Imagine if the World had Actually Changed

Photo by Erin Song on Unsplash

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

John Lennon

John Lennon was and is to this day a great artist for many reasons, he promoted world peace and love, his birthday would have been today (9th of October) he would have been 79.

At school we were allowed to do projects on famous people we respected, mine was on John Lennon’s death. It would be 38 years ago on the 8th of December this year when Mark David Chapman opened fire and shot 5 bullets fatally wounding John, it was the end of an era, the world was devastated.

Mark David Chapman was a dangerous man, his wide knew of his plan and his obsession and yet did nothing, complicit in an unnecessary murder and yet never charged. Marks biggest issue with John was that he preached peace and love but still had millions in the bank. Personally im not sure how having millions in the bank has to do with ones ability to preach peace and love. Sure you could argue that Money makes everything easier but I don’t think you love any less whether you are rich or poor.

His connection to the Catcher in the Rye highlights his mental health issues and his desire to be the 17 year old protagonist are a clear sign that he was unstable. Mark Chapman clearly wanted to address his displeasure with the world but the book has no murder in it, he had taken it one step further. The book itself has been linked to three murders, which in my personal opinion is a shame, as that is not what the book is about, it could be argued as a coming of age book and a teenager’s disgust with the world.

If Mark Chapman hadn’t killed John Lennon on that fateful day, how different would the world be now? Yoko Ono remains artistic and known for her peace activism but in my opinion does not have the same influence as John had or ever will despite his death.

As he said if its not OK it’s not the end, but when will the end come?

The Reason We Breathe

Today the Nobel Prize Committee announced that the 2019 Medicine Laureates will be William G. Kaelin Jr, Sir Peter J. Ratcliffe and Gregg L. Semenza who have identified molecular machinery that regulates the activity of genes in response to varying levels of oxygen.

Thanks to the groundbreaking work of these Nobel Laureates, we know much more about how different oxygen levels regulate fundamental physiological processes. Oxygen sensing allows cells to adapt their metabolism to low oxygen levels: for example, in our muscles during intense exercise. Other examples of adaptive processes controlled by oxygen sensing include the generation of new blood vessels and the production of red blood cells. Our immune system and many other physiological functions are also fine-tuned by the O2- sensing machinery. Oxygen sensing has even been shown to be essential during fetal development for controlling normal blood vessel formation and placenta development.

Nobel Prize Committee 07/10/19

The importance of such research is sometimes lost in the way we are taught about life, before the internet it was common for only minimal education was provided regarding nutrition and how the body works, if you wanted to know you had to go to University. Now we have an open sharing source of information compiled from international sources where we can look up pretty much anything we could possibly want to know. There is an opportunity for all of us to optimise our health by truly understanding our bodies. Body builders are on a constant quest for perfection and anything that will make that easier is worth knowing, if you are rehabilitating from an injury you want to give your body its best chance you can.

The internet has changed the way we learn, some one is bound to have already asked the question there is often a video answering any how-to questions you might have. There is now also scientific information readily available which can educate us far beyond a how-to video could, previously if you wanted that information you would have to be a medical professional with access to research papers, it enables you to make an informed decision for your body.

There are some who follow regimes blindly with no actual regard for their bodies, they don’t read they simply take the latest pill or injection and hope it works, then when it stops working because their body is out of sync and risk permanently damaging their health. Then there are those who care about their bodies, they think about what they are putting in it, they think about the long term effects not just the short term gain.

It pays to be aware of scientific discoveries as they can explain things you might never have understood otherwise. It can be equally dangerous as people may only use half the information but unfortunately that is a risk that science takes every time it publishes research.

The Never Ending #MeToo Arguement

The desire to be an actor can make one do strange things, it puts the people who hire and fire in the most sacred of positions. For years aspiring actors and actresses have ‘done things’ in the hope they might get their first break, does it make it right? No. The psychopathic tendencies of those in senior positions extends outside of Hollywood, whether we like to admit it or not there are a large number of people who are not afraid to use their power for their own sexual gratification.

Women have been conditioned to think they are the weaker sex, our physical strength is different due to physiological differences but it could be argued that we would be as strong as men if we were ‘allowed.’ We have fought tirelessly for equality when we could be fighting for superiority (there is no reason why we couldn’t be the superior race we give life to the world for crying out load) there should be no need to seek permission to improve.

Sadly we cannot change the past and all the people who have suffered at the hands of those on power trips cannot really be recompensed for their suffering, money cant change the years of emotional distress caused by sexual assault, our only choice going forward is to reduce the silence, social media has helped and hindered with this issue as it gives a voice to those who want to cry wolf but it can also help people deal with their issues because they have space to share. It is also imperative in my opinion to maintain a level of awareness and be clear about your intentions, if you are uncomfortable leave, don’t feel frightened, fortunately there is less of a culture for silence since the introduction of the #metoo movement and the ousting of a number of culprits.

I speak entirely as someone observing from the outside, I have not felt the pain experienced by these people I cannot imagine what it would be like living with such secrets but there is no need for silence anymore, people can be brought to justice and it makes it easier if there is evidence. There is no need to suffer in silence anymore.

The Komodo Members Only Club

These majestic creatures are one of the few original links with our distant prehistoric past. They have been subject so several documentaries over the years including a starring role in the BBC’s epic natural history program Life narrated by the master himself Sir David Attenborough.

They are my favourite living dragon, their resilience is second to none, they are however dying out. The reduction in food and a large influx of tourism is seeing a decline in the population on dragon island. The Indonesian governments initial reaction was to consider banning tourists as the numbers have been steadily growing since its discovery in the mid 20th century, earlier in the century claims of giant crocodiles emanated from the island and its said it inspired the very first King Kong movie. The increase in ecotourism has been a mixed blessing, it raises awareness for important issues but in the same vein continues to destroy the very thing these people are trying to protect.

After some consideration the Indonesian government have come to an alternative solution, which if it works then it may help to solve the over all problem. In 2020 new membership fees of up to $1000 (one years access) to the Island will be put in place, tourists will be able to visit the national park without paying the membership fee which also houses the Jurassic lizards. In 2018 it is estimated that over 170,000 up significantly from 44,000 ten years previously. People visited the island which is crazy when you consider the size of it paying around $10 for access. That gives you some scale of the problem, its not just the dragons who are affected the indigenous population are at risk from displacement just as much as the dragons are.

Personally I feel that ecotourism does more hard than good, I appreciate that people want to help but visiting and staring will not help them, pouring money into the local economy may help in small doses but does not solve the problem. Time and space to rebuild the ecology of the island is the only thing that will help the decline.

A New Point of View

I am here to tell you a story, its one of courage and independence, based on true events, let your imagination run wild.

I lived a life of solitude during my youth, although I had friends and family, I spent much time at the computer, sometimes writing, mostly communicating with my online friends in chat rooms, living the emo life.

The move to social media brought with it a different world. Instead of talking to just those in your ‘room’ your profile was public, worldwide communication just got a whole lot easier, people can search and potentially find anyone, track anyone down. Online maps with GPS have become widely used for all sorts of situations.

I was one of the lucky ones, nobody paid attention to me and I didn’t do anything worth noticing, lulled into a false sense of security I assumed it would carry on forever. Surely no one would realise? I was wrong I assumed no one was paying attention. The day came, I had half expected it but hoped it wouldn’t.

I stood at the bottom of the precipice looking up, how did this happen? I looked at the walls, before I would have stopped there and admitted defeat, this time it was different I saw the half brick, I dragged my foot up and put my weight on it, the next was a little further, my other foot scrabbled to grip it. I kept pushing, the light was getting brighter and suddenly I was at the top, the light shining bright, almost blinding, I tried to look around but it was difficult to see much detail. Did I climb too fast? I wondered why the world hadn’t swam into view yet, then suddenly it all became clear, I looked back down, from the top of the cliff, I could see the valley floor now, where before there was a dark wasteland now lay a luscious green space filled with light.

For The Love of Cheese

I’d like to take a moment to say just how much I loves cheese, in many different forms, but not ‘plastic’ cheese as I refer to it (it’s not cheese) the bizarre American slice sitting atop my burger. There are thousands of different types available across the world my particular favourite are sheep and goat despite there being a significantly larger market for the cheaper cows milk cheeses.

They say cheese is as addictive as cocaine, the dose of casein and casomorphins, a casein-derived morphine-like compound stimulates the opioid receptors in our brain producing a dopamine high as our brain rewards us for eating the cheese. Casein is a protein which can be used in fitness regimes, there are plenty of supplements as it is said to support muscle healing in rest periods. There are also those who are actively avoiding it by going ‘plant based’ cutting out the dairy proteins completely.

Dairy sensitivity is on the up and it is having a detrimental effect on our health, I personally don’t advocate going ‘plant based’ unless you really want to as although I am a bit sensitive I know that I can avoid it at certain times or at least reduce my intake for a while for example if I have a cold. As non-dairy cheese this is still a market in its infancy, there are some recipes and companies out there but the choice is limited.

Take a moment to think about your relationship with cheese, if there’s a lot, it might be time to reduce the intake. There is no need to give up just moderation is key. Obesity is not funny, it has serious long term effects on your body. Cheese can make you feel good in small doses it doesn’t need an entire wheel.

Nobel Periodic Research

Sir William Ramsay – born 1852, died 1916 – was a pioneer in inorganic chemistry and discovered a whole group of elements in the periodic table. The discovery of the noble gases – argon, helium, neon, krypton and xenon has made important contributions to the world, the gases are widely used in a number of different applications including arc welding, to dilute the oxygen in deep-sea divers’ gas tanks, and to fill light bulbs.

The Nobel Prize he received in 1904 for his work with Noble gases is well deserved, his prolific work ethic and his supporting team produced extensive research in the field of inorganic chemistry. It is important to note the early part of his career began in physical chemistry.

Interesting Doodle Google

Today 2nd of October 2019 Google chose Dr. Herbert Kleber to be their Google Doodle for that day, he was a pioneer in the understanding of drug addicts and how to treat their symptoms with evidence based treatments He pioneered new approaches such as community-based treatment and methadone maintenance therapy for heroin addicts.

Methadone is a controversial topic and my thoughts are that the whole system needs reviewing. Replacing an opioid with another opioid and hope that you don’t produce another addict is a concept I have always found bizarre. It is well known that opioids are highly addictive and those who use them to replace one addiction with another often have very addictive personalities, it requires a much more structured regime to get clean than just relying on a prescription to take the pain away.

R Robertson argues Methadone is an effective treatment for opiate dependency. Social disapproval and the potential risks should not be barriers to providing this much needed treatment. AM Daniels counters the primary
purpose of drug addiction ‘treatment’ should surely be the return of patients to a drug-free existence; a secondary goal might be harm reduction, though this goal is not without its ethical problems.

The ultimate goal of rehabilitation from drug addiction should be a drug free existence, evidence shows that methadone is an excellent drug for alleviating the withdrawal symptoms, it negates the need for needle sharing thusly decreasing associated cross infections and diseases. It is also ‘cheap’ and presumably highly profitable by the pharmaceutical companies, a similar situation to the Oxycontin row, it seems in this case the lawsuits have become huge class actions. It is however also a choice to take drugs, the addiction you experience is the result of a choice, can we hold companies accountable for our actions? Families want compensation for the damage caused by pharmaceutical companies to their lost family member and certainly they should be recompensed but there needs to be a change in the system to stop using methadone and find something more effective preferably drug free such as behavioural therapy.

Draconids – A Meteoric Event

The October Draconids, in the past also unofficially known as the Giacobinids, are a meteor shower whose parent body is the periodic comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner. They are named after the constellation Draco, where they seemingly come from.

Comet 21P/ Giacobini-Zinner is a small comet with a diameter of 1.24 miles (2 kilometers). This comet takes about 6.6 years to orbit the Sun once. The last time comet Giacobini-Zinner reached perihelion (closest approach to the Sun) was on Feb. 11, 2012. The next perihelion passage will be in 2018.

Each time that Giacobini-Zinner returns to the inner solar system its nucleus sprays ice and rock into space. This debris stream results in an annual meteor shower: the Draconids, which take place each year in early October.

As its an annual event it makes it less special for some but it does provide an opportunity to hopefully see a meteor shower every year, why would you not want to try and watch it rather than hope you might see something on TV or the Internet, nothing quite replaces an in the moment experience.