Fear for Income

Photo by Lynn Kelley Author via WANA Common

There is a paranoia being grown today for the specific reason of making lots and lots of money. To most people, it even looks like the big companies are doing something good. Unless you understand the real story.

What is this growing fear? It is fear of germs. Yep, tiny bacteria and even smaller viruses. Haven’t you noticed? Just about everything now has chemicals in them to kill germs. There are several problems with this glut of micro-assassin ingredients.

    • They aren’t needed. All you really need to get most anything clean is soap and water. There’s a reason we’ve been told for years that the best way to stay healthy is washing our hands. Same goes for counters and sinks and pretty much anything else. There is also the rarely mentioned fact that if a surface dries completely almost all microorganisms will be killed. Bacteria and viruses need moist environments to survive. A dry counter will kill all but a rare few.
    • Our bodies need several types of bacteria. You’ve probably heard of probiotics. These are microorganisms that our bodies require to digest food.
    • Chemicals can be dangerous. Harsh chemicals used to disinfect surfaces can harm skin, eyes, and lungs. Chlorine mixed with other cleaners can release chlorine gas–which can be deadly.
    • Superbugs. You’ve probably heard that the overuse of antibiotics can breed “superbugs” which are bacteria that are not killed by the most common antibiotics. Some have even evolved that are not killed by ANY current antibiotic.

So the next time you clean, consider if you really need to use that strong cleaner. Maybe soap and water would be just as good or better.

Click here for more information about disinfectant over use and here for information about hand washing.

Did your parents teach you to wash your hands?

Are you paranoid about germs?

Have you noticed the increase in germ killing cleaners? The way the ads are designed to worry people?

 

Together We Stand Strong

Bald Eagle, mighty symbol of our country

On this American Independence Day, I’d like to say I love my home and I believe with all my heart we are the greatest country in the world. Not that we don’t have issues and problems that we need to deal with, but we have the freedom to openly talk about those problems. That freedom of speech gives us the ability to change those things that don’t benefit us as a nation.

Changing things that are not good for the country as a whole is not the same thing as changing things we as individuals don’t particularly like. For example, I don’t like much rap or hip hop music. Should I be able to force this style of music to be banned? Of course not. Neither should another person be able to ban Jazz and Blues music—which I love. I think “Daisy Duke” shorts are horrible. Another person may think the sweatpants I wear at home are the worst thing ever (I don’t wear them in public…much) But neither of us can force the other to change. That’s called getting along, and it’s something we as a society needs to learn.

Which brings me back to the great country idea. Just because we don’t all agree with each other doesn’t make America any less a wonderful place to live. Remember, you can’t force the person beside you not to wear orange, but they can’t force you not to wear green either. So be good citizens and play nice!

 

And now a word from across the pond:

Unidentified Flying Thing in the Sky

The first X-Files episode was based on a real UFO investigation.


There’s a UFO flap* going on right now. This one isn’t the kind where people are looking up at the night sky and seeing Venus. This flap is on TV. Perennial favorite, Ancient Aliens is back with new episodes and more on-air time by the hosts. Comcast on demand, for example, has Hanger 1, for example, and even within shows like Travel Channel’s Mysteries at the Museum. I’m guessing, but I’ll bet other providers, Netflix, Amazon, etc., have these or other UFO shows.

Before anyone points it out, I realize there are always UFO and alien related TV shows available. What I’m saying is that there are more at one time than I’ve ever seen, and the ones that are on seem more to lean to the reality of UFOs and the involvement of government(or multi-governments)with these crafts and beings. The whole thing has caught my interest, and I’m wondering if there are things going on that we as regular citizens are not aware of.
I’ve had a lifelong interest in aliens, UFOs, space travel, inter-dimensional transport, and the possibilities of what could be just beyond our reach. I have spent a lot of time and effort studying both the “junk science” areas and the “real science” areas of UFO and other topics. Maybe it’s time for me to share. Stay tuned to this blog for more coming soon.

Have you seen an unidentified flying object?
Have you seen an alien?
Do you think the whole thing is silly and made up by folks who don’t have anything better to do?

*A Flap is a sudden increase of UFO sightings by numerous people in a certain area or areas.

Take care!

Who Stole My Spoons?

spoons gonevia Flickr Creative Commons

I broke one of my personal rules the other day, I ran several errands, pushed hard at my writing, and did a bit around the house. Not a lot, but for me it was entirely too much.  It  felt great to accomplish so many things, and I thoroughly enjoyed the day, but there were consequences. For one, my spoons are gone! Spoons, you say. What the heck is the crazy woman talking about?

The Spoon Theory by Christine Miserandino is the clearest and most accurate explanation around of how energy, which she calls spoons, is the bane of existence for those of us with chronic illnesses.  To truly understand the idea, I suggest reading her explanation. The bottom line is that she uses spoons to represent units of energy. Sort of like a gallon of gas in your car. You can go just so far. Most people are energy efficient and need very little energy to do what they want on a daily basis. It’s only at times of long travel, or the need for lots of trips that the gallons becomes an issue. People use spoons. Most people have plenty for their daily needs. Some of us don’t have so many. Unlike gas, you can’t just go out and buy more. What ya got is what ya got. Deal with it.

spoonsvia Flickr Creative Commons

Most of us eventually learn to live within our spoon limit. We take life more slowly, do things in different ways, break big tasks into smaller ones, and learn to say no. These ways of dealing with insufficient spoons, tend to drive “normal” folks up the wall. Then there is the “do it anyway and pay the price later” strategy. It’s a commonly used strategy, because it allows us more freedom. The problems with it is that afterward we have almost no spoons for days or even weeks, we frequently are hit with other symptoms (pain, confusion, grogginess, weakness, etc.), and the fact that other people understand this coping strategy even less than the others. “But you went to Jan’s birthday party last week, why can’t you go to the mall with me?” We even get called lazy.

It’s a complicated way to live, and some of us cope better than others. If you’re dealing with a person with a chronic illness, maybe you could take a little time to think, to learn more, to figure out how to not push when the person is trying to live with their spoon limit, and most importantly: try to understand!

It would be a really nice thing to do!

Do you have a chronic illness? What do you wish people understood? Any suggestions for living with a spoon shortage?

Do you know someone with a chronic illness? How do you feel about the way they deal with it? What do you wish you understood about them or the illness?

Later!

Cheryel

Science Fiction Authors

When I posted about the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, I mentioned the classic novels of science fiction. Today I’d like to mention the authors who pulled me into SF. Not everyone will consider these are the best or most influential, but in my teens and early twenties they wrote the books I escaped into. They came into my life either by being recommended to me by friends, being available through Scholastic (or both), or by being available in my local library. Still these authors are, if not the best,  at least among the best.

Except for the first name, the list is in no particular order. I stand behind my belief that Isaac Asimov was the best science fiction writer ever.

 

isaac-asimovIsaac Asimov. The author or editor of over 500 books, he also wrote numerous articles and essays. I have spent many hours reading and rereading Asimov’s work. My favorite of his novels is The God’s Themselves, although I’d be hard pressed to say why.  Oddly, while I’m not a huge short story fan (I prefer immersion in a story of a longer period of time), I love Asimov’s short stories more than any of his work. His short story, “What If…” contributed to my desire to write fiction. (I had to do something with all those stories I came up with when I began thinking in terms of “what if”.)

ray-bradburyRay Bradbury Possibly the most well known on this list, Bradbury’s work is deeply layered. I tended to feel I was missing something important, and yet I loved the stories. I can’t wait to read his work again now. I have a feeling I’ll be shocked at some of the amazing things I missed when I was too young to appreciate them.

arthur-c-clarkeArthur C. Clarke When they hear the name Arthur C. Clark, most people think 2001: A Space Odyssey. While I think 2001 is awesome, my favorite of his novels is Childhood’s End. The amazing story of human kind’s evolution into something else is a breathtaking tale of what might be next for our species.  I was excited to hear about the recent miniseries, but while it seemed promising in the beginning, it didn’t really have the depth and intricacy of the novel.

robert-heinleinRobert A. Heinlein I enjoy reading Heinlein, but his The Cat Who Walked Through Walls was the last SF novel I read (that I hadn’t previously read). I had never heard of Schrödinger’s Cat, and had no idea the novel was playing on that theme. I didn’t like the way it ended. I have a feeling I still wouldn’t like it, but wouldn’t feel as betrayed as I did back then (early 80’s).

jules-verneJules Verne  Jules Verne the Man Who Invented the Future, is a biography of Verne by F. Born, and there is much truth in the title. Among other things, Verne introduced a workable submarine, helicopter, and  moon landing. Great vision, exciting adventure stories. What more could you want?

h-g-wellsH. G. Wells Martian attacks, a trip to the moon, horrific biology experiments, an invisible man; and at the time he wrote them, these stories were new.  Wells had a gift of making the reader feel as if he/she was  in the thick of the events.

ZHenderson1953 Zenna Henderson  I loved Henderson’s  Pilgrimage: The Book of the People, but it was only a few years ago that I stumbled onto a volume of her short stories. Here I found even more depth and interesting takes on society.

 

Yes, with one exception these are all men. That’s what was available, so that’s what I read.  There  were women SF writers, but they were harder to find. Thankfully, things have gotten better since that time, though women in the genre are still struggling.

Later I discovered many more excellent SF authors, but the ones I included here were the beginning for me, the “gateway novels” I suppose. Writing this blog, makes me want to read more SF, both authors and stories I know and new authors and stories. There is never enough time to read.

I didn’t include pure fantasy authors (yes, I know the genres blur). Maybe I’ll write another post about them, especially since there are more women.

Do you have favorite authors from earlier in your life? Were they science fiction or other genres? Do you read different genre now than when you were younger?

Have a great week!

Cheryel

 

All photos from FamousAuthors.org except Zenna Henderson which is an author publicity photo.

Fifteen Years Later: Where Are We Now?

Fifteen yeas ago today the United States endured the worst attack on U.S. soil ever. Today our hearts go out to the survivors and the families and friends of those who died in the attack.  May the years soften the heartache, and time lessen the ache.

rememberance

ayphoto by Scott Hudson via Flickr Commons

Soon after the attack, our country pulled together. Pride in our county and in our first responders filled our hearts. A few weeks later, police and fire fighter costumes were huge sellers for Halloween. We united in pride and determination. I thought the country had finally grown up.

Fifteen years later, a major presidential candidate is running a campaign promising to make America great again. Damn it! We ARE great. We always have been. Do we have problems? Definitely. Huge issues to deal with? Yes. Are there divisions among our citizens that are pulling us apart? Unfortunately yes. Ratings (money) hungry media and politicians of all levels looking to use our differences for their own agenda (money and power) have contributed to the problem. So yes, we have a lot to do, but that doesn’t lessen the fact that our ability to speak our minds in public is an indication of the greatness of our country. We are free. We are by and large safe. We accept our differences more than most countries.

We are a nation of explorers, of heroes, of people who were strong enough to weather all the wars and issues we’ve been faced with: revolution, civil war, slavery, industrialization, foreign wars, civil rights, terrorist attacks.

We need to rise above all those who want to use our fears and frustrations for their own betterment. No matter the race, religion, lifestyle, or political inclination let us treat each other with, if not friendship, at least with respect.

God bless America, our home.

Old Timers Don’t Say SciFi

Fifty years ago today, the biggest science fiction franchise ever launched. It was, of course, Star Trek (yes, the original one with Kirk and Spock).

I was fortunate to have watched the very first Star Trek episode the night it originally aired back in 1966. Even better, three years later I watched humanity reach the moon. I am so blessed to have been here to see the time when science and fiction came together and merged into one huge push for the future.

ST_TOS_Cast

Original Star Trek promotional photo

In those heady days of the end of the 1960s, it seemed the whole world was focused on space. It was a time of excitement of adventure, a time full of possibilities. I’m so grateful I was alive to experience that magic. All too soon, the moon was left behind us, and space lost its allure for the masses.

Nichelle Nichols

Photo from IMDB

Sure there were moments. The shuttle program being the biggest. There was the beautiful and talented Nichelle Nichols leading the charge to name the first shuttle Enterprise. (It was, though it never flew into space.)

But soon that time ended. Slowly it became common place for a shuttle to go into space. Few people got excited. Then in 1986, the Challenger explosion occurred (photo below). Ironically, the accident rekindled the space program for a while. Eventually, the public lost interest again.   In 2003, another disaster occurred when the Columbia shuttle broke up during reentry. This time the US space program slowed to barely a crawl. And there it is today, struggling to hold a place in our busy, fast-paced world.

 

Challenger_explosion

Photo By Kennedy Space Center [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Space once again became the domain of fiction. Star Trek is still there, with new movies airing regularly, and a new series coming soon. There are other science fiction movies and series, some good, some not, but nothing as big a hit or social changer. Of course there are the novels. I have to admit, I haven’t read many newer SF novels, I haven’t had the time. Besides, I love the classics so much it’s hard to believe anything can stand up to them.

Science fiction is founded in science, taking current knowledge and building. Those who hold to the foundation of science fiction tend to hate the term sci-fi, feeling it belittles the field. I’m one of those who don’t use the term, instead I prefer the full science fiction or SF But then we’ve already established I came in early.

And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

 

Wanna discuss the subject?

If you could live in any time period,what would you choose?

Would you consider living in  the future?

Do you think humans will ever live in space or on another planet?

Have a great day!

Cheryel

The Waters Of Mars

Mars

Photo of surface of Mars from NASA.org

Three days ago, NASA announced proof of liquid water on Mars. I was thrilled. What an amazing discovery! I honestly thought the news would be all over the story. I wasn’t home at the time of the original announcement, so when I came in the door, I turned on the TV to see what the news agencies were saying. That would be a big NOTHING. What I found was news that the pope was back home, and there was a big discussion over whether Trump or Putin got the harder questions on 60 Minutes. I changed the channel before they got to the Kardashians. My nerves couldn’t have handled that. Finally I caught a crawl across the bottom of the screen announcing water had been found on another plant. Yes, PLANT. At this point, the TV went off.

So there I was, stomping around the house, wondering if I wasn’t on the wrong planet. A day later, I discovered some people actually thought NASA found liquid water on Mars just to promote the movie, Martian.  *head desk*

I’ve spent the last three days alternately depressed, excited, frustrated, and wondering who put stupid juice in the water.

In case you don’t really understand what the big deal is, there’s a video for that:

Bill Nye explains significance of liquid water on Mars. http://www.msnbc.com/the-last-word/watch/bill-nye-explains-why-water-on-mars-matters-534065731547

In better news, today Google celebrated the discovery with a cute doodle:    https://g.co/doodle/m4fgh2

 

How do you feel about the possibility of life on Mars?

Do you think there’s the possibility of intelligent life on other planets?

Would you be willing to take a trip to Mars?

 

Anybody understand the reference in the title?

 

Have a great day!

 

Cheryel