Which is worse, that the NRA wants an “active” mental illness database or that 38 states already have one?
Fewer balloons in the sky, thanks to the global shortage of the second-most abundant element in the universe, means fewer dead dolphins, whales, birds, and other species of marine wildlife. Remember, balloons blow, don’t let them go!
First it was cashew hulls. Now scientists say that onions and garlic also may be effective in soaking up hazardous heavy metals including arsenic, cadmium, iron, lead, mercury and tin. This according to a paper published in International Journal of Environment and Pollution. According to a press release, researchers at GGS Indraprastha University in Delhi, India, found them to be particularly effective in extracting lead, one of the most troublesome metallic environmental pollutants. Since ferns are used to leach arsenic from contaminated soil, these findings make me wonder if planting garlic and onions could in the yard could lessen the toxicity of soil contaminated with lead paint flakes from houses.
While somewhat light on science, the recent New York Times Magazine cover story “The Hazards of Growing Up Painlessly” is a fascinating profile of Ashlyn Blocker, a girl who suffers from a rare, harrowing, and little-understood condition known as “congenital insensitivity to pain.” Although not mentioned in the article, one of the only other diseases that rob patients of the ability to feel pain is leprosy. Although the stereotype persists that leprosy makes parts of your body fall off, what actually happens is that nerve damage from the Mycobacterium leprae causes the extremities to lose sensation and then atrophy. The inability to feel pain leads to chronic sores, gangrene, blindness, and destruction of flesh. Continued bruising, without sensation of pain, can result in absorption of bone, which is responsible for the foreshortening of leprosy patients’ fingers and toes. Only if you are diagnosed with leprosy and treated quickly with a cocktail of powerful antibiotics and steroids can you be cured and stave off the worst of the damage. But at least there is a cure for leprosy, which is more than can be said for the genetic mutation that makes day-to-day living for patients like Ashlyn so complicated.
Designers of the new generation of innovative playgrounds contend that these collaborative free-form environments are inspiring the world’s future problem-solvers. My 7-year-old has a different spin: “Yeeeeeaahhhhhh!!!” Here’s my write-up on Designwire Daily about Rockwell Group’s latest Imagination Playground — the centerpiece of the National Building Museum’s “Play Work Build” exhibition, which opened last week.