April 14, 2017

Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of April 14, 2017. Susan took 4 vacation days this week to apply for Medicaid and Social Security Disability. She had dialysis Tuesday and Thursday. Her blood sugar levels went through the roof after dialysis resulting in her having no energy; she was lethargic. We had an appointment with her diabetes doctor because of the high blood sugar levels after dialysis and found out dialysis also removes/reduces insulin levels. He recommended changes to the settings on her insulin pump. We will see what the new settings do.

In the prison news: (BBC NEWS) — Ohio prison inmates ‘built computers and hid them in ceiling’. “A prison work program has backfired, after two inmates in the US state of Ohio built computers from PCs they were supposed to be dismantling for recycling. The unsupervised inmates later hid the PCs in the ceiling of a training room. Investigators found software, pornography and articles about making drugs and explosives on the machines. The discovery came after IT staff flagged unusual levels of internet activity on a contractor’s account.”  The inmates were offered a job by Dell Computers when they are released. Nice to receive vocational training while incarcerated.

Hard to believe there are still p[laces on this Earth where folks eat dogs and cats. Beijing (CNN) — Taiwan bans eating dog and cat meat. “Taiwan has outlawed the consumption of dog and cat meat, as the island’s legislature on Tuesday passed a landmark amendment to its animal protection laws, according to island’s official Central News Agency (CNA). “Taiwan’s progressive ban is part of a growing trend across Asia to end the brutal dog meat trade,” said Wendy Higgins with Humane Society International. “Previously, the Animal Protection Act only covered the slaughter and sale of dog and cat meat, but this amendment specifically prohibiting the actual consumption of dog meat today is welcome,” said Jill Robinson, founder and CEO of Animals Asia Foundation. Individuals who eat or trade dog or cat meat can now be fined between $1,640 and $8,200.” I wonder how you say “hotdog” in Chinese? [Note: this is an interesting article containing information about other animals folks munch down on.]

It’s been a really bad week for United Airlines (CNN) — What next? Scorpion stings passenger on United Airlines flight. “It’s been a rough week for United Airlines. The same day a passenger was infamously dragged off a United plane in Chicago, a man on a United flight from Houston to Calgary was allegedly stung by a scorpion. The venomous creature fell from an overhead bin and landed on Richard Bell’s hair as he was eating lunch Sunday in his business class seat, according to his wife Linda. “My husband felt something in his hair. He grabbed it out of his hair and it fell onto his dinner table. As he was grabbing it by the tail it stung him,” she told CNN.” How in the world would a scorpion get into an overhead bin in an aircraft? But then, those Texas scorpions are really sneaky.

Talk about getting screwed over by an Ex! (CNN TECH) — 1,100 strangers showed up at his home for sex. He blames Grindr. “Over the past five months, Matthew Herrick says that 1,100 men have showed up at his home and workplace expecting to have sex with him. Herrick is suing Grindr, the popular dating app for gay and bisexual men, because of it. According to the complaint, Herrick, 32, is the victim of an elaborate revenge scheme that’s playing out on Grindr’s platform. An ex-boyfriend of Herrick’s, who he says he met on Grindr, has allegedly been creating fake accounts since October 2016. The accounts have Herrick’s photos and personal details, including some falsehoods like a claim that that he’s HIV positive. The ex allegedly invites men to Herrick’s apartment and the restaurant where he works. Sometimes as many as 16 strangers each day will show up looking for Herrick. In some instances, they are told not to be dissuaded if Herrick is resistant at first, “as part of an agreed upon rape fantasy or role play.” Why in the world is he suing Grindr? “Grindr | The world’s largest gay social network app”  I never heard of it What liability would a social network, (like Twitter or Facebook), have for the actions of users?

Sitting here editing these Ramblings and waiting for Susan to come home. She has dialysis tomorrow afternoon. On the evening news? The potential threat posed by North Korea to South Korea and Japan. We have 78.000 troops in the area. If there is a war, it will have a dire impact on the US … make Hyundai and Kia parts unavailable. Easter Sunday is coming up this weekend. I am planning a traditional Easter meal: ham, mashed potatoes and corn. Haven’t thought about a movie to watch.

Time to post these Ramblings. Later … I will also say a prayer for the safe and soon return of our men and women in uniform, (care to join me?) I remain nicotine free. Be and sleep well, the best we have as a nation are on watch so you can. If my post offends, I apologize … that is certainly not my intent. As always …

A Warm Brotherly Hug

KarlT (the dumb old country lawyer from Holden, Missouri   …   now retired and living in Pascagoula, Mississippi   …   and the Editorial Staff)

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April 7, 2017

Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of April 7, 2017. Susan and I knew this day would come. After getting the results of her blood work on Tuesday morning … the results were bad enough to trigger immediate Hemodialysis that afternoon. In the future 4.5 hours every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.   I brought Susan to the dialysis center Tuesday and found out … the center would not allow me to stay with her during dialysis. I would have to wait 4.5 hours in the lobby. Since the Center is 5 minutes from the house, I went home and picked her up after she was done. Yesterday, she drove herself. Hemodialysis will limit Susan’s ability to work fulltime which will trigger loss of her health insurance. Apparently, going on dialysis triggers Social Security Disability and Medicaid, even if capable of working part time. Every cloud has a silver lining!

Scary prediction: (CNN) — The Big One Is Coming, and Its Going To Be a Flu Pandemic. “Experts say we are “due” for one. When it happens, they tell us, it will probably have a greater impact on humanity than anything else currently happening in the world. And yet, like with most people, it is probably something you haven’t spent much time thinking about. After all, it is human nature to avoid being consumed by hypothetical until they are staring us squarely in the face. Such is the case with a highly lethal flu pandemic. And when it comes, it will affect every human alive today.”  The most likely strain? Avian Flu, (H7N9).

I knew there is all kinds of porn available on the Internet. I have not seen it. But then I haven’t looked for it. (BBC NEWS) — Europe becomes ‘hub’ for child sexual abuse content. Europe is becoming the global hub for the hosting of child sexual abuse images and videos, suggests a report. The Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) found that 60% of worldwide abuse material was now in Europe – an increase of 19%. The Netherlands topped the list of European nations hosting the illegal content, said the IWF. Improved reporting and policing by net firms in North America are believed to have driven the shift. “The situation is reversed from previous years,” said Susie Hargreaves, chief executive of the IWF. “Europe is now the biggest host of child sexual abuse imagery, rather than North America.” …   n 2015, about 57% of the web pages containing abuse content could be found in North America, according to the IWF figures. In 2016, this had dropped to 37% with the majority now in Europe. The IWF report said about 34,212 web pages were found to be displaying abuse content in Europe – which also includes Russia and Turkey.” Kiddy smut is against the law in every country in the world, with some very significant sanctions. In the US, you can get more jail time for possessing kiddy porn than armed robbery.

And in computer news from our gambling brothers in Great Britain. (BBC NEWS) — Bookmakers’ software under scrutiny. “The Information Commissioner’s Office is investigating whether online bookies are breaking the law. It has found in favor of two punters who complained about software being downloaded on to their computers without their permission. The gamblers believe the software could be used to track their betting history and close their accounts if they win. The gambling companies say they are not breaching data laws and they use the software to protect against fraud. The software at the center of the complaints is called iesnare or iovation and downloads automatically when you log in to some online gambling websites. In some cases, it’s downloaded when you visit the homepage. “ Software can be downloaded and run on your computer by simply visiting a website?

And the “yucky” news: (BBC NEWS) — Menstrual cycle recreated ‘in a dish’. “US scientists say they have made a mini working replica of the female reproductive tract using human and mouse tissue. Although the palm-sized device looks nothing like a womb, fallopian tubes and ovaries, the researchers say it should help with understanding diseases of these organs and tissues. It also provides a novel way to test new treatments. The work is part of a project to create the entire human “body on a chip”. The ultimate goal would be to take cells from any given individual in order to create a personalized model of their body to test drugs and treatments on, Nature Communications reports.” Funding for creating an erection “in a dish” did not survive budget cuts.

Sitting here trying to make sense of the last couple of months. Susan and I spent the day working on her SSD and Medicaid applications. We have no clue whether the physical effects of dialysis will impact her ability to continue working. She has a dialysis session tomorrow. Strange how life works out. We moved down here because of my medical issues   … and now her medical issues will define our future.

Time to post these Ramblings. Later … I will also say a prayer for the safe and soon return of our men and women in uniform, (care to join me?) I remain nicotine free. Be and sleep well, the best we have as a nation are on watch so you can. If my post offends, I apologize … that is certainly not my intent. As always …

A Warm Brotherly Hug

KarlT (the dumb old country lawyer from Holden, Missouri   …   now retired and living in Pascagoula, Mississippi   …   and the Editorial Staff)

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March 31, 2017

Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of March 31, 2017. Susan’s peritoneal dialysis stint was not functioning. It was clogged. On Wednesday, I went with Susan to unplug her peritoneal dialysis stint. Her doc went in and found organ inflammation which required removal of the stint. Without the stint, peritoneal dialysis is not an option. Perhaps it will be an option in the future, depending on how Susan heals. Once Hemodialysis starts, we are looking at 4 hour sessions on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at a dialysis clinic.

In the “I wonder how this would play in the US” news. (BBC NEWS) — Mexico City metro’s ‘penis seat’ sparks debate. “When a new style of seat suddenly appeared on Mexico City’s metro system, it was labeled as inappropriate, uncomfortable, humiliating and embarrassing. It was supposed to be. The seat, molded to include a protruding penis and chest, was designed to highlight sexual harassment experienced by female passengers. The explanation next to the men-only label read: “It is uncomfortable to sit here, but that is nothing compared to the sexual violence that women suffer on their daily journeys.” Rumor has it   … the seats were field tested in San Francisco.

Who funds these studies?? (BBC NEWS) —   How the mouse came to live alongside humans. “Mice have been living alongside humans for 15,000 years, according to fossil evidence. This is earlier than previously thought – and predates the dawn of agriculture. Scientists believe wild mice crept into settlements in the Levant (Eastern Mediterranean) region to steal wild grains and seeds that ancient people had gathered and stored. The rodents became what we know today as house mice, enjoying free food and shelter in human homes. “Nowadays, thanks to this relationship, house mice have colonized almost every corner of the globe to become almost as ubiquitous as humans and also one of the most invasive mammalian species,” said Dr Thomas Cucchi of Museum national d’Histoire naturelle, Paris.” And for 15,000 years mice have given us Hantavirus, lymphocytic choriomeningitis, tularemia, and plague.

The latest in “Penguin Porn”. (BBC NEWS) — Seals Discovered Having Sex with Penguins. Things are heating up in the cold climes of the sub-Antarctic. On a remote, and mostly desolate island, seals have been caught engaging in an extreme form of sexual behavior. Specifically, they have been trying to have sex with penguins. More than one fur seal has been caught in the act, on more than one occasion. And it’s all been captured on film, with details being published in the journal Polar Biology.” The researchers at Popular Biology have started a side business  … conducting tours to the island so folks can watch seals flipping a bird.

Stuff happens! (BBC NEWS) — Dutch student flies to Sydney, Nova Scotia by accident. “A Dutch student learned the hard way that some deals are too good to be true when he landed in Sydney, Canada instead of Sydney, Australia. Milan Schipper told the CBC that he bought his flight because it was much cheaper than all the other tickets. Instead of heading straight to the beach, as he had planned, he found himself in near-blizzard conditions with nothing more than a light jacket. Airline employees helped him book a return ticket home to Amsterdam. The 18-year-old says he knew something was amiss when he had a layover in Toronto, and his connecting flight was in a small Air Canada plane.   “The plane was really small and so I figured, would that make it to Australia?” he told the CBC.”  They must not teach basic geography in the Netherlands. I don’t think you would fly from the Netherlands to Australia by way of Toronto!

Sitting here getting ready to post these Ramblings. Just a quiet evening at Ft Timmerman. I put the fence up around the raised garden beds today and planted Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Yellow Squash and Banana Peppers. Tomorrow, I will plant lettuce. Sunday Lunch and a Movie? Thinking about spaghetti and meat balls. The movie? “Kung Fu Yoga [2017]”.

Time to post these Ramblings. Later … I will also say a prayer for the safe and soon return of our men and women in uniform, (care to join me?) I remain nicotine free. Be and sleep well, the best we have as a nation are on watch so you can. If my post offends, I apologize … that is certainly not my intent. As always …

A Warm Brotherly Hug

KarlT (the dumb old country lawyer from Holden, Missouri   …   now retired and living in Pascagoula, Mississippi   …   and the Editorial Staff)

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March 24, 2017

Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of March 24, 2017. Had the 3rd Peritoneal Dialysis training on Wednesday. Part of the training was to do a manual dialysis session. Manually inject the dialysis fluid   … wait 20 minutes, then drain it. No problem injecting   … but after 15 minuets, it would not drain. The catheter was clogged. So   … next Wednesday, Susan’s surgeon will go back in and unclog it.   Disheartening   … but all part of the learning curve.

The miracles of new technology!! (BBC NEWS) — Solar-powered skin for prosthetic limbs. “A synthetic skin for prosthetics limbs that can generate its own energy from solar power has been developed by engineers from Glasgow University. Researchers had already created an ‘electronic skin’ for prosthetic hands made with new super-material graphene. The new skin was much more sensitive to touch but needed a power source to operate its sensors. Previously this required a battery but the latest breakthrough has integrated photo-voltaic cells in to the skin.” Work is continuing on a prosthetic graphene penis enhancement. Unfortunately, developing cell integrated photo-voltaic cells for the enhancement has proven problematic. Apparently, once stimulated, as the enhancement grows in size   … the photo-voltaic cells fall off.

Speaking about sensors: (BBC NEWS) — Fruit-shaped sensor ‘can improve freshness’ “A new fruit-shaped sensor could help cargo companies to keep fruit fresher in transit, researchers say. The device – which mimics the size, shape and composition of real fruit – is packed in with produce in transit and closely monitors its temperature. It comes in orange, apple, banana and mango varieties, and alerts firms to problems with their cooling processes, allowing them to take action. It could also lead to fresher fruit for consumers, researchers said.“ Obviously   … it is important to keep your bananas fresh and cool.

When they talk about the “miracle” of birth: (BBC NEWS) — Sperm swimming technique ‘all down to simple maths’. “ How an individual sperm swims, against all the odds, through fluid to reach the fallopian tubes has been revealed – and it’s all about rhythm. Researchers from the UK and Japan found that the head and tail movements of sperm made patterns similar to the fields that form around magnets. And these help to propel sperm towards the female egg …   When a man has ejaculated, 50 million to 150 million sperm are produced, and these cells immediately start swimming upstream towards a woman’s fallopian tubes. But it’s not an easy journey – there are lots of hurdles to overcome for the male sex cells, which are just 0.065mm in length. Only one sperm can penetrate the woman’s egg and fertilize it, so the race is on. First, they have to survive the vagina, where conditions mean most die. Then they have to avoid dead ends and being trapped before reaching the uterus. On the way there are marauding white blood cells ready to kill them. Finally, the remaining sperm arrive at the fallopian tubes, where they are fed and nourished. But has an egg been released at exactly the right time to welcome the winning sperm? If not, the journey has all been in vain.”  Life is a competition.

Also a problem in our America: parents who refuse to have their children immunized because they believe immunization triggers autism. (BBC NEWS) — Australia considers childcare ban on unvaccinated children. “Unvaccinated children would be banned from childcare centers and preschools under an Australian government plan. Some Australian states already have “no jab, no play” laws, but PM Malcolm Turnbull is calling for nationwide legislation. Health groups have supported the push, arguing parents and the community have an obligation to protect children. An Australian Child Health Poll survey of nearly 2,000 parents showed 5% of children were not fully vaccinated. Mr Turnbull said more needed to be done, citing the case of a baby who died from whooping cough.   “This is not a theoretical exercise – this is life and death,” Mr Turnbull said. “If a parent says, ‘I’m not going to vaccinate my child,’ they are not simply putting their child at risk, they are putting everybody else’s children at risk too.” Vaccinating children is not a legal requirement in Australia, but failing to do so makes parents ineligible for childcare rebates.” A quick “Google” lists an incredible number of studies debunking an immunization and autism link.

Sitting here editing these Ramblings and watching the evening news. For the last 4 election cycles, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016   … Republicans have campaigned on a promise to repeal Obamacare.   They won the House, the Senate and the Presidency with the support of folks opposed to Obamacare … and today, when finally having the opportunity to do so   …   lack the cojones, the political will, to get it done. Obamacare is in a “death spiral” and will go the way of the buffalo. When it does, (and it will), Democrats will be able to blame Republicans for failing to fix it.   Fact is? There is no difference between a Red Pig and a Blue Pig   … a Pig is a Pig, (reference to “Animal Farm”) Sunday Lunch and a Movie? Pork Roast, (somehow appropriate), Egg Noodles, Creamed Corn and a Garden Salad. The movie? “Passengers [2016]”.

Time to post these Ramblings. Later … I will also say a prayer for the safe and soon return of our men and women in uniform, (care to join me?) I remain nicotine free. Be and sleep well, the best we have as a nation are on watch so you can. If my post offends, I apologize … that is certainly not my intent. As always …

A Warm Brotherly Hug

KarlT (the dumb old country lawyer from Holden, Missouri   …   now retired and living in Pascagoula, Mississippi   …   and the Editorial Staff)

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March 17, 2017

Greets and Huggers. Posted the evening of March 17, 2017. Susan and I had our second Peritoneal Dialysis Training on Wednesday. This session was training to perform manual peritoneal dialysis, where “a cleansing fluid flows through a tube (catheter) into part of the abdomen and filters waste products from the blood. After a prescribed period of time, the fluid with filtered waste products flows out of the abdomen into a collection bag and is discarded.” The manual part consists of connecting bags containing the dialysis fluid and collecting fluids from the abdomen, to the catheter and manually switching between them, while monitoring fluid levels. Manual peritoneal dialysis must be performed several times a day and takes between 15 – 30 minutes each time. Manual peritoneal dialysis is a backup for a Peritoneal Dialysis Machine, (PDM), should there be a power failure or the peritoneal dialysis machine malfunctions. A PDM is a mechanical device a little bit larger than an IBM Selectric Typewriter   …   it automatically switches between bags and monitors fluid levels A PDM is portable, can be connected to the catheter with up to a 32’ hose and is used once a day for 6 – 10 hours. Most folks use it at night while sleeping. Beats the hell out of sitting hooked up to a Hemodialysis Machine, at a Hemodialysis Center, every other day for 4 hours. With a PDM   …   you can have a life while on dialysis!!

Many believe racism exists in our America. Does this prove it does? (CNN) — Study: We think black men are bigger than white men (even when they’re not). “When we look at black men, what is and what we see are often different things. Namely, we may see black men as bigger, stronger, and scarier than white men, even if they are the same size. In a new body of research published by the American Psychological Association, 950 online participants from the US were asked to rate black and white men based on their weight, height, strength and build. “We found that these estimates were consistently biased. Participants judged the black men to be larger, stronger and more muscular than the white men, even though they were actually the same size,” said the study’s lead author, John Paul Wilson of Montclair State University. The findings got even more ominous from there. Not only did participants distort the size of the men, they also identified the black men as, essentially, more of a threat deserving of force. “Participants also believed that the black men were more capable of causing harm in a hypothetical altercation and, troublingly, that police would be more justified in using force to subdue them, even if the men were unarmed,” Wilson said.” Isn’t the definition of racism, “prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior?” And doesn’t that beg the question: “Is it racist to judge black men to be larger, stronger and more muscular than white men?”

And a candidate for “Darwin Awards”:   (BBC NEWS) — Man dies charging iPhone while in the bath. “A man was electrocuted as he charged his mobile phone while in the bath, an inquest has heard. Richard Bull died when his iPhone charger made contact with the water at his home in Ealing, west London. A coroner ruled his death was accidental and plans to send a report to Apple about taking action to prevent future deaths. Safety campaigners have warned about the dangers of charging mobiles near water following the inquest. Mr Bull is believed to have plugged his charger into an extension cord from the hallway and rested it on his chest while using the phone, the Sun reports.”  Well .. I can see another warning label on iPhones: “Do Not Charge Your iPhone While in the Bathtub or Shower.” 

In the “I am male and have no clue”, news. (BBC NEWS) —   Girls ‘too poor’ to buy sanitary protection missing school. “Girls in the UK are missing school because they cannot afford sanitary protection, a charity has said. Freedom4Girls was contacted by a school in Leeds after it became concerned about teenage girls’ attendance. The group provides sanitary products to women in Kenya – but is now doing the same in West Yorkshire. One teenager told the BBC she taped toilet roll to her underwear and missed school “every month” because of her period. Two teenage girls spoke to BBC Radio Leeds about how they tried to cope without tampons, sanitary towels or pain relief. One of the girls said: “I wrapped a sock around my underwear just to stop the bleeding, because I didn’t want to get shouted at. And I wrapped a whole tissue roll around my underwear, just to keep my underwear dry until I got home. I once Sellotaped tissue to my underwear. I didn’t know what else to do. “I kept this secret up until I was 14 years old and then I started asking for help. No comment.

Sitting here waiting for Susan to come home and Editing these Ramblings. We will work in the yard tomorrow: “Spring Cleaning”. Sunday Lunch and a Movie? Lasagna and a garden salad. The movie? “Elite [2017]”.

Time to post these Ramblings. Later … I will also say a prayer for the safe and soon return of our men and women in uniform, (care to join me?) I am now close to 4 years nicotine free. Be and sleep well, the best we have as a nation are on watch so you can. If my post offends, I apologize … that is certainly not my intent. As always …

A Warm Brotherly Hug

KarlT (the dumb old country lawyer from Holden, Missouri   …   now retired and living in Pascagoula, Mississippi   … and the Editorial Staff)

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