Sorry, friends, I know I have been off-line, but our household goods arrived, went through customs today and were delivered this afternoon, the first day of the great Doha HUMIDITY. I really felt sorry for the guys having to carry everything in. While the current temperature reads 98°F / 37°C, the humidity is 52% – your sunglasses steam as soon as you leave your house or car. You go through about three changes of clothing a day – your clothes stick to you. You drip sweat, if you are outside for any length of time – or if your doors are open so boxes can come in. It’s pretty awful, and I am thankful that although all my stuff is pretty well baked, it was not steamed.
I got most of the kitchen stuff unpacked, and then AdventureMan and I looked at each other and laughed and said “We quit!” Moving used to be more fun.
I’ve got a couple mountains to move, and I will be back with my normal commentary.
This article is from BBC Health News, posted Wednesday, 24 June.
It was mildly interesting to me until I got to the part about phones. Yes, I think I hear and process better with my right ear, but I have always used my left ear for phones. I assumed most people do. So I asked AdventureMan, who is left handed, and he said he picks up his phone and listens with his right ear, but that is also because he needs his left hand for taking notes. Aha! And I use my right hand for taking notes.
So my question is – which ear do YOU use, and are you right handed or left-handed? I think it would make a difference.
Right ear is ‘better for hearing’
The left-side of the brain processes much of what is heard in the right ear
If you want to get someone to do something, ask them in their right ear, say scientists.
Italian researchers found people were better at processing information when requests were made on that side in three separate tests.
They believe this is because the left side of the brain, which is known to be better at processing requests, deals with information from the right ear.
The findings are reported online in the journal Naturwissenschaffen.
We can also see this tendency when people use the phone, most will naturally hold it to their right ear
Professor Sophie Scott, of University College London
In the first study, 286 clubbers were observed while they were talking with loud music in the background.
In total, 72% of interactions occurred on the right side of the listener.
In the second study, researchers approached 160 clubbers and mumbled an inaudible, meaningless utterance and waited for the subjects to turn their head and offer either their left or their right ear.
They then asked them for a cigarette.
Overall, 58% offered their right ear for listening and 42% their left.
In the third study, the researchers intentionally addressed 176 clubbers in either their right or their left ear when asking for a cigarette.
The researchers obtained significantly more cigarettes when they spoke to the clubbers’ right ear compared with their left.
In conclusion, the researchers said: “Talk into the right ear you send your words into a slightly more amenable part of the brain.
“These results seem to be consistent with the hypothesised specialisation of right and left hemispheres.”
Professor Sophie Scott, of the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London, agreed.
“Most people process speech and language on the left-hand side of the brain and while it is not cut-and-dry a lot of what goes in our right ear will be dealt with by the left-side of the brain.
“The other side of the brain is more involved in things such as interpreting emotion and that is why we have these kind of findings.
“We can also see this tendency when people use the phone, most will naturally hold it to their right ear.”
These are from youTube and ICanHas Cheezburgers . . . it’s not the cats that are so funny, but the noises of the people holding the cameras!
Our son asked how the baby pigeons are doing. They are doing fine. They are huge! Yesterday, I saw the largest one stretch his legs and take a couple steps!
I also know now how pigeons feed their babies. Pigeons are just gross, or at least these wild pigeons who have chosen my villa are gross. (I am sure that Bu Yousefs pedigreed pigeons are much more refined than these wild pigeons. 😉 ) They poop on my front porch. To feed their babies, they eat and then they come back and shake all over and make themselves throw up and the babies go wild and eat right out of their beaks.
I know, I know, it is all part of God’s perfect plan and nothing is gross . . . but it FEELS gross to me!
As we were entering the compound the other night, we saw one of the compound wild cats, young, skinny, and oh-so-proud, head high, carrying a pigeon almost as big as he/she was. You couldn’t help but laugh, even though the pigeon was sadly dead, but that cat was strutting! He/She knew he was going to have a great meal in just a minute, once he got that pigeon to a safe, secret place!
This is from AOL’s Wallet Pop / Financial News
Kodak retires ‘film that captured youth of Baby Boomers’
Jun 22nd 2009 at 3:30PM
As the Paul Simon song goes, “Mamma don’t take my Kodachrome away…” But Kodak is doing it anyway, retiring its iconic Kodachrome color film, effective immediately.
I shoot film. (Much to the shock and chagrin of friends and casual acquaintances and family members who see the receipts for processing.) And a few months ago, I was shopping for my favorite, Kodak Portra VC.
I went to photo lab after photo lab, finding only one roll of 100-speed film at a Wolf’s Camera that was going out of business; and nothing at my regular haunt, Citizen’s Photo. Are they retiring my film? I wondered, panicky.
Finally at a huge camera store I spied a totally empty film shelf, but for a five-pack of expired portrait film. Bingo! I rushed home to make sure it was still available at B&H Photo Video, the New York-based photo store of record. Thank the gods of photography, it was still being produced.
But for fans of Kodak’s famous first commercially-successful color film, introduced in 1935, the hunt will now begin in earnest. Kodak is retiring Kodachrome, saying it’s too complex and expensive to produce. Other films — such as my fave, Kodak Portra, and commercial heavyweights Kodak Max and Kodak Gold — now account for greater than 99% of Kodak’s still-picture films. Due to its complexity, only one commercial lab in the world, Dwayne’s Photo, in Parsons, Kan., still processes it.
The lab, which has committed to continue processing the film through 2010, has a sad message on its homepage, saying how sorry the lab’s owners are to see it go. “Kodachrome was truly an icon of the 20th century and has certainly been a very important part of Dwayne’s business for many years. Once it’s gone, nothing will ever capture “those nice bright colors” in quite the same way,” they write, referring to the Paul Simon song “Kodachrome.”
Kodak will stop producing the film, which was only made at one plant, immediately and expects retail stocks will last through the fall, unless fans stockpile. As for me: I’m headed to buy a roll or two, so I can capture a bit of my film heritage before it, too, is gone
The Doha Museum of Islamic Art is open during the hottest part of the day. It must be that everyone else is travelling, or at home having lunch, taking a snooze or that they don’t know the museum is open – we had almost the entire museum to ourselves, and we felt like honored guests!
The museum is just beautiful, as beautiful as before. This time, without the crowds of people, I really had time to appreciate the interior, the beauty of the materials that went into this building, and the sound of water throughout, making you feel cool and refreshed.
And then, there is that never-ending view of the Doha skyline, seen through the windows overlooking the Gulf:
It just boggles my mind that we are encouraged to take photos, that photos are not forbidden. I love this photo; I am sorry it is not so sharp but if I had used a flash, I would have spoiled the moment. These two men had no idea I was taking their photo; I figure it is OK because you don’t know who they are, you can’t see their faces. I just loved these grizzled warriors examining an even earlier warrior.
I tried so hard not to breathe, still, there was some shake. Sometimes the shot you get is the shot you get.
These tiles draw me back to the museum again and again; I love the intersection of cross and star:
I used it in placemats for my mother, and in a quilt for my youngest sister:
The pattern still draws me, and I have some other ideas of how to use it . . . 🙂
If you have ever thought of visiting this museum, oh WOW, the summer is the time to do it at your leisure. It is quiet, and cool and calm; you can stop and reflect on the beauty of the collected pieces, you are not rushed, there is no one around but you and the guards. Go now! It is the perfect time to visit.
It’s also free. It’s free, it’s open to the public for free, no charge, just come enjoy the beauty. What an amazing gift to the people of Qatar. And to the rest of us!
New article from Real Age suggests we drink white tea to blast the fat cells and keep the weight off:
Drink This to Fight Fat
Have a little fat you’d like to lose? Maybe now is a good time to turn on the kettle and pour yourself a cup of this: white tea.
Made from the buds and early leaves of the same plants used to make green and black teas, white tea may have special fat-thwarting powers, a new study suggests.
Fat cells increase or decrease in size, according to your weight. And in a lab study, human fat cells treated with white tea extract accumulated significantly less fat. In fact, the white tea extract reduced the incorporation of fat by as much as 70 percent! The tea also seemed to stimulate the breakdown of fat from mature cells.