Grab Bag Good News:
A recent article published at ScienceDaily.com reveals that good things DO happen to the environment with time and perseverance. Seems the locals near the tip of Baja California in Cabo Pulmo really wanted to establish a marine preserve there 16 years ago, odds against it be damned.
The area had been overfished, and the local economy was suffering because of it:
“I participated, back in the 1990s, in the studies for the declaration of the marine park. Frankly, we decided to go ahead because the community was so determined but the place at that time was not in good environmental health,” said Exequiel Ezcurra, Director of the University of California Institute for Mexico and the United States (UC MEXUS) and co-author of the article. “If you visit the place now, you cannot believe the change that has taken place. And all of it has occurred thanks to the determination of a community of coastal villagers that decided to take care of their place and to be at the helm of their own destiny.”
Dedicated locals police the marine preserve, ensuring regulations are upheld. The change has been nothing short of astonishing. In the span of 10 years between 1999 and 2009, the “biomass” (amount of marine life) has increased a staggering 460%. The local economy is now tourist-driven, with a real shot in the arm compared to 1995 when the reserve was established.
We can do this. We CAN bring diseased and depleted oceans back from the brink. Yeah for the humans for once! Good job 🙂
Grab Bag Rx Exercise:
As they say in Men’s Health this month,
“Don’t ever say you’re sick of your workout”.
Recent research shows just how exercise actually boosts your immune system:
1. Lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell, are made up of naive cells and memory cells. Young, healthy people have a good balance of each.
2. Naive cells recognize a new infection and then adapt to fight it off.
3. Once the naive cells have learned and adapted to the infection, some live on as memory cells for our immune system… the others die off.
4. The new memory cells clone themselves to make an small army, ready to fight that particular infection, should it return.
5. As we age, we tend to be over-supplied with memory cells, and they crowd out the naive cells, leaving us more susceptible to new infections.
6. Exercise seems to flush out the excess memory cells from our immune system and replace them with young, naive cells, making our immune response healthier and more capable.
…. and you thought your naive days were over 🙂
Grab Bag Snoop Dupe:
There are a load of websites that gather little bits of information about people like you and me and aggregate it all together to build a personal profile about…. YOU. These computers hunt for real estate transactions, marriage records, any legal records out there.
It used to be that only a dedicated snoop who REALLY wanted to perform a background check would have the patience to comb the various databases. Now computers do all the legwork, and the result can be a pretty detailed profile of your life.
If you don’t dig having that info so easily discovered, there are ways to reduce it. Courtesy of a fun website called Gizmodo, here is a list of the most-used database aggregators.
You’ll need to go to the following sites and search for your name and/or address, and age if you have a common name.
If you are bothered by what you see, you can click this link that provides information on most of the sites above and how to go about removing your personal information from their sites.
If a site requires proof of ID like a copy of your driver’s license, be sure to black out your picture and drivers license number, leaving only your name, address and DOB visible.
So you go….. Dupe the Snoopers!
Grab Bag Better A**hole:
We’ll be glad about this if we ever need one, that’s for sure. I am not making this up….
Researchers have built the first functional anal sphincters in the laboratory, suggesting a potential future treatment for both fecal and urinary incontinence. Made from muscle and nerve cells, the sphincters developed a blood supply and maintained function when implanted in mice. The results are reported in the medical journal Gastroenterology.
To engineer an internal anal sphincter in the laboratory, the researchers used a small biopsy from a human sphincter and isolated smooth muscle cells that were then multiplied in the lab. In a ring-shaped mold, these cells were layered with nerve cells isolated from mice to build the sphincter. The mold was placed in an incubator for nine days, allowing for tissue formation. The entire process took about six weeks.
Read the whole article here. Most of you probably thought there were enough a**holes in the world already, but apparently we DO need more…. at least well-functioning ones.
Grab Bag Berry Disturbing:
I think we all pretty much knew this, but always good to reset the alarm….
Thanks to Deb F. for sending this in.
Grab Bag Brain Game:
While you’re amazing your friends, figure out why this card trick works:
Grab Bag Funny Stuff:
The effects of drugs and alcohol on spiders and their web building:Vodpod videos no longer available.