Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Avoid the doctors at (almost) all cost!

I've recently been targeted with the seasonal sickness that spreads and thrives during this time of the year. And yes, I feel like a living zombie - not being capable of doing anything constructive.

But what bears to mind is something a tad more interesting than my personal disarray.
I'm a medical student, meaning some day I'll be a doctor. But at the same time I take on the challenge with some reservations. I think it's important to stress the fact that generally speaking, humans were "healthier" back in the day compared to how we fair today.

Now before you start off ranting about how a simple flu or strep throat ravaged lives, please bear in mind that I'm referring to the days of modest antibiotic treatments, and how reserved we (medical community) were in prescribing them to patients. Most people just had the common cold come and go without any real use of drugs. I mean sure, they might have been KO'd for a week or so, but it would pass. In fact, in most cases I dare to say we were more resistant to some forms of common colds.

But then... the "quick-fix" mentality sprung and we started prescribing and taking drugs and pills for a quick fix for everything. And look at the aftermath now, we are actively making sure that evolution kicks in at a higher rate within bacteria and virii thus making our "cures" useless. This is quite alarming, because even TODAY there are scenarios where contemporary treatment is lacking simply due to resistance developed by the infectants. Of course this also leads to us being forced to apply more aggressive treatment plans which in fact are TOXIC to your body.

And for the love of god, get over the "OMG I GOTTA GET A FLU-SHOT"-craze. Every year there are thousands of people all over the world who die from the flu. It doesn't matter which type of the flu, all of them are just as lethal/non-lethal. It all depends on your current conditions. Some people share risk factors that upon infection can cause death. Most healthy normal people don't.

So if you're 15-55, healthy and with no underlying conditions (such as previous heart failures, etc etc) then don't worry. Avoid the sick people, if you get the flu then just "rest it out" and let your immune system do what it's supposed to do.
After all, there's a reason we HAVE an immune system to begin with, right? :)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The future of products, materials and consumption

I've given quite some thought on the state of our planet, our civilization and our planet's finite resources. Given how everything has it's lifespan, I came to wonder why we allow profit to dictate the terms for our demise as a species on this planet.

It comes to mind that given our current resources being finite, we should strive to produce products which are sustainable and upgradeable in a way that allows us to limit the excess waste which accumulates after excessive production. An example would be, imagine if we produced a car out of the sturdiest most reliable material, and designed it in a way that it was both lenient on the environment as well as easily maintainable forever or at least for a very long time. Or imagine a computer designed with international standards so that component switching for upgrades were made seamlessly simple and the product itself would be "ever-lasting".

But you know, things aren't supposed to last for two reasons. One reason is the very obvious law which governs the universe, being how nothing is everlasting and that all things will decay. The other more profound reason is simply profit. Everything we have is not flawlessly designed, but rather intentionally flawed so that the product will break. Once it breaks, we are forced to either buy a new one or to repair the old one by buying new stuff to it. This is how companies stay afloat.

It's not innovation that drives or excels our technology, it's the failure of it. Just look at the explosive rate of which cellphones are being produced. A Sony Ericsson official once said that their products (cellphones) were designed to last 2-3 years at best because that was their intended lifespan. After that it was thought that the customer would purchase a new phone. And now with that in mind, try to picture your own consumption and how many times you've purchased a new phone, laptop or any other device. Interesting isn't it?

It's not until we look back and think about how much we've spent on these silly upgrades that we realize and, in a way, regret our expenditures in the past. But how were we to know? And how are we to refrain from this? You might think about these things today, but in 6-12 months from now you'll be standing there in your shop ready to purchase x item again. And so it continues until there is nothing left to produce, until there's nothing left at all.

The truth is, it's not the companies that are to blame for polluting the planet. Nor the government for allowing them or not enforcing high enough taxes or whatever. It's YOUR fault. It' my fault, it's every consumers fault - for not considering the moral and environmental price that our consumption pays.

Ah well, enough ranting, time to sleep.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Stopping by Woods on a snowy evening

I came to think of one of my favorite poems earlier today. It's a poem written by Robert Frost, and it's called "Stopping by Woods on a snowy evening."
I like the depth and profoundness of the poem which is expressed in such a subtle and simplistic matter. It's simply beautiful. Anyway, here it goes;

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

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