End of Movember, So Long Mo?

It’s the end of Movember for yet another year; lots of fun was had as people participated in parties and other Movember related soirees. Money was raised for a good cause. Yet I can’t help but feel a bit sad now.

I happen to like Mo’s and other forms of facial hair on a man. So with the end of Movember coming, it will be sad for me to face the inevitable. I must bid adieu to all the great Mo’s that have been grown to support prostate cancer. Though if I’m this reflective on the issue, I can’t help wonder what the women who know these men, are thinking. Maybe they don’t want to see the Mo’s go either?

At any rate; money was raised for a good cause. Too many are still being diagnosed, and dying from, prostate cancer. This month went by fast it seems. So as we say goodbye to Movember 2010, I say farewell to all the great Mo’s. I look forward to you seeing you come back next year.


The Perfect Child or Just a Dream?

I was watching an episode of the old TV show Star Trek Voyager the other day. In the episode Chief Engineer B’Elanna Torres discovers that she’s pregnant. At first her husband Tom, as well as B’Elanna, are overjoyed by the news. Then B’Elanna begins to experience flashbacks to a not so pleasant childhood (she attributes being teased as a child and her father walking out on her mother and her, to B’Elanna’s being half Klingon).

From this she believes her unborn child is doomed to the same unpleasant childhood that she had, due to being part Klingon (and the only one on Voyager next to the child’s mother). B’Elanna sets out to convince the doctor to remove the DNA sequences that contain the dominant Klingon traits. The doctor refuses to perform the procedure to do this.

This episode has long since been a favourite of mine. I wonder, what would others do in this type of scenario? In the show there was a question about ethnicity (from my understanding) and not wanting to be an outsider. Being an outsider, in my experience, goes far beyond race, or even religion.

What if you had a medical condition that could be passed on to your children? Would you genetically alter them to ensure they do not get the medical condition? What if there was a chance they could be born perfectly healthy, regardless of any such intervention? Would you still want to change their genetic makeup?

For me, I know Spina Bifida can be passed on to any children I might have. Should I take every precaution to make sure they don’t get Spina Bifida? What if I were to do that, and they were born with another medical condition such as Down’s Syndrome or Muscular Dystrophy (the latter of which, can be fatal and often is).

These are questions I find myself pondering; would I tamper with nature or leave things to play out? I’m also Catholic so on that note, would I want to “play God” with any future children I might conceive? These are without a doubt, very complicated and challenging questions to have to ask oneself.

What would you do?


Erroneous Text Message; What Would You Do?

I turned my cell phone on last night, and got an interesting surprise. I somehow received a text message that, quite obviously, was not intended for me. What would you have done in this situation?

For me, I reacted pretty much on impulse and just deleted the text. Now however I am wondering, maybe I should have replied and stated the text message was accidentally sent to the wrong phone? Or did I do the right thing by just deleting it?  The text message in question was also, it should be noted, sent more than two days ago.

Would too much time have past for it to have been worth replying to the text in someway; stating that the text had been sent to me in error? In the end, the message is no more, but let me know what you think anyway. I’m curious what others might do in this situation.

Does the Cookie get Cut?

By now a good chunk of people have seen the video uploaded on YouTube, courtesy of http://www.ctvedmonton.ca, of AHS CEO avoiding talking to reporters because he was “eating a cookie.” Now it seems, his job might be on the chopping block. At the time I write this, the aforementioned video has now received 137,811 views and been commented on 987 times.

Dr. Duckett did apologize the next day, via his blog, but has he faced media personally and apologized personally? As far as I know from watching the news on this issue, I do not think he has. One, when someone comes up to you and asks you something, isn’t it just polite to respond; even if he were to say no comment, at least he would have responded to the questions that were asked of him.

While I do try to look at situations, and people, fairly and objectively, I do find myself siding with the reporters that were present that day. Having acted in an unprofessional manner might cost his job now. As I said, I am siding with the reporters that were there, I also can’t help but think that everyone needs a job; some way of putting a roof over their head, and food in their bellies and clothing on their backs. Does this make me soft? Perhaps it does but more or less I’d like to think it means I’m trying to think of people as human, regardless of their role in society.

Will Stephen Duckett find himself out of work today; it’s anyone’s guess at this point. Those interested, will have to keep their eyes and ears peeled to the news tonight to find out. What do you think though? Should the CEO of Alberta Health Services go? Should the cookie crumble?
Note: The video in question can be found at http://www.youtube.com/user/CTVnewsEdmonton

Brrr It’s Cold Out There!

Well today was one freezing cold day. According to Global Edmonton’s evening newscast the temperature got to -36 today (I believe, that’s with the wind chill being factored in). Despite wanting nothing more than to stay in bed, under the comfy warm blankets I had to be in the city today. Today was testing day for me, when I went to write my Writing Assessment as part of the application process to Grant MacEwan.

So who knows why, but I found myself waking up at 3 am and unable to fall back to sleep. That was not such a great way to start the morning. Yet, at about 8 I turned on the news to see what the temperature was going to be that day, and how bad the accidents were. It’s weather like this, that makes me especially glad I can’t medically get behind the wheel.

When I got to the campus, I set out to find the room where I was to write my exam (I was way early, but wanted it that way so I could find my way around beforehand). The exam wasn’t too bad, and I think I did alright. Afterwards I met Garret Kinjerski who had come bearing gifts. I was given some of the first year Journalism textbooks for the program I’m striving for. Thank you again to Laurie Callsen and Garret Kinjerski for the books, I am beyond grateful!

Exam over now, and now I wait with baited breath. It was mentioned to me, it usually takes around six weeks for the exam to be marked, but around this time of year it’s slated to take a bit longer. I most likely won’t hear until after the New Year. Wish me luck all; now to try and figure out this student loans mumbo jumbo that I’ve found online.

Homes for People with Disabilities

This blog post was inspired by an episode of The Little Couple.

Everyone wants a place they can call home. There’s a desire to have a place to relax after a hard day at work. People want somewhere to entertain friends, or just have a good meal with family. What if the house you’re living in; creates so many obstacles for you that your home becomes more just a place to reside?  Too often this is the case and particularly for those with various levels of disability.

Consider a little person, or someone who is otherwise short of stature, high shelves can be impossible to utilize and typical household appliances can be awkward if not dangerous, to use.  Who wants to spill hot soup on themselves, from a microwave placed too high, or boxes fall on them due to the same? Those that use wheelchairs may experience issues with narrow doorways and hallways making navigation difficult.

Then there are those with needs that require a more unique and individualized approach. Take for example, someone with Autism. Now Autism is a spectrum disorder so the following examples might not be suitable or applicable for every person with Autism.  A person with Autism might benefit from rooms that have been sound proofed, or anti slam doors. What could potentially be more calming, than a quiet room and doors that don’t slam when you shut them?

All in all disability or not, whatever the severity, houses, apartments, etc. must be well suited to the individuals living in them. Only then can they really be thought of as home.

Examples presented re: Autism (i.e. Anti-slam doors, sound proof rooms) courtesy of Autism Society of Edmonton.                                                                      Examples presented re: People with dwarfism courtesy of The Little Couple TV show on TLC.                                                                                                       Examples presented re: Wheelchair users courtesy of friends of mine who use wheelchairs.

Remember the Sacrifice

Today being Remembrance Day, I thought it would be fitting to share the words written in a poem, by Lieutenant Colonel John McRae.

In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields

Thank you to all who fight for our freedom, and helping make this world a better place to live.

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