Another of the world’s worst jobs?

Within days of beginning this blog, I wrote about what must be one of the worst jobs in the world – the sewage diver. Now, from Norway, comes a job that may rival it. Researchers in Oslo and Tromsø plan to analyze sewage this autumn, in an effort to determine alcohol consumption among residents. They don’t seem to trust Norwegians’ own admissions of how much they drink. Newspaper VG reported Thursday that state agencies are prepared to pay NOK 4 million on the unusual research project, which will eventually extend to the mountain holiday spot of Hemsedal and all large

Continue reading

Human ovulation captured on camera

This is fascinating! A Belgian specialist, Dr. Jacques Donnez, spotted ovulation in progress during a routine operation. He was able to capture it on film – the first time this has ever been done. From the upper left, viewing clockwise, we see the ovum emerge slowly from the ovary. Click the picture to enlarge it. It amazes me to think that each and every one of us began in this form, a tiny ovum in our mother, an even tinier sperm in our father. At almost the same time, two more Belgian specialists, Stephan Gordts and Ivo Brosens, have captured

Continue reading

Homeopathy exposed as a fraud – again

I’ve long maintained that homeopathy is one of the longest-running and most successful medical frauds in history. A professor in England is now offering a £10,000 prize to anyone who can prove that homeopathy actually works. I don’t think he’s in any danger of losing his money. One of the country’s leading professors of complementary medicine is offering a cash prize to anyone who can prove homeopathy works. Professor Edzard Ernst says he will award £10,000 to the first person who can show the controversial treatment is better than a placebo in a scientifically controlled trial. Calling on homeopaths to

Continue reading

They built a monument to WHAT???

I’m still shaking my head in disbelief at this news report. A monument to the enema, a procedure many people would rather not think about, has been unveiled at a spa in the southern Russian city of Zheleznovodsk. The bronze syringe bulb, which weighs 800 pounds (363 kilograms) and is held by three angels, was unveiled at the Mashuk-Akva Term spa, the spa’s director said Thursday. “There is no kitsch or obscenity, it is a successful work of art,” Alexander Kharchenko said. “An enema is almost a symbol of our region.” The Caucasus Mountains region is known for dozens of

Continue reading

The dangers of ‘energy drinks’

I’ve been involved in a counseling situation with a family for some weeks, and we finally got to the root of one aspect of the problem only last week. It seems their teenage children had been gulping down so-called ‘energy drinks‘, ultra-high in caffeine and other additives, and this had been affecting their behavior. I wasn’t aware of the real dangers posed by such drinks, since I don’t use them myself. However, I’ve learned enough through reading up about them that I’d like to share some of the information with you. These drinks (often mixed with alcohol) appear to fuel

Continue reading

Oral sex isn’t a safe alternative any more

As a pastor, I was often asked by parents to speak with their teenage children about sexual issues. Usually I told the parents that it would be a waste of time for me to talk to them. First, I wasn’t their parent, but an outsider, and one whom they regarded as biased towards a particular view of the problem. (They were quite correct in that, of course.) Second, kids spend much more time with their parents than they do at church, or with church figures. They’re going to learn much more, take in much more, from their family experience, than

Continue reading

Dentists and hypnosis and lasers . . . oh, my!

There are two interesting reports for those interested in things toothsome. First, a patient had two teeth removed under hypnosis, without the use of anesthetic. Mr Mason’s last visit to a dentist before the recent check-up had been in 1998. During the operation on May 20 he had two upper right molars removed along with their roots, plus two roots from teeth which had been pulled in the 1980s. Mr Ridlington spent 45 minutes getting him into a relaxed state of mind beforehand by making him visualise his favourite subject – historic battle reenactments – to distract his mind from

Continue reading

A bulletproof vest isn’t only proof against bullets

I’m very happy for Officer Larry Ashley of Dallas, TX – and for his family. Body armor is designed to shield police from flying bullets. But the protective gear took on an unexpected function late Thursday night after an officer’s squad car tangled with a suspected drunk driver in Oak Cliff. As it turns out, the bulletproof vest is also fence post-proof. Just before midnight, two squad cars were driving south in the 800 block of Westmoreland Avenue when, police say, the suspect’s Chevrolet Tahoe turned in front of them. One cruiser collided with the SUV; the other police car

Continue reading

Let your fingers do the . . . vomiting???

A news report warns that your computer keyboard may be five times dirtier and less hygienic than the average toilet seat. Many users are at risk of becoming ill with stomach bugs, according to the consumer group Which? It warned that ‘qwerty tummy’, named after the first six letters on a keyboard, could sweep through workplaces after tests on equipment in its own London offices showed alarming results. One keyboard was so dirty that a microbiologist ordered it to be removed, quarantined and cleaned. It had 150 times the acceptable limit for bacteria and was five times as filthy as

Continue reading