Hmmm Can You Analyze Love Too Much?

Somebody posted this on Facebook, and I had a good chuckle, and decided that it needed to go up here because putting brain structures and hormones in a love song was the funniest geeky idea I’d seen in a while. I’m pretty happy with myself, I only had to look up a couple word spellings so I could put the lyrics down. I love being able to check the Youtube captions to see if I can trust them. No, Youtube, dopamine is not doctor.

Enjoy, and I hope the warm fuzzies still feel as warm and fuzzy, even if they’re made of oxytocin.

When you looked in my direction, I thought my heart might explode (my heart was racing and I thought it might explode)
Because my sympathetic nervous system caused Norepinephrine to stimulate my sinoatrial node.
When you looked in my direction, when you first looked in my eyes (when you looked into my eyes),
My stress response diverted bloodflow from my stomach and intestines, and it felt like butterflies.
I knew I wanted to marry ya, as my ventral tegmental area sent signals to my nucleus accumbens,
and oh, oh, oh my lord, the anticipation of reward, that do do dopamine starts pumpin’

[chorus]
I know oxytocin is the potion of devotion, gimme that dose of dopamine, hold the serotonin.
still goin’, growin’, stronger all the time.
I love you, and I’m never gonna change my mind.

When you first smiled at me, I did foolish things (really really really really stupid things),
because my judgment was impaired, by a reduction in activity in my amygdala and the frontal cortex of my brain.
When you first smiled at me, I began to fall (one smile and I began to fall)
and so did my serotonin levels, producing anxiety, I couldn’t eat or sleep at all.
Then a year or two went by, with serotonin on the rise, til I was feeling comfortable and calm.
Now every single time we touch, I get that oxytocin rush, our bond has never been so strong

I know oxytocin is the potion of devotion, dialback that dopamine, here comes serotonin.
Still goin’, growin’, stronger all the time.
I love you, and I’m never gonna change my mind

Lady, we’ve been together for a while now and things are starting to mellow out. But that’s ok because we can still get those sparks of dopamine back by experiencing new things together.

[key change]
Oxytocin is the potion of devotion, a little bit of dopamine, a lot of serotonin.
Still goin’, growin’, stronger all the time.
I love you, and I’m never gonna change my, never gonna change my, never gonna change my mind.

Thank Goodness For Modern Medicine, Part 4

Gill returns once again with another look at why life expectancy used to be a whole lot shorter.

You may or may not have asked for it, but from moldy bread for infected wounds to a junk shocker belt here are some more treatments to make you thankful for the 21st century.

  • 1 Moldy bread – Straight out of ancient Egypt this rather progressive treatment was used especially for infected cuts and scrapes. They unknowingly had something there.
  • 2 Snail slime – Got a sore throat or ear infection? Don’t fret, just go to the garden, rob some snails of their slime and consume it.
  • 3 Chloroform – If you’ve ever watched a show where someone throws a rag over someone’s face and drags their unconscious form away they just might have been given chloroform. Now picture this, it’s 1850, and you need surgery, your doctor could give you ether, but chooses instead to give you this just as dangerous solution.
  • 4 the Impotence belt – in the middle of the 19th century when electricity was just becoming a thing doctors were trying to harness its benefits. Apparently one of the benefits was a cure to a man not being able to perform. He would wear this belt and a shot of voltage would go through his member to get shall we say things going.
  • 5 Shock Therapy – In the 1930’s a doctor came up with the idea that a person, such as myself, would benefit from being electrocuted. Although still used today, side effects are common. Thankfully my bipolar disorder is treated with a pill and not potential brain damage.

Question

What home remedies do you remember from your childhood, or that you have created yourself?

Gillie saying stay well

I Hope You Drop Your Stupid Phone In Your Stupid Selfieccino

I should stop typing right now. I should pay this no mind. I should move on and let it die like I hope happens to anyone who legitimately thinks this is a good use of money and bandwidth. But sometimes my get off my lawn impulse shouts down my if you ignore them they’ll go away impulse and we all wind up with posts about some asshole paying eight dollars to print photographs into his goddamn cappuccino foam.

Hello magazine reports that the Tea Terrace cafe on the top floor of London’s House Of Fraser department store has a special printer that allows imprints of photos in cappuccino foam. Customers send a photo to the barista, who then prints out the image in foam using a fine art printer. Many people are going with the tried-and-true selfie, hence the name. But the machine can also upload pictures of a beloved pet, for example, which you may enjoy looking at right before you drink its foamy head off. The visual drink costs £5.75, or about $8. Tea Terrace owner Ehab Salem Shouly explains to Hello: “Due to social media the dining experience has completely changed. It’s not enough to just deliver great food and service anymore, it’s got to be Instagram worthy.”

To each his own and all that, but this sounds like a really good way to become my former friend. I still haven’t been able to accept people who would rather film their food than fucking eat it, and now we’ve managed to make it worse. Seriously, just go away.

Apple Will Soon Let You Decide If Your Ancient Phone Should Be Slow Garbage Or Fast Garbage

You might recall Apple catching some hell at the end of last year when it came out that the company was intentionally slowing down some older iPhones in order to protect their batteries. Since then, there have been lawsuits, apologies and a promise that come the next update to iOS 11, you can take the life of your old ass phone into your own dumb ass hands if you so choose. Basically, Apple has decided to do now what it should have done in the first place. As far as I’m concerned at least, slowing down the phones was never the problem. Keeping quiet about it was the problem.

In an interview with ABC News, Cook said the update will arrive next month in a developer release before a wider public rollout. “We’re going to give people the visibility of the health of their battery so it’s very, very transparent,” he says. “This hasn’t been done before.”
Cook also says the update will more clearly inform users when their iPhone is automatically reducing its performance in an effort to prevent unexpected shutdowns. “If you don’t want it, you can turn it off,” Cook says, though he maintains that this is not recommended — something Apple stands by in its apology letter that addressed consumers after the backlash in December.

Black History Minute

And now, Gill would like to take a second to recognize Black History Month.

You’ve probably heard of those challenges on youtube, it seems there’s one every five seconds. Now imagine it’s 1896 and your a person of color trying to patent your device to improve farming or get a loan for your business. Sadly the door gets slammed in your face, but you do not give up.

Heart Of The Matter

Before 1893 most heart wounds proved fatal, but Dr. Daniel Hale Williams came up with a technique to save a person’s life with a procedure he created called open-heart surgery. The stabbing victim survived.

Question

Although we have come along way in relations between the races we still have a long way to go, what can you do to help this process toward a better world?

Gillie wishing you peace

Happy Shawinigan Handshake Day

Today is Flag Day here in Canada. It’s a time to celebrate the day in 1965 when the Maple Leaf replaced the Red Ensign as our country’s new official symbol.

Strangely, an event of such significance didn’t always have its own day. Believe it or not, it took us until 1996 for a government to decide hey, maybe we should recognize this anniversary in some way. And so it was that on February 15th of that year, Prime Minister Jean Chrétien and Governor General Roméo LeBlanc declared that National Flag of Canada Day would be celebrated for the first time.

The first ceremony was held in Hull, Quebec, because when you think national Canadian pride, Quebec is totally the first place that comes to mind…especially so hot on the heels of that whole should we stay or should we go thing a few months earlier. Although to be fair they did stay, and if memory serves that was part of the reason for choosing that location.

And what a day it was.

All the nice happy flag stuff happened which is great of course, but there was also this, which is what I’ll forever remember it for.

The presiding Prime Minister, Jean Chretien, was confronted by protesters demonstrating against proposed cuts to the unemployment insurance system.
While walking through the crowd Chretien grabbed one protester who had approached him by the neck and pushed him aside, later downplaying the incident.
“I dunno, what happened?” the PM from Shawinigan asked reporters in a media scrum right after. “I had to go, so if you’re in my way, I’m walking. I dunno what happened. Somebody should not have been there.”
Later, the Prime Minister’s Office said Chretien was simply trying to protect himself.
The incident went on to be known as the Shawinigan Handshake.

And Jean Chrétien went on to remain my favourite Prime Minister of all time.

CRTC To Canadians: Your Service Provider Lied To You? Tough Shit!

In January, the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) asked the CRTC to look into the possibly shady sales practices of Canada’s telecommunications companies. Not a bad idea, considering that I, a fellow who knows his way around these sorts of things fairly decently, can sometimes find himself a little lost in all of the intentional and unintentional unclarity. Surely anyone who doesn’t run a phone company would be clambering to be first in line behind this plan.

Well, you’d think so.

Yesterday the CRTC responded, and did so in the form of a big fat nope.

In a February 14th, 2018 letter addressed to the PIAC’s executive director and general counsel John Lawford, the Canadian Radio-Television Telecommunications Commission’s chairperson Ian Scott declined the PIAC’s request, arguing that Canadians already have several avenues to seek redress for telecom concerns.
“If Canadians consider that their wireless, internet, home phone or TV service provider has not provided clear and accurate information to them about their [contracts], or is not acting in a manner consistent with the CRTC’s Wireless Code or Television Provider Service Code, they should first try to resolve the issue with their service provider,” said Scott, in the February letter. “If the matter is not resolved to their satisfaction, they are encouraged to escalate the complaint to the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecom-Television Services (CCTS).”
“…they should first try to resolve the issue with their service provider.”
The CCTS acts as the CRTC’s complaints department. Canadians are able to submit complaints to the CCTS, which will serve to remediate those concerns by working as a bridge between consumers and carriers.
“For example, the CCTS can resolve disputes about what is included in the contract, how the contract should be interpreted, and whether the service provider’s conduct meets its obligations,” said Scott, in the same February letter.
Scott further argued that if directly contacting carriers and submitting complaints to the CCTS fails to resolve any issues, Canadians can contact the Competition Bureau.
MobileSyrup reached out to the CRTC for comment, and a spokesperson responded that the Commission’s letter speaks for itself.

That’s all fine and good, aside from the part where it’s neither fine nor good.

Yes, those dispute resolution options do exist, but they’re designed to interpret contracts that have already been signed, not to prevent consumers from entering into those contracts due to deception. Yes, there are plain language provisions in the wireless code of Conduct, but they don’t stop a company from being plainly dishonest because they know that most people won’t bother to complain and often have no idea they’re being tricked until they’ve already been separated from hundreds or thousands of dollars. And even if somebody does manage to successfully complain on those grounds, the money raked in is worth taking a slap on the wrist, assuming the commission can even be arsed to dish one out.

Sometimes the CRTC does seem like it’s trying to get this stuff right and genuinely wants to help consumers, but this is an area where it’s missing the mark. I realize that there are some complicated, subjective issues here (one man’s obnoxious asshole is another man’s salesman of the year), but there are very clearly things going on that are objectively not ok, and the commission owes it to everyone to at least take a look at them and try to find a way forward. Corporations often don’t make good citizens until they’re forced to, and whether that force comes in the form of penalties that actually fit the crime, more robust compliance monitoring, criminal prosecutions for fraud and theft or all of the above, it absolutely needs to come.

Stuff I Love, Part 1

Gill, who has been cranking out lists like crazy lately, has made another one to help you get to know her better.

I have talked a lot lately about things people frown upon, and you might be asking Ms. Gillie, what makes you happy? What do you love? Well from curries to cheater snacks I’m going to tell you some of my personal favorite foods.

  • 1 Soup – this is a tough one to be honest with you out there reading this. I would say my favorites are tomato, broccoli, leak, and chicken rice {homemade} but when it comes to more unique ones I like Spanish garlic soup, squash soup, apple curry soup, and pumpkin.
  • 2 General snacks – I would have to say that I love these deep fried snap peas, the plain ones are ok but the best by far are the wasabi ranch. Other things I like are rice chips, sour cream and onion, and kettle corn.
  • 3 Comfort foods – Again with the tough ones. My mom makes this stuff called taco pie, it has beef, tomato, cheese, spices, in Bisquick.
  • 4 Burgers – The best by far is when my dad throws some Kobes on the BBQ. The best non-homemade was at this Memphis style BBQ place near where I grew up, it was a portabello mushroom cap burger smoked and coated in BBQ sauce.
  • 5 Going International – If there’s some kind of South or Southeast Asian grocer you can bet I’ll be there. I love a good pad Thai, and Indian curry.
  • 6 Stuff I love making – I love traveling the world with out the expensive plane tickets and passport requirements. Right now I have made a Mexican inspired quinoa dish with peppers, zucchini, onion, and tomatoes. On any given week you might see me whip up a Bolivian rice and corn dish or a Pakistani curry.
  • 7 Desserts – I am normally not really a dessert person, but if someone even mentions icecream of the chocolate, Carmel, or mint variety, I’m there.
  • 8 Cheater snacks – I have type 2 diabetes and must be careful with what I eat, but sometimes I just have to indulge. My favorite indulgences are chocolate anything, cookies, and licorice.

Question

What are your go-to foods for anytime, whether your chillin at home, or out?

Gillie telling you not to be afraid of adventure

And Now, Your Periodic Reminder Not To Be Asshats To Blind People


Lord knows if it does any good (judging by what happens when we have the temerity to go outside and try to live normal lives it’s often tempting to say it doesn’t), but now and then I feel it’s good to post one of these things in the hope that this time, maybe, just maybe, some of you will start catching on. Maybe you’ll stop yelling into our ears. Maybe you’ll stop asking complicated questions and then moving on to the next shiny thing after four seconds. Or maybe, as the one guy so eloquently puts it, you’ll “get your fuckin’ hands off me!” You probably won’t, but we can dream.

There He Goes!

Update:
On the Jeff Blair show earlier this week, they spent two hours with Jerry, talking about his career and retirement. There are guests, there are phone calls, there are memories, there are emotions. You can listen to it here.

Original Post:
I heard my first bit of Blue Jays baseball on the radio sometime in 1985. Don’t ask me what date it was or who was playing. I have no idea. All I know is that I found it the same way I seem to find most things, just by messing around. Oh, and that once I found it, I kept listening. I can think of three reasons for that.

  • The Jays were really good then.
  • Tom Cheek.
  • Jerry Howarth.

Tom has sadly been gone for 13 years (Has it really been that long?), and today comes word that after 36 seasons, Jerry is calling it a game.

I’ll be honest. For a while now I’ve been wondering how long he might keep going. In the past couple years he had missed a fair bit of time due to voice trouble, there was the cancer scare, and there was something I couldn’t quite put my finger on. He just didn’t seem like himself, making more and more uncharacteristic mistakes. It was to the point where Carin, who cares not much for baseball, asked me if he was ok.

But even a somewhat diminished Jerry Howarth was still one of the best in the game, and I’m sad to see him go. I don’t remember a time before him, and though I’m sure that Rogers will find a more than capable replacement (give the job to Mike Wilner assuming he wants it, guys), the future without him isn’t going to sound quite right for a very long time, if it ever does.

“I had every intention of continuing my career into the 2018 season but my health and stamina and continuing voice issues dictated otherwise,” said Howarth. “Who knew that I would spend more than half my life in Toronto with my wife, Mary, and our two sons, Ben and Joe, doing what I love to do most, reaching out to friends and fans alike across our great country to talk baseball?

“I am blessed and I am grateful. I thank everyone who has made this journey of mine so rewarding in every way.”