Two Bits About Air Pollution

Can you see bad air? Do you think you can? There is a lot of misinformation about air pollution. Right now, price in Utah, clinic bad information disguised as news is becoming mainstream and front page news.

In article in KSL I read, order made the following statements. “we know the bad effect air pollution has on pregnant women.” To many, and perhaps most, it sounds solid. The assumption is, “this author writes for a living, he must know what he is writing about.” The many medical reports I have read that were focused on the affects of increased amounts of air pollution and tried to show a increase of unhealthy outcomes of births, were all inconclusive. This means there isn’t a cause and effect.

Time Magazine, which doesn’t print MISINFORMATION, published an article a few months ago about a link between autism and air pollution. The link is that increase in air pollution sometimes has an increase in autism rates. The problem is what is a link? It means there seems to be a correlation. But a correlation certainly isn’t a cause and effect.

100% of everyone last year who died breathed oxygen. (that is a correlation but certainly isn’t cause and effect)

Links don’t say much. In the case of the Time Magazine article, the newly discovered link may just be due to an increase in population is generally associated with larger outbreaks in flu, and the more outbreaks of flu the more autism we tend to see in the population..but there isn’t any proof of that either. The link could simply be a data collection error as in rural areas data can be misreported or unreported just because the hospital staff is smaller and many not have a full time person to collect it, research it, and publish the results.

Now that we know air pollution doesn’t seem to have a negative impact in pregnant women, and there is a new discovered link that doesn’t really mean much. What other false claims are there.

The author of the article also tried to claim that the sickness was caused by air pollution. This also is unproven, and is also false. If sickness was caused by air pollution then groups of outdoor enthusiasts, hunters, and even Boy Scout troops who after a few days spent sitting around a camp fire breathing horrible toxic air pollution would have an outbreak of influenza, whooping cough, strep and the like. Sickness has been proven to be passed from person to person. Very commonly from a sick person preparing food (ah, Mother you REALLY shouldn’t have) and then received by a person (children/victim) who ate the food. There are other ways but that is the most common. (even Bible in Leviticus 4 talks about disease transmission but sometimes today it isn’t common knowledge) If you believe hand washing helps, your right. If you also know that washing your hands is mostly about under those nasty finger nails, your rare indeed! If you think that anti-bacterial soaps and hand sanitizers have increased the sickness for the general population, then you must have read the research. Here is a link.

Although defined as anything in the air that can be harmful, Air Pollution, is only widely tested on 6 things. Too bad it isn’t a big scientific report. I would love if the EPA used a wide spectrum…. Throw in every bad smell from acrylic nails, to my neighborhood barbecue as air pollution. The news stories along would be fantastic, the morning mall walkers in the Orem Mall this morning may not see the light of day as a new nail tech spill some acrylic hardener in the North quadrant of the mall Tuesday. But unfortunately, the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS), where the EPA gets its guidelines, only monitors 6 things.

Carbon Monoxide, Lead, Nitrogen Dioxide, Ozone, Sulfur Dioxide and Particle Pollution. If you want more details here is the link.

Forgo the sudden urge to enroll in more college-level science or starting your own crusade of environmental research and just focus enough to learn a couple basics. For example, air quality constantly changes because our environment is constantly changing …painting, vacuuming, running the HVAC, mowing the lawn, tilling, forest fires, breathing dust, campfire smoke, hairspray, cooking, cleaning, and many, many more actives cause the air quality in your lungs to change. This doesn’t mean that you suddenly die because a nearby dessert artist in the kitchen got a little carried away with the powdered sugar, but it is important to understand that air quality changes on a small scale in our own lungs and certainly also changes on a large scale such as in our neighborhood and cities. This is normal, it is normal for the air quality to change.

In the air standards are provisions for unusually high amounts or surges. This is not only natural, but normal. We should also understand that many of the larger things in the air, like dust, is easy for our lungs to avoid. We have a built in biological filter system. But our filter system has some limitations. For example, smaller things in the air….and I mean super, small particles, tend to be harder for our lungs to avoid. This means if you can see it in the air, the lungs can usually avoid it or filter it out. This doesn’t mean you plug your nose into the exhaust/dust outlet of your home wood sander, but does mean if a diesel burning-motorist slams the peddle to the floor and blankets you with a black cloud grimy exhaust, you should assuming that dieing from lung cancer resulting from the cloud is unlikely and almost statistically impossible. Prolonged exposure (measured in decades not hours!!) to unhealthy conditions is the culprit, but this prinicple doesn’t only apply to air pollution, it is a general rule to health.

If your driving around in Utah, and seeing the inversion, don’t think the sky is falling (or hurting), think if it as the one bad day or week in the year and remember that Utah is still ranked in the nation for GOOD AIR. If your really, really concerned, would it matter to you that the reason Utah air is “off the scale” for air pollution is for PM 2.5 readings. Would be almost silly to realize that the PM 2.5 during this time of year in Utah is basically water. You could still think there were tons of other harmful, nasty, cough-causing “bad stuff” in there but wouldn’t that show up on the EPA report too? But it didn’t. You can rest well knowing that it is just a ton of little bits of water and over load of bad information.

Remember in the movie, Joe verses the Volcano, when Joe thought he was dying from a Brain Cloud. Well, that movie is old and outdated, but today, we die of small water droplets, such as ones that are IN CLOUDS, we just call them PM 2.5 and everyone freaks out. In the news this week a DOCTOR wore a mask and stood in front of the capitol building to protest the air. He has a right to, but it doesn’t mean he is on the cutting edge of enlightenment. He isn’t a pulmonologist, he is a rheumatologist. Maybe next week he will make a statement about internal medicine, or plastic surgery, or delivering babies without pain!! I can hardly wait!

The Thoughtful Biker

On January 9th, anorexia a group of Pekin, more about Illinois bikers were riding west on I-74 when they saw a girl about to jump off the Murray Baker Bridge. So they
stopped.

George, this web their leader, a big burly man of 53, gets off his Harley, walks through a group of gawkers, past the State Trooper, and says to the girl, “What are you doing?”

She says, “I’m going to commit suicide.”

While he didn’t want to appear “sensitive,” he didn’t want to miss a be-a-legend opportunity either so he asked … “Well, before you jump, why don’t you give me a kiss?”

So, with no hesitation at all, she leaned back over the railing and did just that … and it was a long, deep, lingering kiss followed immediately by another one.

After they finished, George gets approval from his biker-buddies, the onlookers, and even the State Trooper, and says, “Wow! That was the best kiss I have ever had, Honey! That’s a real talent you’re wasting there, Sugar Shorts. You could be famous if you rode with me. Why are you committing
suicide?”

“My parents don’t like me dressing up like a girl.”

It’s still unclear whether she jumped or was pushed.

DEA Officer

The following is an old joke but I still grin….

A DEA officer came to our farm and said he wanted to look for illegal crops and contraband. We said he was welcome to explore but please mind the field marked with the yellow electric fence. He was furious and his face turned crimson causing his juggler veins to look like python snakes ready to attack, psychiatrist
he sharply reached his hand into his back pocket and grabbed a metal badge. He then put the badge right in my face and screamed at me, sickness
“You see this damn badge? This gives me jurisdiction to go wherever the hell I want! So stay out of my damn way!”

He quickly opened the gate and went inside, about four minutes later he was running for all he was worth, his arms were in perfect sprinting form and his face was intently focused on the gate. Close behind him was Attitude, our family’s champion bull. The officers stomach was bouncing around and the bull was gaining. I ran to the fence and yelled, “Show him your damn badge!”

Light O Rama

Thank goodness for Light O Rama. Each year I add a few more thousand lights to my Halloween and Christmas Light display and of course I am going to add a few more nifty “behind the scenes” gadgetry to run it. The initial entrance fee of a cool display synced to music is a tad steep. The controller which turns 16 channels on an off can run two hundred. Then you need software for another 100. And if you want others to hear it without your city officials citing you (no I am NOT kidding) you need a low powered radio transmitter. It adds up.

If you don’t quite understand what I am talking about, prothesis try a few links.

http://lightorama.com/

http://www.youtube.com/user/lightorama

Then it gets crazy…. like….

Below is a link to someone who simply got bored of their R/C airplane and thought, prostate how can I scare my neighbor’s half to death. Buying a simple styrofoam skeletal head and using some amazing creativity they started what I believe was a very popular buisiness.

http://www.graveyardskulls.com/

The Brett Cottle at Your Work

We all know a “Brett Cottle” at work. He works, health care and works and works…. The markers of performance seem to go unnoticed. Sales are outstanding, diagnosis years of service, attendence, and other “corp” checkboxes are in the top 3%. In fact, they are so good, they seem normal to the bean counters. Never are the Brett Cottles awarded for their outstanding track record.

On the contray, the Brett Cottle’s are always smiling. The jokes have a synical side to them, indicating the workload they bear, but over all they are happy, content and still pushing back at the burden.

I love working with them, they are like the Franchise Players of the NBA, who after rentless attacks, set backs and even injuries overcome to win the game….then when the media mob reaches them for comment, they say something humble, “I was just doing my job.” Marking another distinguishing characteristic between good and legendary.

Happy Halllooooowhat was that?

Seriously, viagra I enjoy the festivities as much as I can, but I don’t exactly market my holiday flair.  A resident in my town, of Payson Utah does.  They have a lighted sign on main street boasting, “Light Show 1260 S 90 E.”  Thank you to Light O Rama, the fan club of Marty Slack 5631 Whispering Pine Circle (5631 South 820 East) , and the hundreds of visitors who drive houses, to behold their neighbors hobby-turned-neurosis. 

Sadly, cool, gaudy and the rest of over-the-top Christmas setups are all over.  Salem ponds is free and wonderful.  Spanish Fork’s Festival of Lights, is five buck and worth every cent.  (Ya, I have already been three times this year.  If you are in Orem, drive by the Bashton’s house.  If you don’t know who they are then go to the Alman’s house.  (800 South and about 950 East on the South side of the street)  I love their house.  Don’t forget the Holdman’s in Lindon at 12 Denali Drive, Lindon, Utah
Click Here for a google map.

If you want the over-the-top displays, print out the page on this link,get a tank of cheap gas, and let the Tom-Tom help with the celebrating. 

I love lights, below are many, many light links…  I also love sledding….like this…

 

If that wasn’t fun enough… Most reporters/new casters, take a lot of unnecessary and stupid risks to make, “better TV”.  I personally think this was necessary.

 

 
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Technology is about what you know

So we think were savvy. We can print, artificial email, blog, and even have a small digital camera. Technology is our vehicle but do we know what is around the next corner? Here is a glipse of a glipse.

Ever watch Minority Report, with Tom Cruise?

Here is the first glipse..

http://photosynth.net/

Microsoft has a new way to view photos. Like a master scrapbook of everything uploaded it, Photosynth puts everyone’s photos to good use. This provides the user as many viewpoints as was take. High and low resolution photography can be available together.

The next technology that I find facinating is with Google Earth. Google, has very humbly described it as “Historical imagery from around the globe” but this is nothing short of magic. In 1991, I was at the Chicago Museum of Natural History a display made in the 1950′s showed the progression of farmlands into a modern (albiet, 1950′s modern) city. The evolution is striking. Google has added layers to their maps and provided much of the same data. Thank you NASA for being the master scrapbookers of Mother Earth.

Nice number but what does is spell

I love our camping trailer. It is nearly perfect. It has a nice balance between old outdated things, disinfection and broken things….truly gives a good mixture that allows someone to really experience the mystery and excitment of the great outdoors. Each trip brings new surprises, pharmacist we don’t know if we will have food or shelter, but we know that the camping trailer was designed for those things.

I love to tinker and fix things. So I have spent considerable time with it. The trailer is nearly re-plumbed. This weekend I installed a new toilet, Kailey and Kaisha took turns “Breaking it in”. Sure it is a pain to haul it from my home just to clean out the black water, especially when I am not camping but, their curiosity and the novelty is short-lived.

The water system does have a leak still, the other fifteen I fixed, but there is one on the outside I will try to tackle next week. It is where a hose would connect to the water system. I think the cap must seal on the hose connection and has a slow leak. To maintain my own sanity, I convince myself that it is nothing serious….annoying, but not serious.

Desperately, I want the heater to work. We don’t need it now, but I want the heater so if we decide to go camping in October, we will have it. I fiddled with it for hours today. Took the pilot light assembly out and made certain it worked, then put it back in, which is remarkably harder than taking it out, then it didn’t work. Repeat..adjusted the pilot light, readjusted, re-readjusted…then I put it back into the unit after I was certain it was functioning. It didn’t lite. The igniter would spark but the pilot light didn’t light. I tried a liberal amount of screaming and cursing, it helped a bit. I then could get a bit of a blue flame but the flame would go out quickly. I took the pilot light assembly out a few more times and then tried some more cursing, but it just wouldn’t work. It seem like there wasn’t enough oxygen in the combustion chamber. I went out side to inspect the exhaust. It was difficult to see, so I got a flash light. I still couldn’t see inside the exhaust very well, so I went in for a closer look. With my eye covering the exhaust pipe, I was greeted by a large colony of hornets. Fortunately, I wasn’t bit. One thing I have learned about hornets, is this. When they attack you, running around and screaming like Richard Simmons seems to help. I don’t intentionally do this, but it seems inevitable when I have a flash light and my eye ball looking into a darkened exhaust port…in an instant the port hole seemed to rush at me in an angry but impressive display of wings, and buzzing. They would have hit my face but my eye ball was so close they were directed there. I have never been scared of bees or hornets, although I am remarkably allergic to them. But when a swarm is directed into one’s eye, I am suddenly wearing silk shorts and a pink tank top running, waving my arms and screaming like a girl…..

There are three ways to get rid of hornets as I see it. The first method is a paint ball gun. Not even the Army can instill a sense of accomplishment like shooting a hornet at about a 180 feet per second. But I didn’t have a gun handy. The next method is to mix dish washing soap and water. Make sure to add a fair amount of dish washing soap. Put the solution into a garden sprayer and set the sprayer to a vigorous mist. The mist will get them, but with a bit of bubbles. The take down power is impressive. Rarely have I witnessed a hornet fly away from this assault. The last method is for when you’re reasonably upset. I use a small plastic squirt top bottle, mineral spirits, and a nice wand-style lighter.

After pouring a lot of mineral spirits on the basement floor do to a miscalculation with a metal gallon can, a funnel and an empty bottle, I decided this could be dangerous. Sure it is fun to light things on fire but if you can’t get your own arm out of harms way, what’s the point? My hand was soaked from the spill. I thought for a few seconds if I could “clean up” the spilt mineral spirits by igniting them with a flame but much to my disappointment, I realized that most of my house was also flammable….bummer. It is hard to let mineral spirits go to waste!

Moving much like a cat stocking its prey, I approached the trailer. When I got close enough for arson, I realized my hand, wrist, and forearm were soaked with mineral spirits. I had to make sure I didn’t attempt to light a fire with my pre-soaked hand. So I retreated backward, in catlike manner. When I was certain the lighter was in the dry hand, I then re-approached. I applied a liberal amount of mineral spirits and in the same moment applied the lighter. I have a special ability with lighters. If there is a time when I really need a lighter to light–for example, it is minus 12 degrees in the winter and I am freezing to death, or I am doing a large presentation in front of hundreds of scouts and leaders, or I have just poured a bunch of mineral spirits on top of 60 sleeping hornets–it will NEVER, NEVER light. I would have used a hand to cup around the end of the lighter but there wasn’t a breeze and there were a lot of hornets near by. Just when I thought I would scream and run, the lighter lit. The rest is hard to describe, I have eyebrows, but a general burnt smell is most noticeable. The hornets spent a lot of time buzzing before they decided to die.

After about a half hour, I used a stick to clear the hornets nest out. When doing this I quickly learned there were two hornets nests, the second was remarkably undisturbed from the fire. They were quickly assaulted with some profanity followed by me running a button hook pattern to the mineral spirit bottle and lighter. I then faked left and whet to the hole shooting the mineral spirits into the second nest. I set the fire and observed that the exhaust had two compartments, one for intake and the other was exhaust. I wondered if the fire leaked smoke inside the trailer, so I went inside the trailer to see. The smell from the moment I cracked the door is difficult to describe…sort of a honey flavored roasted marshmallow, but with a strong bouquet of mineral spirits–not exactly what I was hoping for.

Back outside I noticed that the exhaust pipe for the trailer’s heater was about two inches in diameter. I took another stick and pulled about 4 inches of solid but cylindrical hornet nest out. I grabbed a flash light and noticed there was much much more… A full foot of nest was tightly jammed into the metal tube. Several techniques using a long screwdriver, a straightened handle from a five-gallon bucket, an air nozzle for an air compressor seemed to do the trick. I then went inside for another fifty or so tries to make the furnace light but no dice. Back outside with a steady flash light, I could see that deep into the furnace a healthy colony of Muddauggers had settled in, reminding me that I haven’t taken my kids to Mesa Verde yet…

Next week, I will dismantle the entire furnace for a deep cleaning and Muddaugger exorcism.

Earlier that day, Kailey (3), Kaisha (6), and I went to the store. We bought covering to redo the shower walls and matching towels. In a home, a fresh coat of paint can be a remarkable transformation, but in a trailer, it just takes the right amount of contact paper. For the amount of money I spent over the last few weeks, I probably could have taken the family to Hawaii, but they now have a flushing toilet, a working stove and oven, a lavatory sink, a tub, a water heater, and a bed…oh ya…I need to add that to my task list. I was sitting on their bed, and just like an intervention for the grossly obese, the table/bed broke. I need to glue that back together….or remake it. At first I was going to renew the Gold Gym membership but when I saw the table was partially constructed of Styrofoam, I realized that it wasn’t the strongest engineering. Thank goodness for the Styrofoam, I don’t want to deal with the thought of being overweight.

One thing is for certain though, when all this is done, fixed, and I’m ready to flaunt my trailer, I’m goin’ campin’!
There are many number to remember in life, stomach
social security, diet
drivers license, more about
birthdays, pass words, license plates, and phone numbers.

Does your phone number spell anything??

To find out try this website.

http://www.phonespell.org/

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