Tag Archives: Michael Pollan

I’m trying to put you out of business

Farmers market vegetablesMaybe not the best way to start off a conversation with your seat partner on a plane.  But I could hardly help myself.  (If you have been following my musings for a while you will know that I tend to get into some interesting conversational situations on planes!)

I was on my way back from a week of meetings in Plainview, Texas.  Now, I realize that bringing an environmental seminar to the high plains of east Texas is not the normal thing to do.  People there are warm, friendly – but pretty convinced that “environment” means “liberal” and “government” and that sort of thing, and they’re not interested.  But things are changing.  For one thing, these folks are running out of water, and they know it.  Continue reading

Neem Hakeem: Headphones and Twinkies are hazardous to your Health?

[Almost anyone who has spent time in Pakistan or parts of India recognizes the term 'neem hakeem' - means a doctor who isn't quite up to par.  Thus one of the most popular folk proverbs in the area:  A 'neem hakeem' is a danger to your life...]

Today’s ‘Neem Hakeem’ lesson is via a story on NPR over the weekend.  People are dying – literally – because of their headphones.

Strangled by the cords as they doze in class, maybe?  Victims of brain cancer because of electromagnetic radiation?  No – run over by buses, trains and other large and noisy vehicles:

Lisa Carolyn Moran, 20, a University of North Carolina exchange student from Scotland, was listening to an iPod while jogging when she stepped into the path of a bus in Chapel Hill last May. Joshua Phillips White, 16, was wearing earphones and walking on a train track in Cramerton, N.C., last November when a freight train hit him from behind, killing him; police said he apparently didn’t hear the locomotive approaching. Alan Eaton-Chandler, 17, was killed under the same circumstances just last Tuesday when he was hit by an Amtrak train in Comstock Township, Mich. And Vicky Baker, 39, was talking on her cell phone when she was struck and killed by a train in Albertville, Ala., in December.

There’s more than one lesson here:

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