Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Time Killers

Some random thoughts and links for an otherwise deadly dull day. Why don’t we just get this entire week leading up to Labor Day off? It’s nearly as bad as the week between Christmas and New Year’s. If anything, companies would save money on electricity currently being used by employees surfing the web and triple checking their fantasy football teams.

Again, I need to be running things.

- One of the running jokes in our family is my father’s habit of falling asleep in the middle of the afternoon no matter what position he is in. He would fall asleep at work with his head propped against his fist while at his desk. He would fall asleep in the middle of solving his crossword puzzle. I even saw him doze off with his head perched against the bookcase next to his chair.

Well, in yet another sign I’m turning into my father, I just fell asleep at my desk; head propped up by my fist. I even have a red mark on my temple.

On the other hand, my father is in his late 70s and in very good health. Maybe afternoon naps are the way to go.

- Scientists at the American Physiological Society have discovered that alcohol can disrupt the body’s natural ability to synchronize it’s patterns to daylight. In other words, it’s harder to ‘rise and shine’ after drinking. By administering varying amounts of alcohol to the happiest hamsters in the world the researchers discovered the following:

1: The hamsters that drank alcohol had the hardest time shifting their rhythms after exposure to the dim light, and the more alcohol they drank, the harder it was to adjust. However, subjecting them to bright light made them wake up earlier.

Lesson? We know why humans invented window shades.

2: Hamsters that consumed alcohol had fewer bouts of activity.

Lesson? Hamsters experience life crippling hangovers just like humans.

3: Chronic drinking continues to affect the biological clock even after withdrawal from alcohol. The hamsters withdrawn from alcohol woke up much earlier in response to light than they normally would, just like people who are trying to stop drinking.

Lesson? Don’t ever stop drinking.

I should point out that their conclusion that ‘People who drink alcohol, particularly late into the night, may not respond to important light cues to keep their biological clocks in synch with daylight over the next 24 hours’ was not under the subtitle of ‘Well…DUH!’

- One of my favorite games (see today’s distraction) ever may actually be good for your brain. According to a recent MRI assessment, ‘After three months of practice, compared to the structural scans of controls, the group with Tetris practice showed thicker cortex, primarily in two areas: left BAs 6 and 22/38. Based on fMRI BOLD signals, the Tetris group showed cortical activations throughout the brain while playing Tetris, but significant BOLD decreases, mostly in frontal areas, were observed after practice.’

While I’ve never had an MRI to verify, I’ll bet my cortex's girth if fucking huge.*

- Six astrophysicists have found the coldest, driest, calmest place on earth. In a shocking upset it is not Rosie O’Donnell’s vagina. Instead it’s third highest point on Antarctica and they will be setting up camp in order to study the universe and freeze their asses off. Send us a postcard when you arrive.

If you are so inclined, you can follow their blog here.

- To be filed with the hamster study under D for Duh, is this study that is shocked – SHOCKED – that North America has a higher rate of recurring heart attacks than that of Japan or Australia. Let’s see. North America has the pollution/over population capital of the world (Mexico), the cheese steak/eat whatever the fuck I want/drive to work capital of the world (USA! USA! USA!) and the beer swigging/don’t leave the house for 8 months out of the year because it’s too fucking cold capital of the world (Canada) all lumped together.

Japan is the sushi/happy ending massage/anime porno/crappy monster movie capital of the world.

Ninety percent of Australia lives in a tropical climate, barely work for a living, and drink beer on a near continuous basis

Which of those continents do you think will have higher heart attack rates?

By the way, they mention Eastern Europe – a place that still smokes unfiltered cigarettes for breakfast – as another high stroke/heart attack area. Go figure.

- This reminds me, lost in this entire health care debate is the fact that a majority of our health care costs are put into helping people that have been self destructive their entire lives and now have to be ‘saved’ with expensive, radical surgeries or transplants. Like chronic alcoholics who need liver transplants or life long smokers who die a slow, prolonged, oxygen tank fueled death. If we want to cut costs then why not put into place some program that will actually REWARD those people that lead healthy lifestyles and punish those who do not. Why is it fair that obese, chain smokers pay the same as someone who eats well and exercises?

- Watched some of the Monday Night Football pre season game between the Vikings and Texans and was sickened by the ass kissing Brett Favre received from ESPN. They should be embarrassed. I turned on ESPN to hear Berman yakking on about Favre. Since I didn’t want to hear anymore about it I switched to ESPN News only to hear them talking about Favre. Disgusted I channeled surfed for about 15 minutes, turned back to ESPN and now the three Monday Night guys were talking about…FAVRE! Holy shit! Really? Is there no other player on the field?

In fact, when Petersen broke off his 70 yard touchdown run they responded with ‘Hey, that’s one way to get us to stop talking about Favre’. That would have been funny if they didn’t somehow bring up Favre’s name in the fucking conversation about Adrian Petersen.

Therefore, fuck you, ESPN. Next time just blow Favre in a closet somewhere so you can show some perspective and objectivity during the actual game.

Oh, and if anyone else had thrown that chop block Favre did and nearly ended a player’s season you would have spent the next three days speculating about a season long suspension. Instead you had one of you ‘analysts’ come on and say how it wasn’t ‘malicious’. ‘Look,’ he said, ‘he wasn’t even looking in that direction’.

I can’t wait for the annual Favre implosion of 12 INTs over the course of 4 games. Can’t fucking wait.

Guess that’s enough anger and sarcasm for one day.

Today’s distraction: Grow a nice, thick, cerebral cortex. Your brain can thank me later.

* That's what she said.


Clayton Bigsby said...

Gruden was awful on MNF. Hangovers really only occur for me if I drink hard on consecutive days.

A Tribute: deer a train and basketball said...

"Lesson? Don’t ever stop drinking,"
a fantastic lesson indeed.

thepowerof10 said...

I find it hilarious when people are baffled by these studies that show Americans are consistently more stressed and apt to stroke, heart attack, and early death than Europeans, Asians, etc. The average working American only gets something like 5-10 days of vacation per year while workers in places like Switzerland and Norway average something like 40-50 days of vacation per year. It's no wonder we as Americans are a fucking mess.