The Curious Autodidact

March 27, 2011

A Helpful Hay Fever Hint

Filed under: helpful hints — Honilima @ 1:21 pm

Tulips in Victoria

The glories of spring bring with it for some the misery of seasonal hay fever.

One of the most helpful hints I ever heard and that I rarely hear spoken about is that before you got to bed rinse off your body and your hair with a quick shower. Your hair otherwise is a collection zone for pollen you have encountered all day long. You put your head on the pillow and breath it in all night long causing your symptoms to worsen by morning. This is especially important if you have been outside in the garden but is a good precaution to take daily during the allergy season.

Simple cost effective and so sensible but rarely spoken aloud.

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March 23, 2011

The Cyber-you: Finite or Infinite?

Filed under: cool internet stuff,end of life,media related — Honilima @ 5:34 pm

I've looked at clouds from both sides now...

Only 33% of Americans have made a traditional will. We don’t like to talk about our mortality and this inability to plan is very hard on those who are left to grieve.

According to writer Rob Walker there are over 300,000 people on Facebook world wide who will die in the coming year and it brings up what will happen to our digital entities when we die. Walker wrote about this in the New York Times Magazine, in an article entitled Cyberspace When You are Dead. Walker is featured on KQED‘s radio program “Forum” called Our Digital Afterlife with Nate Lustig, co-founder of Entrustet a company that allows you to designate who gets your passwords and what your digital wishes are when you have expired. A recent widow calls into the show with the tender quandary of when to take her deceased husband’s Facebook profile off-line, and tells how much it hurt her to alter her own profile, from married to widowed—these are part of out brave new world of cyber-identities.

For those of us with cherished family photos, in albums from our ancestors, the thought of what will happen to our family photos that on-line, who is going to get these passwords, and who will pay the nominal storage fee to access these gems is a new frontier. What about on-line entities on Facebook and things like Twitter etc?

March 19, 2011

Throwback Thursday, Hearing Voices: a Radio Series Worth Finding

Filed under: cool internet stuff,media related — Honilima @ 6:04 pm

Delicate Tulips

Hearing Voices is an NPR program that I have in my podcast feed that brings together stories that have been produced for their various stations that are brought together by a narrator and a theme. Here’s what they say on their website about the series ” Each episode mixes broadcasts, podcasts, sound-portraits, slam poets, docs, radio dramas, features, and found-sound. One-hundred+ stations all already on board”

You never know quite what you may find but I recently listened to one called “Hippies: Flying our Freak Flag ” that was about Haight Ashbury, in San Francisco, circa 1960s that gives you that “you are there” feel and reminds us of another time and place. “Mormon Fringe: Life with Latter Day Saints” is about the fundamentalist sect of the Church of the Latter Day Saints and tells about their feelings about Native Americans that I never had any understanding of until this program. “Elvis Aaron Presley: Birthday Party” will introduce you to fans of Elvis and tell about how many have no believe he is still alive living in seclusion. The story of the family, from the UK, that saved for years to pay to go to Memphis will remind you how this hound dog still has tons of fans in this country and internationally that will go to great lengths to walk through the gates of Graceland.

This is a great series, perhaps you will not want to listen to every episode but if you do you will hear stories you likely never heard before or would never likely hear were you not listening to this program, they get people to speak candidly and their selections are well done indeed.

March 12, 2011

Tsunami: Mother Nature reminds us Who is in Charge

Filed under: helpful hints,media related,women heroes — Honilima @ 2:35 pm

It was a sober reminder of how inter-connected globally we are when we stopped to think of all our personal connections to Japan and Hawaii yesterday morning. Janet, my friend in New Zealand, send me this very interesting animation from NOAA about the tsunami that was quite educational. We have many friends in Kona, Hawaii and this was an amazing YOU TUBE video of the wave coming on shore there, the coast guard has just condemned their main pier and my heart aches for the struggling local businesses that rely on cruise ship passengers every week just to keep afloat.

It’s wild to think of all the amateur videos posted from Hawaii but also from Japan and what it was like before these things could be posted in moments by whomever and distributed internationally. Here’s one from the Grassroots News about Kona’s damage bringing new meaning to the idea of local reporting, from people on site.

All this natural disaster bring up the questions; are we prepared to sustain ourselves, our family, and neighbors in case of a disaster? The recommendation is to have ample supplies for 72 hours and here’s a handy website out of San Francisco to help you to plan. I sent this link to many friends yesterday many of whom commented they were just planning to come to our house, this is not a good plan, as we may not be home. Having ample clear bottled water, and an alternative cooking source, a manual can opener and tinned foods, as well as knowing how to turn off your gas at the meter, and where you water main is essential. Being aware of elderly people and the needs of the disabled in your neighborhood is also important. Are you ready? Take a moment today, to take action, and to create a complete emergency kit. Visqueen? Duct tape, battery operated radio? My neighbor Nancy, who drives a subcompact car, has a small kit in her car–guess where she was in the last big earthquake ten years ago?

Take a moment to send a small donation to help those in Japan who have been so devastated and begin today compiling your own emergency kit and don’t get caught off guard when the natural disaster is in your front yard.

March 10, 2011

Words on Life

Filed under: women heroes,Word Related — Honilima @ 10:43 pm

Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life.
John Muir

Life – It began in mystery and it will end in mystery, but what a savage and beautiful country lies in between.
Diane Ackerman

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