I Love Movies

Antique cinema poster

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You can call them Movies, Films, Talkies, Motion Pictures, or Cinema. . .um. . .Shows. I love them.

I can’t help it. I find something to appreciate in most of the films I’ve seen. I don’t mean to say that quality writing, directing and acting aren’t to be valued and demanded, but if a film’s creators clearly produced what they intended to, I try to appreciate it on its own terms. No film is perfect.

I especially relish discovering an obscure independent film with an unusual take on a particular theme or production style. I’ve compiled a list of (in my opinion) truly great, mostly obscure films on my Movies page. They present their themes especially well, and their weaknesses are easy to overlook. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing each one multiple times. That, for me, is the ultimate test of a great film.

Take a look at the Movies page.

Gallery — Seattle to Victoria from Above

Antibiotics: A Double-Edged Sword

Novamoxin Prescription Drug - Amoxicillin Trih...

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Too much of a good thing will quickly become a very bad thing, if we don’t put a stop to it.

Antibiotic medications (the most famous example being penicillin) are prescribed by doctors as an effective way to combat infections by killing harmful bacterial organisms in our bodies. Antibacterial household products (like hand soap) offer a topical way to achieve the same result with surface bacteria on the skin. But both can produce a higher risk of future infections.
Keep reading — Antibiotics: A Double-Edged Sword

If Memory Doesn’t Serve. . .

crawling up the mountain

Image by JKönig via Flickr

Have you ever had an experience that you couldn’t remember a short while later, or the next day? I don’t mean anything mystical or abstract, but an actual failure of memory. (I don’t include dreams, because I’m not awake for them, and besides, they’re not real.)

This recently happened to me for the first time. It was unnerving.
Keep reading — If Memory Doesn’t Serve. . .

Cultivating Better (Tomato) Taste, Part 2

State fruit - Tomato

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In Part 1 of this series, I discussed my decision to grow my own tomatoes, my selection of a Topsy Turvy “upside down” planter, and the problems with advice on the internet about growing tomatoes. In this post, I address various aspects of choosing a tomato variety, establishing appropriate growing conditions, and getting the tomato plant into the planter.

This is not a step by step tutorial. Each brand of planter comes with its own instructions for planting and cultivation, so I won’t duplicate those instructions here. I’ll emphasize some of the key points they make and add my own comments.
Keep reading — Cultivating Better (Tomato) Taste, Part 2

Cultivating Better (Tomato) Taste, Part 1

Tomato slices.

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Is it too much to ask for tomatoes with decent flavor and ripeness? This year I decided to grow my own tomatoes, using the simplest method I could find. I discovered that I had a lot to learn.

This is the first of a series of posts about my experience growing tomatoes for the first time.
Keep reading — Cultivating Better (Tomato) Taste, Part 1

I Graduated It

Graduating seniors at Brown University in Prov...

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Some people say “I graduated high school”; others say “I graduated from high school.” Which is correct?

This was one of those little language posers that nagged at me from time to time. One version has to be wrong, right? I eventually bothered to figure it out, and I feel so much better now. I pass my insight on to you.
Keep reading — I Graduated It

What Is Is the Deal?

Two men talking to one another, word bubbles overlapping picture‘Round about the mid-1990s or so, I started to notice a peculiar phenomenon in the speech patterns of some English speakers.

It began happening more and more often, with an ever-increasing range of speakers. Now it’s a full-blown epidemic which appears to have infected every corner of our society. This is serious, folks, and Something Must Be Done, I tell you! (Or not.)

I speak of the “is is” construction.
Keep reading — What Is Is the Deal?

Too Much Sodium

Sodium pictureExcess sodium in your body can kill you, even if you don’t have high blood pressure. The good news: most of us can reduce our sodium intake without having to eat overly bland food.

I was diagnosed with high blood pressure in the early 2000’s. Among other things, my doctor prescribed a blood pressure medication, and told me to cut my sodium intake. (Yes, and exercise too. I’m still working on that.) Excess sodium contributes to high blood pressure, and it can also increase the likelihood of some debilitating medical conditions. Although I significantly modified my diet, I still eat plenty of good food and I don’t feel deprived, but my blood pressure numbers are now well within the normal range.
Keep reading — Too Much Sodium

A Qualified Proposition

Brain of the Sistine Chapel

Image by tj.blackwell via Flickr

The term “qualified knowledge” is my way of characterizing the nature of what we know, and how we can best express that knowledge.

Herewith, a persnickety explanation.

All of our knowledge is qualified; that is, it’s never absolute. (Okay, okay, it’s almost never absolute. No need for a self-referential paradox to complicate things.) Logically speaking, every thing that we know to be true is true only if all the necessary and sufficient conditions (qualifications) that make it true are present.
Keep reading — A Qualified Proposition

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