Tag Archives: Hippies

Dude, Wherefore Art Thou?

You dudes are frakkin’ everywhere.

No, seriously.

It’s like this. Every once in a while, WordPress (the fine folks who host this humble blog) will send along a packet of information about who reads the blog and how many and stuff like that. You know, stuff that interests only me and, maybe, Barry.

However, this time, I found something I thought you might enjoy. It’s the list of places from where people — people like you — read the Dude’s Guide. And, dudes, I’ve got to say: I was completely flabbergasted when I read this list. Go ahead and take a gander at the screencap I pulled off the report.

dude country 1

All total, there are 51 countries from which this blog has been accessed. Now, I’m not saying that anyone actually reads this blog when it gets accessed. For all I know, this might be some sort of automatic program crawling through blogs looking for some place to put spam.

Of course, it could be that there are people in each of those countries reading the blog. It could be.

Personally, that’s what I choose to believe. Not because I have an enormous ego and find it nice to have it stroked in this way. Although it is nice. No, I want to believe that because it’s just so cool that someone as far away as the USSR or Australia or some other tiny little nation, can just hop on their computer and call up a blog that I’m writing upstairs in my house.

I still remember the thrill I got when first I received a modem. I was living in Jacksonville at the time and modems still were rather new in the personal computing space. Yeah, I had to go through the squealing and squeaking and all that noise, but it was worth it, just to see those white letters crawling across the black screen.

I was talking to someone in California on my computer screen. It was awesome then and it’s awesome now. We tend to take this sort of thing for granted, the instant communication with people on the far side of the globe. I know I do as well. But sometimes I get reminded what a really tremendous accomplishment this is.

We are forming a global community in ways those hippies in the 1960’s never considered or would have thought possible. There’s commerce, communication, stuff! And it’s as easy as simply sitting down at a computer and turning it on.

That is pretty awesome! Take a minute to think about it. Maybe talk to your young dudes as well. Sometimes we need to step back and realize there really is a forest around us. Wonderful, amazing things are taking place all around us all the time if only we take the time to notice.

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Trade Off

by Richard

I just discovered a grocery store called Trader Joe’s. I know I’m really late to the party, but when I get in a grocery store rut, I tend to stay in the rut for a long time. Hence calling it a rut instead of a quick digression. Like that. Anyway.

My wife, known to me as She Who Must Be Adored, has been on me to go to Trader Joe’s for a while. Apparently, food snobs hippies people with discerning tastes have been raving about the place for a while. I finally went the other day.

Well, it’s no Skaggs Alpha-Beta (inside joke for old people who used to live in Dallas [hi, high-school friends]), but it is, um, interesting. Yeah, that’s a good way to describe it.

Mostly, I think the store is trying to get stuff grown by small vendors, no large farming concerns or big companies. They offer meat without all the good stuff like growth hormones or genetic alterations. You know, stuff that makes life worth living.

I’d been handed a cookbook of things I could make by shopping exclusively at Trader Joe’s. I’d picked out a meaty salad and thought I’d get moving on it. The place is sort of small and very short on canned goods, unless they’re organic or some other froopy stuff like that. Still it does have a good selection of cheap wine, some interesting beers and foods that I haven’t seen anywhere else.

Also? Every hippie in the Charlotte area was out shopping at Trader Joe’s. I haven’t seen that many pony tails on men since, well, since in a long time. (Hi, sis!) It took a while to get through the store, but turns out it was worth it.

I made a quick, easy salad with some nice chicken and black beans in it. Good stuff. So, if you’re into (sort of) healthy food, you might want to check out Trader Joe’s. You probably won’t regret it. (I know, I have the most forceful recommendations don’t I?)

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Freaky Friday: Gecko Or Ginko?

by Richard

Nothing to do with a gecko. I just wrote it for some reason. I forgot what, but I’m sure it was important. Something about. . . Right! Cognitive decline in your kidneys brains. And can we stall it by taking ginko biloba? Turns out, not so much.

Older adults who used the herbal supplement Ginkgo biloba for several years did not have a slower rate of cognitive decline compared to adults who received placebo, according to a new study.

“Ginkgo biloba is marketed widely and used with the hope of improving, preventing, or delaying cognitive impairment associated with aging and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer disease,” the authors write. “Indeed, in the United States and particularly in Europe, G biloba is perhaps the most widely used herbal treatment consumed specifically to prevent age-related cognitive decline.” However, evidence from large clinical trials regarding its effect on long-term cognitive functioning is lacking.

Which means that just because they say it’s so, that doesn’t make it so.

In a perfect world, now would be the time that all those natural-is-better hippie-hangovers would acknowledge that this particular herb (heh, heh, I said herb in connection with hippies) does not work and they’d stop talking and talking and talking about how great it is. We don’t live in a perfect world.

Even this won’t stop them.

In this study, the largest randomized controlled trial of G biloba to report on outcomes to date, the researchers found no evidence for an effect of G biloba on global cognitive change and no evidence of effect on specific cognitive domains of memory, language, attention, visuospatial abilities and executive functions. They also found no evidence for differences in treatment effects by age, sex, race, education or baseline cognitive status (MCI vs. normal cognition).

I think it’s another sign that our pills-cure-everything society might want to give that sort of attitude another look. How about working out your brain like you work out your abs. Notice I said you and your, not me and my. Trust me. There’s a reason for it.

Learn new things. Practice difficult cognitive tasks. (I’m looking at you, sudoku.) Don’t just sit and veg in front of the tv.

We might want the perfect pill to cure everything, but it’s not happening, so we’ll have to do it the old-fashioned way.

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