Monday, November 17, 2014

Spectrum, Seinfeld, and the Non-Listening Public

Upon reflection, I think Seinfeld's actual words were very cautious and very carefully-well chosen.
He didn't say "I have autism". He didn't even say "I have Aspergers."
No, he said "On the spectrum." I think he used the word "spectrum" very deliberately.

"Spectrum" simply means that something falls between two points. In the literal sense of the word, everyone in the world is on the spectrum, with extreme NT-ness on the one end, and extreme autism-ness on the other end.
Of course, currently when someone says "on the spectrum" they mean that their own little dot falls close to the autism end than to the NT end. But nonetheless, I think Seinfeld's use of the word spectrum conveyed the message of not. He even said "On a very drawn-out scale..."

I think if people had listened more closely to his actual words, there would not have been this fuss.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Is Contraception really about gender battle?

I am really bugged by how people speak of contraception as if it is a "woman's issue."

The thing is, if a woman conceives a child, a man becomes a father.
If a woman does not conceive a child, neither has the man with whom she was involved fathered a child.
Conception, parenthood, contraception, all of these involve two people. (three, actually, if we include the child.)

The assumption in debates regarding contraception repeatedly seems to be that "men" are the ones that don't want women to use contraceptives. If someone is against contraception, then people who are for it are like "Oh, you think her body should be owned by her husband." Where did this assumption that the husband (or boyfriend) of the woman in question wants her to become pregnant?
Why forget that some women might want to become pregnant?

There are men who want to be fathers, and women who want to be mothers. There are men who do not want to father a child, and women who do not want to conceive a child.
There are couples who agree that they do not want children (or more children, or do not want children yet), there are couples who agree that they want children, there are also instances where the man wants a child and the woman does not, there are instances where the woman wants a child and the man does not.
There could be cases where a husband pressures his wife to refrain from contraceptives. (I don't know of instances of this, but it is a possibility)
There could just as easily be cases where a husband is the one who pressures his wife to keep using contraceptives.

(there are polls that show a lot of women have lied or would lie, saying they were "on the Pill" in order to get pregnant.)

Acting as if anti-contraception is taking the side of the man against the woman, is drastically over simplifying things.


Apologies to anyone on my mailing list. I accidently published a post under another post's title. But the problem has been fixed. Visit the actual page, to see things as they should be

Monday, November 25, 2013

calories, calorie sources and weight management

1. calories in >calories out= weight gain

2. calories in < calories out = weight loss
3. calories in=calories out = weight stability

But aren't calories from different macronutrient sources processed differently by the body?

They are processed differently. Glucose is used as energy, fructose is turned into fat. Excess protein is flushed out in the urine. Since you NEED glucose, if you avoid carbohydrates, your body will turn the protein from its own tissue into glucose. This would result in death IF you didn't eat more protein to replenish your tissues. 

However, as far as weight loss/gain/stability is concerned, the basic rule of calories in/calories out still holds.

if all your calories came from fructose and got converted into fat, if they were still less calories than you needed that day, your body would then burn the the fat that the fructose had been converted into, plus some of the extra fat you already had.)

If all your calories came from protein, your body would disassemble its tissues to turn protein into glucose and would then reassemble some tissue from the new protein you ate.

If your calories all came from fat, your body would use fat stores for energy, and would also (after using up stored glucose) disassemble its tissues to turn protein into glucose.

So the basic rule of 
1. calories in >calories out= weight gain
2. calories in < calories out = weight loss
3. calories in=calories out = weight stability

holds true

Infatuation vs Love?

What's below is the answer I wrote to a question elsewhere on the Internet. The question was "What's the Difference Between Infatuation and Love?"

The difficulty with this question is that both these words are sometimes used by different people to mean different things.

"Love" means lots of different things. People use it when they want to say that what you are feeling/deciding is good. "Infatuation" is a word that people use when they dislike what you are feeling, or the decisions you are making. 

But I will try to give my own definitions anyway.

Infatuation is when you can't think about anything else except for that person. There is not necessarily anything wrong with this. But it is dangerous if they are a harmful person. And it can interfere with other aspects of your life, by making it hard to concentrate at your job, for instance. Also, if the other person doesn't feel the same way, your infatuation can cause you to become an annoying pain to them, as you follow them around. It can also interfere with your judgement.

Infatuation can turn into mature long-lasting love. Or it can fade away. Infatuation is usually the first stage of romantic love.

When you have mature long lasting love, you are usually more aware of the other person's true feelings than when you were infatuated with them. You are better able to make decisions with consideration for what is truly good for the other person, instead of having all your decisions motivated by the need to be close to them. (But it's very nice when they like and love you too. If that's the case, the decisions that make them happy are probably ones that make you happy too.)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Diagnosing politicians

Okay guys-people writing stuff on the internet

You know something people really shouldn't do? Something that is done too frequently on the internet?
People shouldn't "diagnose" a politician. Especially if their diagnosis is connected to their dislike of that politician.
Don't refer to so-and-so's "autism", or "aspergers", or to his being a "sociopath" or having narcissistic personality disorder.

With few exceptions, most of the people saying those things probably don't know enough about such conditions to make even an intelligent guess as to who has them.
This only leads to further misconceptions about those conditions. The people who really are or could be diagnosed with such things don't need us to further perpetrate misunderstandings of such things.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Happy Writer

Interestingly, even though there seems to be an image floating around in people's minds of the melancholy writer, my creative spirits take a huge leap up when I am happy.