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Sunday, April 6, 2008

Mother Nature… Bringing Sexy Back


Ever since Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”, we knew plants could get it on.

Many years later, Mother Nature is showing a definite urge to bring her sexy back.

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Inevitably some people will always tend to take their love for Mother Nature’s sexy offspring too far.

Various people throughout time have had sexual fetishes that include the use of fruit and vegetables. Some choose to avoid having real relationships with people that involve eventual let down and pain, while others are just really into mother nature.

Loving nature can have some dangers though and some countries have even decided to put warning labels on certain fruits and vegetables to limit the number of hospital visits they are receiving.

Among the list of unsavory produce on the Government’s hit list are courgettes, cucumbers, bananas, carrots and squashes, which will have to carry a Goverment Health warning that: ‘improper use is liable to corrupt and deprave, and may lead to surgical intervention’.

The banana and cucumber are so popular and enjoyed, that they even made those into vibrators.

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Can’t decide between a fruit or a vegetable?

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(link)

Hibernation Method Tested for Space Travel


Irene Klotz, Discovery News

April 4, 2008 -- No matter how much you like your crewmates, a three-year mission to Mars would test the even the best of relationships.

And that's not even the primary reason why future long-duration space travelers may spend part of the journey in suspended animation.

There's the tremendous expense of carrying food, oxygen and carbon dioxide scrubbers to keep astronauts alive, not to mention the hassle of processing their urine and feces.

"Wouldn't it be neat if you could just put them out?" said Warren Zapol, the head of anesthesiology at Harvard University's Massachusetts General Hospital.

One option would be to cool the crew cabin into a big chill. But body temperatures below 30 Celsius (86 degrees F) can disturb the heart's rhythm. Another possibility would be to have the astronauts breathe swamp gas.

Zapol and colleagues report in this month's Anesthesiology journal about how hydrogen sulfide -- the same stuff produced by rotten eggs and swamp gas -- slows mouse metabolism without cutting blood flow to the brain.

"The mice aren't asleep," Zapol told Discovery News. "If you pinch their tails, they respond.

"I don't know what it's like," he added, "probably some slow-motion world."

There are many questions and years of research before healthy people like astronauts would be put into hibernated states, but the procedure could find an earlier application in cases of traumatic injury when life itself is at risk.

"Sixty percent of people in war are dead right there on the field," Zapol said. "They are instantly hurt, and because there is no blood and no fluids in the field, by the time they get to a hospital they are cold and dead and there is nothing to fix.

"During this early period after trauma, if we could freeze you down or shut you down, we could restart you after we fix the aorta, or whatever has been damaged," Zapol said.

Emergency medical workers have tried cooling victims, but the amount of cold water needed to reach effective temperatures makes the technique impractical, particularly in battlefield situations.

"Corpsmen aren't walking around with 150 pounds of cold water," Zapol said. "But what if you could just fog them with hydrogen sulfide?"

During Zapol's experiment, metabolic measurements of the mice, such as their consumption of oxygen and production of carbon dioxide, dropped as early as 10 minutes after they began inhaling hydrogen sulfide.

They remained low as long as the gas was administered. The mice returned to normal within 30 minutes after normal air started to flow.

The animals' heart rate dropped nearly 50 percent while they were breathing the gas, with no significant change in blood pressure or the strength of the heart beat. Respiration rates decreased, but there were no changes in blood oxygen levels, suggesting that vital organs were not at risk of oxygen starvation, the researchers report.

Zapol plans additional experiments on larger mammals, probably sheep.

"Before you use it on astronauts, you want to make sure it's very, very safe," he said.


Related Links:

Irene Klotz's blog: Space Diary

Warren Zapol

NASA Vision for Space Exploration

How Stuff Works: Hibernation

Charlton Heston Passes away at the age of 84

Statement by the Family of Charlton Heston
Saturday April 5, 11:24 pm ET

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., April 5, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Legendary actor, civil rights leader and political activist Charlton Heston passed away today, at the age of 84. He died at his home with Lydia, his wife of 64 years, at his side. Mr. Heston was loved by his two children, Fraser Clarke Heston and Holly Heston Rochell, and his three grandchildren, Jack Alexander Heston, Ridley Rochell and Charlie Rochell.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080405/CLSA013 )

Source: Mercury Group

· Charlton Heston.
· Click Here to Download Image



The Heston family issued the following statement:

"To his loving friends, colleagues and fans, we appreciate your heartfelt prayers and support. Charlton Heston was seen by the world as larger than life. He was known for his chiseled jaw, broad shoulders and resonating voice, and, of course, for the roles he played. Indeed, he committed himself to every role with passion, and pursued every cause with unmatched enthusiasm and integrity.

We knew him as an adoring husband, a kind and devoted father, and a gentle grandfather, with an infectious sense of humor. He served these far greater roles with tremendous faith, courage and dignity. He loved deeply, and he was deeply loved.

No one could ask for a fuller life than his. No man could have given more to his family, to his profession, and to his country. In his own words, "I have lived such a wonderful life! I've lived enough for two people."

A private memorial service will be held. The family has requested that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Motion Picture and Television Fund:

    MPTF
22212 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 300
Woodland Hills, CA 91364

a great collection of photos of Charlton are here

I’ve found God, says man who cracked the genome

From
June 11, 2006

THE scientist who led the team that cracked the human genome is to publish a book explaining why he now believes in the existence of God and is convinced that miracles are real.

Francis Collins, the director of the US National Human Genome Research Institute, claims there is a rational basis for a creator and that scientific discoveries bring man “closer to God”.

His book, The Language of God, to be published in September, will reopen the age-old debate about the relationship between science and faith. “One of the great tragedies of our time is this impression that has been created that science and religion have to be at war,” said Collins, 56.

“I don’t see that as necessary at all and I think it is deeply disappointing that the shrill voices that occupy the extremes of this spectrum have dominated the stage for the past 20 years.”

For Collins, unravelling the human genome did not create a conflict in his mind. Instead, it allowed him to “glimpse at the workings of God”.

“When you make a breakthrough it is a moment of scientific exhilaration because you have been on this search and seem to have found it,” he said. “But it is also a moment where I at least feel closeness to the creator in the sense of having now perceived something that no human knew before but God knew all along.

“When you have for the first time in front of you this 3.1 billion-letter instruction book that conveys all kinds of information and all kinds of mystery about humankind, you can’t survey that going through page after page without a sense of awe. I can’t help but look at those pages and have a vague sense that this is giving me a glimpse of God’s mind.”

Collins joins a line of scientists whose research deepened their belief in God. Isaac Newton, whose discovery of the laws of gravity reshaped our understanding of the universe, said: “This most beautiful system could only proceed from the dominion of an intelligent and powerful being.”

Although Einstein revolutionised our thinking about time, gravity and the conversion of matter to energy, he believed the universe had a creator. “I want to know His thoughts; the rest are details,” he said. However Galileo was famously questioned by the inquisition and put on trial in 1633 for the “heresy” of claiming that the earth moved around the sun.

Among Collins’s most controversial beliefs is that of “theistic evolution”, which claims natural selection is the tool that God chose to create man. In his version of the theory, he argues that man will not evolve further.

“I see God’s hand at work through the mechanism of evolution. If God chose to create human beings in his image and decided that the mechanism of evolution was an elegant way to accomplish that goal, who are we to say that is not the way,” he says.

“Scientifically, the forces of evolution by natural selection have been profoundly affected for humankind by the changes in culture and environment and the expansion of the human species to 6 billion members. So what you see is pretty much what you get.”

Collins was an atheist until the age of 27, when as a young doctor he was impressed by the strength that faith gave to some of his most critical patients.

“They had terrible diseases from which they were probably not going to escape, and yet instead of railing at God they seemed to lean on their faith as a source of great comfort and reassurance,” he said. “That was interesting, puzzling and unsettling.”

He decided to visit a Methodist minister and was given a copy of C S Lewis’s Mere Christianity, which argues that God is a rational possibility. The book transformed his life. “It was an argument I was not prepared to hear,” he said. “I was very happy with the idea that God didn’t exist, and had no interest in me. And yet at the same time, I could not turn away.”

His epiphany came when he went hiking through the Cascade Mountains in Washington state. He said: “It was a beautiful afternoon and suddenly the remarkable beauty of creation around me was so overwhelming, I felt, ‘I cannot resist this another moment’.”

Collins believes that science cannot be used to refute the existence of God because it is confined to the “natural” world. In this light he believes miracles are a real possibility. “If one is willing to accept the existence of God or some supernatural force outside nature then it is not a logical problem to admit that, occasionally, a supernatural force might stage an invasion,” he says.

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Tank Chair - Five is Alive for the Handicapped


Tank Chair is an off-road wheelchair that can go almost anywhere. Tank Chair can go through streams, mud, snow, sand, and gravel, allowing you to get back into nature.

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