Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Holy Crap’ Category

Check this out: 

 

Can you see it? Well, I’m no screenshot expert. It’s the nutrition information for the Baskin Robbins Heath Shake. Wait, here’s a close-up:

 

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

..

..

.

Much better! So, I am totally baffled as to how a milkshake could possibly have 108 grams of fat, 64 grams of saturated fat, and 2310 calories. 1580 grams of sodium? I mean, what did they put in it? Milkshakes shouldn’t have 65% of your daily recommended amount of sodium. And even straight-up fat doesn’t have that much fat in it!

There’s a lot of talk about personal responsibility and freedom of choice when it comes to obesity and related health issues. Food companies and their cronies are fond of saying that they’re just providing options for people and that if people choose to consume unhealthy foods, it’s out of the producers’ hands. I think that’s true to a certain extent, but the existence of “foods” like this is just beyond the pale. Who would ever even think that a milkshake could contain 320% of the daily recommended amount of saturated fat? Why do food companies carry so little responsibility for the health of their customers that they can even get away with producing something like this? This milkshake (to use the term loosely) has 77 ingredients in it! That’s insane.

The trickery is that, while these huge food corporations talk about personal responsibility and freedom of choice out of one side of their mouths, the fact is that they rely completely upon the ignorance of their customers in order to sell their products. If they need people to not know what is really in their food, or what the ingredients or nutrition information mean, then the arguments about responsibility and choice are meaningless.

This just makes me never want to eat in a restaurant again. I mean, what the hell?

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

This story is from last week, but it’s pretty nuts so I’ll link to it. A teacher at Cal State was fired because she refused to sign the loyalty oath required, by the state constitution, of all state employees. The oath states that the signatory promises to “defend” the state and US constitutions against “all enemies, foreign and domestic.” The oath has been in place since 1952, when it was passed because of the Red Scare. This article in the LA Times focuses on one particular woman, a Quaker, who refused to sign the oath because it conflicts with her pacifist beliefs, but it also cites several other examples of people being fired for refusing to sign it.

If I’m not mistaken, not only would an oath to protect your state against enemies conflict with Quaker views on pacifism, but Quakers, as a rule, do not sign oaths or swear in court. So I think it’s not just the particular content of this oath that would be a problem for Quakers, but the requirement of a loyalty oath itself.

I don’t have anything super-illuminating to say about this, I just think it’s disturbing. In my view, the wide-spread hysteria around communism in the sixties is viewed as a dark time for civil liberties in this country, so its pretty shocking that this archaic law is a) still in place and b) still being strictly enforced. Sad.

Read Full Post »

Did anyone else see this story in the New Yorker about the guy, Nicholas White, who was trapped in an elevator for 41 hours? Just sit back for a second and think about the last 41 hours, and the ways in which they would have been different if you’d been trapped, alone and without food or water, in a 6×6 space. Uh, that’s a long-ass time.

Luckily for us, the entire ordeal was captured on the building’s security camera. So if in your quiet moments you’ve ever wondered what a person does under such circumstances, now you can find out, thankfully not in real-time. Here’s the link. It’s amazing how gripping it is to watch someone just pace around at super-speed and lie on the floor for hours at a time. Definitely watch it.

For people who are too busy and important to read the entire accompanying article, here is a bulleted list of the things we all want to know:

  1. He pushed the doors open and peed down the elevator shaft. That was my number-one question, of course.
  2. He didn’t have his cell phone with him.
  3. He had three cigarettes, which he smoked, and two rolaids, which he did not eat.
  4. It was over a weekend, so no one noticed that the elevator was not functioning. He pulled the alarm, but no one heard it. Apparently several security guards came and went and didn’t notice him on the security camera.
  5. It was an express elevator to the 39th floor, and he was trapped somewhere around the 13th floor, so even if the escape hatch hadn’t been locked from the outside there would have been no way for him to climb to safety. It was just a concrete shaft for hundreds of feet in both directions! Shudder.
  6. Eventually someone either noticed him on the camera or friends came looking for him (unclear in the article), and he was released.

I was emailing with my buddy who alerted me to this story and thinking about how I would react under similar circumstances. The New Yorker article said that White had the idea in his head that he wanted to be a “model employee,” even under these extreme circumstances, so that’s why it took him so long to smoke his cigarettes or try to climb out the escape hatch. I thought that was kind of notable. I feel like I would panic immediately. It’s amazing that I don’t freak and go into survival mode when the elevator’s just moving normally between floors.

I’d be trying to start a fire and catch mice for sustenance within three minutes if this happened to me. They’d pry the doors open 10 minutes later and find me clothed in some sort of mouse-pelt loincloth, with a half-chewed piece of carpet in one hand and a urine cocktail in the other.

And fine, that’s not actually a picture of John McClane in an elevator shaft, but you get the idea. It’s just a visual reminder of how awesome that was. Actually, I wouldn’t be eating mice! I’d be climbing around the elevator shaft in a tank top and bare feet trying to kill Alan Rickman! Maybe after dementia had set in, anyway.

Read Full Post »