Thursday, February 28, 2008

Impaired anal sphincter function in professional cyclists!!!??

Thanks to a good poop for this one!

Being a scientist with a recreational interest in cycling I could not help but make note of this incredibly important scientific finding!.

I just have the typical questions regarding this study. One, how exactly did these people recruit their subjects? Two, just how uncomfortable is it to have a balloon shoved up your rectum and inflated? Finally, were these mountain bike riders thinking that this may be bad but it's a whole lot better than being in the saddle and do they get a discount on any prophylactic devices developed?!

In conclusion, I am heading off to my LBS and demanding that they start stocking really really nice comfy shorts and underpants! There is nothing more embarrassing than having to say,"oops! I pooped myself" while on a group ride.

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

why I'm not a vegetarian

I have very few useful skills. It's true. My one true strength is that I have the internet equivalent of ADHD. I am constantly peeking in some of the weirdest corners of the internet.

I recently came across some YouTube homemade videos of one of my most favorite Canadian groups, the Arrogant Worms. So many of their tunes are clever, funny and self-deprecating about being Canadian. This particular video is (I believe) and actual produced by them video of one of my favorite songs. Listen, and laugh. I know I do :)

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Too much of anything...

Below is the abstract of a recent article (discovered by a good poop) reporting a run on meditation induced psychosis!?


Apparently relaxing too much is bad for you, especially if your doing this while engaging in exercise and training. To quote

"A 24-year-old Caucasian male artist was referred because of an acute sensation of being mentally split during a Hindustantype meditation. It was an unguided and intense session. The patient had recently trained extensively for a marathon, which resulted in a weight loss of 7 kg. In addition he was experiencing relationship problems and work-related stress"

I always knew there was something fishy about those relaxed, laidback types. They're trying to suck me into their dastardly plan to take over the earth and feed the proletariat to sheep, causing massive outbreaks of mad cow disease.... wait. I think I've been relaxing too much. I think I'll go get some coffee.

the entire report can be downloaded here for your edification and amusement.

Background: Meditation is a self-regulatory psychological
strategy that is frequently applied in Western as well as non-
Western countries for different purposes; little is known
about adverse events. Sampling and Methods: A male patient
is described who developed an acute and transient psychosis
with polymorphic symptomatology after meditating.
A literature search for psychotic states related to meditation
was carried out on PubMed, Embase and PsycInfo. Results:
In the case presented a diagnosis of acute polymorphic psychotic
disorder was made. Other case reports dealt with either
a relapse of a pre-existent psychotic disorder or with a
brief psychotic reaction in patients without a psychiatric history.
Conclusion: Meditation can act as a stressor in vulnerable
patients who may develop a transient psychosis with
polymorphic symptomatology. The syndrome is not culture
bound but sometimes classified in culture-bound taxonomies
like Qi-gong Psychotic Reaction.

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Sheldon Brown RIP

I learned today that Sheldon Brown

recently passed (Feb 3).

Although I never met the man personally, I have never admired someone so much. As a newbie cyclist I always knew where to go to get clear, easy to understand information on anything and everything bike related. His website has wit and never condescends. A true educator and enthusiast. Rest in Peace Sheldon.

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Just some fun photos from my recent single track ride.


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Friday, February 01, 2008

Shut it

Hey, guess what. I have not blogged in over a month! For those few who regularly check my site I apologize. When I decided to get a little down time I quite literally unplugged and relaxed. Never the less, I'm back in the swing of things and after a hectic first month I'm able to squeeze out a few lines again.

What?, you say. You were relaxing but had a hectic month? How can that be? Well kids, it goes a little something like this...

Over the course of the previous semester, I had accumulated a vast number of holiday projects that I actually wanted to do. Things like: do some more training on my linux machine, get my videos into DVD format, hang some art that has been in storage since we moved into the house 2+ years ago. All things I actually wanted to do but could not justify when I was running like the red queen last semester.

There was also the issue of gift purchases for the little missus and family on Nova Scotia (a country quite difficult and expensive to send gifts to I might add - who knew).

Another hectic element came from my wife and I finally biting the bullet and deciding to stop using her 30+ year old bedroom furniture (click if interested) and become grown ups. We brought in the wife of a colleague who was an an interior designer and got her input on window treatments, bed coverings, reupholstery, wall colors, accent color, art, mirrors, chandeliers, ceiling fans.... have left anything out here? I have to say it was a serious of fun, exciting, mind bending, heart wrenching roller coaster decisions. Then came the estimates and our dreams took a little smack to the gut. That's a lot of $$ for some paint, that's a lot of $$ for window treatments.... It was a LOT of $$. So back we went, making adjustments, spreading the cost over several installments and stages. We've finalized on most everything an the painters are in the house every day making our house beautiful! We've lived in apartments pretty much our whole lives and we so tickled to see color, any color, that was not flat white!



What made it even better is the architecture of the house is such that it lends itself really well to a cool contemporary paint scheme but still homey and warm and cozy.

They've been in the house for 2 weeks now and we expect another 3 but man are we crazy about the job these guys are doing. We are really getting what we paid for. One guy literally, yes literally , was down on the floor with an artists brush doing fine detail work along the baseboard to make sure his lines were straight and there was no bleeding of colors! WOW.

So, that's the kind of relaxing home time I had. When the semester began again I had a whole new set of challenges. 4 courses, 2 subjects, one of which was a new prep and the other a complete revamp since many of the slides and material is over 3 years old. So, I've got ~160 students that I have to entertain and get excited about biological psychology and contemporary theories and methods for studying psychological disorders. This is not a problem for me, I'm Mr. nerd geek and love this stuff but it can be like pulling teeth at times, getting the kids involved. As an added challenge, the vast majority are regular, church goin' folks who don't have much time or inclination to accept evolution as the reason we are the way we are. It can make it a tad difficult to discuss physiology and the use of animal models as good test subjects for new psycho therapeutic compounds when the first response is... uh why would they use a rat? Humans aren't like rats.

Well this post is getting a little long winded so I'll leave my cycling woes for another post but as you can see if you quickly glance to the right, I have not been riding and I'm very edgy right now.. So SHUT IT and GET OFF MY CASE. I've been a little busy fer chrissakes :)

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