My Blog List

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Ask Maxy

Dear Maxy,
For the past several years, I've resigned  myself  to the fact  that my wife  and I aren't  going to have sex , so pornography  and  self-gratification  are the alternative .
I understand she  can be tired, ill or  angry  or  just not  feel like it . But that's all the time . She  says I take it too personally  when she turns  me down . Yet, when she insists  she  likes sex  and wants me to initiate it, I get slapped  and  turned away  as soon as I approach  her . How  can I not  take that  personally ? I finally realized I am better off accepting  that we  aren't  going to have sex  and I no longer get frustrated .
I send  flowers, take  her out to dinner, make  her coffee in the morning, make  her  lunch  for work  , clean up after dinner  and make  breakfast  on weekends . Her interest declined  when our  children were  young  . She  told me if I didn't  like it  I could leave, but  we both know that will be bad  for the children . We talked about  counseling, but she  wouldn't  go, so I went by myself . The counselor wasn't too  helpful , saying suck it up or  leave .
I guess I'm angry . So it's no use talking to her about it  anymore . So why  am I writing ? I want someone to change  my wife . But I know she's the only  one that  can do  that  and she doesn't  have much interest  . Men like me  lead lives  of  quiet desperation .
In Pain 
Dear In Pain,
Please  understand  that your  counselor  was right .  In situations  where the other person  is unwilling to make changes, your  choice is to  go or stay . But although  you decided  to stay ( for all the right reasons ), you didn't truly deal with  the emotional fallout  and became increasingly resentful, lonely and  bitter .  I understand how empty and isolated you must feel and it appears that your wife no longer wants an intimate relationship with you.
Additional  counseling may  help you let  go  of that  and be more at peace . You have put your children's well being before your own and that is admirable. When they are older and more independent, you should consider your own happiness first and perhaps reconsider ending the relationship.

Dear Maxy,
Recently I was sub-tweeted  ... someone tweeted  something  negative  about me on Twitter, but  did not  tweet me  directly  ... by several of my  acquaintances . I took the time to call them  out  on it  and respond to the rude things they were saying, for example, calling  me a disgrace to my race  . Should I have pretended  I didn't  see what  they were saying  or was I right  to defend  myself .
Tweet Snubbed 
Dear  Tweet Snubbed ,
In the  world of social media, so much information is  swirling  about  that it  can  be hard  to keep  track of it . If someone  badmouths  you, you absolutely  have the right to speak up  for  yourself, whether  the insult  came directly  or  via-sub-tweet . 
That said, you have to weigh  when it's  best  to stand  up for  yourself  and when it  might  be better  to say  nothing  or, at least, say it in person .  Make  your  decision  on a case-by-case  basis . If something  is  flagrantly out of line, you can also contact  the provider  to ask  for  the  comment to be removed . 

Dear  Maxy,
I  am a 68-year-old  woman who  has been  divorced  for more  than 30 years . I haven't been in an intimate  relationship for the past 10 years .
Last year I  discovered  that I have  genital herpes . The  doctor  said  that  may have had it  for years  before  experiencing  symptoms . I was  devastated, When I have an outbreak, I take  medication  that shortens  the  discomfort and I decided not to have intimate  contact  anymore . I'm  quite  busy  with my retirement lifestyle  and very content .
Here's the problem ; I recently  met a  man my age. I don't want to tell him  about my personal medical history, but I also don't want him to think I'm a prude . We went  out  casually  once  and  he  has called since, but I have put him off . I can't  decide if I should see him again and say nothing, or whether I should  tell him  I have an STD and let him decide  whether  he wants a 'friend  without  benefits.' What do  you suggest ?
 K ---
Dear K ,
It seems a shame to end  your sex  life  because  you fear  transmitting an STD . There  are ways  to advoid  that . And  your  future partner  may be  more  understanding  than  you realize . Please  contact  the American Sexual Health Association ( ) for  information on all STDs , including  herpes,  and for  support in communicating  with potential partners . Remember, It is always better to be up front and honest with someone you wish to have any kind of relationship with.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Laughing baby

Three year old hears music for the first time

This past weekend, Auguste Majkowski, 3, heard music for the first time. The Montreal preschooler
was born without auditory nerves. Sounds couldn't travel to his brain.
When cochlear implants failed to help, his mother, Sophie Gareau, started looking at other options.
When she saw the viral video of little Grayson Champ hearing for the first time – the result of an experimental auditory brainstem implant (ABI) surgery – she approached Grayson's surgical team and asked if her son was also a candidate. He was.

After months of meetings and appointments in California, Auguste underwent surgery at Children's Hospital in Los Angeles on May 6. During the six-hour surgery, an electronic device was installed directly on Auguste's brain stem so that sound bypasses the inner ear. Now, just weeks after the successful surgery, Auguste is learning to hear for the first time.
"Sometimes we call his name and he looks up. This is something we've never seen him do before. This is amazing," Auguste's mother, Sophie Gareau, told CBC News. Over the weekend, Auguste heard his first song: "Ma Baker" by Boney M.
Almost immediately, the excited preschooler got up and started to dance.
Gareau told Global News that she hoped the first song Auguste would hear would be "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," but she has no complaints.
“Who would’ve thought it would be Ma Baker by Boney M! I won’t complain, this is simply amazing!!!” she wrote on Facebook.
According to CBC News, Auguste is the first of 10 children who will receive this implant, funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
"This is a first step in offering a technology to children that have been unable to benefit from prosthetic devices," said Dr. Laurie Eisenberg, professor of otolaryngology, University of Southern

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

'Pea-sized brain hub could shed light on depression'

Picture of a person in an alleyway
The habenula may help in risky circumstances such as weighing up whether to go down a dark alley

Scientists say a part of the brain, smaller than a pea, triggers the instinctive feeling that something bad is about to happen. Writing in the journal PNAS, they suggest the habenula plays a key role in how humans predict, learn from and respond to nasty experiences. And they question whether hyperactivity in this area is responsible for the pessimism seen in depression. They are now investigating whether the structure is involved in the condition.

Animal studies have shown that the habenula fires up when subjects expect or experience adverse events, But in humans this tiny structure (less than 3mm in diameter) has proved difficult to see on scans. Inventing a technique to pinpoint the area, scientists  put 23 people though MRI scanners to monitor their brain activity. Participants were shown a range of abstract pictures. A few seconds later, the images were linked to either punishment (painful electric shocks), reward (money) or neutral responses. For some images, a punishment or reward followed each time but for others this varied - leaving people uncertain whether they were going to feel pain or not. And when people saw pictures associated with shocks the habenula lit up. And the more certain they were a picture was going to result in a punishment, the stronger and faster the activity in this area.
Scientists suggests the habenula is involved in helping people learn when it is best to stay away from something and may also signal just how bad a nasty event is likely to be.

Dr Jonathan Roiser, a lead author on the paper from University College London, said,
"Everything that moves needs a system like this - to tell us not to stroke the tiger or go down a dark alley.
"It is likely the habenula is a key neural hub allowing us to anticipate such events."
This area of the brain has been seen to be overactive in animal experiments on depression. And in human case-studies, providing deep brain stimulation (electrical current) to this area helped reduce depressive symptoms.
Prof Catherine Harmer, at the University of Oxford, who was not involved in the research, said:
 "This is an important piece of work and has the potential to have great significance in treating depression.
"If the habenula is proven involved in this illness, it will help explain why people suffering from major depression show an over-sensitivity to punishments and are less likely to respond to rewards."

Scientists are now working with people with depression to investigate any differences in brain activity in this area. It looks very promising.
I know there are people out there who suffer overwhelming sadness and distress from day to day. Hang on my friends. Science is in your corner and the answers will soon arrive.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Maxy's Gone....And his Family is Broken Hearted

Our precious Maxy passed away on Friday. He died while my daughter and I held him at the animal hospital. He was a victim of someone's carelessness. They left out some poisoned bait meant for rodents , we assume, and Maxy ingested some. He had an agonizing death that has traumatized us all. And all we could do was stand helplessly by and watch him suffer.

Please, Please don't use poisons on or around your property for any reason at any time. It is a risk to so many innocent little lives and the dying process is horrible. Maxy bled internally and then his eyes and ears hemorrhaged and he vomited blood. We could not bear to watch him suffer any longer and asked the vet to euthanize him. She thinks it was Warfarin (rat poison) or possibly strychnine.

He was a wonderful little guy with lots of personality and a member of our family. He was beloved in our neighborhood and our friends and neighbors are upset and angry and have sworn to find the culprit. He will be so missed by so many, but he will always be in our hearts and will always be the 'Dog on the Blog'.

Hitchbot, the hitchhiking robot, bums 1st ride

Anne and Brian Saulnier say they heard about the project on the radio and are thrilled to pick up Hitchbot. CBC

It didn't take long for a little robot attempting to hitchhike across the country relying on the kindness of strangers to get its first ride.
The little traveller, about the size of a six-year-old child, was made using pool noodles, an old bucket, Wellington boots, rubber gloves, solar panels and a computerized "brain."
Hitchbot is entirely dependent on human beings for its survival. It's part of a Canadian research project looking into the evolving relationship between people and technology.
The robot set off on Sunday just outside of Halifax and was quickly picked up by a couple heading to Kouchibouguac National Park.
“A lovely couple offered to help me out. Look out, New Brunswick. Here I come,” read the robot’s Instagram page.
Anne and Brian Saulnier say they heard about the project on the radio.
“I was actually just reading about him this morning as we were packing up our trailer for our camping trip. I thought that would be really cool if we actually saw him on the side of the highway, but I thought what are the chances of that,” said Anne.
“And there he was. He’s going on a ride for sure,” said Brian.
The Saulniers say they’ll either leave him at the border or give him to another family to take him on the next leg of his journey.

David Harris Smith, an assistant professor at Hamilton's McMaster University, first came up with the idea of creating a collaborative art project centred around a hitchhiking robot.
He says the Hitchbot is also an experiment that looks at the interaction between people and increasingly ubiquitous technology.
Hitchbot will be powered with solar panels covering the beer cooler bucket that makes up its torso, and can also be recharged from car cigarette lighters or a regular outlet. But if Hitchbot's power runs out when it is waiting for its next ride, written instructions on its body will tell people how to strap it into the car and plug it in, and direct people to a help website.
The researchers expect it to charm its way into enough rides to make it all the way to Victoria.
Hitchbot is also equipped with a GPS and 3G wireless connectivity that will allow it to post frequent updates of its position on the internet.
Along the way the robot will share its more than 6,000-kilometre journey on social media.
Smith admits privacy could be a concern, so they've built privacy settings into Hitchbot. It will ask permission before taking a picture, or ask those in the car to take a selfie with it. There will also be flesh and blood moderators sifting through the data collected.

Have a safe journey Hitchbot. It's also a great experiment in human co-operation and people's natural curiosity and sense of fun. I love it.

Explosive Selfie

Does lightning REALLY strike this romantic selfie couple or is cupid letting off fireworks? Intriguing footage shows the moment sparks start to fly between the young couple when they pose for one more selfie just as a storm is coming in

 Life couldn't be better for this couple as they swim and snorkel in Mexico. The tanned twosome clearly only have eyes for each other as they parade around Yal-Ku Lagoon in Akumal, Quintana Roo.
But as lifeguards ask them to leave the water because a storm is approaching, the pair can't resist posing for one more indulgent selfie. As they cuddle together, a thunderbolt  crashes behind them, scaring the living daylights ( and possibly other things ) out of them.
It cut short their photo session as they ran for the hotel and a clean change of pants.

Food for Thought : Herbs and spices

Looking to add a little flavor without a lot of calories or sodium? Add some fresh herbs and spices. Herbs can boost the flavor to your favorite dishes without adding salt and many herbs contain disease-fighting antioxidants. Here are some tips:

Basil is one of the most popular culinary herbs. Sweet basil is used in salads, sandwiches and soups. Try a simple summer salad made with sliced tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil and olive oil, or add basil to tomato soup for a light meal.

Mint is a very versatile herb and can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. It is often used in fruit and vegetable salads. You can also try adding mint to ice cream, tea, peas, carrots or meats.

Rosemary is one of the most aromatic herbs you can find. It has a very distinct lemon-pine flavor and pairs well with many foods. Try rosemary with summer vegetables such as zucchini and squash, as an addition to tomato sauce or pizza, and in marinades for chicken and beef.

Cilantro is an herb that is typically used in Mexican, Latin America, Asian and Indian cuisines. It is best served fresh by adding to a dish just before serving. It makes a great addition to your favorite salsa. It also works very well with other dishes such as summer salads, fruit salads and sweet potatoes.

Words of Wisdom :"Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim; accept no ones definition of your life; define yourself."-
"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are."
 "The happiest of people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way."

In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don’t try to control. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sail. Explore. Dream. Discover."

"The world we are experiencing today is the result of our collective consciousness, and if we want a new world, each of us must start taking responsibility for helping create it."

Friday, July 25, 2014

Woman barred from cruise ship because she was pregnant

Michelle Ligori, her husband Frank and their two sons, eventually boarded the cruise, but not before spending more than $1,500 in extra expenses and losing nearly two days of their week-long cruise. Courtesy of Michelle Ligori

A Hamilton woman is speaking out after she was denied permission to board a Royal Caribbean cruise ship because she told a customer service representative that she was pregnant. 
On the morning of Feb. 8, Michelle Ligori was in the process of checking her family in for a Royal Caribbean cruise leaving from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., when the clerk asked her whether she was pregnant. Ligori had only recently found out she was about two months' pregnant, so she answered “yes.”
“I regret it entirely,” she told CBC Hamilton of her experience.
A chain of events followed that cost the Ligori family nearly two days of the cruise, added around $1,500 to their travel bill and turned their long-awaited family vacation into a “disaster.” As a result of the experience, Ligori is warning other women about the ordeal and questions whether she will travel with Royal Caribbean again.
Royal Caribbean says it is reviewing its policies, to determine what went wrong, and would consider further discussions with the family over what happened to them.

Ligori said the clerk told her that she would not be able to board the boat — the Oasis of the Seas, one of the largest cruise ships in the world — if she didn’t have a note from a doctor stating that she was fit to travel. The clerk contacted a supervisor, who told Ligori to obtain physician’s note. It was a Saturday, and she wasn’t able to get in contact with her family doctor, who didn’t know at the time that Ligori was pregnant.
She managed to reach an on-call physician and told her about the situation. The doctor sent the cruise line a note stating that Ligori’s condition sounded stable, but that the assessment was not made based on an in-person consultation.  Royal Caribbean staff, she said, told her they wouldn’t accept the document.

Time was running out until the boat's 4 p.m. departure time for the seven-day eastern Caribbean tour. With two children under five in tow, Ligori and her husband, Frank, faced the prospect of missing the cruise, for which they had paid about $8,000.
“They left us in the middle of the pier with our suitcases and our children," Ligori said. “I’m crying, I’m calling my travel agent, who was surprised and shocked.”

It wasn’t until 3:30 p.m. that Ligori was instructed to go to a local hospital. But by the time she obtained a doctor’s note, the boat had left. Ligori's travel agent, Robert Simpson, said he contacted Royal Caribbean to ask what his clients’ options were. The company said it would honour the family’s tickets if the Hamiltonians wanted to go on a cruise that was set to leave the following day.
However, Simpson said he received no guarantee that a cabin would be available for the family.
Not wanting to take that risk, Ligori and her husband chose instead to fly the next afternoon to the Bahamas to catch up with the Oasis of the Seas at its first port of call.

In total, Ligori said her family spent a total of about $1,500 for expenses that arose from the delay — including a one-night stay in a Fort Lauderdale-area hotel, airfare to the Bahamas and international calls to the doctor and to Simpson. The family eventually boarded the cruise, but Ligori said they lost the better part of two days of the seven-day tour.
“It was bittersweet,” said Ligori of the vacation. “It was hard to get past all that.”
She went on to have a miscarriage in March.

According to its website, Royal Caribbean doesn’t carry passengers who are more than 24 weeks’ pregnant. Women who are less than 24 weeks into their pregnancies are required to provide a doctor’s note stating that “they are in good health and not experiencing a high-risk pregnancy.” Internet users can access the policy by clicking through to a frequently asked questions page that Royal Caribbean links to via a drop-down bar on its homepage.  Ligori said the proviso isn't visible enough, and she warned women who may be pregnant to look into a cruise line’s health policies before booking a vacation on the seas.
Rob Zeiger, Royal Caribbean’s vice-president of corporate communication, said the company is “aggressively reviewing policies to make sure that this doesn’t happen again.”
In a telephone interview with CBC Hamilton, he said Royal Caribbean is “trying to understand what went wrong, what happened to this poor woman.”
He said Ligori shouldn’t have been asked whether she was pregnant and that the company’s policy requiring pregnant women to submit a doctor’s note is designed to “protect people at a much later stage of pregnancy.”
“It’s clear that somehow this got unfortunately misinterpreted,” he said.

Other major cruise lines, including Florida-based Carnival and California-based Princess, have similar policies posted to their websites. Both travel providers say they don’t carry women who are more than 24 weeks’ pregnant, and both require doctors’ notes from pregnant passengers who are less than 5.5 months’ pregnant.
In a statement on its website, Carnival explains the rationale for its pregnancy policy: “While at sea or in port, the availability of medical care may be limited or delayed. Prenatal and early infant care in particular may require specialized diagnostic facilities and/or treatment that are not obtainable during the cruise on board the ship or ashore in ports of call.”
Denise Réaume, a University of Toronto law professor who specializes in discrimination law, said that, in general, refusing a pregnant woman a service is illegal in many jurisdictions, including Ontario.
“To discriminate against pregnant people is to discriminate against women,” said Réaume.
She said exemptions are often made for policies designed to protect women in very late stages of pregnancy, and speculated that Royal Caribbean was likely acting out of an "abundance of caution."
But in Ligori's case, "that would not be regarded as a good enough excuse," Réaume noted.  
After dealing with Ligori’s situation, Simpson says his office, Expedia Cruise Centres on the Hamilton Mountain, has started asking women travellers if they might be pregnant before booking a cruise.
“Normally, I would feel uncomfortable asking a lady if she’s pregnant,” said Simpson.
“In the office, we’re not in the habit of doing of it, but I don’t want anybody to have to go through this again.”
Is it discrimination against women?? I'm not sure I have a handle on this one.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Ask Maxy

Dear Maxy ,
I am  37  and divorced . I identify myself  as  bisexual  and try to live my dating  life very privately .
The problem is, my parents are quite  judgmental  and racist . I dare not  say anything  about  my dating partners, who are either gender  and any color . But I am tired of living  my life for others . If I choose to go my own way, however,  my two children would lose their grandparents . Any suggestions ?
Dear Frustrated,
You aren't  giving  your parents any credit  for being  for being able  to accept  you as you are  for the sake of their grandchildren . You don't need to give them details  of your  dating  life  and  parade  various  partners  in front  of them . No one does and parents do not really want to hear about it.  Your sexual orientation is your own intimate and personal business.
But you should not be afraid  to introduce  them to someone who becomes  a meaningful  part of  your life, with whom you wish a serious relationship. Give them the  time to work through  their feelings and you will probably find they still love you and very much want to see you and their grandchildren. You  can find  support  through PFLAG  ( )

Dear  Maxy ,
I have to travel  45 minutes  by bus  to get to work  and the bus  comes only once an hour, something that my boss knows . I came into work  and discovered  that the doors were locked .  A custodian let me in, but my department was  still locked . I checked my email  and saw that  my boss  had sent  me an email, prior to when I have  to be in the office, to tell me that I didn't need to come in  today . I found this  rude, since she  knows  my situation  and I had to use my own money  to pay for the bus  to and from  work that day, which was a waste of  my wages, as the bus  fare is not  cheap . Do I have  a right to ask  for  compensation ?
Snubbed at Work
Dear Snubbed at Work ,
Chances are  your  boss  did not intentionally  make the decision  not to open  the office that day too late  for you to know it . It's most likely  that she did not realize  that she  didn't take  her  staff  travel time into account . Often, important  decisions  get  made in a vacuum  and some things  that should be obvious  are overlooked . This  does  not make  your boss's actions  right, however, it can explain  how such a thing  could happen .
I think it is fair  for you  to mention  to your  boss  that you did  not get the message  in time  and  you came to work  unnecessarily .
You can  say how  much  your commute  costs  and ask  if you could  possibly be reimbursed  . By asking  in a polite, respectful way , you create space  for your  boss  to apologize  and give  you the money  that  you spent . Chances are good she will see it your way.

Dear Maxy ,
I am writing for a critique  group  that meets once  a week . It is a small group; therefore, we depend  on the  attendance  of the members, which we make  very clear  in the beginning . Of  course, there are  times  when people  are unable  to make it  and we ask  that they let us  know  ahead of  time . However, there have  been  a  couple of  people  who just won't  show up one week, or  for  a few weeks  at a time with no explanation . Is it  wrong  to expect members  of a group  let us  know  if they can't  make a meeting , even if we  did not explicitly  state  that they  should  tell us  when we started  the  group ?
Team Work
Dear Team Work ,
It is perfectly  within  your  rights  to follow  up  with members of  your writing  critique  group  to ask them  to honor  their obligation  to  attend  and participate  in  your  group sessions . Contact  each of the no-shows  to  find out  if  they are all right  and if  they  intend to come back . Explain  how difficult  it can  be when  members  do not show up . Ask  them to commit  more fully to the group  if they want  to  continue  to be a part of it . It may encourage them to commit but be prepared if someone withdraws from your group because they prefer a more casual involvement. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Gotta Love the Oatmeal


A Parking Space that Launched a Career

LOS ANGELES - CIRCA 1965: Actor James Garner poses for a portrait circa 1965 in Los Angeles, California.
LOS ANGELES - CIRCA 1965: Actor James Garner poses for a portrait circa 1965 in Los Angeles

Truth is stranger than fiction — especially when it comes to the life of Hollywood legend James Garner, who died Saturday at age 86. Unlike so many in Los Angeles, Garner didn't have stars in his eyes. In fact, his résumé was filled with jobs far removed from the glitz and glam of the movie industry. A high school dropout, he had bounced around from telephone installer to oil field roughneck to chauffeur to dishwasher to janitor to lifeguard to grocery clerk to salesman to swim trunk model to gas station attendant. And it was during his tenure at a Los Angeles gas station that Garner met the man who would change his life, Paul Gregory.
At the time, Gregory was working as a lowly soda jerk, but he had ambitions to be an agent. The two young men became fast friends until Garner left Southern California to serve in the Korean War (where he earned two Purple Hearts) and the two lost touch.
Then, years later, Garner was driving down La Cienega Boulevard when he noticed a sign for Paul Gregory & Associates. As Garner recounted in his autobiography, The Garner Files, a car pulled out as he neared the building, leaving an open space in front. Garner decided to pop in and catch up with his old friend, who had apparently made good on his life's ambition.
As it turns out, Gregory was producing a Broadway play, Herman Wouk's The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial. The production starred legends Henry Fonda, John Hodiak, and Lloyd Nolan, but also included a handful of nonspeaking roles. Gregory gave Garner one of them, effectively launching his
THE CAINE MUTINY COURT-MARTIAL, The cast gathers around Adlai Stevenson, ca. 1955: Lloyd Nolan, (third from left), Henry Fonda, (seventh from left), Herbert Anderson, (top left), John Hodiak, (second from right), James Garner, (right), Plymouth Theater, New York, 1954-1955
THE CAINE MUTINY COURT-MARTIAL, The cast gathers around Adlai Stevenson, ca. 1955: Lloyd Nolan, (third from left), …

The play opened in Santa Barbara before opening on Broadway in January 1954 for a 415-performance run.
But time onstage wasn't all Garner got from his first theatrical job. He admitted in his memoir that he learned how to act from practicing lines with the stars and studying them as they performed — especially Henry Fonda.
"I swiped practically all my acting style from him," Garner quipped.
That said, "swiped" is probably an oversimplification. The truth is that he and Fonda had many striking similarities. They were both masculine actors who managed to toe the line between sincerity and charisma while maintaining a likable, guy-next-door vibe. The two stars became lifelong friends offscreen as well. Garner's understated acting method led many to assume he was just being himself, when, in fact, he was practicing a Fonda-esque acting technique.

What's more, Garner's rich (and varied) pre-Hollywood life experience informed his "realness" in front of the camera. This guy had paid his dues in a slew of jobs and served honorably in a war before ever dabbling in the film industry.
In his autobiography, he revealed that when he got started in Gregory's play, he came up with what he called his "five-year plan," which basically meant he decided he'd stick with this whole acting thing for five years and then do something else.
"After the first five years, I'd done Maverick, so then I said, 'Well, maybe I can go five more,'" he explained. "It wasn't until I'd turned 50 and had been in the business 25 years that I realized I might actually have a career as an actor." And have one he did — all because he was paying attention during the rarest and most magical of L.A. moments: when a parking space opened up.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Customer celebrating his birthday leaves $1K tip, tells waiter to ‘pay it forward’

Last week, server Michael Shafts received his biggest tip yet: $1,000.
Shafts was working his regular Wednesday night shift at The Ginger Man, in Albany, New York, on July 15, when one of his patrons left him the huge gratuity on a $113.89 bill.
The man who left the tip had been celebrating his 47th birthday with his wife at the wine bar and restaurant.
"He brought a very good 47-year-old bottle of wine with him, and I handled it well, but I always try to give excellent service and to be a little different. I look young, so maybe people don't expect it, but I always try to give the best service to all of my customers," Shafts said of his service that evening.
While he knew he gave his best effort that evening, he certainly wasn't expecting a 878 per cent tip.
"Pay it forward. My birthday present to me!" read a note on the receipt above where the patron filled in a $1,000 tip.
"I shook his hand, I hugged him twice, and I said it was too much, twice," Shafts told the Times Union. "He insisted, twice, that he wanted to do it, that it was legitimate."
"I did a double-take," The Ginger Man manager Julie Byron told ABC News. "Everybody was very excited. It’s thrilling and it's especially unusual for something like that to happen in the capitol district."
Shafts told the Times Union that he had trouble concentrating for the rest of his shift.
"It was surreal. I was shaking. I couldn't feel my legs," he said.

"I saw him waiting on other tables — it was like, 7 pm." Byron told All Over Albany. "And I said, 'Michael, I can't believe you're not walking out the door.' And he was like, 'Julie, I would never do that to you!' He played it cool and continued to give great service to the rest of his tables. Then he went home and was texting me at 11 pm saying, 'I can't believe it!'"

Because the diner wanted Shafts to "pay it forward," he did just that.
"When he returned to work on Saturday night, he had envelopes of money for all of the staff, both front-of-house and back-of-house that had been working with him on Wednesday night," Byron said. "When all was said and done, he divvied up more than half."
Byron said the tip was a well-deserved one.
"He's a very hardworking young man," she told ABC News, explaining that he works full-time at a credit union, works three shifts a week at The Ginger Man, and has a side iPhone-repair business, too.
"I always tell him that he’s my favourite. He’s honestly a great guy and it couldn’t have happened to a better person," she said.

Shafts told the Times Union that, after sharing the tip with his coworkers, he spent what was left on much-needed car repairs.
In February, a Tennessee waitress who was struggling to pay her bills received a $1,075 tip from a couple who felt "led" to give her the money.
In Nebraska this January, a patron wrote a waitress three cheques to help her return to college: $5,000 to cover her tuition, $1,000 to cover personal expenses, and $100 to spilt with another server.
And last summer, a Canadian lottery winner tipped a Saskatoon, Saskatchewan restaurant owner $10,000 to help him visit his cancer-stricken daughter.

The world still has a lot of good Samaritans in it. We should take a leaf from their notebook and 'pay it forward'.

Monday, July 21, 2014

The diet that Helped Jessica Torch 60 pounds

When you're rushing to get out the door in the morning, don't just grab a breakfast bar - indulge in an easy meal that fuels weight loss without sacrificing taste (or time). The recipe comes from Jessica Simpson, who lost 60 pounds eating delicious meals like hearty baked eggs with the help of trainer Harley Pasternak and Weight Watchers. Packed with protein to keep you full and satisfied, this simple breakfast will kick-start your metabolism and help you burn more calories throughout the day. Plus, it's surprisingly easy to throw together, so you can get ready for the day completely stress free!

Dog heaps toys on baby to stop crying

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Celery Soda...Surprisingly Good

Get creative with celery! We'll show you how to make celery soda.
Surprisingly Good

Food for Thought : Ice Cream

There are not many things that go together as well as summertime and ice cream. Americans consume about 48 pints of ice cream per year, more than any other country per capita. Among our favorites are vanilla, chocolate, butter pecan, strawberry and chocolate chip. While you may have a favorite flavor or brand, most ice creams start out with a few basic ingredients, such as milk, protein solids and sweeteners. Because ice cream can pack a serious calorie and fat gram punch, it is important to remember to monitor your portion size and read the label. Here are a few tips to help you enjoy ice cream this summer with a little less guilt:
1 .    Regular (whole) ice cream contains at least 10 percent milk fat. So watch your serving size and read the label. Most nutrition information is given in ½-cup serving sizes.

2 .    Look for low-fat or nonfat versions of your favorite. There are some tasty ones that will save you some calories and fat grams.

3 .    Make your own ice cream. Electric ice cream makers are quick and easy, not to mention less of a mess maker compared to their salt and ice predecessors. Knowing exactly what ingredients are being added can help you monitor those calories.
Words of Wisdom
"If you're not using your smile, you're like a man with a million dollars in the bank and no checkbook."

"You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance."

"Some people are too tired to give you a smile. Give them one of yours, as none needs a smile so much as he who has no more to give."

"Humor oils the wheels of life and helps to keep it running smoothly."
A very proud Grandpoppa                   G.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Free Hugs

Free Hugs

Obese women 'show signs of food learning impairment'

Unhealthy food  Study participants were asked to learn and predict the appearance of food reward cards

Obese women may have a "food learning impairment" that could explain their attitude to food, research from Yale School of Medicine suggests. Tests on groups of obese and healthy-weight people found that the obese women performed worst when asked to remember a sequence of food picture cards.
Writing in Current Biology, Yale researchers tested 135 men and women. The findings could lead to new ways to tackle obesity, the study says. Study author Ifat Levy, assistant professor at Yale School of Medicine, said the difference in the performance of the obese women compared with the other groups was "really striking" and "significant".
The tests looked at an individual's ability to learn and predict the appearance of pictures of food or money on coloured cards. The participants were told they would be given whatever appeared on these "reward" cards. In the first phase, the reward cards always followed a particular coloured card in a sequence. Later, the order was changed and the reward cards appeared following a different coloured card.
During this time, participants were asked to predict the likelihood of a reward card appearing as the cards were shown one by one. The results showed that obese women performed worst because they overestimated how often the pictures of food, including pretzels or chocolate, appeared. Even after researchers had accounted for other factors, there was still a large difference in their learning performance.
Prof Levy said: "This is not a general learning impairment, as obese women had no problem learning when the reward was money rather than food. An intriguing possibility is that, by modifying flawed association between food and environmental cues, we may be able to change eating patterns."
The study said it was not clear what lay behind the learning deficit in obese women. In contrast, obese men did not show any signs of a food learning impairment.

The study suggested that women who are obese act this way because of particular concerns about food or because they feel more unhappy or dissatisfied about their body image. Previous research suggests that there are differences in how men and women perceive obesity. Future research is likely to focus on whether the food-specific learning problem is a result of obesity or a potential factor in causing obesity by testing individuals before and after weight loss.
The Yale researchers said their results called for a shift in focus.

"Rather than target these individuals' behaviour with food, we suggest that a successful intervention should aim to modify their interactions with other cues that determine their eating patterns," they wrote.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Ask Maxy

Dear Maxy ,
My mother-in-law  has suffered  from dementia  for 10 years . This wonderful, loving  woman  did not receive  the care she  should  have  and as a result  her  quality of  life  is worse  than it need to be. I have some advice  for  family members when a loved one receives  the dreaded  diagnosis  of  dementia  or Alzheimer's:
You need to learn  about the illness  and  you need to make a plan . Pretending  the person  is not sick doesn't  help . It makes  life harder  for them . I never realized  how powerful  a forced  denial  could be until I witnessed  my father-in-law's absolute refusal to change anything about  their  life .
Expecting her to keep cooking, leaving her alone, etc., were  truly acts  of  cruelty .
Realize  that your  loved one  is not  going  to get better. He or she  may stay the same  for a long time, or may steadily get worse, but they are not  going to improve . You need  to keep them  safe  and anticipate that they may do things  they have never  done before  ... like wander, take the wrong  medicines or let a stranger in the  house .
Get help, join a support  group  or  contact your  council on aging . We hired  a wonderful dementia  coach  who helps  families  figure  out what to . It is possible  for the sick person  to enjoy  the things  that they are able  to do if they are given support . Try to  avoid  isolation, for the sick person  as well as the  care  giver . Don't  turn down  offers  of  help .
The In-Law
Dear In-Law ,
Thank you for taking the time  to write  and  guide others  who are  in a similar situation . I  hope  anyone affected  by this  disease  will contact  the Alzheimer's Association at . Their website  has a wealth of  information  for  dementia and Alzheimer's . There is also  a 24/7 Helpline  at  1-800-272-3900.
And remember, if you show someone compassion , you may receive some when you need it most.

Dear Maxy ,
My wife and I  are  a little  concerned about our  30-year-old daughter, "Amber." Every day  she spends  an hour  brushing  her teeth  and  five  full minutes  washing  her hands and then rechecks  the same things  about  five times .
Amber  says  she  can't  control  it  and it's hard to stop . This  has  been going  on  for a little  over a year . Is this  something  to be  concerned  about ? Is this just the way she is ? Any advice  would be  great .
Concerned  Parents
Dear  concerned Parents ,
Repetitive  behaviors like this are  obsessive-compulsive disorders . They are  not uncommon .
However, OCD behavior can become  worse  over time  and it helps to get treatment  as soon as possible . You or Amber  can contact  the International OCD Foundation ( )
for more information  and referrals  to therapists who specialize in dealing  with this  problem . Get better Amber; I will be  thinking of  you .

Dear Maxy ,
My friend is dating  someone  I dated  casually a few  years  ago . It's perfectly OK with me, but  she says   that she wants  all of  us  to be  friends  and even possibly  double-date . If  we do double-date, what is the best  course of  action  to make sure  it isn't awkward ? Do I  joke  around  any past issues, or  just pretend  they never  happened ?
Dear Retread ,
What's  most important  is  for you to let your friend know that you previously dated this guy  so that it  doesn't  come as a surprise to her . You say that it was causal dating, but then you mention "past issues." You have to decide  your level of  comfort  as it relates to becoming  friendly with him again . You must also think of your friend's comfort level and your ex date's. It could get awkward.  Just  because  your  friend  wants  you to double-date  does not mean  that you must do so .
If you do want  to give it  a try,  go out as a group  and pledge  to stay in the  moment . There  should  be no reason for you to  bring  up  old  memories . Joking  around  about old issues  from your dating history  is unnecessary, and probably a bad move that will lead to distress  for everyone .
No need to pretend your dating history never happened . But do not dwell in the past .  Live  fully in the here  and now .

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

In a shocking discovery, missing Mont Blanc mountain climber found after 32 years in ice

In a shocking discovery, missing Mont Blanc mountain climber found after 32 years in ice

PARIS (Reuters) - Mountain-climbers have made a grisly discovery in the Mont Blanc range of the Alps - the body of a young climber preserved in ice for 32 years.The body of Patrice Hyvert, who had been training to be a guide, was found last Thursday by two mountain-climbers, local newspaper Dauphine Libere and other media reported.
Hyvert was last seen alive on March 1, 1982, when aged 23, he took off on a solitary climb up the western side of the "Aiguille Verte" mountain, part of the Mont Blanc massif that straddles the French-Italian border, before bad weather set in in the afternoon.
Another climber was evacuated from the same mountain two days later, but Hyvert was never found.
Local police confirmed to newspapers that the frozen body was that of the missing climber, finding his identity card still in his wallet.
The discovery came as a shock to Hyvert's 82-year-old father, Gerard.
"I'm a mountain man, and I would have preferred him to stay up there," he told RTL radio. "He was better on a mountain than in a coffin. He was in his element."
The dangerous terrain, and inclement weather, of the Mont Blanc range results in scores of deaths of mountain climbers each year. The bodies of the missing are often discovered the following year after the ice thaws.

Billionaire's breakup plan would chop California into six states

Timothy Draper, Founder and Managing Director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, speaks at the Reuters Global Technology Summit New York May 21, 2009 file photo.     REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
Timothy Draper, Founder and Managing Director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, speaks at the Reuters Global Technology Summit 
San Francisco (Reuters) - A long-shot effort to break California into six separate states got a boost on Monday, when the billionaire venture capitalist behind the proposal said he had gathered enough signatures to place it on the ballot in two years. Timothy Draper, a founder of a Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm that has invested in Twitter, Skype and Tesla, among other companies, has been agitating for months for a ballot initiative to chop the most populous U.S. state into smaller entities.

"It’s important because it will help us create a more responsive, more innovative and more local government, and that ultimately will end up being better for all of Californians," said Roger Salazar, a spokesman for the campaign. "The idea ... is to create six states with responsive local governments - states that are more representative and accountable to their constituents."
Salazar said Monday that the campaign had gathered more than the roughly 808,000 signatures needed to place the measure on the November, 2016 ballot. Draper and other supporters plan to file the signatures with California Secretary of State Debra Bowen on Tuesday.

But the plan has raised bipartisan hackles across the state, and opponents say it stands little chance of gaining voter approval. If it does win the support of voters, it must still be passed by Congress, which opponents say is also unlikely.
"This is a colossal and divisive waste of time, energy, and money that will hurt the California brand,” said Steven Maviglio, a Democratic political strategist who has formed the group OneCalifornia with GOP strategist Joe Rodota to fight Draper’s plan. "It has zero chance of passage. But what it does is scare investment away... at a time when the Governor is leading us to an economic comeback.”

Draper's plan would split the world’s eighth-largest economy along geographic lines.
One state, to be called Silicon Valley, would include the tech hub along with the San Francisco Bay Area. Jefferson, named after the third U.S. president, would encompass the northernmost region. The state capital of Sacramento would be in North California, while South California would be made up of San Diego and the eastern suburbs of Los Angeles.
L.A. itself would be part of a state called West California.
Proponents say the division would help create a more business-friendly environment, solve the state’s water issues, and ease traffic congestion.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Are you just eating your soup with those spoons...Get creative

1. Freeze two spoons, and sweep them under your eyes to get rid of under eye bags.
Put two metal spoons in the freezer at night, and in the morning, place the backs of the cold spoons under your eyes and as close to the inner corners as possible. Apply a little bit of pressure and slowly glide the spoons toward the outer corners. The gliding movement will help drain the fluid that's pooling underneath your eye, while the cold spoon will help minimize any puffiness.
2.  Hold a spoon underneath your eye when applying mascara on your lower lashes to avoid marks on your under eye area.
Place a spoon below your eye with the curve out and then apply your mascara like you normally would to your lower lashes. That way the residue will land on the back of the utensil rather than your skin. This also works when applying mascara on your upper lashes if you place the spoon on top of your upper eyelid.
3. Align the curve of the spoon to your brow to get the perfect arch.
The curve of a large spoon is the perfect shape for an eyebrow arch. Line up the curve of the spoon underneath your brow, and lightly trace around it with a brow pencil. Use this line as a guide, and begin filling in your brows above it with light strokes.

9 DIY Beauty Treatments Using Stuff Around the House

 In a pinch (or when you’re pinching pennies), these solutions are genius substitutes.

1. Make your own salt spray with seltzer and a teaspoon of rock salt.
If you want to create some texture in a pinch, celebrity hair stylist Ryan Trygstad suggests making your own ocean spray at home. Mix together 20 ounces of seltzer with a teaspoon of sea salt in a spray bottle and spritz into your hair.

2. Use a dryer sheet to eliminate staticky hair.
Any time your hair is staticky, grab a dryer sheet and gently run it along the top of your hair to eliminate static electricity.

3. If you get a surface burn on your skin, use plain yogurt to cool and soothe your skin.
Immediately after you've burned yourself (with a curling or flat iron), pat some plain yogurt over the scorched spot and leave it on for 10 minutes. Since yogurt contains probiotics, it will help restore the skin's natural barrier.

4. Use apple cider vinegar as toner.
Since apple cider vinegar is a purifying agent and acts as an astringent, you can use it as a toner for your skin. If you're prone to breakouts, use it along your T-zone to prevent blemishes.

5. Eliminate oil from your face with a coffee filter. 
They're made out of similar ingredients as blotting papers, so stash a few coffee filters in your purse. If you're feeling (or looking) shiny, pat yourself down when you need to reduce shine.

6. Apply Vaseline on your pulse points before spraying on your perfume to make the scent last longer.
Since the ointment is occlusive, it will hold the fragrance on your skin longer than if you were to spray the perfume just onto your skin.

7. Use cold green tea bags to decrease puffiness under your eyes.
The quickest way to de-puff and tighten your under-eye skin is to apply a cold, caffeine-based product under your eyes for five-to-six minutes.

8. Substitute conditioner for shaving cream.
The purpose of shaving cream is to give you a hydrating cushion between the razor and your skin. If you ever run out of shaving cream, use your hair conditioner to lather up your legs pre-shave.

9. Make your own body scrub with body wash and raw brown sugar.
Dr. Doris Day, M.D., a cosmetic dermatologist in New York City, suggests using your own DIY mix as a body exfoliator. Just take your favorite body wash and pour some brown sugar into the bottle, and then scrub away. If it's too harsh of an abrasive for you (you'll be able to tell if it's making your skin itch slightly), mix in some honey or coconut oil.

Scary New Reason To Avoid Mosquitoes This Summer

Get informed so you can protect yourself.
Get informed so you can protect yourself. The chikungunya virus -- that's "chik-un-gun-ya" -- is a nasty new infection that could leave you down and out for days.
Warm weather means more mosquitoes, which has U.S. health authorities bracing for the arrival of the chikungunya virus. This mosquito-borne infection causes days of high fever along with joint pain and stiffness, which sometimes linger for months and even years after the initial infection.

Related: The Unseen Threat of Lyme Disease
As of July 8, the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention reported a total of 153 cases in 30 states and Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, with most of the cases cropping up in Florida. Other symptoms of chikungunya include headache, muscle pain, and rash, which are similar to those of dengue, another disease spread by mosquitoes.

Stock up on (and use!) insect repellents with DEET, picaridin, lemon eucalyptus oil, or IR3535, advises Erin Staples, M.D., Ph.D., of the CDC. And although there is no medicine to treat chikungunya, the CDC suggests plenty of rest and fluids, and medication such as ibuprofen to relieve fever and pain.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Food for Thought : Fruits & Vegetables

We are told to eat our fruits and vegetables, but you know the difference? Many times we lump these into the same category, without identifying or noting each category’s unique properties. A fruit is the part of the plant that develops from a flower and contains the seeds while the other parts of the plants, such as stems, leaves and roots are vegetables. Here are a few tips to help you vary your fruits and vegetables of all kinds:

1 . Technically cucumbers, peppers and squash are fruits. They are also in season now. Sliced cucumbers, bell peppers, and squash make a great afternoon snack. Try dipping them in hummus or a low-fat dressing.

2 . Stem vegetables such as celery are wonderful sources of fiber, vitamins and minerals. They can help your digestion and help you feel full longer.

3 . Cauliflower and broccoli are considered vegetables. They both contain vitamin C and vitamin K. Try substituting shredded broccoli stalks for cabbage in coleslaws. Both cauliflower and broccoli make healthy compliments to any entrée.

Words of Wisdom:
"Some men are assholes and some men are cowards. What they both have in common is that both just stops talking to you, for no reason other than that they are assholes and cowards."

"If nobody spoke unless they had something to say, the human race would very soon lose the use of speech."

"The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one."

Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and
put it back in your pocket.

Silence and smile are two powerful words. Smile is the way to solve many problems and Silence is the way to avoid many problems

"My choices in life were either to be a piano player in a whore house or a politician. And to tell the truth, there’s hardly any difference!"

"True humor is fun - it does not put down, kid, or mock. It makes people feel wonderful, not separate, different, and cut off. True humor has beneath it the understanding that we are all in this together."

A very proud grandpoppa G.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Strawberry Chocolate Festival Dessert


    • 1 2/3 cups graham cracker crumbs400 mL
    • 1/2 cup melted butter125 mL
    • 1/4 cup granulated sugar50 mL

    • 3 cups 2% milk750 mL
    • 1/2 cup granulated sugar125 mL
    • 1/2 cup cornstarch125 mL
    • 2 egg yolks, beaten2
    • 1 pkg (1 3/4 cups)  milk chocolate chips, divided270 g
    • 2 tbsp butter30 mL

    • 1 1/2 cups 35% whipping cream375 mL
    • 1 tbsp icing sugar15 mL
    • 4 cups halved strawberries, about 1 lb (500 g)1 L


    1. Crust: Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Toss crumbs with butter and sugar until well combined; press into a 9 x 13-inch (3 L) baking dish. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden around edges; cool.
    2. Filling: Meanwhile, whisk milk with sugar and cornstarch until smooth in a saucepan set over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, for 10 minutes or until thickened. Whisk a little of the hot milk mixture into egg yolks; whisk back into hot milk mixture. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add 1 1/4 cups (300 mL) chocolate chips and butter; stir until melted and smooth. Spread evenly onto the prepared crust. Chill for 1 hour or up to 1 day.
    3. Topping: Beat cream with icing sugar until stiff peaks form; spread evenly over chocolate layer. Arrange strawberries over whipped cream. Melt remaining chocolate chips in a bowl set over simmering water. Drizzle over strawberries. Chill until set or up to 1 hour.

      Makes 12 servings.....Prep Time.....20 Minutes.....Bake Time.....10 Minutes

      • Drizzle the top with melted white chocolate chips instead of milk chocolate chips for a dessert that is perfect for any celebration!

    Thursday, July 10, 2014

    HIV re-emerges in 'cured' Mississippi baby


    The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) attacks the immune system

    A baby girl in the US born with HIV and believed cured after very early treatment has now been found to still harbour the virus. Tests last week on the four-year-old child from Mississippi indicate she is no longer in remission, say doctors.
    She had appeared free of HIV as recently as March, without receiving treatment for nearly two years. The news represents a setback for hopes that very early treatment with drugs may reverse permanent infection.
    Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told US media the new results were "obviously disappointing" and had possible implications on an upcoming federal HIV study.
    "We're going to take a good hard look at the study and see if it needs any modifications," he said.


    There was huge hope that the "Mississippi baby" would live a life free of the HIV. Antiretroviral drugs can keep the virus in check in the bloodstream, but HIV has hiding places - known as reservoirs - in the gut and brain. If treatment stops, then the virus emerges from its reservoirs and begins its assault afresh.
    Doctors had hoped that starting drug treatment within hours of birth would prevent the reservoirs forming.This seems not to have been the case.  This case was never going to lead to an HIV-cure for infected adults, who begin treatment months or years after infection. The Mississippi baby has become a reminder of how difficult HIV is to defeat and how distant a cure really is.

    Genetic mutation:
    The child, nicknamed the "Mississippi baby", did not receive any pre-natal HIV care prior to birth.

    Because of a greater risk of infection, she was started on a powerful HIV treatment just hours after labour. She continued to receive treatment until 18 months old, when doctors could not locate her. When she returned 10 months later, no sign of infection was evident though her mother had not given her HIV medication in the interim. Repeated tests showed no detectable HIV virus until last week. Doctors do not yet know why the virus re-emerged.
    A second child with HIV was given early treatment just hours after birth in Los Angeles in April 2013. Subsequent tests indicate she completely cleared the virus, but that child also received ongoing treatment.
    Only one adult is currently believed to have been cured of HIV.  In 2007, Timothy Ray Brown received a bone marrow transplant from a donor with a rare genetic mutation that resists HIV. He has shown no signs of infection for more than five years. 
    It sounds like a little gene engineering should be seriously looked into.

    Ask Maxy

    Dear Maxy ,
    My daughter, who is in fifth grade, has  two suitors . No, I'm not  kidding . She came home to tell me how  uncomfortable  she was because  she wasn't sure  how to talk  to both boys  at the same time . They were all at a birthday  party recently  and the boys were  vying for her attention. She says it was fun, but also a little weird because she likes  one boy  but  doesn't  want to hurt  the other one's feelings . I felt  so happy  she came to me  with this situation . I want to be able  to help her, but I also  know that she has to learn for herself how to handle boys' attention . What should I tell Her ?
    Growing  Up
    Dear  growing Up ,
    While you cannot  give your daughter  a prescription  for  how to navigate these two boys  as they talk  to her, you can give  your  guidance . First, let her  know  that it is very  nice that the  boys  find her interesting . She should consider that a positive . She should  remember  to treat  them and others as she would like to be treated . That may mean paying  attention when one is talking to her, responding to  questions  when asked, participating  in dialogue ... basically being present .
    When one  boy interrupts another, she  can attempt to manage  that by saying "Hold on  let X  finish  what he was saying ."
    Then  she can turn  to the other after he is  finished . Let her  know that it is much easier  to communicate  one-on-one  with the  boys, especially when they are attracted  to her .

    Dear Maxy ,
    Recently  I haven't been  felt like getting out of  bed  or  doing  anything . I just  feel blah . I  have been  struggling  for  so long  to recover  from losing  my  job  two years ago . I do  freelance work, but often I am broke . I can hardly pay my  bills, and I am always negotiating with a creditor to not  cut me  off because  I'm late .
    I am  tired  of all of it  and just  want to hide . I feel like  I just  want to  move back home with my parents  even thogh  I'm an adult . Maybe  if I don't have the pressure of  so many bills, it  might be easier  for me to get my act together . They offered , but I'm afraid . What should  I  do ?
    Near the Brink
    Dear  Near the  Brink ,
    You may be suffering  from depression . I highly  recommend  that you  get  some mental health support  right  now, before  you pick up and do anything . Talk to a professional who can help you sort through  your thoughts .  You can call Crisis Clinic at 1-866-4-CRISIS  (1-866-427-4747) .
    The struggle with losing a job and attempting unsuccessfully to rebuild your  life can take a toll . I wouldn't  rule out moving back home, even if it is   temporary .

    Dear Maxy ,
    Forty-two years ago, I married a kind gentle man, caring man . Over the  years however, he became  hateful  and mean . I  spent the last  twenty years  trying to make it through one more  day without spurring his  anger, often unsuccessfully.
    Finally I  asked his doctor to  check my husband for depression . His  doctor prescribed a mild antidepressant.  What a change  I am seeing ! I love my husband like I did  forty years ago and look forward to  growing  old with him . Please continue  to encourage  people  to see their  doctor about  depression .
    Things  can be  better .
    His  Wife .
    Dear Wife ,
    Thank  you  for the testimonial . Sometimes depression manifests  itself as  anger, withdrawal, mood swings or other behavioral problems that are not recognized as  depression . I am  glad  you asked  your  doctor  for  help  and  that he  took action which  helped .