this week i

published on the oral health of senior citizens.


this week i

upvoted a predator-prey dataset request.

caught up with michelle.  tri-care for all!

could tattoo a smudged, faded red entry stamp on the back of my hand and make it look like i was a cool kid last night every morning of the week.

squirmed through a bus ride.  my pet peeve: pencil near the eye in a moving vehicle or for that matter an earthquake zone

give a man a fish and he eats for a day.  give a man a bagel and he eats for a lifetime.

wedged my index finger between the mallet and the bell at 4:45, backside switch turns off the alarm but ceasing the adhan oscillation takes priority when someone's sleeping in the next room.  maybe you sleep later than i do because you have free will and i don't.  frustrating few days, down to the dark of the drop ceiling room with the abandoned phonography, and i thought about power dynamics and, even sexier, enthusiasm.  5:30 i boot windows, boil water under frozen spinach flakes, rss toggle past michael cohen's opening statement.  we had caught clips of that hearing last lunch at a district sports-decorated bar with c-span on four televisions, flavors of espn on the other three.  calisthenics mobile app drone-demanded two sixty second planks, then i ran alongside the day's sampling from a steady population of two dozen morning people, canine pairs accompanying in perfect correlation.  one runner is russian, i heard him talking on his phone the other day.  one walker never acknowledged me until i caught his eye once, now he waves and smiles most neighborly of all.  last hill back to the house, and i met my father shuffling down the driveway toward the morning paper delivery.  he reclines to read in ritual, and that morning growled when i kissed his head and again at the decibels of the iqama grinding coffee.

bet you anything that ten times out of ten nicky vinny and tony will beat the shit out of todd kyle and tucker.  george carlin, for the ages.

read the stranger, the maman died today translation..

i knew that i had shattered the harmony of the day, the exceptional silence of a beach where i'd been happy.  then i fired four more times at the motionless body where the bullets lodged without leaving a trace.  and it was like knocking four quick times on the door of unhappiness

he was leaning all the way over the table.  he was waving his crucifix almost directly over my head.  to tell the truth, i had found it very hard to follow his reasoning, first because i was hot and there were big flies in his office that kept landing on my face, and also because he was scaring me a little.  at the same time i knew that was ridiculous because, after all, i was the criminal

i was also made to see that until that moment i'd had mistaken ideas about these things.  for a long time i believed - and i don't know why - that to get to the guillotine you had to climb stairs onto a scaffold.  i think it was because of the french revolution - i mean, because of everything i'd been taught or shown about it.  but one morning i remembered seeing a photograph that appeared in the papers at the time of a much-talked-about execution.  in reality, the machine was set up right on the ground, as simple as you please


this week i

updated our health coverage of immigrants fact sheet and racial and ethnic health coverage changes brief.

listened to maurice cox - post-bankruptcy detroit urban planner - discuss revitalization efforts in zero property values.  snowplow the bike lanes
five years ago you wouldn't be caught dead in a detroit park.  well, you might be

do hate computer programmers as a group, too sloppy to run the world despite all these machine learning machinations.

met erin at packed noontime commissary for two of the same two-cheese caramelized onion burgers.  she had landed ten minutes after opm called it, ten hours before any snow fell.  event and meeting cancelled, we walked through slush to work under maps without new zealand.  the austrians mail blasted a mars attacks poster to lure us to their sibling classical concert, then a manhattan with the masala art gravy boat.

think donburi and chicken parm fill the same role.  but this mosquito, this mosquito on the glass, i do not understand.

read ghengis khan and the making of the modern world..

the majority of people today live in countries conquered by the mongols

genghis khan's last ruling descendant, alim khan, emir of bukhara, remained in power in uzbekistan until deposed in 1920 by the rising tide of soviet revolution

the europeans even picked up the mongol exclamation hurray as an enthusiastic cry of bravado and mutual encouragement

marco polo alleged that the mongol warriors could travel ten days without stopping to make a fire or heat food, that they drank horses' blood, and that each man carried with him ten pounds of dried milk paste, putting one pound of it in a leather flask of water each day to make his meal.  the warrior carried strips of dried meat and dried curd with him that he could chew while riding; and when he had fresh meat, but no time to cook it, he put the raw flesh under his saddle so it would soon be softened and edible

the mongol sensibility that one should never return by exactly the same route that one came

this forbidden city constituted a miniature steppe created in the middle of the mongol capital.  during the mongol era, the whole complex of the forbidden city was filled with gers, where members of the court often preferred to live, eat, and sleep.  pregnant wives of the khan made sure that their children were born in a ger, and the children received their school lessons in the ger as they grew up.  while khubilai and his successors maintained public lives as chinese emperors, behind the high walls of their forbidden city, they continued to live as steppe mongols

whether in their policy of religious tolerance, divising a universal alphabet, maintaining relay stations, playing games, or printing almanacs, money, or astronomy charts, the rulers of the mongol empire displayed a persistent universalism.  because they had no system of their own to impose upon their subjects, they were willing to adopt and combine systems from everywhere.  without deep cultural preferences in these areas, the mongols implemented pragmatic rather than ideological solutions.  they searched for what worked best; and when they found it, they spread it to other countries


this week i

visited curtis and his sweet digs in lancaster.  what small town america could, should be.  farmer's market, bespoke restaurants, faculty potpourri.

you could say that we descended from apes, but not from monkeys.  a monkey ancestor, but not a monkey.  look it up.


this week i

categorized medical spending by international classification of disease codes, tripped up by version ten additions like cat scratch fever.

listened to jeri mulrow summarize the statistical apparati inside the department of justice.

drank some strawberry grenades, made myself a picnic.

 worked at david's, wet dry vac still out front.

is it ok if i turn on classical music?
mmmhmm [pause] only the good stuff [pause] none of that looney tunes shit

 learned dc has a sonny bono park.  measly.

read stephen hawking's the grand design.

because the greeks had not invented the scientific method, their theories were not developed with the goal of experimental verification.  so if one scholar claimed an atom moved in a straight line until it collided with a second atom and another scholar claimed it moved in a straight line until it bumped into a cyclops, there was no objective way to settle the argument

while conceding that human behavior is indeed determined by the laws of nature, it also seems reasonable to conclude that the outcome is determined in such a complicated way and with so many variables as to make it impossible in practice to predict.  for that one would need a knowledge of the initial state of each of the thousand trillion trillion molecules in the human body and to solve something like that number of equations.  that would take a few billion years, which would be a bit late to duck when the person opposite aimed a blow

quantum physics recognizes that to make an observation, you must interact with the object you are observing

it's probably no accident that the wavelengths we are able to see with the naked eye are those in which the sun radiates most strongly: it's likely that our eyes evolved with the ability to detect electromagnetic radiation in that range precisely because that is the range of radiation most available to them.  if we ever run into beings from other planets, they will probably have the ability to "see" radiation at whatever wavelengths their own sun emits most strongly, modulated by factors such as the light-blocking characteristics of the dust and gases in their planet's atmosphere.  so aliens who evolved in the presence of x-rays might have a nice career in airport security

there will be different histories for different possible states of the universe at the present time.  this leads to a radically different view of cosmology, and the relation between cause and effect.  the histories that contribute to the feynman sum don't have an independent existence, but depend on what is being measured.  we create history by our observation, rather than history creating us

traditionally, given any star, scientists define the habitable zone as the narrow region around the star in which temperatures are such that liquid water can exist


this week i

saw karen enter our statistics into the congressional record.

visited artechouse, paid twenty dollars for orange juice, wore their black shoe booties to muze at the mandarin oriental, restaurant to ourselves.

loafed. has anybody ever successfully thrown a boomerang?  a hurdle-model (binary on striking the target), and billiards in three dimensions

i would've guessed suriname was the poorest.  ever been?
i haven't been to those three countries
two.  two countries.

glided down fifteenth past meridian hill park, kicked mcdonalds bag in the bike lane expecting empty, two burgers two fries exploded out.  nasm for free solo imax, rock climbers sans amygdalae.  impressive geologic footage and well-told story, but crash and burn failed the bechdel test.  two silhouettes similar to marcie and david biked past, i followed them to union station, felt like the toddler who mistakenly grasps onto a strange adult's leg.  dolan for dinner, did not know buzkashi uses the body not the head

still depend on the alphabet corporation more than i should.

this week i

updated our most comprehensive report on the uninsured.

converted much of our truven marketscan code from monetdblite to data.table.

hiked the gathland state park branch of the appalachian trail.

read all quiet on the western front..

once i fall fast asleep.  then wakening suddenly with a start i do not know where i am.  i see the stars, i see the rockets, and for a moment have the impression that i have fallen asleep at a garden fete.  i don't konw whether it is morning or evening.  i lie in the pale cradle of the twilight, and listen for the soft words which will come, soft and near - am i crying?  i put my hand to my eyes, it is so fantastic, am i a child?  smooth skin; - it lasts only a second, then i recognize the silhouette of katczinsky.  the old veteran, he sits quietly and smokes his pipe - a covered pipe of course.  when he sees i am awake, he says: "that gave you a fright.  it was only a nose-cap, it landed in the bushes over there."
i sit up, i feel myself strangely alone.  it's good kat is there.  he gazes thoughtfully at the front and says:
"mighty fine fire-works if they weren't so dangerous"

the cries continued.  it is not men, they could not cry so terribly.
"wounded horses," says kat.
it's unendurable.  it is the moaning of the world, it is the martyred creation, wild with anguish, filled with terror, and groaning.
we are pale.  detering stands up.  "god! for god's sake!  shoot them."...those are the wounded horses.  but not all of them.  some gallop away in the distance, fall down, and then run on farther.  the belly of one is ripped open, the guts trail out.  he becomes tangled in them and falls, then he stands up again

"how many inhabitants has melbourne?" asks muller.
"how do you expect to succeed in life if you don't know that?"  i ask albert hotly.
which he caps with: "what is meant by cohesion?"
we remember mighty little of all that rubbish.  anyway, it has never been the slightest use to us.  at school nobody ever taught us how to light a cigarette in a storm of rain, nor how a fire could be made with wet wood - nor that it is best to stick a bayonet in the belly because there it doesn't get jammed, as it does in the ribs

a hospital alone shows what war is


this week i

listened to lukas sommer with marcie at millenium stage, she stirred tomato stew while i roast coffee beans.

met scott and nicole at bindaas then a formal something or other at the french embassy.  unlimited wine and macarons means one full day recovery.

read being mortal..

if our genes explain less than we imagined, the classical wear-and-tear model may explain more than we knew.  leonid gavrilov, a researcher at the university of chicago, argues that human beings fail the way all complex systems fail: randomly and gradually.  as engineers have long recognized, simple devices typically do not age.  they function reliably until a critical component fails, and the whole thing dies in an instant.  a windup toy, for example, works smoothly until a gear rusts or a spring breaks, and then it doesn't work at all.  but complex systems - power plants, say - have to survive and function despite having thousands of critical, potentially fragile components.  engineers therefore design these machines with multiple layers of redundancy: with backup systems, and backup systems for the backup systems.  the backups may not be as efficient as the first-line components, but they may allow the machine to keep going on even as damage accumulates.  garilov argues that, within the parameters established by our genes, that's exactly how human beings appear to work.  we have an extra kidney, an extra lung, an extra gonad, extra teeth.  the dna in our cells is frequently damaged under routine conditions, but our cells have a number of dna repair systems.  if a key gene is permanently damaged, there are usually extra copies of the gene nearby.  and, if the entire cell dies, other cells can fill in

in general, the younger the subjects were, the less they valued time with people they were emotionally close to and the more they valued time with people who were potential sources of information or new friendship.  however, among the ill, the age differences disappeared.  the preferences of a young person with aids were the same as those of an old person..when they were asked how they would like to spend half an hour of time, the age differences in their preferences were again clear.  but when asked simply to imagine they were about to move far away, the age differences again disappeared.  the young chose as the old did.  next, the researchers asked them to imagine a medical breakthrough had been made that would add twenty years to their life.  again, the age differences disappeared - but this time the old chose as the young did

to help people in the state of dependence sustain the value of existence

arriving at an acceptance of one's mortality and a clear understanding of the limits and the possibilities of medicine is a process, not an epiphany


this week i

listened to two lectures on western artists retreating to bali for ideas.  we discovered the garden of eden and did not want to be the serpents

attended the 2,401st psw meeting to watch leroy cronin discuss advances in laser-printing medicines

we need to invent the microphone to record and reproduce the field of chemistry

we can suddenly bring back off-patent drugs or orphaned drugs in small doses without a factory.  like abandoned books with the advent of e-readers

read the god of small things..

she was eighty-three.  her eyes spread like butter behind her thick glasses

even chacko had no really complete explanation for why the communist party was so much more successful in kerala than it had been almost anywhere else in india, except perhaps in bengal

they were forbidden from visiting his house, but they did.  they would sit with him for hours, on their haunches - hunched punctuation marks in a pool of wood shavings - and wonder how he always seemed to know what smooth shapes waited inside the wood for him.  they loved the way wood, in velutha's hands, seemed to soften and become as pliable as plasticine.  he was teaching them to use a planer.  his house (on a good day) smelled of fresh wood shavings and the sun.  of red fish curry with black tamarind.  the best fish curry, according to estha, in the whole world

the high delight of the airborne young

in the arrivals lounge, there were four life-sized cement kangaroos with cement pouches that said use me.  in their pouches, instead of cement joeys, they had cigarette stubs, used matchsticks, bottle-caps, peanut shells, crumpled paper cups and cockroaches.
red betel spit stains spattered their kangaroo stomachs like fresh wounds.
red-mouthed smiles the airport kangaroos had.
they looked as though if you pressed them they might say 'ma-ma' in empty battery voices

what esthappen and rahel witnessed that morning, though they didn't know it then, was a clinical demonstration in controlled conditions (this was not war after all, or genocide) of human nature's pursuit of ascendancy.  structure.  order.  complete monopoly.  it was human history, masquerading as god's purpose, revealing herself to an under-age audience


this week i

resolve when traveling both near and far, need a reason for being.

retrieved my father, aunt rosemarie made cheesesteaks.  his one sibling - and being only child myself - exclusively monikered aunt rosemarie to me.

discovered parglm, faster regression processing.

see useless warnings everywhere.

wondered if dixie originated from mason-dixon.  possibly, but might instead be the french word for ten.

read beowulf, achilles of the north.  the narrative does not begin with beowulf, or even in his homeland of the geats, but rather with a genealogy of danish kings..the prologue might seem to be rather lengthy to a modern reader, but in the world of beowulf people are always concerned about origins, and even the principal characters are often referred to by their father's names.  such origins would appear to define a person's nature and quality, and thus to dispense with them would be unthinkable

the sea-weary men set down their broad shields,
with the powerful bosses, by the side of the hall.
as the men sat on a bench, the mail rang out,
the battle-shirts of heroes.  their spears stood tall,
the weapons of warriors all gathered together

then from the moors that were thick with mist,
grendel emerged, wrapped in the anger of god.
the hellish ravager sought to surprise
one of the men at rest in the high hall.
he crept under clouds toward the wine-hall,
till he could see clearly the glorious building,
glowing with gold plates.  nor was this
the first time he sought hrothgar's home,
yet never before or after, in all his days,
did he find a worse fortune among the hall-thanes.

the sword sweat blood, while the warrior rejoiced.
the light was gleaming, glowing from within


this week i

flew north through quebec to china, but between barrow and prudhoe bay then over ontario home.  we reacquainted under guard of my grandmother's crucifix.  dime tigre.  northern michigan au pair since last winter, for children who mispronounce jama jama red pijama.  primera semana liberada para explorar, she had arrived christmas, tried every carbonated beverage, spit out the root beer.  that's medicina, really medicina.

i feel your heartbeat / your english is getting better / for some things

three times daily / it's not enough / any more and i will die / yes but you will die happy

name your child shakira in colombia and you go to the jail, even my name is illegal now / bajo del mar! bajo del mar! / pinzas pinzas

paraphrased nine pound hammer across the susquehanna.  and i get a little blue, yes i get a little blue


this week i

am fantastically tired.  christmas dinner room service under handmaid's tale hotel lamps

walked the hutongs.  well, that was the last place that that wasn't.

ate hot pot again.  the servers weren't happy i chose garlic sauce from the buffet line, brought me peanut sauce.  stomach ache.  hot pot bad.  if i want to cook my own food, i'll eat at home.

am going to go with "wine snob"

note cinderella comes in many shapes and sizes

changed hotels again and again.

read pablo neruda: twenty love poems and a song of despair

my kisses fell, happy as embers

este poema es una parafrasis del poema 30 de el jardinero de rabindranath tagore

love is so short, forgetting is so long