Good News

Don’t you just love receiving good news? Whether it is life-changing or trivial, good news can always bring mirth to your heart.

Korea Movie Scene Idea

Part of the process of getting a work visa to teach English as a second language in Korea involves a medical check.  Before they issue you a visa they measure your chest size, foot size, test your eye site, and then they do a blood test for STDs.  Yes, they measure your chest size as part of the teacher visa process.  I was tested for diseases back in Canada before I came over to save myself the trouble of having to head home if I was positive for anything.  Not sure how I’m still negative for everything, considering the numbers involved, but I guess I’ll just thank my lucky stars.

Question from a reader: hygiene at the jimjilbang

A reader writes in about my recent article on enjoying the jimjilbang:
great article on jjimjjilbangs! i have been wanting to go for such a long time, and your article just moved it to the top of my list of things to do. the single reason why i have not yet gone, however, is that i am really concerned about hygiene - more specifically, i'm concerned about catching a skin illness such as a foot fungus or even something like an STD....

Vampires in Peru -they don’t sparkle

When I read in the Korea Herald that four Peruvian children had died from vampire bat attacks, I figured it was another example of bad reporting.  However, it appears the report is correct although the bats are not the ultimate cause of death:

Rabid vampire bats have attacked more than 500 indigenous people in Peru’s Amazon, according to foreign news reports.

At least four children are believed to have died in an outbreak of the disease, the Peruvian Health Ministry said Sunday.

Rabies.  Those poor bastards.

From CBS News:

Air Conditioning and blackouts

The Joongnang Ilbo reports that blackouts are possible this summer due to air conditioner use or overuse.

If reserves fall below the 4 million kilowatt level, the government has the right to demand power cuts and control electricity usage.

Of course, the threat of power cuts has been raised in previous summers, and in some winters, but they’ve always been avoided.

One method was through conservation measures, and the ministry is planning to restrict the use of air-conditioning starting next month during the peak hours of 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. for buildings that consume more than 2,000 ton-oil-equivalents (or TOEs) of energy.

The government will advise buildings to turn off the air-conditioners for 10 minutes every hour.

The innocence of vaccine concerns here.

I follow science and pseudo-science news and am concerned by the increase these days of pseudo-science.

I recently saw an article title, “Inoculation fever for young children rising” and feared that the anti-vaxxer crazies had gotten a foothold in Korea (second link is to an anti-anti-vaxxer website).

No, the Korean article is about where people are choosing to get their children inoculated.  It seems people are going to private clinics rather than public health centres.  Both places use the same vaccine and the only difference is the price -free at the public location.

Indeed, there are no concerns about the safety of the vaccines themselves (the first link):

Viagra- a tool for conservation of species

I am not referring to our species, although I guess I could be.

No, I the species that viagra will protect are those previously used in oriental medicines.

Now, I suppose that a few oriental medicines have real and measurable benefits.  I suspect that as more medicines tested in double-blind studies become available, fewer and fewer oriental medicines will be sought.

From the Korea Times (in an ‘https:’ format as they often and inexplicably are):

The oriental medicine market has faced setbacks over the past few years and observers are pointing their fingers at the rapid spread of erectile dysfunction treatment drugs as one of the major causes.

Bad news for beer drinkers

I don’t know if beer changes the smell of your sweat, although I do know it changes the smell of your breath.  One way or another, it attracts mosquitos:

[researchers had] 43 men in Burkina Faso to drink either a locally brewed beer or tap water. They found that the mosquitoes were more attracted to the beer drinkers than the water drinkers.

From Plos One, via Freakonomics.

Tests need to be made to see if Rum and Coke has the same effect.  Or Gin and Tonic (that would be ironic, and poetic!).  Or, Soju!

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