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06/28/2012

Burn-Ban on the 4th?

Drought2012.jpg

Currently major parts of the USA are under severe drought conditions. Record high temperatures combined with record low rain-fall create an extreme fire hazard. Colorado is burning out of control, and almost all counties in Indiana have issued burn-bans. That means you can't make a fire anywhere, and you certainly cannot light your fireworks.

Many cities have canceled or postponed their fireworks displays that were planned for celebrations of the 4th of July this year. While I realize this is a necessary precaution, I still hope that IPFW's fireworks event will take place - because this is the first time I'd be able to enjoy it as a US-citizen.

11:56 Posted in Opinions | Permalink | Comments (0)

04/10/2012

Crown Week

CrownWeek.jpgLast night I had a coupon in the mail. Nothing special, you may say, we get coupons in the mail every day. Sometimes for stuff that we'd never use, or didn't even know existed. Most coupons a worth $1 or $2, sometimes even $10, but my coupon is worth $100 - wow!

That's good, right?

Well, I don't think so. This coupon, in my opinion, sums up most of the things that are wrong with health care and the medical profession in the USA. The coupon is from my dentist, trying to get people to spend thousands of dollars on crowns, bridges, and veneers during the last week of April.

06:39 Posted in Opinions | Permalink | Comments (0)

04/01/2012

Dihydrogen Monoxide

I am shocked! I admit, I have ignored this real chemical danger for too long!

But now that I discovered the truth, I urge you to educate yourself and take action to protect your and your family's health.

Dihydrogen monoxide, also called "hydroxyl acid":
is the major component of acid rain
contributes to the "greenhouse effect"
may cause severe burns
is fatal if inhaled
contributes to the erosion of our natural landscape
accelerates corrosion of many metals
may cause electrical failures and decreased effectiveness of automobile brakes
has been found in excised tumors of terminal cancer patients

Despite the danger, dihydrogen monoxide is often used:
as an industrial solvent and coolant
in nuclear power plants
in the production of styrofoam
as a fire retardant
in many forms of cruel animal research
in the distribution of pesticides. Even after washing, produce remains contaminated by this chemical
as an additive in certain "junk-foods" and other food products

Please visit this eye-opening website and join the movement to ban Dihydrogen Monoxide!
http://www.dhmo.org/facts.html

DHMO.jpg

01:00 Posted in Opinions | Permalink | Comments (1)

10/06/2011

The Best of Two Worlds

Today is the 'official' date to celebrate German-American Day, a little known Holiday that commemorates the foundation of Germantown, PA, on 10/6/1683. I welcome the opportunity to rethink my own German-American identity, especially now - right after returning to the USA from a much needed vacation in Germany.

When you move from one continent to another you expect 'culture shock'. Everything is new, different, better or worse. You're struggling to adjust and learn while trying to keep your personality and memories. After a while you may begin to think that integration was successful. Surprises occur less frequently. Until you travel to the old world and realize the treasures you lost in exchange for the riches you gained.

I define victory as the moment you succeed in combining the best of both worlds for yourself, and becoming a true German-American, or whatever your personal two worlds are called.

09:10 Posted in Opinions | Permalink | Comments (0)

07/06/2011

the Art of the Handshake

One of the more noticeable differences in culture between Germany and the USA is the handshake, or lack thereof. At work in Germany I would shake hands with people a lot more often. Haven't seen each other in a week? Well, that calls for a handshake! Going to not see each other for a week or longer? Time to shake hands for a farewell! Going into a meeting with colleagues from a different department? Shaking hands with everybody demonstrates good manners!

Americans shake hands less frequently. Actually, you will shake most people's hand no more than twice: once when you are introduced, and once when you say good-bye forever. While I admit that I had a hard time adjusting to this at first - feeling rejected, because people didn't want to shake hands with me - I was recently made painfully aware of the advantages of not exchanging a handshake with people. Especially if they haven't been educated on how to do this right.

I had an encounter with a knuckle cruncher, an occasion where my self-control was challenged to the point that I almost let out a high-pitched shriek of pure agony. Two days later my right hand is still very tender to the touch. Good thing I won't have to shake hands with that person again for a long time.

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12:08 Posted in Opinions | Permalink | Comments (2)