07/24/2010 archive

Health and Fitness News

Welcome to the Stars Hollow Health and Fitness weekly diary. It will publish on Saturday afternoon and be open for discussion about health related issues including diet, exercise, health and health care issues, as well as, tips on what you can do when there is a medical emergency. Questions are encouraged and I will answer to the best of my ability. If I can’t, I will try to steer you in the right direction. Naturally, I cannot give individual medical advice for personal health issues. I can give you information about medical conditions and the current treatments available.

Eggplant on the Grill


Eggplant is at its best in the summer months, which, as luck would have it, is also when backyard grills start seeing regular use. It’s a wonderful coincidence, because eggplants love smoke. The vegetable’s flesh absorbs the flavor from the grill as easily as it does olive oil.


When you grill eggplant, you don’t need much olive oil – none if you’re grilling whole eggplants, just enough to lightly brush the slices if your dish calls for sliced eggplant.

If you live in an apartment and want to make some of this week’s dishes, I recommend using a panini grill for sliced eggplants. If you’re grilling whole eggplants, seek out smaller varieties, like narrow Japanese eggplants and some Mediterranean varieties, which don’t take so long to soften all the way through.

Grilled Eggplant Slices With Tomatoes and Feta

Grilled Eggplant and Pepper Salad

Grilled Eggplant Purée With Pomegranate Syrup and Almonds

Smoky Eggplant and Yogurt Purée

Spicy Grilled Eggplant Slices

Prime Time

Feast or famine?  Fortunately I’ll be distracted most of the evening by one of Doose’s follies and with any luck at all won’t lack for amusement until tomorrow’s victory lap around the Champs Elysees.

If you’re not able to escape the Hypnotoad here is the best of a scurvy lot-


Boondocks tonight, Attack of the Killer Kung-Fu Wolf B. and Mr. Medicinal.  GitS SAC: 2nd GigNuclear Power and This Side of Justice

Unf*ck The Gulf Already

This will be incredibly brief.  

Warning: NSFW, especially not ok if you have a problem with the F bomb.


Unf*ck The Gulf Already

Well, there you have it.  

Punting the Pundits

Punting the Pundits is an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Paul Krugman: Addicted to Bush

For a couple of years, it was the love that dared not speak his name. In 2008, Republican candidates hardly ever mentioned the president still sitting in the White House. After the election, the G.O.P. did its best to shout down all talk about how we got into the mess we’re in, insisting that we needed to look forward, not back. And many in the news media played along, acting as if it was somehow uncouth for Democrats even to mention the Bush era and its legacy.

The truth, however, is that the only problem Republicans ever had with George W. Bush was his low approval rating. They always loved his policies and his governing style – and they want them back. In recent weeks, G.O.P. leaders have come out for a complete return to the Bush agenda, including tax breaks for the rich and financial deregulation. They’ve even resurrected the plan to cut future Social Security benefits.

Bob Herbert: Thrown to the Wolves

The Shirley Sherrod story tells us so much about ourselves, and none of it is pretty. The most obvious and shameful fact is that the Obama administration, which runs from race issues the way thoroughbreds bolt from the starting gate, did not offer this woman anything resembling fair or respectful treatment before firing and publicly humiliating her.

Moving with the swiftness of fanatics on a hanging jury, big shots in the administration and Bill O’Reilly of Fox News came to exactly the same conclusion: Shirley Sherrod had to go – immediately! No time for facts. No time for justice.

What we have here is power run amok. Ms. Sherrod was not even called into an office to be fired face to face. She got the shocking news in her car. “They called me twice,” she told The Associated Press. “The last time, they asked me to pull over to the side of the road and submit my resignation on my BlackBerry, and that’s what I did.”

Le Tour: Stage 19

Le.  Tour.  De.  France.

“I still believe I can do it. It will be decided more in the head than in the legs.”


The margin is still only 8 seconds.  As Contador says– “It will be an incredibly hard day, it’s not a time trial like the others, it comes after three weeks of racing. It will be more a matter of the strength you have left and Andy is strong.”

The proximate reasons most analysts toss up their hands are the prologue results where Andy finished 42 seconds behind Alberto over a mere 5 and a half miles and last year’s Time Trial in which, while shorter, Contador finished 1:45 ahead.

On the other hand at 122 Schleck finished 5 places and a full second ahead of the Manx Maniac Mark Cavendish, a pure sprinter who won yesterday’s stage (his 4th stage win this Tour) without the assistance of his head butting blocker, Mark Renshaw.

Cavendish has hopes for the Green Sprinter’s Jersey as he is only 16 points behind the leader in that category, Alessandro Petacchi, and Thor Hushovd, the second place contender, has virtually given up- “It’s over for the green jersey. It’s a disappointment but that’s life. I can’t sprint like Cavendish and Petacchi on this Tour.”

In the race for the final podium spot in the General Classification, Sanchez doesn’t seem to have been too badly hurt by yesterday’s crash.  He still leads Menchov by 21 seconds.

Today’s stage, 33 miles from Bordeaux to Pauillac, is the last day of racing.  By tradition tomorrow’s final stage finishing on the Champs Elysees is a victory lap except for the sprinters who have one last chance to improve their standing.

On This Day in History: July 24

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour a cup of your favorite morning beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

On July 24, 1911, American archeologist Hiram Bingham gets his first look at Machu Picchu, an ancient Inca settlement in Peru that is now one of the world’s top tourist destinations.

Tucked away in the rocky countryside northwest of Cuzco, Machu Picchu is believed to have been a summer retreat for Inca leaders, whose civilization was virtually wiped out by Spanish invaders in the 16th century. For hundreds of years afterwards, its existence was a secret known only to the peasants living in the region. That all changed in the summer of 1911, when Bingham arrived with a small team of explorers to search for the famous “lost” cities of the Incas.

Machu Picchu  (Quechua: Machu Pikchu) – “Old Mountain”, is a pre-Columbian Inca site located 2,430 metres (7,970 ft) above sea level.  It is situated on a mountain ridge above the Urubamba Valley in Peru, which is 80 kilometres (50 mi) northwest of Cuzco and through which the Urubamba River flows. Most archaeologists believe that Machu Picchu was built as an estate for the Inca emperor Pachacuti (1438-1472). Often referred to as “The Lost City of the Incas”, it is perhaps the most familiar icon of the Inca World.

The Incas started building the estate around AD 1400 but it was abandoned as an official site for the Inca rulers a century later at the time of the Spanish conquest of the Inca Empire. Although known locally, it was unknown to the outside world before being brought to international attention in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham. Since then, Machu Picchu has become an important tourist attraction and, since it was not found and plundered by the Spanish after they conquered the Incas, it is important as a cultural site.

Machu Picchu was declared a Peruvian Historical Sanctuary in 1981 and a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983. In 2007, Machu Picchu was voted one the New Seven Wonders of the World in a worldwide Internet poll.

Machu Picchu was built in the classical Inca style, with polished dry-stone walls. Its primary buildings are the Intihuatana, the Temple of the Sun, and the Room of the Three Windows. These are located in what is known by archaeologists as the Sacred District of Machu Picchu. In September 2007, Peru and Yale University reached an agreement regarding the return of artifacts which Hiram Bingham had removed from Machu Picchu in the early twentieth century.

Popular Culture (Music) 20100723. Atomic Rooster

Atomic Rooster was in interesting band.  They were certainly British, and very eclectic.  There are also connexions with other bands (some of which I have covered here) and with other, less well known ones.

This band came to be in much part between the collaboration betwixt the folks producing The Crazy World of Arthur Brown and several other bands, including The Who.  Their connexions include King Crimson, Emerson, Lake, and Palmer, and a couple of other bands that I would rather folks mention in the comments.  Shall we see more about them?

Prime Time

It’s the little things that make me happy, like a Friday night of TV that doesn’t suck.

No Jon or Stephen of course, though at least Stephen will be back on Monday (Jon hasn’t posted his guests yet).  Keith still has one more week of vacation unless there’s another Republican lie that causes Obama to fold like a house of cards and what are the odds of that?  A reminder that you only get the one shot at Rachel, if you miss Larry you won’t be missing much.

But on to the embarrassment of riches-

It would be interesting to know if Turner Classic programmed tonight before or after the Sherrod story broke.


Dave has Paul McCartney.  Alton does fried chicken.  Squidbillies: America: Why I Love Her, The Incredible Mr. Brisby and Look Around You, Live Final.

The VA Eases the Rules on Medical Marijuana Use: Up Dated x 2

VA doctors still can’t prescribe marijuana but the patients in the 14 states where it is legal, no longer have to fear losing their VA benefits if the are found using marijuana. Certainly a step in the right direction for many patients.

V.A. Easing Rules for Users of Medical Marijuana

DENVER – The Department of Veterans Affairs will formally allow patients treated at its hospitals and clinics to use medical marijuana in states where it is legal, a policy clarification that veterans have sought for several years.

A department directive, expected to take effect next week, resolves the conflict in veterans facilities between federal law, which outlaws marijuana, and the 14 states that allow medicinal use of the drug, effectively deferring to the states.


Veterans, some of whom have been at the forefront of the medical marijuana movement, praised the new policy. They say cannabis helps sooth physical and psychological pain and can alleviate the side effects of some treatments.

“By creating a directive on medical marijuana, the V.A. ensures that throughout its vast hospital network, it will be well understood that legal medical marijuana use will not be the basis for the denial of services,” Mr. Krawitz said.

Many clinicians already prescribe pain medication to veterans who use medical marijuana for pain management, as there was no rule explicitly prohibiting them from doing so, despite the federal marijuana laws.


Steve Fox, director of government relations for the Marijuana Policy Project, which favors the legal regulation of the drug, called the decision historic. “We now have a branch of the federal government accepting marijuana as a legal medicine,” he said.

But Mr. Fox said he wished the policy had been extended to veterans who lived in states where medical marijuana was not legal.

Mr. Fox said it was critical that the veterans department make clear its guidelines on medical marijuana to patients and medical staff members, something officials said they planned on doing in coming weeks.