American Lung Association Newsletter – copied from email

 Gaining Momentum in the Fight Against Big Tobacco
On March 11th, the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health passed HR 1108 out of committee and sent it to the full committee for action. This historic action will give the U.S. Food and Drug Administration the authority it needs to regulate tobacco products, which are responsible for more than 438,000 deaths each year. Our work is nowhere near complete and we will continue to need your support as the bill is taken up by the full House Energy and Commerce Committee on April 2nd. Click Here to send a letter to urge your Senators and Representative to pass this critical public health legislation. Also, if you have a Representative on the Energy and Commerce Committee please mark your calendars for Tuesday, April 1st for a nationwide call-in day. We will send a reminder and talking points that day.

New Ozone Standards Adopted–But Falls Short for Public Health
On March 12th the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a critical tightening of the health-based National Ambient Air Quality Standard for ozone. A tighter ozone national air quality standard means federal, state, and local governments must clean up much more of this widespread and deadly air pollutant. Unfortunately, the EPA ignored the unanimous recommendations of their outside expert scientists, as well as the recommendations that we and 15 other national medical and public health societies had made for an even stronger standard that truly protected public health. In addition, EPA proposed measures that would weaken the Clean Air Act itself, efforts we will fight at every turn. For our statement please Click Here.

EPA Requires Cleaner Locomotive and Marine Diesel Engines
The American Lung Association salutes the new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rule that will substantially cut the air pollution produced by locomotive and marine diesel engines. Communities across the nation urgently need this federal requirement to help clean up dangerous ozone and particle pollution. Cleaning up diesel locomotives and marine engines will save thousands of lives and greatly reduce the risk from asthma attacks, heart attacks, and lung cancer. For our statement please Click Here.

Comprehensive Tuberculosis Control Legislation Needed
Monday, March 24th was World TB Day. Initially founded to combat tuberculosis (TB) more than a century ago, the American Lung Association urges Congress to act decisively to finally eliminate TB in America. The Comprehensive TB Elimination Act, S. 1551/HR 1532, now pending in the Congress, would propel the U.S. Public Health Service’s efforts and lead international work to eradicate the infection globally. Click Here to urge your Member of Congress to support this legislation.

Your Help is Needed to Fund a COPD Program at CDC
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis, is the 4th leading cause of death in the U.S. and is on the rise. The American Lung Association is urging Congress to fund a program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to combat COPD. Click Here to urge your Senators and Member of Congress to cosponsor the pulmonary rehabilitation bill.

Pulmonary Rehabilitation Legislation is Needed for Millions of Americans
Pulmonary rehabilitation programs are scientifically proven to improve the health and well being of patients with COPD and other lung diseases. Click Here to urge your Senators and Member of Congress to cosponsor the pulmonary rehabilitation bill

Virtual Lobby Day
On April 8th, American Lung Association volunteers from across the country will come to Washington to tell Congress why FDA tobacco regulation must become law this year. You can be a part of this important day from the comfort of your own home or office. Mark your calendars and join us in urging Congress to support giving the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority over tobacco products. We will send you a reminder along with talking points on April 8th. Thank you in advance for your participation!

Bottle cap

I brought a bottle of “Honest Tea” to drink after class today. It’s “Green Dragon Tea.” I decided I like it, but it would be better to drink with a meal instead of drink solo.

This is what the bottle cap said:

“The bad news: there is no key to the universe. The good news: it was never locked.” – Swami Beyondananda

In the words of someone (in)famous. Way to blow my mind bottle cap!

Real people sizes

The idea is that most models aren’t the same size as real people. Normal people. Models are more like clothes hangers for the ideas designers have. So I’m glad to see a girl that is a size 16 make it to the finals in a “beauty pageant.” I’m not really surprised that it’s not in the U.S. The U.S. seems to have two epidemics going on… the epidemic of fat and the epidemic of too skinny.

She’s cute, and doesn’t look like she’s 16. Her name is Chloe Marshall.  Here’s the article.

Question

How many schools, colleges, universities are equipped to handle a student or employee – someone on campus – having an asthma attack? And would the availability aid in treatment and help with ER visits/emergencies?

Breathing treatments

I do not like breathing treatments. The nebulizer machine is loud. The albuterol tastes like horrible and dries out my mouth and throat. The tremors it causes are really annoying and scary when you don’t know they are going to happen. I need to see what I can do so the tremors aren’t so bad. Focusing on something helps; that’s all I know so far. I think I’ll start calling it the 3 T’s… tremors, twitches and tingles.

Good news though. Breathing treatments most definitely help. The 2 homeopathy remedies from the doctor has helpd a great deal. Maybe better than prednisone.

Asthma and the flu

God damn. This sucks.

I got permission from the doctor to use the inhaler every 2 hours from the time of the last puff. I have a 10 am doctor appointment tomorrow morning. Here’s to hoping I don’t need the ER tonight.

The flu sucks

I had the flu for spring break. Now I’m over the flu but my asthma is fucking horrible. I think I pulled a muscle … or 3… in my neck from coughing. I can’t sleep much with all the coughing. Talked to the doctor a little while, I’m supposed to call him tomorrow morning and see about coming in… He said maybe I’ll feel better tomorrow, which I highly doubt. I feel as if I need some steroids. I hate steroids.

Got class and a study group tomorrow. Test in class Wednesday afternoon and night class Wednesday night. Two classes Thursday. I’m tired just thinking about it.

An “expert” talking about “cybersex”

Q: Have you ever done first-hand research into cybersex—as in, have you ever had cybersex yourself or observed anyone having it?

A: I’ve done surveys and talked to patients. It’s not like I’m just doing this because I’ve heard someone say whatever. As to whether I’ve gone online myself, I haven’t, specifically because these days even if you don’t go online you are totally deluged with email. For example, if somehow you get on this or that person’s list and then they sell the list to everybody else. Every day I probably get thirty emails about “enlarge your penis.” So even without getting on any porn websites, I know what they’re like. All you have to do is just go once on a porn site and immediately your address gets spread out. I just really don’t need that in my life. So the answer is, no I haven’t.

That came from here.

Obviously, she has no idea what she’s talking about. Cybersex according to Wikipedia here. I just skimmed the page – didn’t actually read much. More motivation to do some research or study on the Internet and how the Internet affects our lives – in ways we don’t even realize. The only question is where to start.

Dropped a class

I had to drop a class. I hate dropping a class. But when the professor is not actually a professor and can’t teach… it can become necessary. The good news is I have more time for everything else now. The bad news is I still have to take statistics later on.

It bugs me the school doesn’t seem to care that they are only providing warm bodies to lead classes, and not actually providing professors. Wonder if this would have happened for a more popular degree plan?

Yea. I know. It’s cryptic. *shrug*

My brain on life

Today I went to a class I didn’t need to go to… as in there was no class today. Instead of getting annoyed and going home I decided to see my advisor about adding a minor degree to my education/degree plan/etc. Then, for shits and giggles, I decided to see what it would take to get a double major instead. It turns out, potentially, in theory, unofficially, it won’t really take any extra work. Like the worst part would be 1 extra semester and taking 2 advanced writing classes. Of course this is unofficial. I have to decide and then go talk to advisors again.

But, the other part. Rounding up, I need less than 40 hours to graduate from my bachelors. If I double major then that would be less than 40 hours for 2 bachelors. Yes, two. Of those 40 hours, 15 can go towards the masters I want to take. (They call it fast-tracking.) I have started this semester saying I’m a junior and don’t know how long I’ll be a junior to I’ll be graduating in two years, and that is WITH the masters.

Add this onto the rest of my plans for life (our plans) and I (we) can be married in 2010-2011. In theory that’s two years of paying on credit cards. We could be looking at houses or in a house in 2012. I can now have answers to questions like: When are you getting married? When are you graduating? When..? When…? When…?

My brains is threatening to implode. I’ve gone from not being sure how long I’ll be in school (read as: I’ll be in school forever!) to seeing the light at the end of the tunnel AND knowing it’s not the oncoming train.

To do: Besides not let my brain implode, or explode, of course. Go over the degree plans, and actually think about this on my own time. Then talk to both advisors for both degrees. Confirm that all the information I have is correct.

Purse Part 2

I got my purse from LLBean yesterday. It’s niiiiice. It’s too big though. Told OP that if I ever buy a leather purse again, if it doesn’t actually smell of leather…. that means don’t buy it. This has lovely construction. There’s a few things I have to get used to. Like the wallet. The wallet is huge but I think I will end up falling in love with it. The bigger wallet is also easier to find in the bigger purse. The purse actually is sorta backpack in construction.

Slinky

I don’t remember having a slinky as a child.

Now, I own a slinky. A real one, made of metal, makes the slinky noise.

With as much fun as I’m having messing around with it, I’m pretty sure I didn’t have a slinky.

Summary of my AT&T (DSL tech. support) complaint

I was even given a case number to reference my filed complaint. (I know you are surprised, aren’t you?)

But, anyways, a little background first. It took at least 3 calls, multiple tech visits and a 400 dollar bill (we were reimbursed by the apartment complex by paying less rent) to fix the wiring in our apartment and the apartment building so we might have working DSL. Fast forward a year (to a month ago). The DSL suddenly stopped losing internet connection anytime someone called the landline/house phone. Anytime. Every wrong number. Every “you need that identity protection program on your credit card” call. Every wrong number… oh wait, did I already mention wrong numbers? Fast forward to now, earlier this evening. I spent an hour on the phone with AT&T people today.

That’s about 3 to 4 hours total to get a problem fixed.

The complaint I filed about AT&T DSL technical support:

1. agents are rude, impolite and unprofessional sounding.

2. automated system is horrible. It’s built like you aren’t supposed to reach a real person. (Note: I’d like to point out I’m familiar with how automated systems handle a larger amount of calls than call center agents actually do and without the automated system I’d probably have no chance of reaching a real person within 1 hour, let alone 2 or more. This is a matter of how long it takes you to get THROUGH the system and how it makes you – the customer – feel.)

3. Spent 3-4 hours on the phone to solve a problem.

4. It took 4 agents before I got someone who actually thought about the problem instead of just following a script.  The second person (after asking for the call to be escalated – not calling back) I talked to actually thought to tell me to call my phone company. (The first person tried to tell my there was nothing wrong with my DSL connection and that my router was my problem.)

5. Inconsistent tech. support practices. The first 2 people I talked to (a month ago) didn’t care if I had a router attached to the modem or not. The people today wanted to know OS, computers, how connected, router, how computer was connected, etc.

6. I specifically said that if Verizon FIOS was available in my area I would switch in a heart beat. (After pointing out I’m stuck with AT&T service for cell phone and Internet. I should also note our cable internet option is Time Warner but we don’t have TV cable so that would be stupid expensive.)