Friday, July 30, 2010

Too Much of A Good Thing?

For you:

"What do we do when freedom undermines freedom?"

A Huffington Post thought piece by freelance writer Alan Krinsky.  Below is the introduction.  Then click here for the rest of his analysis.

"In a free society, what do we do when the full expression or fulfillment of a core principle results in its own undermining or destruction?

For instance, what if someone uses the free market to gain a monopoly or otherwise suppress the free market? Or builds institutions too big to fail, meaning that they accrue profits in good times but pass debts to the public in bad times?

What if someone uses free speech to silence others? And what if equating money with free speech subverts the democratic system by selling access and air time to the highest bidders?"

Image courtesy of

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

How Safe is your Cookware?

How safe is your cookware?

Today I'm sharing an article in full.  I don't usually do this, and I might be busting a copyright.  But it covers the safety of assorted cookware surfaces, something I'm asked about a lot.  Cookware surface materials make their way in minute amounts into your foods, so this is important.  Not all surfaces are created equal when it comes to safety.

This is not the article I dream of writing - where once and for all I review all the supposedly safe cookware out there and figure out which ones really, truly are safe. 

I'm thinking I am never going to get around to that.

In the meantime, this article is from the website The World's Healthiest Foods,, and it goes through the environmental and health issues related to different cookware material.  It's very informative!  If there's a copyright issue, I hope WHF will forgive me for spreading the good word. 

And I highly recommend you check out their site if you haven't already, and get on their list for all the important nutrition and health information that they'll send your way.

# # #

Healthy Food Tip

Is anodized aluminum cookware better than non-anodized?

Concerns with aluminum cookware come from the fact that measurable amounts of aluminum can migrate from the pot into the food. Several research studies have confirmed migration of aluminum from conventional aluminum cookware at a level of concern for our health. Aluminum is included in the 2007 list of top priority toxins in the United States (a list put out every year by the Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry), and aluminum has been clearly identified as a toxin for the human nervous system (neurotoxicity), immune system (immunotoxicity), and genetic system (genotoxicity).

Anodization is a process in which chemical baths are used to prepare the surface of aluminum to receive an electrical charge that will increase the thickness of the oxide layer and make it harder, more durable, and less likely to corrode. Anodized aluminum is definitely less reactive than non-anodized aluminum and will leach less aluminum as a result, provided that the surface has not been damaged. Although it is more difficult to damage the surface of anodized versus non-anodized aluminum, its surface can still be damaged.

Although the non-stick properties of anodized aluminum have been a selling point for this cookware to consumers, most cookware in the marketplace using anodized aluminum does not feature this material on the surface that is in contact with the food; instead, they feature a specialized non-stick surface that may have potential toxicity problems much greater than anodized aluminum. Many manufacturers are taking advantage of the durability and quick heat-transfer properties of anodized aluminum by using this material on the exterior of their pots and pans, but they are leaving the non-stick tasks to another material (not anodized aluminum).

Given all of the potential health risk factors listed above-together with the environmental problems created by aluminum mining and manufacturing-I still favor stainless steel and porcelain-coated pots as my first choices for stovetop cooking. Copper-bottomed pots or pots with a layer of copper in between the stainless steel are also fine. Some stainless steel cookware now comes with a layer of anodized aluminum sandwiched inside, and that cookware would also be fine from a health standpoint, even though the environmental problems with aluminum would remain.

It's important to wash all cookware carefully. For example, take care not to scour stainless steel pots too harshly when cleaning them as once the surface of the stainless steel has been damaged, the pot will leak nickel into the food that is being cooked. Stainless steel pads or brushes, for example, are too harsh in my opinion to risk using.

Inside the oven, stainless steel, tempered glass designed for oven use (for example, oven-safe Pyrex), and non-leaded ceramic are all good choices.


Rajwanshi P, Singh V, Gupta MK, et al. Leaching of aluminium for cookwares: A review. Environmental Geochemistry and Health. 1997;19(1):1-18.

Gramiccioni L, Ingrao G, Milana MR, et al. Aluminium levels in Italian diets and in selected foods from aluminium utensils. Food Additives and Contaminants. 1996; 13(7):767-774.

If you have any questions about today's Healthy Food Tip Ask George Your Question

Monday, July 26, 2010

Throwing Precaution to the Wind? An Ethics Perspective

Skip to m'loo! 

I just love it when someone smarter and more educated and higher up the ladder than I says something that confirms what I've been preaching all along!

This month, I've used two posts to advocate for the precautionary principle over a "wait for certainty" approach, here, and here.  Today, in my email box, I got wind of another such argument, made through the lense of ethics, by environmental philosopher Donald Brown, Professor of Environmental Ethics and Law at Penn State.

I've mentioned here before that the primary ethical lense through which our policy-making apparatus is viewed is teleological, or consequentialist.  We ask, what are the benefits of a policy proposal, and what are the costs?   We're all familiar with the "cost/benefit" analysis.

I've also pointed out that this is just one of the possible ethical lenses, and does not give us anything like a full ethical picture. 

Cost/benefit analysis is written into administrative procedures acts at all levels of government, and so proposed legislation almost never makes it through the process without that perspective.  Conversely, the alternative ethical frames have rarely been ensconsed into our policy-making structure.  Not just a shame, but a crime, really, because many harms could be identified and mitigated against by methodically reviewing the multiple ethical ramifications of policy decisions before finalizing them. 

That is not to say that the other ethical perspectives are never a part of the discussion, but since we're not trained to pursue them methodically, alternatives are brought into the discussion only when one side thinks to use, for example, a particular principle as an argument for or against an idea.  Without a methodological approach, there's no apparatus to ensure that competing alternative principles are considered, or that someone "checks the logic" of the principle offered.

It would come as no surprise to my students that I believe our administrative procedures system is ethically inadequate

Quickly, what are the four primary western ethical lenses?

1.  Teleological:  What decision will lead to the greatest happiness?  Of what use is an idea?  What will the long- and short-term, direct and indirect consequences a particular action be?  What will be the consequences of failing to take action?

2.  Deontological:  What principles should be applied here?  Are any of the principles conflicting?  Would we apply the selected principle in another like situation?  Would we apply it universally?   Would we apply it if we personally stood to lose something, or to gain something?  Would we apply it if we knew the impacted parties?   If we did not know the impacted parties?

3.  Virtue:  What would a person of good character do?  What would taking a particular action do to or for the reputation of the actor or the sponsoring organization?  What precedent would this action create?  What message would it send to others?

4.  Intuition:  What does your gut say about the action in question?  Yes or no?  Good or bad?  Embrace or run?  This is not so much an analysis, but more of a first, visceral reaction.

Why am I bringing all this up now?

Ethics professor Donald Brown says that by asking ourselves the typical teleological cost/benefit questions - in identifying the harms to plug into that analysis - we've limited ourselves to asking to the wrong question, e.g. what are the known scientific impacts? 

When we ask that question, we are confronted both with what we know, and with a great number of uncertainties.  If we tend to make policy based on this simple cost/benefit analysis, then a large amount of uncertainty will impede action until we are more clear on the costs.  This is particularly true when we know the benefits - all the economic and material benefits that flow from allowing green house emissions to continue at present levels.

Instead, says Professor. Brown:

"This post argues that for over thirty years the public climate change debate has focused on the wrong scientific questions compared to those that ethics would ask of climate science. Since the mid-1960s opponents of climate change policies have demanded to know from science what are the known climate change impacts; yet ethics would ask: (a) What are the scientifically plausible climate change harms?, (b) Would these harms happen if we wait to all uncertainties are resolved and the consensus view turns out to be correct?, and (c) Have the potential victims of climate change consented to be put at risk while uncertainties have been resolved?

 # # #

This post argues the misplaced focus on the scientifically known, rather than the scientifically plausible climate change impacts and subsequent ethical implications that come from scientific notice that we are doing something dangerous is partly responsible for over thirty years of delay in adopting climate change policies."

Professor Brown's questions take us beyond a simple teleologic cost/benefit analysis into a deontological - or duty - analysis.  It asks, when uncertainty makes a cost/benefit analysis premature, do you have a duty to look at plausible harms instead?  And do you have a duty to include the potential victims of those plausible harms in the discussion?

Just to demonstrate how important Dr. Brown's lense is, what if someone had applied Dr. Brown's questions before permitting deep drilling in the Gulf?  We now know that BP lacked a lot of geological, technical and mechanical information about the way the oil field and their own equipment would behave in case of emergency, and about potential harms to the gulf ecosystem, and to the human society that relies upon the ecosystem for sustainance and economic well-being.  What if the regulatory agency had required BP to analyze "all plausible harms," and to bring the information to all the possible victims and their representatives for comment - from fishermen to wildlife scientists to seafood purveyors - as part of the permitting process?   Would we be where we are today?

If you are interested in reading Professor Brown's discussion about the ethics of decision-making about climate change, why the right ethical question is what harms are plausible, rather than which harms are definite, and who should be involved in making these decisions, the link for the article is here:

Sunday, July 25, 2010


You may have heard the old lobbyist saw, "We aren't buying influence, we're buying access."  Well, who can compete with that?

We all can, if we all use available avenues to let our elected officials know that we have an opinion, we watch their behavior, and we vote!

The fastest, easiest route to access I know is to simply contact your elected official, either by phone, email or regular mail.  They do keep track of those calls and letters. 

What to say? 

    * Name the issue you are calling about, and give a brief "what you want & why" statement.
    * That you live in the district and vote. 
    * If you supported the person in the last election, say so.
    * If you gave money, say so. 
    * Ask the person who answers to let the official know you will be watching to see how they speak about and vote on the issue.

Below are links to websites where you can easily look up and contact your elected officials.

For my tastes, is the best online resource.  It has contact information and an online contact for for everyone from the President down to your state's Governor, including a tweet option!  Obviously, it also has phone numbers, if you prefer to pick up the phone and talk to a real staffer.  That's sometimes good when you want to ask questions - what view does your elected official hold on a particular issue?

Both the Senate,, and the House,, have their own official contact sites.  Again, you can find names and contact information, and contact these people right from the website.

You only have one vote, but you can be noisy over and over again.  If you really care, make noise!  REPOST this blog on your facebook page, or tweet it, and ask your friends to make this joyful noise too.  

Remember that other old saying, "Squeaky wheel gets the grease!"


One of my summer Urban Environmental Policy students - thanks, Jenna! - found an awesome online service, ToxMap, courtesy of the National Library of Medicine.
With this online resource, you can create a Geographical Information Systems [GIS] map of any area in the U.S., showing contaminated sites and sites identified through the Toxic Release Inventory [TRI] by any one or multiple toxic elements.  

Once you find what you're looking for, you can pull down specifics: Maybe you've asked to see accidental releases, and you want to see which company is responsible for the leak.  Maybe you want to see all the sites in a particular geographic area where toxins are being stored.  Maybe you want to see all the Superfund (contaminated groundwater clean-up sites).
Because of a particular exercise my students did in class, I decided to ask for an Arizona map showing Toxic Release Inventory [TRI] sites.  Those are sites that manufacture, transport, use, or store chemicals that are considered toxic by the EPA. 

Suppose you want to find all the companies with a TRI for a particular chemical - say benzine.  Once you locate these, TOXMAP will give you company data. 

And maybe you want to know more information about particular toxic substances - say, what human exposure can cause, how to treat for exposure, etc. 

The site has a full data base of educational material.

This site just has a wealth of information, whether you just want to know what's going on in your own backyard, or you need information for a project.

The site provides a very good, fast "how to" video, here:  I did try to find a video on YouTube so you didn't have to actually go to the link, but there apaprently isn't one.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Deniers Chorus Redux

So, my wonderful visitor Christine Conte just left  (no, that's not her to the left).    I could barely wait to get to facebook to see what Jeffrey Malashock had to say about what I had to say about what of Brenchley had to say (yesterday's post).

Disappointment of disappointments, Jeffrey had not yet attended to my little missive.  But, wide awake, unlike last night while I was writing, it occurred to me that I'd not added a citation for the of Brenchley article.  Naughty me.  

And then I thought, "Gee, I didn't look up this fellow, of Brenchley, either."


Jeffrey, did you say of Brenchley did not have an agenda?  Are you serious?   Let me quote from Wikipedia, tacky as that is:

"Christopher Walter Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley is a British politician, consultant, writer, columnist, and hereditary peer. Since June 2010 he has been the deputy leader of the UK Independence Party.  He served as an advisor to Margaret Thatcher's policy unit in the 1980s and invented the Eternity puzzle at the end of the 1990s, as well as the Eternity II in 2007.  In recent years, Monckton has attracted attention for his denialist stance on anthropogenic global warming."

More to the point, whose work did Monckton put his name on?  Maybe it's his.  On the other hand, he has an undergraduate degree in the classics, and a graduate degree in journalism.  Somewhere in there, he got involved in politics, claimed to be a non-voting member of the House of Lords, a claim  debunked by the House, sold puzzles, and worked for a policy unit on Downing Street as a consultant.  Wait, British politics and selling puzzles.  How interchangeable is that?

And the viscount is a brilliant mathematician in his spare time!   Whoa, you go of Brenchley!

One last comment on of Brenchley's paper.  The current disclaimer on the document, apparently strengthened since the version Jeffrey sent me, says this:

"The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review. Its conclusions are in disagreement with the overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community. The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article's conclusions."

By the way, of Brenchley does seem to have a penchant for getting himself into the thick of controversy.  Here's his view on how to handle the AIDS epidemic, for example:

"There is only one way to stop AIDS. That is to screen the entire population regularly and to quarantine all carriers of the disease for life. Every member of the population should be blood-tested every month ... all those found to be infected with the virus, even if only as carriers, should be isolated compulsorily, immediately, and permanently."  From "AIDS: A British View," American Spectator, 1987.  Click here for the citation.

Anymore of my time on this is a waste.  But if you're feeling like a dose of British humor, here's the Wikipedia link:,_3rd_Viscount_Monckton_of_Brenchley

Climate Chorus In the Key of K


The energy bill has been raised from near death in the waning hours of this Congressional session. 

In the background I already hear competing choruses.  Despite the sheer number of scientists who have put their reputations on the line confirming that global warming is real, somehow the Denier's Chorus grows incredibly, maddeningly loud.

Today, my very smart friend, Jeffrey Malashock, read my blog post addressing the question of Hoax or Not?   Unconvinced by my argument that precaution is the better course of valor, or maybe just prone to oppose, Jeffrey sent me an article meant to be contrary.  Jeffrey is nothing if not tactful.  He prefaced the article, written by one Christopher Monckton of Brenchley, with the following words:

"I know you can search for endless articles on this topic. This one does not have an agenda, it raises some issues. I have more recent stuff by this author, but its almost all math. This is the most readable of his scientific articles. Its from the American Physical Society, of which I am a member"

I should have guessed when I read the author's name (of Brenchley?) that the letter would be stuffy.  I will provide visual proof of this for you in a bit, but suffice it to say, the letter was five parts mathematical equation, one part English.  If this is the most readable of his articles, I say, leave me out of it.  I am a policy person, not a scientist or mathematician.  I require a professional translator. 

Perhaps unfortunately for my reader, since the English part was, in fact, in English, I feel the need to have a word. 

First, since I told you what Jeffrey said, I believe it only fair to note the journal's disclaimer, printed at the very top of the article:

"The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review, since that is not normal procedure for American Physical Society newsletters. The American Physical Society reaffirms the following position on climate change, adopted by its governing body, the APS Council, on November 18, 2007: 'Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate.'"

Next, I want to point out that of Brenchley did not actually deny climate change.  He simply said that the mathematical proof being used to demonstrate that over 50 percent of global warming is caused by the emission of greenhouse gases is in error.  Here are his arguments.

Since they are not the main points, and of Brenchley simply leads off with them for good measure, I will not bother to address the standard stuff of all denials - the general reduction of temperature climaxing in the 2008 low (discussed elsewhere), and the sunspot argument. 

Instead, I will dive directly into the meat of of Brenchley's article.  Although i cannot begin to follow the math in this article, the written portion seems to rely upon the following:

1) too much uncertainty around certain assumptions used to formulate the equation to draw conclusions

2) reliance upon lab experiments that do not seem to be playing out in the real world

3) the likely incorrect value of "k" - not that i understand exactly what "k" is, but it is apparently important to equation calculations upon which some climate scientists have relied.

These three factors, in the end, add up to a statement that we do not have adequate science to trust what we have been told about climate change.  Even if of Brenchley got every little mathematical thing right - and if Jeffrey says he's a good mathematician, well, I can go with that - his paper is just another among many examples of the idea that we should not leap before the science is "right."   To specifically quote of Brenchley:

"In short, we must get the science right or we shall get the policy wrong."

I disagree vehemently with of Brenchley's prescription.   While of Brenchley is doing the scientific world a favor by double-checking equations, those equations are used for only one purpose - predicting multi-variable future weather occurances.  We do not need to rely upon predictions of future events for our proof of climate change.  It is immaterial at some level whether green house gases are causing 50 percent or 30 percent of the climate change.  It is enough to see that the climate is changing in dangerous ways.  There is so much evidence from the here and now - melting ice floes, measurable changes in ocean temperature - real, measurable, hard, empirical, scientific evidence of climate change that we need not wait for scientists to agree about how to quantify and model future climate events.  We can be afraid of climate change now.  

Here is another link from my blog.  I refer you specifically to the ocean data toward the bottom.  Take the link to the original web site, and read more about the science behind the ocean temperature trends.  This data is not "calculation" based on erroneous equations. This data is real, gathered data.

So, no, Jeffrey, I do not feel of Brenchley has poked holes in my belief system.   It is not enough for me that someone "proves" that we don't have all the science.   We will never have all the science.   And like the guy who recently posited that gravity may be nothing but a side-effect of a completely different phenomenon, we may sometimes find out that what we thought was science might not be science at all.  Science is simply the pursuit of knowledge, and what passes for knowledge changes constantly.  To wait for finality is  a fools game.

And looking at today's evidence, even if it is still somewhat inconclusive and leaves us with some doubt, precaution is a policy we can take before we get the science right, without too much fear of getting the policy wrong.

Jeffrey said of Brenchley's article does not have an agenda.  It may not have a scientific agenda in terms of of Brenchley's perfect mathematical talents, but it very assuredly has a bias.  The bias is this: 

We should not go overboard on precaution before we have enough science to "know."   Unwarranted precaution leads to lost opportunities. 

That is a value call, as is my belief in taking the precautionary road.  There is no such thing as science without an agenda.  The existence of purely objective science, or in the case of of Brenchley, number crunching, is still interpreted and utilized within the context of the mathematician's personal bias.

When I teach ethics I ask my students to check their logic the same way we were asked to check our math problems in grade school.  One way to check your logic, when you are applying a principle of behavior, is to ask, "Would we apply this same principle in similar situations?"  Or, "Can this principle be applied universally?"  We have many good examples of similar situations where, in hindsite, we would have been wise to apply the precautionary principle.  The Science and Environmental Health Network says it well:

"Sometimes if we wait for certainty it is too late. Scientific standards for demonstrating cause and effect are very high. For example, smoking was strongly suspected of causing lung cancer long before the link was demonstrated conclusively. By then, many smokers had died of lung cancer. But many other people had already quit smoking because of the growing evidence that smoking was linked to lung cancer. These people were wisely exercising precaution despite some scientific uncertainty.

When evidence gives us good reason to believe that an activity, technology, or substance may be harmful, we should act to prevent harm. If we always wait for scientific certainty, people may suffer and die and the natural world may suffer irreversible damage."

It is 1:13 a.m., and with sincerest apologies to of Brenchley for having a bit of fun at the expense of his name, I feel I may now sleep.

Friday, July 16, 2010

BoysGottaSweat & Other Important Stuff

Ever been toodling down the road, your mind more or less empty, when suddenly you recall something you forgot to do?  I call those "snap to" moments. 

This morning I realized I hadn't touched this blog for days. 

Snap to.

How convenient, then, that the world delivered up two articles worth sharing this morning.  One is from my favorite environmental nonprofit, Environmental Working Group, and the other came by way of my brother Jon, with a note that said, "here's something for your ecocurious folks." 

Btw, it definitely arrived during business hours, so, Jon, does that mean you are surfing the web on the job? 

This is an inside joke, as my brother is, among other things, the official "web police" for Jackson County, Missouri.  Anyway, thanks, bro!

EWG's offering is a new pocket guide to produce and pesticides.  I'm so jazzed because it lays out which produce receives heavy treatment and should only be purchased organic, and which is safe enough to buy "conventional."    If you've ever seen me standing in front of a produce bin muttering under my breath, that's me arguing with myself because I really want blueberries.  I really want a lot of blueberries, and I really want organic.  So why don't I just grab those organic blueberries?  Well, consider the organic blueberries in the itty bitty clamshell that will be finished off before I finish off this sentence - at $6.97, sitting next to the conventional blueberries in the whopper-sized clamshell - for $3.99.  What's a poor graduate student to do? 

EWG simplifies.  It lays out the 15 foods most treated with toxics - ALWAYS buy these organic, no matter the cost - and the 15 foods clean enough to buy "conventional."  Looks like I'll either be springing for those expensive blueberries from now on, or eating mango instead.  Once again, thank you EWG!

Whole article here:

My brother's offering is a Smart Planet defense of lowered thermostat in office environments.  Apparently studies say employee productivity goes down when a building is too cold.  Ha!  You think you're telling we women anything we don't already know?   I'm convinced that office temps are set by men, for men.  All smart women keep a sweater at the office. 

Well boys, productivity now demands that you sweat! 

Good for the electric bill and the environment too.   (Don't you love  Where you can make the URL say any ridiculous thing you want to?)

Monday, July 5, 2010

J'Lein, You're Invited

Margarita Ice

Remember this?

This was so tasty, I got really cocky and decided to do a margarita sorbet.  I'm digging all these almost healthy iced treats.  Yums. 

Combine in a 32 ounce glass measuring cup:

4 tbps Tequila
1 tbsp Triple Sec
1 c. fresh squeezed lime juice

Fill to 28 ounces with either:
Fresh brewed Tazo Sweet Wild Orange Tea, or,
Fresh brewed Numi Desert Lime Tea.

Use three teabags and 2 cups of water.  Cool before adding.


The equivilent of 8 teaspoons of sugar substitute.  I used stevia.
Pinch of salt.  Hey - it's a margarita!

Chill overnight in the fridge, then make in your ice cream maker according to the directions!

Don't eat and drive!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Blog Next Door

  I don't feel good today. I can't pin it down - lack of sleep,  creeping crud, buzz of ADD, or simple malaise.

It may just be the heat.  Jean and I are having something of a tug-of-war over the ceiling fans.  I like to keep them going, and she is constantly turning them off as she walks out the door or heads up to bed - whether by habit or because she thinks it's a waste of electricity, I'm not entirely clear.  Since I assume it's hotter upstairs where she sleeps, it's all a mystery to me. 

Or, it could be that today is my daughter's 25th birthday, and her car broke down in Albuquerque on the way to her new life at culinary school in Denver.  They wanted over $6,000 for repairs.  The car isn't worth that much, and she abandoned it.  She is laughing now but I hope Denver has a good bus system.

Whatever it is, I've given up on my To Do list.  Some days it's better to acknowledge that nothing will get done and let it go. 

Thus relieving my anxiety about what I ought to be doing - I thought I'd take a stroll.  It's too hot outside to walk the neighborhood, and the mall doesn't excite me.  Instead, albeit there's no exercise involved, I decided to take in the neighborhood wherein I blog.  There's a little "Next Blog" link at the top of my blog, and it looks like a doggy door to this pup. 

Wow, what a street I live on.  The first surprise was the number of blogs devoted to relationships with God.  There is a Malaysian nunnery and a couple of official church blogs, but there are also many quieter testimonies to the role of Diety in the lives of my neighbors.  I wonder if this is a coincidence, or if there are a predominance of believers among bloggers.  My own research tsk tsks me, so I guiltily push thoughts of what might be involved in researching that question out of my head.

My neighbors are both grappling with and celebrating life.  One neighbor's blog honors her father, who passed away in 2008.  Another blogs about her big happy adopted family - a veritable Sesame Street with its many small, diversely colored faces.  A third neighbor's blog is an ode to her will to survive a bout with cancer.  A fourth woman wrestles with her family's decision to use a surgical means of birth control in stark opposition to her faith's prescription for an endless stream of babies, and its stringent prohibition against prophylactics. 

My favorite gem in all of this was penned by Retty Hakim, who said this about herself:

"A mother of three boys, who is trying to grab the essence of life through blogging. Citizen journalism firing me to write. The internet has broken the limitation of my house walls and my hectic time schedule. It has opened my eyes to all those wonderful persons with all their own opinions. Sharing ideas and comments are the wonderful aspect of the internet that attract me. I hope that we are going to build a better world with better communication..."

I grok you, Retty. 

I took some photos on my stroll.  Come check out my neighborhood.