Archive for July, 2012

Tiny Dog Carries Cat In Russia (VIDEO)

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

This is a riot.


Allergies and the Benefits of Yogurt

Monday, July 30th, 2012

Research suggests that the powerful probiotic bugs — called Lactobacillus casei (L. casei) — in yogurt may decrease body levels of immune substances involved in seasonal allergies. So every cup of goodness means fewer sniffles and “achoos.”


Replace your lawn with gardens

Sunday, July 29th, 2012

How much water you are wasting keeping a lawn depends on the region you live in and what type of grass you are growing.

Kentucky blue grass, the most common turf outside of the Southern United States, requires a lot of water. St. Augustine grass is prone to succumbing to pests and diseases, and Bermudagrass needs constant maintenance to keep it looking clean and can be invasive.

Instead of trying to keep a lawn alive during this drought, why not plant a garden? Either an ornamental garden that beautifies your neighborhood and provides habitat for wildlife, or a vegetable garden that you can feed yourself from—both are better alternatives.

Take advantage of the effects of our current drought to examine where you can remove turf on your property, and you’ll start to see a reduction in the amount of water you use.

Read more:

I highly recommend this. You can install a drip system in dry areas like Denver, put down weed control cloth, and use recycled wood chips available from many tree cutters for less than you’d spend on the commercial wood chips, and plant your yard with perennials and vegetables. It may take some getting used to. But you will help the planet and wildlife, not to mention yourself, in many ways. You get plenty of food in the deal and learn to tend the earth instead of just taking advantage of it.

My water bill is 1/3 to 1/2 of that of my neighbor’s because I did this when I first moved in and landscaped the area myself. I have all sorts of animals visit my yard–from red foxes to raccoons, and more varieties of birds than we typically see here in Denver. I have watched red foxes pluck grapes from my vines outside my study window, using their paws like hands. I like to think of foxgloves and imagine foxes putting the flowers on to protect their “hands.”

Cat Helps Boy Suffering From Selective Mutism Say “I Love You” For The First Time (VIDEO)

Saturday, July 28th, 2012

Imagine not being able to tell your parents you love them. This is reality for 7-year-old Lorcan Dillon, who suffers from Selective mutism, the Daily Mail reports.

Selective mutism is an anxiety disorder that makes it almost impossible for Lorcan, who lives in Davyhulme in the UK, to speak to classmates and communicate his emotions to family. But all that began changing when his mother got him a cream Birman named Jessi-cat two years ago, reports the Daily Mail. The two quickly became inseparable and Lorcan has since made huge strides in overcoming his disability.

“In the past two weeks he’s started communicating with people he doesn’t know very well and even reads to one of the teachers now — something he’s never done before,” Lorcan’s mother, Jayne Dillon told the Daily Mail.

“She is a loving companion and is always interested in what Lorcan is up to,” Dillon told


Pistachios Are Good for Your Gut

Friday, July 27th, 2012

A pistachio is like Jack Nicholson’s character Randle McMurphy in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”: a nut with a hard shell covering a center of genuine goodness.

An interesting study reveals the amount of healthful bacteria in the poop of people who ate pistachios compared to that of people who ate other nuts or none at all. Pistachios came out the winner for promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) in the digestive tract. Almonds ranked No. 2 (no pun intended).

What’s so special about this little green seed? It’s packed with dietary fiber and nutrients such as B6, thiamin, manganese, and copper. Bacteria in our guts — necessary for a healthy digestive and immune system — dine happily on that mixture.
(By the way, eating a handful of walnuts 30 minutes before a meal can help you lose weight.)


Elderly Bees Discovered The Fountain Of Youth

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

Scientists at Arizona State University recently discovered that when mature members of a hive assume the duties of younger bees, namely staying home and looking after the babies, they’re able to stave off the physical and mental effects of aging. Older bees that leave the nest to gather food begin aging very quickly and demonstrate diminished mental acuity.

To observe this phenomenon, scientists first had to “trick” older bees in to resuming chores that they’d long since outgrown. So, they removed all the young nurse bees from a certain hive, giving the older bees a difficult choice to make: abandon the babies or starve. Interestingly, a portion of the older bees elected to stay at the hive, while others went out to forage.

“We knew from previous research that when bees stay in the nest and take care of larvae — the bee babies — they remain mentally competent for as long as we observe them,” said Gro Amdam, an associate professor in ASU’s School of Life Sciences. “However, after a period of nursing, bees fly out gathering food and begin aging very quickly. After just two weeks, foraging bees have worn wings, hairless bodies, and more importantly, lose brain function — basically measured as the ability to learn new things. We wanted to find out if there was plasticity in this aging pattern so we asked the question, ‘What would happen if we asked the foraging bees to take care of larval babies again?”

The team found that when required to take over nursing duties rather than hunt for food, the impaired bees started to recover. In fact, after 10 days, about 50 percent of the older bees caring for the nest and larvae had significantly improved their ability to learn new things. Upon closer examination, it was found these improved bees had actually experienced chemical changes in their brain.

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Chopra: Find Clues to Your Destiny

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

It seems that it is only at the end of our lives that we will be in a position to look back and see the path we followed. In retrospect, the narrative of our lives appears perfectly logical. We can easily follow the thread of continuity upon which we gathered our life’s experiences. Even now, at whatever point you are in your life, look back and notice how naturally your life flowed from one milestone to the next, from one place or job to another, from one set of circumstances to an entirely different set.

Notice how effortless it all could have been if you had only known where your path was leading. Most people look back and ask: What was I so worried about? Why was I so hard on myself, or on my children?

If we were able to live at the level of the soul all the time, there would be no need for hindsight to appreciate the great truths of life. We would know them in advance. We would participate in creating the adventures of our lives.

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Dolphin’s Heartbreaking Mourning Ritual Over Baby Captured On Film

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

This mourning ritual is rarely seen and hardly ever captured on film. Onlookers said that the dolphin repeatedly lifted its head, carrying the child above the water as if to help the baby breathe. The mammal was also seen continually moving out to deeper water.

After examining photos taken by the tourists, researchers spotted a gash on the infant’s belly, leading them to believe the newborn died due to an injury from a boat propeller. Scientists say that this is not the first time they have seen a dolphin exhibit mourning behavior. On several other occasions the animal has been spotted showing distress over the death of a newborn, even staying with the baby for several days.

While experts can’t speak conclusively, they believe that this ritual shows that dolphins have some understanding of mortality and may even contemplate their own death.

Dolphins are already known as highly intelligent animals. Researchers have documented dolphins using language, tools, teamwork and exhibiting a social culture. This sad display is just further evidence for experts that dolphins are smarter and deeper animals than we may have expected.


Brain Region Called Temporoparietal Junction Linked In University Of Zurich Study

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Some people are generous–others, not so much. Why is that?

A new study from Switzerland suggests that the answer to that question may be a matter of neuroanatomy, with the brains of altruistic types having more “gray matter” in a region of the brain known as the temporoparietal junction.

It’s the first study to show a clear link between brain structure and altruism, according to a written statement released by the University of Zurich.
Does the provocative finding suggest that altruism or selfishness is hard-wired into the brain? Not necessarily.

“One should not jump to the conclusion that altruistic behavior is determined by biological factors alone,” Fehr said. Social “processes” also play a role, he said, adding that the findings raise the question of whether training people to be altruistic could encourage the growth of certain regions of the brain.

What sorts of social processes does Ernst have in mind? “This could be everything similar to what parents do repeatedly when they point out to their children that they should share resources with other kids or that they should take other kids interests into account when making decisions,” he said in an email to The Huffington Post.


After the Aurora, Colorado Movie Massacre

Sunday, July 22nd, 2012

If you need a dose of inspiration this morning, check out this beautiful speech. It’s from a Charlie Chaplin film, interspersed with footage from our own era.

Watch video.

Thomas Ramey Watson is an affiliate faculty member of Regis University's College of Professional Studies. He has served as an Episcopal chaplain (lay), trained as a psychotherapist, done postdoctoral work at Cambridge University, and was named a Research Fellow at Yale University.

In addition to his scholarly writings, he is a published author of poetry and fiction.