Monthly Archives: February 2011

This is how you see Japan


If you are a Westerner, by now you already have a preconceived notion about the culture of Japan. Maybe you don’t know much, but aside from the stereotypically beautiful scenery and exotic architecture, what you know likely involves robots, sex, and badly dubbed anime. More than that, Japan is often seen as being odd, mind-boggling, and just plain absurd.

How else do you explain these tit-scarves?

Makes a great gift

Posted in Culture, Japan, Media | 2 Comments

Work-Life Balance

Work-life balance signsNigel Marsh, the Australian author of “Overworked and Underlaid ,” gave a fantastic talk at TEDxSydney about a year ago, which just came out on the TED website this week. If you’ve never heard of TED, it is an internationally renowned conference in which speakers from all walks of life talk about their work, life, or stories. It stands for Technology, Entertainment, and Design, and its slogan is “Ideas worth spreading.” The popularity of the conference has grown over the last few years – in part, I’m sure, because of the rise of YouTube – and now a new talk comes out virtually every day. I find that the best TED talks include at least some element of storytelling, insight, and humor. Marsh has them all wrapped up in 10 minutes.

Posted in TED | Tagged | Leave a comment

Ignorance is Bliss: How homeopathy works, and why it doesn’t

I’m going to explain homeopathy in three sentences, but just know that I’m not making any of this up. Homeopathy is based on two principles. The first is that like cures like… so if you’re bitten by a poisonous snake, the antidote would clearly be “more venom!”  But not just any amount of venom – the second principle is that you should dilute the antidote, because it’s more potent that way.


Posted in Activism, Medicine & Health, Pseudoscience, Skepticism | Tagged , | 2 Comments