December 6th, 2008

Toddler Fun: Should We Go to the Tree Lighting to See Santa?

Answer: No.

Mainly because it'll be cold and T. won't give a damn.

Also because he's obsessed currently with getting other people to turn lights on and off, unless he can reach them in which case he does it himself. The prospect of having to explain the resulting temper tantrum (lights on! lights off! lights on! lights off!) is horrific to imagine. Well, after I stopped laughing hysterically.

book slog: _Can't Remember What I Forgot_

This isn't the real review (which may or may not ever occur). I've been having a hellish time reading this book (unsurprisingly, the author is married to Bill McKibben), mostly because it keeps setting off my, are you _sure_ we're the same species? Because if you are a representative human, I don't feel like one.

In any event, here's a paragraph to mull over from page 127:

""Here's the thing," Richard Mayeux said one day when we were talking about possible treatments for memory loss and if there were ways to prevent AD. [Note from me: I actually like this prose style.] "Right now you don't know what the hell to do. You don't know whether you should take vitamins, whether you should take ibuprofen, and if you do if you'll get a stroke, whether you should take estrogen, and if that will give you a stroke. People tell you to use your brain, to use your body, and those are all well and good, but you don't know if it's a lifetime of doing those things, you don't know if it's starting to do crosswords when you're ninety. If we can solve some of these genetic puzzles, we'll know how to treat the disease.""

I don't know if _you_ noticed, but Mayeux just conflated living-life with treating-a-relatively-rare-disease-that-strikes-late-in-life-if-something-else-didn't-kill-you-first.

I'm pretty clear on what to do. Use your brain to get through your life day to day in an orderly and happy and fulfilling way. Use your body to get through your life with a view to still having a functioning body in the years and decades to come -- whatever your age. Eat good food in moderation. Treat symptoms conservatively, whether with diet and exercise, vitamins or drugs. And don't treat anything prophylactically, if you can avoid it. Crosswords are fine if you enjoy them. I say this, because this is _how-to-live-my-life_. Framing it as treating-a-disease just causes problems, particularly if I don't have the disease and don't know if I'll ever get it.

Like I said, if these characters are humans, I'm not sure I even _want_ to be a member of that club.