Robb and I met Gerti at the Sage in Hollywood for dinner the other night. I think I like the Hollywood Sage better than the Fort Lauderdale Sage. Although, having stated that, I must say the Gratinée de la Mer I had was not quite as good as it was in Fort Lauderdale. Robb and Gertie both had the Tuna Provençale and raved about it. Gerti is German. She works for the county library system which is how Robb met her. She reminds me a lot of Geoff, in that she doesn't seem to like anybody, she doesn't like the US, she doesn't like the food, and neither she nor her husband like the medical care, but she resists going back to Germany with her husband George. In the meantime, husband George spends a small fortune flying back and forth to Germany to go to the doctor there. Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't get it.
Speaking of not getting it, another thing I don't understand is this; the Muslims claim to hate the Israelis, but when was the last time you heard of a suicide attack in Israel? I wonder if this Gaza thing will propel them into some kind of retaliation. And don't you admire Helen Thomas? I think her colleagues should be begging her to remain in the press corps.
Eat less, live longer? In Greek mythology, the tale of the Trojan prince Tithonus is a tragic one. His lover, the goddess Eos, asks Zeus to grant him eternal life, but forgets to specify eternal youth. Time passes, and while the goddess of dawn stays young and beautiful, Tithonus degenerates into bedridden senility. Eventually Eos shuts him in a chamber of her celestial palace, where his feeble voice can be heard begging for death. Dreams of eternal youth feature in many cultures throughout history, but it was only in the 20th century that research into longevity really began. Much about ageing is still mysterious - we don't even know the underlying reasons why we journey into old age. There are many lines of enquiry into how to live longer, though, with one of the most intriguing being calorie restriction: in effect, going on a lifelong diet.
Hubble identifies Jupiter's attacker. The object that smacked into Jupiter in 2009, leaving a dark bruise, was probably an asteroid, according to a new study based on ultraviolet Hubble Space Telescope images.
Out of the shadows: our unknown immune system. Deliberate infection with a blood-sucking worm seems an odd way to treat multiple sclerosis (MS). Yet more surprising is what this experiment may tell us about a "shadow" branch of our immune system. Completely unknown until recently, this is pointing to new ways of treating a host of complex diseases.
Physicists keep trying to explain why time flows one way. In a famous passage from his 1938 book The Realm of Truth, the Spanish-American philosopher George Santayana compared time to a flame running along a fuse. The flame’s position marked the present moment, speeding forward but never backward as the fuse disappeared behind it. “The essence of nowness,” Santayana remarked, “runs like fire along the fuse of time.” Each spark along the fuse represents one of the “nows” that transform the future into the past and “combine perfectly to form the unchangeable truth of history.” It’s far from a perfect analogy. A flame flitting along a wire doesn’t fully capture the quirky features of time that perplex physicists pondering relativity and quantum mechanics, for example. But Santayana’s sparks do illustrate one of time’s most enduring and puzzling properties — its irreversibility. Read the complete article.
Monday Puzzle: Martin Gardner’s Birthday Celebration
A woman is just getting out of the shower when the doorbell rings. Her husband, heading to the shower himself, asks her to see who's at the door, so she wraps herself up in a towel and runs downstairs. When she opens the door, there stands her next-door neighbor, Rob. Before she can say a word, Rob says, "I'll give you $500 to drop that towel you have on." After thinking for a moment, the woman drops her towel. He looks for a few seconds, hands her $500, and leaves with a big smile on his face. Excited about her earnings, the woman puts the towel back on and runs upstairs. Her husband yells out from the shower, "Who was that?" "It was Rob from next door," she replies. "Great," the husband says. "Did he say anything about the $500 dollars he owes me?"
À la prochaine, mes amis