Friday, March 15, 2013

Batch of links

- Bon Appétit published a list of the 20 most important restaurants in America right now, which is interesting enough in and of itself, but then there’s this quote from David Chang, of Momofuku, regarding his own pick: “Cheesecake Factory. Seriously. They consistently make more people happy than any other restaurant. We can all learn a lot from them.”

- Could there soon be a cure for celiac disease?

- This article is long, but really worth the read. There’s a new experimental treatment out there for children with food allergies. At the end of the treatment, a child who used to go into anaphylactic shock from cross-contamination with an egg, for example, is able to eat a whole egg without any adverse reactions! The downsides are of course that this is a long, difficult treatment, each allergen has to be treated separately, and the patient must continue to eat the problematic food every day for the rest of his or her life, or risk losing the benefits of the treatment. That being said, I can only imagine the relief one must feel if one’s child is no longer in danger if dying from cross-contamination and can go out to restaurants or birthday parties… This is still a ground-breaking treatment, and seems very promising.

- I don’t know anyone who has time to actually pack bento boxes like these for their kids, but I sure like looking at them! I’m also now following Norwegian photographer Ida Frosk on Instagram, as she makes masterpieces with food.

- An update about Pastagate (see here and here for a recap). Louise Marchand, who was president of the OQLF, has thankfully stepped down, thereby leaving room for people who will modernize the OQLF and its mission; I’m pretty sure we can all agree this is good news. However, we’re now in a situation where the PM is finally involved in this language debate, by trying to pass Bill 14. This bill plans for unnecessary measures such as stripping municipalities of their bilingual status if the percentage of English speakers is below 50% (even if the municipality wishes to keep its bilingual status), or forcing children of military personnel to attend school in French (not necessarily a good idea, since some of them are from Anglophone families and many of them will be moving to Anglophone provinces during their youth, so it would be easier on them to get consistent schooling). While I’m pretty sure that Bill 14 won’t pass, at least not in its current state, I can’t help but wonder why some Francophones (meaning those who came up with the bill itself, and not any of the ones I know personally) think that the best way to defend and promote French is by outlawing other languages, instead of promoting it in schools and society in a more effective manner (and this goes for Francophone schools too, as many teenagers today whose mother-tongue in French don’t master the language enough to be able to understand literary text or to spell it properly when writing anything other than a quick email to friends). The PQ dissatisfaction rate is 68% right now, after only 6 months in power – it took Charest 9 years to get there, and that was with rampant corruption! I don’t know who the PQ really thinks it’s protecting with this war on languages… I believe I understand the intent, but this is really not the way to go about it at all.

- Here’s an article about the disappointing results of teaching financial literacy. It still blows my mind that half of Americans over 50 cannot answer both of the simple questions in the first paragraph…

- There is evidence, however, that teaching good sex really pays off.

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