Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Batch of links

- 100 food terms and how to pronounce them. Many of them were easy for me because I’m francophone, but this did settle a few disagreements between the Engineer and me.

- The difference between pancetta, bacon and prosciutto.

- The duck egg market takes off. I actually have a few recipes that call for duck eggs, though I couldn’t for the life of me find them among my bookmarks... I’ll label them more accurately if I come across them again so that I can buy duck eggs on a whim and use them up!

- Did you know that kumquats aren’t officially citrus?

- The FDA will give nutrition labels a makeover. Normally, I’m a creature of habit, but this is one change to which I’m looking forward.

- A farmer’s challenge to Chipotle to start a dialogue about where our food comes from, without putting all food producers in the same basket.

- The recent news that the rates of obesity in American preschoolers had fallen surprised me, albeit pleasantly. It turns out, though, that the data may have been misinterpreted.

- A food scientist is trying to replace eggs with more humane and more environmentally-friendly proteins. This wouldn’t be for, say, poached eggs, but for eggs used in commercial food products like baked goods. Sounds promising!

- A really interesting article in Scientific American about how the advances in genetic sequencing are helping create new varieties of fruits and vegetables. And now I’d like a habanada.

- And another really good article on the GMO controversy.

- I meant to post this much sooner… CVS pharmacies have decided to stop selling tobacco products. This makes me unbelievably happy, that such a large chain has finally decided to put its money where its mouth is and stop selling cigarettes because they are detrimental to their basic mission. I hope more follow suit!

- What the science of memory can teach us about the Dylan Farrow / Woody Allen case, on eSkeptic. Call it wishful thinking, but this basically sums up my current position on the scandal.

- Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In Foundation has a partnership with Getty Images to produce more realistic images of women in the workforce. It’s about time!

- I know I’ve been talking a lot about abortions rights lately, but this is mainly because of my disbelief that I’m living in a country where these basic rights are actually being questioned. (After all, being pro-choice doesn’t mean I’d want an abortion, it just means that I think the choice should be mine, not the government’s.) Now, the Christian right is also trying to prevent access to birth control, even though that would go against federal law. I believe that religious freedom means that one’s religious beliefs should not be imposed on others who do not share them. This means that if you don’t believe in abortion, then you shouldn’t get one, but if your employee contributes to the health insurance plan, you don’t have a right to refuse to cover certain medications or treatments based on your own beliefs. Especially considering that abortion rates have declined in recent years, thanks in part to birth control (which the Christian right is also boycotting). It would seem to me that a Christian would prefer to prevent unwanted pregnancies in the first place rather than risk increasing the rate of abortions, no? What’s worse is the fact that some politicians trying to ban abortions have never even given any thought to the most basic of questions… I don’t necessarily believe that not having a uterus invalidates one’s point of view on the issue, but not even being aware of the reasons that would make a woman consider an abortion certainly should invalidate one’s ability to legislate on the topic.

- On the bright side, Texas’ ban on same-sex marriage has been struck down. The decision is obviously being appealed, but things are moving in the right direction!

- And as proof that the legal system can, and occasionally does, work justly and swiftly: it took TWO DAYS for a law to be written AND passed specifically making upskirting illegal in Massachusetts!

- I’m also happy that Guiness withdrew from the New York St. Patrick’s Day parade over its exclusion of the LGBT community.

- This will forever change the way you look at selfies.

- My life as a retail worker: nasty, brutish and poor. This essay by Joseph Williams is a great look into the working conditions of so many Americans.

- Math class needs a makeover, a TED Talk by Dan Meyer.

- And How movies teach manhood, a TED Talk by Colin Stokes.

- Here’s why you don’t ask a feminist to advertise your sexist product. Ellen, I don’t know what we’d do without you. (Also, as much as I love their ballpoint pens with washable blue ink – what was Bic thinking?)

- I cannot remember if I posted this already… In any case, it’s cool enough to watch again: how wolves change rivers.

- Connecticut could be the first state to curb loud movies, to which I say, Amen.

- And 23 words hilariously mispronounced by toddlers.

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