Friday, February 24, 2017

Batch of links

- The Oscars are this weekend! Take a peek at the after-party menu.

- There’s a drive-thru that sells salads at fast-food prices! It figures this would not at all be on our way to Quebec from Texas…

- Here’s why and when to bloom cocoa powder, i.e. steep it in warm liquid to develop its flavor.

- Have you seen white stripes on some chicken breasts? Here’s why some people avoid them.

- Would you look at these weird paper towels?

- Produce stickers might be replaced with lasering logos instead, but am I the only one who might occasionally want produce that hasn’t been literally branded?

- GQ had this great interview with Tom Hiddleston recently, and then Bon Appétit set out to recreate his Bolognese recipe.

- Parents had an article about families dealing with food allergies, which made me think I haven’t mentioned the “new” guidelines according to which the best way to prevent food allergies in children is to introduce allergens early, not delay their introduction. I used quotation marks on “new” because technically, those guidelines already existed when I was pregnant with the Little Prince, and those are the ones I followed with him. That being said, it’s true that the information hadn’t made its way into the general population; even my doctor wasn’t aware. I remember having this discussion with my then-neighbor: she had a shellfish allergy and was adamant about delaying the introduction of nuts into her children’s diet. I told her the evidence showed it was actually the opposite that was beneficial, but didn’t press the point so as to avoid an argument, because how one raises one’s children is a very touchy subject. For what it’s worth, both her kids now have food allergies, though there’s obviously no proof of causation here, this is entirely anecdotal. So anyway, there you go, hopefully now everyone is aware of the evidence.

- Related: Mylan, which makes the EpiPen, now makes a generic version. CVS also makes an even cheaper alternative, and Auvi-Q is back on the market. More tips here. There’s also hope for eventual treatment with immunotherapy.

- I thought this article titled To Obama with love, hate, and desperation, about the letters sent to President Obama, was both interesting and moving – his staff selected ten for him to read each day.

- I really enjoyed this article on Leonard Cohen’s Montreal. (Here’s another on the same topic.)

- The Globe and Mail recently conducted an investigation into why so many sexual assault claims are dismissed as unfounded by the police. It’s a long read, but very informative – it turns out that “unfounded” doesn’t actually mean “no evidence it happened”. As a result, some places, like the province of Quebec, are reviewing their policies.

- American Girl released its first boy doll last wekk. Some people are not happy about this, but I’m thrilled! It’s about time boys had a doll – hopefully there will be more eventually. They also have dolls with various disabilities and medical conditions.

- Also, while on the topic of gender equality for children: I love Free to Be Kids, a clothing company that makes “clothing with positive messages, designs that flip the script on gender clichés, and stylish, on-trend design”. I recently ordered a t-shirt for the Little Prince from them. In the same vein, I also like Jessy & Jack.

- Finally, it’s Black History Month. I think the U.S. have (overall) done a good job of integrating topics like slavery and the Civil Rights Movement to school curriculums, and I look forward to the day when we just call it “history” without specifying race. That being said, the whole point of this month is to raise awareness, and we still have a long way to go. Did you know that there used to be Black slaves in Quebec, for example? And here’s an African-American woman with whom I’m not nearly familiar enough, given how much I like rock and roll: Sister Rosetta Tharpe. She influenced musicians like Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Little Richard. I think this is the first performance I saw of hers. I need to get myself one of her compilation albums!

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