Choosing meaningful things to get for meaningful people in your life every year can be very difficult. There is a lot of crap out there. But I have some ideas in the first Gift Guide for Livable Wellness inside.Read More
Winter arrived to Southern Ontario this week - the centre and north got it weeks ago. This one will certainly be one of discontent as we watch institutions of the most powerful country on earth creak under the weight of nepotism and thuggery.
I dropped my wallet in Calcutta. It was returned to me.
I got lost wandering around in Istanbul. Strangers helped me get back to my hotel.
I spent Christmas in 2005 in Patna, Bihar, India, a city known for its violence and poverty. I was welcomed at Midnight Mass, where the congregation sang familiar hymns in the unfamiliar Hindi, and shook hands in peace with those around me.
I was afraid I had an infection in my foot when I lived in Kabul. My boss, an Afghan doctor, and his father and his cousin drove me, in the middle of the night, down a dangerous road, to get to the hospital for assessment.
I had a panic attack while scuba diving in a strong current in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. A fellow diver, an Indian tourist, stayed with me, helped me resurface and gather the gumption to dive again.
I was accidentally in the wrong region at the wrong time in Assam. The people staying at the ashram with me put me in a jeep and drove me to the capital in the middle of the night. Local unrest hit just as we arrived.
I needed to find an apartment for 6 months when I lived in Vienna. I don't speak German and was having a hard time searching. My Moldovan colleague spent hours of her free time helping me, graciously.Read More
In response to the very respectable person who posted their whining all over Toronto this weekend:
Hey, white person:
- Tired of basic respect for others being called political correctness?
- Wondering why some other white people don’t realize that most countries would benefit from more legitimate multiculturalism?
- Figured out that diversity is good for everyone?
- Sick of being complicit in many of the world’s problems?
- Tired of appropriating other peoples’ heritage?
- Disgusted by the garbage on talk radio?
- Don’t see a safe and liberated future for yourself or your family, as well as everyone else’s family regardless of race, identity or creed?
- Questioning if the economy will collapse if corporations can’t leverage cheap immigrant labour like they’ve become accustomed to over the past 40 years?
The President-Elect of the United States of America is Donald J. Trump. It is not difficult to guess my assessment of his character and record: inadequate, in all domains.
But how did he win?
I don't believe there are enough troubled, self-hating racist misogynists out there to have elected Donald Trump to the Presidency all on their lonesome. I do believe there are enough angry people - many of whom are older, whiter, maler - out there that voted purely from their gut on this one. And I think that is what connects the anti-establishment, older rural, whiter, maler, un-educated people to each other. This is the Trump Coalition.Read More
November is among the coziest months because you feel excited about creating warmth in your life, but the sun still shines a little bit and the snow is novel. Unlike March where the snow has way outstayed its welcome and you can feel the faint sun giggling at you from its tropical vacation. F@#k you, March sun.
Inside: crushes, soups, books and quotes.Read More
Go into yourself and test the deeps in which your life takes rise; at its source you will find the answer to the question whether you must create. Accept it, just as it sounds, without inquiring into it. Perhaps it will turn out that you are called to be an artist. Then take that destiny upon yourself and bear it, its burden and its greatness, without ever asking what recompense might come from outside.
Rainer Maria RilkeRead More
We reached peak Trump Misogyny this week. Nausea. Anger. Fatigue thinking about how many women have to protect themselves every day against this shit. Some stellar responses around the web this week, and I implore you to hear these roars.Read More
It is exhausting to think of every part of life as a competition against yourself. So I don't. I do my best and sometimes that is better than before and sometimes it isn't. It's all ok. This way of being is compatible with being interested in new personal bests, but it demands a shame-free approach to goal setting...and goal smashing.
With that I've launched a small shop devoted to the idea of Doing My Best featuring tees, tanks, totes, posters and mugs. I hope you enjoy.Read More
So why do I think there is a role for analytic calorie tracking when I just said that calorie restriction fails almost 100% of the time?
Because continuing to remind oneself that food is food by virtue of its unique macronutrient composition and caloric value is helpful in remembering that food is not love. Food is not extra time before a deadline. Food is not stress relief. Food does not fix bad relationships. Food does not fix your crappy job.
Food is food and your body needs a certain amount every day. Beyond that, eating is something else: culture, community, numbing, loving, nurturing, staying awake at night to treat people in the emergency room, surviving a natural disaster or just a tonic for mediocrity.
It is ok to remind each other of this without falling in line with the disastrous cult of personal responsibility from which fatphobia and fat-shaming emerged. I think I can be body positive and also calorically-aware. I don't see those as contradictory things which is why I am ok with the idea of a daily calorie bank as long as my sense of self-worth is independent of said bank.Read More
We have an anthem for making great things, a stone fruit cake, and the trouncing of the self-help industry in a few lines.
Also, people are very divided over the serious matter of washing legs.Read More
These brands are all Canadian, except Farmacy which is based in Vermont which is basically Canada, and will be Canada if Trump gets elected in November.
They are all affordable and usually cheaper than synthetic counterparts.
They are easy enough to find.
They smell nice.
They are full of nice things.
I like clean sundries, and I cannot lie.Read More
Sunday listens is a little riff on Sunday reads because I am really into this Junior Classics audiobook right now on The Great Men and Women in the History of Medicine.
On my first day of medical school, the Dean addressed all 203 of us by calling us "the cream of the cream of the cream of the crop." Of over 4000 applicants, we were the lucky minority to gain a seat in a strong class of future doctors.
I have always been critical of this approach to instilling worth into medical students. What we really need to be valued for is our vulnerability, our willingness to be wrong and our resilience in coming back to the table to learn some more the next day.
Hildegard of Bingen shows us why.Read More
This weekend, I was faced with the choice between meusli for 290 calories and a ham and cheese croissant for 490 calories. I was in New York City and I needed some breakfast at a deli.
My gut wanted something cheesy and savoury and carby. My brain told me that a 500 calorie breakfast makes it hard to meet an overall calorie target of 1700 per day, which is what someone of my height and activity level needs to eat in order to lose weight. The croissant meal is tricky with respect to the target because, in addition to the croissant, I also got a latte and a banana for fibre. Bam. 750 calories before 9am.
So I got the meusli. Lesson 1: Calorie counts changed my mind.
It was really, really delicious but it in no way hit the spot of my craving for savoury/carby/cheesy. This didn't matter, I totally forgot about the craving the moment we hit the pavement and headed to the Yankees game. Lesson 2: Cravings are temporary.Read More
I am on call this weekend, trying my darndest to manage disease. This is different than preventing disease and the gap between the two is an infuriating part of my job. My province, Ontario, is making inroads by attempting to put the social determinants of health - income, housing, violence, gender - in the job descriptions of family doctors (holla!) but we have a way to go.
The first two this Sunday are on vaccines and primary care reform. Before you yawn, take a gander and these views might peak your curiosity.Read More