Odds and Ends

Dear Editor

Odds and Ends

“A dangerous strain of bacteria is produced from raising cattle not on their natural diet of grass but on corn, which screws up their digestive tracts. The reason for corn feeding is economic: corn-fed cattle reach slaughter weight in little over a year while grass-fed cattle require four to five years.” (“Cabin Fever” by Tom Fate.)

The responsible media generally keep us well informed but I have a few questions: Why not use the word “former” more often before the name of an official no longer in office? Why play such loud background music that it drowns out the commentator’s voice?

Why call old news “breaking news”? Why call the killing of one or two persons “mass” killings? Do you need to shout at us in order to get our attention? Rapid-fire talking can be mesmerizing.

How much sleep do you get? Dr. Kommanoff of the National Sleep Foundation recommends seven to eight hours for people over 64 and seven to nine hours for ages 18 to 64. About half of us get less than that. The fact that during sleep waste material is removed from the brain, including elements including Alzheimer’s disease, suggests more personal considerations, according to the “Harvard Health Letter” But our needs obviously differ. For example, Thomas Edison required only four hours a night. ( Attrib. lost)

When Mt. Vesuvius erupted in 79 A.D. it buried Pompei under 20 feet of debris. About one-third of the ancient city remains to be excavated, but permission is not easily obtained. Recently a new section began to collapse opening up new parts of Pompei and revealing fascinating new secrets of life in that ancient city. (“Archeology’” Jan.-Feb, 2021)

Recently the remains of the slave ship “Clotilda” were discovered near Mobile, AL. The ship brought over 100 slaves from Africa long after the slave trade had been banned by the U.S. The slaves were quickly distributed and the boat burned. Some slaves established a village called Africatown which still exists today. (Wik)

On March 16 Israeli authorities announced the discovery of new Dead Sea scroll fragments dating back nearly 2’000 years. They should provide a better understanding of Judaism and early Christianity (TIME, Mar29-Apr. 4, 2021)

Bob Hall