Tuesday, March 24, 2009

better lay off the sake

Brooks PJ, Enoch M-A, Goldman D, Li T-K, Yokoyama A (2009) The Alcohol Flushing Response: An Unrecognized Risk Factor for Esophageal Cancer from Alcohol Consumption. PLoS Med 6(3): e1000050. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000050

I never thought I'd see the term "Asian glow" used in a scientific publication. (I always used to call it "Asian heat.")

Anyway, this is pretty important stuff: turning pink when you drink not only means you look silly at parties, but it may also mean you have an increased risk of contracting esophageal cancer. This hasn't gotten the play in the media that it might have if it were something that applied particularly to people of African or European ancestry, so I thought I'd do my tiny part to get the word out there.

I've never been much of a drinker, for precisely this reason. Well, not because I was worried about getting esophageal cancer, but because girls don't look very cute when flushed bright red from head to toe, and when one is at a party one is often concerned with looking cute. I am glad to now have a medical justification for not being able to knock them back like some of my friends can.

You have been warned.

Friday, March 13, 2009


I was trying to get a photo of the freckle on Solo's nose, because I love to kiss it, but the best shot turned out to be the one where I focused on his eye instead. Of course.

Nikon D300, 17-55/2.8 Nikkor lens

Friday, March 6, 2009

slightly notorious

My friend April Nowell (University of Victoria) and I recently published a critique of Kohn's and Mithen's "sexy handaxe theory" (short version: it is untestable and therefore not scientific) in PaleoAnthropology (February 2009). And this is very cool, and also very cool is that the paper was mentioned in the Random Samples section of Science on February 27 (volume 323, issue 5918, p. 1151). I guess this makes me slightly scientifically notorious, at least for the next five minutes or so.

I have recently discovered that I am also slightly notorious in the context of my avocation as a crazy dog lady. A haiku that I wrote several years ago for a BaggageAgility (an email list for people doing agility with rescued dogs) contest called "Ode to a Pre-Owned Dog" appears in a bunch of seemingly random hits should one choose to Google my name, something that I do occasionally because I am human. I am no poet, much less a haiku writer, but I am glad that people like it. I think it was written for a T-shirt contest or something, but I never got a T-shirt so I guess I didn't win.

Ode to a Pre-Owned Dog, by Melanie Lee Chang
How can it be that
Someone else didn't want you?
What an idiot.

Have a nice weekend, everyone.