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Science of Mom has a great story up about a study on early exposure to peanut. For infants who tested negative for peanut sensitivity, researches found an 86% reduction in peanut allergy at age 5 for those who started getting peanut exposure regularly at < 1 year vs those who had their exposure totally restricted. Crazy awesome result.

Our doctor encouraged us to expose the wee one early and often to just about everything other than honey. For anything that made us nervous, she said with a shrug, just wait to give it to him until right before a scheduled doctor visit. Good luck so far: despite having inherited my crap immune system and attendant eczema, we're food-allergy free as of yet (the eczema has been confirmed to not be allergy-related other than being part and parcel of the allergy/eczema/asthma wonky immune system trinity). Crossing fingers that we keep clear.

On animal allergies he's probably hosed given my genetics, however, and on seasonal allergies, considering both sides of the family tree... the only thing to say is doom doom doom doom doom, doom doom do DOOM, DOOOM doom do-doom, DOOM!

On a side note, I have gotten intensely spoiled our use of Grunt at work. Specifically, the combination of watch and a content server which mean that I don't have to actually refresh a page to see my changes take effect. Who knew that reloading a tab was so onerous? But now that I've not had to do it for weeks... coming home and working on my own stuff, and, GOD FORBID, having to actually refresh pages manually, the horror, to see changes feels enragingly primitive.



Watched an excellent Nova about Petra last night. I mean, almost all Novas are excellent, but this one was particularly good, of the sort where we were super tired, and intended to only watch about 10-15 minutes before postponing to another night... only to watch the entire thing and wish there were some left.

But man, it is outright impossible for me to see footage of The Treasury, particularly with the camera sliding out of the Siq, and not have my brain be immediately and completely filled with Indiana Jones. It's really distracting.

I'm also reminded of how offended I still am that Ashish hasn't seen the Indiana Jones movies, because seeing some of the second one in Spanish class does not count, boyo. I think we should arrange some viewing some Fridays coming up...



Man, I spent too much of the last couple weeks slogging through a couple not-so-good books. They weren't terrible (I had to go back to last year's list to remind myself about some books I actively disliked), and the basic ideas were interesting... but nope nope nope, the characters are just too wretched, and I'm not bothering to read the third in the series. Started reading Roadside Picnic for this month's bookclub, and it's a breath of fresh, unstinky, delightful air. Except then I start coughing on all the smoking the characters are doing. So much smoking. A lot of the rest of the story feels pretty timeless, but that tic really places the author, culturally speaking, several decades back. I was entirely unsurprised to find it was written in the 70s.

*cough cough cough*



This China Web Trends 2015 article in Smashing Magazine was a bit more informative than I really feel like I wanted (tl;d[id]r), but hanging in there was worth it for the interesting bit about fonts. Also, this quote made me giggle:

So, until recently, it looked like dynamic logographic interfaces would be left dejectedly kicking cans around the backyard as Germanic language-based designs frolicked around in the sprinklers.

I've finally got quotes looking the way I want, thanks, Tuts!



The set of books that I'm reading now (Sean McMullen's Greatwinter, which I can't really recommend in general) was not initially noticeably written by a non-American. The author generally avoids Australian slang in favor of his own made-up jargon; the world in general is a few thousand years ahead of us and accordingly adjusted its cultural references.

Partway through the second book, however, I had to stop, put it down, and laugh. It largely takes place in an area called "Mounthaven," a strip of the was-the-US centered around the Rocky Mountains, you see, and suddenly he referenced "the regional capital, Vernal."

Clearly, McMullen opened up a map of the area, saw that Vernal was marked as a county seat near where he wanted stuff to happen, chose it and went on his writing way. But I have been to Vernal, Utah, you see, and, while not the podunkest of podunk towns, it is so high up there on the podunk scale that the thought that a couple thousand years from now it'd be a capital was just too much for me to take.

I guess any writer, even an American, not familiar with the West might make the same odd choice, but still, that just blared this was written by a foreigner right in my face. Heh.

Also, Vernal, I'm still judging you for that ridiculous experience trying to get a meal. But hey, it was a trip long enough ago that the pictures are in the gallery (someday, I'll get the last 7 years of pictures sorted... someday), so let's look at some dinosaurs:

Holy cow, Jeff looks approximately 12 during that trip. (sekrit-not-sekrit: he's still a bebe-face underneath the chops <3)

And reading about Vernal's post office is pretty great:

And he said, "Some S.O.B. is trying to ship a whole building through the U.S. mail," except it was a little more colorful than that.
In a clarification of the rule, the postal administration indicated that "it is not the intent of the United States Postal Service that buildings be shipped through the mail."



It beyond baffles me that anyone would choose to not vaccinate their kids. I remember in a pre-baby class we attended, the instructor one day wrote up a series of "contentious topics" and encouraged us all to contribute our thoughts on related pros and cons. Jeff and I stared at the piece of butcher paper headed "vaccination," stared at each other, stared back at the paper, stared at each other, and stared around at the other parents-to-be in the class. I finally scrawled three words up in the pro column, resisting the urge to fill the rest of the paper with a giant rendition of DUH:

Herd immunity works.

Here, go read up on herd immunity and why 100% vaccination compliance should be the goal. I read an article tonight that talked about how the author's grandmother lost her 2nd son to measles complications when he was 6 and almost started crying. That people lost children to diseases like that in the past is bad enough; that it's a possibility at all in this day and age is heartbreaking.

I was blown away that when I learned this last year that chicken pox vaccination is now a thing. When my tiny son cried after getting stuck, I hugged him close, kissed and rocked him, and told him about how I'm so grateful that he won't have to experience that obnoxiousness as a child, and I'm so glad that his risk of getting shingles later in life is far lower.

Science works, bitches. There are people who legitimately cannot get vaccinated for reasons such as weakened immune systems, and babies are vulnerable while waiting to be old enough to be vaccinated. We all owe it to them to make sure that everyone who can be vaccinated is.



Jury service concluded last Thursday, thankfully. I learned a lot about maritime law as relates to "injuries in service of the vessel," the internal structure of the human shoulder, and how juried trials work. Those parts were largely interesting. The rest, having to do with the interminable he-said-she-said BS of both sides of a civil suit, was largely enraging. And I can't figure out anything else to say without losing the plot of being at all nice to either side, so I won't. Grump.



Jury duty continues, although the end is now in sight. While I'm taking my civic duty seriously, I also seriously cannot wait to return to my real job. I've been working during the epic lunch breaks that it turns out are required (they boot you out and lock the courtroom for 1.5 hours), as well as during mandatory breaks, for sure, and my team's been totally supportive, but I've been out now for nearly 2 weeks and we all wish it was over.

Spent some time tonight creating a master Bookwatch page after trying multiple times to look at one of the lists directly and being sad about them being unstyled. That project naturally led to figuring out some more Javascript, because really, once that seal was broken, there was no going back. Not that I will JS All The Things, mind you, but interactivity that I've had in the back of my mind for years is finally going to near the light of day.

Work's been a very good motivator in that regard; spending my days with 3 JS devs is catching. I may have skillsets that they don't, and I'm unlikely to ever decide that I want to really focus on JS, for several reasons... but I can't have myself being totally lame.

Time for bed so that I can go jury tomorrow!

~ the wheels of justice go round and round / oh so slow / round and round ~