Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Divas and Kidney Stones

As I got some positive feedback regarding my blog about health tips, I thought I'd pass on more interesting and EASY tips. Consider yourself fortunate if you don't like to wade through a lot of health articles that will make you feel doomed and raise your blood pressure. You can read my blog and at least get some info. Better than sitting there playing Tetris eating Krispy Kremes. Hmm...or is it?

Today I read Dr. Mercola's article on the dreaded Kidney Stone. Click that link to read the article or if you prefer, you can go the page and see/hear him talk about it. Although you really should read it yourself for details, for the lazy readers, here's the short story: drink more water, less soda/beer, more exercise, less soy/oxalate foods (sorry, you'll have to look those up). Following the article, readers have submitted some helpful suggestions. Believe me, if you ever get a kidney stone, you'll be scouring the earth and internet for helpful suggestions. Click the link or someday you may be screaming in pain "Why oh why didn't I click the liiiiinnnnk?!"

I would also like to recommend a few invaluable supplements: tumeric + green tea (take them together); resveratrol; ubiquinol. There are a lot of other supplements that most of us should take, but I think those are the "must takes", especially the latter two for us midlifers. I recommend ordering online from Swanson Health.

Enough about health, I want to discuss divas. I've been reading Madonna's biography for lack of a better read. It's strange, I recently borrowed books by two of my favorite authors: Dean Koontz and Dick Francis, both of whom I've been reading for years. Why is it I couldn't get past two chapters of either books??? Is it my imagination or has their writing morphed into prose so overly descriptive that my reading time doubled? Dick Francis' sentences seem to be anti-sentences, as if he were writing backwards. Meanwhile, Dean Koontz feels he has to over-describe every single scene, every single character, every single step each character takes. Please, I haven't got all day!

Again, TGFI (Thank Gore For Internet)! I just now opened Amazon.com in another window and looked up Dick Francis' "Second Wind" and I quote the consensus of 81 "reviewers":

"I am a die hard Dick Francis fan - I have reread most of his books several times. This one I won't. It's disjointed and extremely slow to get to the plot ( which is so convoluted that even at the end it didn't make sense). I had to force myself to finish it in the hopes that it would get better, it didn't. There was very little character development, far too many of the pages were taken up by descriptions ..."

Hallelujah! I wasn't imagining things! And so what about the Dean Koontz "One Door Away From Heaven:??? Just 3 1/2 stars, which is low compared to his other books! And here's the favored critique:

"The plot of "One Door" is so bloated and rambling that at times I found myself skipping ahead in frustration. A good editor would have ripped away entire chapters of meandering description..."

YES!! I feel totally vindicated now. I have to admit I felt puzzled and guilty for giving up on these two favorites after two chapters. I've never done that and was worried that in my older age I was losing my reading skills. It also occurred to me that I was becoming overly critical and wanting fast-moving reads because let's face it, time goes faster as we get older (I explained this phenomena in an earlier blog).

So back to Divas! Jordan had picked out the Madonna biography at the library, but she doesn't read books. I've always had a love-hate thing for Madonna so did not care to read about her. But for lack of anything better, I flipped through the book and ended up reading it. Unlike Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, or Barbra Streisand, Madonna has no easily identifiable talent, so I'm sure many people like myself are attracted to her yet dislike her for seeming to be undeserving of her success. Reading this biography validated my ambivalence: while I'm now able to understand she is deserving of her success, I'm still not a fan. Nothing's changed since the time I watched her for the first time in the 80's in her "Burning Up" video. I recognized that she was going to be "big", but at the same time didn't like her.

Meanwhile, this morning I have an important mission: securing two seats to a rare Mariah Carey "intimate" performance in Las Vegas. Yes, intimate...meaning "only" 2500 seats in the theater. I tried to tell Jordan that we could buy 30 CD's instead of 2 tickets, but nope, no deal. I remember also my first sight of Mariah Carey in her "Vision of Love" video. Another easy call that this singer was special. I worry somewhat about Mariah, though. She seems to be struggling with the fact that she's getting older, but it just goes to show that even the most successful have their insecurities.

How on earth we "middling" folk make it through each day is truly a miracle! Could it have something to do with tumeric, resveratrol, and ubiquinol?

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