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Knowing when to eat is important, but there are no bad times. One of the most obese people I have known personally was our family Kosher (traditional Jewish) butcher back on the east coast.  He said his weight was immeasurable on a normal scale; I didn’t know then that I would become that way later.  He was the kind of guy who was so heavy he was in such pain whenever he got up from a chair to serve a customer, he invoked God in rapidly recited Hebrew.

He said he ate very reasonable “balanced” (which is not what obese people need) meals during the day, but every night he got “crazy hungry” and “snacked” on everything imaginable, mostly sweets, from the minute he finished after-work dinner until his late bedtime, while in front of the television. He said his doctor was irate and told him to stop eating at night because eating in the evening and before bed made people fat and sick. Read more on Meats or Sweets For Weight Loss…

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“I don’t like other women.  They gossip.  I hate gossip.  I think they should all go pound sand.” No, it is not a patient who said this. It was my (Great-) aunt Etta, who wore her hair like “Bride of Frankenstein.” She had been militant about her disdain for “gossip,” and certainly wore a bitter expression on her face most of the time.  But she would not tell the little girl I was then any more of her story.

Read more on Gossip Can Drive Some People Crazy…

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Sometimes, in practical everyday life, I get lost or disoriented.  Like in one of the busy discount department stores we frequent.

My husband is always there in the store. Read more on Mapping Out Life…

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I love snails. After the rain in California, the damp earth drives them to the sidewalk. Usually in twos — they move along in parallel, but slowly. They are hermaphrodites. That means that each one has the requisite sex organs to function as both sexes. It must be very hard for them to get together as a couple. First they have to decide which one is going to be which sex that day.

I had a patient once who tenderly explained to me what that situation could be like for humans. Last I heard, I am pleased to report they are a most excellent couple. People really can find happiness. Some people do not know the road until they are already on it.

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My husband will drive me a bit to go see a patient, closer to his home. I may nod off briefly, although I have had enough sleep.  Only to wake up again briskly when he slams on the brakes, which he will a few times, at least. I continue to be shocked by the total lack of empathy drivers have for each other.

Read more on Another Day Of Spreading Kindness…

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The southern California sun is blinding this morning. I really need my shades.

March is not over yet and I see the requisite blonde in a bikini, working on her tan, stretched out near the swimming pool.

The radio is barely audible; something about how we are all becoming heartless bureaucrats. Read more on Getting Some Rays…

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There is something very funny going on with substance abuse.  There is less of it among teens. Less since — it has been suggested — teenagers are increasingly occupied by the amusing complexities of cell phones. Read more on Teens Favor Phones Over Drugs?​…

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They call it pareidolia. It is all right if you never heard of it — you have probably experienced it. We don’t just love stories.  Our brain seems to need them.  We take what is inanimate and give it an identity, a spirit, a character, a story. In 1944 a couple of psychological researchers at Smith college showed an unimaginatively dull and insipid movie of black triangles and lines and such moving about to 34 “subjects,” probably unpaid Smith students (who may also have been emotionally or even sexually frustrated) when all but one of them described this 2 1/2 minute movie with amazing “humanity.”  They saw scenarios like two male triangles keeping a female circle prisoner. Read more on Seeing Virgin Mary or Christ In Stains…

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I loved all of the French cathedrals, although I lived in Amiens and visited that one most frequently.  DISCLOSURE: I’m Jewish, not Catholic.

Read more on ​Drawing Inspiration From The Great Cathedrals…

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I remember my French apartment, next to the market-place in Amiens, a small town a hundred miles north of Paris. A woman and her husband ran one of the larger produce booths, just a few steps from my window.   She was one of those diminutive nut-brown Frenchwomen — not as pale as most of us were in the frozen north.  She told me that near the Mediterranean, where she came from, I would be called “white as an aspirin tablet.” And when I visited there briefly, that is exactly what they called me. Read more on The Pleasure Of The Table…

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