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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Unidentified Genetically Modified (GM) Salmon Being Sold in Canada │ Great News About Walnuts and Our Gut Microbiome

Perhaps after the long drive back from Kelowna last afternoon, Mark was feeling deprived of his usual beer-drinking (he and his girlfriend Bev had made the trip to Keremeos on Saturday to surprise her father, who was celebrating a birthday).

He showed up here at home right around 7:00 p.m. I put on an episode of America's Got Talent that played while he sat at the dining table reading newspapers and having a supper, and he finally joined me in the living room near the programme's end.

Next I tuned in an episode of the British military series Our Girl, and then one of Zoo. He seemed to watch both of those.

It wasn't until I switched over to a news station that he finally passed out. Had I known that he was going to sit up until maybe 11:30 p.m., I would probably have tuned in yet one further programme. I only tuned in the news so that he could basically taper off with T.V. viewing and get on up to his bedroom ─ his clock-radio would be summoning him at 4:30 a.m. to rise for work.

But even when he regained consciousness and looked at the time well after 11:00 p.m., he seemed still to watch T.V. and have a little more drink.

I finally announced to him that I was leaving him with 'the tube,' and I went on upstairs. I was in bed before he was. I inserted earplugs, so I never heard when he may have gone to his own room.

I slept rather well, I guess. It was 6:09 a.m. when I rose this morning, and I wasn't feeling especially unwell like I so often seem to feel in the mornings.

I was a little surprised to find myself home alone ─ or at least I thought I was.

My youngest stepson Poté has normally been having Tuesdays off work, but he wasn't here. However, he wasn't here last night when I went to bed, so it's likely he never came home.

When I was making my morning's hot beverage, I saw that the door to his older brother Tho's sleeping area was open, so I just presumed that Tho had gone to work. He keeps it closed when he is in bed.

As I was boiling my beverage's hot water, through the small kitchen window I happened to notice some activity in the backyard ─ a pair of skunks were playfully romping with each other at around 6:30 a.m.

Quickly thinking that I might be able to record some of their antics, I hustled upstairs for my camera, and also picked up my iPhone 5.

Then carefully placing the camera between some horizontal slats in the window blinds, I zoomed in and started recording ─ I probably should not have zoomed, for the camera does not always record well in that mode.

Also, the window blinds were being reflected in the window glass, and this was also interfering with the camera's focus, perhaps distracting it.

As well, it was indeed early. And the sky still somewhat smoky grey due to forest fires elsewhere here in B.C.

The first half of the following video is recorded with the camera; the second half with my iPhone, and without zooming.

Note that where the iPhone was concerned, I had stupidly recorded in portrait mode. I did not want to upload that, so I searched about until I eventually found an online programme that allowed me to crop the video, retaining just the central area. The result was almost like I had zoomed after all:

I do regret zooming throughout the first half of the video ─ it ruined the video quality.

After that bit of excitement, I got to work adding content to the post I am working on at my hosted website Amatsu Okiya. I found it necessary to keep reminding myself of something ─ namely, that I wanted to make the four-mile round-trip beer hike to the government liquor store at 108th Avenue & King George Boulevard here in Whalley.

For some reason, my thoughts kept reverting to the mindset I would have on a regular day ─ such as the need to have some exercise out in the backyard tool shed.

It was around 9:00 a.m. when I heard noises from the kitchen, and I then understood that my eldest stepson Tho had not gone to work. I guess it wasn't enough that we just finished a three-day long weekend ─ he needed four days.

The doorway leading to his sleeping area also leads to the laundry facilities, so maybe Mark had opened it for some reason this morning. Or maybe Tho himself left it open because he knew that his younger brother Poté was not going to be home last night and prove a potential disturbance.

Well, with Tho home, I had all the more incentive to be making that hike ─ I would not be losing out on valued time here at home alone. 

Nevertheless, I took my time getting myself galvanized. It was exactly 11:01 a.m. when I had slipped out the front door so as not to alert Tho ─ he doesn't need to know my 'comings and goings.' 

Besides, anytime I do let him know that I am going somewhere so that he will have the sense to lock the door should he also go out, he seems to just go ahead and lock the door anyway, forcing me to use my key to get back in when I return.

It's as if he is actually afraid to be in the house by himself ─ the big, muscular 22-year-old!

With rather smoke-greyed skies, it was a very warm and muggy hike. My head was already beginning to perspire by the time I got to the liquor store; but lugging home the two dozen cans of beer I bought, my head was soon streaming perspiration.

I was back into the house at 12:28 p.m. ─ it had not quite taken me 1½ hours.

That was to be my exercise for the day, as well as my sunning session.

By the way, yesterday was the third consecutive day in which the only time I ate anything was during my early afternoon meal. I made my hike today under the power of a couple of my hot beverages alone.

Around mid-afternoon, while Tho was in the bathroom showering, I heard the doorbell ring. I don't normally answer the door. I have no friends to come calling, and the only other 'visitors' would be people I have no interest in dealing with. Too often, it's donation-seekers, or others trying to sell something.

So screw that. I just don't bother with the door, just as I ignore the ringing house phone ─ there's an answering machine for that.

But then came a persistent round of knocking, and soon another ringing of the doorbell.

I eased myself into the living room to try and ascertain who might be without, and then saw a pizza delivery vehicle.

So I answered the door, and the poor guy ─ who had been just about at his wit's end, I guess ─ hopefully proferred the pizzas, thinking I had ordered them.

When he was told that I knew nothing about them, he looked agitated again, and then asked me if the name on the bill was for someone living here.

Well, my eyes are so bad, I couldn't even begin to read the name, so I told him I would have to go and fetch a pair of non-prescription reading glasses. He then volunteered that the name was Tho.

The fellow was South Asian and with a bit of accent, so to be certain I heard him right, I spelled it out to see if we were in accord: T - H - O?

Yes, he affirmed.

Oh, well, then ─ yes, that person is home, but in the bathroom.

So I came to the stairway and called up to him, "Did you order some pizza?"

He had. He sheepishly opened the bathroom door, and ─ wrapped in a towel ─ he came trundling down the stairs, briefly greeting the guy at the door just in passing, as he then hustled on to get some proper clothes and his wallet. 

So that's Tho.

Someone who would order a pizza delivery, and then go and take a shower. A shower, after all, could not possibly await until after the pizza guy had come. 

But it's not my problem. Besides, maybe there'll even be a few pieces available when I feel like some supper this evening. I didn't have the same early afternoon meal that I had the three previous days, so I expect to be hungry enough to eat come the e'en.

There was something else of annoyance for me today ─ the final results of the Hometown Heroes Lottery. My $115 gamble netted absolutely nothing.

I can't afford playing regular lotteries, so I dare these more expensive types of lottery that collectively only come out a few times a year.

Sure, that initial hit to play in any one of them does give pause, but at least these types of lotteries are staggered over the year ─ several months apart so as not to conflict and thereby reduce participation by the purchasing public.

And of course, the odds are always supposed to be much better than they are for the regular smaller-priced lotteries that run once, twice, or maybe even three times a week.

So yeah, it always feels like I've taken a blow anytime I come up with absolutely nothing.

Now here is something else that ought to annoy more people than just me ─ it has just recently been learned that Canada is allowing unidentified genetically modified salmon to be sold!  

Thanks, Liberals!

You can read the August 7 article about this for yourself:


Damned, bloody useless politicians.

Yesterday I listed some references proclaiming just how unbelievably beneficial just a small quantity of walnuts are if included in our diets.

Well, today I thought I was onto yet another report on the glories of walnuts:


I rushed through the article to see if it was worth posting about today. And I did find it valuable, telling of just how unhealthy and useless ─ i.e., they do NOT help anyone lose weight ─ artificial sweeteners are.

But I had been so caught up in the information about just what these artificial sweeteners are doing to consumers, that it was only afterward that it dawned upon me: Wait! Where were walnuts mentioned in the report? 

Well, they weren't ─ not a word.

But at least there was an accurate walnut reference below the article:


This should be exciting news for those of us with an appreciation for probiotics and prebiotics.

I am trying to keep myself supplied with just enough walnuts (packaged as 'halves & pieces') that I may be able to afford at least some each day ─  probably even a quarter of a cup a day might suffice, but I am guessing about that.

The study involved rodents, and I couldn't notice any suggestions that equated walnut dietary quantities for humans. 

And it seems that I shall have to cut things off ─ my wife Jack has shown up from Vancouver at right around 6:00 p.m.

So here to close out with is a journal entry from 41 years ago when I was 26 years old, and living in a basement housekeeping unit in New Westminster.

I was renting in a private home located on Ninth Street, and about two houses up from Third Avenue.
SUNDAY, August 8, 1976

I'd thought I was going to rise at 4:00 a.m. and go track jogging, but the alarm failed and it was 7:00 a.m. when I got up.

I got Jean's letter finished this gloomy morning. The whole day is going to be similar, I guess.

I typed up a letter to dad discussing his suggestion Thursday on our getting together once again.

I was really tired from 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., and may have stolen some shut-eye.

I mixed up my first batch of yogurt this evening; I've only to determine my skill.

Bed about 10:00 p.m.
I would have gone jogging at the New Westminster Secondary School track. I was not any kind of public exhibitionist, so day jogging was out of the question for me.   

I finished composing a letter to my American pen-pal Jean M. Martin (née Black), and also got busy with one to my father Hector. He had suggested that we could live and work as a partnership if he could line up a gig as an apartment caretaker.  

A yogurt-maker I had mail-ordered had arrived (at my mother's home out in Surrey) a day or two earlier. I really don't remember much about it anymore, though.

I probably didn't realize that I was always going to have to keep buying a culture in order to make yogurt ─ I likely thought that the yogurt-maker would somehow naturally ferment the milk.

I would have lost interest if there was not going to be any money-saving reason to be making my own yogurt.
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