Three hours later…

Just checked my email again. This guy is a professor.

I received two baby rabbits as a present in September of this year, they are now adult size. Unfortunately my wife and I cannot keep them any more because of house space. I have been asking around for a good home for them, but I have not found one yet. I do not want to send them to animal shelter or pet stores. Is there any way that you guys would help in order to find them a good and caring home? I live in Kokomo, IN and I would not mind driving them to Indy if necessary. I have a big cage and a large bag of food as well as some toys and cleaning stuff. I do not know if they are two boys or two girls or a boy or a girl, they are very happy together and bond extremely well.

I can’t wait for the girl to drop a litter.
Sigh.

Pardon me while I put on my reality hat

In my email today:

I have a 5-year old female Dwarf rabbit. Is there a rabbit rescue group in Indiana? I am moving from a house to an apartment, and I can’t take her with me. She is such a sweetheart, and she deserves a good home. Can you help me?

I know that there are circumstances which may require rehoming a pet. But 95% of these notes really mean:

I have a 5-year old female Dwarf rabbit. I didn’t do any research when I bought it at the pet store and thought it would be dead by now. Also, it won’t let my daughter hold it, which I would have known had I bothered to learn anything about rabbits in the first place. It pees everywhere and humps our legs because I didn’t want to spend the money to have it altered, so it’s not a very good pet. And I’ve seen some blood lately and that’s probably also because I didn’t get her spayed so she has uterine cancer now. I really think someone else should take responsibility for me, even though I am an adult and ought to know that pets are not merchandise and need a commitment for life. It’s ok if my kids learn from me that pets are disposable when they’re inconvenient, because when they are adults they can always send their mistakes to a shelter too.

I will of course reply nicely and provide all the same information on rehoming a rabbit that I provide to the other people who send me these emails, with helpful tips like “don’t advertise free to good home because she’ll end up as snake food or dog bait.” But seriously, how hard is it to find an apartment that allows pets? Guess what: I also don’t believe the excuses about allergies, that divorce means the pets have to go, or that it’s reasonable to shirk responsibility because you got a puppy instead, the kids got tired of it, you are too busy now, or that she’d be happier with someone else. There aren’t a lot of people who want a five year old rabbit. If she’s lucky, she’ll find that person and bunny can live the next five years with them. Or she’ll face the needle at the Humane Society.

Playing in the yard

Having a few days off, I finally spent the time to learn how to get video off my camera. Apparently I had missed the software in the box! Works much better now that the computer knows what to do.

So I posted my first YouTube video. This is Casper playing in the yard earlier this year. It’s also proof that she does look and act happy once in awhile. Most people who meet my shy pup must wonder if I am mean to her! Nothing fabulous about the video, but I’m glad I finally got around to it. And Casper is cute. 🙂

Next: figure out how to compress the video of Casper and Walt playing so it will fit on YouTube, and figure out how to get pictures and video off my supposedly fancy phone!

The neverending battle: office temp

I think I just overheard someone talking about me. “She can always put more clothes on. I can’t take mine off.”

Yes, it was me. I turned off the air conditioning. It’s forty degrees outside and I doubt our doublewide is well-insulated. I’m already wearing a heavy sweater, gloves, and a fleece blanket at my desk. Oh, and I saw snow flurries this morning. It’s not like I turned on the heat, geez.

Exhibit A: Study on office temperature and productivity

At 66 degrees Fahrenheit (18.8 degrees Celsius) workers typed 54 percent of the time and with a 25 percent error rate. When the temperature was raised to 77 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius), the workers were typing 100 percent of the time and with a paltry 10 percent error rate.

World Diabetes Day

wdd_logo_2007_en_4.gif
Today is World Diabetes Day. I make insulin and have been proud of my job for the five years I’ve been doing it.

When I was a child, I remember visiting Aunt Annie just a couple of times. I remember she was very fat and “they” said she had diabetes, though I didn’t know what it was.

Then I worked at a church camp in my teens. For a week or two each summer, the campers were all diabetics, rather than the usual congregational crowd. That was when we would sneak glucose tabs as snacks. Two of my fellow camp staffers were diabetic, including one of my best friends, Carlos.

Diabetes hasn’t really touched my life so personally lately, though some of my coworkers are diabetic. But every day I have my hand in the process; I worked in a lab here for several years, testing insulin, and now I support that lab in an office role. I’m glad I don’t need insulin but also glad that we can provide it for lots of people and that my company is involved in efforts like World Diabetes Day.

From the International Diabetes Federation:

The global diabetes epidemic has devastating human, social and economic effects. The largest costs of diabetes worldwide are its devastating effects on families and national economies.

Impact on families and people with diabetes

Diabetes is expected to cause 3.8 million deaths worldwide in 2007, about 6% of total global mortality, about the same as HIV/AIDS. Using World Health Organization (WHO) figures on years of life lost per person dying of diabetes, this translates into more than 25 million years of life lost each year.

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) estimates that the equivalent of an additional 23 million years of life are lost to the disability and to reduced quality of life caused by the preventable complications of diabetes.

People living with diabetes and their families feel the impact of diabetes most directly. They feel the often crushing expenses of diabetes treatments as costs are not subsidized, and family income is frequently reduced when diabetes interferes with work.

It is often the case that caring for diabetes steals valuable time from education, paid work and leisure. In many countries, individuals and families fear and experience the disability, reduced quality of life, and the lost years of life that untreated diabetes brings.

People with diabetes face the near certainty, in many countries the stark reality, of premature death.
Type 1 diabetes is particularly costly in terms of mortality in poor countries, where many children die because access to life-saving insulin is not subsidized by governments (who instead tax it heavily), and is often not available at any price.
Studies recently carried out in Zambia, Mali and Mozambique highlight a stark reality: a person requiring insulin for survival in Zambia will live an average of 11 years; a person in Mali can expect to live for 30 months; in Mozambique a person requiring insulin will be dead within 12 months.
In the poorest countries, people with diabetes and their families bear almost the entire cost of whatever medical care they can afford.
In Latin America, families pay 40-60% of diabetes care costs out of their own pockets.
In India, for example, the poorest people with diabetes spend an average of 25% of their income on private care. Most of this money is used to stay alive by avoiding fatally high blood sugar levels.

Americans take for granted access to insulin; we also eat McDonald’s and sit on the couch and cause our own diabetic demise. Just think if you lived in a place that didn’t have insulin, syringes, or glucose testing available to you.

You can sponsor a child with diabetes to provide access to life-saving medicine and supplies at www.lifeforachild.org.

Sorry, hairy mom searchers

I always find it interesting to look at which Google queries found my site.

# % Query Position
1 19% abx definition 7
2 11% animal testing 24
3 9% girl with eight limbs 19
4 7% dexter 5
5 6% stop animal testing 3
6 6% amy plumbing 7
7 5% dancing carrot 2
8 5% casper 61
9 4% dental dam 18
10 3% standard dachshund 5
11 3% restaurant rant 6
12 3% pizza tyme 7
13 2% petsrescue 6
14 2% fridge friday 9
15 2% ovarian cyst 24
16 2% head sculpture 28
17 2% ovarian cysts 29
18 2% oral syringe 41
19 2% kids on christmas morning 159
20 2% christmas present outline 177

This is better than last week when “gangsta hat” and “hairy mom” were on the list! Other gems have been “crazy glow neck glow,” “something you wear starting with the letter k,” and “berrien springs fish camera.”