As an explanation for those of you outside Germany, or outside Europe, the occasion for the current Episode is the latest EHEC alarm in Germany. You can search the Web and the press for more details. In the meanwhile, the “culprit” for the particular aggressive EHEC type responsible for the latest deaths seems to have been found. It is supposed to be a local german sprout coming from a particular farm, apparently an organic farm. And I expect that someone out there will use the chance to manipulate the opinion regarding green and organic stuff… Oh dear! However, the root cause of it all is still missing. Why is EHEC being found in vegetables when it is rather supposed to be associated to ruminants? Are the reasons correlated with hygienic faults in the farms? Or with water contamination due to the concentrated livestock breeding activity in the area? Or with something else? Will we ever find out, or will the press stop reporting, now that the most aggressive sprout has been found and no more scandal can be made, leaving us without scientific answers?
I just read that, in addition to the less aggressive type found in spanish cucumbers, somewhere in Bayern another EHEC type was found in vegetables… Maybe they are not as dangerous as the current killers, but they are an indication that something is quite wrong…
What the heck is EHEC looking for in vegetables at all?
We people don’t love all kind of animals in the same way. Some hate spiders, love puppies, fear cats, snakes or rats… Everyone I know, including myself, find cockroaches disgusting, even though they are quite brilliant from an evolutionary perspective.
I was surprised when I heard from some scandinavian friends some years ago that seals can be a plague. I saw seals as very cute and funny animals who did not hurt anyone. I guess bedouins have a different relationship with scorpions than New Yorkers would have.
I bet we will soon start having new views about storks around Heidelberg, now that we see them quite often around, after so many years missing them and appreciating them because of their pure rarity.
I just remembered some passages in the book State of Fear by Michael Crichton referring to our not always knowing what we are doing when we define environmental protection policies… His point was valid: We adore some animals and hate others. This probably influences our animal protection policy in some way.
We people, including scientists, politicians, administrators, can never see things fully objectively. Whenever we issue a law to protect a particular species, I am not sure if we do always the right thing, but I am also human and enjoy the beauty of storks, herons and eagles around Heidelberg, while I tend to despise poor, vulgar pigeons.
Went to an Odenwald KrautWoodstock last Saturday: The great Finkenbach Festival 2014, with a tradition of more than 30 years, and only 30 km from Heidelberg. Thanks to J.B. for the spontaneous proposal!
Beautiful vision, excellent music, strange instruments and interesting sounds, wonderful location, minimalistic and effective organization, no advertisements, full local support, no ATMs, no credit cards, slow motion, old hippie vans (it seems they still get spare parts, like it should be everywhere), and the big passion, dedication and performance of a seemingly forever-young-in-their-hearts Guru Guru band.
The stage was hand-made, the concert area was muddy, it rained half of the time and it was pretty cold. The tents, the shopping stands and half of the people’s outfits were taken out of a time machine…
"Breaking the silence of an ancient pond, a frog jumped into water, a deep resonance”
This is one of the many English translations of the beautiful Frog Haiku by Matsuo Bashô’s, written 350 years ago, and still reminding us to be present and alert, now and forever.
I heard this exact version of the Haiku for the first time in one on my English classes at school, and I never forgot the words, the images behind the words, the magical frog, and the sound of the deep silence.
I am not a Zen Master like the frog. I only wrote the “delicate” poem for the Devil above, and though I keep forgetting the here and now all the time, slowly but constantly I am getting better at gaining awareness that I am regularly ignoring the present in order to dive into my pond of dreams and analytical thoughts… Now I am here, slowly typing these words, enjoying the fresh air coming in through the window after a very hot summer week, trying to decrypt the signs of the birds, which seem to be denying the forecasted storm…
I have all the time in the universe. I am one of the limitless, boundless quantum fluctuations of the universe.
I will not comment on this episode… which is actually a paradox… pretty much like the one with the cretans and the liars by Epimenides, who happened to have something to say about moderation in life, by the way… and herewith I just blew up my own rendering of the famous paradox…