Tapped Out

Half of all bottled water is just tap water

According to the Beverage Marketing Association, a trade group, nearly 50% of all bottled water sold in the U.S. is just tap water that's been purified. The regulated standards for bottled water and tap water are actually very similar. The biggest difference is that bottled water is produced specifically for "human consumption."

But with that said, tap water is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ensure that it's safe to drink, and many experts say tap water is actually regulated more tightly than bottled water. There's just no fancy label on your faucet. Plus, tap water typically contains fluoride, which helps maintain strong teeth and prevent tooth decay, and fluoride is often removed from bottled water during the purification process. Mored info here.

It's time to Turn back Time

I am not a fan of "falling back" an hour this weekend (2am on Sunday). I do not like losing an hour of late afternoon daylight to get an extra hour of it in the early morn.

And yes, I know that we are going back to "standard time". I just don't care for it and wish that we would keep daylight savings time all year round. Seems like a good idea to me.

But I know that everyone does not agree with me. Some places in America and, I assume, other parts of the world do not change their clocks in the Spring and Fall.

Another aspect of this practice is that this signifies, to me anyways, the beginning of the nastier part of the year in Kansas City. Not winter yet but there is a chill in the air.

So what do you think? Do you like Daylight Savings?
Or would you prefer that we not turn back time?

Mets Memories

Bill and Bob
I think it was in 1962 or 63 that my older brother Bill first took me to a Mets game. I was 13 or so and really loved taking the Ferry and the Subway to the Polo Grounds in upper Manhattan. But even more I loved being with Bill whether it was a Mets or Yankees game.

These are the things I think about as the NY Mets come to KC this week to play the Royals in the World Series. How I wish my brother, a guy who cheered for his Mets since those early days, was still with us. It would be great fun to talk smack with him about his team and my team. But perhaps Bill will be watching the series from heaven? If he is, I hope that he is not trying to convince God to root for the Mets. ツ

Do the Opposite

Kelli Standish is one of the most inspirational people that I know but have never met - some of you know what that means. Today she shared this on Facebook and she said it was okay to share here.
I am a firm believer in doing opposite things. When a spine surgeon told me I might not be able to travel or even walk again, I went out that night and bought luggage. When a rheumatologist told me my pelvis was almost completely fused by disease, I scheduled a zip lining adventure in the jungles of Costa Rica. When a handyman told me I wasn't capable of dealing with my leaking toilet, I pulled the whole thing out, repaired the break in the line beneath it, and replaced it with a new one.

So last night, when I was at one of my darkest moments in my life, feeling utterly forsaken by God and wishing for death due to all the rejection and emotional pain in my divorce, I decided another opposite thing was in order. Tonight I made myself get dressed up and go to church, and then I reached out to a work acquaintance and asked her if she'd like to get together.

The music and message at church was powerful and uplifting, and my work acquaintance said yes to dinner. We had a fantastic time, eating with our hands, sharing stories, and drinking cup after cup of glorious Ethiopian spiced tea.

So wherever you are in your life, whatever dark thing you're facing, do something opposite. You won't feel like it. You won't have the energy or time or money or bravery or health for it. Do it anyway. Opposite things make room for hope and fresh air and momentum. Opposite things disrupt darkness.
Kelli does not blog much any more but you can find her posts at kellistandish.com.

Naturalism vs Supernaturalism

Love these thoughts (below) offered on this (above) CS Lewis quote by Scott Parnell, a friend of a Facebook friend ...

"It's from "miracles," which is his transcendental argument for the plausibility of the miraculous.
This is in his section refuting Naturalism."

"In his book he takes both the Naturalist and Supernaturalist perspectives and pits them against each other. The naturalist, in his understanding, is one who assumes that everything that exists, exists within a closed system with no perpetual external cause/force--what we would commonly call atheism. In this perspective, reason has to be a byproduct of the evolutionary process, and thus the byproduct of biochemistry of the brain. Thus, thought is simply the meaningless consequence of how atoms line up in our brains.

Lewis' claim is that simply because elements line up in a certain way, does not make something true--it requires an inherent order so as to interpret the biochemistry. The inherent order of "reading the biochemistry" is indicative of a design (not his words, but mine)."

-Scott Parnell is a student at Virginia Theological Seminary

Ten Questions

My Facebook friend Bill reminded me of these questions that James Lipton (pictured) used to ask his quests at the end of each interview of The Actor's Studio. Here they are with my emboldened responses:
  1. What is your favorite word? :: optimizer
  2. What is your least favorite word? :: disability
  3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? :: diversity
  4. What turns you off? :: a closed mind
  5. What is your favorite curse word? :: calvinism ツ
  6. What sound or noise do you love? :: my wife's voice
  7. What sound or noise do you hate? :: passive aggressive silence
  8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? :: chef
  9. What profession would you not like to do? :: acting
  10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? :: Welcome home.
Did you ever watch the show? How would you answer any, or all, of these questions?


This tweet from the governor of Texas yesterday reminded me of the famous "Dewy Defeats Truman" headline.
Made me think about how prone I am to making assumptions based on what I think will happen. A few thoughts.
You must stick to your conviction, but be ready to abandon your assumptions. -Denis Waitley

It's sad that we never get trained to leave assumptions behind. -Sebastian Thrun

Untested assumptions and lazy habits of thought can be shown up, once put in a spotlight of a different hue. -Julian Baggini
And yes. Our Kansas City Royals came back from a 4 run deficit and beat the Houston Astros 9 to 6. ツ

Sports Watching for the Rich

Today's American League playoff game will be broadcast on Fox Sports 1 so anyone who does not have cable TV will be unable to watch the game. It was the same last year. Sad. I remember the days when people could watch their home teams on broadcast TV.
Sporting events on free broadcast TV have given way to big money from cable channels and companies. The big dollars are lining the pockets of execs and players alike. Gone are the good old days. And lest I forget. Go Royals! Beat the Astros and tie the series up.

The Martian | ★★★★★★★★☆☆

Most probably know the storyline - an astronaut gets left behind on Mars when his team loses track of him in a storm and is forced to lift off thinking that he is dead. I found the story to be more of a vehicle than anything. The real deal was the Astronaut Mark Watney (played by Matt Damon) and the way that he dealt with hardship. I loved how Watney showed discipline, humor and creativity as he overcame impossible odds.

The other side of the story dealt with the different ways that the people at NASA and Watney's teammates dealt with the news of his death and then his unexpected survival. In the end their dedication to bring their friend home was a tad inspirational - albeit predictable. I also loved the technology and special effects of the move. I really liked the movie, recommend it to you and, on a scale of ten, give it ★★★★★★★★.

Catch my other mini-reviews by selecting the Movies link in the menu bar above.

When I Walk | ★★★★★★★★★★

Last year Ann and I watched this amazing story of a young man fighting against all odds to share his journey from good health to disability. A few weeks ago this brave young man received an Emmy for his work. Here is a bit of his story.
I love New York. When I was younger, the city was my playground. You could find me on any given weekend catching brunch with a friend at a café, going to an East Village restaurant for dinner, and then hopping the subway, headed to a nightclub in Chelsea. But at age 25, nine years ago, I was told I had multiple sclerosis, and I saw my freedoms slowly vanish. All of a sudden, I found myself using a walker—now, a motorized chair—and planning daily activities with precise schedules and strategies for getting from one place to another, trying to maintain some semblance of the spontaneous city life I loved to live.

I wanted to capture this transformative experience—becoming disabled—in WHEN I WALK because I hadn’t seen it done before, and people need to see how a degenerative disease impacts the lives of those living with it.
Jason DaSilva has my admiration and respect. What he did was so difficult. I recommend it to you. It is [here] at Netflix until October 15. It is an uncomfortable journey but so very inspiring. On a scale of ten, give it ★★★★★★★★★★.