Live Through Us at The Burrow


October 2014

Why I’m no longer a scientist

I started this post once already.  I wound up writing a whole journal entry about my college life.  Then I realized that had nothing to do with the topic and had to start over.  Maybe it’ll be right this time Smile.

I graduated from college with a 3.56 in cursu honorum in biochemistry.  I applied to Vanderbilt for a doctorate.  I was turned down.  This really surprised me as I was told, “You’re all pretty much in at this point.  This is just to make sure that none of you are horrible monsters or something.”  Yet another extraction of my self-confidence and willingness to interact with the world.

I moved to Nashville and found a job at Vanderbilt as a research assistant.  I spent a year on that job.  I quickly learned the truth about the scientific community and why I would never be a part of it again.

For one, my post was completely pointless, for scientific research, anyway.  I grew a protein called microsomal epoxide hydrolase.  My job was to crystallize it in order to learn its structure.  By doing this, one can determine more of its function and how to interact with it.  It was extremely boring.

I went all out anyway, attending seminars, making friends, trying my best-which completely sucked, as usual of course.  I learned several things in the first three months.  During my interview to determine that I was an evil monster, I spoke with several scientists there.  I told them of my ideas.  This is normal procedure.  I was laughed out of the building, literally.  Funny that.  During those first three months, two of those ideas were taken up and researched by scientists there.  Apparently I am a horrible, yet funny monster that has ridiculous ideas about science unless utilized by others.

I was given no direction during college or afterwards as to how to actually perform my job and what would be expected of me.  I went to conventions and functions and was thrown into a whirlwind of the unknown.  But I buckled down, working many hours into the night, trying to learn, trying to be the best scientist I could be.

I met a French woman from down the hall that did horrible experiments on mice where they were born completely without skin.  My facial expressions alone showed my feelings.  I was told, “They only live three days.”  I never said a word, they could just tell from my wide eyes filled with horror.  I never said a word about it after that either, for fear of my job.  What was this life saving medicine being studied that required the endless torture of living creatures?  Cosmetics.

I began to search out other researchers.  I studied the work of those working in the pharmaceutical industry, scanned the pamphlets offering money for being a test subject, and spoke with those working on a “cure for cancer”.  I remember in college one professor.  I really liked him, even more now than then.  He taught us how to fudge our numbers in lab to get the results we were supposed to.  I had no idea how accurate his teaching was to the actual scientific community.

In my papers, I was instructed what to write, no matter the truth.  I learned the truth of how scientists get paid.  Let’s say I want to study a protein.  I take that protein and exaggerate its effects on a particular part of the body.  For example, let’s say a protein is produced in the liver.  I tell investors that this protein could be the cure for any or all liver diseases, and they give me money and a time limit to prove it.  Guess who these investors are.  So then, in order to prove my good reputation and get more money, I fudge the figures.  Now, this is not enough to cause the alarm the recent HIV false research did.  That went too far, even for scientists’ standards.  But it is enough to leave out important info such as side effects and actual effectiveness of the medicine.

But that’s not enough.

Now the investors have to make their money.  They have to make it all worthwhile.  So during phase two of the testing, they ignore the facts that the medicine doesn’t work well and has too many side effects.  It only killed 1% (far more than the disease itself), so it’s marketed as a treatment for a disease that kills thousands each year.  The population is too moldable to look up the fact that millions get this disease every year, thereby making the death rate less than half a percent.

See here for the phasing of medical trials.  Allow me to inform you that phase 3 is when your doctor has been given a sample or lobbied into prescribing the new medication.  Congratulations!  You are now a guinea pig, only you don’t get paid.  In fact, you have to pay for it yourself.  Notice “long term effects” is factored in, but only in phase four.

By the end of this year I had learned several things.  1-I would never make the amount of money I was promised by my college advisor ($65k) unless I did some pretty horrible things.  2-The pharmaceutical industry is a scam; the medical industry will soon follow.  3-People live in denial.  The truth is too painful to know, let alone believe.  4-I will always refuse new medication.  5-Scientists hate creationists.  6-The scientific community is flooded with plagiarism.

So now you all know why I have an opinion on scientific articles.  I read few of them; I know they’re mostly garbage.  I understand most of them, but not all.  Science is not limited to meds, but it is dominated by them.  They do “research” after their results are decided.  And they will never allow any information, no matter how true, to prove anything against their religion.

I was offered a stipend to attend Vandy’s post graduate program.  My initial thoughts were to become a college professor, but by then I had found the truth of Messianic Judaism and had to follow God’s path for me, not mine.  I walked away and never regretted it.

Help! I can’t lose any weight!

For those of you trying for a long time to lose weight, I have made a list of the main reasons II , or someone I knew, was unable to.  Please bear in mind that every body is different, and you may want to visit a doctor to rule out anything else.

1. You’re not being honest with yourself.  Now this may seem obvious, but a great deal of people, including myself, live in denial.  You have to actually count all the “little things” that “don’t count” because they do.  Keep a journal with measured food amounts and actual calorie counts.

2. Healthy food has calories too. Your plate may have zero junk food, but all that healthy stuff has calories too.  Sometimes, it even has more than the junk food! o_o!  Yes, that can be true.  You still have to limit your portions.  Sorry, I know it’s not fair.

3.  You have to exercise too.  Unless you really cut the calories, you have to exercise as well.  Exercising burns calories more than just while you’re exercising.  It also raises your metabolism for the rest of the day, or at least a good while afterwards.  When you exercise regularly, you want to exercise.  It feels good.  You also become more active and move about more, therefore burning more calories, albeit slight.  (But hey, every calorie counts, right?)

4.  Don’t exercise so hard. o_o! What?  Yes, it’s true.  I ran for months, finally reaching my goal of 30 minutes non stop running using this program.  But the same routine was getting harder and harder daily.  So, I switched it up.  I started doing step aerobics.  I started losing weight.  Although I already knew that switching it up periodically is definitely recommended as your body eventually gets used to one exercise and stops improving, I had no idea that a lower heart rate is actually conducive to weight lose.  This is called the “fat burning zone” and is often considered a myth now.  It worked for me, so I must be mythical.

For those of you out there who are also mythical, here’s how it works.  Running was simply too hard for my body.  I’d been saying it for years, but…  By doing a nice and fun aerobic activity, your body does better.  You want to be able to talk, but only a few words at a time.  If you can’t talk, you’re going too hard.  If you can talk without trouble, not hard enough.

5.  Don’t eat past a certain hour.  This is difficult for many people due to scheduling.  You want at least 2 hours between your last bite and the moment you slip into bed.  I often have three or four.

6.  You will be hungry.  You’re eating less food.  You’re burning more food.  A true myth about dieting is that you can do it without being hungry.  Bollocks!  Plain carbonated water helps.

I hope this helps at least one person out there.  If so, I’ll feel like I’ve done something beneficial!  Good luck with you’re dieting and remember, you are not alone!

The Sidestep to Texas

Sorry to take so long to get back to this.  This is the last post in my trip to Louisiana series.  The first three posts can be found here, here, and here, (in order).

The reason I took so long to post anything is first there was Rosh Hashana, then Yom Kippur.  After that I had oral surgery before camping out for Sukkot.  It was a very busy month!  But without further ado, I bring you Texas.

Now, to us, TX was the stereotypical TX.  We never imagined swampland.  In fact, we’re followers of graveyardgirl on youtube, and could never understand her whole alligator swamp thing if she lived in TX.  Now we COMPLETELY understand.  We were never as far in as where she is, but enough to see what’s going on.

TX has a really cool welcome station.  The whole thing is sitting on top of a swamp.  You can see below how it sits on pillars.


Of course we had to pose.



I roamed the welcome center, grabbing the usual maps, brochures, and educational items.  I left through the back door to see a man talking about a gator in the swamp below.  This is when Lorene completely lost it.


She called everyone she knew.  “I saw a gator!  I saw a gator!”  She had actually been looking for one the whole trip, and below you can see her in full excite mode when, on our side trip to TX, she finally saw her very own.


The back porch of the welcome center was absolutely amazing.  I don’t remember how far out it actually went, but it was FAR!


Below is a panoramic shot.  I hope you’re able to click on it and enjoy the beauty of the swampland.



Seriously far.



Here is a closeup of spanish moss.  We were real excited about that because we had just learned about it in homeschool.  The variety of flora here was astounding.


You would see just about everyone peering over the railings, trying to find their own fauna.  Below is another gator we found on the opposite end of the platform.



Quite the educational trip!


Another panoramic shot.


A really cool tree stump out in the middle of everything.  To me, trees would rot in constant water, but apparently they don’t.  Amazing!


After all the excitement, crazy Lorene decided to paint her nails while waiting for everyone else to get back.  I could write a post on her and her adventures alone.


After TX, we came back to LA and paused at Lake Charles.


Ironically, they had a gator exhibit where you could go right up to them, practically.  But it appears as though these don’t count as an actual sighting since they’re in captivity.


Aren’t they cute?!!



Below is some tree that we all believed to be a banana tree.  But if you look closely, you’ll see little green things that look like olives.  Anyone know what this is?


Lake Charles.





We had a nice little field trip here.  We observed a fish skeleton…


And took home a crab claw for observation.  We were studying crustaceans at the time in school.


That’s it!  A wonderful journey with many memories!  I hope you all enjoyed the pictures as much as we did and consider going there yourselves sometime.  Happy journeys!

We finally hit Louisiana!

It was a long drive, but we made it to LA on time.  If you’ll recall, we had some trouble before we finally got to drop the girls off.  And my last post told of our journey through Mississippi.  Now I’ll post the journey with what actually happened in Louisiana itself.

Firstly, I was glad I wasn’t driving.  My nerves can’t handle things like this.  Pulling a trailer on a busy out of state interstate behind someone like this.  We finally passed them, and yes, their wheels were hitting the bottom of the truck on occasion.  Kinda scary.


My favorite state for driving scenery was indeed Louisiana.  There was a great deal of variety in the landscape and road structures.  Lots of flat swampland with lots of bridges which is the complete opposite of mountains in Tennessee.


The cool part about leaving your home state is that it’s almost like going to another country.  The laws are different in every state, at least partially.  We passed casinos all over the place.  There were wine in bags like Capri Sun in the gas stores.  I don’t mean that as in “Oh goody-time to get drunk and gamble!”  It was more of a “Oh look what they have here!”


I can’t remember if this was a draw bridge or not.


One of the inlets we crossed over.P9132127_thumb1_thumb

Swampland.  Sorry for the blur, but we were driving.


This was one of the coolest, and most disturbing part of LA driving.  Miles and miles of ONE bridge over swampland, and then another and another.  They obviously spent all their money upkeeping these bridges (thank you), because the nonbridge roads were positively horrible.  They jiggled so much the pins on our trailer almost fell out.  We had to stop frequently and secure them with tape, wire, cloth, whatever we could find.


Driving along the coast of LA, we passed many refineries.  Here’s one.  They make up whole towns.


After dropping them off, we got to stay at our first hotel.  It was very lucky we made reservations because they were completely booked.  The room we were assigned had a horrible stench of stale cigarette smoke and dog pee.  Apparently this is a local problem with humidity.  I smelled it on several local people, and once we turned the thermostat down to 64, the smell faded to tolerable.  Another local problem is blankets.  After turning down the heat to 64, we really wanted a warm bed.  Alas, this was not to be as the blankets on the bed were not actual blankets.  They were two feet wide strips of red blankety material at the foot of the bed.  Thankfully we were crammed enough in the beds to stay warm without blankets.


Here was our favorite bridge.  It was tall enough to allow boats through.  We drove over it several times and treasured each crossing.



The views from said bridge.




All along one stretch of highway were these stop signs on a parallel street to the right.  They just ran out of road.  One of them stopped inches from a giant tree (wish I’d gotten that one on camera)


Well that’s it for LA!  My next post is the last of this journey, pictures from TX!  It has great pics of gators, swampland, and Lake Charles.  A must see!

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