Saturday, January 31, 2015

Civilian Seal Visit and Decapitated Groundhog

I enjoyed waking on the boat this morning. Looking out my window I first had a troop of Canadian geese go by. That was followed by a dashing flock of young grey sea gulls competing for the mouldy bread I’d found in the freezer and threw out to them. The sea gull ruckus then attracted  a couple of young seals.  What a great visitation for the morning.
The temperature in Vancouver is steadily warming up.  There are crocuses showing all over the city.  I found myself already thinking of the Mount Vernon spring Tulip festival. We’ve been to Harrison Hot Springs and probably will be back sometime in March. That always seems to heal the ravages winter does to the aging bodies.  But the Mount Vernon Tulip Festival just blows the mind. The bright colours wake up the year.  
Laura’s sister has texted her asking if she’ll open her Maine Island Art Studio  April 19th. That's the first day of the Gulf Island Bird Festival.  Caroline annually puts down her paintbrush and picks up her running shoes to come to  the Vancouver Sun Run.  My Winnipeg friend Wes is right now doing his annual pilgrimage to the Mexican beaches. My Vancouver friend Richard has just returned from Puerta Vallata. Richard’s return  really must mean the worst of the Vancouver winter is over here.  Doug’s still fishing off the Mexican coast but Doug’s migrations are as much influenced  by fish movement as weather change.  He’s posting tuna catches on Facebook to the envy of all. Yet Bill just caught a monster trout here and put the picture of that 13 lb beauty up on Facebook.   That means more snowbirds will start their migration north.  I doubt Johnny off in Thailand will be affected by these local movements. He’s more affected by the elephants playing in the ocean off his beaches.  He was putting up pictures of that last month when insane Canadians were participating in the annual polar bear swims.  
I know there’s a ground hog out there somewhere doing computer projections of Climate Change.  I saw on Facebook that an eastern wolf ate it when it gave depressing news before their latest blizzards hit.   I’ve grown suspicious of the United Nations Climate Change predictors because their political hot air about Palestine and Israel seems to throw off all their instruments.  For all I know Islamic Nation beheaded the ground hog.
Personally I rely on evidence of Facebook friends. Laura posted the  pictures of crocuses.   In my office the wave of suicidal complaints that begin in November is cresting now that we’re at the end of January.  My accountant friends are becoming frenzied in the rush to meet the annual taxation jihad by our government.  Gilbert’s hair was so matted with winter growth that I’ve had him shorn last night so he’s half the dog he used to be.
Around me on the dock one or two other skippers are getting their boats ready for spring sailing.  There’s notices out of the spring Motorcycle Runs. It’s hard to believe that February begins tomorrow and the book launch for my book, Psychiatry and Addiction, Personal Perspectives is just a month off, March 1st, Sunday, at the Alano Club 6 to 9 pm.  When Bernice was helping me get that project completed it was fall and a spring launch seemed an eternity away.  Where did Christmas and New Years go
I spent the first couple of weeks of January in Turkey so the build of work that I returned to has had me run off my feet. Time just seems to fly with age. Looking in the mirror I ask who’s the guy with the white santa claus beard.  But I remember December when the ice was on the boat and water pipes on the dock were frozen I wondered if the winter would ever end.  Now I feel sorry for my friends out east.  This week I had the top down on my Miata sports car and lots of motorcycles were back on the streets of Vancouver.  In the rest of Canada people are envying their neighbours who traded their cars in for snow plows. Soon the ice from sleet and frozen rain  will have families  wondering how much their cars will get for a trade in on a Zamborni machine.
I’m so thankful in Vancouver that spring comes a couple of months before the rest of Canada. There has to be some advantages to living in a city where the average house price is a million dollars for a hundred square feet, you can’t park your car anywhere for the bike lanes, and free empty syringes of drug addicts litter the streets.  Thankfully the spring rains will wash the roaches away.
Of course, when I skied at Whistler each weekend I never noticed how sullen Vancouver was in winter.  I might well talk about that as yesterday but it’s been a decade now since I skied at Whistler.  Somethings just seemed silly as I got sober with age. One of them was putting boards on my feet and flying down hill only to wait in lines and do it all over again.  I remember I loved that for decades but today what I miss most is the cross country skiing I fell in love with years ago in Winnipeg.  I last did that a few years back only because there’s no ‘dog friendly’ ski trails hereabout.  So much of my activity depends on  dog friendliness.  Gilbert and I would rather walk on the sea wall than go up the glorious Grouse Mountain where he’d face all the existing predjudice dogs encounter here in this city that prides itself on tolerance.
It really is paradise here.  Every day above ground is a good day.  I must focus more on gratitude because I’ve become a little snarky with winter hibernation.  Fears,resentments and self centeredness are really such an easy ‘default mode’.  As my Christian psychiatrist friend  is fond of saying, the world doesn’t have much need for any more bitter old people.  
Just as spring is coming again this year after winter seemed like it might not end, so each day is a new day.  I loved most the cartoon posted this week on Facebook with twins in the womb arguing about life after delivery.  One insisted there was no life after delivery and everything would be just darkness while the other had hope that there’d be more light and they’d meet their Mother.  That was awesome.
I think in Vancouver the seals know more than the ground hogs.
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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Istanbul Graffitti, Turkey

The government does an admirable job of keeping the city clean. There’s little graffiti of the normal sordid repetitive north american kind. The sad fact about graffiti is that some of the artist are really talented and because there is so much schlock the best of the best getting painted over by the clean freaks.  That said there was some lovely street art in an area of the city which the locals are trying very hard to save from a shopping mall hotel complex.  Right now the area has that Left Bank Paris flavour that spawns real artistic and intellectual creativity.
The struggle that’s going on in Istanbul today was immortalized by Joni Mitchel’s song that said “they paved paradise and put up a parking lot.”  The struggle over the park with a fight between police and locals at Taksim Square was the same competition of ideology - high rise mentality versus trees. There’s no ’third space’ in Istanbul. The Taksim park which my new Friend, Deborah had been through was also the subject of a very fine art work which we saw at the Istanbul Modern Museum.  One day bulldozers came in and the next students stood before them. This was followed by politicians who couldn’t be arrested taking a stand against the police and bull dozers. Then hundreds of thousands joined in including footballers who were famous.  There was tear gas and the normal cast of suspects and then the police left.  The park remains.  It’s a lovely place.  I love ‘green space’ or ’third spaces’ in these great cities.
Vancouver has its famous Stanley Park, loved and used by all the city. The encroachment there is not by bulldozers since we’ve been fortunate to keep them out. Increasingly addicts and alcoholics who spend their rent cheques on drugs are sleeping rough in the park and threatening to burn the place down with their open fires.  Recently a Downtown Eastside Park was taken over by a tent city, claiming allegiance to Occupy, which in New York was a wholly different phenomena than this tent city.
Urban planning and city dynamics are strained always with the history of riots in Byzantine Constantinople as just evidence of the age old conflicts that arise in cities.  In Montreal the graft and corruption of the city officials these last few years in Canada made the middle east look like choir boys. Millions of dollars were pocketed by city officials to allow all manner of abuse of the French Canadian population and it’s city.  The “enquiry’ , as so many such enquiries are  continues, but is limited and most likely the real kingpins will continue their graft and corruption while their cronies get away to do dirt another day.  In Vancouver the Portland Hotel Society had such a case of gross corruption and abuse of public funding but got off with loss of job and keeping of million dollar homes bought with the noney that was supposed to go to the homeless.
I couldn’t at my age be ‘holier than thou’ with the corruption cases I heard of in Istanbul because we have our own. However our graft isn’t covered up by ‘religious claims’ but just seen as white collar crime.  In Istanbul, probably because so many people among the radical Moslem population are so poorly educated the leadership can claim to be acting for god when indeed they’re just serving their own lust and greed. Apparently some palace is being built with public funds by the outwardly pious.  Istanbul needs a dose of our ‘televangelists’ who were caught literally with their pants down and hands in the cookie jar.  The trouble is the Imans as we seen with the Charlie Hebno killing have convinced the populace that ‘transparency’ isn’t good for Allah, whereas I believe ‘we’re as sick as our secrets’ and can only have good politicians with ‘open society’.  Otherwise psychopaths will continue to masquerade as saints while stealing from the children, the widows, the poor and the old.  Istanbul seems to be having this problem on a larger scale than Vancouver. But Vancouver is young and 2 million whereas Istanbul is 12 million.  The more the merrier when it comes to ‘white collar crime’ .
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Gratitude, Wednesday, Jan 28, 2015

Thank you God for the bed. I really enjoy beds.  I enjoyed my sleep. It could have been longer. The dreams could have been better.  Lots of times I love my dreams so much. Especially when my parents and old dogs come to visit me.  Last night was just kind of interesting.  Thank you that the nightmares I used to have didn’t occur. I haven’t been faced with dead patients, still born babies, faces of suicides, faces of men trying to kill me, cancer, HIV, none of that stuff that used to really haunt my sleep.
I am so thankful for the good dreams and last night it was a kind of mix.  I did wake up at 4 am and worry about the courts. I have longed for death so many times as I ‘ve faced the judgement of judges and bureaucrats for doing the very best I could with what I had and still not being the perfection that they have by their association and superiority. I wake to their condemnation and I’m back in grade school with the stupidity of principals and teachers who were wrong and  insisted on hurting me in their error.  I fear now that all I do is ‘identification with the aggressor’. In weak moments I fear that all the times I’ve been strapped and humiliated and punished by authorities has made me join them.  I fear the times I've been held hostage, the times I've been imprisoned, the times I've had guns or needles shoved at me. Yet it’s all above my pay grade.  Still somedays, especially with all the negativity of the media, and all the horrible corruption in government and bureaucracy, all those killings I’ve been punished for stopping over and over again, all the times I’ve stood up and been silenced for telling the truth, all the times I've been punished for saving lives and healing, and all the times I've  stopped  corruption and killing and the lies, the lies are the worst Lord. I'm so tired. So very tired.  I'm fearful of another hotshot, another wannabe, another swaggering killer backed by whatever forces or money and me unable to run. Maybe it was the metaphor of the broken down old tank and a life of crossroads with Nazis over running my position, the saving of some silliness and irrelevancy.  Why do I care for the mentally ill, the drunks and the drug addicts, the rejects of society. Why can't I just focus on the rich and powerful, serving the privileged and feeling good about helping a nun or monk or CEO. Why must I work with everyone when it would be so easy to cherry pick and get ahead, become somebody and something, and have respect and a career and a name.  Why have I worked so far from importance and served in the outback and out way and sideshow and dregs.  Why didn't I get smart and think about a better job and money when I was younger.  Why am I still working 12 hours seeing people all day when the smart ones are going to committee meetings and advising.  Why why why. Why do I let why's ruin my sleep and unsettle my mind. Thank you God for let me let go of the nonsense of thought.  
So I woke in the night worrying again that the Monday morning quarterbacks will question my loyalty and want only those who goose step in their midst and I’m afraid so afraid.  I miss being alone at sea. I miss being alone in the woods.  I feel like running away in the middle of the night when I wake and fear they’re wanting me to stop complaining about all the money that’s being diverted to killing.   I believe in leadership but the mixed messages and the words out of the side of the mouth are frightening me.
But I went back to sleep.  Maybe it was Fury, the great Brad Pitt movie I saw about WWII.  All the forgotten heroes.  Maybe it was the hearing the word ‘hero’ and wondering how much I’ve done for the dollar, or ribbon, or an idea.  Reading always about the loss of faith of other doctors, hearing others asking what it really means. There’s confusion and I’m confused.  Maybe it was being in Turkey where the ideas were so simple.  Like those days when everyone agreed, Serve the Fuhrer.  Maybe it’s the Auschwitz memorial and Obama snubbing it. Maybe it’s Obama.  Maybe it’s the media.  Maybe its Russia at war with the Ukraine. Maybe it’s too much media.  Maybe it’s just worry I’ll not be paid at the end of the week. Maybe it’s worry I’ll not have a job like so many good people I know.  Maybe it’s the welfare state that awards so many I know who just do drugs and break the law then when they’ve wasted all their private resources get given public resources. Maybe I’m just suffering ‘compassion fatigue’, the 19th nervous breakdown, for the 121st time.  Maybe it’s the weather.  I don’t do well in Jan or Feb.  Too many people demanding too little hours and too angry I’m not there for them. Too many people wanting me to write too many letters to too many bureaucrats demanding too much time.  Maybe it’s just that the days are long.
But I fell back to sleep.  Waking in the night is always awful. Especially struggling with a cold, injured feet and joints.  The pain gets to me. I take the pills and the stomach inflames. I know I should be exercising but exercise hurts. I know I shouldn’t be eating but eating eases the pain. I know I should be swimming but I’m afraid of driving. I’m a one may ‘yes,but’ in winter.  But I’m thankful its not the snow and misery of blizzards which are occurring out east.
I’m just confused.
Thank you for the light that comes with day. Thank you for the dog that licked my face this morning. Thank you for the sleep that followed the waking. Thank you for the joy of peeing.  Thank you especially for the coffee. Thank you for the yoghurt and banana.  Thank you that I have so much when I could have so little.  Thank you for the abundance. Thank you for work and purpose. Thank you for direction. Thank for the ability to serve.  Thank you for the trees and grass and green.  Thank you for the shower I ‘ll soon have. Thank you for clean running water that I can make hot with the turn of a switch. Thank you for my car. Thank you for my clothing. Thank you for the laundry.  Thank you for my family. I so appreciate my brother’s wisdom and humour. Thank you for my nephews who are emazing.  Thank you for the god children. Thank you for the health of family and friends. Thank you for the interesting things my friends post on Facebook.
Thank you for all the funny animal videos. Today especially thank you for the bathing elephant babies.
Thank you for Jesus. Thank you for Mark Twain. Thank you for the Dalai Lama. Thank you for Rumi. Thank you for Yogananda. Thank you for all the wisdom teachings. Thank you for the Bible. Thank you for science. Thank for mysticism and spirality. Thank you for religion and politics and play. Thank you for all the entertainment. Thank you for the creativity of men and women. Thank you for fashion. Thank you for the colour orange.
Thank you for memories. Thank you for old lovers.  Thank you for travel. Thank you for anatomy and physiology. Thank you for good literature. Thank you for fine music. Thank you for theatre. Thank you for Hollywood and Balliwood.  Thank you for dance, especially English and Latin. Thank you for recovery.
Thank you for those who’ve heard the message. Thank you for those who listen. Thank you for activities. Thank you for recreation. Thank you for clubs and organizations and institutions. Thank you for principles. Thank you for silence. Thank you for blessings.
Thank you Lord for this day. Help me always to see the silver lining in clouds. Help me to find the rainbows. Help me to be as kind as I can be.  Help me to follow in the steps of my parents and teachers. Help me to be loving and less judgemental.  Help me to see the good. Help me to be kind. Help me to be understanding. Help me to be hopeful and uplifting. Help me to be stable. Help me to resist the sales and pull of despair and narcism. Help me to keep out of the black holes that beckon and want to consume. Help me to stand outside the anger. Help me to see past the rage and hostility and indifference to the hurt that taught.  Help me to love always.  Help me to be a better person. Help me to be a better a doctor. Help me to be more intelligent and more responsive to the needs of my patients. Help me to be more understanding and kind to the bureaucrats and judges who are themselves doing the best they can with so little resources. Help us all in these mean times.  Help us all this day.
Thank you Lord.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Climate Change Cartel, Intellectual Terrorism and Ad Hominem

Ad hominem means 'against the man'.  It is one of the fallacies that are the basis of rhetoric as opposed to logic. Logic is considered to be the way of 'true thinking' that rationally results in arriving at a 'right answer'.  By contrast rhetoric is the 'appearance' of truth, but untrue.  One can win a debate with logic or bully with rhetoric.

As a logician or rational thinker, when one encounters a 'fallacy' one is trained to consider that the 'argument' of those who use 'fallacies' is 'weak'.  Those with strong arguments don't need to resort to fallacy.  Fallatious arguments are normally considered 'false' arguments.

Much of politics is about the use of 'fallacies' craftilly.  Much marketting relies on 'fallacies'.

Ad hominem is simply 'name calling'. It's  the basis of racism and various immature and untrue postulates.

The specific ad hominem that is most prevalent today is 'Climate Change Denier' (CCD).  As a scientist I can easily spot the 'unscientific' and 'pseudoscience' aspects of the present 'debate'.  However as a psychiatrist I am most interestedin the use of the psychiatric term 'denier' ie a "person in denial".

As a psychiatrist, when I say a person is 'in denial', I am indeed saying they are 'insane' or frankly 'psychotic', in general or in specific.   The word 'denial' was a useful description of a  specific 'clinical defence mechanism' that can be seen in mentally ill individuals.  Used clinically the term has validity and limitted usefulness.

For example a person with the psychiatric condition 'la belle indifference' may appear to be 'in denial' about the fact that they cannot use their arm because of a 'conversion disorder'.
A psychiatrist may well help the patient gain insight into their emotional denial about the pain they are experiencing in the loss of use of their arm which may well represent some other unconscious process driven by guilt or shame.  Denial, in psychiatry, is a 'defence mechanism' hypothesized by a psychiatrist, without a conflict of interest, for the sake of helping the patient.

It is not 'insulting' or 'perjorative' like 'denier' when used by a politically biased opponent.

Used politically the term is arrogant, ignorant and aggressive.  The Climate Change Cartel (to use a potentially offensive but potentially equally true term) is self serving and clearly.  The Climate Change Cartel  does not wishto 'help' their opponents in the debate.  To use a psychiatric term correctly they "grandiosely" claim to speak on behalf of the world.  With severe delusions of superiority they argue their viewpoint is the only 'true' viewpoint. Indeed their behaviour is frenzied with religious furor rather than tenative and moderate as true science is.

Having working with the violently insane, and been a scientific researcher, I am clinically concerned about the United Nations  "Climate Change Cartel" which claims they are 'scientific' yet 'bullies' opposition with an aggressive and ignorant name calling and 'labelling'.   The pseudoscence misuse of psychiatric terminology implies that their own position is fundamentally 'weak' because their 'argument' depends on the 'ad hominem' fallacy. Logically and scientifically level minded individuals would question such hysteria, in deed panic, which to the sane might well appear as rank lunacy.  Name calling and insulting bullying is frightening, to say the least.

This 'Climate Change Cartel'  says most unscientifically , "if you don't agree with our "position", and do as we say, and spend money as we say, not only will the world end but you,  who disagree with us will be called  'psychotic' because you are in 'denial'."  'We" (note the supreme 'we') define 'reality' and our 'reality' is true and you are 'deniers'.

I belonged to an organization called Psychiatrist against the Political Use of Psychiatry because political bullies of all stripes have wanted to use psychiatry to abuse their opponents.  Russia long held that it's scientists who did not believe in communism were 'schizophrenic'.

Essentially these 'left wing extremists (Communism is the first church of Aetheism) said, those who do not believe in communism are 'communism deniers'.  They proceeded to lock up anyone who didn't agree with them.

Yet here we have the United Nations (an oxymoron if ever there was one)  (which represents so many countries without civil liberties, freedoms, transparency, rank corruption and 'science deniers' in general) Climate Change Cartel name calling and bullying anyone who 'disagrees' with their 'position'.

They claim this is 'consensus' thinking which fundamentally is itself unscientific.  Science is 'hypothetical.' Consensus thinking is more religious than even political since the religious demanded that all believe in their God and their God alone.  It was thought the community collectively would experience destruction if there was opposition to their 'divine realization.'  The demand that everyone goose step to the same tune pre dates the Climate Change Cartel by at least a millenium.

Which is why the 'Climate Change Cartel' is more religous than scientific. Further the 'science' they 'espouse' is more often as illogical and the fundamentalist as the  'fallacy' their case rest on, ie, that anyone who doesn't agree with them is 'in denial', 'psychotic' or frankly insane'.  It's hard to have a discussion anytime with a fanatic of any ilk, scientist or otherwise.  The Nazi's were great rationalists and great scientists but suffered from just a touch too much arrogance. It doesn't surprise me that the Catholic Church has jumped in bed with the Climate Change Cartel given their rejection of Galileo and the sad plight of Germany's Bonhoffer.

If I believe my opponent is 'psychotic' and 'in denial', so utterly wrong to be insane, so black that I am by contrast 'immutably' and 'divinely white', then I really don't have to have a discussion with him, do I?  What I need to do, is lock him up 'for his own good'.

That's the kind of arguments we saw when in the Psychiatrist against Political Abuse of Psychiatry we saw Jews and people of religious 'faith' disagreeing with the 'divinity' of world leaders whose countries today are members of the United Nations.  Kings and emperors and some recent revolutionary leaders still believe they are divine and their position divine.  Large swaths of people believe books are divine and there are many still who believe bones are.  It's no surprise that the Climate Change Cartel believe their ideas so reverently.   Individually we today might consider them 'in denial' looking at them all from a strictly secular perspective. The secular world is in contrast to to many nations of

Frankly, I'm afraid of the Climate Change Cartel just like I'm afraid of any other bullies and  name callers.  Now perhaps they're be afraid of me because by calling this 'motley crew' a 'cartel' I address the one obvious commonality this disparate group of self proclaimed 'scientists', has in common ie 'monetary interest'.

Before the UN Climate Change Cartel's language became violent, the old climate  'discussion' was simply as follows:

1) Is global temperature getting warmer or colder?  Because I'm older than most these days I remember the 'hysteric' campagn in the 60's that claimed 'global cooling'.  All of the same players and arguments were made then.  That was followed by the 'global warming' fear mongering.  'Computer projections' and the most famous Al Gore's  (note, truly a politician/ not a scientist) famous dramatic!!!  "speculation" chart".
Computer projections are not 'true science".  Ecology and environmental 'science' in general is consider 'soft' in scientific terms. The media doesn't get that all the 'psychological science' used in Criminal Minds is like the "Environmental Sciences'  considered 'soft'.  For "harder science", see the reliably reproducible chemistry experiment of boiling water which changes water to steam every time - that's science.  Fanciful speculative computer projections are based of 'assumed variables'.  These are simply  'best guessing" or 'science assisted 'guessing'.    The 'truth' or 'fact'  about the 'computer projections is that those used by the Climate Change Cartel  were found to be grossly wrong,  out by a factor of hundreds of years.  What immediately followed was  'climate change'.
Everyone knows that 'climate changes' . There is no debate about climate changing.   No one disagrees that climate changes.  Only fools would be investing millions of UN dollars 'proving' 'climate change' since 'change is life'.
As a psychiatrist listening to these people I'm seriously 'scared' by this very 'creepy' tactic.  If you back both sides of the argument, warming and cooling, you can get funding regardless of whether you're right or wrong. My fear is tainted by a little bit of envy that people in power can get away with this sort of skullduggery.
This was what Goldman Sachs did with taking out insurance on the investments on both sides of their 'economic model'. While the world collectively suffered, the Wall Street economic hustlers essentially 'profitted' with 'economic change' 'model'. (As scientists whenever we hear the word 'model' we think, 'fashion", not fact. ). The world economy  nearly 'collapsed', all the while Wall Street called the opponents of the 'new economic change model' 'deniers'.  Opponents at the time may as well have been called  "Economic deniers' because they really did disagree with the 'packaging' . Those that disagreed with the good stock/bad stock real estate hustle that they sold, the dysregulation and subsequent bail outs made the insiders rich were silenced.  Is Climate Change another 'insider' get rich game?  Is this not the question someone should ask when a bunch of rich UN favorites  insist they're doing something for me with my money and they want more money?
Meanwhile climate continues (duh!) to change, but now in addition to confusion about gases, and ozone and temperature there's this new 'variable' called 'extreme weather'.  Interestingly the 'data' about 'extreme weather' is a 'variable' for which there is even less data,  so it works very well for speculation, scientific or otherwise.  Old religious prophets invariably called on the weather change to sell their latest brand of religion.  Astronomy always was the secret 'priestly' science'.  Prophets and priests hustle 'climate change' long before the United Nations got in the game.
But the real issue isn't climate change since obviously climate change is universally accepted.

2) Is 'climate change' 'man made'? This is part of the 'real issue'.  Obviously 'climate change' is not solely  man made. We see climate change on Saturn ie Climate changes, independent of man.  That is fact. Life changes.  The tides change. The seasons change.  So obviously claiming climate change is solely man made is wrong.  It doesn't matter how you wrap it up and how much perfume you put on it, the sun is this great orb in the sky working as a heater and the planet is orbitting and moving closer and further away from the sun. To 'deny' the influence of the sun, the moon and the orbit on climate would be truly psychotic.

3) The question then is 'how much does man's influence affect the climate versus how much is the contribution of non man factors. "  This is indeed a 'scientific question. A typical scientific experiment would be to put a bunch of women and men in a box with a bunch of dogs and measure the fart ratio and density.  A good scientist could say that 'human contribution to the fart density is x while dog contribution is y.'   This is the question that's never heard in the incredibly stupid media "sports casters 'science' casters wannabe' 'discussions'.  It's worse on the internet.

4) The question following this is what scientist call  an 'applied science' question.  What can we do to 'change' things like atmospheric 'gases'.  I've already said that the best solution of all would be to bury universities and grow forests over subterranean cities. The Climate Change Cartel however refuses to listen to reason on this matter.    We all went through the hysteria of the world ending with the millenial madness computer scare.  Then we had the ozone layer hijacking hysteri when we didn't all fry. In 'applied science' there's real money to be made.  My friend became rich selling cheap survival kits for the end of the world to the silly internet people who thought at 2000, Armageddon would come. He wasn't a scientist. He was a businessman.

5)  The UN is principally businessmen and politicians and their pets.  This is a sad fact.  Scientists are tools and don't get paid much unless they 'serve' someone. I love Bob Dylan's song, "Maybe the devil or it may be the lord, but you've got to serve someone!".   So at the level of "applied" 'science' there are business 'cartels' and scientists 'serve' these "cartels"

6) I would n't care about this at all but I don't like fallacies, weak arguments, bullies, name calling and pseudoscientists using the language of 'psychiatry' .  I don't like that the UN's Climate Change Cartel has used the psychiatric term 'denial' and 'denier' so flippantly and erroneously.  Any scientific committee worth it's salt would have consulted psychiatrists about their use of the term 'Climate Change Deniers" rather than misinforming the world with their 'intellectual terrorism'.
The very term "Climate Change Denier" is simply that.  Intellectual terrorism.
I don't even want to talk with you as long as you are bullying me, threatening me and name calling. You frighten me.  Indeed you are more terrifying to me than any of your 'skys falling' negative projections of the future.  I'm even more concerned about your extortionary approach to academic funding.  Your over riding demands for money and all your 'consensus' drama is bullying.  You frighten me.  Stop bullying. Stop name calling.  Maybe then 'real scientists' will feel 'safe' to enter a discussion.

The next question is who 'owns climate' and how much 'climate' will the UN big boys allow the little people?

What 'percentage' of the world's economy does the Climate Change Cartel  want now?  How much more taxes do you want to take from our children to pay for your 'dreams' and 'projections'?
I left the university because I saw inter department fighting worse than provincial and state fighting for funds.  Before everyone gets on the latest academic band wagon, remember academics are the best funding infighters.
'Ecologists' and 'climatologists' are not going to say 'oh by the way, I think you should fund 'science education' rather than 'climate change education, ' The future would be a much better place if we all understood science better, especially the media, and especially those who 'debate' on the internet. . Frankly, I'd be even  happier if students were trained in 'critical thinking'.
But then the Dalai Lama just said we all needed to meditate (every last one of us) (and be taught in meditation) (meditation teachers are not free) and there would be world peace.  So should we do what the Dalai Lama suggests before we do what the UN climate change factions suggest. Now as a scientist I might ask the question in an applied science way, "Which would be the better bang for the buck, giving the Dalai Lama all the money to teach students meditation  or giving the Climate Change Cartel all the money?  Maybe a real scientist could set up an experiment to test the hypothesis that paying the Dalai Lama money would more likely benefit the world than paying the United Nations?  It's just an idea.

In the meantime I just wish the Climate Change Cartel would their stop bullying, intellectual terrorism  and name calling first.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Vancouver Boat Show, 2015

The Vancouver Boat Show 2015  at BC Place was as enjoyable an outing as ever. So much to see. I love the extraordinary boats on show.  Great new advances in water transportation.  Great event with Ferrari’s and Maseratis cars being sold with Executive ships for the Vancouver wealthy.  As well, something for everyone.  I loved the kayaks and canoes.
I personally covetted the Sea Doos.  I have an offshore sailboat, dinghy, kayaks, canoe and 20hp runabout Profile so it’s not like I ‘need’ any more boats. It’s just that I don’t have a Sea Doo and they’re getting better every year.  This year little sparks ran for $7000 but the best was a $17000 executive ‘commuter’ that went from 0 to 70 mph in seconds.  The fun seadoos get everyone wet but the commuter (really a motorcycle for the water) is protected so one can stay dry.  Obviously I need one.  The only thing is I have no where to store it.  They have trailers but I’d need another storage locker.   The guys from Ladysmith were the most informative. They also have the Can AM Spyder which Laura really liked.
Steveston’s Marine had a great selection of safety gear, fashion and everything a boat needs, everything. I shopped at Steveston for 20 years spending a fortune but loving all the high quality equipment.  I love the Mustang survival wear and Laura loved the Sperry boat shoes.
I remember my first boat show, more than 20 years ago.  Then I had an endless wish list.  Today I was very thankful because frankly I didn’t see anything I really ‘needed’ .  While I might like a million dollar boat I’m very thankful for my boat and the little ones I have. I’m so very thankful. My sailboat has crossed the Pacific twice and could today go round the world.  I did see a new set of unbreakable plates and bowls that I liked   The guys at ICOM told me something about the radios I have which I didn’t know. There was all sorts of expertise there.  But generally it was just a great outing.  A fantasy excursion.  If I had a few hundred thousand I’d definitely get one of the cabin cruisers. For hunting I’d love the amphibian aluminum boat that allows you to run an ATV ashore off the deck.  Maybe if we had one of those we’d have got a moose last fall.
Thee were a whole selection of affordable little fishing boats with motors of all sizes. Volvo Penta had a smaller and larger model of my recent new inboard diesel motor purchase so I just ogled that for a while. They look so pretty on display.  In my sailboat I sometimes just touch my new Volvo Penta 40hp engine and feel good with the world.  Having a new motor is spiritual.  I really am so grateful for the equipment that keeps me alive and allows me to so enjoy the BC Outdoors, not to mentions the world’s oceans.
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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Work breaks, back logs and psychosomatics

I'm a week back from a couple of weeks in Istanbul and Turkey.  It was an incredible learning experience with daily touring and education in mosques, churches, museums, art galleries. I really felt like I was in an "immersion" program, far more intense that my medical study programs.  I had read extensively and taken multiple audio courses before going. Then while I was therein addition to have a guide I was reading and writing daily.
Returning home I was most afraid of the dreaded post overseas airplane 'flu'.  So often I've caught a cold travelling. Once I returned from the third world with dysentry but mostly I've just developped winter colds because of the stress of long flights and contact with so many different people in closed spaces.
Many doctors I know and many businessmen don't take time off from their work, simply because the back log is overwhelming when they return.  I've resisted the temptation to stay in the harness and cope with the excessive daily work.  Instead I take these study breaks and even go on vacation.  Extended weekends don't cause much back log but whenever I'm away from the office more than a week it's bedlam when I return.
When I return from Russia last spring my staff had left and returned to inform me they'd decided they didn't want to live in Vancouver.  The backlog combined with staff turn over was murderous. I worked weekends for weeks and late into the night each day.
There haven't been sufficient psychiatric resources in Vancouver in decades.  If people with physicial disease had to face what people with mental illness do on a daily basis they'd go insane themselves and add to the overwhelming backlog.
When I graduated I saw people weekly and had a waitlist of a month or two.  Now I'm more likely to see people at 1 to 3 month ,sometimes 6 month, intervals and had a 2 years waitlist till I limitted patients to my very specific subspeciality area and also more commonly accepted patients from family physicians I knew.  Increasingly general practitioners and especially walk in clinics want to cherry pick their patients and 'dump' more complex or complicated cases (see psychiatric cases) on the specialists.  All the 'cream' has long been taken from medicine by the midwives, psychologists, counsellors and health food stores.  The 'worried well' just aren't the issue they once were in the standard medical practice.  Probably because they want 'strokes' and only the 'alternative health care folk' have the resources of private funding to entertain the 'worried well' or 'walking wounded.'  Too often the public health care system is serving only the most desperate.  Everyone that pays taxes should have access but often government health services 'triage' resources for the most desperate meaning everyone else is waitlisted months to years.
When I began in psychiatry my patients rarely had more than one or two diagnosis.  Today it's more common for my patients to have multiple psychiatric and physical diagnosis and often major social and financial issues.
When I go away there's no one I can refer to.  It's been 20 years since I could have another specialist 'cover' my practice.  Last year I saw several patients from practices of my cohort clinicians who were simply 'orphaned' when their doctor retired.
In the British Columbia model every patient seeing a specialist must be referred so when the specialist is away the family physician is supposed to provide the care alone.
The irony of this is that only last month it was made public that Quebec doctors on average were seeing only 10 or 11 patients a day whereas the physicians in the rest of Canada were seeing at least 30 patients a day.  Most GP's I know are seeing more like 50 a day in Vancouver.
There's just not any 'fat' in the frontline systems.  Of course this doesn't speak to the Monday Morning Quarter backs.  The Canadian health Care system compared to the German Health Care system has 20 x the administration with no evidence that any of that administration is improving health care delivery or services.
I think I'm just belly aching because despite my best efforts I fear I may be getting a 'cold'.  A facebook cartoon went around about the "ManFlu" with the proverbial woman asking the sick guy in bed, 'can I get you anything, orange juice, soup, kleenex, your balls, maybe?"
I got back last week and all I could do was face the deluge of work that was waiting for me. I was in the office till 7 or 8 each night and missing lunches and hardly taking time to pee.  I had a series of other obligations but the emergencies and despiration demand just took precedence. All I could do was go to work, 'put one foot in front of the next', 'do the next right thing', then get home and sleep. Jetlag was a problem because I was waking at 3 am.  I'm thankfully back to a good nights sleep but now I've the dreaded post nasal drip.
People have cancer, bullet wounds, bankruptcies and alien abductions. Meanwhile I'm here swallowing to see if the throats any rawer.
The fact is it's all psychosomatic.  I'm a whimp. I have 'self pity' at having work, I should be grateful and thankful and glad to have a purpose and use. So normally when I 'overwork' I get sick because as a child being 'sick' was the only way I could miss school.  There were no 'mental health days'.

I have a resentment at the government services too. Alright I admit it I've a resentment at Billionaires. Inflation being what it is I want Bare Naked Lady to put out a new song, If I had a billion dollars, just to keep up with the times.  There's just so much waste and misuse in the system and no one asks me to be Sultan or Emperor. Instead we have millions being made on heroin and cannibis and I'm here like the proverbial dutch boy trying to get people off drugs when the real money is getting people addicted.  Self pity.  Poor me.

It's the January in BC blas and I've been on vacation. Imagine the poor sods who just have to live through January.  Worse is those Climate Change Deniers in Winnipeg and the prairies who have lost all faith in spring with the snow deeper and streets dirtier.

All I've got to complain about is post nasal drip. But I'll milk it.  I'll whine.  Tonight I'll go to bed early. I missed the first week back onslaught of disease but fear I've taken a shot on the second week.  Soon I'll be in medical student ichthitis, convinced I'm dying and certain I've a new Canadian ebola strain when all I have is at best the 'manflu'.  It's so embarrassing.
The other thing that gets me is lice and scabies.  I'd rather run from polar bears. Except I'm feeling lethargy.

Well I'm here, not contagious, not coughing, but sharing my evil thoughts rather than singing hallelujuahs and praising the Lord.  Maybe a trip to Japan for a little radiation would save me from that horror of horrors, the 'man flu'. A man flu can need a dose of Chernobyl.

Really I just think I should have a nap. Nap time should be mandated for all over 50.  A little nap would be good right now.  If I wasn't self employed I'd get the union to lobby for comfy cots and afternoon nap time.  Imagine as a kid I didn't like the kindergarden 'nap time'.  What a fool I was.

I think this blogpost started out as something meaningful and now has devolved into something pitiful. Patients have come and gone and between them I've added disconnected lines. Gilbert is groaning below the desk.  We've had a walk together.  I just "think" I may be getting a cold.  I can't remember how many times, this time of the year, I've been gargling vinegar, dousing myself in vitamin c, sometimes on antibiotics and always gargling and drinking endless soup.  Maybe I've got PTSD from living years in Winnipeg in January and just have flashbacks out here on the coast.
I got the flu shot.  I prayed. I'm a good man.  Why am I being punished? I can feel that tickle in the back of the throat like jalopeno snot just building there.  I remember when I would switch to smoking menthol cigarettes when I had these 'throat ailments'.  It's the big scnoz weakness. If I had a smaller nose maybe I could keep infection out better.

Can't I just go back to bed, pull the blankets over my head and come out when the crocuses and tulips come out.  Here that's only next week or the week after.  I'll shake this off somehow.  Typically, I'll think I can't afford to be sick.  Get thee behind me Satan.  I cast the demons out of the schnoz and pray for healing sleep tonight.  Maybe it was just the propane heater last evening.  Another source of self pity.  They're cleaning the mould in my winter home.

 Maybe I'll get some Vicks and wrap my psychological throat in socks and remember my mother caring for me when I was a kid.  Those were great days and I didn't fully appreciate them at the time.  I miss my parents and aunt as I get older. I think a good reason for death is to get together again with all the folks that have gone.  Grand dad and grandma were others I took for granted.  Now I'm older I wished I'd talked and listened more to them.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Harrison Hotsprings Getaway

My home continues to be under repairs.  Mould damage now. On Saturday I repaired the boat’s hot water heater so might well have a home.  It’s been couch surfing since I arrived back from Istanbul.  Gilbert and I have been welcomed at Laura’s saving me from checking into a hotel like I did last year.  Gilbert loves Laura and gets much better care and walks with her. I’ve been doing the 12 hour doctor day backlog catch up which follows any time off.
Thankfully in the street practice colleagues covered but in my own office it’s just been steady.  My new staff, Angel, has faced the steep learning curve and thanks to her nothing was missed while I was away.  In Istanbul I only had a half dozen or so emails regarding emergencies and a few phone calls.  It was light compared to other times off.
I’ve been bothered a little more recently by the criticism of doctors incomes without the recognition we don’t have pensions, we don’t get paid overtime, we lost 12 years of income in study, the job is dirty and dangerous, very very dangerous at times,  and in my case, I’v  have spent years on call without pay.  I’m actually thankful for some of the ‘equity’ we’ve achieved in recent years with the public sector and many of the corporate employees.  I still don't know if on an hourly basis I've ever got 'minimum' wage but I surely have appreciated that I've a job where I can if needed work long hours and weekends and not take holidays to pay the bills. That was the only way I got through the horrendous divorce costs in bygone years.  Unfortunately because of shortages and cutbacks we feel somewhat guilty when we don't go to work since the need today is so great.  I'm also seeing the fulfillment of 30 years of steady 'service' after the early lean years. I'm thankful to have made it to today when, while I can't afford to own a house in Vancouver like rich people can, I have enough income that I can have a boat and sports car.  Young man's dreams and reality in an old man's body.
I’ve been impressed too with others I know who are doing continuing education realizing that their jobs today might not be available in the future.  So many people left school and got paid while we've been continuing to learn. Today the rest of the world seems to be doing what we took for granted. The computer folk I know are always upgrading just like doctors.  It's the way of the future .I continue to learn and am thankful for these opportunities to address my own areas of profound ignorance.
My time away was mostly study and touring.  So often my travel is really just learning.  These last couple of years I’ve been astonished by how much I’ve learned about Russia and Turkey, a couple of countries I really was ignorant about because of the western bias of news and education.  I don’t think it’s wrong. It’s just the way it is.  Neither country knows much about Canada or even America either. I learned so much about Islam but know that Moslems in general are equally if not more ignorant of Christianity.   I learned so much on the ground. Admittedly I brought a lot of university education and research to the equations so could truly appreciate what I was seeing.  I might well have missed the opportunity to attend Sema, the Sufi Whirling Dervish religious ceremony if I didn’t have the background I do in mysticism.  I certainly appreciated the museums because what I was seeing was from times in history I've studied through my sometimes 'applied' reading aimed as it is at a deeper understanding of the world we live in.  I was truly fascinated by the ride on the Bosphorus and the divide between west and east that Istanbul embodies.
That said, I’m really having a very conventional ‘relaxing escape’ here in Harrisons.  It's  my favourite getaway place near Vancouver.  I love the Harrison Spa Resort  but they charge a $100 for Gilbert to stay so it’s not a place I come to overnight anymore.  .If I can get away for a few days I still like it.  I don't mind that most places like the Ramada charge $20 extra for Gilbert. My favourite Harrison Hotsprings stays have been the Bungalow Cabins. I love these best in autumn. In the summer everyone else loves them and you have to book a week or two in advance.  Right now I’m in the Ramada. This was the old Executive Hotel. I loved the Executive Hotel mostly because of location and comfort.  Since Ramada took over there's a little bit more efficiency but nothing much has changed thankfully. It’s such a short walk to Harrison Hot Springs Public Pool. The public pool gets the mineral hot springs water direct just like at the Resort spa.
Laura and I left Gilbert to have an hour soak in this healing hot spring big hot tub.  I’d put in a take out order before our dip with the Black Forest Restaurant (604-796-9343).  In summer I enjoy this fabulous restaurant because it has great patio seating on the main drag.  Gilbert can sit beside us then on the street.  the food and service are excellent.
With Black Forest Restaurant  take out food in hand, so relaxed I felt like a wet noodle after our soak, we walked back to the Ramada. Gilbert was so pleased we’d returned with his dinner.  The Avengers was on the Ramada’s Shaw Cable.  I loved my Peppercorn steak and Laura loved her Schitzel.  Gilbert loved the tidbits.
I must still be recovering from jet lag and the mass of work because I’d hardly finished dinner before I fell asleep in front of the tv.  It couldn’t have been 9 pm.  I slept till 6 am.  I really ought to have worked out for an hour or read the latest physics text and the Lancet and NEJM . Instead I read Facebook for an hour or so.  Talk about being on vacation.  I might as well have been in Mexico.  Reading Facebook it’s so much fun to see what my friends and their friends are up to and interested in.  I’m so thankful so many of my friends are nut bars with interest in baby animals, silly jokes, inspirational messages and all aspects of the latest political fads and fashion.
I loved the long shower.  People take showers for granted but for us who conserve water, hotels are the place to indulge in the true regal luxury of endless hot water.
Gilbert and  I then had a walk in the rain.  It’s ugly out there. Really windy. White caps on the lake. None of the boats are out. Grey skies. Can’t even see the white capped mountains.  I ordered bagel egg and bacon sandwiches .  Another 5 minutes of walking for Gilbert then collecting the take out and back to the hotel.  Laura, still in bed, enjoyed the ‘hotel’s room service’.
Now I’m watching tv.  There’s a great West Coast BC channel with all these zip lining, hang gliding, shorts about all the things people can do in BC.  There’s just so much to do here.  I love all the activities on the coast.  The church channels were great too with the amazing music and song.  Can’t say I’m a fan of the televangical preaching style but I do like the singing.  The only down side of weakend getaways is missing church.  I love seeing Kevin, AJ and the kids, and all the others,  as well as our choir and the sermons. I’ll miss Father Mark Greenaway Robbins,  his lovely wife Ruth, their kids and dogs.  They’re now in Wales and I’m anxious about whose going to step into their very big shoes.
When I finally get mobile again we’re probably going to visit in Chilliwack as well as check out my RV being repaired in Abbotsford.  It’s definitely a laid back day.  I’ve got the little Miata  . Gilbert shares his seat with Laura and they seem to fair quite well.  At least the kids don't fight.  If Laura wanted to hang her head out the window, there might be trouble.
I think what’s best about this is being in the country. I realize that in Istanbul I was in the heart of 12 million people most of the time I was there. Then I returned to a city of a couple of million. There’s something just restful about being in the country.
I love that I’ve been coming to Harrison Hot Springs for a quarter of a century and love it as much today as I loved it way back when.
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Friday, January 16, 2015

Taksim Gezi Park Riots, Istanbul, Turkey

My guide Mehmet Tetik pointed out Gezi Park when he first showed me Taksim Square.  I was more interested in the incredible monument to the truly amazing Ataturk one of history’s greatest soldiers and visionaries, a true statesman.  Ataturk was Turkey’s first president.
“This was where the riots occurred between the police and developers and students. Did you not see it in the news,”
Indeed, yes ,  I had. I’d followed the BBC filming of this, amazed at the numbers of people involved and the police with tear gas cannons.  “That was here!” I said somewhat.
Mehmet nodded.  I felt like I was at the site of modern history, a place like that in Berlin where the wall came down. Mehmet had been showing so much ancient history and yet here I was being showed in passing a bit of history of my own time. We walked on to the main street of New Town.
The park was so serene today with locals and tourists, women, children and old people enjoying this little oasis of green and tranquility in the midst of a bustling noisy city centre.

I thought of the urban developer I knew who studied what he described as ‘third spaces’. I remember him telling me that crime and discord could be directly related to the lack or presence of ’third spaces’ in a city.  A third space is different from the ‘first place’ or ‘home and the ‘second space’ or workplace in a city.  The third space were these other spaces that were the ‘anchors of community because they facilitated and fostered broader creative interaction. Oldenberg in his famous book, “The Great Good Place’ articulated this all. Obviously Gezi Park was just such a third space.
The Istanbul Modern Art Museum had an amazing black and white video of the Gezi Park riots.
My new friend, Deborah, a college professor, living hear Taksim Square had been kind enough to walk me through the conflict.  “The students were there but it was these politicians who couldn’t be arrested that were instant heroes as they stood before the bull dozers."
“It wasn’t radicals. Tens of thousands of ordinary people came out. There’s no other green space in Beyoglu like Gezi Park.  There was a sense that this government was like the bulldozers here so it was as much a metaphor.  There’s tremendous fear now about the government’s perceived destructiveness. Everyone loved Ataturk and Turkish people want democracy but there was a feeling that Turkey was becoming a police state. The Gezi Park Riots were at the centre of all this.  Then suddenly the police left, it was over and today we still have this park.  People saw this as a sign that the government could still hear the voice of the majority and wasn’t deaf as people had feared. “
We sat in a cafe enjoying coffee.  Some men came up wanting to interview us about the Charlie Hebdo murders in Paris. Deborah said how sad she was at  the loss of life and the tragedy of it all. I, typically , answered their questions with more vehemence.  “I don’t think murdering innocent people can be justified.  I think the murderers are just common criminals, sociopaths and psychopaths who have a desire to kill and use religion or whatever else is handy to justify their lack of civilization or social maturity.”  Deborah said she thought the young men had difficulty with translating words like “psychopath’ and ‘sociopaths’.  They did look a little befuddled after I’d spoken.
Gezi Park really was a lovely place. Deborah and I talked about our pasts and what had brought us to Istanbul.
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Trici Venola - Drawing on Istanbul

It was a delight to meet Trici, first in New Town then next at the Crimea Memorial near the Galata Tower in Istanbul.
“I mostly draw in the winter because I’m so busy guiding in the summer.’  We’d been invited  for lunch with Father Ian and others from the Christ Church.  A continuation of the normal after church coffee and tea.  I loved the area that Trici walked me through. “They often don’t realize that once you destroy something old you can never make it old again.'
It’s been Trici's passion to record the out of the way ancient bits.  “They want to put up a high-rise parking lot complex in this area but it’s full of old ruins.  As well it’s a vibrant community of cafe’s  where artists and locals congregate.  The idea of a flashy modern hotel complex is right out of sync with the community.  Yet shiny, new and big is where the new money is so it may well go ahead.”
I’d heard often of this conflict between developers and community.  Were it not for the whole “heritage” movement cities around the world would be destroyed by modernity no different than they’d been destroyed by alien invaders.   It’s a different twist of Joni Mitchell’s famous song, “ they paved paradise to put up a parking lot’.
I so enjoy England’s Prince Charles insights into urban planning in this regard.  He's been at the forefront of the heritage movement. It’s all a matter of balance.  It’s obvious too that Turkey’s first president Ataturk understood the importance of history. The concern is with the leaderships today who often lack the genius and vision of yesterday's greats.
As tourists we don't need to travel from the new world to the old world to see fancier hotels and parking lots.  Indeed I challenge anyone to show me a more modern and beautiful city than my own Vancouver.  There the ideas of Frank Lloyd Wright are as important to architecture as the preservation of the skyline laws are to old Istanbul.
The very best portrayal of 'developer arrogance and insanity' is in Douglas Adam's "Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy" where the Vorgon's destroy our planet earth  to put up a faster intergalactic space way!
I loved Trici’s drawings. She showed me a 13th century byzantine church that was now a car wash.  The owner of the car wash loved his location, the natural beauty and history and Trici’s love for this.  As a result famous artists and entertainers, she guided were brought to this shrine. There’s a wonderful irony this former baptismal site is now a thriving car wash.
Along the way we saw  amazing graffiti art. This was truly poetic ‘art’ and not the all too common doggerel graffiti  that really benefits from whitewash. But who decides what is ‘art’ in the street? I don’t think it should be left to ‘ city maintenance’ workers.  Would they recognize a Banksy?
Trici as well as guiding teaches drawing in Istanbul, combining her love of the city and her joy of drawing.

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Istanbul - out and about

I spent time just walking about Istanbul.  I took a lot of pictues. There was another Armenian Church I looked in. There was the main street of New Town.  I'd stayed in the Amber Hotel in Old Town but moved to the Riva Hotel by Taksim Square.  Both hotels were excellent but the flavour of old town and new town were very different which each having it's merits.  Old Town and New Town are on the European side but there's also the Asian side which adds another dimension to the diversity that is Istanbul .The New Town is in the district of Beyoglu. I was amused to get a picture of a lingerie store showing that the wold over men like women in kinky nurse uniforms.  I took a taxi a few times and just snapped some shots out the window.  It’s a beautiful city with sights everywhere to be seen.  A real mix of old, new and ancient.
Taksim, New Town.
Riva, the very nice hotel I stayed in by Taksim Square.
Advertising poster.
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Two great guys who were selling riverboat tours. When I asked them directions they got out their gps and directed me right to where I needed to be. So many of the Turkish people were so helpful like this. One fellow Mustafa walked me several blocks to my destination one eventing when the taxi let me off short of where I was going.

Star pf David on Synagogue near Galata Tower
Ophthalmology Hospital. Galata Tower.
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