New Old Trek, dietary pop science, and healthcare

I’m ready for it to be warm enough to put my plants outside. The amount of mealybugs I have is obnoxious, and there’s no better treatment than popping them out back to get eaten by predatory bugs. I was just looking at old posts on my Facebook, and I said this exact same thing last year. I don’t think I needed to release more predatory insects indoors; I seem to recall making it through to summer last year. Of course, my memory is crap, so what do I know?

I promised myself I’d stop talking about my New Sober Life because going on and on about withdrawal is an extremely boring subject. But. I have been having rather strong anxiety the last couple weeks in fits and starts. My psychiatrist recommended I focus on improving my diet and exercise, and of course that is something I must do too; I’ve gotten very out-of-shape.

But I think it’s also a side-effect of the withdrawal, based upon what I see in MJ recovery groups. I’m only (“only”) two months into sobriety. It’s fairly early, all things considered. I’m looking at a year-long withdrawal process (for reals!). 2024 is just gonna involve spurts of anxiety, periods of feeling stoned (like the last couple days tbh), and brainfog making me dreadfully forgetful.

On the bright side, I do continue working a bit, and I hope I can keep at it. I am having a very hard time focusing on worky stuff but the desire is there, if not necessarily willpower or energy. I Want To Get Better.


I used to hate the Abrams-spawned Trek movies, but the distance of time has given me fondness for them. I really like Chris Pine as Kirk. The fandom specific to those movies is endearing. Also, it’s easier to swallow “wrong” Trek when Trek has continued since. It was hard to accept those shallow, action-oriented Trek films when it felt like a rejection of most everything Trek had been until then, and I feared we would never get more of the Trek I like. We have gotten plenty more good Trek since.

So it’s with that in mind that I continue watching NuTrek 4 development with curiosity. There’s a new writer attached. (Variety)

It’s been awhile since the last movies, and Pine at least is in his Daddy Era, so I’d love if they skewed toward some Star Trek II aging-related plots.


One study has linked intermittent fasting to heart disease-related deaths. (Smithsonian Mag) I used to spend a lot of time in diet circles, and what they would say in defense of IF is this: the study is self-reported, and self-reported diet studies don’t mean very much in isolation. This looked at people for eight years, and doesn’t seem to have controlled for lifestyle or many other factors. It doesn’t seem they even looked at whether people were fasting willingly or if it was brought about by other circumstances. You really have to wait for meta studies to draw conclusions.

In diet circles, IF is regarded as a health panacea. They’ll point out that everyone does some degree of IF, since (almost?) nobody eats overnight when they’re sleeping, and that feast/famine is a “natural” eating pattern for humans. I’ve become increasingly skeptical of all the dietary magic bullets. I’m willing to believe it’s more dangerous than anyone says. I already think most restrictive diet patterns like keto and IF are less likely to be suitable for people with estrogen-driven hormone systems.

Generally the best advice that seems to persist through the ages: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”


I really can’t just link every article, but I always enjoy the read. This one is about ways to think about time.

We’re stuck with the past. But you can dress it up in different ways. Often, what happened in the past is affected in the future because ‘what happened’ depends on how things turn out. Whether some past purchase was a lucrative investment decision depends on what happens to the investment after the decision. Even if you reasoned really well, if your prediction didn’t pan out, you lose the money. If you met someone for a coffee and it turns out that this was the first meeting of the relationship that defines your life, then the coffee was a different kind of event than of a coffee meeting that leads nowhere and has no later significance. This needn’t be a failure of knowledge on your part. Whether or not it counts as a significant event in your life might hinge on how things go subsequently. There may be no clues that you can spot at the time. So there you are, sitting in a café, nervously reading an online magazine, unaware of the significance of the event you are waiting for – because there is no fact yet!


Senator Ava Burch of Arizona did a brave thing: she announced both her pregnancy and abortion simultaneously on the Senate floor. (NPR) Hers was medically necessary due to a tragically unviable fetus. She’s had a lengthy history of miscarriage. Her story is one that more people find sympathetic, but she stands in defense of everyone’s abortion.

“I don’t think people should have to justify their abortions,” Burch, a Democrat, told the chamber.

“But I’m choosing to talk about why I made this decision, because I want us to be able to have meaningful conversations about the reality of how the work that we do in this body impacts people in the real world,” she said, in reference to the state’s 15-week abortion ban, passed in 2022. […]

Burch, who is also a nurse practitioner, says the current law requires her provider to give a list of “absolute disinformation” as well as what Burch describes as an “unnecessary” ultrasound, plus counseling designed to change the minds of patients with viable pregnancies.

“I was told that I could choose adoption; I was told that I could choose parenting, which were two things that I couldn’t choose,” Burch said. “And it was cruel to suggest that that was an option for me when it’s not.”

Disinformation surrounding abortions is law in many places, and it’s simply cruel for the government to be involved in medical decisions like these. It’s the definition of personal.


Puerto Rico is having an outbreak of dengue. Cows in Texas and Kansas have bird flu. (Ars Technica)

I always think about how often I’ve heard that increased epidemics are going to be one of the hardest-hitting effects of climate change. I don’t know if that’s a factor here, but…I think about it.


Scientists want parts of the Moon protected from private interests so that it can be used for scientific purposes instead. (Smithsonian Mag) I extremely do not like humans more aggressively marking off bits of our beloved space-rock for any reason, but I suppose scientific research is preferable.

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