Author Topic: In the New Yorker...  (Read 864165 times)

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2250 on: November 17, 2019, 08:05:47 pm »
Once again I'm way behind in my reading. I visited my dad this weekend, and I had the Nov. 11 issue with me. This should have been the perfect time to catch up, but the trouble was, I just didn't feel like reading TNY. I was more interested in re-reading a book I'd first read many years ago, so that's what I did.

The Nov. 18 issue was waiting for me when I returned home late this afternoon.
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Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2251 on: November 17, 2019, 08:43:05 pm »
Careful ... an issue here, an issue there, and next thing you know you’ve got a pile dating back to the previous presidential administration.

:laugh:

Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2252 on: November 30, 2019, 01:02:23 pm »
Last night at only 6 pm I retired to my fireplace setting and read three (3!) articles from the latest issue. "The Defector" is another in the almost-weekly series of articles about how the Internet is taking away our privacy and humanity. "Ecstacsy and Ruin" is about Beck, where Los Angeles attempts, and nearly succeeds in stealing the spotlight. "Can You Forgive Her?" draws subtle parallels between Thatcher-era Britain and what we are going through in the U.S. now. I also read parts of "The Interview" about volunteers who try to get parole for people imprisoned for serious crimes. It seems like an exercise in futility. Even the criminals themselves don't understand why the volunteers are doing it.

Even though some of these topics are heavy, I find reading The New Yorker a good stress reliever. People tell me to watch shows like "The Sopranos", etc. but I find them very depressing and it often takes me several days to get over a watching session.
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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2253 on: November 30, 2019, 01:05:02 pm »
During Thanksgiving I listened to NPR's "On Giving" show and delighted to hear Adam Gopnik talk on several subjects. Apparently he has a new book out called The Table Comes First, which I'd like to give my son for Christmas.
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Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2254 on: November 30, 2019, 05:39:23 pm »
Last night at only 6 pm I retired to my fireplace setting and read three (3!) articles from the latest issue. "The Defector" is another in the almost-weekly series of articles about how the Internet is taking away our privacy and humanity. "Ecstacsy and Ruin" is about Beck, where Los Angeles attempts, and nearly succeeds in stealing the spotlight. "Can You Forgive Her?" draws subtle parallels between Thatcher-era Britain and what we are going through in the U.S. now. I also read parts of "The Interview" about volunteers who try to get parole for people imprisoned for serious crimes. It seems like an exercise in futility. Even the criminals themselves don't understand why the volunteers are doing it.

Those sound interesting. I don't think I would have read the Beck story without your endorsement. I'll try it.

It happened again this week. I was looking forward to reading the New Yorker, which contained a piece by David Sedaris. I usually turn immediately to anything he writes. But when I got the mail that evening I found another, newer New Yorker.


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Even though some of these topics are heavy, I find reading The New Yorker a good stress reliever. People tell me to watch shows like "The Sopranos", etc. but I find them very depressing and it often takes me several days to get over a watching session.

I put off watching The Sopranos until a few years ago, then I watched all six seasons -- an episode a night. Mostly I enjoyed them but I'll admit there were a few in there that were hard to take.

And I know what you mean. I'm in a TV rut right now and I should either finish the season of Orange is the New Black, or watch the new season of The Handmaid's Tale, but both sound like such downers I'm never in the mood to turn them on. (OITNB is occasionally light, but also often depressing. THT is never light.)




Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2255 on: December 07, 2019, 12:07:26 pm »
So, what do you Brokie moms think of Burkhard Bilger's article about baby food (Nov. 25)?
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2256 on: December 07, 2019, 02:57:39 pm »
So, what do you Brokie moms think of Burkhard Bilger's article about baby food (Nov. 25)?

I didn't read it because a) I've never been that interested in baby food, even when I had babies. I believe people tend to way overthink the subject and that young children are more resilient than we seem to think and b) what appeared to me to be the premise -- babies should eat more vegetables -- doesn't necessarily ring true to me. I could be misinterpreting the point, though -- was that what he was saying? What did you think of the article?

I've long held a theory that most children dislike vegetables for completely healthy evolutionary reasons. Back in caveman days, if an infant wandered away from adult supervision and ate some meat s/he'd probably be OK unless the meat was rotten, in which case the smell alone might prevent tasting. But if an infant wandered away and ate some random plant, it could easily be poisonous without giving off any warning sign. Kids who did that were less likely to live long enough to reproduce and pass on their veggie-consuming genes. So an aversion to vegetables is hardwired until kids are old enough to use better judgement or follow adult guidance.

So I have assumed (possibly incorrectly!) that most babies throughout history have not consumed a ton of vegetables and yet the human race did not die out, so it's probably OK.



Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2257 on: December 07, 2019, 05:19:21 pm »
I didn't read it because a) I've never been that interested in baby food, even when I had babies. I believe people tend to way overthink the subject and that young children are more resilient than we seem to think and b) what appeared to me to be the premise -- babies should eat more vegetables -- doesn't necessarily ring true to me. I could be misinterpreting the point, though -- was that what he was saying? What did you think of the article?

Seems to me that in the end, he more or less comes to the same conclusion, that people overthink the subject, and young kids are more resilient than we think. He also discusses how much sugar is in commercially produced baby food, even when sugar is not added.


Quote
I've long held a theory that most children dislike vegetables for completely healthy evolutionary reasons. Back in caveman days, if an infant wandered away from adult supervision and ate some meat s/he'd probably be OK unless the meat was rotten, in which case the smell alone might prevent tasting. But if an infant wandered away and ate some random plant, it could easily be poisonous without giving off any warning sign. Kids who did that were less likely to live long enough to reproduce and pass on their veggie-consuming genes. So an aversion to vegetables is hardwired until kids are old enough to use better judgement or follow adult guidance.

He touches on that, too, about the poisonous plant thing.


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So I have assumed (possibly incorrectly!) that most babies throughout history have not consumed a ton of vegetables and yet the human race did not die out, so it's probably OK.

In everything I've read about family life in past centuries, I don't recall anybody discussing what was fed to babies and how it was fed. All I remember reading is that small children drank small beer just like grown-ups because the water was impure.
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2258 on: December 08, 2019, 11:34:23 am »
In everything I've read about family life in past centuries, I don't recall anybody discussing what was fed to babies and how it was fed. All I remember reading is that small children drank small beer just like grown-ups because the water was impure.

I did know that everybody of every age drank from morn til night because they didn't trust the water. I've always wondered, though, whether they were right about the water in this country. I can see why they would be right about the water in European cities, but you'd think it would be purer here. So were they just paranoid because of previous experiences or were there "natural" diseases in the water here?

I think the reason you have read less about what was fed to babies in the past is because there were fewer options. Breast milk vs. formula was, of course, a non-issue until the late 1800s. And once children were old enough to eat solid foods, there were no commercial varieties. So I suppose most families breastfed babies as long as possible then fed them whatever they had on hand.

One thing that was common was for wealthier families to hire wet nurses so the mother wouldn't have to bother with breastfeeding. Sometimes they dropped babies off with professional wet nurses, which because of diseases and stuff, often led to the babies' deaths. But I believe people took babies' deaths more in stride back then -- they would had to have, because infant death was so common as to be almost expected.



Offline Front-Ranger

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2259 on: December 08, 2019, 02:43:30 pm »
Why would you think water is and was purer in the Americas? In the stories of Western expansion, there were many reports of impure water leading to illness and death from diarrhea, cholera, dysentery, typhoid fever and the like. Also in mountainous places, water can have high levels of metals, including lead, mercury, arsenic and uranium.

For example, in Wyoming, there is an area called Sweetwater where the water is naturally filtered with sand and aquatic plants, so it gained the reputation of being safe to drink. It was along the Oregon Trail. But there are many other places called Badwater, Bitter Creek, etc. Along the central western part of Wyoming is the "Muddy Gap", a place where water flows neither west or east, and the Continental Divide is fractured. Stagnant water bred disease. But we've ventured a long ways from baby food.

I fed my daughter baby food but my son got soft regular food. All of my grandchildren were fed from their mother's plate, with the addition of applesauce and the like that comes in a squeezable pouch. They started with the BRAT diet: bananas, rice, applesauce and toast. When ill, they go back to the BRAT diet until well. As a baby, my daughter loved olives, tuna, and green onions pulled out of the ground. Also, she loved tomatoes and broccoli. Babies seem to like the food their mothers ate while they were in the womb.

Warning, now, I'll say a few words about breast feeding. Breast milk is quite sweet. It also has a lot of fat. When I was breast feeding my daughter, I thought I needed to drink a lot of milk. Unfortunately, my husband would only have skim milk in the fridge. The milk was high in protein and low in fat and gave my daughter colic. She had stomach problems and her growth was stunted. When my son's turn came around, if I couldn't get whole milk, I drank extra water. He didn't have colic and has grown tall and strong.
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