Daily Archives: 12/26/2005

More Housing

Happy Holidays! Sorry for the lapse in posting; Blogger has been quite nice to me lately and I’ve let my other web oriented things slide.

Anyways, here are a couple cool housing links:

  • EcoHouse Urca – a sustainable design/retrofit for a house in Rio de Janiero.
  • ehabitat – since I seem to be fascinated with prefab housing, here’s a cool design from Australia.

Say Hello To 2¢ Stamps

This one just kind of sneaked up on me; the US Postal Service is set to increase postage rates on January 8th, 2006. I got a pile of 2¢ stamps last week to use with all the 37¢ stamps I bought in bulk last year. Enough to tide me over at least. Seems like they just increased postage a year ago; no wait, the last postage increase was in 2002.

Not only is first class postage increasing to 39¢, postcards are increasing a penny to 24¢ as well. So maybe I should get a few 1¢ stamps to boot. Sure seems like postage rates have skyrocketed in the last few years. Though I shouldn’t complain, my 39¢ stamp gets a letter halfway around the world—if it doesn’t end up floating around the Marshall Islands.

Christmas Dinner

I know my family is worried about my holiday plans, so here’s a photo of me amidst the Germans at Christmas Dinner last night. Dianne prepared a magnificent feast of prime rib with Yorkshire pudding, asparagus, mushrooms, roast potatoes and onions. I skipped the potatoes and pudding, but the prime rib was delicious. And the company was wonderful too, with Reiner, Peter and Claudia providing plenty of fascinating topics. All those Germans at the table made it seem more like Weihnachten than Christmas in Yoña last night.
Claudia, Peter, Thomas and Reiner at Christmas DinnerThanks to Dianne for a wonderful evening of meat and converstion!

Ghouls Of New York

A piece of ghastly news made the rounds yesterday. Apparently funeral homes in New York City are harvesting the organs of the deceased and selling them for medical transplants. This is done without the family’s knowledge or consent and the tissue is often mislabeled and transplanted in unsuspecting people in need of live saving transplants.

Investigators exhumed a woman from Queens and discovered the bones in her legs were replaced with PVC pipes. Famed British broadcaster Alistair Cooke, who died last year at 95, was also desecrated in this manner, along with dozens of others. In Cooke’s case, the tissue taken from a cancerous 95 year old body was tagged as coming from an 85 year old that died of a heart condition. His remains could never have been used because of his cancer, yet the ’tissue processors’ deliberately mislabeled it for resale.

I don’t know what’s worse in this ghoulish story, the illicit harvesting of organs from the dead by funeral homes; or the fact that the organs are deliberately mislabeled and implanted in desperately ill people that need transplants to survive. The whole business is just ghastly.