one fine president’s day


Started the day with a bicycle climb up one of Seattle’s steepest hills. For those of you not from around here, that’s mighty dang steep. Every time I got to a cross street I’d ride around the traffic circle, gasping for breath before trying to power up the next block. My progress was so slow that, from above, I must have looked like a hamster on a treadmill. I made it. Some guy riding perpendicular to me near the top of the hill said, “Good work.” Thanks, buddy. That made it all worthwhile.

An hour or so later I was downtown at a labor immigration reform rally. I was able to use two of my few Spanish vocabulary words leftover from high school. Q: ”Cuando?”  A: “Ahora!” Then I took a photo of Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn as he posed with a friend. “Say bicycle!” I said to inspire a smile (the mayor is an avid cyclist.).

That night I saw Ben Goldacre, columnist for the Guardian and author of Bad Science and Bad Pharma. He talked really fast. Funny guy. Even though it was a deadly dry subject — medical research publishing and pharmaceutical marketing — he made it as lively as possible. He talked about the large number of clinical research studies that are never published. This provides an uneven and downright distorted view of the evidence regarding treatments. Critical decisions are being made about medications without the whole picture. He mentioned some efforts to correct this which had failed and additional efforts that might succeed.

Then I got wrapped up and out late and must … go … to … sleep … now, as William Shatner would say it.  Below: a classic Fremont moment at the beginning of yesterday’s riding. Waiting with other cyclists for the bridge.



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