27 August 2009

Hair Length

I heard an interesting 'factoid' being quoted frequently when I was getting my hair done at the hairdresser's.

"Men's hair always grow faster than women's."

Huh, I didn't know! Could it be true? Is there something in our DNA that determines hair growth?

The answer, simply, is that they were looking at the wrong number. Instead of looking at absolutes, they looked at relativity. And it's true - human brains are qualitative, not quantitative. So we say things like, "My house is bigger than yours", but rarely "My house is 200 square feet larger than yours".

Assume hair growth for both males and females is 3cm per month. On a guy with 3cm of hair, it would look like his hair has doubled in length within a month. But for a girl with 30cm hair, it would only appear that her hair has changed 10%, a slight change to the casual observer. So it's only natural for our flawed brains to perceive men's hair as growing faster than women's.


Thank you, I just saved you 60 minutes of watching Mythbusters.

26 August 2009

Under the Weather

There are instructors who can teach 3-4 classes a day and survive with a smile on their faces. Maybe I have to concede that I'm not one of them. On Friday evening I taught 2 classes, and I became quite lethargic on Saturday and Sunday. Monday I began to have cough. Monday night the fever came. I stayed in bed on Tuesday, and this morning I began to have some slight runny nose. The fever is under control, but because of that the doctor would not issue an MC for today. Damn her.

Anyway, I doubt it's A(H1N1), but I'm taking necessary precautions by avoiding contact, wearing a face mask, and upping my supplements. I am currently:
  • Taking at least 3000mg of Vitamin C a day (spread out over 3 doses)
  • Taking NoCo, a herbal supplement
  • Making lemongrass + ginger tea everyday
  • Constantly drinking warm fluids (green tea, for all its antioxidants)
  • Gargling with salt water twice a day
  • Avoiding exercise (say bye to my stamina!)

Anything else to add?


I have sciatica. Ouch.

In the latest in my long list of health problems, I did a particular nasty pull when teaching BodyJam one day. Normally sprains or muscle pulls resolve itself within 3-4 days, but when the pain intensified on Day 5, I knew this wasn't normal.

Modern medicine is surprisingly useless in resolving pain, so I decided to consult the Almighty, All-Knowing, All-Encompassing Google. Self-diagnosis has led me to conclude I have a mild form of sciatica. There is no modern cure but I found some effective deep stretches that will really relax the muscle causing the pain.

It has worked well so far, but I'm still left with a dull pain - that last stubborn 10% that won't go away! I'm now considering whether to visit a Chinese traditional sinseh, those specializing in sprains, dislocations, etc. I've heard many good things about them, but I'm reluctant to go because I have a persistent trust issue. How would I know if they cracked my back and I'd end up paralyzed from the waist down the next day?

Deep stretches for now.

25 August 2009

New Room

I'm moving to a new room! No, not a new house, but a new room!

My house has an under-utilized guest bedroom. Well, guests rarely stay over at my place. I don't blame them - my house ain't exactly a fun fair of exciting experiences.

Anyhow, the air-con in that room malfunctioned recently. My father changed it, along with the 20 year-old mattress. So now the room is actually better than my own. Therefore, the decision to switch rooms.

I've spent the last couple of weekends just cleaning up the room. You won't believe the amount of lizard excrement in that room. And the spiders I had to chase out. Eww. Mildew was the last of my worries.

Still, I managed to air out the place and now it's ripe for moving in. I just gotta decorate it a little and beautify the place. Then, I'll finally get to enjoy that nice queen-sized bed! That's the chief advantage - I can now accommodate another human being on the bed (wink! wink!). My old room only has a single bed and it's IMPOSSIBLE for 2 people to sleep on it (trust me - I've tried).

Pictures will be up once I've touched up the room with some lemongrass (nice color, easy to grow, and natural mosquito-repellant) and other as-of-yet-undecided decorations.

24 August 2009

Knock You Down

I just love love love this song from Keri Hilson, Ne-Yo, and Kanye West! It's so hopeful, optimistic, and it really gives me hope that love is still possible. Somebody, knock me down!

"Sometimes love comes around,
When it knocks you down, just get back up!"

19 August 2009

Phone SMS Usability

When looking for a new phone, my father will only insist on Nokia phones. "Superior usability," he says. I know a lot of people who are reluctant to switch away from Nokia because they really do interfaces quite well. But my Motorola phone has a little usability trick that is so effective I'm surprised I don't see it in Nokia phones.

My phone (Motorola ROKR E2) keeps a list of 5 Most Messaged numbers. So after I type my SMS, it's very likely my recipient is already at the top of the list. That's way more convenient that searching through the entire list for your friend's name, or (like what I did with my Nokia last time) append a special character in front of their names so it will appear first.

What can your non-Nokia phone do that Nokia should learn?

01 August 2009

Final Tally

Throughout my stay in Beijing, my weight has fluctuated wildly, no thanks to the constant intake of rich foods. Just before I left, the apartment's electronic weighing machine was screaming "78kg!!!!!!!!!!!' mockingly to my face. Sometimes even 79. And there was once it read 80.0 after a particularly heavy lunch.

But now that I'm back, I can re-calibrate with my own weighing machine. And that one reads 75kg this morning. Whew! 3kg, I can deal with. I have a little small tummy protruding out that I'm keeping where it belongs by sucking my breath in. Rather die from asphyxia than embarassment. Anyway, once I'm back to my usual diet and schedule of workouts, I hope to slowly burn that 3kg of fat away, and replace it with 2kg of muscle.

This would be my Operation: Eat Stage 3!