I’m back!

2 things. First, below are answers to the Friday the 13th (which seems like an eternity ago now) quiz questions.

  1. Who is more likely to die in a car crash?
    The Correct Answer: Farmers.
    Country living may be associated with a slower, safer way of life, but the stats don?t bear that clich? out. In 2005, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released the results of a study that compared fatal car accidents in rural and urban areas between the years 1999 and 2003. The study found that there were roughly 42 percent more fatal crashes in rural areas than in urban ones?and this despite the fact that rural residents were actually spending less time on the road than their urban counterparts.
     
    The data collected by the NHTSA matched up with an earlier study published in 2003 by University of Virginia architecture professor William H. Lucy. According to Lucy, three factors account for the rural areas and exurbs being more deadly: Dangerous roads, faster speeds and remote hospitals. Rural drivers are more likely to be traveling faster than 50 mph on curvy, two-lane roads, where the driving environment can quickly turn any small mistake into a big problem. Add to that the fact that hospitals are farther away and ambulances can?t arrive immediately on the scene and you?ve got a common-sense recipe for trouble.

  2. Which of the following may influence your chances of being killed by a tornado?
    The Correct Answer: Being divorced.
    On March 1, 1997, tornadoes swept through several counties in Arkansas, killing 27 people and injuring many others. Two weeks later, a team of researchers arrived to follow the tornadoes? path and try to figure out why some people survived and others had died. Led by Kent State University geology professor Thomas W. Schmidlin, the team surveyed survivors to collect what data they could about the victims?everything from age, race and sex to where the people were and what they were doing when they first realized that the twister was headed for their home.
     
    Most of their results weren?t too surprising?basement-less homes are dangerous, the sick and elderly are at risk?but one factor stood out. While 1 percent of survivors were divorced, a whopping 22 percent of fatalities shared the same ex-marital status. The ?whys? of this statistic aren?t entirely clear, but Schmidlin thinks it might have to do with the financial strain caused by divorce. ?With divorce you have to split the two households and that sometimes ends with one person living in a mobile home,? he says. ?And we know that those are very bad places to be during a tornado.?

  3. What makes a woman more likely to be murdered?
    The Correct Answer: Being pregnant.
    This is definitely one of the most disturbing death statistics out there, but, sadly, it?s very true. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the fact-finding arm of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, homicide doesn?t rank high as a cause of death in women in general. In fact, it?s only 15th on the list of leading causes of death for all Americans.
     
    But a study published in 2005 by NCHS researchers found that homicide ranked as the second-leading cause of death for pregnant and post-partum women. The study looked at deaths between 1991 and 1999 and excluded those caused by complications of pregnancy. Thirty-one percent were attributable to homicide, most often by partners and other killers known to the victims. Worse, because the pregnancy status of murder victims isn?t always recorded, that number might actually be low. Renee Brown-Bryant, associate director of health communications at the CDC?s Division of Reproductive Health, says it?s currently unclear why pregnancy increases the risk of homicide. However, one factor being investigated is whether the pregnancy was intended and how that stress might affect a relationship already prone to abuse.

  4. Which job increases your risk of dying from heart disease?
    The Correct Answer: Firefighter.
    Fighting fires is dangerous, but not just how you expect. According to a study published in the March 2007 New England Journal of Medicine, heart disease accounts for 45 percent of deaths among firefighters and the act of firefighting itself increases a firefighter?s risk of heart-related death by as much as 100 times.
     
    And heart disease isn?t just a fatal problem for the men and women in red, it pushes the majority of them into early retirement, as a previous study conducted by the same group showed. Led by Harvard researcher Dr. Stefanos Kales, the new study showed that smoke, carbon monoxide and physical stress experienced during firefighting all contribute to bad heart health?only made worse by the fact that many firefighters aren?t in top shape. According to the new study, 70 percent of fire departments don?t have physical fitness programs and new recruits often enter the service already overweight.

  5. Which of the following have been linked to an increased risk of suicide?
    The Correct Answer: Being born in spring.
    Why someone chooses to commit suicide is a very complicated matter, so it?s important to note that there?s no need to stage an intervention for all your May-born friends. However, statistical links have been drawn. In May 2006, the British Journal of Psychiatry published the surprising results of research conducted by scientists at Liverpool University and the Institute of Child Health at University College London.
     
    According to a BBC story about the report, the researchers found that British people born in April, May or June between 1979 and 2001 had a 17 percent greater chance of dying from suicide than those born in the fall months. Why? Nobody knows, but the researchers speculated that babies born during these months might be exposed in utero to diseases or other factors that made their brains more prone to depression later in life.

  6. Who is more likely to catch the deadly bacteria meningitis?
    The Correct Answer: College freshman.
    Causing fever, hallucinations, seizures and brain damage, meningitis strikes about 3,000 people in the United States each year, with roughly 10 percent of those dying. The most common victims are very young children, under the age of 3 or 4. But since the 1990s, the rates of infection in people ages 19-24 have been on the rise. Today, toddlers and post-teens are almost equally affected. And according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, college freshmen and sophomores are most at risk in the 19-24 age group.
     
    According to a 2004 study published by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases and another paper published in 2000 by the CDC, the problem seems to be a combination of group living and hobbies that weaken the immune system and spread disease. The typical college hobbies include smoking and binge drinking, often with drinks and smokes shared by multiple people, and not getting enough sleep. While these factors are common to many young people, they appear to be more prevalent among those in their first two years of college.

And the winner is — Laura! with a score of 3 out of 6! I’ll try to find a more universally popular quiz next time. It appears that one may have been a little too morbid for my readership. Until next time…

Secondly, I have just returned home from my summer vacation to NYC! 

Angela (who has appeared in previous posts) and I decided a few weeks ago that we needed a getaway to the city so we headed up to New York to stay with a friend and see a show and eat some good food and not think about work for 4 whole days! It was awesome. I was able to break out of my usual Chick-fil-A routine as we ate French, Indian, Italian, Mediterranean, Ukranian… Friday we went and checked out Saatchi’s NY offices and toured the MoMA. Saturday we saw a matinee of  Sarah Ruhl’s Eurydice at the Second Stage Theatre — which was amazing, and then hung out in Central Park for the afternoon. Sunday we went shopping on 5th Avenue and I bought my first Harry Potter book. Monday was the longest traveling day of my life as our car picked us up at Kelly’s apartment at 5am and we had a 3-hour layover in St. Louis (where I bought my 2nd Harry Potter book) and we flew back in to Little Rock and DROVE back home to Fayetteville. I thought we would never get here.

It was such a good time and the city is a lot of fun. Here are a few pictures.

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Bar Felix in SoHo — we landed here for a bite to eat on Thursday night. We planned to share an appetizer and a bottle of wine, as it was a little pricey.

A few minutes into the evening, a random (and rather intoxicated) man sat down at our table and offered to buy us a drink. A few minutes later, he reached over and took a swig out of the bottle of still water on our table – which was disgusting. So he starts apologizing over and over and takes out his wallet to pay us for the water. As we’re trying to stop him, he just keeps piling money on the table… He finally gets up to walk away and runs into a table nearly falling in the floor. His friends help him stumble out of the bar. We are all just sitting there trying to figure out what just happened – and realize that this freakshow has left us $97! We proceeded to order dinner – to supplement our appetizer and wine – and it was amazing! We had risotto with calamari, mussels, and a cheese plate for dessert. Yum!

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Saatchi & Saatchi building in NY.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 Friday nights are free at the MoMA, compliments of Target. What they don’t tell you is that there are thousands of people who have this same “get into the Museum for free” plan. We waited in this line (which honestly moved quickly) as if we were about to ride a rollercoaster. It wound around and around the lot beside the museum and then more line inside — but well worth it!

 

 

 

 

A few of the more famous pieces inside the Museum of Modern Art: Vincent van Gogh’s The Starry Night, Claude Monet’s Reflections of Clouds on the Water-Lily Pond, Pablo Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, and Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans and Double Elvis.

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Angela playing with an iPhone at the Apple store on 5th Avenue.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Really blurry (sorry!) picture of Sardi’s off Times Square.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A few photos of an Indian restaurant that we found that was OUT OF CONTROL. It was like Indian Mardi Gras in there! You truly can’t get the full effect from the pictures – I took some video that I’ll try to post. Every inch of the walls and ceiling was covered in flashing lights – of every shape and size. And there was some kind of thumping Indian disco music playing. The food was good, not great, but the atmosphere was truly one-of-a-kind!

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McSorley’s! The oldest bar in Manhattan. It opened in 1854 and has retained the priceless Irish atmosphere. They only first allowed women through the doors in 1970! If you want a drink they have two options — light or dark. And they serve you beer 2 at a time!

Tom: I thought of you the whole time we were there. I am sure that you’ve been there – and if you haven’t, we should go when you get home. (Our waiter’s name was Tom, too!)

 

 

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In Central Park. We stopped to enjoy a few street performers and have a pretzel — and walked through the park for several hours. LOVE the park.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was such a good time and I think I’ve scoped out a couple of things we HAVE to do when we go back in October 2008. I didn’t take too many pictures – which is kinda odd for me – but it was a blast.

3 Responses to I’m back!

  1. ChiquitaQ July 26, 2007 at 11:24 am #

    I am SO glad you had fun!!  I’ll make it to NYC someday… maybe a sister trip??

  2. OLDSMAJ July 27, 2007 at 7:23 pm #

    welcome back, we missed you

  3. CMartinw4 July 28, 2007 at 11:13 pm #

    I didn’t do too well on the quiz.  :( 

    I loved your NY pictures.  Should we “do” NYC the week before or the week after the wedding in October 2008?

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