A happy, sad story of a Dutch village and dementia

A story about a Dutch village “where everyone has dementia” is both happy and sad.

It is good to know that the residents are treated with respect and dignity and are helped to live as normally as possible in their new reality. The sadness comes from the knowledge that there is no cure for what afflicts them and that so few can live in Hogewey.

The article says it might be impossible to make such a place work in the United States. We do have some good assisted living facilities for those who can afford them, but far too many families don’t have that luxury.

It seems there are lessons we can learn from the Dutch village experience, and big questions we need to ask. One question the article raises is particularly intriguing: How much of dementia is a result of disease, and how much is a result of how we treat it?

My question: Are we ready to help the millions more who are likely to need dementia care in years to come?

Sadly, no.

Quote

Whither American greatness?

We create magical devices — manufactured elsewhere — that sit in our palms and can tell us there is good pizza around the corner, but we can’t get our hands around a version of our future that unpacks the mysteries of the great beyond.

via American Greatness 2.0 — Press Play — Medium.

The guys’ revealing view of cycling people to know

When you publish a list of people to know in an industry and those people are all male, the list may reveal more about yourself than you intended.

Puncture

Puncture (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m assuming there was no editor to ask some important questions. The result makes a person wonder if the writer and publishers:

  1. Really believe the only people worth knowing are male.
  2. Did not know there are females worth knowing in the industry.
  3. Even considered the possibility that some women have an impact.
  4. Were just too lazy or didn’t care enough to do a thorough job.

None of those possible reasons for the males-only list reflects well on the guys at Element.ly. On a positive note, they did show the good judgment to publish this two days later:

Don’t daydream on a bicycle?

…every cyclist must assume that every car driver could kill them. And you should never daydream.

Here at the Smith Compound (SC) we can’t say that Timothy Egan is wrong in this sad NYTimes piece about the death of a 31-year-old Seattle woman.

Indeed, while cycling we assume that every motorist, pedestrian and cyclist in the immediate vicinity is about to do something stupid, as they very often do.

But never daydream? It is surprisingly easy to become lost in thought while pedaling down the road or trail.

To never daydream is to deny one of the greatest pleasures of going about the countryside on two wheels.

Never is asking too much.

The SC prefers a more moderate approach: Be aware of your surroundings, and daydream when there’s no one else in sight.

empty road

Time to think, to dream

On accidents and executions

Accident warning

Accident warning (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When is an accident a criminal act? When is an execution really brutal murder?

Two shootings that Meredith Carroll mentions in the Denver Post on Sunday were, indeed, accidental by some definitions.

A police officer accidentally shot his teen daughter in their garage; a woman in Florida accidentally shot her 7-year-old grandson. They were unfortunate events, to put it mildly, that resulted from carelessness. They were also by far the most common type of accident: the ones that can be prevented.

That the shootings were in some sense accidental doesn’t mean those who pulled the triggers are blameless. They pulled the triggers quite intentionally with horrific, unintentional results. There is, or should be, a legal price to pay. We should also find a better word than “accident” to describe such things.

Similarly, the media have almost universally described the beheading of journalist James Foley as an execution.

More precisely, it was murder.

“Cleansing” a term that masks brutal reality

A Denver Post editorial ran under this headline the other day:

The latest religious cleansing in the Mideast

Feel free to click that to read the Post’s opinion. I agree with it, but it prompted this response from The Smith Compound in the form of a letter to the editor:

We should purge the euphemism “cleansing” from our collective vocabulary when what we really mean is persecution, extortion, and murder. There is nothing truly religious or clean about what you described in that editorial. You already know that; just tell it like it is.

Words matter.

 

Petition: Treat the children as refugees

Consider this, if you think of children being detained at our southern border as young refugees rather than criminals: Petition.

Here’s my take, from last week:

Are the children refugees or illegal immigrants?

 

Supermoons right on “schedule”

The sight of a rather large moon over the Flatirons this morning reminded me of a Sunday evening news report about the supermoon on Saturday night.

Two more are “scheduled,” the news reader said, one in August and another in September, leaving me wondering who is in charge of supermoon scheduling.

We should have them more often.

English: A supermoon is a perigee-syzygy, a ne...

English: A supermoon is a perigee-syzygy, a new or full moon (syzygy) which occurs when the Moon is at 90% or greater of its mean closest approach to Earth (perigee). The March 19, 2011 supermoon is just 221,566 miles (356,577 kilometers) away from Earth. The last time the full moon approached so close to Earth was in 1993, according to NASA. it is about 20 percent brighter and 15 percent bigger than a regular full moon. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)