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October 2012

Do Seniors Network?

October 27, 2012 | Jorge | Comments (0)

Who said networking is for business people and business people only? If you ever thought that networking is not a senior’s thing – think again.

Networking is an effective activity for everybody - from all walks of life and from all ages. Sometimes it’s hard to separate the word from professional advancement but simply put, it is the exchange of information between two or more people that may benefit either party. So how does networking benefit seniors?

Seniors Network

There are many exchanges that can help the elderly – new health information or lifestyle routines are normally the conversation centerpiece. In my experience with seniors, one of the most valuable networking discussions is when seniors talk about the programs and events they’ve attended. It’s really an opportunity to get a sense of whether a community program is right for you.

In the spirit of making connections, a group of community-based organizations are getting together to showcase their community supports for seniors. We are inviting Dr. Magic to perform some tricks and a local pianist to keep the rhythm going. Please see the event information page for the Magic of Connections Community Fair at the Barbara Frum Branch.

Monday October 29, 2012
2-4:30 p.m.
3rd Floor, Room A & B

Is it just the flu?

October 13, 2012 | Cynthia | Comments (0)

Is it just the flu?

    As the weather starts to get colder, people start talking about “cold and flu season” and going to the doctor for a flu shot.  When someone does get sick, they will often be heard to say, “It’s just the flu – I’ll go to my doctor for some antibiotics.”  But is it a cold or is it the flu? What’s the difference?  Is it really seasonal? Is it really just the flu, and will antibiotics help? 

    If your symptoms hit suddenly and hard – you’re feeling weak, tired, running a fever of 38.5C or more, have a severe headache and you ache all over, this is probably the flu.  If your symptoms come on more gradually – you have a sore throat, stuffy nose, maybe some coughing and a mild headache, this is probably a cold.

    So what?  It’s no big deal – you’ll just go to the doctor for antibiotics, right?  Colds and flu are both caused by viruses, so antibiotics won’t help.  Nothing will actually cure either one, although there are lots of things you can take or make at home or do to ease the symptoms a bit.

    Ok, you say, but it’s just a cold or flu, right?  It’s no big deal – the ads on tv imply that you can just take some medicine and stay in bed for a day and then go back to work – or maybe go back to work once you’ve taken the medicine.  But is that true?  It depends – who remembers SARS?  That was a non-influenza virus that experts said could be contained by “quarantine and hygiene” – stay at home if you’re feeling sick and wash your hands frequently.  But the flu virus spreads much faster and doesn’t respond to “quarantine and hygiene.”  And it can be deadly – the flu pandemic of 1918 to 1920 spread around the globe in about four months, killing millions of people.  It was sometimes called “the Spanish flu” but that’s not accurate – scientists don’t know where it started, or when.  It was spread quickly partly because of troop movements and their close quarters during World War I, and killed about 10 to 20% of the people that were infected.  Most flu viruses hit the very young, the elderly, and people with weak immune systems.   The influenza pandemic of 1918-1920 hit hardest at healthy people in their prime – more than half the deaths were among healthy people 20 to 40 years of age,  because the disease caused a massive overreaction of their immune systems.

    One academic argues that the virus “helped tip the balance of power” toward the Allies nearing the end of the war, because the viral waves hit the Central Powers before they hit the Allied Powers and that “both morbidity and mortality in Germany and Austria were considerably higher than in Britain and France.” 

    If you would like to find out more about the flu pandemic of 1918, here are some suggestions:

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There have also been novels written about this, or set in that time period, such as:

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Children's nonfiction:

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and Children's fiction:

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Soccer, Lies and Deceit

October 10, 2012 | Jorge | Comments (0)

Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World Cup Qualifying is in full kick.  With forthcoming matches this weekend, soccer supporters and fanatics are gearing up to see their favourite teams advance.

As much as we love to think that it is all about “the love for the game” there have been numerous controversies involving FIFA.  I’m sure you heard about Canadian world-class striker, Christine Sinclair, and the comments she made towards a FIFA referee that called a penalty in favour of the USA Soccer Team.  Christine allegedly stated that the USA cheated their way into an eventual over-time victory.  

Corruption in professional soccer is not a new storyline.  The inequalities have been secretly documented by reporters and journalists including the release of Foul! The Secret World of FIFA: Bribes, Vote-Rigging and Ticket Scandals - the first international exposé of bribery in the world’s most passionate sport.   Checkout some titles below for more insider stories, but don’t take the lies and deceit too close to heart!

The Fix   Foul   Fifa Mafia

Let's Get Physical

October 4, 2012 | Claire A | Comments (3)

Everyone always says that summer is a great time to get into shape but I say there is no time like the present.  A year ago today, I made the best decision of my life: I joined the gym and I have become a new person.  Not only am I physically and mentally stronger, but I am more confident and happy in my day to day life.  Making a lifestyle change with physical fitness isn't always the easiest but choosing exercises that you find convenient and enjoyable will help you to stick to your activity plan.  For more tips on how to incorporate fitness into your everyday life, check out some of these titles. 

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