Residential Space A creative outlet during residency, turned ongoing virtual soap box

Oil Prices  2

Posted on January 30th, 2006. About Money, News and Politics.

As many of you who know me are probably well aware, the rise in oil prices over the past few years has not bothered me. (Warning – here comes another list.) This is primarily because: A) I hardly ever drive, B) Gas is not nearly as expensive here as it is in Great Britain, and C) My hope is that expensive gasoline will force people away from gas-guzzling SUVs and towards more energy efficient vehicles and transportation modalities.

I have heard quite a bit from the media recently about Iran, oil hitting $68/barrel, blah blah blah…and then I found this most excellent graphic at http://money.cnn.com :

Oil through the ages

I especially like that the price of a barrel of oil is adjusted for inflation so that I can relate to how much of a burden the price really was. I am discounting the 1864 value since these folks were not dependent on automobiles, but the 1979-1980 value is interesting, isn’t it? Oil has been (when adjusted) higher than $68/barrel before with the masses panicking, and things cooled off. I expect the same may happen this time around as well. Then, perhaps the panic will be over how oil stocks are “tanking.” Too soon to tell, though.

The Perfect Orange  0

Posted on January 30th, 2006. About Uncategorized.

In November, Dr. Stephanie Wheeler, the attending physician for our medicine team at the VA Hospital, brought us a bag full of these small, somewhat shriveled oranges that still possessed their stems and leaves. Hmmm…I inquired as to where she obtained these strange things, and she informed me that they came from the Whole Foods Market. No one touched them the entire night on call. Now, I love oranges, but I hate eating them while working because: A) sticky fingers from peeling them, B) no good place to spit the seeds, and C) I have to peel all of that white stuff off of them to keep them from tasting too stringy.

Anyway, I finally broke down and decided to peel one the following morning. I peeled it in, I’m not kidding, less than ten seconds. Just grab part of the skin, and the whole thing practically peels itself. Inside was the juiciest (but none of the juice got on my fingers), most delicious seedless orange I have ever tasted, and it had minimal white stuff on its exterior. Wow – so all three of the annoying aspects to oranges had been eliminated. I had just consumed the perfect orange.

At this point, in typical Jodi-fashion, it was time to do some research on this most curious fruit. It is a type of mandarin orange, similar to a Clementine, but not quite as sweet, called a Satsuma. They are available during the late fall/winter months here and are grown in California’s San Joaquin Valley. Apparently, there is also a research project at Auburn University in Alabama, and of course some are grown in Florida, but I don’t recall having ever seen them at the grocery stores in South Carolina.

In brief, I am delighted to have found such a perfect fruit that can keep me happy until strawberries are back in season.

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