Because creating vague yet interesting-sounding headlines is what I do.

Erin started classes at Western University in Monmouth on Monday. We debated making these family day trips so she could feed Jonah on the spot but ultimately decided that it would be easier if he and I stayed at home and I bottle-fed him. Despite some major poodoos and massive milk burp ups, the arrangement seems to be working. I like that it allows Erin to be temporarily untethered from the kid since she’s been virtually nothing but since he was born.

Jonah’s sleeping through the nights with perhaps one wake-up call in the early morning. Since he’s only at 8 weeks, we’re very pleased by this. More thrillingly, he’s even made it entirely through a couple nights without a peep, proving at least to me that there is such a thing as heaven on earth.

Jonah’s bigger now, weighing in at just under 13 lbs. His burp ups and poodoos are correspondingly larger, which is obviously the downside. All his cuddling makes up for a lot of that, though. And he’s just so durned cute, that one can’t help but be forgiving of everything else. I’ve posted another Jonah photo gallery so you don’t have to just take my word for it.

Dave was here yesterday and we updated his parents iMac with all the latest and greatest stuff. It wasn’t a long visit, but it was, as always, a good one. Dave even got some Jonah hold time which, given that babies don’t stay this size forever, is pretty nifty.

Late in the evening Bret stopped by, and we swapped video tapes. FIFA is running a Confederation Cup tourney in France, and since it’s broadcast on Spanish language stations we receive but Bret doesn’t, we’re taping the games for him. In return, he’s taping The Amazing Race 4 which is on at the same time as the games.

Outside the home front, I read in the paper that McDonald’s is “asking” (read: telling) its meat suppliers to reduce their use of antibiotics in farm animals by the end of 2004. According to The New York Times, “McDonald’s said it was making the change because of growing evidence that the use of antibiotics in farm animals was creating antibiotic resistance in animals and in the bacteria that cause diseases in humans.”

Well, no kidding, Sherlock. Nice of you join rest of the scientific community, if only partially. Most of what’s really going must have been left unsaid in the press release because McDonald’s still didn’t talk about:

  • Antibiotics pumped into animals have major health consequences for the human beings who eat them. It’s not just that the bacteria develops a resistance. It’s that the antibiotics themselves are bad for us.
  • The larger point is that the animals are still going to be treated terribly, forced to eat food which makes them sick (which is mainly why the antibiotics are used—to keep the cows alive long enough so that they can be fattened up and killed).
  • Mickey D’s still doesn’t have microbial testing in their meat facilities. Food born illness from fast food is a major problem, and the reduction in the use of antibiotics will likely make this worse not better.
  • This does nothing to eliminate one of the central problems of McDonald’s burgers: There is (forgive me) shit in the meat. Until they insist that meat suppliers allow their animals the dignity to express their nature (in the case of cows, by roaming and eating grass), this problem will not go away.
  • I wouldn’t eat a McDonald’s burger if you paid me.

Speaking of drugs and human beings, a number of pharmaceudical companies (Abbott Labs, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Wyeth I’m looking in your direction!) are promoting an “enhanced” infant formula chock full of fatty acids as a way to increase your infants IQ. Why breast-feed your newborn, parents are being asked, when we can sell you a product?

The Food and Drug Administration is noticeably iffy about the claims of these infant formula makers, and so should you be. The American Academy of Pediatrics declines to endorse the “super formulas” because of their “unknown adverse effects.” Yes, we’re busy writing another pathetic chapter in the story of American capitalism.

Howard Dean, MD for president. It’s early yet, but I think he will win the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary. Whether he ultimately takes the nomination will be a test of the Democratic Party. If grassroots activism is what the party is about, he’s in. If it’s about money and entrenched power brokers, say hello to Sen. John Kerry.