Showing posts from July, 2014

The Social Grump: No Handshakes, Kissing or Sharing Food For Me

    Okay we all have our own little idiosyncrasies and for the most part we expect the world to deal with them.   I have three (well, perhaps there are many more, maybe even a thundering lot, but these are ones I’m willing to admit here).   These three, alas, make me something of a social grump and doubtless the cause of snide comments behind my back. Two of them are health related.   As readers of this blog may know, in 2009 I had a heart transplant and while that has put me into excellent physical condition it has left me with a weakened immune system.   Let’s deal with those two first. 1.   Shaking Hands .   While I will routinely shake hands when introduced to someone, I never do so in hospitals for obvious reasons.   Hospital personnel are generally pretty good at understanding my reluctance.   A recent USA Today article reported on studies that have found all sorts of nasty germs on lab coats, sleeves, ties, watches, rings and even shoes worn by healt

Are Gays Really Just 1.6% of the U.S. Population?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the federal government’s watchdog for health statistics has just released a 2013 National Health Survey on its gay citizens, which it compiled by having the Census Bureau interview 33,557 adults between the ages of 18 and 64.   The actual report can be found at .   The government began by asking respondents their sexual orientation.   Only 1.6% of those willing to be interviewed self-identified as gay, with another .7% announcing that they were bisexual.   This is the lowest estimate of the number of gays in the country produced in modern times and it’s caused quite a stir.   Homophobes were thrilled, with one blogger exclaiming, “ The CDC is doing a service , because it has clearly de-bunked the ‘10% of the population’ claim that the gay-rights movement has routinely pushed,” and another stating that even this new number is too high: “This comes from the Obama machine, trying to norma