Man cannot live on bread alone; we need wine, cheese, tacos, pesto, ketchup, Chinese food, or sometimes just a can of Pringles.
Your brainmeats are the most important organ you have–feeding it the same old boring crap over and over leads to blandness and eventually, decreased brain function. You have to give your brains a little flavor once in a while to liven things up and get them energized. Your brain grows the same way muscles grow and get stronger–with exercise.
And one great way to flavor your delicious brainmeats is with something like the TED talks, such as this totally amazing TED video about one man’s crusade to make condoms available throughout Thailand.
How amazing was that? 13 and a half minutes of awesome. And family growth down from 7 children per household to 1.3 in twenty years! A 90% DROP in NEW HIV/AIDS CASES!
If you aren’t familiar with the TED talks, they are always worth checking out. They’re basically these global conferences where people go to showcase some mindblowingingly interesting idea that they need funding for. And of course, you don’t just show up with some bullshit scribbled on the back of a napkin and then pass around a bucket for pocket change. TED stands for Technology Entertainment and Design, and the people who showcase their ideas are usually people whose ideas have already borne fruit, like Mr. Viravaidya.
I’ve seen some amazing suggestions over the years; one idea was teaching crows to pick up trash and paying them with food, through the use of these crow-targeted ‘vending machines.’ The crow puts in a bit of trash, metal, or paper, and the machine spits out a peanut. HOW AMAZING IS THAT IDEA? People domesticated animals for heavy lifting, hauling and protection; what if we used technology to put them to work cleaning up garbage or picking walnuts or something? And their involvment is voluntary, and they teach their offspring and other individuals within the species the behavior; it becomes sharing culture instead of domestication.
Anyhow, the TED talks are a great way to renew your faith in humanity and give your brainmeats a little flavoring.
Mr. Viravaidya is a goddamn genius on many, many levels. Only one of them is the condom thing–
–he mentioned something about ‘labor as collateral’ for people who have bad or no credit history. This BLEW MY MIND.
Think of all the homes sitting around right now that have been foreclosed on, which are now owned by banks. Many of them are falling into disrepair, making them LESS likely to sell to a buyer who ins’t already interested in either a fixer-upper or bulldozing the whole thing in order to build a McMansion. Maybe that’s why the bank isn’t interested anyway–they’d rather get someone in who’ll bulldoze a 250k house so they can build a 4 million dollar shitbox.
But think of how many people are out of work right now, in debt to those same institutions or others. The banks could easily swap labor as collateral for loans!
You apply for a loan, you voluntarily perform some task in order to qualify for it–be it manual labor or some kind of service, and you get your money and the bank receives your services in exchange. Sure it wouldn’t be a perfect option–not everyone has services or training to swap or is able to perform physical labor, and the opportunity for exploitation is huge–but it’s at least SOME kind of option for people with no or poor credit history, so long as you’re serious. Public Works projects, like fixing up crappy schools, parks, roads, or government buildings could be an option.
Anyhoodle, I saw that video and wanted to share.
If Mr. Condom bringing birth control to Thailand isn’t your cup of tea, then just go to the TED talks search function and type in something mildly interesting to you. There’s probably a great video on it right now.