Tuesday, October 6, 2009

pandemic, pregnacy, and the gas mask bra

i'm glad my sister had her baby before the h1n1 pandemic set in. there are already too many worries for pregnant women. i can't imagine how i would handle all the do's and don'ts--which, honestly, didn't sound like that hard to follow before being intimately with someone who was pregnant. then everything seemed much more complicated (well, duh)

of course now the swine flu has made this a potentially very scary time. my heart goes out to all my friends pregnant and with new borns that are having to negotiate this issue. "60 pediatric deaths related to 2009 H1N1 flu have been reported to CDC since April 2009, including 11 deaths reported this week." and pregnant women are at the top of the list for the vaccine because of the deaths already associated with it. there's all sorts of scary numbers at the cdc site.

and yet the flu itself is relatively not terrible--i mean they are saying in new york by august already 10% (800,000 people) of the city had/has it. and of course it's just supposed to get worse number wise.

luckily for us all, and for all my preggers friends, the Ig Nobel Prize has just been awarded to-among others- the developers of the Gas Mask Bra. The bra converts into a mask for the wearer and one for a needy bystander.

Elena Bodnar, who lives in Chicago, got her start as a scientist in Ukraine, when she witnessed the devastating effects of the Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster in 1986. She noticed, among other things, that women were wearing bras that may have been lacy but were certainly not life-saving.

At the ceremony, Bodnar demonstrated her invention, which she said could have prevented people from breathing in Iodine-131 in the wake of Chernobyl. She graciously gave pink bras (each of which can turn into two gas masks) to actual Nobel laureates (yes, even the men, who now have the option to enjoy the bras without shame--not to mention any likely real effect--in the privacy of their own homes).

now, will it protect from the h1n1?

and whose idea was it to advertise the new NY lotto with sweet sleeping piggies??

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