Mellow fish and mislabeled tuna
- Blog Post by: James Lileks
- February 22, 2013 - 11:59 AM
The snow made the commute less than pleasant. Your possible mood:
But if you complained about this morning’s drive, try to channel this Russian. He’s either hungover beyond the ability to care, or his temperament is so rock solid that an enormous flaming streak across the sky does not rise to the level of things about which he could give a fig.
At least it’s pretty outside. But wouldn’t you like to ride in a subway heated by the fires of hell itself?
Speaking of pretty:
APPS Expereal is a way to obsess over your emotional states. You assign numbers to your mood, and the program crunches the data to sum up your emotional temperature. You can add tags and pictures. This way, if you thought you were reasonably happy last week, and you really weren’t, you can be reminded that you were miserable.
One hitch: Facebook’s required. Goodbye! I have Facebook and I use Facebook, but there’s no reason to require it to run a program. It’s turning into the Mark of the Beast, it is.
URP I haven’t read the Atlantic magazine in a long time, but the website is turning into something quite useful. Today: “59% of the ‘Tuna’ Americans Eat Is Not Tuna.” Whoa:
In Chicago, Austin, New York, and Washington DC, every single sushi restaurant sampled sold mislabeled tuna.
84% of fish samples labeled "white tuna" were actually escolar, a fish that can cause prolonged, uncontrollable, oily anal leakage.
Those last three words are a link in the original story, and may be today’s winner for “things no one clicked, but actually caused them to back out of the page with a keyboard command lest their pointed inadvertently launch the link.”
Well. I clicked on it, so you don’t have to. Here’s the explanation:
Escolar is a type of snake mackerel that cannot metabolize the wax esters naturally found in its diet. These esters are called gempylotoxin, and are very similar to castor or mineral oil.
There you go. Literally. When I was a kid I remember cartoons of kids being forced to take castor oil, something that was dreaded and loathed.
At least it's not horsemeat. Yet.
A Chinese shipyard has formed a panel and upgraded its facilities to prepare for the construction of a replica of the Titanic for an Australian billionaire. According to the State-owned CSC Jinling Shipyard Co Ltd in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, it will take three years to build the luxury liner.
It will sail from England to North America on its maiden voyage, of course. If it does encounter difficulties and everyone has to go to the lifeboats, will anyone believe the announcements? Or will they think it’s part of the package?
Of course, the ship will have sufficient lifeboats - and that’s the twist. It’s not a replica if it has onboard internet. It’s not a replica unless the third-class rooms look like this.
Four to a room with no bathroom or shower. It’s not a replica unless the menu has things like Cold Leek Consumme and Poached Quail in Aspic or other dishes of the era. It’s not a replica if there are lifeboats for everyone.
I think people may be surprised how small it seems, compared to today’s vessels.
SCIENCE! No one wants to be unaware of the consequences of over-medicated perch. Don’t worry. The Swede are on it:
Researchers in Sweden exposed wild European perch to water with different concentrations of Oxazepam, an anti-anxiety medication that can show up in waterways after being flushed, excreted or discarded.
Researchers reported that fish exposed to Oxazepam became less social, more active and ate faster, behaviors they said could have long-term consequences for aquatic ecosystems.
Because even the lowest concentration of Oxazepam in the study was higher than that found in a Swedish waterway that researchers tested, “the relevance of their study to the real world is unclear,” the United States Environmental Protection Agency said in written answers to questions.
That’s the NYTimes. The WSJ version, which I’m quoting from the paper version:
Typically, all kinds of drugs get into the water supply qhen people flush unneeded medication down toilets or pass trace amounts in urine.
I’m not saying the drug might be overprescribed or handed out a bit too easily, but when the behavior of fish is altered because enough people are peeing metabolized residue, well, let’s say a lot of people must be on the stuff. Perhaps we could do something about the zebra mussel by pumping Viagra into their breeding grounds. They couldn’t swim. They’d just float around like decks of cards, tumbling and sinking.
That's it a column to write and a My Minnesota to do. But as long as we began with an animated GIF, here’s one I found at Gliphy. Hope this is the absolute antithesis of the rest of your day.
Okay, one more. However your winter day unfolds, chances are it won't be like this.
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