Shots - Health News
10:48 am
Fri April 18, 2014

Why Mumps And Measles Can Spread Even When We're Vaccinated

Potent but not perfect: Medical assistant Elissa Ortivez prepares a measles, mumps and rubella vaccine at a clinic in Walsenburg, Colo.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 4:09 pm

More than two months ago, a nasty mumps virus triggered fever, headache and painfully swollen glands among a handful of students at Ohio State University. Now the outbreak has ballooned to 234 cases at last count, and has spilled into the surrounding community in Columbus, Ohio.

"Columbus officials are calling it the city's biggest outbreak since the development of the mumps vaccine in the 1940s," WOSU reporter Steve Brown tells Shots. "It even pushed them to open a new clinic."

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Shots - Health News
10:46 am
Fri April 18, 2014

Pot Smoke And Mirrors: Vaporizer Pens Hide Marijuana Use

Vaporizer pens look like the e-cigarettes that dispense nicotine, and the vapor smells the same. But these devices are optimized for a potent marijuana resin with high concentrations of THC.
Courtesy of Grenco Science

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 4:01 pm

It's a sunny afternoon at Kelly's Collective, a medical marijuana dispensary in Los Angeles, and Nikki Esquibel is getting stoned. But you wouldn't know it.

The 19-year-old, who has a medical prescription for marijuana, is "smoking" pot with a handheld vaporizer, or a vape pen. It's sleek, black, and virtually indistinguishable from a high-end e-cigarette.

That's the point, says Esquibel. "I use it mostly around my neighborhood. It's easy to hide." The vapor coming from the device doesn't even have much of an odor.

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Weather with Cliff Mass
10:40 am
Fri April 18, 2014

Mass: April Showers In The Forecast, But Easter Sunday Will Be 'Pretty Good Day'

In this photo taken Wednesday, April 16, 2014, flowers and plants removed from a tulip field are tossed in a truck near Mount Vernon, Wash.
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

If you’re planning any outdoor fun this weekend, Sunday’s your best bet, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass.

The famous Puget Sound convergence zone has been dumping rain in the greater Seattle area, with some places in the foothills of the cascades getting as much as 4 inches in the space of just six hours on Thursday afternoon. Mass, who teaches atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington, says there will be a break from that today, but not for too long.

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Sports with Art Thiel
5:00 am
Fri April 18, 2014

After Rocky Start, Sounders Star And Rapper Dempsey Finally Finds His Groove

Sounders midfielder Clint Dempsey scores on a penalty kick to tie the game against the Portland Timbers on Saturday, April 5, 2014. He scored his first-ever hat trick in that game. The two teams tied 4-4.
Don Ryan AP Photo

Sports with Art Thiel weekly commentary

Sounders star midfielder Clint Dempsey has made headlines recently. He scored his first-ever hat trick two weeks ago against Portland. Dempsey has scored a total of five goals in the past two games, earning back-to-back Player of The Week awards from Major League Soccer.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says things are finally coming together for Dempsey and the Sounders.

"Finally, it's happening. The investment is bearing fruit," Art said.

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Aerial Acrobatics
5:00 am
Fri April 18, 2014

UW Researchers: Tiny-Brained Fruit Flies Are Top Gun Fliers

A fruit fly executes an agile banked turn with just the subtlest wing motion.
Florian Muijres University of Washington

New research out of the University of Washington shows that an insect with a brain smaller than a salt grain can take complex evasive action in flight. The findings could have value for engineers.

Consider the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. It’s — actually, wait. You really should click this soundtrack before you read any further.

Right. So, drosophila. You see them buzzing around your wine glass or your compost bin. Maybe you wave it away with your hand, and it seems to dart around to avoid the swat.

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Anti-Bullying
8:02 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Murray's Anti-Bullying Bill Targeting Colleges Limits Free Speech, Critics Say

U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash.
AP

Washington state's senior U.S. senator is hoping to revive a push for federal anti-bullying laws aimed at preventing harassment of college students based on their race, gender, religion or sexual orientation. But critics say such laws would impede on the students' First Amendment rights.

Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., visited the University of Washington campus Thursday to promote a bill she introduced in the Senate late last month. The measure would require any university receiving federal funds to adopt policies barring "severe, persistent or pervasive" harassment against its students.

"If ... you want to keep those federal funds, you will have an anti-bullying policy," Murray said during her visit.

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The Two-Way
4:57 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Obama: Affordable Care Act Enrollment Hits 8 Million

President Obama speaks about health care on Thursday. ACA enrollment has reached 8 million, he said, and it's "well past time" for Republicans to stop trying to repeal it.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 1:22 pm

President Obama says that enrollment under the Affordable Care Act has reached 8 million after the March 31 sign-up deadline was extended by two weeks.

"This thing is working," he told reporters at a White House briefing on Thursday.

The president said that 35 percent of those signing up through the federal government's website were under the age of 35. The need for younger, healthier individuals to enroll in the program is considered vital to the success of Obamacare.

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The Two-Way
3:45 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Even Chimps Know That A Firm Bed Makes For Quality Sleep

A chimpanzee hangs from a tree trunk in Kibale National Park in Uganda. A new study indicates that chimps prefer a specific tree for sleeping.
James Akena Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 4:14 pm

In the wilds of Africa, chimpanzees consistently choose to make their sleeping nests in a particular tree that offers the "just right" kind of comfort that Goldilocks famously preferred.

That's according to a new study in the journal PLOS ONE that could also bolster a theory that solid shut-eye may have been a key to human evolution.

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Remembrances
2:21 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Who Gave Voice To Latin America, Dies

Admirers ask Gabriel Garcia Marquez --€” seated alongside his wife, Mercedes Barcha €-- to sign books in Santa Marta, Colombia, in 2007.
Alejandra Vega AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 5:06 pm

Latin American author Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who won the Nobel Prize in literature in 1982, died Thursday. He was 87. Garcia Marquez, the master of a style known as magic realism, was and remains Latin America's best-known writer.

His novels were filled with miraculous and enchanting events and characters; love and madness; wars, politics, dreams and death. And everything he had written, Garcia Marquez once said, he knew or heard before he was 8 years old.

A Writer Shaped By His Beginnings

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Jazz Appreciation Month
2:15 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Song Of The Day: Roy Hargrove's 'Strasbourg-St. Denis'

smithsonianjazz.org

A "jazz standard" is defined as "a musical composition which is an important part of the musical repertoire of jazz musicians, in that they are widely known, performed, and recorded by jazz musicians, and widely known by listeners" (forgive me for quoting Wikipedia, but I think that's a pretty good description).

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Esperanto Lives
12:45 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Esperanto Speakers To Gather On Whidbey Island, Celebrate Language's Arts Scene

Martin Schmitt Flickr

In the 1800s, a Polish doctor wished there was an easy way for his polyglot neighbors — and everyone, really — to communicate. So, he invented a language: Esperanto. About 130 years later, it’s still around, including in the Pacific Northwest.

Jennifer Bondelid started learning the language when she was 11 years old. This week, she’s hosting workshops on Whidbey Island to promote theater and film in the language. Saturday night, she and 10 cast members will perform a play called “Connected” for those attending the 34th regional conference. I had to ask: Why?

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The Two-Way
12:03 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Scientists Spot A Planet That Looks Like 'Earth's Cousin'

An artist's rendering of Kepler-186f, the first validated Earth-size planet to orbit in the habitable zone of a distant star.
T. Pyle NASA/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 5:06 pm

Scientists who have been hunting for another Earth beyond our solar system have come across a planet that's remarkably similar to our world.

It's almost the same size as Earth, and it orbits in its star's "Goldilocks zone" — where temperatures are not too hot, not too cold, and maybe just right for life.

But a lot about this planet is going to remain a mystery, because it's 500 light-years away.

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Oso Slide
9:43 am
Thu April 17, 2014

3 More Mudslide Victims Identified

A search worker walks with a tool Wednesday, April 16, 2014, as the search continues for the remaining missing victims of the massive deadly mudslide that hit the community of Oso, Wash. on March 22, 2014.
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

Authorities have identified three more bodies pulled from the debris of the mudslide that swept through the Washington town of Oso last month, leaving four names left on the list of the missing.

The Snohomish County medical examiner's office said Thursday it has now identified all 39 victims it has received.

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The Salt
9:36 am
Thu April 17, 2014

Sichuan Pepper's Buzz May Reveal Secrets Of The Nervous System

It's the Sichuan peppercorn in dishes like spicy ma po tofu that makes your mouth buzz. Researchers wanted to know if that buzz is connected to the tingling you feel when your foot falls asleep.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 5:19 am

The Sichuan peppercorn is known to give some Chinese dishes a pleasant tingling feeling.

What's not so pleasant is that pins-and-needles feeling we get when our foot falls asleep — or when people who suffer from paresthesia experience constant tingling in their limbs.

Diana Bautista, a neuroscientist at the University of California, Berkeley, wondered: Could these sensations be connected?

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Going Places
5:00 am
Thu April 17, 2014

Going On A Cruise? Try The Smaller Boats

The Lindblad Expeditions ships National Geographic Sea Lion or Sea Bird operate in Baja and Southeast Alaska. They offer a more intimate, hands-on cruise experience than the big mainline companies.
Michael S. Nolan www.wildlifeimages.net

If you want to kick back and relax without thinking too hard about your itinerary, your destinations or dinner, your best bet is a cruise aboard one of the big mainline cruise ships, no question. They all offer reasonably priced, all-inclusive getaways aboard a giant floating resort.

But if your style is to get active, get educated or get away from the crowds, then you might want to consider a smaller cruise line, says KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley. 

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