Monday, May 17, 2010

Two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl.

When I was a young boy, I think I envisioned that driving was going to be like living a video game, and would more often than not, be fun to do. Too much Mach Rider, I guess. I hate driving. I especially hate the drive to Tyler. Partly because I've done it so much, and partly because it takes you through a dozen small towns with their 35mph speed limits. It gets a little maddening, all the slowing down and speeding back up. But alas, we want to see our families, thus we persevere.

Leah, Harper, Darcy, and I had a great weekend in East Texas, all driving aside. On Saturday, my parents had a get together brunch to celebrate Harper's, and my niece, Kya's, birthdays. My uncle was there and somehow, he, Seth, and I, got into a lively discussion about alternative medicine and one's ability to write off a lot of it as bullshit. It felt nice to be on the same side as my brother for the first time in a long time. Seth got frustrated with the conversation and excused himself, but I soldiered on and eventually convinced him of my point (which if you're interested; he was making the relativist/accomodationist assumption that we can't know everything so to say that anything is stupid or ridiculous is arrogant, and my point was that while we don't know everything about anything, we do know a lot about most things, and therefore are capable of using what evidence we do have to inform our logic, and making reasonable assumptions based on said evidence/logic. In other words, it's not arrogant to call a spade a spade).

Later, Leah and my sister in law, Kara, went and shot a wedding in Longview, and Seth and I went and saw Iron Man 2, which is great. The next day we all ate Chinese food for lunch and then went to the park to take pictures. Then we drove some more. I had a great weekend but I did miss the new Dr. Who episode. No worries, it's on the DVR, after all.

Last night, I dreamt that Jesus and I were roommates. He was a cool guy and he wasn't mad at me about anything. My friend Steven was there too, except that he was gay and he insisted that I call him "Steve" from now on.


  1. I've been thinking a lot about the whole alternative medicine thing since we found out Sara was pregnant. We've been looking into all kinds of birth plans, and both of us have been convinced that for women in a typical healthy pregnancy , a more natural approach is preferable to what the common experience now is.
    It's important to remember that it wasn't all that long ago that electro-shock therapy and lobotomies were considered legitimate medical practices. We now think these practices are naive and barbaric, of course. That's not an argument for relativism, but just that it's not always clear what the evidence means. Evidence doesn't come to us already interpreted- it has to be dealt with against a background of presuppositions. It's not appropriate to just assume that because we happen to accept a certain set of practices that they are the best available.
    I'm inclined to agree that most of what people call 'alternative medicine' is probably marketing hype and snake oil more often than actual good medical procedure. A 'holistic lifestyle' satisfies the same itch that misappropriated/Americanized renditions of eastern religions do. Both appeal to a romanticized conception of cultures and ways of living that seem exotic and provide a vague sense of 'health' and 'spirituality'.
    That being said, I think attributing the word 'alternative' to those medicinal practices outside the typical realm of western industrialized medicine is either begging the question about their potential merits, or is just misleading people into thinking they are in fact a legitimate alternative.
    We shouldn't care whether or not any given medical practice/drug is 'alternative' or 'conventional', only whether or not it is good or bad medicine. If herbal remedies and acupuncture work, then so be it... and as you were right to point out, our only hope of addressing that question will be on the basis of the best evidence available against a background of warranted presuppositions.

  2. Leah watched that Ricki Lake documentary about home birth and midwives and I think she's really interested in looking into that if we decide to have another one. That being said, we had a great pregnancy experience with our doctor and hospital, all the same. You guys might be interested in checking out the documentary, though it's name escapes me.

  3. It's called "The Business of Being Born". We watched it and enjoyed it. By a more natural approach, we mean to say we are having a medication-free, midwife assisted birth in a hospital. It's illegal in the state of Indiana to birth at home and I don't know if I'm brave enough to attempt it with our first. If all goes well this time around, I would consider a home birth for future pregnancies as long as they are low risk, etc.
    I think it is every woman's right to labor and deliver in any way she sees fit, as long it isn't harmful to her or the baby. From what I've read on Leah's blog, the way she birthed seemed to work great for her and Harper. That's all that matters. :)

  4. Changing the subject-The best solution to the driving dilema seems to be that you guys should move closer to family!! Problem solved for all parties involved!! I really like that idea actually.

  5. Pink Floyd sucks. I had no idea you were into laser light shows.

  6. Pink Floyd does not suck! They've sold hundreds of records! Who ISN'T into laser light shows?!?!

    Mom, why would we leave the greatest city in the U.S.? Maybe you guys should live closer.