10 Tips For Successfully Using Airbnb

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The explosive growth of Airbnb has been impressive, to say the least. Like many “platform” businesses, it was initially created out of necessity. It all started in 2007, when two designers, Joe Gebbia and Brian Chesky, began to have problems making the rent payments on their San Francisco apartment. They thought they could turn their loft into a “rental space,” but felt that existing platforms like Craigslist were not the right way to advertise the space.

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Edward Jenner’s Discovery Of The Smallpox Vaccine

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Smallpox ranks among the world’s most terrible diseases. Over the centuries, it has killed or scarred hundreds of millions of people. It seems to have originated in the tropical zones of sub-Saharan Africa or India, and spread along trade routes to China and Europe. Virologists suspect that the disease was a mutation of a pox-like virus that afflicted domesticated animals.

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The Persistence Of Guilt, And How To Get Rid Of It

I saw the new film MacBeth (starring Michael Fassbender) at the Botafogo district of Rio de Janeiro a couple nights ago.  I recommend it highly, as the production values are incredible and the pulse of the drama is intense.  I don’t consider myself a big Shakespeare fan.  I like a few of the major plays (Hamlet, MacBeth, etc.) but many of the others I find to be tedious.

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How To Prepare Korean Roasted Barley Tea And Roasted Corn Tea

This is a cold time of the year where I live.  Sometimes I’m reminded of the time I spent in Korea many years ago, and of the great food I used to eat there.

I like to haunt Asian food stores every now and then, to take me back to the old days.

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Six Men’s Health Topics You Should Know Something About

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I was talking to my father on the phone earlier today.  He was telling me that he had been speaking recently to another man he knew.  It had been a sad conversation with this friend of his.

This man had suddenly discovered he had serious health problems.  Basically, he found out that he had prostate cancer issues.

“You know, it’s amazing,” he told me.  “There is all this push in the culture here for awareness of women’s health issues.  We hear about breast cancer awareness week.  We hear about how we should care about female slavery in the Third World.  We hear about how we should care about reproductive rights.  We hear about how we should care about all things about women’s health.

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Adding Much-Needed Variety To Your Fitness Routine

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Everyone knows that physical fitness is crucial.  It is the bedrock that supports the other activities of the body and the mind.  But it’s often necessary to change things up a little.  It’s too easy to slip into a rut, to fall into a trap of feeling that we’re well-rounded, when we may not be.

And that’s something I see a lot of.

I see a lot of guys focusing too much on one thing, to the detriment of the big picture.  I’m seeing too much focus on weightlifting, and not enough focus on all-around fitness.

Remember that it’s all-around fitness that matters.

Don’t get me wrong.  I love weightlifting and firmly believe that it should be one of your foundations.  But other things matter, too.  And it’s easy to slip into the self-delusion that you’re in shape just because your biceps or pecs look good with a tight t-shirt on.  Some of these guys are laughable.

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Celsus’s General Directives For Good Health

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The most famous book of Roman medicine was the work entitled De medicina; the author’s full name was most likely Aulus Cornelius Celsus, and tradition has shortened this mouthful simply to Celsus.  We know almost nothing of his life.  The rhetorician Quintilian describes him as a learned man writing on a variety of subjects, including agriculture, war, philosophy, and law; but of this output the only surviving part is his treatise on medicine.  His year of birth appears to have been around 25 B.C.

It is an unsettled question whether Celsus himself was a practicing physician, or just a compiler of medical information; in those days, it was not uncommon for a wealthy Roman gentleman to equip himself with a wide knowledge of practical medicine which would prove useful in handling his domestics and slaves.  The landed estates in the countryside, the latifundia, would need ready access to such information.  His book contains many details on surgical procedures, some of them quite advanced; but this is not conclusive.  He certainly understood Greek, and with his wide reading, he was able to condense much of the essentials of Hellenic medicine.

It is an interesting work, written in a lucid and simple Latin prose.  The introduction, or prooemium, of the book gives a fair and adequate summary of this history of medicine, summarizing the development of the several schools of medical knowledge (dogmatic, methodic, and empiric).  Anatomy is one of the cornerstones of medicine, and must be thoroughly understood; for this reason, dissection is essential.  He considers hygiene, prognosis, diagnosis, and prevention to be of critical importance; more diseases are avoided, he reminds us, than are cured.  Yet he is no faith-healer:  drugs and surgery are enthusiastically described and recommended when needed.

Of course, most of the information here has been superseded by the progress in medical science since his day.  But it is still interesting to see what riches can be found here, if only to satisfy our historical curiosity.  The least perishable part of Celsus’s advice lies in his general principles of good health, which I have tried to extract below.  Please note that this information is presented for historical purposes, and is not intended as medical advice or treatment.

1.  A man in good health should prefer variety to a tedious routine:  now in town, now in the country, with a variety of activities such as hunting, sailing, walking, running, and hiking.  Variety is critical.

2.  It is a good idea to frequent baths, but cold waters are also essential.  Alternating hot and cold baths can cure many maladies (II.17).  Frequent visits to the calidarium and the frigidarium should be accompanied by rubdowns.

3.  Sex (concubitus) is “neither to be obsessively sought after, nor to be feared; if it is indulged in infrequently, it excites the body.  If indulged in frequently, it restores it.” [Concubitus vero neque nimis concupiscendus, neque nimis pertimescendus est.  Rarus corpus excitat, frequens solvit.] I.4.  These are perhaps the wisest words ever spoken on sexual activity.

4.  Be careful about the environment in which you live.  You should try to live “in a house that is light, airy in summer, and sunny in winter.”   Try to avoid the sun at noon, and the sun in the morning.  Avoid also the evening chills.

5.  Beware of the vapors rising out of lakes, rivers, and marshes.  Frequently the air in such places can be fetid and latent with disease or pestilence.

6.  Observe your urine with frequency for any signs of discoloration or strange effect.

7.  In winter, it is a good idea to lie in bed during the entire night.  Siestas should be before the midday meal; when the days are short, the siesta should come after it.

8.  Exercise is always critical, and should preferably come before food.  Handball, running, walking, and all varieties of sport are examples of good exercise.  The exercise should “come at the end with sweating, or at least rest, which should be not utter exhaustion.”  [I.7].

9.  With regard to eating, too much is always a bad thing.  By the same token, excessive fasting or abstinence is no good either.  When eating, it is better to begin a meal with “savories”, salads, and small appetizers; after this, meat should be eaten, whether roasted or boiled [I.8].  Desserts are a matter of choice; they do no real harm to a healthy person in moderation, but to one with a weak stomach, they are a problem.

10.  Digestion after a meal is best aided with a drink of cold water, and then not sleeping for a time.

11.  If you desire to make any changes in your health routines or eating habits, it is best to accomplish such changes gradually.  Sudden changes can cause serious problems.

12.  Vomiting should not be seen as a bad thing; purgative action of the stomach sometimes does much good.  A vomit can be more advantageous “in winter than in summer, for then more phlegm and more severe congestion in the head occur.” [I.17].

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13.  You must become acquainted with the nature of your body in all different climates and environments.  Only in this way will you learn how to respond adequately to problems.

14.  Purging of the bowels can also be of advantage, and should be accomplished regularly by the eating of fibrous substances.  If these are unavailable, aloes can be used.  But this type of thing must be done with great care, as it may leave the body in a weakened state if done too often.

15.  Regarding hunger, we should be mindful of the following:  middle-aged people sustain hunger better than do young people and very old persons.  Wine should be diluted for children, but for old people, it should be more concentrated.  Constipation can be a problem if not addressed.  “It is better to be rather relaxed when young, and rather costive when old.” [Melior est autem in iuvene fusior, in sene adstrictior.] I.3.

16.  It is better to eat more in winter, and to drink less alcohol.  But the alcohol you do drink should be stronger than in the summer.

17.  Cold is very bad for aged people, but rather good for the very young.  Cold water baths or immersions are very good for the health generally.  It helps the stomach and joints, and tightens the sinews.

These, then, are some of Celsus’s general rules for the maintenance of good health.  It is interesting to note how frequently he mentions baths, rubdowns, anointments, and purgatives; these things were common in the Roman world, but fell out of widespread use in later centuries.  We moderns probably could still use more of them.

Reading him, we become suddenly conscious of just how toxic most of our daily habits can be to our general well-being.  It is also interesting to note how he links eating and drinking with times of the day, and the seasons of the year; perhaps we should pay as much attention to how we eat and drink, as to what we actually consume.  Balance, moderation, and variety emerge as underlying principles of health.  We would do well to remember this.

The information in this article is presented for historical purposes and is not intended as any specific medical treatment or healthcare regimen.  Readers looking for medical advice for their situation should consult with their physician.  

 

Read More:  Ibn Khaldun’s Theory Of Social Development