One Hundred Demons: Common Scents Sample Assignment

Reading this story made me want to read all of Lynda Barry’s work. It’s the perfect starter and one would surely be looking for more. I didn’t understand it much at first but after researching some of the words, I found it really hilarious. It’s so natural and so unscripted. We talk in the house just like the family in the cartoon. I guess being able to relate so much to the story makes it even more interesting for me.

 The topic of the story is so trivial, smell. But it’s something that I’m sure most people think about too. It’s something that I notice a lot but don’t take the time to really think about. But it’s so true and so real. Our rooms have their own distinct smell. Even our lockers in school smell differently from one another too. It’s funny because I also used to conclude about what kind of people they are and how they live their lives based on how their lockers smell. Sweat-smelling lockers are those of the varsities, lockers that smell like a new book are usually occupied by the studious ones and lockers who smell like loose powder and lipstick are for the Barbie dolls in school. Reading this brought back a lot of memories and they make me smile.

 But I guess this story also has something else to it than humor. I guess it also shows how people in a very diverse community are, through the eyes of a child. The boy in the story, and so are the other characters in the story, was very observant and was also drawing out conclusions about his neighbors with the way their houses smell. He talked to his Filipino grandmother and she was talking about dirty things in front of him, in combined English-Filipino. I just think the grandmother’s view of things and the way she reasoned out was very cool and casual.

This one’s a really good read. The way the cartoon was drawn, the colors, the characters, and the dialogues, are all so realistic and adorable. This one’s very humorous and entertaining.

Works Cited

  1. Barry, Lynda. One Hundred Demons: Common Scents. Retrieved 5 December 2006, from <http://archive.salon.com/mwt/comics/barry/2000/07/14/barry/index.html?x>

Сommon Good As Seen In The Purview Of The Catholic Church

The Common Good

As the name suggests, it means whatever is good for everyone.  However, this definition sounds rather pedestrian or too basic.  If this were to be taken at face value, one would assume that this idea is absolute and applicable everywhere.  In realistic terms, this is not the case and there is no definite way to fully capture the meaning of common good.  One can at least grasp the spirit or essence of these two words.  This essay will tackle the concept of the common good as seen in the purview of the Catholic Church.

The duty of the Catholic Church is to minister to its followers which are widely scattered around the world and it does more than just religion, it also applies its teachings in everyday life and central to this is the common good.  The Church recognizes the rights of the individual to live in accordance to his or her wishes.  However, in a community, the individual must be willing to relinquish some of these rights and it is necessary for a purpose – to promote that “common good.”  What can be inferred here is that the Church teaches one to be altruistic – be willing to set aside self-interest and contribute to the benefit of all.  The rationale behind it is that if the interests of others are met, one’s own interests will be met in the process as well.  It discourages selfishness and self-serving manners, and it encourages generosity, fairness and to an extent, charity as well as promoting a sense of responsibility (Catholic Church, 80).  This is also because it would not be fair that many will suffer while only a few benefit. All are equal in the sense of entitlement and no one should deprive others of what they deserve to get.

The most obvious example and model of one looking out for the common good is none other than Jesus Christ who exemplifies self-sacrifice.  He died on the cross because it is for the common good as all mankind would be redeemed.  If Jesus did not care for the common good, he never would have had to go through that passion and suffering leading to his crucufiixion.  Christians are encouraged to follow his example though not exactly in the same manner.  This is somewhat similar to the social contract concept of Jean Jacques Rousseau where he emphasized the “general will.”  The good of all far outweighs the good of the individual or the few.

In closing, the common good is the good of all or what is in their best interests though in reality this is impossible in the sense that not everyone will either benefit or receive the benefits that is forthcoming.  Nevertheless, as far as the Catholic Church is concerned, this does not mean giving up, it makes an effort to try to reach out to all like Christ seeking out the proverbial lost sheep leaving the rest of the flock behind in doing so.

Works Cited

Catholic Church. Compendium Of The Social Doctrine Of The Church. Dublin, Ireland: Veritas Publications, 2005.

Common Diseases Of Late Adulthood

Common Diseases of Late Adulthood

The elderly population, those aged above 60 years, make up a significant portion of the general population. Thanks to advancements in healthcare sciences and technology, they have begun to occupy a larger share of the population pie due to increased life expectancy. It is estimated that by the year 2020, the elderly will represent 18% of the American population – quite a large leap from 12% in 1990. By this estimated period, one in every six Americans will be elderly. Therefore, it becomes highly important to be aware of diseases that affect this age group as these diseases are bound to become larger concerns as the population grows older. Currently, about 80% of elderly adults living at home suffer from chronic diseases – as much as five to six chronic illnesses (Wykle, 2007). Some common diseases among this age group include cataracts, glaucoma, presbycusis (deafness), Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and dementia.

Diseases that affect the vision and eyesight of the elderly include cataracts and glaucoma. Cataracts are described as the clouding of the normally clear lens of the eye. The resulting frosting” turns the lens partially opaque, disrupting its natural function to sharpen and focus light passing through it, thus disrupting normal vision processes. There are many types of cataracts, mostly due to chemical changes in the lens that may result from natural aging, hereditary factors, or eye injuries (HealthScout Network, 2009). Glaucoma is a disease caused by increased intraocular pressure (IOP) resulting either from a malformation or malfunction of the eye’s drainage structures (St. Luke’s Cataract & Laser Institute, 2008). If left untreated, glaucoma may cause permanent damage to optic nerves and retinal fibers leading to blindness. For cataracts surgery is typically recommended while for glaucoma medications can control IOP.

Hearing loss is a common disease among the elderly, one example of which is a condition known as presbycusis. This condition comes on gradually as a person ages and is most likely a result of deterioration or changes to the inner ear, auditory nerve, middle ear, or outer ear. Some of its causes are aging, loud noise exposure, heredity, head injury, infection or illness, certain prescription drugs and circulation problems such as high blood pressure.

It is important to treat hearing problems immediately once they are noticed. If left untreated it only becomes worse and may result in permanent deafness. Treatments usually include hearing aids, assistive devices and surgical implants (Aging Care 2008).

Lastly, among the graver diseases to which the elderly are predisposed are those related to the degeneration of mental and nervous functions, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive and fatal brain disease that destroys brain cells, causing problems with memory, thinking, and behavior. It is the most common form of dementia and still has no cure as of today. According to the Alzheimer’s Association (2009), today it is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States.” Like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease also involves a progressive loss of nerve cell function in parts of the brain that manage muscle movement. Its symptoms include:

People with Parkinson’s disease may experience tremors or shaking due to damage to their nerve cells. These tremors tend to worsen when the person is at rest but improve when they move. The tremor can affect one side of the body more than the other and may impact the lower jaw, arms, and legs (American Academy of Family Physicians, 2008).

Like Alzheimer’s, the etiology of Parkinson’s is also unknown. Similarly, there is no cure for Parkinson’s; however, medications can help control the symptoms of the disease.

References

Aging Care (2008) provides information on health conditions, specifically hearing loss. The article is published by MediaBrains Inc and can be accessed at http://www.agingcare.com/Health-Conditions/1197/Hearing-Loss/. The article was retrieved on January 24, 2009.

The Alzheimer’s Association (2009) provides information about what Alzheimer’s disease is. According to the association, Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive brain disorder that affects memory, thinking skills and behavior. It is the most common cause of dementia in older adults. For more information on this topic, visit the Alzheimer’s Association website at http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_what_is_alzheimers.asp.

The American Academy of Family Physicians (2008) provides information on Parkinson’s disease. The website, www.Family-Doctor.org, offers insights on the topic. Retrieved on January 24, 2009 from http://familydoctor.org/.

Online resource for information on common brain disorders: famdocen/home/common/brain/disorders/187.html

HealthScout Network (2009) provides a health encyclopedia that covers various diseases and conditions. One of the topics included is cataracts. The information can be accessed by visiting their website at http://www.healthscout.com/ency/68/114/. This resource was last retrieved on January 24, 2009.

Main page link: Causes and Risk Factors of Cataracts

St. Luke’s Cataract & Laser Institute (2008) provides information on eye conditions, specifically glaucoma. The website can be accessed at www.stlukeseye.com/conditions/Glaucoma.asp and was retrieved on January 24, 2009.

Wykle, M.L. (2007) discusses health disparities in late adulthood in a publication from the University of Washington School of Nursing.