* In other news, Asians beware. Got that Asian flush after you drink half a bottle of beer? That means you're lacking an enzyme. We've known that. More than 1/3 of East Asians (Chinese, Japanese and Korean) lack this enzyme, thus encurring that embarassing redness. Some folks take antacids and other remedies to avoid the flush. Others build up tolerance over time -- by drinking more. According to this new study, folks who lack this enzyme have a much greater chance of getting esophageal cancer. Yikes. Watch out, my drinking friends. Those who build up tolerance or ignore the flush are at an even higher risk for this type of low-survival cancer.
* I guess 2007 really was the year of babies! My own son is a 2007 baby. We did notice a spike among people we knew who were bearing little munchkins. But we thought it was purely anecdotal. Apparently, there were more babies born in the U.S. in 2007 than ever in the history of the U.S. A whopping 4,317,119 births -- 51,564 more births than the previous year. Reasons? Who the hell knows. The economy? The ongoing war? More people? I like to think it's because of all the Asian Americans and their Golden Pigs. Yep, 2007 was the Year of the Golden Pig, which supposedly is a great year to have babies for people who follow the lunar calendar. Can we verify this through statistics? I think so! Check out the CDC's report here. Scroll down (I know, I know) to Table 1 on page 6. Look at the birth rates broken down by race. The birth rate of Asian/Pacific Islanders went up from 16.6 to 17.2 from 2006 to 2007, the highest increase of all groups. In fact, some groups had slight declines in the same time period. In 2006, we collectively had 241,045 babies. In 2007, 254,734 babies. That's an increase of 13,689 API babies. (And please, tell me if I messed up on the math here).