A gynecologist had become fed up with malpractice insurance and HMO paperwork, and was burned out.  Hoping to try another career where skillful hands would be beneficial, he decided to become a  mechanic.

He went to the local technical college, signed up for evening classes, attended diligently, and learned all he could.  When the time of the practical exam approached, the gynecologist prepared carefully for weeks, and completed the exam with tremendous skill. When the results came back, he was surprised to find that he had obtained a score of 150%.

Fearing an error, he called the Instructor, saying, "I don't want to appear ungrateful for such an outstanding result, but I wonder if there is an error in the grade?"   "The instructor said, "During the exam, you took the engine apart perfectly, which was worth 50% of the total mark. You put the engine back together again perfectly, which is also worth 50%of the mark."  

After a pause, the instructor added, "I gave you an extra 50% because you did it all through the muffler, which I've never seen done in my entire career."

Yacht Delivery! [via David Adashek]

85' custom-built motor yacht complete with 4 state rooms, a state-of-the-art galley, GPS   System and radar for navigation, twin supercharged diesel engines, etc. $7,474,793.00. 
Champagne, chocolate covered strawberries with cream and music dockside for the excited 'soon to be owner' and a small group of his friends $1500.00.

Two corporate representatives, crane, and rigging $2,500.00 a hour minimum... complete with a  faulty $25.00 dollar turnbuckle............  


 (Note the owner in the stern / back of the yacht) 

Watching your 7 million dollar dreamboat nose dive into the harbor, accompanied by two corporate Representatives from the company that built it just prior to 'inking' the final paperwork and handing over a 7 million dollar bankers check... 


Top 10 Reasons Marijuana Users Are Safer Drivers [via Nina Reznick]

driving stoned 

1. Drivers who had been using marijuana were found to drive slower, according to a 1983 study done by U.S. National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). This was seen as a factor in their favor, since drivers who drank alcohol usually drove faster and that is part of the reason they had accidents.

2. Marijuana users were able to drive straight and not have any trouble staying in their own lanes when driving on the highway, according to a NHTSA done in 1993 in the Netherlands. The study determined also that the use of marijuana had very little affect on the person’s overall driving ability.

3. Drivers who had smoked marijuana were shown to be less likely to try to pass other cars and to drive at a consistent speed, according to a University of Adelaide study done in Australia. The study showed no danger unless the drivers had also been drinking alcohol.

4. Drivers high on marijuana were also shown to be less likely to drive in a reckless fashion, according to a study done in 2000 in the UK by the UK Transport Research Lab. The study was done using driver on driving simulators over a period of a month and was actually undertaken to show that pot was a cause for impairment, but instead it showed the opposite and confirmed that these drivers were actually much safer than some of the other drivers on the road.

5. States that allow the legal use of marijuana for medical reasons are noticing less traffic fatalities; for instance, in Colorado and Montana there has been a nine percent drop in traffic fatalities and a five percent drop in beer sales.
The conclusion was that using marijuana actually has helped save lives! Medical marijuana is allowed in 16 states in the U.S.

6. Low doses of marijuana in a person’s system was found by tests in Canada in 2002 to have little effect on a person’s ability to drive a car, and that these drivers were in much fewer car crashes than alcohol drinkers.

7. Most marijuana smokers have fewer crashes because they don’t even drive in the first place and just stay home thus concluded more than one of these tests on pot smoking and driving.

8. Marijuana smokers are thought to be more sober drivers. Traffic information from 13 states where medical marijuana is legal showed that these drivers were actually safer and more careful than many other drivers on the road.

These studies were confirmed by the University of Colorado and the Montana State University when they compared a relationship between legal marijuana use and deaths in traffic accidents in those states. The studies done by a group called the Truth About Cars showed that traffic deaths fell nine percent in states with legal use of medical marijuana.

(To view our study on Drunk Driving vs. Alcohol-Related Traffic Deaths, click here.)

9. Multiple studies showed that marijuana smokers were less likely to be risk takers than those that use alcohol. The studies showed that the marijuana calmed them down and made them actually pay more attention to their abilities.
  All of these tests and research studies showed that while some people think that marijuana is a major cause of traffic problems, in reality it may make the users even safer when they get behind the wheel!

10. Marijuana smoking drivers were shown to drive at prescribed following distances, which made them less likely to cause or have crashes.

Every test seemed to come up with these same results in all of the countries they were done in. Even so, insurance companies will still penalize any driver in an accident that has been shown to have been smoking pot, so this doesn’t give drivers free reign to smoke pot and drive.

So, the bottom line is that while alcohol has been shown in every single incident to have major problems and to have caused countless traffic crashes and fatalities, pot smoking overall has had none of these issues and in fact may make drivers pay more attention, drive slower and straighter and perhaps even stay home so they can’t be in an accident at all!

Yoga Gives Back April Newsletter

E Newsletter- April 2012
Yoga Gives Back
For the cost of one yoga class, you can change a life.


We are thrilled to share the great outcome of YGB's direct funding program "Sister Aid" from its first year:
  • Out of 22 women who received micro loans, 20 are successfully running their business today
  • Most women repay fully by May 2012, and will get the 2nd loans
  • Total income increased 400% among these women
  • 22 daughters all remain in school, with 12 of them A grade
  • One son advanced into the 2nd year at Dental Medical College, one girl advances to 2nd year in college and plans to major in fashion design technology
  • Six children at orphanage remain fully educated and boarded
Based on this success and the growth in our revenue, YGB added 22 more mothers for micro loans and 22 daughters for education funding at NISHTHA, West Bengal. At D Trust Home in Karnataka, we added four more girls for their education and one mother for her business loan. With your continued support, we are committed to fund these 103 direct fund recipients for five years.
Report from India

D Trust Home, Karnataka, South India
Yoga Flex FlyerThese sisters never saw their father and their mother died four years ago. Their grandmother and uncle fed them, but were no longer able to support these orphaned girls. They are now in 5th and 6th grades and showing amazing skills in dance. Their studies are going well.

NISHTHA: Tripuranagar Village, West Bengal

In addition to administering micro loans, NISHTHA assembles women once a month in their village to discuss topics such as "Children's Rights" and "Reproductive Health" so they can make informed decisions and better protect their children. In these rural villages, girls are most neglected, and often become victims of discrimination and abuse. These sessions are extremely successful in enabling the women to share openly, their daily concerns.
NISHTHA's director Mina Das says in their most recent report---"These women could never imagine that one day they would have the opportunity to earn money. After one year, with the support of Yoga Gives Back, 20 out of 22 women are running successful businesses. Pratima Sardar is noteworthy. She started the business of selling ready-made Sarees with a loan of 5000 Rupees ($95 U.S.). She now carries goods to the streets but will soon have a shop in the market. We are trying to extend all possible support for her to become a role model in the area."
Yoga Flex FlyerYoga Flex FlyerYGB is delighted to work with these two NGOs in India that send us updates and photos of our fund recipients to share with our supporters like you.

Exciting News
Thank You Mother India Update!!

Yoga Flex Flyer
Let's unite on Saturday, September 29th, for our 2nd annual global day of support. On this special day, we call upon your Karma Yoga. Host an event, donate or become a sponsor. This year's goal is $50,000! Registration will start soon and you will receive an invitation E-mail.

YGB Ambassador Kino McGregor announces her commitment 

Yoga Flex Flyer
Kino is generously offering proceeds from the sales of her popular "New Kino Pro Yoga Mat" to YGB this year!! Thank you Kino.

YGB London Team gains two new members!! 

Yoga Flex FlyerYoga Flex Flyer
Welcome Heather Bonnie Lee and Rachel Goodman to make a great team with Emily Gopaul in London.

Upcoming Events

Yoga Flex Flyer Monday 2nd, 16th and 23rd April 2012, 6:30-8pm,@
Whole Foods Market, 63-97 Kensington High Street, London, W8 5SE
"Yoga Magazine's Charity Yoga Class Series "Give Back!"

Sally Parkes is this month's teacher. Thank you Yoga Magazine UK, Sally and Wholefoods for your continued and generous support!!

Just £8 per class or £25 for 4 classes

All money raised is donated to Yoga Gives Back!

Yoga Flex Flyer Saturday May 19th, 12-2:30pm,@
Omkar108, Los Angeles, CA
"Music, Munchies and Facts about American Veda"

Philip Goldberg, author of "American Veda" will give a talk with his entertaining multimedia presentation, "THE GREAT YOGIC TRANSMISSION: HOW INDIA CHANGED OUR WORLD". Enjoy a healthy lunch, and melodic Kirtan concert by Guru Prem Singh and Simran. Thank you Omkar 108 of YGB Ambassador Jorgen Christiansson for hosting this special event!!

Buy tickets or donate @ First Giving

Water Brazillian Yoga and Pilates Tuesday June, 5th, 10-12pm,@
Stella McCartney's boutique in Beverly Hills, Beverly Hills, CA

A very special yoga class with Kathryn Budig. More details soon.

Thank you for these past events

Ashtanga Yoga Confluence , San Diego, California

March 2-4th; AYC organizers, Jenny Barrett-Bouwer, Deborah Ifill and Carol Miller, generously invited YGB to participate in this amazing weekend! We met so many passionate supporters from all over the U.S., and the world. Thanks also for Zico for generous donation.
Yoga Flex Flyer Thanks again YGB Ambassador Chaz Russ, who generously donated proceeds from her annual retreat in Ojai in March.

Water Brazillian Yoga and Pilates High school student, Avanti Prasanna, promotes YGB in India!! 18th International Conference on High Performance Computing , Bangalore, India

December 20, 2011; A brave high school student from Palisades Charter High School, California, single-handedly set up a booth to promote YGB in Bangalore!!

From Avanti, "As part of my Community Service, I have decided to support Yoga Gives Back. I chose YGB because it is based in Los Angeles where I live and they provide help to women and children in India…the country of my birth. The purpose of my project is to raise awareness of YGB, which is a great example of people doing their Karma Yoga."

Thank you Avanti. We are so touched by your action and such understanding support. You are making history for us!!

Your support is making a difference one event at a time. Thank you!!
Follow Yoga Gives Back on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube!

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Your donation helps Yoga Gives Back's campaign to alleviate poverty in India. To make a donation, click

Yoga Gives Back is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization.

Questions, comments, want to get involved?

Vote for Jesse!!

Sense of Humor [via David Adashek]

Several guys from Peterborough Ontario dressed up their truck with a guy tied to the roof.

The driver and passengers put on Moose Head costumes.

As they drove down the main street of Peterborough they caused about 6 accidents.

They were charged with Public Mischief and having open beer in a vehicle, Peterborough cops have no sense of humor.

Largest Flower in The World [via Vicki Hake]

One of nature's jewels that so many may never see. The largest flower in the world was blooming in Blanco, Veracruz , Mexico. Two meters (6 5/8 feet) high and weighing 75 kilos (165 1/3 lbs). It has the peculiarity of blooming only during three days every 40 years. 


Mathematical Culture and ENCOUNTERwithMATHEMATICS

Yoshihiko Mitsumatsu
Professor of Geometry (Specializing in Differential Topology), Dynamic Systems and Mathematical Physics,
Faculty of Science and Engineering, Chuo University

What is Mathematical Culture?

Does mathematics in general, and particularly modern mathematics, give people a cold clinical image? And do people avoid it precisely because it is so difficult? To a certain extent, the answer to both these question is yes, with many discoveries today the result of highly complex and abstract research, albeit challenging and exciting at the same time. However, the depth and breadth of such excitement and thrills are not impartial; rather, they are deeply related to the Mathematical Culture that exists in the background.
If a person is enchanted by the appeal of mathematics as a young child and decides to pursue a career in mathematics, he/she may be lucky enough to produce successful results at the end of an arduous period of training. In other words, they may be lucky enough to discover and prove a theorem, or even to establish a new theory. However, compared to rushing towards the cutting-edge (or, as some would say disparagingly, the minor details) of each segment of the field, a great difference arises in mathematical understanding when focusing on taking a broader and more fundamental view of the same topics. This is greatly influenced by the background of Mathematical Culture, an area which I would like to share with you in this article. Additionally, I would like to introduce the activity ENCOUNTERwithMATHEMATICS, whose task it is to foster and disseminate the Mathematical Culture.

Is there only one answer to mathematical questions?

High school students, who aspire to enter university mathematics departments, often say that mathematics is enjoyable since there is only one correct answer and no confusion. Actually, there is also a belief in general that math problems have only one answer. This may be true in the sense that answers are very clear, and certainly it is for simple computational problems. In order to facilitate grading of entrance examinations, there is a trend to create problems that have only one answer. However, generally speaking there are many cases in which problems with more than one answer make better questions. For example, consider a question that asks what kind of triangle is an equilateral triangle. There are at least two correct answers to this question - a triangle with three sides of equal length or a triangle with three angles of equal degree. This is true because a theorem states that equal lengths and equal angles are equivalent conditions. Now, consider a question that asks for a function that is drawn as a straight line. Would it be best to answer with a function that becomes zero after it has been differentiated twice? Or would it be best to answer with a function of degree 1?
Furthermore, a polynomial function of degree 3, which is zero up to the second degree, is the same as a function satisfying f(ax)=a³f(x), where "x" is a variable and "a" is any constant (polynomials that provide such a function are called homogeneous of degree three). The best expression depends on the particular case.
So, is there one answer or two answers to the next question? Or perhaps I should suggest that no answer exists at all! This problem deals with the size of infinite sets. Both ℝ, the set composed of all real numbers, and ℚ, the set composed of all rational numbers, are infinite sets. However, the size of "infinity" in each set is completely different. When taking ℚ away from ℝ and then placing the remainder in a row on the real line, it is true that irrational numbers are missing. However, rational numbers can be distributed in any given place. This means that ℚ exists deep within ℝ. Conversely, when aligning ℕ, the set of all integers, along the real line, the integers exist discretely or extremely infrequently when compared to the rational numbers. Still, both ℕ and ℚ have the same size as infinite sets. For example, assume that positive rational numbers are presented as irreducible fractions. When numbers are assigned in order, beginning from the smallest sum of numerators and denominators, a response of 1-to-1 occurs between the positive rational numbers and the natural numbers (assigned numbers). However, the same method cannot be used to assign numbers to real numbers. This is because there is a much greater amount of real numbers. Even the closed interval of [0,1] is the same size as ℝ. The symbol # is often used to express the size of sets. In the case of a finite set A, #A represents the number of elements. Similarly, ♯φ=0 is used for the empty set φ. The process explained above is there for expressed as ♯ℕ=♯ℚ<♯ℝ.
So, are ♯ℚ and ♯ℝ infinities that exist adjacent to each other? Let's look at this question in more detail. If they are not adjacent, it must mean that an infinite set X exists for which ♯ℚ<♯X<♯ℝ. If the problem is formulated in this way, many mathematicians will respond that there is no answer (actually, it depends on their position). What in the world does this mean?
In terms of ZF or ZFC, which are axiomatic systems (or logical frameworks for discussion) that are currently used as standards in modern mathematics, this problem is by no means unanswerable. More specifically, it has been proven that no contradiction occurs in axiomatic systems regardless of which answer, namely Yes or No, is given (Kurt Gödel 1940, Paul Cohen 1963). This discovery caused quite a shock to mathematicians, as well as to many parts of the rest of the world, in the middle of the 20th century.
My argument has gone off on a tangent, however. In the case of proof problems, it is inherently clear that more than one method often exists for proving a certain fact. However, depending on the type of problem the question of whether multiple answers exist for a mathematical problem may be meaningless. Normally, it is best to assume that many answers exist. Indeed, the ability to state a mathematical phenomenon in many different ways increases the richness of that phenomenon. The mathematics that provides an understanding of this phenomen is also enriched (as are the humans who have understood it). This fosters richness and an organic nature in mathematics.

The path of 20th century mathematics

Starting in the second half of the 20th century, the appreciation of the beauty and richness of 19-th century mathematics started to develop. Thanks to the discovery of calculus in the second half of the 17th century, the stagnation of mathematics experienced a sudden spurt in growth and has made great strides in the last 350 years. From today's perspective, the stringency of logic was quite dubious until the 19th century. However, at the very least, a handful of great geniuses served as leaders who advanced mathematics in the right direction, constructing theory closely related to mathematical objects and avoiding rampant fragmentation of mathematics into separate fields.
Then, upon entering the 20th century axiomatism was introduced. Although, logical stringency began to thoroughly permeate all areas of mathematics, the effect of growth was to split the field into different directions. As a result, internal advancements within each field became conspicuous. Ultimately, it seems that mathematics fragmented into many fields and grew at the same time, while losing its organic nature. In particular, a mathematics group called Bourbaki appeared in France. The group worked to safely preserve the important advances of modern mathematics of axiomatization and abstraction (mathematical principles) for future generations to the greatest extent possible. Moreover, a pronounced trend among western universities after WWII was that mathematics and physics existed within a framework of separate undergraduate schools and departments. Before this, mathematics and physics had been indivisible. On the other hand, Russia did not divide mathematics and physics to the same degree as western countries. At that time, Japan was working feverishly to catch up with (and even surpass) western culture, so the system of axiomatization and segmentation was readily accepted. In terms of general mathematics in Japan, it was natural to attempt to reach the latest advances in each field as quickly as possible.
As an adherent of western culture, we first became aware of the gap with Russia in the last quarter of the 20th century. The mathematics education that I received at universities (graduate schools) from the 1970s to 1980s was segmented into different fields and was admittedly composed of a curriculum full of abstract theory. The same situation continues to stubbornly exist at almost all universities today. Of course, there are an infinite number of different study methods and teaching methods depending on the individual mathematician. One example is Mr. Tatsuru Takakura (a colleague of mine in the Department of Mathematics). Takakura is 7 years younger than me, but studied almost the same curriculum at the same university. Even so, Takakura has already recovered from his segmented and abstract mathematics education as a student and has gone on to acquire an organic and beautiful mathematical perspective.

Trends in France

In France there is the Bourbaki Seminar, which was started long ago by the aforementioned mathematician group Bourbaki. Recent outstanding successes from the world of mathematics are introduced by mathematicians who had nothing to do with the mathematician who developed the theory itself. In addition, the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon (which I was affiliated with during the mid 1990s) began a series of meetings at the end of the 1980s known as Les Rencontres Mathématiques (Mathematical Get Togethers). At these meetings, experts and non-expert mathematicians and also young researchers spent a day-and-a-half discussing designated themes. These meetings were unlike anything in Japan and were extremely well received by audiences. It is astounding that the French put so much effort into cultivating the organic nature of mathematics!
All of the students that I saw at the Ecole Normale in Lyon had a solid understanding of classical analytical mechanics. I realized that they naturally absorbed and understood the origin of important problems in modern mathematics. I reached the conclusion that French mathematicians had developed their bold approach to preserving mathematics through abstraction because in the past they had already been familiar with and had substantially contributed to the other side, namely that of the organic and rich Mathematical Culture.


When I returned to Japan in the autumn of 1995, I wanted to create get togethers in Japan similar to the Bourbaki Seminar and Les Rencontres Mathématiques. Upon consulting with many individuals, the general opinion seemed to be that, unfortunately, get togethers like the Bourbaki Seminar were still not possible in Japan. If such meetings were to take place, it would have been the responsibility of The Mathematical Society of Japan. Conversely, people seemed to feel that Rencontres Mathématiques could be held, although it would be difficult. Therefore, beginning from November 1996, I started a get together named ENCOUNTERwithMATHEMATICS in the Department of Mathematics of Chuo University. I try to hold meetings four times a year. For meetings, we decide a theme and recruit a lecturer for an audience of non-expert professional mathematicians. A large number of expert mathematicians also join the audience, but we have our lecturers proceed without too much worry. These meetings discuss major academic trends and explicit topics that cannot be heard at normal lectures or research meetings. This makes the meetings very meaningful for young graduate students, who are close to becoming experts. Each time we have a large audience from all over Japan (please visit the webpage window).
Back in Lyon, Mr. Etienee Ghys (the founder of Les Rencontres Mathématiques) has expanded his activities even further. Unfortunately, the get togethers were dissolved in order to form a better organization. Whenever I meet Etienne somewhere in the world, I ask him how to have these mathematical activities carried forward by others. His answer is always the same - "If your activities are progressing well, then keep at it, even if it is tough." Following his advice, we are continuing our activities through cooperation with graduate students and parties both inside and outside the Department of Mathematics. At the end of January 2012, I will visit Lyon again after many years to pursue my research. Although no ENCOUNTERwithMATHEMATICS will be held until autumn, I will start them once again in September.
Yoshihiko Mitsumatsu
Professor of Geometry (Specializing in Differential Topology), Dynamic Systems and Mathematical Physics,
Faculty of Science and Engineering, Chuo University

Born in Tokyo in 1957. Graduated from the Department of Mathematics, University of Tokyo, in 1980.
In 1985, completed the Doctoral Program of the Graduate School of Science, University of Tokyo. Holds a PhD in science (University of Tokyo, 1985).
After serving as a Full-Time Instructor and Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Science and Engineering, Chuo University, assumed his current position in 1999. Has served as the Director of ENCOUNTERwithMATHEMATICS since 1996.
Current research focuses mainly on dynamic differential topology, such as foliations and contact structures. Also conducts research on theoretical mathematical physics.
His written work, Topology of 3D Contact Structures (The Mathematical Society of Japan; Mathematical Memoirs Vol. 1, 2001), contains many illustrations and is accessible to the non-specialist, even though it deals with extremely abstract and difficult material.
Among the different fields of geometry, contact structure theory in particular lends itself to geometric intuition. Conversely, it is a complex field in which even experts often make mistakes.

[VIA David Adshek]

The Washington Post has also published the winning submissions to its yearly
contest, in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common

And the winners are:

1. Coffee, n. The person upon whom one coughs.

2. Flabbergasted, adj. Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.

3. Abdicate, v. To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.

4. esplanade, v. To attempt an explanation while drunk.

5. Willy-nilly, adj. Impotent.

6. negligent, adj. Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.

7. Lymph, v. To walk with a lisp.

8. Gargoyle, n. Olive-flavored mouthwash.

9. Flatulence, n. Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run over by a steamroller.

10. Balderdash, n. A rapidly receding hairline.

11. Testicle, n. A humorous question on an exam.

12. Rectitude, n. The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.

13. Oyster, n. A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.

14. Frisbeetarianism, n. The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.

15. Circumvent, n. An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men.

The Washington Post's Mensa Invitational ... [via David Adashek]

once again invited readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition.

Here are the winners:

1. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.

2. Ignoranus: A person who's both stupid and an asshole.

3. Intaxicaton: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.

4. Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.

5. Bozone ( n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.

6. Foreploy: Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid.

7. Giraffiti: Vandalism spray-painted very, very high

8. Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.

9. Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.

10. Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)

11. Karmageddon: It's, like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's, like, a serious bummer.

12. Decafalon (n.): The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.

13. Glibido: All talk and no action.

14. Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.

15. Arachnoleptic Fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.

16. Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.

17. Caterpallor (n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating.