Talking Tuesday: Spanish Interview on Flu Edition

Back in 2010, right before the flu season started, the bosses at the health department allowed me to do an interview with an AM radio station out of Washington, DC. The interviewer was awesome, and she really did a good job of asking pertinent questions and keeping my answers in line. It was a great opportunity to practice public speaking and speaking in Spanish. Although it is my first language, sometimes I forget some of its conventions. I've speaking English too long, I guess.

Talking Tuesday: Jetlagged On Ebola

I'm jetlagged from the trip to Korea, and I'm feeling a little silly. So I recorded this podcast with a lot of complaints over the craziness going on about Ebola. When an elected US Senator tells us that you can get Ebola at a cocktail party, you have to ask yourself two questions: What kind of cocktail parties does he attend? And exactly what science and virology book he read this from? I don't think he read anything about it, personally. Anyway, listen to my rant. Or don't. I won't hold it against you if you don't.

Talking Tuesday, Korea Edition: Smoking Causes Cancer (On Average)

Greetings and salutations form the wonderful city of Seoul, Korea. It's the Korea without the labor camps and despotic dictator-for-life, maybe. (Most dictators are for life, I hear.) Here are 4 minutes of me giving you a quick thought about causality and how smoking causes cancer. I was sitting in a courtyard at one of Seoul's palaces and recorded this. A friend and colleague back home said that there was a discussion in a class on whether we, epidemiologists, can say that "smoking causes cancer" or if we should instead say that "smoking increases your risk of lung and other cancers". She and I agree that we should say that smoking causes cancer, period, when talking about smoking to the public. If you throw in words like "chances" or "probability" or even "risk", the message gets confused. Individuals within the population start asking for their specific risk, or they think that other things they do minimize the risk. (Some people have told me that they won't get lung cancer from smoking because they run marathons.)