Yeah, yeah… It’s been a while. I missed you too. Here’s 12 minutes of me catching you up on what happened this summer with dad getting cancer, me picking up cycling and swimming, and taking some exams. Also, there is something about Puerto Rico and Zika in there.
Back in 2010, when I was working at the health department, a reporter from 1030AM in DC asked to do an interview with me about influenza. It was the beginning of the 2010-2011 season, and the whole “EpiGate” fiasco hadn’t happened. So the bosses allowed me to do the interview with her. (Also, they didn’t have many people who spoke Spanish.) So I sat down and talked to her over the phone for about half an hour. We talked about influenza surveillance, the disease, and even some virology. It was actually a really good interview. I felt very at ease.
Listening to it now, I can hear some grammatical mistakes here and there from me trying to translate my knowledge of influenza — which I learned in English — into what I’m saying in Spanish. Spanish has a lot of conventions that need to be followed, and I was a bit rusty. Since then, I’ve made an effort to speak and write it to as many people as I can. It would be ridiculous, in my opinion, to not be able to speak it fluently one day when I think in Spanish and when everyone in my dreams speaks Spanish. (Yeah, it’s weird.) Also, it’s my first language, and I hope to pass it on to any eventual Big Fat Baby Ren.
So here it is, 28 minutes of me talking about influenza in Spanish. (If you don’t understand Spanish, then you’ll just have to wait until the next Talking Tuesday.)
What else was I going to do while I waited out the great Northeast Blizzard of 2016 but do a podcast? And what is a better way to do it than to invite a couple of friends to chat with?
I used a new app called ZCast to record a chat with Briana Morgan and Craig Egan about “Impostor Syndrome” and “Trolling” against anti-vaccine people. It was a great talk. It goes for about half an hour. Enjoy!
My wife and I went to talk at the Pennsylvania School Counselors Association a couple of weeks ago. Our talk was about the things that work in autism treatment, and the quackery things that don’t. Mrs. N took care of talking about autism in general and the medications that are prescribed at times to treat some of the manifestations of autism. Then I stepped up and talked about the lack of association between vaccines and autism, and all the crazy, scary “treatments” that people peddle as “cures” for autism.
The talk is about 50 minutes long, with a lot of questions during the talks and at the end. We got a lot of really good feedback from the 30 or so people who were there.
A group of students from Brazil came to Hopkins for a weeks-long course on public health. Now, these were not just any students. They were the cream of the crop from Brazil’s public health infrastructure. Some were physicians, others were epidemiologists, and others were from other professions within public health there. My aim was to talk to them about the changes that happened at the state health department where I worked while I was working there in terms of influenza surveillance. I tried not to “toot my own horn” a lot, and it was hard to exclude some of the barriers that I encountered while working there, but I kept the persona parts out… For the most part.
The talk is about an hour long, and you can also download it by clicking here.
Yeah, so I totally forgot to publish a Talking Tuesday last week, and I apologize for that. This week, you get about 7 minutes of me telling you that I’m sorry, something about my thesis, and plans for a new episode of “Driving Mrs. De.” Maybe that should be a podcast all its own?