Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Newspaper reading in India

I am staying in one place for a while, waiting for tires for the motorcycle. Indians love newspapers. And so do I. I get one every morning and I really get a kick out of reading it. Somehow the news here just gets presented in a way I find highly amusing. I thought I share some of these articles with you:

Spirit of times: Beer, there and everywhere
Recent studies point to India having some of metrics in the world, particularly when it comes to children; worse than sub-Saharan Africa, if you can stomach that. The adult population is not in great shape either. Word is getting around that South Asians are more prone to heart trouble at an earlier age than any other ethnic group. Not good news for rising, shining, poised, incredible India. But since we are intoxicated by our demographic dividend for the moment, lets not rain on that party.
Instead, mull over the imminent arrival in India of Budweiser and Burger King., calorific exemplars of American haute cuisine. As the humorist Dave Barry once wrote,"Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer... the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza." Now that both American beer and pizza, or its cousin burger, have arrived hand in hand, expect hale and hearty Indians to protest "India Pois-on-ed!"
However, look at the bright side. Alcohol is avoidable, but if you are going to drink at all, wine and beer in moderate quantities are probably more recommended than harsher liquors. It's a travesty that liquor outlets in India are called wine and beer shops but they sell little of the said drinks. Instead they are stacked with hard stuff like whisky and rum, some of it of industrial grade that can test a cast-iron stomach.
Our beer consumption is piddly, which is why Budweiser and Heineken are hurrying to open the tap. India's beer market was worth an estimated $764.9 million in 2004, compared to China's 8.5 billion. Per capita consumption: China 20.3 liters; India 0.7 liters. Good news? Well, here the bad news: India is the world's biggest whisky market, 20% higher than second placed US home to Jack Daniels and Jim Beam. As someone observed, more scotch whisky is consumed in India than produced in Scotland.
On the other hand, our wine consumption is so negligible that one report put it at half a teaspoon per person per year. We probably drink more cough syrup than wine. By comparison, Canadians drink about 12.8 liters a year and the French soak up 55 liters.
Since foreign beer is here wine can't be to far behind. If anything, given the health benefits, it should be ahead. Already wineries from California and Washington are tripping across to get at the small but growing market.
So should we despair? The remarkable thing is Indian wines and beers have already made minor inroads in the west even with their limited production and exposure.
Beer barons took the easy route and bought breweries abroad, but our vintners have sweated it out to produce modest quantities of wine that are actually exported, even as domestic demand rises. In the US, Indian niche restaurants, such as Miami's Imlee and San Francisco's Dosa, pair their atypical menu with American And French wines. It would be in the spirit of the times if their American clientele got to drink Indian label, even as you imbibe theirs.

Cooker arm in brain, woman lives
Doctors remove 7-inch handle after five-hour surgery, repair fractured skull
On February 19, T. T. (40) was cooking the afternoon meal at her home when the pressure cooker burst. The enormous pressure flung the cooker lid at extremely high velocity at her face and the impact drove the handle through her right eye, up through the brain.
The velocity of the projectile was so high that the handle broke thorough the top of her skull and lodged under the skin. Referred by the local surgeon the Jehangir hospital T. was unconscious and barely alive, with the handle lodged firmly in her head and the lid prodtruding out of her eye cavity when she reached the hospital.
A group of surgeons undertook a five-hour-long surgery to save the lady. Rather astonishingly even for the doctors, T. has not only survived, but is recuperating and is able to move her limbs and obey commands to yawn or flick her surviving left eye open and shut.
The team of emergency staff was led by neuro-spine surgeon S. G. and assisted by plastic surgeon Sa. G. The initial emergency management was carried out by a team led by M. B., head of Jehangiri's emergency service.
G. and his team applied the time tested policy of airway, breathing an circulation or ventilator support to keep the patient stable. "Stabilising and rapidly creating a passageway for breathing were critical and a tracheotomy (surgery to create an opening of the trachea through the neck) was performed'" said Gandhi.
For conduction a CT Scan to find the level of penetration, the angle of gantry at the scan machine was changed to allow the patient in. The cooker handle had penetrated seven-and-half inches inside the skull.
Chances of long-term permanent neurological deficit ruled out any attempt to bring out the handle in one single attempt. Emergency craniotomy (or surgical opening of the skull to again access to the intracranial structures) was carried out by removing a portion of the brain scalp. " Swelling of the brain had led to continuous deterioration of the patient's condition", G. said, adding that after a five-hour-long ordeal, the team succeeded in removing the blood clots and the cooker handle and repaired the fractured skull.
T's right eye was completely shredded and restorative surgery was not an option due to lack of any visual potential. "The issue was to prevent any infection moving to the surviving eye. Now, there is chance of using prosthesis like a plastic eye as the damage has been kept minimal" said G.
After the surgery, the patient was moved to neuro ICU and monitored for 96 hours. She regained consciousness on February 23 and is now able to move her limbs and say short sentences.
Though baffled, G. suggested that T's recovery may be due to the fact that unlike a bullet the cooker's handle did not rotate once inside the body. " That might have reduced the damage to sensitive tissues," he said.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very good, please leave some more interesting articles...