Uncategorized – Dr. Plastic Picker
 

Category: Uncategorized

 NEWSLETTER
General Comments

It’s Sally and Vi and we wanted to send you April 2021 Updates! We are trying a new format so let us know what you think! We’ve been busy at our two overlapping groups, just wanted to let everyone know what we’ve all been up to and remind everyone that we’ll have our q2month meeting May via Zoom! Let us know if there are any projects you want to tackle together. We’d love if anyone wants to write something for the AAP-CA3 blog on behalf of our committee as well. We’d like to increase our web presence. This is just highlights.   Rewild Mission Bay Cyrstal Doan Stephens MD our member from San Diego Family Care sent this important event for anyone who is interested in Rewilding efforts in Mission May. “Please join us on Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 7 pm for “How Mission Bay Can Protect San Diego from Sea Level Rise .” This event is a free Zoom webinar hosted by STAY COOL for Grandkids. Andrew Meyer, Director of Conservation for the San Diego Audubon Society, will be our guest speaker in April and has updates to share about the significant Rewild endeavor to restore wetlands in Mission Bay. This effort has the potential to be one of the largest, most visible projects anywhere to protect a city from sea-level flooding.” https://www.eventbrite.com/e/how-mission-bay-can-protect-san-diego-from-sea-level-rise-tickets-147184892977 It also brings up the important question whether we are a group want to support and join their coalition. Will discuss at the May meeting and hoping Crystal can present.      

San Diego Science Fair!!!
1st Ever Green Ribbons Awarded! AAP-CA3 Climate Change and Health Committee led by Dr. Patty Pascual announced the award winners of the 2021 Greater Sand Diego Science and Engineering Fair! From Patty, “The science fair took place virtually on 3/16/21; the top students were interviewed, and 3 projects were chosen out of 200+ science fair submissions. The top students will be given a monetary award, a green ribbon and certificate, AAP memorabilia, succulent & planter, and their names will be engraved on a plaque for the AAP-CA3 office. Thanks to Meredith Kennedy, director of AAP-CA3, for her support, Vi Nguyen & Jim Moseman for their guidance. Thank you to intern Ashley Teo for assisting in vetting abstracts, and to the judging committee, Drs. Cindy Fujii, Anne-Marie Birkbeck-Garcia, Larry Ashbacher, and Joe McQuaide, for all of their hard work.
1st place: Kyle Tianshi, 9th grade, NEREID: Nanoparticle Examining Raspberry Pi Empowered Image Processing Detector
2nd place: Ayush Agrawal, 11th grade, Detecting Arsenic Contamination in Asia Using Hyperspectral Satellite Imagery and Deep Learning practical and implementable for environmental contamination monitoring.
Honorable mention:  Zachary Eiseman, 8th grade, Effectively Reducing Electromagnetic Radiation From Technology the internet connection speed. Therefore these coverings did the best at limiting the radiation being emitted.

Less Litter More Health Litter Picking Event! Please consider participating in this FREE virtual event sponsored by Sustainable Pharmacy Project at Virginia Commonwealth University. A few of us are working with these great students on shared pharmaceutical waste projects. “The SPP team is elated to announce our upcoming litter picking competition, Less Litter More Health. With the support of VCCA, we have some great incentives to get you out in your community right around earth day. Please sign up via our interest form here or by clicking the hyperlinked image below. Be sure to read about how to participate in the event, as well as the great prizes from local businesses here in Virginia. Invite your family and friends and get outside to enjoy the beautiful spring weather!”  
Dr. Anne Maire Birkbeck Garcia Public Health Member on Air Pollution Control Board
This was probably the biggest development for our group.  Our organizational efforts and lobbying (many thanks to Sabrina Perrino and Dan Spencer and ABG of course) got it done.  I’ve posted this all over the blogsphere but in case you missed it, here is the link to SDPCA website.  Congratulations again to Anne Marie! Well done. https://sdpediatriciansforcleanair.com/dr-birkbeck-garcia-sdpca-pediatrician-appointed-to-the-apcd-board LEGISLATIVE STUFF:
Sally and Vi worked with AAP-California Climate Change and Health Legislative group, and AAP-California signed up to support SB 467 the anti-fracking oil setbacks bill.  Several of us are working and some of you have called also, on the SDGE Franchise Agreement fight to get San Diego to sign a shorter 5-year-agreement with our not-friend-to-the-environment SDGE. Patty, Vi and Sally are attending this month the National AAP Legislative Conference, and thank Meredith and chapter leadership for the support. Lots of legislative stuff we are working on, so if this is your passion – PLEASE LET US KNOW. We need help!

UPCOMING MEETINGS:
Children’s Art Council is meeting this Saturday, April 10 at 11:30 to finalize the submission website and everything will hopefully live this weekend!  Email premed intern Hakim Tokhi at aapchildrensartcouncil@gmail.com   General Committee Meeting: Q2MONTH Climate Change & Health Meeting May 18, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. via Zoom  
It’s so beautiful and fragrant.

April 8, 2021

by drplasticpicker

I’m filled with hope today. Usually I blog in the early morning, but I haven’t really posted anything in a few days. I’ve been busy working the late shift at work and doing interesting climate projects and work work projects. But I wanted to share this picture of a simple blue flower from a rosemary branch my friend Dr. Jill Gustafson gave me. It seems a silly thing, but this is a branch she gave me from her bush. I had tried to propogate several other rosemary bushes from around the office but they didn’t root. This one I asked her for, and after she had given it to me – I had just stuck it in this pot with a mix of potting soil and compost. I watered it here and there, and at times I did not think it would root or make it. But it flowered this past week and the blue flowers are really beautiful. It’s alive.

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I was doing this instead of writing my part!

March 24, 2021

by drplasticpicker

Everything turned out fine yesterday. I made a lot of headway on several important work projects, creating a newsletter template and have some fun sections that other pediatricians contributed. We tweaked the pediatric schedules in the evenings and weekends a bit, to open up more appointments for needed PE access and vaccines. Even the Medi-CAL Performance Improvement Project Update is going to be fine, because one meeting was cancelled and I moved the other meeting up, so my colleague and I will have an hour to hash things through and type out the proposed project workflow. We’ll have an hour before the official meeting, which should be more than enough time to put things together. This will also be an upcoming publication for us. Maybe I should bring this computer with me, as it has the citation software that I’m using for the article I’m procrastinating on.

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Creative mornings.

March 23, 2021

by drplasticpicker

It’s 5am, and I’ve been up for already 1.5 hours. I fell asleep early last night, and at 3am I wasn’t sure if I should start my day. But my body said, get up Dr. Plastic Picker – get up Dr. Plastic Picker. I am working on a journal article of the Built Environment and Environmental Justice with four other AAP Climate Advocates, so that article is on my mind. I should be able to write a lot of it today. My section is only about 1000 words which is the length of a blogpost. But it’s a “real article” and I have to get in the emotional and intellectual space to write it.

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Upcycled Bird House. Essentially free, helps my birds.
Upcycled Planter. Most of the plants were propogated for free.

March 7, 2021

by drplasticpicker

My mortgage broker and I are best friends again. I’ve worked with this particular person for over a decade on various purchases, and I value our relationship. I always shop around at least with 1-2 other brokers, but usually she will offer a comparable rate and the most important thing about her is that she gets the job done. I’ve tried to work with other mortgage brokers but they are not as efficient as this particular person. She really is a gem.

So I’m up and continuing to work on my refinance of the two properties. Before I commit to making a big financial move (this is not big, but a moderate financial move), I have to have quiet and go through the numbers. And honestly yesterday morning, I went through the scenarios and the decision to refinance was a no-brainer for property #1.

The first property is a no-brainer as I have a 30-year fixed at 4.6 percent around and bout 25 more years left on the loan, and I will refinance at a 20-year-fixed at about 2.875% with 0 points. When I originally bought this property I had a substantial downpayment > 30%. I’m a super safe real estate investor. Anyway, the monthly payment will actually stay the same but the length of the loan will shorten 5 years. I will save us 70,000 in interest over the lifetime of this loan, as this is a long-term investment. As always Dr. Plastic Picker has plan B-Z for what may happen in life, and for some reason if Mr. Plastic Picker and I need to downsize – I will be very comfortable in this 2 bedroom 2 bath place in a choice area in downtown. Lets just say its across from one of the best places on earth – A LIBRARY! Free unlimited books for me to read in retirement which will keep my retirment cost low. What more could I ever need? But in all seriousness we have things planned out that we will comfortable retire in the current home we live in. But always good to have back-up plan after back-up plan.

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A Reused Bow On Our Puppy.

December 21, 2020

by drplasticpicker

Mr. Plastic Picker’s mother turned 80 this weekend and we had a small family party. Our small family party included buying a pumpkin pie from Sprouts (we had all been wanting to eat one for a while and there was very little plastic), singing Happy Birthday while our tween daughter played on the piano, and shooting the requisite pictures to send to family members. We then ended by eating said pumpkin pie before dinner which is pure luxuriousness. It was a standard 9 inch pumpkin pie so just enough for everyone in our 6 person family (excluding pets who can’t eat pie) to have one piece and an extra bite.

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Does this trash art looked worried?

December 20, 2020

by drplasticpicker

I was a bit despondent about the state of the COVID-19 vaccine roll out in our particular institution and in the country, probably felt like the trash art piece I made from bottle caps yesterday. Looking. Looking. Where is my vaccine? But then I read an article in the New York Times about how the wealthy countries including ours have ensured that rich countries will be vaccinated first and the poor will be last. It was all kind of depressing.

But if there is anything that Dr. Plastic Picker is good at, it’s compartmentalizing things. What happens in our institution will happen. We will get ours in due time, and both Mr. Plastic Picker and I don’t want to tempt fate. We actually would rather get the Moderna vaccine simply because it sounds better, Moderna sounds more modern. And regarding the inequity of poor versus rich countries and echoes of colonialism, wow – I can’t do anything about that right now.

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Video I watched yesterday while stretching.

November 12, 2020

by drplasticpicker

I Ecosia (not googled) searched “Stretching Calming Youtube Video Hawaii” last night. I had the video on and the calming beach sounds while I did some simple stretching for 10 minutes. I had just a normal busy day in clinic. I had extended myself to doing bi-monthly VIDEO sessions with a family that is at a crisis point due to a common pediatric psychiatric diagnosis. The patient is in with the therapist but the appointment is not for another month, and it’s frustrating for both the family and myself. I happened to have a psychiatry book on this topic in my house. It has vetted therapy techniques to “Improve Your Daily Life and Take Back Your Peace of Mind, Calm Anxiety, Diasable Panic Triggers, Prevent Relapses and Setbacks, Manage Responses.” The author I just checked is the director for mental health training at our sister HMO up north. Now I definitely know I am in good hands!

I am sending to the family short lessons from the workbook for their child, and just checking up with them and seeing how they are doing. It is through the secure portal. I’m doing it for them, but I’m also doing it for myself. I’m getting to learn something so valuable that no one has ever taught me. I desperately need to learn for myself and for my patients. How do we heal ourselves?

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One of 3 Rosemary Bushes in our HMO parking lot.

November 10, 2020

by drplasticpicker

Did you know that Salvia rosmarinus or Rosmarinus officinalis commonly known as rosemary, is a woody, perennial herb with fragrant, evergreen, needle-like leaves and white, pink, purple, or blue flowers, native to the Mediterranean region.”https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosemary I had known these shrubs on my walks around the parking lot, and I had seen bees around them. But for some reason yesterday I really noticed the plant, and broke off a few branches to smell the leaves. Indeed, it smelled like Rosemary. I thought they were native, but they are a transplant from the Mediterranean that has a very similar climate to our little corner in Southern California. This is a wild growing cultivated plant. Just reading the Wikipedia page there is a long history of it’s journey during Greek and Roman times, through Europe, and finally “Rosemary finally arrived in the Americas with early European settlers in the beginning of the 17th century.” Then at some point it arrived in a little hidden corner of our HMO Parking lot.

I know that the particular non-descript HMO complex I work at was built about 30 years ago. Rosemary plants can live about 30 years. I wonder how old this plant is? I wonder who planted it? I love Wikipedia. It details the history of Rosemary and “In Don Quixote (Part One, Chapter XVII), the fictional hero uses rosemary in his recipe for balm of fierbras.” What is the balm of fierbras? “According to a chanson from 1170, Fierabras and Balan conquered Rome and stole two barrels containing the balm used for the corpse of Jesus. This miraculous balm would heal whoever drank it . . . Don Quixote mentions to Sancho Panza that he knows the recipe of the balm. In Chapter XVII, Don Quixote instructs Sancho that the ingredients are oil, wine, salt and rosemary.” When Don Quixote drinks the balm of fierbras, he vomits and sweats and is healed from it. Sancho gets diarrhea and is nearly killed from it.

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The beach was actually really clean the Friday evening of this fateful election.

November 4, 2020

by drplasticpicker

It’s 530am after the 2020 Pandemic Era US Elections. There was the Executive Branch on the ballot, but so was the Senate, House and many local races. There is palpable sense of disappointment on my personal Facebook feed as there is in our home. Yet I have always known we live in a skewed bubble echoing chamber. Of course California went blue, as did the entire west coast. 65% of Californians voted for Biden. Yet I also know the history of the anti-socialist Cuban community, and I could have told you that they 100% they aren’t “Latino Voters” that would suddenly vote for a ticket with a black woman as VP candidate? They are Cuban-Americans and they hate Communist, just like the community I grew up in. Case in point their favorite son is Mark Rubio. He is not a caricature. He is elected by a population and represents that view. Do you think Cubans and Southeast Asians in the majority care about Black Lives Matter? There is still centuries of internalized racism and colonialism. But we can’t save the earth with just half of the population, and no matter what happens with the election – we know that at least half voted for Trump.

Did anyone ever think it was going to be easy? There are still many ballots to be counted. If this pandemic has taught me anything, it’s that no one can predict anything. Demoacracy will play out in it’s messy and beautiful way. Dr. Plastic Picker believes in democracy – this is the only way things will work. The only way we can save this earth, is changing hearts person by person. We also need to speak the language they understand, which can include finances or faith. It’s hard and messy, and takes engagement and building community. Mr. Plastic Picker looked at me yesterday with a clearer gaze and he said, “You are right. You keep on doing what you are doing no matter what the election results. You’ll still be Dr. Plastic Picker.”

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