Sunday, October 1, 2006

How To Kill A Penquin

Who alive could ever forget the great Captain Hazelwood, drunk as a loon, at the helm of the giant oil tanker "Exxon Valdez" as he steered it directly into the rocks off the Prince Edward Isles?  I can picture still those boomers put out into the far reaches of the ocean trying to contain the black tary slime before it went further out to sea.  But what will always stay with me is the image of self-less Greenpeace workers and many hundreds of volunteers out there cleaning rocks with soap and water and a scrub brush.  They were hearty.

Something that wasn't so wonderful, however, was the way they tried to save the water fowl, the penguins, all manner of sea life, which came ashore caked in oil and unable to fly or swim.  People got out their pails of soapy water and ever-so-gently washed away the oil from each creature, then setting it free in the unpolluted area set aside for that purpose.  It took many months (yes!) before marine ornithologists took to their alerts and explained that all this soap, no matter the good intent, was killing these animals, as it removed their most essential life-saving feature:  waterproofing.  That layer is what kept those animals from drowning, from hyperthermia, from starvation.  Once removed by this soapy mixture the water fowl would soon, within only a day or two, either freeze or starve to death.

It was when their little corpses started to wash ashore that the human animal realized their tragic mistake and though their intentions were of the most noble in orientation, the result was catastrophic, as many of us remember.  These good folk truly worked hard, for as we all know, oil and water don't mix, so they spent many hours using elbow grease (scuse the pun) scrubbing those penguins and sea otters - but removing their one source of survival in the cold waters off the sound.

The world learned from this lessen - it would seem. 

Just last week I saw something that brought all those memories back, and it boiled my britches.  The makers of "Dawn" Liquid detergent have a commercial out showing a woman and her daughter bonding (in suitable slow-mo) as they scrub a little penquin clean with a toothbrush and - need I say it?  That soapy ooze.  Either they have short memories or something's gone terribly wrong with the world, but when you remove the extremely valuable waterproofing of these fowl it's akin to removing our own skin - we'd die of infections within, what, hours?

I'm also adding a little medical info, just for frustration's sake:  The more you use these liquid "Anitibiodic" soaps, the more immune germs will become to any effectiveness they may have on your hands.  These liquid "anti" soaps are the biggest rip-off health hazards and no one cares since money flows and people think they're protecting themselves against germs.  They're actually making themselves more prone, more susceptible.  The best soap in the world is one with no color, perfume or added "anti" anything.  But we'll continue to help what are fast becoming "super-bugs" which hospitals all over the world have already seen developing for years.  Wide-spectrum antibiotic rounds do little to stave off the fevers and lesions associated with these germs.  And it's all because we thought we weren't CLEAN ENOUGH! 

I'm going to sleep, dream about mud puddles.    

 

16 comments:

treesrgreen78 said...

Luddie good entry, I have been fortunate enough to see the march of the penguins in Australia on St. Phillips Island.  These little creatures are absolutely amazing as you see them come in from the sea and traverse the cliffs to find nests for their young.  I am very fortunate indeed to have witnessed this amazing thing.  God bless the penguins and keep the soap of them, bring on the mud, lol.

TreesRGreen78

queenb8261 said...

Great entry, as ever.
Barb  

jmorancoyle said...

     I like mud puddles. I also like your entries. I never heard about the those animals not being saved. That really makes me sad. It just seems that we humans are really good at screwing up nature.
Jude
http://journals.aol.com/jmorancoyle/MyWay

brainwhispers said...

I never use that antibiotic soap stuff.
Washing is sooooo overrated anyway.
Although a nice rub down with a warm wet sponge would be welcome if you are offering!
:o)

queeniemart said...

i LOVE this entry...how thought provoking and interesting!!!!! Thank you for the info.
HUGS, lisa

lifes2odd said...

Very good entry -- very depressing but very thought provoking as well.

siennastarr said...

I am embarrasssed to say that I don't remember the part about the humans scrubbing the tar of the penguins and them dying.  Wow.  That is horrible.  How heartbreaking, especially when you think you are doing something 'good.'   I've not seen that commercial with the penguin as of yet.  Probably would not have given it a thought, had I not ready your entry today.

I am with you about too much antibacterial soaps and hand cleansers.  I do use antibacterial dish soap.. which is usually what I end up washing my hands with, but I'm not a fanatic about it, and do not own any of that disinfectant hand cleanser.  I agree that you can overdo anything, to the point where it stops being effective.

Interesting and informative entry, Cathy!

Hugs
Jackie
http://journals.aol.com/siennastarr/Hopefloats/

rockoned7 said...

Luddie
I enjoyed reading your take on our advertising gurus who never spare a thought for the poor animals that they exploit just for the sake of persuading us to purchase their products.

Don’t they know that the road to hell is paved with good intentions?  

I suppose you can blame a countryman of mine who first discovered a substance that would kill or inhibit the growth of growth of micro-organisms. The use of antiseptics was pioneered by Joseph Lister in the Royal Infirmary Glasgow in 1852. He used carbolic acid (Phenol), which is a weak antiseptic. To this day antiseptics such as TCP are derived from this discovery, and of course the further development of all sorts of cleansing lotions and potions.

Of course the introduction of antibiotics in the 1930’s have saved many countless numbers of people but the drawbacks as you point out is the number of superbugs which has grown a world wide threat to all in our society. It is not the antibiotics are at fault but the indiscriminate use of these substances which has led to this immunity to the antibiotics themselves. As far as some would say that this heralds the end of antibiotics.

It was ironically in the same hospital in Glasgow that two virulent strains of the superbug MRSA were discovered in the first cases to be logged in the UK.

Well they say “Cleanliness is next to Godliness” but it makes you think hard on that saying without the modern persuaders being preponderant on that subject.

hugsdoodlewacky said...

((((((((((((((((((LUDDIE)))))))))))))))))))))))))))Very intresting,its sad thoe,you think soap can clean naything.But if soap doesnt work with cleaning the anaimals,what good kind of soap is there for us?I use Dove.Thank you for sharing this with us all.

swmpgrly said...

omg I would never of imagined that

lanurseprn said...

I wasn't aware of the penguins plight.  You are so right about the "Super Bugs" though. If only more people were educated.  It really gets me when someone has a sore throat and tells me "I took an antibiotic." A full 10 day course? "No...one pill..maybe two!"  Ok...you've just give the bugs resistance to that drug. Thanks.
Have a good day......Pam

bedazzzled1 said...

You are right on the money with all you have said here. It is frightening, isn't it?

Although, I need to add this. EVERY SINGLE PERSON who visits someone in a hospital should wash their hands before touching a patient and afterwards. There are too many incidences of staph infections contracted from lack of clean hands. Staph kills. Oh, and let's don't forget to wash those hands well after going potty. Good Lord, I don't know how many women I have seen use the hospital restroom and exit without washing hands. ICK, ICK, and ICK.

Hugs to you~
Nikki

xxroxymamaxx said...

Wow, I didn't know that about the animals in the oil spill.  I mean I knew about the oil spill but not the events after.  Amazing.  And for the record, I use ivory.  Allergic to everything else.  : )  Big hugs and GBU, Shelly

ravenjuiced said...

Yeah, as heartless as it seems, I remember thinking when the Valdez thing happened that they'd be better off putting those poor things out of their misery. I visited Valdez around 1990 and the stink of the oil was still in the rocks. Filthy bastard that Hazelwood.

Fred

nemokat05 said...

I'm probably going to get ANOTHER staph infection..... for the second time!!!!

Saturday, January 5, 2008
Subject: Hospital
Time: 6:56:54 PM EST

I was up and down all last night. I finally got up around 8 am and took an shower. Then Travis, me and his mom went to the ER room at the hospital. My finger gotten really puffed and hurted like hell! My abscess on my right leg popped last night and alot of pus and blood mixture came out of it. The ER doctor numbed my finger and my leg and cut them open to drain them. A little bit came out of my finger and my leg but mostly when the one on my leg popped last night the pus was alot. They sent it to a lab and its going to take 48 hours to know what I have but they are treating it like Staph Infection. I am taking Keflex and Bactrim. Well I had a hellish day so I'm going to rest.

I am taking Cephalexin (Kelfex) 500 MG CAP. One capsule by month 4 times daily for 10 days. And Bactrim DS 800-160 TAB. One tablet by mouth twice daily for 10 days.

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