A very Happy Good Friday to you all
A very wet Good Friday though–Its a tradition for a Bank holiday to be bad. The promise is that Monday is going to be very warm.
Ah, the comforting hot cross bun, with its rich yeasty smell emanating from the oven (or if you’re as impatient as me, from the toaster, which inevitably results in corners that have burnt to an inedible crisp), the warm dough, the fruity taste and the sticky golden exterior. They are sold all year round and are perfect components of afternoon tea or breakfast, however the Christian tradition is to eat them on Good Friday alone. How did this tasty treat become part of a religious ritual?
The most common recipe has yeast, milk, flour, butter, eggs, sugar, raisins, and a combination of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and allspice, but some older recipes called for saffron and mace. Throughout the 1600s trade with faraway countries became easier, and new, exotic ingredients like spices and sugar found their way into British kitchens. The introduction of these items increased the popularity of fruit breads, however they actually have a much older history.
Remains of cakes marked with crosses have been found among ruins in Herculaneum, an ancient Roman city near Pompeii, suggesting Romans were eating confectionery very similar to hot cross buns. The crosses were crudely marked into the bread with a knife, rather than piped on with pastry, although this wasn’t always intended to symbolise the Christian cross. Pagan Saxons used a cross to depict the four quarters of the moon, and in other cultures it was simply meant to show the lines along which the bun should be divided.
There are older theories around, such as that of the ancient Egyptians offering small round buns to the goddess of the moon, the cross representing two ox horns, the symbol for strength and sovereignty. Other possible explanations point to their origin during the Greek Empire, or as a Jewish Passover food. The only certainty is that the term “hot cross bun” first appeared in the Oxford English Dictionary in 1733, along with a folk song: “Good Friday comes this month, the old woman runs, with one or two a Penny hot cross Bunns”. While at first glance this seems little more than gibberish, it does tell us that the tradition of eating hot cross buns on Good Friday must have started well before the date of the dictionary’s publication.
But that’s not all in terms of folklore. In the 19th century, a widow living in Bromley-by-Bow awaited the return of her son from sea. It was Good Friday, and she had baked him a hot cross bun. The lad never came home, but his mother refused to give up hope. She kept the bun, and baked a new one each year on the same date, adding them to the collection. To pay homage to this story, the Hot Cross Bun Ceremony takes place every Good Friday at The Widow’s Son, a pub situated on the site of the woman’s home. Sailors from the Royal Navy hang buns above the bar to pay their respects to those who lost their lives at sea (where they remain, in a net, as they don’t go mouldy). The ceremony has been celebrated for almost 150 years (the pub was built in 1848), but health inspectors may be pleased to know that a fire took with it some of the older relics around 15 years ago.
MARF Today is Day 3 of Asbestos Awareness Week. We honor this week by providing our community and the general public with educational information, blog posts, press releases, and important facts necessary to raise awareness of the dangers of asbestos and to prevent dangerous exposures to asbestos.
Also, in honor of this important week, the Meso Foundation launched its new prevention program with focus on early detection research, prevention of asbestos exposures, and prevention of disease development.
Particularly, with respect to prevention, the Meso Foundation is placing a strong focus on education for the general public, as well as workers at risk of occupational exposure.
The EPA estimates that asbestos is still present in tens of millions of homes, government buildings, schools, and has also been found naturally-occurring in the soil in several locations in the United States, sometimes in very close proximity to inhabited areas. According to the US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), an estimated 1.3 million construction employees continue to be occupationally exposed to asbestos.
When disturbed, asbestos particles become airborne and are easily inhaled. No amount of exposure is deemed safe.
Because most cases of mesothelioma are known to be caused by exposure to asbestos, we believe that prevention of exposures to asbestos, and other known carcinogens associated with the development of mesothelioma, will contribute to our mission of eradicating mesothelioma. More information is available at http://www.curemeso.org.
This day of Global Asbestos Awareness Week is dedicated to Janelle, a mesothelioma warrior in the U.S. who lost her courageous battle in June 2013.
Posted in January 2013
“I Will Never Be the Same Again” – Janelle’s Story
Date of Birth: 16-MAR-1976
Date of Diagnosis: 1-May-2007
Date of Death: June 19, 2013
Treatment: thoracentesis, chemotherapy, pleurodesis with chest tube drainage and talc, extrapleural pneumonectomy, 30 rounds of radiation, physical therapy,nerve blocks, decortication surgery with HIPEC, and medical acupuncture
How has asbestos changed your life? I was a 31-year-old wife with a 4-year-old son when I was diagnosed with Pleural Mesothelioma. It started with trouble breathing, pain around my left rib and a constant cough. It was a matter of weeks and I went from being healthy to fighting for my life. I was told I would not survive Mesothelioma, that there was no cure. I decided to have an EPP and I was so thankful it was a success!
Since surgery, it has been a long road to recovery. I have come a long way, but I know I will never be the same again. I had a hard time getting off the pain medications and I suffered with severe depression. Some days, I could deal with the new me and other days, it was harder. I just try to continue to improve my life every day. In 2011, I was faced with the reality that the cancer had metastasized into my abdominal cavity. I had debulking surgery with HIPEC. The surgery went well. However, I then learned I was dealing with Restricted Lung disease in my only lung. I now use a BiPAP AVAPS to sleep at night. There has been a lot of hard days, but the ones in between are really great!
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“The slogan “Pray for the dead, and fight like hell for the living” will be on display later this month on posters and t-shirts as people commemorate International Workers’ Memorial Day. Each year, April 28 is set aside to recognize the heavy toll that preventable work-related deaths take on families, co-workers and communities. People in at least 50 countries will gather to remember that workplace hazards – from dangerous machinery to toxic chemicals – cut lives short. They will be calling on governments, industries and each other to demand safe workplaces.
In 2014, about 2.3 million individuals died from work-related causes. The number includes 11 construction workers in Chennai, India who died when a warehouse collapsed, four workers from Kosovo who were killed in an explosion at a power plant, and a 17-year old worker at a junkyard in Texas, USA who was fatally struck by a forklift. Some of the incidents are covered by news outlets, such as the 301 coal miners who died on-the-job last May in Manisa, Turkey. Most occupational fatalities, however, don’t make the headlines. About 86% of them are caused by work-related illnesses, including cancers, silicosis, black lung, and infectious diseases. Certainly, a large portion of the deaths were caused by exposure to asbestos – exposure that occurred 20 or 30 years ago. To save lives in the future, strong action is needed today to address exposure to this deadly mineral.
Some of us will mark Workers’ Memorial Day by lighting candles with a few co-workers. Others will rally with hundreds and call out the names of those killed last year by workplace hazards. We will remember those who were fatally injured, as well as the many who succumb to asbestosis, mesothelioma and other work-related diseases. No matter the size or place of the event, we will be together in spirit to remember the dead. I urge you to recommit to “fight like hell for the living” by supporting a global ban on asbestos.”
Celeste Monforton, DrPH, MPH, Professorial Lecturer, Milken Institute School of Public Health, George Washington University, Washington, DC
Rays Blog –Whitstable 1940 Its been a bit fresh of Late ,drizzly and wet. I came accross this picture of our beach in 1940. Now thats cold. Its been frozen over a few times since that date. So its probably not been that cold here after-all. I see TV is still prattleing on about the debate.And we still have 5 weeks of this.