You won’t believe what the US Trademark Office is doing

Bosnian land mine warning sign. Source : Wikipedia
Bosnian landmine warning sign. Source: Wikipedia

Imagine that words and phrases in the English language could be bought. A company could purchase words and become the only entity who could ever use them.

It would fill our language with landmines, forcing writers to navigate through a whole new kind of stylebook. If we used a forbidden word, we could be sued by the word’s owner. One day our use of words like “iced tea” or “notebook” might be completely fine; the next day, if we tried to use that turn of phrase, we could get our websites shut down.

Sounds like crazy science fiction, doesn’t it?

It’s not.

The US Trademark Office is allowing companies to trademark phrases in common and widespread use, such as the term “fire cider,” just because a company wants to have exclusive rights to using a phrase for a product.

Read more…

Acupuncture gets right to the point

Alternative health care fascinates me. Not only are the tools for providing care different from “traditional”, allopathic care, but the methods can also vary. Often, alternative care finds ways to reach people who don’t have access to doctors and hospitals due to expense, scheduling and other concerns. As I learned through my herbalism training, it often works just as well, or better, than mainstream treatments. After my unexpected trip to the Emergency Room on Friday, I discovered that the pile of medicines prescribed to relieve my pain helped… to a point. Even with a full dose, I was still in considerable discomfort, particularly as I tried to sleep. Looking for a solution that would work in tandem with the medications (not wanting to chance herbal remedies this time around), I considered acupuncture, something I had tried once in the distant past for a similar issue. I discovered a small clinic in Austin called Acupuncture Together that advertises low cost treatments ($30 for the first one, and $20 … Read more…

herbal salve

Herbal healing salve

Today’s project: homemade salve with around a dozen herbs, olive oil, lanolin and beeswax. Miraculously the final mixture was exactly the right amount for the containers I had… not too much, not too little. Perfect. I take that as a good omen. Herbs used: Comfrey Echinacea Plantain Grindelia Rosemary Yarrow Calendula Chaparral Chickweed Agarita Myrrh All of these herbs were chosen for their skin healing, anti-microbial, or anti-itch/soothing qualities. I did not add essential oils for fragrance as I prefer it to smell “green.” 🙂