E-Book BEA Debate; Michael Douglas on Oral Sex; New Fight Against AIDS

E-Book BEA Debate

When I post about this topic now, I start to feel as if I’m living in an altered universe sometimes. And yet this article from PW talks about e-books as if they were just invented.

In a question from the audience, Ed Conklin, buyer at Chaucer’s Books in Santa Barbara, Calif., said, “I’m not real interested in e-books.” That’s because there’s no way for a customer to buy an e-book in his store. In a follow-up question, Emily Pullen, manager of Word Books in Brooklyn, N.Y., pointed out how little money booksellers make on e-book sales. “If I sold an e-book to every customer who came in my store, I’d be out of business in a week.” To which Friedman responded that e-book pricing is going to level out at higher than $2.99.

While I do often think that e-books are either too expensive or too inexpensive to be realistic, and I would like to see publishers focus more on fair pricing, I can’t help but always take into consideration the near future. And when I say the near future I mean watch kids in grade school, or even in middle school and high school. The tech devices they own would most likely turn someone like Ed Conklin from Chaucer’s Books upside down. If past is prologue, and if history does repeat itself, than all these debates are absolutely pointless.

I saw an interesting TV commercial last evening. I forget what the commercial was about in detail, but at the end there was a young woman holding a record in her hands and she says, “I know what these are. I read about them in books.” The main focus was that records are obsolete, and most kids don’t even know what they are. Frankly, I don’t even know what records are because my generation had cassette tapes and CDs. I never had a record collection. My mom and dad owned records. But the underlying irony in that commercial is that in the real world the odds are that the young woman either read about old fashioned records online somewhere, or she read about them in an e-book. And whoever put that ad together didn’t even realize they were being ironic.

Michael Douglas on Oral Sex

Update: Here’s a link that will lead you to a web site that talks in depth about HPV. There’s also a vaccine available, which I didn’t know about.

Actor Michael Douglas talked openly about his ordeal with throat cancer and the kind of cancer it was. According to this article, it wasn’t caused by smoking or alcohol. It was caused by engaging in oral sex. This isn’t the first time I’ve heard something like this. It’s actually more common than most people know.

 In a candid new interview with U.K.’s The Guardian, Douglas admits that his illness was caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV).

“Without wanting to get too specific, this particular cancer is caused by HPV, which actually comes about from cunnilingus,” the “Behind the Candelabra” star, 68, explains.

For those who haven’t heard about this, it’s an interesting article with more links.

New Fight Against AIDS

This comes from Lambda Legal.

As the nation marks the opening of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month, executive directors from 35 LGBT and HIV/AIDS organizations from across the United States have released a joint letter committing themselves and their organizations to re-engaging the broader LGBT community in the fight against HIV. While issues like marriage equality and employment protections for LGBT workers have taken center stage, HIV continues to ravage the LGBT community. Despite making up just two percent of the population, gay and bisexual men accounted for more than 63 percent of new HIV infections in 2010. In fact, gay men are the only group in which HIV infections are increasing.

With all the information out there, the numbers in gay men getting HIV should be declining, and yet that’s not the case. I’ve read that a lot of younger gay men hear that HIV is a chronic disease and there are now medications that can keep them alive so they don’t think they have to be as careful anymore. This is true about HIV in a general sense. Those with HIV don’t get a death sentence anymore. It is treated as a chronic disease.

But that’s not the bottom line, not by any means. The HIV meds have side effects that you may not see for years to come. These side effects can appear in a variety of ways. And none of them are pleasant. I know this first hand because I’ve been acting POA for a friend who is HIV+ and I often go to his doctor’s appointments with him at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. The other factor is the cost of HIV meds. They run into thousands of dollars each month and if you think Obamacare is going to help you you’d better start reading more. The fact is that if you don’t have a great medical insurance plan you’re going to have to figure out a way to get those meds and it’s not going to be simple.

This is the goal. I think it’s realistic if everyone takes the time to read this information.

“The LGBT community always has been at the epicenter of the AIDS epidemic. As the community most impacted in the nation, we are the ones who must step-up and recommit to ending future transmissions. To have a new generation of LGBT young people grow up free from HIV and AIDS will be a fitting legacy to those we have lost to this disease.”

I also think it’s time we took the stigma away from AIDS. Michael Douglas talked about his ordeal with cancer and oral sex in the above article without a hint of shame. We need to be able to do the same thing with HIV as gay men.

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