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FIELD OF GREENS: A Vietnamese farmer waters his kohlrabi field in Thuong Tin district outside Hanoi. (KHAM/REUTERS)
FIELD OF GREENS: A Vietnamese farmer waters his kohlrabi field in Thuong Tin district outside Hanoi. (KHAM/REUTERS)

Talking Points: Relying on food banks, parental well-being, and King Tut’s death Add to ...

FEEDING THE NEEDY

Sad but true: Nearly four years after the global recession, the number of Canadians forced to use food banks on a regular basis has gone down slightly, but remains near record-high levels. CTV News recaps the annual study by Food Banks Canada, which revealed that more than 833,000 people depended on food banks during the month of March, 2013. In the same month one year before, 872,379 Canadians used food banks. “During a time of apparent economic recovery, far too many Canadians still struggle to put food on the table,” said the report. The study blames low-income jobs, which are abundant in Canada as manufacturing jobs continue to decline.

PERFECT PARENTS

Are some parents placing their children’s happiness before their own? The Atlantic reports on a study examining whose well-being comes first in the modern family compact: The kids’ or the grownups’. The study took an unflinching look at 136 parents with at least one child under 18. Parents were asked how much time they spent with their children and rated how strongly they agreed with statements such as, “The happiness of my children is more important to me than my own happiness.” The results: Parents who scored highest for “child-centrism” also reported they derived more personal well-being from the parenting process. The study runs counter to previous research suggesting that being over-involved, “helicopter” parents was detrimental to parents’ happiness.

DIGGING UP TUT

At long last, we may discover how Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun died and why his mummy was scorched. CBC News reports on a British documentary, Tutankhamun: The Mystery of the Burnt Mummy, about Egyptologist Chris Naunton’s work to unravel the mystery using a “virtual autopsy.” X-ray scans of the boy-king’s mummy revealed a “highly distinct pattern” of injuries on one side of his body. With the aid of auto-accident investigators and computer simulation, Naunton’s team determined Tut was probably in battle when he died, and was most likely run over by a chariot. So why was the body burnt? Chemical testing revealed the mummification was “botched,” resulting in combustion of the embalming oils.

THOUGHT DU JOUR

When the gods wish to punish us, they make us believe our own advertising.

Daniel J. Boorstin, historian (1914-2004)

 

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