Archive for May, 2014

“There’s Something About Sarah”

May 21, 2014

Originally posted on my old blog Sunday, 5 July 2009

“The advert was deemed to distressed to be broadcast”

There’s Something About Sarah – Chapter One

So there I was. Stepped off the train from my daily commute to and from Queens Park and Glasgow Central Station, albeit at the weekend, working overtime.

Since the train was lengthier than normal (due to a certain Take That gig at Hampden Park that evening), one alighted the train at a part of the platform I rarely have navigated before.

And that’s where and when it struck me and prompted this post. 15.27 pm, Saturday 20th June 2009 to be precise.

Hang on a minute. I actually know the person featured on this poster. Blimey. How did that happen – what’s the story?

A billboard that normally is posted with adverts for fizzy drinks and all sorts of various advertising shite-ola.

My journey home (2 min walk) continued as usual, but I was understandably most perplexed. So I did what I would normally do, and logged onto the web for informationz.

The person in question was none other than Ms. Sarah Ezekiel, an individual I have had contact with via PatientsLikeMe, Facebook, and now, email.

But just who is Ms. Sarah Ezekiel readers of this post may ask. Previous post on McBlawg here.

Sarah is an extremely active individual who other than looking after her two children (Eric now 9 and Aviva, 12 years old) campaigns tirelessly in terms of raising awareness about Motor Neuron Disease (MND).

Chapter Two

When I got into my flat and logged onto the web, and specifically, PatientsLikeMe – ALS, a theme was clearly already well under construction.

“Have to post this photo taken by my carer in Tottenham Court Road tube station! The irony is that I may never see it because London Transport isn’t very accessible for wheelchair users…” Sarah Ezekiel – Jun 13, 2009 04:26PM

Chapter Three

“Our Sarah’s Story awareness campaign is being promoted on national billboard space for two weeks, thanks to the generous support of CBS Outdoor media.

The poster campaign aims to raise awareness of MND and encourage visitors to

The campaign will run for two weeks from 15 June. This means that the second week coincides with our MND Awareness Week (20 – 28 June).

There will be 48 sheet posters on 18 London Underground poster sites in zone one and over 80 mainline railway station sites right across England, Wales and Scotland.

This is the first time that the MND Association and MND Scotland have developed a joint awareness campaign”.

LATEST: Some posters will remain at stations. View the Sarah’s Story mainline poster sites beyond 28 June (13 kb) London Underground poster sites beyond 28 June (9 kb)

Chapter Four

In January, I placed a link to the video, Sarah’s Story on FriendFeed. On 23rd June, I updated that entry to alert people to the fact that I was writing another blog post about it and asked people to consider leaving a comment. Follows the interesting discussion that took place.

Here is the poster in question (click to enlarge):-

As displayed in the above FriendFeed thread, the poster, the media and over the internet, the video has evoked wide ranging reactions.

Sarah has now created her own website and blog.

(UPDATE – Sarah is an active Twitter user and can be found at @sarahezekiel aka eyegazeartist)

sarah new

Finally, I would like to publicly thank Sarah for her assistance in composing this post and for her continued role as an active patient advocate in the field of MND.

1 comment:

Louisa said…

In regards to the comments stating that MND doesn’t rape you, as a family member of a sufferer I would have to say that after talking to my father about his thoughts and feelings on how MND affects him I would have to disagree. We feel as though it has invaded my fater just as a Rapist would, it does strip eveyday people, living everyday lives of their dignity just as MND does.

TED Fellowships – Open Science

May 14, 2014

Originally posted on my old blog Sunday, 15 March 2009

TED Fellowships – Open Science


“And then it struck me….” A line from a film currently under construction that I’m not allowed to say much about, at the moment.

Like many many others, McDawg is a massive fan of TED. Previous McBlawg TED related posts here. Indeed, TED came into the discussion two weeks ago at CISB’09 and McDawg was most surprised to learn that Henry Gee was unaware of TED. He has been primed about it now.

McDawg wasn’t aware of TED Fellows Program until yesterday. Also see The story,How it works and Applying to be a Fellow.

Cue this related thread over at FriendFeed started by Bill Hooker.

I have to say I completely agree with this comment from Bill:-

Yaroslav — I was indeed thinking of Jean-Claude, Cameron and a growing number of others who are actually *doing* Open Science. The TED people seem pretty forward-looking so I don’t think it’s necessary to have already changed the world, just made a good start on that project. A TED talk would certainly put ONS on a LOT of peoples’ radar, which is where collaborations come from, which is the secret to ONS success…

ONS = Open Notebook Science.

Cameron Neylon and Jean-Claude Bradley

McDawg has had the priviledge of meeting them both in person. Cue this post from Cameron:- The Open Science Endurance Event – Team JC-C

From the comments in the FriendFeed thread, Cameron has kind of ruled himself out but nominated Jean-Claude. I second that nomination.

I would dearly love something like ONS/OS to be platformed at a prestigious event like TED and would encourage someone like Jean-Claude to seriously consider applying to become a TED Fellow. Alternatively, anyone can nominate an individual by email:-

“Note: If you would like to nominate another individual (rather than apply), please email your nomination to Include your and the nominee’s contact information (phone, address and email). Please tell us why you’d like to nominate him or her. Also list any pertinent websites that might give us more information about the nominee”.

++UPDATE++ Having alerted Peter Suber to the above (pers. communication), he has given this his full approval.

1 comment:

Readhead said…

Hi, we’d very much be interested in seeing an application from one of you working Open Science projects!

Tom Rielly
TED Conferences

How my ‘plain omelette’ nearly cost me my Wife – Exclusive

May 11, 2014
Originally posted on my old deceased blog on Tuesday, 10 March 2009
We already know about Aliens Eating Buicks and DJ’s Saving Lifes, so, what’s different about a plain omelette disrupting married life? READ ON.

Last nicht, after work, McDawg met up again with James Meikle (and his wife, Fiona) from The Guardian for a few drinks at The Drum And Monkey, in Glasgow. (Follows a random snap of the interior of the pub)

Flickr source

McDawg has had regular contact with James for about 8 years now, but this was only the third time that we’ve met in person. The previous time was in London last August with Dr Jenny Rohn for an hour or so the day before Science Blogging 2008: London

Prior to the meet up yesterday, McDawg had a browse through some of James’s recent online articles and noted a couple of key changes:-

a) He’s started to include lots of handy hyperlinks, which he didn’t used to
b) On a number of his articles, comments sections are included, which is new

All in all, despite not being really into social networking sites, etc., he’s morphing into being a blogger !! Woot….

I found this rather interesting and threw open a discussion in this regard. I noted that certain articles had no comments, and others had differing amounts. Relatively typical in the blogosphere.

A broken egg with yolk spilling out. Photograph: Getty

One particular recent post he referred to was Sunny side up for eggs published in The Guardian’s Word Of Mouth Blog.

Mrs Meikle pretty much told me the story about that post and it was rather amusing to listen to them discuss it. From the blog:-

“My wife (jokingly, I think) threatened to leave me when I promised her a special dinner on her return from a trip away and proudly produced a beautifully-cooked, but undeniably plain, omelette. With salad, I hasten to add”.

James lied about adding mushrooms, allegedly – tsk, tsk!!

What came out of that post however and James was so delighted about this, were the number of recipe suggestions that followed in the comments section (67 before the comments section was closed).

Mrs Meikle said that she had considered leaving a comment, but wasn’t too sure about the concept of a husband and wife team communicating online in such a manner.

McDawg responded straight away, citing the likes of Dr Gee and Mrs Gee who’ve relatively recently started to do this on Nature Network ! Most recent example earlier today.

Some ‘take home’ issues here, and knowing The Meikle’s as I now do, I most enjoyed the other night and writing this up in a blog !! Enjoy your Oban/Highlands trip guys !!!!

This sounds rather nom nom nom, from commenter, bitwize

Here’s an excellent Turkish egg dish

Menemen – for 4 persons
4 eggs
2 green peppers,
2 T. butter
2 ripe tomatoes
salt, blk. pepper
chopped parsley
chopped onion
feta cheese cubes
Peel and chop the tomatoes. Remove the top and seeds of the green pepper and cut into thin rings. Cut the larger rings into half or forths. All should be the same size. Dice the onion

Melt the butter in a pan over medium heat. Sauté the onion green pepper & garlic until soft. . Do not allow to brown. Add the tomatoes and allow to sauté a few minutes. Use a fork to crush them until it resembles a loose sauce.

Add the slightly beaten egg, salt and pepper to taste and stir gently until it begins to set. Add the feta cheese iand continue to stir until the liquid is evaporated.

Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and serve with crusty bread/baguette.

Absolutely Beautiful.

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