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Mindful : February 2018
mindful A man’s career at the juvenile justice department in South Texas wrapped up after it was discovered he’d been intercepting their tasty Tex-Mex food deliveries. The man acknowledged stealing and reselling more than $1.2 million worth of fajitas over nine years. Who knew cigarette butts, plastic water bottles, and old smartphones could be upcycled into modern fur- niture and other high-end goods? UK startup Penta- tonic is doing just that—no resins, glues, or harmful additives included. Google faced a backlash over the calorie-counting feature added to Maps. Critics argued a rigid focus on calories (mea- sured by the app in mini- cupcakes) can promote an unhealthy mindset around food. Google listened up and ditched the feature. The nonprofit Com- passion Games encourages a culture of kindness through working together. Teaming up for the games, women incar- cerated at a California prison performed 4,500 acts of kindness: sharing food, cleaning each others’ living spaces, and knitting items for charity. Dust bunnies, beware: A woman in Coventry, UK, called animal control in alarm over what she believed to be an unidentifiable species of lizard sticking out from under her bed. On closer inspection, the “lizard” proved to be nothing more exotic than a pink, stripy sock. A Florida man was arrested when police identified white crumbs in his car as meth. More thorough testing showed the substance was just the glaze from Krispy Kreme donuts. ● Illustrations by Jessica Rae Gordon mindless Healthy hearts, healthy minds Rhode Island’s Brown University opened its Mind- fulness and Car- diovascular Health Lab in fall 2017. The lab has both public service and research goals: to share evidence- based information about mindful- ness and health, to work with other researchers, and to promote rigor- ous scientific stan- dards in the study of mindfulness. Can meditation help protect the ticker? Could be. While the evidence is still preliminary, the American Hear t Association has acknowledged for the first time, in a scientific statement, that meditation may help prevent heart disease—perhaps by easing risk fac- tors such as blood pressure. ● 16 mindful February 2018 what’s new Mindful or Mindless? Our take on who’s paying attention and who’s not