Random Neuron Firing

Internal Memo: The Ashes are upon us.

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Please note that productivity out of my office (OK, OK…the room I share with Kim) may be slower than usual from July 7 – 11 due to the First Test being played at Cardiff. You may hear the dulcet tones of the BBC's cricket commentators coming from said office as they exhort their wonder at the boys from Down Under.

This is serious. This is the Ashes. Unlike the local "World Series" played here by your sometime drug – assisted Rounders League, this actually involves teams from two entirely different countries playing for pride (and a few bucks) powered by tea and cucumber sandwiches. (I am amazed drugs haven't hit Cricket – not sure why. There's a lot less money involved so maybe that's why)

It involves a series of five games played every two years between Australia and England dating back to 1882.

The greatest batsmen of all time – Don Bradman (pictured above)  – an Australian who was a stock broker by trade averaged 99.94. That is the number of runs he scored on average in an innings over his 20 year career. Only three other payers in history have averages over 60. The man was a freak. And every cricket fan father hopes his son emerges as the next Bradman. His trick was to practice hitting a golf ball with a cricket stump (like the thin end of a baseball bat) against a currugated water tank (so a curved surface). Try it sometime.

So fair warning has been given. I might be out of it over the next week…!

Random Neuron Firing

Pull your socks up Kraft & Heinz, your making our kids fatties…

From today's Sydney Morning Herald…

Toddlers might be better with Big Macs

Kate Tarala

May 5, 2009

CHEESEBURGERS, Big Macs and chocolate biscuits are healthier than some foods designed for babies and toddlers, many of which contain more sugar, salt or fat than similar products marketed to adults.

A examination of foods marketed for babies and toddlers up to the age of three found that many foods contained more saturated fat, sugar or salt than Big Macs, cheeseburgers and Tim Tam biscuits.

Kraft and Heinz products were among the worst offenders, with Heinz Little Kids Muesli Fingers containing 8.1g of saturated fat and 42g of sugar, compared to Be Natural trail bars nut and fruit aimed at adults with 1.5g of saturated fat and 20.4g of sugar.

A dietitian and researcher Therese O'Sullivan, based at the nutrition and development research team at the Telethon Institute for Child Research, said the average energy daily intake for a two- to three-year-old was 17g of saturated fats and 79g of sugar. There was no reason why children's foods should be higher in fat than similar products for adults.

She said parents should choose less processed foods for their children and encourage a healthy diet because childhood food preferences flowed into adulthood.

"If kids are given the choice between one of the oat biscuits and a carrot stick, it's not going to be a hard choice," Dr O'Sullivan said. "But if they are not given the option, they don't know any different."

The consumer group Choice last week revealed that many breakfast cereals aimed at children were packed with excessive sugar and salt.

Its senior food policy officer, Clare Hughes, said many snack foods marketed for children were high in fat, sugar or salt to appeal to young tastebuds.

A spokeswoman for Heinz Australia said the company's Little Kids range had been designed according to strict nutritional guidelines.