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Health Archives - ATX Fun - Austin-San Antonio Fun, Travel & Educational Opportunities

Better Than Free – Get Paid $150 Tuesday for Giving Your Opinions

Tammadge Market Research seems to be trying pretty hard to find focus-group participants for this study. I participated in some groups with them in years past, and they paid cash immediately upon conclusion of the meetings.

From their email:

We are looking for men and women, age 35-80, to participate in focus groups regarding healthcare!  Study details and a shareable link are included below.

Day & Date:  Tuesday, December 3rd, 2019
Times of Day:  Morning / Midday
Duration:  1.5 hours
Location:  L&E (in Austin, 78704)
Incentive:  $150


Please forward the survey link (above) to anyone you know who may be interested.


Hiking In and Around Austin

Regular hiking is good for the body and the mind. Several Meetup groups have regular hikes in the Austin area, as does the Sierra Club and others.

I have regularly hiked with the Monday-Friday Hikers for 7+ years. Most of us in the group do not work a regular 9-to-5 job, so our hikes begin at 9:30 AM. We usually walk for 1 to 3 hours.

We do not recruit new members directly. Instead, we encourage people to take the “Hiking Austin Trails” course given by Austin’s Lifetime Learning Institute. Tuition for that course is just $20, and it meets 8 times for hikes on some of the same trails that the Mon-Fri Hikers frequent. Anyone who is comfortable with the Hiking Austin Trails hikes is welcome to join us.

Lifetime Learning Institute of Austin, A Valuable Resource for Persons Age 50+

LLI LogoLifetime Learning Institute of Austin ( has been in operation for over 40 years, providing economical classes on an eclectic range of topics. The primary group served is persons 50+.

Registration for the Spring 2019 semester opens on January 16, but it’s not too early to take a look at the classes that were offered in the Fall because many will also be available in the Spring.

Many LLI classes fill up within hours, so it pays to register as soon as possible. You can take a look at the list here to see which Fall classes filled (shown in red) and which still had room.

I usually take 2 or 3, sometimes 4, LLI classes each semester. My favorites are T’ai Chi (Taiji) and Qigong, and Yoga Fit. This time I enrolled in classes about American Comedy Films, Exercise for Men and Women, and India. My other recommendations are How to Listen to Classical Music, and Geology.

LLI is run as a non-profit by volunteers, and part of what keeps Austin wonderfully weird.

Hiking In & Around Austin

When you mention hiking in Austin, many people think of the Hike & Bike Trail around Lady Bird Lake. While this trail is popular, our city is home to numerous other maintained hiking trails, both in and out of the city limits.

The best and safest way to find and experience these other trails is with a group of friends. An excellent such group is the hiking class offered by Lifetime Learning Institute of Austin. At just $20 for 8 sessions, LLI classes are truly “The Best Bargain in Town”. You can sign up at

Mon-Fri Hikers LogoAfter graduating from the class, some members elect to join the Monday & Friday Hikers group. This very-loosely organized group consists mainly of retired persons.

Hiking, like other forms of exercise, is beneficial for the body and the mind. After I began hiking, my “bad” cholesterol number went down and my happiness level went up. Many friendships form during the shared experience of an hour or two hike in the Hill Country.

How to Travel Together and (in spite of everything) Stay Together

This blog post was written by a lady who persuaded her stay-at-home BF to travel the world for a year. More remarkably, they are still together!

One of her tips is to Establish a Routine. Every morning he sat and had his coffee and read the New York Times on his iPad. She was ready to get going, but she recognized that her BF needed that slow start in the morning in order to be able to sightsee the rest of the day.

The article is very good reading, even if you and your partner don’t intend to be gone for 12 months at a time.

A Happy Couple. Photo by Thomas Hawk / Flickr
A Happy Couple. Photo by Thomas Haek / FlickrThomas Hawk via / CC BY-NC

A Happy Couple. Photo by Thomas Haek / FlickrThomas Hawk via / CC BY-NC

You Can Be a Hero — How a Passenger Can (Theoretically) Land a 737 in an Emergency

This YouTube video explains how a non-pilot can (in theory) land a Boeing 737 commercial airliner if both the captain and the co-pilot are out of commission.

I never quite realized how complex this would be…seemingly impossible for a novice. Maybe it would be possible for someone who has a lot of hours with Microsoft Flight Simulator.

The hundreds of comments shown below this video are quite interesting. A couple of commenters mention that “the 37 has the capability to autoland.”

Another issue is how a passenger would be able to enter the cockpit…that is not addressed in the video.

On FlyerTalk, a commenter has posted this bit of inside humor, which applies to the alternative version of the video after Delta Airlines evidently complained that they didn’t want their company name associated with a dangerous situation: “I thought the video was pretty funny using the 736 and “Janet” callsign. For those who may not know, “Janet” flights are the shuttle from LAS to Area 51 and some other secret military base.”


I Saw a Yellow Dot on a Car Rear Window…What Does it Mean?

A yellow dot stuck to the rear window of a car signifies that the owner or regular passenger has a specific medical need, and that instructions are in a container in the glove compartment.

Here are two examples from different states.

sheriff yellow dot window

Yellow DotYou can Google yellow dot + your state name to see how to receive a Yellow Dot kit for yourself or a family member.

Airlines Letting Passengers Cancel Flights to Zika Virus Areas

As the Zika virus spreads from South America into Caribbean island nations (including the U.S. Virgin Islands), airlines have begun letting passengers cancel flights without penalty.

If you or your partner are or could be pregnant, call the airline to learn if you can cancel for a full refund. The airlines are changing their policies on this daily, so Hang Up / Call Again (“HUCA”) tomorrow if you do not get a good answer today.

You can see a map from the Center for Disease Control showing areas of the United States where Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes capable of spreading Zika virus are found.

Nations where the Zika virus have been found, according to the CDC:
Cape Verde
El Salvador
French Guiana
Puerto Rico
S. Martin

Mosquito, Photo by edans / Flickr