Zen and the Art of Safe Hazardous Waste Disposal – Talkin’ Trash, July 2017

When it comes to tension in life, there’s both good and not-so-good.

Waiting to see if Astro’s pitcher Lance McCullers will throw his crazy grip curve ball (I can’t even get my fingers to go like that, let alone throw a ball) and the anticipation in wondering if JD will pull it into the left field bleachers…that’s the good kind.

Finding a needle, even if unused, in the garbage…not so good.

Following a major-IV chord with the minor-IV instead of resolving to the expected major-I chord (sorry…had a buncha years of music theory that I was really looking to use)…good tension.

Finding out that a bottle of blue gloop was dumped down the drain, putting hospital staff and the environment at risk…not so good.

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Do Unto Hazardous Waste Disposal as You Would Have Others Do Unto You – Talkin’ Trash, March 2017

The Mystery of Chemical & Pharmaceutical Waste

(apologies to mystery solvers everywhere)


Aside from a few unlucky felines, it may very well be the defining characteristic of Homo sapiens, the distinguishing feature that sets us apart from most other living things on our fair planet.  It’s the instinctual drive to, like a toddler of the species Homo sapiens hopped up on multi-grain, GMO free, naturally sweetened “Os”, continually ask “Why? Why? Why?”…and later pose the perhaps more important query, “Why not?”

And we at UHN are fortunate to be surrounded by many who have become proficient at not only asking “why”, but then answering their own questions. And while I definitely do not put myself in the same league as these question askers and answerers, I do find myself pondering the occasional mystery from time to time…which, as of late, has had me coming back to the same question:  Why do things taste better when wrapped and in a tortilla?

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The Future’s Open Wide – Talkin’ Trash New Year 2017

(apologies to M. English)

It’s occurred to me, now that I’m severely entrenched in what can only be called my own personal middle-ages, that I seem to have amassed a body of experiences that have weathered the test of time and biology and, still to this day, resonate with me. In short, these are the moments that my brain has somehow decided are important to me and that I’ve hung on to over the years.

…It’s cresting Pulsatilla Pass, on the Sawback trail between Banff and Lake Louise, the just revealed view of the valley below making what seemed like hours of hiking upward disappear.

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Show Me The (Waste Of) Money – Talkin’ Trash, October 2016

First A Contest

In celebration of Waste Reduction Week, which runs from October 17-23 this year, UHN has challenged the SickKids and Sinai Health Systems to an Interhospital Challenge – take the quick quiz before October 30 and help your hospital prove it’s a waste reduction champion.

And Now Back To Our Regularly Scheduled Blog

Money talks.  Sure, we don’t always listen to it, and sometimes even when we do pay attention, we don’t really understand what it’s saying…but undoubtedly, the murmur of money is all around us.


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Stopping To Smell The (Energy Saving) Roses – An Operation TLC Celebration

When it comes to saving energy, it’s easy to get so focused on how far we need to go to meet our targets and goals that we forget to take a look back to see how far we’ve come.  Case in point – this past April, UHN set new, aggressive energy saving targets, replacing our original, aggressive energy saving targets that we hadn’t fully met.  And I was so intent in figuring out how well we were doing against our new targets that it wasn’t until last month that I realized that, albeit 6 months later than we’d planned..

We’re meeting our original energy consumption saving target!

This is something all at UHN should celebrate – it truly is a team effort in every sense of the word.  So, before we return to new targets and projects, take the time to pat yourself on the back and reflect for a moment, not on where we’re going, but how far we’ve come…we’ve done something good!

UHN's Golden Lightswitch Award for energy excellence.

UHN’s Golden Lightswitch Award for energy excellence.

A Food Lover’s Guide To Biomedical Waste – Talkin’ Trash, September 2016

(all apologies to cilantro…not!!!)

While I would not necessarily classify myself as a so-called “foodie”, I would say that a fair share of the enjoyment I get in life comes from partaking in some of the finer aspects of eating. As a matter of fact, it’s not uncommon that in the midst of enjoying a preparation of edibles I am simultaneously fondly recalling the pleasures of meals past, and the excitement of meals planned.

However, there is one aspect of food to which my enjoyment does not extend: cilantro. It’s horrid, vile, disgusting and, if I had my druthers, a) cilantro would be classified as biomedical waste and b) more people would use the word druthers.


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