cholesterol level

Lipitor, First Class Meals in Flight and Saving Whales

First Class Meals in FlightIt’s hard to say which was worse news yesterday, that the airlines will no longer serve meals in first class or that my cholesterol level shot back up since I stopped taking a statin. Well, yeah, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, hey, there’s the whole Gaza thing and Ebola concerns and our severe drought going on, and this screwball Sacramento REALTOR  has her knickers in a twist over the scarcity of meals in flight, especially in light of the fact she gets stainless utensils and not plastic, on top of enjoying TSA Pre-Check. Where’s the beef?

She should be happy her eyes open in the morning instead of yakking about her cholesterol level and no in-flight meals. The problem is I had set such high expectations when my last test results showed such a dramatic drop due to my new lifestyle diet. I have to say “lifestyle diet” so people don’t think I’ve switched to some fad like 16-ounce steaks smothered with sides of bacon. Fruits, vegetables, lean meats, reduced sugar, whole grain, healthful stuff. It dropped my cholesterol dramatically but it was by accident.

I was hopeful that I could stop taking a statin to reduce cholesterol but no such luck. Without a statin, my cholesterol level jumped to a dangerous height and more than doubled. Ah, the joys of being over 60. Yet, still, there is a silver lining of such in that Lipitor is available at a reasonable price because its patent protection expired, and I can switch back to Lipitor instead of taking a generic.

Since 1997, Lipitor has earned Pfizer $81 billion, making it the best selling prescription drug in history. My doctor prefers Lipitor, says it’s the better cholesterol medication for me but because of its patent, I could not afford to buy it. This is America. All we had to do was try not to die while we waited for the patent to expire.

My positive outlook doesn’t do a thing about the flight meals, though. It’s American Airlines that is starting this but you know how that goes. All of the airlines will follow suit soon enough. It’s bad enough that they made coach class so unbearably uncomfortable that passengers would rather crawl naked through broken glass. I suppose the best way to fly is to be sedated. Once on-board, get an injection, have your hands tied and be hung from the ceiling like a pig dripping blood at a meat processing plant; simply go to sleep until the plane lands at your destination.

Think of all the money the airlines will save. American companies are in big trouble today because they are not making enough profit. Some are setting up domiciles overseas to avoid taxes. We also have to pay some of them just to do the right thing, like the cargo and freight shipping companies who operate off the coast of Santa Barbara. The government is now paying 6 global shipping companies $2,500 a pop for each ship that slows down and tries to not run over a whale. Saving the whales should not mean we have to bribe corporations but it does. These are probably the same types of people whose parents had to pay Johnny not to whomp his sister.

The whale-saving speed reduction program is expected to reduce emissions of smog-forming nitrogen oxides and help to protect the lives of our ocean mammals, which is hard to argue with. On the other hand, the hand with the sticky fingers that hasn’t been washed for a while, we’ve subsidized the airlines for years, and we still can’t seem to save that industry. Not even for beef tenderloin with a side of asparagus and a limoncello raspberry torte.

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