The Sundry Thoughts on Healthcare Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

Avocado for Health



Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,

The Buddha once said that “Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship.”

In our household, we believe that healthcare is a right, not a privilege. It has been widely reported that, before the Affordable Care Act, more than 500,000 Americans a year would declare bankruptcy as a result of medical bills. My wife Kate and I have a better understanding of how that could happen now that we’ve received the $80,000 bill for Kate’s April emergency appendectomy and week-long stay in the hospital. I’m grateful to have health insurance through my job at UC Davis (and even more grateful that Kate received such excellent care at Sutter Davis Hospital and continues to recuperate). Our out-of-pocket expense will be $250.

How does one maintain one’s health? The Buddha had something to say about that, too: “To enjoy good health, to bring true happiness to one’s family, to bring peace to all, one must first discipline and control one’s own mind. If a man can control his mind he can find the way to Enlightenment, and all wisdom and virtue will naturally come to him.”

According to Becker’s Hospital CFO Report, “National healthcare expenditures rose 5.3 percent in 2014 to $3 trillion, or $9,523 per person, accounting for 17.5 percent of gross domestic product.” I wonder if healthcare costs have continued to rise since 2014.

From today’s New York Times I learned that when he was president, Harry Truman proposed universal healthcare. The American Medical Association had other plans: “A.M.A. officials decided that the best way to keep the government out of their industry was to design a private sector model: the insurance company model.” This is one of the answers to the question posed in the title of Christy Ford Chapin’s op-ed: “How Did Health Care Get to Be Such a Mess?”

My cousin MJ Bailey, the only person alive who knew my grandmother well (she died when my father was in his early 20s), has a different view on health care. Today she posted this opinion: “One good thing about being as old as I am: with a little bit of luck, I will no longer be around when this crazy, violent world finally implodes.” Isn’t that sanguine?

I do not think that my cousin MJ is a Buddhist.


In addition to the topics raised above, tonight’s Pub Quiz will feature questions on the following: Dad jokes, Michael J. Fox, digital music, the plural of phoenix, ballads, bathroom habits, sporty teammates, Harper Lee, short tales of the tape, Democrats, bewilderment, the second half of the alphabet, famous people named John, L. Ron Hubbard, unpleasantries that we have forgotten were once German, Christianity, today’s headlines, first ladies, mathematics, high temperatures, lethal weapons, repeated birds, puns, angry inches, unwelcome light shows, broken clocks, signs that are turned into relics, masks, father figures, Portland, foxes, and Shakespeare.

It will be warm this evening, so come early to claim a table inside.


Your Quizmaster


Here are three questions from last week’s quiz:


  1. Name That 50 million population Country. What country borders Panama, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru?  


  1. France. What does the French equivalent of the British Parliament call itself? Is it A) French Arrondissement, B) French Congress, C) French Parliament, or D) French Tuilerie. 


  1. Science.   What M word do we use for the largest, strongest and lowest bone in the face?