Don’t let this hap­pen to you,

Modern Healthcare - - NEWS -

Just in time for the most dan­ger­ous cook­ing day of the year, here comes … Shat­ner?

Yes, Wil­liam Shat­ner, who has grown on our pop­u­lar cul­ture like an ironic moss since 1966, has teamed up with a ma­jor prop­erty in­surer to de­liver a pub­lic health mes­sage to the masses. That mes­sage is: Deep-fry­ing turkey can be dan­ger­ous. Es­pe­cially if the turkey is not to­tally thawed.

Dou­bly es­pe­cially if the deep fryer is lo­cated in­side a house in­stead of out­side.

Dou­ble-dog es­pe­cially if the turkey-chef doesn’t use his or her din­gle-dan­gle in the process. (The din­gle-dan­gle in ques­tion be­ing the de­vice used to lower the hol­i­day poul­try into the siz­zling oil.)

Shat­ner is star­ring in a se­ries of Youtube videos pro­duced by State Farm In­sur­ance of­fer­ing sev­eral tips on deep-fry­ing tur­keys (you can watch them at Those tips pri­mar­ily con­sist of: Make sure the turkey is thawed and dry; turn off the gas-pow­ered flame be­fore putting the bird in the fryer and use a din­gle-dan­gle to lower the bird into the vat; and al­ways fry out of doors.

Shat­ner uses his trade­mark tongue-in-cheek de­liv­ery—does he have any other kind?—to over­dra­ma­tize what is other­wise a se­ri­ous is­sue. (State Farm records show that Thanks­giv­ing pro­duces more cook­ing fires than any other day of the year.)

“That fire took so much from me,” Shat­ner says in a voice-over, de­scrib­ing a past turkey-fryer ac­ci­dent of his own. “Mostly arm hair, a lit­tle skin. But it gave me a healthy fear. Fire, metal, oil and turkey are glo­ri­ous when in har­mony. But their power is un­re­lent­ing in care­less hands.”

And don’t for­get the din­gle-dan­gle.

Tweet-less at the AMA ...

Sev­eral ob­servers on Twit­ter sent out tweets about the Amer­i­can Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion House of Del­e­gates’ lack of so­cial me­dia skills, but it’s doubt­ful that many del­e­gates will ever read them. Or, as Amer­i­can Col­lege of Physi­cians Se­nior Vice Pres­i­dent Bob Do­herty put it, “What if u tweet and no one there to hear?” Ex­act numbers weren’t re­ported, but ac­cord­ing to an in­for­mal poll of the House of Del­e­gates, while 32% of them liked Face­book, only 1% used Twit­ter; 10% used both; while 41% used nei­ther and 16% said so­cial me­dia was “for kids.”

That last to­tal could be why a Bloomberg reporter added #old­peo­ple to his tweet. (Though af­ter check­ing some mes­sages with that hash­tag, Out­liers was tempted to retweet them but only af­ter adding #cantwritea­gram­mat­i­calsen­tence.)

… well, not ex­actly

While so­cial me­dia may not be big at the AMA’S House of Del­e­gates, some­one at­tend­ing must be get­ting their so­cial me­dia on. If it wasn’t for so­cial me­dia, it doesn’t ap­pear that there would be any ev­i­dence that three high-pro­file docs from Washington came to New Or­leans for last week’s Amer­i­can Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion House of Del­e­gates in­terim meet­ing.

U.S. Sur­geon Gen­eral and former AMA Trustee Dr. Regina Ben­jamin ap­par­ently spoke to the Med­i­cal Stu­dent Sec­tion, but there is no men­tion of this on her own web­site. If it weren’t for some tweets and an out-of-fo­cus yfrog pic­ture, you’d never know she was there.

Two GOP con­gress­men from Ge­or­gia, Drs. Phil Gin­grey and Tom Price (an of­fi­cial Ge­or­gia AMA del­e­gate) stopped by and ad­dressed the AMA’S South­east Del­e­ga­tion, at least ac­cord­ing to tweets by the Mis­sis­sippi State Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion, “Dr. Bob” Sewell and Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion of Ge­or­gia Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Don­ald Palmisano Jr. While Gin­grey and Price each have web­sites with links to news re­leases, Face­book posts and Twit­ter mes­sages, nei­ther used any of these to pub­li­cize their ap­pear­ances.

Makes you won­der if the three of them en­tered and ex­ited through the back­door to avoid be­ing seen.


“We are out­raged that Congress is se­ri­ously con­sid­er­ing lan­guage that would ef­fec­tively cat­e­go­rize pizza as a vegetable in the school lunch pro­gram. It doesn’t take an ad­vanced de­gree in nu­tri­tion to call this a national dis­grace.” —Amy Daw­son Taggart, di­rec­tor of Mis­sion: Readi­ness, a group of re­tired gen­er­als that has called poor nu­tri­tion in school lunches a national se­cu­rity is­sue, on plans to classify the tomato sauce on pizza as a serv­ing of veg­eta­bles in school lunches.

If you want to avoid a turkey day con­fla­gra­tion, Wil­liam Shat­ner has some safety ad­vice.

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