spunktitud3

Musings on Travel, Fashion & Fun

In case of emergency, you have my bra

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The Haze in Singapore

At a Pollutants Standards Index (PSI) as high as 400 (hazarduous! The previous record was 226 in 1997), Singapore’s signature financial district skyline is a total blur, and I am turning into smoked duck soon. And no, if you see tears in my eyes I am not angry nor sad – it’s just the blardy haze.

For a country known for its greenery, clear blue skies and signature skyline, Singapore looks more like a cloud forest with its thick smog over the past week, courtesy of our friendly Indonesian neighbour’s forest fires started by plantation owners and farmers ‘slash and burn’ agricultural practice. The situation has become so bad the PSI level is breaking new records faster than Usain Bolt, and social media channels have become ‘live’ haze monitoring stations. It has been a while since the General Elections, that we see Singaporeans so united on a topic (other than McDonalds’ Hello Kitty collection).

Haze in Singapore

Singapore’s skyline as of 20 June 2013 at 4pm

Singapore Skyline

What Singapore’s skyline should look like normally at 4pm
With such freaky weather conditions, I am really not sure what is ‘normal’ anymore. Will I get to see clear skies again? I wonder.

Haze in Singapore

We look like we are living in the clouds and driving on a road to heaven

Haze in Singapore

This is better than Chris Angel – Swissotel, a 72-storey building, has disappeared amongst the thick smog blanket

As the smog thickens, Singaporeans are also frantically buying up face masks to the point a local pharmacy chain reported an increase of 37 times(!) on the sale of N95 masks, and people profiteering by selling the masks online.  So what to do if you can’t get your hands on the elusive N95 face mask? A Chicago professor may have the perfect solution.

THe Emergency Bra

The Emergency Bra!
Simply unsnap the bright red bra, separate the cups, and slip one cup over your head, and the other for your friend. When placed over the nose and mouth, it can filter out particles as harmful as radiation.
Photo: EBbra

Emergency Bra

This invention by Dr Elena Bodnar won the Ignoble Award in 2009, an annual tribute to scientific research that on the surface seems goofy but surprisingly practical
The bra – only available in fire-engine red – is not only capable of saving lives during haze, dust storms and terrorist attacks, it also incorporates a radiation sensor to warn the wearer of the presence of ionizing radiation in the event of a “dirty” bomb explosion or any other type of nuclear release involving high energy gamma rays.

Before you write the inventor off as a floozy, Dr Bodnar, a Ukraine native who now lives in Chicago, started her medical career studying the devastating effects of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear plant disaster. If people had cheap, readily-available gas masks in the first hours after the disaster, they may have avoided breathing in Iodine-131, which causes radiation sickness. Hence Dr Bodnar invented the EBbra with the intention of making gas masks affordable and readily available – you can now save your life (and another worthy person’s) for just US$29.95.

Emergency Bra

“It is important to mention that it takes only 25 seconds for average woman to use this personal protective device – 5 seconds to remove, convert and apply your own mask – and 20 seconds to wonder who the lucky man she is going to save.”
Image: Improbable Research

Emergency Bra

At the awards ceremony, she demonstrated how to use an EBbra on three lucky Nobel Laureates – to much joy of the audience
Image: Improbable Research

Emergency Bra

A cosplayer would be proud
Image: Improbable Research

Emergency Bra

His “Why did I ever agree to this?” look is priceless
Image: Improbable Research

Watch the video. It’s worth the 5.5 minutes :)

Emergency Bra

If you were wondering who I would share my bra with, I do not need 20 seconds to decide – it would be him in a split second :D
Oh yeah, this is what perfection looks like LOL Maybe I should get him his own – in a Size 42D ;)

Until we can find an ideal solution to Singapore’s annual haze problem, we have to learn to adapt to situations. Buy your masks, buy your bras, air filtration systems, turn on the air-con while the governments work (I hope) to find efficient agricultural alternatives to the primitive slash-and-burn method. It will be a thin line jeopardizing a farmer’s livelihood by telling him his farming method is jeopardizing the health of people 1,561km away. Lots need to be done on educating them on alternative farming methods, technology transfers and infrastructure funding before a sustainable solution can be achieved. From what we see of the attitude of the Indonesian government, I think it may take a while. A long while.

Meanwhile, for those in Singapore reading this, take care, drink lots of water and stay indoors! Just in case you need some music to entertain yourself, Bloomberg has come up with the perfect playlist ;)

The Haze Playlist:

  • “We Didn’t Start the Fire” – Billy Joel
  • “Leave me breathless” – The Corrs
  • “Harder to Breathe” – Maroon 5
  • “Blurred Lines” – Robin Thicke
  • “Purple Haze” – Jimi Hendrix
  • “Smoke on the Water” – Deep Purple
  • “Smoke gets in your eyes” – Jo Stafford
  • “The Fog” – Kate Bush
  • “A Foggy Day” – Fred Astaire
  • “Firestarter” – Prodigy
  • “Beds are Burning” – Midnight Oil
  • “Light my Fire” – The Doors
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Author: spunktitud3

A little post by a fun-loving spunky gal in love with the quirky, the artsy and anything which inspires new creations. Read about her adventures on: spunktitud3.wordpress.com

2 thoughts on “In case of emergency, you have my bra

  1. I just saw a report on this pollution on the BBC evening news. It’s really serious – please take care!

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