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Articles by Carma Spence

‘Bionic Woman’ Producers Defend Hiring Washington

The recently announced decision to hire actor Isaiah Washington for a role in the remake of the cyborg NBC series Bionic Woman came under fire by reporters at this week’s Television Critics Association press tour, but producers apparently were already prepared for the onslaught. Washington was recently fired from the ABC series Greys Anatomy for making homophobic slurs regarding a co-star on the show. Continue reading on…

Strange Happenings On Set Of ‘Driftwood’


Filming at the abandoned Fred C. Nelles Youth Correctional Facility in Whittier, Calif., turned out to be just as spooky an experience as the one portrayed in the movie, “Driftwood,” cast revealed at a screening late Friday night at Haunt X. “Driftwood,” director Tim Sullivans latest release, takes place in an “attitude correction” camp for boys. But when 16-year-old David Forrester, played by Ricky Ullman, is sent to the camp by his misguided parents for writing in his blog the “wrong thing” about his grief over his brothers death, he uncovers a mystery no one wants to talk about. Continue reading on…

George Romero Speaks His Mind At Haunt X

George Romero

George Romero stands tall in the VIP Suite at the Hilton Los Angeles Airport, his long grey hair pulled back in a ponytail, his head leaning forward to look over the rims of his large black-rimmed glasses, and a small group of adoring fans standing casually around him. A young man with a mohawk animatedly tells him about how Romeros business partner once gave him grief over requesting an autograph on his copy of “Night of the Living Dead.” Turns out the video, which he received when he was just 8 years old, was a bootleg. Romero smiles and they all have a carefree laugh at the story. Continue reading on…

Shatner Never Wanted To Trek To Space

William Shatner

Despite life’s problems, the actor who played Captain James T. Kirk would rather stay here on Earth. “Who the heck wants to go out into space?!” William Shatner told The Ottawa Citizen, dismissing with a laugh the rumors that he purchased a seat aboard Virgin Galactics planned flights for 2008. The Montreal-born actor has two Emmy awards to his name and is happy with his life here on Earth. Continue reading on…

Remembrances of Roscos


The following short was published in the October 2004 edition of The Nature of Writing News. Notes From Afield Remembrances of Roscos Abuela was the consummate cook, the perfect grandmother from a Norman Rockwell painting. My early holiday memories are filled with the smells and tastes that came from her kitchen. Pumpkin pies, homemade pizza, enchiladas and a score of Christmas cookies. I especially remember the delicate, flaky donut-shaped roscos — cookies made chiefly from three ingredients: white wine, melted butter and flour. A teaspoon of anise seeds cooked in the melting butter and then discarded, as well as a final dusting of cinnamon sugar after the cookies baked, were the only other flavorings. One year, I ate so many, sneaking out of my bed at night to grab just a few more, that I earned the nickname “bottomless stomach.” I remember countless nights sitting at her kitchen table sharing

NHGRI-Funded Researcher Among Pioneer Awardees

Stephen R. Quake, Ph.D., a researcher funded by the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), is among the first recipients of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s Pioneer Award, which were announced on Wednesday, September 29, 2004. Dr. Quake, formerly of the California Institute of Technology, and currently a professor of bioengineering at Stanford University has received substantial funding from NHGRI for highly innovative research that may dramatically improve the technologies used to advance genomics. Continue reading by downloading the PDF

Chromosome Abnormalities

What are chromosomes? Chromosomes are the structures that hold our genes. Genes are the individual instructions that tell our bodies how to develop and function; they govern our physical and medical characteristics, such as hair color, blood type and susceptibility to disease. Each chromosome has a p and q arm; p is the shorter arm and q is the longer arm. The arms are separated by a pinched region known as the centromere. Continue reading at

The Ultimate Juggling Act Maintaining a Work/Life Balance


This weekly feature was posted on KidsGrowth Professional, a now defunct part of, on July 31, 2000. The Ultimate Juggling Act Maintaining a Work/Life Balance Roger, a pediatric practice manager, comes home late after a long day of fighting administrative fires to find his wife asleep-the fifth day in a row and it is only Wednesday. Dr. Jones, a private practice pediatrician, catches herself confusing two different patients’ medications-this is the third time this week she has caught herself about to make a potentially dangerous mistake. John, a third-year pediatric resident, comes home after pulling the night-shift rotation at the NICU, just in time to wave goodbye to his daughter as she heads off to pre-school. Americans work more hours than the rest of the industrialized world, the International Labor Organization found. In fact, we work 350 hours more per year than Europeans and 70 hours more per year

Hey! What’s a Snake Doing in My System?


The following was a Weekly Feature for KidsGrowth Professional. It was first posted April 24, 2000. Hey! What’s a Snake Doing in My System? ASPs: What Are They? What Can They Do for Pediatric Practices? The health care industry is the largest single industry in the U.S. but, when compared to similar information-rich industries like finance, it under-invests in information technology (IT). In fact, in 1997 the health care industry spent only 2-3 percent of its total revenue on IT (the financial industry spent a little more than 7 percent). Continue reading…