Microbiologists, and particularly food microbiologists, are rarely invited to be after-dinner speakers - our interests are just too awful!
I recently listened to a TED talk that set me thinking. This blog is about safe food and, I admit, tends to concentrate on microorganisms in food. Safe food should be the right of every man, woman and child on earth; without it, life becomes unpleasant, and in some cases, unsafe food can be the cause of death.
We read about the devastation that can be caused by HIV, but apparently, the major cause of infant death is diarrhoea. The latter is easy to treat, but without clean water and good sanitation, many children die. My daughter-in-law recently presented me with a granddaughter. It's a long time since I held a new-born baby, but I realised just how tiny a new-born is - they can't afford to lose large amounts of fluid.
As the TED lecturer said, we take clean water and flush toilets for granted, but a large proportion of the world's population don't have even suitable latrines.
Have a look at an attractive woman talking crap: