The potential economic benefit of trained mathematicians and scientists may be obvious to policy makers, and as scientists we can appreciate this. It can be difficult to envision how a third grader's piano lessons will lead to future economic gains; however, the hidden benefits of language and music training on cognitive health and brain function should not be overlooked. It's time to put what's "extra" back into the curriculum and embrace arts programming in schools as an essential part of building and maintaining cognitive health both in the present and into the future.
I stumbled across this quaint shop in the heart of Singapore. I developed an instant fondness for the Fall 2011 Birth Defect Men's collection -- the designs are a breathe of fresh air compared to what you'll see on the streets. Wearable, but still insanely unconventional.