Tag Archives: cancer

Will Ferrell plays nine positions

Will Ferrell will play all nine positions of a baseball game. Photo by Eva Rinaldi/Creative Commons
Will Ferrell will play all nine positions of a baseball game. Photo by Eva Rinaldi/Creative Commons

Baseball and Will Ferrell fans rejoice, for today Ferrell will be playing all nine positions during five different Spring Training games.

Ferrell and HBO teamed up with Major League Baseball to film a Funny or Die segment that will be dedicated to fighting cancer. As many baseball lovers know, MLB has teamed up with Stand up to Cancer to help fight cancer.

Ferrell will travel to Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale, Glendale, and Peoria, Arizona and participate in the following games:

Mariners VS A’s
Cubs VS Angels
Reds VS Diamondbacks
Giants VS White Sox
Dodgers VS Padres

San Francisco Giants’ pitcher Madison Bumgarner asked if he would be able to pitch to Ferrell tomorrow during the game. Ferrell will be catching in the 5th inning for the SF Giants and Bumgarner is insisting on pitching to him.

“You don’t think I’ll be pitching in the 5th?” Bumgarner replied when SF Giants Manger Bruce Bochy told him that Ferrell will be catching then.

Ferrell isn’t a stranger to baseball games though. In 2010, he pitched a Triple-A (minor league) round under the name “Rojo Johnson,” for Texas, caused a brawl, and was ejected from the game.

Ferrell and HBO have not released many details for this project, but know Ferrell and the funnies of MLB will be something great for a good cause.

Here are some of the best reactions to Ferrell’s new project.

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A Fashion Legend Passes Away

The Oscar de la Renta website remembers the iconic fashion designer.
The Oscar de la Renta website remembers the iconic fashion designer.

Influential fashion icon and world-renowned designer Oscar de la Renta died at the age of 82 on Monday, October 20th in Kent, Connecticut, where he and his wife, Annette, resided. The Dominican designer has been at the forefront of the fashion industry for the past five decades – having dressed first ladies from Jacqueline Kennedy to Michelle Obama.

The immediate cause of death has still not been announced but De la Renta was diagnosed with cancer in 2006, though last year told the media that he was “totally clean” of the disease.

The sad news has created an outpour of tributes for the designer who had created friendships with both political and fashion professionals like former First Lady Laura Bush and Vogue’s Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour.

“He never once complained about his illness, always positive, always looking forward. His last words to me were I love you, and I said I love you back,” Anna Wintour writes on Vogue.com.

“We will always remember him as the man who made women look and feel beautiful,” former first lady Laura Bush said to CNN on Monday evening.

The award-winning designer began his passion for fashion and design at the Academy of San Fernando in Madrid, Spain. The then 17-year-old designer’s sketches were first noticed by the wife of the U.S. Ambassador to Spain, who then requested a dress to be made for her daughter’s debutante ball. The pictures of his design-come-to-life for the ball were sent to Life magazine and, from there, De la Renta’s career emerged.

Known for his ready-to-wear designs, De la Renta made the move to the Big Apple after getting a coveted spot to work with Elizabeth Arden. From there, the designer went on to be the first Dominican to become the creative director for a French fashion house at Balmain.

Even with his passing, the Santo Domingo native’s legacy will live on with his fashion house, which will debuting their first collection in New York in February.

One of De la Renta’s most recent and highly-acclaimed designs was for human rights lawyer Amal Alammudin and Hollywood’s once most-eligible bachelor, George Clooney’s wedding in Venice, Italy last month.

The most recent accomplishment before the designers passing took place at the Council of Fashion Designers of America Awards in 2013, where former first lady and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presented De la Renta with the Founder’s Award aka the “Oscar” of the fashion world.

Along with his legacy, the designer leaves behind his wife, Annette de la Renta, an adopted son, Moises, and two step-children, Alex and Eliza Bolen, who currently run his fashion house.




New concerns over cell phone radiation

Cell Phone Graphic
Written by Thomas Figg-Hoblyn
Photo by Ryan Leibrich

Recently I brought up the idea of writing a story about the dangers of using a cell phone because of radiation to some of my colleagues on staff, and immediately someone interjected “I thought that got debunked years ago.”

And that was pretty much the end of it. I gave up on the idea – and forgot about it.

Two days later as I bounced up and down on a red and gray Muni seat riding the M Line, the subject of cell phones and health circled back to me in the form of a young boy, about four years old, who sat across the aisle from me completely captivated by his mother’s white iPhone.

The brown-haired kid was all up on the smartphone trying to move his slobber-covered index finger on the screen to the frantic pace of some colorful game.

He held that phone like a rainbow flavored snow cone on a hot day in Texas – his eyes bugging out in pure ecstasy as he played – all the time pressing that phone closer and closer to his face.

Then inexplicably, he licked the phone, and then kept right on playing.

It was then and there that I decided to find out if cell phones were really dangerous.

I felt an obligation.

If this kid was coveting his mom’s cell phone like a sugary-treat, then odds were that other kids were doing the same thing.

And according to the Pew Research Center, 91 percent of Americans use a cell phone.

SF State student Arthur Abelardo talks on his smart phone
SF State student Arthur Abelardo on his phone

I started digging around to see what I could find out.

A quick Google search using “are cell phones safe” and/or “are cell phones dangerous,” as well as almost anything related to cell phones and health (I used almost a dozen) turned up a sea of legitimate articles focused on radiation, cancer, and cell phones.

The more I read, the more creeped out I became – to the point that I moved my cell phone to the other side of the room.

My favorite companion and gadget suddenly had a sinister side.

Here are the highlights of the search.

The World Health Organization recently re-classified cell phone radiation as a possible carcinogen similar to car exhaust.

A report titled “Cell Phones and Cancer Risk” produced by The National Cancer Institute states that cell phones emit radiation that can be absorbed into the tissues where the phone is held.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently opened an official inquiry regarding the safety of cell phone radiation emissions.

CBS Channel 58 of Minnesota reported in an article titled “New concerns over cell phone radiation” that even though for years scientists have insisted there was no connection between cell phones and cancer, now there were credible experts re-evaluating the position.

An attorney interviewed in the story says that some lawyers are currently pursuing class action suits, and that  brain tumors were being associated with extensive cell phone usage.

The Guardian reported in August that a new Tel Aviv University, Israel, study, that studied the saliva of heavy-cell phone users compared to non-cell phone users, found that the saliva of heavy-users showed indications of higher oxidative stress, a process that damages all aspects of a human cell, including DNA, through the development of toxic peroxide and free radicals – a major risk factor for cancer.

An international study published in the International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Medicine states that adults who have used mobile phones intensively for at least ten years, experience an increase in brain cancer, salivary gland cancer, and even rare eye cancers; and some men diagnosed with testicular cancer had the cancer occur in the testicle that was closest to the pant pocket where they stashed their cell phone.

As reported in The Telegraph by Richard Alleyne, Italy’s Supreme Court ruled that a businessman’s tumor was caused by a causal link between his illness and cell phone use.

Inside Edition reported that  Tiffany Frantz, a 23-year-old who stashed her cell phone in her bra since she was a young-teen was recently diagnosed with breast cancer, which was attributed to cell phone radiation.

After scouring the web I decided to go see a local expert on health, Erik Peper, Ph.D., professor of holistic health at San Francisco State University.

Erik Peper, Professor of Holistic Health at SF State smiles next to his biofeedback computer program. The biofeedback machines can measure the effects of cell phone radiation on the body.
Erik Peper, Professor of Holistic Health at SF State smiles next to his biofeedback computer program. The biofeedback machines can measure the effects of cell phone radiation on the body.

“Dr. Peper” as I like to call him, referred me to his fact-filled blog called the Peper Perspective  , which goes granular on explaining the dangers of cell phone use.

Peper says that all cell phones emit radiation by definition because they connect to a local cell tower, and as long as a cell phone is being used for talking, texting or streaming data then it is talking with the cell tower and emitting radiation.

To demonstrate Peper placed a cell phone next to a student volunteer who was connected to a biofeedback machine. Right before the phone rings a significant spike registers on the computer in micro-volts showing the high-frequency cell signal going through the subject.

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