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Corey Demaline

Aretha Franklin cancels two shows due to poor health

Janelle Monae takes the spotlight in Chicago

Legendary diva and “Queen of Soul,” Aretha Franklin, recently canceled two upcoming shows (Chicago and Connecticut) under doctor recommendations. According to the latest reports, the inspiring vocalist has been under the weather for some time. A news report said Franklin will need treatment during the time both shows are scheduled.

The release did not mention what kind of treatment Franklin would be undergoing and her publicist did not immediately comment on the matter when asked details.

Originally, Franklin was to perform at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Corporate Night fundraiser. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra commented, saying, “Franklin canceled her performance due to a “doctor’s recommendation for treatment during the time frame of May 20 and 26.” Due to the cancellation, Janelle Monae will be performing in place of Aretha Franklin.

This isn’t the first occurrence of Franklin needing medical attention. In 2010, she took a break from the stage due to poor health. She told Access Hollywood the pain was “so hard it almost brought me to my knees.”

Fortunately, Franklin’s upcoming shows are still in tact for two scheduled in Canada and one in Michigan in June.

Bodyweight Training

One of the hottest fitness trends of 2013

 

Many Americans are discovering a more simple, inexpensive way to get fit and slim for the summer: bodyweight training.

Everyday people are finding more reasons to get back on track and lose the excess weight. Unfortunately, not all of us can afford the added cost of a gym or the fancy equipment to get those perfectly defined arms. This year, a developing form of exercise called bodyweight training has many people talking. If there’s one thing people love about bodyweight training it’s this: completely free.

There are many benefits to bodyweight training that many are discovering. Kelley Brown, Founder of Fat2fitnessmodel.com, says, “Bodyweight training is great because it allows your body to gain lean muscle, and as I put it, brings your body to it’s ‘natural state’ – when you’re at the gym, you have complete control of weights, reps and sets and you are able to build your body as you please. But bodyweight training can be done anywhere. A playground, home, in a parking lot, literally anywhere.” Brown also leads a group of dedicated and inspired women on Facebook, supporting them by providing helpful tips throughout their health and fitness journey.

Mike Fitch, Founder and President of Global Bodyweight Training, says, “I put down the dumbbells and began using my own bodyweight for strength training. I soon began gymnastics classes, adding tumbling and acrobats to my workout routine. I began incorporating hand balancing into my daily skills practice (think handstands and frog poses).” Fitch created the site to help inspire and motivate those seeking new and inexpensive forms of exercise.

Many well-known names, such as Men’s Health and Women’s Health magazines, are in full-force, embracing bodyweight training. Throughout almost every issue, you can discover the latest maneuver in this growing form of exercise. From the traditional push-up to planking (holding yourself up in the push-up position or down on your elbows), you’ll discover old and new ways of getting into shape solely based off the weight and stance of your body.

Coca-Cola recipe for sale on eBay

A Georgia man claims to have the formula

Cliff Kluge of Georgia claims to have “accidentally” come across one of the world’s most desirable recipes, that of Coca-Cola.

Over the years, this well-hidden formula has many people believing they, too, have discovered such recipe. But this time around, Kluge is so sure he’s discovered it, he’s placed it for sale on eBay. If anyone is interested in purchasing the recipe, you can find it on eBay, starting at a bid of $5 million and a Buy Now price of $15 million.

How did he discover the claimed formula, you ask? Kluge tells reporters that he and his wife, while at an estate sale, purchased a box of letters. One of the letters just so happened to be a cola recipe from 1943. He assumes it’s the real deal when comparing the formula to that of previous claims.

Coca-Cola doesn’t seem too concerned on the matter. They have stated, once again, this is just another attempt to recreate the sought-after recipe. They state the one and only recipe is locked in a vault in Atlanta at the company’s headquarters.

The Ringgold antiques dealer, Kluge, states, “You don’t stumble on things like this very often. It’s a letter, and a formula, and the processes to make it. I think it’s a little deeper than having fun; I think it’s the recipe for Coca-Cola.”

Ted Ryan, an archivist and historian at Coca-Cola, states, “This particular formula is one of dozens that have popped up over the years trying to emulate the flavor of Coca-Cola. What I can discern about the formula is that it’s a formula for a cola-type drink. I don’t think it’s Coca-Cola. It can’t be Coca-Cola.”

“It’s just excitement,” Kluge says. “It’s an Easter egg hunt, looking for eggs out there. And when you come up with something like this, it’s Christmas.”

The Georgia resident has made attempts to contact the company with his discovery, but has yet to hear back from Coke.

Angelina Jolie undergoes double mastectomy

Strong possibility for breast cancer

Hollywood actress and United Nations ambassador, Angelina Jolie, underwent a double mastectomy between early February and late April. The mother of six and partner of Brad Pitt recently wrote an op-ed in the New York Times discussing her decision to undergo such an invasive procedure.

Due to the death of Jolie’s mother, who lost her own battle with breast cancer, the actress went through genetic testing only to discover she carried the BRCA 1 gene and had an 87 percent chance of being diagnosed with the disease herself.

Jolie writes her mother died at the age of 56 after battling breast cancer for almost a decade. She also includes that her mother lived just long enough to meet and hold the first of her grandchildren, but unfortunately, because of breast cancer, her children will never have the chance to get to know such a loving and gracious woman.

“I wanted to write this to tell other women that the decision to have a mastectomy was not easy. But it is one I am very happy that I made,” Jolie writes. “My chances of developing breast cancer have dropped from 87 percent to under 5 percent. I can tell my children that they don’t need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer.”

In her op-ed, Jolie does not shy away from intimate details regarding her multiple surgeries for the double mastectomy.

“My own process began on Feb. 2 with a procedure known as a ‘nipple delay,’” she writes, “which rules out disease in the breast ducts behind the nipple and draws extra blood flow to the area.” The main surgery occurred two weeks later where breast tissue was removed, in which Jolie describes as “a scene from a science-fiction film.” Nine weeks later, she underwent another surgery to reconstruct her breasts and received implants.

Jolie stands by her surgery with pride and encourages other women to look into genetic testing for breast cancer. I do not feel any less of a woman,” she writes. “I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity.

She also included that Brad Pitt, her partner of eight years, was at the Pink Lotus Breast Center in Southern California for “every minute of the surgeries.”

Mike Jeffries, Abercrombie CEO refuses plus-sizes

No pants larger than a 10 will be worn on cool kids.

 

The CEO of Abercrombie & Fitch, Mike Jeffries, says he will never allow plus-size clothing into his stores. Jeffries has even gone as far as to say he only wants attractive employees working for him. It’s one thing to be against selling plus-size clothing in your store, but it’s another thing to judge what is “hot” and “cool” based off a person’s weight.

 

Steve Hoch, a marketing professor at the University of Philadelphia, says Jeffries has been “unapologetic about this exclusionary marketing forever. They have a very targeted, narrowly defined [customer] in age and what type of body, even what ethnicity you are, and they’ve been able to hold on to it.” The narrow-minded CEO has made it abundantly clear he only wants a certain type of client shopping in his stores and if they don’t fit that image, they should shop elsewhere.

 

In 2006, Jeffries told Salon, “In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids. Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong, and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.”

 

But who’s to say the cool kids must be a size 0? Who created the rule that anyone being referred to as popular must wear a size M shirt? According to Mike Jeffries, only slim and thin teens can be cool. I’m not sure which schools Mr. Jeffries attended growing up, but where I come from, as long as you are a respectful, genuine person, anybody can be cool. I understand rejecting the idea of plus-sizes, but to assume all beautiful people be a size 2 is ridiculous.

 

Mike Jeffries needs to reevaluate his terminology and what the real definition of beauty is. One could say the same of him if he was to walk into one of his own stores. What makes him hot and cool? Remember, Mr. Jeffries, money doesn’t buy happiness and image doesn’t define a person’s character.

Telsa, the next leading electric car

Consumer Reports magazine, near-perfect rating

 

Telsa Motors Inc has released what Consumer Reports magazine rates could be best electric-car on the market. We’ve heard over the years electric cars will soon be taking over our roads. Fuel will be a pastime and our grandchildren will laugh hearing stories of the rise and fall of gas prices. The latest car company, Telsa Motors Inc, has many heads turning with curiosity and excitement.

 

Telsa released their first electric car, Model S, which overall, was expected to fail. The first model did surprisingly well, making Telsa the talk of the industry. Its first quarterly sales skyrocketed. The company’s shares reached a high of $75.77, blowing their first public offering price of $17, out of the water. Others still remain hesitate on whether or not the ten-year-old car company has what it takes to be successful. Many are concerned with the price of the Model S, coming in around $70,000 (before federal tax credit). To some people earning a six-figure income each year, this price is reasonable. Realistically, a blue-collar family may not be willing to invest in the growing company.

 

Tom Gage, former CEO of AC Propulsion says, “One good car does not a car company make, unfortunately. They have to continue to grow by orders of magnitude before they become a real car company.” Gage developed the drive train for the Roadster, Tesla’s first model.

 

Luckily, Telsa has a more cost-efficient model due to be released next year. The Model X crossover will be easy on the wallet and people won’t feel as if they’re dropping their life savings on the car. Due to be released in 2017, the third generation car is estimated between $30,000 and $35,000. Sounds more reasonable, right?

 

The company seems to be heading in the right direction as far as style and technology is concerned. Telsa uses lithium-ion battery cells, which can be found in almost all electric devices today. Because costs for the battery are rather high, the company is still working on ways to keep prices low for their car.

 

Consumer Report magazine says the Model S “performed better or just as well overall as any other vehicle, of any kind, ever tested by CR.” Many consumers of the Model S are greatly satisfied with the electric car. David Cowan, a venture capitalist in Silicon Valley, owns a Model S and a Nissan Leaf. In comparison he says, “She completes me and I’ve never been a car person”, referring to his Model S.

 

Whether or not Telsa Motors Inc becomes the next leading car company remains to be seen, but as it currently stands, Consumer Report has great expectations for the electric car.

Iron Man 3

Box Office Success

It’s no surprise that the previous two were box office worthy, but with the release of the most recent, “Iron Man 3” takes it for the win. Robert Downey Jr. comes through full-throttle with one mission: to be the best of the best in the superhero industry. His character, Tony Stark, takes Iron Man to a whole new level. With his bad boy image combined with his billionaire income, Iron Man faces his Marvel comic book nemesis the Mandarin, played by Ben Kingsley. As the Mandarin enters the film, he steals the show, wowing audiences in overcrowded theaters every where.

With respective box office success from Iron Man one and two, coming in at $585 million and $623, “Iron Man 3” grossed $173 million during its opening weekend, May 3rd in the U.S. This was the second biggest debut for Disney’s studio, arriving just behind “Marvel’s The Avengers”. Globally, Iron Man 3 has already earned $680.1 million. Writers Shane Black and Drew Pearce certainly knew what they were doing. The film has already defeated box office sales of both previous Iron Man movies.

Watch out, Harry Potter fans. “Iron Man 3” beat “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2” ($169.1 million), knocking it out of second place behind “Marvel’s The Avengers” ($207.1 million). “Hunger Games” ($152.5 million) was also defeated by “Iron Man 3”, bumping it out of its honorable position in the top five.

Robert Downey Jr. has certainly had his share of success since 2008. This is his fifth movie to top $500 million around the globe and his fourth Marvel film. If “Iron Man 3” ultimately exceeds the $1 billion mark, Downey will be standing next to Christian Bales and Johnny Depp as one of the lead actors with multiple films.

Familiar faces return to the screen such as Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow), the girlfriend of Tony Stark and Colonel James Rhodes (Don Cheadle) as a specialized agent with the US Army. New to the film is 11-year-old Ty Simpkins playing Tony Stark’s buddy, Harley Keener. Not only has “Iron Man 3” exceeded expectations, but has future superhero films feeling nervous and uneasy of their chances with a successful box office outcome.

Nose Leaking Brain Fluid

Arizona man with a runny nose for years

The last thing an Arizona man, Joe Nagy, suspected was dripping from his nose was brain fluid. For years, Joe Nagy dealt with an every day runny nose. He always assumed he just had a severe case of allergies and would eventually learn to live with the annoyance. When he finally made a trip to see a specialist on the issue, he quickly discovered this wasn’t an ordinary runny nose. Nagy underwent testing and was informed the clear liquid was in fact brain fluid.

“I was scared to death if you want to know the truth,” Nagy says, describing the very moment he was informed of his serious condition. Never did he think his constant runny nose would lead to such a shocking discovery. Being unaware of the real issue, Nagy took allergy pills year-round. On some days, his runny nose would drip so fast he wouldn’t be able to fetch a tissue in time. Nagy admits how embarrassing it was. The fluid would drip on everything, including blueprints for work. It would drip out around a teaspoon, landing on model airplanes he was building.

How does this happen? The membrane surrounding Nagy’s brain had a small hole in it, which caused brain fluid to leak out of his nose. Dr. Peter Nakaji, a neurosurgeon at Barrow Neurological Institutes says, “You don’t really think about it, but our brains are really just above our noses all of the time.” Dr. Nakaji explains that the human body produces around twelve ounces of brain fluid on a daily basis, preventing the brain from drying out. This also explains why Nagy’s constant runny nose never stopped.

If this news wasn’t difficult enough for Joe Nagy, he then developed a severe case of meningitis right before his scheduled brain surgery to fix the leak, causing the fluid to become infected. Thankfully, the infection diminished and the surgery was a success. The process of repairing the leak is not a typical surgery. A needle is inserted through the nose and a minimal amount of glue patches the tiny hole.

Before his surgery, Nagy would awake every morning with a runny nose after sitting up in bed. After years of allergy pills and carrying around boxes of tissues, this Arizona man can continue his life without his nose constantly dripping brain fluid. Since the surgery, Joe Nagy has started a new hobby. He is building a sailboat called the Great Pelican and is confident it will never leak.

May the fourth be with you

National Star Wars Day

Stars Wars fanatics look forward to saying the words “May the fourth be with you” every year. To any person who isn’t obsessed with the way of the Jedi and light sabers, May fourth is just another day. But to someone who at the very mention of Star Wars leaps out of their seat, this date represents the unofficial holiday known as “Star Wars Day”. The original quote is famously known as, “May the force be with you,” but on this day, many fans reword the phrase as, “May the fourth be with you”.

Why May fourth? It surrounds the events of the May Fourth Movement which occurred on May 4, 1919 in Beijing. This significant anti-imperialist movement was created based off of a student movement protesting Chinese nationalism. Since then, Stars Wars fans have followed “the Force” and created this holiday as a guide for peace and inner strength. Star Wars fans everywhere rejoice on this influential holiday as they say, “May the fourth be with you”.