Good News Wednesday (8/7/19)

Need some good news?  Here are some stories that will restore you faith in the world…

GNW_0807_01GOOD SAMARITAN CHASES DOWN TEXAS FAMILY’S STOLEN RV SO 6-YEAR-OLD WITH CANCER CAN TRAVEL

(from Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

A family in Texas can now travel with their son thanks to a Good Samaritan with a sharp eye.

Ethan Perez was 4-years-old when he was diagnosed with leukemia after suffering with what his family thought were growing pains, the Houston Chronicle reported. For the last two years, Ethan, now 6, has undergone extensive chemotherapy treatments and spent more than his fair share of time in the hospital.

Ethan’s parents purchased an RV so they could travel with their son on short trips that wouldn’t put his health at risk, his mother Evelyn wrote in a Facebook post.

Their hopes came crashing down when the RV was stolen from the family’s driveway Thursday night, KPRC reported. A landscaper working on their neighbor’s lawn told the family a man and woman connected the RV to a Uhaul before driving off. The RV was not yet insured.

Evelyn posted about the crime on social media, imploring anyone with information to reach out.

The next day, someone did.

Rick Jones was on his way to work when he saw the Uhaul pulling the RV, Evelyn wrote. He recognized the vehicle from Evelyn’s social media post and followed it down I-10 to a gas station and called police, the Houson Chronicle reported.

“I can’t believe it,” Evelyn wrote on Facebook. “I’m in awe.”

When police arrived, they apprehended two men and two women, but later told the family they could not be arrested because the suspects were already standing outside the RV and had unhitched it from the Uhaul, the Houston Chronicle reported.

“We were floored, we could not believe it,” Evelyn said, according to the newspaper. “They were caught with a stolen RV. I would think that’s evidence to arrest these people.”

Ernesto Perez, Ethan’s dad, told KPRC the thieves had “trashed the inside,” broken a window and stolen a flat screen television.

Still, the Perez family is thankful for the diligence of their “hero.”

Ethan met Jones on Saturday and gifted him a Superman shirt along with the framed words “Not all heroes wear capes,” the post said.

“How else do you thank someone like this who saves the day for a little boy that is fighting cancer, for an entire family?” Evelyn said, according to the Houston Chronicle. “It was a really special way that our family connected with them under these sour circumstances.”

GNW_0807_02MAN DONATES MONEY TO NEIGHBOR, NEIGHBOR USES IT TO PAINT MAN’S HOUSE
(from cbs2iowa.com)

Gary Cookus remembers welcoming his new neighbors to town three years ago.

“I met (them) at Wildcat (Golf Course) having dinner,” he recalls about his first encounter with Jen and Brian Steadman. “I just felt like I needed to say, ‘Hello.'”

“Nobody was talking to them,” he laughs. “It’s what I do.”

That was the start of a friendship between Gary and the Steadmans – and what ultimately brought a bunch of runners to Gary’s house in Shellsburg on a Sunday morning in July.

Health issues had been keeping Gary from upkeep on his house, which was in dire need of a paint job. The Shellsburg City Council was even telling Gary to get it taken care of.

Unable to do the physical work on his house, Gary still recognizes good work when he sees it. That’s why he gave Jen a donation for her birthday in July for her work as a board member for Corridor Running.

“Runners are very unique in that each one of us has a story,” Jen says, “but we just support one another and we will always be that way.”

That means running a leg of life’s race that somebody else can’t.

“Right off the bat after he did that, I told my husband, ‘I know what we’re doing for Gary,'” Jen says. “We’re gonna go in and paint his house.”

A donation Gary made for someone else was sent right back to him in the form of brushes, buckets, and about eight people getting that paint job done for him.

“Very heartfelt. It’s been a really happy thing for me,” Gary says as his house is painted in the background. Others in town have been helping him with carpentry and plumbing work, as well as cleaning out his gutters.

“It’s been a great, great thing,” he says.

The same can be said for a friendship started with a simple conversation three years ago.

“He always has something funny to say,” Jen says as she sits next to Gary.

“May not be nice,” Gary replies, followed by a laugh that seems to punctuate most of his sentences.

“He keeps us going,” Jen adds. “Never a dull moment with Gary.”

GNW_0807_03MAN DRESSED AS SPIDERMAN SENDS ENCOURAGING MESSAGE TO DRIVERS AND CHILDREN
(from abc13.com)

If you think you’ve seen Spiderman lately, your eyes weren’t playing tricks on you.

Cameron Fielder is known to dress up as a superhero on his days off. Fielder dresses up, stands near busy intersections and holds a piece of cardboard with phrases like “You Matter” and “You are Strong” written on them.

“This world is full of negativity these days and I don’t want that to be continuing,” Fielder said. “Of course, it always will, but I want to at least try to make a difference.”

As drivers pass by, Fielder said they often honk and yell to get his attention, and he hopes he’s getting theirs.

Fielder said he wants to provide a sense of encouragement for people facing silent battles.

“I took what I dealt with and applied it to other people,” Fielder said. “Anxiety or depression, any of these types of things you may have.”

In just the two weeks he has been dressing up as Spider-Man, people are already starting to look for him around town.

“I wave at everyone and high five some kids, things like that,” Fielder said. “Then, I got the idea to pass out coloring books and sticker books.”

He said he will be in Houston in the upcoming days. Spider-Man plans to keep encouraging drivers for as long as he can.

GNW_0807_04PUPPY WITH MISSING LEG ADOPTED BY AMPUTEE VETERAN
(from people.com)

A military veteran from Tennessee who lost his leg after an IED explosion found a new best friend after adopting a dog with a missing leg.

Joshua Ferguson took home three-legged Scooter on Thursday, after adopting the pup from the Humane Society of Dickson County in Dickson, according to WTVF in Nashville.

“He makes it easier for me to remember, hey it’s still a beautiful day,” Ferguson said Scooter. “You realize really just how tremendous a journey life is.”

Scooter was discovered with a severed leg in a wooded area at Johnson Creek near Burns, Tennessee, in June, with veterinarians believing the dog got his leg stuck and was forced to gnaw it off in order to free himself and find food, WTVF reported.

The dog’s mangled leg was eventually amputated at the Animal Medical Hospital.

“It’s impossible to not smile around him,” Ferguson said. “Everybody’s so happy to see him, then they notice he’s got 3 legs. He’s happy you were overjoyed to see him, don’t pity him!”

Ferguson told the news outlet that he and four other soldiers were in a truck when it drove over an improvised explosive device, and although none of the five died, he ended up losing his leg in the ensuing explosion.

Not one to complain, the military veteran added, “There’s silver linings to anything, you can find something, and even if you can’t, somebody’s had it worse! So stop complaining.”

“The future can be better than the present and you have the power to make it so.”

It’s “Just” A Headache

headacheI have headaches. In fact, I am having one right now. People who don’t experience this often blow it off. Okay, so it isn’t a severed limb or the flu but it isn’t pleasant for the person with the pain.

My mother had severe migraine headaches when I was growing up. They would ruin several days when we had plans for things. She had to be in a quiet and dark room. She would cry out in pain. I hated seeing her go through it. My doctor recently diagnosed me with migraine headaches. Although not as severe as what my mother had, it is still nothing fun.

So what are headaches?

A headache is pain that is experienced in the head and can be a sign of stress or emotional distress, or it can result from a medical disorder. A headache can occur in any part of the head, on both sides of the head, or in just one location. There are different ways to define headaches.

There are more than 300 types of headaches but only 10% have a known cause.  Let’s take a look at the most common headaches.

Common types of headaches

Tension headaches:  The most common form of primary headache. Such headaches normally begin slowly and gradually in the middle of the day. A person experiencing a tension headache can feel as if they have a tight band around the head, a constant, dull ache on both sides or pain spread to or from the neck. They can can either be sporadic or chronic. Sporadic attacks are usually a few hours in duration, but it can last for several days. Chronic headaches occur for 15 or more days a month for a period of at least 3 months.

Migraines:  A migraine headache may cause a pulsating, throbbing pain usually only on one side of the head. The aching may be accompanied by blurred vision, light-headedness, nausea and/or sensory disturbances. Migraines are the second most common form of primary headache and can have a significant impact on the life of an individual. Migraines are the sixth highest cause of days lost due to disability worldwide. A migraine can last from a few hours to between 2 and 3 days.

Rebound headaches:  Rebound or medication-overuse headaches stem from an excessive use of medication to treat headache symptoms. They are the most common cause of secondary headaches. They usually begin early in the day and persist throughout the day. They may improve with pain medication, but worsen when its effects wear off. Along with the headache itself, rebound headaches can cause neck pain, restlessness, a feeling of nasal congestion and/or reduced sleep quality.

Cluster headaches:  Cluster headaches usually last between 15 minutes and 3 hours, and they occur suddenly once per day up to eight times per day for a period of weeks to months. In between clusters, there may be no headache symptoms, and this headache-free period can last months to years. The pain caused by cluster headaches is one-sided, severe, often described as sharp or burning and/or typically located in or around one eye. The affected area may become red and swollen, the eyelid may droop, and the nasal passage on the affected side may become stuffy and runny.

Sinus headaches:  causes pain over the forehead, around the nose and eyes, over the cheeks, or in the upper teeth. Stooping forward increases the pain. Thick nasal discharge, congestion, and fever pinpoint the problem to the sinuses. When the acute infection resolves, the pain disappears. Sinusitis is not a common cause of chronic or recurrent headaches.

Thunderclap headaches:  These are sudden, severe headaches that are often described as the “worst headache of my life.” They reach maximum intensity in less than one minute and last longer than 5 minutes. A thunderclap headache is often secondary to life-threatening conditions, such as intracerebral hemorhage, cerebral venous thrombosis, ruptured or unruptured aneurysms, reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome (RVS), meningitis, and pituitary apoplexy. People who experience these sudden, severe headaches should seek medical evaluation immediately.

How to treat headaches:

The most common ways  of treating headaches are rest and pain relief medication.  For me, I want to sit in a quiet room after taking pain medication and “ride it out”.  Sometimes putting an ice pack on my neck helps the recovery process.  My doctor also suggested that I start taking B2 vitamins.  I have but I haven’t really seen any change in the frequency of my headaches.  I assume that it takes a while until I feel the effect.

When I feel a headache coming on, I usually take headache medication immediately.  Then, depending on the severity of the headache, I will slow down my activity.  If it’s really bad, I will turn off some lights if possible.

So when should you worry about a headache as a symptom of something more?

You can take care of many types of headaches by yourself, and your doctor can give you medication to control most of the tougher headaches. But some headaches call for prompt medical care. Here are some warning signs for when you should worry about headaches:

  • Headaches that first develop after age 50
  • A major change in the pattern of your headaches
  • An unusually severe headache
  • Head pain that increases with coughing or movement
  • Headaches that get steadily worse
  • Changes in personality or mental function
  • Headaches that are accompanied by fever, stiff neck, confusion, decreased alertness or memory, or neurological symptoms such as visual disturbances, slurred speech, weakness, numbness, or seizures
  • Headaches that are accompanied by a painful red eye
  • Headaches that are accompanied by pain and tenderness near the temples
  • Headaches after a blow to the head
  • Headaches that prevent normal daily activities
  • Headaches that come on abruptly, especially if they wake you up
  • Headaches in patients with cancer or impaired immune systems

So as you can see, it isn’t “just” a headache.  Usually people who respond to your pain in that way have never experienced a true headache.  It is difficult to explain how debilitating a headache can be.  When I experience a headache, I just feel out of sync.  It’s just an extra effort to get through the day of work.  Trust me, we will get through it just give us some time.

 

 

 

 

 

Thoughts And Prayers

After yet another mass shooting, I once again read where our political leaders say that the families of the victims are in their “thoughts and prayers”.

I am fed up with that.

Enough of the thoughts and prayers. It’s time to do something.

It’s like when I hear Christians say that we need to put prayer back in schools. Really? What’s that going to do?

It’s these lame Christian sentiments that is an embarrassment to God. Most of these folks aren’t praying about anything because if they were, they would obey God and take action and do something about it.

I am absolutely supportive of prayer. I’m not hating on people who genuinely do it when they aren’t in a position to do anything else. We certainly need prayer but we also need to hear from God. God isn’t impressed with our eloquent wording in our prayers, He is moved by the sincerity of our hearts.

In these times of senseless violent acts, there is a powerful evil in the hearts of men today. The undercurrent of anger and hate fuel these horrific acts. Praying helps but praying and doing works much more. Just having the families of victims in our thoughts does little to console them.

It is sad that the only time people seem to be kind is when there is a tragedy. Why can’t we be kind when there aren’t any? Why can’t we be kind to others every day? That should be the norm.

Stop saying “thoughts and prayers”. We’ve been saying this since the first mass shooting and it still hasn’t done anything.

One thing I can offer that would help is for assault rifles to be banned. Period. Why does the average person need this weapon? What war are they preparing for? I know I have heard that people want to be ready in case the Government attacks them but do we really think a person’s private arsenal would stop them? Let’s stop the silliness. I mean it’s even called an ASSAULT rifle. Good grief use some common sense.

How many more mass shootings is it going to take to do something? How many more “thoughts and prayers” do we need?

If your loved one had been a victim, you’d want more than someone’s thoughts and prayers.

It’s time to fight back against evil. People with evil hearts do not have to win.

Football Friday (8/2/19)

GDFL

Oklahoma meets Middle Tennessee for GDFL Title

It’s already football season around the world, let’s take a look at what’s happening this week:

ARENA FOOTBALL LEAGUE

The Philadelphia Soul defeated the Washington Valor 69-33 at Capital One Arena on Sunday afternoon behind a big day from Darius “Money” Reynolds. With the win, the Soul will take a 36-point lead back to Philadelphia next weekend for the second game of the home-and-home series. The team with the highest aggregate score after both games will advance to play the winner of the Albany Empire-Baltimore Brigade series in ArenaBowl 32.  Read more…

The Albany Empire (10-2) defeated the Baltimore Brigade (7-5), 61-26, in front of 9,085 fans at the Times Union Center on Saturday night. The victory gives the Empire a 35-point lead over the Brigade in the aggregate score of the home-and-home playoff series. The second game of the series will be on Saturday, August 3 at 7 p.m. at the Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore. Read more…

AUSTRIA

The Swarco Raiders staged a second half rally to defeat the Dacia Vienna Vikings 42-34 Saturday in St. Polten to capture Austrian Bowl XXXV and finish off a perfect, undefeated season. The Raiders fell behind early and trailed the entire first half. It wasn’t until late in the third quarter that Swarco pulled even and then took the lead for the first time. Quarterback Sean Shelton completed 14 of 22 passes for 245 yards and three touchdowns while rushing for another one. His leading target, Patrick Donahue, had 105 yards receiving scoring two touchdowns while Adrian Platzgummer had three receptions for 58 yards. Running back Sandro Platzgummer had eight carries for 85 yards and a touchdown while teammate Tobias Bonatti had eight for 84.  Read more…

CANADIAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE

The Toronto Argonauts pulled off an incredible fourth quarter comeback against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers last week, completing a game-winning touchdown drive in the final seconds to edge Winnipeg 28-27.  Argos quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson had his strongest performance of the season, completing 37 of 49 passes for 343 yards and three touchdowns to lead Toronto to its first win.  Read more…

Current Standings:

East Division

  1. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (5-2)
  2. Montreal Alouettes (3-2)
  3. Ottawa Redblacks (2-4)
  4. Toronto Argonauts (1-6)

West Division

  1. Winnipeg Bluebombers (5-2)
  2. Calgary Stampeders (4-2)
  3. Edmonton Eskimos (4-2)
  4. Saskatchewan Roughriders (4-3)
  5. British Columbia Lions (1-6)

EUROPE

Team Sweden’s offense sputtered at times but caught fire when it needed to defeat France 7-0 and advance to the finals of the IFAF 2019 U19 European Championships. This is the second time in the history of this tournament that Sweden has reached the final. Both defenses played lights out football making the offenses work for every yard. Sweden kept the vaunted French running attack neutralized much of the game. France reached the Swedish red zone twice but squandered their chances with penalties and miscues. In fact, France was flagged 13 times for 128 yards. Each time they had a semblance of a scoring chance, a penalty would take them out of range. Or an interception. Read more…

GRIDIRON DEVELOPMENTAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE

Middle Tennessee counter punched its way to another postseason victory vs. the Erie Express.  Eleven seconds after Erie took its only lead in Saturday’s Xtreme Conference final for the Gridiron Development Football League playoffs, the Bulldawgs responded with the game’s decisive points.  The Nashville franchise scored when quarterback Eric Chapa connected with wide receiver Tyran Moore down the left sideline for a 52-yard touchdown with 3 minutes, 36 seconds left in the fourth quarter.  Its defense made it hold up for a 32-27 win at Dollinger Field.  Read more…

The #1 seed in the Impact Conference, The Oklahoma Thunder throttled the #3 seeded River City Pythons to reach the GDFL National Championship (Gridiron Bowl X) this Saturday in Broken Arrow, OK – recording a 55-0 shutout. This was the Thunder’s fourth shutout of the season and first game in which its defense held an opponent to negative total yardage. As typical for the Thunder this season, the offense utilized a combination of explosive plays in both the passing and rushing attack to control the game from the start. Standout RB Adidas McDonald spearheaded the rushing attack behind a veteran offensive line and rushed 9 times for 148 yards and three touchdowns. That total included an impressive 76-yard touchdown run immediately after another long run that got called back due to a penalty.  Read more…

NATIONAL ARENA LEAGUE

The Massachusetts Pirates (8-6) were able to build momentum heading into the playoffs next weekend with an impressive 50-35 victory over the New York Streets (4-10). The Pirates swept the season series from the Streets four games to none. With the seeding already locked, Pirates backups saw a significant amount of playing time. The Pirates were guided by an impressive performance by Alejandro Bennifield who completed 16 of 30 passes for 171 yards and four touchdowns. In his debut as a Pirate, receiver Rannell Hall caught eight passes and two touchdowns and added 98 yards receiving to lead the Pirates receiving corps. New York was led by quarterback Cody Williams who passed for 174 yards and four touchdowns. Read more…

Final Regular Season Standings:

  1. Jacksonville Sharks (13-1)
  2. Carolina Cobras (9-5)
  3. Massachusetts Pirates (8-6)
  4. Columbus Lions (6-8)
  5. New York Streets (4-10)
  6. Orlando Predators (2-12)

(Thanks to American Football International and Our Sports Central for their reports)

Good News Wednesday (7/31/19)

Need some good news?  Here are a few things that will make you feel good about the world:

GNW_0731_01WOMAN BUYS OUT ARKANSAS PAYLESS STORE’S STOCK, DONATES SHOES TO CHILDREN IN NEED
(from Newsweek.com)

Carrie Jernigan didn’t plan on buying 1,500 pairs of shoes at the end of May, but the Arkansas woman is using that massive purchase to give back to her community.

Jernigan took her three children to a Payless Shoe Source in Alma, Arkansas, to do a bit of shopping before the family went on vacation, and during the visit to the store Jernigan’s 9-year-old daughter asked if they could purchase a pair of Avengers tennis shoes for someone in her class that needed a pair.

“She has the biggest heart, and she said ‘There is a boy in my class that loves [The] Avengers, and his shoes are too small, could you buy him these?,’ and I was like ‘of course,'” Jernigan told THV11.

Jernigan said she was touched by her daughter’s thoughtfulness and, “As I was checking out, I just said, ‘how much for the rest of the shoes in the store?’ almost joking, and then I could see the clerk’s face, her wheels start to turn.”

In February 2019, Payless announced that the company would close all of its stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico by the end of May, a move that came after the shoe and accessory retailer had filed for bankruptcy twice in two years. At the time of the announcement, the company had 2,100 stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

According to Southern Living, Jernigan gave the clerk her phone number before she left the store and later that day she was contacted by the district manager who told Jernigan she could purchase the store’s remaining stock before it closed. Jernigan agreed, thinking should would go to the store to buy approximately 350 pairs of shoes.

However, when she went back to pay for them, Jernigan learned that the store was getting another shipment of shoes just days before it would close and instead of buying 350 pairs of shoes. When her children asked to buy those shoes, Jernigan ended up purchasing 1,500 pairs — all the remaining stock from the store.

“I always tell my kids, if you ask them what they want to be when they grow up they say be kind, and so I don’t care what they do in life as long as they are kind and good people. And so it just reiterates to me that their hearts are in the right place and if it’s in the right place they can do amazing things,” she told THV11.

Money reports that Jernigan bought $21,000 worth of merchandise.

Jernigan intended to donate the shoes to her local schools, where she serves at the school board president, but upon buying the additional shipment, she decided to hold off until the new school year.

“I wanted these kids to have brand new shoes for the start of school,” she told Money.

Others in the town of Alma have gotten involved, donating to a Kickstarter campaign that aims to purchase school supplies. Jernigan and a local Baptist church are hosting a back-to-school event on Aug. 10 at the Alma Middle School Gym where parents and children can get school supplies and a new pair of shoes just before classes begin for the 2019-2020 school year.

“If they can go help one person, one child, go to school with a new pair of shoes on, it will make that child’s day so much better,” Jernigan told Money.

The adult shoes Jernigan purchased will also be donated to those in need.

GNW_0731_02FRANKFORT, KENTUCKY OFFICERS SURPRISED WHEN STRANGER PAYS THEIR MEALS
(from wkyt.com)

Frankfort officers are thanking their community after someone paid for four officers to eat at Pizza Inn during the weekend.

Captain Dustin Bowman told WKYT the officers work third shift and were eating at the restaurant when someone gave them a note reading in part, “Thank you very much for serving and protecting the community! To show appreciation we are honored to buy your dinners.”

Bowman said kind gestures like this happen often but never become less shocking.

He said he typically responds by paying it forward.

“We don’t want to just receive the blessing, we want to hand them out to those who might be having a bad day and might need something to just boost them up a bit,” Bowman said.

GNW_0731_03DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY DONATES 17,000 MEALS FROM CANCELLED NEW ORLEANS CONVENTION TO STORM DISASTER RELIEF
(from thehill.com)

The Delta Sigma Theta sorority donated 17,000 meals to disaster relief efforts in New Orleans after it was forced to cut their biennial national convention short this weekend due to ongoing Tropical Storm Barry.

According to The Washington Post, nearly 16,000 people were expected to attend the convention this weekend. But the sorority decided to end the convention ahead of schedule after the storm caused heavy flooding across the Gulf Coast and prompted tens of thousands of homes to lose power.

But Beverly E. Smith, the national president and CEO of the sorority, told the newspaper that members of the sorority were “delighted” to donate food intended for their luncheon to recovery efforts.

“There was inordinate amounts of food that would have been wasted,” she told The Post.

The sorority donated the food to the Second Harvest Food Bank, which will distribute the meals to people affected by the storm in New Orleans and areas nearby.

“To have all these meals ahead of time is really a godsend,” Jay Vise, the communications director for the food bank, told the paper.

Vise added that he feels the food donated – which ranges from macaroni and cheese, chicken, chocolate cake and potatoes au gratin – could also help cheer up victims who have been hit hard by the storms and have limited resources to prepare their own meals.

According to CNN, the storm made landfall in Louisiana on Saturday. At the time, Barry had been categorized as a Category 1 hurricane. However, the storm has since weakened and is currently being labelled a tropical storm.

GNW_0731_04

Football Friday (7/26/19)

unicorns

Germany’s Schwabisch Hall Unicorns are Europe’s Top Team

Here’s a recap of American football leagues around the world:

ARENA FOOTBALL LEAGUE

The Albany Empire enters the AFL playoffs as the top seed.  Returning home for the first time in nearly a month, the Empire made a statement in the team’s tenth win of the season, handling the Philadelphia Soul, 72-27 in the regular season finale. Albany dominated from start to finish and ended the game with the largest margin of victory in Empire history and the most points scored by one team in a game in 2019. The Empire remain home this weekend for the first game of a home-and-home playoff series against the Baltimore Brigade. The Philadelphia Soul (7-5) begin their quest for a fourth ArenaBowl title this Sunday at 3:30 pm against the defending champion Washington Valor (7-5) at Capital One Arena. Having fallen to the three seed after a loss to the Empire in the regular season finale, the Soul will host the second leg of the home-and-home series at the Wells Fargo Center on August 4th at 4 pm.

Final Regular Season Standings:

  1. Albany Empire (10-2)
  2. Washington Valor (7-5)
  3. Philadelphia Soul (7-5)
  4. Baltimore Brigade (7-5)
  5. Atlantic City Blackjacks (4-8)
  6. Columbus Destroyers (1-11)

CHAMPIONS INDOOR FOOTBALL

Champions Indoor Football announced that the Duke City Gladiators had submitted a petition for a voluntary release from their league commitment. This afternoon, the CIF of Board of Directors voted unanimously to honor Duke City’s petition and release the team from the CIF effective immediately. All six remaining teams also reaffirmed their commitment to the CIF for the upcoming 2020 season.

“The owners of the six current teams of the CIF are working hard this off-season and are dedicated to the growth of the league as we enter our sixth season,” CIF Commissioner

Ricky Bertz said. “Our owners are dedicated to the CIF and continuing the league’s growth moving forward. We have six solid teams and will also continue to evaluate possible expansion options as we proceed towards the 2020 season.”

Champions Indoor Football announced today that the Duke City Gladiators had submitted a petition for a voluntary release from their league commitment. This afternoon, the CIF of Board of Directors voted unanimously to honor Duke City’s petition and release the team from the CIF effective immediately. All six remaining teams also reaffirmed their commitment to the CIF for the upcoming 2020 season.

“The owners of the six current teams of the CIF are working hard this off-season and are dedicated to the growth of the league as we enter our sixth season,” CIF Commissioner

Ricky Bertz said. “Our owners are dedicated to the CIF and continuing the league’s growth moving forward. We have six solid teams and will also continue to evaluate possible expansion options as we proceed towards the 2020 season.

GRIDIRON DEVELOPMENTAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE

The Middle Tennessee Bulldawgs (9-0) defeated the Tri-City Outlaws (4-5) 12-6 in a game that was continued after being postponed due to a torrential downpour this past Saturday. With 1:57 left in the first half, Bulldawg defensive back Randall “Bay Bay” Smith scored from the “Dawg-Cat” position on the first play from scrimmage. His run of 17 yards tied the game.  Read more…

The Oklahoma Thunder are looking to do something that’s never been done in before in minor league football, win four straight national championships. They’re well on their way to doing that after a convincing win in round one of the playoffs. Oklahoma took down the Joplin Crusaders with a 28-6 final score. With that, one step closer to returning to the national championship.  Read more…

INDOOR FOOTBALL LEAGUE

The owner of the IFL’s Grand Island-based Nebraska Danger announced the team will most likely be put up for sale. It is hoped a new ownership group would keep the team in Grand Island, but if that is not possible the team could be sold and moved to a new location. The Nebraska Danger joined the IFL as an expansion team for the 2011 season and just completed its ninth season.

NATIONAL ARENA LEAGUE

The Columbus Lions (5-8) stormed back from a 43-20 deficit to beat the Orlando Predators (2-12) in overtime 52-46. In doing so, the Lions clinched a playoff berth for the 3rd straight year and set up a future date with the Jacksonville Sharks.  Read more here…

Current Standings:

  1. Jacksonville Sharks (12-1)
  2. Carolina Cobras (10-3)
  3. Massachusetts Pirates (7-6)
  4. Columbus Lions (5-8)
  5. New York Streets (3-10)
  6. Orlando Predators (2-11)

INTERNATIONAL LEAGUES:

CANADA

The Saskatchewan Roughriders came out on top in a back-and-forth battle against the BC Lions on Saturday Night, combining big offensive plays and relentless defensive pressure to claim the 38-25 home win.  A thrilling 100-yard kickoff return touchdown from Marcus Thigpen gave the Riders a one-point lead heading into the second half, but the Lions continued to stick around until three consecutive touchdown drives from the Riders in the second half sealed the victory.  Read more…

GERMANY

The German Football League returns this weekend with a full schedule of games after a four-week July break for most of the teams.

Two teams remain unbeaten so far as the GFL has reached the midpoint of the season. The Braunschweig New Yorker Lions, winners of four of the last six German championships, and the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns who have won the last two titles.

There were a total of three games during four week break but this weekend, all 16 teams will be back in action.

EUROPE’S TOP 10

  1. Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns (9-0 GFL) – Germany (Last poll: #1)The Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns have passed the halfway point of the 2019 season and look just as dominant as ever. The Unicorns are on a 43 game winning streak stretching back to the 2016 German Bowl and show no signs of letting up. This year they have beaten the Marburg Mercenaries 52-9, the Ingolstadt Dukes 24-0, the Munich Cowboys 35-3, Kirchdorf Wildcats 51-12, Stuttgart Scorpions 63-13, Frankfurt Universe 31-0, Stuttgart again, 63-21, Kirchdorf Wildcats 56-0 and Ingolstadt Dukes 51-0.  Next up: Munich Cowboys, July 27.
  2. Swarco Raiders (14-0 – AFL: 11-0 CEFL: 4-0 Int.) – Austria (Last poll: #2)The defending Austrian champs have looked just as impressive as ever in running their record to 14-0 overall (4-0 in CEFL play) They ran through the AFL without a loss and then downed the Danube Dragons in the Austrian semifinals. . They defeated the Dacia Vienna Vikings in the ECTC final and then got by Switzerland’s Calanda Broncos to capture the CEFL title. In the other international games, Swarco disposed of France’s Thonon Black Panthers, beating them 41-7 in Central European Football League action and then beat up on the Italian champions, the Milano Seamen, 50-23.  Next up: Austrian Bowl XXXV vs Dacia Vienna Vikings, July 27.
  3. New Yorker Lions (7-0 ) – Germany (Last poll: #3)The Lions have looked every bit as impressive as their championship years. They have won all their games but were pushed to the limit by both the Dresden Monarchs, finally beating them 34-31 and also by the Hildesheim Invaders who they rallied to defeat 35-28, in the last game before the break. They had opened the year beating the Cologne Crocodiles in a back-to-back series, 23-6 and 45-7, and then took care of the only team that defeated them in the regular season last year, the Berlin Rebels. Braunschweig beat the Rebels 29-12. The Lions downed the Potsdam Royals 35-14.  Next up: Berlin Rebels, July 28.
  4. Hildesheim Invaders (6-1) – Germany (Last poll: #6)Hildesheim is so far the most improved team in the league and have won six of their seven opening games. They edged the Dresden Monarchs 31-27 and finally were beaten by the New Yorker Lions 35-28 in the last game before the break. Most of their other wins were by lopsided scores as they beat the Potsdam Royals 50-28, took care of the Dusseldorf Panther 49-17, downed the Cologne Crocodiles 31-14, outlasted the Berlin Rebels 56-41.and beat the Panther again 46-10.  Next up: Kiel Baltic Hurricanes, July 27.
  5. Dresden Monarchs (5-2) – Germany (Last poll: #5)The Monarchs had opened the season with three straight wins – 49-13 over the Dusseldorf Panther ,42-14 over the Kiel Baltic Hurricanes and then a 17-0 shut out of the Cologne Crocodiles – before dropping two close games in a row, 34-27 to the New Yorker Lions and then 31-27 to Hildesheim. They rebounded beating Cologne again, 42-7 and then the Potsdam Royals, 33-13. Their two close games against the Lions and Invaders show they are definite contenders.  Next up: Dusseldorf Panther, July 27.
  6. Frankfurt Universe (6-1) – Germany (Last poll: #4)Frankfurt has opened the 2019 with four wins, – downing the Ingolstadt Dukes 37-13 and then getting by the Munich Cowboys 24-17, after beating the Allgau Comets 20-0 in their opening game and then downing the Marburg Mercenaries 20-14. They were brought down to earth with a thud, getting shut out 31-0 by the Unicorns. They came back and defeated Ingolstadt 63-13 and the Comets 34-7  Next up: Kirchdorf Wildcats, July 28.
  7. Calanda Broncos (14-2; NL: 11-1, CEFL: 3-1) Switzerland (Last poll: #9)Calanda put on a strong showing in the second half of the season, winning the Swiss Bowl in emphatic fashion, beating the Geneva Seahawks 31-0. They were oh so close to winning the Central European Football League title losing in the championship game 46-42 to Austria’s Swarco Raiders after leading much of the game. In rest of international CEFL play, the Broncos overwhelmed Turkey’s Koc Rams a few weeks ago whipping them 55-17 in Istanbul and last week beat the Kragujevac Wild Boars from Serbia 37-33.. Calanda opened the tournament with a big 27-3 road win over Poland’s Wroclaw Panthers.  Next up: Season over, Swiss champions
  8. Dacia Vienna Vikings (10-4 – AFL: 8-3, ECTC: 2-1) – Austria (Last poll: #7)The Dacia Vienna Vikings have reached the Austrian Bowl but needed a strong second half against the Prague Black Panthers in the semifinal to win 21-14.. They won all but four games during the year, three to the Swarco Raiders, the last one a 35-10 loss in the ECTC final. The only other team to beat them was the Graz Giants early in the season. In international play, they had big wins in European Club Team Competition (ECTC) action downing the Badalona Dracs 38-8 and Denmark’s Triangle Razorbacks 60-0.  Next up: Austrian Bowl vs Swarco Raiders, July 27.
  9. Wroclaw Panthers (12-1; LFA: 10-0, CEFL: 2-1) – Poland (Last poll: #10)                  The Wroclaw Panthers dominated the opposition in Poland’s Liga Futbolu Amerykańskiego, finishing the regular season with an 8-0 record and then beating the Gdynia Seahawks in the semifinals 52-6 and downing the Bialystok Lowlanders 28-14 to win the title. In international play, the Panthers dropped a 27-3 decision to the Calanda Broncos early on but rebounded with big wins over the Kragujevac Wild Boars from Serbia and Turkey’s Koc Rams.  Next up: Season over, Polish champions
  10. Danube Dragons (7-5) – Austria (Last poll: #14)   The Danube Dragons came close to reaching the Austrian Bowl, losing a tough semifinal game to the Swarco Raiders 49-43. Danube had beaten the Graz Giants 24-17 in the wild card playoffs to earn the right to play in the semis.  The Dragons had fashioned a solid 6-4 regular season record with their only losses coming against the Raiders, as well as the Dacia Vienna Vikings and the Prague Black Panthers (34-31). Their performance against Swarco in the semis earned them their 10th place.  Next up: Season over, Austrian semifinalists.

(Thanks to Oursportscentral.com and American Football International for these news stories.)

Boot Scooters Release Schedule

The Nashville Boot Scooters have a playing location and now the X-treme Scooter Quidditch League (XSQL) has distributed their first regular season schedule.  The Boot Scooters will open against the San Francisco Muggles on Saturday, September 26th at Greer Stadium.  Nashville will have seven home games and seven away games.  There will also be several promotions throughout the season with Bird Scooter offering a chance to win a scooter on opening night.  Vanderbilt hospitals will give away free helmets to the first 200 fans on October 10th.  There will be a Harry Potter costume night on October 27th.

The Boot Scooters will close the season at home on Sunday, November 10th against the Atlanta Avengers.

Boot Scooters’ coach Kevin Henning likes the scheduling.

“It looks pretty favorable to have a home game to start things off and get fans excited about the team and league.  I think we’ll find out quickly who the top teams will be.  Now we need to get players that will fill our roster.”

The times of the games will be determined later.

“We’re just excited to get sponsors onboard and once the stadium is constructed, we will be able to fine tune things,” said team manager Ryan Cooper.

The top four teams will advance to the semifinals during the weekend of Nov 16-17.  The championship game will be played on Sunday, November 24th.  The league is working with a major network to televise the title game.

2019 Nashville Boot Scooters Schedule

[THIS IS A FICTIONAL SPORTS ARTICLE.  IT IS INTENDED FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY.]

 

Good News Wednesday (7/24/19)

Need some good news?  Here are a few things that happened this week that will make you smile:

GN724_01IOWA CARPENTER SAVED $3 MILLION TO PUT 33 STRANGERS THROUGH COLLEGE

An Iowa carpenter is responsible for sending dozens of people to college. People he never had a chance to meet.

Dale Schroeder lived simply for his entire life. He grew up poor, never married or had kids, and worked as a carpenter at the same company for 67 years. He owned just two pair of jeans and drove a rusty old Chevrolet truck.

Shortly before his death in 2005, Schroeder told his attorney, Steve Nielsen, that he wanted to use his savings to help poor students in Iowa go to college.

Read more of this story…

GN724_02GROUP OF STRANGERS SAVES MAN IN FLIPPED TRUCK

A resourceful group of construction workers and fellow commuters came together to save a man trapped in a flipped pickup truck on Monday.

A report from CNN says that between six and eight good Samaritans rushed to aid the man after his rear tire blew on I-88 in suburban Chicago.

The charge was led by Tom Meyers, a paramedic and firefighter who was passing by when he saw the wreck and a group trying to flip the truck back over.

Read more of this story…

GN724_03KANSAS CITY TV STATION PAYS IT FORWARD TO MAN WORKING BEHIND THE SCENES TO HELP VETERANS COMMUNITY PROJECT SUCCEED

This Pay-It-Forward award goes to a veteran working behind the scenes to help homeless veterans get a roof over their head and secure a job.

Veterans Community Project volunteer Joan Slawson nominated Vinnie for the award because she said he keeps things running smoothly.

“Vinny is the director of everything that goes on in the village with the residents,” Slawson said. “Whether it’s the bus passes, food bags, food boxes, some type of job counseling.”

Read more of this story…

GN724_04GRACE LUTHERAN CHURCH MEMBERS GROWING FAITH WITH GARDEN IN MURFREESBORO, TENNESSEE

Grace Lutheran Church members growing faith with garden in Murfreesboro

This summer, Grace Lutheran Church members in Murfreesboro have a unique way of growing their faith.

They’ve planted Katie’s Garden and give away the bounty for free to anyone in need. There are peppers, tomatoes, squash, watermelon and a variety of other fruits and vegetables.

“Part of it is to be of benefit to our community, get to know our neighbors, get to be a benefit to our neighbors. … We can get to know our neighbors and be friendly and invite them to church and help them in any way we can,” said the Rev. Al Thoe, assistant pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, 811 E. Clark Blvd.

Read more of this story…

“Every day may not be a good day but there is good in every day”

I Am 99% Vegan

At the start of the year, my wife and I decided to try the vegan lifestyle.  She has completely done it and I have as much as I can.  Before we decided to go this route, I was pretty much a vegetarian anyway.  I guess I need to clarify the difference for you because sometimes this is still a little blurry to me at times.  While “being a vegan” does change your diet it isn’t necessarily a diet.  Being a vegetarian is pretty much a diet where you abstain from eating meat.

So what have I learned about being a vegan?

  1. Being a vegan isn’t just a diet, it is a choice for a lifestyle.  It’s not about losing weight.  It’s about abstaining from the use of animal products.  A vegan lifestyle prevents a tremendous amount of animal slaughter and suffering. It offers a potent way to shrink our environmental footprint, especially in regard to climate change. And a well-planned vegan diet can fuel the highest levels of fitness, while reducing our risk of various chronic diseases.  Yes, most of the attention is on food but it extends beyond that which is why I say I’m about 99% vegan.
  2. For certain, menu choices are strictly limited.  You can’t simply go to Cracker Barrel or Burger King without having to narrow down your choices.  Meals are a lot more planned now than they were before; however, I can tell you that I haven’t gone to bed hungry and I haven’t lost a ton of weight.  To me, vegan is more about thinking about the ridiculous use of animals.  I had to ask the question:  Why are we drinking cow’s milk?  Who came up with this idea?  When you really think about this, it really doesn’t make much sense.
  3. People think you’re silly for being vegan.   Yep, we’ve gotten those looks and eye rolls when asking if something is vegan or not.  Hey, everyone has something or their own purpose but it’s funny how some don’t respect your choices.
  4. Food can still be good.  I have made veggie patties, biscuits, sauces and other food that taste just as good as the non-vegan versions.  For sure it takes more work but it’s not all about eating tofu.
  5. You can still have junk food!  Believe it or not, it isn’t just hippie food.  There are actually some good junk food even for vegans.

I say that I’m 99% vegan because I still slip on a slice of cheese when the vegan option isn’t available for me.  I also still buy leather products or other animals products.  I do try to be mindful of it but sometimes it isn’t as feasible sometimes.  If I find myself stuck at a restaurant without vegan options, I try to customize it as much as possible.

I honestly thought it was going to be a lot more trouble when we first started this but, while it does take more thought and planning, it hasn’t been as difficult as I thought it would be.  There are actually vegan substitutes out there if you look for them.

I can’t tell you I’m an expert on this vegan stuff but I’m learning.  It’s not all about nuts and berries.  I have had to retrain my thinking, especially about the food.  I was already having issues with meat.  Pork and beef was causing me digestive issues anyway so eliminating them wasn’t much of a stretch.  Chicken was the difficult thing for me because that was a common food for me.  I was also getting quite grossed out with eggs so that wasn’t so difficult to drop either.  I mean, really, when you think about what you’re eating here, it grosses you out.

When you tell someone you are vegan, they act like you’re in some sort of cult or far-out religious group.  Well, there are some things far worse out there.  Yes, I’m attending the Church of Vegan now.  Don’t be a hater.  I don’t hate on you for scrambling those eggs, drinking your dairy milk or frying that bacon.

I am by far no expert on vegan.  If you want learn more about this vegan stuff, go to vegan.com to read more.

 

 

 

 

My Apollo Experience

img_4167Before you get excited, no, I was not an Apollo astronaut but I wanted to be one during the Apollo Moon missions. I was five years old 50 years ago today when I watched the television broadcast of Neal Armstrong taking the first step on the moon. Armstrong was the first of 12 people who have walked on the moon. There were six moon mission during the Apollo program between 1969 to 1972.  The last person on the moon was Eugene Cernan.  He was on Apollo 17 which was the last mission to the moon.  The last spacecraft to reach the moon was an Israeli private spacecraft Beresheet which launched from Cape Canaveral with the intention of a soft landing but contact was lost with the spacecraft and it crashed onto the moon on April 11, 2019.

img_4168

Tang with Lunar Rover Toy attached

When anyone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up I would immediately and enthusiastically tell them that I wanted to be an astronaut. I was obsessed with the Apollo missions. When Tang came out with the fact that the astronauts drank this powder drink on their missions, I had to have it. That’s all I would drink. When Tang later had a lunar rover toy attached to the jar, I was not happy until my parents bought it for me.

I watched each mission with complete awe. Even two years ago when we visited the Space and Rocket center near Huntsville, Alabama, I felt the same excitement when I saw one of the Apollo Command capsules and even some of the moon rocks.

Of course, there are some who cast doubt on whether we actually went to the moon or not. I think some people just want to be haters and spin the ridiculous conspiracy theories. It’s a big stretch to think it was all a hoax.

It is also amazing how the technology compares between now and what was available during the Apollo missions. I have read that the technology in Nintendo game systems now are more advanced that what was used on the Apollo missions. It makes me wonder now how much grander a moon mission could be if it was supported like it was in the Apollo days. The moon missions back then were just as patriotic as anything could be. There was a push to beat the Soviet Union to the moon. The United States got caught up in it. There’s not so much of a rally for it now. NASA doesn’t really have the funding so it has become a question as to whether private funding will ever get us back to the moon or anything more.

Whatever the case may be, it won’t ever be like the Apollo Moon missions.

I never achieved my childhood claims that I would become an astronaut. Those hopes were dashed when I was 10 when my mother said if I couldn’t ride the Great American Scream Machine rollercoaster at Six Flags over Georgia that I could never be an astronaut. Well, at some point later I did ride the Scream Machine but I never made it to the astronaut program.

I don’t think we will ever experience the same excitement for the space program as we did back then. I still get excited about space stuff and whatever NASA is doing. Even 50 years later, today’s 50th anniversary of the first steps on the moon still brings back that excitement.