Overnight Briefing & General Reality Check - Aug 1, 2016
August 1, 2016
Off the beaten path:
A new pub in England has completely banned cell phone use.
The Gin Tub in Brighton installed a cell blocking device which prevents customers from making calls or sending texts. Owner STEVE TYLER says cell phones have "killed pubs" and he wants his visitors to actually talk to each other face-to-face. He adds, "When you go out socially, you don't need social media." The bar has only been open about a week but is already getting rave reviews. (Still)
Pushing up daisies:
Sorry to hear that Weather Channel meteorologist DAVE SCHWARTZ has died after a long battle with cancer. He was able to beat a bout of pancreatic cancer, but was diagnosed again in 2015 with stomach cancer. Dave worked with the Weather Channel beginning in 1985, starting out as a gofer in the newsroom and worked his way up through the ranks. "His love of weather will never be forgotten," a spokesman for the network said.
Editor's note: Before he was on TV for the Weather Channel, he fed radio forecasts and updates and was unfailingly the nicest voice on the other end of the phone line any and every day of the week. He called to offer extra updates before we ever asked when a problematic weather system threatened the listening area, eager to share his resources and expertise and Do The Job communicating weather news the listeners could use. I've met few people who loved their work so much. And a lovely man, too. (Kaye)
On, off and way-off-Broadway:
JESSE TYLER FERGUSON wrapped up his 17-week Broadway run yesterday in "Fully Committed." He plays 40 different characters in the play for 90 minutes without an intermission. After doing that eight times a week, you'd think Jesse would be ready for a vacation. Nope! He told the Confidential gossip column in the New York Daily News that he heads right back to the set of "Modern Family" on Wednesday for the show's new season. Jesse said his only time off will be the six-hour plane ride home from New York to L.A. (Marino)
NFL players are tested once per summer (mid-April through early August) for marijuana. If they fail the test, they are tested regularly through the following season. However, recently the NFL has heard from more and more past players (and current ones) requesting that the league amend its policies towards medical marijuana.
Why? Take for example, LEONARD MARSHALL. A former Pro Bowl defensive end for the NY Giants, Marshall was diagnosed in 2013 with signs of the brain-eating disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Each day, he takes a 500-milligram dose of a cannabidiol (also known as CBD) --a compound found exclusively in the marijuana plant; unlike the better-known compound THC, CBD doesn't get users high. "My quality of life has improved because of this" he says.
Also advocating more leniency is JIM McMAHON, former QB of the Chicago Bears. Three decades after winning the Super Bowl, McMahon has been diagnosed with dementia and struggles with severe memory loss, headaches and depression. The vertebrae in his neck are cracked and twisted. "I was using 100 Percocets a month during my career," McMahon says. "I wasn't sleeping. I wasn't eating. I knew I had to get off pharmaceuticals." McMahon says CBD has given him a "new lease on life."
The other leagues have differing policies related to marijuana: the NBA does four random drug tests throughout the season; none during the off-season. The MLB does not test for pot unless there is reasonable cause to suspect someone is using.
In hockey, the NHL does not test all its players... one-third of its players are randomly tested each season for "street drugs." Players are not disciplined for weed. (Lane)
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