Definition of a Man

July 2, 2010

Humphrey Bogart - True Man?

While I was in California, I stumbled upon a fantastic article written in Esquire Magazine. This article which is below is a pithy and brilliant description of the values and morals that the modern man might and probably should possess.

Esquire Magazine Article

Now granted there are a few statements in here that are controversial, and I may not agree completely with the semantics, but the overall message is interesting. I welcome your overall impressions on this article.



August 29, 2009

 Styrofoam cups… They seem so innocent. They’re handy. They’re great for insulating your beverages.  They have even become so popular that they have their own hip-hop song. Check it out:

As much as I lovethat video my love is equally as strong for styrofoam cups. (Yes, I was trying to use a sarcastic font) Now I know what you’re thinking… Ohhh here goes Dave on a rant for Greenpeace, recycling, or beautifying America, or George H.W. Bush’s 1000 Points of Light.  No, that’s not quite, what I’m doing. Yes, Styrofoam cups = bad. Just to prove it here’s a PSA for you. 

So if I’m not on a Save the World rant, then why is there the uncontrollable urge to write about Styrofoam cups… Here’s why

Yesterday, I drove up to a local Bucks County Hospital of which it’s name and the patient’s name will remain anonymous (because that’s what I was asked to do.)  I’ll call the patient Job, because  this is a test in his life and he’s a fairly religious man. Job recently was diagnosed with prostate cancer and had to undergo prostate surgery. The surgery was scheduled and completed with what the doctors called, “record speed” and with no major complications! Excellent! So I decided it would be a great thing to go visit my friend to see how he was feeling, how he was recovering, and offer some support. This was an important step for me, not only to be there for my friend, but because this was the first time I had stepped back into a hospital, and/or rehab facility since my father’s passing.

For the most part, I handled it well manuevering through the corridors of the hospital. And as I wandered the hallways, I smiled at the people I passed and I spoke politely with the people at the circulation desk to find the proper room number and progressed towards the elevator. In the elevator, I continued my polite conversations with various people, learned of baby births and knee surgeries and the like, but eventually they departed and I was left staring at the opening of Job’s room. I crossed the threshold and arrived at my destination bed  # 2 (by the window)  and found Job.  Job was sitting upright in his hospital bed staring off into space, while the TV seemed to endlessly prattle to no one. Looking up, Job seemed very surprised and happy to see me, which was wonderful feeling and I’m glad I was a pleasant surprise. We talked for awhile about the news, our jobs, his family, his procedure, basically everything you could think of and I was emotionally very fit.  There were moments that would invoke memories of my father’s treatment and these would send me into small moments of silence, but they were quickly shaken off by a question or a thought. 

However, there was one thing that everytime I looked upon, made me think of my dad’s treatment and of all the hospitals and rehab facilities. The more I looked up it, the more I hated it… the damn styrofoam cup.  It was the same size, had the same appearance, the same lids and of course the same straws.  It even matched right down to the fact that the date was written on the side.  Yes, I know what a silly thing to focus on, but how strange is it that the Styrofoam cups in all of these hospitals and rehab facilities should be the exact same. Not even a ripple different, or a different color, or different width. They were exactly the same. You would think of all things that would set you off it might be the hospital room, the beds, the beeps, the gowns anything, but for me it’s the Styrofoam cup.  It was unnerving and sent me through a collage of images. I held all the emotions in check, finished my visit and left. The car and the drive home were a little bit tougher, because that’s where I got to let loose a little, it also didn’t help that the song What Sarah Said was playing… if you haven’t listened to it, go listen to that one.

For now, I think I’m going to start a boycott of styrofoam cups.

What’s in the Box?

August 21, 2009

If only it were this easy!

If only it were this easy!


What a great movie? Who doesn’t love the movie Seven?  Kevin Spacey is excellent, as a psychopathic, murdering genius! With a protagonist duo of Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman whose characters sync so well on screen that they naturally draw you into their partner relationship. And of course there is Gwenyth Paltrow whose innocence makes the ending so heartbreaking.  However, in regards to the photo, what was in the box?  The Livestrong Challenge Philadelphia shirts for our diverse team of runners, walkers and cyclists.  Kampusklothes, which lies in far away and scenic Ivyland, PA, delivered the shirts ahead of schedule and in flawless fashion.    I didn’t notice the writing on the side of the box right away, because I was just so floored by the actual product and the amazing job Mike and the crew over at Kampusklothes did.  Phenomenal! I can’t wait to snag photos of them on our team! Those will be posted, I promise Sunday, after the race.

I did notice the box when I was walking back in from taking my mother  to the movies to view Julie & Julia.  This was an adorable movie starring Rachel McAdams of The Notebook fame who works her way through Julia Child’s amazing cookbook entitled Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I’m glad I went. I enjoyed the film, but the best laugh for me was walking in and seeing the writing on the side of shirt box. I just started thinking of all of the possible captions… 1.) If only it were that easy… (you know to put cancer into a box.) 2.) What should have been left in Pandora’s Box? 3.) In the voice of Brad Pitt… “What’s in the box?” This started me thinking about a caption contest.

So here’s the Contest! Come up with your best caption for the  cancer box picture. The prize will be something worthwhile. I  haven’t decided what it will be, yet, but I will think of it and post it soon.  So take your chances.  Make sure to send me an email at with your caption for the picture and I will post them underneath and choose a winner. Contest ends Monday, August 24, 2009 @ 12:00 PM.  (High Noon!) 

On other Livestrong notes the Countdown to Livestrong Challenge Philadelphia is at 2 Days!

With that in mind hopefully, you are getting your final days of workouts, rides, and runs in.  Please remember to stay hydrated, stretch, check your equipment and eat.  We want you to arrive on Sunday fully ready for a great race and a happy aftermath. 

In other news for the Challenge: Eddie George, Philadelphia native, and former Heisman trophy winner will be in attendance.  His organization Mastertheshift is  working with the Lance Armstrong Foundation to improve nutrition and workout techniques. My  mission: track him down and get a photo! If you are successful in getting a photo mail it in and it will be posted! I can’t belive all of our time and effort’s are going to be rewarded in the next few days. I’m looking forward to seeing you all there.

So I have a variety of ideas that I want to post about, but I figured I would use today to bring some other information to the forefront and follow up with some articles that reinforce some of the previous posts…

First: Being an Informed Patient

So in previous posts, I’ve discussed the idea that patient involvement is essential to ensuring top quality in your medical endeavours and to safeguarding those that you care about. Most people take for granted the “would be magic” that takes place within the walls of a hospital. Hospitals have ground breaking technology and a world of extremely intelligent medical practitioners that have prepared for the various illnesses and issues that will arise. Even with all of their expertise, hospitals are still businesses and are still victim to the same issues that plague any business. The coordination of various parts, allocation of staff, allocation of funds, cleanliness, public relations, and of course customer error.  One way that you can safeguard against the last piece is to create your own family medical history.  Fortunately, for you and for me… US News and World Report has already written an article about how to put together a family medical history.
Creating your own Family Medical History. US News and World Report.  Think about it.. this could be fun… it’s like investigating your own family mystery… You can play Sherlock Holmes, or Nancy Drew if you desire… just guys be careful …wigs… they truly make the part.

Creating your own medical history will alleviate some issues when you are admitted to the hospital, plus it keeps a general record for your entire family and generations to come.

Another possibility is to research the hospital that you  may choose to go to.  Consumer Reports recently discussed this very idea in their September 2009 installment.  They stated that, “fifty-nine percent of patients in [their]survey did not enter the hospital through the emergency room, so they  might have had a choice of which hsopital to go to.”  Therefore, one thing you should consider is quality of care that exists within the hospitals around you.  Consumer Reports later goes on to provide a list of links to aid in the research of various hospitals.  I will provide those here for you:

  Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

Commonwealth Fund – contains free performance data on hospitals nationwide from a private foundation.

Consumer Reports Health

The Joint Commission – Free nonprofit group that inspects and accredits most U.S. hospitals.

Leapfrog Group – A nonprofit employer-advocacy group on overall patient safety and safety of selected procedures, based on a voluntary annual survey of acute care hospitals.

US News and World Report

Second: There are some new updates for those of us attempting to avoid cancer:

1.) For those of you who like to use tanning beds …Tanning beds = Confirmed leads to cancer. This is an article from Yahoo, but reported by the Associated Press. Thanks to @LIVESTRONGCEO from bringing this one up…

2.) For those of you who are a fan of Oral Sex.  Unprotected Oral Sex may increase your chances of neck and head cancers. This article comes from, which is owned and operated by WebMD.  Thanks to @stupidcancer for this one…

3.) Latest reports from the National Cancer Institute

4.) Some specifics about a variety of different types of cancer from US News and World Report

5.) Here’s a side effect of Chemotherapy as reported by the New York Times.