As tobacco use plummets, figures reveal dramatic attitude shift from EUs worst offender
Simon Laprise has sculpted a full-sized car replica out of snow to fool the snow removal guys, but it attracted the attention of local police officers instead. The 33-year-old Canadian woodworker from Montreal said it was an innocent joke, but the cops even pulled over to write a ticket for the ‘illegally parked’ vehicle.
“I did the car to have fun expressing my creativity on that beautiful day,” Laprise told Buzzfeed. It was a full-sized replica of a DeLorean DMC-12 (the Back to the Future car), although some say it looks more like a third generation Toyota Supra. In parts of Canada, however, parking in a snow removal zone when plowing is scheduled is prohibited. And that’s probably why the cops pulled over.
Upon further inspection, they did identify the vehicle for what it actually was. Finally, the police left a fake ticket on the fake car: “You made our night!!!”
Image credits: Simon Laprise
Image credits: Simon Laprise
Image credits: Simon Laprise
Image credits: Maxim Tot
Image credits: Maxim Tot
Image credits: Simon Laprise
Image credits: Simon Laprise
Image credits: Simon Laprise
(CNN)Several former NFL players called Thursday for an end to tackle football for kids ages 13 and under.
Jimmy Fallon is asking people to share more embarrassing stories, this time focusing on their fitness fails. Fallon has decided to lead by example and started everything with his own experience: “My dad bought a treadmill to get in shape,” he tweeted. “We came home once and there was a beer in the cup holder.”
From collapsing just after a tour of a health club to spilling pizza sauce all over your workout schedule, these funny moments highlight that the road to having a body of a Greek god requires sacrifice. Scroll down to read what epic fails people have experienced while getting into shape and vote for your favorites.
How much effort would you put into being, would you say? Like, say a 10 is working three jobs and still waking up to go running for a few miles in the morning, and a 1 is keeping a bottle near your bed so you don’t have to get up to pee. While some of us are real go-getters, I hear secondhand that many of the rest of us are just half-assing everything we do to a greater or lesser degree, because effort takes effort, and who the hell needs that? And it’s not just relationships, or building a boat; it’s everything. We half-ass everything.
No One Is Doing Hygiene Right
I was at Walmart recently, because I keep my shit real, and I had to urinate, which is what mature people call whizzing. So while washing my hands, this dude who also had to whiz came up to the next sink, put one hand under the faucet, and literally missed the water, then walked away. I was saddened by his lack of respect for the “best hand-washing practices” sticker that was very visible on the mirror. But it did emphasize for me that probably no one is out there washing their hands properly. The same people who are shaking your hand or making your flapjacks or sneaking a thumb into your mouth when you’re sleeping.
Michigan State University researchers staked out several bathrooms to check out thousands of people’s techniques, and a staggeringly gross 95 percent of people weren’t washing their hands correctly. 33 percent don’t use soap, and 10 percent don’t wash at all. The average wash time was only six seconds. Every time you touch anything someone else has touched, you’re basically touching someone else’s crotch resin.
It’s not just your hands that are being left encrusted with globules of funk; it’s your face hole too. You’re supposed to brush your teeth for a solid two minutes at least twice a day, for an epic 240 seconds per day. The average is somewhere between 45 and 70 seconds. And it’d maybe make sense if people were asking us to spend an hour on oral hygiene — that seems daunting — but two minutes? Think of how much time you spend on social media or shoving corn in your neighbor’s tailpipe. There’s room for two minutes.
We even sleep in filth, because apparently laundry is modern humanity’s equivalent of toiling for 40 years in the desert, and fuck that right in its ear. Experts — not just in sweating in bed, but in science stuff like microbiology — suggest washing your sheets once a week. And your pillowcase should be getting cleaned every other day. Why? Because you’re a gross, leaky goo bag. You produce 26 gallons of sweat a year, much of which is currently steeped in your bed, making your mattress into a sloughed flesh and microfiber teabag. Your pillow very likely contains anywhere from four to 16 different species of fungus. You’re sleeping in a goddamn mushroom jungle.
A solid third of respondents in one survey changed their sheets once every two weeks. 37 percent of 18-24-year-olds only did it once a month. Only one third of people said they did it once a week, meaning the vast majority of beds in the world are just sweaty ass wafers waiting to glurge all up on you.
We’re Not Exactly Productive At Our Jobs
I’m not taking the side of the corporations and bosses of the world here — our lack of motivation happens for a reason. I once had a job whose demands were so laughably unreasonable that at some point I switched to actively trying to become the world’s greatest Minesweeper player. The numbers back this up. If you let someone be their own boss, suddenly they’re a dynamo. We work an average of 54 hours per week if allowed to call the shots, versus 37 hours per week when having to grind through a list of meaningless tasks handed off by some cranky shift manager. But holy shit do we take every opportunity to waste those 37 hours.
One study found that for the average worker, 56 minutes per day goes down the toilet thanks to non-work cellphone time, playing on social media, looking at porn, reading this article, etc. Another 42 minutes gets devoted to personal tasks like running errands. Maybe you get a little shopping done, maybe you rub one out in the comfy handicapped stall. Whatever it is, it ain’t work, but you’re on the clock — a thing about which I know nothing, because I never tape a pencil to my dog’s leg and make him run across the keyboard to write my articleshsyyuoooooonajbjbsnd.
So that’s about a full day for each week of work time that’s spent not doing anything in particular. That’s about $15 billion or so in lost productivity, but who’s counting? That’s a drop in the bucket. What kind of bucket? How about a bucket of booze until you get shitfaced and have to call in sick to work? The cost of drunk and hungover workers’ loss of productivity is calculated at about $90 billion a year. How many goddamn Zimas do people need to drink to cost the economy $90 billion? Like 12, at least.
The Washington Post put together a list of all the studies charting such losses and came up with $1.8 trillion in lost productivity every year. Hey, you know who doesn’t slack off for hundreds of hours a year? Robots.
We Make No Effort To Keep Our Information Secure
The sad truth is that most of us don’t even do the zero-effort stuff to keep our information safe — things like downloading software updates when they become available. Average Joes figure that there’s no point, since the update didn’t seem to make the software any better. It was a security update, Joe! They’re probably updating because hackers found a way to use it to steal your credit card numbers!
Meanwhile, 40 percent of cellphones that have been resold by owners (not stolen, just willingly sold) still have personal data on them that people either didn’t know was there or had no idea how to clear. Info like passwords, tax details, names, addresses, and pics of congressional wieners. The kind of stuff you maybe don’t want eBayTaintWrangler001 to have access to.
And in a world in which leaked celebrity nudes make headlines due to cloud storage hacks, more than a quarter of us don’t even set pass codes on our phones. When we do, 38 percent of us share the code with our partner. Oh, and half of those phones have “intimate” photos or texts stored in them — stuff that will be public domain the moment you leave your unsecured phone behind at a party or cafe. If these were Polaroids of our buttholes, we’d keep them at home, in a locked box, under the bed. How often would you just walk around with those in your bare hand at the mall? Almost never. Almost.
We Treat Our Bodies Like Rental Cars
The U.S. fitness industry is worth about $25 billion a year, part of the $60 billion a year we drop on trying to stay in shape, in addition to the $40 billion we’ll spend on organic food, plus the several hundred billion we spend on medications. How’s that workin’ for ya? Less than 3 percent of Americans actually live a healthy lifestyle. Shit.
The Mayo Clinic’s definition of healthy living includes moderate or vigorous exercise for 150 minutes a week, no smoking, and a diet in the top 40 percent of the Healthy Eating Index, which is a robot that crushed the soul out of the Food Pyramid. Across the board, many people excel at one thing or another — tons of people don’t smoke, for instance. But to hit every point is brutal, and only 3 percent are doing it. It doesn’t help that more than half of everything we eat is processed slurm — that easy-to-eat junk accounts for 90 percent of our added (as in, on top of what we need) sugar intake.
Then, when we do get sick, we screw the pooch on trying to fix it. One study shows that about half the people on some kind of serious medication don’t take it correctly. They skip or forget doses, they take the wrong dose, they stop early when they feel better, or they avoid taking the meds for fear of side effects. All of this is the medication version of sticking your dick in a glory hole you found in a gas station wall — maybe it’ll work out for you, or maybe a possum will eat your genitals.
Even simple things seem to escape a lot of us. Only one third of people who use sunscreen actually apply it correctly. It turns out that all of your skin is outside when you go out, so you need to cover all of your skin in sunscreen. But only 42 percent will cover their face, and only 3.6 percent bother to use it on their legs, as if they think they’re walking around on triumphant pillars of naturally cancer-proof meat.
We’re So Lazy About Staying Informed That It’s Ruining The World
Six in ten people will share a link without actually reading the article that accompanies it. Now let me preface this by asking you to please share my article. I need the validation. But also read it, which I guess you did if you got this far. Hello, friend!
Those who do open an article are just as likely to half-ass the reading process by skimming it. Many, many people probably skipped the intro paragraph of this column to hit the first bolded entry, because what could possibly be in the intro? Well I’ll tell you. There was a pretty snappy joke about peeing which probably would have changed your life, but the moment’s passed and if you read it now, it’s barely worth a titter.
This matters, because even actual news can get wildly misrepresented in a headline. If you read just this headline, it’s the story of a congressman threatening to call the police on an innocent woman for daring to expose the truth about him. If you actually read the article, you realize it’s the story of a victim of revenge porn talking about reporting the crime to the police. They’d had a consensual relationship, and she was spreading around his nudes.
Reading for comprehension takes time and energy, and shady people are well aware that we won’t bother. A Stanford study of teens showed that 82 percent of kids can’t tell the difference between news and a sponsored ad article. They just consume what’s given to them and take it at face value, like whoever the hell keeps ordering Filet-o-Fish because they see it on a menu and assume it’s edible. Which is why fake news is both a problem and so easy to toss as an accusation. If no one can tell the difference, then any Tom, Dick, or Presidick can label anything fake news, and people will then believe that. And so on, until all of civilization spirals out of control.
Psssst. Toothbrushes are way more sanitary now, too. Get one with silicone bristles!
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Hair health is for reals. You may think it doesn’t take a genius to get good, long, healthy hair, but you could be wrong. Like, did you know that 90% of your normal routine is probably leading to breakage and the actual opposite of shampoo commercial hair? It’s sad, but it’s true. Since we only hang out with people who have nice clothes and hair, we figured it was our godly duty to inform you of the everyday shit you’re def doing that’s fucking up your potentially shiny, amazing hair. So say goodbye to things like cotton pillowcases, towels, and hot water. SAD.
I love washing away the stench of failure a day at the office as much as the next betch, but it’s important to know that turning that dial all the way up to HOT can lead to breakage and frizz because you’re washing out all the natural oils in your hair. You can still take a hot shower, just don’t, like, overdo it.
Because towels aren’t, by nature, that soft, using one to wrap around your head turban-style can actually lead to more breakage. Rubbing and trying to dry hair with a towel is even worse. Using something like a jersey material is actually WAY better and more absorbent.
YAS QUEEN. Stop sleeping on that plebeian material and invest in a silk or satin pillowcase (like this one from SLIP that we swear by). Not only is it gentler on your skin and less likely to give you wrinkles (bless), but it also won’t play host to as much friction as cotton, which can lead to hair breakage.
Alright, well, I guess I’ll just go fuck myself. APPARENTLY using too much dry shampoo can block your scalp’s pores and make your hair super dull. It can even lead to literal pimples on your head. I’ve never felt so betrayed.
I KNOW. According to Doris Day, an important historical figure NYC dermatologist, tight hairstyles put strain on hair follicles, damaging them and creating scars that can, in turn, destroy the follicle forever. So, like, go ahead and wear the topknot, but not every day and not hella tight.
Sooooo the juice cleanse you’re on may have you feeling super in touch with your inner zen, but it isn’t doing jack shit for your hair. Turns out you need protein and calcium to provide keratin, which helps protect hair from the inside out. The more you know.
We all have one—don’t deny it. Dirty brushes can actually irritate your scalp and result in clogged pores, equaling not so shiny tresses.
Ughhhhh. So apparently, hair needs nutrients just like the rest of your body, and not eating can fuck that shit up. Like, not chugging some OJ and stuffing a granola bar in your face at 7am can actually lead to shedding and slower growth of your hair. So, like, eat.
Although moms everywhere will attest that going to bed with a wet head will def result in pneumonia/AIDS/death, it actually is super bad for your hair—not so much your health. Putting wet hair in a ponytail and going to bed can lead to breakage since the hair is in a not-so-strong state.
If you’re trying to grow out your hair, a trip to the salon seems out of the question. But not going could actually be worse for your long tress quest. As your hair grows, you’re obv going to have split ends. If you don’t cut ’em off, and keep growing everything out, those splits are going to travel upward. So, like, go to the hairdresser—ask for a “dusting” or to JUST remove split ends. It’ll be okay.
The Trump administration on Friday told Kentucky it can go ahead with its controversial Medicaid overhaul an initiative that would reduce benefits, require some beneficiaries to work, and generally make it more difficult for people to stay on the program.
Administration officials and their Kentucky counterparts have portrayed the plan as a way to improve the health of low-income residents and encourage self-sufficiency among poor but able-bodied adults. “The result will be a transformational improvement in the overall health of our people and will provide a model for other states to follow,” Matt Bevin, the state’s Republican governor, said at a press conference Friday.
But there’s scant evidence that Kentucky’s changes will have the effects that Bevin and his allies are promising. In fact, of the roughly 95,000 people expected to lose coverage, some will almost surely be people who are working or have reasons why they can’t work but who failed to satisfy the new system’s paperwork requirements.
Almost by definition, the people likely to lose coverage already have some combination of financial and medical problems, and without coverage, both are likely to get worse. It’s not clear how much this worries Bevin and his allies in Washington or whether it worries them at all.
In the new scheme, most working-age adults in Kentucky would have to demonstrate that they have spent at least 80 hours a month working or engaged in employment-related activities, like searching for a job or performing community service. Many would also have to pay premiums, of up to $15 a month.
Anyone who does not pay their premiums or submit paperwork to show their eligibility would lose their coverage and would not be able to reapply for six months, although people who don’t pay premiums could restore coverage by completing a financial literacy course (the details of which aren’t yet clear).
The Kentucky initiative also eliminates a transportation benefit, designed to get poor people to the doctor or hospital when they don’t have the means to do so. And it ends “presumptive” or “retroactive” eligibility, under which Medicaid covers bills from the past three months for people who sign up for Medicaid only after they’ve had a medical episode that landed them in the hospital.
Kentucky’s proposal is likely to prompt legal challenges. If it survives, then the result will almost certainly be a smaller Medicaid program. Both the state and the federal government would likely end up spending less money than they would otherwise. But fewer people would be on Medicaid: The number of beneficiaries would drop by roughly 95,000 within five years, according to official state estimates.
By comparison, Kentucky’s total Medicaid enrollment including kids on the Children’s Health Insurance Program is about 1.25 million right now, according to official statistics.
In theory, the new requirements would not affect children, the elderly, pregnant women, primary caregivers or the “medically frail,” because Kentucky’s proposal explicitly exempts them. But those categories are narrower than they might seem, experts warned Friday as they pored over the final proposal and checked it against previous versions. (Every analyst studying it has warned that their conclusions are still a little tentative.)
“Medically frail,” for example, doesn’t appear to include people with serious chronic diseases that make jobs difficult to find and keep. And the new paperwork requirements will be difficult for some people to satisfy because they can’t get the right documentation, for example, or because overwhelmed state offices won’t be responsive to questions.
As a result, some people who remain eligible for Medicaid will almost surely end up losing coverage anyway. It’s happened that way before, when states introduced work requirements for food stamps and straightforward cash assistance.
“The policy could allow many people to fall through the cracks, including those with chronic health conditions, and those with mental health or substance use disorders such as opioid addiction,” Hannah Katch, a senior analyst at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, told HuffPost. “And for those who are eligible for an exemption, the policy could still require someone who is medically frail, for example, to jump through administrative hoops to demonstrate that they are eligible for an exemption.”
Kentucky isn’t the only state that wants to impose these kinds of restrictions on Medicaid. Nearly a dozen states have similar requests sitting in Washington, awaiting approval from the Trump administration that they’re almost certain to get. More could follow soon.
Friday’s approval of Kentucky’s new plan came one day after the Trump administration announced it would approve work requirements. This represented a considerable policy shift. Previously, the Obama administration had rejected such requests, arguing that work requirements violate Medicaid’s guarantee of health care for poor people. These are the same arguments that advocates for the poor are likely to make if and when they sue to block the changes.
Trump administration officials, like their Kentucky counterparts, know this. In their letter approving the proposal, they previewed their defense by making the same argument they did on Thursday that requiring able-bodied Medicaid recipients to work would improve their health outcomes and help them become familiar with the way private health insurance works. That is why, the administration said, it was within its rights to approve Kentucky’s request as a “demonstration project.”
But there’s very little evidence to suggest Kentucky’s overhaul will improve health outcomes, and quite a lot of evidence to suggest it will actually worsen them. Multiple studies, some of them focusing on Kentucky specifically, have shown that giving people Medicaid makes them healthier and more financially secure, which in turn makes it easier for them to find and hold on to jobs.
There is also little reason to think these changes would make Kentucky’s Medicaid program more efficient. On the contrary, new requirements such as checking to make sure people have jobs will inevitably require more administrative work not just for the people who want Medicaid, but for the state government as well.
Retroactive eligibility a key if underappreciated provision of Medicaid in most states doesn’t simply help low-income people avoid crippling medical debt. It also helps finance the operation of safety net hospitals. Ending it, as Kentucky plans to do, would likely hurt both. When another state, Indiana, experimented with having Medicaid recipients contribute toward the cost of their Medicaid, large numbers did not, and they ended up losing coverage as a result.
Those are just some of the reasons to think the real motivation for these changes has little to do with health outcomes, efficiency or the economy as a whole. A more plausible explanation is that Republican officials including Bevins and Seema Verma, the Trump administration official in charge of Medicaid think too many able-bodied adults are on the program. In fact, Verma has said this explicitly before.
Many Americans quite possibly most would have no problem linking Medicaid and work. But nearly 80 percent of people on Medicaid are already in families where somebody is employed, and nearly 60 percent work themselves, according to data from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. And of those who don’t work, most are in school or caring for a family member, or have a medical condition that they say prevents them from working. Other studies have yielded similar findings.
That all of this should be happening in Kentucky is ironic. Although a relatively conservative state, smack in the heart of what now qualifies as Trump country, Kentucky enthusiastically embraced the Affordable Care Act when it became law. It took advantage of new federal money to expand its Medicaid program, so it would be available to all people with incomes below or just above the poverty line.
Between 2013 and 2016, the share of Kentucky’s residents without insurance fell from 20.4 percent to 7.8 percent. That was the single biggest drop of any state in the country.
But that change took place while Steve Beshear, a Democratic governor enthusiastic about helping poor people get health insurance, was in charge. Bevins, his successor and a loud critic of “Obamacare,” campaigned on a promise to roll back the expansion. Although he backed off that promise perhaps because many of those who supported him would have been among the hundreds of thousands losing coverage he has continued to suggest Medicaid needs radical changes because, he says, it encourages dependency.
Bevin has also made a threat that if he can’t get his way on the work requirement and other changes, he will go ahead and roll back the expansion after all. That would leave a much larger number of Kentucky residents, perhaps approaching half a million, without health insurance.
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