The Life & Times of Rob Ford, Former Controversial Mayor of Toronto (RIP)

Robert Bruce Ford aka Rob Ford was born on May 28, 1969 in Etobicoke, Ontario, and died on March 22, 2016 in Toronto.

He was a Canadian politician, and mayor of Toronto from 2010 to 2014.

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Origins and family life

Son of a millionaire boss of a sticker company, Rob Ford spent most of his adult life involved in politics.  His brother, Doug, is the current premiere of Ontario as of 2022

Three times, beginning in 2000, Rob was elected Alderman for the Etobicoke North Electoral District.

During his campaign for mayor, he faced candidates Joe Pantalone and George Smitherman.

The 383,501 votes in his favor allowed him to win a victory with 47.11% of the popular vote on October 25, 2010 .

His popularity was based in particular on his image of “everyday man, apparently accessible and close” to the people against a political class often “perceived as arrogant, hypocritical and self-satisfied” journalist Murtaza Hussain explained at the time.

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His positions in terms of urban transport and labor relations as well as with the media, in particular, have made him a criticized character.

Presenting himself as the “defender of the taxpayers”, he lead a policy of drastic reduction of public expenditure, in opposition to the controversial management of his predecessor at the town hall, the left-wing mayor David Miller.

He notably contributed to Stephen Harper ‘s victory in the 2011 federal election.

A decision by the Ontario Superior Court removed him from his position on November 26, 2012, after convicting him in a conflict of interest case, but this decision was reversed by the Court of Appeal on January 25, 2013.

On January 2, 2014, he officially submitted his candidacy for the next municipal election in Toronto, which were to be held on October 27, 2014, but, the following September 12, he withdrew from the race.

This was following the discovery of liposarcoma, a rare form of cancer. John Tory was elected to replace him.

He dies on March 22, 2016, following his cancer battle, in Toronto.  We will speak more on his death later in this article.

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Get yourself a Rob Ford sweatshirt right over here on Redbubble

Controversies

In the spring of 2013, his erratic behavior sparked rumors of drug abuse.

In May, journalists said they saw a video showing him smoking crack, which sparked intense media curiosity, including from Gawker, and journalistic research into his family’s history of drug trafficking.

In November 2013, Toronto Police Services confirm having recovered a video corresponding to the suspicions and a photo showing him in front of “a crack consumption place” in the company of three men, two of whom are part of a gang, and a third who will be killed in a shooting, is disclosed.

Subsequently, a new video shows him drunk and uttering death threats.

Rob Ford confessed and admitted to using crack while he was intoxicated. However, no charges were brought against him, and he refused to resign.

The scandal and the public indignation are amplified in front of the revelations which accumulated on his consumption of alcohol in the office and in the car, the bonuses granted to the members of his staff who support him, the arrival of a prostitute in his office, the sexual advances to his collaborators and the vulgarity of his language in press briefings.

On November 15, the city council stripped him of the right to manage his staff and undertook measures to strip him of his powers of governance.

Ford then threatens to appeal this decision to the courts.

Following his many scandals, Rob Ford became the laughing stock of many international television news, which gave negative visibility to the city of Toronto.

It is notably parodied in the American show Saturday Night Live, the November 16 , 2013 episode.

However, he retained a certain popularity with part of the conservative electorate, in particular thanks to his economic program (reduction of public expenditure and taxes), the choice of certain measures (privatization of garbage collection) and a form of verbal “authenticity”.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper maintained his support for Rob Ford, at the time.

In the municipal elections of October 27, 2014, his brother Doug was beaten by John Tory who succeeded Rob Ford as mayor of Toronto on December 1 of that year.

Rob Ford’s Drug Use

To understand Rob Ford’s drug use – specifically crack – we must go back to 2014, and the scandal that surrounded him at the time.

The throat knotted by emotion, Rob Ford gave a brief speech, hammering in passing that he would be a candidate for his own succession, in 2014, before leaving the room without answering questions.

Earlier on that fateful Tuesday morning, Mr Ford had admitted to smoking crack, after months of denials.

The mayor says he hid his drug use and therefore did not inform his family, staff and colleagues at city hall, because he was “embarrassed and ashamed”.

The mayor assured that these “mistakes” would “never happen again”.

On that Tuesday morning, Mr Ford told reporters at City Hall that he had tried the drug, ‘probably while (he) was drunk’. He assured not to be addicted to crack, but to have actually used it about a year ago.

“Yes, I smoked crack. But is this always the case? No. Am I addicted? No. Have I tried ‘that drug’? Probably during a time when I was drunk, probably about a year ago. I answered your question. Ask the question correctly, I will answer it,” he told reporters.

“Yes, I made mistakes, and all I can do is apologize and move on.”

Here’s the clip.

Mr Ford had been under enormous media and political pressure since May of 2014, after two outlets reported a video of the mayor appearing to smoke crack cocaine.

The previous week, the Toronto police chief announced that authorities had got hold of a video of the mayor, the footage of which matched media reports of possible crack use by Mr Ford.

“I happened to be drunk. That’s why I want to see the video. I want everyone to be able to see this video. I don’t remember there was a video, and I would like to see the state I was in then, and that’s it. I don’t know what else to say,” added the mayor.

Until that point, Mr. Ford denied using the drug, and implied that the video did not exist.

“I wasn’t lying, you didn’t ask me the right questions,” he told reporters, “I have made mistakes in the past, and I can only apologize to my family, friends, colleagues and the people of this great city.”

Here’s the clip…

According to legal experts, the mayor’s surprising admission exposed him to very little criminal prosecution, and therefore appeared to be just a strategy to arouse public sympathy.

Criminal lawyer James Lockyer believed the whole affair was “part of a cynical attempt” to manipulate public opinion.

“He play(ed) his cards very smart here,”

The mayor may have admitted to smoking crack cocaine, but the biggest problem was that this bombshell revelation lacked specific details, other experts pointed out.

Among other things, the police would have needed to be able to demonstrate that what he smoked was indeed crack cocaine. The authorities should’ve also known the approximate date of the deed, and even have known the location.

“He may (have) claim(ed) that this constitutes evidence, the police need more than that,” said criminal lawyer Mark Polley.

“You wouldn’t want to take a shot at this, with all the resources it would take.”

A spokesperson, at the time, said Toronto police would not comment on the mayor’s revelations.

What was still clear, observers said, was that Mr Ford followed his lawyer’s advice to the letter, even when he said how difficult and embarrassing it was to make his confession.

“His admission doesn’t tell us anything that we don’t already know, but it allow(ed) him to seek the sympathy of voters,” said Me Lockyer.

“What we have seen here (has been) a shrewd and highly cynical political strategy concocted by Mr. Ford and his inner circle, including a criminal lawyer who knows what he (was) doing.”

In addition, shortly before Mayor Ford’s confession, his brother launched a call on that fateful Tuesday morning for the temporary withdrawal of the Toronto police chief.

Councillor (now Premiere) Doug Ford had also asked the Toronto Police Oversight Committee to investigate the recovery of the video that allegedly showed Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine, and the police chief’s handling of the case, Bill Blair.

Doug Ford told the media that Mr Blair should have left the office until an investigation was to be carried out by the police oversight committee, made up of civilians.

He claimed he had never come across such a biased police chief before, even going so far as to say Mr Blair acted as ‘judge and jury’ in the case.

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The Rob Ford Sit-in Protest at Toronto City Hall

There were many efforts to have Rob Ford removed from office while he was mayor.  In fact, a lengthy 24/7 peaceful sit-in protest was in effect for a substantial duration of time.

The following is from the “Rob Ford Must Go!” sit-in group’s website, which details the nature of the sit ins that took place at the time.

Mission Statement of Rob Ford Sit-In Protest Group:

“The peaceful Rob Ford Must Go! permanent rotating citizens’ sit-in takes place directly in front of Rob Ford’s office at Toronto City Hall.

The sit-in is active every weekday from 8:30 am until 9 pm. The sit-in is also active on weekends and most holidays from 10 am to 6 pm.

Basically if City Hall is open, the sit-in is there.

The sit-in will remain until Rob Ford is no longer Mayor of Toronto.”

“Given the extraordinary volatility, unpredictability, and pure surreality of Ford’s term so far, that could mean the sit-in extends until the election this October… or ends tomorrow. There’s genuinely no way to know. Every day brings a new set of circumstances and experiences.

Everyone is welcome to join the sit-in! It belongs to all citizens of Toronto.

We welcome people from all walks of life, all backgrounds, all political affiliations, nationalities, creeds, races, religions, gender identities, sexual orientations, abilities, and cultures. This is Toronto! Diversity is our strength!”

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“Come and sit-in for a few minutes or a few hours – any time you’re able to spare is meaningful and most valued!

“Why should I do this? What are you guys doing there? Looks like you’re just sitting around talking!”

It’s impossible to accurately convey what it’s like to participate in the sit-in if you haven’t been there.

Every day an enormous amount of new experiences and interactions take place. The situation is constantly shifting, evolving, fluid.

Over the initial days that we’ve been there, participants have broadly speaking found that the sit-in serves several vital purposes simultaneously.”

Why Was There A Rob Ford Protest Sit-In?

These were the details laid out by the protest group, verbatim, according to their website at the time.  It shows the animosity towards Rob Ford’s mayoral “occupation” (according to this group):

“The sit-in creates and sustains a place directly outside of Rob Ford’s office that is the complete opposite of Ford; where he lies constantly, the sit-in is scrupulously honest; where Ford is hateful, the sit-in is loving; where Ford is angry and seeks to create division and mistrust, the sit-in is calm and constantly works to create unity and trust and meaningful connection between all its participants.”

“Ford speaks in garbled lie-saturated soundbites; the sit-in provides an opportunity for Toronto citizens and residents to have very long, involved, complex, revelatory discussions about all manner of subjects of vital importance to the city.”

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“Ford targets vulnerable groups (eg: the LGBT community) in order to rally his dwindling base around hating “the other”; the sit-in welcomes everyone, from all walks of life, embracing Toronto’s official motto – “diversity is our strength”.

To wit – symbolically and practically, the sit-in represents the best of Toronto. It’s everything that Ford isn’t. It’s a direct manifestation of the city we want to live in – Toronto the Good.

The sit-in provides a place for people who’ve been shell-shocked and appalled by the unprecedentedly wretched behaviour of Rob Ford and his brother Doug to share their frustration and anger and sadness and horror with fellow citizens who really, really “get it”.

It’s a very warm, open, healing environment, and it really helps participants to work through their various forms of Ford-related suffering and outrage in a positive and constructive manner, leaving us feeling empowered and energized.

Sit-in participants keep coming back over and over – many remark that they just can’t get enough of it.”

Suffice it to say, the sit-in protestors had a lot to say about Rob Ford, and most of it was not exactly ringing endorsements of the man, however, the overall atmosphere of the sit-in was meant to positive and a form of “healing” from what many considered the PTSD of Ford’s tenure as leader of Toronto.

The Death of Rob Ford

Although many people were against Rob Ford throughout his career in politics, he did have those who stood by him, and many were shocked when he finally passed on March 22, 2016.

This seemingly tenacious politician who elicited strong feelings on both sides of the political aisle finally succumbed to his battle with cancer, and it definitely struck a chord with the residents of Toronto, and beyond.

A statement by his family at the time said: “It is with heavy hearts and deep sadness that the Ford family announces the death of their beloved child, Rob Ford, at the age of 46.”

Rob Ford had entered palliative care at the beginning of that week prior to his death, no longer responding to treatments against his cancer.

This disease was diagnosed in September 2014. He then gave up running for mayor of Toronto, but was still re-elected city councillor for the Etobicoke North sector, a district he had already represented from 2000 to 2010.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau underlined the death of Mr. Ford, “at the too young age of 46”. “My thoughts are with his wife Renata and his two young children. Our thoughts are with the entire Ford family at this difficult time,” said Justin Trudeau.

rob ford death

More people came forward with statements: “I am very saddened to learn of the death of Rob Ford after a long battle with cancer,” said Rona Ambrose, interim leader of the Conservative Party. She insisted that “he fought tirelessly for taxpayers and was a real spokesperson for the people he represented.”

So, even though liberals seemed to despise him for his highly dubious antics, the then-leader of the Conservative Party hoped that Canadians will be able to put aside the character’s controversies to remember his accomplishments. “Despite the hardships and controversies he faced, it is my wish that people will remember Rob Ford for his love for his community and his country,” added Rona Ambrose.

“His absence will be felt” …The death of Rob Ford in 2014 aroused a wave of sympathy among both his loyal supporters and his most ardent detractors, in the Canadian metropolis and elsewhere in the country.

Mr Ford’s successor as mayor, John Tory, was saddened that the ‘deeply human man’ will never return to City Hall, where ‘his absence will be felt’.

He hailed the memory of a man “who expressed the substance of his thoughts and who presented himself to the town hall animated by deep convictions”.

Shortly after his passing, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne interrupted question period in the Legislative Assembly to offer her condolences to those close to the former mayor, as MPPs were shocked to learn the news, even though it was known that Ms. Ford was already in hospice care.

Support from the “Ford Nation”

Those who knew Mr. Ford describe a man for whom loyalty to friends and family was as unwavering as the support he received from the “Ford Nation”, a group of voters inspired by his tough and relatable personality.

“He is very loyal to his friends. He has a big heart, described former Liberal MP John Nunziata, a friend of the Ford family. “He does not send his friends to the slaughterhouse.”

This loyalty was mutual. His family remained by his side despite the scandals, and thereafter, during the dark days of his illness. A significant number of voters also continued to support the “Ford Nation”.

His brother, Doug Ford, who took over as mayoral candidate after his cancer was discovered, finished a close second in the October 2014 election – a sign of his brother’s continued popularity, which was proven ultimately by his being elected as premiere of Ontario, a position he still retains.

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Mr Ford, who kept a picture of his dead father on his office computer, liked his role as ‘everyman’.

The regular guy, as he described himself, drove his own car – a luxury SUV – to work every day and made war on the “downtown elite” his hobbyhorse.

He was, according to his more reserved admirers, the typical politician who had a natural talent for making people feel that he really cared about their concerns.

When he died, Rob Ford was survived by his wife, two children, mother and three siblings.

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Hopefully this article has given you an idea what Rob Ford represented, which was many things to many people.  We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, so please chime in if you stop by!

The Crusty Origins of Crust Punk Music

Crust punk (often referred to simply as crust, or stenchcore , or alternatively crustcore ) is a musical genre influenced by anarcho-punk , hardcore punk , d-beat, and extreme metal.

The style, which emerged in 1980s England, most often lists songs with dark, pessimistic lyrics that deal with social and political ills.

The term “crust” is credited by Hellbastard on the Ripper Crust demo, released in 1986.

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Crust, as a musical style, is defined in part by its bass-heavy, distorted sound.

It is most often played at a fast tempo with occasional slow parts.  The song is often guttural and sometimes growled or howled.

Crust punk takes elements of anarcho-punk from Crass and Discharge, and extreme metal from bands like Venom, Hellhammer, Celtic Frost, and Motörhead.

Although the term is primarily associated with Hellbastard,  Amebix is ​​considered the founding father of the style with Discharge and Antisect.

Over the years, Crust Punk has developed into a specific aesthetic in terms of lifestyle and fashion, which can be in the gnarly styles of DIY punks around the world.  Imagine dumpster dive-chiq and you’re getting close.

Features of Crust Punk Music

Crust punk is a musical form derived from hardcore punk and anarcho-punk , mixed with metal riffs.

The tempo is often fast, but more shortened than thrashcore or grindcore.

The musical sound itself is described as minimalist. Drum tracks are usually fast, and often make use of d-beat.

Crust punk vocals are often shouted or howled by one or two singers. The lyrical content of crust punk is dark and politically engaged.

Crust punk songs are often about nuclear war , militarism , animal rights, police forces, personality, stress states, and fascism.

Amebix is ​​interested from time to time in mysticism and gnosticism.

Malcolm “Scruff” Lewty, guitarist and vocalist of the band Hellbastard, explains the difference between the lyrics used in metal and crust:

“The lyrics in metal are dumb, and totally outdated. Venom was about Satan…and motorcycles…and Satan…and women…and Satan! You know what ? I never woke up one morning saying, ‘Damn! Satan! Let’s go to Hell and see what’s going on there!’ All I have to do is turn on the TV to see hundreds of people dead in an earthquake in the Third World… and all those people starving to death as more and more military spending… It was — and it is always — the reality. All that is heavy metal is just an escape from reality, which leads to a world… let’s say, shitty.”

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History & Precursors

The very first influence of the crust punk scene came from the anarcho-punk style of Crass and the d-beat of Discharge.

Swedish d-beat groups like Crude SS, Anti Cimex, Mob, and the Finnish group Rattus also contributed to its development.

Amebix is ​​also inspired by many post-punk bands like Public Image Ltd. , Bauhaus , Joy Division , and especially Killing Joke.

The proto-metal music of Black Sabbath and Motörhead strongly inspire Amebix and Antisect.

1980s

The crust was launched by the groups Amebix and Antisect, in 1985, thanks to the album Arise and the single Out from the Void , respectively.

The term “crust” was first used by Hellbastard on their Ripper Crust demo released in 1986.

Ian Glasper , specialist in punk history explains that “it was in Ripper Crust that the term ‘crust’ was for the very first time used in the punk context, hence the launch of the crustcore genre which some would attribute to groups like Disorder, Chaos UK, and Amebix a few years earlier.”

ripper crust

Malcolm “Scruff” Lewty, lead singer and guitarist of the band, comments that, “A lot of people say we started the crust-punk genre, but whatever. If that’s what they think, I don’t care, but I’m not Malcolm McLaren , who says he made something up when it’s wrong.”

Music scholar Felix von Havoc considers Doom , Excrement of War, Electro Hippies and Extreme Noise Terror to be the first few British crust bands. Other musical subgenres emerge soon after.

Deviated Instinct, from Norwich, launch the ‘stenchcore’, blending ‘imagery and sound — dirty and metal-oriented, respectively — into their music.

Originally an anarcho-punk group, the group is inspired by metal.

Julian “Leggo” Kilsby of the band comments: “We were part of the anarcho scene, first of all, very politically engaged.”

Extreme Noise Terror is credited with developing the grindcore style.

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However, Pete Hurley, the band’s guitarist, says he never had an interest in the style: “‘Grindcore’ is just a stupid term used by kids in the West Midlands, and we had nothing to do with it. ENT was, is, and—assuming—always will be a hardcore punk band…not a grindcore, stenchcore, trampcore, or any other kind of -core you might find.”

American crust punk was launched in New York , also in the mid-1980s , thanks to bands like Nausea.

The band formed in the Lower East Side scene and the New York hardcore scene with Roger Miret of Agnostic Front.

The early songs of Neurosis, a band from San Francisco, shared those of Amebix, and represented West Coast crust punk Disrupt (Boston), Antischism (en) (South Carolina), and Destroy (Minneapolis) are also important bands in the American crust scene.

Gallhammer's Vivian Slaughter

1990s

An important band in the American crust punk scene is called Aus Rotten, from Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania.

Crust punk is also emerging in Minneapolis, led by the Profane Existence label .

During this period, the crust punk ethic extended to subjects such as vegetarianism, feminism , and sometimes the straight edge claimed by certain groups on the scene.

The powerviolence scene associated with the Slap-a-Ham Records label approaches crust punk, as is the case with Man Is the Bastard and Dropdead.

The crust is also spreading in South America where the labels Prank Records and Crimeth Inc. popularize the genre.

The southern crust is mainly represented by His Hero Is Gone.

Crust punk bands (Driller Killer, Totalitär, Skitsystem, Wolfbrigade, and Disfear) emerge in parallel in Sweden, and are mainly associated with the d-beat scene.

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2000s

A few notable 2000s crust bands involve Iskra, Behind Enemy Lines, and Tragedy.

The 2000s also saw the emergence of the scene in the city of A Coruña, Spain , with bands like Black Panda, Ekkaia, and Madame Germen.

Fusion with other genres

Amebix was inspired by Killing Joke, which is one of the founding bands of industrial rock with which crust punk has always been associated.

Nausea also incorporates elements of industrial rock.

Crust also influences the grindcore genre.

The first grindcore genre, played by British bands like Napalm Death and Extreme Noise Terror , emerged from the crust scene.

This style is called “crustgrind”.

The thrashcore and powerviolence genres , developed by hardcore punk bands are related to crust, as is the case with Man Is the Bastard , Dropdead, and Capitalist Casualties.

Crust punk bands like Amebix, draw inspiration from the first wave of black metal involving Venom and Hellhammer, Celtic Frost.

bathory

In a similar way, Bathory was initially inspired by crust punk and metal.

Do you like crust punk?  Let us know in the comments!

 

Andy Griffith – A Brief Biography of the Superstar

Andy Griffith is a true icon of American television. He had a career spanning over fifty years, dividing himself between theatre, song, cinema and television.

The actor is perhaps best known for playing Matlock . He began his career playing the lead role in A Face in the Crowd by Elia Kazan in 1957.

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Click here to buy Andy Griffith stickers and t-shirts

He then toured under the direction of Mervyn LeRoy or, more recently, in Waitress by Adrienne Shelly.

But the actor has especially marked the small screen with series like The Andy Griffith Show where he plays Andy Taylor, a nice and philosophical sheriff from a small town in the United States.

The show was a really huge success, regularly ranked among the most popular sitcoms ever made, and which lasted 8 seasons.

In 1968, when the series stops, Griffith turns especially to do telefilms. Much later he experienced a resurgence in popularity with Matlock.

This production, initiated by NBC in 1986 before being taken over by ABC, was spread over nine seasons, or 194 episodes.

Andy Griffith and Carol Huston star in Matlock.

Andy Griffith as Ben Matlock

Andy Griffith played Benjamin Matlock, a famous defence lawyer who leads the cases for which he is responsible thanks to his daughter, Charlene (first season), the lawyer Michelle Thomas, and the private detective Tyler Hudson.

This legal series, in the tradition of Perry Mason, was widely broadcast, in the second part of the evening and then sometimes during the day, before eventually disappearing from screens…only to return in syndication.

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He – Andy, that is – was the executive producer of the series, as well as the writer and director on some episodes.

Seen as a guest-star in many shows (Hawaii State Police, Dawson, among others), Andy Griffith remains America’s favorite sheriff from here to across the Atlantic, which he played in the 1960s.

He was also the on-screen dad of a certain Ron Howard, future Happy Days’ Richie Cunningham and future successful director.

For the record, Andy Griffith wanted to become an opera singer.

In the 1940s he turned to music, which he later studied and taught.

It was when he met his future wife, actress Barbara Edwards that he began acting on stage.

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One of his sketches, What it was was football , was one of the most popular when it was released in 1953.

In 1981, he was nominated for an Emmy Award thanks to the TV movie Murder in Texas.

The Life & Times of Ron Howard

Ronald Howard, more commonly known as Ron Howard, is an American director, actor, and producer, born in Duncan, Oklahoma on March 1, 1954.

As a young actor, he played Richie Cunningham, the central character of the 1970’s classic series Happy Days.

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In the following decade, he established himself as a director by creating several hit feature films: Cocoon (1985), Willow (1988), and Backdraft (1991).

He gained critical recognition during the years 1990-2000: Apollo 13 (1995) earned him a Golden Globe nomination for best director, then two biopics with Russell Crowe, A Beautiful Mind (2001) and Cinderella Man (2005) allowed him to win the Oscar for best director and best film.

He confirms this with another historic film, Frost/Nixon (2008), hailed with an Oscar nomination for best film and best director.

During the following years, he continued his collaboration with Tom Hanks (beginning with Splash (1984) and, later, Apollo 13, followed by the Robert Langdon adventure series (2006-2016).

His films have grossed over $3 billion at the worldwide box office.  Now let’s look at him in more depth.

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Private Life & Family

Ronald William Howard was born in Duncan, Oklahoma on March 1, 1954.

He is the son of comedians Rance Howard and Jean Speegle Howard, he is also the older brother of actor Clint Howard.

Ron Howard got married on June 7, 1975 to actress Cheryl Aley. They have four children, including actress-director Bryce Dallas Howard.

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Television Revelation (1970s)

As a child star, Ron Howard began on the screen at the age of eighteen months in Frontier Woman then six months later under the direction of his father in the play The Seven Year Itch.

At the age of five, he played a small role in The Journey by Anatole Litvak, and then began appearing on television in dozens of dramas and series.

Ron, or “Ronny” Howard as he was then called, played Opie Taylor in the Andy Griffith Show in 1960.

opie taylor ron howard

Click here to get an Opie Taylor T-shirt

In 1973, he came to mainstream prominence when he played the role of Steve Bolander in George Lucas ‘ film American Graffiti.

He was then invited to an episode of the M*A*S*H series at the end of 1973.

After high school, he played the role of Richie Cunningham in the television series Happy Days in 1974.

He left the series in 1980, contenting himself with making a few sporadic reappearances in 1983 and 1984.

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Move to Directing Comedies (1980s)

While pursuing his career as an actor in the cinema, Ron Howard embarked on directing in 1977, with the dramatic comedy, Grand Theft Auto, then the comedy Night Shift in 1982.

For this one, he directs his ex-colleague Henry Winkler – and above all, we have Splash, which allowed him not only to achieve great commercial success in 1984, proceeding to direct Tom Hanks for the first time while trying his hand at science fiction.

The following year he embarked on a dramatic register with the fantastic melodrama Cocoon.

ron howard cocoon

He nevertheless continued to diversify on the lighter ground: leading Michael Keaton for the satire Gung Ho, then delving into the fantasy epic for Willow (1988), and directing the family comedy-drama Parenthood in 1990.

Some of his films divide the critics, and some are critically acclaimed.

Recognition For Dramatic Films (1990s)

Ron Howard kicked off the 1990s by directing the acclaimed action thriller Backdraft, with a cast of Hollywood film veterans: Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Robert De Niro, and Donald Sutherland.

ron howard backdraft

He continued in 1992 with a badly received romance, Far and Away – carried by the tandem of mega-stars of the decade Tom Cruise / Nicole Kidman – but returned to criticism for the comedy-drama The Paper, in 1994.

In 1995, he experienced the second major success of his career with Tom Hanks – the space adventure Apollo 13 enjoyed wide critical and commercial success and earned the filmmaker a citation from the Directors Guild of America as best director, and received the prize for best film at the Directors Guild of America Awards in 1996.

The same year, he delivered the thriller The Ransom, worn by Mel Gibson and Rene Russo.

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He left the decade with a nod to television with the satire Live on Edtv (1999).

Adaptations and Biographies (2000s)

The 2000s will be marked by numerous commercial projects, from which only two biopics with Russell Crowe will emerge, both critically acclaimed.

Indeed, after having created the popular family comedy that is an adaptation of The Grinch in 2000, he returned to the dramatic fare two years later.

ron howard the grinch

The filmmaker’s critical consecration came in 2002 when he received the Oscar for Best Director at the 74th Academy Awards for A Beautiful Mind, which also won the Oscar for Best Film.

The film is a biography of John Forbes Nash (portrayed by Russell Crowe), a great mathematician with paranoid schizophrenia.

His media coverage was then at its height: He himself provided his voice in several episodes of the series The Simpsons in 1998, 1999, and 2002.

In 2003, he ventured into western terrain with The Missing, a dramatic piece flanked by two stars in Cate Blanchett and Tommy Lee Jones, which convinced neither the critics nor the public.

ron howard the missing

On the television side, he produced, in the same year, the television comedy Arrested Development (TV series), created by Mitchell Hurwitz.

The filmmaker also lends his voice to the program’s narrator. Critics are good, but the weak hearings contribute to the top of the program in 2006, at the end of three seasons.

In 2005, the Ron Howard/ Russell Crowe duo reunited for another biography From Cinderella Man, which also marked the former’s return to writing. The reviews were good.

ron howard da vinci code

Ron Howard then accepts an openly commercial project: the adaptation of Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown’s bestseller, scheduled for the end of 2006.

This project allows him to find success with Tom Hanks for a third time, this time as lead character Robert Langdon.

The adaptation opened at the 59th Cannes Film Festival and was a box office hit ($550 million), the director’s biggest hit. Yet the film will receive disastrous reviews, the worst of his career.

In 2008, he came to defend a more intimate film: the biography Frost/Nixon, the hour of truth, adapted from the play by Peter Morgan.

FROST/NIXON, Frank Langella as Richard Nixon, director Ron Howard, on set, 2008. ©Universal/courtesy Everett Collection

This test allows him to deliver a political thriller recounting the televisual confrontation between the American president Richard Nixon and the presenter David Frost and he reconnects in a spectacular way with criticism.

The decade nevertheless ends with the sequel to Da Vinci Code: an adaptation of the novel Angels and Demons, also by Dan Brown. It is a new box office success despite very poor reviews.

2010s

In 2011, the comedy The Dilemma was a critical and commercial flop, which did not even repay its budget.

In 2013, however, the feature film Rush allowed him to reconnect with success. This feature film on the world of Formula 1 tells the famous rivalry between the Austrian drivers Niki Lauda and British driver James Hunt in the 1970s.

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The film is acclaimed by the press, and the receipts are satisfactory, despite limited distribution.

The following year, he returned to comedy, but this time on television, co-producing the fourth season of Arrested Development, launched in 2013 by the Netflix platform.

In 2015, he directed the adventure blockbuster In the Heart of the Sea, which was nevertheless quickly considered a failure, despite the presence of rising star Chris Hemsworth, whom he had already directed in Rush 3 years earlier.

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In 2016, he continued the saga of Robert Langdon’s adventures with the esoteric thriller Inferno, adapted from the eponymous novel released in 2013. Reviews were as bad as for the previous opus.

In the summer of 2017, he was the honorary president of the 13th edition of the Festival in Nîmes.

In June 2017, two days after Lucasfilm announced the dismissal of Phil Lord and Chris Miller, Ron Howard is called to take over the direction of the film Han Solo released in May 2018.

In July 2018, he is announced to direct the pilot of 68 Whiskey, the television adaptation of an Israeli series called Charlie Golf One.

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2020s

It starts with Hillbilly Ellegy, a family drama based on the memoir of businessman JD Vance. The film airs in late 2020 on Netflix. He received several Oscar and Golden Globe nominations.

He then directed Thirteen Lives, a film about the Tham Luang cave rescue operations in June 2018 and released in 2022.

Clearly, Ron Howard has lived an amazing and full life, and he’s not done yet!  We will update this page as Ron gives us more amazing films to watch!

Until then… watch these!

Filmography – As an actor

1959 : The Fourth Dimension ( TV series ), episode Memory of childhood ( Walking Distance ): The child who plays marbles
1959 : Le Voyage ( The Journey ), by Anatole Litvak : little Billy Rhinelander
1960 – 1968 : The Andy Griffith Show by Sheldon Leonard ( TV series – 114 episodes): Opie Taylor
1961 : Five Minutes to Live ( Five Minutes to Live ), by Bill Karn : Bobby Wilson
1963 : We must marry daddy ( The Courtship of Eddie’s Father ), by Vincente Minnelli : Eddie Corbett
1965 : Village of the Giants , by Bert I. Gordon : Genius
1969 : Land of the Giants / In the land of the giants ( TV series ), by Irwin Allen : Jodar the little genius
1971 – 1972 : Ah! What Family ( The Smith Family ) ( TV series ): Bob Smith
1971 : The Wild Country ( The Wild Country ), by Robert Totten : Virgil Tanner
1973 : American Graffiti , by George Lucas : Steve Bolander
1973 : Happy Mother’s Day, Love George , by Darren McGavin : Johnny
1974 : Blood in the Dust ( The Spikes Gang ), by Richard Fleischer : The Richters
1974 – 1980 : Happy Days ( Happy Days ) ( TV series ): Richie Cunningham
1976 : Full throttle ( Eat My Dust ), by Charles B. Griffith : Hoover Niebold
1977 : The Last of the Giants ( The Shootist ), by Don Siegel : Gillom Rogers
1978 : Unleash the cars ( Grand Theft Auto ), by Ron Howard
1979 : American Graffiti, the sequel ( More American Graffiti ), by Bill L. Norton : Steve Bolander
1981 : Fire on the Mountain , TV movie by Donald Wrye : Lee Mackie
1998 : Welcome to Hollywood by Adam Rifkin and Tony Markes : himself
2001 : Osmosis Jones , by Bobby and Peter Farrelly : Tom Colonic (voice)
2003 – 2006 , then 2013 : Arrested Development , created by Mitchell Hurwitz , and produced by Ron Howard: Narrator (all seasons), then himself (last episode of season 3 and season 4)
2016 : The Odd Couple created by Matthew Perry and Danny Jacobson : Stanley
2016-: This Is Us , created by Dan Fogelman : himself
Clip
2009 : Blame It ( On Alcohol ), performed by Jamie Foxx with the participation of T-Pain , clip directed by Hype Williams : single appearance

ron howard sticker

Get a Ron Howard Sticker here

As director – Feature films

1977 : Unleash the Speedsters ( Grand Theft Auto )
1982 : Undertaker Madness ( Night Shift )
1984 : Splash
1985 : Cocoon
1986 : Gung Ho, Sake in the Engine ( Gung Ho )
1988 : Willow
1989 : Spitting Image of a Model Family ( Parenthood )
1991 : Backdraft
1992 : Far and Away _
1994 : The Journal ( The Paper )
1995 : Apollo 13
1996 : The Ransom ( Ransom )
1999 : Live on Edtv ( EdTV )
2000 : The Grinch ( How the Grinch Stole Christmas )
2001 : An Exceptional Man ( A Beautiful Mind )
2003 : The Disappeared ( The Missing )
2005 : From shadow to light ( Cinderella man )
2006 : Da Vinci Code ( The Da Vinci Code )
2008 : Frost/Nixon
2009 : Angels and Demons
2011 : The Dilemma
2013 : Rush
2015 : In the heart of the ocean ( In the Heart of the Sea )
2016 : Inferno
2018 : Solo: A Star Wars Story
2020 : Hillbilly Elegy
2022 : Thirteen Lives

Short films

1969 : Old Paint
1969 : Deed of Daring-Do
1969 : Cards, Cads, Guns, Gore and Death
2010 : Presidential Reunion , Funny or Die skit

Documentaries

2013 : Made in America
2016 : The Beatles: Eight Days a Week
2019 : Pavarotti
2020 : Rebuilding Paradise
TV series
2017 – 2018 : Genius (episode 1: Chapter One )
2016 – 2018 : March

As a producer

1988 : Back to life ( Clean and Sober ), by Glenn Gordon Caron
1991 : Closet Land , by Radha Bharadwaj
1998 : From the Earth to the Moon ( From the Earth to the Moon ), miniseries of 13 50-minute episodes, with Tom Hanks , produced by HBO
2007 : In the Shadow of the Moon , by David Sington , documentary about the American Apollo lunar program
2008 : Changeling , by Clint Eastwood
2003 : Arrested Development , by Mitchell Hurwitz . He is also the voiceover in the original version.
2011 : Cowboys and Aliens , by Jon Favreau
2011 : J. Edgar , by Clint Eastwood
2011 : Restless , by Gus Van Sant 14
2016 – 2018 : Mars , TV series 15
2017 – 2018 : Genius , television series on the life of Einstein.
2017 : Barry Seal: American Traffic ( American Made ), by Doug Liman
2017 : The Dark Tower , by Nikolaj Arcel
2020 : Hillbilly Elegy

Honors – Awards

Golden Globes 1978 : Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy Television Series for Happy Days
Oscars 2002 : Oscar for Best Picture and Oscar for Best Director for A Beautiful Mind
Critics’ Choice Movie Awards 2015 : Louis XIII Genius Award

Tribute

(12561) Howard , asteroid named after him.

Scientists Who Died From Their Discoveries

The lingering curiosity of human beings that makes our time here on earth interesting, and yet, the further we push in our explorations of the world, the closer to death we may become.

These same great deeds are what make us immortal, even as we may meet a tragic end.

Here I have listed some of the passionate scientists which died or got severely injured through their experiments and research.

Karl Scheele

Karl Scheele

Karl Scheele was a brilliant pharmaceutical chemist, who died from tasting some of his discoveries.

He discovered many chemical elements like oxygen (though Joseph Priestley published his findings first), molybdenum, tungsten, manganese, and chlorine.

Scheele also discovered a process very similar to pasteurization.

Scheele had the habit of taste testing his discoveries and, fortunately, managed to survive his taste test of hydrogen cyanide.

But, in a turn of misfortune, he died of symptoms strongly resembling mercury poisoning.


Pilatre de Rozier, French balloonist

Jean-Francois De Rozier

Jean-Francois was a teacher of physics and chemistry, who become the 1st victim ever of an air crash.

In 1783 he witnessed the world’s first balloon flight which created in him a passion for flight.

After helping in the untethered flight of a sheep, a chicken, and a duck, he eventually took the first manned free flight in a balloon.

He traveled at an altitude of 3,000 feet in a hot air balloon.

He didn’t stop there and planned to cross the English Channel from France to England.

Who knew that it was his last flight?

Unfortunately, it was; after reaching 1,500 feet in a combined hot air and gas balloon, the balloon deflated, causing him to fall to his death.

As we learn, his fiancée also died by committing suicide within a few days of his death.


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Sir David Brewster

Sir David was one of the great scientists, inventors, and writers.

He was interested in optics, especially in polarization which requires an excellent vision.

While he was experimenting, he went almost blind, and, though his vision returned, he faced eye troubles till his death.


Elizabeth_Fleischman_-_American_X-ray_journal_(1900)

Elizabeth Fleischman-Aschheim

Elizabeth Fleischman-Aschheim was an American radiographer who is considered an X-ray pioneer.

Elizabeth Fleischman Ascheim married to a doctor, Dr. Woolf, and Dr. Woolf was very much interested in a discovery made by Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen, X-Rays.

Ascheim also got equally interested in this discovery, as her husband was, as she used to help Dr. Woolf as a bookkeeper and in many prospects.

Then what happened was she bought a newly created x-ray machine in Sam Francisco, and kept it in her husband’s office.

At that time people were not much aware of its side effects.

Unfortunately, they did not realize the consequences of their lack of protection and Elizabeth died of extremely widespread and violent cancer.


Alexander-Bogdanov

Alexander Bogdanov

Alexander Bogdanov was a physician and a great revolutionary scientist in from Russia, who began early experiments with blood transfusion in 1924, in a search for eternal youth.

He used to perform transfusions on himself.

After 11 transfusions, he declared that he had suspended his balding & improved his eyesight.

But the science of transfusion was too young at that time, unfortunately in 1928, he took a transfusion of malaria & tuberculosis infected blood.

After the incident, he died soon after.


bunsen

Robert Bunsen

Robert Bunsen is a great chemist; you may have seen the Bunsen burner that made him popular.

Bunsen nearly died twice due to arsenic poisoning.

And he also lost his eyesight on the right side after an explosion occurred, due to Cacodyl Cyanide.

Then he shifted his organic career to inorganic chemistry and developed spectroscopy.


Sir_Humphry_Davy,_Bt_by_Thomas_Phillips

Sir Humphrey Davy

Sir Humphrey Davy was one of the most famous chemists & inventors of Britain.

He used to create many explosions in his laboratory – he was known for this.

When he took up chemistry, he had a habit of inhaling various gasses.

Fortunately, this bad habit made him discover the anesthetic properties of Nitrous Oxide.

But the same habit made him nearly kill himself many times, as he was dealing with this bad habit.

The frequent poisoning left him an invalid for the remaining two decades of his life.

And next issue is that he had permanently damaged his eyes in a nitrogen trichloride explosion.


michael faraday

Michael Faraday

In the same way as Sir Humphrey Davy, Faraday became an apprentice to him.

He tried to improve Davy’s methods of electrolysis and to make important discoveries in electromagnetic.

He came to an unfortunate end for that, but not before also damaging his eyes in a nitrogen chloride explosion.

He had to suffer the rest of his life suffering from chronic chemical poisoning.


curie

Madam Curie

Many know that in 1898 Madam Curie and her husband Pierre Curie discovered the element “radium”.

Madam Curie spent the maximum of her remaining life performing various research studies in radiation and radiation therapy.

Her constant exposure to radium causes in her a lethal disease.


Justus_Sustermans_-_Portrait_of_Galileo_Galilei,_1636

Galileo Galilei

Everybody knows the greatest scientist Galileo.

But do you know that he lost his eyesight due to his experiments on sunlight?

We know that Galileo’s work on the refinement of the telescope opened the darkness of the universe for this generation.

He was so fascinated with the sun and spent many, many hours staring at the sun, and it caused him to damage his retinas.

It made him almost blind in the last 4 years of his life.


Slotin Argonne

Dr. Louis Slotin

Louise Slotin worked on a US project “Manhattan project” which designed the 1st nuclear bomb.

While he was experimenting once he accidentally dropped a sphere of Beryllium onto a second sphere causing a prompt critical reaction, as the spheres were wrapped around plutonium.

Other scientists witnessed a “blue glow” of air ionization and felt a “heatwave”.

He was rushed out immediately to the hospital, and he died on the 9th day.

And can you imagine that the amount of radiation exposure was equivalent to standing 4800 feet away from an atomic bomb explosion?

Jogging Tips For Beginners and First Timers

Whether you’re jogging just to aid general fitness, or perhaps to lose weight, or you may want to compete in a particular event that you’ve seen advertised, you need the right equipment.

If you visit a proper athletics shop, they will probably help you in this. Surely there’s one in your region.  Time to get on Google!

Proper Cushioning

One of the most important pieces of equipment is your running shoes.

You’ll find that the running shoe itself has got an awful lot of cushioning to it, especially around the heel area.

new balance women's fresh foam

This will help absorb the impact of your weight when you’re hitting the ground.

After years of running, your feet do all sorts of strange things, so running shoes and running advice from a running specialist shop may be important.

You can also have your gait analyzed for a small fee from some of these shops.

You may also want to go to a podiatrist, a foot specialist that is, if you have certain problems when you’re running, and your Achilles, your ankle may swell up, you may have problems with the underside of your foot.

If you do have a pain, then you will need to see a specialist.

Purchase A Running Watch

Another piece of important equipment is a running watch. You can buy these cheaply from jewellers or running shops, and all you really need, as well as the time on it, is a good stopwatch.

running watch

This will let you know how long you’re out for. It may also beep at intervals to let you know how long you’re running for. It may beep every ten minutes or so.

Train, Don’t Strain

If you’re a beginner, you may want to follow the saying, ‘Train, don’t strain.’

You may have to start off with brisk walking before you start jogging, or it may be a combination of walking and jogging.

Jog, and then walk.

In general terms, a warm-up would dilate the blood vessels, make the muscles warm, and deliver blood to the muscles that are just about to be worked.

Again, in general terms, it’s probably important to exercise about three times a week.

So start your jogging three times a week and perhaps build up.

This will build up depending on what you want to achieve, depending on your particular fitness, your size and build and what the body is going to be able to cope with.

Join A Running Club

Your training program will be tailored to you and what you want to achieve. It may change depending on what your goals are and how you’re getting on.

You may want to join a jogging club or a running club.

This is probably a good idea because you will meet people like yourself and you will gain a training partner.

And there also is a social aspect in some of these clubs.

If you do join a club, remember they may partake in things like speed work.

fast runner

This is probably not a great idea to start with because you have no base and this may cause your muscles to ache more than they should, again, depending on the particular training program that you’re working on.

Start off and set your goals fairly low because if you do want to compete and you do want to finish a particular event, remember you’re just starting out and it’s going to be a learning process all the time.

On the whole, runners and joggers are friendly people and they will be able to help you and give you advice.

Good luck, and happy jogging.

Mt. Pinatubo Eruption – A forecasting success with VDAP

It is widely speculated that the largest eruptions in the near future would occur in the least monitored volcanoes.

This is primarily because our scientists and their monitoring devices are focused towards the frequently erupting volcanoes that provide more continuous monitoring data and pose the most imminent threat to life and property.

However, it is well known that larger eruptions are typically less frequent and often do not have much historical records.

As a result, we have neither identified nor monitored most of those volcanoes that could possibly show large eruptions in the foreseeable future.

One such volcano is Mt. Pinatubo in Philippines that had not erupted in centuries but its 1991 eruption went on to become the largest eruption in the last 100 years and the second largest in the 20th century.

Due to its dormant state over the last few centuries, Mt. Pinatubo was not under the watch of volcanologists around the world.

The volcano was completely unmonitored and close to 1 million people resided in its vicinity, unaware of the threat it posed.

In fact, the island’s native Aeta tribe lived in the very slopes of Mt. Pinatubo.

Things looked as good as ever until a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit some 100 kilometres northeast of Mt. Pinatubo on July 16, 1990.

Following the earthquake, the local residents living close to the volcano felt tremors and observed the release of steam from the ground.

In August, a group of catholic nuns who resided high on the slopes of Pinatubo reported the matter to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS).

When the PHIVOLCS scientists surveyed the region, they observed new gas vents and they installed the first seismometer in the area.

The seismometer showed signs of strong seismic activity over the next few days hinting at the disaster that was brewing up in the shallow depths of Pinatubo (to learn more about the activities that precede an eruption, click on “Volcanic Unrest”).

PHIVOLCS contacted the US Geological Survey for help and soon after, a VDAP team was deployed in Mt. Pinatubo.

The Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (VDAP) was created in 1986 to efficiently respond to volcanic disasters whenever they occur around the world.

Fig: Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology unload volcano monitoring gear from a U.S. Air Force helicopter on the east side of Mount Pinatubo.

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology unload volcano monitoring gear

Credit: U.S. Geological Survey. The VDAP team, along with the scientists at PHIVOLCS, set up additional instruments to monitor the activities of Mt. Pinatubo.

Over the next few months, the monitoring data and a detailed study of previous eruption deposits made it clear that the volcanic mountain that had been in a slumber for centuries was preparing for the next giant eruption.

A survey of the previous eruption deposits and the extent of pyroclastic flows helped the team prepare a hazard map on the basis of which, evacuation was immediately carried out in a region of up to 40 km radius.

As expected, just a few days later, on the 12th of June, a massive explosion took place that sent ash and volcanic material spewing out of the ground.

Finally, the massive explosion occurred and Mt. Pinatubo exploded its way into our memories and history books for ages to come.

Pinatubo released so much material that it collapsed upon itself and formed a caldera.

In the area that saw maximum damage, a population of over 25,000 resided prior to the eruption.

If these people had stayed put on the day of the eruption, they would have been wiped out in all likelihood.

Many more in the affected region, beyond the ‘death zone’, would have faced serious difficulties or even death if the timely evacuation had not been carried out.

The actual death toll of the 1991 Mt. Pinatubo stands at 300-400, a number which would have been dramatically more if the nuns, the Aeta tribals, the PHIVOLCS and the USGS had not acted on time.

The successful forecasting of this eruption talks volumes about the need for international co-operation in the science community and the need for more widespread monitoring if such disasters are to be averted.

Overall, this eruption continues to remain a model for coordinated international rapid response and the integration of geologic and geophysical data to forecast eruption timing and magnitude.

What You Need To Know About Back Acne (Or Bacne)

Acne is a skin condition that affects many individuals both young and old (depending on the type) and can be from a mild case, where you may see a few blackheads or pimples, to the more severe types, that can be emotionally devastating and actually cause permanent disfiguring scars.

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Acne, although many times is most prevalent on the face, (again depending on the type), can be found on other parts of the body, and this article centers on the problems arising with getting an acne condition on your back, and what you can do about it!

There is a lot of information regarding back acne and what you can do to treat and prevent it.

Back acne can be more than just troubling, as it many times it is common to see a form of cystic acne attacking an individual’s back that appear as hard comedones and dark colored boils.

These can be painful and unfortunately without the aid of someone else it can be difficult to apply one of the topical methods of treatments that are available, but there are other ways to beat this condition.

back acne 5

What Causes Back Acne?

The same with most forms of acne, this skin condition, even on the back, is caused by a bacterial infection that arises when there is a blockage in the pores of the skin.

Although higher in men, androgen hormones actually aggravate, and can increase the size of the sebaceous glands, resulting in an excessive oil production, that when combined with dead skin cells can cause these blockages, which can result in an acne breakout.

The particular bacteria that generally attacks the back is known as Propionibacterium and causes redness, inflammation and creates enzymes that dissolve the oil gland production into irritating substances that can fill a pustule, boil, whitehead or blackhead.

back acne treatment

Back Acne Treatment

It’s really only because of the difficulty in applying topical treatments on the back (because of the location) that many times the approach is more about prevention than the actual curing of the problem.

If you have some assistance, it certainly makes getting rid of back acne a much easier task, and you will find that most of the remedies and treatments that work well for acne on other places of the body will also work well on the back (again depending on the severity and type).

Obviously as with all types of acne vulgaris, an excellent cleaning regime will go a long way in preventing acne from occurring in the first place, and especially in the back it is very important to open up the clogged pores in order to facilitate the healing process.

back acne cure

You can do this by using an exfoliating scrub (but never scrub too vigorously, as this can actually aggravate most acne conditions) that can normally be picked up at any drug store.

Many of the products used for facial cleaning have an exfoliate base and will normally work well for the back as well.

This is where some help will definitely come in handy because as stated to effectively treat your back acne problem, the products must be applied directly to the lesions, and this can be difficult to do yourself.

Once your pores are open it is imperative that you keep them clean until they heal up, as this is when you can be the most susceptible to forms of infection.

Adipose Tissue In The Body – What Is Its Function?

“Adipose tissue” is a phrase that is well known by individuals who are in the process of dieting; however, usually under a different term….

What is that special term?  Well, when an individual is overweight or even obese, they are said to have a high amount of adipose tissue or …body fat.  It can be found under the skin (subcutaneous fat), packed around internal organs (visceral fat)

In men, it is often stored in surplus around the midsection, like this:

Obesity6

Now, body fat generally gets a bad reputation, as we hear about people who have basically no (or very little) body fat, and they are considered the most, let us say, “aesthetic” among us.

It is accurate that it is healthier, overall, to store less body fat, but for some of us, it is more difficult to do this, for a variety of reasons.

That said, don’t misunderstand what body fat, aka adipose tissue, is, and does.

Body fat is a necessary part of our body’s make-up, but we start to run into problems when we store too much of it.

According to Pubmed, “As a consequence of their increased total adipose tissue mass, morbidly obese patients have many more fat cells than individuals of normal weight and the cells are enlarged compared to normal. Contrary to earlier beliefs, fat cell numbers can increase throughout adult life.”

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So, bigger people can have more body fat, both in terms of the number of cells, and the size of the cells as well.

But what is body fat’s job, or purpose, anyway?

Body fat that is a loose connective tissue in which main function is to store energy, in the form of fat.

You see, if we are storing fat, it just means we technically have more “stored energy”, that takes the form of fat, and which people in society tend to stereotype as being less appealing to look at, which has lead to the stereotypes of beauty from past decades.

Remember Baywatch?  These people generally did not have an excess of adipose tissue.

cast of baywatch

Adipose tissue, or body fat, is located beneath the skin around your internal organs, in your bone marrow, inter-muscular and within the breast tissue.

Body fat is perfectly normally, and we do need it, but there comes a point where we have it in excess for our frame, and it becomes problematic for our health.

adipose_connective_tissues_1

Adipose tissue is increasingly present in Western society, due to consuming too much non-lean foods, which turns into unhealthy types of fat, which can be hard to shed, because of where they get stored in our body.

adipocytes

Adipocytes

Adipose tissue is comprised of adipocytes. The purpose of the adipocytes in adipose tissue is to store this energy in the form of fat, which, again – some of these fats are “good” fats, and some of which can be “bad” fats.

For example, a certain amount of fat, or adipose tissue, is an advantage because it helps to both insulate and cushion the body.

This tissue, which itself contains many blood vessels, is also present around the internal organs and works to protect the organs from damage.

Adipose tissue also performs the role of storing energy in the form of lipids, which are used to dissolve fatty acids, waxes, sterols etc.

Too much of the wrong type of adipose tissue, however, and it will cause you problems, as we stated earlier.

White_adipose_distribution_in_the_body

Adipose Tissue – Growing and Multiplying as we age

According to the NIH, “During infancy and adolescence, adipose tissue is growing by a combination of increase in fat cell size (to a lesser extent) and (above all) the number of these cells. In adults, fat cell number is constant over time in spite of a large turnover (about 10% of the fat cells per year) when body weight is stable.”

As we age, a number of factors play a role in determining the amount of adipose tissue cells in the body, including the amount of fat contained in the cells including hormones, diet, genetics, physical activity and innervation.

In order to reduce the amount of adipose tissue that is present in your body, you will need to undertake a diet and exercise regimen, but it is a delicate balance of exercise and consumption that allows you to lose weight over long periods of time.  No crash dieting!

Weight loss, and diets, in particular, are more complicated than many people think…but that’s another story.

Did you know that the colour of your fat matters as far as if it is healthy or not goes?  That’s what we’ve been hinting at all along – the “bad” vs the “good” fats.  Well, that can be determined by the colour of the fat.  We’ll get to that soon enough.

Typical-samples-of-brain-obese-and-lean-fat-tissues-were-cut-using-an-8-mm-diameter

In addition, adipose tissue produces essential hormones such as leptin, estrogen, resistin, and cytokine, which can affect our weight on both a short term and long term basis.

resistin

Being a key connective tissue, adipose tissue holds 20-25% of total body weight in a healthy human body.

Individuals who find that they are quite overweight and simply cannot lose the amount of adipose tissue they need to lose may need to seek alternative means, such as surgery.

It should be noted that this is a serious undertaking and before selecting surgery to dispose of adipose tissue, a thorough consultation should be scheduled with a knowledgeable physician.

adipose tissue

White vs Brown Adipose Tissue

It is important to distinguish the difference between white adipose tissue and brown adipose tissue.

Again, the government says: “While white adipose tissue is specialized for energy storage, brown adipose tissue has a high concentration of mitochondria and uniquely expresses uncoupling protein 1, enabling it to be specialized for energy expenditure and thermogenesis.”

Brown adipose tissue, which is used maintain body temperature, is more metabolically active than white adipose tissue.

In individuals who are at their ideal body weight, between 15 and 25% of the body weight is typically adipose tissue.

Here are some helpful videos related to this topic.

Ok, that’s all for now!  Comment below…

 

Are Tarantulas Dangerous?

As a long time tarantula owner and breeder, there can be nothing more annoying than reading a totally hysterical account in one of the daily tabloids regarding Tarantulas or True spiders.

tarantulas-290x191

These are always written with the intention of selling the lousy rag and the sad thing is that millions of otherwise naive readers will digest the information as if it was gospel.

The only losers in this scenario are the poor spiders or Tarantulas and the people, like myself, that enjoy this fascinating and rewarding hobby.

Tarantulas and True Spiders are not the same

Let’s get the ball rolling with a little fact that escapes most people, Tarantulas are not True Spiders.

This is mainly due to the fact that they belong to the Theraphosidae family and have several physical differences to True Spiders.

They tend to grow far larger than a normal spider and they have fangs that are fixed as opposed to moveable ones that True Spiders have.

A female Tarantula can live for more than 25 years and despite the unfair reputation, their venom is usually no worse than a bee sting.

Has anyone ever died from a Tarantula bite?

Which brings us nicely onto the next myth, as far as records are concerned, no one has ever died as a direct result of a Tarantula bite.

Though we are sure that the daily tabloids would love this not to be true!

There are around 900 different species of Theraposidae and although these vary in temperament and appearance, they are less likely to bite you and more likely to turn and run.

The New World Tarantulas, mainly from America, will probably flick some rather irritating hairs in your general direction and these can cause some nasty rashes.

tarantulas2

Okay, there are some fairly naughty True Spiders…

Going back to the Tarantula’s diminutive cousins, these bad boys have a few in their number that are known to carry venom that is powerful enough to cause severe pain and in some cases even death:

Redback Spider – Latrodectus hasselti

An Australian legend that can give you a bite that you will never forget. The last known casualty was way back in 1950 thanks to an effective antivenin.

Sydney Funnel-Web Spider – Atrax robustus

It’s your worst nightmare, a spider that you can easily find in your home that has actually caused 13 deaths.

Fortunately the antivenin introduced in 1981 has made Sydney dwellers a little happier in their homes!

Brown Widow – Lactrodectus geometricus

Not as well-known as its darker sister, the Brown Widow Spider has a bite that is twice as deadly!

Thankfully it produces less and that has been why this little minx is relatively unknown.

Brown Recluse – Loxosceles reclusa

One bite from this tiny assassin and your tissue will probably start having a very bad day indeed.

Although deaths usually do not occur, kidney failure, comas and seizures are not unknown. .

Brazilian Wandering Spider – Phoneutria

This little terror is the most venomous arachnid in the world and also has a fairly aggressive streak to boot!

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Wandering Spider

Can You See a Pattern Emerging Here?

None of these unusual suspects live in the UK or even Europe yet we are constantly bombarded with horror stories courtesy of our daily rags.

Is it too much to expect a mutual appreciation of some of the finest examples of living nature and just ignore the scare mongering tactics that are dreamt up merely to sell a few more copies?

Compared to the deadly bunch we have just covered, Tarantulas are positively cuddly creatures, it is fast becoming the most popular hobby in the UK and the more we learn about our 8 legged friends, Tarantulas or not, the better we can understand the whole planet!