Daily Archive: June 8, 2011

Sports

Inside Conditions…Braggin’ rights

I was at Roland’s Iron Landing in the Strip District Saturday afternoon devouring some broiled scallops and other seafood delicacies when I struck up a conversation with a very lovely family from “Joisey” adorned in all of the latest fire engine red Philadelphia Phillies gear. They were also armed and dangerous because they had in their possession tickets to the Pirates/Phillies game to be held later on that evening at PNC Park. As we got a little deeper into the conversation, they told me that they had built a minor family vacation around this particular game, coming all the way in from the garden state to sightsee and take in a contest that featured their favorite team against their cross state rivals. Plus, if the game were held in Philly the field box seats that they had attained more than likely would not have been available and if they were, the price for four field box seats may have rivaled the entire budget for their Pittsburgh excursion including game tickets.

Sports

Shaq moving on to the next chapter—retirement

by Tim Reynolds WINDERMERE, Fla. (AP)—Shaquille O’Neal changed from his gray T-shirt and sweat pants into a three-piece suit, then walked by some of the souvenirs he accrued during his NBA days for the final time as an active player. FATHER TIME CATCHES UP—In this June 15, 2001 photo, Los Angeles Lakers’ Shaquille O’Neal holds up the MVP trophy, right, and the championship trophy after the Lakers won their second straight NBA championship in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File) Framed jerseys from the likes of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Wayne Gretzky, Mark McGwire, Kirby Puckett, Steve Young and Jerry Rice. An NBA finals MVP trophy. Bottles of wine with labels bearing the “S’’ logo that he borrowed from Superman and essentially made his own. Basketballs with the Miami Heat logos painted on them, one to commemorate his 25,000th point, the other for his 10,000th rebound. A photo of him, Bill Russell and John Wooden.

Sports

The 5 best performances from Shaquille O’Neal

by Christy Lemire LOS ANGELES (AP)—Shaquille O’Neal announced this week that he’s retiring from the NBA after 19 seasons. He shared the news on Twitter, of course, where he has nearly 4 million followers—which just goes to show what an engaging, larger-than-life presence he’s been off the court. That big personality has extended to movies, music and more, and made Shaq a one-name pop culture icon. You can analyze the 15-time All-Star center’s prodigious stats all you want and measure him against the greats of the game, but here’s a look at the big man’s five best performances outside of basketball (although pretending to get along with former Los Angeles Lakers teammate Kobe Bryant deserves an honorable mention):

Lifestyle

Church Circuit

Strawberry fest JUNE 10—Shadyside Presbyterian Church, 5121 Westminster Place, Shadyside, will host its Strawberry Festival from 5:30-8:30 p.m. This will be a traditional evening of fun, games and delicious food to celebrate the impending arrival of summer and support for the non-profit organization, Sojourner House MOMS. For more information, call Peter Bodnar at 412-682-4300 ext. 116 or email pbodnar@shadysidepres.org.

Lifestyle

First Niagara donates $100,000 to help Pittsburgh kids swim safe

First Niagara Bank announced that it is contributing $100,000 to the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh and challenging the community and other corporate citizens to support “Pool Together for Swim Safety,” a program that will provide local school-age children with urgently-needed swimming instruction at YMCA Urban Summer Camps this summer. “Learning to swim is a critical skill for any child. But for minority children, who are 2.6 times more likely to drown, basic swimming skills are especially important,” said Eric Mann, president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh. “Seventy percent of African-American young children and 58 percent of Hispanic children can’t swim, compared to 40 percent of White children, according to a 2010 study commissioned by USA Swimming.”

Health

Five simple screenings to get on path to healthy life

(ARA)—One in two Americans is living with a chronic disease. Chronic diseases are persistent and recurring, and are typically either hereditary or the result of factors such as poor diet, obesity or lack of exercise. Dr. Ian Smith, creator and founder of “The 50 Million Pound Challenge” and “The Makeover Mile” is a health and nutrition expert who is constantly encouraging Americans to be proactive when it comes to their health. “Unfortunately, many Americans postpone or even skip key health screenings due to fear, lack of awareness, or cost concerns,” says Smith. “However, it’s important to know your risk so you can make the appropriate lifestyle modifications to change—or reverse—the course of chronic disease.” DR. IAN SMITH

Health

Food pyramid out, ‘My Plate’ in for healthy eating

WASHINGTON (AP)—There’s a new U.S. symbol for healthful eating: The Agriculture Department unveiled “My Plate” on June 2, abandoning the food pyramid that had guided many Americans but merely confused others. The new guide is divided into four slightly different-sized quadrants, with fruits and vegetables taking up half the space and grains and protein making up the other half. The vegetables and grains portions are the largest of the four. ‘MY PLATE’ INTRODUCED—First lady Michelle Obama greets Surgeon General Regina Benjamin at the Agriculture Department in Washington, June 2, during an event to introduce the department’s “My Plate”—a simple circle divided into quadrants that contain fruits, vegetables, protein and grains—which will replace USDA’s food pyramid, which has been around in various forms since 1992. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) Gone are the old pyramid’s references to sugars, fats or oils. What was once a category called “meat and beans” is now simply “proteins,” making way for seafood and vegetarian options like tofu. Next to the plate is a blue circle for dairy, which could be a glass of milk or a food such as cheese or yogurt.