July 1, 2013
Exposure to tobacco smoke while in the womb can lead to diminished hearing by adolescence, doctors have found in the first study ever to link tobacco use and hearing impairment. The new research by Michael Weitzman and Anil Lalwani of the NYU-Langone School of Medicine suggests compounds in tobacco smoke cross the placenta and harm the auditory system. In the past, doctors have linked low birth weight, asthma, sudden infant death syndrome, and recurrent ear infections to both maternal smoking and exposure of the mother to secondhand smoke while pregnant.
July 1, 2013
D EAR ABBY: When we married, we both drank and smoked. My husband quit smoking five years ago, and I have continued to smoke off and on. If he catches me with a cigarette it becomes an argument, and it's either I quit or we're done! I love my husband, but I don't see the big deal if I smoke a cigarette. He sometimes makes me feel like a teenager hiding it from my parents! Any advice? - Closet Smoker in Wisconsin DEAR SMOKER: Surely you know that smoking isn't good for you, and it upsets your husband because he loves you. This is less about a contest of wills than the fact that you are addicted to nicotine and can't stop using.
June 16, 2013
Christopher Fifis, Nick Fifis, and John Fifis are the owners of Ponzio's Diner & Bakery Bar in Cherry Hill Growing up as sons of a first-generation Greek immigrant, we learned early about the value of hard work and family. As the owner of Ponzio's Diner in Cherry Hill, our dad spent almost every day for more than two decades greeting guests and entertaining them with his dry wit and sense of humor. We had dinner at the diner almost every night because our dad was always working, and when we were old enough, he put us to work there, too. On the rare occasion that our dad did take time off for a family vacation, we all piled into the car to head to Wildwood for a week, with Greek music turned up as loud as we could stand.
June 13, 2013 |
SEAN BENSCHOP apparently liked to take it easy before demolishing buildings. The gaunt, wild-haired Benschop sat on a tree stump smoking a marijuana blunt before he hopped into his backhoe to haul bricks and tear down a crumbling North Philadelphia rowhouse a few weeks ago, a neighbor said. Now Benschop is locked up, charged with six counts of involuntary manslaughter and related offenses for operating an excavator at the Market Street building collapse last week that killed six and injured 13. Sources said he had marijuana and painkillers in his system that day. Benschop also was in the process of demolishing two rowhouses - one on Page Street in North Philadelphia and one on 63rd Street in West Philly - when he was jailed.
May 30, 2013 |
ROSEDALE, Md. - A CSX freight train crashed into a trash truck and derailed Tuesday in a Baltimore suburb and the explosion that followed rattled homes at least a half-mile away, sending a plume of smoke into the air that could be seen for miles, officials and witnesses said. In the third serious derailment this month, the dozen or so cars, at least one carrying hazardous materials, went off the tracks about 2 p.m. in Rosedale, a Baltimore eastern suburb. A hazardous materials team responded, but Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz said at a news conference that no toxic inhalants were being released.
May 25, 2013 |
Smokers are welcome in fewer outdoor places as bans against lighting up in parks and recreational areas are adopted with increasing frequency in the region. Even some beaches are off-limits. Burlington County joined 183 other counties and municipalities in New Jersey on Wednesday when it snuffed out smoking in its parks, according to the Global Advisors Smokefree Policy (GASP), a nonprofit that promotes the trend. In Philadelphia, smoking is prohibited at city playgrounds, pools, and rec centers; New York City extends its ban to sidewalks in some business districts, according to GASP.
May 24, 2013
D EAR ABBY: I was surprised to see you equate a concerned grandmother's creative solution to smoking with bribery in a previous column. The word "bribe" has a negative connotation. What the grandmother did was offer an incentive, not a bribe, that will benefit her grandchildren in the long run. I think the woman should be congratulated. Now for a disclaimer: When my daughter was 14, I came up with the same idea in the form of a wager. I bet her that if she could resist peer pressure and not become a smoker by the time she was 21, I would buy her the dress of her dreams.
May 20, 2013 |
Question: I have a concern that I tried addressing with a specific Days Inn and with Wyndham, which owns Days Inn, but have not received a response. I recently stayed at the Days Inn in Fernandina Beach, Fla. I made a reservation for a nonsmoking room and was given a smoking room when I checked in. I spoke with a manager, who told me he was sorry he couldn't offer me a nonsmoking room. The only rooms the hotel had left to sell were smoking rooms. So, my question to Wyndham is: Is it their policy to accept a reservation for a nonsmoking room when no such room exists?
May 17, 2013 |
To raise money for the desperate Philadelphia School District, Mayor Nutter proposed Wednesday to tax cigarettes at $2 a pack and raise the city's liquor-by-the-drink tax from 10 percent to 15 percent. Alongside School Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. and others at City Hall, Nutter also pledged to improve city tax collections. The mayor estimated that his plan would raise an additional $95 million for schools in 2013-14 and $135 million in the second year. Nutter stressed that the money would benefit not only students enrolled in district schools but those who attend the 84 taxpayer-funded charter schools in the city.
May 3, 2013 |
Falling star Lindsay Lohan is telling friends her rehab assignment in New York may be a no-go if the Seafield Center, where she's bound, won't let her smoke, reports celeb website TMZ. Sources say LiLo doesn't think she can go 90 days cig-free, so her lawyers are asking the Long Island rehab to lighten up. That hasn't worked so far, Sources tell TMZ, so the lawyers are now trying to get her back into Morningside Recovery in Newport Beach, Calif.,...