Former NBA Star Working to Secure 10 Million Masks for NYC

Stephon Marbury Masks
(Instagram/starburymarbury)

New York City is the new epicenter for COVID-19. The hospitals have been overrun by cases, sirens are the only constant sounds on the streets, and healthcare workers are in desperate need of PPE. And on that last need, one former NYC basketball star is trying to come to the rescue.

Stephon Marbury, a talented baller from Brooklyn who starred for the New York Knicks, is working to negotiate the delivery of 10 million of the much-needed N95 masks, and at a steep discount. Marbury played in the NBA for more than a decade, but it wasn’t until he moved to China that he became a basketball hero.

In China, where he still lives, Marbury became an icon. And as the country of origin for COVID-19, they know a thing or two about fighting the illness. Now that cases are lower in China, they don’t have a significant need for protective equipment. Marbury wants to help move the surplus to his hometown and found a mask supplier willing to sell them at cost (which is about three times cheaper than what NYC has been paying for masks).

“At the end of the day, I am from Brooklyn,” Marbury told the New York Post. “This is something that is close and dear to my heart as far as being able to help New York.”

The basketball legend still has family scattered throughout the city, and recently lost a cousin to the deadly virus. He said he’s working to have the masks delivered in weekly shipments of 2 million.

Marbury has always been a charitable figure, donating frequently to various causes when he was a Knick. This latest act is another testament to the legacy of one of the most important players New York City has ever produced. He wasn’t exactly known for assists, but this one would be a big one that’s never been needed more.

John Krasinski and Steve Carell Talk Good News and The Office

Some Good News
(YouTube/SomeGoodNews)

John Krasinski was supposed to be celebrating the premiere of the sequel to his 2018 blockbuster The Quiet Place. Alas, COVID-19 had other plans, and the movie, along with just about every other major studio release slated for this year, was delayed. So, like the rest of us, the former Office star needs to find other ways to fill his time.

Thankfully for us, he decided to do that publicly. And with his famous friends.

The actor/writer/director has started a series on YouTube called “Some Good News,” via which he attempts to spread a little positivity during these trying times. The channel, which only launched yesterday and already has over 650,000 subscribers, features Krasinski himself sharing heartwarming and positive stories of humanity during the pandemic.

His first full episode featured a “visit” from his Entertainment Correspondent and former co-star Steve Carell, aka Michael Scott. Carell appeared on the show to chat with his friend about The Office’s 15th anniversary, and to share some of their favorite moments from the classic sitcom and talk about the enduring bond between the cast members.

The pair had a good time laughing and reminiscing together, and Krasinski also featured an interview with Courtney “Coco” Johnson, a teenager who recently had her last chemotherapy treatment but remains under isolation due to the coronavirus.

Check it out for Some Good News – then around the 5:30 mark John talks Office!

Crocs Is Giving Away up to 20k Pairs to Healthcare Workers, Daily

Crocs Daily 20k Giveaway
(Instagram/Crocs)

If there was an honorary member to the dad shoe class, Crocs could make a case. It checks all the boxes; they’re comfortable and durable. They’re affordable and easy to clean. Oh, and they’re an awesome company.

The shoe is popular in the medical community, for many of the above reasons. And as our nation’s healthcare workers are facing a pandemic, the shoe company is trying to show its love, by giving away up to 20,000 pairs to healthcare workers daily.

The president and CEO of Crocs said in a statement the duration of the giveaway to these ‘heroes’ would depend on inventory. But after offering 10,000 daily the first few days the campaign ran – they upped the number to 20k a day.

He also said: “These workers have our deepest respect, and we are humbled to be able to answer their call and provide whatever we can to help during this unprecedented time.

This is the hour where people are rallying to help those on the front lines in any way they can. Maybe it’s free shoes. Or maybe it’s stopping the manufacture of jerseys, opting to make medical masks and PPE. Or maybe it’s donating supplies from your TV show, or making hand sanitizer instead of (or along with) booze.

Companies across the spectrum are doing their part to support those in the pandemic trenches. If you are a healthcare worker (or know one), you can get your free Crocs by going here at 12:00 p.m. ET every day.

Children’s Book Author Creates Video to Explain Social Distancing

Time to Come In Bear
(YouTube/Kim St. Lawrence - Children's Author)

There are a lot of challenges during the time of the coronavirus. From not being able to visit restaurants and stores, to being isolated from family and friends and having to manage day jobs with homeschooling, our daily lives are largely unrecognizable. But at least we understand why. Our children may not.

There isn’t a ton that young kids need to know about the unprecedented global pandemic that has ground the world to a halt, but there are things they can do, like wash their hands, and practice social distancing.

Of course, explaining why kids need to wash their hands is never easy, and impressing upon them the importance of not getting to close to other people is a strange new concept that many toddlers simply can’t grasp. Thankfully, a children’s book author has come up with a clever and appealing way to explain the idea to children.

Kim St. Lawrence created a video version of a children’s book called “Time to Come In, Bear” and posted it on YouTube for families to access for free. It’s a mere 90 seconds, but it does a nice, and adorable, job of explaining why social distancing is necessary, with the help of a bunny rabbit and a bear.

“The world caught a cold,” the story begins. “You won’t get the germs if you just stay at home.” It offers a few indoor activities while gently reminding kids of things they can’t do, like visit Grandma. Simple, straightforward, and short, the video is a handy way to help your youngest kids understand the current situation, without overwhelming them with fears.

Check out the video:

Heroic Healthcare Professionals En Route to Help New York City Hospitals

Healthcare Workers Fly to NYC
(Instagram/southwestair)

As COVID-19 continues to spread across the globe – there are a handful of hotspots where large numbers of cases have been confirmed. One of those hotspots is New York City, now known as the epicenter of the Coronavirus in the United States.

Over the past week, frequent updates from hospitals and healthcare workers in the NYC area have bemoaned the overwhelming number of Coronavirus patients and a subsequent lack of personal protection equipment (PPE). Also at a premium are doctors and nurses, those dedicated professionals who are putting themselves in harm’s way every day, to help care for patients and try to stem the growth of the disease.

To that end, many selfless doctors and nurses are heading to New York to help their colleagues on the front lines of the pandemic, and a whole bunch of them recently flew up from Atlanta on a Southwestern Airlines flight. The airline shared a photo of those brave men and women on Instagram, where it’s getting a lot of attention with over 25,000 likes.

 

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While so many of us continue to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, no one knows what is happening quite like our medical professionals. These brave souls soldier on in the midst of tremendous risk and exposure, constantly putting the needs of others above their own. Their selfless sacrifice is a beacon of light during such a dark time in our world, and no amount of gratitude and praise would ever be enough. Because of their courage, our family, our friends, our coworkers, our neighbors, and more have a fighting chance. More than a dozen healthcare professionals from Atlanta answered the call this past Friday evening to serve in New York. This photo embodies it all: bravery, courage, and sacrifice. If it were easy, everyone would do it, but we know that is not the case. Thankfully, this group and countless others do it each day, and for that we are forever grateful and in their debt. So to all the first responders, medical professionals, healthcare workers, and anyone else on the front lines today and every day to keep us safe, thank you. #SouthwestHeart (📸 Southwest Employee Dayartra E.)

A post shared by Southwest Airlines (@southwestair) on

Southwestern’s caption perfectly describes their heroic actions, which is the behavior that we can all do with hearing more about during these tough times.

“While so many of us continue to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, no one knows what is happening quite like our medical professionals. These brave souls soldier on in the midst of tremendous risk and exposure, constantly putting the needs of others above their own. Their selfless sacrifice is a beacon of light during such a dark time in our world, and no amount of gratitude and praise would ever be enough. Because of their courage, our family, our friends, our coworkers, our neighbors, and more have a fighting chance. More than a dozen healthcare professionals from Atlanta answered the call this past Friday evening to serve in New York. This photo embodies it all: bravery, courage, and sacrifice. If it were easy, everyone would do it, but we know that is not the case. Thankfully, this group and countless others do it each day, and for that we are forever grateful and in their debt. So to all the first responders, medical professionals, healthcare workers, and anyone else on the front lines today and every day to keep us safe, thank you.”

They’re all making the “Southwestern heart” logo with their hands, but they might as well be showing the size of their own hearts as they fly halfway across the country to help.

Sports Apparel Companies Start Manufacturing Hospital Supplies

Sports Apparel PPE
(Twitter/AROD/BauerHockey)

Getting healthcare workers the supplies they need has become a worldwide effort, with companies doing what they can to make sure doctors and nurses have enough personal protective equipment (PPE) to safely treat COVID-19 victims. We saw it with medical TV dramas donating their supplies to local hospitals, and now sports equipment manufacturers are shifting gears to help answer the call.

Major League Baseball and Fanatics, the company that makes its jerseys, are retooling their efforts to instead make some of the most in-demand items in hospitals: masks and gowns. Fanatics immediately stopped making jerseys for MLB and is using the fabric to make those masks and gowns. Their goal is to make one million for hospitals around Pennsylvania (where the factory is located), with hopes to increase production to help the New York/New Jersey area as well.

The employees are appropriately spaced out in the factory (read: more than six feet apart) and volunteered to be part of the movement. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred quickly agreed to the shutdown of MLB jerseys and cleared the way for Fanatics to refocus on much-needed hospital supplies. Baseball greats approve:

Fanatics isn’t the only sports company getting in the mix. Bauer, which is synonymous with ice hockey, has joined in to start manufacturing much-needed face shields for doctors and nurses. Sure, it would be cool if they were inked up like a goalie’s mask, but I understand how that may be time prohibitive. The legendary hockey company released a statement on social media, saying:

Protection that allows athletes to give everything for their team is our heritage. Right now, we’re all on the same team. We’re repurposing our facilities to make face shields so that medical professionals battling COVID-19 can safely continue to help those most vulnerable.

Bauer will put skates and helmets on hold, and will instead be dedicating its efforts to making the equipment doctors and nurses need more than ever.

Dad Makes up for Canceled Disney Trip With DIY Splash Mountain Ride

Dad's DIY Splash Mountain Ride
(reddit/laramargaret)

The coronavirus has taken something from everyone. Even for those who are in good health, it’s disrupted and changed daily lives in ways we are still unpacking. Even the small indignities can have big effects on kids, such as missing graduation, a prom, a birthday party, or even the last three months with a beloved first-grade teacher. And for plenty of families, a missed vacation is part of the equation.

Obviously not equivalent to having a family member or friend struggling with the virus, but it’s still a bummer to see your kid’s heartbroken at the cancellation of a long-awaited trip to Disneyland. That was what one Utah family was experiencing. So their dad decided if they couldn’t go to Disneyland, they would bring Disneyland to the living room. All he needed was the library of virtual Disney rides on YouTube and a little dad-ingenuity.

In a video shared by their mom, the dad is shown with his five-year-old son on his lap, as they watch a POV video from Splash Mountain. He’s got his kid in an empty diaper box that he’s moving around along with the ride and even adds authentic home-made splash effects throughout.

When you can’t go to Disneyland…thanks for the idea Reddit! from r/Disneyland

This is where we’re at after only a few weeks into life under pseudo house arrest. For now, we can turn our living rooms into theme parks. If this lasts into the fall, we can kick off the NFL season in our basements, ruthlessly bowling over toddlers on your way to a badass touchdown.

Everyone is going to cope with changes in their own way, so if some dads are going to kick that creativity up a notch, more power to them. And maybe we learn we don’t really need Disneyland because the real Disney was in our hearts the entire time.

And that’s the lie we’ll all tell ourselves until this mess is over.

Here at The Dad, we hope you, your families, and communities stay safe and healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic. For the latest information, please utilize online resources from local public health departments, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization to remain as informed as possible.

Community Hosts a Social Distancing Parade for Girl Finishing Chemo

Social Distancing Parade for Coco
(Twitter/momuses)

Social distancing has been in our lexicon for only a few weeks, which in 2020 time, is equivalent to about 40 years. And as we get used to the guidelines of our new society, we’re finding ways to make it work. Friends and family are connecting over Zoom. Neighbors exchange pleasantries with the proper six feet of space between them. Kids school themselves on iPads with all screen time rules abolished. And we are also finding new ways to celebrate.

In one of the best feel-good stories you will see today, a young girl was returning home from her last chemo treatment, and her neighbors wanted to do something to celebrate. But with our social distancing rules in place, they had to get creative. So they did, helping set up a social distancing parade to welcome home the young girl.

Hat tip goes to John Krasinski of Office fame since he put the call out for good stories, and to the girl’s mom for delivering the video we needed to see today.

The girl’s friends, family, and neighbors all lined the street in decorated cars, holding balloons and signs, cheering her on as they pass.

It’s the most heartwarming thing you’ll see today, and frankly, we can use all the good news we can get these days.

Welcome home, Coco.

Medical TV Dramas are Donating Much-Needed Supplies to Hospitals

Shows Donate PPE
(Instagram/ontariofiredept)

One of the biggest challenges ahead is keeping health systems from being completely overrun by COVID-19 cases. An essential piece of this puzzle is keeping healthcare workers healthy enough to treat patients. And for that to happen, they need enough supplies to stay safe in the line of duty. Sadly, they don’t have nearly enough.

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is what hospitals desperately need, and they are going to any length necessary to acquire it. Masks, gowns, and gloves are the basics, and healthcare workers are searching high and low to find them. Several medical TV dramas are heeding the call, donating their supplies to healthcare workers and actually doing something real to help people (beyond making sexy doctor dramas).

The Resident on FOX donated their supply of masks and gowns to an Atlanta-based hospital. The staff there was overjoyed to see the shipment come in, to help replenish their supply.

 

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“Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” . To the entire team @theresidentonfox, thank you for this incredibly generous donation of #PPE from your set, including gowns, masks, gloves, and all the things our healthcare workers need to provide safe care for our community during #COVID19. . Yesterday, I had a serious discussion with the residents about how, though supplies are low, a magical shipment of masks is unlikely to arrive. And yet, a magical shipment of masks DID arrive, in the form of this very generous gesture. This kind of community support means so much to our #frontlineproviders who are making many sacrifices to staff our hospitals and care for our community. . Thank you, @theresidentonfox and @foxtv for being helpers. We needed this kind of good news today. . PS: Sorry it’s not a great pic, but the focus was not on the photo at the time. Similarly, the team @theresidentonfox are good citizens doing good deeds and not looking for a shout out. Though I encourage all to support The Resident and the great team behind the show and to pay their good deed forward any way you can. . #Hurstlife #residentlife #emoryIMresidents #lookforthehelpers #gratitude

A post shared by klaw (@karen.ll.law) on


“Yesterday, I had a serious discussion with the residents about how, though supplies are low, a magical shipment of masks is unlikely to arrive,” wrote a doctor at the hospital. “And yet, a magical shipment of masks DID arrive, in the form of this very generous gesture. This kind of community support means so much to our #frontlineproviders who are making many sacrifices to staff our hospitals and care for our community.”

Grey’s Anatomy on ABC is one of the longest-running shows of all time, and they also followed suit, donating medical supplies, gowns, and gloves to a California-based hospital.

“At Grey’s Anatomy, we have a backstock of gowns and gloves which we are donating as well,” said producer Krista Vernoff. “We are all overwhelmed with gratitude for our healthcare workers during this incredibly difficult time, and in addition to these donations, we are doing our part to help them by staying home.”

Fire drama Station 19 donated their hundreds of N95 masks to a real fire station.

The Good Doctor, Chicago Med, and several other medical dramas plan to donate their inventory to local hospitals. Several popular medical dramas on the BBC are also donating their set supplies to hospitals in the U.K.

It’s not much, but every bit counts, and hopefully, they will inspire more to donate what they have.

Here at The Dad, we hope you, your families, and communities stay safe and healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic. For the latest information, please utilize online resources from local public health departments, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization to remain as informed as possible.

Dad Hopes His Laughter Phone Line Can Help Soothe COVID-19 Woes

The Laughter Line
(Google/laughterline.org)

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed in the middle of this unprecedented situation. The Coronavirus pandemic has many of us stuck at home, social distancing, avoiding crowds, and if we’re lucky enough to be healthy, being bored. Keeping your head up is important, and can be hard to do, what with the steady flow of scary news that keeps pumping through our phones and our TV screens.

Thankfully, there is some good news out there, in the form of charity work, generous athletes and celebrities, and regular people who are doing their part. Like one dad in Los Angeles, who created a phone line you can call if you need a boost.

In the absence of a vaccine, or a night out with friends, or even a hug, laughter can be really helpful and necessary. Dave Carlson understands that, and so he created the Laughter Line, a phone number that anyone can call just to hear Dave and his family have a laugh.

Dave actually created his Laughter Line years ago, long before COVID-19 was here, because laughter is always needed, but these days it’s more necessary than ever.

“I think we can all share a little joy right now. My kids’ favorite part of the day is sitting down and listening to all the laughing voicemails people have left from all over the world,” Dave told Red Tricycle.

He’s updated the website to reflect current times: “Could laughter be even more contagious than COVID-19? This is a phone number you can call to hear someone laugh. And then leave your laugh after the beep. When you call, your area code gets marked on the map. ”

He’s received calls from all over the country, and there’s a map showing all the locations that have called so far.

Something tells me that map is going to get busier and busier as this thing goes on. Here’s hoping we don’t need Dave’s Laughter Line much longer, but right now, it’s a fun way to relieve some stress while you’re stuck inside surviving.

Arnold Schwarzenegger Donates $1 Million to First Responders Fund

Arnold Donates $1 Million
(Instagram/schwarzenegger)

In times like this, entertainment can be a nice distraction, which is why movie studios and streaming services are doing whatever they can to make things easier for us, making their content available sooner, and cheaper, than usual.

But when things are tough, we need more than superheroes and action stars, we need real-life heroes to save the day, and unlike comic book characters, real-life heroes need help. Thankfully, one of the biggest movie stars of all-time realizes that, and he’s pitching in.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, the man who killed the Predator, rescued Alyssa Milano and helped saved John Connor, and the world, from Skynet, has long been known for far more than his movie superstardom. The champion bodybuilder and former governor of California is dedicated to using his fame and influence to help others, and during the Coronavirus pandemic, he’s at it once again.

Arnold took to Instagram to share a GoFundMe link to the Frontline Responders Fund, urging his followers to “all do our part to make things better” and leading by example with a one million dollar donation of his own.

In the post, the movie star called the fund “a simple way to protect our real action heroes on the frontlines in our hospitals” and wrote that he is proud to be part of it, explaining that the fund was “created by an organisation called Flexport, which is currently ‘focusing all [their] resources on getting critical supplies to frontline responders combating COVID-19’.”

The GoFundMe page states:

There’s a shortage of masks, gowns, gloves and other critical supplies to protect our medical professionals in hospitals across the world. If a member of hospital staff catches the virus, their health is at serious risk, and they cannot work for at least 14 days. That’s a major problem.

We need to protect frontline responders. More responders on the frontline means more capacity at our hospitals, and more people will get the care they need… One of the most important things we can do is protect our frontline responders. We need to protect them so they can protect us.

The proceeds raised by the fund will be used to provide PPE – personal protective equipment – the first responders and health care practitioners on the front lines of the epidemic. The money will help bring masks, gloves, and other crucial supplies to those who need it most as they fight to stem the tide of COVID-19.

So far, Arnold’s post has over 200,000 likes, and the fund is up to nearly $4 million. Kudos to the Governator for getting the word out, and putting his money where his mouth is.

Ryan Reynolds Donates Aviation Gin Proceeds to Bartenders Amid Coronavirus

Aviation Gin Donates Proceeds
(Instagram/VancityReynolds)

Good news is always welcome, and never more so during tough times. A global pandemic definitely qualifies, and thankfully, despite the fear and panic and uncertainty, we’ve had no shortage of good news over these past few weeks. Movie studios are stepping up to give us new content sooner, celebrities are making questionable music videos and Twitter is mocking them, and athletes are doing their best to protect the arena employees and team staff who don’t have six and seven-figure bank accounts.

Today we get another positive bit of news from a famous actor who really seems like a fun hang and a good guy. His name is Ryan Reynolds, and when he’s not playing Deadpool and cracking jokes on Instagram or donating $1 million to food banks – he’s running a gin company that’s making a name for itself both for its product and its marketing.

Whoever is running things back there, whether it’s Reynolds or somebody else, knows how to do things. Their Peloton rebuttal was clever and subtle, and their recent Leap Day ad was hilarious. And now they’re getting their name out there in the service of a good cause: helping protect bartenders who are losing income during the Coronavirus.

“Until May 1st, for every bottle of Aviation ordered online, we’ll donate 30% of proceeds as a tip to your bartenders – who REALLY miss you btw. Visit http://AviationGin.com/delivered #TipYourBartenders #StayHomeSaveLives,” Reynolds wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.

Bartenders among the many service professionals who have lost income due to the shutdown, and being that those people are responsible for serving Reynold’s gin more often than not, it makes sense that his company would support them. It’s also a savvy business movie, sure to endear Aviation Gin to bartenders everywhere who benefit from the contributions the brand is making.

The Aviation Gin website also states that they’ve already kickstarted things by starting a tab and putting in $15,000 already.

“We’re available at home – where we hope you are right now – but your bartenders miss you. So we’ve started a tab by donating $15K to the United States Bartender’s Guild and will be adding an additional 30% tip for every bottle delivered through May 1st.”

Of course, Reynolds has a personal reason to help bartenders, as he shared in another tweet after news began to spread.

Amen to that.

Nursing Home in Isolation Hosts Giant Game of Hungry Hungry Hippos

Nursing Home Hungry Hungry Hippos
(Bryn Celyn Care Home)

We can all use a pick-me-up from the COVID-19 news cycle these days, and the trusty old internet can usually be counted on for such a respite. So for those who need some good news, may I present to you a senior citizen center creating their own version of Hungry Hungry Hippos?

It’s a classic kids game, involving all the strategy of eating everything as fast as humanly possible. It was the original button masher. And a nursing home in Wales recreated the whole thing, using the elderly as the hippos. All it took were some wheelchairs, some rigged up baskets, a bunch of balls and some willing seniors.

A representative for the facility told NBC the team there is always trying to come up with fun ways to keep residents entertained. “This activity really raise morale and had all the relatives and team members laughing.”

Morale needed a boost, as the center is currently under self-isolation rules (sort of like the entire world, for the most part.) It seems to have worked out for the best, as everyone seemed to have a blast including the millions who viewed it.

There will be no judgment for how we (safely) pass the time to get through this. That said, we’re probably only a few months away from a Senior Citizen Ninja Warrior obstacle course.