Podcast Paper: NFC

Going into week 13 of the NFL season, the playoff picture is starting to become clearer and Super Bowl favorites have emerged. On the NFC side, the Philadelphia Eagles lead the way with a 10-1 record. Quarterback Carson Wentz has been playing at an MVP level, combined with the trade for running back Jay Ajayi and a great defense, I think the Eagles are a clear favorite. Wentz is not only the face of the franchise but could be the future of the NFL if he continues playing at the level he is. Behind them is the 9-2 Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings have great wide receivers with Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, but I think quarterback Case Keenum is questionable. Keenum has played well this season but has never shown before the skill of a top starting quarterback and I don’t think he will be able to lead the team through the playoffs. Two teams come in tied at 8-3, the Los Angeles Rams and the New Orleans Saints. The Rams have a good young quarterback in Jared Goff with a talented offense around him. Having said that, I don’t think it is Goff’s time to make a playoff run but this season will set the Rams up well for the future. The Saints have been great offensively and surprisingly good on defense. With quarterback Drew Brees, they will always have a good offense but adding rookie running back Alvin Kamara to Mark Ingram has given the Saints the best running game in football. The Saints still haven’t convinced me that their defense will be able to hold come playoff time, partially because of past failures. At the end of the season, I predict it will be a battle of Pennsylvania with the Pittsburgh Steelers defeating the Philadelphia Eagles 27-21.

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Willpower and Chillpower: Karen Dubs’s Balance of Life

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Photo courtesy of Karen Dubs

When Karen Dubs was just 17 years old, she started teaching aerobics at a gym in Timonium.

This was the beginning of her life journey to a career as a health coach and yoga teacher for her business that she calls Flexible Warrior. She graduated from Towson University in 1991, with a degree in mass communications.

Dubs described Flexible Warrior as the balance of opposites, having flexibility but still challenging yourself and your strength.

“Willpower and chillpower,” Dubs said.

Her yoga teaching when she started teaching yoga and stretching to the Baltimore Ravens. She said she sent a letter one day to the athletic director and a few weeks later they replied and within a few days she was teaching the team members.

She also worked with various collegiate athletic teams such as UMBC men’s soccer. She also trained Olympic pentathlete Suzanne Stettinius as she prepared for her competition. Stettinius brought Dubs to the 2012 London Olympic Games with her.

Dubs is a healthy person now, but she faced challenged when she was in her 20s.

She had undiagnosed Lyme disease for two years.

“It felt like living in a box,” Dubs said.”I thought I was always going to be sick.”

She said she worked to heal herself through lifestyle changes that included improving her diet.

“If you don’t take care of yourself, you have nothing to give anyone else,” Dubs said. “You can’t give from an empty cup.”

In addition to Lyme disease, she was also diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.

She sometimes has migraines and uses essential oils to help control them. She also uses essential oils to clean her home.

She also helps athletes get through injuries.

“What you can do is what you should focus on,” Dubs said in regards to injury.

Dubs said that she credits Towson University for having helped her in the health and yoga industry. She said her Mass Communication degree gave her the confidence to be able to speak efficiently in public. She can also clearly communicate with athletes when teaching them.

Though her primary focus is with athletes, Dubs recommends that everyone do 10 minutes of yoga every day.

She said she wakes up and does sun salutation as a total body warm up. If she isn’t feeling up to it, she meditates.

She said that it’s important for people to remember these letters JERF, “Just Eat Real Food,” Dubs said.

“The simplest things make the biggest difference,” Dubs said.

Dubs has been married for 26 years. She also rescues dogs and donates time and money to charity.

She teaches yoga classes for charity. Her favorite dog shelter is Barcs Animal Rescue and Care Shelter in Baltimore. She also donates to Believe Big, a cancer charity.

Before becoming a success in the health and yoga fields, Dubs worked in public relations and marketing. Her pathway to health started at her sickest.

Lynsey Addario: It’s What I Do

Photojournalist Lynsey Addario was kidnapped while in Libya by Qaddafi’s soldiers. Even after this, she still travels to warzones to document history.

Her kidnapping in Libya was an eye-opening experience because her and fellow photojournalists were taken while driving by Qaddafi’s soldiers. During this, a soldier squeezed her breasts and she prayed to not be raped.

She details these experiences in her book “It’s What I Do.”

This incident made her question why she does this line of work, but she didn’t stop.

Addario has been in serious car accidents and kidnapped. She has a child and still returns to the warzone because it is simply what she does. It is where she says she belongs, and she doesn’t feel right not being there.

Few people have the courage that Addario does, the courage to run toward world conflicts with only a camera. She does what it takes and this is why Addario is called upon to be a conflict photojournalist.

Unlike most of her fellow conflict journalists, Addario is a married woman with a child.

She chose to go into photojournalism because of her love for traveling. Once she realized the powers that having a camera gave her, she learned how to gain access to telling people’s stories through photographs.

Being in the line of fire during war isn’t something many people do. But Addario still chooses to pursue while juggling family life. She never stops capturing the stories of those who are without a voice.

Addario writes that she is lonely at times. She also recalls breakups with boyfriends due to the time spent apart because of her job. She knows the conflict photojournalism field can be tough on family, but she is happy to have found a loving and supporting husband.

Photojournalism is Addario’s way of making an impact on society and gives her a sense of purpose. The ability to go and document uprisings of oppressed societies is something that few people have the opportunity to do.

She says it is her duty to tell people the truth, good or bad, about government, poverty-stricken countries, and war. She says her good intentions outweigh the risks.

With passion, courage, and perseverance, it is possible to rise to the top in journalism. These characteristics made her a successful conflict photojournalist.

To learn more about Addario’s time as a conflict photojournalist, visit http://www.lynseyaddario.com/. Addario’s website shows photos she has taken, has a link that you can find out more about her book, and gives bio and contact information.