Here's why this boy has a kidney that's 3 times older than he is.

"He's a success, even with all his side effects. He's a success, because he's still here."

Meet Tony Salerno. He's 13. Well, most of him is 13.

"If someone asks me how old I am, I can tell them, ‘Well, part of me is 50, and the other part of me is 13,'" jokes Tony.

Tony just got a new kidney from his dad, so while he's really a 13-year-old boy, his new kidney's almost four times as old.


He needed a kidney because the treatments that saved his life also did a lot of damage. At 2.5 years old, he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a type of nerve-based cancer.

Baby Tony in the hospital. Photo courtesy of Karen Salerno.

At the time, the rate of survival for someone Tony's age was about 30%, but, thanks to rigorous treatment, he was pronounced cancer-free at age 3.

However, the intense treatments, which included five rounds of chemotherapy, two stem cell transplants, and total body radiation, did a number on his little body. Though he is still cancer-free 10 years later, Tony is dealing with a number of health problems as a result.

"I have to take a lot of pills at every meal," says Tony. "I have to get nightly injections and a weekly injection."

He has some high-frequency hearing loss from the chemo and cataracts in both eyes. His brain's processing speed is slightly slower than normal, which means he takes more time on tests and assignments. That said, he's no less intelligent than the other kids in his class. "I'm smart," retorts Tony.

His adult teeth have only 20% of the root structure they should. Therefore, eating things like corn on the cob can be tough. He also has only one kidney because the radiation destroyed the other one.

It sounds like a lot for anyone to handle, much less a 13-year-old, but Tony keeps walking tall.

Tony with his Superman T-shirt. Photo courtesy of Karen Salerno.

"I've nicknamed him 'the Mayor' because when he walks into a room, whether it's filled with adults or kids, he acts like he's running for office and wants to talk to everyone," Tony's dad, Tony Sr., writes in an email.

Tony's in Boy Scouts. He is often outside, hanging with friends and learning from nature. When he's inside, he's usually playing video games or watching movies with his family.

One New Year's Eve, they were watching "Back to the Future" and Tony's mom, Karen, remarked on Michael J. Fox's short stature. Tony's also always going to be short because the chemo affected his growth. Seeing someone else who's small be so cool definitely gave him a boost.

In the midst of managing symptoms and living the life of an average 13-year-old, Tony got news that his remaining kidney was failing. He needed a transplant.

Karen was ruled out as a donor candidate because her blood type wasn't compatible, but Tony's dad met the long list of criteria.

Tony's parents. Image via NorthwesternMutual/YouTube.

"My biggest worry next was that they would find something wrong with me," writes Tony Sr. "And I'm not a perfect match, but I'm the best match we found."

In November 2016, Tony's doctors said he'd probably need the transplant within one to three years. However, just a month later, his numbers weren't looking so good, and they decided to schedule the procedure for summer 2017. Tony had his transplant on Aug. 1, and his family is happy to report that it was a success!

Tony felt a little "weird" about getting a part of his dad, but his dad lightens the mood with jokes.

Tony at a Lego exhibit. Photo courtesy of Karen Salerno.

"Mostly I kid him that he better take care of it, because I will be watching, and that he gets to celebrate not only his birthday, but his kidney's birthday on my birthday," writes Tony Sr.

Joking aside, it's not easy for his parents to see Tony struggle, especially when he's just trying to live a normal kid's life.

Tony goofing in a hammock. Photo courtesy of Karen Salerno.

Tony Sr. writes that it's hard to watch him "encounter his limitations alongside his friends and schoolmates." Life after cancer, especially when you're also a growing boy, can be a roller coaster, and sometimes they just feel like they're along for the ride.

But with a son like Tony who has beaten so many odds and, despite his limitations, keeps on truckin', it's not all scary.

Of course, things would not look nearly so bright if it weren't for the extraordinary medical support Tony's had over the years.

Tony with Dr. Michael Hogarty at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Image via NorthwesternMutual/YouTube.

The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia in particular really impressed Tony's parents.

"From a scientific perspective, the things they can find out about him without having to do invasive, exploratory surgery are amazing," remarks Karen.

In fact, Tony's case was involved in initial immunotherapy work at the hospital — a less invasive treatment that involves boosting disease-fighting cells to enable them to target the cancer better. Much of their research wouldn't be possible without funding from companies like Northwestern Mutual.

In the midst of seeing other kids who aren't as lucky as Tony, these less-brutal treatments give his parents hope.

Tony with the family dog, Spike. Photo courtesy of Karen Salerno.

He's still got a long road ahead of him, but with his family and doctors by his side, Tony has the best possible support.

What's more, thanks to the research that's been done on his case, many other sick kids may have an easier time recovering. That's a major win for all families going through this. It's also why Tony's dad believes this simple truth with all his heart:

"He's a success, even with all his side effects. He's a success, because he's still here."

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Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

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The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

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What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

Planet

The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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