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Hi. So ... nothing to worry about here but ... scientists have discovered that sea levels are rising faster than they have in 2,800 years.

I know, I know. I know that sounds really bad, but it's fine. It's fine. Really. I'm not worried about it. It's just the fate of the planet and humankind, but I'm not — you know, it's just — just don't worry about it. It's fine.

First of all, I mean, come on, "faster than they have in 2,800 years" yeah, sure that sounds like an impressive observation, but psht — 2,800 years isn't even that long. It's only what ... ? 28 centuries? Come on! Just 28 centuries. That's ... like ... nothing.


Plus, OK, it's not like those scientists are even 100% positive about that number. In fact, according to The Washington Post, the scientists are only hypothesizing it to be true with, like, 95% certainty.

95%? That's nothing! Right? I only trust scientists who are 100% certain about their findings. Or else I'd be totally panicking over this news, you know, like totally panicking. Which I'm not. Like — I'm definitely not. Shut up, I'm not panicking at all, OK?

Like, if you had a 95% chance of winning the lottery, would you even play? I wouldn't. That's not even ... oh God ... no reason to panic...

OK. OK. Yes. Let's just ... look at this ocean picture. Just a nice ... calm ... serene ocean picture.

Photo by Manu Schwendener/Unsplash.

Just a nice ... rapidly rising, warming, globally threatening ocean... Oh — oh no — no, this isn't working.

OK. Let's just look at the facts. This new study, which was published Monday, says that sea level rise in the 20th century was "extremely likely faster than during any of the 27 previous centuries."

Which, again, right, yeah. That's not horrifying or cause for any panic at all or anything — I'm not panicking, you're panicking.

I, for one, am definitelynot frozen with fear at the implications of a drowning planet that will no longer be able to sustain human life. Nope. Not me. Haha. Hahahahahahaha! Haha! Hah.

The study also shows that, from 1900 to 2000, sea levels rose about 1.4 millimeters per year, while the current rate of rise, according to data from NASA, is about 3.4 millimeters per year.

Which is fine. Totally fine! Just fine! You can swim, right?

Hey, it's a good thing nothing else is rapidly increasing — like my heart rate or my general sense of dread. Steady as a rock, totally not panicking right now. That's me.

Here, maybe another ocean photo will help:

Just take deep breaths and look out at the sunset over this gorgeous, (also criminally over-polluted by the way) ocean. Photo by Sam Wheeler/Unsplash.

But let's just say, you know, hypothetically, that these "scientists" with their "data" and "studies" and "advanced degrees" are right about this....

...what would actually happen?

If sea levels continue to rise, a lot of us would be in some very real danger.

But that's just — you know — hypothetically speaking, of course, because everything is fine. Everything is gonna be just ... fine.

In Bangladesh, for example, research shows that rising sea levels could displace 20 million people there in the coming decades.

But I mean, come on, 20 million people? Pfft — that's it? 20 million people is like — so, OK, it's not — nothing. But it's only like ... 1,098 Madison Square Gardens worth of people. Only ... OK, wow, yeah ... that's a lot of — is it hot in here or is it just me? I'm sweating a lot all of a sudden.

But, it's not like it's going to affect us,right? I mean, okay, except for the entire east coast of the United States. Where (again, totally not freaking out here, but) scientists have predicted that rising sea levels and changing ocean temperatures are likely to worsen winter storms and contribute to more extreme weather conditions.

That's fine! I live in New York and no one here ever complains about winter storms or extreme weather conditions or not being able to take the subway or order takeout. We love winter storms more than we love pizza!

Oh man — the denial factor is wearing off a little bit. Ooohhhh boy.

No one is bothered by this! This is a totally IDEAL SITUATION. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

No, seriously, is it like reallyhot in here?

There's also Florida. Just ... yeah. Florida. Large portions of which are projected to be — um, hah, yeah — underwater by 2025. But don't worry about that! That's nine whole years away! So much can happen in nine years. I mean you could make like 12 new "Fast and Furious" movies in that much time.

Oh man. My mouth is so dry. You ever get that feeling?

The point is this: Oh — who am I kidding? — EVERYONE PANIC.

GET TO HIGHER GROUND!

GET GRANDMA IN A RAFT!

THIS ISN'T FUNNY ANYMORE, PEOPLE, WE ONLY HAVE 20 YEARS TO STOCK UP ON CANNED GOODS AND LEARN HOW TO GROW GILLS SO WE CAN BREATHE UNDERWATER.

OH MAN.

Oh ... God.

OK.

Deep breaths.

In and out.

Ocean. Just keep looking at the ocean. Photo by Oliver & Hen Pritchard-Barrett/Unsplash.

You know what? I — I actually feel a little better now.

Here's the thing, folks. This latest report is an almost comically horrifying indicator of the completely cataclysmic and looming problem of climate change. It is.

This data is yet another sign, in the already long list of signs, showing that the need for sweeping climate reform is immediate and urgent.

So, yes, there is totally something to be worried about here.

Especially when you consider that, as the conditions of climate change get worse, it will feed into what's known as a positive feedback loop: Ice melts, seas rise, and the whole system begins to spiral out of control faster and faster. So fast that we won't be able to stop it, and it'll just keep getting worse and worse, and I'll start to wonder if maybe growing gills isn't something I thought of in a moment of panic but an actual survival strategy I might need to invest in.

This is alarming stuff. If you aren't already freaked out about climate change, you probably should be.

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, which flooded in 2015 due to abnormally high tides and rising sea levels. Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images.

The good news is there's never been a better time to be involved. And our country is (just sort of) beginning to take some real action.

The White House's current climate change plan boasts some helpful goals, like increasing clean energy use 30% by 2030. It's not a lot, but it's something.

It's also an election year. 2016 could very well decide the future of the climate, given that the candidates' beliefs on climate change range from "It's the number one thing threatening our nation" to "It isn't real."

Now, more than ever, is the right time to learn what you can do to help. We're all in this together. Do what feels right to you. Recycle. Call your congressman. Vote.

If you don't want to do any of that, I would suggest moving to a landlocked state at some point in the next few years. I hear Nebraska is lovely.

Photo courtesy of Girls at Work

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Girls are bombarded with messages from a very young age telling them that they can’t, that is too big, this is too heavy, those are too much.

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

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Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

Pop Culture

'90s kids share movies that will 'take you back to a better time'

It was a magical time when animals played sports and yet somehow things were just simpler.

YouTube/Upworthy photo illustration

Honey, I shrunk the kid named Matilda while jamming in space!

Everyone knows that '90s movies just hit different. From sports movies to rom-coms to even horror, there was an undeniable innocence, without being overly simplistic or juvenile. They didn’t have nearly the amount of money going into production as they do today, but somehow managed to transport us to magical places.

Movies of the '90s are so iconic that there have been several attempts to reboot beloved titles. Which, let’s face it, tends to be a fool's errand at a cash grab. These movies are so timeless that simply viewing the original is more than fine.

Not sure which movie to start with? You’re in luck—a Reddit user by the name of YouBrokeMyTV asked ’90s kids to share movies that took them “back to a better time,” and because the internet can be a wonderful place, tons of people responded with some beloved classics.

These answers certainly don’t make a definitive list (there are just so, so many gems) but they're a fun glimpse into what made '90s cinema so special. A nostalgic romp through memory lane, if you will.

Enjoy these 14 titles that just might leave you jonesing for a rewatch:

1. "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids"

via GIPHY

A perfect example of how '90s movies were silly, but smart at the same time. And oh so wholesome.

2. "The Sandlot"

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It taught us nothing about baseball, but everything about friendship, rooting for the underdog and (most important) how to make s’mores.

3. "Drop Dead Fred"

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Critics might have run this cult classic through the mud during its inception, but audiences fell in love with the bizarre charm of this story about a mischievous little girl and her anarchist imaginary friend. So take that, snotfaces!

4. "The Goonies"

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Everyone just wanted to set off an epic quest with their friends for pirate treasure after seeing this movie.

5. Tim Burton's "Batman"

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Before the superhero genre was the behemoth it is today, a quirky director and the dude who was best known for playing the creepy demon in "Beetlejuice" breathed new life into comic-book movies. Marvel might be the leader on creating stories with adult themes that are digestible for kids nowadays, but this DC film was the first of its kind. Plus, that soundtrack … forget about it.

6. "Hook"

via GIPHY

Pretty much any '90s film starring Robin Williams was an absolute gem, but this one in particular is timeless. His gift of balancing childlike humor with emotional gravitas lent itself so well to playing the now grown and cynical Peter Pan, who must learn to reclaim his joy (relatable, millennials?). It was a bang-a-rang-er, no question.

7. "Space Jam"

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It had Looney Tunes, it had aliens and it had Michael Jordan. That’s a winning combination.

8. "Matilda"

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I don’t think I’m out of line when I say that this movie helped a lot of kids make their way through difficult childhoods.

9. "The Parent Trap"

via GIPHY

Even '90s reboots were awesome. And how fun it is to see that Lisa Ann Walker—the actress who played Chessy the housekeeper—is not only yet again gracing the screens in NBC’s “Abbott Elementary,” but is also being revered as a style icon on TikTok for her ultra casual looks in the film. We all knew she was onto something with long button downs and shorts.

10. "The Land Before Time"

via GIPHY


No cartoon, not even “The Lion King,” was a better depiction of childhood grief. And yet, despite encapsulating tragedy, director Don Bluth still left viewers hopeful. The subsequent 14 (yes 14) sequels definitely pale in comparison to the original, but "The Land Before Time" continues to stand the test of time nonetheless.

11. "Richie Rich"

via GIPHY

The scene where they play tag on four-wheelers is simply iconic.

12. "Dunston Checks In"

via GIPHY

Man, the '90s were the golden age of animal-centered films. And not just monkeys either—we got sports playing golden retrievers and not one, but two movies starring talking pigs. What a time to be alive. These films were made before CGI had reached the levels it’s at today, and the authentic interactions between humans and creatures reached right through the screen.

13. "George of the Jungle"
george of the jungle, brendan faser

Watch out for the tree!!!

Giphy

Have I seen this movie at least 20 times? Probably. It doesn’t get any better than this in terms of silly action films with bird puppets. It’s crazy to think that this role would eventually lead Brendan Fraser to "The Mummy" franchise, turning him into a household name. Though his career has had some tragic ups and downs, we are all grateful for the glorious comeback he’s been having.

14. Anything involving Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen
mary kate and ashley

Yes, they were professional detectives.

Giphy

Whether vacationing in London, Paris or Rome, whether playing magical witches or making a huge billboard so their father could find love … Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen offered zany, whimsical entertainment while wearing fun outfits. Sometimes, that’s all you need.

Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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