The Daily Bug

Skin Cancer/Melanoma Awareness

By: palmettobug53, 1:47 AM GMT on April 28, 2010

May 18th: Today marks the beginning of the Seige of Vicksburg in 1863.

To read what Mark Twain had to say about this in his book, Life on the Mississippi, you can read it in Google books:

Vicksburg During The Trouble. I could not figure out how to link directly to that chapter, so just scroll down to page 296.
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May 15th: Today is the running of The Preakness Stakes, step two in trying for the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred racing.

Only one jockey had two Triple Crowns under his belt: Eddie Arcaro.

He won in 1941 on Whirlaway and again, in 1948, on Citation.

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May 12th: The coronation of George VI (the current Queen's father) was held on this date in 1937.

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May 10th: This day in 1857 marked the beginning of the first rebellion in India.

Indian Rebellion of 1857

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May 10th is the Feast Day of St. Damien of Molokai.

If you have ever read James Michner's book, Hawaii, you'll have heard of Father Damien.

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I just want to wish a Happy Mother's Day to all.

Take time today to tell your mother how much she means to you. lf your mother is no longer living, thank the special woman, or women, in your life who help to fill that void.

Do Mom a favor: Make a day of it. Set up a morning appt for both of you to get a full skin check. How about follow that up with lunch and an afternoon for two spa treatment? Or a nice mani/pedi?

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Monday, May 3rd, is Melanoma Monday. The entire month of May is National Skin Cancer/Melanoma Awareness Month

I am reposting my entry from May, 2008, with some revisions and new links. The message is pretty much the same, so I decided not to type up an entirely new entry. I hope you don't mind.

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Basal cell. Squamous cell. Melanoma.

The first two are the most common skin cancers and, if caught early, are usually treatable. A small percentage of basal cells are resistant to treatment and may wind up causing disfigurement. BCC and SCC are generally slow to metastasize and are not usually considered life threatening.

Melanoma, on the other hand, is deadly serious. Even caught early, it may not be 100% curable. Anyone who contracts melanoma is going to have to live with the possibility of recurrence for the rest of their entire life, no matter how early they catch it.

I am putting this entry up because of what happened to my brother. If he had known the risk factors and the signs and had gone in to see a doctor months earlier, he would most likely still be alive today. Living with the threat of recurrence but still living. I am also putting this up at the behest of friend, who has an immediate family member battling melanoma. They have been spending the last few years constantly watching, checking, seeing the doctor, having biopsies, scans and trying new treatments. They will be doing this for years to come. Always with that monster lurking in the background, ready to pounce the minute they let down their guard.

Larry spent years in the sun. Weekends at the lake out on boats. He worked construction. He gardened. He was always outside and, in the summertime, was frequently shirt-less or wearing tank tops. I doubt that he ever used sunscreen. He seldom wore a hat, while working.

And he had used a tanning bed.

I don't care what the owners of tanning salons tell you, tanning beds are NOT safe. Larry's doctor told him that the use of that tanning bed was probably what pushed him over the edge. He had been going religiously several times a week for over a year. (Why, I don't know - he tanned very easily on his own) If you use a tanning bed as little as once a month, your risk for melanoma increases by 55%. People who have ever visited a tanning salon just once are 2½ times more likely to later get squamous cell skin cancer and 1½ times more likely to develop basal cell skin than those who haven't.

This does not mean you have to hide in the house and never go outside and have fun. Know the risks. Know what to look for. Do regular self-checks or get your significant other to do it for you. And you check them. Wear your sunscreen. Wear a hat. Stay away from tanning beds.


Basal cell carcinoma

A pearly or waxy bump on your face, ears or neck.

A flat, flesh-colored or brown scar-like lesion on your chest or back.

Squamous cell carcinoma

A firm, red nodule on your face, lips, ears, neck, hands or arms.

A flat lesion with a scaly, crusted surface on your face, ears, neck, hands or arms.


A large brownish spot with darker speckles located anywhere on your body.

A simple mole located anywhere on your body that changes in color, size or feel or that bleeds.

A small lesion with an irregular border and red, white, blue or blue-black spots on your trunk or limbs.

Shiny, firm, dome-shaped bumps located anywhere on your body.

Dark lesions on your palms, soles, fingertips and toes, or on mucous membranes lining your mouth, nose, vagina and anus.

Dangers of Tanning Beds

Basal Cell Carcinoma

Squamous Cell Carcinoma


There are a lot of very informative sites out there, if you care to do further research. Since a good many of them duplicate the information, I'm keeping my list of links short.

If, by putting up this entry, I can get just one person to go in and have a suspicious spot examined and catch something before it turns cancerous, then maybe some good will come out of Larry's death. I really hope so....

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Updated: 4:47 PM GMT on May 01, 2012


Topiary Artiste Extraordinaire

By: palmettobug53, 2:42 AM GMT on April 06, 2010

As I was vegging in front of the TV the other night, a John Deere commercial came on. I wasn't paying too much attention until I noticed the man on the riding mower. I knew who it was.

In the small town of Bishopville, SC, there lives a man named Pearl Fryar. With no formal topiary training, he has turned his 3 acre yard into a fantastical world.

I have been to his garden but I have not had the honor of meeting him. When my Dad and his wife still lived in Sumter, SC, we rode over one afternoon to take a look. It was amazing!

I will let the videos and links tell the story. You can find more videos on YouTube and more articles by asking Uncle Google.

P.S. He really does drive a Deere! The commercial is currently airing, so you may have a chance to catch it.

Mr. Fryar's official website: Pearl Fryar Topiaries

This link from SCIWAY has numerous links about Mr. Fryar to choose from. Have fun browsing through these: Pearl Fryar Topiary Gardens

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Updated: 2:38 AM GMT on April 28, 2010


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About palmettobug53

WU member since Oct. 2005. I enjoy reading, crafts, crosswords, puttering in the yard, old movies and hanging out with my friends on WU.

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