• On GTU Hour 2 this morning – Actor Jeff Bridges was “close to dying” last year when he got COVID while battling non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The 72-year-old The Big Lebowski star, who’s now healthy and back to work making The Old Man, detailed his health crisis in a new interview, beginning with the morning he was doing routine exercises at home and felt something in his stomach. A visit to the doctor determined, “I had a 12-by-9-inch tumor in my body,” he told People. “Like a child in my body. It didn’t hurt or anything.” He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system, and started chemotherapy infusions followed by oral chemo. The treatment was effective. “They got a cocktail that worked, and oh, man — it worked fast,” he said. “That thing just imploded.” However, in early January 2021, he received a note from the facility where he was receiving chemotherapy, saying he had been exposed to COVID while being treated there. Bridges, who was not yet vaccinated because it wasn’t available, tested positive along with his wife, Susan Geston. The couple, married 45 years next week, shared an ambulance to the hospital, where they were placed in the ICU. Bridges didn’t leave the hospital for nearly five months.
  • Plus, “Goodfellas” actor Ray Liotta has died, ABC News confirms. He was 67. Liotta, who also starred in “Field of Dreams” and won an Emmy for a guest role on “ER,” is survived by his daughter, Karsen, 23, whom he shared with his ex-wife, Michelle Grace. The actor was engaged to Jacy Nittolo at the time of his death.
  • And Jennifer Aniston has always been there for Ellen DeGeneres. The former “Friends” star, who was the first guest on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” 19 years ago, joined the host for her final episode on Thursday. During the pair’s chat, Aniston, 53, jokingly shared how she coped when “Friends” came to an end in 2004 after its celebrated decade-long run. “Well, I got a divorce and went into therapy,” she quipped, referring to her 2005 split from first husband Brad Pitt after five years of marriage. “Oh, and then I did a movie called, ‘The Break-Up,'” she continued. “I just kind of leaned into the end. I was like, ‘You know what guys? Let’s make this a completely new chapter… Let’s just end everything and start new.'” “It worked great,” Aniston added as the audience laughed.
  • And if you are thinking of heading outside this holiday weekend, don’t hesitate! There are plenty of well-documented health benefits associated with getting outdoors—increasing vitamin D production and exercise are simply two of them. But did you also know that spending time outside can actually improve your productivity levels? According to Dr. Allison Chase, a clinical psychologist and regional clinical director with Pathlight Mood and Anxiety Center, heading outdoors can help you find “relief and balance,” especially if you regularly experience stress that distracts you from daily tasks. In fact, studies suggest that sunlight exposure strongly influences mood and energy levels, and both variables are often correlated with productivity, says Dr. Casey Means, the chief medical officer and co-founder of Levels, which uses biosensors to offer real-time feedback about how what you eat affects your metabolic health.
  • At the end of the show – What can you do with a can of WD40? Lubricate M-16s, catch bigger fish, de-ice rod guides, clean turtles, repel pigeons, remove dog poo, make a flame-thrower, and much, much more. If you could take the American spirit—equal parts Daniel Boone, Chuck Yeager, and Elon Musk—and distill it into an aerosol, it would be a blue-and-yellow can of WD40. A 1983 survey revealed that 4 in every 5 American homes had a can of WD40 in them. Among Field & Stream readers, that figure is probably 19 out of 20. So what do you use it for? Deena tells us all the things you didn’t know you could do with the little blue and yellow can. Hope you join us for these Hot Topics and so much more this morning on GTU Hour 2.