Sep 25, 2008 There is a Santa Claus in West Virginia, U.S.A. running for president as a write -in candidate. (A write-in candidate is a candidate in an election whose name does not appear on the ballot, but for whom voters may vote nonetheless by writing in the person's name.)
Known as Thomas O'Connor until 2005 when he legally change his name to Santa Claus lives near Lake Tahoe. Thanks to the state's easy registration rules all the West Virginian have to do is file a form at least 42 days before the election unlike most states which put a number of hurdles before write-in candidates, ranging from requiring dozens of forms to identifying presidential electors for the candidate. The primary reason Santa said he is running is that Obama and McCain have refused for more than a year to address the plight of the 2 million children in the U.S. annually who are abused, neglected, exploited, abandoned, homeless, and institutionalized through no fault of their own. VIA
Santa Claus Homepage
"A penny for your thoughts"
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Saturday, September 20, 2008
He Pingping from Inner Mongolia, China's autonomous region, the world's smallest man sits underneath Svetlana Pankratova from Russia, the Queen of Longest Legs, as they pose at Trafalgar Square in London, Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2008. Pingping, born with primordial dwarfism, holds the Guiness World Record for the smallest man at 74.61 cms (2 feet and 5.37 inches) and Pankratova holds the Guiness World Record for the longest leg of any woman at 132 cms
Mr Pingping, 20, suffers from primordial dwarfism and was no bigger than his father's palm when he was born. He was flown to Britain from his home in inner Mongolia where he runs a restaraunt. Ms Pankratova, who stands at 1.96m, is a 36-year-old Russian real estate agent who lives in in Spain. The pair were brought together to promote the 2009 edition of the Guinness World Records book, which is launched today.
17 July 2007 Mr Xishun, 56, towers above everyone at an astonishing 7.9ft, 19-year-old Mr Pingping is a mere 2.4ft high.
Bao Xishun, a herdsman from Chifeng, Inner Mongolia, was recently married in a traditional ceremony to a 28-year-old saleswoman from his hometown. At 5ft 6" Xia Shujian only comes up to his elbow and is half his age. Mr Xishun was confirmed as the tallest person by the Guinness Book of Records last year.
World's shortest man, He Pingping, makes trip to New York City-Friday, September 19th 2008
World's shortest man, He Pingping, makes trip to New York City
20. September 2008 England's Keeley Hazell and Claudia Ciesla of Germany are looking to do their countries proud as they fight it out in a sexy showdown.
Keeley Hazell: English men have been drooling over her ever since she shot to fame by winning The Sun's Page 3 Idol competition in 2004. Renowned for her amazing figure, her career has since rocketed. The gorgeous gal from South East London has been a constant feature on the covers of men's magazines and in ad campaigns.
Ambitious Keeley also released a popular music video, 'Voyeur', which did the rounds on the internet. Twice named among the top five of FHM's World's Sexiest Women, she's now a household name around the world among red-blooded males.
The German stunner is set to challenge feisty Keeley as the toast of England - and Germany. The blonde bombshell from Bamberg made her name by appearing as a BILD World Cup Girl in 2006 as well as being an AUTOBILD Tuning Girl. Claudia Ciesla in Llandudno, Wales for I love dancing in espana
Following the release of her recent single 'I love dancing in Espana' she has jetted off to Calcutta in India to star in a Bollywood film. Claudia is currently shooting an Indian film called '10:10' in Calcutta. Playing the part of a German journalist, Claudia stars opposite Indian film star Soumitra Chatterjee. The multi-talented Claudia certainly has all the right assets to make it to the top.
But German men were given a slap in the face after sizzler Claudia admitted to 'The Sun' that she loves British men! Speaking to Britain's biggest-selling paper she revealed: “They make you feel like a queen.” And she is sure to find a string of suitors after the double-D wonder showed off her unbelievable all-natural curves.
The battle of the breasts was a bust for German BILD girl Claudia Ciesla as voters chose British beauty Keeley Hazell as their favourite buxom babe - both in Germany and in the UK.
In a recent interview with BILD, sexy Claudia challenged Keeley to a friendly duel
in a nice little competition with events like car racing, bungee jumping or skydiving. Claudia explained. "I see the whole thing as a friendly match between Germany and England."
CClaudia.net - Official Homepage of CClaudia
Official Keeley Hazell Website
Medical records services, such as Microsoft HealthVault and Google Health, promises an explosion in the storage of personal health-care information online.
While the services aim to make it easier for consumers to access and manage their personal health information, the ready availability of this data also makes it much easier and less expensive for insurers to put your medical history under the microscope. In fact, the number of companies that have legal access to this information runs into the millions, say privacy advocates.
Microsoft kicked off the beta test of its HealthVault service almost a year ago, while Google announced its Google Health service last February and launched a beta in May. While both services are still in beta, each company has partnered with large health-care providers for pilot tests: Microsoft with Kaiser Permanente and Google with the Cleveland Clinic. Microsoft, Google, and other companies that put your medical records online ensure that their security is top-of-the-line. Their services are intended to give consumers greater, not less, control over who sees what by giving consumers personal ownership of their information, according to the services.
Indeed, consumers' control of their health data is not the core problem. It's what happens to your information after its initial release that worries privacy advocates — and with good reason. For instance, a July article in Business Week cited the case of a Louisiana couple denied health insurance because the wife took two medications that set off red flags for a prospective insurer.
Most observers — including privacy advocates — state that the move to store our health records in the cloud is inevitable. In fact, there are many benefits to consumers for having that information available virtually instantly. For example, if you were in a different city and needed to be rushed to the emergency room, your health history would be immediately available to the physicians on call.
The downside is that storing health records online makes it easier for insurers to calculate the odds that you will be more expensive to insure than the next person. That's the rub, say privacy advocates. There is a law that keeps health data from being misused called the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA. Moreover, there are many exceptions to the law. Additionally, both Microsoft and Google claim their health services are not subject to HIPAA regulation, since they don't offer health-care services themselves.
Patient Privacy Rights offers these recommendations and questions to safeguard your health-care records:-
• Don't even think about using a personal health record (PHR) that's offered by an employer or insurer. These are the last companies with which you want to share all your personal health and daily activities.
• Don't simply rely on a "HIPAA-compliant" PHR. HIPAA has more loopholes than the tax law; millions of businesses can legally access your information without your consent.
• How do you authorize access to the information? If gaining access requires nothing more than having someone guess your password, say "no, thanks."
• Does the PHR provider have the right under its "agreements" to take, sell, or share your information?
• What security does the PHR provide?
For the time being it would be advisable to hold off signing up for any electronic health-records system. Giving more time for the system to be tested out especially the potential for identity theft .
Tue, 16thSept2008 There's a new celebrity in town, Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin's daughter Bristol about to give birth and that means it's time for online gambling websites to start offering those oh so famous baby odds. The largest most successful sportsbook on the web, BetUS.com posted odds on all things of Bristol Palin pregnancy.
Analysts at BetUS.com posted the following odds on the Bristol Palin Pregnancy:
Odds on sex of baby male/female?
Odds on whether she'll get married before or after the birth of the child
Not marry the father 20/1
Odds on color eyes the baby will have
Weight of Bristol's baby at birth
Over/Under 7lbs 5 ounces
5/6 Over 5/6 Under
Additional Pop-Culture odds, Sports and Newsworthy odds can be found at BetUS.com
Sunday, September 14, 2008
09/10/2008 Video search is about to get a huge upgrade, courtesy of a new site called VideoSurf. Even YouTube, what many average users would consider to be the premiere site for searching videos, has problems nailing down relevant results sometimes. The main issue with video search (along with image search) has been the fact that the search engines generally use text associated with the videos to come up with results VideoSurf actually gets into the videos themselves on a frame by frame basis. VideoSurf is one of the most innovative, radically different approaches to video search (or any kind of search for that matter) VideoSurf is a computer vision search engine that processes all of the kinds of information most video search services do, but then goes a step further, applying a proprietary process using "multigrid fast computation" and some heavy-duty computer processing power to analyze videos, identify people, and extract all kinds of additional information directly from the video itself.
VideoSurf was founded by the folks who built one of the first real-time travel information sites, Farechase, which was acquired by Yahoo in 2004. The VideoSurf team applied many of the lessons they learned in working with real-time info in the development of VideoSurf.
You can use keywords to search VideoSurf to provide a rich set of thumbnails that go beyond what you usually see in video search results. VideoSurf "understands" who people are and what they look like, you'll often see images of different people when you limit your search to an individual. This lets you to discover the connections of actors and performers in an incredibly easy, intuitive way. VideoSurf shows you the point in the video that you'd like to see, rather than having to either watch the video or use the slider to jump ahead to what you hope is the most relevant part.
At this point, VideoSurf is only available to the public on an invitation-only basis, although you can request an invitation.
|Natalie Dylan, 22, claims her offer of a one-night stand has persuaded 10,000 men to bid for sex with her. Last September, when her auction came to light, she had received bids up to £162,000 ($243,000) but since then interest in her has rocketed. As a student auctioning her virginity to pay for a masters degree in Family and Marriage therapy has seen bidding hit £2.5million ($3.7m). She said she had had a lot of attention from a wide range of men, including "weirdos", "those who get really graphically sexual about what they want to do to me" and "lots of polite requests from rich businessmen". Miss Dylan said she did not think it was particularly significant to be willing to sell your virginity and insisted that she was happy to undergo medical tests for any doubters. She said: "I get some men who are obviously looking for a girlfriend but I try and make it clear that this is a one-night-only offer.She think she and the person whom she do it with will both profit greatly from the deal. VIA|
Natalie Dylan, the pretty 22-year-old recent college grad who is selling her virginity to the highest bidder, has reportedly received a $250,000 offer on Sept. 10.
The woman is using the alias Natalie Dylan has earned her bachelors degree in women's studies from Sacramento State and in January she will start working on her master's in marriage and family therapy there.
Dylan hopes the online bidding will reach $1 million. eBay would not allow the auction to take place on its site. The Nevada brothel, Moonlite Bunny Ranch, a legalized brothel is where the deal will be consummated. Dylan's sister currently is working there to pay off her college debts.
To prove her virginity Dylan will submit to a polygraph test and a gynecological exam. Natalie's not a total novice: She admits she has had oral sex, but is still technically a virgin. Howard Stern is due on Tuesday 16th Sept. 2008 morning to kick off the auction of a 22-year-old beauty's virginity. The auction will be conducted online at bunnyranch.com . Dylan says she has no moral issues with auctioning off her virginity. Still, Natalie says the winner won’t necessarily be the highest bidder. She will take bids until she find a suitor she is happy with. VIA
September 10, 2008 Don Gorske, 54, from Wisconsin, US, claims he has eaten 23,000 of McDonald's Big Mac burgers On August 17, 2008 count, continuing a culinary obsession that began May 17, 1972, and is fed by his obsessive-compulsive disorder.
He stopped ordering fries every day in the '90s, now eating them about once a month. He eats two Big Macs, which each have two beef patties, cheese and a special Mac sauce, along with two parfaits a day. Gorske says he keeps himself in good shape. He says he's 6-foot-2 (1.89 meters) and weighs 185 pounds (84 kilograms), and walks as many as 16 kilometers a day.
Eight ocassions he failed to eat Big Mac:
1) In 1988, the day his mother died, to respect a request she made.
2) Twice because of his job as a prison worker where a number of work emergencies kept him on the clock past midnight which he recorded those days as missed days.
3) Three other times on traveling and couldn't find a McDonald's.
4) He went Big Mac-less on the U.S. holiday of Thanksgiving in 2000.
5) During a 1982 snowstorm that prevented a local McDonald's franchise from opening.
Ever since these burgerless days he keeps a few in the freezer.
Documentary Super Size Me
On 29 October at the Odeon West End the world's first public screening of new Bond film Quantum of Solace is to take place at this year's London Film Festival.
Quantum of Solace trailer New Bond girl Olga Kurylenko is also featured in the trailer, which introduces the film's French villain Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric).
The 52nd London Film Festival is due to take place in London from 15 to 30 October. M is a fictional character in Ian Fleming's James Bond series, as well as the films in the Bond franchise. M has been portrayed by Judi Dench since 1995.
In Goldeneye one line that was said, "I hear that the new M. is a lady". The Casino Royal and Quantum of Solice are suppose to take place before Dr. No. If that's the fact, why is M not a male. Also where are the soviets. M in Casino Royal said she missed the Cold War. If these two films are indeed before Dr. No, then they should be in the Cold war!!
Sep 10 Ten days ago at his Al-Fanar Restaurant in the southern port city of Tyre, Lebanese restaurant owner Raymond Salha and his wife were having oysters for lunch when she made an amazing discovery - a cluster of 26 pearls inside an oyster on her plate. Beleiving the pearls were valuable, Salha called the city's maritime museum which sent a team that took the oyster - and the pearls still inside it - away for testing. However museum officials counted "only" 25 pearls was preserved and returned by the museum not believed to be worth a lot of money. VIA
Type rest of the post here
Thursday, September 11, 2008
North Korea reported Sunday 15th Nov 2008 that its leader Kim Jong-Il ,66, has made another public appearance in a military art performance ailing to state when and where the performance took place. Kim's health is the subject of intense speculation because he has not publicly nominated a successor -- as his father had done more than 20 years before his death in 1994 -- to run the impoverished, nuclear-armed state. North Korean state media have recently issued a series of still undated photos of Kim in public, in an apparent attempt to end the swirling speculation about his health. Some Seoul officials and North Korea experts say Jang Song-Taek, Kim's brother-in-law, has become more powerful since Kim fell sick, with some believing he is effectively standing in for the supreme leader. Japan's Prime Minister Taro Aso said earlier this month that Kim was probably in hospital but still capable of making decisions.
North Korea has released photos of its leader(Video), Kim Jong-Il, in apparent good health and watching a football match. There has being an intense speculation about Kim's health since he failed to appear a key celebration marking the country's 60th birthday on Sept. 9. Photos released in October,2008 showing a healthy-looking Kim inspecting a military unit appeared outdated, with lush greenery in the background at a time when the entire Korean peninsula is awash in autumnal foliage. Also North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il has missed the funeral of a top party leader, former vice president Pak Song-Chol on Thursday 30th October,2008.
Video-02 Nov 2008 NKorea releases photos of Kim in bid to quash health rumours
In one of the photos disclosed by the ministry here, Kim sat smiling on a sofa inside a glass structure wearing his trademark sunglasses, while his full cheeks and bouffant hair looked the same as usual. Kim, 66, is widely thought to have suffered a stroke in mid-August 2008. Japan's Prime Minister Taro Aso said this week he is probably in hospital, but still capable of making decisions.
A veteran Japanese expert on North Korea says the “dear leader” is actually dead of diabetes in 2003 – and Kim Jong-il role is played by a double. World leaders including Vladimir Putin of Russia and Hu Jintao of China have been negotiating with an impostor.
North Korea's official news agency released this picture of the leader in April (Korea News Service/Reuters)
Is this him or a lookalike in 2007? (Korea News Service/Reuters)
During a massive military parade in the country in April 2002 (Katsumi Kasahara/AP)
Listening to the then-Russian President Vladimir Putin at Vladivostok in August 2002 (Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP)
Laying a wreath at the Piskaryovskoye cemetery, to pay homage to hundreds of thousands of people who died during the WWII siege of St.Petersburg, in August 2001 (Anatoly Maltsev/EPA)
Kim, fearing assassination, had groomed up to four lookalikes to act as substitutes at public events. Now, the expert claims, the actors are brought on stage whenever required to persuade the masses that Kim is alive.
Professor Toshimitsu Shigemura’s bestselling book The True Character of Kim Jong-il, cites sources from inside North Korea and from the intelligence services of Japan and South Korea has one of its principal claims is that a voiceprint analysis of Kim’s speech at a 2004 meeting with Junichiro Koizumi, then the Japanese prime minister, did not match an authenticated earlier recording. His book traces Kim’s supposed demise to autumn 2003 when he vanished for about 42 days. Kim’s poor health has been the subject of speculation for decades. The book argues that no substantive policy decisions have been taken since North Korea joined nuclear disarmament talks in 2003.
Kim changed appearance (before and after his supposed death) had been noted by South Korean analysts who attended two summits with Kim. The difference in looks was taken as him having lost weight, quit smoking, given up cognac in favour of red bordeaux and coaxed the rest of the politburo onto a health kick. VIA
Kim Jong-il, "Dear Leader" of North Korea since 1994. The son of the communist state's "Great Leader", Kim Jong-il has super-expensive tastes, with 17 palaces, and collections of hundreds of cars and about 20,000 video tapes. On one state visit to Russia, he reportedly had live lobsters airlifted daily to his armoured private train. He is believed to spend around $650,000 a year on Hennessy VSOP cognac and maintains an entourage of young lovelies known as the "Pleasure Brigade"
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
November 2003, Gary Leon Ridgway (born February 18, 1949), known as the Green River Killer, is one of the most prolific serial killers in American history. The Green River case has already set cost records in King County, with a $12 million price tag over the last two years alone. A death penalty trial for Ridgway would likely be one of the longest and most complex in U.S. history. On November 5, 2003, Ridgway entered a guilty plea to 48 charges of aggravated first degree murder as part of a plea bargain, agreed to in June, that would spare him execution in exchange for his cooperation in locating the remains of his victims and providing other details. In his statement accompanying his guilty plea, Ridgway explained all of his victims had been killed inside King County, Washington, and that he had transported and dumped the remains of the two women near Portland to confuse the police.
Full documentary Video
On November 30, 2001, as Gary was leaving a Renton, Washington factory where he worked, he was arrested for the murders of four women whose cases were linked to him through DNA evidence. Two years later he pleaded guilty to 48 counts of aggravated murder, although he says he actually killed 71 women, almost all prostitutes. The murders occurred in the early 1980s. As part of a plea bargain, he was spared the death penalty and received a sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Ridgway has been married three times and has one son. He carried his son's photo in his wallet to lure most of his victims into his pickup truck.
• Prosecutor's summary of evidence (King County, Wash.)PDF link
• Plea agreement (PDF, King County)PDF link
• Ridgway's statement (PDF, King County)PDF link
External Links - 1) Gary Ridgway
2) Court TV.com: Why not the death penalty?
Monday, September 8, 2008
|Ingredients for Okonomiyaki|
(serves 2 people)
- Batter -
100g Soft Wheat Flour (3 1/2 oz)
140ml Dashi Soup (5 oz)
1/4 tsp Baking Powder
1 tpsp Grated Yamaimo (Japanese Mountain Yam)
A Little Bit of Salt
200g Cabbage & Welsh Onion (7 oz)
50g Boiled Octopus (1 3/4 oz)
8 Deep-Water Shrimps
Sakuraebi (Dried Pink Baby Shrimps)
Tenkasu (Bits of Deep-Fried Tempura Batter)
Beni Syoga (Pickled Ginger)
100g Slice Pork (3 1/2 oz)
- Toppings -
Long Green Onion
Dried Bonito Frakes
Aonori (Green Laver)
If you ever wondered what is a Japanese Okonomiyaki and how do Japanese people eat it in Japan, see Okonomiyaki in Japan.
05 September 2008: Filipino bowler honoured for third time by Guinness Book of World Records
Renowned Filipino bowler Rafael "Paeng" Nepomuceno has been honoured for the third time by the Guinness Book of World Records.
The six-time world bowling champion was first recognised by the Guinness Book of World Records for winning four World Cup championships in three different decades.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Fri, 05 Sep 2008 Singapore court set a new precedent as previously gambling debts incurred in non Commonwealth countries could not be recovered in Singapore when it ordered Poh Soon Kit on Tuesday to abide by a 1999 US court ruling and cough up the cash pay his debt after gambling away millions at Las Vegas casino Caesars Palace, over a six-year period that began in 1992. The Singapore businessman lost 4.4 million Singapore dollars in Las Vegas and then left the US with unpaid debts. Poh has filed an appeal against the judgment.
The ruling puts local gamblers on notice that that they can be sued for gambling debts anywhere in the world which also implicates Singapore's two soon-to-be opened casinos in the future to recover debt incurred by foreigners after this precedent.
Las Vegas Sands, which owns the Venetian Casino Resort in Las Vegas teamed up with companies controlled by the government's investment arm, Temasek Holdings scheduled open the first of the two casinos by 2009. VIA The second license for the casino (Sentosa casino resort) projects has been awarded to Genting International with teammate Star Cruises, scheduled to open in 2010 on a site of 49 hectares, or 121 acres, on Sentosa Island. It in 2005 that Singapore lifted a 40-year ban on casinos as part of an effort to bolster tourism (in an attempt to double visitor arrivals to 17 million by 2015.) as more manufacturing jobs shift to countries with lower labor costs. To ensure that gambling at the casinos is no cheaper than the overseas alternatives Singaporeans already have, the government will require that locals pay either a daily entrance fee of 100 Singapore dollars ($63) or an annual fee of 2,000 Singapore dollars ($1,265).
The Marina Bay Sands is a SGD6 billion project awared to the Las Vegas Sands Corp. Picture 1:Artist rendtion of the Marina Bay Sands with the skyscrapers of Singapore.on April 6th 2006 to build a 6 million sq. ft. integrated resort. The Sands will contain business and convention facilities, hotel guest rooms and a casino. VIA
Picture 2:The casino resort on Sentosa, Singapore, by Malaysia's Genting International and Star Cruises A venture worth 5.2 billion Singapore dollars is intended to lure thousands of visitors with a Universal Studios theme park and a huge outdoor marine park. VIA
04 Sep 2008
Alice Newstead took the drastic action in protest at the practice of finning – where sharks are impaled on hooks, before their fins are sliced off to harvest meat for shark fin soup. The sharks are then thrown back into the ocean still alive. She suspends herself on shark fishing hooks in the window of a central London (London's Regent's Street) cosmetics store to highlight the use of shark products for cosmetics and food stuffs. Crowd gasped as blood trickled down her back.
Shark finning has been blamed for pushing many species of the fish to the brink of extinction and since 1970, several species have been reduced by more than 90 per cent. VIA
Friday, September 5, 2008
September 22, 2008 Aso went on to win the election by a landslide 351 votes. Yosano got 66 votes, Koike 46, Ishihara 37 and Ishiba 25. Aso will be sworn in as Prime Minister on 24 September 2008. A general election will be called on 3 October for 26 October 2008 following the leadership election.
Yuriko Koike emerged Wednesday as a possible contender to be Japan's first female prime minister, with heavyweights in the ailing ruling party urging her to challenge conservative favorite Taro Aso( LDP's secretary general ). Koike , 56, a former television anchorwoman who has been a defence minister and environment minister, has stayed coy on whether she will contest a party vote on September 22 to replace outgoing Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, plunging Japan's long-dominant ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) into crisis mode. Koike belongs to the LDP's largest faction.
Koike quoted "I want to consider what we need in general, rather than my own individual situation," "I'm contacting various people since you can't play a baseball game all by yourself." Koike , an expert on the Middle East and fluent in both English and Arabic, is known for her close ties with reformist premier Junichiro Koizumi, who was popular during his 2001-2006 tenure.
Japan to pick new premier on September 22- video
Japan has one of the developed world's lowest rates of female representation among politicians and corporate executives. Only 89, or 12 per cent, of the 722 members of parliament are women.
Aso has run unsuccessfully three times to be prime minister. The former Olympic marksman is known for his hawkish views, although he has softened his image in recent years by highlighting his love of comic books and pop culture. Aso backs spending to revive the economy, which is now teetering on recession as inflation soars and demand for exports slow. Japan has the highest public debt of any developed nation.
The LDP has been in power for all but 10 months since it was created in 1955. But it lost control of one house last year to the opposition, which has tried to block the LDP agenda in hopes of winning the next elections.
Source: Channel NewsAsia