Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year Myspace Comments

May all your wishes and dreams for the new year come true and may you find peace and true happiness.
Thankyou for visiting our blog
With affection...Witchy and the Genie

We will return on Monday

Harry Potter Invisibility Cloak a Step Closer

Scottish researchers say they have created a flexible material that can manipulate light, a step closer to producing something akin to Harry Potter's invisibility cloak.

Researchers in Scotland say they have brought a Harry Potter-like invisibility cloak a step closer to reality with the creation of a flexible material that can redirect light – eventually right around objects. “We can reroute light, we can have it  move around our new material any way we like,” says Andrea Di Falco, the study’s lead author.
Dubbed Meta-flex, the new polymer material will one day be able to route light around an object and have it come out the other side, as if it were going straight through, says Di Falco, a University of St Andrews physicist.  Objects become visible when they reflect, scatter or absorb light.  Metamaterials work by interrupting and channeling the flow of light. In effect, they bounce light in such a manner as to produce an invisible effect.

Metamaterials that bend and channel light had already been developed, but mainly on hard, inflexible surfaces, mainly silicon, and only subject to long wavelengths of light. To create the invisibility effect for short visible wavelengths of light, the structure, or nanostructure, of the metamaterial needs to be smaller than scientists had before been able to manufacture.
In 2006, scientists at a UK/US team announced that they could cloak solid objects. Sir John Pendry, the theoretical physicist at Imperial College London who developed the idea, explained, “Our device is more an invisibility shed than an invisibility cloak.”

The breakthrough by the St. Andrews team is in the development of a metamaterial membrane using nanostructures stacked on thin polymer film to create a flexible surface which would appear invisible at shorter wavelengths in the visible spectrum. Metaflex operates at wavelengths of about 620 nanometres, which is within the visible light spectrum. The scientists at St. Andrews overcame the problem of manufacturing small metamaterial atoms by using a technique to free meta-atoms from the initial hard surface. Dr. Di Falco's team created Metaflex by stacking the nanostructures on thin polymer film instead of the hard silicon used previously. Other applications for Metaflex include improved lenses for cameras and contact lenses for the eyes.

The invisibility cloaks envisioned in fairy tale and science fiction were invariably used for ill purposes. Responses to the possibility of a real-life invisibility cloak range from excitement to fear. Many scientific developments of the last decade have raised ethical questions we have never been faced with before (eg...cloning and stem cell research using fetuses).  How to administrate and control such an invention will raise ethics debates around the world. And yes, think of the possibilities it presents to criminals and insane despots of which we have many.
According to Dr. Di Falco, "The first step is imagining that this can be done. We are only limited by our imagination here."

Barbeque Salmon Salad

Prep Time : 25 minutes ...Total time :4 hours
2  tablespoons chilli powder
1  tablespoon galic powder
1  tablespoons onion powder
3  tablespoons sugar  ( equal  sugar)
1/2  teaspoon ground  cumin
1/4  teaspoon white pepper ( black pepper)
1  tablespoon paprika
6  salmon fillets
5  tablespoons olive oil
1/2  cup v8 100 % Vegetable Juice
I  tablespoon cider vineger
1  tomato 1 pound mixed salad greens  ( lettuce)

Stir the chilli power , garlic , onion powder  , sugar , cumin , pepper  and paprika  in a small bowl . Reserve  1  1/2 tablespoons mixture for the dressing . Sprinkle the salmon with the remaining seasoning mixture . Cover the  salmon and  refrigerate for 4 hours .
Lightly oil the rack . Heat the grill on high . Brush the salmon with the 1 tablespoon oil . Grill for 8 minutes or until the salmon flakes easily when tested with a folk .

Beat the vegetable juice , vineger , tomato , remaning oil and reserved seasoning mixture in a large bowl with a folf or whisk until blended . Add the salad greens and toss to coat .

Divide the salad among 6 plates  . Top with the salmon.

When I can't grill outside , I use  the grill rack  and cook inside the oven , I put some liguid smoke in a pan of water inside the oven  350 degrees  for  15 minutes or until it flakes with a folk.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Blizzard in New Jersey

Time lapse shows 20-hour blizzard in 40 seconds

Tue, 28 Dec 8:57 AM
A photographer in New Jersey captured the blizzard falling there by taking a single picture every five minutes starting when the snow first began to fall and ending after the last flake. (Dec. 28)

2010 : Natural Disasters ---Part 2

An aerial photograph shows flooding at Naval Support Activity Mid-South  in Millington , Tennessee, on May 2, 2010.

Steam and ash float out to the Northern Atlantic from Iceland's Eyjafjallajokull  volcano on April 19, 2010.

Millions of gallons  of oil poured into  the Gulf of Mexico after an April 20 , 2010 explosion on an off-shore rig .

October 16 , 2010 ....A villager  , displaced by floods  , leads his buffalo through the flooded waters in the Pakistan's Sindh Province .

Disaster  strikes twice in Indonesia , first , a tsumami hits west of Sumatra , then a  volcano erupted  on the island of Java .

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Resolutions Which are Easy to Keep

*I will not tell the same story at every get together.
*I will not bore my boss by with the same excuse for taking leaves. I will think of some better excuses.
*I will do less laundry and use more deodorant.
*I will avoid taking a bath whenever possible to conserve water.
*I will give up chocolate totally. 100%. Completely. Honestly....
*I resolve to work with neglected children -- my own.
*When I hear a funny joke I will not reply, "LOL... LOL!"
*I will balance my checkbook. (on my nose).
*I will find out why the correspondence course on "Mail Fraud" that I purchased never showed up.
*Start buying lottery tickets at a luckier store.
*Remember to brush teeth with bristly end of toothbrush.
*Always replace the gas nozzle before driving away from the pump.
*I will not wet the bed and blame it on the dog
*I will read fewer books. A little learning is a dangerous thing. Too much of it can make your head hurt..
*Gain weight, at least 40 pounds. Didn't  mom always say I was a  bit skinny?
*Cut down on exercise. Too much is bad for your health, it can even kill you.
*Watch more TV. Catch up on all the programs I missed in the past few  years.
*Draw up a list of people who were nasty to me in the past year and get my revenge on them in the new year.
*Eat more nice things like candy, Big Macs, popcorn and ice cream. Eat less crap like fresh fruit, vegetables and soy nuts.
*Work less. Take it easy. All work and no play can make you a dull boy or girl.
*Take up some worthwhile new habit, like smoking - it helps keep tobacco workers in jobs.
*I will drink less beer,  I drank enough beer already to re-float the Titanic.
*I will spend less money on buying useless stuff like this new DVD Rewinder I ordered for christmas
*I will never again take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.
*I will stop saying," Ooh, that feels nice" whenever the security guys frisk me at airports.
*I resolve not to swim in any swimming pool without water.
*Find out what the hell "resolution" means.
*I promise to stick to these resolutions for more than a week (even though I never do).

Baby and Boxer - Touching Moment

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Scientific and Astronomical Events of 2010

A New Branch of the Human Family Tree -- Neither Modern Human Nor Neanderthal:    A 30,000-year-old finger bone found in a cave in southern Siberia came from an extinct hominin who was neither an early modern human nor a Neanderthal, but belonged to a previously unknown group of human relatives who may have lived throughout much of Asia during the late Pleistocene epoch. The DNA extracted from the bone has yielded a draft genome sequence, enabling scientists to reach some startling conclusions about this extinct branch of the human family tree called "Denisovans" after the cave in Siberia where the fossils were found.

Total Lunar Eclipse to be Visible on Monday Night:
An extraordinary total lunar eclipse will be visible from the United States in the early morning hours of Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2010. Weather permitting, sky gazers in North and Central America and a tiny sliver of South America will have the best seats to 2010's only total eclipse of the moon. The eclipse will start Monday night on the West Coast of the US and during the early hours Tuesday on the East Coast. Western Europe will only see the start of the spectacle while western Asia will catch the tail end.

SpaceX Dragon Spacecraft is Recovered Successfully:
On December 8, 2010, SpaceX became the first commercial company in history to re-enter a spacecraft from low-Earth orbit. It is a feat performed by only six nations or government agencies: the United States, Russia, China, Japan, India, and the European Space Agency. After the Space Shuttle retires, SpaceX will fly at least 12 missions to carry cargo to and from the International Space Station as part of the Commercial Resupply Services contract for NASA. Its aim is to ultimately reducing costs by a factor of ten.

Life as We Don't Know It:Carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus and sulfur -- the six basic building blocks of all known forms of life on Earth -- Unitil now. NASA-funded astrobiology research has changed the fundamental knowledge about what comprises all known life on Earth. Researchers conducting tests in the harsh environment of Mono Lake in California have discovered the first known microorganism on Earth able to thrive and reproduce using the toxic chemical arsenic. The microorganism substitutes arsenic for phosphorus in its cell components. This finding of an alternative biochemistry makeup will alter biology textbooks and expand the scope of the search for life beyond Earth.

Chandra Finds a 30 Year Old Black Hole:
Astronomers using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory have found evidence of the youngest black hole known to exist in our cosmic neighborhood. The 30-year-old black hole provides a unique opportunity to watch this type of object develop from infancy. Researchers think this object, SN 1979C, first discovered by an amateur astronomer in 1979, formed when a star about 20 times more massive than the sun collapsed.

Primordial Dry Ice in Comet Fuels Spectacular Jets of Gas:
The EPOXI mission's recent encounter with comet Hartley 2 provided the first images clear enough for scientists to link jets of dust and gas with specific surface features of the comet. Images from the flyby show spectacular jets of gas and particles bursting from many distinct spots on the surface of the comet. Analysis of the spectral signatures of the materials coming from the jets shows primarily CO2 gas (carbon dioxide) and particles of dust and ice. The EPOXI mission revealed a cometary snow storm created by carbon dioxide jets spewing out tons of golf-ball to basketball-sized fluffy ice particles from the peanut-shaped comet's ends.

NASA's Fermi Telescope Finds Giant Bubble-like Structure in Our Galaxy:
NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has unveiled a previously unseen bubble-like structure centered in the Milky Way. The bubble, which spans 50,000 light-years, may be the remnant of an eruption from a supersized black hole at the center of our galaxy. At more than 100 degrees across, the structure spans more than half of the sky, from the constellation Virgo to the constellation Grus. The bubble also appears to have well-defined edges. Taken together, the structure's shape and emissions suggest that it was formed as a result of a large and relatively rapid energy release -- the source of which remains a mystery.

This is just a small selection  of the scientific and astronomical events in 2010. It has been a year of great discovery, especially among the stars and planets of our galaxy.

Antimatter Created Trapped and Studied

The ALPHA experiment at CERN1 has taken an important step forward in developing techniques to understand one of the Universe's open questions: is there a difference between matter and antimatter? In a paper published in Nature today, the collaboration shows that it has successfully produced and trapped atoms of antihydrogen. This development opens the path to new ways of making detailed measurements of antihydrogen, which will in turn allow scientists to compare matter and antimatter.

Antimatter - or the lack of it - remains one of the biggest mysteries of science. Matter and its counterpart are identical except for opposite charge, and they annihilate when they meet. At the Big Bang, matter and antimatter should have been produced in equal amounts. However, we know that our world is made up of matter: antimatter seems to have disappeared. To find out what has happened to it, scientists employ a range of methods to investigate whether a tiny difference in the properties of matter and antimatter could point towards an explanation.
One of these methods is to take one of the best-known systems in physics, the hydrogen atom, which is made of one proton and one electron, and check whether its antimatter counterpart, antihydrogen, consisting of an antiproton and a positron, behaves in the same way. CERN is the only laboratory in the world with a dedicated low-energy antiproton facility where this research can be carried out.

Antihydrogen atoms are produced in a vacuum at CERN, but are nevertheless surrounded by normal matter. Because matter and antimatter annihilate when they meet, the antihydrogen atoms have a very short life expectancy. This can be extended, however, by using strong and complex magnetic fields to trap them and thus prevent them from coming into contact with matter. The ALPHA experiment has shown that it is possible to hold on to atoms of antihydrogen in this way for about a tenth of a second: easily long enough to study them. Of the many thousands of antiatoms the experiment has created, ALPHA's latest paper reports that 38 have been trapped for long enough to study.
 Antimatter cannot exist in the presence of or in contact with matter. To create and isolate enough antimatter to study  is a remarkable achievment.

2010 : Natural Disasters ----- Part 1

Snowmageddon blanketed the U.S. East Coast in early 2010 with record snowfall.

The earthquake in Port-au-Prince  on January 13,2010 , destroyed the  Presidential Palace , school , hospital and shanties .

Avalanches killed at least 157 people in Salang tunnel in Peruvian provine  , China on February 10,2010.

Cars lie overturned after a powerful earthquake in Santiago , Chile , on February 27 ,2010 .

March 3, 2010 ; A boy walks over soil after a landslide in Bududa , 228 miles east of the Unganda  Capital .

Monday, December 27, 2010

Couple Receives Hundreds of Letters to Santa From Needy Kids

As Christmas approached, a couple living in New York City began receiving letters addressed to Santa, but  strangely, with their address on the envelope.
"Our address is not in the North Pole," says Jim. "Kids seem to think that Santa Claus lives in Chelsea." Over the month of December, the couple received over 450 letters from all over the State. Despite researching possible reasons for the mysterious letters, neither Jim nor Dylan could arrive at any conclusions.

As the letters piled up, Dylan says he started to care little about why they were receiving the letters and more about what they could do to help. They knew they couldn't let the letters keep piling up, so they began opening. In the video produced by The New York Times, Jim reads a letter from a 10-year-old girl from the Bronx begging Santa to help her mom out by bringing her family presents.

"It's more emotional that I thought it would be," says Dylan. Jim begins by taking the letters to his office and asking coworkers to take one letter each. Then he posted one of the letters on Facebook and received a huge response.

In the end, the self described two little elves were able to fulfill about half the letters. Bless you both.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Myspace Comments

  To all our friends and to anyone who sees this message, my  partner and I wish  
  you  all  
  a very special, happy and memorable 'Christmas' and a  prosperous and healthy  
 ' New Year' 
  We will return one week from today 
  Until then, safe journey 
Christmas Myspace Comments

To Nan James and Family
Christmas Myspace Comments

To Nee, Gil, Jonny, Sha, Jill and Man

Earhart's Final Resting Place Believed Found

Amelia Earhart mostly likely crash landed near a tropical island in the southwestern Pacific.

Amelia Earhart may have died a castaway, and three bones, recently found, could help to prove that theory of her disappearance. The remains were found on a remote island in the South Western republic of  Kiribati by a group from Delaware that recovers historic aircraft ( The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR)).  Researchers at the University of Oklahoma are hoping that DNA will prove the remains belong to the legendary aviator.

Tall, slender, blonde and brave, Earhart disappeared while flying over the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937 in a record attempt to fly around the world at the equator. Her final resting place has long been a mystery.
For years, Richard Gillespie, TIGHAR's executive director and author of the book "Finding Amelia," and his crew have been searching the Nikumaroro island for evidence of Earhart. A tiny coral atoll, Nikumaroro was some 300 miles southeast of Earhart's target destination, Howland Island.

A number of artifacts recovered by TIGHAR would suggest that Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan, made a forced landing on the island's smooth, flat coral reef. According to Gillespie, who is set to embark on a new $500,000 Nikumaroro expedition next summer, the two became castaways and eventually died there.
"We know that in 1940 British Colonial Service officer Gerald Gallagher recovered a partial skeleton of a castaway on Nikumaroro. Unfortunately, those bones have now been lost," Gillespie said. The archival record by Gallagher suggests that the bones were found in a remote area of the island, in a place that was unlikely to have been seen during an aerial search. A woman's shoe, an empty bottle and a sextant box whose serial numbers are consistent with a type known to have been carried by Noonan were all found near the site where the bones were discovered.  "The reason why they found a partial skeleton is that many of the bones had been carried off by giant coconut crabs. There is a remote chance that some of the bones might still survive deep in crab burrows," Gillespie said.

Although she did not succeed in her around-the-world expedition, Earhart flew off into  legend just after her final radio transmission. Books, movies and television specials about her disappearance abound as well as speculation about her fate. Theories proliferated that she was a spy, that she was captured by the Japanese, that she died in a prisoner-of-war camp, and that she survived and returned to live her life as a New Jersey housewife. A new biopic about Earhart's life, starring Hilary Swank and Richard Gere, opens this weekend.

The general consensus has been that the plane ran out of fuel and crashed in the Pacific Ocean, somewhere near Howland Island.  But according to Gillespie, the "volume of evidence" TIGHAR has gathered suggests an alternative scenario. "Propagation analysis of nearly 200 radio signals heard for several days after the disappearance make it virtually indisputable that the airplane was on land," Gillespie said.
Eventually, Earhart's twin-engine plane, the Electra, was ripped apart by Nikumaroro's strong waves and swept out into deep water, leaving no visible trace.

"The evidence is plentiful -- but not conclusive yet -- to support the hypothesis that Amelia landed and died on the island of Nikumaroro," forensic anthropologist Karen Ramey Burns told Discovery News.
The author of a book on Earhart, Burns believes that the strongest of the amassed evidence comes from the report related to the partial skeleton found by Gallagher. "The skeleton was found to be consistent in appearance with females of European descent in the United States today, and the stature was consistent with that of Amelia Earhart," said Burns. According to Burns, another piece of documentary evidence comes from the accounts of Lt. John O. Lambrecht, a U.S. Naval aviator participating in the search for Earhart's plane. Lambrecht reported "signs of recent habitation" on what was an officially uninhabited atoll. Lambrechet's report begs the question: Why did no one follow up? "I have stood in plain sight on Nikumaroro in a white shirt waving wildly as a helicopter flew over me and was not noticed until the video tape of the flight was examined," Burns said. "I find it very easy to believe that Amelia and Fred would not have been seen by the pilot. If the Electra was not visible at the time, their last chance of rescue was lost in Lambrecht's notes," she added.

Abandoned on a desert island where temperatures often exceed 100 degrees, even in the shade, Earhart and Noonan likely eventually succumbed to any number of causes, including injury and infection, food poisoning from toxic fish, or simply dehydration. The coconut crabs' great pincers would have done the rest, likely removing some of the last physical traces of this pioneering aviatrix.
Have they solved the mystery at last? Can we finally put poor Amelia to rest? Maybe she was more exciting as an unsolvable riddle. All they can do now if the DNA is positive is put up a small plaque on the island and leave her spirit in peace.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

$11 million Christmas Tree

A luxury hotel in Abu Dhabi which unveiled a Christmas tree decorated with jewels valued at 11 million dollars has decided to put the record straight against criticism of having gone over the top. The Emirates Palace hotel said it regretted "attempts to overload the tradition followed by most hotels in the country," it said, in a statement quoted in Gulf News on Sunday. "Putting the Christmas tree... is a tradition meant to share in celebrating occasions guests hold while they are away from their home countries and families," said the hotel in the United Arab Emirates capital.

Under a headline of "Trouble over 11 million dollar Christmas tree," Gulf News said the hotel stressed this was "within the framework of the UAE's policy which is based on the values of openness and tolerance."
Emirates Palace stressed that the jewels were on loan from an Abu Dhabi gallery which had paid all the costs of making and decorating the tree. The jewels would be recovered by their owner at the end of the festive season."The hotel is just a venue for exhibiting the tree," it said
The tree, inaugurated on Wednesday, holds a total of 181 diamonds, pearls, emeralds, sapphires and other precious stones, said Khalifa Khouri, owner of Style Gallery which provided the jewellery. Emirates Palace hotel general manager Hans Olbertz said the tree, which he described as the "most expensive Christmas tree ever," will probably be an entry into the Guinness book of world records.

The 13-metre (40-foot) faux evergreen, located in the gold leaf-bedecked rotunda of the hotel, is not the first extravagant offering from the three-billion-dollar Emirates Palace. The hotel in the oil-rich Gulf emirate where the local population is Muslim, bills itself as a seven-star establishment and has a package for a week-long stay priced at one million dollars. The package comes with a personal butler and a chauffeur-driven Maybach luxury car as well as a private jet available for trips to other countries in the region.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

How The Attack On Prince Charles Will Change Royal Wedding Plans

From the moment the Royal wedding was announced last month , Prince William has made it clear he wants  this to be a  "people wedding" and has taken deliberate steps to ensure all Britons feel welcome to share in his and Kate Middleton's special day . For starters , he made sure the wedding fell on a Friday (April 29) so that all his country men  can have a three-day weekend . However , after the ugly attack on his father , Prince Charles , during last weeks'  student protests in London , a change has to be made .

"William is devastated that the Palace is insisting on major changes ," a royal insider says . "At this point there will still be open carriages taking members of the family from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abby . But now the gathering will be kept far away from the action that they won't be able to  do much of anything ."

"William is putting up a good fight to keep the wedding as open as possible  but that 's not likely , he's not going to win this battle ," a palace insider says.

Prince Charles and  wife Camille's car was attacked in London by a mob of angry students protesting  the sharp hikes in University fees . Since the shocking episode , a formal investigation into the safety of the Royal Family has been launched which sources say will alter the way the family can interact with the public .

"Security experts are suggesting that bullet-proof cars replace the current fleet of Royal vehicles and carriages  ," an insider says . "Also , the famous Royal Walkabout , where members of the family interact with the public , is a thing of the past . Now it's just much to dangerous ."

The Royals have long resisted advice on security measures that would further remove them from the public  , but in this dangerous world  that we live in , it's hard to argue that  the young Prince is going to have to take a step back.

PIC and I send our very best to Prince William and Kate  may their lives be long and fruitful .

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Repeal of Gay Soldier Law

The US Senate has lifted the 'don't ask, don't tell' gay soldier ban. Activists urged President Obama to deliver on the repeal of 'don't ask, don't tell'.  He listened and he delivered.  The  Senate has approved landmark legislation allowing openly gay people to serve in the military. Senators voted 65-31 to overturn the 1993 "don't ask, don't tell" law, which bars gay people in the military from revealing their sexual orientation.

The House of Representatives had already approved the repeal bill. President Barack Obama says he is looking forward to signing it into law. Opponents argue that the change will damage troop morale at a time of war. More than 13,000 service members have been dismissed under "don't ask, don't tell", enacted under President Bill Clinton. Saturday's vote was along broad party lines, with a few moderate Republicans joining the Democratic majority in favour of lifting the ban.

Defence secretary Robert Gates also welcomed the Senate vote. "Once this legislation is signed into law by the president, the Department of Defense will immediately proceed with the planning necessary to carry out this change carefully and methodically, but purposefully," he said.

The vote is a major victory for Mr Obama, who had made overturning "don't ask, don't tell" a key policy objective. The president said it meant "thousands of patriotic Americans" would not be forced to leave the military "because they happen to be gay". The repeal will take effect after a 60-day period allowing the defence department to consider how to implement the new policy.

Aubrey Sarvis, head of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, an advocacy group, said: "Until the president signs the bill, until there is certification, and until the 60-day Congressional period is over, no-one should be investigated or discharged under this discriminatory law." Earlier this month, a Pentagon report said that allowing openly gay troops would have little impact on the cohesion of US forces fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Democrats, who still control both houses of Congress, have said they want to approve the repeal before the start of a new Congress in January.
What effect will this have on the US military population? Do you believe that it was right to lift the ban on gay people in the military revealing their sexuality? Do you believe a person's sexual orientation is very personal and should remain private?

Woman With The Giant Legs

Mary Sellers - born February  20,  1975 in Lancashire , United Kingdom .
Mary Sellers , a 34-year-old woman from Lancashire , was diagnosed  with a rare condition involving a progressive abnormal growth of body tissure called Proyeus sydrome in May 2006 . She was said to be born with abnormally large feet and legs , which continue to grow  into hugely oversized legs at an alarming rate , making her normal life nearly impossible . Her legs are observed to be heavier than most women  and wider than the average man's waist .She has a clubfoot which has turned 180 degrees backwards , and her left leg is about 5 inches longer than her right leg .

At  19 , Mandy moved out to live on her own ,she obtain a B.Sc. in  psychology from the University of Central Lancashire  and succeeded in maintaining an independent lifestyle as an adult with no live-in helpers . She gets around using crutches  or a wheelchair , and has a specially modified hand controlled car.

When she was 28 , she suffered a deep vein thrombosis , which left her paralzed from the waist down  for about 6 to 8 weeks . Afterwards she had to learn to walk again . Three years later , she got a blood  infection , her kidneys failed , and she contracted  MRSA.

Ultimately , it is expected that she will  have to have her legs amputated . When the television series  'Extraordinary People" devoted an entire episode to her called "The Woman With Giant Legs" (2008) it paid for her trip to the United States to consult with  "renowned orthopaedic surgeon Dr' William Ertl and prosthotic  whizz Kevin Carroll" after examining her , they gave her hope that she would be able to have a less drastic amputation than the one recommended by her doctors which would have  severely curtailed her independence .

Her  left leg had to be amputated in  2010 .

A Fish From the Deep Deep Oceanic Abyss

The Macropinna Microstoma is a little known, seldom seen, deep sea fish with a completely transparent head, who steals for a living.

HEY G... I'm Taking Dancing Lessons

I was so embarrassed by my lack of dancing skills, I decided to take lessons. See if you can pick me out.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Parrot Sings...Let the Bodies Hit the Floor

The Latest in a String of Spectacular Solar Explosions

Watch the sun’s great explosions

A solar filament that had been lurking atop the sun for a week finally exploded this month, the latest in a string of large solar explosions that NASA scientists say will peak in 2013. This explosion, seen below, released high-energy plasma into the solar system, but did not create auroras on Earth because it dispersed before reaching our atmosphere.NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured the image sequence, which shows the filament exploding.
 In August, NASA scientists observed a 28-hour period of shock waves, solar flare explosions and solar "tsunamis" that rocked the sun. They've named the event "The Great Eruption." (Seen above)
Scientists say the activity is a sign that the sun is "waking up" and heading for another "solar maximum" cycle in 2013, according to"The August 1st event really opened our eyes," NASA scientist Karel Schrijver said. "We see that solar storms can be global events, playing out on scales we scarcely imagined before."
Scientists are still trying to figure out what kind of connection there is among the massive explosions that occurred so far apart on the sun's surface.
"We're still sorting out cause and effect," Schrijver said. "Was the event one big chain reaction, in which one eruption triggered another, bang, bang, bang, in sequence? Or did everything go off together as a consequence of some greater change in the sun's global magnetic field?"

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas HA HAs

Everyone is affected by global warming

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Refugee Disaster off Australian Christmas Island...50 Feared Dead

Refugee Boat smashed in storm near Australian Christmas Island
A boat carrying dozens of asylum seekers including children smashed into  rocks  in the violent seas off Australia's Christmas Island on Wednesday and all passengers were feared dead, according to the Australian authorities. Video footage showed the boat rammed onto the rocks, splintering and sinking while passengers including children were crying out for help. 41 people have been rescued by the Australian authorities but some 30 were still missing after the boat was destroyed. The exact number of casualties is not confirmed yet. Most of the asylum seekers were from Iran and Iraq. Local residents awakened by the screaming of boat passengers who were crying for help,  rushed to rescue drowning people but were unable to help them.

What's Next For 'John Edwards'

Following Elizabeth Edwards funeral over the weekend , her estranged husband , John Edwards , is quietly devising a plan on how to prudently return to public life.

"John is a political animal , there can be no doubt about that ," a former friend of the politician says. "He knows that he self-destructed  [with the cheating scandal]  but believes  that with the right plan , and the power  of time , he'll be able to win back the hearts of the public.

Sources say that John's plan is to lay low for the next several months . John was last seen leaving his late wife's funeral on December 11, with his two children , Emma Claire . 12 ,and Jack, 10 , who are both now living  with their father . Over the next year John will focus on being a full-time dad raising them both without a mother .

However , don't expect John to disappear from  public view for long .

"John is very ambitions  and that's something you just can't turn off . If he can prove  that he is a loving father and is willing to spend his time , money  and fame helping out great causes  , that could help  clean up his  tarnished image ," an insider said .

What kind of causes  you ask ? "Expect him to work hard for disadvantaged children who have lost a parent  or volunteer for a   cancer charity ," the source reveals . John wants to do something good.

Let's take a look : I have a difficult time picturing John Edwards winning any office ...even  dog-catcher  . The good will just isn't there  and I don't see it returning  anytime soon . Still , I will never say never . Look how many people  we're seen disgraced  in the public eye do a   'mea  culpa'  and turn it around .
Americans can be a mean group of people , but we are a forgiving group . So here's a few pointers : Raise  your kids with love ; never forget your blessings  for the time you spent with Elizabeth ; don't hide  , let the public see and hear from you , and don't  ever , ever  marry your babys' mama . 

Flying High...Pilot Poses as Doctor Until His Story Crashes

MILWAUKEE - He seemed like Superman, able to guide jumbo jets through perilous skies and tiny tubes through blocked arteries. As a cardiologist and United Airlines captain, William Hamman taught doctors and pilots ways to keep hearts and planes from crashing.
He shared millions in grants, had university and hospital posts, and bragged of work for prestigious medical groups. An Associated Press story featured him leading a teamwork training session at an American College of Cardiology convention last spring.
But it turns out Hamman isn't a cardiologist or even a doctor. The AP found he had no medical residency, fellowship, doctoral degree or the 15 years of clinical experience he claimed. He attended medical school for a few years but withdrew and didn't graduate.

His pilot qualifications do not appear to be in question — he holds the highest type of license a pilot can have, a Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman said. However, United grounded him in August after his medical and doctoral degrees evaporated like contrails of the jets he flew. He resigned in June as an educator and researcher at William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich., after a credentials check revealed discrepancies, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Doctors who worked with the 58-year-old pilot are stunned, not just at the ruse and how long it lasted, but also because many of them valued his work and were sad to see it end. "I was shocked to hear the news," said Dr. W. Douglas Weaver, who was president of the cardiology group when it gave Hamman a training contract for up to $250,000 plus travel a few years ago. "He was totally dedicated to what he was doing, and there is a real need for team-based education in medicine," said Weaver, a pilot himself from Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

Even after learning of Hamman's deception, the American Medical Association was going to let him lead a seminar that had been in the works, altering his biography and switching his title from "Dr." to "Captain" on course materials. It was cancelled after top officials found out. Now, groups that Hamman worked for are red-faced that they hadn't checked out the tall, sandy-haired man who impressed many with his commanding manner and simple insights like not taking your eyes off a patient while talking with other team members about what to do.

Doctors who attended Hamman's sessions don't have to worry — the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education will not revoke any education credits they earned.

Hamman did not return several phone calls and emails seeking comment. David Nacht, an employment lawyer in Ann Arbor, Mich., acknowledged that his client did not have the medical and doctoral degrees he had claimed from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the 1980s. There is no indication Hamman ever treated a patient, though his teamwork training had him videotaping in emergency rooms and other settings where patients were being treated.

Hamman does have an associate's degree in general aviation flight technology and a bachelor of science degree from Purdue University. He also has "type ratings" to fly half a dozen very large commercial planes, according to the FAA. United would not discuss his job history, citing employee confidentiality. But the company confirmed that he is not currently authorized to fly. Hamman lives in Michigan and is based in Chicago.
In 2004, he joined Western Michigan University, a Kalamazoo school with a big aviation program in nearby Battle Creek, as co-director of its Center of Excellence for Simulation Research. In 2005, the centre got a $2.8 million grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation to expand simulation training into medical settings. Matching funds from other groups brought the total to $4.2 million.
Soon Hamman was videotaping heart attack treatment drills and deconstructing what doctors did right and wrong. He spoke at Northwestern University and for the AMA and the American College of Emergency Physicians. In 2009, he joined Beaumont Hospital.
Dr. Sameer Mehta, a Miami cardiologist who runs an annual conference for heart specialists, had Hamman lead sessions in 2009 and earlier this year. He seemed to understand the jobs of the EMS, emergency room and cardiac catheterization lab staffs and how they needed to work together, Mehta said. "He was able to simulate exactly what we were doing," and to offer suggestions from aviation to help, Mehta said.

Hamman's ambition may have done him in. In checking a grant proposal he wanted to submit in late spring, the Beaumont staff discovered the lack of an M.D. degree, said spokeswoman Colette Stimmell. Hamman resigned June 15.
In hindsight, the careful wording in some of Hamman's comments is apparent. "I couldn't handle a full-time cardiology practice" with the demands of being a pilot, he told at least two reporters. Less clear is what, beyond basic principles of teamwork, his training really offered.
"In a sense, he didn't talk about anything medical," said Dr. Stephen Mester, a Florida cardiologist who took one of Hamman's sessions at the cardiology conference in Atlanta last spring. "I did not find it worthwhile, but I believe it could be worthwhile for programs just getting started."

After fessing up, Hamman asked the AMA and the cardiology group to let him continue, saying, "the work is the work." They decided that a lie is a lie.

Goodbye Voyager...Heading Off Into Intersteller Space After 33 Years

NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has reached the outer edge of the solar system where wind from the Sun is no longer blowing outward, but sideways, the US space agency said. The spacecraft was launched in 1977 and has since snapped images of Earth and other planets in the solar system and provided NASA with crucial information as it makes its long journey into outer space.
NASA researchers think Voyager 1 will leave the solar system and enter interstellar space, or the area in between the end of the Sun's influence and the next star system, in about four years. For now, Voyager 1 is 17.4 billion kilometers (10.8 billion miles) from the Sun in "an area where the velocity of the hot ionized gas, or plasma, emanating directly outward from the sun has slowed to zero," the space agency said.
"Scientists suspect the solar wind has been turned sideways by the pressure from the interstellar wind in the region between stars."
NASA noticed that the solar wind's outward speed had slowed to zero back in June, but wanted to look at readings from Voyager 1 over the next four months to be sure.
The data was presented late Monday at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco, California. "When I realized that we were getting solid zeroes, I was amazed," said Rob Decker, a Voyager  senior scientist at Johns Hopkins University. "Here was Voyager, a spacecraft that has been a workhorse for 33 years, showing us something completely new again."
NASA described the finding as "a major milestone in Voyager 1's passage through the heliosheath, the turbulent outer shell of the sun's sphere of influence, and the spacecraft's upcoming departure from our solar system."
Safe journey Voyager. Thankyou for your long service to mankind. May you continue to send us new and enlightening data as you explore the great beyond.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Choco-Mint Fudge Brownies

An excellent Christmas gift
When wrapped and tied with a ribbon, these fudgey brownies--with their cheerful layer of mint frosting--look like a pretty, edible package.

1/2 cup butter
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup softened butter
2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 to 3 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
Green food coloring
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Heat the oven to 350ยบ and grease a 9-inch square baking pan. For the brownies, place the butter and chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 1 minute, stir, and microwave for 1 minute more. Stir until smooth. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs. Stir in the chocolate and the vanilla extract. Finally, stir in the flour and salt until thoroughly combined. Pour into the prepared pan, then bake for 25 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool for at least 1 hour.
To make the mint frosting: cream the butter and confectioners' sugar. Add the milk 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until it is smooth and spreadable. Beat in the peppermint extract and tint to the desired shade with green food coloring. Frost the cooled brownies, cover, and chill for 1 hour.
To make the chocolate topping: pour the chips into a microwave-safe bowl, add the butter, and microwave on high for 1 1/2 minutes or until the chocolate melts. Stir until smooth. Pour the chocolate over the brownies and smooth it with a knife. Refrigerate for 45 minutes or until the coating hardens.
Bring the brownies to room temperature, then cut into 16 to 32 pieces. Layer them on a piece of cellophane (place waxed paper between the layers to prevent sticking), wrap up the brownie package, and tie with a red ribbon. Makes 16 to 32 brownies.

Mint Chocolate Bark

Peppermint extract and chocolate chips -- both white and semisweet -- give this melt-in-your-mouth candy a familiar after-dinner-mint flavor. Makes about 2 dozen pieces. A  great Christmas  gift  and the kids can help make it.

2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 drops green food coloring
Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper; set it aside. Melt the semisweet chips in a heatproof bowl set atop a pot of simmering water over medium-high heat. Stir continuously until smooth. Pour the chocolate onto the cookie sheet and spread it to about a 1/4-inch thickness with the back of a spoon.
Using the same method, melt the white chocolate chips with the oil. Stir continuously until smooth. Add the peppermint extract and food coloring; stir well. Pour the mixture over the chocolate layer and spread to about a 1/8-inch thickness with the back of a spoon. Draw the tip of a butter knife through the layers to create swirls. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes.
Remove the bark from the pan. Peel off the waxed paper. Set the bark on a cutting board and cut it into 2 dozen bars with a sharp knife. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Duff McKagan & Wife : Strips Down For Anti-Fur PETA Ad

A hard rocker and his  beautiful wife stripping down for a photo  isn't exactly a rare occurrence  , but  it's still uncommon when the musician  and model  in question are doing it for charity.

Bassist  Duff McKagan , of  'Guns  N' Roses and Violet Revolver fame , recently disrobed  alongside his wife , Susan Holmes McKagan as part of  'PETRA's  "Ink ,  Not  Mink" anti-fur campaign . The stars of E!'s 'Married to Rock' joined fellow musicians Dave Navarro , Tommy Lee and Linkin Park's  Chester  Bennington in the tattoo-heavy series .

"I think we should know better than that," Susan told PETA . "Whether  you're a photographer , a designer , celebrity  or a stylist ,I think everyone should share responsibility in bringing more awareness that's , by , [fur's] not necessary , it's out of fashion , it's completely immoral to the animals.

Just wondering : The faux furs today are plenty warm and looks like real fur and are soft. No animal needs to be killed these days just for sport .O.K   some of  my family is hunters , but they don't believe in the cruel act of beating a seal over the head  or killing a calibu  and skinning it alive .
I say don't cause pain or be cruel , please don't kill the animals just for the sake of killing.
There are people all over the world  that depends on hunting animals for their livelihood and existence .....but to kill for fun and profit is just so wrong .