June 30, 2008
The Associated Press
BARNEGAT, N.J. - It's the case of the nonexistent ninja. Public schools in Barnegat were locked down briefly after someone reported seeing a ninja running through the woods behind an elementary school.
Turns out the ninja was actually a camp counselor dressed in black karate garb and carrying a plastic sword.
Police tell the Asbury Park Press the man was late to a costume-themed day at a nearby middle school.
The lockdown began shortly after 9 a.m. Wednesday and lasted until 9:30.
I have no good excuse for not seeing Tom in Columbus over the weekend. Other than I don't know another human being that would have gone with me. Should have gone anyway.
Been watching his setlists for the current Glitter and Doom tour. Looks like in Columbus he busted out one of my own personal favorites, Big In Japan. Damn. Damn damn damn.
Tom Waits - Columbus Setlist - 06/28/08
Way Down In The Hole
All The World Is Green
Sins of the Father
16 Shells from a 30-ought-6
Cold Cold Ground
Black Market Baby
Hoist That Rag
Innocent When You Dream
Lost in the Harbor
Lie To Me
Misery Is The River Of The World
Big In Japan
Dirt In The Ground
Make It Rain
Jesus Gonna Be Here
House Where Nobody Lives
June 27, 2008
June 19, 2008
Following are excerpts from an interview with Dr. Ahmad Al-Mu'bi, a Saudi marriage officiant, which aired on LBC TV (Lebanon) on June 19, 2008
Dr. Ahmad Al-Mu'bi: Marriage is actually two things: First we are talking about the marriage contract itself. This is one thing, while consummating the marriage – having sex with the wife for the first time – is another thing. There is no minimal age for entering marriage. You can have a marriage contract even with a one-year-old girl, not to mention a girl of nine, seven, or eight. This is merely a contract [indicating] consent. The guardian in such a case must be the father, because the father's opinion is obligatory. Thus, the girl becomes a wife... But is the girl ready for sex or not? What is the appropriate age for having sex for the first time? This varies according to environment and traditions. In Yemen, girls are married off at nine, ten, eleven, eight, or thirteen, while in other countries, they are married off at 16. Some countries have legislated laws forbidding having sex before the girl is eighteen.
The Prophet Muhammad is the model we follow. He took 'Aisha to be his wife when she was six, but he had sex with her only when she was nine.
Interviewer: When she was six...
Dr. Ahmad Al-Mu'bi: He married her at the age of six, and he consummated the marriage, by having sex with her for the first time, when she was nine. We consider the Prophet Muhammad to be our model.
Interviewer: My question to you is whether the marriage of a 12-year-old boy with an 11-year-old girl is a logical marriage, which is permitted by Islamic law.
Dr. Ahmad Al-Mu'bi: If the guardian is the father... There are two different types of guardianship. If the guardian is the father, and he marries his daughter off to a man of appropriate standing, the marriage is obviously valid.
People find themselves in all kinds of circumstances. Take, for example, a man who has two, three, or four daughters. He does not have any wives, but he needs to go on a trip. Isn't it better to marry his daughter to a man, who will protect and sustain her, and when she reaches the proper age, he will have sex with her? Who says all men are ferocious wolves?
June 26, 2008
June 25, 2008
A song that makes me misty eyed every time I hear it. Thanks Tom.
June 24, 2008
I remember back when the Coen Brothers almost won the Best Picture Oscar for the almost universally praised FARGO. Their next film was the completely off the wall stoner epic THE BIG LEBOWSKI.
Now, in the wake of Oscar recognition for the brilliant NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN comes the Coen's latest....BURN AFTER READING.
Looking at the trailer, it would seem they are following their own set tradition of following up a respected 'artistic' picture with something completely anarchic.
June 23, 2008
Comedian George Carlin dead at age 71
Mon Jun 23
A publicist for George Carlin says the legendary comedian has died of heart failure at a hospital in Santa Monica, Calif.
Jeff Abraham says Carlin went into St. John's Health Center on Sunday afternoon, complaining of chest pain. Carlin died at 5:55 p.m. PDT. He was 71.
Carlin, who had a history of heart trouble, performed as recently as last weekend at the Orleans Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas. It was announced Tuesday that Carlin was being awarded the 11th annual Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.
The dean of counterculture comedians, Carlin constantly pushed the envelop with his jokes, particularly with a routine called "The Seven Words You Can Never Say On TV."
June 21, 2008
Police said 52-year-old David Workman, of Irondale, confessed to taking the credit card while he was investigating a fatality at the Jefferson County morgue.
Two days after the victim died, according to police, Workman charged more than $400 on the stolen card at an exotic dance club in Weirton.
Workman said the card was "not intentionally used." When a NEWS9 reporter asked to explain further, he remained silent.
The victim's family notified Ohio State Highway Patrol after they noticed charges made on his credit card after his death, Weirton police detective Rob Alexander said.
On a surveillance video, a manager at the club questions Workman about the card, but officers said Workman lied and forged a signature of the dead victim's name.
Police did not release the name of the club because they said the owners played a key role in the investigation.
Workman turned himself in to police on Friday and was arraigned in Weirton on charges of fraudulent use of a credit card, a felony. He was released on $5,000 bond.
It was not immediately known if Workman will face additional charges in Ohio, since that is where the alleged theft happened.Jefferson County Coroner John Metcalf said Workman was fired from his job of seven years. He said Workman was one of his first hires and he was shocked by the allegations.
June 19, 2008
June 18, 2008
Tom Waits returns to the road with searing two-hour set
By SANDY COHEN, AP Entertainment Writer
Tom Waits doesn't play live very often, so when he does, it's an event.
The elusive musician began his Glitter and Doom tour Tuesday with a searing two-hour set that traipsed through his 20-album catalog. The show at the Orpheum Theater is the first of 28 Waits plans to play in the United States and Europe.
Waits rewarded fans with a nonstop set of familiar and re-imagined tracks from throughout his 35-year recording career.
Wearing a gray three-piece suit and a black bowler, Waits twisted and trembled as he sang, wringing his gruff trademark growl from every cell of his body. He stomped his feet, wagged his fingers and flailed his arms, conducting his band with subtle hand gestures all the while.
Waits anchored the spare stage, decorated only with colored light and a backdrop of broken bullhorns and dismembered brass instruments. His shadow loomed large behind him.
The 58-year-old singer-songwriter embodied as many onstage personas as his work does musical genres. He was a passionate preacher and the audience his congregation on the bluesy "Jesus Gonna Be Here" from 1992's "Bone Machine." Moments later, he was an animated ringleader on the polka-flavored "Rain Dogs," from the 1985 album of the same name.
He was a defiant rock 'n' roller strapped with a guitar on the rebellious "Goin' Out West," a lonely bluesman on "Anywhere I Lay My Head" and an old-fashioned crooner on a jazzy interpretation of "Murder in the Red Barn."
He played half a dozen songs from 1999's "Mule Variations," including the heartfelt ballad "Picture in a Frame" and the tongue-in-cheek Messianic tribute, "Chocolate Jesus," which he sang through a bullhorn.
Sitting at the grand piano, Waits reached back 30 years to sing "Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis" and 20 for "You're Innocent When You Dream."
Waits peppered his set with playful banter, responding to shouts from the audience and explaining a ridiculous formula for calculating the weather without a thermometer. And he took time out for fun, donning a disco-ball bowler hat just to enjoy the light effects. But he didn't stray from the music for long, packing more than two dozen tunes into a set that was sure to satisfy any fans that made the trip.
June 17, 2008
Coffee Drinkers Have Slightly Lower Death Rates, Study Finds
ScienceDaily (Jun. 17, 2008) — A new study has good news for coffee drinkers: Regular coffee drinking (up to 6 cups per day) is not associated with increased deaths in either men or women. In fact, both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee consumption is associated with a somewhat smaller rate of death from heart disease.
"Coffee consumption has been linked to various beneficial and detrimental health effects, but data on its relation with death were lacking," says Esther Lopez-Garcia, PhD, the study's lead author. "Coffee consumption was not associated with a higher risk of mortality in middle-aged men and women. The possibility of a modest benefit of coffee consumption on heart disease, cancer, and other causes of death needs to be further investigated."
Women consuming two to three cups of caffeinated coffee per day had a 25 percent lower risk of death from heart disease during the follow-up period (which lasted from 1980 to 2004 and involved 84,214 women) as compared with non-consumers, and an 18 percent lower risk of death caused by something other than cancer or heart disease as compared with non-consumers during follow-up. For men, this level of consumption was associated with neither a higher nor a lower risk of death during the follow-up period (which lasted from 1986 to 2004 and involved 41,736 men).
The researchers analyzed data of 84,214 women who had participated in the Nurses' Health Study and 41,736 men who had participated in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. To be in the current study, participants had to have been free of cancer and heart disease at the start of those larger studies.
The study participants completed questionnaires every two to four years that included questions about how frequently they drank coffee, other diet habits, smoking, and health conditions. The researchers then compared the frequency of death from any cause, death due to heart disease, and death due to cancer among people with different coffee-drinking habits.
Among women, 2,368 deaths were due to heart disease, 5,011 were due to cancer, and 3,716 were due to another cause. Among men, 2,049 deaths were due to heart disease, 2,491 were due to cancer, and 2,348 were due to another cause.
While accounting for other risk factors, such as body size, smoking, diet, and specific diseases, the researchers found that people who drank more coffee were less likely to die during the follow-up period. This was mainly because of lower risk for heart disease deaths among coffee drinkers.
The researchers found no association between coffee drinking and cancer deaths. These relationships did not seem to be related to caffeine because people who drank decaffeinated coffee also had lower death rates than people who did not drink coffee.
The editors of Annals of Internal Medicine caution that the design of the study does not make it certain that coffee decreases the chances of dying sooner than expected. Something else about coffee drinkers might be protecting them. And some measurement error in the assessment of coffee consumption is inevitable because estimated consumption came from self-reports.
This study was supported by National Institutes of Health research grants.
June 11, 2008
June 10, 2008
Salvatore de Ciuco, spokesman for Bishop Lorenzo Chiarinelli of Viterbo in central Italy, told SkyTG24 television: "No bishop, no priest can celebrate a wedding when he knows of admitted impotence as it is a motive for annulment" of the marriage.
The 26-year-old groom, who took part in a civil marriage ceremony on Saturday in Viterbo, has been paraplegic since he was involved in a car accident.
The curate of the parish who was banned from marrying the couple was present at the ceremony.