31 March 2008

Google Trend 31 mar 08: Sean Levert

CLEVELAND -- A nursing supervisor at Lutheran Hospital confirms to Fox 8 News that musician Sean Levert, a Cleveland native, died of natural causes just before midnight.Sean Levert, 39, is the son of legendary O'Jays lead singer Eddie Levert and the brother of late R&B superstar Gerald Levert. Sean, Gerald and Marc Gordon made up the music group Levert, which hit it big in the late 1980s with its popular song "Casanova."Sean Levert had also appeared in movies, including 1991's "New Jack City."The hospital spokesperson with whom Fox 8 News spoke said that Sean Levert's body was immediately taken to the coroner. Cuyahoga County Coroner's Office spokesman Powell Caesar confirms that Sean Levert's body had been received.A story in the Chicago Sun-Times reports that Sean Levert was found dead in a Cleveland jail over the weekend. The story says that he was being held in prison for "allegedly failing to pay about $80,000 in child support."

Source: Fox 8
Watch a recorded show of Levert brothers.

30 March 2008

Google Trend 30 mar 08: Matt Maupin

The Army has identified remains found in Iraq as belonging to Matt Maupin of Bartonville's 724th Transportation Company. Staff Sergeant Maupin went missing on April 9th, 2004. He was the only U.S. soldier unaccounted for in Iraq. His unit was ambushed in Iraq. D.N.A. testing and a piece of clothing confirmed the remains were of Matt Maupin. Maupin's family was given the news by a three star general around one this afternoon. The community of Len Este, Ohio, near Cincinnati, rallied around Maupin's parents Carolyn and Keith Maupin over the past four years. With the help of friends, Keith Maupin spread the word that his son is coming home. "I feel bad that Matt didn't come home the way we wanted. But, he's coming home. And, I don't know, I can't explain it. But, we got a lot of prayers and I think that helps me," Keith Maupin said. A memorial service is being planned for Maupin. Source: Week-TV watch a collection of photos of Matt's team

26 March 2008

...so you are guilty !

Peru's ex-president, Alberto Fujimori, fell asleep during his trial over alleged human rights abuses (torture and other insignificant things).

Why are the bells ringing ? Is already Christmas?

25 March 2008

Google Trend 25 mar 08: jonas brothers

jonas brothers "Music on Red Bull." Without hesitating, that's how 17-year-old Kevin Jonas describes the hyper-adrenalized sounds he's created with his two brothers, 13-year-old Nicholas and 16-year-old Joseph, on the Jonas Brothers' debut album, It's About Time. And it's no wonder since the boys' influences include an eclectic mix of artists ranging from the Ramones to the Jackson 5 to The Modern Lovers--all purveyors of tight, catchy anthems. One thing is for sure, the Jonas Brothers are all ready to keep the momentum going strong. "We go crazy on stage!" says Kevin. "It's so much fun!" Music always played a major part in the brothers' lives growing up in Wyckoff, New Jersey. Their parents are both musicians, so gathering around the piano for sing-alongs was an essential part of regular family bonding, yet each brother found his own musical calling in a different way.
Source: Starpulse

"(-Rapping-) Yo! Listen, I'm Joe Jonas! I'm your best friend! Open the fridge. Eat a chicken."
Joe Jonas

For the Jonas Brothers fans, below is a widget that can be placed on your iGoogle page,Netvibes, Facebook page or any other page. The photos are updated as are uploaded on Flickr. Click on 'Get and share' button to get it.

24 March 2008

Speech trend: Martin Luther King Jr. meets Morpheus meets Obama

There are at least three similarities in these speeches. Morpheus's speech about the last hundred years is clearly based on Luther King Jr.s speech. All three speeches refers to history. Obama also refers to slavery.

Google trend 24 mar 08: Anarchic hand syndrome

Maybe some things shouldn't be made public. For instance this disease called "Anarchic hand syndrome". Is such an abomination which perhaps should remain in the doctor's labs. Here is their description:

"An alien hand sufferer can feel normal sensation in the hand, but believes that the hand, while still being a part of their body, behaves in a manner that is totally distinct from the sufferer's normal behavior. They feel that they have no control over the movements of the 'alien' hand, but that, instead, the hand has the capability of acting independent of their conscious voluntary control. Alien hands can perform complex acts such as undoing buttons, removing clothing, and manipulation of tools. Alien behavior can be distinguished from reflexive behavior in that the former is flexibly purposive while the latter is obligatory. Sometimes the sufferer will not be aware of what the alien hand is doing until it is brought to his or her attention, or until the hand does something that draws their attention to its behavior." Full description on Wikipedia. I feel pity for the people who has this rare disease, but this reminds me of a very funny video, which I would name it "Anarchic foot syndrome". Now, the question is "who had first the disease, the man or the dog" ?

21 March 2008

Not trendy: hacker-spammer-blogger

Google Trend 21 mar 08: Lisfranc joint

Jacques Lisfranc (1790-1847) was a field surgeon in Napoleon's army serving on the Russian front. He wrote about a new amputation technique between the forefoot and midfoot. This route became known as the Lisfranc joint. A Lisfranc injury encompasses everything from a sprain to a complete fracture/dislocation through this joint.

20 March 2008

Google trend 20 mar 08: Free ride lyrics

Although the keyword of the day is free ride lyrics , my searches leaded to a "hound dog" video on youtube which is quite pretty actually.
The lyrics reffers to Edgar Winter Band - Free Ride
It looks like a Google joke if this is the trend for this day; or is just a simple way for Google to find who is actually following the trend. LOL

19 March 2008

Google Trend 19 mar 08: Jennifer Wilbanks

The man who was once engaged to the runaway bride has gotten married — to another woman. John Mason, 35, married Shelley Martin, 34, in a quiet ceremony Saturday at his parents' home in Duluth, his father, Claude Mason, told People magazine for a story posted Tuesday on its Web site. "We were very, very happy for him," said Claude Mason, who serves as an associate municipal judge and officiated the ceremony. John Mason was thrust into the spotlight in 2005 when then-fiance Jennifer Wilbanks disappeared just days before their wedding. She turned up a few days later in New Mexico and initially claimed she had been kidnapped and sexually assaulted. She later recanted, saying she ran away because of personal issues, and pleaded no contest to telling authorities a phony story. She was sentenced to two years' probation and performed community service that included mowing the lawns at public buildings. Wilbanks and John Mason ended their engagement and filed lawsuits against each other, which were later dropped.

18 March 2008

Google trend 18 mar 08: Barack Obama's speech

Barack Obama's dividing speech about "A More Perfect Union" “We the people, in order to form a more perfect union.” I am the son of a black man from Kenya and a white woman from Kansas. I was raised with the help of a white grandfather who survived a Depression to serve in Patton’s Army during World War II and a white grandmother who worked on a bomber assembly line at Fort Leavenworth while he was overseas. I’ve gone to some of the best schools in America and lived in one of the world’s poorest nations. I am married to a black American who carries within her the blood of slaves and slaveowners – an inheritance we pass on to our two precious daughters. I have brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, uncles and cousins, of every race and every hue, scattered across three continents, and for as long as I live, I will never forget that in no other country on Earth is my story even possible. It’s a story that hasn’t made me the most conventional candidate. But it is a story that has seared into my genetic makeup the idea that this nation is more than the sum of its parts – that out of many, we are truly one.

by Barack Obama

17 March 2008

Google trend 17 mar 08: Derisory

Meet the Biggest Loser in the Bear Stearns Debacle 'Bear Stearns' second largest shareholder, Joe Lewis, said Monday JPMorgan's $2 a share offer for the investment bank is "derisory."

"I think it's a derisory offer, and I don't think they will get shareholder approval," Lewis said, in an interview with CNBC.

Lewis also discounted rumors that his position in Bear Stearns was leveraged.

The British-born billionaire, who amassed his fortune as a currency trader, is the biggest individual loser in Bear Stearns' debacle. It is estimated that he has lost nearly $1 billion from his decision to pile into Bear Stearns stock in recent months.


Derisory means: "ridiculous". That was all about this word.

16 March 2008

Google trend 16 mar 08: Blood For Oil

It's hard to miss the point of the "Blood for Oil" Web site. It features one poster of an American flag with "Blood for oil?" in white block letters where the stars should be and two dripping red handprints across the stripes. Another shows a photo of President Bush with a thin black line on his upper lip. "Got oil?" the headline asks wryly.

Five years after the United States invaded Iraq, plenty of people believe that the war was waged chiefly to secure U.S. petroleum supplies and to make Iraq safe -- and lucrative -- for the U.S. oil industry.

We may not know the real motivations behind the Iraq war for years, but it remains difficult to distill oil from all the possibilities. That's because our society and economy have been nursed on cheap oil, and the idea that oil security is a right as well as a necessity has become part of our foreign policy DNA, handed down from Franklin D. Roosevelt to Jimmy Carter to George H.W. Bush. And the war and its untidy aftermath have, in fact, swelled the coffers of the world's biggest oil companies.

But it hasn't happened in the way anyone might have imagined.

Instead of making Iraq an open economy fueled by a thriving oil sector, the war has failed to boost the flow of oil from Iraq's giant well-mapped reservoirs, which oil experts say could rival Saudi Arabia's and produce 6 million barrels a day, if not more. Thanks to insurgents' sabotage of pipelines and pumping stations, and foreign companies' fears about safety and contract risks in Iraq, the country is still struggling in vain to raise oil output to its prewar levels of about 2.5 million barrels a day.

As it turns out, that has kept oil off the international market at just the moment when the world desperately needs a cushion of supplies to keep prices down. Demand from China is booming, and political strife has limited oil production in Nigeria and Venezuela.

In the absence of Iraqi supplies, prices have soared three-and-a-half-fold since the U.S. invasion on March 20, 2003. (Last week, they shattered all previous records, even after adjusting for inflation.) The profits of the five biggest Western oil companies have jumped from $40 billion to $121 billion over the same period. While the United States has rid itself of Saddam Hussein and whatever threat he might have posed, oil revenues have filled the treasuries of petro-autocrats in Iran, Venezuela and Russia, emboldening those regimes and complicating U.S. diplomacy in new ways.

American consumers are paying for this turmoil at the pump. If the overthrow of Hussein was supposed to be a silver bullet for the American consumer, it turned out to be one that ricocheted and tore a hole through his wallet.

"If we went to war for oil, we did it as clumsily as anyone could do. And we spent more on the war than we could ever conceivably have gotten out of Iraq's oil fields even if we had particular control over them," says Anthony Cordesman, an expert on U.S. strategy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies who rejects the idea that the war was designed on behalf of oil companies.

But that doesn't mean that oil had nothing to do with the invasion. Says Cordesman: "To say that we would have taken the same steps against a dictator in Africa or Burma as we took in Iraq is to ignore the strategic realities that drove American behavior."

There is no single conspiracy theory about why the Bush administration allegedly waged this "war for oil." Here are two.

Version one: Bush, former Texas oilman, and Vice President Cheney, former chief executive of the contracting and oil-services firm Halliburton, wanted to help their friends in the oil world. They sought to install a pro-Western government that would invite the major oil companies back into Iraq. "Exxon was in the kitchen with Dick Cheney when the Iraq war was being cooked up," says the Web site of a group called Consumers for Peace.

Version two: As laid out in an April 2003 article in Le Monde Diplomatique, "The war against Saddam is about guaranteeing American hegemony rather than about increasing the profits of Exxon." Yahya Sadowski, an associate professor at the American University of Beirut, argues that "the neo-conservative cabal" had a "grand plan" to ramp up Iraqi production, "flood the world market with Iraqi oil" and drive the price down to $15 a barrel. That would stimulate the U.S. economy, "finally destroy" OPEC, wreck the economies of "rogue states" such as Iran and Venezuela, and "create more opportunities for 'regime change.' "

There are historical roots for all this suspicion. After World War I, the Western powers carved up oil-producing interests in the Middle East. In Iraq, the French were given about a quarter of the national consortium, and the U.S. government pressured its allies to turn over an equal share to a handful of American companies.

Even now, the fate of Iraq's concessions is laden with politics. Russia's Lukoil hopes to regain access to a giant field. China is seeking new fields. The big U.S. firms are angling to return to fields they ran before sanctions barred them during the 1990s. Smaller U.S., Turkish, European and Korean firms are gambling on new exploration deals with the autonomous Kurdish regional authority despite threats from Baghdad.

"One can imagine Iraq's oil fields as a pimple waiting to be pricked," says Antonia Juhasz, author of "The Bush Agenda: Invading the World, One Economy at a Time." She notes that the Bush administration put former oil executives on the reconstruction team, hired the Virginia consulting firm BearingPoint to write a framework for Iraq's oil industry, picked the Iraqis who took key oil ministry posts and has pressured Iraq to adopt a petroleum law favorable to international companies.

The petroleum law has become a rallying point for critics who say that the war was about oil. It would allow long-term production-sharing agreements, which Juhasz says are only used in 12 percent of the world "and only where the country needs to entice the companies to come." Defenders of the law, including exiled Iraqi oil experts, say that it provides for different types of contracts; how generous they are will depend on how well they are negotiated, but the law sets minimum conditions.

Greg Muttitt, another widely quoted war critic, who works for Platform London, a group of British environmentalists, human rights campaigners, artists and activists, says that an occupied country can't negotiate freely. What ended up in the proposed petroleum law, he says, was "pretty close" to what was in papers drafted by the State Department before the invasion. "Perhaps not surprising," he adds, given lobbying by U.S. officials and the role of former oil company executives in the reconstruction hierarchy.

That's the theory. The problem is: The petroleum law has not been adopted.

* * *

The idea that the Bush administration was in the tank for the oil industry glosses over a story of conflicting views before the U.S. invasion and the bungled execution of plans afterwards. There were two rival interagency policy groups before the war, one led by the Pentagon and one by the State Department. Some key differences were never resolved. Some Pentagon planners wanted Iraq to maximize oil output, while State worried that a flood of Iraqi oil could threaten Saudi interests and market share.

The notion of an oil war also conjures up an image of a swashbuckling, string-pulling oil industry that no longer reflects a business that in many ways has become cautious and fearful of political turmoil. Western oil interests did encourage the overthrow of Iranian leader Mohammed Mossadegh in the early 1950s and the war in Suez in 1956. But generally oil companies are content to forge alliances of convenience with leaders as diverse as Saudi kings, Angolan communists and Indonesia's late, long-time autocrat Suharto as long as they're predictable. On those leaders' politics, human rights record, ethnicity or religion, oil giants are agnostic.

"Companies don't like and won't make investments where there's uncertainty, and war is the biggest uncertainty of all," said Rob McKee, the former number two executive at ConocoPhillips and a former top U.S. official overseeing Iraq's oil sector. "On the other hand, companies were hoping that Iraq would open up, and as long as Saddam was there, Iraq couldn't. . . . From that point of view, maybe they were happy that there would be a change."

Still, the big firms had trepidations. In a conversation with a consultant shortly before the invasion, the chief executive of one of the five major oil companies described what he would say if asked to invest billions of dollars in Iraq after the war: Tell me about the contract system, arbitration, physical security and social cohesion, then I'll decide.

Five years later, he still hasn't decided, and physical security is so tenuous that the oil giants are still declining Iraqi invitations to send their employees to inspect existing fields.

This wasn't what Bush administration planners had expected.

Leading administration officials expected a postwar Iraq to reclaim its former position among oil exporters. "We are dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction and relatively soon," then-Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told Congress just after the invasion, predicting that oil would generate $50 billion to $100 billion in revenues within two to three years. Ironically, Iraq might approach that figure this year because of high prices, not higher production.

Prewar planning settled who would oversee Iraq's oil sector. The Pentagon picked Phil Carroll, a well-respected former top executive at Royal Dutch Shell, who was succeeded by McKee. War critics point to such industry ties as evidence of nefarious influence, but former administration members say the choices were made on the basis of expertise. "If you wanted to get someone to help run an oil industry, who would you choose?" asked one person involved in selecting Carroll. "A broker on an exchange? An environmental expert? Or the head of an oil company?"

* * *

The controversial details were all part of the larger strategic picture. "When we first decided on the war, I don't remember oil playing an important part," says Brent Scowcroft, national security adviser under the elder Bush and a critic of the current president's decision to invade.

But that's because concern about oil supplies is part of the architecture of U.S. foreign policy. Scowcroft notes that oil can't be disregarded because Iraq and its neighbors sit on two-thirds of the world's oil reserves. But oil needn't be mentioned either because it's self-evident. War critics might call that the perfect conspiracy.

In a sense, though, all Americans are part of that conspiracy. We have built a society that is profligate with its energy and relies on petroleum that happens to be pooled under some unstable or unfriendly regimes. We have frittered away energy resources with little regard for the strategic consequences. And now it's hard and expensive to change our ways.

Zaab Sethna, a business consultant and former official of the Iraqi National Congress, says that he attended many Pentagon and State Department meetings and never heard postwar oil policy discussed.

But, he says, "Let's not kid ourselves. Iraq is sitting on a very large portion of oil itself and is in a key region of the world. And that makes it important for U.S. security interests. . . . The Iraqi opposition . . . realized that Rwanda wouldn't be getting the attention of the superpower."

Until Rwanda discovers oil.

15 March 2008

Google trend 15 mar 08: Atlanta Tornado

ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) -- At least 20 homes in Atlanta's historic Cabbagetown neighborhood were flattened by a tornado that ripped through downtown Atlanta on Friday night, a spokeswoman for the mayor said.

Firefighters fear there could be people dead inside the ruins of a collapsed loft complex in the same neighborhood, the spokeswoman said.

There have been no deaths confirmed from the tornado, but at least 15 people were treated at two hospitals. Most of the injuries were minor cuts, scrapes and bruises, officials said.

The Fulton Cotton Mill Lofts, just east of downtown Atlanta, collapsed in a "pancake fashion," Atlanta Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran said early Saturday.

The tornado that ripped through the heart of the city damaged the roof of the Georgia Dome during a college basketball game, shattered windows and ripped roofs from buildings before continuing into several residential neighborhoods.

The building that houses CNN was at the epicenter of the storm -- sitting next to the dome and hotels where thousands of basketball fans attending the Southeastern Conference tournament were at least temporarily displaced.

14 March 2008

Google trend 14 mar 08: Pi Day and Pi Approximation Day

Pi Day and Pi Approximation Day are two holidays held to celebrate the mathematical constant π (pi). Pi Day is observed on March 14 (3/14 in American date format), due to π being equal to roughly 3.14. Sometimes it is celebrated on March 14 at 1:59 p.m. (commonly known as Pi Minute). If π is truncated to seven decimal places, it becomes 3.1415926, making March 14 at 1:59:26 p.m., Pi Second (or sometimes March 14, 1592 at 6:53:58 a.m.). Pi Approximation Day may be observed on any of several dates, most often July 22 (22/7 (European date format) is a popular approximation of π). March 14 also happens to be Albert Einstein's birthday. The first Pi Day celebration was held at the San Francisco Exploratorium in 1988, with staff and public marching around one of its circular spaces, and then consuming fruit pies; the museum has since added pizza pies to its Pi Day menu. The founder of Pi Day, the "Prince of Pi", is Larry Shaw, now retired from the Exploratorium, but still helping out with the celebrations. They have also recently added the first Pi Day celebrations in Second Life. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology often mails out its acceptance letters to be delivered to prospective students on Pi Day. Some also celebrate Pi Approximation Day in addition to Pi Day, which can fall on any of several dates: July 22: 22/7 in nearly all date formats, an ancient approximation of pi November 10: The 314th day of the year (November 9 in leap years) December 21, 1:13 p.m.: The 355th day of the year (December 20 in leap years), celebrated at 1:13 for the Chinese approximation 355/113 On March 14, 2004, Daniel Tammet recited from memory 22514 decimal digits of pi. March 14, 1916 (3/14/16 in American date format) is the closest approximation of pi in the last century.

13 March 2008

Google trend 13 mar 08: Ashley Alexandra Dupré

The prostitute that brought down the New York governor The Observers: "The governor of New York, Eliot Spitzer, announced yesterday that he would resign from office after the press dicovered his past dealings with a prostitute. The New York Times traced the prostitute and went on to publish details from her MySpace page. A few hours later, the call girl, Ashley Alexandra Dupré, was a freshly made web icon. The 22-year-old's MySpace page has already been viewed more than four million times (doubling within the space of a few hours) and web-users are digging up anything they can find about the New Yorker. One of her former classmates has already set up a Facebook group with an alleged photo of her as a teenager. No rock has been left unturned. But are these actions condemnable? Born Ashley Youmans in New Jersey, the home-runaway told the New York Times that 'this has been a very difficult time' and that she didn't want seen as ' monster'. But the sex-worker has not turned away from the hounding press and public. She could have easily closed her MySpace account and deleted the photos published on the site. But she didn't. And neither did she delete her song, 'What We Want'."

12 March 2008

Google Trend 12 mar 08: The Forbidden Kingdom

The Forbidden Kingdom (2008) - Plot summary: "An American teenager who is obsessed with Hong Kong cinema and kung-fu classics makes an extraordinary discovery in a Chinatown pawnshop: the legendary stick weapon of the Chinese sage and warrior, the Monkey King. With the lost relic in hand, the teenager unexpectedly finds himself traveling back to ancient China to join a crew of warriors from martial arts lore on a dangerous quest to free the imprisoned Monkey King."

11 March 2008

Google Trend 11 mar 08: F-22 Raptor

US Army To Replace F-177 Jets With F-22 Raptor: "After 27 years of service in US Army the famous fighter jets F-177 will be replaced by F-22 Raptor having the same stealth technology. The Nighthawk has been in service for 27 years, and seen combat in the skies over Panama, Serbia, Iraq, and Afghanistan. It was the first purpose built stealth aircraft designed to overcome radar by deflecting it away with its faceted appearance. According to book description of 'Lockheed-Martin F/A-22 Raptor: Stealth Fighter (Aerofax)' F-22 Raptor was initially referred as the Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) and was designed to meet a USAF requirement for 750 new fighters to replace the F-15 Eagle. 'Work began in the early 1980s, and competition selection resulted in orders for flying demonstration prototypes of the YF-22 and the Northrop YF-23. The first of two prototypes was flown on 29th September 1990, and extensive testing and evaluation took place during that decade. In 1993 an air-to-ground attack role using precision-guided munitions was added to the original air superiority role, and the designation has been changed to F/A-22 to reflect this. The F-22 is designed to supercruise at up to Mach 1.5 without use of the afterburner, and its unusual layout is designed for agility as well as to incorporate stealth characteristics. A planned two-seat trainer version, the F-22B was cancelled, but production deliveries are now taking place, with service introduction planned for 2005. Author Jay Miller has followed the program closely to produce an extensively researched and well-illustrated review of this topical new fighter in the well-established and acclaimed Aerofax style and depth.'"

10 March 2008

Google Trend 10 mar 08: Eliot Spitzer

NEW YORK — The day after federal prosecutors pulled the covers off the high-priced prostitution ring that would soon bring down Gov. Eliot Spitzer, the call girl at the center of the scandal told her father she was in a little trouble, he said. But Ashley Alexandra Dupre didn't explain what that trouble was, William Youmans told the New York Post Friday from his hometown of Kill Devil Hills, N.C. "Everyone makes mistakes, and this was a very large mistake," the stonemason said. "I love her tremendously and support her, but I am just in so much shock right now." His 22-year-old daughter was unmasked Wednesday as the prostitute — identified in court documents as "Kristen" — whom Spitzer arranged to meet for a tryst in Washington the night before Valentine's Day, according to law enforcement officials. When Dupre called her father in tears on March 7, Spitzer had not yet been publicly linked to the Emperors Club VIP escort service. But four alleged organizers had been arrested the day before. "She was really upset. I was worried for her," Youmans told the Post. "She told me she was in a little bit of trouble." Dupre, born Ashley Youmans, grew up largely in New Jersey but moved in with her father on North Carolina's Outer Banks at age 17, he said. Feeling out of place, she left after a year to move to New York and pursue her singing ambitions. Dupre has found herself in a media maelstrom since her role in the scandal was disclosed. Pictures of her have been splashed across newspaper pages, Hustler publisher Larry Flynt has offered her $1 million to pose nude for his magazine and thousands of people have bought her songs from an online music retailer. Her lawyer lambasted the media Friday for publishing revealing photos and thrusting her into the "public glare" without her consent.

09 March 2008

Google Trend 09 mar 08: Nova Dreamer

Control Your Dreams with Lucid Dreaming Experts Caution that Guiding Dreams May Lead Sleepers to Miss Subconscious Messages For many of us, dreams are a strange other world -- puzzling, terrifying and beyond our control. But some psychologists now say, under the right conditions, we can control our dreams to have fun or to learn from them. One way to do that is through lucid dreaming, in which you choose what happens in your dream. You can fly through the air, swim with dolphins, tame the monster in your nightmares, speak to a dead relative -- anything you want to do, all the while aware that it's a dream. "Lucid dreaming is simply a dream in which you know you're dreaming while it's happening," said Dr. Stephen Laberge, founder of the Lucidity Institute at Stanford University. "So you know, 'This is a dream I'm having,' and therefore, you can control, you can decide. You know it's all in your mind, so nothing can hurt you. You're free and you can experiment." Recently, people come to the big island of Hawaii for a two-week session with Laberge, who is widely considered to be the country's pre-eminent authority on lucid dreaming. Stephanie Smedes, an animal eye doctor, is here to learn how to have lucid dreams. One of her goals is to control her nightmares of being chased by an unknown figure, running from room to room. Smedes hopes that lucid dreaming will "help me to be part of them and then switch them around so I'm not so frightened of them." At its most basic level, lucid dreaming involves recognizing that you're dreaming while you're dreaming. "The key to lucid dreaming is [to] remember to do something in your dreams, to notice that it's a dream," Laberge said. "So before bed, you set your mind. Say, 'Tonight, I'm going to be dreaming -- and when I do, I want to remember to notice that I'm dreaming.'" To train the mind to realize it's in a dream, Laberge sometimes uses a device called "the nova dreamer." "It's your sleep mask you wear while you're asleep," Laberge explained. "There are sensors on it that pick up the rapid eye movements, where your eyes move when you're dreaming." The sensor triggers flashing lights that penetrate your consciousness. The lights are a visual cue to become aware that you are dreaming. You can then take over control of your dream as if you were directing a movie. Two months after the Hawaii conference, ABC News visited Smedes in Seattle to see if she was able to become a lucid dreamer. "I have had three dreams I would call lucid dreams," she said, "and I've had a number of near successes." In one especially vivid lucid dream, Smedes found herself flying above the ocean. "I thought, 'How did you get here? You said you weren't going to fly in your dreams.' And I went, 'Oh, just stop Steph, who cares? Be quiet. Just you're here; be excited,'" she said. "And so I saw, first I saw, one dolphin. And then I saw a school of fish go by. And then I saw a whole pod of dolphins go by. And I got real excited, and I clapped my hands." Smedes said she hasn't had nightmares again since the Hawaii trip. But some dream psychologists say lucid dreaming should not be a substitute for dreaming freely. "The note of caution I would inject is if you focus too much on controlling your dreams, you lose perhaps one of the most valuable aspects of dreams, which is what they're telling you what you don't know about yourself," said Dr. Alan Siegel, author of "Dream Wisdom" and a clinical psychologist at the University of California Berkeley. But people like Smedes say lucid dreaming has brought them amazing breakthroughs -- claiming they are now the masters of own dreams, for wisdom or just for fun.

08 March 2008

Google Trend 08 mar 08: Pacquiao

LAS VEGAS -- The moment the fight ended, both fighters raised their arms in victory. Within seconds, corner men lifted each into the air in celebration.Both men were right. So were both corners. All deserved the assumption of victory. But on a wild night of boxing at the Mandalay Bay Events Center here Saturday, a night when defeat brought with it no shame, Manny Pacquiao won a narrow split decision over Juan Manuel Marquez.It was a super-featherweight title fight. Super turned out to be a fitting word. Marquez had held the title. Pacquiao has it now. After watching this one, they might ponder sharing the belt. Six months with Pacquiao in the Philippines, six with Marquez in Mexico City.It was the kind of fight where, no matter how neutral you are, you root passionately -- for both fighters to live through it.At the end, Marquez's right eye, indeed, much of his face, looked like pulp. No fiction there.And Pacquiao's wasn't much better.When the final bell sounded, the front of Pacquiao's white trucks was mostly pink. Blood everywhere, some Mexican, some Filipino.They had fought once before, in 2004. Pacquiao had knocked Marquez down three times in the first round and Marquez still managed to hang in, turn things around and get enough points back to get a draw and retain his title. Often, rematches don't measure up. This one made that one look like patty-cake.There was one knockdown. Pacquiao caught Marquez with a killer left hook on the chin and put him down in the third round."I thought I was in control then," Pacquiao said afterward.Then Marquez caught Pacquiao with a razor-blade punch in the next round, cutting him badly over his right eye."That made it more difficult," Pacquiao said.Judge Jerry Roth had the fight scored for Marquez, 115-112; judges Duane Ford and Tom Miller had it for Pacquiao, 115-112 and 114-113, respectively.Marquez, naturally, hated the decision."The people are the best judges, and the people were booing him," Marquez said. "I won."Actually, the people are the worst judges. That's why they are called fans, short for fanatics.There may come a time when Marquez, who is five years Pacquiao's senior at 34, can sit back, watch a film of this fight and feel better about the defeat. If they had a meter that could have measured this one in terms of heart, guts, stamina and willpower, it would have been a draw.To be sure, styles were different. Pacquiao, as pronounced a left-handed attacker as there is, seemed to want a brawl from the start. It was almost as if, the minute he entered the ring, he forgot all those things about the use of his right hand that trainer Freddie Roach has been teaching and preaching.Pacquiao planted, coiled and lunged from the left. That's why Marquez's right eye, directly in the path of each lefty lunge, had no chance to survive more than a few rounds.

07 March 2008

Google Trend 07 mar 08: TMAU

TMAU is a rare metabolic disorder that affects men, women and children, from newborns to seniors, all races and ethnicities in most countries around the world. The presence of volatile trimethyl-amine (TMA) in sweat is the critical determinant, because it creates a pungent odor that emanates from the skin and surrounds the patient in an unpleasant aura. This life-disruptive disorder is caused by both genetic and environmental factors. Living with TMAU is challenging, and it can adversely affect the livelihood of adults who have it and their families. Children with the condition could find it difficult to go through school without facing tormentors and bullies.
Currently, there is no cure and treatment options are limited. FAQs How do you determine if you have TMAU? Getting tested is an important first step. A simple urine test will give you the answer; a blood test is available to provide genetic analysis. The prominent enzyme responsible for TMA N-oxygenation is the FMO3 gene. Does TMAU have a signature odor description? No. If you have TMAU the odor varies depending on many known factors, including the types of foods eaten, hormonal changes, other odors in the space, and our individual sense of smell and odor perceptions. The malodor has been described variously as cigarette/cigar smoky, garbagelike, feces, urine, funky, fishy and more. In a reported 15 percent of the diagnosed cases, a fishy odor persisted. Who should get tested? If you suffer from an unusual body odor that is volatile and pungent and negatively affecting you at work or school, then consider getting tested to rule out whether you have TMAU. Many get tested after ruling out other possibilities such as halitosis and glandular diseases. You need to know what you have before you can seek solutions. Why is it so hard to get a TMAU diagnosis from my family doctor or general practitioner? TMAU is a rare disorder. There used to be very limited medical knowledge readily available about most rare disorders or how to get tested for them. However, health care professionals willing to go the extra mile can now get helpful information from genetic and rare disorder databases.

06 March 2008

Google Trend 06 mar 08: American Idol 12

HOLLYWOOD -- It's no surprise that this is a town that thrives on idle gossip. But nothing quite compares to Idol gossip. We're of course referring to American Idol, which every year delivers its share of backstage scandal, but this season the "Have you heard...?" element seems to be getting off to a particularly frenzied start. The Top 12 hadn't even warmed up their seats when the rumour-mongering began in earnest. Irish belter Carly Smithson, Aussie charmer Michael Johns and country crooner Kristy Lee Cook had prior recording contracts? So it isn't so! Soulful David Hernandez used to strip for his supper? Horrors! Filipina dynamo Ramiele Malubay was photographed cavorting naughtily on a Facebook page? Tsk-tsk. Puppy dog teen idol David Archuleta was actually a junior Star Search winner all the way back in 2003? The deception! Rocker chick Amanda Overmeyer has a drunk driving record? Whoa, couldn't have seen that one coming. In this day and age of YouTube/MySpace/TMZ-style instant gratification, a secret past doesn't stay secret for very long, a fact to which fallen Idols from Frenchie Davis to Antonella Barba can easily attest. Whether or not you chose to view recently ousted Danny Noriega as a courageous (Ryan Seacrest's word) individual who remained true to himself or a petulant little brat (we were sorta leaning toward the latter), an old YouTube clip in which a teenaged Noriega delivered a profane Christmas message probably didn't help his cause. But when it comes to making it as an Idol finalist, a past in and of itself can be a valuable thing. Let's face it, if it wasn't for an inherent exhibitionist streak, few would have the gumption to perform in front of 30 million people every week while barely breaking a sweat. And that sort of comfort level could only come with a considerable amount of stage time, no matter how young and sheltered that contestant may appear. Current Idol fave Archuleta may be all "Aw shucks" modesty whenever the audiences and the judges show their appreciation, but it takes no small degree of chutzpah to plant yourself in front of the Season 1 Idols and belt out And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going from Dreamgirls, earning props from Kelly Clarkson in the process. The producers of American Idol are intent on selling a Great Dream Factory vision of Hollywood along the overnight success storylines of a Lana Turner and her fabled discovery as a teenager sipping a soda at Schwab's Drugstore. But the reality is, if Turner was starting out today, she would have her own Facebook page with pictures of her doing suggestive things with a drinking straw and a couple of DUI's under her belt. Of course, there's still hope, like finalist Brooke White, whose demeanour is as pure and virtuous as her name. The former nanny, whose favourite quote is James Taylor's "Shower the people you love, with love," has thus far resisted Simon Cowell's threats to bring her over to the dark side. You go ahead and remain in that beatific light as long as you can, Brooke. Somewhere in the shadows lurks a spurned boyfriend with a few snapshots he's willing to share.

The London Free Press

05 March 2008

Google Trend 05 mar 08: TMTH

TMTH abbreviated for TO MUCH TO HANDLE, first used exclusively by homosexual males in southern California frequently, now frequently used by many people of many different "categories".TMTH can be used to describe something or someone negativity OR positively. *Mattie is listening to Brittny's new album loudly while dancing sexualy*Daphne:"Mattie you're being a little TMTH tonight."OR*A kickback has been cancled after a group traveled 50 miles to reach it, the group arives and is informed*Michelly:"This kickback is the definition of TMTH."

Urban Dictionary

04 March 2008

Google Trend 04 mar 08: Don't you forget about me

Whilst writing the score for John Hughes' latest (and in retrospect best) brat-pack film "The Breakfast Club", Keith Forsey and Steve Schiff penned "Don't You (Forget About Me)", intended for the film's opening credits. Recording a rough demo, Forsey wanted it recorded by an established band and started to hawk both the tape, and himself, around the record companies of bands he admired and felt could suitably record it and add gravitas to the soundtrack.Which is why SIMPLE MINDS found him in their dressing room after one of the Tour De Monde gigs in America, clutching a collection of Simple Minds bootlegs, and enthusing about this great song he'd written. (After hearing the song A&M invited him backstage but neglected to tell SIMPLE MINDS anything about it). Bemused, and no doubt amused by the episode, they declined.Bryan Ferry also declined. As did Billy Idol, who Forsey was successfully producing at the time.Forsey was not one to give up and flew to the UK to persuade SIMPLE MINDS again to record the track. He found them in London, working on the demos for Once Upon A Time. With Forsey on their backs, and A&M on their backs, the band relented, thinking the song was just another incidental track to a forgettable brat-pack movie. They booked a studio in Wembley, and nailed the song in three hours. One of the caveats was they could play with the arrangement, and JIM KERR added the "La La Las" on the day.The band carried on with "Once Upon A Time" and completely forgot about the song."Prior to the release of "Don't You (Forget About Me)", SIMPLE MINDS had achieved a fair amount of critical success. However, there is little point denying that this is the song that kicked the door to "the big league" wide open for us"- JIM KERR.

"Don't You (Forget About Me)"

Hey, hey, hey ,hey


Won't you come see about me?

I'll be alone, dancing you know it baby.

Tell me your troubles and doubts,

Giving me everything inside and out and

Love's strange so real in the dark,

Think of the tender things that we were working on,

Slow change may pull us apart,

When the light gets into your heart, baby

Don't you forget about me.

Don't, don't, don't, don't.

Don't you forget about me.

Will you stand above me?

Look my way, never love me,

Rain keeps falling, rain keeps falling,

Down, down, down.

Will you recognise me?

Call my name or walk on by?

Rain keeps falling, rain keeps falling,

Down, down, down, down.

Hey, hey, hey, hey


Don't you try to pretend,

It's my feeling we'll win in the end.

I won't harm you or touch your defenses,

Vanity and security.

Don't you forget about me,

I'll be alone, dancing you know it baby.

Going to take you apart,

I'll put us back together at heart, baby.

Don't you forget about me.

Don't, don't, don't, don't.

Don't you forget about me.

As you walk on by,

Will you call my name?

As you walk on by,

Will you call my name?

When you walk away.

Or will you walk away?

Will you walk on by?

Come on - call my name

Will you all my name?

I say : La la la...


03 March 2008

Google trend 03 mar 08: Mothman

Mothman is the name given to a being or creature reported in the Charleston and Point Pleasant areas of West Virginia between November 12, 1966, near Clendenin, and December 1967. Most observers describe the Mothman as a winged man-sized creature with large reflective red eyes and large moth-like wings. The creature often appeared to have no head, with its eyes set into its chest. A number of hypotheses have been presented to explain eyewitness accounts, ranging from misidentification and coincidence, to paranormal phenomena and conspiracy theories. Read the rest of the explanation. A painful thought : "I read a story back in 2002 about the Mothman being seen on 9/11. Someone said they were going to take the elevator down after the plane hit, but there was a dark figure with terrifying red eyes, so he/she rushed to the stairway and make his/her way down. Apparently they weren't on a high floor or anything, but this person claims the Mothman saved his/her life. I myself have found some fascinating websites about the creature, which lives right by my state, Virginia. I also read that MM is an ancient creature from very very long time ago, some sort of demon thing, and was somehow arisen in the mid 1960's. Siting of the creature go back 100 years ago, and it is said to be over 5,000 years old. Strange, eh? "

02 March 2008

Google Trend 02 mar 08: julian beaver (sidewalk artist)

A Sidewalk Artist's 3-D Works First he draws his design in miniature - in this case, a very expansive image: "Figures and things coming out of the hole [in the ground] exploding into life, blowing a fanfare out to the world." The entire process will take three-and-a-half days. Beever says the first day is the hardest, outlining a scribble with the aid of a rope. And there's the physical toll from drawing on the ground and running back and forth to look through the camera, hundreds of times, just to gain perspective. "In the past, I felt quite insecure really on the first day, not knowing that I would have enough time to get it finished. I've tried to be a little bit more cool about it. I've done so many of these and they always do get finished." -- julian beever--

01 March 2008

Google Trend 01 mar 08: A Map For Saturday

On a trip around the world, every day feels like Saturday. A MAP FOR SATURDAY reveals a world of long-term, solo travel through the stories of trekkers on four continents. The documentary finds backpackers helping neglected Thai tsunami victims. It explains why Nepal’s guesthouses are empty and Brazil’s stoplights are ignored. But at its core, SATURDAY tracks the emotional arc of extreme long-term travelers; teenagers and senior citizens who wondered, “What would it be like to travel the world?” Then did it.

A MAP FOR SATURDAY is the product of a year’s travel through 26 countries on four continents. Emmy winning producer Brook Silva-Braga left his cushy gig with American TV network HBO to travel the world with five pounds of clothes and 30 pounds of video equipment. The barebones production set-up yields an intimate window onto the world of long-term, solo travel; moments of stark loneliness and genuine revelation. During the year, two-dozen solo travelers intersect with Silva-Braga, helping tell the story of the place they’ve met and the experience they share. The film lands in Australia at mid-summer and in Nepal on the eve of revolution. There’s the challenge of Vietnam’s absurd traffic and Europe’s steep prices. Beyond clichés of shagging backpackers and dubious self-discovery, Silva-Braga finds a hidden world of long-term, solo travelers. At times lonely and difficult; more often joyous, and always adventurous, A MAP FOR SATURDAY completes an around the world trip in 90 minutes.