Sunday, March 16, 2008

Gung Hay Fat Choy!!

Yeah Chinese New Year is over. But still I love that God damn Lunar New Year. It's so festive and happy and every time it come's around I love celebrating with my Chinese friends.
Well that's just my opinion on New Year.

How To Tie A Tie

Crazy Ass Month In Review

My God There's nothing quite like February, It's short even on a leap year. It is with out a doubt the most love filled month (because of Valentine's). But February 2008 was definitely more crazy than many we seen past as I'm sure many of your will agree. For More on February 2008

Fri.Feb.1: 43 people are killed and 85 injured as a result of two bombings
Sat.Feb.2: Nicolas Sarkozy marries singer and former supermodel Carla Bruni.
Former Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney wins the Maine Republican caucus.
Sun.Feb.3:Serbian presidential election, 2008: Boris Tadić is reelected President of Serbia
Mon.Feb.4:United States district court judge Florence-Marie Cooper rules that President George W. Bush cannot exempt the United States Navy from complying with environmental laws banning sonar training.
Tues.Feb.5:New York Senator Hillary Clinton wins the American Samoa, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma and Tennessee Democratic contests.
Illinois Senator Barack Obama wins the Alaska, Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, and Utah Democratic contests.
Arizona Senator John McCain wins the Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, and Oklahoma Republican contests.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visits disaster-affected region in Guizhou Province, one of the worst-hit provinces, to direct relief efforts. This is his third trip to disaster regions in eight days.
Wed.Feb.6:The United States Centers for Disease Control says that an infected mother can transmit HIV to her baby by pre-chewed food.
Thurs.Feb.7:A gunman kills five and wounds two people at city hall before being shot and killed by police in Kirkwood, Missouri.
The National Assembly of France approves the Treaty of Lisbon by 336 votes to 52.
There are mass arrests in the United States and Italy in an anti-Mafia sweep including three suspected senior members of the Gambino crime family.
Fri.Feb.8;The Nebraska Supreme Court rules the electric chair unconstitutional.
The man accused of the Gurgaon kidney scandal is arrested in Nepal.
Sat.Feb.9:Writers Guild of America strike (2007–present): Hollywood writers reach tentative agreement with the major movie studios.
Illinois Senator Barack Obama wins Democratic Party caucuses in Nebraska, Washington and the U.S. Virgin Islands and the primary in Louisiana.
Arizona Senator John McCain wins the Washington Republican primary
A suicide bomber kills 20 people at an opposition rally in Pakistan
A fire at Camden Market in London, England forces the evacuation of residents. The London Ambulance Service reports no casualties.
Sun.Feb.10:Illinois Senator Barack Obama wins the Maine caucus.
Mon.Feb.11:The United States files charges against six alleged al-Qaeda operatives including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in connection with the September 11, 2001 attacks, seeking the death penalty for war crimes and murder.
The Singapore Flyer, the largest observation wheel in the world (30 meters higher than London Eye), starts to turn.
Tues.Feb.12:Illinois Senator Barack Obama wins the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia Democratic primaries.
Arizona Senator John McCain wins the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia Republican primaries.
Chilean opera singer Ernesto "Tito" Beltran is sentenced to two years in jail by a Swedish court for rape during a concert tour in 1999.
Members of the Writers Guild of America vote to end the WGA strike that had been in effect for just over three months.
Wed.Feb.13:Former Major League Baseball pitcher Roger Clemens testifies to the United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform regarding performance enhancing drugs.
An explosion in Vancouver, British Columbia destroys a Starbucks and Taco Del Mar. Police report arson, originating in the taco restaurant.
Thurs.Feb.14:The United States House of Representatives approves contempt of Congress citations against Harriet Miers and Joshua Bolten in the U.S. Attorneys controversy.
A gunman opens fire at a lecture hall at Northern Illinois University, injuring as many as 18 students and with at least six people dead including the gunman.
President Vladimir Putin says Russia would target its missiles at Ukraine if it threatened Russia's national security.
The Wallraf-Richartz Museum in Cologne has announced that its painting The Seine at Port Villez, thought to be by Claude Monet, is a forgery.
Fri.Feb.15:A home-made bomb explodes near the headquarters of the Federal District Police in Mexico City. One person is killed and two injured.
Sat.Feb.16:37 people are killed in a suicide car bombing in Pakistan's tribal region after a meeting of the Pakistan Peoples Party, reports say.
A student dies of unknown causes while competing at the Harvard National Speech and Debate Tournament.
The parliament of Kosovo declares independence from Serbia.
Sun.Feb.17:President of the United States George W. Bush offers a $700 million aid package to Tanzania.
California-based Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company voluntarily recalls just over 143 million pounds (65 million kilograms) of raw and frozen beef products, considered the largest meat recall in the United States, following an investigation into animal cruelty.
The parliament of Kosovo declares independence from Serbia.
Dozens of people are killed and dozens more injured as a bomb explodes in a dog fighting match in Kandahar, Afghanistan.
Ryan Newman wins the 50th Daytona 500.
Mon.Feb.18:The Government of Kosovo holds its first meeting after the declaration of the independence of the country.
A suicide bombing targeting a Canadian military convoy kills at least 37 Afghan civilians and injures three Canadian soldiers in Spin Boldak, Afghanistan.
An international conference aiming to ban the use of cluster bombs opens in Wellington, New Zealand.
In China, the trial of human rights activist Yang Chunlin commenced in the city of Jiamusi. Yang helped organise a petition entitled, "We want human rights, not the Olympics", and is accused of "inciting subversion of state power".
Tues.Feb.19:Arizona Senator John McCain wins the Wisconsin and Washington Republican Party primary election.
Illinois Senator Barack Obama wins the Democratic Party Wisconsin primary and the Hawaii caucus.
Fidel Castro retires, resigning as the President of Cuba (after 49 years in office) and as Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, effective 24 February 2008 upon the election of his successor.
Wed.Feb.20:Two United States Air Force F-15 Eagle fighter planes crash in mid-air over the Gulf of Mexico near Florida.
The United States Federal Reserve forecasts lower economic growth for the rest of the year with rising unemployment rates.
The United States Geological Survey reports the occurrence of a 7.6 magnitude earthquake off the western coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra.
Thurs.Feb.21:At least 500,000 Serbs rally in Belgrade to protest against Kosovo's declaration of independence over the weekend.
A group of protesters breaks into the United States embassy in Belgrade and sets fire to part of the consular office.
A magnitude 7.5 earthquake strikes the Indonesian province of Aceh.
Singapore is elected by the International Olympic Committee as the first city to host the Youth Olympic Games in 2010.
An earthquake of 6.3 Magnitude hits 11.1 miles east/southeast of Wells, Nevada. It is 2.2 miles deep, and is felt as far away as Twin Falls, Idaho, about 125 miles away, and Salt Lake City, Utah, about 180 miles away.
Fri.Feb.22:The Swedish Academy, the body that awards the Nobel Prize in Literature, names the professor of literature Anders Olsson as one of its members to succeed poet and writer Lars Forssell, who died in July 2007.
Turkey sends between three thousand and ten thousand troops into northern Iraq.
The White House announces that U.S. Army National Guard Master Sergeant Woodrow W. Keeble will posthumously receive the Medal of Honor for his service in the Korean War, becoming the first Sioux to receive the award.
The United States warns the Serbian government that it has a responsibility to protect its assets after about 1,000 protesters set fire to the U.S. embassy in anger at Kosovo's declaration of independence.
Sat.Feb.23:At least 18 people are injured by a blast on a bus in the outskirts of the Sri Lankan capital Colombo.
Sun.Feb.24:Marion Cotillard wins the Academy Award for best actress for her portrayal of Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose, while Daniel Day-Lewis takes home the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in There Will Be Blood.
No Country For Old Men wins the Academy Award for Best Picture while the Coen Brothers win the Academy Award for Directing.
A Virgin Atlantic Boeing 747 becomes the first commercial aircraft to make a flight powered by biofuel flying between Heathrow and Amsterdam.
The National Assembly of People's Power unanimously selects Raúl Castro to succeed his brother Fidel as President of Cuba.
Cypriot presidential election, 2008: Dimitris Christofias is elected President of Cyprus, defeating Ioannis Kasoulides.
Mon.Feb.25:The New York Philharmonic becomes the first American musical ensemble to perform in North Korea.
Lee Myung-bak is sworn in as President of South Korea
Hungary agrees to join the South Stream gas pipeline project.
A suicide bomber in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, kills 8 people including Pakistan's Surgeon General, Lieutenant General Mushtaq Ahmad Baig.
Tues.Feb.26:A shutdown at the Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Station causes a loss of electricity for millions in Florida.
Researchers announce they have sequenced the genome of corn.
Wed.Feb.27:Colombian FARC rebels release four former members of Congress, held hostage since 2001 and 2002, in a deal brokered by Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez.
Microsoft is fined a record €899 million by the EU anti-trust commission.
A gunman kills four at a public housing complex in Bristol, Tennessee, before committing suicide.
The biggest earthquake in nearly 25 years hits England (5.2 on Richter scale).
Thurs.Feb.28:The Israeli Air Force launches a series of air strikes into Gaza following Hamas rocket attacks, with 32 confirmed dead.
Ecuador suspends oil exports after a landslide cuts off its main pipeline.
Germany becomes the first country to formalize its recognition of Kosovo by renaming its diplomatic office in Pristina into an embassy.
Kofi Annan announces that Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga have agreed to form a coalition government to resolve the country's political crisis.
The former Prime Minister of Thailand Thaksin Shinawatra returns to Thailand to face corruption charges.
Applied mathematicians at Brown University have proven four theorems concerning the optimality of centroid estimators.
Fri.Feb.29:Ricin is found in a Las Vegas hotel room of a man who was admitted to the hospital in mid-February. The area affected is under quarantine. Officials do not suspect any relation with terrorism.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture stands down two employees as part of its investigation of the biggest meat recall in United States history.
Northrop Grumman and EADS win a US$35 billion U.S. Air Force contract to build a new refueling plane, the KC-45, shutting out Boeing.
Turkey has announced a complete withdrawal and end to operations in northern Iraq.
The African Union says its troops will arrive in the Comoros in a few days.
The Presidency Council of Iraq approves the execution of Saddam Hussein's cousin Ali Hassan al-Majid, widely known as "Chemical Ali", for his role in the Al-Anfal Campaign against Iraqi Kurds in the 1980s.
Three policemen are killed in Pakistan's North West Province after a bomb explodes near their vehicle. At least 27 people are later killed in a suicide bomb attack on the funeral of one of the policemen.

For Those Questioning Themeselves

The Trevor Helpline=(866) 4-U-TREVOR or (866.488.7386)

Cup that cheers may be a counter to next terror strike

New York, March 16 (IANS) It may well and truly be the cup that cheers - especially if you are under terrorist attack. A cup of the humble tea - with or without sugar, but minus milk - is an effective antidote to anthrax that, in powder form, terrorised the US post-9/11, according to a new study.

Researchers at Cardiff University and the University of Maryland have found that special components in tea - called polyphenols - can considerably inhibit the activity of Bacillus anthracis - anthrax’s scientific name, Sciencedaily reported.

Findings of the study have been published in the latest issue of the journal Microbiologist.

A very serious and rapidly progressing form of the disease occurs when bacterial spores are inhaled making anthrax a potent threat when used as a biological warfare agent.

Les Baillie, who led the study, said: “Our research sought to determine if tea was more effective than a commercially available American medium roast coffee at killing anthrax. We found that special components in tea such as polyphenols have the ability to inhibit the activity of anthrax quite considerably.”

The study provides further evidence of the wide range of beneficial physiological and pharmalogical effects of this common household item.

The research also shows that the addition of whole milk to a standard cup of tea completely killed its antibacterial activity against anthrax.

Said Baillie: “I would suggest that in the event that we are faced with a potential bio-terror attack, individuals may want to forgo their dash of milk at least until the situation is under control.

“What’s more, given the ability of tea to bring solace and steady the mind, and to inactivate Bacillus anthracis and its toxin, perhaps the Boston Tea Party was not such a good idea after all.”

Special Thanks to

World's Largest Mozzerella

In Sala Consilina, a small town near Salerno, a team of mozzarella masters spent a significant portion of their Sunday on 7 October crafting the world’s largest mozzarella.

Three 70 meter coils of mozzarella were twisted together to create a braid that was 56.5 meters long and 30 centimeters in diameter. The cheesy effort won the artisans a place in the Guinness Book of World Records, for they topped their own 2006 record by adding 13.7 meters to the length of this year’s mozzarella.

Following the Italian rule that says that mozzarella should be eaten on the day it is made, the super-mozza was consumed a clamoring crowd of fans who had turned out to watch the making of cheese history.

Circa October, 2007

Discovering a DaVinci

It could be a scene from the Da Vinci Code: A high-tech art sleuth finds a hollow space behind an Italian palazzo’s murals, and believes he may have discovered a Da Vinci masterpiece not seen since 1563.

In a case of life imitating art, Maurizio Seracini, an internationally recognized expert in high-technology art analysis, has done just that – and, in an odd twist, he does indeed appear, as himself, in Dan Brown’s popular bestseller about secrets hidden in Leonardo’s work – the book’s only non-fictional character.

(In the Da Vinci Code, Seracini uses his investigative skills to show that Leonardo’s Adoration of the Magi has been painted over by other artists and can no longer be considered a true Da Vinci.)

Seracini, 55, an alumnus of the University of California, San Diego and a native Florentine, thinks he may be close to finding the lost fresco Battle of Anghiari behind murals by Giorgio Vasari in Florence’s Palazzo Vecchio. Using radar, x-rays and other devices, he discovered a narrow cavity behind the Vasari fresco Battle of Marciano, and believes that the latter artist, an admirer of the great Leonardo, intentionally created the space to preserve the master’s work.

Art historians have known that Battle of Anghiari existed from early sketches, from the copies made by Da Vinci contemporaries, and from the writings of those who saw it – one of whom described it as “miraculous.”

“Leonardo’s Battle of Anghiari was considered the highest work of art of the Renaissance at that time,” Seracini said. “For over 50 years afterwards, documents spoke of the wonderful horses of Leonardo with the highest admiration.”

If he and other researchers can prove that the Vasari murals conceal a greater treasure, “it may be possible,” Seracini believes, “to remove the Vasari fresco and the wall behind, extract Leonardo’s mural, and finally put the Vasari back in place.”

Seracini, who heads Editech — a Florence-based company he founded in 1977 focused on the “diagnostics of cultural heritage” — estimates that he’s worked on some 2,000 paintings, including 31 works by Raphael and three others by Da Vinci. Most of his equipment, he says, has been adapted from medical devices. Infrared, thermographic, ultraviolet and other kinds of scanners allow him to see images behind a painting’s visible layers.

Now those high-tech tools have peered behind a mural, into a palazzo’s walls, to find another mural, long thought destroyed or lost to the ages.

How will he search for Leonardo’s lost painting? A cutting-edge nuclear probe will carry out an analysis using “neutron activation and“point by point, we will get a map that will enable us to see what’s behind Vasari’s fresco,” Saraceni said. So-called ‘georadar’ technology created at the University of Florence will also be used.

Seracini received his bachelor’s degree from UCSD’s Revelle College in 1973; he majored in applied mathematics and bioengineering, and spoke at his alma mater in April, as a Bioengineering Distinguished Lecturer, on “The Role of Science in Conservation of Cultural Heritage.” In 1975, he received a degree in electronic engineering from the University of Padua in Italy.

He credits his UCSD teachers – who had him experiment with lasers on fragments of blackened marble from Venice and Florence – with the spark that “ignited a long-lasting desire to blend art and science.”

During his time as a student in San Diego, he also traveled to UCLA to study under Carlo Pedretti, a scholar of Renaissance art and a specialist in Da Vinci. It was his mentor Pedretti, seeking a non-invasive way to search for Leonardo’s masterpiece, who steered Seracini to the murals in the Palazzo Vecchio.

Begun in 1505, the Battle of Anghari is considered by many art historians to be Leonardo’s most important – and largest – masterpiece. Vasari, commissioned by the Medici family in 1593 to remodel the palazzo’s hall, might have covered the unfinished work with a wall.

Most art historians believe, says Seracini, that even if the incomplete Da Vinci fresco is behind the wall, it may have deteriorated beyond salvation. Like the doctor he studied to be, he takes a physician’s detached approach to the prospect. “We’ll investigate,” he says, “and see.” It’s the code Da Vinci himself might have followed.

Special Thanks to UCSD