Friday, September 18, 2009

When Singers Can't Sing Their Songs Anymore

While The Who is on hiatus, Roger Daltrey is going solo for his "Use It or Lose It" tour starting October 10. "Use It or Lose It" refers to Daltrey's voice, or as bandmatePete Townshend puts it, "his aging vocal chords." In an interview with Rolling Stone, Daltrey was even more blunt, "These are the last years of my life that I can sing that material," he confessed.

Want to know more? Click here - Yahoo! Music

8 Things an Airline Would Never Tell You

We asked a half-dozen insiders to expose little-known facts the airline industry would rather you didn't think about. They shared some pretty eye-opening stuff.

1. "Airport luggage scales often lie." It's bad enough that the airlines charge a fee for overweight luggage, varying from $39 to $300 per bag industrywide. But it's galling that they may also hit you with the fee by mistake. At JFK last November, New York City's Department of Consumer Affairs found that 14 percent of the airport's scales were not properly calibrated. At Boston's Logan airport, 10 percent of the scales recently inspected gave incorrect readings. The South Florida Sun–Sentinel has discovered numerous busted scales at area airports. And the list goes on. What to do? Stand up for yourself, especially when a scale barely tips the balance into the "overweight" category. Brandon Macsata, executive editor of the D.C.-based lobbying group Association for Airline Passenger Rights advises passengers to weigh their bags at home first, and if the airport scale comes up with a different number, insist that your bags be weighed on a different scale. Yes, it's come to that.

2. "Our air may make you sick." The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating whether potentially harmful fumes have been circulating in airplane cabins. Between 1999 and 2008, air became contaminated on 926 flights, reports the FAA, without specifying any possible health risks. Currently, the agency is looking at a particular type of "fume event" that involves "bleed air," or air that's been compressed by the airplane's engines. If there's a malfunction in plane equipment, the air that's fed into the cabin can be contaminated with chemical residues from engine oil — specifically TCP, or tricresyl phosphate. "Passengers may have symptoms like tremors," says Clement Furlong, a research professor of genome sciences and medicine at the University of Washington. So far, federal reviews of the research have been inconclusive about whether bleed air actually endangers the health of passengers and flight crews, though two civil lawsuits about fume events are under way.

Volkswagen L1 Concept

A one-liter car? This moniker describes a car that uses one liter of fuel—about a quarter of a gallon—to propel a car for 100 kilometers, or 62 miles. The one-liter car’s fuel economy translates to almost 240 mpg, and VW has had such a car in its sights for some time now. In 2002, outgoing VW CEO Ferdinand Piëch, now head of the company’s supervisory board, drove a cigar-shaped prototype fromVW headquarters in Wolfsburg to a shareholders’ meeting in Hamburg.
Now the idea of the one-liter car has been resurrected. VW’s biggest news at the Frankfurt auto show was the L1 concept, a prototype that "is close to production" and "will be developed," the company says. Three ingredients were needed to make it happen: a supremely efficient powertrain, great aerodynamics, and lightweight engineering.
As to the powertrain, VW has opted for a two-cylinder, 39-hp turbo-diesel engine combined with a 14-hp electric motor. There is a stop/start system and a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. The L1 can reach 100 mph, but fuel economy at that speed drops to a shameful 1.38 liters per 100 kilometers, or 170 mpg.
The front-wheel-drive L1’s aerodynamics are optimized by the two-seat layout with the occupants sitting in a row. The result is a car that is relatively long, quite low, and extremely slim. The monocoque and body is made of carbon fiber, and total weight of the L1 is a mere 838 pounds. We think that the seating configuration will likely be changed as development progresses; two people sitting behind each other is too unusual for prospective buyers.
Even so, the L1 looks refined and close to series production, which couldn’t be said of the 2002 concept. It could be on the market as soon as 2013, Volkswagen sources tell us. The L1 may seem ironic to those who remember that VW is also responsible for Bugatti, which makes the fastest production car in the world, the Bugatti Veyron, and which just unveiled the W-16 Galibier sedan concept. But if you think about the styles of both Piëch and current VW chairman Martin Winterkorn, this contradiction seems logical: These guys both tend to go to extremes. And we submit that the Volkswagen L1 is a more significant step in saving resources than are heavy gasoline-electric hybrids.

Dunta Robinson's shoe-based payment demand gets him big fine

On Sunday, Houston Texans cornerback Dunta Robinson(notes) wore shoes bearing a message designed to get him more money. They ended up having the exact opposite effect.
Robinson was fined $25,000 yesterday for wearing customized Nike cleats with the words "Pay Me Rick" written on the heel during the team's season opener Sunday. The message was intended for Texans GM Rick Smith, who had placed the franchise tag on Robinson after failing to sign him to a long-term contract over the offseason. After sitting out all of training camp because of the dispute, Robinson finally signed the one-year tender a week before the season began. It will pay him $9.957 million in 2009, or $9.932 million after he pays that fine.
But don't let the shoes fool you into thinking that Robinson is a guy concerned only about making money and not the betterment of the team. As he told The Houston Chronicle about the shoes:
"It's just a little reminder for myself what I'm playing for. It's a reminder that this is what we're here for."
Oh, nevermind.
At least he's sorry though:
"It was over a long time ago. I've moved on."
Or not.
A long time ago? Robinson issued that quote 72 hours after the game. In what realm could that be considered a long time? Even a gnat would be like, "dude, that's nothing."
To be fair, Robinson did say on Monday that he was "sorry if I offended anybody." Serena Williams would have been proud of the non-apology apology. (Speaking of tennis, maybe Robinson should have gone toMelanie Oudin's boyfriend for advice on what to write on his shoes. It worked wonders for Oudin's game and had the added bonus of not costing her 25 grand.)
After Robinson pays the fine, expect Rick Smith to spend $140 of it on rebuttal cleats.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

4 Dumb Financial Moves in the Recession

You can almost hear the collective slaps to the head.
This recession has brought to light dumb money management practices, forcing just about all of us to confront our financial foibles.
Maybe, for instance, you're one of the ones who panicked and sold during the market bottom. Or, you believed housing prices were guaranteed to rise.
The federal government is tapping behavioral economists -- experts on why we humans make the money judgments we do -- to help devise regulations so that people don't take on unaffordable mortgages and to help them understand their actual credit card fees.
But these efforts just scratch the surface. Here are four common mistakes that surfaced during this economic turmoil, and fixes that we can put in place to prevent ourselves from making the same costly error again:
Regret 1: I didn't have emergency reserves.
Outsmart yourself: When we're confident about our security, stashing cash can seem like a waste. We'd prefer to put the dollars into a "better" use, whether it be sprucing up our home or going on vacation.
Last year, when the unemployment rate started soaring, so did the savings rate of suddenly scared Americans.
If you were one of those scrambling to build emergency reserves, you may abandon the practice once your fear subsides -- setting yourself up for another panic at the next sign of trouble.
So prevent yourself from slipping out of the savings habit by establishing an automatic withdrawal from your checking to a liquid savings. Moreover, if you instruct the bank to sweep a certain sum into a short-term CD when your balance reaches a prescribed level, you won't be tempted to raid the emergency stash.
"The idea is to create a mechanism that will force a habit," says Dan Ariely, a Duke University behavioral economist and author of "Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions."
If disaster does strike, there may be a small penalty to cash in a CD, but at least there'll be money to tap, says Ariely. Not all banking institutions may agree to automatically set up a short-term CD, however, so you might have to direct yourself periodically by putting the task on your calendar as a "must do."

8'1" Turk takes title of world's tallest man

A towering Turk was officially crowned the world's tallest man Thursday after his Ukrainian rival dropped out of the running by refusing to be measured.
Guinness World Records said that 8 foot 1 inch (2.47 meter) Sultan Kosen, from the town of Mardin in eastern Turkey, is now officially the tallest man walking the planet. Although the previous record holder,Ukrainian Leonid Stadnyk, reportedly measured 8 feet 5.5 inches (2.57 meters), Guinness said he was stripped of his title when he declined to let anyone confirm his height.
Stadnyk, 39, told The Associated Press he refused to be independently measured because he was tired of being in the public eye.
"If this title had given me more health or a few extra years, I would have taken it, but the opposite happened, I only wasted my nerve cells," he said.
"If I have to choose between prosperity and calm, I choose calm."
Kosen, 27, told reporters in London that he was looking forward to parlaying his newfound status into a chance at love.
"Up until now it's been really difficult to find a girlfriend," Kosen said through an interpreter. "I've never had one, they were usually scared of me. ... Hopefully now that I'm famous I'll be able to meet lots of girls. I'd like to get married."
Kosen is one of only 10 confirmed or reliably reported cases in which humans have grown past the eight foot (2.44 meter) mark, according to Guinness.
The record-keeping group said he grew into his outsize stature because tumor-related damage to his pituitary triggered the overproduction of growth hormones. The condition, known as "pituitary gigantism," also explains Kosen's enormous hands and feet, which measure 10.8 inches (27.5 centimeters) and 14.4 inches (36.5 centimeters) respectively.
The tumor was removed last year, so Kosen isn't expected to grow any further.
The part-time farmer, who uses crutches to stand, said there were disadvantages to being so tall.
"I can't fit into a normal car," he said. "I can't go shopping like normal people, I have to have things made specially and sometimes they aren't always as fashionable. The other thing is that ceilings are low and I have to bend down through doorways."
But he noted some advantages too, including the ability to see people coming from far away.
"The other thing is at home they use my height to change the light bulbs and hang the curtains, things like that."
Kosen's trip to the U.K. — his first outside Turkey — was organized by Guinness to publicize the release of its 2010 Guinness World Records book, this year's repertoire of weird and wonderful records.

Arrest in Yale student's death

A lab technician charged with murdering a Yale grad student is in court for arraignment.
Raymond Clark III arrived at court in New Haven just after 10 a.m. escorted by police with his hands cuffed behind his back.
Clark was arrested Thursday at a hotel and charged with murdering Annie Le, whose body was found stuffed in the wall of a research building on what would have been her wedding day.
Police say it was a case of workplace violence, but didn't elaborate.
Police had been waiting outside the Super 8 hotel in Cromwell, about 25 miles north of the Ivy League campus, where Clark got a room shortly after being released from police questioning in the death of the 24-year-old student.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Download Michael Jackson`s videos from YouTube in HD

Melodycan ia a powerful program to help you to:

1. download videos from
2. convert FLV video to popular video formats
3. extract audio from FLV video
4. get videos from YouTube to play them on your computer and your Zune, iPod or iPhone player etc

Download& Try

How to...

Bridge to Somewhere: Vision for Old Bay Bridge

How's this for a real estate listing: Great location, Bay views, easy access to on-ramp. Actually, you'd be living on a bridge, or under it, if some futuristic architects' vision ever takes shape.
Here's the back story. In 1989 a major earthquake shook the San Francisco Bay Area and put a big crack in the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Fast forward to 2009 when the new bridge is taking shape — right next to the old bridge. It's really big, has really nice views, and, well, is kind of needing a purpose now that we've got a new one. So why not add some cool housing dangling below the freeway?
Well, we'll tell you why. It's impractical, expensive, and for goodness sake, would cost a fortune to retrofit, which is why we have a new bridge in the first place. But, it's not all whacky. After all, New York City just created the High Line park out of an unused elevated train platform. Florence and London both have built housing projects in unused bridges. And the California bridge is way bigger and way emptier.
The two local architects who have proposed parks and mixed-use housing they call the Bay Linehave inspired a conversation, says the blog Io9. After all, this won't be the first major piece of urban infrastructure scheduled to be demo'd where it could be given another life, and another use. Kudos to the planners for some major bridge building.

Universal reveals details of new Harry Potter park

It sounds like a new book in the Harry Potter series, but "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey" will be a high-tech ride and the marquee attraction at the "Wizarding World of Harry Potter," a new theme park area opening in spring 2010 at Universal Orlando Resort.

The "Forbidden Journey" ride was named by author J.K. Rowling and described Tuesday by Universal officials in a Web cast revealing details of what the Potter park will look like.

The ride will takes guests through scenes and rooms from the blockbuster movies inside a richly detailed remake of Hogwarts Castle made to look 700 feet tall. Hogwarts is where Harry attends a boarding school for witches and wizards.

Guests will enter the "Wizarding World" through a station archway named for Hogsmeade, the magical village near Hogwarts. A plume of steam and a train whistle will sound the arrival of the Hogwarts Express. The goal is to make the experience immersive, so nothing outside is visible after guests pass the Hogsmeade station archway.

Rowling, known for carefully guarding the Potter franchise, hasn't yet journeyed to Orlando, but the design team has made several trips to London to consult with her.

Other rides include the "Dragon Challenge," a twin high-speed roller coaster themed after the "Triwizard Tournament" and the family roller coaster "Flight of the Hippogriff," named for a creature with an eagle's head and a horse's body.

"Along those journeys they're going to be swept up into the greatest parts of the movies and the books. We've pushed every technology available to us to give guests a theme park experience unlike any they've had before," said Paul Daurio, producer of the Potter area.

'This Is It' Trailer Captures Vibrant King of Pop

Michael Jackson's This Is It
Watching the trailer for Michael Jackson's posthumous documentary "This Is It" confirms that I better purchase my theatre tickets the minute they go on sale September 27.
The tickets for the short two-week theatrical run, beginning October 28, will sell out quickly. I want to watch "This Is It" on the big screen with surround sound, Raisinets, popcorn, and other loud, responsive viewers.
The two-minute promo video is engaging, capturing Michael as he rehearses with his background dancers and musicians. He effortlessly runs through the choreography. When he explains his vision to his team, he speaks in a low, husky, more serious sounding voice that I've only heard described by insiders.

Watch the Trailer for 'Michael Jackson's This Is It'

The imagery is his usual grandiose design. There is a dance sequence of thousands of digitally replicated soldiers, dressed in black uniforms, and set in a desert. There are endless acrobatic performance shots. Michael embodies his trademark stage presence. He hits his marks precisely, and is fascinating to watch.
Michael demonstrates that he was the King of Pop, and that there has never been another artist like him.
The piece compiled from 100 hours of footage shot between April and June, looks incredible. Those who had purchased tickets to the show originally scheduled to run in July at London's o2 arena undoubtedly would have gotten their monies' worth.
Kenny Ortega, the director of "This Is It" and Michael's creative partner, said the film documents Michael's role in shaping the show. "You see him as the true architect and driving force of this project," Kenny said in a statement.
"It's a very private, exclusive look into a creative genius' world," Kenny said. "For the first time ever, fans will see Michael as they have never seen him before... It is raw, emotional, moving and powerful footage."
Considering the shock of his untimely death in June, I wonder if watching this movie will foster closure or if it will just make fans feel worse about his passing?
Nothing in the trailer suggests that Michael was 50-years-old or on the verge of death. I will not be able to get that thought out of my head.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Dirty Dancing (1987)

They might not have taken any Oscars for best movie, but Dirty Dancing and the first three Star Wars films are all-time winners in the viewings league.

A survey found that male fans of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi have seen them an average of 20 times.

Dirty Dancing: Women have seen cheesy  movie an average of 15 times

And women who confessed to liking Dirty Dancing tend to have watched it 15 times.

The 1987 movie starring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey was turned into a West End musical last year - and broke box office records.

The survey involving viewers of the Sky Movies Sci-fi & Horror channel revealed that some films are a hit with both sexes - including Star Wars, Jaws, The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Terminator, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Top 10 Most Watched Films By Women
1 Dirty Dancing
2 Star Wars trilogy
3 Grease
4 The Sound of Music
5 Pretty Woman
6 The Lord of the Rings trilogy
7 It's A Wonderful Life
8 The Terminator
9 The Matrix
10 Jaws
Top 10 Most Watched Films By Men
1 Star Wars trilogy
2 Aliens
3 The Terminator
4 Bladerunner
5 The Godfather
6 Alien
7 Jaws
8 Die Hard
9 Terminator 2: Judgment Day
10 The Lord of the Rings trilogy

Prince Harry turns 25, gains access to income

 Prince Harry has turned 25, making the eligible bachelor entitled to part of his inheritance from his mother, Princess Diana.
The prince, the younger son of Prince Charles and the late Diana, was spending his birthday by continuing his pilot training in the Royal Air Force on Monday.
Harry and his brother Prince William were left equal shares of their mother's estate following her death in a car crash in Paris in 1997.
With inheritance tax deducted, the estate was valued at nearly 13 million pounds 12 years ago, but its present value has not been disclosed. In today's currency markets, that would be worth nearly $22 million.
Under the will, the princes are entitled to all the income from their part of the estate when they are 25.
They gain access to the capital at age 30. William is 27.

'Dirty Dancing' star Patrick Swayze dies at 57

Patrick Swayze, the hunky actor who danced his way into moviegoers' hearts with "Dirty Dancing" and then broke them with "Ghost," died Monday after a battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 57.
"Patrick Swayze passed away peacefully today with family at his side after facing the challenges of his illness for the last 20 months," his publicist, Annett Wolf, said in a statement Monday evening. Swayze died in Los Angeles, Wolf said, but she declined to give further details.
Fans of the actor were saddened to learn in March 2008 that Swayze was suffering from a particularly deadly form of cancer. He kept working despite the diagnosis, putting together a memoir with his wife and shooting "The Beast," an A&E drama series for which he had already made the pilot.
Swayze said he opted not to use painkilling drugs while making "The Beast" because they would have taken the edge off his performance. The show drew a respectable 1.3 million viewers when the 13 episodes ran in 2009, but A&E said it had reluctantly decided not to renew it for a second season.
When he first went public with the illness, some reports gave him only weeks to live, but his doctor said his situation was "considerably more optimistic" than that. Swayze acknowledged that time might be running out given the grim nature of the disease.
"I'd say five years is pretty wishful thinking," Swayze told ABC's Barbara Walters in early 2009. "Two years seems likely if you're going to believe statistics. I want to last until they find a cure, which means I'd better get a fire under it."
C. Thomas Howell, who costarred with Swayze in "The Outsiders," "Grandview U.S.A." and "Red Dawn," said: "I have always had a special place in my heart for Patrick. While I was fortunate enough to work with him in three films, it was our passion for horses that forged a friendship between us that I treasure to this day. Not only did we lose a fine actor today, I lost my older 'Outsiders' brother."
Other celebrities used Twitter to express condolences, and "Dirty Dancing" was the top trending topic for a while Monday night, trailed by several other Swayze films.
Ashton Kutcher -- whose wife, Demi Moore, costarred with Swayze in "Ghost" -- wrote: "RIP P Swayze." Kutcher also linked to a YouTube clip of the actor poking fun at himself in a classic "Saturday Night Live" sketch, in which he played a wannabe Chippendales dancer alongside the corpulent -- and frighteningly shirtless -- Chris Farley.
Larry King wrote: "Patrick Swayze was a wonderful actor & a terrific guy. He put his heart in everything. He was an extraordinary fighter in his battle w Cancer." King added that he'd do a tribute to Swayze on his CNN program on Tuesday night.
A three-time Golden Globe nominee, Swayze became a star with his performance as the misunderstood bad boy Johnny Castle in "Dirty Dancing." As the son of a choreographer who began his career in musical theater, he seemed a natural to play the role.
A coming-of-age romance starring Jennifer Grey as an idealistic young woman on vacation with her family and Swayze as the Catskills resort's sexy (and much older) dance instructor, the film made great use of both his grace on his feet and his muscular physique.
It became an international phenomenon in the summer of 1987, spawning albums, an Oscar-winning hit song in "(I've Had) the Time of My Life," stage productions and a sequel, 2004's "Dirty DancingHavana Nights," in which he made a cameo.
Swayze performed and co-wrote a song on the soundtrack, the ballad "She's Like the Wind," inspired by his wife, Lisa Niemi. The film also gave him the chance to utter the now-classic line, "Nobody puts Baby in a corner."
Swayze followed that up with the 1989 action flick "Road House," in which he played a bouncer at a rowdy bar. But it was his performance in 1990's "Ghost" that showed his vulnerable, sensitive side. He starred as a murdered man trying to communicate with his fiancee (Moore) -- with great frustration and longing -- through a psychic played by Whoopi Goldberg.
Swayze said at the time that he fought for the role of Sam Wheat (director Jerry Zucker wantedKevin Kline) but once he went in for an audition and read six scenes, he got it.
Why did he want the part so badly? "It made me cry four or five times," he said of Bruce Joel Rubin's Oscar-winning script in an AP interview.
"Ghost" provided yet another indelible musical moment: Swayze and Moore sensually molding pottery together to the strains of the Righteous Brothers' "Unchained Melody." It also earned a best-picture nomination and a supporting-actress Oscar for Goldberg, who said she wouldn't have won if it weren't for Swayze.
"When I won my Academy Award, the only person I really thanked was Patrick," Goldberg said in March 2008 on the ABC daytime talk show "The View."
Swayze himself earned three Golden Globe nominations, for "Dirty Dancing," "Ghost" and 1995's "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar," which further allowed him to toy with his masculine image. The role called for him to play a drag queen on a cross-country road trip alongside Wesley Snipes and John Leguizamo.
His heartthrob status almost kept him from being considered for the role of Vida Boheme.
"I couldn't get seen on it because everyone viewed me as terminally heterosexually masculine-macho," he told The Associated Press then. But he transformed himself so completely that when his screen test was sent to Steven Spielberg, whose Amblin pictures produced "To Wong Foo," Spielberg didn't recognize him.
Among his earlier films, Swayze was part of the star-studded lineup of up-and-comers in Francis Ford Coppola's 1983 adaptation of S.E. Hinton's novel "The Outsiders," alongside Rob LoweTom CruiseMatt DillonRalph MacchioEmilio Estevez and Diane Lane.
Other '80s films included "Red Dawn," "Grandview U.S.A." (for which he also provided choreography) and "Youngblood," once more with Lowe, as Canadian hockey teammates.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Kanye West Has Truly Lost It This Time

You know that saying, it takes a village to raise a child?
Apparently, Kanye's village has failed him. He obviously doesn't have a real friend in the world. There does not appear to be anyone who can get through to him, to make him understand that he needs to curb his obnoxious behavior.
I thought it was a joke when Kanye showed up on the MTV Video Music Awards stage next to Taylor Swift, right in the middle of her acceptance speech for Best Female Video for "You Belong With Me." It was the first Moon Man for the 19-year-old country starlet, who has become an equally huge star in the pop world.
"I always dreamed about what it would be like to win one of these one day," Taylor said with surprise. "I never thought it would happen."
As Taylor continued, Kanye interrupted, saying he thought Beyonce's "Single Ladies" video was wrongly overlooked. "Hey Taylor, I'm really happy for you, but Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time."
Taylor looked humiliated. I felt humiliated for her. The audience booed him, and gave her a standing ovation.
I didn't expect Taylor to win that award, and I'm not upset about Kanye's opinion. However, bum-rushing the stage wasn't the appropriate time and place to express his disagreement.
Not only was Kanye's approach disrespectful, it was especially disrespectful because it was directed towards a woman--a teenage girl, actually. Taylor won't turn 20 until December. I can only imagine how her father feels. I'm sure he would like to have a talk to Kanye. I'm not related to her, and I'd like to have a talk with him.
If Kanye wants people to win the awards he thinks they deserve, he should create his own event. He should name it after his website,, and webcast it..........

Search This Blog