LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Moviegoers shook off economic gloom and gave Hollywood a gift over the U.S. holiday weekend, sending comedy "Four Christmases" to the top of box office charts and boosting ticket sales nearly 4 percent from last year, according to studio estimates on Sunday.
"Four Christmases," in which Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn play a couple who learn about love during unexpected Christmas visits to their divorced parents, earned an estimated $46.7 million in five days and $31.7 million for three days ending on Sunday, according to its distributor Warner Bros.
"In tough times, people are looking for comic relief and that's what we gave them," said Dan Fellman, head of domestic distribution for Time Warner Inc's Warner Bros.
Teen vampire romance "Twilight," last weekend's No. 1 movie, and animated family film "Bolt" battled for the second position depending on whether box office watchers looked at five-day or three-day totals.
"Twilight" landed at No. 2 with $39.5 million starting on Wednesday and encompassing a five-day Thanksgiving holiday in the United States, which is one of the busiest moviegoing periods of the year. "Bolt" was just behind at $36 million.
But in a typical three-day weekend starting Friday, "Bolt" surged into the No. 2 spot with $26.6 million in ticket sales, slightly ahead of "Twilight" with $26.4 million.
Final figures will be issued on Monday. "Twilight" was released by privately-held Summit Entertainment LLC and "Bolt" by the movie studio division of The Walt Disney Co..
Ticket sales for all films over the five-day weekend rose 3.7 percent to $236 million from $227.6 million over the same holiday last year, said box office tracker Media By Numbers.
Epic romance "Australia," starring Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, made its debut in the No. 5 spot with a five-day total of $20 million and a three-day figure of $14.8 million, said distributor Twentieth Century Fox, a unit of News Corp
Chris Aronson, Fox's senior vice president of domestic distribution, called the U.S. opening "fantastic" and said sales exceeded studio forecasts by about 20 percent.
Among other new entries, Lionsgate's action-packed "Transporter 3" landed at No. 7 with a five-day tally of $18.5 million and a three-day total of $12.3 million.
James Bond film "Quantum of Solace," was No. 4 with overall holiday sales of $28.1 million, boosting its cumulative total to $142 million for distributor Columbia Pictures, a unit of Sony Corp. The movie was co-produced by Columbia and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.
Another holdover, animated "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa," was No. 6 with five-day sales of $19.6 million lifting its gross domestic box office to $159.5 million. It was produced by DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. and distributed by Paramount Pictures, a unit of Viacom Inc.
Finally, Oscar hopeful "Milk," about slain gay activist Harvey Milk, saw a strong start in only 36 theaters with an average of about $52,000 per theater for five days and a total of $1.87 million. By contrast, No. 1 "Four Christmases" posted a theater average of about $14,000 in more than 3,300 venues.
"Milk" was released by Focus Features, a unit of the NBC Universal media division of General Electric
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Here is an hour to hour account of the madness in Mumbai
MUMBAI, India – 9:21 p.m. Wednesday, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus __ Two young men walk casually through Mumbai's main railway station, a worn Victorian hulk bustling with late commuters heading home, scurrying past small food stands and juice bars and vendors selling newspapers. They enter near the taxi stand, where long lines of battered black and yellow cabs wait for fares. One wears khaki cargo pants and a blue T-shirt. A pair of small knapsacks are slung over a shoulder. He looks like a college kid.
They are, says a photographer who follows them on part of their grim journey, "backpackers with assault rifles."
The two — and other death squads working in pairs — are to wreak carnage in landmark after landmark across Mumbai over the next three days, creating panic in this normally unflappable city and killing more than 195 people.
Nothing else to say.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Strangeness continues even on Black Friday! Two stories for your consideration.
Wal-Mart worker dies after shoppers knock him down
NEW YORK (AP) — A worker was killed in the crush Friday after a throng of shoppers eager for post-Thanksgiving bargains burst through the doors at a suburban Wal-Mart, authorities said.
At least four other people were injured, and the store in Valley Stream on Long Island was closed.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. in Bentonville, Ark., called the incident a "tragic situation" and said the employee came from a temporary agency and was doing maintenance work at the store.
"He was bum-rushed by 200 people," co-worker Jimmy Overby, 43, told the Daily News. "They took the doors off the hinges. He was trampled and killed in front of me. They took me down too. ... I literally had to fight people off my back."
More on this story here!
The second snip...
2 dead after shots fired in SoCal Toys 'R' Us
PALM DESERT, Calif. (AP) — Two people were shot to death in a crowded toy store on Black Friday in a confrontation apparently involving rival groups, city officials said.
Palm Desert Councilman Jim Ferguson said police told him two men with handguns shot and killed each other. Ferguson said he asked police whether the incident was a dispute over a toy or whether it was gang-related. He said police told him they were not going to release further details until the victims' relatives were notified.
"I think the obvious question everyone has is who takes loaded weapons into a Toys "R" Us?" he said. "I doubt it was the casual holiday shopper."
And the silly season has just started!!!!
Gunfire was still being heard in the Taj Majal Hotel in Mumbai. The last holdouts from the group Deccan Mujahideen fired their last shots and were killed by Indian security forces.
48 hours after the first shots were fired, 160 are confirmed dead, 10 of them are Americans, 12 are British. 350 are hurt.
After all this tragedy...my question is...
Can you feel the power of religion?
Thursday, November 27, 2008
The Taj Majal and the Oberoi hotel are still under siege. According to SKY News, BBC and CNN, new fires and shooting has broken out in the aforementioned hotels, the Victoria Train Station and the Leopold Cafe, where is believed that dozens of terrorists are still holed up with hostages.
125 people are confirmed dead, including 6 foreigners, 13 policemen and the chief of the anti- terrorist unit in Mumbai. 9 terrorists are confirmed killed, 12 are detained. More than 300 persons have been injured and taken to nearby hospitals. It is unknown how many terrorists participated in the attacks that targeted 10 places in the city that are popular with tourists and foreigners, including movie theaters, hospitals and cafes.
The group Deccan Mujahideen have claimed responsibity for the attacks. A very little known group, it's believed that they have ties to Al Quaeda.
Pakistan president has condemned the attacks calling them barbaric.
Both president Bush and president-elect Barack Obama have strongly condemned the attacks.
Still 24 hours after this started, it shows no signs of abating!
UPDATE- A new gun battle has been reported on the Oberoi hotel. And Indian police say they have found a cel phone property of one of the terrorists that has info on other terrorists and video of the attacks.
This situation is still evolving!!!
CNN is reporting that most of the hostages in the Taj Majal hotel in Mumbai were freed but they are still terrorists and hostages inside.
Now it's known that the terrorists were asking for Americans or British citizens to take hostage or to kill. The group claiming responsibility are called the Deccan Mujehaidin. They are relatively unknown in intelligence circles, but probably with ties to Al Qaeda.
They also attacked a train station, a hospital and the Jewish Orthodox Offices.
More as it arrives.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
CNN is reporting this as an ongoing story as unconfirmed reports say that terrorists have taken hostages in hotels around the city, hurling hand granades from rooftops. Police are battling them.
This was the report filed by ABC-Reuters earlier...
Police in India's financial capital Mumbai say up to 80 people may have been killed and over 200 wounded in a series of attacks around the main railway station and two five-star hotels.
Maharahstra state police chief, A.N. Roy, says unknown terrorists fired automatic rifles and threw hand grenades weapons indiscriminately, adding that they are still in several places.
Two of the attackers were shot dead on the beach front and there are unconfirmed reports gunmen may have taken hostages.
Several people were shot dead in the luxury Taj Mahal hotel in the Colaba district, and the lobby of another five-star hotel nearby, the Oberoi, was also hit.
Gunmen opened fire at several locations in Mumbai's popular tourist district.
One of the men armed with an assault rifle stormed the lobby of the Taj Palace Hotel.
Several people were shot and killed in a similar attack at Mumbai's central railway station and at a restaurant popular with tourists.
There were also shots fired and reports of blasts at the Oberoi Hotel.
Smoke has been seen rising from the building and police have surrounded the area, saying the gunmen appear to be inside.
The wounded have been taken to local hospitals.
This looks as the same assholes acting on the will of some invisible man that tells them to kill in it's name!
The world will be a better place without religion!
The march of technology continues!
JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Want to optimize your looks without radically altering them? An Israeli team of computer scientists may have the answer.
They have developed a computer software model based on the innate preferences that studies show we have for human faces.
"This technology could become a product where for example there's a web service where people upload their photographs and have them enhanced or beautified by our software," said Professor Dani Lischinksi of Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
Studies show that eyes a certain shape and distance apart, nose a certain length, lips a certain curve, increase the probability that we will find one face more attractive than another.
For more on this, CLICK HERE!
Here at Les'Shyerar Labs and Fried Chicken Shack, we applied this new software to different photos. See the results. Please pay close attention to the Croc.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
It looks like the Catholic Church got the message...
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The Vatican's newspaper has finally forgiven John Lennon for declaring that the Beatles were more famous than Jesus Christ, calling the remark a "boast" by a young man grappling with sudden fame.
The comment by Lennon to a London newspaper in 1966 infuriated Christians, particularly in the United States, some of whom burned Beatles' albums in huge pyres.
But time apparently heals all wounds.
"The remark by John Lennon, which triggered deep indignation mainly in the United States, after many years sounds only like a 'boast' by a young working-class Englishman faced with unexpected success, after growing up in the legend of Elvis and rock and roll," Vatican daily Osservatore Romano said.
The article, marking the 40th anniversary of the Beatles' "The White Album," went on to praise the pop band.
"The fact remains that 38 years after breaking up, the songs of the Lennon-McCartney brand have shown an extraordinary resistance to the passage of time, becoming a source of inspiration for more than one generation of pop musicians," it said.
Lennon was murdered in New York in 1980.
Ok...now it will take 500 years to make him a saint! That's how long it took the church to make Joan Of Arc one!
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – "Twilight," the vampire romance that has spurred feverish anticipation among young female moviegoers, took a bigger-than-expected $70.55 million bite out of the weekend box office in North America, according to studio estimates issued on Sunday.
The teen smash crushed the competition, including "Bolt," a Walt Disney Co canine cartoon that made its debut at No. 3 with a disappointing $27 million.
"Twilight's" showing was the best opening weekend for a movie since "The Dark Knight" launched with a record $158 million in July.
Last weekend's champion, the James Bond outing "Quantum of Solace," slipped to No. 2 with $27.4 million.
"Twilight," the first in a planned franchise based on the best-selling books by Stephenie Meyer, was released by nascent independent studio Summit Entertainment LLC. Studios such as MTV Films and Fox Atomic had passed on the project.
Not unlike each new "Harry Potter" movie, the film has had fans on tenterhooks for months, in this case young girls and their mothers. Many fans camped out overnight ahead of the film's world premiere in Los Angeles on Monday. Hundreds of "Twilight" performances set for midnight Thursday sold out quickly.
Going into the weekend, industry pundits had forecast a three-day opening somewhere above $50 million but that target was blown out by the film's $36 million take on Friday -- a sum that almost matched its official budget.
Women accounted for three-quarters of the audience and 55 percent of viewers were under the age of 25, Summit said. It was confident the movie could spread its appeal to other demographics.
"Where the young girls are, the young boys soon will follow," said Richie Fay, president of domestic theatrical distribution at Summit.
The film's director, Catherine Hardwicke, said she attended a screening on Saturday afternoon where a thirty-something woman told her that she had already seen the film eight times. But the audience also included "a ton of men ... some pretty old dudes," Hardwicke said.
British actor Robert Pattinson stars as the brooding vampire Edward and Kristen Stewart plays the object of his affection, Bella. A sequel is in the works, based on the second book, "New Moon." Hardwicke has the option to direct, but said she wanted to make sure it is planned the right way since it involves werewolves and an Italian setting.
"Bolt" features the voices of John Travolta and Miley Cyrus. Pundits had forecast an opening upward of $40 million. Disney said it would have preferred an opening in the $30 million range but hoped to recover in the coming Thanksgiving holiday week.
The last Disney cartoon -- as opposed to any from its Pixar division -- was "Meet the Robinsons," which opened to $25 million in March 2007. Just two weeks ago, rival studio DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc sequel "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa" opened to $63.1 million. It fell two places to No. 4 this weekend with $16.0 million and a total of $137 million.
"Quantum of Solace" has earned $109.5 million after 10 days and remained the No. 1 film internationally with sales of $40.6 million. Its worldwide total stands at $418 million. The film was released by Columbia Pictures, a unit of Sony Corp, which produced the film with closely held Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Yeah! Leave it to the Japanese to come up with something like this.
TOKYO (Reuters) - Who said bras are only for women? A Japanese online lingerie retailer is selling bras for cross-dressing men and they've quickly become one of its most popular items.
Since launching two weeks ago on Rakuten, a major Japanese web shopping mall, the Wishroom shop has sold over 300 men's bras for 2,800 yen ($30) each. The shop also stocks men's panties, as well as lingerie for women.
"I like this tight feeling. It feels good," Wishroom representative Masayuki Tsuchiya told Reuters as he modeled the bra, which can be worn discreetly under men's clothing.
Wishroom Executive Director Akiko Okunomiya said she was surprised at the number of men who were looking for their inner woman.
"I think more and more men are becoming interested in bras. Since we launched the men's bra, we've been getting feedback from customers saying 'wow, we'd been waiting for this for such a long time'," she said.
But the bra, available in black, pink and white, is not an easy sell for all men.
The underwear has stirred a heated debate online with more than 8,000 people debating the merits of men wearing bras in one night on Mixi, Japan's top social network website.
Friday, November 21, 2008
The jerk parade continues unabated.
Read this and ponder...
MIAMI (Reuters) - A Florida teenager committed suicide by drug overdose in front of a webcam streaming live video to the Internet and some viewers may have egged him on, authorities said on Friday.
Abraham Biggs Jr., 19, was found in the bedroom of his home in Pembroke Pines, Florida, on Wednesday and an autopsy showed he died of a toxic combination of opiates and benzodiazepine, a drug used to treat anxiety and insomnia, the Broward County Medical Examiner's Office said.
"We have ruled it a suicide. Part of the terminal event was recorded on a website and there was streaming video," said Dr. Steve Cina, deputy chief medical examiner of Broward County.
A police spokesman said detectives were investigating the case but would not release any details.
Biggs had written blogs about his intentions and some of the viewers who were watching the event live may have goaded him on, Cina said.
"There is some indication of that, yes," he said.
In a purported suicide note posted by Miami television station WPLG on its website, Biggs said: "I hate myself and I hate living."
The note said he had "thought about and attempted suicide many times in the past."
The Miami Herald newspaper said another suicide in Broward County was broadcast live on the Internet a few years ago.
Last year, a 42-year-old man killed himself in front of a webcam in what was believed to be Britain's first suicide on the Internet. Viewers saw him climb onto a chair, tie a rope around a ceiling joist and hang himself.
Good riddance, you effing jerk!
Thanks from taking yourself out of the gene pool!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Vampires are a hot commodity now. Movies like "Twilight" and HBO's "True Blood" confirms this trend. But Underworld: Rise of the Lycans have different stars. The vamps are there, but the action is the war between them and the werewolves. It was time that the werewolves had their screen time. This movie is a prequel, which means no Kate Beckinsale in tight leather.
Any way here's the poster they released today.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
In the near future, when we are old, it's likely that robots will take care of us. Don't belive it? Read on...
In the not-so-distant future, American seniors may turn to helpful, uncomplaining robots to fill the worrisome "care gap" that many face today.
One of these autonomous devices, called the uBOT-5, is already capable of carrying out simple tasks while it monitors the home environment. The robot can even spot trouble -- such as a person falling down -- and call 911 if necessary.
The freestanding device can also bring a faraway loved one into an aging person's home via video Internet hook-up.
"So, if I'm at work, and it's lunch hour and I want to poke in on Dad, I can get on the Internet and basically 'step inside' the robot," said uBOT-5 co-inventor Rod Grupen, who directs the Laboratory for Perpetual Robotics at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. With their face appearing via video on the front of the robot's head, the virtual visitor can converse with their loved one while moving the robot around, doing some cleaning, for example, or retrieving a dropped TV remote.
Any "authorized user" can jump into and guide the robot, Grupen said. "So, if you can't get to your doctor, your doctor can now come to you," he said. In fact, the UMass team hopes that the uBOT-5 will someday be capable of running simple medical tests, such as measuring blood pressure or blood sugar.
And because it's fully mobile, with Segway-like wheels, virtual visits from others should include much of the house, and beyond. "Your granddaughter on the West Coast can get into the robot and visit with you outside in the garden, you can have a two-way conversation with audio/video, hold hands and go show them the flowers you just planted," Grupen said.
More on this article here!
Yup, Rosie the robot maid will be in our future soon!
Click here for demo
This thing kills the iPhone, Blackberry, Treo, whatever’s been tripping your trigger - ’til now.
Let the flash demo load. Run through whichever features turn you on - and there are many.
Click on “I’ve seen enough” when you’ve finished checking out the revolutionary features in this phone. You’ll get up-to-date information on price and availability in your country.
Put RBRBBlog for 10% discount!
Thanks John Dvorak!
Monday, November 17, 2008
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The latest James Bond thriller dominated the box office in much of the world during the weekend, boosted by a record opening in North America, distributor Columbia Pictures said on Sunday.
"Quantum of Solace" sold $70.4 million worth of tickets in its first three days of release across the United States and Canada. Industry pundits had forecast an opening in the $60 million range.
The record for a Bond opening in North America was held by "Die Another Day," which earned $47.1 million during its first weekend in November 2002. That film was the last one starring Pierce Brosnan.
"Quantum of Solace" and its 2006 predecessor "Casino Royale," which opened to $40.8 million, starred Daniel Craig. The laconic English actor has invested the famed agent with a darker, more complicated personality.
The new film also earned $56.1 million in 73 countries during the weekend. Having begun its international run two weeks ago, the foreign total now stands at $251.6 million. With a worldwide haul of $322 million, the film is fast approaching the $594 million tally of "Casino Royale."
BOND RULES BRITAIN, FRANCE
Britain was the top foreign market with sales to date of $64.1 million, while Germany and France have each kicked in about $26 million. "Quantum" has already earned more in France than "Casino Royale" did during its entire run there, Columbia said.
The $200 million film was directed by Swiss-German filmmaker Marc Forster, who made his name with smaller pieces such as the Oscar-winning domestic-abuse saga "Monster's Ball" and the James Barrie melodrama "Neverland."
While critics have approved of Bond's less-campy demeanor, they were less than enthused about the plot of new film. Bond travels the world battling a villain (French actor Mathieu Amalric) looking to control natural resources. Along the way, the vengeful hero earns the enmity of the British and U.S. spy agencies.
The Wall Street Journal described the film as "a model of mediocrity," while the Washington Post said it was an "often visually incoherent travelogue of revenge and trumped-up angst."
The film is billed as a 50/50 partnership with closely held Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. Columbia, a unit of Sony Corp, oversaw production, marketing and distribution and funded most of the $200 million production budget. MGM has ancillary rights, such as DVD distribution.
Elsewhere in North America, last weekend's champion "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa" slipped to No. 2 with $36.1 million. After 10 days, DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc's cartoon sequel has already earned $118 million -- 18 percent ahead of the pace of its 2005 predecessor, which finished its run with $193.6 million.
There were no other major new releases. But in the art-house world, "Slumdog Millionaire" earned $350,434 from 10 theaters in six cities. On a per-theater basis, it earned 72 percent more than "Quantum of Solace." British filmmaker Danny Boyle directed the film about an Indian slum-dweller who competes on a "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire"-type game show.
The film, which has generated some Oscar buzz, was released by Fox Searchlight Pictures, a unit of News Corp.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
The Greeks? Yes! Read on...
ATHENS (Reuters) - "I'll tell you what's wrong with it. It's dead, that's what's wrong with it."
For those who believe the ancient Greeks thought of everything first, proof has been found in a 4th century AD joke book featuring an ancestor of Monty Python's Dead Parrot sketch where a man returns a parrot to a shop, complaining it is dead.
The 1,600-year-old work entitled "Philogelos: The Laugh Addict," one of the world's oldest joke books, features a joke in which a man complains that a slave he has just bought has died, its publisher said Friday.
"By the gods," answers the slave's seller, "when he was with me, he never did any such thing!"
In a British comedy act Monty Python's Flying Circus sketch, first aired in 1969 and regularly voted one of the funniest ever, the pet-shop owner says the parrot, a "Norwegian Blue," is not dead, just "resting" or "pining for the fjords."
The English-language book will appeal to those who swear that the old jokes are the best ones. Many of its 265 gags will seem strikingly familiar, suggesting that sex, dimwits, nagging wives and flatulence have raised laughs for centuries.
In many of the jokes, a slow-witted figure known as the "student dunce" is the butt of the jokes. In one, the student dunce goes to the city and a friend asks him to buy two 15-year-old slaves: No problem,' responds the dunce. If I don't find two 15-year-olds, I'll get one 30-year-old.'
In another, someone asks to borrow the student's cloak to go down to the country. "I have a cloak to go down to your ankle, but I don't have one that reaches to the country," he replies.
The manuscript is attributed to a pair of ancient comedians called Hierocles and Philagrius. Little is known about them except that they were most likely the compilers of the jokes, not the original writers.
The multi-media e-book, which can be purchased online ( www.yudu.com/oldestjokebook ), features veteran British comedian Jim Bowen, 71, reviving the lines before a 21-century audience.
"Jim Bowen brings them back from the dead. It's like Jurassic Park for jokes," Richard Stephenson, CEO of digital publisher YUDU, said in a statement.
For Bowen, much of the material seemed very familiar: "One or two of them are jokes I've seen in peoples' acts nowadays, slightly updated: they put in a motor car instead of a chariot."
Other one-liners in Philogelos may baffle a modern audience, such as a series of jokes about a lettuce, which only make sense in light of the ancient belief it was an aphrodisiac.
So there you go! Now go and tell this to your "Norwegian Blue", and watch it become an ""ex-parrot"!
Friday, November 14, 2008
Even after magnificent and humane strides in their culture, the Germans have one or two habits left from the bad old days. One of them is the strict enforcement of rules and laws. The other is the utter callousness in which they sometimes treat their children. When those two combine...well, lets say their results are far from statisfactory. Summited for your consideration...
BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's national railway company has come under fire from passenger groups after inspectors ordered children off trains because they did not have the right tickets.
Deutsche Bahn has apologized for the embarrassing incidents that made headlines across the country.
In the fourth such expulsion in three weeks, a 12-year-old schoolgirl was made to leave a train an hour's ride from home because she could not pay a 40 euro ($50) fine.
"It is purely foolish to react in such a way," said Karl-Peter Naumann, director of the passenger organization Pro Bahn. "Banishing them from the train is inhumane and causes unnecessary problems."
German newspapers had already condemned Deutsche Bahn on Tuesday after a 14-year-old was told to leave a train because her ticket was only valid later in the day.
Earlier, a 13-year-old and a 12-year-old were also forced to leave trains. One child had to carry her cello 5 km (3 miles) home in the dark while the other was left on a platform with no money or mobile phone.
Wednesday, Deutsche Bahn said all ticket inspectors would have to sign an agreement promising not to banish children from trains if traveling alone.
"Everybody should know that it is unacceptable to throw children off the train," a spokesman told the TAZ daily.
This reminds of "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade"
Indy throws the German officer from the Zeppelin in a fight, then turns to the passengers and remaks..."No Ticket!"
Everyone shows their tickets to him.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
This really is a loss...
GULFPORT, Fla. (Nov. 10) - A one-eyed, three-legged dog that won the title of world's ugliest pooch this summer has died.
The St. Petersburg Times in Florida reports that Gus, a Chinese crested dog, had cancer. He was 9.
Gus was rescued from a bad home and went on to win the annual World's Ugliest Dog contest at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in northern California.
Gus came from humble origins. According to the fair, his adopted family in Gulfport, Fla., rescued him after learning he was being kept in a crate inside someone's garage.
He had one leg amputated because of a skin tumor and lost an eye in a cat fight.
Gus' owner had said the prize money from the contest would be put toward the dog's radiation treatment.
Cheerio, Gus! Your fugliness was legendary. You will be fondly remembered! Now if only politicians here in PR could Drop DEAD!!!! Ah...this could be a happier place.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Here's a story that will put you in the X-Mas spirit, eve if you don't belive in it!
You better watch out. There is a new combatant in the Christmas wars.
Ads proclaiming, "Why believe in a god? Just be good for goodness' sake," will appear on Washington, D.C., buses starting next week and running through December. The American Humanist Association unveiled the provocative $40,000 holiday ad campaign Tuesday.
In lifting lyrics from "Santa Claus is Coming to Town," the Washington-based group is wading into what has become a perennial debate over commercialism, religion in the public square and the meaning of Christmas.
"We are trying to reach our audience, and sometimes in order to reach an audience, everybody has to hear you," said Fred Edwords, spokesman for the humanist group. "Our reason for doing it during the holidays is there are an awful lot of agnostics, atheists and other types of non-theists who feel a little alone during the holidays because of its association with traditional religion."
Read more here!
As a firm non-beliver in the Invisible Man all I can say is...Merry Festivus!!!
The wackiness continues!
SAO PAULO, Brazil Police say a woman has died on the way to a cemetery when a traffic accident hurled her husband's coffin against the back of her neck.
Police say 67-year old Marciana Silva Barcelos was in the front passenger seat of the hearse when the accident occurred Monday in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul.
Barcelos died instantly.
Her 76-year-old husband Josi Silveira Coimbra died Sunday of a heart attack while dancing at a party.
The driver of hearse and Barcelos' son suffered minor injuries.
I guess he didn't want to go alone!
Now this is a man that follows the law!
BEIJING (Reuters) - A police chief in a remote county of southwestern China has taken down 48 of his relatives, including brothers, cousins and a number of his wife's family, for various crimes, local media said on Tuesday.
Laobulaluo, a police chief in Heizhugou township, Sichuan province, had seen 25 relatives either jailed, sent for "re-education through labor," or punished in other ways, according to a report posted on state news portal Chinanews.com ( www.chinanews.com.cn ).
The police chief, who is in his 30s, is a member of China's Yi ethnic minority. Over a 10-year career, He had personally arrested a brother and two cousins after finding they had beaten local teachers at a primary school while drunk.
Other family members were arrested after stealing a woman's handbag.
The policeman's sense of duty had inflamed his relatives, some of whom had taken turns threatening his parents, and had "even secretly cut off the tails and slashed the legs of their cows," the report said.
"In the first few years, I did not dare head back to my hometown to pass the New Year holiday, but now it's all right. Everyone understands and supports what I was doing at the time," the report quoted him as saying.
This guy is the real Judge Dredd!
Don't you know who Judge Dredd is? Google it!!!!
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Apart from all the stupid things The Mormons have done recently like pumping money for proposition 8 in California, they have a practice that border on the insane. Read on and laugh (or cry), if you want to.
Holocaust survivors said Monday they are through trying to negotiate with the Mormon church over posthumous baptisms of Jews killed in Nazi concentration camps, saying the church has repeatedly violated a 13-year-old agreement barring the practice.
Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints say they are making changes to their massive genealogical database that will make it more difficult for names of Holocaust victims to be entered for posthumous baptism by proxy, a rite that has been a common Mormon practice for more than a century.
But Ernest Michel, honorary chairman of the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors, said that is not enough. At a news conference in New York City on Monday, he said the church also must "implement a mechanism to undo what you have done."
"Baptism of a Jewish Holocaust victim and then merely removing that name from the database is just not acceptable," said Michel, whose parents died at Auschwitz. He spoke on the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the Nazi-incited riots against Jews.
"We ask you to respect us and our Judaism just as we respect your religion," Michel said in a statement released ahead of the news conference. "We ask you to leave our six million Jews, all victims of the Holocaust, alone, they suffered enough."
Michel said talks with Mormon leaders, held as recently as last week, have ended. He said his group will not sue, and that "the only thing left, therefore, is to turn to the court of public opinion."
In 1995, Mormons and Jews inked an agreement to limit the circumstances that allow for the proxy baptisms of Holocaust victims. Ending the practice outright was not part of the agreement and would essentially be asking Mormons to alter their beliefs, church Elder Lance B. Wickman said Monday in an interview with reporters in Salt Lake City.
"We don't think any faith group has the right to ask another to change its doctrines," Wickman said. "If our work for the dead is properly understood … it should not be a source of friction to anyone. It's merely a freewill offering."
Michel's decision to unilaterally end discussion of the issue through a news conference leaves the church uncertain about how to proceed, Wickman said.
Baptism by proxy allows faithful Mormons to have their ancestors baptized into the 178-year-old church, which they believe reunites families in the afterlife.
Using genealogy records, the church also baptizes people who have died from all over the world and from different religions. Mormons stand in as proxies for the person being baptized and immerse themselves in a baptismal pool.
Only the Jews have an agreement with the church limiting who can be baptized, though the agreement covers only Holocaust victims, not all Jewish people. Jews are particularly offended by baptisms of Holocaust victims because they were murdered specifically because of their religion.
Michel suggested that posthumous baptisms of Holocaust victims play into the hands of Holocaust deniers.
"They tell me, that my parents' Jewishness has not been altered but … 100 years from now, how will they be able to guarantee that my mother and father of blessed memory who lived as Jews and were slaughtered by Hitler for no other reason than they were Jews, will someday not be identified as Mormon victims of the Holocaust?" Michel said Monday.
Wickman said the practice in no way impinges upon a person's "Jewishness, or their ethnicity, or their background."
Under the agreement with the Holocaust group, Mormons could enter the names of only those Holocaust victims to whom they were directly related. The church also agreed to remove the names of Holocaust victims already entered into its massive genealogical database.
Church spokesman Otterson said the church kept its part of the agreement by removing more than 260,000 names from the genealogical index.
But since 2005, ongoing monitoring of the database by an independent Salt Lake City-based researcher shows both resubmissions and new entries of names of Dutch, Greek, Polish and Italian Jews.
The researcher, Helen Radkey, who has done contract work for the Holocaust group, said her research suggests that lists of Holocaust victims obtained from camp and government records are being dumped into the database. She said she has seen and recorded a sampling of several thousand entries that indicate baptisms had been conducted for Holocaust victims as recently as July.
Wickman said lists of names have been entered into the database by a small number of well-meaning members who were acting "outside of policy." He said that church monitors have identified and removed 42,000 names from the database on their own, and that the church welcomes research from others.
Church officials say a new version of the database, called New Family Search, is being tested overseas and should reduce the problems. In the works for six years, the new database will discourage the submission of large lists of unrelated individuals. It will also separate names intended for temple rites from those submitted purely for genealogical purposes, the church states in a letter sent to Michel on Nov. 6.
"The names of any Holocaust victims we can identify in the database are to be flagged with a special designation — not available for temple ordinances," the letter states.
The church also proposes jump-starting a monitoring committee formed in 2005 to review database entries. The committee has met just once since 2005.
In May, the Vatican ordered Catholic dioceses worldwide to withhold member registries from Mormons so that Catholics could not be baptized.
The Mormons. They don't want to gays to marry, because they want to reserve the right to marry multiple child brides!
Monday, November 10, 2008
You can't make this s$#@ up!!!
HAILEY - Hailey Police say a woman battered a security guard, took off her clothes, punched two officers and bit a deputy. Now, Lori Brutsche-Ely, 41, faces several charges.
Hailey Police Chief Jeff Gunter tells NewsChannel 7 Brutsche-Ely was intoxicated Halloween night at the Chester Jakes restaurant in the Mint Bar when she got out of control.
Gunter says when the security guard called police -- she took off her clothes in the bar. When officers approached her, Gunter says she punched one of them in the chest.
The Idaho Mountain Express reports that once she got to the jail, Brutsche-Ely bit a deputy and also managed to set off a fire sprinkler, causing her jail cell to flood.
Brutsche-Ely is charged with four counts of battery, obstructing and resisting arrest and indecent exposure. She has bonded out of jail.
And what did you do on Halloween?
Miriam Makeba, the voice against Apartheid for more than 30 years is dead.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South African singer Miriam Makeba, one of Africa's best known voices and a champion of the fight against apartheid, has died of a heart attack after a performance in Italy. She was 76.
Known as "Mama Africa" and the "Empress of African Song," Makeba was the first black South African musician to gain international fame, winning renown in the United States in the 1950s with her sweeping vocals.
Makeba fell ill after a concert against organized crime in the southern Italian town of Baia Verde late on Sunday, her publicist said. She died after being rushed to a clinic in the town of Castel Volturno.
"It was from a heart attack, but she had not been well for some time," publicist Mark Lechat told Reuters. He said Makeba had also been suffering from arthritis.
South African radio stations paid tribute to Makeba, reading out text messages in praise of one of the best loved stars in the country and across the continent.
Makeba had spent 31 years in exile after openly speaking out against apartheid. One of her songs demanded the release of former South African President Nelson Mandela, who spent 27 years in jail fighting white-minority rule.
Read more here!
It's a sad loss! I'll always remember the "Pata Pata" song, so popular in PR in my childhood.
Rest In Peace, "Mama Africa".
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The zoo animals of "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa" ruled the roost at the weekend box office in North America, while James Bond was the big shot across the rest of the world.
According to studio estimates issued on Sunday, DreamWorks Animation's "Madagascar" sequel sold $63.5 million worth of tickets in U.S. and Canadian theaters.
The three-day sum blew past forecasts of an opening in the $50 million range, as young children dragged their parents to see the latest exploits of Alex the lion (voiced by Ben Stiller), Marty the zebra (Chris Rock), Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer), and their pals.
Its 2005 predecessor, "Madagascar," opened to $47.2 million during its first three days, and finished with $193.6 million domestically.
Both films were distributed by Viacom Inc's Paramount Pictures on behalf of DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. The sequel cost $150 million to make and an additional $175 million to market worldwide, DreamWorks Animation said.
A DreamWorks official said it was too early to tell if there would be a third feature, but the studio was "definitely encouraged" by the start for the new film.
James Bond was the man of the moment everywhere else as "Quantum of Solace" claimed the top spot in all 60 of its foreign markets with a weekend haul of $106.5 million, distributor Columbia Pictures said.
It ranks as the second-biggest international weekend of 2008, behind the $146 million bow of the fourth "Indiana Jones" film, the studio said.
Daniel Craig's second outing as the super sleuth beat the opening for his 2006 debut "Casino Royale" in every market, in some cases with double the numbers.
Having got a head start last weekend in Britain, France and Sweden, the film's 10-day total now stands at $160.3 million. Top markets included Britain with $15.1 million (10-day total, $50 million), Germany with $15.0 million, Russia and China with $9.1 million each, and South Korea with $4.5 million.
The $200 million film opens on North America on Friday. Columbia, a unit of Sony Corp, oversaw production, marketing and distribution of the film, which is billed as a joint release with closely held Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.
Elsewhere in North America, the raunchy comedy "Role Models" opened at No. 2 with a better-than-expected haul of $19.3 million. Pre-release forecasts had the film opening in the $11 million range. Seann William Scott and Paul Rudd play two guys who are sentenced to act as big brothers for a pair of troubled youngsters. It was released by Universal Pictures, a unit of General Electric Co Inc's NBC Universal.
After two weeks at No. 1, Walt Disney Co's "High School Musical 3: Senior Year" slipped to No. 3 with $9.3 million. Its total now stands at $75.7 million.
Not all was splendid at the box office. "Soul Men," an urban-skewing comedy starring Samuel L. Jackson and the late Bernie Mac, opened at No. 6 with just $5.6 million. "Soul Men" also features soul icon Isaac Hayes, who died the day after Mac in August. The film was distributed by MGM.
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Another case of guns and kids, this one with a deadly twist.
ST. JOHNS, Ariz. – A man who police believe was shot and killed by his 8-year-old son had consulted aabout whether the boy should handle guns and had taught him how to use a rifle, the clergyman said Saturday.
The father, Vincent Romero, 29, was from a family of avid hunters and wanted to make sure the boy wasn't afraid of guns, said the Very Rev. John Paul Sauter of St. Johns Catholic Church. The boy's stepmother had suggested he have a BB gun, the priest said.
Romero taught his son how to use a rifle to kill prairie dogs, Sauter said. Police say the boy used a .22-caliber rifle Wednesday to kill his father and another man, Timothy Romans, 39, of San Carlos.
The priest did not say how he advised the couple but said Saturday that the boy "was just too young."
"That child, I don't think he knows what he did, and it was brutal," Sauter said.
The boy, who faces two counts of premeditated murder, did not act on the spur of the moment,said. Police are looking into whether he might have been abused.
Read more here
What else can you say?