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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Shakespeare Theatre Screens in American Theatres Starting Monday

NCM Fathom, Globe Theatre and Arts Alliance Media present a four part series of Classical Shakespeare titles in movie theaters nationwide this summer and fall. Captured in 2010 from the prestigious and internationally renowned Globe Theatre in London, the series will begin in June with The Merry Wives of Windsor followed by Henry IV Part 1, Henry IV Part 2 and closes in September with Henry VIII.

Each performance will include a historical perspective on the Globe, the reconstruction process, the work of the Globe today, and a behind-the-scenes look at each production with interviews from the actors and creative team involved.

Shakespeare’s Globe London Cinema Series consists of four in-theater events:
-Monday, June 27th – The Merry Wives of Windsor-Monday, August 1st – Henry IV Part 1-Thursday, August 18th – Henry IV Part 2-Thursday, September 15th – Henry VIII
Tickets on sale NOW! Enter your zip code to find a theater near you.

Limited seats available so purchase your tickets early!

Help us spread the word about Shakespeare’s Globe London Cinema Series in movie theatersClick here for access to web banners, emails, fliers, trailers and more to share within your community and among friends.

New York gay parade celebrates pride, marriage law

Top 10 SNL Classroom Skits of All Time

We recently published an article that you may be interested in entitled, “Top 10 SNL Classroom Skits of All Time”(

Note this is from a commercial blog on a site that evaluates and sells on-line education sources...Some later night TV language as well, linked by permission. Links are Hulu, which also contains commercial matter.

State of the Art Random Access Information Retrieval System at OPRF

This was state of the art when I went to High School. You wait what seemed forever to watch a film strip, listen to a cassette, view a short grainy video or read achieved micro-fische. This clipping predates me but the Oa Park River Forest high School system was still in regular use and a part of my "high tech" library experience. Later in college the stamp card or computer card became a part of working with the huge room of computers for simple tasks. Did enjoy playing against a far away college as a Klingon commander in "Star Trek" simulations (very tame by the standards of the new Star Trek video games).

Sunday Morning News and Views, Part II

 New York City's gay pride parade today may look more like a victory celebration, coming two days after the state legalized same-sex marriage. It's one of the world's biggest gay pride parades and could get bigger, with organizers expecting as many as half-a-million people.

It's the largest concert of its kind outside of Europe. Fun, fast, over 200,000 fans and at least five people were taken to local hospitals and 300 were treated for medical care after a huge electronic music festival opened at the Las Vegas Speedway.. Not a large number for the size, scope and nature of the event. The Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas unfolded only a week after the touring concert's Dallas show ended with two drug-related deaths.  There have been no fatalities in Nevada, but there were 21 arrests, mostly related to drugs. Carnival rides, art exhibits, bands, DJ's, food, drink and, although not allowed, drugs kept the all night 3 day carnival going. giant daisy misters kept the crowd cool, with plenty of free water available and even more for sale.It ends at sunrise on Monday morning.

A close friend of British Prime Minister David Cameron has been found dead in a portable toilet at the Glastonbury music festival.Cameron said he was devastated to hear of the death of Christopher Shale, who chaired his West Oxfordshire constituency's Conservative Association. Cameron said Shale was a "close and
valued friend." It was not immediately clear how Shale died. Glastonbury is a fixture of Britain's music calendar. About 170,000 people have descended on a farm in southwestern England for the festival, which includes sets by U2, Morrissey, Mumford & Sons, Coldplay, Beyonce and scores of other acts.

Advertising icons are returning, not just for the Baby Boomer, but to give new owners a bit more stock for their product investment. The Pillsbury Dough Boy, Speedy Alkaselzer, the Jolly Green Giant, Captain Crunch...all have real value beyond the product they sell.  M&M's, the talking gecko Geico, the Budweiser frogs, the slime of Musilix, Bun Boy ,Freshen Up Freddie, the Dominoes Noid, Snap-Crackle-Pop, even those who did not make it stick in your mind once you see their all so familiar images, Speedy Alkaseltzer's TV career ended in 1964, but was brought back last year by an ad agency and computer rendering. Mr Peanut, now voiced by actor Robert Downey Jr., is back less Monopoly formal and more animated than before.

Furniture mark-ups range from 100% to as much as 800% depending on the type of item and the perceived value of the item. There are cost involved, from shipping to storage to showroom space, so much of the mark-up is justified, however 

When you buy eyeglasses you are paying ten to as much as 50 times the actual costs for the frame. The mark-up lines designer pockets, pays for brick and mortar stores, inflates egos (when people pay "real money" it increased perceived value.Even the lens is artificially inflated with "extras" and "processing" that cost no where near what you are charged, but without a prescription lens frames are of no real value.

Federal officials are investigatingallegations that Home Depot is providing Chinese-made products and other foreign goods to government customers in violation of the Buy American Act. The investigation was disclosed in a Department of Justice court filing earlier this year in a Los Angeles federal court. The DOJ is mulling whether take over a whistle-blower lawsuit that alleges the country's largest home improvement provider has violated the 1933 law mandating U.S. materials be used in public construction projects. A company spokesman said Home Depot is cooperating with the investigation and "would never knowingly sell prohibited goods under any circumstances." Spokesman Stephen Holmes said the plaintiffs have an "inaccurate view of the facts." A judge has set a trial date for early next year.
Belgium's defense minister is proposing to withdraw half of the nation's 580 troops from Afghanistan by next
year. Defense Minister Pieter De Crem said Sunday the pullout would be in line with President Barack Obama's announcement of the start of the U.S. withdrawal next month. Washington intends to cut a third of its 100,000 troops by next summer.Belgium joins a growing number of NATO nations intending to recall large numbers of troops from Afghanistan. America's NATO European allies and several partner countries contribute about 40,000 troops to the NATO force. Half of the Belgian troops provide security for Kabul airport. The rest are based mainly in Kandahar in the south, where six Belgian F-16 fighters are deployed.

There are more large protests in Yemen today demanding that the president's sons and other aides leave the country. Tens of thousands took to the streets of Yemen's major cities also calling for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step aside after nearly 33 years in power. Saleh is in Saudi Arabia for medical treatment after being badly wounded in an attack earlier this month.

In the 1970's one our of 4 Americans were nearsighted. Today is is one out of two. We have trouble seeing things far away. Pupal dilation is a muscle reaction in the eye and how the eye grows. A boost in growth, which may have little to do with our current lifestyle and more to do with diet, may be as much of the cause, if not more, than the reality that we no longer need to be in the wide open spaces, looking long distances on a regular basis. Scientist recommend two hours or more a day outdoors to avoid losing your ability to see distances.

There is a growing movement against experience, the knowledge, networking and skills that can only be gained through experience, trusting fresh, young and new. This trend is in part a reaction to the ceiling in place due to an economy where older Americans cannot afford to give up their incomes, careers and lives. At the same time industry is forcing jobs out of America and we are just pulling out of the first recession to impact higher educated workers and white collar seniority as much as and in some ways more than the blue collar entry level jobs traditionally challenged by a recession.

After an all-night wait as the final votes were counted, the Cherokee Nation has elected a new principal chief. Final election results posted shortly before 7 a.m. Sunday on the tribal website indicated Bill John Baker has unseated three-term incumbent Chad Smith. The results show Baker leading Smith by 11 votes out of more than 15,000 cast. The vote margin between the men had been fewer than 30 votes since late Saturday. Baker is a longtime tribal councilman and Tahlequah businessman. He will take the oath of office on Aug. 14. The Cherokee Nation is Oklahoma's largest American Indian tribe and one of the nation's biggest, with a membership approaching 300,000 people. The Tahlequah-based tribe has a 14-county jurisdiction in eastern Oklahoma.

As the annual Sierra Nevada Bighorn Sheep lamb count is underway, California and Nevada state biologists are wondering how new program protections for mountain lions will affect the population. Biologists this winter had to scale back efforts to snare and collar suspected nuisance cougars after a complaint that even those not threatening sheep were being harmed.

Bear sightings at lower elevations in Utah and Nevada are becoming more common because of heavy snowfall in the mountains. In Nevada, wildlife officials worry about more bear encounters with humans if nuts and berries the animals naturally feed on don't develop because of the unusually cold mountain temperatures. In both states, authorities are urging people to keep campsites, garages and cabins clean, and never feed bears. Bears have been spotted entering the cab of a truck on Utah's Boulder Mountain, peaking through cabin windows near Hobble Creek in central Utah and wandering in Ogden Canyon, places they usually
aren't seen. Wildlife authorities say bears prefer meadows higher in the mountains in June but snow has closed off many of those areas. Nevada already has had to euthanize three aggressive bears.

Six fatalities have been confirmed after a semi-truck slammed into an Emeryville, California.bound Amtrak passenger train on a rural highway. The Churchill County Sheriff's Office said in a release late last night that officials are working to confirm the victims' identities. Nevada Highway Patrol had said earlier that the truck driver and an Amtrak conductor were among the confirmed dead in Friday's crash.At least one passenger remains missing as of Sunday morning.

Nevada Democrats have selected State Treasurer Kate Marshall as their pick to run for the state's vacant House seat. Marshall won the support of all but five of the eligible 122 delegates who cast votes yesterday to make her the nominee in the special congressional election Sept. 13 for the open 2nd District seat.

Israel's ambassador to the Vatican has backed off his praise of Pope Pius XII, the World War II-era pope
blamed by some Jews for having failed to speak out enough against the Holocaust. Ambassador Mordechay Levy said in a statement Sunday that his personal judgment had been "premature." Levy made headlines last week when he praised the pope and the Catholic Church in general for taking in Roman Jews during the Nazi
occupation of the Italian capital. The Vatican newspaper ran his speech on the front page, giving the brief but significant remarks high visibility. But some Jewish groups balked, saying Levy's comments were morally wrong and historically inaccurate. Pope Benedict XVI is keen to see Pius beatified, the first step to sainthood.

Christiane Desroches Noblecourt, a pioneering French Egyptologist who prodded Gen. Gamal Abdel Nasser to help salvage Nubia's vaunted antiquities, has died. She was 97. Anne Francoise, treasurer of a retirement home in the nearby town of Sezanne where Desroches Noblecourt lived the last few years, says she died Thursday at a hospital in Epernay, where shehad been taken after suffering a recent stroke. Born Nov. 17, 1913 in Paris, Desroches Noblecourt developed an early passion for Egypt after reading about the discovery of King Tut's tomb in the early 1920s. She later studied at the Louvre and the Sorbonne. French President Nicolas Sarkozy paid tribute to her as the "grande dame of the Nile" who blend scientific rigor and the qualities of "the most passionate of educators."


Sunday Morning News and Views, Part I

Having trouble reading this? Why are more people nearsighted today than ever? Researchers say all the time we spend indoors and away from the sun is making our vision worse.  Neuroscientist Sandra Aamodt and co-author Sam Wang write about the sun and vision in their upcoming book, "Welcome to Your Child's Brain: How the Mind Grows from Conception to College." Like the subterranean Enocks in HG Wells' "The Time Machine" we are acclimating to closer spaces and less harsh light, as we sit in our offices and homes, watching our flickering tubes and flat screen computer monitors, staring at little iPods and iPads, cell phones and Game Boys. Now add video games, books, magazines and newspapers and the world is less the great outdoors and more the sphere you put yourself in as you focus on your own little mediated world.
70 years ago this week Operation Barbarossa was launched, the German invasion of Russia. "Sheer Horror" as the German invasion began with the shelling of civilian cities and small Soviet targets. Stalin did not believe he was being attacked and agreed to fire back and mobilize until well into the next day. Within a few hours of the invasion front line Russian soldiers were shattered, with half dead or wounded, and weapons of defense run over by Panzer Tank Blitzkrieg...tanks, followed by troops and artillery.

The Russian Army had no plans or training on retreating, only attacking, so they did not know how to retreat. Germans gained well over 300 miles of territory in three days, with 15,000 Red Army Officers assassinated by both sides (Stalin had given the order to shoot any officer who orders a retreat as a traitor).

Egypt's precarious transition to democracy is threatened by the continued use of military trials against civilians, three-decades old emergency laws, press restrictions and other repressive practices leftover from the old regime. That's the conclusion of the head of the rights group Amnesty International as he wrapped up a multi-day visit to Egypt today. 

The mayor of the high desert town of Lancaster, California says he believes he's found the solution to bringing down crime and making people in the city generally happier and less stressed. He's piping in New Age Music and bird songs in all of downtown.  Initially a good idea, that worked, it is grating on the nerves of many residents.If the mayor has his own way, there will be a designated "smile zone" downtown with fictitious laws enforced in a light hearted way to cheer citizens and visitor up and put a smile on their face.

The only remaining authenticated portrait of Billy the Kid, sold at auction in Denver yesterday for 2.3 million dollars to a private collector.

Mexico beat the USA at the Rose Bowl, taking Men's Soccer's Gold Cup and giving Mexico a birth in the next World Games, which is a stepping stone to the World Cup. The Mexican team played to a "home crowd" on US turf in Pasadena, CA. Today starts the FIFA Women's World Title games in Germany.

Nick Charles, a onetime Washington sportscaster who became CNN's first sports anchor in 1980, has died of bladder cancer. A taxi driver, he joined CNN on its first day of operation, anchored sports for 17 years and anchored his own sports show along with boxing events for over 13 years.

Billie Jean King marks the 50th anniversary of her first title at Wimbledon (at the age of 17) -- and her 50th consecutive Wimbledon! She says that today the US is a long way from being the tennis power we once were. For one we never had to compete against the entire world, only tennis countries. Today the world plays tennis, including countries that train their athletes practically from birth.

When I was growing up dinosaurs were imagined like the lizards shot on movie film and blown up to see huge, slow, lumbering, cold blooded (need to bask in the sun), slithery tongue and definitely not with feathers. Today we know they had fast reflexes, many ran at rapid speeds, some had feathers and were more foul than beast, and there is a strong indication from Cal Tech that the giants who roamed the earth were warm blooded. They bathed to stay cool, stayed hidden in the shrubs and trees, and needed the energy and speed of a warm blooded predator. Carbon dating and test of tooth enamel, including on the T-Rex, indicate a warm blooded creature, more advanced than we had previously thought.

The latest surveys show that both business owners and consumers have been losing confidence in the economy. When people feel uncertain about the future, they don't want to spend money -- and that lack of spending is making everything worse. No matter how the government may juggle the numbers, they cannot make up for a basic slowing in consumer spending and its impact on everything from large manufacturers to truckers to ships at sea and local mom and pop stores. And when we buy, it is discount, increasingly on line or with companies where the money doe not remain in the community, or even in the country.

Many economists say housing prices won't start to recover until 2014. Even Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said the market may be worse than anyone had thought. Still, there may be glimmers of hope as policy makers try to think up new ways to help struggling homeowners avoid going into foreclosure, and help investors buy up those properties that already are in foreclosure.There is movement on the housing market, but so far not the advantage of Las Vegas and Nevada, where property values continue to decline and the retail per foot rate is at an all time low (once you get off the Strip).