Thursday, December 10, 2009

"We recall clothing because"...From Paris

There is a running joke in my household, which started when my husband made the irreparable mistake of showing our kids a high school photo of himself. You know the one. He's wearing a polyester leisure suit. It's checkered burgundy and white. He's gorgeous. His suit is hideous.
Our kids? They've never let him hear the end of it. They've never let him live it down.
His response? "Hey! That was a really cool-happening suit in the mid 70's."
"We recall clothing because something happened to us when we had it on, or we wished something had happened to us," says writer Nora Ephron, whose new play. "Love, Loss, and What I Wore" is now playing off Broadway.
Nora delves into how our clothes trigger emotional responses--and flashbacks.
A recent article in 'Haute Topic' Fashion Washington, winter 2009, states:
"Like photos or stacks of old letters, such wearable mementos serve as physical reminders of our past selves and our ever-evolving style. It's part of that complicated, lifelong question, 'who am I, and who do I want people to think I am?"

Ballerina Sweetspot: A Chair Designed Specifically For Audiophiles

There is just something about chairs. Just look around the office—they are not just places to sit anymore. Chairs have become super-engineered status symbols. Now audiophiles can have their own high-tech throne.

The Ballerina Sweetspot is designed to be the ultimate music lover's chair. It features a thin headrest to accommodate headphones and prevent the reflection of sound, memory foam to cushion the body, hollow armrests to neatly hold controls and an aluminum frame that supposedly reduces sonic vibration.

Why would you change the Greatest Country in the World?

... Obama on education. | DMI

"My friends, we live in the greatest nation in the history of the world. 
I hope you'll join with me, as we try to change it."   -- Barack Obama 

''Life's's even tougher if you're stupid.''  -- John Wayne

PS: New favorite John Wayne Movie: McLintock McClintock!

He does even shoot a gun.

Clemens' trainer McNamee to publish book

'Death, Taxes and Mac" coming in February

Brian McNamee, the onetime personal strength and conditioning coach for former Yankees, Red Sox, Blue Jays and Astros pitcher Roger Clemens, is self-publishing a book that will reveal his perspective on Clemens’s steroids controversy. Death, Taxes, and Mac: Brian McNamee in His Own Words, written with Marc Zappulla, drops February 17, 2010, the same day Yankee pitchers and catchers report for spring training in Tampa, Fla.

Sail away Kirkus Reviews

Hello Goodreads

gr_logo.gifKirkus Reviews closed today, taking away about 5,000 book reviews a year--a tremendous loss for the publishing industry. In a world without these useful reviews, how will people find out about new books?

This week, Goodreads, the social network for readers, just scored $2 million in new financing with the help of True Ventures. Publishers Weekly has the scoop: "Goodreads will use the new funds to improve the site and create more features around reading ranging from quizzes to bookswaps to e-book support tools." Goodreads has a booming community of 2,600,000 readers, who have panned and celebrated 64,000,000 books.

As traditional review outlets disappear, online communities may be one of the last places where readers can go to find out about new books. Here at GalleyCat we would love to create some sort of a community book review feature for our readers. Email us if you are interested in joining the conversation.

GW: It is about the money. If it was so obvious, if the science wasn’t “cooked” why would they suggest spending this much?


$60B to Monitor... Everything

EXCLUSIVE: U.N. bodies calling for massive project to uncover new climate information, underlining incompleteness and uncertainty about existing data

Dogs and Cats: Dogs are Better – New Scientist

How dogs are man's better friend: Canines outclass cats by a whisker in the best pet test

A study into character, intelligence and usefulness shows dogs are better pets than cats  -  but only by a whisker.

In the 'great pet showdown' experts compared 11 traits from brain size to environmental impact by looking at research published in scientific journals. Dogs came out on top in six categories to cats' five.

Cat and Dog

Paw to paw: 11 traits of cats and dogs were compared for the study

Staff at New Scientist magazine first listed the areas where cats fared best. These included having bigger brains in proportion to their body size.

Cats' brains also contain more cells, with about 1.4million more devoted to complex functions such as memory and attention than dogs' brains.

The cats' second point was awarded for being more popular, with 204million living in the top ten cat-owning nations compared to 173million dogs in the ten countries where canines are most in vogue.

But in the other six categories examined  -  many of which related to how the animals interact with humans  -  dogs had the edge.

Dogs have a longer shared history with humans, and may have been domesticated as long as 135,000 years ago. Cats are relative newcomers to our homes. Similarly, dogs have a greater ability to bond with their masters. Even four-month-old puppies choose a human companion over another dog, research has shown.

Dogs scored a third point for their superior powers of understanding.

Felines v canines

Read more:

Hops good for preventing Prostate & Breast Cancer

... Beer. Why we drink. Beer

Hops Compound May Prevent Prostate Cancer

ScienceDaily (Dec. 10, 2009) — The natural compound xanthohumol blocks the effects of the male hormone testosterone, therefore aiding in the prevention of prostate cancer.

... hops next to a glass of beer

Xanthohumol is derived from hops and belongs to the group of flavonoids that are found in many plants, fruit, vegetables and spices. Studies to date have shown that xanthohumol blocks the action of estrogen by binding to its receptor, which may lead to prevention of breast cancer.

O2 to the rescue

... Cluster Headaches |

Treating Cluster Headaches With High-Flow Oxygen Appears Effective

ScienceDaily (Dec. 10, 2009) — Patients with a cluster headache, which is characterized by bouts of excruciating pain usually near the eye or temple, were more likely to report being pain-free within 15 minutes of treatment with high-flow oxygen than patients who received a placebo treatment, according to a study in the December 9 issue of JAMA.

The study included 109 adults (ages 18-70 years). Patients treated four cluster headache episodes alternately with high-flow oxygen (inhaled oxygen at 100 percent, 12 L/min, delivered by face mask, for 15 minutes at the start of an attack) or placebo (high-flow air).

The researchers found that 78 percent of the patients who received oxygen reported being pain-free or to have adequate relief within 15 minutes of treatment, compared to 20 percent of patients who received air.

Nat Geo No. 1 “Space” story for 2009


Sun Oddly Quiet -- Hints at Next "Little Ice Age"?

Anne Minard
for National Geographic News

A prolonged lull in solar activity has astrophysicists glued to their telescopes waiting to see what the sun will do next—and how Earth's climate might respond.

The sun is the least active it's been in decades and the dimmest in a hundred years. The lull is causing some scientists to recall the Little Ice Age, an unusual cold spell in Europe and North America, which lasted from about 1300 to 1850.

sun at minimum and maximum pictures

Sun's Power Hits New Low, May Endanger Earth?

The coldest period of the Little Ice Age, between 1645 and 1715, has been linked to a deep dip in solar storms known as the Maunder Minimum.

John Stewart again leads in the reporting – from about 30 seconds in to 1:45

Obama Proposes $12,000 "Cash for Caulkers" Program

President Obama has proposed a $12,000 "Cash for Caulkers" program, modeled after the "Cash for Clunkers" program.  Although the details are sketchy, the outline calls for a 50% rebate on up to $24,000 of purchases by homeowners of energy-efficient appliances and insulation.  It is expected to cost $23 billion over two years.

JOHN STEWART Pictures ...

Helping the Moslems

In a gesture of good will to "militant extremists"muslim terrorist all over the world, the Transportation Security Administration has posted online its airport screening procedures manual. According to ABC News, the 93-page standard operating procedures manual "includ[es] some of the most closely guarded secrets regarding special rules for diplomats and CIA and law enforcement officers." At Pajamas Media, Annie Jacobsen conducts her own after-action review.

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano Napolitano.jpgcommented brilliantly that although the document posted was out of date

Obama in Norway or as they see it “An elephant in a porcelain shop”. UPDATE: O's Speech was very good. Gracious and well done.

obama wins nobel peace prize
Obama snubs King.
A day before President Obama receives his Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, the president’s treatment of his Norwegian hosts has become hot news across Scandinavia.
News outlets across the region are calling Obama arrogant for slashing some of the prize winners’ traditional duties from his schedule. “Everybody wants to visit the Peace Center except Obama,” sniped the Norwegian daily Aftenposten, amid reports the president would snub his own exhibition at the Nobel Peace Center. “A bit arrogant—a bit bad,” proclaimed another Aftenposten headline.
“It’s very sad,” said Nobel Peace Center Director Bente Erichsen of the news that Obama would skip the peace center Nobel Peace Center in Oslo ...exhibit. Prize winners traditionally open the exhibitions about their work that accompany the Nobel festivities. “I totally understand why the Norwegian public is upset. If I could get a few minutes with the president, I’d say, ‘To walk through the exhibition wouldn’t take long, and I’m sure you would love the show. You have no idea what you are missing.’”
Meanwhile, the Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet is reporting that the president has declined an invitation to lunch with King Harald V, an event every prize winner from the Dalai Lama to Al Gore has attended. (The newspaper’s headline: “Obama disses lunch with King Harald.”)harald V.jpg
To be fair, though, Obama’s just in town to pick up his prize, and the King probably doesn’t have enough accomplishments on his record yet to merit lunch with Obama. But here’s the best point:
The American president is acting like an elephant in a porcelain shop,” said Norwegian public-relations expert Rune Morck-Wergeland. “In Norwegian culture, it’s very important to keep an agreement. We’re religious about that, and Obama’s actions have been clumsy. You just don’t say no to an invitation from a European king. Maybe Obama’s advisers are not very educated about European culture, but he is coming off as rude, even if he doesn’t mean to.”

New Jobless Claims Rise to 474,000 After 5 Straight Weeks of Decline

COAL COMPANY LETS 500 WORKERS GO: “Which category does this job loss fall under: created or saved?”

Yesterday in Norway

Obama defends US wars as he accepts peace prize...
Norwegians Incensed Over Obama Snubs...

Press to Obama: How do you like your premature Nobel?

Dalai Lama: Hey, maybe it’s a little early for Obama’s Nobel

Yesterday in the US

House Democrat: Senate public option “compromise” is a total victory for fans of … single-payer


Upper Midwest Slammed By Storm; State Of Emergency In Wisconsin ...
Frigid temperatures follow...

Has Merit

Proposed Amendment # 28 to the US Constitution

Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators and/or Representatives, and Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and/or Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States .