January 1, 2010

Happy New Year, no Happy New Decade – but what decade are we in? –
A decade with no name – The Twenty-tens? The Deccies? The Tennies? The Onesies?
All logos 2500x600 small text v2 cropped

– The world’s financial markets are in the middle of the worse recession since the Twenties.

– Barack Obama is President of the US and Gordon Brown is Prime Minister of the UK.
US_President_Barack_Obama_taking_his_Oath_of_OfficeBarack Obama

– Pamela Anderson suffers a “wardrobe malfunction” in Hollywood and David Tennant hands over Doctor Who’s screwdriver to Matt Smith. Stephen Fry (temporarily) quits Twitter.
Pamela-AndersonPamela Anderson

– Scientists at Kings College, London reveal that the G-spot doesn’t actually exist.

It’s not a great start to the decade but, as D:Ream sang 6 years earlier, things can only get better… can’t they? Read on…

Video of the Day –

Robbie Maddison New Years Eve jump 2009 in Las Vegas


February 10, 2010

Top News Stories –

Cashmere loo roll, the ultimate bathroom indulgence –
Quilted, embossed, ultra soft aloe vera – the humble loo roll has gone steadily more upmarket in recent years. But surely it has now hit the apogee of indulgence: a cashmere version has gone on sale. Cashmere, one of the softest and most prized materials, has been used to add an extra layer of extravagance to the sheets of paper, ensuring consumers enjoy the bottom line in comfort. The loo rolls have gone on sale in Waitrose, the supermarket with a legion of loyal and discerning middle-class customers. The supermarket won’t reveal quite how much cashmere goes into each roll, but insists it is a “significant” amount. No cashmere fibres themselves are included in the manufacturing process. Rather, the paper is covered in oil extracted from the hairs of the cashmere goat. [Daily Telegraph]

Sleeping Beauty condition means teenager sleeps for two weeks –
Louisa Ball, 15, has earned the nickname ‘Sleeping Beauty’ thanks to a rare condition that causes her to sleep for up to two weeks at a time. Miss Ball, from Worthing, has slept through school exams, dance competitions and entire family holidays thanks to her unusual condition. Her prolonged sleeps, which began in 2008 as she recovered from flu, were initially thought to be hormonal until she was diagnosed with Kleine-Levin Syndrome last year. People who develop the condition, also known as Sleeping Beauty Disease, are prone to falling into extended periods of deep sleep that can stretch to weeks. [Daily Telegraph]

Beyonce and Alicia Keys film music video in Rio slum –
The Grammy Award winning singers performed at the Morro da Conceicao shantytown.
They were shooting a video for a duet “Put It In a Love Song” which appears on Keys’ album “The Element of Freedom.”
Beyonce is on tour in Brazil and is expected to have a special role in the video.
Keys had already filmed part of her video at the Dona Marta slum, which became renowned worldwide after Michael Jackson was there in 1996 to film a video for “They Don’t Care About Us.” [Daily Telegraph]
Alicia KeysAlicia Keys

Video of the Day –

HP – invent from Wriggles & Robins on Vimeo.


December 13, 2014

Ben Haenow wins X Factor 2014 –
Ben Haenow has been named this year’s UK X Factor winner after going head-to-head with Fleur East in the 2014 final at Wembley Arena. The singer from Croydon, south London, was chosen by a public vote with over 10 million votes cast. Mel B the former Spice Girl and one of the four judges, missed the final due to illness. Tulisa Contostavlos stood in as her replacement.
Melanie_BMel B

FIFA dismiss complaints over report –
A complaint by US lawyer Michael Garcia who spent two years investigating World Cup corruption claims for Fifa has been dismissed by football’s governing body. Garcia’s findings were released as a 42-page summary by FIFA-appointed independent judge Hans-Joachim Eckert. Garcia said his summary was “incomplete and erroneous”. There have been calls to release the full report in the wake of Garcia’s complaint, but FIFA president Sepp Blater has said it cannot do so for legal reasons.
2014_FIFA_Announcement_(Joseph_Blatter)_Sepp Blatter at the 2014 FIFA Tournament Announcement in 2007

Indecent proposal –
A Dutchman’s attempt at a romantic wedding proposal using a mobile crane has resulted in the crane falling over and smashing into a neighbour’s roof. The man had rented a crane in the central town of Ijsselstein to descend in front of his girlfriend’s bedroom window, play her a song and ask her to marry him. Despite the disaster, in which no-one was hurt, his girlfriend accepted his offer.

Video of the Day –

Our Streets –

OUR STREETS from Jared Rosenthal on Vimeo.


January 18, 2015

Top News Stories –

Pope takes Mass with 6 million people –
Pope Francis finishes his tour of the Philippines giving Mass in front of an estimated 6 million people in Rizal Park in the capital Manila. This appears to be a record attendance for a papal event eclipsing the 5 million who saw Pope John Paul II in Manila in 1995.
Pope Francis Korea Haemi Castle 19 (cropped)

AB de Villers gets fastest ODI ton –
A new record for the fastest 100 in a one-day international (ODI) by South Africa batsman AB de Villiers who hit a century off 31 balls during an innings of 149 against the West Indies in Johannesburg. Including 8 fours and 10 sixes to beat the previous ODI record of 36 balls by New Zealand all-rounder Corey Anderson against West Indies on January 1st 2015 but doesn’t match Chris Gayle’s 100 from 30 balls in the Indian Premier League on April 23rd 2013. See List of the Day below.
AB de Villiers 2

Vonn’s record causes Tiger to lose a tooth –
American skier Lindsey Vonn (@lindseyvonn) has won her 63rd World Cup downhill title with a win in the super-G race in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy overtaking the record set by Austrian Annemarie Moser-Proell over 35 years ago. Vonn’s boyfriend is golfer Tiger Woods who surprised her by being at the podium after the event. In the media scrum to get pictures of the skier a hand-held camera knocked out one of Wood’s front teeth. She celebrated with this tweet:
copyright @lindseyvonn
Lindsey Vonn CULindsey Vonn

Video of the Day –

Wetness from The Coastal Crew on Vimeo.


February 21, 2015

Top News Story –

Razzies 2015 Winners: Cameron Diaz and Kirk Cameron Get Bashed at the 35th Annual Golden Raspberry Awards
Cameron-DiazCameron Diaz

Video of the Day –

The Torch Tower, Dubai on fire –


June 5, 2015

Top News Stories –

Southampton footballers set new world record for longest match –
A new world record for the longest football match has been set at St Mary’s, the home of Southampton FC, after a 102 hour-long charity game. The 36 players, from the Testlands Support Project, a Southampton charity, played on until 00:30 BST on Friday to break the previous record, of 101 hours. The players took turns to take breaks to eat, get physiotherapy and sleep. They began the 11-a-side match at 18:30 on Sunday, scoring over 1,600 goals. The Reds went on to beat the Whites 910-725. [BBC]

Surprising pop star facts revealed by YouTube –
YouTube reveals statistics, usually only visible to those behind the scenes, showing some bizarre trends about the world’s biggest stars. They show that Taylor Swift is twice as popular in Bangkok in Thailand than New York, for example. Or that One Direction are huge in Quezon City, the Philippines, as well as Mexico City. The Artist Insights service was unveiled on Wednesday. Google says it means musicians will be able to see the cities where they have the largest number of fans. The records go back to September 2014 and include original versions of the artist’s videos as well as fan shares and re-uploads. [BBC Newsbeat] See List of the Day

Taylor-Swift Taylor Swift

‘Female Viagra’ to boost women’s libido one step closer –
The development of a pill to boost women’s libido is one step closer after an American panel recommended the approval of the female equivalent of Viagra. A panel of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisers has voted in favour of recommending flibanserin, a daily pill nicknamed the “female Viagra”. The recommendation will be seen as a major coup for campaigners who have fought for women’s sex drives to receive the same level of medical attention as men’s. The decision will now be passed to the FDA itself, which will rule on whether the pill will be officially approved for public use later this year. [Daily Telegraph]

Video of the Day –

Trick Meter from Simeon Duncombe on Vimeo.

List of the Day –

Taylor Swift’s YouTube fanbase by country (September 2014 – June 5, 2015) – Data from YouTube Artist Insights


United States
678,418,914 total views

United Kingdom
204,980,705 total views

190,668,351 total views

158,830,256 total views

145,212,778 total views

116,673,111 total views

100,100,885 total views

77,336,118 total views

67,362,320 total views

Republic of Indonesia
66,044,140 total views

Top Twitter Trends –

Worldwide USA UK
1 #PSYYnaAtAngelo #NationalDonutDay #FirstYearAdvice
2 #ComoDiceUnaCancion #WorldEnvironmentDay #FridayFeeling
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4 #NBAFinals #NBASongs #BBCMusicDay
5 #NationalDonutDay #FlashbackFriday Jerry Collins
6 Warriors #USMNT #NBAFinals
7 #الهلال_النصر Chris Brown #NationalDonutDay
8 #WorldEnvironmentDay Ferris Bueller #NationalFishandChipDay
9 Jerry Collins Pat Venditte #bbcqt
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June 7, 2015

Top News Stories –

Kate Moss escorted off flight ‘for being disruptive’ –
Supermodel Kate Moss has been escorted off a plane at Luton airport after reportedly being disruptive. The Easyjet flight had arrived from Bodrum in Turkey on Sunday afternoon. In a statement, Bedfordshire Police said they “were called to assist staff in escorting a passenger from a flight arriving into Luton airport this afternoon”. No formal complaints were made against her and she was not arrested. [BBC] In February 2010 Calvin Klein said of Moss – while “a great model,” she was a “difficult” person to work with.
Kate-Moss-with-Mario-TestinoKate Moss with photographer Mario Testino

Bradley Wiggins breaks UCI Hour Record at Lee Valley Velopark –
Sir Bradley Wiggins has broken the iconic hour record by completing a distance of 54.526km (33.88 miles). The 35-year-old smashed the record previously held by fellow Briton Alex Dowsett of 52.937km (32.89 miles), which was set in May. Roared on by a capacity crowd at Lee Valley VeloPark in London, Wiggins became the sixth rider to claim a Tour de France title and the hour record. “I’m just glad it’s done. It was torturous,” he said.
“That’s the closest I have ever come to what it’s like to a have a baby,” Wiggins, who becomes the fifth person in the past nine months to break the record, joked. The multiple Olympic and world champion on track and road surpassed Dowsett’s 212 laps, set in Manchester, with 1min 42secs to spare and eventually completed 219 laps.[BBC] In January 2015, Wiggins launched his own cycling team, Team Wiggins, to compete in the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.
Roubaix - Paris-Roubaix, le 13 avril 2014 (B16)Bradley Wiggins

Dame Helen Mirren reigns at Tony theatre awards –
Dame Helen Mirren has been named best actress in a play at the Tony theatre awards in New York. She took home the prize for her portrayal of the Queen in The Audience. Dame Helen, a previous Oscar-winner for The Queen, accepted the award saying: “Your Majesty, you did it again.” Other wins included Alex Sharp for best actor and Marianne Elliott for best directing of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which was also named best play. [BBC] See List of the Day

Actor, Sir Christopher Lee dies, aged 93 –
See full story on June 11, 2015 when his death was announced.
Sir-Christopher-Lee-in-2013Sir Christopher Lee (1922-2015)

Video of the Day –

My Homemade 40W LASER SHOTGUN!!!!!

List of the Day –

Tony Awards 2015 Winners –

Best musical

An American in Paris
Something Rotten!
The Visit

Best play

WINNER: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Hand to God
Wolf Hall Parts One & Two

Best play revival

WINNER: Skylight
The Elephant Man
This Is Our Youth
You Can’t Take It With You

Best musical revival

WINNER: The King and I
On the Twentieth Century
On the Town

Best leading actor in a musical

WINNER: Michael Cerveris, Fun Home
Robert Fairchild, An American in Paris
Brian d’Arcy James, Something Rotten!
Ken Watanabe, The King and I
Tony Yazbeck, On the Town

Best leading actress in a musical

WINNER: Kelli O’Hara, The King and I
Kristin Chenoweth, On the Twentieth Century
Leanne Cope, An American in Paris
Beth Malone, Fun Home
Chita Rivera, The Visit

Best leading actor in a play

WINNER: Alex Sharp, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Steven Boyer, Hand to God
Bradley Cooper, The Elephant Man
Ben Miles, Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Bill Nighy, Skylight

Best leading actress in a play

WINNER: Helen Mirren, The Audience
Geneva Carr, Hand to God
Elisabeth Moss, The Heidi Chronicles
Carey Mulligan, Skylight
Ruth Wilson, Constellations

Best featured actor in a musical

WINNER: Christian Borle, Something Rotten!
Andy Karl, On the Twentieth Century
Brad Oscar, Something Rotten!
Brandon Uranowitz, An American in Paris
Max von Essen, An American in Paris

Best featured actress in a musical

WINNER: Ruthie Ann Miles, The King and I
Victoria Clark, Gigi
Judy Kuhn, Fun Home
Sydney Lucas, Fun Home
Emily Skeggs, Fun Home

Best featured actor in a play

WINNER: Richard McCabe, The Audience
Matthew Beard, Skylight
K. Todd Freeman, Airline Highway
Alessandro Nivola, The Elephant Man
Nathaniel Parker, Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Micah Stock, It’s Only a Play

Best featured actress in a play

WINNER: Annaleigh Ashford, You Can’t Take It With You
Patricia Clarkson, The Elephant Man
Lydia Leonard, Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Sarah Stiles, Hand to God
Julie White, Airline Highway

Best book of a musical

WINNER: Fun Home, Lisa Kron
An American in Paris, Craig Lucas
Something Rotten!, Karey Kirkpatrick and John O’Farrell
The Visit, Terrence McNally

Best original score (music and/or lyrics) for the theatre

WINNER: Fun Home, Music: Jeanine Tesori, Lyrics: Lisa Kron
The Last Ship, Music & Lyrics: Sting
Something Rotten!, Music & Lyrics: Wayne Kirkpatrick and Karey Kirkpatrick
The Visit, Music: John Kander, Lyrics: Fred Ebb

Best director of a play

WINNER: Marianne Elliott, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Stephen Daldry, Skylight
Scott Ellis, You Can’t Take It With You
Jeremy Herrin, Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
Moritz von Stuelpnagel, Hand to God

Best director of a musical

WINNER: Sam Gold, Fun Home
Casey Nicholaw, Something Rotten!
John Rando, On the Town
Bartlett Sher, The King and I
Christopher Wheeldon, An American in Paris

Best scenic design of a play

WINNER: Bunny Christie and Finn Ross, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Bob Crowley, Skylight
Christopher Oram, Wolf Hall Parts One & Two
David Rockwell, You Can’t Take It With You

Best scenic design of a musical

WINNER: Bob Crowley and 59 Productions, An American in Paris
David Rockwell, On the Twentieth Century
Michael Yeargan, The King and I
David Zinn, Fun Home

Top Twitter Trends –

Worldwide USA UK
1 #SandığınaSahipCık #TonyAwards #internetbestfriendday
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7 Booba #WouldPreferForgetting #FIFAWWC
8 Cotto Cheetah Girls 2 #FrenchOpenFinal
9 Wawrinka #earthquake Suarez
10 #Secim2015 Gardena #UFCNOLA

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June 27, 2015

Top News Stories –

Taiwan Water Park Blast Leaves Hundreds Injured –
Hundreds of people were injured at a water park in Taiwan on Saturday when a cloud of colored powder ignited in the air over a crowd during an event, erupting into a huge fireball. No deaths were reported, but at least 516 people were injured, 194 seriously, including eight with life-threatening injuries, the island’s official Central News Agency reported. The injured, many suffering burns, were overwhelmingly young, in their 20s or younger, according to a roster posted on the news agency’s website. Color Play Asia bills itself as Asia’s biggest color party, an event where people dance to music while spraying each other with colored powder. A promotional video for the event on its Facebook page shows employees on a stage blasting colored powder onto the crowd. [NY Times]

Thousands attend London Pride march –
Thousands of people have taken to the streets of London for the annual Pride parade. More than 250 groups took part in the parade, which started in Baker Street at 13:00 BST. Police said there was extra security on the route following terror attacks in France, Tunisia and Kuwait on Friday. The United States flag joined Ireland and Mozambique’s at the front of the march, recognising recent gay rights progress in the three countries. [BBC] See List of the Day below
BBC London Pride Tweet

2 Charged in Confederate Flag Removal at South Carolina Capitol –
A protester climbed a 30-foot flagpole and removed the Confederate battle flag from its perch outside the South Carolina State House early Saturday, before she was arrested and the flag replaced, the police said. The protester, an African-American woman, was nearly halfway up the pole when a State Capitol police officer on routine patrol ordered her to come down. The authorities said the woman, who was wearing climbing gear, had ignored the command. She continued her climb to the top of the flagpole and unhooked and removed the flag before descending. An officer from the Bureau of Protective Services arrested her and a white male who had aided her. [NY Times] See Video of the Day


Video of the Day –

#KeepItDown Confederate Flag Takedown

List of the Day –

Legal status of same-sex marriage [from Wikipedia]

· Denmark proper
· Greenland*
· CH, CA, QR,
· DF
· Netherlands proper1
New Zealand:
· New Zealand proper
South Africa
United Kingdom:
· England and Wales
· Scotland
· Pitcairn Islands
United States**

Top Twitter Trends –

Worldwide USA UK
1 #carrotnight #1yearof5SOSalbum #ArmedForcesDay
2 #AdmitoQue #HappyBirthdayLauren #Pride2015
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8 동성애 #MakeAFilmSkeptical Boca Juniors
9 #HappyBdayLaurenFromBrazil Hagelin #FreeBree
10 フォロワーの大半 Fav Song Florence

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July 5, 2015

Top News Stories –

Greece votes ‘No’ and gambles its future –
Greek voters have delivered a defiant response to Europe. Political leaders and heads of government had lined up to warn the Greeks that a “No” vote would be a vote to leave the euro. It did not deter them. Indeed many voters seemed to revel in their resistance. The European Project is now facing its gravest crisis. [BBC]

USA beat Japan 5-2 in Women’s FIFA World Cup Final –
Carli Lloyd scored an incredible 13-minute hat-trick as the United States thrashed Japan to win their third Women’s World Cup title. In a repeat of the 2011 final, which Japan won on penalties, the Nadeshiko could not live with their stronger and quicker opponents, who went 4-0 up when Lloyd scored an astonishing third from the halfway line. The pulsating finale to an entertaining tournament was the highest-scoring final in the tournament’s history, and matched the highest scoring men’s final, when Brazil defeated Sweden by the same scoreline in 1958. [BBC] See Video of the Day
Carli-Llyoyd Carli Lloyd

Video of the Day –

List of the Day –

FIFA Women’s World Cup results [from Wikipedia]

Year Host Champions Score Runners-up Third Place Score Fourth Place Teams
1991   China
United States

1995   Sweden

United States
China PR
1999   United States
United States
0–0 a.e.t.
(5–4 pen)

China PR

0–0 [A]
(5–4 pen)

2003   United States
2–1 asdet

United States
2007   China

United States
2011   Germany
2–2 a.e.t.
(3–1 pen)

United States

2015   Canada
United States

1–0 a.e.t.

Top Twitter Trends –

Worldwide USA UK
1 #ToNoTwitterPq Happy 5th of July #greekreferendum
2 #QueLindoEstariaQue #USAvJPN Chile
3 デスノート #dontjudgechallange Messi
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8 #شي_مانستغني_عنه #MakeAMovieMoreAmerican Sanchez
9 Messi Best 4th of July #BritishGP
10 Vidal Take Jackson Off the $20 Bill #marr

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November 4, 2015

Top News Stories –

Brazilian prison inmates using a mouse to courier drugs –
As prison guards in one of Brazil’s notoriously overcrowded and chaotic jails, the officers in Barra da Grota prison probably thought they had seen it all. But last week they saw something that shocked even their hardened heads: a mouse, they noticed, was being used by inmates to courier drugs. The animal was seen scurrying along the corridor with tiny bags of drugs tied to its tail, running between the cells. Gean Carlos Gomes, director of the central Brazil prison, 1,100 miles inland from Recife, said the mouse was being used as a “bridge” between cells. “They attached a hook to the mouse’s tail and then used it to carry the drugs and other goods from one cell to another,” he said. “When the animal arrived at its destination, the prisoner took the mouse and removed the hook from its tail.” [Daily Telegraph]

Vladimir Putin is Forbes magazine’s most powerful person in the world –
Vladimir Putin has been named the world’s most powerful person for the second year running by Forbes magazine. Of the 73 listed, 28 are billionaires. Thirty of the individuals are Americans. And only nine are women – the same number as last year. The 63-year-old Russian president has, unsurprisingly, retained his position at the top of the Forbes ranking of the world’s most powerful people. Forbes says the decision is made on the amount of money they control; the number of people they impact; their total spheres of influence; and how actively they wield their power. And in all areas Mr Putin has triumphed; he dominates one of the world’s largest countries, and his actions in Ukraine and Syria are changing the course of history. [Daily Telegraph] See List of the Day
Vladimir_PutinVladimir Putin

WARNING: Do Not Post Your Winning Ticket On Social Media –
Chantelle from Perth won $900 [Australian] by betting on 100-to-1 shot Prince Of Penzance in the Melbourne Cup yesterday… Like many punters around the country Chantelle celebrated the win by posting a selfie with her victorious ticket on Facebook. Little did Chantelle know, the photo of the barcode could be used at an automated machine to claim the cash – which is exactly what someone did. “To the low life who is obviously my friend on Facebook and used my photo to claim our winnings. You’re a massive dick. You ruined my day,” Chantelle wrote on Facebook. Chantelle told Triple M that police were able to track where the money was claimed and are confident of finding the person responsible. [Triple M]
Chantelle winning ticket Facebook postChantelle winning ticket Facebook post

Video of the Day –

Emirates: #HelloJetman
Armed with unguarded ambition and the vision to push boundaries beyond the unthinkable, Jetman Dubai and Emirates A380 take to the skies of Dubai for an exceptional formation flight.

List of the Day –

Forbes Most Powerful People Top Ten 2015 [Forbes]

Rank Name Organization Age
#1 Vladimir Putin Russia 63
#2 Angela Merkel Germany 61
#3 Barack Obama United States 54
#4 Pope Francis Roman Catholic Church 78
#5 Xi Jinping China 62
#6 Bill Gates Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation 60
#7 Janet Yellen Washington, United States 69
#8 David Cameron United Kingdom 49
#9 Narendra Modi India 65
#10 Larry Page Google 42

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4 #احتجاج_الهلال… #NerdyCountryMusic Gerrard
5 Briana #CMAawards #PMQs
6 #NationalStressAwarenessDay UC Merced Dapper Laughs
7 Benzema Hump Day #IPBill
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December 2, 2015

Top News Stories –

British parliament votes to bomb Islamic State in Syria –
Britain’s parliament voted on Wednesday to launch bombing raids against Islamic State in Syria, supporting Prime Minister David Cameron’s case that the country needs to help destroy militants who are “plotting to kill us”. After more than 10 hours of tense debate, lawmakers voted in favour of air strikes, by 397 to 223. British Tornado GR4 bombers could leave an air base in Cyprus within hours to launch the country’s latest military action in the Middle East. [Reuters] See Top Twitter Trends.
David_CameronDavid Cameron

Video of the Day –

The Dreams of an Astronaut – with Helen Sharman from The Royal Institution on Vimeo.

Top Twitter Trends –

Worldwide USA UK
1 #SyriaVote #SyriaVote #terroristsympathiser
2 JELENA IS BACK #SanBernadino #SyriaVote
3 男根のメタファー Samurai Jack Gary Neville
4 #معلمه_تعض_تلم�… #MillenialChristmasSongs Mark Zuckerberg
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9 DEMI LOVATO CONFIDENT #CelebrityChristmasCarols #AAOOD3
10 #زد_رصيدك19 #CMTAOTY Stella Creasy

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March 19, 2016

Top News Stories –

Bruce Springsteen signs late note for schoolboy –
As excuse notes go, it is a step up from the “dog ate my homework”. But not all teachers would be impressed with a letter explaining a nine-year-old’s late arrival in class was down to being at a rock concert the night before. So Xabi Glovsky had it signed by Bruce Springsteen. He went to the concert in Los Angeles with his father, Scott, a life-long fan of the Boss. They went armed with a homemade sign. “Bruce, I will be late to school tomorrow. Please sign my note :-)” it said. At the end of the three-and-a-half-hour show, and well after Xabi’s bedtime, Springsteen sent a security guard into the crowd at the Los Angeles Sports Centre to invite father and son backstage. He asked Xabi for the name and spelling of his teacher, before whipping out pen and paper for the note. It read: “Dear Ms. Jackson, Xabi has been out very late rocking & rolling. Please excuse him if he is tardy.” [Daily Telegraph]
Bruce_SpringsteenBruce Springsteen

Six Nations 2016: England win Grand Slam with France victory –
England have their first Grand Slam in 13 years after holding out to secure a historic victory in Paris. First-half tries from Danny Care and Dan Cole had given them a five-point half-time lead, only for the relentless penalty precision of Maxime Machenaud to keep France within touching distance. But a third try in three matches from Anthony Watson calmed rising nerves before a brace of late penalties from Owen Farrell allowed the travelling support to sing their heroes home. It marks a remarkable turnaround for new head coach Eddie Jones, coming just six months after the humiliation of a home World Cup exit at the group stages before he took control. [BBC] See List of the Day

Video of the Day –

2084 from Taz Goldstein on Vimeo.

List of the Day –

Winners of Grand Slams in the Five Nations (England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and France) and Six Nations (Italy added in 2000) Championship

Nation Grand Slams Grand Slam winning seasons
 England 13 1913, 1914, 1921, 1923, 1924, 1928, 1957, 1980, 1991, 1992, 1995, 2003, 2016
 Wales 11 1908*, 1909*, 1911, 1950, 1952, 1971, 1976, 1978, 2005, 2008, 2012
 France 9 1968, 1977, 1981, 1987, 1997, 1998, 2002, 2004, 2010
 Scotland 3 1925, 1984, 1990
 Ireland 2 1948, 2009
 Italy 0


Top Twitter Trends –

Worldwide USA UK
1 #IndvsPak #IndvsPak #ScotLab16
2 #FlyDubai #GetMillennialsToVoteIn5Words #IndvsPak
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May 13, 2016

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Fifa appoints Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura as its first woman secretary general –
Fifa appointed its first female and non-European secretary general on Friday night after ­announcing that United ­Nations humanitarian co-ordinator Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura would replace the disgraced Jérôme Valcke. New president Gianni Infantino confirmed that the Senegalese, a 21-year veteran of UN programmes, would become the most powerful official in world football during Fifa’s annual congress in Mexico City. Infantino had previously promised to consider both a woman and an African for the role – and he delivered on both counts. [Daily Telegraph]
Fatma_Samoura_in_2008Fatma Samoura (R) in 2008 with George Clooney (L) and Marie-Sophie Reck (C)

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EYES WIDE OPEN from Vitùc on Vimeo.

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  • A massive fire breaks out at a tire dump in Seseña, near Madrid in Spain. The illegal dump contains 100,000 tons of used vehicle tires. The smoke from the fire is visible for at least 30km. (ABC News)
  • At least one person is dead as a shopping mall being built in the Nigerian city of Abeokuta collapses. Unconfirmed reports indicate that ten people may have died. (BBC)
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August 20, 2016

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Glass bridge: China opens world’s highest and longest –
The much-heralded “world’s highest and longest” glass-bottomed bridge has opened to visitors in central China. It connects two mountain cliffs in what are known as the Avatar mountains (the film was shot here) in Zhangjiajie, Hunan province. Completed in December, the 430m-long bridge cost $3.4m (£2.6m) to build and stands 300m above ground, state news agency Xinhua reported. It has been paved with 99 panes of three-layered transparent glass. And according to officials, the 6m-wide bridge – designed by Israeli architect Haim Dotan – has already set world records for its architecture and construction. [BBC]

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  • Derrick Dearman a 27-year-old Mississippi man kills five people in the U.S. town of Citronelle, Alabama then kidnaps his pregnant ex-girlfriend from among the victims. Nearby, the Greene County, MississippiSheriff’s office takes the surrender and confession of the suspect. (Reuters)

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August 21, 2016

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Rio Olympics 2016: Team GB beat China to finish second in medal table –
Great Britain have finished second in the medal table at the 2016 Olympics – above sporting powerhouse China. One of the event’s dominant nations, China have won more than 200 golds since returning to the Games in 1984. Britain ended the Rio Games with 27 golds from 15 sports, one ahead of China, as they finished with a total of 67 from 19 sports, beating the 65 at London 2012. Since the modern Olympic era began in 1896, no country has increased its medal tally at the summer Games immediately following one it hosted. GB have also smashed their pre-Games target of at least 48 medals, which was set by UK Sport. That means Rio 2016 is the nation’s most successful ‘away’ Games in history. China, with a population of 1.357bn to Britain’s 64.1m, have amassed more medals (70) than Team GB in Brazil, achieving notable success in table tennis, diving and weightlifting. However, GB are ahead on golds, which is what the rankings are based on. [BBC] See List of the day

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2016 Summer Olympics Medals Table [Wikipedia]

2016 Summer Olympics medal table
 Rank NOC Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  United States (USA) 46 37 38 121
2  Great Britain (GBR) 27 23 17 67
3  China (CHN) 26 18 26 70
4  Russia (RUS) 19 18 19 56
5  Germany (GER) 17 10 15 42
6  Japan (JPN) 12 8 21 41
7  France (FRA) 10 18 14 42
8  South Korea (KOR) 9 3 9 21
9  Italy (ITA) 8 12 8 28
10  Australia (AUS) 8 11 10 29
11  Netherlands (NED) 8 7 4 19
12  Hungary (HUN) 8 3 4 15
13  Brazil (BRA) 7 6 6 19
14  Spain (ESP) 7 4 6 17
15  Kenya (KEN) 6 6 1 13
16  Jamaica (JAM) 6 3 2 11
17  Croatia (CRO) 5 3 2 10
18  Cuba (CUB) 5 2 4 11
19  New Zealand (NZL) 4 9 5 18
20  Canada (CAN) 4 3 15 22
21  Uzbekistan (UZB) 4 2 7 13
22  Kazakhstan (KAZ) 3 5 9 17
23  Colombia (COL) 3 2 3 8
24  Switzerland (SUI) 3 2 2 7
25  Iran (IRI) 3 1 4 8
26  Greece (GRE) 3 1 2 6
27  Argentina (ARG) 3 1 0 4
28  Denmark (DEN) 2 6 7 15
29  Sweden (SWE) 2 6 3 11
30  South Africa (RSA) 2 6 2 10
31  Ukraine (UKR) 2 5 4 11
32  Serbia (SRB) 2 4 2 8
33  Poland (POL) 2 3 6 11
34  North Korea (PRK) 2 3 2 7
35  Belgium (BEL) 2 2 2 6
 Thailand (THA) 2 2 2 6
37  Slovakia (SVK) 2 2 0 4
38  Georgia (GEO) 2 1 4 7
39  Azerbaijan (AZE) 1 7 10 18
40  Belarus (BLR) 1 4 4 9
41  Turkey (TUR) 1 3 4 8
42  Armenia (ARM) 1 3 0 4
43  Czech Republic (CZE) 1 2 7 10
44  Ethiopia (ETH) 1 2 5 8
45  Slovenia (SLO) 1 2 1 4
46  Indonesia (INA) 1 2 0 3
47  Romania (ROU) 1 1 3 5
48  Bahrain (BRN) 1 1 0 2
 Vietnam (VIE) 1 1 0 2
50  Chinese Taipei (TPE) 1 0 2 3
51  Bahamas (BAH) 1 0 1 2
 Ivory Coast (CIV) 1 0 1 2
 Independent Olympic Athletes (IOA) 1 0 1 2
54  Fiji (FIJ) 1 0 0 1
 Jordan (JOR) 1 0 0 1
 Kosovo (KOS) 1 0 0 1
 Puerto Rico (PUR) 1 0 0 1
 Singapore (SIN) 1 0 0 1
 Tajikistan (TJK) 1 0 0 1
60  Malaysia (MAS) 0 4 1 5
61  Mexico (MEX) 0 3 2 5
62  Algeria (ALG) 0 2 0 2
 Ireland (IRL) 0 2 0 2
64  Lithuania (LTU) 0 1 3 4
65  Bulgaria (BUL) 0 1 2 3
 Venezuela (VEN) 0 1 2 3
67  India (IND) 0 1 1 2
 Mongolia (MGL) 0 1 1 2
69  Burundi (BDI) 0 1 0 1
 Grenada (GRN) 0 1 0 1
 Niger (NIG) 0 1 0 1
 Philippines (PHI) 0 1 0 1
 Qatar (QAT) 0 1 0 1
74  Norway (NOR) 0 0 4 4
75  Egypt (EGY) 0 0 3 3
 Tunisia (TUN) 0 0 3 3
77  Israel (ISR) 0 0 2 2
78  Austria (AUT) 0 0 1 1
 Dominican Republic (DOM) 0 0 1 1
 Estonia (EST) 0 0 1 1
 Finland (FIN) 0 0 1 1
 Morocco (MAR) 0 0 1 1
 Moldova (MDA) 0 0 1 1
 Nigeria (NGR) 0 0 1 1
 Portugal (POR) 0 0 1 1
 Trinidad and Tobago (TTO) 0 0 1 1
 United Arab Emirates (UAE) 0 0 1 1
Total (87 NOCs) 307 307 360 974

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