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Larry ‘Bud’ Melman aka Calvert DeForest

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Calvert DeForest (July 23, 1921 – March 19, 2007), also known by his character LarryBudMelman, was an American actor and comedian, best known for his appearances on Late Night with David Letterman and the Late Show with David Letterman.

Calvert DeForest as Larry “Bud” Melman giving hot towels out at the Port Authority as people get off the bus. Nov. 16, 1983

Late Night with David Letterman, Custom Made Show #2 (1984). Dave puts Larry in a bear suit and sends him down the hall to get change.

David Letterman pays tribute to the late Calvert Deforest (aka Larry “Bud” Melman)

 

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Little has been published about his early life. He was born to Calvert Martin DeForest, M.D., a physician who died in 1949, and Mabelle (Taylor) DeForest. He was a cousin of actor DeForest Kelley of Star Trek fame, and Bebe Daniels, a silent film star who survived the introduction of sound. Radio pioneer Lee De Forest was Daniels’s second cousin. The exact family connection of Lee De Forest to Calvert DeForest is unclear.

DeForest attended Poly Prep Country Day School in Brooklyn, New York. He worked for many years for the large pharmaceutical company Parke Davis, which was later acquired by Pfizer. He had aspirations of acting but was discouraged by his mother, who was briefly an actress herself. After her death in 1969, DeForest did part-time backstage work, which eventually led to acting work.

Work with David Letterman

He is credited with four films from 1972 to 1982 and, after his first appearance with David Letterman, appeared in 15 other films or television shows.

The Associated Press noted: “DeForest’s gnomish face was the first to greet viewers when Letterman’s NBC show debuted on February 1, 1982, offering a parody of the prologue to the Boris Karloff film Frankenstein. ‘It was the greatest thing that had happened in my life,’ he once said of his first Letterman appearance.”

The Melman character also opened Letterman’s first CBS show under his own name, but as essentially the same character, when Letterman moved from NBC to CBS in 1993. The name change was made because the character of “Larry ‘Bud’ Melman” was considered the intellectual property of NBC. Melman also appeared as “Kenny The Gardener”. He continued to appear on Letterman’s show until his 81st birthday in 2002 before retiring from acting. DeForest often “drew laughs by his bizarre juxtaposition as a Late Show correspondent at events such as the 1994 Winter Olympics in Norway and the Woodstock anniversary concert that year.” One of DeForest’s more memorable skits came on Letterman’s May 13, 1994, show. The host stated Johnny Carson would announce the evening’s Top 10 list, at which point DeForest, as Melman, appeared as “Johnny Carson.” On DeForest’s exit, the real Johnny Carson appeared in what would prove Carson’s last television appearance. DeForest was also noted for his remote interviews in which he would ask the interviewee a question, but pitch the microphone to the interviewee too quickly, resulting in a fade out of the last part of the question.

Letterman noted after DeForest’s death: “Everyone always wondered if Calvert was an actor playing a character, but in reality he was just himself: a genuine, modest and nice man. To our staff and to our viewers, he was a beloved and valued part of our show, and we will miss him.” When asked how he’d like to be remembered, DeForest responded “Just being able to make people laugh and knowing people enjoyed my humor. I also hope I haven’t offended anyone through the years.”

Other appearances

He was co-host (in charge of the digital switcher) on the local SF Bay Area radio program, 10@10, on KFOG-FM with Dave Morey.

In 1985, he appeared in the music video for the Run-DMC song “King of Rock” as a security guard.

In 1989, he appeared in the Special Ed video for the song “Think About it” as the villainous Dr. Norecords.

In 1994, he wrote a humor book called Cheap Advice.

In the late 1990s, he often appeared in various television ads including ones for Tropicana Twister, 1-800-Collect and Little Caesars.

DeForest also appeared on the hit albums Americana and Ixnay on the Hombre by The Offspring, doing some of the voices that can be heard before and after certain tracks. In late March 2007, a 20-minute clip of DeForest recording the voices for their album was posted on The Offspring’s website.

He appeared at Woodstock 1994 to announce Nine Inch Nails late night set by proclaiming, “Ladies and gentlemen, punch your balls off and please welcome Nine Inch Nails!”

He appeared on the first episode of the 1996 series The Dana Carvey Show on ABC.

He appeared as one of the clubhouse gang in an episode of Pee-wee’s Playhouse.

Death

After years of poor health, DeForest died at Good Samaritan Hospital in West Islip, New York, on Long Island, on March 19, 2007. Per his request, no funeral services were held; he was cremated and his remains were interred at Pinelawn Cemetery, Farmingdale, New York. By all press accounts, he left no surviving relatives.

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Poke Out Big Brother’s Eyes

Smash CCTV
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Game to destroy CCTV cameras: vandalism or valid protest?
The game is real-life Grand Theft Auto for those tired of being watched by the authorities in Berlin; points are awarded for the number of cameras destroyed and bonus scores are given for particularly imaginative modes of destruction. Axes, ropes and pitchforks are all encouraged. The rules of Camover are simple: mobilise a crew and think of a name that starts with “command”, “brigade” or “cell”, followed by the moniker of a historical figure (Van der Lubbe, a Dutch bricklayer convicted of setting fire to the Reichstag in 1933, is one name being used). Then destroy as many CCTV cameras as you can. Concealing your identity, while not essential, is recommended. Finally, video your trail of destruction and post it on the game’s website – although even keeping track of the homepage can be a challenge in itself, as it is continually being shut down.
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FAQ in English | CAMOVER
1.1) Why destroy cctv cameras ? Trust your instincts, but if you need intellectual justification then: “The gaze of the cameras does not fall equally on all users of the street but on those who are stereotypical predefined as potentially deviant, or through appearance and demeanour, are singled out by operators as unrespectable. In this way youth, particularly those already socially and economically marginal, may be subject to even greater levels of authoritative intervention and official stigmatisation, and rather than contributing to social justice through the reduction of victimisation, CCTV will merely become a tool of injustice through the amplification of differential and discriminatory policing.” “an instrument of social control and the production of discipline; the production of ‘anticipatory conformity’; the certainty of rapid deployment to observed deviance and; the compilation of individualised dossiers of the monitored population.”
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THE MOST DECADENT NIGHTCLUB IN THE WORLD; Mick Jagger was refused entry, Boy George dressed up as a nun and ran the cloakroom while the owner set up secret dates for Prince Andrew and Koo Stark. Here the founder of Blitz nightclub, Steve Strange, reveals

I had just opened my club, Blitz, when one night, a quite drunk Mick Jagger turned up. We had been in trouble with the fire brigade for letting too many people into the club and that night the building was packed. I had to go to the door and tell Mick, the biggest rock star in the world, that he couldn’t come in. The story goes that I held a mirror up to his wrinkled face and said: ‘Would you let yourself in?’ But the truth is more mundane, I just couldn’t let him in: we were full. I tried to be polite, but Mick got annoyed and said: ‘Don’t you know who I am?’ before storming off in search of nightlife elsewhere. The next day the story was all over the papers. It was the best publicity we could have had. Overnight, Blitz became the club for the new young elite and the legend of the New Romantics was born.
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Unseen, all-out cyber war on the U.S. has begun

“The cyber war has been under way in the private sector for the past year,” says Israel Martinez, a board member of the U.S. National Cyber Security Council, a nonprofit group composed of federal government and private sector executives. “We’re finding espionage, advanced persistent threats (APTs), and other malware sitting in networks, often for more than a year before it’s ever detected,” Martinez says. He says U.S. entities are being targeted on multiple fronts by China and Iran for espionage and intellectual property theft, by interests in Russia and Eastern Europe for syndicated crime such stealing cash and identities, by social-agenda “hacktivist” groups such as Anonymous, and by increasingly skilled individual criminal hackers.
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More Than A Dozen Brands Of Security Camera Systems Vulnerable To Hacker Hijacking

Eighteen brands of security camera digital video recorders (DVRs) are vulnerable to an attack that would allow a hacker to remotely gain control of the devices to watch, copy, delete or alter video streams at will, as well as to use the machines as jumping-off points to access other computers behind a company’s firewall, according to tests by two security researchers. And one of the researchers, security firm Rapid7′s chief security officer H.D. Moore, has discovered that 58,000 of the hackable video boxes, all of which use firmware provided by the Guangdong, China-based firm Ray Sharp, are accessible via the Internet. “The DVR gives you access to all their video, current and archived,” says Moore. “You could look at videos, pause and play, or just turn off the cameras and rob the store.”
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Swartz didn’t face prison until feds took over case, report says

State prosecutors who investigated the late Aaron Swartz had planned to let him off with a stern warning, but federal prosecutor Carmen Ortiz took over and chose to make an example of the Internet activist, according to a report in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. Middlesex County’s district attorney had planned no jail time, “with Swartz duly admonished and then returned to civil society to continue his pioneering electronic work in a less legally questionable manner,” the report (alternate link) said. “Tragedy intervened when Ortiz’s office took over the case to send ‘a message.’”
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North Korean parents ‘eat their children’ after being driven mad by hunger in famine-hit pariah state

Undercover reporters found a ‘shocking’ number of cannibalism incidents Up to 10,000 people feared dead after ‘hidden famine’ in farming provinces Drought and confiscated food contribute to desperate shortage, reports say Reports of men digging up corpses for food and murdering children
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Judge bans father-of-four who owes $100k child support from having any more kids

A father-of-four who owes $100,000 in child support has been ordered by a judge to stop having children, it was revealed today. Asim Taylor, 35, from Elyria, Ohio, was sentenced to an additional five years’ probation last Wednesday after failing to pay child support for his four children. If Taylor has another child in this time he could go to jail for one year. He was originally indicted in August 2011, accused of owing $78,922 to the mothers of his four children. He pleaded guilty, and now owes more than $96,000 in child support payments. Judge James Walther told the defendant at his sentencing, according to the Lorain county Chronicle-Telegram: ‘I put this condition on for one reason and one reason alone. It’s your personal responsibility to pay for these kids.’
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Helter Skelter: Is The Conflict In Mali A ‘Race War’?

The spiraling war in the West African country of Mali has now involved Western military forces, principally airpower and ground troops from former colonial master France, as well as military equipment from Britain, the United States and other allies. However, even before the intervention by Europeans and other Westerners, the conflict in Mali was already complex — a hodgepodge of Islamist and separatist groups in the vast northern region of the desert country engaged in a battle with government troops based in the south. In addition, the Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) has begun sending troops into the country to defend the Bamako regime. Aside from issues of religion and territorial sovereignty, another factor may be playing into this evolving drama — race.
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KKK robes in class? Students’ presentation sparks debate

KKK robes in class: Clark County School District officials investigated and the Las Vegas Academy principal sent parents a letter calling the incident “unfortunate” after one of the students was photographed wearing the KKK white robe and hooded mask in class.
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A retrospective editing of consciousness

A new study has found that conscious experience can be altered retrospectively, so that experience of visual information can be changed almost half a second later by manipulating where our attention is drawn.
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Pro-Foreskin Protesters target Oprah in Vancouver

Her advice may be followed by hordes of people, but a Vancouver group wants Oprah Winfrey to explain why she has endorsed an anti-wrinkle cream made with human foreskins.
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New Mexico Bill Would Criminalize Abortions After Rape As ‘Tampering With Evidence’

A Republican lawmaker in New Mexico introduced a bill on Wednesday that would legally require victims of rape to carry their pregnancies to term in order to use the fetus as evidence for a sexual assault trial. House Bill 206, introduced by state Rep. Cathrynn Brown (R), would charge a rape victim who ended her pregnancy with a third-degree felony for “tampering with evidence.” “Tampering with evidence shall include procuring or facilitating an abortion, or compelling or coercing another to obtain an abortion, of a fetus that is the result of criminal sexual penetration or incest with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime,” the bill says.
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Microbes Survive, and Maybe Thrive, High in the Atmosphere

Each year, hundreds of millions of metric tons of dust, water, and humanmade pollutants make their way into the atmosphere, often traveling between continents on jet streams. Now a new study confirms that some microbes make the trip with them, seeding the skies with billions of bacteria and other organisms—and potentially affecting the weather. What’s more, some of these high-flying organisms may actually be able to feed while traveling through the clouds, forming an active ecosystem high above the surface of the Earth.
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2 men arrested for stealing chicken wings worth $60K

No word on the whereabouts of the wings, according to police.
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“>Trashy Mom Gets Tased [Video]

Mothers of the Year
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Mother Holds Baby As Baby Gets A Tattoo [Video]
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Hack Yer DNA

✧ 1972 Kenner Toy Comic Book Catalog
1972 Kenner Toy Comic Book Catalog (Newspaper Insert)
✧ THE COOLEST TOYS EVER: The barely legal pleasure palace
If there’s one thing that kids have in common, it’s a love of toys.  Whether your parents got you ever latest new flashy thing, or you just found an armless GI JOE to pass the time with, toys have played an important role in all of our lives.  Here’s a loving look at the coolest toys of all time, resulting from an intensive 8 year multi-million dollar study performed by our website.
✧ Sandusky’s Lawyer: If You Believe Witness, “I Suggest You Dial 1-800-REALITY.” That’s A Gay Phone Sex Line.
Joe Amendola, the attorney for Jerry Sandusky who thus far has been lawyerin’ like a man who got his J.D. from the bottom of a cereal box, did some more lawyerin’ in front of the cameras this morning. The choicest moment: At one point, Amendola discussed the possibility that Mike McQueary witnessed a rape, told Joe Paterno and two university administrators, and no one did anything except tell Sandusky to stay out of the locker room with kids. To anyone who believes that version of events, Amendola said, “I suggest you dial 1-800-REALITY.” We did. Here’s what we got: Hey guys, welcome to the hottest place for triple-X action. Get ready for bulging, bursting pleasure with horny gay, bi, and bi-curious studs. Just 99 cents per minute.
✧ “Mad Honey” Sex Is A Bad Idea
“Mad honey” is honey made by bees from the nectar of toxic Rhododendron flowers. In places where wild Rhododendrons grow, including Turkey, it’s a health hazard. The dangers of mad honey were known to the ancient Greeks and Romans, and it’s reported that leaving tainted honeycombs in the path of invading armies was a popular military tactic. 2000 years later, some people still haven’t quite got the message. According to a case report from cardiologists Yarlioglues et al, a married couple deliberately ate some mad honey “for reasons of sexual performance”.
✧ The Internet Blacklist vs. The Constitution
Last week, two leading Constitutional scholars offered detailed analyses of the Internet blacklist bills now pending in Congress, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect-IP, or PIPA. Both scholars concluded that the proposed law could not pass muster under the U.S. Constitution. So you’d think that the new version of SOPA circulated this week would have resolved those concerns.   You’d think wrong. While the revised SOPA briefly mentions the First Amendment, the substantive text makes clear that’s just lip service.  Here’s a selection of fundamental flaws that remain in both SOPA and PIPA:
✧ Rosemount High parent-on-student kissing prank has principal apologizing
A prank on some blindfolded Rosemount High School athletes — they were unknowingly and at times amorously kissed by their parents during a recent pep fest — is collecting YouTube views by the tens of thousands and has the principal apologizing for what happened… …The captains of the school’s winter sports teams — boys and girls — were lined up and blindfolded. They were told they would be kissed and then asked to guess who was on the other side of their lips. Some of the parents during the 59-second YouTube video are seen holding the kisses for several seconds, cupping their child’s faces or embracing and swaying. One mother moved her son’s hand down to her behind during the encounter. Another mom has her son down on the gym floor to the delight of two male students nearby. The hoots, screams and laughter rolled on as the students pulled off their blindfolds to realize it was Mom or Dad they were smooching.
✧ Brain scans should not be used in court… for now
Should an offender’s sentence be decided on the basis of a brain scan? A group of neuroscientists have put together a report for the Royal Society to assess this issue and other ways that progress in brain science might impact the law. Neuroscience is already making waves in court: an Italian woman convicted of murder recently had her sentence reduced on the grounds that her behaviour could be explained by abnormalities in her brain and genes.  The authors on the Royal Society panel, led by Nicholas Mackintosh of the University of Cambridge, also flag up research that suggests the brains of psychopaths are fundamentally different. This raises the question: should individuals with the brain anatomy of a psychopath have their sentence reduced on the ground of diminished responsibility, or should brain scan evidence be used to keep dangerous individuals locked away?
✧ Gingrich ‘proposed the death penalty for marijuana’
Over the weekend, struggling Republican presidential candidate Gary Johnson reminded MSNBC viewers that GOP frontrunner Newt Gingrich had once to called to punish some drug offenders with death. “Newt Gingrich, in 1997, proposed the death penalty for marijuana — for possession of marijuana above a certain quantity of marijuana,” Johnson explained. “And yet, he is among 100 million Americans who’ve smoked marijuana.”
✧ Machine reads your age, gives sample
Big Brother isn’t just watching, he’s also about to size you up via a new product sampling machine that can determine whether you’re the right age — or even the right sex — to receive a sample. Kraft’s new sampling machine, developed by Intel, scans your face and can detect it you’re an adult or a child and blocks dispensing if you are a child. Today, Kraft Foods, the nation’s biggest foodmaker, will roll out in Chicago a device that dispenses its mousse-like Temptations dessert by Jell-O, but only to the product’s target market: grown-ups. The machine, developed by Intel, can detect facial age with a special camera that scans your face and determines if you’re an adult or a kid. If the machine detects a child, it shuts down and asks the child to step away. If it detects an adult — bingo — the sample can be dispensed.
✧ China Keeps Slapping America In The Face And America Just Keeps Taking It
Today, China is absolutely crushing the United States on the global economic stage, but they are hardly playing fair.  They shower their own firms with huge government subsidies, they brazenly steal technology, they publicly violate intellectual property rights, they manipulate currency rates so that foreign firms cannot compete with Chinese prices and they slap ridiculously high tariffs on many classes of foreign goods.  In short, they basically do everything that they can get away with to give themselves a trade advantage.  This predatory behavior has caused an enormous transfer of wealth from the United States to China.  It isn’t as if it is just some sort of an “accident” that we now owe China about a trillion dollars.  The truth is that China just keeps slapping America in the face and America just keeps taking it.  We are like an abused spouse that just keeps coming back for more.  It is disgraceful and it needs to stop.
✧ As Facebook Aims at Millions of Users, Some Are Content to Sit Out
As Facebook prepares for a much-anticipated public offering, the company is eager to show off its momentum by building on its huge membership: more than 800 million active users around the world, Facebook says, and roughly 200 million in the United States, or two-thirds of the population. But the company is running into a roadblock in this country. Some people, even on the younger end of the age spectrum, just refuse to participate, including people who have given it a try. One of Facebook’s main selling points is that it builds closer ties among friends and colleagues. But some who steer clear of the site say it can have the opposite effect of making them feel more, not less, alienated. “I wasn’t calling my friends anymore,” said Ashleigh Elser, 24, who is in graduate school in Charlottesville, Va. “I was just seeing their pictures and updates and felt like that was really connecting to them.”
✧ 10 Ridiculous Things That Make You a Terror Suspect
You thought you weren’t doing anything wrong, so why should you care about who they call a terrorist? Well, you may not believe it, but you’re likely a terror suspect in America’s new paradigm of the Land of the Fear. The government is casting a wide net over its citizens in its search for potential threats. Now, you don’t need to actually commit a crime to be hauled away to a detention center and held without charges while you are tortured; you just need to appear suspicious by sympathizing with anti-government views to be labeled a domestic terrorist.
✧ DNA: The next big hacking frontier
Imagine computer-designed viruses that cure disease, new bacteria capable of synthesizing an unlimited fuel supply, new organisms that wipe out entire populations and bio-toxins that target world leaders. They sound like devices restricted to feature-film script writers, but it is possible to create all of these today, using the latest advances in synthetic biology. Just as the personal computer revolution brought information technology from corporate data centers to the masses, the biology revolution is personalizing science.
✧ DNA Hackers: Synthetic biology weaponized virus, zero-day exploit to infect your brain?
From the let’s get futuristically freaky department, future hacking crimes could take a decidedly sinister twist; not hacking to breach systems but brains, bodies and behaviors. This DNA hacking goes way beyond potentially using police bees to bust biohackers, or even storing unhackable data in box of bio-encrypted bacteria. It’s not science fiction to hack insulin pumps or to use jamming signals to stop hackers from lethal pacemaker attacks, but now bioengineers and security futurists are warning that the day is coming when criminals and bioterrorists hunt for vulnerabilities that will give a new meaning to zero-day exploits. In the future, a weaponized virus will aim to infect you, your brain and body biology, and not just your computer or mobile device.
✧ Woman sues sex toy company after injuring herself using vibrator
A California woman claims a little foreplay nearly put her six feet under. April Bonjour says her pleasure turned quickly to pain while using a “vibrator/dildo” with her boyfriend last November when the sex toy caused a sharp vaginal pain and massive bleeding. “I started to get faint from the loss of blood,” she wrote in a personal injury complaint filed Aug. 30 in California Superior Court. “My boyfriend called 911. By the time they got there, I was in and out of consciousness.” Bonjour, in her suit against Pipedream Products Inc., said both she and her son “thought I was dying … Once we got to the hospital, I had lost so much blood I was given several pints.” Thanks Jasmine
✧ Mother tasered and buried alive in cardboard box by ‘bored’ lover, court told
“Terrified” Michelina Lewandowska, 27, was bound by her hands and feet and left to die in a shallow grave, Leeds Crown Court was told. In a bid to stop her getting free Marcin Kasprzak, her partner and father of their two-year-old son, had a friend help him bury her in a box less than 2ft high and then covered it in soil and leaves and then put a large branch over the top, a jury heard. But she eventually managed to free herself and raise the alarm. A jury was told how Kasprzak, 25, had decided that he no longer wanted to live with his partner and wanted his mother to bring up their young son. In a bid to get her out of the way he used a 300,000 volt electric stun gun on her at their home in Waterloo, Huddersfield, West Yorks, before using parcel tape to gag her and tie her hands and feet.
✧ Woman caught smuggling 1.5kg of cocaine in her dreadlocks on flight to Bangkok
A woman was caught trying to smuggle 1.5 kilograms of cocaine in her dreadlocks on a flight to Bangkok, it was reported today. South African Nobanda Nolubabalo, 23, was arrested and held in Thailand’s capital yesterday after customs officers allegedly noticed a suspicious white substance in her hair. Officials later carried out a search and discovered she had allegedly matted the Class A drug into her dreadlocks before boarding a flight from Brazil.
✧ Man dressed as Santa drugs teen at Berlin Christmas market, 9th victim in a week
A man dressed as Santa drugged a 15-year-old girl at a Berlin Christmas market over the weekend — the latest such attack that has seen holiday revelers left either sickened or unconscious, police said Monday. At about 10 p.m. Saturday the suspect approached the girl and her friend at Berlin’s downtown Alexanderplatz Christmas market, offering both of them what he said was a shot of alcohol in a paper cup, police said. One girl refused, but the other girl drank both of the shots. She soon started vomiting and had to be taken to the hospital, where she underwent a blood test, before being released. Police said it appeared she had been slipped some type of a date rape drug, but released no further details, citing the ongoing investigation.
✧ Man dressed as Santa drugs teen at Berlin Christmas market, 9th victim in a week
A man dressed as Santa drugged a 15-year-old girl at a Berlin Christmas market over the weekend — the latest such attack that has seen holiday revelers left either sickened or unconscious, police said Monday. At about 10 p.m. Saturday the suspect approached the girl and her friend at Berlin’s downtown Alexanderplatz Christmas market, offering both of them what he said was a shot of alcohol in a paper cup, police said. One girl refused, but the other girl drank both of the shots. She soon started vomiting and had to be taken to the hospital, where she underwent a blood test, before being released. Police said it appeared she had been slipped some type of a date rape drug, but released no further details, citing the ongoing investigation.
✧ Indonesia: Punkers’ Mohawks Shaved, Piercings Stripped By Hard-Line Police
Police in Indonesia’s most conservative province raided a punk-rock concert and detained 65 fans, buzzing off their spiky mohawks and stripping away body piercings because of the perceived threat to Islamic values. Dog-collar necklaces and chains also were taken from the youths before they were thrown in pools of water for “spiritual” cleansing, local police chief Iskandar Hasan said Wednesday. After replacing their “disgusting” clothes, he handed each a toothbrush and barked “use it.”
✧ If you want to drink less, then turn down the music: Alcohol tastes sweeter as noise impairs judgement of intake
Alcohol tastes sweeter when loud music is playing and the noise could make it difficult for drinkers to judge how much they are consuming, new research has claimed. Dr Lorenzo Stafford, a psychologist from the University of Portsmouth, conducted the first experimental study to find out how music can alter the taste of alcohol. Dr Stafford said: ‘Since humans have an innate preference for sweetness, these findings offer a plausible explanation as to why people consume more alcohol in noisy environments.’
✧ Man grows new fingertip on stomach
Doctors in China saved a man’s partially-severed finger – by attaching it to his stomach. Furniture worker Wang Yongjun, 20, cut off the end of his middle finger with an electric saw in an accident at work. Wang, of Liaoyang, Liaoning Province, was rushed to hospital where doctors had to think fast. Dr Huang Xuesong said the muscle and skin had been cut away from the end of his finger leaving only the bone showing. “We had to make a quick decision or he could have lost his finger. We decided to cultivate a new fingertip on his stomach,” he said. Doctors operated and attached Wang’s finger to his stomach in the hope that new skin and muscle would grow around it.
✧ Baby, baby, baby, no: Pay up or be forced to listen to Justin Bieber
For someone who isn’t a fan of teen idol Justin Bieber, being forced to listen to one of his songs over and over again could be considered cruel and unusual punishment. At Evanston Township High School this week, they called it a fund-raiser. To motivate their fellow students to donate money for a struggling cafe/arts center popular with ETHS kids, seniors Charlotte Runzel and Jesse Chatz persuaded administrators to let them blast Bieber’s hit “Baby” over the school’s loudspeaker system at the end of each class period — and not stop playing the song until Runzel and Chatz had met their goal.
✧ Bye Bye Booie! California’s smoking chimpanzee who learned sign language dies at 44
A chimpanzee that kicked a smoking habit and used sign language to beg for candy has died at a California animal refuge. Martine Colette, founder of the Wildlife WayStation, said Booie was being treated for a heart condition when he died on Saturday, at the age of 44. The chimp had been living at the animal sanctuary near Los Angeles since 1995, after he retired from a research lab. Ms Colette said she successfully turned Booie away from his smoking habit but could not make a dent in his love of sweets. She said he would use his signing skills to panhandle for candy by signing: ‘Booie see sweet in pocket.’
✧ Girl, 13, brought booze-laced milk to school
A Glen Ellyn junior high student brought chocolate milk mixed with Bailey’s Irish Cream to school as a “joke,” Glen Ellyn police said. Glen Ellyn Deputy Police Chief Bill Holmer said this week the 13-year-old girl allegedly brought the liquor mixed with chocolate milk to Hadley Junior High School on Dec. 9. Holmer said it’s unclear if any students actually drank the concoction, but it was “given to some other students who claimed to not know what they were given.” The “kid brought this stuff to school claiming it was meant to be a joke,” Holmer said. A student at the school informed staff about the drink, who interviewed other students about the incident then called police, Holmer said. Police worked with the juvenile and her parents “regarding enforcement action,” according to a police report.
✧ Pig Born Without Back Legs: A Balancing Act Like No Other
Wang taught her to walk on her front hooves and she learned in just a few days. After about a month, she began walking on her own, balancing her weight on her front legs as she moves about. Today, despite a body weight of 50 kg (110 pounds), the piglet walks upside down quite effortlessly.
✧ 14 bomb-sniffing dogs on way to Afghanistan died in truck
The death of 14 bomb-sniffing dogs allegedly housed in an unventilated sealed truck while awaiting air shipment from Houston to military forces in Afghanistan has spawned a lawsuit in which requested damages may top $1 million… In an unsuccessful bid to settle the matter without going to court, a Houston lawyer for the Florida company asked the defendants to pay $1.3 million in damages and $30,000 in legal fees. According to the lawsuit, the animals — Tiny, Rex, Rocky, Crock, Dork, Harrie, Stress, Sigo, Rex, Jaco, Kimbo, Kilo, Albert and Bak — were taken the Houston shipping facility on Dec. 20.
✧ Giant Smiley Feel-o-Meter Reflects the Mood of the City
Fuehlometer (Feel-o-meter) by Richard Wilhelmer, Julius von Bismarck, and Benjamin Maus is a light installation consisting of a giant smiley face that reflects the average mood of the people living in the city. An earlier version of this work originally used a more standard light screen installation instead of kinetically moving the different parts of the smiley face. The average emotional value is calculated through the computational analysis of the faces of people passing a camera located in a specific part of the city,
✧ The teenage politics of the British Churches are summed up by their pathetic Christmas poster
The Baby Jesus will not be visited by Three Wise Men bearing gifts of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh this Christmas. Three different sorts of guys will turn up at the manger, bringing the young Son of God a Fabergé egg, a Swarovski crystal perfume bottle and a Damien Hirst skull. All this is on the seasonal advertising poster issued by the British Churches. There are no shepherds either. These are replaced by a cycle courier and a plasterer. As King Herod himself might have said: “Gee, it’s so relevant and accessible it fair sets your teeth on edge.” Jesus famously commanded us: “Take no thought for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat and the body than raiment? Why take ye thought for raiment?”
✧ As Banks Start Nosing Around Facebook and Twitter, the Wrong Friends Might Just Sink Your Credit
A new wave of startups is working on algorithms gathering data for banks from the web of associations on the internet known as “the social graph,” in which people are “nodes” connected to each other by “edges.” Banks are already using social media to befriend their customers, and increasingly, their customers’ friends. The specifics are still shaking out, but the gist is that eventually, social media will account for at least the tippy-top of the mountain of data banks keep on their customers. “There is this concept of ‘birds of a feather flock together,’” said Ken Lin, CEO of the San Francisco-based credit scoring startup Credit Karma. “If you are a profitable customer for a bank, it suggests that a lot of your friends are going to be the same credit profile. So they’ll look through the social network and see if they can identify your friends online and then maybe they send more marketing to them. That definitely exists today.”
✧ How common is Nazi fancy dress?
It is really very easy to avoid a controversial costume, but that does not seem to stop some people. And one of the most offensive outfits is a Nazi uniform, as Conservative MP Aidan Burley has discovered. The MP for Cannock Chase in Staffordshire has been pictured in a national newspaper sitting next to another man dressed as an SS guard. Burley, who was on a stag do in a French ski resort at the time, has apologised for the “clearly inappropriate behaviour” of some of his friends. In some countries, wearing a swastika armband in public would be illegal But he is not the first person, and will surely not be the last, to hit the headlines over a Nazi costume. Prince Harry is perhaps the most famous Nazi fancy dress costume-wearer in the world. In 2005, he was pictured wearing a German desert uniform and a swastika armband at a friend’s birthday party. The fancy dress theme was “colonial and native”.
✧ The school of Jay-Z studies
Judging by the amount of fuss he caused, one would think Georgetown University Professor Michael Eric Dyson had floated the idea of abolishing child labor laws. In reality, all he had done was announce that this semester he would be teaching a course entitled “Sociology of Hip-Hop – Urban Theodicy of Jay-Z.” And it was Glastonbury all over again. The outrage flew from all directions. A SPIN headline referred to “Georgetown’s Semi-Ridiculous Jay-Z Class”, while the main article nonchalantly mentions that tuition at the university is $40,920, attaching the price to a particularly inarticulate quote from a college sophomore. Gawker was still more ruthless in its takedown, declaring: “One notable thing about Michael Eric Dyson is that although he is very good at being an academic celebrity, he doesn’t know shit about hip-hop.”
✧ Census data: Half of U.S. poor or low income
Squeezed by rising living costs, a record number of Americans — nearly 1 in 2 — have fallen into poverty or are scraping by on earnings that classify them as low income. The latest census data depict a middle class that’s shrinking as unemployment stays high and the government’s safety net frays. The new numbers follow years of stagnating wages for the middle class that have hurt millions of workers and families.
✧ China’s deserted fake Disneyland
Situated on an area of around 100 acres, and 45 minutes drive from the center of Beijing, are the ruins of ‘Wonderland’. Construction stopped more than a decade ago, with developers promoting it as ‘the largest amusement park in Asia’. Funds were withdrawn due to disagreements over property prices with the local government and farmers. So what is left are the skeletal remains of a palace, a castle, and the steel beams of what could have been an indoor playground in the middle of a corn field.
Memphis Cop Sexts & Rapes 14 Year Old Relative
A Memphis police officer is behind bars after investigators say he sent a 14-year-old girl nude pictures and had a sexual relationship with the teen. Officer Ericck Cain, 25, has been charged with aggravated statutory rape and exploitation of a minor by electronic means. Investigators say Cain emailed a naked picture of himself to a 14-year-old relative in January. About six months later, police say, the two had sex in a house in the 5600 block of Cottonwood. “He gave us a statement of admission,” said Dave Martello, of the Memphis Police Department. Police say the initial report was made at the Mt. Moriah precinct. One of the teenager’s friends came went to the station Monday night and told police everything she knew about the relationship. Police say they do not suspect there are any other alleged victims, but that one is enough. “It’s such a disappointment,” said Martello.”This person is a criminal just like the people that we deal with on the streets every day.”
✧ Somalia’s Rebels Embrace Twitter
Think of it as the Battle of the Tweets. Somalia’s powerful Islamist insurgents, the Shabab, best known for chopping off hands and starving their own people, just opened a Twitter account, and in the past week they have been writing up a storm, bragging about recent attacks and taunting their enemies. “Your inexperienced boys flee from confrontation & flinch in the face of death,” the Shabab wrote in a post to the Kenyan Army. It is an odd, almost downright hypocritical move from brutal militants in one of world’s most broken-down countries, where millions of people do not have enough food to eat, let alone a laptop. The Shabab have vehemently rejected Western practices – banning Western music, movies, haircuts and bras, and even blocking Western aid for famine victims, all in the name of their brand of puritanical Islam – only to embrace Twitter, one of the icons of a modern, networked society.
✧ ‘White Only’ Pool Sign Owner Explains
A female landlord, Jamie Hein, had a sign that read, “Public Swimming Pool, White Only” hanging on a gate at her house and her private pool. (Photo credit: Ohio Civil Rights Commission) An Ohio landlord accused of discriminating against an African-American girl with a “white only” sign at her swimming pool told ABCNews.com that the sign was an antique and a decoration. “I’m not a bad person,” said Jamie Hein of Cincinnati. “I don’t have any problem with race at all. It’s a historical sign.” The sign in question reads, “Public Swimming Pool, White Only.” It is dated 1931 and from Alabama. Hein, 31, was unapologetic about the racist origins of the sign that she displayed at the entrance to her pool. She said she collects antiques and was given the sign as a gift. She also said that even though the sign seems to indicate that the pool is public, the pool is on her private property and “everybody has to ask before getting in my pool.”

 

 

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Conjured by SeMeN SPeRmS on December 16, 2011

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Put A Band-Aid On It!

  • The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says it lost control of an unmanned helicopter during a flight near the No. 2 reactor building, forcing the controller to make an emergency landing on a roof there.

    Tokyo Electric Power Company says the remote-controlled light helicopter took off from an observatory south of the Fukushima plant just past 6:30 AM on Friday. Its mission was to collect airborne radioactive substances around the No. 2 reactor building.

    The utility says its engine failed about 30 minutes later, making it impossible for the aircraft to ascend.

    The helicopter — 50 centimeters long and weighing 8 kilograms — was found lying on its side on the rooftop.

  • She claims that “during the course of these after-hours appointments, the plaintiff was placed under sedation by defendant Adams for the purposes, ostensibly, of defendant Adams conducting internal vaginal examinations and procedures including, but not limited to, internal ultrasounds of the plaintiff.”
    She says Adams prescribed large amounts of medication which was contraindicated in her conditions.
    “Over the course of the treatment regimen, defendant Adams insured that the plaintiff became dependent on the large volume of prescription drugs provided by defendant Adams to his patient … (H)e assured her that the prescription drugs being prescribed were necessary for her treatment and pain management,” the complaint states.
  • As typically happens in Russia, Pavlova began her drug use as a teenager shooting a substance called khanka, a tarlike opiate cooked from poppy bulbs, then graduated to heroin and finally, at the age of 27, switched to krokodil, because it has roughly the same effect as heroin but is at least three times cheaper and extremely easy to make. The active component is codeine, a widely sold over-the-counter painkiller that is not toxic on its own. But to produce krokodil, whose medical name is desomorphine, addicts mix it with ingredients including gasoline, paint thinner, hydrochloric acid, iodine and red phosphorous, which they scrape from the striking pads on matchboxes. In 2010, between a few hundred thousand and a million people, according to various official estimates, were injecting the resulting substance into their veins in Russia, so far the only country in the world to see the drug grow into an epidemic.
  • Philip Fursman has been buying plain models from a UK company, painting them and then selling them on the eBay website for a number of years for a small profit.

    But Mr Fursman from Card, Somerset, fell foul of the site’s policies when he tried to sell a model of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler.

    However, similar models of Osama bin Laden used in war games are allowed.

    The 37 year-old father-of-three said he was surprised by the policy because he had recently sold miniature figures of Osama bin Laden and the Taliban on eBay without any problem.

  • When art copies art

    The Flavour of Tears is established as a bona fide original, but René Magritte and his fellow Surrealists were no strangers to the dark arts of forgery. Magritte made a living during the Nazi occupation of Belgium by forging Picassos and Renoirs. Fellow artist Marcel Mariën would sell them on to private collectors.

    The Surrealist movement explores the tension of the real and the unreal, and Magritte may well have seen his forgeries as part that conflict. Playing a joke on the aficionados, he hung his forgery of Max Ernst’s The Forest in place of the original in 1943.

    Fellow Surrealist Giorgio de Chirico, in his later years, produced what he called “self-forgeries” of his earlier, more popular style. He would backdate them to fool the critics; ironic revenge for their attacks on his later works.

  • The name krokodil comes from its trademark side effect: scaly green skin like a crocodile around the injection site. TIME calls it “the dirty cousin of morphine,” because it’s three times cheaper than heroin and very easy to make, being that its main ingredient is codeine, a behind-the-counter drug that has sent many of America’s famous rap community to prison.

    The medical name of krokodil is desomorphine. A quick search for that will bring up graphic images of people with swollen faces, exposed bones and muscles and skin rotting off on any given body part.

    The reason the drug is so anatomically destructive is due to its mix-ins. Users stir in ingredients “including gasoline, paint thiner, hydrochloric acid, iodine and red phosphorus which they scrape from the striking pads on matchboxes,” reports TIME.

  • The Federal Communications Commission adopted new rules Thursday that increase the penalties for faking caller ID information in order to commit fraud or harm consumers.

    The practice, known as caller ID “spoofing,” can still be used for legal purposes such as safeguarding the privacy of individuals. But the commission argues spoofing is increasingly used for malicious purposes such as identity theft or placing false emergency calls to police.

    “Far too often, though, fake caller IDs are used by bad actors to get money from consumers, steal consumers’ identities, or stalk or harass,” said Joel Gurin and Sharon Gillett, the chiefs of the FCC’s Consumer and Wireline bureaus, respectively, in a statement.

  • Federal regulators are poised to hit Google Inc. with subpoenas, launching a broad, formal investigation into whether the Internet giant has abused its dominance in Web-search advertising, people familiar with the matter said.
  • After years of negotiations, a group of bandwidth providers that includes AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon are closer than ever to striking a deal with media and entertainment companies that would call for them to establish new and tougher punishments for customers who refuse to stop using their networks to pirate films, music and other intellectual property, multiple sources told CNET.
  • With more than 700 bulletins, email archives, images and other files, the 440MB package will keep readers busy for days. A few excerpts from the most obviously newsworthy documents follow.
  • The “limited kinetic action” in Libya has been one of the most misrepresented, selectively covered, and tragic imperialistic NATO adventures in recent history. We are presented a picture of a madman, frothing at the mouth, slaughtering civilians whenever possible. We are shown a Libya that is united against Qaddafi, with a population that wants NATO to save them and help depose the evil Qaddafi. But is this true?

    In fact, this is only a very small part of a large, complex picture. However, the Western media refuses to show their audience the entire reality while they are in fact there in Libya, able to fully appreciate the events. This just goes to show the strict gatekeeper aspect of Western mainstream media in which only certain things get covered and a very select few become major stories.

  • With Boise rainfall samples measuring by far the highest concentrations of radioactive nuclides in the country, apocalyptic rumors of nuclear disaster run rampant. Higher cancer rates, lower SAT scores, genetic mutations, and birth defects are just a few of the things doomsayers expect to see in the wake of the nuclear disaster at Fukushima’s Daiichi plant. But if the nuclear scare has you dumping milk and fleeing from radioactive rain, you might want to put the dangers into perspective.
  • In Sept. 1859, on the eve of a below-average1 solar cycle, the sun unleashed one of the most powerful storms in centuries. The underlying flare was so unusual, researchers still aren’t sure how to categorize it. The blast peppered Earth with the most energetic protons in half-a-millennium, induced electrical currents that set telegraph offices on fire, and sparked Northern Lights over Cuba and Hawaii.

    This week, officials have gathered at the National Press Club in Washington DC to ask themselves a simple question: What if it happens again?

    “A similar storm today might knock us for a loop,” says Lika Guhathakurta, a solar physicist at NASA headquarters. “Modern society depends on high-tech systems such as smart power grids, GPS, and satellite communications–all of which are vulnerable to solar storms.”

  • After visiting a Taichung beef noodle restaurant in July 2008, where she had dried noodles and side dishes, Liu wrote that the restaurant served food that was too salty, the place was unsanitary because there were cockroaches and that the owner was a “bully” because he let customers park their cars haphazardly, leading to traffic jams.
  • Police believe they have tracked down a missing portrait of Farrah Fawcett.
  • Penn & Teller call BULLSHIT!
  • The International Bottled Water Association on Wednesday took on what it described as a “a myth repeated by some anti-bottled water activists that bottled water which comes from municipal water sources is just tap water in a bottle.”

    At least one group opposed to bottled water, however, shrugged at the public-relations gambit, suggesting that no matter how much processing is involved, bottled water is, on its face, an unnecessary product.

  • Remember Kind of Bloop, the chiptune tribute to Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue that I produced? I went out of my way to make sure the entire project was above board, licensing all the cover songs from Miles Davis’s publisher and giving the total profits from the Kickstarter fundraiser to the five musicians that participated.

    But there was one thing I never thought would be an issue: the cover art.

  • Roosters looking to get a little action in local henhouses must first produce a clean bill of health under a newly adopted law regulating romantic interactions among chickens in backyard farms.

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Conjured by SeMeN SPeRmS on June 24, 2011

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Aiding The Enemy

    • The Iranian national Olympic committee claims the logo spells out the word ‘Zion’ and has complained to the IOC it is “racist”.
    • There is a double dosage of bad news for men who like to watch a lot of porn on laptops resting on their groin area. You know who you are (and so do we).

      Fox News has reported that an Italian andrologist, Carlo Foresta of Padua University, has conducted a study that found that resting a laptop on one’s groin for just one hour can raise the temperature of one’s testicles by two degrees Celsius (about four degrees Fahrenheit), overheating the genitals to the point that the owner’s ability to produce sperm could be impaired. Studies have further shown that even a one degree rise can lead to infertility, and that resting a laptop on the groin for more than two hours can result in having a child that looks like Joy Behar.

    • Whac-A-Mole seems like it could be endless fun.

      Moles pop out of five holes in the arcade game and a soft mallet is used to force them back into the holes to score points.

      Children and adults alike could whack the moles for hours at a time.

      Or at least they could until a worker programmed a virus into the machines to make them shut down after a pre-determined number of plays, Holly Hill police said.
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      Now they have arrested that man, Marvin Walter Wimberly Jr., 61, of Orlando, who faces a charge of offenses against intellectual property.

      It was all a scheme by Wimberly to insure job security, according to an arrest affidavit.

    • Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) vowed Monday to eliminate net neutrality rules recently enacted by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), referring to the regulations as a “government takeover of the Internet.”

      “Right now, freedom and free expression are under attack by a power structure in Washington populated with regulators who have never set foot inside a radio station or a television studio,” Rep. Boehner said during a speech at the annual National Religious Broadcasters convention.

    • Evidence outlined in a Pentagon contractor report suggests that financial subversion carried out by unknown parties, such as terrorists or hostile nations, contributed to the 2008 economic crash by covertly using vulnerabilities in the U.S. financial system.

      The unclassified 2009 report “Economic Warfare: Risks and Responses” by financial analyst Kevin D. Freeman, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Times, states that “a three-phased attack was planned and is in the process against the United States economy.”

      While economic analysts and a final report from the federal government’s Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission blame the crash on such economic factors as high-risk mortgage lending practices and poor federal regulation and supervision, the Pentagon contractor adds a new element: “outside forces,” a factor the commission did not examine.

    • The first text message said: “Mommy, I got buried.” About 40 minutes later: “Mommy, I can’t move my right hand.” Then, a brief call from New Zealand’s earthquake rubble to parents in the Philippines pleading to send help.

      After another harrowing hour in a crumpled building, when she sent a half-dozen more texts about increasing pain, continued shaking and overwhelming smoke, came the final one: “Please make it quick.”

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