Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sacha Baron Cohen, aka "Bruno", shakes up Milan

The renowned Milan Fashion Week recently endured a visit from the hilarious, often controversial, and attention-grabbing actor Sacha Baron Cohen. Well, sort of.

Acting as "Bruno," his flamboyant and openly homosexual alter ego, Cohen marched down the catwalk in a full velcro suit while screaming and yelling, pretending to be an Austrian fashion reporter (see picture). The stunt was filmed as part of a scene for the upcoming movie "Bruno: Delicious Journeys Through America for Purpose of Making Heterosexual Male" which is set for release sometime next spring.

Paolo Gerani, the stylist whom "Bruno" interrupted, was able to put an end to the madness and restore order to the show. Officials are now on high alert, after discovering the fake passes that Cohen and his film crew used to enter the show.

So what does this mean for college students in America? Well, if a flamboyantly gay male comes up to you and starts to make you laugh, you should probably play along, because you could be caught in a scene from Cohen's next movie! Be careful, however...three fraternity members from the University of Southern California will be the first to tell you that being caught in a Sacha Baron Cohen movie can have its pitfalls.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Banning My Favorite Candy Bar

The Makers of my favorite candy bar have to recall their chocolate in China due to reports that they may be contaminated with the chemical melamine. This same chemical is what was found in the milk scandal seen earlier last week.

"The candy maker is the latest company to get caught up in China's tainted-milk scandal."

The milk scandal has made an estimated 53,000 children sick in China, while four have died. 53,000 is A LOT. With just milk alone that would be an awful thing to have occur in the country, but combined with the products that the particular milk was used in makes it even worse, affected that many more people.

Foreign companies who have products sold to the United States can obviously have a great impact on the country here. If you thought before that the milk problem was only an overseas matter, it may be interesting for you to see that something that is made there, and we sell here can still affect you if you don't know what's going on in the world.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Superman is in Switzerland

Swiss thrill seeker Yves Rossy successfully crossed the English Channel this morning...using a a jet-propelled wing pack.

Rossy became the first man to fly across the English Channel using a homemade, single, jet-powered wing while covering a distance of 23 miles in 13 minutes. The National Geographic Channel will be airing a special on Rossy and his historic flight at 8 o'clock tonight.

Thinking about the first flight that took place with the Wright Brothers in North Carolina, it is amazing to see how far the world of aviation and flight has come. Acknowledging something like this from a Swiss man will help to push forward the way of thinking when it comes to aviation along with other forms of travel.

Youtube video of the flight
(I chose this version because I found it interesting how they used the theme song from The Greatest American Hero in a video of a Swiss man's flight)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Jetpack Pilot Postpones Flight

An attempt to fly across the English Channel by a Swiss pilot Yves Rossy was postponed today due to weather for the second time. Rossy hopes to be the first person to fly solo with a jetpack across the Channel. He has flown around the Alps with this jetpack before but across the Channel will far surpass the airtime he encountered in the mountainous terrain.

There is so much to be said for this groundbreaking feat. Will the military hope to cash in and use these jetpacks strategically? Can these jetpacks became a new form of transportation for individuals? The implications of this form of transportation are boundless. It has yet to be perfected and tested to levels where these things I ask can happen but it is moving in that direction.

For more information: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7634927.stm

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Malaysian blogger in trouble

Raja Petra Kamaruddin has been arrested and detained for his blogging. He supposedly criticized the Malaysian government as well as "insulting" Islam. No trial dates have been scheduled for him, meaning he must wait two years in jail before anything happens. They detained him without any official charge. A little unfair?

This is a scary thing for any upcoming journalists. But remember, we live in the United States. We are lucky we can speak our mind on many issues, to a certain extent.

For a more detailed interpretation of his "charges" visit http://www.guardian.com/ and search Raja Petra Kamaruddin.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Oktoberfest tradition in jeopardy

In Germany, Oktoberfest is one of the oldest and most traditional festivals around. Each year, thousands gather to celebrate their heritage and drink enormous amounts of beer.

One element of German heritage throughout the years has been the "Dirndl." The Dirndl is the lacy and often low-cut dress typically worn by women attending the Oktoberfest festival. Recent developments, however, have some German traditionalists cringing.

To open this years' festival, the wife of Bavarian Premier Guenther Beckstein showed up wearing something other than the classic Dirndl. Instead, she wore a suit. Cora Schumacher, wife of Michael Schumacher (a German racing hero), added insult to injury when she attended the festival wearing a skull-studded Dirndl.

Now, many Germans are crying foul. Wives of German politicians are expected to follow tradition (obviously that didn't happen). Locals were shocked at Mrs. Schumacher's outfit. The Dirndl is traditionally supposed to be a conservative outfit, despite it's low-cut design. Apparently skulls aren't conservative enough.

So what does all of this mean for Oktoberfest? It could mean rapid change in the future. If the attire is able to switch from traditional and conservative to modern and radical, what could potentially happen to the beer?

The bigger question at hand: why should American college students care about what German women are wearing to Oktoberfest? Well, if your one of those crazed fans of the movie "Beerfest" and you were hoping to go scope out some German girls on your next vacation, you should probably start changing your plans.

The bigger point here is that no festival or traditional gathering is safe from change and/or modernization. Think about an annual event you have attended on a yearly basis, maybe a fair or rock concert series. How would you feel if that rock concert changed into a jazz festival? Or, say, how would you feel if people started wearing Dirndls to that rock concert?

You'd probably be weirded out and upset. Just the way the Germans are.

Campus Shooting Deadly in Finland

On Tuesday September 23, news came from Finland that nine individuals had been slain in a shooting at a vocational school in Finland. A masked gunman opened fire killing nine students and then turned his gun on himself to shoot himself in the head. He was rushed to the hospital with serious head injuries.

This obviously affects students all around the world, because anytime schools safety is put in question people begin to think about their own schools safety. What are some procedures your school takes to ensure your safety? Do you think your school does enough? Does your school take these situations seriously, and not turn a cold shoulder to thinking it will never happen to them? What can you as a student do to maintain a safe environment?

Every parent gets worried with their child moving out generally for the first time to attend college and move on to the real world but a new question schools must now answer to instead of having a quality academic program is safety. A new priority in which will help students and parents decide their destination.

For more information on the shooting: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2008/09/23/Death_toll_nine_in_Finnish_campus_shooting/UPI-24821222166224/

Monday, September 22, 2008

Milk scare in Beijing

Beijing, China, home of the 2008 summer olympics has no milk for their cookies. Sadly, over 53,000 babies have been sickened by a tainted milk scare which has already killed four children.

The chemical, melamine, has been found in formula powder milk in 22 dairies across China. The chemical is known for causing kidney stones, which could eventually lead to kidney failure. Tests have been performed and the chemical has been found in more than just the baby formula. Two of China's biggest dairy producers, Mengnui Dairy Group and Ylili Industrial Group, have also found traces of the chemical.

To get another perspective on how bad this chemical is, look at what is is typically used for: coatings and laminates, wood adhesives, fabric coatings, ceiling tiles and flame retardants.
It's important to know what is going on around the world, especially when it comes to serious issues such as this. Some people may say they do not care because its not their country, but we should all have some respect for other countries and what they are going through.
picture is courtesy of sportsgist.com

Friday, September 19, 2008

Switzerland in need of organ donors

Switzerland is looking to foreign residents in the country to step forward and fill out organ donation cards in order to be added to a small but needy transplant list.

"The phenomenon of demand exceeding supply is common to all countries with an organ donation programme but Switzerland has a worse record than other comparable nations.Fifty people on the waiting list died last year, despite a new transplant law establishing a centralised system that came into force in July 2007."

With this need so apparent to the people of Switzerland, it reminds me why I became an organ donor. It may not be something that most people think about, but it is definitely something that needs to be discussed. The more that the subject is brought up, the easier it is for people to express their desire as to whether or not they are interested in being an organ donor. It's sad to think that someone could have decided to be an organ donor and could have saved a life, but didn't have the opportunity to express that to someone who could decide that for them until it was too late. Switzerland's excessive need for such a thing seems like an obvious example of how something so minimal, like signing your name to a donation card, could have a dramatic impact on someone else's life.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Austrailian bar literally gets "down under"

In Melbourne, Australia, there is a pub (inside a hotel) that is offerring women a $50 free drink card.

So whats the catch? The women have to remove their panties (or knickers as the Aussies call them) and hang them over the bar. And if the women do not feel like taking them off, they can flash their bras, landing them a free drink on the spot. The Aussie bar has referred to this event as "No Undie Sundie."

One of the advertisements for the event was the infamous, Britney Spears getting out of a car, exposed. The ads have been on the streets, in the press and online.

I think the only reason this was such a scandal was because the bar had advertisements all over for the event. Most bars around the United States, and especially around colleges do "under the table" type of advertising and promotion. There may be flyers put under dorms but no billboards. Thats just silly.
This is also just another warning to women that if you are going to a bar and are expecting a free drink, do not do something of this nature to get your drink. It is sexist and will show no respect for yourself or people around you.
And college students, remember, drinking age is 21.
Good day, mates.
Since September 18, 2008, the event has been shut down. The Web site for the event also happened to disappear from the Internet. How ironic.
photo is courtesy of dailymail.com/UK