Did you know Peace Day was today?

This came as quite a surprise since there seems not to have been much publicity for this other than Jude Law….but it raises a few questions. Even though the goal of having ‘Peace One Day’ is valid, will global cease-fire and independence ever truly be achieved for the one day? This seems more borne out of wishful thinking than critical thinking. How would this be able to be ensured? Would someone enforce it? or would we depend on the goodness of ‘the people’?

If we could organize a process in which to donate to these war-torn countries where peace is most inevitably needed, that could be a more realistic goal for the moment. There seems never to be enough publicity for what is important. This shouldn’t have only been on Youtube. It should have been on one of the many social networks that we have access to in this day and age.

10-year-old Lands 5 Figure Anti-Smoking Contract

10-year-old Meghan Ward was driven to get the anti-smoking message out because of her Grandmother’s smoking related death. She would save her pocket money to have prototypes made in China for her final product, a key chain where tar is pushed side-to-side inside lungs. Anti-smoking execs caught wind of the idea and inked a deal for 25, 000 of Meghan’s keyrings. They call it clever and ingenious and it really is!

Click here to watch the video

Now those are CURVES

January 2010 Issue of Vogue India with Sonam Kapoor who reportedly once weighed 198 pounds (90kg). She is now about 136 pounds (60kg). Something important to note about weight is that it isn’t the weight you should be concentrating on but rather what is healthy for your height and the less than 80cm around the waist rule. Sonam Kapoor, a Bollywood actress, is 5,9. Though the amount of weight she has lost is remarkable, we have to wonder if now she is slightly underweight, due to her height.

Here were some of her words of food wisdom, which we all agree with.

1. Don’t eat that samosa. (you know what she means! Junk food)
2. Eat small meals, every two hours, instead of three big meals.
3. Stay away from refined foods. Eat lots of fruit and vegetables, and lean meats.
4. Exercise.
5. Cut down on caffeine and drink more water. Green tea has the caffeine you need, so switch from coffee.
6. Accept that there can be no excuse for straying from your regime.
7. Put on music and dance.
8. Recognise that there is no easy way.
9. Don’t be a lazy bum. You only need six hours of sleep. Get up and get moving.
10. Never be unhappy with who you are, but do see where there may be room for improvement.

Nicely put.

General Larry Platt: American Hero

Remember the infectious hit from American Idol, “Pants On The Ground”? The delight that went viral just a few short days ago? Remember its rapper General Larry Platt aged 62, who some call the next William Hung? Say William Hung no more. Larry Platt is an American Hero. A real hero. He even had a holiday named after him in his hometown of Atlanta on September 4, 2001 for his “priceless and immeasurable contributions to society” and “great energy and commitment to equality and the protection of the innocent and for his outstanding service to the Atlanta community and the citizens of Georgia.”

The Georgia General Assembly’s homage to Larry that day also showed how important his contributions were stating that “For the past 40 years, Larry Platt has given of himself in service to the people of the City of Atlanta, the State of Georgia, and the nation…Larry Platt merits the highest recognition for his many valuable contributions to the Civil Rights Movement and his dedication to the struggle for equality and human rights.”

Platt’s list of contributions began at the mere age of 16 as a crusader for the Civil Rights Movement in Georgia back in the 60s. Though he may not be an actual general, he received the ”General” nickname from an impressed influential civil rights leader Reverend Hosea Williams for his courage and valiance. He was also a student of Martin Luther King Jr while he worked with activist groups like the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee and Southern Christian Leadership Conference to fight racial segregation in the South and endured beatings while participating in the “Bloody Sunday” protest march from Selma to Montgomery in Alabama.

How inspirational!

What’s even more inspiring is that the General has continued his community activist work up till now. He works alongside a volunteer organization set up to find missing children in the Atlanta area called the United Youth Adult Conference and fights public foreclosures.

We are in awe. We hope other people remember this too while listening to Pants On The Ground. The song does take  the seriousness out of his activism background, doesn’t it?

The Louvre Is The Most Visited Museum In The World

And with an astronomical 8.5 million visits in 2009, the Louvre has broken even its own record, which has been 8 million visits for the past four years.

That’s quite a lot of people!

The addition of the temporary exhibitions of the Egyptian exhibition Les portes du Ciel (Heaven’s gates) and Titien, Tintoret, Véronèse. Rivalités à Venise (Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese: Rivalry in Venice) attracted a large number of visitors with 250,000 and 400,000 people, respectively.

The museums that ranked after the lustrous louvre were British Museum in London coming in second with 5.93 million, third with the National Gallery in Washington, DC at 4.96 million, Tate Modern in London at fourth with 4.95 million with the Metropolitan Museum in New York coming in fifth at 4.82 million.

We think we have only been to the Louvre, to be honest. At the time, the only attractions to really see were the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo. The Egyptian and Italian exhibitions would have been nice to see.

Canada? Where are you?

India’s First Transsexual Talent Show

India will host for the first time a transsexuals talent show all in the effort to create and promote awareness about the marginalized community of transsexuals and eunuchs (men who have been castrated). Transsexual and activist Laxmi Narayan Tripathi says, “We were always the invisibles”  and hopes that the ”pageant [can] take [us] a step forward”.

It was just last year that transsexuals and eunuchs of India had their wish to be listed as ”others” granted, distinguishing them from male and females. This but scratches the surface of a multitude of issues they are forced to live with. Many live in squalor due to their alienation from society and limited options for survival, namely prostitution, jobs that pay insignificant amounts and begging.

As the SuperQueen pageant is meant to recognize and celebrate these others, hopefully we can better understand and delve into the trans-world. The ‘queens’ will be judged by Celina Jaitley (campaigner for sexual minority rights and former beauty queen), Zeenat Aman (actress) and Salman Khan (actor). Bollywood actress, Celina Jaitley says, “We want them to portray what is inside them. Speech, poise and confidence to work for the community will be important criteria [for the competition] .

The trans and eunuch hopefuls will compete over a period of two weeks in audition to fill 12 finalist positions for the crown of ”Indian Super Queen 2010”. They will also be competing for a cash prize of one million rupees (22,000 dollars).

OoO Fun for a good cause! We think that everyone needs to start accepting the fact that not everyone lives the way others do. The influence of the media should be used not only to generate awareness for issues such as these but also for women of darker colour, the abolishment of Fair And Lovely, which is a popular bleaching cream in India and a wider acceptance for what beauty and normal is.

Embrace a little!

Woman Who Saved Anne Frank’s Diary Dies At 100

Miep Gies, the Dutch woman who sheltered, fed and hid the Frank family in the Second World War and saved Anne Frank’s diary has died at the age of 100. The Anne Frank House museum stated that Gies died sustaining a neck injury during a fall at her home before Christmas.

Anne Frank’s cousin, Bernd (Buddy) Elias said that, ”During the two years she hid Jews from Nazis, she put herself in danger. If they had caught her, she would have been put in a concentration camp herself.” Instead as history indicates, German secret police found Frank and her family hidden in the secret annex and took them to concentration camps where Anne suffered from typhus and died at the age of 15, a mere two weeks before the camp liberated.

This left Gies with Anne’s diary and papers, which she had kept locked in a drawer and never read as she said it would have ”incriminated other helpers”. She gave the papers to the only Frank family member who survived the camps, Anne’s father, Otto, who published the diaries in 1947.

Gies was commended and honoured for her courage by an Israeli Holocaust museum, the German government and the Dutch monarchy though she said that she didn’t deserve as much applause as others did who did ”far more dangerous work”.

The Diary of Anne Frank is now translated into 70 different languages and has allowed millions into the world of the girl secretly hidden in the annex evading Nazi capture.

If it hadn’t been for Miep Gies bravery, no one might have ever known.

Rest in peace

Crying Blood

No, it’s not another Vampire movie. It’s about 14-year-old Twinkle Dwivedi who suffers blood loss from every pore about 50 times each day without being injured or touched. This undiagnosed disorder has prevented the teen from Lucknar, Uttar Pradesh from attending schools for the last two years as she was banned for the uncontrollable bleeding which occurs from her eyes to the soles of her feet.

In the U.S., a 16 year old American boy, Calvino Inman from Rockwood, Tennessee also was reported as suffering from this rare disorder with constant bleeding occurring from his eyes, which is currently being investigated by U.S doctors.

Dr George Buchanan was interested in Twinkle’s case and travelled to India to meet her. As a prominent American paediatric blood specialist even he was stumped. ‘I’ve never seen a case of someone who bleeds spontaneously from their scalp or their palms, or read about it in medical history.’

When he observed Twinkle in the Mumbai’s Jaslok Hospital, he was astonished to see that when she bled he saw “no signs of cuts or bruising anywhere on her body [as] it doesn’t seem physically possible for blood to seep through intact skin.”

Twinkle attests “I bleed from my eyes, my hands, my head, from everywhere. From my ears, nose and eyes as well. It doesn’t hurt when the bleeding starts. But it makes me tired and sometimes I have headaches.”

Through tests that consisted of cutting Twinkle’s skin to see how fast the blood stopped, they have shown that her platelets do not stick together properly meaning that she has a slight clotting disorder, which does not give an indication as to where the bleeding comes from.

Initially Dr Buchanan didn’t rule out abuse or self-infliction as a cause for the bleeding but he observed they had a healthy relationship with Twinkle, a Hindu defending herself saying that she wasn’t “causing this.” She continues, “Why would I want to make myself bleed? I don’t want to be like this. I want to go to school and have a normal life.”

Twinkle’s mother Nandani Diwedi says, “We have tried praying and seeking medical help to cure Twinkle. Sometimes you need to do both.”

Her condition is now being confirmed as one “they have never seen before.”

This unfortunately doesn’t inspire much hope. Also even if seeing someone constantly bleeding worries people, we would have rather not heard that schools are preventing her from her education. Banned is for miscreants and troublemakers. She is guilty of an unpreventable condition. They should make accommodations for the poor girl.

We do like her positivity though and we hope they do find a cure for her.

Story of Michael Oher From A Year Ago!

Oh CBS. You are wonderful.

The best part of the story is Leanne Tuohy’s simply saying, ”Michael needed to be loved I hugged him for a year before he ever hugged me back and I think that was the first time in his life that he knew in his heart that somebody loved him for him”

Ps. Collins Tuohy is gorgeous.
Pps. Go see The Blind Side. We liked it even more than Precious!

The Blind Side Is A Shining Beacon Of Light

The Tuohy Family

Michael Oher

The Tuohy‘s are the family that inspired the film The Blind Side. Even if this family is considerably affluent, there is nothing in the film or in interviews that would suggest that they possess anything other than the brightest hearts of gold.

The story of Michael Oher is heart-breaking, inspirational and uplifting. Not often have we seen church-going people or families depicted in films except in a fanatical or hypocritical light. Here, we are introduced to a family that accepted this boy with no family, support or connections and made him a part of their family.

Leanne, Michael’s adoptive mother does say that certain artistic liberties were taken in certain scenes but that their story is true. The only criticism Michael would admit however, was that he was depicted as a ”babe in the woods” in reference to his football skills, something he says is not true. Haha!

Now, he is an offensive lineman for the Baltimore Ravens and if you’ve seen his plays, he is clearly NOT a babe in the woods but a ”bully with a nasty streak” when described by others.

Good job Fox News (finally)

Sandra Bullock Makes Box Office History

The Blind Side has made over 200 million dollars with a female lead at the helm for the first time. Though many have come close, no other woman has ever cracked it. Not Julia Roberts, Angelina Jolie, Reese Witherspoon or anyone else.

All hail Sandra!

Precious Leads NAACP awards With 8 Nominations

Not surprising even Mariah’s being recognized!

With the captivating performance she gave in her portrayal of a social worker despite her limited screen-time, the woman deserves an Oscar. Last night however she won an award at the Palm Springs Film Festival.

Good it wasn’t for her brilliant speech making. Craazy.

Also the NAACP awards nominated her, Mo’Nique and Paula Patton in the best supporting actress category.

Gabourey Sidebe was separately nominated in the best actress category competing with the likes of  Sandra Bullock in The Blind Side(YES!), Sophie Okonedo in Skin (DOUBLE YES!), Taraji P. Henson in Tyler Perry’s I Can Do Bad All by Myself and Anika Noni Rose for her vocal performance in the animated feature The Princess and the Frog(Très Good).

Precious earned a nomination for Best Picture along with The Blind Side, Invictus, Michael Jackson’s This is It and The Princess and the Frog. It also was nominated for Best Independent Picture, alongside Amreeka, American Violet, Endgame and Medicine for Melancholy. (Independent.. with Oprah!)

Lee Daniels was picked for best director while Geoffrey Fletcher was nominated for best screenplay in his adaptation of the novel to the big screen.

The NAACP awards will be given on the 26th of February, not solely for films but also for television, music and literature.

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