Terrific shots, looks like a fun day.
Terrific shots, looks like a fun day.
With the number of selfie deaths on the increase with new ones happening almost every week, you’d think people would get smart and figure out that taking dangerous risks for social media just isn’t worth it. Apparently not. A woman has been reportedly been banned for life by Royal Caribbean Cruises after posing for a selfie on the wrong side of the balcony safety rails outside her room.
CNN reports that the incident happened aboard the Allure of the Seas ship as it was approaching Labadee, Haiti earlier in the week. An unnamed woman was spotted by another passenger, Peter Blosic, while out on his own balcony, who then alerted the crew.
Blosic posted a photo of what he saw, a lady with her hands above her head, appearing to pose for a camera behind her, branding her a “moron” and an “absolute IDIOT”. He said in his post that he alerted guest services soon after he saw her. After showing the photo to the staff captain, they were able to determine the room in which the guest was staying, reports The Sun.
Earlier this week on the Allure of the Seas a guest was observed recklessly and dangerously posing for a photo by standing on her stateroom balcony railing with the help of her companion
Security was notified and the guests were later debarked in Falmouth, Jamaica, as a result of their actions and are now banned for life from sailing with Royal Caribbean.
– Royal Caribbean statement
Passengers are forbidden from “sitting, standing, laying or climbing on, over or across any exterior or interior railings or other protective barriers” according to Royal Caribbean’s guest conduct policy.
With the number of people who fall off ships throughout the year, never to be found, she’s lucky she got off with just being banned.
He may have started out singing cover versions on cheap compilation albums, but Elton John went on to become the fifth highest-selling recording artist of all time.
He was the first musician to enter the US album charts at number one. He has won a Brit award for outstanding achievement three times. And he owns six gold, 38 platinum and one diamond albums.
None of this, however, impressed his father.
Stanley Dwight, a flight lieutenant in the Royal Air Force, never attended one of Elton’s shows, and never expressed pride in his son’s success. Their relationship was strained until his death from heart disease in 1991.
Writing in his new autobiography, Me, Elton admits he spent his whole career “trying to show my father what I’m made of”.
“It’s crazy, but I just wanted his approval,” the star tells the BBC, in the only print interview about his book. “I’m still trying to prove to him that what I do is fine – and he’s been dead for almost 30 years.”
Strikingly, however, the star harbours no resentment, describing his father as a “product of his time” – uptight, emotionally stunted and trapped in an unhappy marriage.
“Although he didn’t really come to the shows or write me a letter to say, ‘well done’, I don’t think he knew how to,” he explains.
Born Reginald Dwight and raised in Pinner, near Wembley in north-west London, Elton was frequently on the receiving end of his parents’ frustration. He spent his formative years in “a state of high alert” amid arguments and “clobberings” from his mum.
“My parents were oil and water. They should never have gotten married,” he says. “As you get older, you can see much clearer what they went through, what they tried to do for me at the expense of their happiness.”
His salvation came in rock and roll.
Both his parents were musically inclined – Stanley was a trumpet player with the Bob Miller band, while his mother, Sheila, would bring home new records every week on pay day. One day, she arrived home clutching Elvis Presley’s Heartbreak Hotel, a disc that turned Reggie’s world upside down.
“I grew up in the 1950s, which was a very conservative age – people peeking behind the curtains, being very judgmental,” he says.
“I knew nothing about sex, it was never even mentioned to me. If a girl got pregnant she was sent away and nobody talked about it. It was a very different place.
“Then Elvis Presley arrived on the scene and revolutionised things musically and socially, and then the 60s happened and all hell broke loose”.
Initially, the teenager watched these developments as an outsider – in love with the music, but forbidden to participate.
“I was very shy,” he says. “I grew up not being able to wear what I wanted to. Winkle picker shoes? No, they were too disgusting. The mods wore chisel toe shoes and anoraks. I couldn’t wear those either.
“So when I changed my name and became Elton John, I just went off like an Exocet missile, and I had a great time. I lived my teenage years in my 20s, basically.”
The story has been told a thousand times: The miraculous meeting with lyricist Bernie Taupin, a blue-touch-paper appearance at LA’s Troubador club, and an unbeatable run of hit albums.
Between 1970 and 1975, there were 11 in all, an astonishingly productive purple patch that generated classic singles like Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting, Tiny Dancer and Rocket Man – the latter of which unexpectedly turned Elton into a sex symbol.
“It was a surprising time,” he laughs. “I mean, I wasn’t David Bowie, I wasn’t Marc Bolan, I was sitting at the piano. But I suddenly became, you know, the object of screaming girls. I don’t know why.”
Emboldened by success, Elton’s outfits became ever more outrageous: Satin capes and winged boots gave way to mohawk wigs, bejewelled top hats and peacock suits adorned with feathers and sequins – the sort of thing Liberace would have worn if he’d had the courage to be really flamboyant.
His imperial phase culminated with two sold-out shows at LA’s Dodger Stadium in October 1975. With a combined audience of 100,000 fans they were, at the time, the largest concerts ever staged by a single artist.
“He was like Elvis at the height of his career,” said photographer Terry O’Neill, who shot the gigs. “It is impossible to try to explain to people today what it was like.”
But Elton knew as he played those shows that he would never reach that peak again.
“I was smart enough to know it couldn’t last. It’s impossible. You just have to accept that there’s going to be someone bigger than you.”
It’s a sense of perspective other artists lack, he says.
“When Michael Jackson said, ‘I want to sell more records than Thriller’, I thought, ‘Oh boy, you’re in for a big fall’. Because Thriller was a classic record. It sold 40 million albums, which was huge. You can’t have a record coming in at number one all the time.”
Sure enough, Elton would have to wait until 1990 before he returned to the top of the charts. The wilderness years, while hardly hit-free, saw him split temporarily with Bernie Taupin and record an ill-advised disco album, Victim Of Love.
Behind the scenes, his drug and alcohol intake was spiralling out of control. In his memoir, he describes having seizures and witnessing his voice go “haywire” as his “unbelievable appetite” for cocaine grew stronger.
The drug had initially given him a “jolt of confidence and euphoria,” but as addiction took hold, he became erratic and violent. In 1983, after filming the video for I’m Still Standing, he woke up with his hands throbbing, unaware that the night before, he’d stripped naked, punched his manager John Reid and methodically demolished his hotel room.
Although the recent biopic Rocketman depicts I’m Still Standing as Elton’s hymn to sobriety, it actually took him another seven years to kick the habit.
The turning point came when his then-boyfriend Hugh Williams checked into rehab, plunging Elton into a fortnight-long cocaine and whisky binge. Eventually, he dragged himself to the clinic, where Williams confronted him on his behaviour.
“You’re a drug addict, you’re an alcoholic, you’re a food addict and a bulimic,” he said. “You’re a sex addict. You’re co-dependent”.
“Yes,” said Elton, “yes, I am,” and started to cry.
So on 29 July, 1990, he entered rehab in Chicago to treat “three addictions at once”.
In his book, Elton reprints a poignant break-up letter he wrote to “the white lady” during his treatment. “I don’t want you and I to share the same grave,” it reads.
He kept his word: The singer has now been clean for 29 years, during which time he’s revitalised his career, married film producer David Furnish, written the hit soundtrack to the Lion King, launched the stage version of Billy Elliot and become father to two children, Zachary and Elijah.
He says the autobiography was written for them: A document they could read after he’s gone that would tell the unvarnished truth.
“I want them to know that their dad was being honest, and he made something of his life after a few hiccups along the way”, he says.
It was Elton’s sons that prompted him to give up touring, too.
“My kids were only going to grow up once,” he writes in the memoir. “Music was the most wonderful thing, but it still didn’t sound as good as Zachary chatting about what had happened at football practice.”
With typical grandiosity, Elton’s farewell tour is scheduled to run for three years, with the final show set for 17 December, 2020, at London’s O2 Arena.
But that is definitively not the end. Last week, Bernie Taupin posted a photo of himself at the writing desk, composing lyrics. Can Elton confirm they’re intended for him?
“Yes, they are,” he says. “I said to Bernie, ‘I’m going around the world for three years, why don’t I write?
“You know, I wrote the whole of the Captain Fantastic album on the SS France, sailing from Southampton to New York, and I didn’t have a tape recorder. So I remembered everything I wrote in my head: The chord changes, the sequences, everything.
“And I said, ‘I’d like to go back and do that, instead of going into the studio and writing on the spot’. It may not be successful but I just want to try it.”
What’s more, he’s already cooking up plans to play concerts after the farewell tour.
His “dream thing” is to put on a theatrical residency, in the style of Kate Bush’s Before the Dawn extravaganza in 2014.
Like her, Elton would delve deep into his back catalogue, prioritising lesser-played cuts like Amoreena, Come Down In Time and Original Sin over fan favourites like Your Song or Rocket Man.
“I’ve sung these songs nearly 5,000 times, some of them, and although they’re wonderful songs, and I’m very appreciative of them, I’ve sung them enough,” he says.
“If I do perform again, I would like to do songs that I think are just as good as the ones that have been popular for 50 years, but haven’t had the chance to emerge.”
Elton John’s autobiography, Me, is out now, You can hear excerpts, read by Taron Egerton, on BBC Radio 4’s Book of the Week and on BBC Sounds this week.
Primal – Trailer
On Tuesday afternoon, a federal court in Massachusetts upheld Harvard University’s use of race in admissions as constitutional. Judge Allison Burroughs ruled that the school’s race-conscious application process does not unduly burden Asian Americans, as a lawsuit alleged, and allows it “to achieve a level of robust diversity that would not otherwise be possible, at least at this time.” Although the plaintiff, Students for Fair Admissions, has indicated that it will appeal the decision all the way up to the Supreme Court if necessary, Burroughs’ ruling is a win for affirmative action. But it doesn’t let Harvard off the hook.
Conservative activist Edward Blum, the founder of SFFA, explicitly engineered the lawsuit to abolish affirmative action, which would be a major change to college admissions that would primarily help white applicants to the detriment of diversity in universities’ student bodies. The lawsuit refashioned long-running anxieties that Asian Americans harbor around discrimination in college admissions as a tool to dismantle the entire project of affirmative action, which has crucially helped people of color find their footing in some of the country’s most elite and powerful institutions.
Yet for all the lawsuit’s ugly intentions, it did ultimately force Harvard to divulge data on the admissions process that’s normally kept under wraps. While it’s troubling that it took an attack on affirmative action to learn what we did, the information is valuable nonetheless. As I’ve written before, the most alarming revelations from the trial disclosures had to do with “personal ratings” and the preference for athletes, legacies, applicants placed on a dean’s list (often because of their parents’ donations), and the children of faculty—taken together, a group that the university refers to as ALDC. These facets of the admissions process have little to do with affirmative action but nonetheless put Asian Americans at a disadvantage.
The admissions data that Harvard released as part of discovery indicated that Asian American applicants consistently received the lowest scores on the personal rating, which is based on a combination of subjective factors like the personal essay, interviews, and qualities such as “humor” and “courage.” Race is not supposed to be a factor in the personal rating, and for good reason—you wouldn’t want race influencing whether an admissions officer sees an Asian applicant as “quiet” or “hardworking.” Burroughs wrote in the ruling that “the reason for these lower scores is unclear, but they are not the result of intentional discrimination” and suggested that they are rather a result of “implicit biases among some admissions officers.” She recommended that Harvard conduct “implicit bias trainings for admissions officers” and maintain “clear guidelines on the use of race in the admissions process.” To be sure, personal ratings do include valuable information about a candidate, and an admissions system without recommendations and application essays would be woefully lacking. Hopefully, Harvard will now keep a closer eye on how the scores can also allow implicit bias to seep into its decisions on whom to admit. As the trial was going on, the university notably amended its admissions guidance to more clearly advise admissions officers against factoring race into the personal ratings. Harvard also overhauled its personal rating criteria for the Class of 2023, steering application officers away from using culturally biased descriptions. These are welcome developments.
What’s more pressing, though, is Harvard’s practice of favoring ALDCs, which became an issue during the trial because the plaintiff suggested that Harvard could achieve its current levels of diversity by simply eliminating these tips, rather than relying on affirmative action. Supreme Court precedent dictates that universities must pursue race-neutral alternatives to the extent possible in their mission to foster diversity in the student body.
ALDCs make up only 5 percent of applicants but 30 percent of the admitted class. They enjoy an admission rate of about 45 percent, as opposed to the normal rate of 4.5 to 5 percent, and account for more than 40 percent of the white student population. These preferences benefit white and wealthy applicants over people of other races but especially over Asian Americans, who are the least likely to be ALDCs. As the opinion observes, “ALDCs are disproportionately white, with 8% of white applicants being ALDCs compared to 2.7% of African American, 2.2% of Hispanic, and 2% of Asian American applicants.” This is a mechanism separate from affirmative action that discriminates against all people of color and, to a certain extent, against Asian Americans in particular. In sum, Asian Americans receive the highest extracurricular and academic scores but also the lowest personal scores, and they’re especially underrepresented among ALDCs. So in this sense, fears about anti–Asian American bias are not completely unfounded.
Athletes and legacies make up most of the ALDCs who are admitted, and research indicates that advantages for these two groups have actually been increasing over time. Legacy admits get in at a rate five times that of nonlegacies. From 2010 to 2015, legacies accounted for more than 20 percent of the white student population at Harvard, compared with 7 percent of the Latino population, 6.6 percent of the Asian American population, and 4.8 percent of the African American population. Favoring the children of predominantly wealthy alumni serves to entrench racial and economic privilege at the university, and proponents of diversity should call on Harvard to end the practice.
Harvard’s athletic recruiting practices also overwhelmingly favor the white upper class. A recent paper using data obtained during the trial found that nearly 90 percent of recruited athletes won acceptance to Harvard between 2009 and 2014. (The paper’s lead author, Duke economist Peter Arcidiacono, was an expert witness against the university during the trial, but the plaintiff did not pay him for this particular study.) The paper further found that 69 percent of athletes accepted to Harvard were white. What’s more, Slate’s Jordan Weissmann points out that 20 percent of athletes at Harvard come from households earning more than $500,000 a year, according to a Harvard Crimson survey for the Class of 2019.
A friend suggested Harvard could be fairer to Asian Americans by also recruiting for ping-pong or badminton. I find the proposal no more absurd than the university’s current practice of recruiting for sailing.
The Atlantic’s Derek Thompson interpreted these finding as proof of “the American scam of rich-kid sports.” Rich-kid sports are, perhaps not coincidentally, also white-kid sports. Though Harvard does recruit for sports that are generally available throughout the country to kids from a variety of backgrounds, like football and basketball, it also recruits for sports that require expensive equipment and training. Skis, oars, lacrosse sticks, and squash rackets aren’t a common sight in low-income high schools.
Harvard shouldn’t get rid of all preferences for recruited athletes, but it should look at the kinds of sports it favors in its admissions process and how many spots are portioned out to each team. While I was covering the trial back in March, a friend suggested that Harvard could be fairer to Asian American applicants by also recruiting for ping-pong or badminton. It was meant as a joke, but I find the proposal no more absurd than the university’s current practice of recruiting for sailing.
The case for ditching, or at least limiting, ALDC preferences is strong. The problem with the plaintiff’s embrace of that argument was trying to toss out affirmative action at the same time.
Burroughs found that simply getting rid of the ALDC system, as the plaintiff proposed, would not be “a race-neutral alternative that would obviate the need for considering race in admissions.” She notes that eliminating these preferences would indeed increase racial and socio-economic diversity in the student body, but the impact would not be sufficient to replace affirmative action. The ruling reads, “The Court notes that reasonable minds can differ on the importance of college athletics, alumni relations, and admitting the children of faculty and staff, but takes no position on these issues other than to note that these are topics best left to schools to figure out for themselves.”
Reasonable minds might want to consider that Harvard could keep its affirmative action policies in place while also eliminating, or radically reforming, its preferences toward ALDC students. The question before the court was specifically whether one action could replace the other—but why not push for both? If Harvard really does “embrace and celebrate diversity,” as it’s claimed throughout this trial, the university needs to contend with ALDCs as a force that undoubtedly stifles that diversity.
Zuckerberg will be the sole witness at the hearing, entitled “An Assessment of Facebook and Its Impact on the Financial Services and Housing Sectors.” Previously, Facebook has decided to mainly send out Calibra CEO David Marcus to go over Libra with regulators.
Facebook announced Libra and Calibra in June, and prepared to roll them out next year. It hasn’t precisely been smooth cruising for the cryptocurrency considering that. Regulators in the US, UK and EU, along with central banks, have actually looked for responses about the stability and privacy implications of Libra.
France and Germany have said it ought to be prohibited in the European Union. They argued it ‘d pose a challenge to federal governments’ “monetary sovereignty.” Meanwhile, PayPal has dropped its assistance for Libra, and Visa and Mastercard may do the same.
In July, the Democratic members of the committee proposed legislation to obstruct Facebook and other major tech business from introducing cryptocurrencies. Even if the bill doesn’t make much progress towards ending up being law, it highlights a degree of wariness about Libra from lawmakers, and recommends the committee members will have plenty to ask Zuckerberg about.
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The Switch has offered over 10 million systems in Europe because introducing on March 3, 2017, according to a tweet from Nintendo of Europe
That total includes the original Change and the just recently launched Switch Lite, a more inexpensive, handheld-only variation of the console.
According to Nintendo’s official numbers, the Switch had actually sold exactly 36.87 million systems worldwide as of June 30, 2019, meaning Europe represent a substantial chunk of those worldwide sales.
It hasn’t all be plain sailing for the Switch the previous number of years, however, and this summer Nintendo was hit with a class action claim for stopping working to address a persistent Joy-Con drift problem that those involved claim affects both the initial console and the Switch Lite.
Include Environment Change as an interest to keep up to date on the current Climate Change news, video, and analysis from ABC News.
” I do not see a reason to not listen to the science,” Thunberg informed the Home Foreign Affairs Committee. “It’s not just a thing we should be considering approved. We listen to the present best-available, united science. It’s just something we ought to do. This is not political opinion or views, this is science.”
Thunberg, who has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Reward, has attracted world-wide attention for motivating worldwide student-led strikes, called “Fridays for the Future.” She’s earned a celeb track record in the U.S. amongst youths, appearing on Funny Central’s “The Daily Show” and sharing a fist bump with former President Barack Obama throughout a check out on Tuesday.
When asked by legislators on Capitol Hill how to get young individuals involved, she said adults should “tell them the fact.”.
” Tell them how it is,” she stated. “Because when I discovered I was furious. I wished to throw down the gauntlet.”
Rep. Garret Graves, R-La., said the U.S. has made strides in restricting climate emissions and that China was taking the lead in launching carbon emissions understood to add to environment modification
” For everybody one lots of carbon emissions we produce in the United States,” Graves stated throughout the hearing Wednesday. “China has increased by 4 loads, more than balancing out all the decreases that we have actually had in the United States.”.
Thunberg reacted that China’s emissions levels shouldn’t be a reason for the U.S. to withdraw its own efforts to limit greenhouse gases.
” I want you to join behind the science. And after that I desire you to take real action.”
Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg appeared prior to Congress to advise lawmakers to “listen to the scientists” and accept worldwide efforts to lower carbon emissions. https://t.co/Rik2UcuJDt pic.twitter.com/oEgGFdNsTu
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 18, 2019
” I am from Sweden, a little nation. And there, it is the exact same argument. ‘Why must we do anything, simply look at the U.S.,’ they say. So, so you understand, that is being used against you also.”
Thunberg took a trip to the U.S. by cruising across the Atlantic Ocean to minimize her carbon footprint. She is expected to attend the United Nations Environment Action Top in New York City later on this month.
He was one of the top heroes of late ’80s and early ’90s, but a sudden dip in his Bollywood career hit Chunky Panday hard.
The actor says he didn’t hesitate to start anew as a struggler in movies and the results have been positive.
After cementing his position in Bollywood with films like Tezaab, Aag Hi Aag and Aankhen, Chunky stopped getting work and then moved to star in Bangladeshi film for a few years, only to return with memorable roles in the Housefull series and Begum Jaan.
“In 1993 after giving a blockbuster Aankhen, I had no work. I was sitting at home for a year. I only had one film titled Teesra Kaun?. That’s when I got the opportunity to work in Bangladesh and my first film was a superhit. I worked there for three-four years.
“After marriage, my wife told me, ‘Bollywood is my actual identity’. When I came back to Hindi cinema, I realised a generation had forgotten me completely. I had to start struggling. I would meet people, ask for work and luckily I got it,” Chunky told PTI in an interview.
The actor said filmmakers Harry Baweja, Subhash Ghai and Sajid Nadiadwala helped him restart his career in Hindi cinema.
“Then there was no looking back. I believe an actor should be shameless. I have a thick skull,” he added.
Chunky said after tasting stardom it was hard to sit at home with no work.
“You get into depression when you are sitting at home and have no work, especially after being at the top of your game… where you have seen the highs and people were chasing you.”
The actor believes the key to survive is to keep yourself busy.
“One should take up small roles, do work related to films, like I started an event management company and a restaurant. I kept myself busy.”
Initially in his career, Chunky won hearts with his impeccable comic timing as a hero but now he is on a way to establish himself as an actor fit to play grey characters.
“A lot of people did not expect me to do a villainous role. In Begum Jaan, a lot of people did not recognise me as my look was different. That is the big thing and it means you have gone so much into your character. I feel you have to be blessed to get such exciting opportunities,” he said.
The actor revealed he was inspired to take up antagonist parts after seeing Rishi Kapoor’s turn as the menacing Rauf Lala in the Agneepath remake.
He added, “I wish I had done this earlier. A hero is very boring. He has to do all the good things… While a villain can do everything.
“Since childhood, I have always rooted for the villains. I would wish the villain beat the hero and get away with everything.”
In future, the actor said he would like to portray emotionally intense parts.
“I want to do something emotional. I find doing emotional scenes very tough, it is very challenging for me.”
Chunky will next be seen in Saif Ali Khan-Tabu starrer Jawani Jaaneman. The actor has also signed a couple of new projects.
Max Cohen, USA TODAY
Published 11: 44 a.m. ET Sept. 13, 2019 | Updated 1: 20 p.m. ET Sept. 13, 2019
Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg has a message for Donald Trump – listen to the science about climate change. (Aug. 28)
After calling out politicians for climate inaction on “The Daily Show” this week, teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg is protesting Friday outside the White House to demand the U.S. government address the affects of climate change.
The 16-year-old Swede is joined by youth activists in the protest, which marks the start of Thunberg’s six-day stay in Washington, D.C.
Along with dozens of other youth protesters, Thunberg chanted, “Hey hey, ho ho, climate change has got to go” as the activists marched outside the White House.
The students held a variety of homemade signs, including “Make Earth cool again,” “Save the ice caps” and “If you did your job, we would be in school.”
Just before 1 p.m., Thunberg briefly spoke to a crowd that had swelled to more than 100.
“I’m so incredibly grateful for every single one of you,” she said
“Never give up. We will continue,” she said amid loud cheers. “See you next week on Sept. 20!”
Next Friday, Thunberg is organizing a worldwide climate strike that encourages students to step out of class to protest. New York City Public Schools has said it will excuse absences for students joining the protest with parental consent.
Read more about Greta: Youth climate activist sailing across the Atlantic Ocean, completes voyage
In August, Thunberg captured global attention when she set off from Plymouth, United Kingdom, on a zero-emissions boat voyage across the Atlantic. Thirteen days later on Aug. 24, she arrived in New York City and went on to hold a protest outside the United Nations headquarters.
Thunberg’s celebrity status has grown in recent months. On Wednesday, Thunberg joined Trevor Noah on his Comedy Central late-night show,where she said her decision to embark on a boat trip was motivated by the massive impact aviation has on carbon emissions that lead to climate change.
Citing that 200 species go extinct every day, Thunberg said the world is in the midst of a mass extinction and she reiterated that the impacts of climate change were being felt now.
Thunberg urged people to get informed on climate exchange and to push for a political movement to stop the world’s destruction.
“What we should do as individuals is to use the power of democracy to make our voices heard and to make sure that the people in power actually cannot continue to ignore this,” Thunberg told Noah.
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