Archive for April 12th, 2011


4.12.2011 … Is it spring … or summer … blessings …

random, history: 🙂

April 11, 1990

Gov. Joe Frank Harris signed an act designating the Vidalia Onion Georgia’s official state vegetable.

via Atlanta History Center, April 11, 1990.

summer 2011, kith/kin:  We are very excited for Molly!

Tufts Summit invites high school students to develop a greater understanding of the global village they will call home. While improving their French language skills, students are introduced to the complex world of international politics and diplomacy through classroom instruction, exploration of French culture, and field trips to local sites of historic importance and natural beauty.

via Tufts University European Center in Talloires, France.

science, health:  very interesting …

TELOMERES are to chromosomes what plastic caps are to shoelaces—they stop them fraying at the ends. Unlike shoelaces, though, chromosomes replicate themselves from time to time as the cells they are in divide. This shortens the telomere and, after 50-70 such divisions a number known as the Hayflick limit, after its discoverer, a chromosome can grow no shorter and the cell it is in can divide no more.That provides a backstop against cancer. The rapidly dividing cells in a tumour soon hit the Hayflick limit and the process is brought to a screeching halt. Which is a good thing. The bad thing is that reaching the limit is one of the markers of old age. You do not want it to happen too quickly, particularly in tissues that have to do a lot of dividing in order to work properly, such as those in the immune system.It has been known for some time that chronic stress caring for a child with a protracted illness, for example causes premature shortening of the telomeres. What has not been clear is whether this is a one-way trip, with each stressful period turning the telomeric ratchet irreversibly. This week, though, at a meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Orlando, Florida, a group of researchers led by Edward Nelson of the University of California, Irvine, showed that it isn’t. Their research suggests that stress management not only stops telomeres from shortening, it actually promotes their repair.

via Stress and ageing: A question of attitude | The Economist.

libraries, travel, lists, bucket lists:  Only seen 3 … more to add to y bucket list. 🙂

Forget stereotypes about libraries. You’re likely to find art exhibits, lounge chairs and free Wi-Fi. Monday marks the start of National Library Week, but visitors don’t need an excuse to visit. “It’s a place where stuff happens,” says Rebecca Miller  of Library Journal magazine. She shares 10 favorite locations with Larry Bleiberg  for USA TODAY.

via 10 great places to take a library tour –

children’s/YA literature:  I wonder what my favorite says about me … it’s not on the list … A Wrinkle in Time.

Click through for our predictions, and do your best to take it with the grain of salt we intend – don’t worry, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory lovers, we’re not really accusing you of advocating slavery. Be sure to add to the fun and make up your own in the comments!

via Flavorwire » What Your Favorite Kids Book Then Says About You Now.

education, children’s/YA literature, lists:  The Brits don’t read the same books we do .. 🙂

Education Secretary Michael Gove says that children aged 11 should be reading 50 books a year to improve literacy standards.

We asked three of Britain’s leading children’s authors and two of our in-house book experts to each pick 10 books, suitable for Year 7 students.

The authors chose books that have brought them huge joy, while expressing their outrage at the “great big contradiction” of Mr Gove’s claim to wish to improve literacy while closing libraries across the country.

via The 50 books every child should read – News, Books – The Independent.

culture, education, reading, children’s/YA literature:

in many cultures, it is actively rude to take out a book in a public place, that reading is a private activity to be carried out at home. Only when subjected to a long and tedious wait might it be acceptable to take out a book; and it is true, the one reader I spotted was in an airport lounge.

Still, though the observation probably doesn’t hold water as a judgement of the literacy of a society, it does make a point about the place of reading in a nation’s life. You can tell something about a nation by how universal and constant a habit reading is. In Japan, there seems hardly a moment of stasis too brief to whip out a manga or a classic novel. One of the wonderful sights of Bengali culture, whether in Calcutta or Bangladesh, is of people gathered round a newspaper pasted on a wall, or standing on a street corner deep in the morning’s paper.

And, like other European cultures, the English have always been not just great readers, but great readers in public. Look around you on the train at the prevalence, even now, of the morning newspaper. On the evening train there will be 20 books being read in every carriage, of all sorts – Herodotus, Jane Green, Dickens, lives of Hitler and histories of Hungary. Reading is, even now, as central to the existence of many English people as eating.

…Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, has raised a few eyebrows with his aspiration that every schoolchild, from 11 onwards, should be expected to read 50 books a year. That number of books a year seems like a gigantic step upwards from the present situation where, as Mr Gove tells us, many school students read only two books for GCSE, the culmination of years of education, and one of those is usually Of Mice and Men. Is it achievable?

via Philip Hensher: Fifty books a year is ideal, but why stop at school children? – Philip Hensher, Commentators – The Independent.

icons, fashion, Sally Field, tv, Gidget:  Poor, Gidge …

Gidget, as played by Sally Field in the eponymous 1965 television series, was the ultimate California girl. A sturdy pink-and-white bikini suited the boy-crazy surfer perfectly as she went about on her Malibu misadventures.

via Sally Field, Gidget,1965 – The Most Iconic Swimsuits Ever – Get Star Style – Fashion – InStyle.

Libya, news, South Africa, Colonel Gaddafi, Jacob Zuma:  Interesting twist given that the general consensus is that Zuma is a crooked as they come.

A rebel spokesman said any deal designed to keep Colonel Gaddafi or his sons in place would not be acceptable

South African President Jacob Zuma says the Libyan government has accepted an African Union peace proposal to end the eight-week-old conflict.

Mr Zuma’s AU delegation met Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi in Tripoli on Sunday. An AU team is going to the eastern rebel stronghold of Benghazi.

But rebel spokesmen said there could be no truce unless Col Gaddafi stepped down and his forces withdrew.

via BBC News – Libya: Gaddafi government accepts truce plan, says Zuma.

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