New Delhi: In a heated courtroom drama that lasted for almost two hours, former Union minister M J Akbar Saturday recorded his statement and was cross examined in a defamation case filed by him against journalist Priya Ramani. Akbar, who appeared before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal, said the allegations made by Ramani were “malafide” and “defamatory”. Senior advocate Rebecca John, appearing for Ramani, cross examined Akbar on details regarding Ramani joining The Asian Age, among others. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange framework However, Akbar responded to most of the questions as ” I do not remember”. Akbar, who resigned as Union minister on October 17 last year, had filed a private criminal defamation complaint against Ramani after his name cropped up on social media as the #MeToo campaign raged on in India. Ramani has accused Akbar of sexual misconduct around 20 years ago when he was a journalist. Akbar has denied the accusations. The court has posted the matter for the next hearing on May 20.
Dakhla – Former French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin, said Saturday in the Moroccan city of Dakhla in the so-called Western Sahara, there is an “urgent need” for political dialogue “after 40 years of a painful conflict over the Sahara issue.”“We cannot forget here in Dakhla the urgent need for political dialogue after 40 years of painful conflict around the Sahara issue,” said Mr. De Villepin, who was speaking at a plenary session of the Crans Montana Forum on the theme “An urgent need: to strengthen the dialogue between Africa, North Africa and Europe.”This edition of Crans Montana Forum on Africa and South-South Cooperation was dedicated to energy access through renewable energy, with a special focus on wind farms. The Forum brought together illustrious figures from 36 African, 30 Asian, 31 European and 15 America countries, as well as more than 20 regional and international organizations
A global search is underway for this dynamic person and two others from civil society organizations to address a special United Nations High-Level Event on Climate Change, set for 29 June, and convened by the President of the General Assembly, Sam Kutesa.The event, which will be attended by Ministers, business leaders and representatives from civil society organizations will take place just months before countries meet in Paris in December 2015 to adopt a new universal agreement on climate change. “The first goal is to check the pulse of Members States to see where we stand. But we also know the world needs to go further to tackle climate change. We are therefore looking for solutions and inspiration from a young person who is already successfully taking climate action in his or her community,” said Mr. Kutesa.The search for a dynamic young speaker to address the opening ceremony is being conducted by the UN Non-Governmental Liaison Service (UN-NGLS). In addition, UN-NGLS asks for candidates to participate in two other panels during the day of the meeting.UN-NGLS is asking candidates who are representatives of civil society organizations to share their story of successful local climate action to help shift the world to a sustainable path, enabling economic opportunity, equality, and a healthy environment for all. Civil society representatives may also apply to serve on the Selection Committee for this event. To apply, please visit: http://bit.ly/Apply-29June-UNPGA-climate-change.The event will be the highpoint of a week of climate change activities at UN Headquarters in New York, which kick off on 23 June with a meeting of business leaders organized by UN Global Compact. This will be followed on 26 June by a two-day meeting of Ministers from the least developed countries (LDCs). The events will culminate in a concert by leading World Music stars and the New York Symphony Orchestra on 30 June. The events will all take place under the banner of the UN campaign “2015: Time for Global Action.”“This year is both historic and momentous,” Mr. Kutesa said. “We are engaged in three critically important processes – the post-2015 sustainable development agenda, financing for development, and climate change. This year, 2015, is the time for global action and this High-Level Event should highlight and inspire governments, communities and civil society to take further action.”
The Security Council convened an emergency session in New York later in the day,to discuss the latest developments impacting the war-torn north African nation. According to a statement from the UN Special Representative for Libya, Ghassan Salame, the staff members who died and were injured served with the UN Support Mission in the country, UNSMIL, which he heads. Scores of civilians were also injured by the explosion. “This cowardly attack, which comes at a time when Libyans are out shopping in preparation for the Eid al-Adha, serves as another strong reminder of the urgent need for Libyans to stop fighting, set aside their differences, and work together through dialogue, and not violence, to end the conflict”, he said. Keita: Positive that Prime Minister Serraj and General Haftar’s LNA have agreed to @GhassanSalame’s call for a truce for Eid al Adha in #Libya, to begin tonight. Hope both sides will genuinely abide, in good faith, to their public commitment. https://t.co/v8vRyXUOFU pic.twitter.com/uXmU4ixx7z— UN Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (@UNDPPA) August 10, 2019 UN Photo/Evan SchneiderThe Security Council observes a moment of silence during an emergency meeting on the situation in Libya, convened after a car bomb attack in Benghazi killed three United Nations staff members and injured two others, among scores of injured Libyan nationals.UN has no intention ‘to evacuate’ from Libya: Bintou Keita The UN Assistant Secretary-General for Africa, Bintou Keita, briefed the Council late on Saturday afternoon in New York, saying that the attack “serves to highlight the continued danger of terrorism across the country, and the limits of effective security control in the absence of one Government and one military, and police force, working across the country.” She said it confirmed that the chronic violence and instability “is creating a vacuum easily exploited by radical elements that thrive on chaos and violence” and noted that the attack came in an area “supposedly under full control” of the LNA. “The UN does not intent to evacuate from Libya” she said pointedly. “For the forseeable future, our place remains alongside the Libyan people, like our brave colleagues who gave their lives today.” Ms. Keita expressed hope that both sides would abide by the Eid truce” in good faith, to their public commitment. Senseless and absurd violence needs to stop.” She noted that Libya was incapable of pushing back against terrorism, “the tragedy of illegal migration” or the continued collapse of its economy, without pulling together in search of a common political solution through an agreed political process. UNSMIL had worked hard in the days leading up to the truce. “It is essential that this truce is deepened and strengthened” through confidence-building measures such as prisoner exchanges, she urged, “and that the parties move quickly forward to an international meeting to recommit to a roadmap to transition the country from conflict, back to the peaceful, democratic process.” She warned that “the continued brutal descent of southern Libya into chaos, and inter-communal fueds is a disturbing harbinger of what may ensue should the wider conflict persist.” Mr. Salame added that “this attack will not discourage us, nor will it prevent us from carrying out our duties to bring about peace, stability and prosperity to Libya and its people.” Mr. Guterres said in a statement issued by his Spokesperson that he condemned the attack “in the strongest terms”, extending his deepest condolences to the bereaved families. “He calls on the Libyan authorities to spare no effort in identifying and swiftly bringing to justice the perpetrators of this attack”. “The Secretary-General calls on all parties to respect the humanitarian truce during Eid al Adha and return to the negotiating table to pursue the peaceful future the people of Libya deserve”, the statement added. The UN has been attempting to broker a truce in fighting which erupted following a major assault in April on the southern outskirts of the capital Tripoli by the forces of the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) and forces loyal to the UN-backed Government of National Accord. The Benghazi-based LNA has not been able to advance beyond the southern suburbs of Tripoli, but it controls large swathes of eastern and southern Libya, under the command of its leader, Commander Khalifa Haftar. Hundreds of civilians and fighters have been killed in the fighting, while more than a 100,000 have been forced to flee their homes. Meanwhile, tens of thousands have crossed the border into Tunisia, seeking safety. According to news reports, in the last 24 hours, both the Government and LNA had accepted a UN proposal for a ceasefire during the holy Muslim holiday of Eid, beginning on Sunday. UNSMIL issued a statement late on Saturday welcoming the agreement “by concerned parties to the principle of humanitarian truce”. Security Council honours ‘ultimate sacrifice’ of fallen UNSMIL staff The UN Ambassador for Poland, which currently holds the Presidency of the Council for the month of August, Joanna Wroneka, said on behalf of the 15-member body that they condemned “in the strongest terms, the outrageous, deadly and totally unacceptable attack on the United Nations, that occurred today”. She conveyed the Members’ deepest condolences to the families of the victims. “Those brave workers were operating under a mandate given by this Council in order to provide a more secure future, for the people of Libya. We commemorate their ultimate sacrifice, in the cause of peace.”
Epiroc says its Mobilaris Mining Intelligence (MMI) is set to help improve decision making at Assmang’s Black Rock underground manganese mine in South Africa.The mining original equipment manufacturer said this will be the first installation of the decision support solution in a room and pillar mine.Pierre Becker, General Manager Black Rock mine, said MMI will help to increase production and utilisation at the mine. “The solution enables an unprecedented opportunity for mining personnel to make right decisions faster than ever before,” he said.Through MMI, the Black Rock Mine control room will evolve to a source of real-time production data fully integrated with planning, task dispatch, machine telemetry data, mobile operator clients and a layer of analytics to collect and monitor insights and key performance indicators for the mine production, Epiroc said. “The project is expected to yield significant improvements in employee safety, process efficiency and overall production,” the company added.MMI enables superior situational awareness and is designed to visualise and support mining operation in all its complexity, in real-time, according to Epiroc. It provides a 3D real-time information model where the position of machines, vehicles and personnel are recognised, and other vital information sources like shift planning, machine and production data are presented.Andrew Main, Regional Business Line Manager, Underground Rock Excavation division for Southern Africa, Epiroc South Africa, said: “Epiroc will support Black Rock’s business improvement processes with the MMI solution. The globally acclaimed Situational Awareness together with Short Interval Control package will take their operations to the next level of performance gains.”System installation is expected in June, Epiroc said.
GRAEME MCDOWELL HELD his nerve to win a dramatic play-off and pocket a $1 million prize at the RBC Heritage tonight.A par four on the first play-off hole was enough for McDowell to beat Webb Simpson, sealing his first win on the PGA Tour since the 2010 US Open.Luke Donald and Kevin Streelman shared third place on seven-under-par, two shots behind McDowell and Simpson.“It was really tricky and gusty,” McDowell said after posting an excellent 69 for his final round in difficult conditions at Hilton Head.“I’m just really happy to get my first authentic PGA Tour win over the line.”A closing birdie on Saturday left McDowell in contention at the start of the final round, four shots behind overnight leader Charley Hoffman.With the wind swirling around the South Carolina course, he seized his chance and was flawless through his first 17 holes, posting birdies at the fifth, 11th and 16th to move to the top of the leaderboard.But after overhitting his approach to the back of the 18th, the adrenaline appeared to get to McDowell who rocketed his first putt 15 feet past the hole, leading to his first bogey of the day.That left the door open for Simpson who sank his putt at the last for a round of level-par 71 and set up a showdown between the two former US Open champions.After the drama of the nine additional holes needed to decide Sunday’s Spanish Open, the finale in America was short and sweet by comparison. A well-struck approach from the 18th fairway gave McDowell a chance to putt for birdie and the win.Though his first attempt came up a couple of inches short, Simpson’s bogey five was enough to hand the man from Portrush his first win of the season.“I played nicely. I played nicely all week,” he told CBS afterwards.“I sat down with Jim Furyk on Tuesday in a Q&A we did for RBC and he said: ‘You’re never out of this tournament. You’ve just got to hang around and hang around’ and I did that.”5 talking points from this weekend’s Premier League action
Share70 Tweet Email2 Whoops! We couldn’t find this Tweet 39,606 Views http://the42.ie/3190816 “We’re outraged really,” Vince Alm of Wales fan group FSF Cymru told Wales Online. “We’re really disappointed. We’re normally offered 10% on a reciprocal basis. The gentlemen’s agreement has always been 10%.“We want to play at our home stadium, which is the Cardiff City Stadium. It’s not as big as the Aviva but that’s where we’re at and they should respect that.”When contacted by The42, both the FAI and FAW declined to comment on the matter.Man United chase Celtic teenager, City hold talks over Messi and all today’s transfer gossip‘I spent six months with my head in a noose’ – LVG criticises media for treatment at Man Utd Whoops! We couldn’t find this Tweet THE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION of Wales confirmed today that they have received an allocation of 3,300 tickets for their World Cup 2018 qualifier against the Republic of Ireland at the Aviva Stadium on 24 March.The allocation represents just 6.4% of the 51,700 capacity for the crucial fixture at the Dublin venue. As they bid to qualify for next year’s tournament in Russia, Ireland currently lead the way in Group D on 10 points, two clear of Serbia and four ahead of the Welsh.The Football Association of Ireland’s modest allocation of tickets to their Welsh counterparts comes in spite of the FAW’s offer of 10.5% of tickets (3,500) to Irish supporters for the return fixture at the 33,280-capacity Cardiff City Stadium on 9 October.However, there remains a possibility that this potentially decisive game — which is the final Group D fixture for both teams — could be moved to the 74,500-capacity Principality Stadium.Although Fifa rules only require a minimum of 5% of tickets be made available to visiting supporters, Wales were optimistic that their generosity would be reciprocated by the FAI.At £44 (€51) each, Wales supporters are also said to be disappointed by the price of tickets being offered to them for the Dublin fixture. Short URL The Aviva Stadium will play host to the World Cup 2018 qualifier between Ireland and Wales on 24 March. Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO Tuesday 17 Jan 2017, 12:40 PM The Aviva Stadium will play host to the World Cup 2018 qualifier between Ireland and Wales on 24 March. By Paul Dollery Wales fans ‘outraged’ by ticket allocation for World Cup qualifier in Dublin The Football Association of Wales have been allocated 6.4% of tickets for the game against Ireland in March. 62 Comments Jan 17th 2017, 12:40 PM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article
Cancer : un cabinet médical condamné après avoir licencié une employée maladeLa justice a rendu “nul” un licenciement opéré par un cabinet médical de Poissy, à l’encontre d’une salariée qui avait appris son licenciement ainsi que le fait qu’elle était atteinte du cancer le même jour.L’affaire se déroule en mai 2005 dans un cabinet médical des Yvelines. Le 13, une salariée du cabinet constate une grosseur au sein, et demande à l’un des médecins présents de procéder à une consultation, ce dernier identifiant une tumeur à la palpation. Le même jour dans la soirée, la salariée qui vient alors d’apprendre qu’elle est touchée par le cancer, reçoit de ses employeurs une convocation à un entretien préalable au licenciement pour motif économique.La réceptionniste décide alors d’attaquer ses employeurs au conseil des prud’hommes et saisit également la Haute autorité de lutte contre les discriminations (Halde). Le conseil des prud’hommes conclut à un licenciement “sans cause réelle et sérieuse” et la Halde estime après enquête que le licenciement de la réceptionniste est fondé sur son état de santé. La salariée a alors fait appel, et la cour a décrété, selon l’AFP, que le licenciement était à “caractère discriminatoire”, le rendant nul par la même occasion. Et la cour d’appel de préciser : “La concomitance entre ces deux événements laisse supposer l’existence d’une discrimination en raison de l’état de santé de la salariée”. La justice a accordé à la salarié 35.000 euros au titre d’indemnité provisionnelle et 10.000 euros pour préjudice moral. De son côté, le cabinet médical explique avoir subi le départ d’une associée lors de cette période, justifiant un licenciement économique.Le 22 décembre 2010 à 12:50 • Emmanuel Perrin
Legislation to build new 1,200-foot locks and improve the environment for the Upper Mississippi River Basin (UMRB) was introduced yesterday, Thursday, May 20. Upgrading locks and dams is a top policy priority for the 25,000 members of the American Soybean Association because 75 percent of U.S. soybean exports are shipped down the Mississippi River to customers worldwide. The legislation authorizes construction to replace 70 year-old locks. The bill also approves the implementation of a Corps plan to improve the river system’s ecosystem.”This as a major step forward following 12 years of work with the Corps and Congress,” said ASA President Ron Heck, a soybean producer from Perry, Iowa. “The Mississippi and Illinois River systems are a major advantage for U.S. soybean producers when competing for overseas markets.”Senators Kit Bond (R-MO), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Charles Grassley (R-IA), Peter Fitzgerald (R-IL), Jim Talent (R-MO), Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Norm Coleman R-MN) introduced the legislation to provide lock construction authorization to replace seven locks on the Upper Mississippi and Illinois Waterway costing about $1.6 billion (50% cost-shared) along with $1.6 billion in ecosystem restoration for the Upper Mississippi.”This monumental legislation took three months to develop and negotiate, and is reflective of the 15-year plan the Corps has recommended as well,” Heck said. “We applaud the authors of this measure for their leadership and look forward to working with them to include it in the Water Resources Development Act of 2004.”The bill follows the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers release of its draft plan to enhance navigation along the Upper Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. Among other things, the Corps’ plan calls for new 1,200-foot locks.The Corps’ draft navigation plan will be the subject of another round of public hearings beginning June 7th, in Davenport, IA and concluding on June 17th, in Washington, D.C. The exact dates and locations are as follows: June 7, Davenport, Iowa; June 8, Dubuque, Iowa; June 9, LaCrosse, Wis.; June 10, Bloomington, Minn.; June 14, Peoria, Ill.; June 15, Quincy, Ill.; June 16, St. Louis, Mo.; and June 17, Washington, D.C. Public comments can also be e-mailed to: DraftNavRptComments@usace.army.mil. For additional details about the hearings go to www.soygrowers.com/policy/hearings0604.htm. The ASA strongly encourages its members to participate in these hearings and register their support for the Corps’ draft plan.The legislation follows a two-phased approach where seven key lock and dam locations (#20-25 on the Mississippi River, and Peoria & LaGrange on the Illinois Waterway) were selected for immediate pre-engineering design in preparation for 1,200-foot lock chambers. Five other locations will receive extensions to existing chambers, and other non-structural efforts will occur at other locations. Of the $2.4 billion total cost for infrastructure improvements, half will be paid by shippers through the Inland Waterway Trust Fund, with federal funding for the balance. Ecosystem restoration’s initial measures are budgeted at $5.3 billion and will be primarily federally funded.”This legislation is clearly beneficial for everyone,” Heck said. “Efficiently moving bulk commodity products on the river helps the U.S. economy grow, and helps farmers compete for overseas markets.”
In connection with the acquisition, BIA said it promoted Frank Finn to executive vice president and COO, and Bill Murrill to vice president of finance and administration.Among BIA’s portfolio of investments are a number of magazine publishing groups including Hoffman Media and Macfadden Performing Arts Media. BIA Digital Partners has acquired b-to-b publisher Douglas Publications. Under BIA, the business will be called Briefings Media Group.Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.BIA, a Chantilly, Virginia-based private investment firm, first invested in Douglas in 2005 as part of Douglas’ estimated $15 million acquisition of the Briefings Publishing Group from Wicks Business Information. Douglas is a Richmond, Virginia-based newsletter and trade magazine publisher—including American Painting Contractor and Workplace HR & Safety magazines.It was not immediately clear if any layoffs were associated with the acquisition. BIA did not immediately return requests for comment. Douglas Publications president Alan Douglas did not return an e-mail seeking comment.
The Indian consumers may get some relief from the steep fuel price hikes in the coming months, as global crude oil prices are expected to come down sharply from their year-highs.Two consecutive sharp increases in petrol and diesel prices in the last two consecutive review meetings have wiped out more than one-third of the gains passed to the consumers by the oil marketing companies since August last year.The petrol price saw a cumulative decline of ₹17.11 per litre between August and February, as the oil companies announced price cuts for 10 times during the period. Similarly, diesel prices were reduced by ₹12.96 a litre between October and February.Crude oil prices had declined sharply by over 50% since June last year reaching a low of $46 per barrel in January, on concerns of global supply glut, which was also aggravated by rising oil production in the US.However, petrol and diesel prices kept rising and falling from February owing to a rebound in global crude oil prices.International crude oil prices rebounded by nearly 50% in May from the lows of $46 per barrel hit in January on the expectations that the US oil output will slow further leading to a balance in global oil market later this year.In May, petrol prices went up by ₹7.09 a litre and diesel by ₹5.08 per litre as a result of two consecutive price hikes.Analysts see the recent surge in crude oil prices as a temporary phenomenon and purely driven by speculation. They expect the US oil production to resume quickly once oil prices go higher.Goldman Sachs has cut its forecasts for oil prices, saying that improved efficiencies in US shale production and higher output from Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to supply more oil than demanded by the market, leading to a fall in prices, NDTV Profit reported.”Should West Texas Intermediate (WTI) remain near $60/bbl, U.S. producers will ramp up activity given improved returns with costs down by at least 20 percent,” Goldman Sachs told Bloomberg.The sharp decline in oil prices resulted in the number of active US oil rigs being reduced by 58% since December.Besides, the OPEC is widely expected to keep oil output unchanged at its next meeting on 5 June. The oil cartel’s decision to keep production levels stable at its November meeting last year had accelerated the decline in oil prices.Saudi Arabia, the world’s second largest oil producer and largest exporter, is also not contemplating a cut in output.Moreover, a successful deal on Iran nuclear programme in June will weigh on the crude oil prices as the oil exports from the country are expected to exacerbate oversupply concerns.
Twinks Social and Civic Club, Baltimore Chapter are hosting the ‘Pink Pancakes and Pearls,’ Honoring Women of Courage Prayer Breakfast on 9 a.m. on Oct. 31 at the Forum Caterers, 4210 Primrose Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21215. The guest speaker is Rev. Rhonda S. Boozer-Yeary, associate pastor of Douglas Memorial Community Church. Tickets are $40. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for tickets and information.
The 2016 fall semester has been underway for several weeks at Baltimore City Community College, but on Sept. 16, the school welcomed a new class of potential graduates. The Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-Tech) program began operations this year in Baltimore, accepting Carver Vocational-Technical High School and Paul Laurence Dunbar High School as its first participants.Students from Carver Vocational-Technical High School and Paul Laurence Dunbar High participate in the P-TECH program at Baltimore City Community College. (Photo by Maliik Obee)A group of shouting BCCC students chanted and gave out hi-fives to the group of 100 ninth-graders from Carver and Dunbar as they filled the seats of the campus auditorium. The uniformed students created a small sea of colors, as Carver’s grey and Dunbar’s yellow polo shirts brightened the room.The program features several high-end partners, including IBM, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore City Public Schools and the University of Maryland. A group of leading individuals behind the program were in attendance, including IBM’s Sally Scott Marietta and Baltimore City Schools’ director for career readiness Michael Thomas.Thomas discussed his long-term plans for the group, enlightening the students on the great opportunity they have to graduate high school with a diploma and an Associate’s Degree.“My goal is to have you graduate in four years not in six,” said Thomas. “You have my word: We are going to do everything in our power to get you where you need to be.”The students were split into groups by their school and split again in half, as they were taken on tour throughout the various programs at the school.One visit included to surgical technologist Andrea P. Drisdom, who gave students a crash course on being a surgeon’s assistant, showcasing the life-like surgical dummies on which students practice.Each student has a one-on-one mentor, with mentors coming to the respective schools four times a year. The students and mentors also have access to MentorPlace, a website dedicated to making sure the students can communicate when needed with mentors in a safe, timely fashion.P-Tech works to prepare students for the workforce, proposing to offer students the opportunity to be employed by the program’s partners upon graduation.The program demanded no special criteria for enrollment, allowing students and parents the chance to jump on an unprecedented opportunity that, if successful, can lead to bigger opportunities for neighboring schools down the road.
Stay on target Real There You Guys: Ready Player One and Nostalgia as Generational PoisonReal Good You Guys: ThinkGeek’s Bags of Holding (Fast Travel and M… If you’re into anime, there’s a relatively new series with “Academia” in the title that’s gotten pretty big recently. I’m not talking about that one (though Boku no Hero Academia/My Hero Academia/Macadamia is itself pretty great, or at least as great as any shonen anime can be). There’s another great, recent anime with “Academia” in its name that deserves your attention, and hasn’t gotten nearly the groundswell of Green Naruto.Little Witch Academia is a 26-episode anime series about a girl named Akko who goes to a school for witches. The premise sounds so light and fluffy that you could immediately write it off as generic bubblegum anime, but you shouldn’t for two reasons. Reason one: It’s produced by Studio Trigger. Reason two: You don’t need a second reason, it’s produced by Studio Trigger.Studio Trigger is the Platinum Games of anime. They usually don’t have massive successes, but everything they put out is bombastic, insane, and incredibly entertaining. This is the studio that did Kill la Kill, and it’s led by Hiroyuki Imaishi, the Gainax vet who directed Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann (and made the key animation for episode 5 of FLCL, which was the best action sequence of the entire series).Trigger’s style combines clean lines and relatively simple character designs with absurdly energetic animation. Think Gainax’s pastiche, but toning down fanservice jiggle physics and replacing it with Chuck Jones-style cartoon mayhem. Trigger specializes in over-the-top action and comedy, which is unsurprising when you consider it was founded by animators who made a series about a galaxies-high drill mecha powered entirely by how badass you feel.Which brings us to Little Witch Academia. Yes, it sounds like any Harry Potter rip-off (or The Worst Witch rip-off, if you prefer). Aspiring girl who doesn’t understand magic enrolls in a school for witches. Seems obvious. And thematically it doesn’t really throw a ton of curveballs, though it does play with the premise enough to make it feel interesting. Instead of magic being a half-open secret, it’s simply a part of the world that’s fallen out of fashion. Societies used to rely on witches for protection and prosperity, but technology can get the job done and anyone can use it. So instead of a mysterious force the rest of the world doesn’t know about, magic in Little Witch Academia is seen more as a quaint curiosity, like calligraphy or dial-up.Magic is a slowly fading art and Lunar Nova Academy is languishing because of it. This doesn’t dissuade Akko, however, whose boundless enthusiasm and nearly flat personal learning curve make her a magic fangirl no matter what society tells her. And since she’s in a school full of aspiring witches who ultimately have their own goals outside of magic for magic’s sake, and who are smart enough to recognize that it’s a fading art, she stands out as a weirdo. Basically, imagine if Mako from Kill la Kill was the main character of her own anime, which is set at a ladies’ Hogwarts.This could get horribly cloying, but thanks to Studio Trigger’s aesthetic philosophy of hot bloodedness and passion above all things, loads of slapstick humor, and an excellent performance by Erica Mendez (Ryuko in Kill la Kill) in the dub, it never grates. While Akko endlessly cheers on magic because she wants to make people happy with it, she falls flat on her face constantly, and no one around her fails to hesitate to rain on her parade with the actual problems faced by the magic community. Yes, Akko’s bubbly as hell and it’s initially off-putting and annoying, but the performance and execution of that bubbliness makes her grow on you as a character as surely as the grows on the people around her (who also think she’s an absurdly perky weirdo who doesn’t fit there).So, you have an aspiring witch who has a boundless love for magic but isn’t very good at it, constantly running into walls only to get up again and break through them. This is where the real magic of the series comes into play. It’s the magic of Studio Trigger. Forget the tepid joke of “Character says something weird, beat, all the characters around them fall in one frame of animation with a cymbal crash.” That’s basic. That’s obvious. That isn’t Trigger.Yes, this is a Silent Hill 2 reference.How about Akko not being able to fly a broom, so she steals a super-fast legendary broom that sends her flying through time zones at super speed? How about a mushroom harvesting experiment gone awry that sends her into the mind of her roommate while their room gets filled with springy fungus? How about Akko’s other roommate (again, an actual witch) being an obsessive fangirl for a Twilight-analog book series and getting cursed by the pen that writes it? And then there’s Constanze, the generally mute super-genius girl who builds robots in her secret lair under her dorm room (which is accessible through an impossibly long and fast chute directly under her bed). Incidentally, for standard anime fan clarification, Constanze is the series’ Best Girl while mushroom fetishist and serial poisoner Sucy is a close second.Everyday gags are consistently fun, with spot-on execution in both animation and voice acting in the dub. It’s a really strong presentation, and I don’t just mean that in the context of having watched Neo Yokio right after it. But the really good parts are where Trigger lets loose. Because they let loose hard.One episode has a mecha fight. The entire sequence is the show screaming “Hey, remember we did Gurren Lagann and think about how sick it was! Just because this is teenage witch funsies doesn’t mean we can’t still do that!” And the finale of the series is a shmup stage. I’m completely serious, and I won’t explain more than that. When it happens, you’ll know.For all the bombast and energy it has, Little Witch Academia is actually one of Studio Trigger’s most emotionally and narratively grounded series. And yes, I’m saying that in all honesty after mentioning a mecha fight in the last paragraph. The character interactions are natural and often heartwarming, with few of the completely insane, hot-blooded lunatics you might expect after seeing Kill la Kill and Gurren Lagann. Akko’s absurdly cheery, but every other character largely has their own thing going on, and their reactions and interactions feel downright human. Which makes the Trigger-style action and comedy sequences stand out, even more, when they kick into gear.Little Witch Academia isn’t an epic action anime series or a screwball comedy (and if you want the latter, Trigger’s short-form series like Space Patrol Luluco are right up your alley). But it takes a satisfying dollop of elements from both of those styles and puts them in a simple, funny, and thoroughly enjoyable series. The excellent dub is on Netflix, and it’s an easily consumable 26 episodes. Check it out if you like fun, oddball animation.It’s real good you guys.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.
Posted by Travelweek Group Keanu Reeves goes on a road trip with strangers after their flight makes emergency landing Share << Previous PostNext Post >> BAKERSFIELD — When you’re stuck on a bus in the middle of nowhere, Keanu Reeves is probably your best bet to get you home safely.The actor, known for saving a hijacked bus in the blockbuster movie ‘Speed’, found himself stranded at an airport along with other United Airlines passengers after their flight from San Francisco to Burbank was forced to redirect to Bakersfield due to a mechanical indication.via GIPHYRather than wait for another flight out, Reeves and a small group of passengers decided to board a bus (okay, it was more like an oversized minivan) for the two-hour drive to L.A. – and someone did us all a favour by documenting the whole thing on social media!“That time when your flight out from #GDC almost crashes and you have to emergency land in a remote airport but at least Keanu Reeves is having as bad a day as you are,” Twitter user Amir Blum, a passenger on the flight, posted along with a photo of him and the 54-year-old actor.That time when your flight out from #GDC almost crashes and you have to emergency land in a remote airport but at least Keanu Reeves is having as bad a day as you are. pic.twitter.com/XSPa1wlNuO— Amir Blum (Unboxed) (@CheesyJedi) March 24, 2019In other videos taken by passengers, Reeves is seen speaking with airport officials to presumably save the day (once an action hero, always an action hero!), and sharing factoids about Bakersfield with his fellow road-trippers while onboard the van.More news: Apply now for AQSC’s agent cruise rates“The population is around 380,000, making it the ninth most populous city in California and the 52nd most populous city in the nation,” he reads from a pamphlet.Reeves then hilariously plays some Bakersfield Sound (a genre of country music developed in Bakersfield in the late 1950s) from his phone, and shares the fact that he has a “Gatorade, water and a banana”, presumably to share with his fellow riders.At the end of the journey, Reeves is seen walking away into a Carl’s Jr., because who wouldn’t want to chow down on some burgers after a long road trip?keanu got stranded somewhere in california and had to take a bus instead of a plane and some guy filmed the entire experience and i am BEGGING yall to watch this pic.twitter.com/I1TmLOEYiK— ᴄ ᴀ ᴛ (@keanusgf) March 24, 2019The videos prove that Reeves is just a regular guy who isn’t immune to travel mishaps like the rest of us. And if the whole movie star thing doesn’t work out for him, we think he’d be a great spokesman for the Bakersfield Tourism Board! Tags: Bakersfield, Celebrities, Funny Wednesday, March 27, 2019
HPPI HVI 2017-07-11 Staff Writer According to recent data by Quicken Loans, appraisal values lag homeowners’ expectations. The gap between opinions is small, but even a small amount can make a big impact.The Home Price Perception Index (HPPI) and Home Value Index (HVI) were released today, representing the difference between appraisers’ and homeowners’ opinions of home values.The gap between opinions is only 1.7 percent, but this represents the first time in seven months that the gap between the two opinions of value has lessened.According to Quicken Loans EVP of Capital Markets, Bill Banfield, a 1 or 2 percent difference in home value opinions may not seem like a lot, but it could be enough to derail a mortgage.“A homeowner could be forced to bring more cash to closing in order to make a mortgage work if the appraisal is lower than expected. On the other hand, if an appraisal comes in higher, they could be surprised with more equity than they had planned. Either way, if owners are aware of their local markets it will lead to smoother mortgage transactions,” Banfield said.Despite the decrease in the opinion gap, there was an increase in home values nationwide by 1.2 percent from May to June, and an increase of 5.35 percent compared to June 2016.The Midwestern and Eastern regions stuck with the national status quo with lower appraiser opinions. Conversely, the Western markets were more likely to have owners underestimate home values.June also showed strong home value growth. The HVI showed appraisals increased an average of 1.25 percent from May to June, and increased 5.35 percent as well since last year.The Northeast region was the only lack of growth in appraisal values with a 1.18 percent drop. However all regions showed annual increases from 2.17 percent in the Northeast to a 6.12 percent increase in the West. Almost There July 11, 2017 687 Views in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Headlines, News Share
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