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  1. 3 points
    Falcom has released the first official information and screenshots for The Legend of Heroes: Kuro no Kiseki, the newly announced latest entry in the Trails series and its 40th anniversary commemoration title. It will launch in 2021 in Japan for unannounced platform(s). Beyond the blue sky, ahead of a flashing light, a land of dawning resides—. This latter half of the Trails series is about to begin! The setting moves to the Calvard Republic—. In 2021, Falcom will release The Legend of Heroes: Kuro no Kiseki, the latest entry in the Trails series, as its 40th anniversary commemorative work. The Calvard Republic is a multi-ethnic nation experiencing unprecedented economic growth brought about by postwar reparations. In a corner of the capital of a huge nation where immigration issues bring about political instability and a new president is pushing for radical reform, a young man who works as a “Spriggan” (Underground Fixer) receives a peculiar job, which eventually develops into a situation that shakes the entire nation of Calvard. The command-style AT (Action Time) battle system used in previous Trails titles has been revamped! Seamlessly transition from action-oriented field battles to turn-based command battle systems while making use of the unique elements of the sixth generation combat orbment “Xipha” in a battle system evolved from the previous Trails titles. Kuro no Kiseki will feature many original elements that utilize its setting, including a “Topics” system that enables you to gather intel (topics) by communicating with NPCs throughout towns to create situations in your favor when you act as a Spriggan; and an “Alignment Flames” system in which your character’s three alignments (“Lawful,” “Gray,” and “Chaotic”) fluctuate depending on your play style, influencing various statuses, allies and adversaries, and even scenario developments. Please look forward to The Legend of Heroes: Kuro no Kiseki, the latest entry in the Trails series, depicted in rich expression by Falcom’s new original engine! ■ Prologue Spriggans—a kind of “underground profession” born from the melting pot of diversity that is the Calvard Republic. Some days as detectives, some days as negotiators, and other days as bounty hunters, they are up for any job from any client. That includes cases even the police are unable to handle and issues citizens cannot discuss in public, as well as “honest” work from criminals and underground organizations. That was the style of the “underground fixers,” as they were called. S.1208. A schoolgirl wearing the uniform of a prestigious school visits an rundown building located in the old town of the Republic’s capital. “The Arclide Fixer Agency.” With a dignified gaze, the girl glances at the cold typography of a slate that bears this name. She swallows her breath and knocks three times with determination. “Yaaawn, well a client before noon is rare…” The mature, yet young; sloppy, yet composed voice of a man echoes as the doorknob slowly turned. —This is the beginning of a new Trails. Weekly Famitsu has a five-page interview with Falcom president Toshihiro Kondo, who shares the following additional tidbits: The game is set in the Republic of Calvard (the east side of the continent) in the year S.1208. The title is derived from the Japanese word for “Daybreak” (Reimei). This is reflected in the colors associated with the protagonist. The story is focused on characters who can be described as somewhat in the gray zone of society (a detective, a negotiator, a bounty hunter, etc.) Kondo said it would have been nice if The Legend of Heroes: Hajimari no Kiseki was titled Shiro no Kiseki (Trails of White) instead to compliment Kuro no Kiseki. The game engine is brand-new. Character modelling has evolved. There is a significantly different feel when the character is in motion. Calvard is a cultural sphere in the vein of Eastern Europe with an influx of people from the Middle East. It feels like a mixture of Europe and Asia. It is somewhat small compared to Erebonia. The scale of the map is equivalent to that of the Cold Steel series. It is still in development, but Kondo believes it will be very close in terms of size. You could say the additional episode “Hajimari no Saki e” in Hajimari no Kiseki acts as a prologue to Kuro no Kiseki. 90 percent of the characters in Kuro no Kiseki are new. If you did not know any better, you might look at the game screen and not realize it is a Trails game. The remaining 10 percent of the cast will be characters that are highly anticipated by fans. Three characters have been revealed so far: a Kirito-looking character, a dual-wielding redhead character with a Middle Eastearn appearance, and a character that looks like Alisa minus the attitude and with the chest of Ryza. Kondo would not say which one is the protagonist. (Though it is obvious if you recall the earlier note about the protagonist’s associated colors.) Fans would be disappointed if the Society was not depicted. Kondo also was unable to comment on the Oaths. But each will be depicted properly. The game will have a proper ending. If a game does not sell well, there will not be a sequel, and the Trails series is no exception. The amount of content in the game is about the equal to a single Trails of Cold Steel title. The Trails of Cold Steel games had a large number of allies, but Kuro no Kiseki will not have as many due to the protagonist’s line of work. Instead, there will be more enemies. There will not be 50 playable characters. There is a screenshot of a battle scene. Movement and battles are seamless. While action elements have been added, Falcom is not considering anything that requires any sort of input skills. Commands are input in real-time instead of pausing. You will also have the option to switch to command-style battles. Arts and Crafts remain as they were, but ARCUS is replaced by Xipha. There are no Combat Links or Brave Orders. But there is a new system in place that is said to be quite amazing. There is a “Topic System” that has to do with conversations with NPCs. “Alignment Flame” is a system in which, depending on your play-style, your character’s alignment as “Lawful,” “Gray,” and “Chaotic” will change, influencing your status as well as the story. But there will not be any situation where an event does not occur due to your specific alignment. There is an alternative to bond events. As for platforms, Kondo says he would like to release it on PlayStation 4 as well as other platforms where there is demand. He said, “Since there are the usual technical challenges, we will consider starting where there’s the most demand.” Nihon Falcom as a whole is making preparations to support PlayStation 5.
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  3. 2 points
    https://www.gog.com/game/metro_last_light_redux Metro: Last Light Redux is currently free on GOG. https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/torchlight-2/home Torchlight II is currently free on Epic Games Store.
  4. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/solitairica/home Solitairica is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/super-trench-attack Super Trench Attack! is currently free on IndieGala.
  5. 2 points
    Just finished off DRAGON QUEST XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age – Definitive Edition. Only took a couple weeks to plow through the game and get 100% of the achievements, finished all side-quests, did all the extra definitive edition content, collected all costumes, etc. Total play time was around 104 hours.
  6. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/stranded-deep/home Stranded Deep is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/spirits-of-xanadu Spirits of Xanadu is currently free on IndieGala. https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/comic-coloring-book-switch/ Comic Coloring Book is free on Nintendo Switch. The 3 DLC at the bottom are also free on Switch.
  7. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/night-in-the-woods/home Night in the Woods is currently free on Epic Games Store.
  8. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/my-time-at-portia/home My Time at Portia is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/rc-cars RC Cars is currently free on IndieGala.
  9. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/darkest-dungeon/home Darkest Dungeon is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/darkest-dungeon/the-musketeer Darkest Dungeon: The Musketeer DLC is also free on Epic Games Store.
  10. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/inside/home Inside is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/xmas-shooting-scramble Xmas Shooting - Scramble!! is currently free on IndieGala.
  11. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/tropico-5/home Tropico 5 is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/adam-wolfe-complete-edition Adam Wolfe (Complete Edition) is currently free on IndieGala. https://freebies.indiegala.com/762-high-calibre 7,62 High Calibre is currently free on IndieGala.
  12. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/the-long-dark/home The Long Dark is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://register.ubisoft.com/happyholidays2020-lastchance/en-US Get a free PC copy of Anno 1701 History Edition, Starlink: Battle for Atlas Digital Edition and Trials Rising Standard Edition on Ubisoft Connect PC and the following in-game items: - The Seafarer Settlement Pack and the Bayek outfit for Eivor in Assassin's Creed: Valhalla - The Power Suit outfit and the Ubisoft Mask in Watch Dogs: Legion - The Nahari’s Pow Surfer Gift in Hyper Scape In-game items will be delivered on all platforms. https://freebies.indiegala.com/chop-chop-princess Chop Chop Princess is currently free on IndieGala.
  13. 2 points
    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/oddworld-new-n-tasty/home Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://register.ubisoft.com/happyholidays2020-day5/en-US Get the Hyper Scape Rewards pack today. Receive the Nahari’s Pow Surfer Gift including a snowboard, a fact tracker and a D-tap pistol. Content will be delivered on all platforms. https://www.ubisoft.com/en-gb/game/hyper-scape/download Hyper Scape is free to play on PC and consoles.
  14. 2 points
    https://register.ubisoft.com/happyholidays2020-day4/en-US Get a free PC copy of Trials Rising Standard Edition on Ubisoft Connect PC when you register. https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/cities-skylines/home Cities Skylines is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/cities-skylines/carols-candles-and-candy https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/cities-skylines/pearls-from-the-east https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/cities-skylines/match-day Cities Skylines - Candles and Candy, Pearls from the East and Match Day DLC are also currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/theatre-of-war-2-kursk-1943 Theatre of War 2: Kursk 1943 is currently free on IndieGala. https://store.steampowered.com/app/1062420/Generation_Zero__Schweet_Vanity_Pack/ Generation Zero - Schweet Vanity Pack is currently free on Steam. https://store.playstation.com/en-us/product/UP5259-CUSA12260_00-GZSCHWEETDLCPACK https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/generation-zero-schweet-vanity-pack/9nfvx6ffz0nl?activetab=pivot:overviewtab Generation Zero - Schweet Vanity Pack is also currently free on PlayStation Store and Microsoft Store.
  15. 1 point
    What's the Word? - DEMIURGIC pronunciation: [dem-ee-ER-jik] Part of speech: adjective Origin: Greek, early 17th century Meaning: 1. A powerful creative force or being. Example: "When she's in her studio, she's a demiurgic force." "I meditate before I work to try to access a demiurgic state." About Demiurgic Demiurgic is thought to have originated from the Greek word "dēmiourgós," or "skilled worker." Did you Know? While demiurgic describes a powerful creative force or state of being, a demiurge is a creative entity — such as an artisan or craftsman. One notable demiurge is the Greek god Hephaestus, who was a talented blacksmith known as the god of the forge.
  16. 1 point
    Fact of the Day - BASKETBALL James Naismith Did you know... that the history of basketball began with its invention in 1891 in Springfield, Massachusetts by Canadian physical education instructor James Naismith as a less injury-prone sport than football. Naismith was a 31-year old graduate student when he created the indoor sport to keep athletes indoors during the winters. (Wikipedia) Basketball in Canada Article by Frank T. Butler | April 30, 2006 Updated by Tabitha Marshall | March 10, 2017 Basketball is a game played between two teams of five players each. The objective is to score by throwing a ball through a netted hoop located at each end of the court. Invented by Canadian James Naismith in 1891, while he was teaching at the YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts, basketball is now one of the most popular sports in the world. James Naismith, inventor of basketball Invention of Basketball Basketball was invented in 1891 by James Naismith at the YMCA International Training School (now Springfield College) in Springfield, Massachusetts. Naismith, an instructor at the school, responded to the need for an indoor winter recreational activity that could be easily learned and played in teams. Naismith wanted to develop a game that emphasized skill instead of force. The result was a team sport in which the object was to score by throwing a large ball into a (peach) basket placed about 3 m (or 10 feet) above the floor. Naismith also defined 13 basic rules, including prohibitions against running with the ball and “shouldering, holding, pushing, tripping, or striking in any way.” Naismith's original rules There were only thirteen rules of "basket ball": The ball may be thrown in any direction with one or both hands. The ball may be batted in any direction with one or both hands. A player cannot run with the ball, the player must throw it from the spot on which he catches it, allowance to be made for a man who catches the ball when running at good speed. The ball must be held in or between the hands, the arms or body must not be used for holding it. No shouldering, holding, pushing, tripping or striking in any way the person of an opponent shall be allowed. The first infringement of this rule by any person shall count as a foul, the second shall disqualify him until the next goal is made, or if there was evident intent to injure the person, for the whole of the game, no substitute. A foul is striking the ball with the fist, violation of rules 3 and 4, and such as described in rule 5. If either side makes three consecutive fouls it shall count a goal for opponents. A goal shall be made when the ball is thrown or batted from grounds into the basket and stays there. If the ball rests on the edge and the opponent moves the basket it shall count as a goal. When the ball goes out of bounds it shall be thrown into the field and played by the person first touching it. In case of a dispute, the umpire shall throw it straight into the field. The "thrower-in" is allowed five seconds. If he holds it longer it shall go to the opponent. If any side persists in delaying the game, the umpire shall call a foul on them. The umpire shall be the judge of the men and shall note the fouls, and notify the referee when three consecutive fouls have been made. The referee shall be the judge of the ball and shall decide when the ball is in play, in-bounds, and to which side it belongs, and shall keep the time. He shall decide when a goal has been made and keep account of the goals with any other duties that are usually performed by a referee. The time shall be fifteen-minute halves, with five-minute rests between. The side making the most goals in that time shall be declared the winner. In the case of a draw, the game may, by agreement of the captains, be continued until another goal is made Graduates of the YMCA training school in Springfield helped to spread basketball throughout the world. By the 1930s, it was played in countries around the world, prompting its acceptance as an official Olympic men’s competition in 1936. Basketball in Canada Many students at the YMCA International Training School in Springfield were Canadian, and these young men (e.g., Lyman Archibald, J. Howard Crocker, William H. Ball) helped establish the new game across the country. By 1900, basketball was being played in Canada by both men and women at local YMCAs and YWCAs, and in schools and clubs. In 1923, the Canadian Amateur Basketball Association (CABA) was formed in Port Arthur [Thunder Bay], Ontario. As the official governing body for basketball in Canada, its main function was to assist with national championships, but its programs, beyond men's and women's national championships, now include: men's and women's national team development; technical development with coaching; official and player certification; youth programs; a Hall of Fame; educational services; and promotion and revenue generation. In 1973, the organization voted to adopt the international playing rules of the Fédération Internationale de Basketball Amateur/International Amateur Basketball Federation (FIBA). The CABA was renamed Basketball Canada by 1980, and later became Canada Basketball. Basketball is one of the most popular sports in Canada. According to the Canadian Youth Sports Report, around 354,000 youth (age 3–17) played basketball in 2014, making it the sixth most popular sporting activity for young Canadians after swimming, soccer, dance, hockey and skating. Among new Canadians (those whose parents were born outside Canada), basketball was second only to soccer. The first basketball court: Springfield College Professional Basketball in Canada Canada’s first professional basketball teams began playing in the 1946–47 season. The Toronto Huskies played that season as part of the Basketball Association of America, a forerunner of the National Basketball Association. On 1 November 1946, Toronto hosted the league’s first game, playing the New York Knickerbockers at Maple Leaf Gardens. The Huskies lost to the Knickerbockers that evening and folded at the end of the season. On the West Coast, the Vancouver Hornets played in the Pacific Coast Professional Basketball League (1946–47 and 1947–48), before the league folded. It would be several decades until professional basketball returned to Canada. In the 1980s, Canadian teams began playing in minor professional leagues such as the Continental Basketball Association and the World Basketball League. A new era in Canadian professional basketball began in 1994, when the National Basketball Association (NBA), the major professional league in the United States, awarded franchises to two Canadian cities. The Toronto Raptors and Vancouver Grizzlies, who both began play in 1995, brought major professional basketball to Canada for the first time. The Grizzlies were unsuccessful and moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 2001. The Raptors continue as the league's only Canadian team. Support for the Raptors has grown, with increasing numbers watching or attending games. In 2005–06, the average attendance at Raptors home games was 17,056 (17th of 30 teams in the NBA), but by 2015–16, attendance had risen to 19,825 (4th of 30 teams). Between the 2010–11 and 2014–15 seasons, TV viewership for the Raptors more than doubled, from 108,000 to 246,000. A growing number of Canadians have played on National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) teams in the United States, and in the professional National Basketball Association and Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA). Canadian NBA players include Bob Houbregs, Bill Wennington, Rick Fox, Steve Nash, Cory Joseph and Andrew Wiggins. In 2005, while playing for the Phoenix Suns, Nash won the league's MVP award, becoming the first Canadian to receive the honour. Steve Nash International Competition Basketball appeared as a demonstration sport for male athletes at the 1904 Olympic Games in St Louis. The Edmonton Grads, a women's team, played a series of matches in conjunction with the 1924, 1928 and 1936 Olympic Summer Games. In 1936, men’s basketball first appeared as an official Olympic sport. Canada's team at the 1936 Berlin Olympiad, the Windsor Ford V8s, made up of players primarily from Windsor, Ontario, and strengthened by players from the West Coast, won the silver medal, losing in the final to the United States 19 to 8. Women’s basketball became an Olympic sport in 1976. Neither team has won an Olympic medal in basketball since 1936, but both have reached the podium at the Pan American Games and the FIBA Americas Championships. The women’s team has also won bronze medals at the FIBA World Championships. Wheelchair Basketball In 1946, about half a century after basketball was invented, American Second World War veterans played the first documented wheelchair basketball game. Two Canadian teams soon formed — the Vancouver Dueck Powerglides in 1950 and the Montréal Wheelchair Wonders in 1951. The game quickly became popular, and in 1968 the first Canadian championships were held in Edmonton, Alberta. Wheelchair basketball is now one of the most popular team sports for athletes with disabilities. The national men’s and women’s teams are among the best in the world, and since 1992 have won several Paralympic and world championships. Source: Wikipedia - History of Basketball | Basketball in Canada
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    What's the Word? - TOHUBOHU pronunciation: [toh-hoo-BOH-hoo] Part of speech: noun Origin: Hebrew, unknown Meaning: 1. A state of chaos; utter confusion. Example: "The mayor's unexpected announcement left the press in a tohubohu." "After recess the students were always in a tohubohu." About Tohubohu This word developed from the Hebrew word "tōhū wa-ḇōhū," which translates to "emptiness and desolation." Tohubohu is also found in the Bible, used in context to mean "without form and void." Did you Know? In a modern sense, tohubohu refers to a state of chaos. Originally, however, it meant something very different. The Hebrew phrase "tōhū wa-ḇōhū" refers to the world just before the creation of light. In this context, it means a lightless, endless void.
  18. 1 point
    Hey no worries... I enjoy the stuff you post here.
  19. 1 point
    Fact of the Day - DRIFTWOOD Driftwood provides a perch for a bald eagle on Fir Island, Washington. Did you know... that driftwood is wood that has been washed onto a shore or beach of a sea, lake, or river by the action of winds, tides or waves. In some waterfront areas, driftwood is a major nuisance. However, the driftwood provides shelter and food for birds, fish and other aquatic species as it floats in the ocean. (Wikipedia) The Surprising Beauty and Benefits of Driftwood By Russell McLendon | Updated August 15, 2018 Trees are pillars of their communities, a role they can maintain even in death. An upright dead tree offers vital habitat to certain birds and bats, for example, while a fallen tree is a bonanza for life on the forest floor, including future trees. Yet rotting in place is not the only natural afterlife for a tree. Sometimes, instead of giving back to its birth forest, a tree will embark on an odyssey to pay it forward, carrying its ecological wealth away from the only home it has ever known. These traveling trees don't mean to betray their roots; they're just going with the flow. They've become driftwood, a term for any woody remnants of trees that wind up moving through rivers, lakes or oceans. This journey is often brief, merely leading to a different part of the same ecosystem, but it can also send a tree far out to sea — and maybe even across it. Driftwood is a common sight at beaches around the world, although many people dismiss it as unremarkable scenery or useless debris. And while some driftwood is a little short on mystique — like twigs from a nearby tree, or boards that fell off a fishing pier — it can also be a ghost from a distant forest or shipwreck, transformed by its adventures into something beautiful. Along the way, driftwood tends to return the favor by reshaping and enriching the environments it visits. In an age when oceans are plagued by plastic trash, driftwood is a reminder that natural marine debris can be benign, even beneficial. It embodies the fragile ecological links between land and water, as well as the subtle beauty commonly hiding in plain sight. In hopes of shedding more light on these qualities, here's a deeper look at why driftwood deserves more attention: Windows of opportunity Long before humans built boats from dead trees, the raw materials were out there exploring uncharted waters on their own. Driftwood may have even inspired our first wooden rafts and boats, as ancient people noticed its strength and buoyancy. Dead trees have always served as boats, though, just usually for smaller passengers. Driftwood not only feeds and shelters lots of tiny wildlife, but can also help them colonize otherwise unreachable habitats. And its arrival can benefit local residents, too, introducing new resources to sustain coastal wildlife and help buffer their exposed home from wind and sun. Depending on the driftwood and where it washes up, seafaring trees can be valuable additions to waterfront habitats that lack the canopy and roots of live trees, such as rocky beaches or coastal sand-dune ecosystems. Even in places with plenty of trees, like the banks of a forested river, driftwood often plays an integral role in building up and shaping the habitat's infrastructure. Logging off The adventures of driftwood often begin in rivers, and many of them stay there. Driftwood is an important part of virtually all natural waterscapes around the world, including freshwater streams, rivers and lakes as well as oceans. Rivers that flow through or near forests tend to collect pieces of dead trees, sometimes resulting in accumulations of driftwood known as logjams. Over time, these clusters can help build up the banks of rivers and even shape their channels, influencing not only the way water moves through the ecosystem, but also what kind of solutes, sediments and organic matter it contains. Driftwood also slows down the flow of a river, helping it retain more nutrients to nourish its native wildlife. And by forming lots of different microhabitats within a river channel, driftwood has a tendency to boost local biodiversity, too. Similar to long-lived beaver dams, driftwood logjams have been known to persist for centuries if left alone, eventually becoming huge, landscape-altering rafts. One such logjam, known as the Great Raft, may have been growing for 1,000 years before the Lewis and Clark expedition encountered it in 1806. The raft, reportedly sacred to the native Caddo people, held tens of millions of cubic feet of cedar, cypress and petrified wood, covering nearly 160 miles of the Red and Atchafalaya rivers in Louisiana. The Great Raft may have been a natural wonder, but because it blocked navigation of the Red River, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers launched an effort to dismantle it. Initially led by steamboat captain Henry Shreve, the project kicked off in the 1830s and took decades to complete, inadvertently transforming the geology of the Lower Mississippi River watershed in the process. "The many lakes and bayous that the Red River had created in Louisiana and East Texas drained away," according to the Red River Historian. "The river shortened its path to the Mississippi. To stop the destabilization of the land surrounding the river, the Corps of Engineers had to implement billions of dollars in lock and dam improvements to keep the river navigable." Even under natural conditions, however, rivers rarely hold onto all of their driftwood. Depending on the size of a waterway, it may let trees and woody debris keep flowing downstream, eventually reaching a new environment like a lakeshore, estuary or beach. Although driftwood often decays within two years, some pieces last much longer under certain conditions. The Old Man of the Lake, for one, is a 30-foot-tall (9-meter) tree stump that's been bobbing vertically in Oregon's Crater Lake since at least 1896. Branching out As streams and rivers carry driftwood seaward, large "driftwood depositories" sometimes collect at a waterway's mouth. These buildups have existed for roughly 120 million years, dating back almost as far as flowering plants themselves. Some of their driftwood may eventually continue out to sea, while other pieces stick around in a river delta, estuary or a nearby shoreline. Click the link below to read more about Driftwood. Source: Beauty and Benefits of Driftwood | Wikipedia - Driftwood
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    What's the Word? - AILUROPHILE pronunciation: [aye-LOO-rə-fayhl] Part of speech: noun Origin: Greek, early 20th century Meaning: 1. A cat lover. Example: "She must be an ailurophile after fostering cats for 15 years." "Even though I only have dogs, I'm an ailurophile at heart." About Ailurophile Ailurophile developed in Greek, specifically from a combination of the Greek word "ailuros" (cat) and "phile" (a love or fondness for something). Did you Know? If you would like to indicate your identity based on your love for something, you can follow this pattern: use its Greek or Latin name + the suffix "phile." Some examples include ailurophile (cat lover), bibliophile (book lover), and Anglophile (a lover of England and English culture).
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    Fact of the Day - COLOR Did you know... that color, or colour, is the characteristic of visual perception described through color categories, with names such as red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or purple. This perception of color derives from the stimulation of photoreceptor cells by electromagnetic radiation. (Wikipedia) Interesting Color Facts COLORS About colors. The world around us is not black and white. It is beautiful, colorful, and it offers itself to us in a multitude of different colors. The human eye can distinguish between at least 2000 different shades of different colors and those also in many different combinations. We use and express ourselves with them. They serve as a tool for communication and help us as changing the welfare, surroundings. Using them, we also disclose our spiritual and cultural orientation. We can enrich our world with colors, making it more aesthetic and adjusted to your own needs and desires. It is also good to know something about the colors so that we do not spoil the climate in which we live. ABOUT COLORS There are three basic colors: yellow, red, and blue. These are called primary colors. They are basic because they can not be derived from other colors. When mixed, they form black. This is called subtraction of color mixtures. From the original primary colors mentioned above, they differ in that: we get them by the removal of light. Primary Colors When we mix the neighboring colors, the circle, we get secondary colors: orange, violet, and green. Secondary Colors And if we mix the primary and secondary colors, we get tertiary colors: red-violet, red-orange, blue-green, yellow-green, blue-violet, and yellow-orange. Tertiary Colors Harmonic colors are those who are the neighbors of the color circle. These are, for example: yellow, lemon yellow, orange-yellow, orange-brown. All 4 of these are originating from the area between yellow and orange, so they fit together nicely. Harmonic Colors Complementary colors are those that are lying on the opposite side from one another and are generating a voltage. Yellow is complementary to purple; orange is complementary to blue, and green is complementary to red. Complimentary Colors Warm colors are red, orange, and yellow. Cool colors are blue, green, and purple. Neutral colors are white, brown, and beige. Color Wheel CONCLUSION We practically never see a single solitary color, not even if we want to isolate it on purpose. Each has its color tone, brightness, and saturation, and is more or less under the influence of the colors that surround it, or those that form its background: – Brightness: color on a dark background seems to be brighter than on a lighter background. – Tint: Cyan on a green background looks bluer and on a blue background looks greener. – Saturation: any color is greyish on the background of pure, clean tone; however, if the background is bright, it looks greyish. WHITE COLOR FACTS The white flag is a symbol of peace. Pharaohs of Egypt wore a white crown. A wedding in a white dress is supposed to bring good luck. Therefore, it is the traditional color of wedding dresses in the Western world and Japan. Whitelist (opposite to blacklist) contains big things. The knight in shining white armor is supposed to be the savior. White Room is usually a clean room, dust-free, temperature-controlled, meant for Inhalt precise instruments. Old Persians believed that all gods wore white clothes. The white feather is a symbol of a coward. Angels are mostly dressed in white. White is the color of mourning in China and some parts of Africa. By the 16th century, it was also the color of mourning in Europe. The ancient Greeks were dressed in white while sleeping due to dreams, more pleasant thoughts. YELLOW COLOR FACTS Yellow is the color of mourning in Egypt and Burma. For holistic healers, it is the color of peace. The yellow ribbon is a sign of support to the soldiers at the front. If someone is said to have yellow lines, it means that a person is a coward. Yellow can symbolize jealousy and deceit (France) and sadness (Greece). Hindus in India wear yellow when celebrating the festival of spring. In the 10th century, in France, criminals and traitors got their front door painted with yellow. Executioners in Spain in the old days wore yellow. In the US, taxis and school buses are yellow. For old Aztecs, yellow symbolized food (corn). The yellow flag means quarantine. In India, it can symbolize farmers or traders. ORANGE COLOR FACTS Orange is Dutch national color from their War for Independence, which participated in the rebel “Orange” prince. In China and Japan, the orange symbolizes happiness and love. RED COLOR FACTS In South Africa, red is the color of mourning. Red in Russia represents beauty. In India, red is a symbol of a soldier. “Red-shirts” were soldiers of the Italian leader Garibaldi, who united and founded modern Italy in the 19th century. In Greece, Easter eggs are colored in red for good luck. For old Romans, red was also a sign of conflict. In England, telephone booths and double-decker buses are red. The Aztecs associated red color with blood. In China, red is the color of happiness and is used for weddings. Also, with Hindus and Muslims. Red amulets prolong life for many cultures. The highest arc in the rainbow is red. In financial circles, red represents a negative outlook. Bees can see all the colors except red. In India, the red dot on the forehead of women is bringing good luck. When you blush, it means that you feel embarrassed. A red flag means danger. VIOLET COLOR FACTS Purple is the color of mourning in Thailand. Violet’s heart is a reward for the injured and dead soldiers. Purple gowns represent authority and high positions. BLUE COLOR FACTS In Iran, blue is the color of mourning. Pharaohs in ancient Egypt wore blue for protection against evil. Blue blood means royal roots. We believe that blue protect against witches. Even in ancient Rome, public officials wore blue. GREEN COLOR FACTS In the ancient Egyptians, the floor of the temple was painted green. Green with envy means that jealous and envious. In ancient Greece, green symbolized victory. Greenhorn means a new man, a newcomer, someone fresh without experiences. If anyone gets the green light means that a person can start with a task or project. Green Room is a special room in concerts and theaters, where performers rest and relax before performing. In Scotland’s Highlands, the green is worn as a sign of pride. Green is the national color of the Irish people. If you’re green, it means that you got sick. Green means go. BLACK COLOR FACTS Black Sheep is an outcast. With the ancient Egyptians and Romans, the black was the color of mourning. Black is often the color of secrets and mysteries. A person who has “a black heart” is evil. The black market stands for illegal trafficking in goods or money. Blacklist is a list of people or organizations which are punished or boycotted. If a business is in the black, it means it is doing well and brings in some money. The ancient Egyptians believed that black cats possess divine power. Experts in karate are wearing black belts. The black flag in car racing means that the driver needs to drive into the boxes. Source: Wikipedia - Color | Interesting Color Facts
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    What's the Word? - SKUEOMORPH pronunciation: [SKYOO-oh-morf] Part of speech: noun Origin: Greek, late 19th century Meaning: 1. An object or feature which imitates the design of a similar artifact made from another material. 2. (Computing) An element of a graphical user interface which mimics a physical object. Example: "The museum had several skueomorphs of original indigenous weaponry." "I love a pen and paper but the notepad skeuomorph on my phone is handier." About Skeuomorph Skeuomorph originated from the Greek words "skeuos" (container, implement) and "morphē" (form). Did you Know? Apple has incorporated skeuomorphs into much of the iPhone design. Your note-taking app is represented by a skeuomorph of a notepad, and the timer is a skeuomorph of a clock. This design element is everywhere!
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    What's the Word? - BIJOU pronunciation: [bee-ZHOO] Part of speech: adjective Origin: French, Unknown Meaning: 1. (especially of a residence or business establishment) small and elegant. Example: "For their first date, Harold reserved seats at a bijou restaurant downtown." "Kyle was a little intimidated by how bijou his new friend's house was." About Bijou This adjective comes from the French words "bizou" (finger ring) and "biz" (finger). Did you Know? Have you heard of the tiny house trend? Many tiny house owners seek a bijou residence — small, but easily cared for, blending elegance with self-sufficience. On a side-note: bijou is also French for jewelry as in "Where are your bijous?"
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    What's the Word? - TROUVAILLE pronunciation: [troo-VAI] Part of speech: noun Origin: French, Unknown Meaning: 1. A lucky find. Example: "The rare coin was a trouvaille for the archaeologist." "My train ticket was in my pocket the whole time — what a trouvaille!" About Trouvaille Trouvaille developed in French from the word "trouver" (to find). Did you Know? You've probably heard of "A Series of Unfortunate Events," but luckily, a trouvaille describes the opposite. A trouvaille is a lucky find — like when you happen upon your keys in the freezer after giving up on finding them.
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    Fact of the Day - TEA Longjing green tea being infused in a gaiwan Did you know... that tea is an aromatic beverage commonly prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured or fresh leaves of the Camellia sinensis, an evergreen shrub native to East Asia. After water, it is the most widely consumed drink in the world. (Wikipedia) LITTLE-KNOWN FACTS ABOUT TEA by Tiffany Boutwell | March 11, 2016 For nearly five thousand years, people have been enjoying tea. Discovered in China, it is currently the one of the most popular beverages worldwide, second only to coffee. Sometimes it’s sipped on the go, and other times it’s prepared in traditional ways, with great ceremony. There are many different varieties to choose from, there is a lot of history behind this beloved drink as well, much of which you may not know. 1. THE DISCOVERY Originally used for medicinal purposes such as detoxification, it was often chewed rather than being drunk from pretty painted china cups. According to folklore, the beverage was first discovered when the leaves from some tea bushes blew into the water that servants were boiling, to purify it for Emperor Shen Nong to drink. The leaves went unnoticed and the water was served to the emperor, who was also an herbalist. Upon drinking this accidental brew, which he very much enjoyed, the concept of drinking tea was born. 2. THEY ARE ALL ONE There are several different types including black, oolong, green, and white. They all come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis, but the difference lies in how the leaves are treated after they are harvested. All tea leaves are withered, rolled, and heated. Different varieties are created depending on the additional steps, or in the timing of the steps, that are taken before the leaves are packaged. Black- the most commonly consumed (about 84 percent of totals worldwide), it is also the most processed – but this doesn’t refer to the use of unhealthy sugary or artificial additives. Rather, the leaves are left to ferment until they turn black, then dried and packaged. Oolong- follows a similar process to black tea, however, each individual stage is not as long. Green- not put through any sort of fermentation process, it is either steamed or pan fried. White- the least processed of the four. Picked earlier in the season and made from younger leaves, white tea leaves are typically only left to dry briefly in the sun before being prepared for packaging. Brew temp matters too, and overboiling should be avoided. Combo coffee/tea makers like this one allow you to change that setting, to get the perfect cup. It’s also important to properly store your teas to avoid degradation by heat, moisture, and light. Take a look at our review of the top containers to store them! 3. TEA OR TISANE? Now that you have learned that there are only a few different types, you may be wondering about all of the other ones that you’re aware of, like peppermint or echinacea. Well, hold on to your hats, people: these herbal drinks are technically not teas at all, but rather, something called a tisane. Although the word tisane was originally used to describe a drink made from pearl barley, it now commonly refers to any tea-style herbal infusion. And it can be made from nuts, seeds, berries, flowers, leaves, or roots. Fresh or dried herbs like mint and lavender can be used to make a tisane, though you’ll find that all of these brewed or infused drinks are referred to as “tea,” more often than not. You can also combine the two, making flavorful infusions of tea leaves brewed with your favorite herbs and spices, like fruit in an iced tea or cardamom in a steaming cup of homemade chai. And don’t forget – the dried leaves can even be used to add enticing flavor to baked goods, like these Earl Grey cookies. 4. THE CHAMPAGNE OF TEA Grown in Darjeeling, India, the type of the same name is often referred to as the champagne of teas. It is a widely accepted belief that this particular black variety is the best of the best. Grown in the Himalayas where the perfect climate for growing Camellia sinensis exists, the rocky mountain terrain makes it difficult to harvest. To gather Darjeeling leaves, pickers must battle the cold, the steep terrain, mists, and heavy rains. These factors also contribute to the delectable, musky-sweet taste that Darjeeling connoisseurs know and love, as well as the high price that is commands. A pound of this can cost hundreds of dollars, though it typically sells for less. Many products packaged under the Darjeeling name are actually blends of this type and a much cheaper variety, so you have to be careful when you’re shopping. Read labels, and keep your eye out for the real thing! 5. MOST EXPENSIVE CUP While Darjeeling can be quite expensive, it is not actually the most costly type to brew. That prize goes to a rare Chinese variety called Tieguanyin. Named after the Buddhist Iron Goddess of Mercy, this oolong will cost you a pretty penny, at up to $1,500 per pound. But the good news is that the leaves can be brewed up to seven times before losing their unique flavor. The reason for the high price lies in the fact that this type truly tickles each one of the five senses: Sight- The leaves have a nice bright color. Touch- They are also thick, and crisp to the touch. Sound- When brewing loose-leaf Tieguanyin, it’s said to actually make a pleasant ringing sound when it’s being poured into the cup. Smell– The nutty aroma makes it a one-of-a-kind oolong. Taste- This variety also has a very rich flavor. If you are able to enjoy a cup of Tieguanyin, consider yourself lucky, as this means you are not only wealthy enough to afford it, but also among the small percentage of people who will ever have such an experience. 6. GREEN TEA AS A SUPER FOOD In addition to external healing properties, green tea is known as a super food when it’s consumed. Though “super food” is a relatively new term for foods or drinks that are packed with nutrients, the potential benefits of drinking tea have been known for a long time. It is said that the green type can help to soothe a sore throat, regulate blood sugar levels, and reduce the risk of heart disease. Though it has been used medicinally for thousands of years, it is only recently that scientific studies have begun to confirm many of the widely held beliefs regarding its healing powers. There are many compounds in green tea that contribute to its potential healing benefits, such as flavonoids and catechins. These compounds offer antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, and even anticancer properties. Green tea has also shown positive results in aiding weight loss, preventing tooth decay, and alleviating depression. The reason that the green variety is superior when it comes to helping certain conditions is because the leaves are not fermented, allowing the maximum amount of beneficial compounds to remain intact. 7. MOTHER OF INVENTION? The teabag was invented in the United States in the early 20th century. True lovers of this drink do not consider teabags to be a great invention, since they tightly pack the tea. This does not allow the leaves to expand while brewing, which enables the release of more of the compounds that are responsible for flavor, among other things. Teabags, which are generally made from filter paper or silk, do offer convenience, and this has brought the beverage to a wider audience than it may have ever had before they were created. The main advantage they have over infusers, which were used before bags were invented, is that they hold the leaves inside so they will not escape. They are also disposable, so they do not need to be cleaned like infusers do. While these may not be favored by true connoisseurs, they certainly have their place in the industry, and they’re used by many. 8. RECORD-BREAKING BEVERAGE As of the time of this writing, the largest teabag recorded by Guinness World Records weighed in at just over 551 pounds, and measured 9.8 feet wide by 13 feet high. It could be used to brew over 100,000 cups. Ahmed Mohamed Saleh Baeshen & Co., owner of Rabea Tea in Saudi Arabia, set this record in 2014. Other world records recorded by Guinness that are related to tea include the Largest Cup (10 feet tall by 8 feet wide), and the Most Cups Made in One Hour (an astonishing 1,848 by a team of 12 people). Recordsetter.com, a website that allows users to create their own world records, offers many more record-breaking, tea-loving activities, such as Most Bags Held in One Hand and Longest Time to Balance a Cup on the Chin. Next time you have a cup, consider setting your own world record with your favorite drink (or just enjoy it)! 9. HEAVIEST DRINKERS China, Sri Lanka, and Kenya export the most tea worldwide, shipping out about 1 million metric tons of it between the three countries. Thanks in large part to its huge population, China consumes the most of any country in total. However, per capita, Turkey, Ireland and the United Kingdom take the top three spots. Over 3 billion cups are consumed worldwide each year. 10) YOU DID WHAT WITH IT? There are some very interesting uses for this product beyond brewing. One such remedy is to rub slightly damp leaves on uncovered areas of skin, in order to keep mosquitoes away. Tea has also been used for cleaning floors, naturally dyeing cloth, marinating meat, and for helping to patch up tiny nicks from shaving. It’s often used for gardening purposes, too. Roses love the leaves, absorbing the nutrients that they offer through the soil. This makes a great addition to a compost pile, as it can accelerate the process of decomposition. HOW DO YOU LIKE IT? Hot or iced, black or green, milk or lemon, honey or sugar, tea or tisane? There are so many different types and ways to delight in a cup that it can be overwhelming at first. However, there truly is a type out there for everyone, even if the drink doesn’t immediately strike you as your “cup of tea,” so to speak. Try as many different kinds as you like, and figure out what works for you. Challenge yourself to sample new infusions, like our golden turmeric tea, until you learn your preferences – you might be surprised to discover how enjoyable it can be! You’ve already learned so much about this favored beverage, so what are you waiting for? Brew, pour, and sip away. Source: Wikipedia - Tea | Facts About Tea
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    What's the Word? - QUISQUOUS pronunciation: [KWIS-kwəs] Part of speech: adjective Origin: Unknown, 17th century Meaning: 1. Difficult to deal with or settle; perplexing; (of a person) of dubious character. Example: "I wanted to trust him, but also knew that he had a quisquous reputation." "She tried to be patient, but knew that her friend was quisquous." About Quisquous While we know that quisquous is a Scottish word that first came into use around the 17th century, its exact origins are uncertain. It could possibly originate from the Latin word "quisquis," which means "whoever." Did you Know? Quisquous characters have long been referred to as tricksters in mythology; the coyote (Indigenous cultures), the fox (East Asian cultures), Anansi (the spider god of West Africa), and Loki (Norse god) are all viewed as tricksters.
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    Fact of the Day - JURASSIC PARK Did you know... that Jurassic Park is a 1993 movie about a wildlife park that scientists populated with genetically engineered dinosaurs. The movie was written by Michael Crichton and David Koepp. Michael Crichton also wrote the novel Jurassic Park, released in 1990. The movie takes place on a fictional island near Costa Rica. Much of the filming of Jurassic Park took place in Hawaii and California. Many of the dinosaurs were life-sized animatronics. The film was so popular and well-received that it won many awards including three Academy Awards. The sequels to Jurassic Park have been very successful as well, including The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997), Jurassic Park III (2001), and Jurassic World (2015). Another movie is being scheduled for release in 2018. Jurassic Park secrets and behind-the-scenes facts you never knew BY TOM POWER | 12/06/2018 Yes, Jurassic Park was released all the way back in 1993, which means that your childhood favourite just turned 25. A quarter of a century may have passed, but the franchise it spawned shows no signs of slowing down thanks to the recent release of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. With dinosaurs in the air (literally), we've uncovered some of the more surprising behind-the-scenes moments from the original film and secrets that you may not have known. 1. It stayed unbelievably true to the source material When writing the passage where the park's first guests listened to an audio guide in their jeep, author Michael Crichton envisaged veteran stage and screen performer Richard Kiley as the voice on the tape loop. Steven Spielberg wanted to stick to the source material as much as possible, so actually hired Kiley for the film adaptation, and it's his voice that viewers can hear playing through the jeeps' speakers. 2. The jeep attack scene happened by accident Remember the terrifying moment when the T-Rex attacks Lex (Ariana Richards) and Tim (Joe Mazzello) in the jeep with only a piece of Plexiglas to protect them? It turns out that this scene wasn't supposed to go down that way, as Mazzello told Entertainment Weekly back in April 2013. "We were in that car, and I think the T-Rex was only supposed to go down so far, and the Plexiglas was the only thing between the dinosaur and us," he reminisced. The pair were so startled by the incident that their screams were genuine – shrieks that were so loud that Spielberg elected to keep them in the final cut. 3. Jeff Goldblum almost missed out on his legendary role We may never have had the chance to see Jeff Goldblum's renowned portrayal of Dr. Ian Malcolm – or get that famous open-shirt scene – if Spielberg had opted for casting director Janet Hirshenon's other choice for the role. Jim Carrey was, in fact, frontrunner for the part after he had performed well during the audition phase, but Hirshenon eventually pushed for Goldblum – a decision that gave us his "life finds a way". 4. The man behind the iconic logo Jurassic Park's logo is known by cinemagoers all over the globe, but just who is the person behind the famous image? That man is Chip Kidd, who designed the logo for the front cover of Michael Crichton's original novel after he was "particularly taken" with a T-Rex skeleton that he found inside a book he purchased from New York's Museum of Natural History. Film distributors Universal fell in love with the design and ended up buying the rights to it. The man himself told an audience during his 2012 TED talk that he was still as "thrilled" as ever that they selected his design. 5. The reason for Malcolm and Hammond's monochrome clothing Ian Malcolm and John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) – found themselves at loggerheads during some scenes of Jurassic Park over Ingen's research. It's interesting to note, then, that the pair wore opposite-coloured clothes during the film's two-hour runtime – Malcolm dressed all in black and Hammond dressed in white. The story goes that Spielberg and Crichton saw the duo as representations of themselves, with Spielberg's positive and idealistic approach resembling Hammond – hence the white garments – and Crichton's cynical and scientific side defined by Malcolm and his dress code. 6. Spielberg's fat pay cheque Spielberg wasn't sure that Jurassic Park would be a success, but he need not have worried as the dinosaur blockbuster became the highest-grossing film of all-time (for the time…) He earned his fair slice of the pie too, earning a whopping $250m thanks to a back-end deal that saw him scoop up a sizeable portion of cash from profits and total gross of merchandise sales. Reportedly, no other director had made as much money from one movie as Spielberg did, though James Cameron has probably since overtaken that record with his alleged $350m Avatar pay cheque. 7. The computer program ahead of its time During one scene, Lex performs a reboot of the computer system's Unix Interface after the sneaky Dennis Nedry cuts the park's power earlier in the film. The program on the monitor may look fake, but it is actually a real-life 3D browser that was made by now defunct manufacturer Silicon Graphics. Named Fusion – or FSN for short – it was ahead of its time for 1993, but goes to show just how advanced technology has become since Jurassic Park was initially released with those dated graphics. 8. Even animatronic dinosaurs can be dangerous It's very rare that an actor, stunt person or crew member dies on-set in a freak accident, but sometimes such tragedies do occur. One such incident almost happened during the building of the animatronic T-Rex but, luckily for one team member, tragedy was avoided. Adam Scott was inside the robotic dinosaur gluing skin to its frame when the power – keeping the hydraulics in place – turned off in the studio, resulting in the T-Rex moving into its powered-down position. Miraculously, Scott's position inside ensured that any metal sheets or pistons narrowly missed him, and he escaped without any serious injuries after his colleagues managed to literally pry the T-Rex's jaws open. 9. Rain, rain, go away It's no secret that during filming a devastating hurricane hit Kauai Island, Hawaii, and forced the cast and crew to take shelter for a few days until it subsided. The elements didn't just interrupt filming, but also played a key part in the crew struggling to get their animatronic T-Rex to work as the rain kept causing the robot to malfunction. The precipitation also soaked the animatronic' 'skin' and caused the T-Rex's head to droop and shake due to the additional weight – a nightmare for those operating it during key scenes such as the iconic sequence with the attack on the jeeps. 10. The joke that made the final cut Mr. DNA – the animated character that explained how dinosaurs were genetically engineered in a child-friendly way – was another part of Jurassic Park that almost never saw the light of day. Screenwriter David Koepp told Entertainment Weekly that the character originally started out as a joke between himself and Spielberg, but eventually seemed like the most logical way to discuss dinosaur DNA extraction from mosquitoes. He quipped: "I remember Steven and I were wrestling with that very issue, about the DNA, and one of us said, 'What are we supposed to do? Have a little animated character called Mr. DNA?' And the other one said, 'Yes! That's exactly what we're going to do!'" 11. Toilet humour is no joke for Laura Dern Laura Dern, who played Dr. Ellie Sattler, undergoes a transformation from scientist to all-action hero throughout her Jurassic Park arc, and has been lauded for her badass portrayal of the character ever since. Unfortunately for Dern, she is still only seen by many kids as the "the girl who put her hand in the dinosaur poo" – according to quotes carried by Moviefone – as Sattler looked to get to the bottom of one sick Triceratops' illness. Children apparently refuse to shake her hand to this day too, as they don't believe she's ever washed it. That's the first and last time Dern has put her hand in poop, then – and with good reason. 12. Feathers are still a no-go Feathered dinosaurs have been a topic of hot conversation in the scientific world, with plenty of archaeologists now believing that some were covered in plumage. Back in 1993, such evidence wasn't yet popularly accepted and resulted in Spielberg rejecting suggestions that he blanket Jurassic Park's reptiles in feathers. That was in spite of on-set dinosaur expert Dr. 'Jack' Horner – the real-life inspiration behind Dr. Alan Grant – pushing Spielberg to do so. The director felt that scaly dinosaurs would be scarier than their feathery counterparts. 13. The coolest Easter egg in Jurassic Park The other main dinosaur stars of Jurassic Park – the velociraptors – are present during the geekiest Easter egg moment in the entire flick. During one climactic scene when the cast try to escape via a ceiling duct, one velociraptor stands in front of a projection of a repeating sequence of the letters A, C, T and G. The letters stand for the amino acids adenine, cytosine, thymine and guanine – the four base proteins that make up DNA. Source: Wikipedia - Jurassic Park | Jurassic Park, Secrets and Facts Trivia
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    The anime film is set between season 1 and season 2.
  29. 1 point
    https://www.pushsquare.com/news/2021/01/ps_plus_free_january_2021_ps5_ps4_games_announced Sony/PlayStation will be giving away Maneater (PS5), Shadow of the Tomb Raider (PS4), and Greedfall (PS4) for free in January. Note: You will need an active/current PlayStation Plus membership in order to redeem, download/install, and play them.
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    Not that I remember, but they didn't finish up various plot lines... and what sucks the most is they only really needed one more season to finish off the source material from what I've been told by others.
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    Netflix revealed a teaser trailer for David Production's new anime series based on Hiroshi Takashige and Ryōji Minagawa's Spriggan (Striker) manga. Hiroshi Kobayashi (Rage of Bahamut Genesis assistant director, Kill la Kill episode director) is directing the anime. Hiroshi Seko (Attack on Titan, Mob Psycho 100, Jujutsu Kaisen) is supervising and writing the series scripts, and Shūhei Handa (Little Witch Academia) is designing the characters. Netflix will debut the anime worldwide in 2021. The manga's story centers on Yū Ominae, a high school student who is also a Spriggan, an agent charged by the ARCAM Corporation to protect the ancient relics of an advanced older civilization from falling into the hands of states and entities who wish to misuse them. Takashige wrote the Spriggan manga with artist Minagawa beginning in 1989. Viz Media published edited versions of three of the manga's eleven volumes as Striker in North America from 1998 to 1999. The manga inspired an anime film in 1998. ADV Films released the film in 2002 with an English dub.
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    Fact of the Day - MORE ABOUT ANIME Did you know... that although it was once extremely foreign to Western children, a new generation of kids has grown up watching Japanese animated shows like Dragon Ball, Pokémon and Naruto, or watching movies like Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro. Today, people all over the world are infatuated with anime, whether for its art style, its different from of storytelling, or simply because it’s produced so many classic works. Whether you’re a big fan ready to argue if the Attack on Titan anime lives up to the original manga, or if you’re a complete novice and are just wondering what this is all about, read on for 24 facts about the movies and TV shows that put this distinctive art form on the map. Facts About Anime And Japanese Animation Cadeem Lalor | Factinate | June 2018 1. Lost in Translation Although most people know anime is Japanese, less might know what the word actually means. In English speaking countries, many resources might simply refer to it as an animation style developed in Japan. However, in Japanese the word “anime” is just a blanket term for all animation, and doesn’t necessarily refer to the specific style with which we here in the West associate it. 2. MVP Akira (1988) is credited as the film that led to a second wave of anime-fandom in the West, and paved the way for properties like Dragon Ball Z and Pokémon. It has influenced directors such as Rian Johnson (Looper, Star Wars: The Last Jedi) and musicians like Kanye West, who did an homage to the movie in the music video for his hit song “Stronger” in 2007. 3. Looking Ahead The anime industry is currently working at “full capacity,” which means all of the studios are already fully booked for projects. In this case, all of the studios are booked until the year 2020. Although this might sound like a good thing, this is expected to hamper growth in future years. 4. Going Strong 100 years after the first ever Japanese animated work, anime set a record year with earnings of $17.7 billion in 2017. Nearly half of Japanese domestic box office grosses came from the film Your Name. Overseas sales of broadcasting rights, DVDs etc. increased by almost a third, while licensing fees for mobile games have also been a key contributor to the industry’s growth. 5. Live Fast, Go Young One of the main factors that might impede the anime industry going forward are the low wages paid to junior animators. Additionally, Japan’s large portion of older workers limits the amount of young people who are able to get their start in the industry. 6. Looks Good for its Age Anime started gaining more popularity in the 1980s and ’90s, but it actually dates back to 1917 during the era of silent films. 7. The Real Anime Although anime (with the Japanese definition as a generic term for animation) began in 1917, anime as industry experts and general audiences think of it, with its distinctive style, began with Astro Boy (1963-1975), which started as a manga before being adapted to television in the early ’60s. Prior to Astro Boy, issues such as financing made anime a peripheral focus in Japan. World War II developments such as censorship and economic woes then made it even more difficult for anime to expand. However, with Japan’s post war economic boom, TVs became more popular and anime began to become more and more widespread. 8. Cellular Anime’s distinctive visual style began with “cel animation.” Cels are transparent sheets artists drew and painted on in order to create a single frame of animation by layering multiple cels together. Tezuka Osamu began to reuse cels and used fewer frames in order to cut down on production costs, because he realized that such fluid motion was not necessary to have audiences to connect with a film. “Full-animation” uses about 12-28 images per second, while Osamu’s early anime used about eight. 9. Heads High Although some anime characters might look over-the-top, anime actually aims for proportionality when drawing humans or humanoid characters, much more so than was usually the case with Western animation. A general rule in anime is that the average person is about seven heads tall. Also, women typically have longer legs and shorter torsos than men. A head that is too big or out of proportion for the body is usually reserved for a child or character that is meant to be child-like. 10. You Can’t Just Ask People Why They’re White Many fans remark that anime characters look Caucasian to them, and will often stick with the logic that if the character looks white, then they must be white. Even if they have names like Light Yagami or Ichigo Kurosaki and live in Japan. Anime artists are trained in a method known as mukoseki (without nationality). Therefore, anime characters are not depicted with the racist, stereotypical markers Western audiences may be used to in portrayals of Asian characters, such as yellow skin and slanted eyes. Anime characters are drawn with more generic features, or features that Western audiences might think of as “white” ones, such as light skin and round eyes. Look at it this way, if you draw a stick person in America, people will likely assume it’s meant to be a white person unless you add some racial marker like brown skin. In Japan, white is not the default, so Japanese audiences do not assume the characters are white. Even if the character does not have a Japanese name, they were created by a Japanese person in Japan so there is a good chance they are meant to be, you know, Japanese. Click the link below to read more on Anime and Japanese Animation Source: Facts About Anime And Japanese Animation
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    Fact of the Day - ANIME - ACCUARATE AND LEAST ACCURATE Did you know.... that while anime is usually known for being pretty over-the-top, filled with magic and mayhem, or technological dystopias, or pirates, or interesting magical objects, there are some anime that do a fairly good job at portraying actual historical periods in a way that's pretty true to life. Sometimes that means specific eras in Japan, telling the stories of actual heroes from Japan's history. Sometimes it's about providing a look at period-specific attire. Sometimes, the anime is so historically accurate that western Japanese students creating fan-subs have to postpone the release of their translations of certain anime because the language is so archaic they didn't learn it in school. And sometimes, they're um... Not so accurate. Most Accurate: Grave Of The Fireflies Grave Of The Fireflies is well known for being both pretty historically accurate when it comes to the history of Japan's involvement in World War II, and their receipt of one of the most heinous military attacks in the world's history after atomic bombs were dropped on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This movie isn't just known for how accurate it is though, it's literally one of the most soul-crushing watches you're likely to encounter if you decide to check it out. It tells the stories of Seita and Setsuko, our two protagonists who are doing their best to survive in the final few months of the war. While this movie is incredibly heart-wrenching, realizing that this is based on an actual historical occurrence makes it all the more important to watch. Least Accurate: Spice And Wolf Spice And Wolf is a historical fantasy that can't quite be considered one of the most accurate on this list, but it still does a pretty good job of being unique and fairly accurate at what it's attempting to do. It takes place in a fictionalized version of the medieval European world, focusing mostly on things like politics, economics, and trade instead of any normal fantasy plot you might come to expect if you're looking at it from the outside in, like slaying mythological creatures, Arthurian legend, etc. While it isn't the most accurate in terms of setting, it's really still worth the watch if not just for its virtue of daring to tackle strange subject matter for its genre. Most Accurate: Rose Of Versailles The Rose Of Versailles is a historical fiction Shojo series that started as a manga, has been adapted to become a series of musicals, received an anime adaptation, and has received tons of accolades in whichever of its myriad forms. It tells the story of a woman raised as a man so that she could succeed her father as the captain of the royal guard. There's a struggle brewing inside of her though. Does she remain in the ruling class to abide by her father's wishes, or should she leave the lap of luxury to aid the brewing revolution, led by the impoverished and malnourished populace of France before the revolution? This isn't the only problem she's dealing with either since she also has a variety of love interests. Least Accurate: Rurouni Kenshin Rurouni Kenshin is a great historical shonen series, even if the history most definitely isn't all the way where it should be. Almost the whole cast of characters is based on an actual historical person, but they aren't really portrayed very true to life whatsoever. It details a rogue assassin who left his life of murder and war to protect the folk in the countryside, vowing never again to take another life. The setting is fairly accurate as far as history goes, what with the time of turmoil that was 1800s Japan being portrayed as such. There were constant exchanges of power from emperors to Shogunate, and the military might reign supreme. That being said, Kenshin's historical precursor never decided to abandon military life in the same way Kenshin did, and as such was executed. Most Accurate: The Wind Rises The Wind Rises is a biographical film made by Studio Ghibli and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. It's a somewhat fictionalized biopic of Jiro Horikoshi, who designed one of the most advanced Japanese warplanes that Japan had during the duration of World War II. While it is indeed just a little bit exaggerated and played with since it's a Ghibli movie, after all, it sticks to the life of Horikoshi pretty closely, as well as working in a few historical points in Japan's history that Horikoshi wasn't directly involved in. It brings up a great earthquake, a tuberculosis outbreak, and even explores that Jiro himself wasn't at all in favor of the war and that his dream was to build beautiful aircraft. It's definitely more of a feel-good take on WWII than Grave Of The Fireflies was. Least Accurate: Samurai Champloo Samurai Champloo is an undisputed modern classic of anime, but it isn't necessarily because of how historically accurate it was as a depiction of the Edo period. Helmed by Shinichiro Watanabe, a master of anime known for his series Cowboy Bebop, Space Dandy, and countless other projects, Samurai Champloo is a highly-stylized tail about 2 samurai, their companion, and the search for the "Samurai that smells of sunflowers". The Edo period ran from 1603 through to the year 1868 and is a really common setting for anime that's set in a historical Japanese period since it's such a transitory time for the country. While some details are definitely inspired by history here and there, the spin on the period kinda detracts from that. Most Accurate: Kingdom Kingdom, even though it takes place in a fictionalized retelling of an actual historical period, is a pretty good look at the ancient "Warring States" period of China, a period before a man named Qin and his son Zheng succeeded in unifying these disparate warring states under the single helm of an emperor for a great number of years. Least Accurate: Vinland Saga Although the use of the word Vinland in the title might suggest to the reader that it takes place in the bit of North America that was explored by Leif Ericcson, it actually takes place in Dane-occupied England at the beginning of the 1100s and tells the stories of Vikings, and of King Cnut The Great's rise to power, and the plan for revenge that Thorfinn has been planning. Most Accurate: Hyouge Mono Hyouge Mono is pretty much the Holy Grail of historical fiction anime since this is the one we were talking about when we mentioned that the language used in one of these anime was so complicated and outdated that Japanese students had trouble with the translation when they were writing a fan-sub. It tells the story of a vassal to Oda Nobunaga, a man who attempted to unify Japan. This vassal must decide how to balance his subordination to his lord with his love for the peaceful art of the tea ceremony. Least Accurate: Barefoot Gen Barefoot Gen is a semi-autobiographical series that tells the story of a 6-year-old boy who struggles to survive in the time after the bombing of Japan at the end of World War II with the help of a couple of other survivors. It shows the people he meets, the journeys of the other survivors, and the ways that they might have found to cope with the loss of their homes and the normal state of affairs they had lived in before the bombing. Some of the survivors even turn to a life of crime in an attempt to deal with the horrible poverty they find themselves faced with. Source: Most and Least Historical Accurate Anime
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    What's the Word? - MENOLOGY pronunciation: [mə-NAL-ə-jee] Part of speech: noun Origin: Greek, early 18th century Meaning: 1. An ecclesiastical calendar of the months, especially a calendar of the Greek Orthodox Church containing biographies of the saints in the order of the dates on which they are commemorated. Example: "Rosa loved collecting different examples of menology, and switched calendars throughout the year to change things up." "Theresa consulted a menology to learn more about her namesake saints." About Menology This noun comes from the Greek word "mēnologion" — which can be broken down further into the words "mēn" (month) and "logos" (account). Did you Know? Calendars come in all different shapes and forms, from breathtaking art prints to a simple desk flip calendar. Switch up your way of tracking the days this year to a wonderful alternative, such as a menology. Don't worry, your digital calendars will still be there.
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    Fact of the Day - SNOW LEOPARD Did you know.... that the snow leopard, also known as the ounce, is a large cat native to the mountain ranges of Central and South Asia. It is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List because the global population is estimated to number less than 10,000 mature individuals and is expected to decline about 10% by 2040. (Wikipedia) COMMON NAME: Snow leopards SCIENTIFIC NAME: Panthera uncia TYPE: Mammals DIET: Carnivore SIZE: Four to five feet with a tail up to 36 inches WEIGHT: 60 to 120 pounds What is the snow leopard? Asia High Mountains These spotted leopards live in the mountains across a vast range of Asia. They are insulated by thick hair—in shades of gray or creamy yellow and covered with grayish black spots—and their wide, fur-covered feet act as natural snowshoes. Snow leopards have powerful legs and are tremendous jumpers, able to leap as far as 50 feet. These big cats use their long tails for balance and as blankets to cover sensitive body parts against the severe mountain chill. They are shy and reclusive, and rarely seen in the wild. Habitat Snow leopards can be found throughout high mountain ranges, including the Himalayas and the southern Siberian mountains in Russia. They can also be found in the Tibetan Plateau and across a range that stretches from China to the mountains of Central Asia. They prefer steep, rugged terrain with rocky outcrops where prey can be hard to come by. That’s why these carnivores require an enormous amount of space to roam: Male leopards require up to 80 square miles—an area bigger than three Manhattans—while females have ranges of up to 48 square miles. Diet and hunting Snow leopards prey upon the blue sheep (bharal) of Tibet and the Himalayas, as well as the mountain ibex found over most of the rest of their range. Though these powerful predators can kill animals three times their weight, they also eat smaller fare, such as marmots, hares, and game birds. One Indian snow leopard, protected and observed in a national park, is reported to have consumed five blue sheep, nine Tibetan woolly hares, 25 marmots, five domestic goats, one domestic sheep, and 15 birds in a single year. Threats to survival The expansion of human settlement, especially livestock grazing, has led to increased conflict. Herders sometimes kill snow leopards to prevent or retaliate against predation of their domestic animals. Their lives are also threatened by poaching, driven by illegal trades in pelts and in body parts used for traditional Chinese medicine. These cats appear to be in dramatic decline—they've lost at least 20 percent of their population in two decades as a result. Vanishing habitat and the decline of the cats’ large mammal prey are also contributing factors. Climate change is raising the average temperature across the snow leopard’s home range, which scientists believe will shrink the species' alpine habitat and drive competition with other predators like leopards, wild dogs, and tigers. For these reasons, the International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies snow leopards as vulnerable to extinction. Conservation In recent years, a concerted effort has begun to save snow leopards. Protected areas have been established throughout their range, including sanctuaries in Afghanistan, Mongolia, and Kyrgyzstan. The latter was particularly good news: Kyrgyzstan’s mountains serve as a corridor for snow leopards traveling between the northern and southern ends of their range. That said, creating protected areas for these big cats has only helped so much: According to one study, 40 percent of those protected areas are too small for the wide-roaming snow leopard. Countries have also been strengthening their enforcement against poaching, and conservation groups work with herders to develop systems to keep snow leopards away from their livestock. Others are building awareness about the important role these big cats play in their environment. As a flagship species, snow leopards are essentially a mascot for their entire ecosystem: If they survive, so will many of the other species in their habitat. Source: Wikipedia - Snow Leopard | National Geographic - Snow Leopard
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    Fact of the Day - SPAGHETTI WESTERN Clint Eastwood as the Man with No Name in a publicity image of A Fistful of Dollars, a film by Sergio Leone (1964) Did you know... that the Spaghetti Western, also known as Italian Western or Macaroni Western, is a broad subgenre of Western films that emerged in the mid-1960s in the wake of Sergio Leone's film-making style and international box-office success. The term was used by American critics and those in other countries because most of these Westerns were produced and directed by Italians. (Wikipedia) What Is a Spaghetti Western? How Westerns from Italy became the cinema gold standard Christopher McKittrick | Updated May 08, 2019 Italian-made Western films from the 1960s and 1970s are called "Spaghetti Westerns." Their stark depictions of the Old West have made them some of the most popular Westerns ever created. As a genre, Westerns were incredibly popular with movie audiences from the earliest days of cinema—one of the first big movie milestones was 1903’s The Great Train Robbery—through the end of the 1960s. Westerns were also very popular on television in the 1950s and 1960s. In addition to the box office popularity of the genre, the relatively cheap production values of Westerns in which props and sets could be reused made Hollywood studios of all sizes embrace the genre. International filmmakers who lacked Hollywood’s big budgets embraced the Western as a genre that could allow them to produce high-quality movies on limited budgets. The country outside of America that truly made the Western its own was Italy, whose Westerns of the 1960s and 1970s have been dubbed "Spaghetti Westerns." The Origins of the Spaghetti Western Prior to the popularity of Westerns, the most popular film genre in Italy in the late 1950s and early 1960s were "sword-and-sandal" films: biblical, mythological, and historical epics. In order to increase the international appeal of these epics, Italian filmmakers would hire American actors to star in the films, such as bodybuilder/actor Steve Reeves, who played Hercules in two Italian movies. Italian filmmaker Sergio Leone directed Reeves in the sword-and-sandal epic The Last Days of Pompeii (1959) and followed it up with a similar film, The Colossus of Rhodes (1961). Next, Leone turned his attention to a different genre: the Western. The success of Leone’s 1964 Western A Fistful of Dollars led to an explosion of popularity in Italian-made Westerns. Though it was not the first Italian Western, A Fistful of Dollars was the first to become a huge financial success around the world. Several factors contributed to its success: it featured stunning direction by Leone, memorable cinematography by Massimo Dallamano, a classic minimalist score by Ennio Morricone, and, perhaps most notably, a story ripped off from Akira Kurosawa’s 1961 samurai film Yojimbo. (The production company behind Yojimbo, Toho, received an out of court settlement after suing Leone for the unauthorized remake.) However, perhaps the biggest reason for the film's popularity was the fact that it starred American actor Clint Eastwood. Yojimbo Clint Eastwood and Spaghetti Westerns At the time of his casting in A Fistful of Dollars, Clint Eastwood was already known as a Western star thanks to his role in the U.S. series Rawhide. In A Fistful of Dollars, Eastwood plays an unnamed character (popularly known to cinema fans as "The Man with No Name") who rides into a town controlled by two warring factions. The Man with No Name takes advantage of the greed of the factions by playing against both sides in a clever (and bloody) scheme. A Fistful of Dollars quickly became the highest-grossing Italian film of all time, and Italian filmmakers now had a winning cinematic formula to follow. After A Fistful of Dollars, Leone created two more Westerns with Eastwood’s unnamed character — For a Few Dollars More (1965) and The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly (1966) — as well as 1968’s Once Upon a Time in the West, which starred Charles Bronson. These four Leone Spaghetti Westerns are considered by critics to be among the greatest Westerns ever made, with The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly ranked as one of the Top 10 films of all time by IMDb users. Characteristics of Spaghetti Westerns One aspect that set Italian Westerns apart was their stark depiction of the Old West. Unlike the American westerns of this era, which were generally family-friendly entertainment starring “white hat” hero cowboys, the Italian Westerns embraced the harshness of the Old West. They also pushed beyond American standards of violence, featuring characters who possessed both heroic and villainous traits. As with the earlier sword-and-sandal epics, Italian directors often hired one or two familiar American actors to boost the film’s international appeal. In addition to Eastwood, American actors who starred in Spaghetti Westerns include Richard Harrison (Gunfight at Red Sands), Gordon Scott (The Tramplers), Cameron Mitchell (Minnesota Clay), Mark Damon (Johnny Yuma), Burt Reynolds (Navajo Joe), and Henry Fonda (Once Upon a Time in the West). Unlike American Westerns where Native Americans were frequent antagonists, Native Americans were rarely depicted at all in Spaghetti Westerns. In a few in which Native Americans do appear (such as Navajo Joe), they are usually not the film's antagonists. Many Italian Westerns were actually shot in Spain (though some were also shot in Southern Italy) to depict the dry climate of the American Southwest. Old West sets from several Spaghetti Westerns later became tourist attractions in Spain. The growing popularity of Italian-made Westerns led to the creation of the term “Spaghetti Western" (journalist Alfonso Sancha is credited with inventing the phrase). Many contemporary American critics used the Spaghetti Western label to deride the quality of Italian Westerns, as they had done before with Italian sword-and-sandal movies. Most Spaghetti Westerns did not receive critical acclaim in their time because of repetitive plots, relatively low production values, and poorly dubbed dialogue. But in the decades since, many critics have come to appreciate the raw, stylistic filmmaking that produced Spaghetti Westerns. Top Spaghetti Western Movies A similarly influential Spaghetti Western was 1966’s Django, which starred Franco Nero in another film that heavily borrows from the plot of Yojimbo. The film was the second Spaghetti Western directed by Sergio Corbucci, who became recognized for his stark depiction of violence. The popularity of Django led to over two dozen unofficial "sequels" produced by various Italian filmmakers through the early 1970s and Quentin Tarantino titled his 2012 Western Django Unchained in tribute to the Django character (Nero also appears in the film in a cameo). Corbucci also directed the classics Navajo Joe (1966), about a revenge-seeking Native American, and The Great Silence (1968), about a mute gunfighter. Similarly, Italian actor Gianni Garko starred as the mysterious gunslinger Sartana in four films starting with 1968’s If You Meet Sartana Pray for Your Death, though a dozen unofficial Sartana films were produced from just 1969-1972. Even a movie teaming “Django” and “Sartana” was released in 1970, One Damned Day at Dawn… Django Meets Sartana! Italian actor Terence Hill (born Mario Girotti) also starred in a number of well-regarded Spaghetti Westerns including 1968's Django, Prepare a Coffin; 1970's They Call Me Trinity; and 1971's Trinity is STILL My Name! Hill also starred in the Spaghetti Western parody that featured some direction by Leone, 1973's My Name is Nobody, though unlike most Spaghetti Westerns it was mostly shot in the United States. Decline and Legacy of Spaghetti Westerns Much like the sword-and-sandal genre before it, the Spaghetti Western gradually fell out of favor with audiences in Italy and abroad. In the U.S., the Western genre overall declined in popularity in both film and television by the mid 1970s. Because of this decline, European filmmakers decided not to continue making the films. Though no single genre took over following the decline of Spaghetti Westerns, there was a significant rise in the number of low-budget Italian horror films in the mid-1970s. The genre undoubtedly influenced later Westerns like Eastwood's own directorial efforts High Plains Drifter (1973), The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976), Pale Rider (1985), and Unforgiven (1992), Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained (2012) and The Hateful Eight (2015), and non-Western cult favorites like Alex Cox's Straight to Hell (1987) and Robert Rodriguez's Once Upon a Time in Mexico (2003). Spaghetti Western Key Takeaways Spaghetti Westerns are Western movies made in Italy during the 1960s and 1970s. The genre featured lower production values than Hollywood Westerns, but today many of the films are well-regarded for their depictions of violence and complex characters. The most famous and critically acclaimed Spaghetti Westerns were directed by Sergio Leone. Clint Eastwood starred in three of Leone's Westerns including The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly. Filmmakers like Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez have cited Spaghetti Westerns as important influences on their work. Source: Wikipedia - Spaghetti Western | What is a Spaghetti Western?
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    Fact of the Day - SLAPSTICK FILMS Laurel and Hardy Did you know.. that slapstick films are comedy films where physical comedy that includes pratfalls, tripping, falling, practical jokes, mistakes, are highlighted over dialogue, plot and character development. The physical comedy in these films contains a cartoonish style of violence that is predominantly harmless and goofy in tone. Silent film had slapstick comedies that included the films starring Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, the Keystone Cops and Harold Lloyd. These comedians often laced their slapstick with social commentary while comedians such as Abbott and Costello, Laurel and Hardy and The Three Stooges did not contain these social messages. Slapstick is about uninhibited action and timing, which may include being made to look foolish or to act with tom foolery. There were fewer slapstick comedies produced at the advent of sound film. After World War II, the genre resurfaced in France with films by Jacques Tati and in the United States with films It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World and The Great Race, starring the Stoic, aloof and mild mannered Buster Keaton, also known as The Great Stone Face, as well as the films of comedians like Jerry Lewis. (Wikipedia) Slapstick, a type of physical comedy characterized by broad humour, absurd situations, and vigorous, usually violent action. The slapstick comic, more than a mere funnyman or buffoon, must often be an acrobat, a stunt performer, and something of a magician—a master of uninhibited action and perfect timing. Commedia dell'arte characters Harlequin (left) and Pierrot, illustration on paper, c. 1874–88; in the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Outrageous make-believe violence has always been a key attraction of slapstick comedy, and, fittingly, the form took its name from one of its favourite weapons. A slapstick was originally a harmless paddle composed of two pieces of wood that slapped together to produce a resounding whack when the paddle struck someone. The slapstick seems to have first come into use in the 16th century, when Harlequin, one of the principal characters of the Italian commedia dell’arte, used it on the posteriors of his comic victims. The rough-and-tumble of slapstick has been a part of low comedy and farce since ancient times, having been a prominent feature of Greek and Roman mime and pantomime, in which bald-pated, heavily padded clowns exchanged quips and beatings to the delight of the audience. Slapstick reached another zenith during the late 19th century in English and American music-hall entertainment and vaudeville, and such English stars as George Formby and Gracie Fields carried its popularity well into the 20th century. Motion pictures provided even greater opportunities for visual gags, and comedians Charlie Chaplin, Harold Lloyd, Buster Keaton, and Mack Sennett’s Keystone Kops introduced such classic routines as the mad chase scene and pie throwing, often made doubly hilarious by speeding up the camera action. Their example was followed in sound films by Laurel and Hardy, the Marx Brothers, and the Three Stooges, whose stage careers predated their films and whose films were frequently revived beginning in the 1960s and were affectionately imitated by modern comedy directors. The best of the slapstick comedians may be said to have turned low humour into high art. Comedy in slapstick lies in the basic tension between control and its loss. Both the verbal outbursts of the wordier comics (the Marx Brothers [Chico (1887–1961), Harpo (1888–1964), Groucho (1890–1977), and Zeppo (1901–1979)], W. C. Fields [1880-1946]) and the physical eruptions of those who use extreme body comedy (Charlie Chaplin [1889-1977], Jerry Lewis [b. 1926]) are predicated on the delicate balance between resistance and inevitable surrender—indeed, the resistance serves to make the surrender even funnier. Slapstick's classic moment, the pie in the face, is funny only if the recipient is not already covered in pie but is first clean and neat; slipping on a banana skin provides humor only when the before—the dignified march—is contrasted with the after—the flat-out splayed pratfall on the sidewalk. Slapstick comedians learned early on that humor could be prolonged if resistance, whether to gravity or another inevitability, could also be prolonged—in other words, as long as there were a chance that the other shoe might fall. This balancing act is the slapstick comic's main job: paradoxically, when we watch him—and it is usually a him—performing lack of control, at least part of our pleasure derives from his skill at controlling this lack. Jim Carrey might beat himself up mercilessly in Me, Myself, And Irene (2000), but even as he seems to abandon restraint while punching himself, we are aware of the physical control needed to perform this routine. Part of the humor in this tension is also derived from the comic hero's insistence on maintaining control when others around him have abandoned it. Chaplin's Tramp tries to maintain dignity even though poor, starving, drenched, and an outcast: the humor lies in his scrupulous adherence to social niceties (he holds his silverware nicely) even when society is in chaos (he is having to eat his own boot from starvation in The Gold Rush, 1925). Slapstick comedy derives its name from the flat double paddle (like a flattened, oversized castanet) that, when struck against another performer, produced a satisfyingly big noise but only a small amount of actual discomfort. This battacio, or slapstick, traditionally wielded by male performers, is said to have evolved from a symbolic phallus (Chamberlain); certainly the habitual association of slapstick comedy with male comics might be seen to bear out this symbolism. While early cinema slapstick boasted performers of both genders, including famous slapstick queen Mabel Normand (1892–1930) (Tillie's Punctured Romance, 1914), early flapper Colleen Moore (1900–1988) (Ella Cinders, 1926), and heroines of the 1930s screwball comedy genre, such as Carole Lombard (1908–1942) (Twentieth Century, [1934] and Nothing Sacred, [1937]), who was not afraid to take pratfalls amidst the glossy art deco sets of the genre, almost all major slapstick comedians since then have been male. Perhaps there is a reluctance on the part of female comedians to align themselves with a form of humor that relies so much on mess, violence, and pain; when female comics become involved in slapstick's routine business of physical humiliation this seems to be more as a punishment than a chosen route. Click the link below to read more about Slapstick. Source: Encyclopedia - Slapstick Comedy Wikipedia - Slapstick Film | Slapstick Comedy
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    Fact of the Day - DEEP SEA CREATURES Common fangtooth, Anoplogaster cornuta Did you know... that the term deep sea creature refers to organisms that live below the photic zone of the ocean. These creatures must survive in extremely harsh conditions, such as hundreds of bars of pressure, small amounts of oxygen, very little food, no sunlight, and constant, extreme cold. Most creatures have to depend on food floating down from above. These creatures live in very demanding environments, such as the abyssal or hadal zones, which, being thousands of meters below the surface, are almost completely devoid of light. The water is between 3 and 10 degrees Celsius and has low oxygen levels. Due to the depth, the pressure is between 20 and 1,000 bars. Creatures that live hundreds or even thousands of meters deep in the ocean have adapted to the high pressure, lack of light, and other factors. (Wikipedia) Weird and Wild Deep-Sea Creatures We're not at sea level anymore. Erin Spencer | JULY 4, 2019 The deep sea has captured our imagination for centuries—and for good reason. Once we venture past the zone where light penetrates the ocean, the dark depths of the sea are filled with strange and captivating critters (some of which have even inspired horror movie monsters). We know remarkably little about the deep ocean—in fact, we know more about the surface of the moon than we do about the ocean floor. It’s no surprise, then, that the ocean’s deepest inhabitants don’t get the same recognition as their shallower peers. So, prepare for a deep dive! Here are seven of the weirdest and wildest residents of the deep sea. Anglerfish Imagine following a warm, inviting light, only to find a mouth of razor-sharp teeth directly behind it. That is the unfortunate fate of the deep sea anglerfish’s prey (and nearly Marlin and Dory’s in Finding Nemo). Deep sea anglerfishes have evolved a cunning method of hunting: they use their bright lure, which gets its glow from specialized bacteria, to entice fish and crustaceans to draw close to the anglerfish. Only females have the lures, however. They also use it to attract males, who will bite onto the female and fertilize her eggs. Sixgill Shark Sixgill sharks get their name from their six gill slits (no surprise there). Other familiar species, like blacktip reef sharks, bull sharks, blue sharks and hammerhead sharks, only have five gill slits. (Side note: there is another species of shark called the sevengill that has—you guessed it—seven gills slits.) Sixgill sharks can reach up to 16 feet (4.9 meters) in length, making it one of the largest sharks in the ocean. They come up to the surface at night to search for prey, but can dive down 8,200 feet (2,500 meters) or more during the day. Bluntnose sixgill shark Bigeyed sixgill shark Hexanchus Atlantic sixgill shark Giant Isopod A giant isopod is to a roly-poly bug as King Kong is to a gorilla: it’s bigger, scarier and could easily star in a B-grade horror movie. The giant isopod is a crustacean, the group that also includes shrimp and crabs, and is closely related to your friendly neighborhood pillbug. They are carnivores who feed on the ocean floor at depths up to 7,000 feet (2,100 meters). Because meals in the deep ocean floor can be few and far between, giant isopods are able to go long periods without food and will binge eat when they can. Coelacanth When the coelacanth was first discovered in 1938, it was compared to the feeling of finding a T-rex walking around in modern times. Scientists thought the coelacanth had gone extinct 65 million years ago, until a museum curator in South Africa discovered one in a local fisherman’s net. They can reach almost 7 feet (2 meters) in length, and live in depths up to 2,300 feet (700 meters). Their paired lobe fins are similar to those of tetrapods, or four-footed animals, and they move in a way that looks like the fish is “walking” through the water. Vampire Squid Despite its blood-red color and its horror-story name, vampire squid won’t suck your blood. These cephalopods are scavengers that prefer to munch on dead plankton and other matter that drifts down to the deep ocean. They don’t produce ink like other cephalopods (it wouldn’t do them much good in the black-colored deep water), and instead expel a bioluminescent substance that derails predators. Gulper Eel The gulper eel, also known as the pelican eel, is one of the strangest looking fish in the sea. Its mouth is disproportionately large for its body, and can open wide to consume animals much larger than the eel itself. They use their mouth to scoop up prey, similar to how a pelican used its large beak. Like the anglerfish, the gulper eel has a bioluminescent organ that scientist theorize could be used to attract prey. Giant Squid The giant squid lives up to its name: they can reach more than 40 feet (12 meters) long, making it one of the largest invertebrates, or animals without backbones, in the world. They live at depths of 1,000 to 2,000 feet (300 to 600 meters), making them difficult to study—most of what we know about them comes from dead squid that have washed ashore or been pulled up in fishermen’s nets. We do know that they have the largest eye in the animal kingdom—their eyes reach up to 10 inches (25 centimeters) in diameter, and allow them to pick up the tiny amounts of light that reach the deep ocean. Source: Wikipedia - Deep Sea Creatures | Weird and Wild Deep-Sea Creatures
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    Fact of the Day - SPEED OF SOUND Did you know... that the speed of sound is the distance travelled per unit of time by a sound wave as it propagates through an elastic medium. At 20 °C, the speed of sound in air is about 343 metres per second, or a kilometer in 2.9 s or a mile in 4.7 s. (Wikipedia) Facts About The Speed Of Sound BY PRO AV EDITORS | OCTOBER 18, 2007 It was British scientist Sir Isaac Newton who gave the first analytical determination of the speed of sound in his scientific treatise, “Principia,” in 1687. But it was Italian physicists Giovanni Alfonso Borelli and Vincenzo Viviani who, in the 1660s, first calculated the speed of sound. They measured the time between seeing the flash of a gun and hearing its report over a long distance on a still day. Their calculation: 350 meters per second. Although the equation for the speed of sound (speed = frequency x wavelength) is constant, the speed is affected by the medium through which the sound waves are propagated, as well as other conditions such as temperature and humidity. Today’s accepted value for speed of sound through air: 344 m/s (1,130 feet per second). The first measurement of the speed of sound through solids didn’t come until the early 1800s, through the experiments in sound frequency of German physicist and musician Ernst Florens Friedrich Chladni, often called the father of acoustics. Speed of sound through most solids: 5,960 m/s (13,332 mph). Soon after, in 1826, Swiss physicist Jean-Daniel Colladon calculated the speed of sound in 8 degree Centigrade water as 1,435 m/s. Today’s calculation of speed of sound through water at that temperature: 1,482 m/s (3,315 mph). Why is light so much faster than sound? Light is an electromagnetic wave, and its photons can move as a wave through air or as particles through a vacuum. Sound, however, is a pressure wave, which must produce a vibration to be heard. That can only occur when the wave encounters a particle of some kind, such as an air molecule. The Doppler Effect is the change in the perceived frequency of sound waves. If the source of a sound and the listener are standing still, the sound waves are emitted in uniform concentric circles. But if the source moves toward the listener, the waves reaching the listener are closer together, and the listener hears a higher frequency. When an aircraft travels through air at less than the speed of sound, about 770 mph, the sound waves it produces propagate ahead of it. But when it travels at supersonic speed, the distance between sound waves decreases to nothing, and they combine to create a sonic boom. Flicking the tip of a bullwhip also creates a sonic boom, as does thunder. An echo, or reflection, occurs when sound waves bounce off a surface. A ship in a fog can avoid running into cliffs by sounding a foghorn and waiting for the echo. If the time delay is, say, 1.5 seconds, and using 330 m/s as the speed of sound, the ship would be about 250 meters from the cliffs. You can’t see around a corner because light waves don’t bend. But you can hear around a corner because of wave diffraction: If the wavelength of a wave is similar to the size of an object, it bends around it and spreads out as it passes. Source: Wikipedia - Speed of Sound | Fascinating Facts About the Speed of Sound
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    What's the Word? - DEPUTE pronunciation: [də-PYOOT] Part of speech: verb Origin: Late Middle English, unknown Meaning: 1. Appoint or instruct (someone) to perform a task for which one is responsible. 2. Delegate (authority or a task). Example: "The dean decided to depute the review process to the department head." "He deputed the responsibility of answering emails to the secretary." About Depute This word developed in Middle English via influence from French and Latin. The original Latin word "deputare" (consider to be; assign) came from the words "de" (away) and "putare" (consider). Did you Know? Do you need a word to describe someone who has been deputed a task? Call them a deputy. A deputy is a representative of an authority who has been delegated a task to complete — similar to how the word depute means delegating a task to an individual.
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    Fact of the Day - GREAT BARRIER REEF Satellite image of part of the Great Barrier Reef adjacent to the Queensland coastal areas of Airlie Beach and Mackay. Did you know... that the Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system composed of over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands stretching for over 2,300 kilometres over an area of approximately 344,400 square kilometres. The reef is located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia. (Wikipedia) One of the 7 natural wonders of the world, the Great Barrier Reef is located off the coast of Australia’s Queensland and is home to a vast array of marine life. Adventures around this spectacular area can take place from the air, by boat, or by diving beneath the waves and swimming alongside the spectacular corals. You’ve probably seen and heard a lot about this underwater wonderland but in case you haven’t, here’s everything you need to know… 1. It is the world’s largest reef system With almost 3,000 individual reefs, 900 islands, and stretching for 2,600km there is no denying the reef is massive. This incredible living system can even be viewed from space. If you want to get an idea of size, then imagine the country of Italy lying just off the coast of Australia and you begin to get an idea of its vastness. 2. It is home to an incredible diversity of species Attempting to list all the species here would be a challenge to say the least so here are some of the most impressive groups that the reef is home to: 30 species of whale, dolphin, and porpoise 6 species of turtle 17 species of sea snake More than 1,500 species of fish – incredibly, 10% of the world’s fish species inhabit the Great Barrier Reef. 3. Corals are alive So what is a coral, you ask? Corals are formed by tiny creatures called polyps that have a sac-like body with emerging tentacles. Corals gain their rock-like structure from the polyps as they use calcium and carbonate ions from the seawater to create a hard outer skeleton to protect their soft bodies. These polyps survive due to their relationship with the algae that live alongside them. The algae absorb light from the sun and subsequently feed the coral. The algae also give the corals their bright colours. Corals are, in fact, nocturnal and it is under the cover of darkness that the polyps emerge from their outer casings to catch small creatures that pass by. 4. The reef is further out than you may think Whilst coral reefs thrive in warm, shallow waters, these are not always close to shore. A barrier reef is defined as a coral reef running parallel to the shore but separated by a large lagoon. Visitors to the reef may be surprised that their boat trip could take between 45 minutes and 2 hours to reach the dive site so remember your travel sickness pills if it’s a windy day! 5. The threats to the reef are numerous Sadly, the reef is struggling to survive with climate change being the main threat. Rising sea temperatures and pollution leave the coral more susceptible to bleaching and, tragically, eventual death. Tourism can also play a role, with swimmers and divers touching and damaging parts of the reef as well as leaving behind rubbish and contaminating the waters with sun cream and other pollutants. 6. A bleached reef isn’t always a dead reef Coral bleaching occurs when changes in conditions cause the polyps to expel the algae on which it depends to survive. It is the algae which give the corals their colour so, of course, no algae means a bleached, colourless reef. Not all corals will immediately die following this event, however they are left without their primary food supply and are therefore more at risk of starvation and disease. Corals can recover after bleaching providing that conditions return to normal and they are not put under strain too soon afterward. 7. There is hope for the reef’s return Protection of the Great Barrier Reef is a top priority for the Australian Government and conservationists, so you’ll be happy to hear that measures are being taken to help protect this natural wonder. Efforts are being made to reduce sediment runoff and advanced laboratory techniques are allowing resilient corals to be grown away from the reef and planted in the wild when they are ready. Also, whilst tourism can play a part in the reef’s problems, it is also a part of the solution. With over 2 million visitors a year, the Great Barrier Reef is one of the most popular attractions in Australia and generates $5-6 billion per year. Money from reef tourism contributes massively to reef protection and the more people that love the reef, the more will be determined to help it survive. 8. The reef is millions of years old! The living corals which form the reef now are sat upon old, dead structures. These corals of the past could be up to 20 million years old! 9. Prehistoric creatures still live there As already mentioned, some of the coral structures could date back millions of years, but so too could some of the creatures living there. The alien-like nautilus is a distant cousin to the squid but what makes this creature unique is that it appears to have remained relatively unchanged over the last 500 million years! 10. Corals only spawn once a year When conditions are right, often after a full moon, the incredible phenomenon of coral reproduction takes place. An entire colony can synchronize, with each polyp releasing its genetic matter into the water creating a scene reminiscent of a snowstorm. This event can leave deposits on the surface of the water visible from space! Following this, new corals can form. Amazingly, it can take a single polyp to start a new reef! 11. Visit in the winter The summer months may seem like a great time to visit the reef. But aside from the scorching temperatures, what may put you off a summer visit are the stingers. Stinger season stretches from November to May and within this time you could find yourself wearing a stinger suit in the water or only swimming within enclosures. But have no fear! Whilst it is cooler in the winter, the air and water temperatures are still pleasant and, most importantly, you’ll avoid a dreaded jellyfish encounter. Source: Wikipedia - Great Barrier Reef | Facts About the Great Barrier Reef
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    https://www.epicgames.com/store/en-US/product/alien-isolation/home Alien: Isolation is currently free on Epic Games Store. https://freebies.indiegala.com/crowd-control Crowd Control is currently free on IndieGala. https://pipka-team.indiegala.com/it-falls It Falls is currently free on IndieGala.
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    Fact of the Day - ALBINO ANIMALS Albino Squirrel Did you know... that albinism is a congenital disorder that robs the skin, hair and eyes of color? Albinos are extremely pale and as such, suffer from sunburns and skin cancers more frequently than non-albinos. The lack of eye pigmentation can also cause problems. Human albinos often require surgery or wear corrective lenses. Albino animals face almost insurmountable odds when they're born in the wild. Baby albinos are seen as an oddity within their own species and are more visible to predators. These animals may also be cursed with imperfect vision or other health problems. (Wikipedia) Famous Albino Animals By Shea Gunther | Updated August 28, 2019 Albinism is a congenital disorder that robs the skin, hair and eyes of color. Albinos are extremely pale and as such, suffer from sunburns and skin cancers more frequently than non-albinos. The lack of eye pigmentation can also cause problems. Human albinos often require surgery or wear corrective lenses. Albino animals face almost insurmountable odds when they're born in the wild. Baby albinos are seen as an oddity within their own species and are more visible to predators. These animals may also be cursed with imperfect vision or other health problems. Those lucky enough to be born in a zoo can look forward to a relatively comfortable life. Here are several amazing famous albino animals. Pair of White Giraffes One white giraffe is a rare sight, but recently a pair of them — a mother and calf — was spotted strolling in eastern Kenya on the Ishaqbini Hirola Conservancy. They're leucistic, according to the Hirola Conservation Program, which manages the area. That's why the baby has a little coloring left on its neck. "They were so close and extremely calm and seemed not disturbed by our presence. The mother kept pacing back and forth a few yards in front of us while signaling the baby giraffe to hide behind the bushes — a characteristic of most wildlife mothers in the wild to prevent the predation of their young," the conservation program wrote on its blog. Snowflake the Gorilla Snowflake the gorilla arrived at the Barcelona Zoo in the mid '60s to great fanfare, including an official reception thrown by the mayor of the city. Snowflake was captured by a farmer in Equatorial Guinea under tragic circumstances — the farmer killed all the gorillas in Snowflake's group just to capture him. He was found clinging to his dead mother's fur. Through a series of middlemen, Snowflake found his way to the Barcelona Zoo where he settled into a comfortable life. He went on to father 22 babies, none of which were albino. In September 2003, the zoo announced that he suffered from a rare form of skin cancer (most likely caused by his albinism). Thousands of visitors came to pay their respects before he was euthanized a month after the announcement. Claude the Alligator Claude the alligator is the most famous resident of the California Academy of Sciences. Born in captivity in Florida, he now spends his days splashing around The Swamp, his little corner of the academy. For a few years he shared the space with another gator named Bonnie, but that ended when Claude, whose weakened albino eyes made him prone to bump into things (and other gators), provoked Bonnie into biting him on the foot. After Bonnie was shipped back to Florida and Claude recovered, he was reintroduced back into The Swamp. Rescued Albino Orangutan This extremely rare albino orangutan was rescued from a village in the Indonesian part of Borneo. The 5-year-old female, later named Alba, was being held in a cage by villagers, and the dried blood visible on its nose may have been from attempting to fight free from the villagers. The Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) said in a statement that in its 25 years of existence, it had never taken in an albino orangutan to its rehabilitation center, where workers were being cautious in their care of the orangutan. She demonstrated sensitivity to light, and she is showing "wild behaviors." After she received a full medical evaluation, the BOSF began the process of determining the best possible paths forward for the orangutan's conservation and protection. And those efforts paid off. In December 2018, Alba was released in a national park in Indonesia, along with Kika, a female orangutan with whom she had become friends. You can watch their release in the video below. Snowdrop the Penguin You'd think albino penguins would be more common since they spend so much time in the snow. (If you're going to be an all-white animal, what better backdrop could you find?) Of course, nature doesn't work that way. Snowdrop the penguin was one of the few albinos that made it to adulthood. He was born at the Bristol Zoo in England, and was accepted by his clutchmates unconditionally. Sadly, Snowdrop only lived for a couple of years before dying suddenly in August 2004. Migaloo the Humpback Whale Migaloo the albino humpback is well-known in Australia where he regularly travels along the country's east coast during migration season. First spotted in 1991, Migaloo is the world's only known albino humpback. He has been seen nearly every year since his discovery, and he even has his own website and Twitter account, where you can follow along with the most recent sightings of this amazing animal. Mocha Dick the Sperm Whale Mocha Dick was another famous white whale. This ferocious fighter was so well-known to 19th-century whalers that he inspired Herman Melville's classic, "Moby Dick" (pictured). Mocha was an albino sperm whale that reportedly survived more than 100 encounters with whalers before he was eventually killed. He was docile when unprovoked but would turn into an aggressive fighter when attacked, using his body to smash the boats of those who sought his blubber. He was killed in 1838 after coming to the rescue of a cow that had just lost a calf to whalers. Source: Wikipedia - Albinism | Famous Albino Animals
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    What's the Word? - CAMPANOLOGY pronunciation: [kamp-ə-NAH-lə-jee] Part of speech: noun Origin: Latin, mid 19th century Meaning: 1. The art or practice of bell-ringing. Example: "We knew he played the piano, but his expertise at campanology surprised us." "The art of campanology is kept alive during the holiday season." About Campanology Campanology developed from the Latin words "campanologia" and "campana," which both mean "bell." Did you Know? One of the most enduring December sounds is the chime of the bell ringer stationed by donation boxes. This campanology is meant to remind people to donate, but the bell ringing is also a nostalgic, wintry sound.
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    Fact of the Day - GRANDMA FOR RUN OVER BY A REINDEER Did you know... that "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" is a novelty Christmas song. Written by Randy Brooks, the song was originally performed by the husband-and-wife duo of Elmo Shropshire and Patsy Trigg in 1979. (Wikipedia) How 'Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer' Became a Holiday Staple BY Kenneth Partridge | December 8, 2016 With more than 11 million copies sold, the kooky country Christmas classic that is "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer" is a musical gift that keeps on giving—and that can evidently never be returned. It’s the fantastical tale of a tipsy old lady who’s trampled to death by Santa’s sleigh, and the story behind the song is nearly as good. It begins, like all Christmas fables should, with a blizzard. It was December 1978, and a San Francisco veterinarian named Elmo Shropshire, a.k.a. Dr. Elmo, was booked at the Hyatt in Lake Tahoe with his then-wife, Patsy. The couple had a comedy-bluegrass duo called Elmo & Patsy, and just before taking the stage, they got a visit from one Randy Brooks, a Texas singer-songwriter who’d played the hotel before them and gotten stuck there by the snow. "I was never what I’d consider to be much of a singer," Dr. Elmo tells mental_floss from his home in California. "I always sang novelty songs, so it didn’t matter if I could sing or not. At the time, we were doing a lot of funny songs. Randy saw our show and said, 'I’ve got this song I think would be perfect for you.'" The song, of course, was "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer," which Dr. Elmo deemed "the most original take on Christmas music" he’d ever heard. "I didn’t know how long it would last," he says. "But I knew it would get people’s attention the first time he sang it." Funnily enough, "Grandma" didn’t get much of a reaction from the audience at the Hyatt, where Elmo & Patsy played it with Brooks the night they met. "They thought it was kind of cute," Dr. Elmo says. "There are some songs that are more in your face than that one. The song has all the trappings of Christmas in it, except for that one thing." Elmo & Patsy That one thing—the old woman getting blindsided by St. Nick, plus the indifferent response from her family—made all the difference. In 1979, an early recording by Dr. Elmo found its way to influential San Francisco DJ Gene "The Emperor" Nelson, who made it a local sensation. Then December 26 rolled around, and Dr. Elmo figured the fun was over. Not even close. "The following year, word spread from radio station to radio station," says Dr. Elmo, who wisely secured the publishing rights early on. "This wasn’t anything that started out with any big-time radio hype. We weren’t giving DJs cocaine or women or anything. I didn’t have the wherewithal to do all that stuff." Dr. Elmo self-released 500 copies on 45 rpm vinyl, and by 1981, as the buzz continued to build, he dared to think bigger. In 1982, a company in Nashville contacted him about pressing up 250,000 copies. Dr. Elmo feared he’d be stuck with a garage full of unwanted product, but the records flew off the shelves like Santa’s caribou. That’s when he decided to sell his veterinary hospital to finance a music video, which he shot for $30,000 at his home. At this point, he still didn’t have a record deal. "After I made the video, I had what you’d call filmmaker’s remorse," Dr. Elmo says. "I paid all that money, and nothing was happening. The 250,000 copies was a good sell, but we didn’t make any money—not enough to pay for the video." But the investment soon paid off. In November 1983, Dr. Elmo got a call from MTV. The network loved the clip, and it’s easy to see why. Although Grandma lives in the end—a happy ending Dr. Elmo figured was necessary to sell the thing—the video has a vaguely subversive, charmingly low-budget quality that was bound to appeal to teenagers. In the last week of the Christmas season, with the vid in heavy rotation, "Grandma" passed Bing Crosby’s "White Christmas" on the Billboard holiday charts. "My father would’ve rolled over in his grave," Dr. Elmo says with a laugh. "He thought Bing Crosby was the greatest singer in the world. And so did I." As Bing felt the sting of the public’s changing tastes, Dr. Elmo was finally in a position to make some money. In previous years, every record company he’d queried had mailed back his letter with the same message: "Stop sending us this crap." With his crap now smelling like gingerbread, Dr. Elmo flew to L.A. and signed a deal with Columbia Records. The label reissued the full-length Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer album he’d recorded the previous year, and in December '84, the LP became the label’s top seller, outpacing Michael Jackson’s Thriller, which was two years old but still plenty popular. In the 30 or so years since, Dr. Elmo has basically become the Michael Jackson of novelty holiday tunes about hilariously slain matriarchs. Despite the occasional protest from groups like the Gray Panthers, who once gave Dr. Elmo a major publicity boost by labeling the lyrics sexist and ageist, "Grandma" returns each year to leave hoofprints on the popular imagination. The perennial radio favorite has spawned numerous commercial tie-ins, including a 2000 animated TV special and a line of Hallmark musical greeting cards, buttons, and an ornament. This year, fans have their pick of "Grandma" hats at Shopko and dozens upon dozens of apparel options at Walmart. According to Dr. Elmo, there are even plans for a full-length feature film, so clearly, the franchise still has legs. And so does Dr. Elmo. When he’s not singing his holiday jam, the 80-year-old can be found outrunning the competition at senior track meets and road races. In 2005 at age 69, he finished the New York City Marathon, and in 2013, as a member of Team USA’s 4x400 relay, he won a gold medal at the World Masters Games in Porto Alegre, Brazil. On the day he spoke with mental_floss, he was gearing up for the Florida Senior Games. Win or lose, he’ll probably be the only participant able to say he’s shared bills with Gwen Stefani and Avril Lavigne and rocked with The Roots on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon. For a one-hit wonder, Dr. Elmo has had a remarkably fruitful career—one that likely wouldn’t be possible today. As he says, "Grandma" went viral at a time when major labels still mattered and radio stations were the source of new music. With everything moving toward streaming, it’s harder for any single artist or song to really capture the public’s attention. "Everyone just listens to whatever they want to hear now," Dr. Elmo says. "That’s the difference. That’s both good and bad. If you’re a person who likes music and likes to listen to what you want to hear, there’s never been a better time." As for why people still dig "Grandma," Dr. Elmo says it continues to fill a void in the holiday music market. "All those hits from the early '50s were really sweet and wonderful and lovely," he says. "They liked to play them in shopping malls so people would buy stuff. When this song came along, another generation of people—and even the younger generations now—embraced it because it’s a little dark. It was much more to their sense of humor. It wasn’t too syrupy sweet." The song’s darkest moment comes in the second verse, where Grandpa responds to his wife’s death by swilling beer and watching football, like nothing happened. There are two possible ways to read his reaction: Either the old man is coping as best he can, or he’s quietly relishing his newfound freedom. Dr. Elmo is a veterinarian, not a psychologist, but he has a theory. "He was just kind of tired of the old woman," he says with a laugh. "Grandpa is old. He likes to drink beer and watch football. That’s it." Source: Wikipedia - Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer | How 'Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer' Became a Holiday Staple
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    What's the Word? - SODALITY pronunciation: [soh-DAL-ih-tee] Part of speech: noun Origin: French, early 17th century Meaning: 1. A confraternity or association, especially a Roman Catholic religious guild or brotherhood. Example: "The sodality ran a toy drive with the local elementary school every December." "Many of the traditions started by the sodality 200 years ago are still in practice." About Sodality While this word might bring a bubbly beverage to mind, it originates from the French and Latin words "sodalité" and "sodalis," which both mean comrade. Did you Know? Belonging to a sodality can impact you socially beyond getting invited to parties. Over 76% of U.S. Congressmen and Senators belong to a fraternity, and Greek Life contributes to a lot of our societal and cultural development.
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    Fact of the Day - METEOR SHOWER Leonids from space. Did you know... that a meteor shower is a celestial event in which a number of meteors are observed to radiate, or originate, from one point in the night sky. These meteors are caused by streams of cosmic debris called meteoroids entering Earth's atmosphere at extremely high speeds on parallel trajectories. Most meteors are smaller than a grain of sand, so almost all of them disintegrate and never hit the Earth's surface. Very intense or unusual meteor showers are known as meteor outbursts and meteor storms, which produce at least 1,000 meteors an hour, most notably from the Leonids. (Wikipedia) The Nine Planets Meteor showers have occurred since the first celestial bodies had formed. Earth has always experienced these events. One of the greatest meteor shower events in the modern era happened in 1833. This meteor shower was named Leonids, and it is associated with the the comet Tempel-Tuttle. Estimates from then suggest that around 100.000 to 200.000 meteors hit the Earth’s atmosphere per hour. The nature of meteors was still debated during the 19th century until the Italian astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli ascertained the relation between meteors and comets. Key Facts Most meteors never hit Earth’s surface. Almost all of them are smaller than a grain of sand. As such they disintegrate in the atmosphere. There are however very intense meteor showers known as meteor outbursts and meteor storms. These events produce at least 1.000 meteors an hour. These “showers” are caused by streams of cosmic debris called meteoroids which enter Earth’s atmosphere at extremely high speeds on parallel trajectories. The Leonids meteor shower gave birth to the term “meteor shower”. It produces the most intense meteor storms, peaking at rates of thousands of meteors per hour. One of the most visible meteor showers is called the Perseids. Usually, one meteor per minute can be observed during this event. It occurs each year in mid-August. Meteors fall on Earth even in the day, though they are harder to spot. Comets are largely responsible for meteor showers. As Earth moves through the debris trails created by comets, the debris hits our atmosphere. One of the earliest records of the Perseids meteor shower was found in the Chinese annals from 36 AD. Meteor showers can be best viewed in the early morning hours, or on a dark, moonless night. Most meteor showers are named after the constellation from which they appear to hail. For example, the Perseids appear to “come” from the constellation Perseus. Meteor showers can be observed with the naked eye. Meteor showers do not occur only on Earth. They can manifest on any celestial object with a reasonably transparent atmosphere. Mars has been observed to have meteor showers. Even moons may experience these events. The Meteor Data Centre lists over 900 suspected meteor showers of which about 100 are well established. Formation In 1951, the American astronomer Fred Whipple demonstrated that comets produce debris by water vapor drag, and by breaking. He envisioned comets as “dirty snowballs”, made up of rock embedded in ice, orbiting the Sun. Meteors, are basically space rocks that fall towards planets, or other celestial bodies. The atmosphere of a celestial body heats up these rocks making them appear bright. The bright streak is not actually the rock, but rather it is the glowing hot air as the hot rock zips through the atmosphere. When many meteoroids hit the atmosphere of a celestial body, they are called meteor showers. Comets also orbit the Sun with a lop-sided type of orbit. As they get closer to the Sun, amounts of its icy surface boils off, releasing many particles of dust and rock the size of sand grains. This debris gets thrown out along the comet’s path, especially in the inner solar system. As Earth makes its journey around the sun, its orbit crosses the orbit of a comet resulting in many meteor showers. Given the number of comets orbiting the sun, this happens frequently every year. The maximum size of these meteors is about the size of a boulder. Many of them burn up in Earth’s atmosphere, but some actually hit the surface. Radiant Point The “tails” of the meteors mostly point back to the same spot on the sky. This is because they are coming from the same angle. Meteor showers are usually named after the constellation where they appear to come from. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they come from there, it is simply a matter of preference and not actuality. Meteor shower on chart. They travel in parallel paths, and at the same velocity creating the illusion that they radiate from a single point in the sky. This radiant point is caused by perspective, similar to parallel railroad tracks – when viewed from a distance they appear to come together in a single point. Due to their brightness, they are often termed as “shooting stars.” Major Meteor Showers The Meteor Data Centre lists over 900 suspected meteor showers of which about 100 are well established. However, there are about 6 major meteor showers that stand out: 1. Quadrantids – It occurs mostly in late December and early January. They originate from 2003 EH1- an asteroid or a possible "rock comet." Radiant – Constellation Boötes. Around 80 meteors per hour fall during this event with a velocity of 25.5 mi / 41 km per second. The Quadrantids are best viewed in the Northern Hemisphere. 2. Lyrids – From mid to late April. They originate from the comet Thatcher. Radiant – Constellation Lyra the Harp. Around 20 meteors per hour fall during this event with a velocity of 29.8 mi / 48 km per second. The Lyrids can be tracked by searching for the star Vega. This is one of the oldest known meteor showers. It has been observed for over 2.700 years. Meteoroid trail between fragments of Comet 73P 3. Perseids – Active in mid-August. It originates from the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle. Radiant – Constellation Perseus. Around 60 meteors per hour fall during this event with a velocity of 36.6 mi / 59 km per second. The Perseids are one of the most visible meteor showers. They can be seen from any location but especially from the Northern Hemisphere. 4. Orionids – Active in late October-early-November. It originates from the comet 1P/Halley. Radiant – Between the constellations of Orion and Gemini. Around 15 to a maximum of 50-70 meteors fall during this event with a fast velocity of 41 mi / 66 km per second. The Orionids are among the brightest and fastest meteor showers. This event can be best viewed from both the Northern and Southern hemispheres during the hours after midnight. 5. Leonids – The peak is reached in mid-November. It originates from the comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle. Radiant – Constellation Leo. Around 15 meteors per hour fall with a velocity of 44 mi / 77 km per second. They are among the brightest, fastest, and colorful meteor showers. About every 33 years or so, Earth can experience a Leonid meteor storm that can peak to hundreds to thousands of meteors per hour. The last Leonid meteor storm took place in 2002. The Leonids are best viewed starting at about midnight local time. Leonid storms gave birth to the term meteor shower. Leonids from space. 6. Geminids – Active in early to mid-December. It originates from 3200 Phaethon - an asteroid or a possible "rock comet." Radiant – Constellation Gemini. Around 120 meteors fall per hour with a velocity of 22 mi / 35 km per second. Geminids are considered to be one of the best and most reliable annual meteor showers. They tend to be yellow in color and have begun their activity since mid-1800. It is best viewed during the night and predawn hours and they are visible across the globe. This shower is considered one of the best opportunities for young viewers since this shower starts around 9 or 10 p.m. Extraterrestrial Meteor Showers Mars meteor by MER Spirit rover Even the Moon can experience meteor showers. Mars and its moons are known to have meteor showers. Many impact craters are used as evidence for this. The atmosphere of Mars has less than 1% the density of Earth’s ground-level atmosphere. At the upper edges where meteoroids strike, the two planets are more similar. Meteor showers on Mars tend to be less bright due to the distance from the sun, and the slower velocity also contributes to this dimness. Generally, meteor showers on other planets are difficult to observe, but any celestial body with a reasonably transparent atmosphere can also have meteor showers. Future There are many dedicated websites on the internet that track and observe future meteor showers. Usually, big events are announced rapidly as well as minor ones. If the Leonid meteor shower stays true to its 33 year period meteor storm, then we will probably have the chance to see a spectacular view of meteors descending upon Earth in 2035, in mid-November. Meteor showers are unpredictable due to their nature, with new and unknown comets having the potential to “birth” new meteor showers at any given moment. Did you know? Around 30 meteor showers occur every year. Most of them occur between April and December. The Sylacauga meteorite is the first recorded/documented extraterrestrial object to have injured a human being. Around 1.000 people were injured by the Chelyabinsk meteor airburst event over Russia in 2013. No human is known to have been killed by a meteorite. Calculations suggest that you are more likely to win the lottery than getting hit by a meteorite. Meteorites are quite valuable. Some are worth as much as $1.000 per 1 gram. They are rarer than gold, platinum, diamonds or emeralds. The ancients worshipped meteorites and included them in their religions. In the present day, the black stone set into the eastern corner of the Kaaba is revered by Muslims, and it is often believed to be a meteorite. Meteor showers contribute to almost 50 tons of space debris falling on Earth every day. In the first century A.D., the Greek astronomer Ptolemy believed that shooting stars were a sign of the gods looking upon mortals and listening to their wishes. Source: Wikipedia - Meteor Shower | Facts About Meteor Showers | NASA
  48. 1 point
    https://store.steampowered.com/app/1400520/Nomads_of_Driftland/ Nomads of Driftland is free on Steam. https://store.steampowered.com/app/1367530/Rekt_Crash_Test/ Rekt Crash Test is free on Steam. https://store.steampowered.com/app/1475380/TheDawn/ The Dawn is free to play on Steam. https://store.steampowered.com/app/1287800/Schwarzerblitz/ Schwarzerblitz is free on Steam.
  49. 1 point
    Here's the YouTube version. There was actually a somewhat difficult boss fight in this one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yU3ugmmZc34
  50. 1 point
    Good luck with your YouTube channel . I subscribed and hope that it will grow !
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