first_img Smoke 2013 Tutorial: Working With Sync When the pre-trial (and later full versions) are avaliable you’ll already have the know-how from these useful Smoke 2013 tutorial videos. Smoke 2013 Tutorial: 3 Point & 4 Point Editing Smoke 2013 Tutorial:Track Patching Want to get started with Smoke?  Check out these info-filled video editing tutorials for Smoke 2013!This is an exciting time for video editors.  We’re having to say goodbye to our beloved Final Cut Pro 7, but new contenders are entering the video editing app market to take it’s place.  Many former editors may be migrating to Avid or Adobe’s Premiere Pro CS6…but a radical redesign of Autodesk’s Smoke now seems like a very attractive replacement as well.Autodesk announced a radically updated Smoke application at this year’s NAB show, specifically geared torward the video editor (not just the compositer or visual effects artist).  What makes Autodesk Smoke 2013 even more attractive is a drastically reduced price point – $3,495, as opposed to the $15k+ price tag of previous versions.  More details on the launch and Smoke 2013 product specs here.Although a full commercial version is not expected until later in 2012, a Smoke 2013 pre-release trial should be available sometime in June.  Sign up to be on the product trial list here.Free Smoke 2013 TutorialsAutodesk has setup a YouTube channel specifically geared torward the Smoke user, so subscribe to keep up with the latest video news and tutorials.The following free tutorial videos come from that SmokeHowTos YouTube channel and are geared specifically for the video editor.  Learn how to perform common video editing techniques in the Smoke interface.Click the topics below to check out each Smoke video tutorial: Smoke 2013 Tutorial: Splice, Extract, Sub-Clipping Smoke 2013 Tutorial: Trimming Smoke 2013 Tutorial: Viewing Source FootageSmoke 2013 Tutorial: Sequences Smoke 2013 Tutorial: Overwrite/Insert/DragSmoke 2013 Tutorial: Timeline Navigation  Smoke 2013 Tutorial: Moving Clips in the Sequencelast_img read more

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first_imgAt one time, every project needed a promotional website, but in the age of Facebook pages, is this still true?Cover Image via Shutterstock. Before the introduction of Facebook pages, one of the best ways to promote your film and create a following was through a website. At networking events, festivals, online, or wherever, you could quickly direct someone to your film’s URL, where they could see behind-the-scenes photographs, credentials, contact information, and so on. The more professional the site, the more professional you and your project looked. In today’s digital age, however, you can do all that and more on Facebook — for free.Creating a website is neither cheap nor easy. So let’s weigh the pros and cons between a Facebook page and a dedicated website.Image via Shutterstock.The CostIf you’ve never created a website before, let’s break down the very basics of the cost. We’re going to assume you’re using something like a wordpress.org hosting platform. (Learn the difference between .org and .com here). Using WordPress, you can find a ton of great short film or creative-oriented themes that you can build upon to create a unique website. While there is definitely a learning curve, you can pick up what you need to know relatively quickly. For your first purchase, you can also get the essentials at a discounted cost:Domain — (the website URL) $0.99 for a year’s registration, and around $10 after that.Hosting — $10 a month or at a discounted price for the year.WordPress.org theme — $40-$150+So for the basics, you’re looking at at least $150 for the initial year. If you’re working on a low-budget or no-budget film, that’s a substantial amount. This isn’t even taking into consideration the hours you have put in to get the site operational. Conversely, a Facebook page is free, and you can get one up and running in just ten minutes. There is no learning curve, there are no plug-ins to install, and there is no code to understand. (Although, you don’t own this page outright like you do a website.)Image via Shutterstock.If you want a completely new and unique website, you would have to hire a web designer, and this would very quickly enter into the thousands-of-dollars price range. Therefore, it’s usually wisest to stick with a theme and customize it to the point that it’s indistinguishable from the original — or at least hire a WordPress theme designer, which would be somewhat cheaper than building an entire website from the ground up.Social EngagementIf you decide to host the film or web-series on your own website rather than through YouTube, you have to consider the discoverability of your website as opposed to YouTube or even Facebook’s (not-so-good) video player. Webmasters spend months, even years, working on creating SEO-friendly pages and content to increase the page rankings of their website. If your site is solely going consist of a short film with no additional content, traffic will stop, and the site will ultimately fall in the search rankings.Image via Shutterstock.In the age of social media, we have to talk about the benefits of hosting your short film on Facebook rather than a website. Whether you build a website, create a Facebook page, or host the short film solely on Vimeo, at some point, the film will begin circulating on Facebook. However, the audience reach of people sharing your film’s Facebook page in comparison to your film’s website will be far greater. Facebook’s sharing algorithm strongly prefers content that keeps users on the site (more ad impressions = more revenue for Facebook). Therefore, if several audience members share your short film, then a lot more people will view the Facebook page than if the same group was sharing the link to your website.At this point, opting for a Facebook page should seem like the obvious choice. The nail in the coffin, however, is communicating with your audience at a moment’s notice.Image via Shutterstock.While you can configure WordPress on your phone, there’s nothing as easy as using the Facebook Pages app on a smartphone or tablet. You can essentially build a community around your film or web series on Facebook, and as communities tend to grow, so will your viewership. Unless you install forums on your website, which is tedious, this just wouldn’t be possible for your film’s web page.Ultimately, if you’re creating a low-budget short, setting up a website for promotional purposes isn’t feasible. It’s just going to be money that you’ll never get back. However, there is one situation wherein a website would reign supreme, and that’s if you’re selling merchandise. Currently, the Facebook merchandise feature is very fickle, although they are looking into making advancements. Therefore, if you think there is a market for merchandise and Blu-Rays, like RocketJump’s “Videogame Highschool,” it would likely be best to have a website for e-commerce.When to Build a WebsiteConversely to everything discussed above, when you have a body of work to showcase, it would then be in your interest to create a website. Followers and interested viewers can easily browse all your work on a single page — which is not possible on a Facebook page because you have to scroll through an endless sea of status updates.The verdict?Individual exhibition: Create a websiteShort film: Take advantage of Facebook’s fantastic page feature.AdvertisingIf you’ve already browsed your Facebook feed today, I’m sure you have already come across a sponsored post. These are paid promotions for posts from Facebook Pages that appear in the timeline of someone who has a similar interest. If you were to follow various Facebook Pages about the horror genre, vampires, and Dracula, and I promoted a post for my short film about Dracula’s Son and targeted those keywords, you would more than likely see the film appear in your timeline. While you can do almost the same thing with a website, the process is inherently a lot harder and requires the use of a third-party ad manager.Whether you love or loathe Facebook, it’s become an invaluable tool for filmmakers and creative types to promote their work, and I recommend you take advantage of it for your creative venture.Looking for more articles on using Facebook for promotion? Check out these:How to Properly Export Video for FacebookFacebook Hack: How to Optimize Your Video PostsCreate a Social Media Bumper and Lower Third for Your VideosExport Premiere Pro Projects Straight to Social MediaEngage Your Audience Faster With Adobe’s Social Publishing Panellast_img read more

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first_imgThe Donald Trump administration which will take charge on 20 January in the US has announced that it will push for legislative measures to curb misuse of H1-B and L1 work visas significantly used by Indian IT professionals. Related Itemslast_img

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first_imgA panoramic view of the Chocolate Hills”Did you manage to find anything on the net?” I asked with eyes wide shut. The query was directed to my elderly companion from Mumbai, seated across the narrow aisle on the ageing Airbus.”Not much. I hope they have spelt it right on the itinerary,” came the rejoinder.”Aaah… I guess it has to be all wait and watch in Tagbilaran,” I concluded, still adamant on keeping the world out of sight. What led things to such a pass was the turbulent weather which trailed us right from Manila. The lukewarm smiles of the cabin crew did little to alleviate my aerophobia and the only distraction I found was in the quaintness of the destination. A place called Tagbilaran that throws up only a handful of coherent results on the world’s most trusted search engine. And after exchanging notes with all eight travellers in the group, I found myself exactly where I started.The smooth road to the Chocolate HillsI ran through the sketchy details as the aircraft oscillated with alarming precision: Tagbilaran is the principal city of Bohol, a small island near the southern end of the Philippine archipelago. Less than two hours away from Manila, this lush island has come up as a promising ecotourism destination in the last decade.An announcement by the captain finally compelled me to open my eyes. “Look out of the window for the Chocolate Hills… we are flying above them now. But please don’t be disappointed that the hills are now green, not chocolate in colour…” the voice trailed off while some of us craned our necks to admire what the captain had dutifully drawn our attention to. And of course the hills were green. That shade of green one finds only in places where it rains heavily. The colour, quite frankly, was not important enough to whet my curiosity. What suitably captured my attention was the shape of the hills spread out on the scenic canvas below us. Gumdrops? Turtle shells? I searched for more descriptors even as we lost the pretty picture to a carpet of grey clouds.A cruise boat on the LobocThe grey notwithstanding, I felt resuscitated enough to look forward to the overnight sojourn at Tagbilaran. Walking through sheets of rain into the coach, I quickly devoted my rested eyes to the brochures I had collected from Cecilia, our guide in Bohol. While some in the group contemplated a lazy afternoon at the beachside resort, the rest of us filed back into the coach for a river cruise. It was on the way to the jetty that I first turned my eyes to the place I was in. To be honest, it looked nothing more than a tropical island village. Roads lined with coconut trees, modest huts breaking the monotony of velvety green rice fields, a chapel or two and a town square sporting a cluster of shops and eateries in haphazard arrangement.It was, however, this very unpretentiousness that distinguished Bohol. A world apart from the glitz and cacophony of Manila’s malls–of which we’d had our fill in the last three days–the island’s main attractions can be safely put at three: the tarsier, perhaps the world’s tiniest primate; the forests that guard Loboc river and the curious hills aforementioned. A tarsier stares back at the cameraIt took only a minute-long discussion to change our course of action. Instead of the jetty, we were headed for a tarsier reserve near Corella, about 15 km from Tagbilaran. As we drove up canopied roads, I stole a glance at the primate on the glossy brochure. A pair of bulging eyes, as glazed as glazed can get, stared right back. Though the seemingly cute, furry creature promised to be no bigger in size than half my palm, the brochures fittingly warned us against its nocturnal and predatory traits. In a matter of 15 minutes, I stood face to face with the first tarsier. It was everything that we were promised and described. It clung effortlessly to the slim tree stem while silently challenging everyone to an impromptu round of Who Blinks First. The stillness of its beady eyes led me to doubt if the creature was not a stuffed one. Perhaps reading my cynical mind, it turned its neck an inch to the right, drawing gasps of admiration from all. The path to the Chocolate Hills viewing gallery is skirted with greenery”Don’t use the flash,” the guide announced as we herded behind him to greet the second tarsier of the day. The tiny reserve, which takes barely half an hour to cover by foot, echoed with exclamatory sounds each time we spotted the primate. Back on the artificial hanging bridge across a pool in the reserve, I happily took stock of how many tarsiers I had captured in my camera. And with enough memory space for the cruise up the Loboc, I sprinted towards the coach.Squeals of excitement and strains of music from other cruise boats greeted us as we disembarked at the jetty. The river of green, aptly surrounded by rainforest-like greenery, seemed all we needed to erase the last trace of mall-weariness. And Loboc, not to forget the hospitable crew on board the modest vessel, lived up to every expectation. As I settled down to a lunch of Chicken Adobo and rice, the young singer on board triggered a pleasant journey down the retro lane. Harry Belafonte joined the cruise as did the Beatles and Frank Sinatra. Torn between the crooner’s magical voice and the captivating scenery upriver, I struggled to be fair to both. But it wasn’t long before the latter scored over the other. Leaning against the wooden railing, I trained my lens on the gigantic trees that lay splayed across the banks. The foliage was one of the thickest I’d seen and I soon regretted not carrying my binoculars for a closer look at the huts on stilts that lined the course.Young girls do a jig on a tourism raft on the LobocFriendly locals, dressed in bright pinks and blues, waved back even as they sipped coconut wine, the local brew, from bottles. And before long, the boat stood inches away from a mini cascade at the heart of the Loboc. We waited a good ten minutes, soaking in the quiet, tranquil beauty of the jungle and the river. Our next stop, on the river itself, was a couple of ‘tourism’ rafts. Anchored to the sides of the river, these rafts were anything but as boring as their names. These are in fact used by the local community as stage. So there was song, dance and smiles galore. Men and women strummed the banduria, the Philippine mandolin, with great gusto while teenagers danced with gay abandon. Happy with whatever we stuffed into the small wooden donation boxes, they saw us off with more music that still ring in my ears.The ride downstream was equally relaxing. What followed next was a dash to the Chocolate Hills, up snaking roads flanked by mammoth trees. The rain-sodden paths reminded of pleasant drives up north in India and I silently agreed as some of my companions compared the scenery to those in Indian hill stations. An hour after bidding farewell to Loboc, I said hello to the Chocolate Hills, for the second time that day. And what I saw before my eyes truly defied logic. A view of the dense forests that run along the course of the LobocThe Unesco website describes the wonder thus: “… the symmetrical and same-sized hills known as the Chocolate Hills… were the uplift of coral deposits and the result of the action of rainwater and erosion. The hills are located throughout the towns of Carmen, Batuan and Sagbayan and consist of about 1,776 mounds of the same general shape. During the dry season when precipitation in inadequate, the grass-covered hills turn chocolate brown, hence the name in reference to a branded confection.”From the viewing gallery–an easy climb of not more than 15 minutes–the mounds looked like cowrie shells scattered across a moss green carpet. I watched in amusement as tourists posed for souvenir photos against a hand-painted backdrop of the hills. While some rode a broom for the Potter-esque touch, others chose to jump across the screen. Farmlands melded with coconut plantations in creating the most alluring mosaic around the hills. And wild blooms, as bright as the costumes I found myself surrounded with, highlighted the natural abundance that Bohol was all about. That’s when pangs of regret gripped my heart. My time here was coming to an end. Thankfully, though, I could still look forward to dinner–at a bee farm, amid acres of greenery and all-organic. Just the tonic I need before I head to another city. Trailing the TarsierThis one is for the adventurous. If you want more than just spotting tarsier spotting in the Corella reserve, you can go for a 15-km hike on the Tarsier Trail. This walkway in the rolling hills, north of Tagbilaran, links the towns of Corella, Sikatuna and Loboc. Remember to carry good walking shoes, insect repellent and hat for the trek. For details, visit www.tarsierfoundation.orgFact fileGetting there: Fly Delhi/Mumbai-Bangkok-Manila on Thai Airways Fare: Rs. 35,000 approx. Tagbilaran, Bohol’s only airport, is connected to Manila.When to go: Early winter is the best time to visit. Avoid the rainy season.Plus saysStay: Bohol Tropics; Graham Avenue, Tagbilaran City; e-mail: info@boholtropics.comEat: Have at least one meal at the Bohol Bee Farm. Among other delicious items, the honey glazed chicken and the homemade avocado ice-cream are absolute must-trys. To book a table, visit www.boholbeefarm.comShop: Pick up a bottle of coconut wine or a banduria, the local mandolin, as souvenir.See: Go snorkeling or scuba diving off Panglao Island.Courtesy: Travel Plusadvertisementadvertisementadvertisementlast_img read more

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first_imgForget five, Mahendra Singh Dhoni used eight bowlers in 14.5 overs and still couldn’t prevent Australia from steamrolling India on Friday.And after the game, the captain defended his bowlers, saying the spell of rain that intervened at the start of the Australian innings made it impossible for them.”We did well in the last match (against England). The bowlers can’t be criticised for one bad game. The rain came at the wrong time, and once the ball started getting wet, there was no real grip for our spinners,” Dhoni said.”They (bowlers) couldn’t put any pressure on them. But we needed to bat better. We collapsed from 70 for two to 74 for five.” On Virender Sehwag’s omission from the XI, Dhoni said: “Once we decided on playing five bowlers, we had only two options. We have to go with horses for courses, and pick players on the basis of who is doing well in what format. But (given the defeat), it would be difficult for me to justify any decision.” Asked why Irfan Pathan was not given the new ball, Dhoni said it was due to a strategy to bowl spin at one end. “We had planned to have Ashwin bowling at one end, and Zak (Zaheer Khan) bowls well with the new ball,” he said.Aussie skipper George Bailey was proud of his boys.”It was impressive performance, set up by some good bowling. Pat Cummins was outstanding, the best we have seen him bowl in this tournament. We were probably behind the eight ball after six overs but came back very well,” Bailey said.”The absolute beauty of those two openers (Shane Watson and David Warner) is that when they are on song, there are no better hitters.”advertisementlast_img read more

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first_imgLeicester’s players are getting ready for another big party – and this time the fans are invited.Images of the Leicester squad celebrating its unlikely Premier League title triumph in Jamie Vardy’s house on Monday night were posted on social media and went global. Wes Morgan, Leicester’s captain, was filmed being spun around the kitchen floor while jubilant teammates danced around him, savoring one of the greatest-ever sporting stories.On Saturday, Morgan will have the honor of lifting the Premier League trophy in front of more than 30,000 fans at Leicester’s atmospheric King Power Stadium. Add Morgan’s name to the likes of Manchester United’s Roy Keane, Arsenal’s Tony Adams and Manchester City’s Vincent Kompany, some of the other inspirational captains to have got their hands on English soccer’s biggest prize.The Leicester story is rich with feel-good tales, notably Vardy’s rise from playing non-league soccer to being English champion in the space of five years. Morgan’s back-story is also one to gladden the heart, too.The 32-year-old center back was released by Notts County as a youngster and also had to start again in the non-leagues. He got another chance in the professional ranks, this time with Nottingham Forest in 2001, but was overweight and was worked extra hard by the club’s fitness staff.He became a mainstay of Forest’s team for a decade before moving to Leicester in 2012, and only got his first taste of top-flight soccer at the age of 30. He was error-prone in the early stages of last season but is now a commanding presence in the defense alongside fellow center back Robert Huth.advertisementLeicester will be presented with the trophy after Saturday’s match against Everton, which will be as much a celebration as a game of football.”I’m just going to try and hold back the tears,” Morgan said. “I think it’s going to be very emotional. It’s the biggest moment of my life. I can’t wait to lift the trophy and get my hands on it.”There’s another treat for Leicester fans on Saturday: Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli will sing before the game, honouring a commitment he gave to Ranieri in a conversation six weeks ago if Leicester went on to win the Premier League.Leicester, a 5,000-1 longshot for the title at the start of the season, has achieved the unthinkable with two games still to play. For many other teams in the Premier League, there’s still plenty at stake.last_img read more

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first_imgFormer India cricketer turned commentator Sanjay Manjrekar on Saturday clarified his on-air comments on Kieron Pollard saying he never called the West Indian “brainless”.While it was clear from the footage that Manjrekar never uttered the word “brainless” but Pollard’s twitter dig at the veteran cricketer saw lot of strong reaction on social media.(Kieron Pollard in Twitter outburst against Sanjay Manjrekar)Range?? and not brain?? or brainless?? – Video of @sanjaymanjrekars remarks on-air right here https://t.co/UjWSkFX5xz #IPL- IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 15, 2017″Said ‘Does he have the range (to bat higher up the order)?’ Using terms like ‘no brains’ or ‘brainless’ not my style. I can be critical but never insulting,” Manjrekar tweeted on Saturday.Said ” Does he have the range? ” Using terms like ‘no brains’ or ‘brainless’ not my style. I can be critical but never insulting.- Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) April 15, 2017″I would also encourage all those reacting to the Pollard issue to hear the footage & not just take my word for it,” he added.I would also encourage all those reacting to the Pollard issue to hear the footage & not just take my word for it.- Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) April 15, 2017Manjrekar’s comment on Pollard’s batting invited a strong response from the Mumbai Indians allrounder apart from being trolled on social media.Pollard had thought that the Indian called him “brainless” on air. (Muttiah Muralitharan slams Sanjay Manjrekar’s comments on Kieron Pollard)”Do you know how I get big so.. about BRAINLESS.. words are very powerful .. once it leaves u can’t take it back.. sins of parents fall on…advertisement”u feel any positive can come out of your mouth bcuz u get pay to talk u can continue with your verbal diarrhea …” Pollard had posted.The West Indian struck a match-winning 70 to script a sensational turnaround for the Mumbai Indians against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Friday.last_img read more

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first_imgNew Delhi, Nov 8 (PTI) As air pollution reached alarming levels in the national capital, major city hospitals witnessed a surge in the number of patients complaining of respiratory problems with doctors saying some may develop life-threatening conditions.While people were seen wearing masks to protect themselves outdoors, there was a spurt in fresh cases in hospitals and conditions of patients with history of asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) and cardio- vascular diseases deteriorated.”Patients have started coming to the OPDs with complaints of breathlessness, coughing, sneezing, tightness in chest, allergy and asthma complications. There is about 20 per cent rise in patients seeking treatment due to respiratory and cardiac issues,” said AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria, who is a also a renowned pulmonologist.He, however, said that N95 masks and air purifiers, whose sale has increased in the last few days, may not provide full-time protection and stressed on implementation of long- term measures to tackle the crisis.He also compared the situation in the national capital with the Great Smog of 1952 in London–a severe air pollution event which led to death of over 4,000 people–and said pollution is at such a severe level that patients with respiratory and cardiac problems may develop life-threatening conditions.”This is a silent killer,” he said. The centre-run Safdarjung hospital also witnessed an increase in such patients in its OPDs and casualties over the past two days, professor and head of pulmonary medicine at the hospital J C Suri said.He said the immediate effects are cough, throat infections and pneumonia, but in the long term the results could be disastrous as one could also develop lung cancer.advertisement”Elderly and children are more likely to develop infections and allergies due to smog and pollution. So they should avoid going out during the early morning and at dusk hours when the toxic level is at its peak,” Suri said.”Also, when pollution levels rise, the condition of those suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) or asthama or heart disease worsens,” he said.According to Vivek Nangia, Director and HOD, Pulmonology, Fortis Flt Lt Rajan Dhall Hospital, there has been a 25 per cent increase in OPD footfall in the past 24 hours of patients with various kinds of respiratory stress.”These comprise not only first time walk-in patients but also repeat patients. The situation is grim with the disease being more protracted due to the severely poor air quality.”This is leading to longer recovery times, more dependence on steroids, antibiotics and inhalers. The situation will continue till the pollution levels are brought under control,” Nangia said.Rajesh Chawla, Senior Consultant (Critical care, pulmonary and sleep disorders) at Indraprastha Apollo hospitals suggested that people avoid indulging in outdoor physical activity and wear good quality masks and keep their eyes, nose and mouth covered.Delhis air quality was at the seasons worst yesterday as a combined effect of smoke from stubble burning and moisture which turned the city into a “gas chamber” leaving people gasping and prompting authorities to announce closure of primary schools and a four-fold hike in parking fees among a series of sweeping measures.As a thick blanket of haze hung low over the city, visibility levels plunged, affecting flight and train operations. It permeated living rooms and even the underground metro stations in the city making it difficult to breathe, turning eyes watery and producing burning sensation.The Indian Medical Association said the capital was witnessing a “public health emergency” and appealed to the government to stop outdoor sports and other such activities in schools to protect the health of children. PTI PLB AARlast_img read more

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first_img‘I’ve had a beautiful wee life,” Eamonn Magee says soon after he has opened the front door in his dressing gown and cracked open his first beer of the day just after 11 on a Monday morning. The former boxer, who knocked down Ricky Hatton in 2002 and was a world champion when he won the WBU welterweight title, is cut and bruised from being attacked the night before.Magee’s left hand is also swollen with an obviously broken finger making him wince whenever it brushes against his can of Carling. Such pain, however, is fleeting compared with the deeper hurt that runs through him in Ardoyne, the tough Republican enclave of Belfast, where Magee’s life has been scarred by violent sectarianism, tragedy and alcoholism.“I wouldn’t change a thing,” Magee says as he takes another slug of warm beer. His battered, 46‑year‑old face crinkles and the lump under his left eye looks even more like a purple mouse as he echoes: “I’ve still had a wee beautiful life.”Magee is in trouble again because he and the writer Paul Gibson have produced a raw and riveting book which opens like this: “A book? Listen, I’ve been beaten with baseball bats, I’ve had my throat slashed, I’ve been kidnapped and exiled out of the country. I’ve been shot twice, I’ve been in prison and my son’s just been stabbed to death. Amongst all that, I was the welterweight champion of the world while drinking the bar dry and doing enough coke to kill a small horse every night. My life’s not a book. It’s a fucking movie script.” … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Support The Guardian Facebook Since you’re here… Share on Pinterest interviews Yet it’s hard to feel serene now. Each time Magee’s phone interrupts us, with its Who Let The Dogs Out? ringtone, I scan his beaten-up face, wondering if it’s a call to tell him a paramilitary gunman is on his way. I don’t feel too hopeful at the prospect of Magee, in his dressing gown, and I talking our way out of trouble.“Why the hell would you want to shoot me?” Magee asks. “I didn’t do anything wrong.”As a way of changing the subject I point to his beer. He has been drinking since he was nine and the book makes clear he is a high‑functioning alcoholic but does he ever wish he could kick the bottle?“I tried rehab,” he eventually says, pausing again with comic timing before breaking into the Amy Winehouse song. “And I said, ‘No, no, no!’”I can’t help laughing with him before Magee continues. “I really did go to rehab and the only thing that fucked me up was that you’re not allowed TV. Not having TV was worse than no drink. You’re better off doing six months in jail.”Beneath all his scars the internal wounds have not healed. Magee tells a chilling story of how, during internment raids in the 1970s, he and his three brothers would be turned out of the two beds they shared. British soldiers marched them downstairs and they had to kneel, hands behind their heads, while their photographs were taken for no apparent reason.“Oh fuck, where are we starting?” Magee says as he remembers the impact that internment, detention without trial, had on Catholic families in the Troubles. “My dad was a through‑and‑through Republican and had a proper understanding of what the war was about. It wasn’t about bothering Protestants. The war was against the British army in Ireland. But my dad was a smashing man. The Brits imprisoned him in Long Kesh and the Irish Republicans had a bus run because in them days people couldn’t afford anything else. So we would take the bus up to Long Kesh. I was a wee nuisance and carried in letters which we’d written on cigarette papers. I folded them and hid them under my tongue.” Hatton sealed a close decision but Magee won the vacant WBU welterweight title by beating a journeyman in Jimmy Vincent in December 2003. He retained his world title until May 2006 but he only had two fights in that troubled time. Magee had fallen out with a respected figure in Republican circles and, in a gruesome attack in 2004, his left leg was clubbed to a pulp. He suffered a compound fracture of his tibia and fibia, a shattered knee, and a punctured lung. They called him the Miracle Man when he returned to the ring.Magee’s legs stick out of his dressing gown and the lumps and scars provide graphic proof of that terrible beating. “It still gives me pain,” he says, balancing a beer on his knee as he studies his left leg. “The doctor thought I’d never walk again but I was in the gym a year later.”I suggest we leave the house and go for a walk around Magee’s neighbourhood. Rather than waiting inside for a knock on the door, we will be less exposed to any stray visitors. Magee agrees but, first, we remember his son who was stabbed to death in May 2015 – by the jealous ex-husband of his girlfriend. Eamonn Jr was so different to him, studying engineering at university while also boxing, and the grief becomes too much. Magee starts to cry, a muffled ache falling from his mouth as tears roll down his face.I say how sorry I am and Magee squeezes my hand only to curse the pain in his broken finger, before wiping his eyes. We talk about his book and, of the title, he says: “The Lost Soul was beautiful. My mother called me a lost soul and she was right.”Magee goes upstairs to get dressed. When he returns, wearing a hat straight out of Peaky Blinders, he almost looks dapper. The old fighter sinks the dregs of his beer. We walk outside and Magee takes me on a tour of the murals. Afterwards he hugs me in the street, calling me a gentleman and a scholar, even if I can’t stay for a lunchtime drink. Magee lifts his broken hand in a stately wave as my taxi drives away. I check my recording in the back of the cab and Magee’s ghostly voice echoes again as we drive through Belfast: “I’ve seen things not many people have seen but if they hadn’t happened I wouldn’t be the man I am today. So I wouldn’t change a thing. I’m more than happy with my wee life.”The Lost Soul of Eamonn Magee by Paul Gibson is available at www.guardianbookshop.com Twitter Eamonn Magee at his mother’s home which still contains his boxing trophies in his former bedroom. Twitter Facebook Sign up to The Recap, our weekly email of editors’ picks. The book has caused strife and he says he has been attacked on successive nights in Ardoyne. Exception has been taken to Magee detailing many horrendous incidents, stretching from Republican politics and sectarian violence to drink and drugs, and he shakes his head when I ask how he is feeling. “It’s more embarrassing when I’m fighting,” he says softly, licking his cracked lips. “Last night I was even talking to him while defending myself. I’m punching him and saying: ‘Fuck sake, what’s this about?’”Magee waves his bust hand at me. “Who do you think came out the better?”His husky laugh fades. “What is it? Pick on Magee week? I’m training fighters in the gym every day and one thing annoys me. We’ve got a new gym on the way and the guys that own the building don’t want me near the place. Because of what’s been in the papers [a tabloid ran a sensationalised book extract last weekend], and because of me telling the truth, they’re scared of people coming to shoot me dead. They say: ‘What happens if they shoot somebody else as well?’”Will Magee return to the gym? “I’m busy this week but back next Monday,” he says, defiantly.Could someone really walk in and shoot him? “What’s keeping them?” Magee says with a dark chuckle. “It’s not as if they don’t know where I live.”I had felt calm when I took the call which told me about Magee’s latest scrap. My mood remained the same in the cab rumbling through the familiar streets of Belfast, passing the old Republican murals and the high Peace Walls which still separate Catholic and Protestant communities. I even felt OK when, after I rang the bell, two pit bulls next door leapt at the fence, barking fiercely. “They’re wee nippers,” their owner warned as he pulled the dogs away. Share on Facebook Facebook Pinterest I tried rehab and I said no, no, no! Not having TV was worse than no drink’Eamonn Magee Share on LinkedIn Twitter Pinterest Share on WhatsApp “If my dad hadn’t stepped in they were talking about me getting the six-pack – elbows, knees and ankle. But my father convinced them to only give me one bullet.”How did Magee feel waiting for the knock on the door before he took a bullet in his calf? He shrugs. “It had to be dealt with. I knew it was going to be a flesh wound so hurry the fuck up. When he took me down an alleyway I asked: ‘What it’s like getting shot?’ He said: ‘Like a hot poker going in your leg.’”Who Let The Dogs Out? thumps again on cue. Magee shuts down his phone and I say it’s incredible he still won the national title a few months later. “I won but there was blood streaming down my leg from the gunshot wound.”Magee is a hard and sometimes violent man but between the ropes he was a slick southpaw who boxed with artistry. “I never bullied anybody in my life, so you can rephrase that,” he says quietly when I mention his violent infamy. “I went to the gym because I’m the baby of four and my brothers all were boxers. After a couple of years I’d see wee openings. Bing, bang. Soon as I started learning how to hit him before he hits me it was a hell of a lot easier.”Magee’s best year in the ring was in 2002 when he knocked out Jon Thaxton, a very good pro, to secure a crack at Hatton’s WBU light-welterweight title. He still drank six beers every Saturday night while training. “It was a wee prize at the end of the week but I was well prepared for Thaxton. With the Hatton camp, life was a party.”He would drive around town late at night, visiting bars and clubs, with Magee v Hatton logos splashed across his Range Rover. Three senior IRA men paid him a visit. “I don’t know why they gave me another warning. I wasn’t doing anything wrong apart from drinking and driving – and that’s nothing to do with the IRA. They told me to concentrate on training and stop partying. The main guy shook my hand and said: ‘Best of luck when you fight Ricky.’”On the night of the fight, Magee was seen smoking a cigarette outside the Manchester arena. He smiles at my bemusement. “I started smoking aged 11 so in a fight, at the end of each round, I’d be coughing [Magee imitates a charming phlegm‑ridden cough]. Whatever came out of my mouth would have knocked you out. But a smoke before a fight opened my lungs.”It clearly worked in the Hatton fight because, in round one, Magee knocked down his celebrated opponent. “It was the worst punch I ever threw because I landed it after 40 seconds. Bam! But he’s 10 years my junior so of course he’s getting up when still so fresh. I wish I’d landed that punch later.” Share on Messenger Topics Pinterest Magee opens his mouth to show me how he did it but, sitting in his dead father’s house, I’m upset by his memory of how, once his dad had fallen out with the IRA and been banished to England, he snuck back into Ardoyne and was hidden away in his attic. Magee, his mum, Isobel, and his brothers lived in fear of his dad being discovered. They hid him in the attic for 18 months – which contributed to Magee Sr’s acute depression and alcoholism.“I didn’t get over that,” Magee says. “My mum would have a wee drink and dad would sit in there all night. I’d go in and slip him a tin or a fag. Nobody ever knew he was there.”Later, when Magee had become one of the most accomplished amateur boxers in Ireland, his father saved his career. Magee had joined the IRA’s youth wing because he loved the mayhem of rioting but he also began taking and dealing drugs. An IRA punishment shooting usually entailed being shot in the kneecap or worse but his dad reminded the paramilitaries that Eamonn was fighting in the Irish championships. Eamonn Magee bears the bruises from being attacked the night before his meeting with Donald McRae. All portrait photographs: Paul McErlane/Guardian Share via Email Eamonn Magee on the defensive against Ricky Hatton during the WBU light welterweight title fight in Manchester, in June 2002. Hatton won on points. Photograph: Gareth Copley/PA Share on Twitter Reuse this contentlast_img read more

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first_imgTransfers Arsenal January transfer news LIVE: Gunners eye Martial exchange deal Goal Last updated 1 year ago 05:05 1/13/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Transfers Arsenal Premier League Goal brings you all the latest news, rumours and deals related to the Gunners as the January transfer window heats up Arsenal want Martial in Alexis dealArsenal want Anthony Martial included in any deal that would take Alexis Sanchez to Manchester United, according to the  Daily Star .Gunners boss Arsene Wenger wants a replacement before he allows Alexis to leave, and he is hopeful Martial can be that player.United are reluctant to let Martial go, however, though they would be willing to include Chris Smalling in the deal should Arsenal be keen on the centre-back. Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player No Alexis bidding war, says WengerAlexis SanchezArsene Wenger has said there is no bidding war between Manchester City and Manchester United over Alexis Sanchez.The Frenchman was tightlipped over the future of the Chile international but did not deny that approaches had been made.Get the full story right here on Goal! Mourinho refuses to rule out Alexis moveJose Mourinho Manchester United SouthamptonManchester United manager Jose Mourinho is not ruling out the possibility of a move for Alexis Sanchez.The Arsenal forward has been widely expected to join Manchester City, but the Red Devils have reportedly swooped in with a late move for the 29-year-old. Get the full story right here on Goal!​ Did Benzema snub Arsenal & Chelsea?Karim Benzema Real MadridKarim Benzema turned down two offers to leave Real Madrid in the summer, with Arsenal and Chelsea having been interested, according to Don Balon .The Frenchman apparently has no interest in moving to England and wants to remain with the Liga giants, despite frequent links with Tottenham striker Harry Kane.Benzema has Arsenal offerKarim Benzema Real MadridKarim Benzema has an offer on the table from Arsenal who want the forward to replace Alexis Sanchez, according to Diario Gol .The price for the Frenchman is still a sticking point, with Real demanding at least £53m for the 30-year-old. Arsene Wenger is only willing to go to £36m for his services. Spurs won’t give up on MalcomMalcom BordeauxTottenham have not given up hope of beating Arsenal and Manchester United to the signing of Bordeaux sensation Malcom, reports UOL Esporte .Arsenal have held talks with Malcom’s representatives this week over a potential January deal as Arsene Wenger searches for a replacement for Manchester City target Alexis Sanchez.United are also set to make a £40 million bid for the Brazilian in January , but Spurs remain keen to capture the winger, even if Arsenal are favourites to agree a deal.Mahrez begins Liverpool talksRiyad Mahrez, Leicester CityLeicester winger Riyad Mahrez has opened talks with Liverpool over a potential January move to Anfield, the Express reports.The Reds are looking to bolster their ranks after losing Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona and see the Algeria international as a suitable option.It is claimed that Mahrez is open to the idea of playing under Jurgen Klopp although would prefer a move to Arsenal, with whom there has been no contact thus far.Man City still hopeful on AlexisAlexis Sanchez Arsenal 2017Manchester City are still hopeful of signing Alexis Sanchez in January, despite a supposed approach from Manchester United, Goal understands.The Blues’ plans for Alexis remain unchanged, despite news of rival interest emerging on Thursday, and the club are also believed to be working on at least one other deal.Read the full story on an intriguing transfer tale here. United’s new Cantona or Van Persie?Cantona1 croppedAlexis Sanchez could help Manchester United win trophies if he decides to snub Manchester City for Jose Mourinho’s men, with former Red Devils star Phil Neville tipping the Arsenal forward to make a similar impact to Eric Cantona and Robin van Persie at Old Trafford.Sanchez had been expected to join former Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola at runaway Premier League leaders City in January after his protracted move to the Etihad Stadium fell through during the previous transfer window, but the Red Devils have now joined the chase for his signature.See what Neville has had to say with Goal’s full story. Man Utd too late to sign AlexisAlexis Sanchez Arsenal v LiverpoolManchester United are too late in their attempt to beat Manchester City to the signing of Alexis Sanchez, according to the Daily Express .The Red Devils reportedly reached out to Arsenal to see if a £25 million bid would see the forward turn his back on Man City, who have offered £20m.But City remain favourites to sign the Chile international as he has his heart set on a move to the Etihad Stadium because of his experience playing under Pep Guardiola at Barcelona.Premier League giants compete for WilmotJurgen Klopp LiverpoolLiverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham are interested in Stevenage defender Ben Wilmot, ESPNFC reports.All four clubs sent scouts to evaluate the 18-year-old centre-back during Stevenage’s FA Cup match against Reading last weekend.Coquelin: I should’ve left Arsenal earlierFrancis Coquelin ArsenalFrancis Coquelin says that he “almost regrets” not taking the chance to leave Arsenal sooner after completing a move to La Liga side Valencia on Thursday. His displays during the 2016-17 season drew interest over the summer, but the 26-year-old wanted to stay and fight for his place under Arsene Wenger.Read the full story on Goal! Mahrez will snub Arsenal transfer – WiseRiyad Mahrez Leicester CityRiyad Mahrez would not be interested in a move to Arsenal, according to former Chelsea midfielder Dennis Wise.“I think there would be other teams that Mahrez would look at and think he’s capable of going into, teams that are in a better position than Arsenal.”Read the full story right here on Goal! Arsenal urged to move for EvansJonny Evans West BromFormer Arsenal defender Martin Keown has urged the Gunners to bid for West Brom defender Jonny Evans, saying the Northern Ireland centre-back would be a perfect fit at the Emirates. The 30-year-old former Manchester United man has drawn interest from some of the Premier League’s top clubs with his performances at The Hawthorns. Get the full story here on Goal!last_img read more

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first_imgST. JOHN’S, N.L. — A Newfoundland beekeeper who intended to run as a Marijuana Party candidate in this month’s federal election had his hopes dashed when he realized too late that he was missing necessary paperwork.Brendan Quinlan said a series of miscommunications left him scrambling at the last minute, and he missed a Sept. 30 deadline to file the paperwork needed to make his candidacy official with Elections Canada.“I found out basically everything too late,” Quinlan said from his home in Holyrood, N.L.After speaking with a Marijuana Party organizer to start the process, Quinlan saw his named listed in the newspaper as an interested candidate and thought he had done all the necessary work.He learned too late that there were more forms to complete and signatures to collect, leaving him and his passionate — but politically green — volunteers with little time to learn the campaigning ropes.Quinlan said he believes the odds are stacked against inexperienced candidates running for smaller parties with little financial and logistical support.“If you’ve got no one to show you the way … it’s quite difficult,” Quinlan said.Blair Longley, the leader and chief agent of the Marijuana Party, said he never spoke to Quinlan personally before the nomination deadline, and instructions on how to set up a campaign slipped through the cracks.There has been a relatively low follow-through rate for interested candidates since the Marijuana Party’s establishment in 2000, Longley said: about 75 per cent of those who express interest don’t end up on the ballot.Longley said his decentralized party runs on a “broken shoestring budget” and prospective candidates are often overwhelmed by the work it takes to get their campaigns off the ground.The Marijuana Party lost a significant portion of its membership in the early 2000s to larger political parties, including founder Marc-Boris St-Maurice, who left to join the Liberal party. Longley became leader in 2004 when he was the only person willing to step up.With its membership numbers gutted and cannabis officially legalized last October by the federal Liberal government, the future of the Marijuana Party is hazy. But the party has four candidates in the running this year.Longley said legalization in its current form does not reflect the long-held vision of the Marijuana Party, arguing, among other things, that new regulations continue to criminalize cannabis users through impaired driving laws.He also takes issue with the fact that federal government has not apologized for cannabis prohibition, and small cannabis producers and consumers are still not able to get ahead in a system that benefits larger producers.Longley is realistic about his party’s chances. He said he does the minimum necessary to keep the party registered, but it gets harder every time.Still, he said the Marijuana Party will hang on as long as possible as a small statement of opposition to what he calls “bogus legalization.”“From my point of view, it’s better to do something than nothing, even if what you can actually do is next to nothing,” he said.For Quinlan, his campaign’s failure to launch has not diminished his passion for policies such as expunging the criminal records of people with cannabis-related convictions and empowering small farmers.He said he’s learned from the experience and plans to run in the next election as a candidate in Newfoundland and Labrador’s Avalon riding.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 4, 2019.Holly McKenzie-Sutter, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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first_imgIt’s nice to have you back, Mike Ross.In a new 30-second teaser touting the ninth and final season of Suits, Patrick J. Adams returns to his old haunts after being away for one calendar year. And though it’s felt like forever since Mike and his mentor, Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht), were reeling off legal wins at the law firm, it’s nice to have the pair back together again. Advertisement Facebook “I always have time for an old friend,” Mike says, as he shakes Harvey’s hand.  We have seriously missed this bromance!So what whisks Mike away from Seattle where he’s, presumably, still happily married to Rachel Zane (Meghan Markle) and helping those in legal need at their own firm? A case that pits Mike against Harvey and Samantha Wheeler (Katherine Heigl). Patrick J. Adams (Photo courtesy of USA Network) Advertisementcenter_img LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

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first_img“The LNG project has demonstrated some clear, positive steps around consultation,” Singh said. “There was an exhaustive and pretty thorough consultation around Indigenous communities, First Nations communities and elected bands and chiefs.”“There are people standing up and defending their land who have the right to express those concerns, and there’s still ongoing work that needs be addressed before this project moves ahead.”Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs oppose a Coastal GasLink pipeline that would lead to LNG Canada’s export terminal in Kitimat. RCMP arrested 14 people at a blockade last month, sparking national protests.Police later reached a deal with the chiefs to allow pipeline work to continue.Coastal GasLink has signed agreements with all 20 elected First Nations bands along the pipeline.Singh has tried to project unity in the party while facing internal criticism for poor fundraising and low support in the polls. If he wins the byelection Monday and remains leader, he is likely to encounter calls from his caucus for a tougher stance on climate change. BURNABY, B.C. – Federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh is facing calls from within the party for a stronger stance on climate change as he defends his support of the $40-billion LNG Canada project in northern British Columbia.Svend Robinson, the New Democrat candidate in Burnaby North-Seymour in the general election, opposes any new oil and gas infrastructure. Julia Sanchez, running for the party in a byelection in Outremont in Montreal, disapproves of the use of public funds for such projects.Singh is seeking his first seat in Parliament in a byelection in Burnaby South. The leader opposes the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion that would increase tanker traffic departing from the Metro Vancouver city, but he approves of liquefied natural gas pipeline and export facility. Robinson said he returned to politics after 15 years because of the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the United Nations panel that assesses scientific evidence on global warming. The report concluded temperatures were likely to rise 1.5 C above pre-industrial levels between 2030 and 2052 unless drastic action is taken.“The most important issue facing our planet and our country today is climate change. We have to effectively put the country on the same kind of wartime footing that we did at the time of the last world war to fight climate change,” Robinson said.“If we are to do that, there can be no new oil and gas infrastructure.”He said his specific concerns about LNG Canada include the increase in emissions associated with the project, the environmental impact of fracking and the importance of respect for hereditary Indigenous leadership.center_img Robinson would not say if he tried to change Singh’s mind on the project. But he said he hopes to influence the NDP’s fall election platform, and if he wins a seat, he will continue to bring his position forward around the caucus table.Julia Sanchez said climate is the key issue she hears about on the doorstep while campaigning in Outremont, the riding previously held by former NDP leader Thomas Mulcair.She has proposed a vision she calls the “Great Transition,” which urges an end to subsidies for the oil and gas industry and for public investment in new infrastructure. It also recommends more ambitious greenhouse gas emissions targets.Sanchez said the NDP has made progress on its position on climate change over the past two years, but the party could go further. She noted LNG Canada benefits from $275 million in federal funding.“I have a hard time seeing how we can justify making massive investments in projects in the oil and gas industry,” she said. “That means we’re not doing investments in renewable energy or … in supporting the transition of workers from the oil and gas industry to other industries.”LNG Canada spokeswoman Susannah Pierce said the project has been designed to achieve the lowest greenhouse gas emissions of any large-scale liquefied natural gas facility in the world, about 50 percent lower than the average facility.The UN report models pathways to keep global warming to 1.5 or 2 degrees C, including one scenario that says natural gas use must grow while coal declines, Pierce said in a statement.“Natural gas is clearly a part of the solution, as is natural gas shipped as LNG to Asia from B.C.,” Pierce said.Simon Donner, a geography professor and climate-change expert at the University of B.C., said LNG Canada’s emissions represent a fraction of Canada’s 2030 target. But the project would operate for decades, making it harder for the country to meet longer-term targets, he said.Singh has also faced pushback from the public for his support of LNG Canada. A protester recently interrupted a debate in Burnaby South to accuse Singh of “turning his back on Aboriginal people,” and the leader calmly listened and offered to speak with the man after the event.Singh likely supports the project to align himself with the province’s minority NDP government, said Richard Johnston, a University of B.C. political science professor.“He needs his friends,” Johnston said. “It means that the government of B.C. can be unembarrassed in supporting him in his attempt to get elected to Parliament.”last_img read more

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first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – JD Knives and Custom Works and Northern Hydrographics FSJ have come together to raise funds to support the Fort St. John Charitable Society(FSJFFCS).Through the collection of donations, each $20.00 gives you an opportunity to choose one of two custom gifts while raising money to help support families throughout the Peace Region needing assistance covering medical costs and travel expenses.JD Knives and Custom Works are offering a Custom San Mai JD Bird & Trout 6” knife with the retail value of $700 and an (FSJFFCS) challenge coin. Each suggested entry of $20.00 will enter your name in the draw.The draw date will be Tuesday, May 21, 2019To view JD Knives and Custom Works; CLICK HERETo view Northern Hydrographics FSJ; CLICK HERE Northern Hydrographics FSJ is offering a customized firefighters helmet valued at over $500.Donations can be made in person to the following locations;JD Knives & Custom WorksUnit 8 10404 101 ave.Fort St. John, BCNorthern HydrographicsUnit 9 10404 101 ave.Fort St. John, BCFort St. John Fire Department9312 93 Ave, Fort St John, BCOr by E-transfers which can be sent to jdknives.donations@gmail.com with the password: “knife”last_img read more

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18 July 2007The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reports that a predicted decline in the rate of cereal production this year in many low-income food-deficit countries (LIFDCs) could lead to a tighter food supply situation as 28 countries to suffer serious food shortages. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reports that a predicted decline in the rate of cereal production this year in many low-income food-deficit countries (LIFDCs) could lead to a tighter food supply situation as 28 countries to suffer serious food shortages.After four successive years of relatively strong growth, cereal production in many LIFDCs is expected to rise by just over 1 per cent in 2007, which exceeds the rate of population growth, says the latest FAO Crop Prospects and Food Situation report. Moreover, if the largest producers – China and India – are excluded, overall cereal output of the rest of LIFDCs is forecasted to decline slightly from last year.Continued high international prices are also exacerbating the problem, the agency notes.Countries which have experienced harsh droughts or irregular periods of rain are facing reduced crop yields. Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Lesotho have reported their worst main season harvests ever; compared to last year, the production of maize – the main staple crop in these countries – will drop by 50 per cent on average. Meanwhile in Morocco, the cereal crop is estimated at just one-quarter of what it was last year. On the other hand, the prospects for this year’s crop yields are favourable in other areas, according to the report.In Asia, forecasts for coarse grain and rice crops are reported to be generally favourable thanks to the onset of seasonal rains. Several Southern African countries are reporting record or above-average harvests, and apart from Somalia, most East African countries estimate increased output.The report classifies 28 countries as requiring external assistance to overcome food shortages.In one of these countries, Nepal, a major obstacle in the face of providing relief for providing food assistance is the limited access to vulnerable populations. A total of 42 out of the Himalayan country’s 75 districts are estimated to be food deficient, with chronic and widespread food insecurity prevailing in some mountain regions.Violence and subsequent security problems – in such countries as Sudan, Somalia and Iraq – have adversely impacted food security. In Iraq, over 1.8 million people have been internally displaced while more than two million have fled the country, according to humanitarian agencies.The other countries on the FAO’s list include Eritrea, Ethiopia, Mauritania, Sierra Leone, Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Afghanistan, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Timor-Leste and Bolivia. read more

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The joint United Nations-African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur (UNAMID) today reported that the security situation in the war-torn western Sudanese region was calm although banditry remains a problem. UNAMID said the most recent incident involved a robbery yesterday of a house shared by mission staff in El Fasher, the capital of North Darfur, where thieves made off with electronics and cash, said UN spokesperson Michele Montas.Ms. Montas added that other acts of banditry have been reported in and around makeshift camps sheltering internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Darfur, where an estimated 300,000 people have been killed and another 2.7 million forced from their homes since violence erupted in 2003, pitting rebels against Government forces and their allied Janjaweed militiamen.In a report to the Security Council earlier this month, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned armed clashes which erupted in North Darfur in recent months, initiated by elements of the rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) against the Sudan Liberation Army/Minni Minawi (SLA/MM), a pro-Government faction, supported by the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF). Mr. Ban said a 24 May attack on the SAF Umm Baru camp left at least 53 people seriously injured, needing evacuation for medical treatment. In addition, around 350 civilians – mainly women, children and the elderly – as well as 100 unarmed Sudanese soldiers and members of the SLA/MM took refuge at the UN base near the scene of the violence.UNAMID, currently at 68 per cent of full deployment with some 13,455 uniformed personnel, was established by the Security Council in 2007 to protect civilians in Darfur. 24 June 2009The joint United Nations-African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur (UNAMID) today reported that the security situation in the war-torn western Sudanese region was calm although banditry remains a problem. read more

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In his final address to the Security Council, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative Atul Khare said that President José Ramos-Horta and other leaders of Timor-Leste do not wish to be continually dependent on the deployment of UN police units in their country.“I also believe that the long-term sustainability of Timor-Leste’s efforts depends on the ability of its own institutions to operate in a democratic, responsible and effective manner,” said Mr. Khare, who heads the UN Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT). “At every step of the way, UNMIT and the UN country team have consciously endeavoured to work in a manner that enhances the capacity and credibility of the institutions of this young nation,” said Mr. Khare.The Special Representative noted, however, that the success in supporting security forces instead of taking the lead in law enforcement means that progress depends on the rate of which local institutions develop, which can also include setbacks.“The touchstone for success in Timor-Leste is not whether crises occur, but how future crises are met and resolved,” said Mr. Khare. “The goal should be to ensure that they are handled in a responsible manner that does not threaten the State, and instead provide an opportunity for enhanced social cohesion and development.”He said that the future presence and role of the international security forces needs to be carefully taken into account in planning any modification of the composition and size of UNMIT.Current UNMIT strength stands at 1,578 police officers, 33 military personnel, around 1,200 international and local civilian staff and 195 UN Volunteers.“The United Nations and the Government of Timor-Leste should jointly agree on the criteria for each step in the process of downsizing the UNMIT police,” said Mr. Khare. “It should be clearly agreed with the authorities, in advance of each stage, what support the UN will and will not provide.”The UN presence in Timor-Leste began in 1999 when it conducted a “popular consultation” which saw a huge turnout of Timorese overwhelmingly vote for independence over autonomy within Indonesia. The eventual result was the birth of the State, but 1,500 to 2,000 people were killed in clashes in the immediate aftermath of the declaration.UNMIT received its mandate to restore public safety in the wake of an eruption of violence in 2006 – attributed to differences between eastern and western regions of the country – when 600 striking soldiers were fired, and the ensuing hostilities claimed dozens of lives and drove 155,000 people, or 15 per cent of the total population, from their homes.In his most recent report on UNMIT earlier this month, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stressed that the causes underlying the 2006 crisis, including the rising level of poverty, persistent unemployment, the lack of an effective land and property regime, and under-strength justice and security sectors, could still destabilize the country. 23 October 2009Any drawdown of international security forces in Timor-Leste should proceed with caution, the top United Nations envoy to the South Pacific nation warned today ahead of UN and Government reviews of the world body’s peacekeeping presence in the fledgling country. read more

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Do Over Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman Rematch Set

The rematch between Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman for the UFC middleweight title will be held Dec. 28 at MGM Grand Garden in Las Vegas as the main event of UFC 168. Dana White made the announcement live on ESPN’s Sports Center just moments after the deal closed.Chris Weidman knocked, Silva, the greatest mixed martial artist in the history of the sport, out cold in 2012. Weidman caught Silva with a hard left hook straight to the chin during one of Silva’s infamous cocky moments in the octagon.The day after the fight at the post-fight news conference, Weidman said that he wanted the rematch. He referred to the rematch as “a done deal.”Watch the blow that knocked Silva out cold in the video above.

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first_imgThe last few years have seen a raft of changes in the education system, not least for GCSE qualifications. While some of these have already been implemented, reforms will continue for the next few years, all the way up to 2020 when current plans will see all GCSE students take the English Baccalaureate (EBacc). Exam hall From course content, to performance measures and grading – here are the changes parents and pupils should expect to see over the next few years.There seems to have been a lot of changes already, what have I missed?The introduction of linear GCSEs in September 2012 effectively prevented students from retaking the same test twice in one year. This reform addressed the widespread ‘resit culture’, which often saw pupils sitting units repeatedly until they had achieved the desired grade.Many welcomed this move to abolish the January and March exams, arguing that modular assessment contributed to grade inflation, encouraged ‘teaching to the test’, and didn’t give an accurate picture of ability.New league tables were also introduced that only took into account a pupil’s first attempt at an exam, meaning there was less incentive for schools to enter pupils early for GCSEs.Haven’t there been changes to subjects as well?So far, exam awarding bodies have strengthened qualifications in geography, history and English.In terms of English language, marks awarded for teacher-assessed speaking and listening exercises were scrapped, while marks for written papers became worth 60 per cent of pupils’ overall grade, compared with 40 per cent previously.Additionally, from January 2013, a small number of additional marks were introduced to reflect the quality of spelling, punctuation and grammar in written exams. This amounted to 5 per cent of overall marks in English literature, history, religious studies and geography papers.What’s the new grading system?New GCSEs in English language, English literature and maths were launched in September 2015 in schools in England, with the first qualifications due to be awarded in August 2017. Courses will be taken over the full two years, rather than by modular assessment.One of the main differences with these GCSEs will be the grading system. No longer will these qualifications be graded A/B/C, students will – in 2017 – receive a grade between 1-9, with 9 being the highest grade awarded.It is thought that roughly the same number of students will achieve a grade 4 and above as currently achieve a grade C and above, while the top 20 per cent of those who get a grade 7 and above, will get a grade 9.Grade 5 – equivalent to a low B or high C – will be the new benchmark for a “good pass” required by league tables, where currently the required grade is C. This, the Government says, will bring the country in line with some of the top performing education systems around the world.It is hoped that this new grading will introduce greater differentiation between high performing students and will also mark out the new GCSEs from their older counterparts.In 2017, students collecting their results will received a mixture of the old style grades and the new numerical system. By 2019, all pupils will be graded with a 1-9.  What will the new GCSEs entail?Maths: From September 2015, pupils will be expected to learn key formulae by heart, while the syllabus will also cover proportion, ratio and “real-world problems” including financial mathematics.There will also be a greater emphasis on non-calculator work. Where previously, as little as 25 per cent of exam papers were “non calculator”, new GCSEs will need to include between a third and 50 per cent.Documents published in 2014 also revealed that the exams would be lengthened to cover the extra content, with pupils set to sit three test papers over four-and-a-half hours.English language: Students will be required to read a greater range of challenging literature and non-fiction texts from a variety of genres and time periods – with reading and writing being equally weighted in the overall grades. There will be greater emphasis on the correct use of spelling, punctuation and grammar.English literature: While no longer compulsory (and not a part of the EBacc performance measure), pupils who take the subject will have to assess a 19th century novel, a Shakespeare play, a selection of poetry since 1789 and a British fiction or drama from 1914 onwards. There will also be emphasis on ‘unseen texts’ in the exam.What about the Ebacc?For those who don’t know, the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) is a performance measure that allows the public to see how many pupils achieve a grade C or above (a “good pass”) in core academic disciplines, including English, maths, the sciences, history or geography and a language.In June 2015, the Government announced plans to make sure all school pupils study the Ebacc to GCSE. This will be implemented for all pupils starting Year 7 in 2015, who will take their GCSEs in 2020.I’ve heard people mention Progress 8, does this concern me?Realistically, Progress 8 will only concern you if you’re a teacher, the Government, or if you’re looking at league tables. It is a new performance measure which aims to compare the progress of pupils over eight key subjects.It will, in fact, be the Department for Education’s headline performance measure when tables are published for GCSE results in January 2017, alongside traditional measures including; the percentage of pupils obtaining five A* to C grades and the percentage of pupils obtaining the EBacc.A pupil’s Progress 8 score will be reached by first calculating their Attainment 8 score. This score is based on eight subjects taken at GCSE; English and maths (which receive double points), three EBacc subjects, and three additional subjects.Points are assigned to each subject, depending on the grade received. A total is then taken and divided by 10, which becomes the Attainment 8 score.A pupil’s Progress 8 score will be calculated thus: Attainment 8, minus ‘estimated’ Attainment 8.The estimated Attainment 8 score will be the average Attainment 8 score of all pupils who achieved the same level in primary school key stage 2 tests.Each school will also receive a Progress 8 score, based on the average taken from their pupils. Schools will be required to meet a national benchmark, set by the Government, or could be labelled as failing.Still confused? Basically, all you need to know is that Progress 8 will tell you how well a school is performing with all their pupils, not just the high fliers. So, are lower attaining students being left to flounder in favour of the bright students who would previously push up a school’s position in the league tables?There are worries, though, that schools will start to share individual pupil’s scores with parents, when this is intended as a Government measure looking at the whole school, not as an additional way to assess pupils.Is that it then? Or are these changes going to continue?That is definitely not ‘it’. English literature, English language and maths were simply the first new GCSEs to be introduced. Biology, chemistry, physics, modern foreign languages, history and geography – among others – will be launched in September 2016.In September 2017, it will be the turn of economics, psychology, sociology and design and technology.center_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. By 2019, all pupils will be graded with a 1-9.Credit:PAlast_img read more

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