31 August 2006

World's Tallest Woman

Yao Defen (R), believed to be the world's tallest woman, and her friend sit at the entrance of her home in Shu Cha in China's Anhui province March 15, 2006. A German outsize shoemaker said he will fly to China next week with three pairs of size 57 ladies shoes as a special and much-needed gift for Yao.

Yao Defen was born in Shucha Town of Liuan City in Shuchen County, Anhui Province in 1972. The fourth child of her family, she weighed only 6.16 pounds at birth. At age 3, her food intake was three times that of other children her age. By age 11, her height was 6 ft. 2 in., and she grew to be 6 ft. 8 in. by age 15. Finally, she became the tallest woman in Asia at 7 ft. 5 in., which is almost seven inches taller than the woman basketball star Zhen Haixia.

The story of this "woman giant" began to spread rapidly after she went to see a doctor at age 15 for an illness. After that, many companies attempted to train her to be a talented sports star. However, the plans were discarded because Yao was too weak. Because she is illiterate, since 1992 Yao Defen has been forced to earn a living by traveling with her father and performing.

Yao Defen's father and mother are both about 5 ft. 2 in. tall. Yao's giant stature was caused by a large tumor in the pituitary gland of her brain, which was releasing too much growth hormone and caused excessive growth in her bones. Six years ago, a hospital in Guangzhou Province removed the tumor and she stopped growing.

How is Yao's life now as the famous "woman gaint"? According to reports by China News Net, Yao Defen said she has gained nothing after two years of hard work. In 2003, she signed with a circus manager in Suzhou City in order to make a living and support her mother. During her national tours, she fell several times during the performances, and injured several parts of her body. Her boss, a person identified only as Mr. Qui, refused her request to be taken to a hospital and forced her to continue the performing.

According to Yao, her health worsened, which affected her performances. Her boss became dissatisfied with her performance. One day in 2004, she asked Qiu to take her to a hospital once more. Instead, Qiu took her up a mountain, where she was held for 24 hours without food or water.

In 2004, her colleagues, Wang and Ding, conspired with her boss to trick her into signing another one-year contract to perform with the traveling circus, telling her there was a new boss. When the terms of the contract expired, she asked the circus to send her home, but Qiu took her to the mountain again and threatened her. Finally, in late December, Qiu let her go home.

All the hard work and moving around from place to place causes Yao's constant pain in her lower back which keeps her from sleeping. Yao Defen's biggest wish is to be able to go to a big hospital for a health examination.

26 August 2006

Learn from the Australians

Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told on Wednesday 5th July 2006, to get out of Australia , as the government targeted radicals in a bid to head off potential terror attacks.

A day after a group of mainstream Muslim leaders pledged loyalty to Australia and her Queen at a special meeting with Prime Minister John Howard, he and his Ministers made it clear that extremists would face a crackdown.Treasurer Peter Costello, seen as heir apparent to Howard, hinted that some radical clerics could be asked to leave the country if they did not accept that Australia was a secular state, and its laws were made by parliament. "If those are not your values, if you want a country which has Sharia lawor a theocratic state, then Australia is not for you", he said on national television."I'd be saying to clerics who are teaching that there are two laws governing people in Australia : one the Australian law and another the Islamic law, that is false. If you can't agree with parliamentary law, independent courts, democracy, and would prefer Sharia law and have the opportunity to go to another country, which practices it, perhaps, then, that's a better option", Costello said.

Asked whether he meant radical clerics would be forced to leave, he said those with dual citizenship could possibly be asked to move to the other country. Education Minister Brendan Nelson later told reporters that Muslims who did not want to accept local values should "clear off. Basically people who don't want to be Australians, and who don't want to live by Australian values and understand them, well then, they can basically clear off", he said.

Separately, Howard angered some Australian Muslims on Wednesday by saying he supported spy agencies monitoring the nation's mosques Quote: "IMMIGRANTS, NOT AUSTRALIANS, MUST ADAPT. Take It Or Leave It. I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali , we have experienced a surge inpatriotism by the majority of Australians."
"However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled when the 'politically correct' crowd began complaining about the possibility that our patriotism was offending others. I am not against immigration, nor do I hold a grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by coming to Australia, However, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some born here, need to understand."

"This idea of Australia being a multicultural community has served only to dilute our sovereignty and our national identity. As Australians, we have our ownculture, our own society, our own language and our own lifestyle."
"This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom.We speak mainly ENGLISH, not Spanish, Lebanese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society, Learn the language!"

"Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right; wing, political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture. We will accept your beliefs, and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours, and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us."

"If the Southern Cross offends you, or you don't like " A Fair Go", then you should seriously consider a move to another part of this planet. We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change, and we really don't care how you did things where you came from. By all means, keep your culture, but do not force it on others.This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR LAND, and OUR LIFESTYLE, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great Australian freedom, 'THE RIGHT TO LEAVE'. If you aren't happy here then LEAVE. We didn't force you to come here. You asked to be here. So accept the country YOU accepted."

Maybe if we circulate this amongst ourselves, Citizens of America and Britain will find the backbone to start speaking and voting the same truths!!

17 August 2006

Dog Pack Kills Gator In Florida

At times nature can be cruel, but there is also a raw beauty, and even a certain justice manifested within that cruelty. The alligator, normally considered the "apex predator" in it's natural eco-system, can still fall victim to implemented 'team work' strategy, made possible due to the tight-knit social structure and "survival of the fittest pack mentality", bred into the canines over the last several hundreds of years by natural selection. See the attached remarkable photograph courtesy of Nature Magazine.Note that the Alpha dog has a muzzle hold on the gator preventing it from breathing, while the remainder of the pack prevents the beast from rolling.

Not for the squeamish!

12 August 2006

North Pole

Denise, Myself, Katee, Zachary went to the North Pole on Friday 11th August. Jody came along too, with her children, Rachel & Austin and her nephew Jake and friend Linda.

North Pole

Denise, Myself, Katee, Zachary went to the North Pole on Friday 11th August. Jody came along too, with her children, Rachel & Austin and her nephew Jake and friend Linda.

North Pole

Denise, Myself, Katee, Zachary went to the North Pole on Friday 11th August. Jody came along too, with her children, Rachel & Austin and her nephew Jake and friend Linda.

11 August 2006

North Pole

Denise, Myself, Katee, Zachary went to the North Pole on Friday 11th August. Jody came along too, with her children, Rachel & Austin and her nephew Jake and friend Linda.

08 August 2006


The six astronauts who are scheduled to launch aboard shuttle Atlantis this month arrived at Kennedy Space Center on Monday to participate in the traditional practice countdown. Liftoff of the STS-115 mission, which will continue assembly of the international space station, is planned on Aug. 27 during a five-minute window opening at 4:29 p.m. Shuttle commander Brent Jett made a few brief remarks Monday to reporters and well-wishers shortly after the crew touched down at KSC's shuttle runway in a trio of T-38 jets.
"The training events of this week mark the last milestones for us in flight preparations," Jett said. "We're looking forward to a good week of training with the launch team and a real smooth countdown , or at least a smooth practice countdown, on Thursday."
Alluding to the sunny blue skies above Cape Canaveral on Monday, Jett added that "It's a beautiful day today. I was kind of hoping we would save some of these days for the end of the month because I think we're going to need them. This is pretty close to our launch time and if we get a day like today on Aug. 27, we'll be in good shape."
The crew's three days of training at KSC will end Thursday with the practice countdown.