Showing posts from April, 2011

Why does the date of Easter change every year?

Have you ever wondered why Easter Sunday can fall anywhere between March 22 and April 25? And why do Eastern Orthodox churches celebrate Easter on a different day than Western churches? These are all good questions with answers that require a bit of explanation. In fact, there are as many misunderstandings about the calculation of Easter dates, as there are reasons for the confusion. What follows is an attempt to clear up at least some of the confusion.

The Short Answer

At the heart of the matter lies a very simple explanation. The early church fathers wished to keep the observance of Easter in correlation to the Jewish Passover. Because the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ happened after the Passover, they wanted Easter to always be celebrated subsequent to the Passover. And, since the Jewish holiday calendar is based on solar and lunar cycles, each feast day is movable, with dates shifting from year to year. Now, from here the explanation grows more complicated.

The Lo…

Brits measure happiness

Turn that frown upside down Great Britain!

“Is this a serious question, are you happy? And can you do something about it? Well this is the launch of Action for Happiness, a new charity, and this is well, effectively, a festival of happiness.” (BBC)

The charity encourages Brits to engage in a pay it forward lifestyle and its founders say the proof is in the numbers--something Great Britain’s government is picking up on.

“...[The organization] comes at a time when happiness will for the first time in Britain be quantified. The Office for National Statistics is devising questions in order to measure the public's subjective quality of life, with the responses published alongside figures for gross domestic product (GDP).”
The Scotsman

That’s right, GWB or the General Well Being of the public will be measured right alongside the GDP based on national surveys. But what’s got Brits so down? The Guardian weighs in...

“...if we want a happier society, we've got to approach our own live…

Babydoll controversy hits States

It’s a decision every new mother must make- breast or bottle? Now six-year-olds are faced with the same choice.

Thanks to the world’s first breastfeeding babydoll! The doll teaches little girls how to breastfeed--and even requires periodic burps. First released in Spain a couple years ago, VH1’s Best Week Ever has a go... (Video Source: Breast Milk Baby)

Opens with doll sucking: “That is really (expletive) weird. I’m sorry.”
“Spain sees teen pregnancy and they say, ‘No, no, not young enough.”
“We’ll get the blowup doll and teach our son the other stuff...”

ABC’s Good Morning America covered all its bases with this story--first speaking with its kid panel of breast milk baby testers:

“So what’s your favorite part of the dolly?”

Then to the breast milk baby spokesman:

DENNIS LEWIS: “There have been people who’ve called us pedophiles, they’ve called us perverts, they’ve said we’re endangering the innocence of little girls...”

...and finally to …

Clubbing accident may lead to big money

Clubber sues for £100,000 over slippery dance floor

A CLUBBER is seeking £100,000 in compensation from the former owners of a popular Inverness nightspot after slipping and falling.

Angela Spalding has brought the civil action against the CFG Leisure Group, which used to own the Love2Love nightclub on Castle Street, claiming she fell and injured herself because the dance floor was slippery from spilt drink.

She argues the company failed in its statutory duty and was negligent.

However, the company refutes this, claiming the sum sued for is “excessive”.

Ms Spalding’s claim dates back to an incident in November 2007 when the 40-year-old was dancing with friends in Love2Love.

She says she was jostled by an unknown man, stepped back and ended up slipping. She claims she only fell because the dance floor was wet.

Although she did not have a drink on the dance floor, and despite signs saying it was forbidden to take drink onto it, she argues it was common practice for clubbers to have them.

Lack of action against bullying

Madrid school to pay 40,000 € compensation for case of bullying
It's the highest amount a school has ever had to pay in Spain

A school run by a religious order in Alcorcón has been ordered to pay 40,000 € compensation to the parents of an ex pupil who suffered constant bullying by a group of schoolmates during his primary school studies.

The amount set by First Instance Court No. 44 in the Spanish capital is the highest ever ruled on a Spanish school for a case of bullying.

The court considered there was no record that the directors of the school had spoken with the parents of the children who were involved in the bullying campaign, even though they had been informed of what was happening.

The bullying took place over a period of more than two years, producing in the child, according to a psychological assessment which was presented as evidence in court, chronic post-traumatic syndrome.

It’s understood that the school, which is run by the Congregación Hermanas del Amor de Dios, has…

EF Int Plus Revision

Part 1 Vocabulary

Choose A, B, C or D to complete the sentence.

1. Would you mind looking _______ the dog while I’m away?

A. for                         B. at
C. after                      D. over

2. I look __________ my father because he is a hard-working, honest man.

A. down to                B. up to
C. up for                   D: down over

3. Could you _____________ this form and hand it in next week?

A. write in               B. write down
C. fill up                  D. fill in

4. I'm really looking _____________ on holiday at Easter.

A. for to go               B. forward to go
C. going away           D. forward to going

5. He always ___________ late for meetings.

A. turns up            B. turns out
C. gets to              D. gets into

Complete the following with one word.

6. You need to __________ up your mind. He's waiting for an answer.

7. Don't they _______ on? I thought they were friends.

8. I was __________ up in a small town next to the sea. It was an idyllic chi…

Japan tsunami dog reunited with owner

Video: Associated Press

A dog rescued from a roof drifting off Japan's north-east coast more than three weeks after a quake and tsunami has been reunited with her owner.

The owner recognised the dog from a TV news report on the rescue on Friday.

The female owner and the two-year-old dog called Ban had an emotional reunion at an animal care centre where she was being looked after.

"We'll never let go of her," the owner, who wished to remain anonymous, was quoted as saying by a centre official.

The dog was found by a Japan Coast Guard crew on a drifting roof some 1.8km (1.1 miles) off Kesennuma, Miyagi prefecture, one of the worst-hit areas along Japan's north-east coast.

The roof is believed to have been detached and washed out to sea by the retreating waters of the devastating tsunami, which hit the country on 11 March.

Ban immediately jumped up and wagged her tail when her owner appeared, local media reported.

"I'm happy for the reunion, after they were…

British humour

Here is a clip from a series from the 1970s called "Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em".

Source: BBCWorldwide (You Tube) Key words: some mothers do rollerskating
Perhaps the most popular British sitcom "Only Fools and Horses":

Source; BBCComedyGreats (You Tube) Key words: fools horses del bar
One of comedian Harry Enfield's many characters Kevin the Teenager:

Source: BBCWorldwide (You Tube) Key words: kevin crush teacher
A classic comedy from the 1970s "Fawlty Towers":

Source: BBCComedyGreats (You Tube) Key words: fawlty towers biscuit rat
The world famous Mr Bean:

Source: MrBean (You Tube) Key words: bean meets royalty
One of many characters from the show Little Britain:

Source: comedyklips (You Tube) Key words: Little Britain Carol Spain
Benny Hill best represents British humour for many:

Source: whovianlover (You Tube) Key words: Benny Hill wishing well
'Allo 'Allo was a sitcom set in wartime France:

Source: pifimental (You Tube) Key words: allo allo subtit…

ZP to step down as PM

Spain PM will not stand at election

Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has announced that he will not seek a third term in office at general elections in 2012.

His decision opens a process to elect his successor at the helm of the Socialist Party.

Mr Zapatero said he had decided to limit his time in office to two terms because it was the right thing for the country, his party and his family.

"I will not be a candidate in the forthcoming general elections," he told a party meeting at its headquarters in Madrid.

Zapatero was elected to office in 2004 in the wake of terror attacks on Madrid's trains, that left 191 dead and 1,800 injured, and a wave of public disapproval at the previous government's involvement in the Iraq war.

At the time, Spain's economy was one of the most dynamic in Europe having recorded continuous growth for around a decade.

But the international financial crisis has dogged Zapatero's second term and immersed Spain in debt…

Another doggy miracle

Tsunami-surviving dog rescued after three weeks at sea A dog believed to have survived the tsunami and then three weeks at sea was rescued by the Japanese Coast Guard in northern Japan.
Coastguards spotted the dog on the floatingroof of a house that had been washed out to sea, about 1.8 kilometers (1.1 miles) from the coast of Kesennuma in northern Japan.

The dog had evaded capture for several hours as it scrambled over the large tract of floating rubble.

However, once rescued, it captured the hearts of the coast guards. Initially shaken by the experience, it quickly seemed toget used to its new home on the coast guard vessel, and licked its rescuers' hands.

The crew could only speculate who the dog belonged to as they could not find a name tag or ID on the collar. The Japanese broadcaster NTV said the the coast guard had hoped the pet would lead them to the owner.

It was a rare piece of good news as Japan's rescue services, along with US forces, launched a three day ope…

Power to the ladies

José Zapatero's feminista agenda
Spain's prime minister José Zapatero has nine women in his cabinet. But has it really made a difference?

On 16 April 2008, Spain scored a European first, (opinion is divided about whether or not it was a world first – it depends on whether or not you count the Amazons) when José Zapatero, the socialist prime minister, entered his second term and announced a majority-female cabinet. He had always been sound on matters of gender – he said in 2004, "I am not just anti-machismo, I'm a feminist", and four years later, nine of his 17 cabinet ministers were female. Once Zapatero sat down, the table was split 50:50, but it was clear that Zapatero, saw himself not as part of the fray of his radical cabinet, but rather the father (or midwife, if you like) of a new era of equality. "I feel very proud that there are more women ministers than men," he said.

It was the most obvious moment of what Zapatero has long described as a femini…

Madrid's 'Female Body Inspectors' fool tourist drivers

Fake police have been stealing from foreign drivers in Spain

Nine arrests have been made in Madrid as a gang of fake police have been broken up. The gang is thought to have taken more than 18,000 € from foreign drivers in 76 crimes around the capital, pretending to be the police, and despite using very poor costumes for their scam.

One even had a T-shirt which read – FBI – Female Body Inspector, and another wore a tie with the Spanish flag.

The police think their fake counterparts were carrying outbetween three and sixattacks every day.

The gang stopped drivers allegedly on controls of the movement of drugs or counterfeit money. The foreign victims are reported to have collaborated with the supposed agents, handing over money, watches, mobile phones and other items.

Six of the arrests were made in a property in the Madrid sierra, while the rest were in Arganda del Rey.


If this had happened to you in a foreign country, would you have been fooled?

You'll get used to it soon.

Consider the following:
I usually go to work by car.I used to go to work by car. (Now I go by bus)I am used to going to work by car.I am getting used to going to work by car. "Usually" is an adverb like "always", "sometimes", "never" and so on, which we use to describe the frequency of an action.

"Used to" describes a past habit and implies a comparison / contrast with the present.

"be used to + ing" describes something that is normal or not unusual for you.
I am used to getting up early. I've been doing it for years.A: Are you used to living alone yet? B: I'm not used to cooking for one person. "get used to + ing" describes the process of something becoming normal.
I think smokers are slowly getting used to going outside for a cigarette.It was difficult at first but I eventually got usedto driving on the left.I'd never get used to sleeping just five hours. I need to sleep more.
Check previous posts on the …

Obese kids

Toddler Tips the Scales at 132 lbs!
Three years old and 132 pounds.

Shown here, the Chinese toddler, Lu Hao, is severely overweight. His parents tell The Sun the boy eats more than both of them at an average meal. And portion control is a battle. Hao throws vicious tantrums when he’s denied food, especially his favorites, ribs and rice.
The Sun

Ironically, Hao didn’t start out this way, KGTV explains.

“Lu Hao weighed just 5.7 pounds when he was born but starting at the age of three months he has gained weight at an incredible pace.”

Fox News reports Hao’s weight has been a problem ever since.

“He was banned from [school] over fears that his size might be a danger to other children and usually plays alone at home — but moving around is becoming tougher and tougher for the overweight toddler.”

According to The Daily Mail- the toddler knows he’s different. His mother tells the paper- superman is his favorite hero- but...

“When asked is he would like to fly like Superman Hao giggles and…

Hitler house - no April Fool!

*Not fuhrer sale
A HOUSE that looks like HITLER is creating a *nazi impression — in SWANSEA.

The lintel above the property's slim brown door echoes the toothbrush moustache of the evil dictator.

And the roof slopes at an angle like the fascist leader's greased down hair.

The house — divided into two flats — in Port Tennant, Swansea, South Wales, has become an internet hit after sharp-eyed Charli Dickenson spotted the resemblance and posted photos on her Twitter page.

Youth worker Charli, 22, said: "I walk past the house all the time - but I'd never noticedthe Hitler likenessbefore.

"But then, at the weekend, I was in the car with my boyfriend and we were stuck in traffic - and I just said to him: 'That house looks like Hitler'.

"We both laughed about it. I took a picture and posted it on Twitter.

"It's very funny - everyone who has seen the picture says it looks like Hitler.

"It was picked up by Jimmy Carr on his Twitter. Now ev…

April Fools' stories

Today is April Fools' Day. I wonder how many people were fooled by the articles in today's newspapers. Click on the headline to see the original article.

Portugal 'sells' Ronaldo to Spain in €160m deal on national debt

Weighed down by debt, and reeling from the latest downgrading of their country's credit status, Portugal's finance ministry has secured the co-operation of football's highest-paid player in an audacious bid to draw the nation back from the brink of economic collapse.

In a move which some observers claimed "will lead to the destruction of the World Cup", Cristiano Ronaldo has agreed to "act like a patriot" and be sold to neighbouring Spain for €160m.

Last week, Prime Minister José Sócrates resigned after his government's latest austerity package was rejected by parliament. His move followed the downgrading of his country's credit rating to the category above "junk". While Ronaldo's fee, though double th…