Packer legend Favre from done

first_imgBefore we get into the real business of the column today, I figured I would make a few comments on the Super Bowl. I was working and had no real burning desire to watch the game. But since it was on in the office, I monitored it somewhat.First, I watched just about every commercial during the third quarter because some chump was supposedly going to propose to his wife during one of them. Never happened. Even more disappointing were the commercials themselves. From all accounts, they stunk this year. Companies ran spots that had been out for a couple months, and there were not any real innovative ones that really stood out.Second, Rex Grossman sucks. I tried to think of a gentler way to put it, but there really is none. Personally, I would have voted “Sexy Rexy” Super Bowl MVP for what he did to help the Colts win. But that is neither here nor there. On a scale of one to 10, how much do Bears fans wish they had a more accomplished quarterback like, say, Brett Favre starting for them? Probably about 3,837 or more, but while we’re here…There are three different types of good news. There is the type that elicits a smile when you hear it, like “Congratulations, you got an A on the paper.” Then there is the good news that deserves a high five with a friend: “We just won the basketball ticket lottery.” The third variety of good news prompts Tiger Woods-esque fist-pumping response, seemingly forgetting you are in public as you nearly skip all the way down Charter Street.Not surprisingly, this sort of good news is always unexpected and doesn’t come around too often.Last Friday, like many of you, I received some certifiable Stage-Three good news.Answering the phone having just left class, I heard my roommate John, “Coming back for his 17th season, Brett Favre.”There may very well never have been eight words that I have been happier to hear.Brett coming back instantly improved the Packers’ chances of being a playoff contending team next season, given they have any sort of productive offseason. General manager Ted Thompson has more salary cap space than most teams in the league and also the 16th overall pick in the draft. Rumors circulating that Randy Moss may be on the move to Green Bay — as good or bad as you believe such a move to be — are a sign this will not be a quiet offseason in Titletown.Aside from offseason acquisitions, the Packers are without a doubt a better team with him under center than if Aaron Rodgers was. The offensive line improved as last season went on, as did the defense.Undoubtedly there are some — my colleague Mr. McGrath, Bears and Vikings fans, and people who enjoy kicking kittens, to name a few — for whom the announcement was not welcome. Those types of people are cynical of his return, saying Brett’s just doing it for fame or fortune.While he will make a boatload of money (an estimated $11 million) and set many records (keep in mind not all of which will be positive, as Favre is only four interceptions away from setting that all-time mark), I firmly believe neither of those reasons are what convinced him to come back. Call me naive (as many people probably will), but I really believe all Brett cares about is going out there, playing football and having fun. Watch him play 230-some odd times and tell me otherwise.Which brings us to the consecutive games streak. For those sports fans who live under a rock, Brett has started 238 consecutive games dating back to 1992. That streak is at the core of the bond fans feel toward Favre. The bond that outside observers find difficult to understand. How fans’ feelings toward him ebb and flow with every throw, yet still always feel so attached to a football player who — at this point in his career — is not as good as he once was. After all, he is just a football player, right?Not as far as I am concerned.Maybe my cousin — who by her own admission follows football about as closely as I follow opera — explained it best.”It’s almost like he’s a part of the family,” she said. “He was that one family member who was never able to make it to the family functions, but he was always a part of them because everyone still talked about him.”As lame and ridiculous as that sounds, it is true. And I don’t think my family and I are the only ones with that sort of experience.Chew on this: Brett has started every game for the Packers since I was five. Out of all those games (237 in the regular season) I may have missed a handful or so. Packer fans of my age and I grew up with Brett as he grew off the field from a crazy young kid to a graying father. He still tends to play like a big kid, which is part of what endears him to fans. I have seen Brett play more often than I have my own brother, as sad as that may sound. In that sense he has been something of a long-lost relative.But it is not the streak alone that endears Brett to Packer fans. Moreover it is the fact that he is a real, genuine person. In an era of sports where athletes try to hide as much of their private lives as possible from the public, Brett’s has, for the most part, unfolded before the state of Wisconsin.Some critics bring up Favre’s previous addiction to painkillers as some sort of slam against him, as proof he is not a good person. In reality, almost everyone knows someone who has battled an addiction of some sort. But Brett stood up and admitted his fault like a man, admitted he had a problem before an entire state. He cleaned up his life for the betterment of his own family and his career.Then, in 2003, Brett played his signature game, the game by which I will forever remember him. Playing the day after his father died, Brett played a magical game, throwing for 300 yards and completing every pass he threw in the first half on Monday Night Football against Oakland. The nation saw a vulnerable iron man. And what I will always remember most about that game is that I watched it with my own dad.Over the next few years, Brett has suffered through a myriad of other personal hardships. His wife, Deanna, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004. His brother-in-law was killed in an ATV accident that same year. His Mississippi home was damaged during Hurricane Katrina.All those events with which people can identify, all those events make him human in ways most athletes aren’t. Over the years, Packers’ fans have seen enough of those moments to make Brett seem like part of the family.That’s why there will always be a seat for him at my family’s big kid table.Ben is a sophomore majoring in Political Science and Journalism. Share your thoughts about Brett with him at bvoelkel@badgerherald.comlast_img read more

Kieron Pollard Sunil Narine not in West Indies World Cup squad Andre

first_imgPollard has been ignored by West Indies selectors for the World CupIANSThe West Indies Cricket Board have announced the 15-men squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. The most interesting feature of it is the absence of Kieron Pollard despite his heroics during the ongoing IPL. Sunil Narine, struggling with a finger injury, also failed to return to the team.But there was good news for fans of Andre Russell as he made it to the squad. The Jamaican all-rounder has been the most consistent performer in this year’s IPL with the bat and his success ensured that the selectors couldn’t ignore him. In other notable decisions, Marlon Samuels remains out of the team while Shannon Gabriel and Evin Lewis have been included.Reasons for decisionsBoth Pollard and Narine have been away from the West Indies ODI team since 2016. While the former continues to be a big draw in T20 leagues around the world, the latter has been struggling with a finger injury. Even without it though, he might have struggled to make the cut due to the lack of effectiveness in his bowling since remodeling of his action.The other notable omission – Marlon Samuels – suffered from lack of form last year. The veteran right-hander was struggling to get big runs across formats and was unsurprisingly left out of the team.Russell’s inclusion is both surprising and unsurprising. He has been scoring prolifically but may not play a big role with the ball. On the other hand, the return of Evin Lewis was along expected lines as his replacement in the ODI series against England, John Campbell, failed to capitalize on the opportunity. Shannon Gabriel’s impressive performance in the Tests against West Indies made him almost a certainty despite the fast bowler missing the one-day series against England due to a ban.West Indies’ 15-member World Cup squad: Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope (WK), Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran, Fabian Allen, Andre Russell, Jason Holder (C), Carlos Brathwaite, Ashley Nurse, Sheldon Cottrell, Kemar Roach, Shannon Gabriel, Oshane Thomas Chris Gayle would be playing his last ODI tournament in the World CupMARTY MELVILLE/AFP/Getty ImageOther members of the teamThe rest of the team is along expected lines. Carlos Brathwaite remains in the team even though he hasn’t achieved the sort of success expected after his heroics in the 2016 World T20 final against England. Nicholas Pooran and Fabian Allen are two exciting young talents in the squad. Both are yet to make a big mark in international cricket. While Pooran would be a back up keeper batsman for Shai Hope, Allen could be tried out as a part-time spinner.Talking of spinners, West Indies have picked only one specialist – Ashley Nurse. The bulky off-break bowler is the latest among a list of tweakers the Caribbean side have tried in the last couple of years in 50-over format and has done alright so far.There are as many as five fast bowlers along with two medium-pace bowling all-rounders. Sheldon Cottrell’s good performance against England earned him a spot in the team. The big setback for West Indies has been the injury to Alzarri Joseph during IPL which ruled him out of the tournament. In his absence, hopes would ride on Oshane Thomas to deliver the goods thanks to his pace.The attack would be led by experienced Kemar Roach and he would be backed up by Shannon Gabriel and captain Jason Holder. With the skipper able to play as an all-rounder, West Indies may well pick two more fast bowlers in the final XI.After their brilliant Test series win against England and a spirited performance in the ODI series that followed against the same opposition, hopes are high from the Caribbean side. Even making it to the semis would be regarded a major achievement for the Holder-led team.Let’s look at the final XI that West Indies are likely to field at the start of the tournament.Expected XI: Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope (WK), Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Andre Russell, Jason Holder (C), Ashley Nurse, Sheldon Cottrell, Kemar Roach, Shannon Gabriellast_img read more

Putin bigger threat than IS McCain

first_imgRussian President Vladimir Putin is a bigger threat to world security than the so-called Islamic State group, according to veteran US Senator John McCain who also admits Donald Trump makes him “nervous”.Republican McCain — one of US President Trump’s most outspoken critics in his own party — said Russia’s alleged meddling in elections was a danger to democracy.”I think he (Putin) is the premier and most important threat, more so than ISIS,” McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation late Monday.”I think ISIS can do terrible things … but it is the Russians who are trying, who tried to destroy the very fundamental of democracy and that is to change the outcome of an American election.”I have seen no evidence they succeeded but they tried and they are still trying. They just tried to affect the outcome of the French election.”So I view Vladimir Putin, who has dismembered the Ukraine, a sovereign nation, who is putting pressure on the Baltics, I view the Russians as the far greatest challenge that we have.”McCain’s comments come with the Trump team embroiled in controversy over its relationship with Moscow, which US intelligence agencies say tried to sway last November’s election in the property tycoon’s favour.A broad investigation into Russia’s apparent meddling is being led by Robert Mueller, a respected former FBI director who was given wide powers to pursue the case as a special counsel.The US Senate and House Intelligence committees are also leading their own probes.Over the weekend the furore pierced the innermost circle of the White House with reports that Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner sought a secret communications link to Russia — an allegation the president called “fabricated.”Asked about the Kushner revelation, McCain, in Australia on a visit, said: “My view of it is I don’t like it.”I know that some administration officials are saying ‘well that’s standard procedure’.”I don’t think that it’s standard procedure prior to the inauguration of a president of the United States by someone who is not in an appointed position.”When put to him by the ABC that some people feel nervous about international security with Trump as president, McCain said he understood why.”I am nervous from time to time,” he said. “I do believe that the president has great confidence in the national security team. I do believe most of the time that he accepts their advice and counsel.”Can I tell you that he does (that) all the time? No. Does it bother me? Yes, it bothers me.”last_img read more

Magnetic Microchips Replaces Electronic Semiconductor

first_img Magnetic fields created using nanotechnology could make computers up to 500 times faster This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further This development evidently offers a potentially economical and simpler way of computing for the future, which could also be put to new and useful purposes. This research follows the team’s groundbreaking first step in 2002 at Durham, when they managed to create a basic computer operation or ‘logic gate’ using a magnetic microchip. Since 2002 the team has created a number of further ‘logic gates’ and created interconnecting structures using magnetic ‘nanowires ‘, which can now reproduce the logic functions of a conventional computer empowered by semiconductor electronics. Dr Del Atkinson of Durham University comments on this success are: “This new technology offers a number of advantages over conventional computers. Electronic microchips generate a lot of heat, which creates the need for fans in PC units, whereas these magnetic microchips do not generate this heat. . The magnetic microchips that have been created are also simpler and potentially cheaper to produce than the electronic chips. They are economical insofar as they use simple metals layers.This would also imply that the computers being economical would become still more disposable. “ This means that they could be used for cheap and therefore disposable simple computers in the future., “ Dr. Atkinson further commented: “These developments are important and exciting and while there is still some way to go, the potential is there to create a whole new technology based on magnetism rather than electricity.”This use of magnetism, rather than that of electricity has potential of being exploited further .The team is working in the rapidly growing field of nanotechnology, harnessing the magnetic properties of electrons, rather than their electrical charge on which conventional electronics is based. Nanotechnology involves working with materials at an extremely microscopic level. A nanometre is one thousand millionth of a metre – about the width of five atoms.This harnessing the capability of magnetic properties of electrons could mean a sea-change in the field of electronics.by Dr. Bikram Lamba, Copyright 2005 PhysOrg.com Dr. Bikram Lamba, an international management consultant, is Chairman & Managing Director of Tormacon Limited- a multi-disciplinary consultancy organization. He can be contacted at 905 848 4205. email: torconsult@rogers.com , www.torconsult.com center_img The combined efforts of researchers from Durham University, Imperial College, London and the University of Sheffield have fructified. Till now the basic computer is usually made by using semiconductor electronics. The researchers have gone ahead and have successfully created a computer by using magnetic microchips rather than semiconductor electronics. Citation: Magnetic Microchips Replaces Electronic Semiconductor (2005, September 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2005-09-magnetic-microchips-electronic-semiconductor.htmllast_img read more

Hibernators live longer mainly because they escape predators

first_img Researcher Christopher Turbill of the Research Institute for Wildlife Ecology in Vienna, said that when animals hibernate they slow their metabolism and thus vastly reduce the energy required for their survival. They also tend to find a safe place in which to hibernate, which means they are less likely to die from predation while hibernating, and the research team believes this is the key to their longevity.Previous research also suggested that hibernating animals tended to have longer lives, but this was thought to be because they avoid the harsh winter temperatures and the competition for dwindling food supplies.Hibernation allows the animals to have around a 15 percent higher survival rate but they have fewer offspring each year than non-hibernating animals. In rodents for example, a non-hibernating species such as a rat weighing around 100 grams has up to 14 offspring a year, has a 17 percent chance of surviving the year, and its maximum lifespan is about 3.9 years. A hibernating rodent of the same size has only about eight offspring a year, but has a 50 percent chance of surviving and a maximum lifespan of 5.6 years.The research, which was based on analyzing previous studies of hibernation, along with new data on the edible dormouse (Glis glis), also suggested that hibernation could have been involved in the evolution of slower life-cycles, since hibernating animals tend to mature later than non-hibernating species with shorter lifespans. Co-author of the paper, Claudia Bieber of the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna, said scientists had previously thought hibernation posed a challenge for animals, but their research had shown the animals survive exceptionally well and also have a better chance of surviving the active season than non-hibernating animals. This is particularly true of small species (under 1.5 kg), such as the edible dormouse, which spends half the year in hibernation.The paper was published this week in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. Citation: Hibernators live longer mainly because they escape predators (2011, April 1) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-04-hibernators-longer-predators.html Explore further Climate change might affect hibernation (PhysOrg.com) — Small animals generally live shorter lives than larger animals, but those that hibernate are an exception, primarily because they escape predation during the winter, according to a new study by scientists from Austria. Hibernating animals also reproduce more slowly than non-hibernating animals.center_img © 2010 PhysOrg.com More information: Hibernation is associated with increased survival and the evolution of slow life histories among mammals, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Published online before print March 30, 2011, doi: 10.1098/rspb.2011.0190 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Keeping theatre alive

first_imgMovies gets fame, television gets wealth, but it is theatre that gives the greatest satisfaction, say most theatre veterans. Om Puri who passed away and had been a veteran of the National School of Drama often said he never got from cinema the joy he got from acting on stage in the presence of a receptive audience. It is that rapport with the audience that keeps theatre alive.Delhi’s Tadpole Repertory and Tokyo based theatre collective Hanchu-Yuei have collaborated to add new flavor to modern theatre with “This will only take several Minutes” at OddBird Theatre and Foundation, New Delhi on February 2 and 3 – presented by The Japan Foundation, New Delhi. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”This will be the opening performance for the Japan Foundation New Delhi in 2017, The Year of Japan-India Friendly Exchanges, and will be a representation of the great relationship between the two countries”, says Misako Futsuki, Director of Art & Cultural Exchange at the Foundation.’This Will Only Take Several Minutes’ is set in a city not far from yours. Six strangers confront themselves and each other, seeking out their place and purpose. They grapple with hunger and sickness, love and solitude, through their shadowy pasts and the foggy present. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive In all of this there is but one certainty – that they cannot escape this place and must try anything they can to bear it.Tadpole Repertory is a theatre collective of actors, writers, musicians and designers. The group is dedicated to presenting original written and devised performances on subjects that are relevant and compelling to audiences today. The approach to stagecraft seeks to rise above the limitations of independent theatre in the country, and to push its boundaries and conventions. Tadpole’s productions include Taramandal (2010), winner of the Hindu MetroPlus Play-writer Award in 2010; a critically acclaimed production of William Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale, A Brief History of the Pantomimes and NDLS, a variety sketch show about life in Delhi. Futsuki added, “It’s been a great pleasure for me to organize this project. As a director of Arts & Cultural Exchange Programme at the Japan Foundation, New Delhi, I strongly feel the necessity of cultural projects in more mutual ways to learn from each other, not just showcase from one side only in this emerging global society. The play is the result of a three-year journey from Tadpole founder Neel Chaudhuri’s first encounter with Suguru’s practice in Japan in 2014.”Collaboration sounds beautiful, but not always so beautiful. There are some difficulties when different cultures meet. However, as the two theatre groups do in this project, if you try to understand and learn from each other, there will always be something wonderful there,” Futsuki said.Playwright and Director, Suguru Yamamoto has attracted attention in Japan and Asia for his unique style of staging that combines projected text, photography, video, color, light, and shadow with performers, as well as his scripts that question our ethics. His play “Girl X” won Best Play and Best Original Script award at the Bangkok Theatre Festival in 2014. Another play, “I can’t die without being born”, was shortlisted for the 59th Kishida Kunio Drama Award in 2015.last_img read more

TAP Portugal to add TorontoLisbon flights in summer 2017

first_img Wednesday, December 7, 2016 NEW YORK — TAP Portugal is expanding its network to six new destinations in summer 2017, including Toronto. Rounding out the new additions are Stuttgart, Las Palmas, Alicante, Budapest and Bucharest.The new Toronto-Lisbon flights are scheduled to start next June.“The new routes, along with the operations reinforcement, will result in significant growth for the summer season, clearly emphasizing TAP’s growth in the near future,” said the company. In July 2017 TAP will increase operations by 11% with over 1,176 more flights offered than in same month last year, representing a 19% increase in seat capacity.The growth planned for 2017 comes in line with the carrier’s expansion strategy launched in 2016, an intense year during which TAP not only increased its activity but also introduced quite a few changes, such as the order of a new medium and long haul fleet with Airbus (due for delivery at the end of 2017); the phase-in of two additional A330 aircraft; the cabin retrofit of 48 aircraft currently in progress; the launch of the new brand TAP Express for regional operations; the new Lisbon/Oporto shuttle service; the launch of TAP Stopover and the reinforcement of its positioning in the North Atlantic with the inauguration of two new routes in the U.S.: Boston and New York JFK.More news:  Sunwing ready to launch Mazatlán-Quebec City direct this winter After completing the restructuring of its network earlier this year, TAP said it has put in place “a new and more competitive fare policy” and is now ready to grow again with an improved and diversified product and reinforced fleet.TAP will also upgrade its offer in the domestic sector, reinforcing summer 2017 operations from Lisbon to Faro, growing from three to four daily flights. Share << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted bycenter_img Travelweek Group Tags: Portugal, Toronto TAP Portugal to add Toronto-Lisbon flights in summer 2017last_img read more