This day, 35 years ago, marks the passing of English singer
and songwriter and former member of The Beatles, John Lennon.
(Born John Winston Lennon; Oct. 9, 1940 – 8 Dec.19, 80)
John Lennon was an English musician who gained worldwide fame as one of the members of the Beatles, for his subsequent solo career, and for his political activism and pacifism.
He was shot by “a deranged American gunman” (I refuse to use his name) in the archway of the building where he lived, The Dakota, in New York City on 8 December 1980.
Lennon had just returned from Record Plant Studio with his wife, Yoko Ono.
After sustaining four fatal gunshot wounds, Lennon was pronounced dead on arrival at Roosevelt Hospital. He was 40 years old.
At the hospital, it was stated that nobody could have lived for more than a few minutes after sustaining such injuries. Shortly after local news stations reported Lennon’s death, crowds gathered at Roosevelt Hospital and in front of the Dakota.
Lennon was cremated on 10 December 1980 at the Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York. The ashes were given to Ono, who chose not to hold a funeral for him.
This graph, presents a poem, which been shared plenty of times in the blogosphere. Please, allow me the opportunity to present it again.
I want to apply it to our present time.
I’ve seen it many times.
Every time it makes me think.
More so now, in view of the ugly turn in the road where American politics seem to be headed.
To me, the bottom line is that if you don’t speak up for others who are somehow persecuted, eventually your turn will come and there will be no one to stand up for your when you are persecuted.
It’s time to stand up and hold your ground.
Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) was a prominent Protestant pastor who emerged as an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps.
The quotation stems from Niemöller’s lectures during the early postwar period. Different versions of the quotation exist. These can be attributed to the fact that Niemöller spoke extemporaneously and in a number of settings.
Much controversy surrounds the content of the poem as it has been printed in varying forms, referring to diverse groups such as Catholics, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jews, Trade Unionists, or Communists depending upon the version. Nonetheless his point was that Germans – in particular, he believed, the leaders of the Protestant churches – had been complicit through their silence in the Nazi imprisonment, persecution, and murder of millions of people.
First he came for the Mexicans, then he came for the war heroes, then he came for African Americans, then he came for the immigrants, then he came for the Jews, then he came for the “gays” …. now he’s coming for the Muslims. Maybe you can add someone else or he will continue adding groups.
The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP 21 or CMP11 is being held in Le Bourget, Paris, from November 30 to December 11.
It is the 21st yearly session of the Conference of the Parties to the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 11th session of the Meeting of the Parties to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. The conference objective is to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, from all the nations of the world.
2498 academics from 75 countries signed this Open Letter calling for world leaders meeting in Paris to do what is necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change.
Prominent signatories include Noam Chomsky, Naomi Oreskes, Kwame Anthony Appiah, Michael E. Mann, Ursula Oswald Spring, Bill McKibben, David Suzuki, and Peter Singer.
Open Letter from Academics to World Leaders ahead of the Paris Climate Conference 2015
Some issues are of such ethical magnitude that being on the correct side of history becomes a signifier of moral character for generations to come. Global warming is such an issue.
Indigenous peoples and the developing world are least responsible for climate change, least able to adapt to it, and most vulnerable to its impacts. As the United Nations Climate Conference in Paris approaches, the leaders of the industrialized world shoulder a grave responsibility for the consequences of our current and past carbon emissions.
Yet it looks unlikely that the international community will mandate even the greenhouse gas reductions necessary to give us a two thirds chance of limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. At the moment, even if countries meet their current non-binding pledges to reduce carbon emissions, we will still be on course to reach 3 degrees Celsius by the end of this century.
This is profoundly shocking, given that any sacrifice involved in making those reductions is far overshadowed by the catastrophes we are likely to face if we do not: more extinctions of species and loss of ecosystems; increasing vulnerability to storm surges; more heatwaves; more intense precipitation; more climate related deaths and disease; more climate refugees; slower poverty reduction; less food security; and more conflicts worsened by these factors.
Given such high stakes, our leaders ought to be mustering planet-wide mobilization, at all societal levels, to limit global warming to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius.
We undersigned concerned academics, researchers and scientists from around the world recognize the seriousness of our environmental situation and the special responsibility we owe our communities, future generations, and our fellow species.
We will strive to meet that responsibility in our educational and communicative endeavors.
We call upon our leaders to do what is necessary to prevent catastrophic climate change. With just as much urgency, we call upon our fellow citizens to hold their leaders responsible for vigorously addressing global warming.
For the full list of signatories please see below.
Around the world, people from all walks of life are standing together to demand a strong climate agreement in Paris and a healthy future for the planet. When the world speaks with one voice, our leaders have to listen.
So we’ve put together this Open Letter with one very clear message: DEAR WORLD LEADERS: TAKE CLIMATE ACTION NOW.
People from around the world are affected by climate change today – right now. And they’re calling out to world leaders to demand real action this year at the UN climate talks in Paris.
Santa Claus’s reindeer form an imaginary team of flying reindeer traditionally held to pull the sleigh of Santa Claus and help him deliver Christmas gifts.
Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen.
I’m one of them. Which one do you think I am?
The 1823 poem by Clement C. Moore “A Visit from St. Nicholas” (also known as “The Night Before Christmas” or “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas“) is largely credited for the contemporary Christmas lore that includes the eight flying reindeer and their names.
The relevant segment of the poem reads:
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
but a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny rein-deer,
with a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and call’d them by name:
“Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer, and Vixen!
“On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Dunder and Blixem!
“To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
“Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
“IOTD” is image of the day, a concept I came up with. I teach visual meditative therapy – or in easy terms – a mini mental holiday. For some people it is very difficult for them to get their image right. I post an image a day for people to use in their mini mental vacay. Some are serious, some are silly, and some are just beautiful!”
I’ve followed this family since their early days in Miami.
I know their story and how Gloria came to be the main singer of Miami Sound Machine. The band became a huge hit in the Latin community. Then Gloria “crossed over” into the American mainstream music scene.
It was all then about Gloria.
I remember their hits, I have all the CD and concert videos. I couldn’t forget the harrowing time of the bus crash, her fractured back, her rescue, her recovery, her rehab and her comeback … that blue dress singing “Coming Out of the Dark”.
And the rest is history!
In their personal lives, they had Nayib and finally a daughter, Emily. Her name honors her dad Emilio.
I’ve seen Emily dab here and there in music. She has it in her genes, her internal makeup and her talent has grown.
She has released an awesome video with an absolutely on target message.
If you ask Gloria Estefan, it feels like yesterday when her daughter Emily was a baby backstage at her sold-out concerts. Fast-forward to today and the 21-year-old college sophomore is totally grown up and ready to rock out on her own.
“I always think about it as a double-edge sword,” Emily shared on Today’s show when asked about following the same career as her mom. “I don’t even understand that saying because doesn’t a sword have one edge?”
She continued, “But the reality is they’re amazing golden footsteps to follow in so my biggest fear now is just being able to do the past justice.”
“I know that must people I know believe in me for my talent and for what I stand for but there’s always a doubt in my mind because there is no way of knowing when you are a descendant of the Conga Queen.”
As her parents focus on their Broadway musical appropriately titled “On Your Feet,” Emily is ready to prove she herself can turn the beat around. And yes, she’ll do it while wearing mama’s clothes.
“When I want to go shopping, I just go to the warehouse and grab her clothes,” Emily admitted while wearing Gloria’s retro pants and T-shirt. As they like to say, like mother, like daughter.
Singer Emily Estefan, the Miami Beach daughter of Gloria and Emilio, on Thursday released a music video in which she expresses her point of view to a ‘sterile and ominous’ world: F#ck To Be.
F#ck To Be prominently focuses on male and female gender roles and stereotypes.
On November 3, Emily Estefan released her brand new video F#ck To Be. The concept behind the video shows Emily discovering and noticing a world that it is not what she expected instead it is very sterile and ominous.
“There are two POVs in the video, it is either what I see or what the mirror sees. It is me against the mirror. The mirror being expectations that I carry of myself, or what people expect me to be. I’m combatting the mirror, “ says Estefan.
F#ck to Be will be the first single from her forthcoming full length CD, Take Whatever You Want. Emily wrote, recorded, produced and performed her full album at Fairy Light Studios (her own studio in her college apartment in Boston, MA).
“Many people think I am saying “F” everything or everything sucks, but that is not true. I go in and out of these very different looks in the video that I don’t necessarily like for myself, but that doesn’t mean that I frown upon them, it just means that it is not me” said Estefan.
Before going into the actual post, I must confess that I have totally fallen in love with Adele’s new musical project.
I have been listening to her new CD “25” and must say that I’m totally taken by it.
I know I’m not the only one because everything seems to be Adele nowadays. She was on a visit to New York City and hit all the major talk and late night shows. She appeared on Jimmy Fallon and was hilarious.
She also filmed a TV special for NBS which will air December 14 at 10 PM. One show that I will surely record and watch at my leisure.
Ellen DeGeneres made a parody of her “Hello” which was quite entertaining. Heather Rooney, an incredible illustrator, painted a colored pencil picture of Adele.
I found this video, a rendition of Adele’s “Hello” by the Southern University Marching Band and the Dancing Dolls.
Southern University Marching Band’s Outstanding Cover
By COLLEEN ANNEK
December 3, 2015
Southern University, “of Baton Rouge, not New Orleans: this distinction is incredibly important” as noted by USA Today, takes on Grambling State in the Bayou Classic every year, this year having been the 42nd face-off between the teams, according to the Bayou Classic’s website.
Southern University competed in the Bayou Classic Battle of the Bands on November 27, 2015, and they came to impress. With a stacked horns section, the band covered Adele’s chart-topping single ‘Hello’ with unparalleled power as the Dancing Dolls accompanied the band from the field.
Record-breaking ‘Hello,’ which is currently one of the most popular songs in the country (it has been at the top of Billboard’s Hot 100 list for five weeks now) was the perfect card for Southern University’s marching band to play.
While Adele’s power-ballad might not be the first thing you think of when considering marching band music, the orchestration of the original track leaves plenty of room for the song to be adapted to a full marching band arrangement. The resulting harmonies are out of this world — just make sure you don’t have the volume turned up too high, these horn players mean serious business.
Pink reveals her new role as a UNICEF ambassador on Good Morning America
Pink has been appointed a UNICEF ambassador.
And the proud pop star appeared on Good Morning America on Monday to share her big news.
The 36-year-old singer – who shares three-year-old daughter, Willow with husband Carey Hart – will focus on children’s health initiatives, including fighting global malnutrition, which impacts 159 million children.
“From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest.
But for us, it’s different. Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives.
The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.
Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience.
There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world.
To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”
Carl Sagan gives the best speech ever about humanity and how foolish we behave. Pale Blue Dot is one of the most important and reflective speeches about the human condition and our place in the Universe. The Pale Blue Dot is a photograph of Earth taken in 1990 by the Voyager 1 space probe from a record distance of about 6 billion kilometers from Earth, as part of the solar system Family Portrait series of images.
“The Earth Prelude” by Ludovico Einaudi, Antonio Leofreddi, Laura Riccardi & Marco Decimo