Wisconsin’s Ice Caves Are Open For The First Time In Years, And They Look Incredible. The 21-island park located off the coast of the northern tip of Wisconsin is a well-known summer kayaking destination that attracts visitors with colorful, winding caves and rock formations that protrude and dip along the water line…..In the winter, the seashore takes on an entirely different quality. As frigid weather takes its toll on the Midwest, massive stalagmites and stalactites form along the islands’ striated geology. Inside the caves, lake water freezes into smooth, icy floors that are as clear as a sheet of glass.
Visitors can reach the caves by walking about a mile across the frozen surface of the lake — when the ice is thick enough, that is….Park officials monitor the ice conditions carefully, and the last time the ice was thick enough to venture safely out onto the frozen lake was in 2009. Luckily, after the past several weeks of Arctic-like weather, Lake Superior is now iced over enough to allow safe passage from the mainland to the caves.
‘Facts’ About History You Thought Were True, But Definitely Aren’t.
It’s almost as if you should relearn everything you know about history.
*[Takes deep breath]* Vikings didn’t have have horns on their helmets, iron maidens aren’t real, Columbus didn’t prove the world is round, Napoleon wasn’t short, Paul Revere didn’t shout “the British are coming,” Isaac Newton wasn’t hit by an apple, Walt Disney didn’t draw Mickey Mouse, Nero didn’t fiddle over a burning Rome and “Et tu, Brute?” doesn’t have the historical significance you think it does. *[Exhales]*
And that’s just the beginning. The stories below have become so persistently ingrained in our popular culture that we still consider them “facts” worthy of the history books. They aren’t.
So let’s set these stories straight…
1. The “story of Hamlet” was created by Shakespeare.
The plot of a vengeful prince planning retribution for the murder of his father the king, by his uncle, is at the center of an old Indo-European legend.
Around 1200 AD, the Scandinavian author Saxo Grammaticus even popularized the story in a work called, “Vita Amlethi,” or “The Life of Amleth.”
While the prince in Grammaticus’ story is named Amleth, Prince of Denmark, Shakespeare’s main character is Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. In Grammaticus’ version, too, the tormented prince fakes madness, is angered by his mother’s quick marriage to the new king, and kills a secret spy.
2. George Washington Carver invented peanut butter
Although finding hundreds of new uses for the peanut and greatly aiding the farming economy of the American South, Carver didn’t invent peanut butter, despite popular belief.
Peanut butter has actually been around since about 950 B.C., as the Incas in South America mashed their peanuts into a paste. But even in contemporary times, the first patent for a peanut butter-like substance was registered in 1884, when Carver was only about twenty years old. In his 1943 New York Times obituary, no mention of inventing peanut butter appears, though the publication lists peanut-based developments “including milk, ink, flour, breakfast foods, wood stains, face creams and, latterly, a medicinal peanut oil which was found helpful in the treatment of infantile paralysis.” Carver never patented his products as he believed they were a gift from God.
Dr. John Harvey Kellogg is credited with the first patent related to “peanut butter,” but most suspect that the true inventor of the delicious spread we’ve come to knowwill remain a mystery.
3. Ninjas wore all black costumes.
If anything, ninjas would have worn dark blue, as the night isn’t actually pitch black.
The thing is, it would very rarely make sense for ninjas to have an “assassin” costume so ridiculously different from a normal wardrobe. No matter how many shadows you can sneak through, at some point you’d need to get close enough to the target to make the kill, and wearing an outlandish outfit that people would clearly identify you as “assassin” seems idiotic. But even the idea of ninjas regularly performing sneaky assassinations might be fairly skewed and overblown.
The Ninja Museum of Iga-ryū, a historical school of ninjutsu in Japan, claims the popular idea of what ninjas do and look like is “a mistaken image of the ninja introduced by movies and comic books.” Ninjas who would swing their swords around in fights were considered the “lowest of the ninja,” as using intellect and acts of espionage was typically the goal.
4. Lady Godiva rode naked through the streets on a horse.
You probably now know her best from chocolate boxes, but according to legend, Lady Godiva wanted her husband to abolish taxes on the citizens of Coventry, England, so she rode through the town naked on a horse. How did that make sense? In a deal she made with her husband Leofric, Earl of Mercia, he would only grant her wish if Godiva made the now-famous nude ride. She obliged, and the town’s taxes were abolished to the historic delight of the citizens of Coventry and generations to come.
There are a few reasons to question this tale, beyond its apparent outlandishness. First of all, it didn’t start sprouting up until centuries after Godiva’s death. The original version came from a monk from a monastery Godiva had originally funded. Furthermore, Coventry probably didn’t even pay taxes back then.
5. Vincent Van Gogh sliced off his ear.
Although many people think that Van Gogh cut off his whole ear, it was actually just a portion of the left earlobe that was removed. Furthermore, there’s a compelling argument that Van Gogh wasn’t the one who cut off the earlobe at all.
At the time of this incident, Van Gogh was living with his friend, French artist Paul Gauguin, with whom he had a tumultuous and often violent relationship. Gauguin was an expert fencer and the earlobe came off right after the two had a massive quarrel. The two officially asserted that Van Gogh had cut it off himself, but this could have been a decision by the artists to cover up the true shame and guilt of the encounter, especially when considering Van Gogh claimed in interviews that he had no recollection of the night. Although Van Gogh was also notorious for being mentally unstable, which could lend potential credibility to the tale, he did later write to his brother, “Luckily Gauguin … is not yet armed with machine guns and other dangerous war weapons.”
If you still want to hold on to some part of the legend, according to a report in Le Petit Journal just three days after the incident, Van Gogh apparently did actually gift the earlobe to a prostitute.
6. King Henry VIII was fat and villainous during his whole reign.
The later years of King Henry VIII — the ones that involved many wives and beheadings — seem to wholly overshadow those of a once relatively kind and generous ruler.
Despite the common imagery of Henry as a fat, bearded despot, the king actually took the throne at the age of 18 and was originally revered by subjects. They even called him “Bluff King Hal.” Few people seem to know that right before the end of his marriage with Anne Boleyn, the king was still considered “sporty and generous.”
Unfortunately, things started to fall apart when Henry was beset by persistent medical ailments like leg ulcers, which caused him to grow fatter and angrier as the years passed.
However, things also took a serious turn for the worse when Henry was thrown from his horse in a horrific jousting accident. The animal ended falling on top of him, leaving the royal unconscious for two hours. He reportedly experienced a downturn in mental capacities as well as extreme leg pain for the rest of his life. Boleyn miscarried a male child after learning of Henry’s accident and later that year the king had her executed, starting a long, infamous history of villainy.
7. Benjamin Franklin proposed the turkey should be our national bird over the bald eagle.
The only recorded account of Franklin talking about turkeys and eagles is in a private letter to his daughter about a military group called the Society of the Cincinnati, whose eagle seal he criticized for being inaccurate and looking more like a turkey. It is true that in this letter he also said that he wished the bald eagle wasn’t the national seal, but his “preference” for the turkey was only because he thought that the SoC seal looked more like the bird that would eventually come to symbolize Thanksgiving.
Franklin actually did propose a different national seal in one of the early planning stages, but instead of any bird, he brought forth a more biblical symbol:
Moses standing on the Shore, extending his Hand over the Sea, thereby causing the same to overwhelm Pharaoh who is sitting in an open Chariot, a Crown on his Head and a Sword in his Hand. Rays from a Pillar of Fire in the Clouds, reaching to Moses, to express that he acts by Command of the Deity. ‘Motto – Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God.’
This proposal didn’t catch on and subsequent planning committees ended up choosing the bald eagle.
8. Einstein was a terrible student and failed mathematics.
Albert Einstein actually crushed his report cards. His reputation for being a notoriously terrible student? That came from his habit of talking back to his teachers when he felt they were acting too authoritarian.
Einstein’s mother once wrote in a letter to his grandmother, “Yesterday Albert received his grades, he was again number one, and his report card was brilliant.”…..And he definitely never failed mathematics, as in his own words, “Before I was fifteen I had mastered differential and integral calculus.”
9. Marie Antoinette said, “Let them eat cake.”
The first known report of French Queen Marie Antoinette having uttered the now-infamous words, “Let them eat cake,” didn’t surface until many years after her death. The quote is now widely considered to be a mis-attribution.
The picture is that of a 21-week-old unborn baby named Samuel Alexander Armas, who is being operated on by surgeon named Joseph Bruner. The baby was diagnosed with spina bifida and would not survive if removed from his mother’s womb. Little Samuel’s mother, Julie Armas, is an obstetrics nurse in Atlanta. She knew of Dr. Bruner’s remarkable surgical procedure. Practicing at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, he performs these special operations while the baby is still in the womb.
During the procedure, the doctor removes the uterus via C-section and makes a small incision to operate on the baby. As Dr. Bruner completed the surgery on Samuel, the little guy reached his tiny, but fully developed hand through the incision and firmly grasped the surgeon’s finger. Dr. Bruner was reported as saying that when his finger was grasped, it was the most emotional moment of his life, and that for an instant during the procedure he was just frozen, totally immobile.
The photograph captures this amazing event with perfect clarity. The editors titled the picture, “Hand of Hope.” The text explaining the picture begins, “The tiny hand of 21-week-old fetus Samuel Alexander Armas emerges from the mother’s uterus to grasp the finger of Dr. Joseph Bruner as if thanking the doctor for the gift of life.”
Little Samuel’s mother said they “wept for days” when they saw the picture. She said, “The photo reminds us pregnancy isn’t about disability or an illness, it’s about a little person” Samuel was born in perfect health, the operation 100 percent successful.
Sean Paul Kelley is a travel writer, former radio host, and before that an asset manager for a Wall Street investment bank that is still (barely) alive. He recently left a fantastic job in Singapore working for Solar Winds, a software company based out of Austin to travel around the world for a year (or two). He founded The Agonist, in 2002, which is still considered the top international affairs, culture and news destination for progressives. He is also the Global Correspondent for The Young Turks, on satellite radio and Air America .
If you are Indian, or of Indian descent, I must preface this post with a clear warning: you are not going to like what I have to say. My criticisms may be very hard to stomach. But consider them as the hard words and loving advice of a good friend. Someone who’s being honest with you and wants nothing from you.
These criticisms apply to all of India except Kerala and the places I didn’t visit, except that I have a feeling it applies to all of India , except as I mentioned before, Kerala.
Lastly, before anyone accuses me of Western Cultural Imperialism, let me say this: if this is what India and Indians want, then hey, who am I to tell them differently. Take what you like and leave the rest. In the end it doesn’t really matter, as I get the sense that Indians, at least many upper class Indians, don’t seem to care and the lower classes just don’t know any better, what with Indian culture being so intense and pervasive on the sub-continent. But here goes, nonetheless.
First, pollution. In my opinion the filth, squalor and all around pollution indicates a marked lack of respect for India by Indians. I don’t know how cultural the filth is, but it’s really beyond anything I have ever encountered. At times the smells, trash, refuse and excrement are like a garbage dump.
India is a mess. It’s that simple, but it’s also quite complicated. I’ll start with what I think are India ’s four major problems–the four most preventing India from becoming a developing nation–and then move to some of the ancillary ones.
Right next door to the Taj Mahal was a pile of trash that smelled so bad, was so foul as to almost ruin the entire Taj experience. Delhi , Bangalore and Chennai to a lesser degree were so very polluted as to make me physically ill. Sinus infections, ear infection, bowels churning was an all to common experience in India . Dung, be it goat, cow or human fecal matter was common on the streets. In major tourist areas filth was everywhere, littering the sidewalks, the roadways, you name it. Toilets in the middle of the road, men urinating and defecating anywhere, in broad daylight.
Whole villages are plastic bag wastelands. Roadsides are choked by it. Air quality that can hardly be called quality. Far too much coal and far to few unleaded vehicles on the road. The measure should be how dangerous the air is for one’s health, not how good it is. People casually throw trash in the streets, on the roads.
The only two cities that could be considered sanitary in my journey were Trivandrum –the capital of Kerala–and Calicut . I don’t know why this is. But I can assure you that at some point this pollution will cut into India ’s productivity, if it already hasn’t. The pollution will hobble India ’s growth path, if that indeed is what the country wants. (Which I personally doubt, as India is far too conservative a country, in the small ‘c’ sense.)
The second issue , infrastructure, can be divided into four subcategories: roads, rails and ports and the electrical grid. The electrical grid is a joke. Load shedding is all too common, everywhere in India . Wide swaths of the country spend much of the day without the electricity they actually pay for. With out regular electricity, productivity, again, falls.
The ports are a joke. Antiquated, out of date, hardly even appropriate for the mechanized world of container ports, more in line with the days of longshoremen and the like. Roads are an equal disaster. I only saw one elevated highway that would be considered decent in Thailand , much less Western Europe or America . And I covered fully two thirds of the country during my visit.
There are so few dual carriage way roads as to be laughable. There are no traffic laws to speak of, and if there are, they are rarely obeyed, much less enforced. A drive that should take an hour takes three. A drive that should take three takes nine. The buses are at least thirty years old, if not older.
Everyone in India , or who travels in India raves about the railway system. Rubbish. It’s awful. Now, when I was there in 2003 and then late 2004 it was decent. But in the last five years the traffic on the rails has grown so quickly that once again, it is threatening productivity. Waiting in line just to ask a question now takes thirty minutes. Routes are routinely sold out three and four days in advance now, leaving travelers stranded with little option except to take the decrepit and dangerous buses.At least fifty million people use the trains a day in India . 50 million people! Not surprising that waitlists of 500 or more people are common now.
The rails are affordable and comprehensive but they are overcrowded and what with budget airlines popping up in India like Sadhus in an ashram the middle and lowers classes are left to deal with the overutilized rails and quality suffers. No one seems to give a shit.
Seriously, I just never have the impression that the Indian government really cares. Too interested in buying weapons from Russia , Israel and the US I guess.
The last major problem in India is an old problem and can be divided into two parts that’ve been two sides of the same coin since government was invented: bureaucracy and corruption.
It take triplicates to register into a hotel. To get a SIM card for one’s phone is like wading into a jungle of red-tape and photocopies one is not likely to emerge from in a good mood, much less satisfied with customer service.
Getting train tickets is a terrible ordeal, first you have to find the train number, which takes 30 minutes, then you have to fill in the form, which is far from easy, then you have to wait in line to try and make a reservation, which takes 30 minutes at least and if you made a single mistake on the form back you go to the end of the queue, or what passes for a queue in India.
The government is notoriously uninterested in the problems of the commoners, too busy fleecing the rich, or trying to get rich themselves in some way shape or form. Take the trash for example, civil rubbish collection authorities are too busy taking kickbacks from the wealthy to keep their areas clean that they don’t have the time, manpower, money or interest in doing their job.
Rural hospitals are perennially understaffed as doctors pocket the fees the government pays them, never show up at the rural hospitals and practice in the cities instead.
I could go on for quite some time about my perception of India and its problems, but in all seriousness, I don’t think anyone in India really cares. And that, to me, is the biggest problem. India is too conservative a society to want to change in any way.
Mumbai, India ’s financial capital is about as filthy, polluted and poor as the worst city imaginable in Vietnam , or Indonesia –and being more polluted than Medan , in Sumatra is no easy task. The biggest rats I have ever seen were in Medan !
One would expect a certain amount of, yes, I am going to use this word, backwardness, in a country that hasn’t produced so many Nobel Laureates, nuclear physicists, eminent economists and entrepreneurs. But India has all these things and what have they brought back to India with them? Nothing.
The rich still have their servants, the lower castes are still there to do the dirty work and so the country remains in stasis. It’s a shame. Indians and India have many wonderful things to offer the world, but I’m far from sanguine that India will amount to much in my lifetime.
Now, have at it, call me a cultural imperialist, a spoiled child of the West and all that. But remember, I’ve been there. I’ve done it. And I’ve seen 50 other countries on this planet and none, not even Ethiopia , have as long and gargantuan a laundry list of problems as India does.
And the bottom line is, I don’t think India really cares. Too complacent and too conservative.
Some other facts (that mainstream media will never disclose) about Gaddafi and Libya :
Loans to Libyan citizens are given with NO interest.
Students would get paid the average salary for the profession they are studying for.
If you are unable to get employment the state would pay the full salary as if you were employed until you find employment.
When you get married the couple gets an apartment or house for free from the Government.
You could go to college anywhere in the world. The state pays 2,500 euros plus accommodation and car allowance.
The cars are sold at factory cost.
Libya does not owe money, (not a cent) to anyone. No creditors.
Free education and health care for all citizens.
25% of the population with a university degree.
No beggers on the streets and nobody is homeless (until the recent bombing).
Bread costs only $0.15 per loaf.
No wonder the US and other capitalist countries do not like Libya . Gaddafi would not consent to taking loans from IMF or World Bank at high interest rates. In other words Libya was INDEPENDENT! That is the real reason for the war in Libya ! He may be a dictator, but that is not the US problem. Also Gaddafi called on all Oil producing countries NOT to accept payment for oil in USD or Euros. He recommended that oil get paid for in GOLD and that would have bankrupted just about every Western Country as most of them do not have gold reserves to match the rate at which they print their useless currencies.
Remember the last time someone had the “NERVE” to make a similar statement was when Saddam Hussein advised all Opec countries not to accept payment for oil in US Dollars. Well, we all know what happened to him .
Yes, they HUNG HIM , more appropriately said “Lynched Him“
The popular tale of Bengalooru (now Bangalore) getting its name from ‘Bende Kaalu Ooru’ meaning ‘Town of boiled beans’ after King Veera Ballala II of the Hoysala dynasty in 1120 AD was fed boiled beans by an old woman in the forest is historically incorrect. The name ‘Bengalooru’ was recorded much before King Ballala’s time in a 9th century inscription found in a temple in Begur village near Bangalore.
Bangalore was founded by Kempe Gowda I, who in 1537 AD built a mud fort in an area which is now K.R Market, Avenue Road and its nearby areas. Kempe Gowda built 8 gates for this fort:
* Yelahanka Gate (present Mysore Bank Square).
* Yeshwantpur Gate (near Upparapet police station).
* Kengiri Gate (now a police station is named after it).
* Halasoor (Ulsoor) Gate. (Now a police station is named after it).
* Kanakanahalli Gate (near Vokkaligara Sangha Bldg).
* Sonde Koppa Gate.
* Anekal Gate.
* Delhi Gate (at the Fort in K.R Market, which was rebuilt in stone by Hyder Ali). Inside the fort, he built the localities (pets) of Balepet, Aralepet (Cottonpet), Chickpet, Doddapet (Avenue Road), Upparapet, etc.
· To this day these areas bear their old names, and serve as major wholesale & commercial markets.
Kempe Gowda II came to power in 1585 and it was he who set the limit for Bangalore’s expansion by erecting 4 watch towers. These Watch towers still exist and are known as the Kempe Gowda Towers.
· In 1638, the army of Adil Shah, the Sultan of Bijapur, led by Ranadulla Khan & Shahaji Bhonsle (Shivaji’s father) captured Bengalooru fort. Kempe Gowda II was then forced to retreat to Magadi, from where he and his successors ruled as Magadi Rulers. Magadi was later annexed to Mysore Kingdom in 1728.
· Bangalore was gifted twice as a Jagir and sold once. In 1638 AD, Adil Shah gifted it to Shahaji Bhonsle, thus starting the Maratha rule of Bangalore. In 1689, the Mughals captured Bangalore from the Marathas and sold it to Chikka Devaraja Wodeyar of Mysore for 3 lakh pagodas (gold coins). In 1759, Hyder Ali, commander of Mysore’s army, received Bangalore as a Jagir from Krishnaraja Wodeyar II. Later Hyder Ali declared himself ruler of Mysore Kingdom after Krishnaraja Wodeyar II’s death. Bangalore returned to the Wodeyars after Hyder’s son, Tippu Sultan, died in 1799 fighting the British.
· The British established the post of ‘Mysore Resident’ of Mysore Kingdom in 1799 and appointed Col.Sir Barry Close as the first Resident. In 1804 The Mysore Resident was shifted from Mysore to Bangalore. The Resident’s office & house known as ‘The Residency’ was first situated in the SACRED HEARTS SCHOOL (GOOD SHEPHERD CONVENT) building opp St.Joseph’s college in Bangalore. It also housed a jail, while the site across the road where convicts were hanged now houses the ST. JOSEPH’S COLLEGE. Many a ghost was seen wandering about before the College came up! The Road along the ‘Residency’ came to be called ‘RESIDENCY ROAD’ and even today it’s known as Residency Road though officially it has been changed to ‘ Gen. Cariappa Road ‘. In fact ‘The Residency’ later in 1881 shifted to what is today the RAJ BHAVAN, but Residency Road has retained its name ever since 1804 (now 200 years).
· The Raj Bhavan in Bangalore was built in 1840s & owned by Sir Mark Cubbon, who was Commissioner then. Cubbon was passionately fond of Arabian horses and used to keep at least fifty horses in his stable here. Lewin Benthem Bowring who succeeded Cubbon as Commissioner purchased the bungalow with its vast estate in 1862 for the British Govt to be used as the official Commissioner’s Bungalow. Later when the post of Commissioner was abolished, the Resident came to stay here and it came to be known as ‘The Residency’. But the road still was known as Commissioner’s Road, which is the reason why the road on the old Residency building continued to be known as ‘Residency Road’.
· In 1806, the British established a new CANTONMENT AREA in Bangalore (at Ulsoor) for its army and called it the ‘Civil & Military Station’. Till India’s independence this Cantonment area was ruled directly by the British. Thus Bangalore comprised two separate areas, to the West, Bangalore (Pettah) administered by the Mysore Maharaja, and to the East, Bangalore Cantonment, administered as a separate unit by the British Govt through the Resident. Soon the Cantonment area became not only a military base for the British army & its family, but also a settlement for a large number of Europeans, Anglo-Indians, missionaries, and Tamil speaking workers & traders from the neighbouring British controlled Madras Presidency.
· The Cantonment area under the British consisted of Shoolay, Blackpully (now SHIVAJINAGAR) , The Parade (M.G ROAD AREA), St. John’s Hill, Fraser Town, Benson Town, Cleveland Town, Cox Town, Richard’s Town, Ulsoor, Knoxpet (Murphy Town), Agram, Richmond Town, Langford Town, Austin Town (named after British Resident, Sir James Austin Bourdillon), Whitefield (Anglo-Indian Colony created in 1882), etc. Even today these Suburbs exist. The names given to the roads in the Cantonment were according to the military arrangement and campus. Thus, there was Artillery Rd, Brigade Rd, Infantry Rd, Cavalry Rd, South Parade (now M.G. ROAD), East Parade (near Mittal Towers), etc. The heart of the city in those days was the so called MacIver Town, the area around South Parade, St. Mark’s Road, Brigade Road and Cubbon Road.
· The Shoolay area (now Ashoknagar) still has streets named Wood Street, Castle Street, etc. The name ‘ SHOOLAY CIRCLE ‘, however, still exists near Brigade Towers. The famous Shoolay Police Station of the Cantonment was renamed Ashoknagar Police Station and now it has been demolished.
· COLES PARK is named after British Resident of Mysore Kingdom, Arthur H. Cole, who was Resident from 1809 – 1812 and again from 1818 – 1827.
· The British Cantonment area was also a host to SIR WINSTON CHURCHILL, the future British Prime Minister who stayed in Bangalore from 1897 to 1900.
· In 1892, new extensions were added to the old town of Bangalore (Pettah) by creating CHAMARAJPET (named after Chamarajendra Wodeyar) and SHESHADRIPURAM (named after the Mysore Diwan Sir K. Sheshadri Iyer).
· In 1898, a plague broke out in Bangalore. The Bangalore Administration at once laid out 2 new bigger extensions to the City to meet the demand that had risen due to people being forced to leave their original areas that were affected. This resulted in laying out a suburb, named BASAVANGUDI after the Basaveswara (Bull God) Temple (also called Bull Temple) erected by Kempe Gowda I and another suburb, named MALLESWARAM, after the Kadu Malleshwara (Siva) Temple in the old Mallapura village.
· In 1901, VICTORIA HOSPITAL was established in commemoration of Queen Victoria of England’s Diamond Jubilee.
· In 1902, VANIVILAS HOSPITAL & SCHOOL was opened and the Road was also named VANIVILAS ROAD in memory of Maharani Vani Vilas Sannidhana, the Queen Regent of Mysore.
· In 1905, Bangalore became the first city in India to get electrical power.
During the post-Independence period KUMARA PARK area came into existence in 1947, JAYANAGAR was inaugurated in 1948, and at Binnamangala was created the INDIRANAGAR extension during the late 1960s.
· The large stone building on Residency Road, now housing L.I.C. adjacent to Devatha Plaza once housed The Reserve Bank of India. The present canteen of L.I.C. was once the strong room of the bank!
· One wonders why in the old records there is a reference to ‘ CENOTAPH ROAD ‘ in Bangalore when there is none to be seen. Cenotaph Road is today the NRUPATHUNGA ROAD named after Kannada poet Nrupathunga. The Cenotaph (Tomblike monument), was there at what is now the Corporation Circle . This Cenotaph was built in memory of Lt. Col. Moorhouse, Capt. Delany and about 50 soldiers who died in the siege in 1791, besides soldiers who died in different wars with Tipu Sultan till 1799. This monument was destroyed on Oct 28th 1964, by the Bangalore City Corporation and even the engraved stones are not to be traced! Only one broken small section piece has been located in the Corporation compound, used as a bench.
· CUBBON PARK is named after Sir Mark Cubbon, who was the British Commissioner of Mysore Kingdom from 1834 to 1861. Sir Mark, incidentally, had never set his eyes on the park. He left India in April 1861, and died on his way back home at Suez on 23rd April 1861. Cubbon Park was planned in 1864 by Sir Richard Sankey, the then Chief Engineer of Mysore (SANKEY TANK & SANKEY ROAD is named after Richard Sankey). The park was initially known as ‘ Meades Park ‘ after John Meade, the then acting Commissioner of Mysore. Subsequently it was rechristened as Chamarajendra Park in 1927 and later came to be known as Cubbon Park.
· CHURCH STREET at M.G’s is called so, because the road used to lead directly to St. Marks Church. At one time the compound of the Church was much bigger and the Church could be seen as you walked along Church Street.
· MUSEUM ROAD next to Church Street was named so since the Museum was located there before it was shifted to the present Kasturba Road in 1866.
· MAYO HALL at M.G. Road was erected in memory of Lord Mayo, the Governor-General of India who was assassinated in the Andamans in 1872. Built with public subscription it was handed over to the Municipal Commission in 1883.
· LALBAGH (meaning Red Garden) is not the original name of the famous garden in Bangalore, which was established by Hyder Ali in 1760 as a mango garden. In earlier records it was referred to as the Mango Tope & the Cypress Garden. The reason why people started calling it Lalbagh was due to the fact that Hyder & Tipu had a beautiful garden called Lalbagh at their capital, Srirangapatna.
· THE HOLY TRINITY CHURCH at Trinity Circle, at the end of M.G. Road, was earlier the British Army’s Garrison church, opened in 1851. The beauty of Trinity Church is not only in its tall tower & unparalleled pillars, but also the British military memorials inside.
· In 1868 the construction of Attara Kacheri (present High Court) was completed. The Secretariat (with 18 revenue departments) was shifted to Attara Kacheri from Tippu’s Palace at K.R Market. Attara Kacheri literally means ’18 Courts/Offices’.
· The TAJ WEST END HOTEL is the oldest Hotel in Bangalore and still maintains some of its earlier memories!! The original Proprietors were Spencer & Co Ltd, Madras. Today it’s owned by the Taj Group of Hotels.
· Opposite the Telegraph Office near Bangalore GPO, is the compound of the most famous Hotel of the late 1800’s, The Cubbon Hotel. Today it is in ruins.
· Spencer & Co (where FOOD WORLD is now located) started by an Englishman, Mr. Oakshot, was the most sophisticated and only Departmental Store in B’lore in earlier days.
· On the West of Spencer’s (present FOOD WORLD) one used to find Liberty Theatre (today try Handloom House!). Before it was called Liberty, it was The Globe, and before that the Crystal Picture Palace.
· The very popular Funnel’s Restaurant of the 1800’s & early 1900’s stood where the present DECCAN HERALD Office stands at M.G Road.
· S.J. POLYTECHNIC & SILVER JUBILEE PARK (at K.R MARKET – KRISHNA RAJENDRA MARKET) was set up in 1927 to commemorate the Silver Jubilee Celebration of Mysore Maharaja Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV. The SJP ROAD thus got its name.
· J.C ROAD (Jaya.Chamarajendra Road) is named after Jayachamaraja Wodeyar the last Maharaja of Mysore.
· The TATA SILK FARM was established south of Basavanagudi in 1906. The farm no longer exists but the area however is still known as ‘Tata Silk Farm’.
· In 1910, a General Hospital was opened at Malleshwaram and named after Mysore Princess Kempu Cheluvarajamnanni. Today this Hospital at Malleshwaram Circle is popularly known as K.C. GENERAL HOSPITAL.
· Bangalore once had 141 lakes (tanks) of which 7 are untraceable, 7 are now small pools of water, 18 are illegally occupied by slums & private parties, 14 were dried up & leased out by the Government, 28 have been converted as parks, BDA housing extensions, & commercial areas and the remaining 67 lakes are in fairly advanced state of deterioration, save for two or three like Ulsoor lake, Sankey Tank, Hebbal, etc.
· Some famous water bodies (tanks) which no longer exist are :
Dharamambudi Tank (present SUBASH NAGAR, BANGALORE CITY TRANSPORT SERVICE & KSRTC BUS stands are built on the bed of this lake). That’s why we still have a road named TANKBUND ROAD in that area.
· Sampangi Tank (present KANTEERAVA STADIUM was built on the bed of this lake).
Miller’s Tank (now houses Guru Nanak Bhavan, schools, and several buildings).
· The Halasoor Tank (now called ULSOOR LAKE), is the only surviving tank built by the Gowda (Kempe Gowda) rulers in Bangalore.
· Gandhinagar area is popularly nicknamed MAJESTIC, because of the Majestic Talkies (Theatre), which still exists in that area.
· ANANDA RAO CIRCLE at Majestic is named after Shri T. Ananda Rao, who was Dewan of Mysore from 1909 – 1912.
· VIDHANA SOUDHA, which houses the state Goverment’s Secretariat & Legislative Assembly. It was planned & constructed in 1954 by Kengal Hanumanthaih, Chief Minister of the then Mysore State (Between 1951-1956).
· The Double Road near Lalbagh is now named KENGAL HANUMANTHAIH ROAD (K.H. ROAD).
· CHOWDIAH MEMORIAL HALL, opposite Sankey Tank, has been built in memory of T. Chowdiah, a noted musician & violinist. This building is shaped like a violin, the stringed instrument of Chowdiah. Also the road along the Nehru Planetarium near Raj Bhavan is named T.CHOWDAIH ROAD.
· RAVINDRA KALAKSHETRA, near K.R. Market was built to commemorate Rabindranath Tagore’s centenary. It promotes cultural activity. R.T. NAGAR is also named after Rabindranath Tagore.
· My tailpiece. Most of you would have read R K Narayan’s MALGUDI DAYS. Does anyone know where Malgudi is? It is actually the combination of the names of two areas in bangalore – one where R K Narayan lived and the other where his in-laws lived. It is the combination of MALleswaram and BasavanGUDI.
I was born in one country, raised in another. My father was born in another country. I was not his only child.
He fathered several children with numerous women. I became very close to my mother, as my father showed no interest in me.
My mother died at an early age from cancer. Although my father deserted me and my mother raised me, I later wrote a book idolizing my father not my mother.
Later in life, questions arose over my real name. My birth records were sketchy. No one was able to produce a legitimate, reliable birth certificate.
I grew up practicing one faith but converted to Christianity, as it was widely accepted in my new country, but I practiced non-traditional beliefs and didn’t follow Christianity, except in the public eye under scrutiny. I worked and lived among lower-class people as a young adult, disguising myself as someone who really cared about them. That was before I decided it was time to get serious about my life. and I embarked on a new career.
I wrote a book about my struggles growing up. It was clear to those who read my memoirs, that I had difficulties accepting that my father abandoned me as a child.
I became active in local politics in my 30’s then, with help behind the scenes, I literally burst onto the scene as a candidate for national office in my 40s.
They said I had a golden tongue and could talk anyone into anything.
I had a virtually non-existent resume, little work history, and no experience in leading a single organisation. Yet I was a powerful speaker and citizens were drawn to me, as though I were a magnet and they were small roofing tacks.
I drew incredibly large crowds during my public appearances.
This bolstered my ego.
At first, my political campaign focused on my country’s foreign policy…
I was very critical of my country in the last war, and seized every opportunity to bash my country. But what launched my rise to national prominence were my views on the country’s economy. I pretended to have a really good plan on how we could do better, and every poor person would be fed and housed for free.
I knew which group was responsible for getting us into this mess.
It was the free market, banks and corporations. I decided to start making citizens hate them and, if they became envious of others who did well, the plan was clinched tight.
I called mine “A People’s Campaign”. That sounded good to all people.
I was the surprise candidate because I emerged from outside the traditional path of politics and was able to gain widespread popular support.
I knew that, if I merely offered the people ‘hope’, together we could change our country and the world.
So, I started to make my speeches sound like they were on behalf of the downtrodden, poor, ignorant to include “persecuted minorities”.
My true views were not widely known and I kept them unknown, until after I became my nation’s leader.
I had to carefully guard reality, as anybody could have easily found out what I really believed, if they had simply read my writings and examined those people I associated with.
I’m glad they didn’t.
Then I became the most powerful man in the world. And the world learned the truth.
Who am I?
Life is an adventure to be lived, not a problem to be solved.
Ever wanted to know how the different companies were named? Here is an interesting primer.
This was actually financier’s daughter’s name.
This came from the name of the river Adobe Creek that ran behind the house of founder John Warnock.
It was the favourite fruit of founder Steve Jobbs.He was three months late for filing a name for the business, and he threatened to call his company Apple Computers if the other colleagues didn’t suggest a better name by 5 o’clock.
It is not an acronym as popularly believed. Its short for San Francisco.
This name was formed by using COMp, for computer and PAQ to denote a small integral object.
The name was derived from the founder’s name Dr. Michael Cowpland. It stands for COwpland Research Laboratory.
The name started as a joke boasting about the amount of information the search-engine would be able to search. It was originally named ‘Googol’,a word for the number represented by 1 followed by 100 zeros. After founders – Stanford graduate students Sergey Brin and Larry Page presented their project to an angel investor; they received a cheque made out to ‘Google’.
Founder Jack Smith got the idea of accessing e-mail via the web from a computer anywhere in the world. When Sabeer Bhatia came up with the business plan for the mail service, he tried all kinds of names ending in ‘mail’ and finally settled for hotmail as it included the letters”html” – the programming language used to write web pages. It was initially referred to as HoTMaiL with selective uppercasing.
Hewlett Packard :
Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard tossed a coin to decide whether the company they founded would be called Hewlett-Packard or Packard-Hewlett.
Bob Noyce and Gordon Moore wanted to name their new company ‘Moore Noyce’ but that was already trademarked by a hotel chain so they had to settle for an acronym of INTegrated ELectronics.
Mitch Kapor got the name for his company from ‘The Lotus Position’ or’Padmasana’ . Kapor used to be a teacher of transcendental Meditation of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
Coined by Bill Gates to represent the company that was devoted to MICROcomputer SOFTware. Originally christened Micro-Soft, the ‘-‘ was removed later on.
Founder Paul Galvin came up with this name when his company started manufacturing radios for cars. The popular radio company at the time was called Victrola.
It originated from the Latin word ‘sonus’ meaning sound, and ‘sonny’ as lang used by Americans to refer to a bright youngster.
Founded by 4 Stanford University buddies, SUN is the acronym forStanford University Network. Andreas Bechtolsheim built a microcomputer; Vinod Khosla recruited him and Scott McNealy to manufacture computers based on it, and Bill Joy to develop a UNIX-based OS for the computer.
It got its name because its founders got started by applying patches to code written for NCSA’s httpd daemon.. The result was ‘A PAtCHy’ server –thus, the name Apache Jakarta (project from Apache):A project constituted by SUN and Apache to create a web server handling servlets and JSPs. Jakarta was name of the conference room at SUN where most of the meetings between SUN and Apache took place.
The servlet part of the Jakarta project. Tomcat was the code name for the JSDK 2.1 project inside SUN.
Dennis Ritchie improved on the B programming language and called it ‘New B’.He later called it C. Earlier B was created by Ken Thompson as a revision of the Bon programming language (named after his wife Bonnie).
Bjarne Stroustrup called his new language ‘C with Classes’ and then ‘newC’. Because of which the original C began to be called ‘old C’ which was considered insulting to the C community. At this time Rick Mascitti suggested the name C++ as a successor to C.
A species of African antelope. Founder of the GNU project Richard Stallman liked the name because of the humor associated with its pronunciation and was also influenced by the children’s song ‘The Gnu Song’ which is a song sung by a gnu. Also it fitted into the recursive acronym culture with ‘GNU’s Not Unix’.
Originally called Oak by creator James Gosling, from the tree that stood outside his window, the programming team had to look for a substitute as there was no other language with the same name. Java was selected from a list of suggestions. It came from the name of the coffee that the programmers drank.
Combination of two popular Korean brands Lucky and Goldstar.
Linus Torvalds originally used the Minix OS on his system which here placed by his OS. Hence the working name was Linux (Linus’ Minix). He thought the name to be too egotistical and planned to name it Freax(free+ freak + x).His friend Ari Lemmke encouraged Linus to upload it to a network so it could be easily downloaded. Ari gave Linus a directory called linux on his FTP server, as he did not like the name Freax.(Linus’ parents named him after two-time Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling) .
When Marc Andreesen, founder of Netscape, created a browser to replace Mosaic (also developed by him), it was named Mozilla (Mosaic-Killer, Godzilla) .The marketing guys didn’t like the name however and it wasre-christened Netscape Navigator.
Company founder Marc Ewing was given the Cornell lacrosse team cap (with red and white stripes) while at college by his grandfather. He lost it and had to search for it desperately. The manual of the beta version of Red Hat Linux had an appeal to readers to return his Red Hat if found by anyone!
“Systems, Applications, Products in Data Processing”, formed by 4 ex-IBM employees who used to work in the ‘Systems/Applicatio ns/Projects’ group of IBM.
From Santa Cruz Operation. The company’s office was in Santa Cruz.
When Bell Labs pulled out of MULTICS (MULTiplexed Information and Computing System), which was originally a joint Bell/GE/MIT project, KenThompson and Dennis Ritchie of Bell Labs wrote a simpler version of the OS.They needed the OS to run the game Space War which was compiled underMULTICS. It was called UNICS – UNIplexed operating and Computing System by Brian Kernighan. It was later shortened to UNIX.
The inventor, Chestor Carlson, named his product trying to say `dry’ (asit was dry copying, markedly different from the then prevailing wet copying). The Greek root `xer’ means dry.
The word was invented by Jonathan Swift and used in his book ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ . It represents a person who is repulsive in appearance and action and is barely human. Yahoo! founders Jerry Yang and David Filo selected the name because they considered themselves yahoos.
Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company started off by mining the material corundum used to make sandpaper.
Lightning bolts appear above and around the Chaiten volcano as seen from Chana, some 30 kms (19 miles) north of the volcano, as it began its first eruption in thousands of years, in southern Chile May 2, 2008. Cases of electrical storms breaking out directly above erupting volcanoes are well documented, although scientists differ on what causes them. Picture taken May 2, 2008. (REUTERS/Carlos Gutierrez)
Kartoula, 14, a refugee from Sudan’s western Darfur region, enters a distribution centre to receive monthly food rations at Djabal camp near Gos Beida in eastern Chad, June 5, 2008. (REUTERS/Finbarr O’Reilly)
The Space Shuttle Discovery lifts off from launch pad 39-A at Kennedy Space Center on May 31, 2008 in Cape Canaveral, Florida, en route to the International Space Station on a construction mission. (Eliot J. Schechter /Getty Images)
An aerial view of floods caused by Tropical Storm Hanna is seen in Gonaives, Haiti on September 3, 2008. Haiti’s civil protection office said 37 of the 90 Hanna-related deaths had occurred in the port city of Gonaives. (REUTERS/Marco Dormino/Minustah)
A U.S. Marine, from the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, has a close call after Taliban fighters opened fire near Garmser in Helmand Province of Afghanistan May 18, 2008. The Marine was not injured. (REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic)
The hand of a dead body lies on the ground amongst the rubble of the earthquake ravaged town May 15, 2008 in Beichuan, Sichuan province, China. (Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)
Italian soccer club AC Milan’s newly signed player Ronaldinho of Brazil attends his presentation at San Siro Stadium in Milan, Italy on July 17, 2008. (REUTERS/Alessandro Garofalo)
The right hand of a young visitor is silhouetted against a jellyfish exhibition hall at the Ocean Park aquarium-amusement complex in Hong Kong on January 20, 2008. (REUTERS/Victor Fraile)
Buildings and debris are seen floating in the Cedar River against a railroad bridge Saturday, June 14, 2008, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Days after it rose out of its banks on its way to record flooding in Cedar Rapids, the Cedar River has forced at least 24,000 people from their homes, emergency officials said. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
Kenyan athletes train at Eldoret’s Chepkoilel stadium on May 30, 2008 in preparation for the upcoming Beijing Olympic Games 2008. Recently the Kenyan athletics federation announced the setting up of two training camps in Eldoret and Nairobi to cater for a selected team of 120 athletes ahead of the Beijing Olympic trials on July 4-5. (TONY KARUMBA/AFP/ Getty Images)
Time exposure of the Swiss mountain resort of Grindelwald next to the north face of the Eiger mountain, seen on January 10, 2008. (REUTERS/Stefan Wermu
Department of Water and Power workers are emptying out bales of plastic balls in the Ivanhoe reservoir in Los Angeles on Monday, June 9, 2008. Department of Water and Power released about 400,000 black plastic 4-inch balls as the first installment of approximately 3 million to form a floating cover over 7 acres of the reservoir to protect the water from sunlight. When sunlight mixes with the bromide and chlorine in Ivanhoe’s water, the carcinogen bromate can form. (Irfan Khan/AP)
A man dressed as a tiger carries a small whip made from rope in Zitlala, Guerrero state, Mexico, Monday, May 5, 2008. Every year, inhabitants of this town participate in a violent ceremony to ask for a good harvest and plenty of rain, at the end of the ceremony men battle each other with their whips while wearing tiger masks and costumess. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)
A baseball is illuminated by the sun as Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Ted Lilly throws during the first inning of a game against the Milwaukee Brewers Saturday, Sept. 27 2008, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Darren Hauck)
Children of slain Philadelphia police sergeant Stephen Liczbinski, Amber and Steve embrace after their father’s funeral mass on the steps of the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania May 9, 2008 Sergeant Liczbinski was gunned down as he investigated a bank robbery on May 3. (REUTERS/Tim Shaffer)
A policeman carries a child away during a gun battle in Tijuana, in Mexico’s state of Baja California, January 17, 2008. A shootout on Thursday, after police agents moved in on a drug cartel group, left four people injured and forced the emergency evacuation of a school in Tijuana, according to the local media. (REUTERS/Jorge Duenes)
A man stands in front of the Marriott hotel after a bomb blast in Islamabad September 20, 2008. A truck bomb was detonated outside the Marriott in the Pakistani capital Islamabad on Saturday, killing at least 54, injuring at least 266 and starting a fire which swept through the hotel. (REUTERS/Faisal Mahmood)
Locals and tourists walk around the Dutch ship Artemis which ran aground on the beach of les Sables d’Olonne, southern French Britanny, western France, March 10, 2008. The boat had been driven onto the coast by the wind blowing more than 130 km per hour. (REUTERS/Stephane Mahe)
A fire rages out of control at the backlot filled with movie sets at Universal Studios in Universal City, California, 12 miles (19 km) from downtown Los Angeles June 1, 2008. A portion of the set used in Steven Spielberg’s film “War of the Worlds” including a jet airplane is shown foreground. (Fred Prouser /Reuters)
Swiss pilot Yves Rossy, the world’s first man to fly with a jet-powered fixed-wing apparatus strapped to his back, flies during his first official demonstration, on May 14, 2008 above Bex, Switzerland. (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/ Getty Images)
Cyclone Nargis victims huddle in torrential rain as they await assistance in Dedaye Township, southwest of Yangon, Myanmar on May 19, 2008. Political resistance to outside aid and a slow response by the government worsened an already devastating situation – an estimated 146,000 people lost their lives. (REUTERS/Stringer)
Tear gas cannisters fired by Israeli soldiers fall from the sky on Palestinian and Israeli peace activists during a protest agaisnt the construction of Israel’s controversial security barrier in the West Bank village of Bilin, near Ramallah, on June 6, 2008. (Abbas Momani/AFP/Getty Images)
Maasai warriors cover a battle field as they clash with bows and arrows with members of the Kalenjin tribe in the Kapune hill overlooking the Olmelil valley located in the Transmara District in Western Kenya on March 01, 2008. The Massai, the Kalenjin and the Kisii tribes have recently clashed over ongoing land disputes that erupted after botched local elections during the general elections held in Kenya in December of 2007. Over twenty warriors from the tribes have been killed in bow and arrow battles near the borders of these tribes in the last couple of months. (Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images)
Firefighters battle a blaze at the Namdaemun gate, one of South Korea’s most historic sites, in central Seoul, on February 11, 2008. An arsonist started the fire, destroying the gate – the oldest wooden structure in Seoul, first constructed in 1398 and rebuilt in 1447. (Kim Jae-hwan/AFP/ Getty Images)
The head of a male student, still alive, trapped under the debris is pictured at the scene of the church school that collapsed on the outskirts of Haiti’s capital Port-au-Prince, November 7, 2008. At least 30 people were killed when the three-story La Promesse school building collapsed while class was in session and some of the walls and debris crushed neighboring homes in the Nerettes community near Port-au-Prince. (REUTERS/Joseph Guyler Delva)
Wounded Palestinians lay near Reuters news agency reporter Fadel Shaana’s car after it was hit by an Israeli missile on April 16, 2008 in the central Gaza Strip. The Israeli air strike killed a Palestinian cameraman working for the Reuters news service and two other civilians, Palestinian medics and witnesses said. (MOHAMMED ABED/AFP/Getty Images)
A rescue helicopter prepares to hoist aboard surviving Japanese climber Hideaki Nara near the summit of Aoraki Mount Cook in New Zealand on December 5, 2008. A Japanese climber stranded for six days just below the summit had died just hours before rescuers reached him and a compatriot, local media reported. The two Japanese climbers were forced to huddle in a tent 50 meters below the 3,754-meter (12,349 feet) peak, as poor weather and high winds foiled attempts to rescue the men by helicopter. (REUTERS/The Christchurch Press/John Kirk-Anderson)
A Kenyan boy screams as he sees kenyan policeman with a baton approach the door of his home in the Kibera slum of Nairobi 17 January 2008. Hundreds of police who had earlier clashed with supporters of Kenya’s opposition leader Raila Odinga at the entrance of the slum moved into the shantytown and did a house to house search for protestors. (WALTER ASTRADA/AFP/ Getty Images)
An Afghan refugee child hides from a dust storm behind a tent at a refugee camp in Kabul, Afghanistan on October 7, 2008. Over a quarter million Afghans have returned home this year from Pakistan and Iran, many of them reportedly due to economic and security uncertainties faced in exile, the United Nations said. (MANPREET ROMANA/AFP/Getty Images)
The Guizer Jarl is silhouetted as members of his Viking Squad walk around a long boat with burning torches during the annual Up Helly Aa Festival, in Lerwick, Shetland Islands on January 29th, 2008. Up Helly Aa celebrates the influence of the Scandinavian vikings in the Shetland Islands. (Carl de Souza/AFP/Getty Images)
Comoran and Tanzanian African Union soldiers (not seen) arrest an injured Anjouanese man after shooting three rockets at his house in Mutsamudu on 25 March 2008. The Comoran army said it had located the renegade leader of the isle of Anjouan, Mohamed Bacar, during the operation it launched earlier March 25, 2008 with the African Union to oust him. Some 400 AND troops backed by around 1,000 soldiers from Sudan and Tanzania launched a offensive before dawn to wrest back control of the isle of Anjouan from Bacar, its self-proclaimed leader, and capture him. Bacar was captured, and after some legal wrangling, evaded extradition back to the Comoros, and is now living in exile in Benin. (JOSE CENDON/AFP/Getty Images)
Fishermen try to catch fish during the Argungu fishing festival in Nigeria on March 15, 2008. Over 30,000 fishermen from different parts of Nigeria and neighbouring West Africa took part in the final of the yearly Argungu fishing festival in Kebbi, northwestern Nigeria. (Pius Utomi Ekpei/AFP/Getty Images)
A firefighter uses a flare gun to set a backfire in the rugged area of Little Tujunga Canyon, 20 miles (32 km) north of downtown Los Angeles in the early hours of October 12, 2008. Fifty miles per hour gusty winds spread the fire towards ranches and houses in the heavily-forested canyon. (REUTERS/Gene Blevins)
Flames from a wreckage of a passenger plane are seen after crash Goma in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo on April 15, 2008. 40 people were killed, most of them were on the ground in the marketplace where the plane crashed. (Lionel Healing/AFP/ Getty Images)
A polar bear shakes his body to remove water at the St-Felicien Wildlife Zoo in St-Felicien, Quebec on March 6, 2008. (REUTERS/Mathieu Belanger)
Cambodian families living on the grounds of the disputed 900-year-old Preah Vihear temple, along the Thai-Cambodian border October 16, 2008. Nearly 200 Cambodian residents living near the temple have taken refuge on its grounds, after recent fighting killed two Cambodian soldiers, a local Cambodian newspaper reported. The International Court of Justice awarded the temple to Cambodia in 1962, but the court failed to determine the ownership of 1.8 square miles (4.6 sq km) Hindu ruins, a ruling that has rankled with Thais ever since. (REUTERS/Adrees Latif)
A man in a traditional “Perchten” costume performs during an Austrian league soccer match in Ried, Austria November 12, 2008. (REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler (AUSTRIA)
A man carries the body of a child recovered from the rubble of a destroyed house after an air strike in Baghdad’s Sadr City in Iraq on April 29, 2008. (REUTERS/Kareem Raheem)
Finland’s Harri Olli soars through the air during the large hill ski jumping FIS World Cup event in Liberec, Czech Republic on February 9, 2008. (REUTERS/David W Cerny)
Kerby Brown rides a huge wave in an undisclosed location southwest of Western Australia July 6, 2008, in this picture released November 7, 2008 by the Oakley-Surfing Life Big Wave Awards in Sydney. Picture taken July 6. (REUTERS/Andrew Buckley).