Now here’s a story we keep hoping it’s a hoax but so far there’s no sight of that being the case. Reports from Singapore and Vietnam have been documenting a number of food intoxication cases traced back by they eating fake rice.
The staple of Asian cuisine, rice is never missing from the daily Continue reading →
It took over seven centuries but researchers are finally coming around to identify redeeming qualities in the “work” of feared Mongol General Genghis Khan. Up to now, everyone was convinced that when he got busy creating his vast empire in the 13th and 14th Centuries, invading and pillaging nations, and pretty much annihilating anyone standing on his way, he was doing that just for his thirst for blood.
Oh, how wrong we all were. For yes, he did kill about 40 million of his closest enemies, either because they opposed his plans of world domination or didn’t like his hairstyle, but all he had at heart was the best interests of future generations, we know now. You see, years after his Continue reading →
Some say it was bound to happen. What, with its 20% of the world’s population, statistically it shouldn’t come to no one’s surprise that some things happen only in China. And New York, of course. But it’s not everyday you see someone spotting a hefty horn say, on 5th Avenue.
Well, in China, no one knows why, it turns out that there are several people growing horns. Some on their foreheads, some in the back of their heads, some just somewhere on the top. One thing they all share: Continue reading →
It’s 2,400 years old, it’s obviously cold and the bones in it are green. On the upside, it’s still liquified, it may’ve been cooked for a member of the land-owning class and it’s paired with a glass of an odorless concoction believed to be wine.
That’s the latest discovery of a group of Chinese archaeologists excavating an empty tomb in Xi’an, China’s capital for over a Continue reading →
You’ve read here about a summit of 13 nations in Russia last month to discuss their commitment and strategies to protect the wild tiger, said to be facing a serious threat of extinction. Vietnam is among those nations.
But old, misguided cultural habits die much harder than these magnificent animals, it seems. Word just came out that Vietnamese authorities are planning a public auction of approximately six pounds of tiger paste – ground bones and Continue reading →
Clearly, Tokyo has a big problem with umbrellas being left behind in the subway system. City officials have tried everything to remind riders to collect their belongings before leaving the trains, apparently to no avail.
All else having failed, they went for broke. By some undisclosed grace granted upon their land from above, they recruited none other than Jesus Christ, who brought along three of his closest disciples to help him out with the task.
Now do you realize the seriousness of the situation? By anticipating his second coming, Jesus ruined big plans by every earthly Christian promoter worth his or hers fishes, never mind screwing up all prophecies written in the past two millennia in the process, just so the issue could be quickly addressed.
No word yet on the progress of such a transcendental job bestowed upon the Chief Spiritual Officer of billions of faithful. Most likely, they make up the majority of those forgetful Japanese commuters anyway. But by the looks of the poster, J.C. seems to be on top of it.
And it won’t be done a moment too soon. After all, many remain blissfully unaware of this premature visit of his, and who wants to spoil and steal the thunder of that other event, the one they’re all counting on, when he’s supposed to return to earth with a completely different agenda?
It takes just a quick glance at the toll poor sanitation causes to public health to realize how lucky we all are. What with flushing water, plenty of soft tissue and as much privacy as we think it’s our right to demand, it’s hard to imagine that we still need an annual day like Friday to call attention to such a vital issue. That’s exactly what the World Toilet Organization is trying to accomplish.
According to estimates, in the developing world, diarrheal diseases spread via feces kill more children than HIV/AIDS. In great part of African, Asian and Latin American countries, running water is a luxury, and people use nearby open air sewages is their toilets. And it’s useful to be reminded that, while we as we flush once more, not too far away Haiti is facing a cholera epidemic that can be traced directly to poor sanitation. Along with access to clean water, proper nutrition and education, the right to have high standards of hygiene and improved sanitation should be inherent to human beings, if we expect to Continue reading →
Several nations have recently gathered in St. Petersburg, Russia, in a last ditch effort to prevent the imminent extinction of tigers. Big cats face threats to their natural habitats, which shrink as the human presence increases, are hunted relentlessly for the black market value of their skin and body parts, and are down to an ever-diminishing genetic pool. Captives living in private reserves, which outnumbered those in the wild, don’t have the necessary biological diversity to guarantee the species’ survival.
Without a global, effective and consistent strategy to preserve them as they’ve lived for millennia, neither their mythological charisma nor the powerful allure they’ve always exerted over our Continue reading →
Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize winner who single-handedly personified the struggle of thousands of Myanmar citizens against the country’s military junta, has been released from her seven and a half years of house arrest.
The Oxford-educated daughter of General Aung San, an independence hero assassinated in 1947, she’s been incarcerated for 15 of the past 21 years, since her return to the country that used to be called Burma.
But although as politically articulated as her father was, there’s Continue reading →
Flooding Drives Pakistanis
To the Middle of the Road
It has killed an estimated 1,600 people and disrupted the lives of about 20 million. It’s ruined an area the size of Italy. And to some, it drove them to camp by the side of a highway, where cars zip by at high speeds but drivers often stop to offer water and scrapes of food.
The floods in Pakistan, the country’s worst natural disaster, may bring even more misery to its impoverish population. Dispossession and disease are expected to increase casualties tenfold, and the world’s slowness to help will only compound the crisis.
Life alongside the Peshawar-Islamabad expressway is not any easier than the one most left behind. Their homes, farms and livelihood taken by the rains, all that’s left is to beg for help and not be killed by the speeding traffic on this muddy 27-mile stretch, with no toilets or running water.
Most resist the government’s plans to transfer them to even crowder camps. In the meantime, as heavy rain alternates with baking heat, a feeling of resignation starts to settle in. They’re now living on the road but most likely, no one will get to go anywhere anytime soon.