Sunday, August 31, 2008


Here are the 5 blogs I have chosen to be featured for Blog Day. All of them have an artistic theme! If you love original artwork, click on over to view Evelyn Dumont Illustratice Colors of Poulili - I especially like the paintings on book pages (just go there!)

New blogs can mean new friends! Blogspot itself could almost be classified as a "social network!"

According to DRuci is the blog of Carolina Crespo of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Un Respiro Para El Alma comes to the blogosphere by way of Gigi German

Also check out Critiqart Guadeloupe from Mycho in Abymes, Guadeloupe and Liz Webster's crafts blog!

I feel 2008 is a great year to shine the spotlight on artistic blogs! Have a look at my Blog Day 2007 post, here!

BlogDay founder Nir Ofir in this short clip will be part of an upcoming segment on Cyber Sapiens: Blog Day 2008 on Cyber Sapiens

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Blog Action Day Reminder

October 15th rings in this year’s blog action day.Please head over to, register your blogs, watch the new video, and explore the new site!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Around the Blogosphere 30 August 08

Brazilian blogger Alex Castro [pt] posts the Terms of Use of his blog, among them the rights of bloggers and of blog readers. “Blog readers should remember that reading and commenting on a blog is a privilege that can be revoked at any time. Nobody has the “right” to read a blog or to comment on it. (…) Bloggers should remember that no one is obliged to read blogs, that readers can disappear in a flash and to have readers is a not easy to conquer privilege. Nobody has the “right” to be read and reviewed.”

I believe every blogger should post policy about his or her blog. Here's mine.

Add this to your list of must have iPhone apps. Direct Line (iTunes link) is a service that helps you automatically navigate phone trees to get right to an operator (exactly what companies don’t want you to do).

Afromusing posts the video of Kenyan blogger, Ory Okolloh, at TEDGlobal 2007 in Arusha, Tanzania. Ory Okolloh is the founder of and co-founder of

Bahraini blogger and administrator of the locally banned Bahrainonline [Ar] online forum Ali Abdelemam posts an interview with him in an LA newspaper - on blogging and the how authorities view bloggers as trouble.

Marcha contra la inseguridad

With very little to go before the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadhan, which is signalled by the sighting of the new moon with the naked eye, Jordan's blogs are already abuzz with greetings, religious observations and personal promises. In a few days I will be posting Ramadan links and a schedule.

Miss Info, who is now experimenting with Twitter, uploaded turns Game’s album into a free mixtape? "Wow….there are absolutely no rules of engagement at this point."

Dallas Penn: Prince vs. Michael Jackson = Soul Slam XII - In one corner His Purple Badness, in the other corner, the Gloved Boy Wonder. Choose your sides and most of all, bring your dancing shoes. A story on MSNBC asks what's left for Jacko and urges him to make more music. The Guardian offers 50 MJ facts, though this list of "weird" facts from a German website is more interesting.

LoveFrom1stBite shares the recipe for (and photos of) her favorite Moroccan dish, tanjia.

Friday, August 29, 2008

MediaWatch 29 August 08

Six daily newspapers, in Minneapolis; Idaho Falls; Bakersfield; and in Spokane, Wenatchee and Yakima, Washington are all dropping the Associated Press newswires. The recent decisions to drop AP service follow a planned AP rate structure change, which was announced in 2007 and takes effect in 2009.

Barack Obama's campaign organized its supporters Wednesday night to confront Tribune-owned WGN-AM in Chicago for having a critic of the Illinois Democrat on its air. (Listen to the interview.)

Bob Cudmore interviews with NY 21st CD candidates on WVTL Radio (1570 AM) Amsterdam NY.

A former Roman Catholic priest turned talk show host is going to jail for coveting kiddie porn. (He was outed by an "online dominatrix").

Madonna has been banned from an FM radio morning show in North Florida. Gainesville/Ocala, Florida FM station WNFB 94.3 morning man Jack Wiley is outraged over a new video that plays at the opening of Madonna's "Sticky & Sweet" concerts as she kicks off her U.S. tour because it compares John McCain to dictators such as Hitler and Robert Mugabe.

and... Warner Bros. Television Network, which was folded with UPN into the CW in 2006, has been resurrected as Again together in one place are "Buffy the Vampire Slayer,""The Gilmore Girls,""Smallville,""Veronica Mars" and "One Tree Hill."

The WB appealed to other demographics, too, but perhaps more than any other TV network, the WB set its sights squarely on teenagers. It began in 1995 — soon adding its mascot Michigan J. Frog — and reached its peak in the late '90s.

John McCain's Big Surprise

WoW! Talk about taking the spotlight off Barack Obama in a hurry! John "Maverick" McCain took the DNC lift from underneath the Obama airplane with the announcement of his female running mate: Sarah Palin is an interesting pick. On paper, she has debits and credits. Palin may be Republican, but the Hillary supporters in my neighborhood are already throwing the Democratic nominee under the bus. They want to know more about "that lady from Alaska!" Like McCain, Palin has developed a reputation as a political maverick who doesn't always toe the party line. By picking a woman as his running mate, McCain is clearly telegraphing the message that he himself is as much as (or maybe more than) a candidate of change as is Obama!

I think this is so interesting, and dead-on with something I wrote this morning: "...don't count those "wild card" situations out. And if there IS one, I'll betcha it won't be any one of the events I made up above. It'll be something totally unexpected."


Ramadan 2008

Ramadan is the holiest month on the lunar Islamic calendar — a time for fasting, taming human passions, and developing compassion for those less fortunate ("O ye who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that ye may aquire self-restraint " Qur'an 2:183).

For Muslims worldwide, the start of the month is based on sightings of the moon, as well as other astronomical calculations.

Ramadan begins on August 31, 2008 and ends on September 29, 2008 for North, Central and South America. However Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia, and Australia start on September 1. The Night of Destiny (Night of Power) will be on September 25, 2008 for the Americas, God willing. It will be one day later (September 26, 2008) for the rest of the world.

The new moon times to be used for determining the beginning and ending of Ramadan are given below for UT (Universal time) – also called GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).

7:58 p.m. on August 30, 2008 (UT/GMT)

8:12 a.m. on September 29, 2008 (UT/GMT)

The information reported is based on data from the U.S. Naval Observatory, Astronomical Applications Department.

The actual time for each time zone is relative to UT.

To calculate the Ramadan start date, compare the time of the New Moon with the Sunset in your location. If the new moon is born before sunset, you should fast the next day God willing. *

Similarly to determine the last day of fasting, compare the time of the next New Moon with the sunset in your location. If the new moon is born before sunset, the month of Ramadan is complete on that day.

More details on Ramadan including information about why the calculation is done as above (i.e., the beginning of the day is at sunset) is available in an article on Ramadan.

  • 1st Ramadan (Fasting Begins) September 01, 2008
  • Lailatul-Qadr (Night of Power) September 26, 2008
  • Eid-al-Fitr (End of Ramadan) October 01, 2008
  • Yaum-al-Arafah (Day of Arafaat (Hajj)) December 07, 2008
  • Eid-al-Adha (10th Zul-Hijjah) December 08, 2008

  • Ramadan Information Center - One stop browsing for Ramadan prayer timetables, a database of mosques searchable by U.S. state, Quran study lessons, daily live webcasting of Taraweeh and the pre-recorded Taraweeh prayers from prior years held in Makkah, plus Q&A on Ramadan, Taraweeh, Laylatul Qadr, fasting and Zakatul Fitr, and live Webcasts, video presentations and more with paid membership.

    Ramadan - Excellent interactive resource for community events in Great Britain featuring prayer timetables for major UK cities, Ramadan recipes, kids stories, activities and coloring pages, e-cards, plus audio files of dua for fasting and breaking fast.

    BBC Religion & Ethics - Ramadan - Excellent collection of stories, traditions, recipes and observances of Ramadan around the world, photo galleries, multimedia guide, e-cards, related links.

    Essentials of Ramadan, The Fasting Month - A virtual encyclopedia of traditions and customs including the complete fasting tradition, the giving of alms, nightly prayers, and observing the end of Ramadan. Includes glossary of terms, bibliography.

    Islamic Holidays & Observances - Ramadan - Quick overview of its meaning with information on spiritual aspects as well as community customs, foods, and traditional wishes for Ramadan in Turkish and Arabic.

    Ramadan - Fact Sheet for Teachers - Lesson plans and ideas for the classroom including information on the lunar calendar, fasting rituals, key people and places, vocabulary words, suggested student activities, and a list of discussion questions.

    101 - A selection of Ramadan e-cards, inspirational quotes, related links.

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    DNC my POV Conclusion

    Some TV network announcers say the Obama nomination is MLK's "dream realized." Some TV networks went to great lengths to ferret out Obama supporters who compare Barack to JFK. My advice to them is not to use other people as yardsticks by which to measure accomplishments or capabilities. Obama may certainly be the first mile-marker on the roadway to realizing the dream, but please admire / appreciate him for his own personality. As I've written many times about wanna-be celebrities, they rarely ascend when the press constantly refers to them as "the next so-and-so" --- one should never aspire to be "the next so-and-so" and if the press tells it that way, correct them immediately. Be a UNIQUE individual, not a "re-mix" or "re-imagining" of somebody else.

    Scroll down to read all of my DNC-related posts. I'm pretty satisfied with everything I've written. I think had Obama stripped the anti-McCain stuff out of his stadium speech and added a pinch of "something" he would indeed have delivered a blockbuster. The negativity surrounding mentioning McCain drained the positive energy out of the rest of the speech, and it seems the media was attracted to the anti-McCain rhetoric. Obama made more than a few incredibly good electrifying statements but they are all lost, it seems, as all I hear on the morning news is how "Obama used the occasion to launch a series of attacks on John McCain" and "Obama spanks McCain onstage" and, well, you get the idea. Without that negative stuff, I'll betcha Obama would have soared many points ahead of McCain in the polls. Instead, he'll draw a 5 to 8 point surge which will recede when the RNC begins.

    I had a heated discussion with someone last night over the November election. I was trying to make the point that nothing is set in stone. Use your imagination to visualize any of a series of events that could change the entire contest. The case I tried to make: what if one or both of the candidates should die? At first I was going to say suppose Obama was in a plane crash or some wacko group shot him and suppose McCain passed away in his sleep. But those are too expected, too obvious.

    Suppose Obama just suddenly died in his sleep. Yeah, he's a young man, but it has happened to people younger than he. Suppose McCain suffered a debilitating stroke. Now what would the two parties do? Bump the VP nominees up to P?

    Here's another scenario (far-fetched, of course): a nuclear terrorist event on American soil in October. George Bush suspends the election indefinitely under Martial Law.

    Less far-fetched: one of these hurricanes or another does serious damage to the southern state oil rigs. Gas skyrockets to $5 a gallon. The stock market looks like it's collapsing and suddenly (a la Indymac) banks begin to fail, people line up to get their money out, rioting begins in some cities... yup - Martial Law.

    Scenario most likely: NOTHING will happen. We'll arrive at election day with both candidates and the nation intact. We'll vote. The Electoral College will vote. We'll see who wins.

    But don't count those "wild card" situations out. And if there IS one, I'll betcha it won't be any one of the events I made up above. It'll be something totally unexpected.


    I don't mean to sound callous, but I just watched a couple on the morning news tell a TV crew that were so very worried about the approach of the hurricane. "We've put everything we have into this house. If it's gone we have nothing." My question is twofold. WHY on earth would you want to stay in that area (let alone build a home there) and IF YOU MUST stay there for some sentimental or compelling reason, why don't you build something designed to withstand the forces of nature? People in the tropics have been dealing with these storms for centuries. We certainly could learn better ways of dealing with this kind of situation from them.

    Around The Blogosphere 29 August 08

    Fall is just around the corner: Why Autumn is Better than Summer. Come fall, Olympian Michael Phelps has extra goodies stacked on his plate.

    Feeling un-creative? I have just the blog to spark it up and start YOU up: Liz Webster posts photos of some wonderful stuff she's come up with (that's where the one came from that is featured on this post!)

    Since we're on the topic of photography, you might want to stop by Iranian blogger Masmoud Mohammadi's "My Photo World." There are also beautiful photos and interesting art viewable on Kolkata Eyes

    Chickpeas on the menu? Serve 'em up right via The Dali Mama...

    A blogger was arrested for leaking Guns N' Roses songs.

    Degrowchyowl has an insightful post on sports and women in the context of Islam.

    Thursday, August 28, 2008

    DNC my POV 4th Night

    Al Gore, a few minutes ago, referenced the coming "Benediction" at Mile High Stadium... I may add to this post in the morning, or may not. From Al Gore's speech:
    Many scientists predict that the entire north polar ice cap may be completely gone during summer months in the first term of the next president. Sea levels are rising, fires are raging, storms are stronger. Military experts warn us our national security is threatened by massive waves of climate refugees destabilizing countries around the world, and scientists tell us the very web of life is endangered by unprecedented extinctions.
    "Frame of reference" is my term of choice to apply right this very now... as I mentioned in a previous article, Barack Obama should deliver nothing less than a blockbuster speech of the "I have a dream" caliber. It is said that he will not, that instead he will attack GOP rival John McCain. I'm hoping for the blockbuster dream speech myself, but that's not why I'm posting this early.

    I bumped into the tail end of Al Gore's speech at the Democratic National Convention right after watching Dr. Spencer Wells' incredible "Journey of Man" on one of the PBS digital channels. Too bad all of America could not have watched that program tonight. In a nutshell, Dr. Wells' show tells how a group of African bushmen, some 50,000 years ago, left home. Their first stop was Australia by way of India. mankind branched out, expanded, exploded. The barriers of prejudice we've erected come from the belief systems individual cultures have created. Like the aborigines who refused to believe they could have come from someplace else, may of today's religions and cultures refuse to consider anything but the things they alone hold dear. That is the foundation for fear and for racism, for tyranny, brutality and war. Dr. Wells' work may also help shed some light on why some of us have "doubles" running around - just as Barack does!

    There is no way of knowing what the future holds in store for any of us. Whether Obama or McCain will be elected, whether the eventual winner will be a great leader or not much of a leader at all. Whether there will still even BE a "U.S.A." 50 or 100 or 500 years from now. Whatever happens, mankind will somehow survive, in some form, despite the odds. Like Dr. Wells says, it took men 35,000 years to get from Africa to North America, something a modern man with an airplane ticket can do in a single day.

    LiveBLOGGING: The Albany Project and Michelle Malkin "Covering Barackopolis"

    MediaWatch 28 August 08

    Newspapers Are Dying - Jay Mariotti

    Star columnist Jay Mariotti resigned from the Chicago Sun-Times, telling CBS2 Chicago that he decided to quit after covering the Olympics in Beijing because newspapers are in serious trouble, and he did not want to go down with the ship. [LiNk]

    The slump for the New York Times is continuing, says Associated Press.

    More staff cuts are coming to the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News, says Philadelphia magazine.

    Will future newspapers look like the Christian Science Monitor? The Boston Globe reports.

    With the decline of newspapers, Rishad Tobaccowala believes TV may be the only mass medium left in a few years. Tobaccowala keeps a close eye on new media as the chief innovation officer at Publicis Groupe Media, one of the world's leading advertising conglomerates. TV Newsday reports.

    A good lesson for anyone in the public eye comes by way of Liz Benjamin's blog where she writes about New York Governor David Paterson's ability to meet tough questions head-on (and remain in office to tell about it!)

    Aaron Sorkin wants to make a movie about Facebook. Facebook got this guy elected!

    CELEBRATE THE 4th BlogDay ON AUGUST 31st!

    What is BlogDay?

    BlogDay was created with the belief that bloggers should have one day dedicated to getting to know other bloggers from other countries and areas of interest. On that day Bloggers will recommend other blogs to their blog visitors.
    With the goal in mind, on this day every blogger will post a recommendation of 5 new blogs. This way, all blog readers will find themselves leaping around and discovering new, previously unknown blogs.

    What will happen on BlogDay?

    one long moment on August 31st, bloggers from all over the world will post recommendations of 5 new Blogs, preferably Blogs that are different from their own culture, point of view and attitude. On this day, blog readers will find themselves leaping around and discovering new, unknown Blogs, celebrating the discovery of new people and new bloggers.

    Spread the word

    • Facebook app
    BlogDay posting instructions:

    1. Find 5 new Blogs that you find interesting
    2. Notify the 5 bloggers that you are recommending them as part of BlogDay 2008
    3. Write a short description of the Blogs and place a link to the recommended Blogs
    4. Post the BlogDay Post (on August 31st) and
    5. Add the BlogDay tag using this link: and a link to the BlogDay web site at


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    DNC my POV 3rd Night

    Party Unity. I turned on the TV last night just as former President Bill Clinton was about to speak. Bill said Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama is ``ready to lead'' and vowed to do everything he could to make sure Obama wins the White House in November. Clinton's speech was one of the most closely watched at the Democratic National Convention. I tuned off the TV.

    CBS News this morning mentioned Obama's stadium speech. They said something like "don't expect a speech of 'I have a dream' caliber." They said Obama would use the event to bash McCain. If I were Obama's camp, I'd do the former: deliver a powerhouse speech that would seal and solidify. We'll see...

    POLITRICKS 2008: The Losers Get The Spoilers…
    Golisano Goes National, Backs Obama

    Wednesday, August 27, 2008

    Obama Clone

    Dop·pel·gäng·er - a ghostly double or counterpart of a living person.

    Gerardo Puisseaux lives in Miami and works for the online Spanish-language news channel America TeVe ( He was a construction worker until a few months ago, when he was recruited for a comedic reality TV show because of his resemblance to Obama. Puisseaux’s routine: He shows up, and the cameras capture how people react.

    He had a press pass into the Pepsi Center. Despite his height (too short), he looked enough like the presumptive Democratic nominee to cause a stir. [more via latimesblog] [picture] [Video]

    Um sósia de Barack Obama tem chamado a atenção das pessoas que passam em volta do ginásio Pepsi Center, em Denver, onde se realiza a convenção do Partido Democrata dos Estados Unidos.

    O americano-cubano Gerardo Buisseaux foi contratado por um canal de televisão de Miami para trabalhar como sósia do virtual candidato democrata à Casa Branca.

    Gerardo, que apóia Obama, diz que "é uma honra se parecer com um grande homem".

    Barack Obama encerrará a convenção na próxima quinta-feira, 28 de agosto, com um discurso em um estádio de futebol americano de Denver com capacidade para mais de 75 mil pessoas.

    Get well Yarah!

    International DJ Yarah Bravo is under the weather...

    Everyone's been here: life sometimes gets out of hand. You just gotta ride it out! Best wishes and get well soon!

    From Yarah's blog:

    Damn... i arrived in London yesterday a WHEEL CHAIR...?? (yeah it got that bad)
    rockin my brand new adidas outfit that my homey Mimi Fresh hooked me up with
    and of course my boombox bag...yeah i still style it... but admittedly i was looking utter
    shite hahaha I guess lil miss b has seen better days lol
    Yeah you can never question my dedication to this shit. cause i did it till my body
    literally gave up
    ...right? ; )

    This weekend being an emotional roller an understatement!

    I have cancelled my participation in the We B-girlz tour.
    For a few different reason, but firstly because of my health...
    and though i know i will disappoint a lot of people, i do hope that over all
    you will be the health should always be the no. 1 priority!!
    And i cannot work under circumstances where people do not respect
    each other ...i dont care what your rank or status is.
    We ALL deserve to be treated with respect and love.
    And from the bottom of my heart i tried....then picked myself up and tried again = )
    till i realized there was nothing else i could do...

    So to the people who were planning to come out and support me, i'm sorry.
    I will make it up to you...i promise!!

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