April 17, 2014 |
MY COLUMN last Thursday enraged readers like Bill Gradwell on behalf of Christina Sankey. "I can't get this story out of my head," emailed Gradwell, of Cape May. "Even with an endless pyramid of useless bureaucrats, a poor human being is dead and tossed away! What are we, The Black Hole of Calcutta? What was Christina, human garbage?" Also among those concerned about Christina: the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office. Deputy D.A. Ed McCann tells me that the office, along with Philly homicide detectives, will investigate the disappearance and death of the severely disabled and nonverbal 37-year-old.
April 26, 2013 |
Icarus without feathers - and with a semi-happy ending - can still be Icarus. In a new version created jointly by physicist/author Brian Greene, playwright David Henry Hwang, and composer Philip Glass, the paragon of youthful hubris lives in an age well beyond the wax wings of antiquity, piloting a spacecraft that veers too close to a black hole. You might think you know the rest, but Icarus at the Edge of Time , which enveloped Verizon Hall on Wednesday with a huge video screen, narrator, and the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, has a smarter message: Respect the unknown.
December 22, 2012 |
Once again, the Earth has survived. Unless typing at this terminal is Heaven - and it's clearly far from Hell - no rapture or disaster happened overnight, contrary to movie-inspiring misreadings of Mayan calendars. Add that to the list of dead-wrong prophecies about the end of the world. Here are 10 previous apocalyptic flops: 1. Radio preacher's dud and redux. California evangelist Harold Camping said he could "absolutely guarantee," based on his Bible-based math, that on May 21, 2011, a grave-opening earthquake would let 200 million blessed souls get "caught up" or "raptured" into Heaven, while remaining billions would feel "horror and chaos" until Oct. 21, "when God will completely destroy this earth.
November 8, 2012
Here are some observations and notes after a review of the Eagles' 28-13 loss to the Saints on Monday: On second thought Why were the Eagles so bad in the red zone on Monday night? On five trips inside the Saints' 20-yard line, they came away with only two field goals. There are a number of reasons. Turnovers, penalties, and bad execution stand out. But how about the play-calling? The Eagles ran 20 plays in the red zone but called only three runs. Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg may say, "Well, look at the end result of those runs.
May 21, 2012 |
LOS ANGELES - Back when single-celled organisms ruled Earth, a gigantic black hole lurking quietly at the center of a distant galaxy dismantled and devoured a star. This month, astronomers reported that they watched the whole thing unfold over a period of 15 months starting in 2010, the first time such an event had been witnessed in great detail from start to finish. "The star got so close that it was ripped apart by the gravitational force of the black hole," said Johns Hopkins astronomer Suvi Gezari, lead author of a paper about the observations that was published online by the journal Nature.
September 7, 2011 |
TARIQ ALI acted as soon as he saw the hole in the street. It was February, and the opening was small. But it was right next to a playground, so he figured he shouldn't wait another day. He called 3-1-1, and was told that the Streets Department would take care of it in about six weeks. Ali waited. The days grew longer in Frankford and the hole grew larger. Ali said it was about 5 feet wide. "It was like a black hole," he said. While he was waiting for the Streets Department, people got their cars "tore up," Ali said.
April 24, 2011
"We're gratified that Boscov's will remain a family business. " - department store chairman Albert Boscov, 81, on the appointment of his nephew Jim Boscov, 61, as vice chairman "I call them the black hole because they suck up everything and nothing comes out. " - Bill Quimby of TollFreeNumbers.com, on Philadelphia-based PrimeTel Communications Inc.'s aggressive acquisition of toll-free numbers for phone-sex services "If this...
April 20, 2011 |
Maybe you've seen the signs of the apocalypse. One was spotted in New York. Literally. The kind with lettering. Next to a sidewalk squatter, not far from the Ripley's Believe It or Not museum. This wasn't a vague the-end-is-nigh warning. This guy knew when: May 21, 2011. Billboards scattered around the country, from Vineland, N.J., to Nashville, also proclaim that's the date of Judgment Day, when Jesus Christ returns. The message comes from California-based radio evangelist Harold Camping, who did the math and calculated the time left to "turn away from your sins and humbly beg, beseech, and implore God for forgiveness," he writes at his familyradio.com.
December 23, 2010
Business model is what Christie wants Gov. Christie has nominated former New York City deputy schools chancellor Christopher Cerf to be education commissioner. Is it me, or does anyone else see the incongruity of selecting someone to run New Jersey's schools from a state ranked lower than New Jersey in national academic assessments? Christie has made it no secret that he is a supporter of charter schools, and so is Cerf, who is a former chief executive of Edison Schools, the country's largest for-profit operator of public schools.
April 14, 2010 |
I just mailed in my family's income taxes, and I'm not - I repeat, not - hopping mad. I don't own an assault rifle or a crossbow. A week of downpours just wiped out my early garden crops - the peas, beets, and the rest - and I'm already over it. I'll replant. I can't think of a single ethnic group that makes my blood boil - unless you count my own Fighting Irish, those gridiron delinquents. I just sent in the census form without giving it a second paranoid thought.