Tag: music comedy

The Most Beautiful Woman in the World Award

Lost in the road F570, Iceland mode... =O)

My adoration for women is actually a rare innocent one if I am allowed to judge myself. I will be more than happy to outline my criteria that define my own jurisdiction, because it's not correct to be one's own judge. But, I think I will let my results speak for themselves.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for most exotic beauty, goes to Jennifer Connelly. I can not get her hair out my head from the movie Blood Diamond . Of course, she's in the bushes in West Africa following the story of conflict diamonds and does not have time to setup an appointment with a hairdresser. But when someone can be that gorgeous even under those circumstances, that's what drives me wild. Forget the fact that I've been in love with her since I first saw her in Labyrinth and I've followed her career through some of my most favorite movies including House of Sand and Fog , Dark Water , and He's Just Not That Into You . Jennifer Connelly steals away with the most beautiful woman in the world for most exotic beauty.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for being an unexpected hottie, goes to Jenna Fischer. I started watching The Office when it first came out in 2005 and I noticed the cute receptionist behind the desk. I loved the way she flirted with Jim and deal with Michael. I was actually rooting for Jim and now he finally is with her, with a child and the whole nine yards. But then, I saw her on the cover of Shape in November 2009. It was seriously one of those Wow moments. Who in the world is that? The hottest little hottie to grace the cover of Shape , and I had no idea that the cool, cute receptionist from The Office was that gorgeous. Jenna Fischer takes by a landslide the most beautiful woman in the world for being an unexpected hottie.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for absolute adorability, goes to Jennifer Aniston. Bursting onto the scene in Friends , she caught everyone's attention with her rich-girl innocence and her amazing beauty. The Rachel hairedo became a national hit. Millions of girls tuned in every week just to see what she was wearing. Even though she could not miss any matter what she wore, she had some of the most famous outfits including the green dress in TOW No One's Ready , the yellow dress in TOW All The Kissing , and the black dress in TOW Monica's Thunder . Rachel Green owned that show and Jennifer Aniston went on to star in such favorites as Office Space , Along Came Polly , and The Break-Up . Jennifer Aniston sweeps the votes for the most beautiful woman in the world for absolute adorability.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for pure loveliness, goes to Angela Kinsey. Another unexpected beauty comes from The Office in the form of Angela Martin. She plays the straight-laced accountant who can not stand inappropriate behavior, excess indulgence or frivolous activities. However, she goes on to have an affair with both Dwight and Andy at the same time showing us that she too is human and not above temptation. But then, I saw Angela Kinsey sport a turquoise blouse with black shorts, high heels and straight blonde hair. That's when I realized how perfectly gorgeous she really was. That was just the first of many enjoyable other-than The Office sightings including the red bikini top and cut off shorts on a day at the beach with her daughter, the blue dress at the premiere of "Meskada" after party, and a slew of red carpet sleeves that knock me dead every time I see her. Angel Kinsey blasts the competition away for the most beautiful woman in the world for pure loveliness.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for stunning angel, goes to Emily Procter. Of course, I first noticed her as Calleigh Duquesne in CSI: Miami , a beautiful detective who was nice to everyone, but stern at times when the situation called for it. The first episode I watched was when a new officer was being introduced to the force and one of his first duties was as an observer of everything Calleigh was doing. She explained a few things to get him up to speed and then she welcomed him to the Miami Dade Police Department. Her eyes stayed fixed for what seemed like eternity and she flashed that smile that would haunt me for years. Emily Procter triumphs as the most beautiful woman in the world for stunning angel.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for sheer elegance, goes to Sasha Alexander. She hit the scene in her first memorable performance as Gretchen, Pacey's older sister, in the wild conflicted, overly dramatic, idealistic world of Dawson's Creek . She and Dawson share a romance that is associated with too much thinking and not enough spontaneity, even though once in awhile you see sparks of an actual relationship in there somewhere. She immediately became one of the actresses who holds the status, "If she is in it, I will watch it." Here, my attention turned to NCIS when I saw her pure gorgeousness grace the show as the big sister type to the team. Obviously, I was heartbroken when she was murdered by Ari. But, Rizzoli & Isles have become the balm that soothes all the ails. Sasha Alexander gallops away with the most beautiful woman in the world for sheer elegance.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for unmatched brilliance, goes to Beth Riesgraf. Repelling into my life as Parker in Leverage , she is a bit naïve about certain facts of life even though she is remarkably skilled in cracking safes, scaling buildings and gaining entrance either legally or illegally. It's the stern look that comes across her face when she is thinking about something as deep as she can, but her smile is mesmerizing. You melt when you see her fifty gorgeous expressions. Where has she been all my life? She pulls off the beautiful rock and roll blonde, the straight hair formal and the runway yellow dress with designer pocketbook to match. Beth Riesgraf lifts the most beautiful woman in the world for unmatched brilliance.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for stealing the show, goes to Natalie Portman. Of course, she had been in Anywhere But Here and Beautiful Girls along with a slew of other huge hits. But, I did not sit up and notice her until a pregnant girl with no shoes is abandoned at America's department store in Where the Heart Is . Adopted by a crazy couple, she grew from a childish teenager into a professional lady who finally learns how to trust her heart again. From then on, I have not been able to take my eyes off of her. She rocks the innocent look in Sesame Street while dominating sexy in such works as Black Swan and No Strings Attached . Natalie Portman is hands down the most beautiful woman in the world for stealing the show.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for total whiplash head turner, goes to Katherine Heigl. When you see her smile from the side in that infamous "sucker" scene in The Ugly Truth , your heart passionately screams, "I want to be in that guy's shoes." She's down to earth playful, seriously red carpet hot and even pulls off the bad hair day with beauty most runway models would die to embody. I think I love her most when she's facing her own mortality in Gray's Anatomy "Good Mourning" or facing someone else's in "Dream a Little Dream." It's in those deadly serious moments that you find her true beauty glowing from within. Katherine Heigl rules the most beautiful woman in the world for total whiplash head turner.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for dripping hot sexy, goes to Charlize Theron. When she caught my attention in The Devil's Advocate , I thought to myself that someone would literally have to be daft to drift away from her into a meaningless marriage. But, that was written into the script. Just look at how she rocked Mighty Joe Young , Reindeer Games , The Italian Job and Hancock . She even made a serial killer seem likable in Monster . But to really understand the jaw dropping, massive coronary, stand-there-with-nothing-to-say pure sexiness Charlize exudes, all you have to do is witness her raw amour as she walks down the hallway leaving layers of clothing behind in the renamed Dior J'Adore commercial. Charlize Theron demands the most beautiful woman in the world for dripping hot sexy.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for pure enchantment, goes to Christi Paul. The CNN's Headline News anchor as well as for In Session on truTV. She is the ultimate girl next door with the prom queen beauty. But, there were some Miss America aspirations that could have come true as witnessed by her climb from Miss Mansfield to Miss Greater Cleveland as she worked her way up to running for Miss Ohio in 1993. WDTV was smart to hire her as broadcast journalism just sees to be in her blood. And now you know where I get my news spoon fed from everyday. Christi Paul wears the most beautiful woman in the world crown for pure enchantment.

Robin Meade certainly shares the title of pure enchantment along with Christi Paul. With her adorable laugh and the new style she has brought to the news, I stay on top of what's going on in the world today and it's easy to figure out why. Plus, Robin's song Welcome Home is a touching tribute to the troops who are fighting overseas and that means a lot to a veteran like me. But, the reason why I step out of protocol and share a title between these two gorgeous anchors from CNN is because their lives are so totally similar. However, she went on to become Miss Ohio in 1992 and was one of the top ten finalists in the 1993 Miss America Beauty Pageant. They both are married with children and living in Georgia. So, I tap Robin Meade to share the most beautiful woman in the world for pure enchantment with Christi Paul. It's the most beautiful woman in the world for crying out loud! I'm sure they do not have a problem sharing it.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for knocking my socks off entirely, goes to Scarlett Johansson. With only one exception, the mysterious skip in 2000, Scarlett has at the very least bought us something new every year since herception in 1994 with North . Among my favorites are Lost in Translation , The Perfect Score , and In Good Company just to name a few. But, it's when she plays the parts in such movies as He's Just Not That Into You that you see her amazing sensuousness. Her wonderful laugh, the elegant look over her shoulder, even her ability to be innocent while entrenched in raw passion makes me fall in love with her over and over again. Scarlett Johansson epitomizes the most beautiful woman in the world for knocking my socks off entirely.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for ending fascination, goes to Julie Bowen. Catching my attention in Ed , I immediately hung on her every scene. I cursed the director and the other actors who were stealing our precious time away from me. But then, she became the love interest in Happy Gilmore and Adam Sandler's daydreams are nothing short of ingenious. She is the reason I became a fan of Boston Legal just like she's the reason I watch Modern Family now. Her soft brown eyes can flash intense every once in awhile. But, her smile! It's the kind of smile that radiates and it is very contagious. Julie Bowen exhibits utter greatness of the most beautiful woman in the world for ending fascination.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for being drop dead gorgeous, goes to Diane Lane. She can not be touched! Since 1979, she has touched my heart and I was not even aware of how deeply then. But, I caught on when she exploded on the screen in Streets of Fire . That was the making of history. An all-time favorite of mine, I have enjoyed her in such greats as Chaplin , A Walk on the Moon and Under the Tuscan Sun. But, she brings it home in works like Jack , Judge Dred , and The Perfect Storm where she's not the lead but she steals each scene. She's class and elegance and everything you can say about a princess. A genuine model of all that is beautiful in the world, Diane Lane easily exemplifies the most beautiful woman in the world for being drop dead gorgeous.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for everlasting magnificence, goes to Ashley Judd. So powerful in her back story, she left her mother and sister while they were still on the road performing. She went off on her own to do her own thing and what a gift she has given us! She's in a long line of favorites to cherish such as Double Jeopardy , High Crimes , and Where the Heart Is . She could easily become a cult classic with roles like Eye of the Beholder , Twisted and Bug . She has the allure to bring fans from the outskirts into the mainstream because she can be pleasantly charming even when her character might be suffering from alcoholism, is mentally disturbed or grossly psychotic. Her beauty requires absolutely no makeup as she rocks the red carpet in dresses and skirts that she makes look good, while trumping the beauty of all the celebrities who flock to take their pictures with her. Ashley Judd simply is the world's most beautiful woman in the world for everlasting magnificence.

The most beautiful woman in the world, for redeeming grace, goes to Dana Delany. A routine Dana photo shoot can produce such great shots as the purple blouse with sexy hair in her eyes, the blue dress from Desperate Housewives , and the black shirt staring into the camera from Kidnapped . Truly amazing how effortlessly she makes it all look. I will not mention her age, which is by far the most phenomenal feature about her beauty. My heart skipped a beat when she leaned against the tree in Tombstone . I've watched every ounce I could find of her since, catching old reruns of China Beach , Wild Palms and Sweet Surrender . Checking out Multiple Sarcasms, A Beautiful Life and even Route 30. But now, I will be able to get my weekly Dana dosage in Body of Proof . I can not imagine this world without her! Dana Delany describes most beautiful woman in the world for redeeming grace.

As you can see, these ladies are not ranked from one to three as being the most beautiful woman in the world. They are simply the most beautiful woman in the world. They can not be put in any kind of order at all. Furthermore, it was very difficult to narrow my choices down to just these three. But, I did it! I finally narrowed my choices down to only those whom I absolutely consider to be the most beautiful woman in the world.

This panel acknowledges the fact that there is indeed a very beautiful woman in the world missing from this year's choices. There are quite a few in fact including but not limited to farmer's daughters, nuns, librarians, teachers, ex-girlfriends, sisters and my daughter, who are not included for legal reasons relating to being on the panel, being its only panel member and to avoid any allegations of bias. It is only due to a sheer mental meltdown after making my selection that the rest of the most beautiful women in the world were not included.

Gods of Gambling

MONTPARNASSE CEMETERY 9-21-2014 4-42-21 AM

People like to gamble, they place bets to have fun or to earn extra cash. When they feel lucky or when someone is watching over them, they simply want to take a chance, to prove that fortune smiles on them, and betting / gambling is no exception.

Praying to God for a team to win a specific game in order for you to win a bet is more or less selfish when there are still so many bad things in the world. But what about those ancient gods of the past, people believed in them and prayed to them for fortune. The different mythologies of the world reveal powerful deities that rule over the world of gambling. Here are some of the gods that can influence the outcome of a football match in our favor:

Hermes is the Greek god of gambling, profit, hazard, and gaming. Hermes was the winged messenger of the gods. He was the god of flocks, road, trading, commerce, thieves. He is also known as Mercury in Roman Mythology. His father is Zeus, the ruler of the Greek gods.

Thoth is the Egyptian god of gambling. He had the same attributes like the Greek god, Hermes. He is the creator of magic, the inventor of writing, the messenger of the gods and the divine record-keeper and mediator. According to myth, he earned 5 extra days by gambling with the moon (then known as Iabet) in a game of dice to help the sky goddess Nut to have her children.

Macuilxochitl, (five flowers, also called Xochipilli) is the Aztec god of gambling, music, dancing. He was the god of games, from board games (Patolli) to the Aztec version of football (Ullamaliztli). Generally represented as a god of fun and dancing, Xochipilli could also send venereal disease to anyone who violates abstentions by engaging in sexual intercourse.

Li-Nezha is the Chinese god of gambling. He is probably the only one of the Chinese Gods that can reveal the winning numbers in lottery. Li-Nezha is perhaps more well-known as Nataku or Nata from Japanese anime a half-mortal war god. In ancient times mortals worship him as a God of Lotteries and Gambling.

Lakshmi, is the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity and fortune. Lakshmi is the consort of the god Vishnu. Hindus believe that anybody who worships Lakshmi sincerely, and not in greed, will be blessed with fortune and success. After worshipping Lakshmi on Diwali, many Hindus gamble and spend profusely, believing that Lakshmi has bestowed good fortune upon them.

Nohoilpi – The gambling god of the Navajo. Also called “He Who Wins Men”. He is a renegade son of the sun god Tsohanoai. He came down to Earth and taught his gambling games to the various tribes but soon abused his power by overcoming them at all his games of chance and collecting his winnings by enslaving people to build a city to mark his glory. He was defeated at gambling by a Navajo man send by the other gods and was thrown into the sky.

15 Facts About Masada – Dead Sea, Israel

Il mare dei Malavoglia

Masada, also referred as Metzada, is a mountain top fortress that is located on the western shore of the Dead Sea in Israel. The Fortress includes barracks, storehouses, an armory, palace, cisterns, etc. Masada is a name that is derived from unmetzade, a Hebrew word, that means “stronghold” or “mountain castle”. It is worth disclosing the fact that Masada is considered as one of the greatest symbols of Israel’s ancient kingdom, its brutal destruction and Jewish revolt in the first century A.D. against Rome. Let’s discover some of the vital facts about Masada:

  1. It is located on the top isolated rock on the edges of the Dead Sea valley and the Judean Desert, between Ein Gedi and Sdom.
  2. Masada remained ignored for many centuries and came again in limelight after a famous epic entitled Masada, written by popular Hebrew poet in 1920’s. The epic has invoked the hidden emotions and gave a rousing account of fight.
  3. Masada plateau was naturally fortified and surrounded by deep gorges.
  4. Cliff on the east and west edge of Masada are about 400 m (1300) and 90 m (300) high respectively. Plataea’s top is flat and of rhomboid-shape.
  5. Around the plateau’s top, there was a casemate wall which is 1.3 km long, 3.7 m thick and has many towers.
  6. A Jewish Roman Historian, Herod the Great has fortified Masada in between 37 and 31 BCE to hide himself from the massive revolt.
  7. Sicarii, a group of Jewish rebels, defeated roman troops and defended Masada by taking control over it.
  8. At the end of the first century, Judea’s Roman Governor had decided to take back Masada.
  9. Masada was rediscovered by modern world in mid 19th century BC. Israeli archeologists, Yigael Yadin, in the early 1960’s, began excavating the region. Cable cars were added to the region, in order to make it accessible for tourists. The place is considered as most popular tourist destination in Israel, outside of Jerusalem.
  10. Being considered as one of the most respected Jewish symbols, Israeli soldiers take an oath at this site “Masada shall not fall again”. Oath taken by soldiers of Israeli army is an expression of commitment towards protecting modern Israel state.
  11. Since 2001, Masada has been counted as one of the UNESCO world heritage sites.
  12. On the western side of mountain, an audio-visual light show dramatizing Masada’s history is presented at the night time. Whereas, during winters there is no sound and light show.
  13. Two Mikvahs and Synagogue is considered as two most exciting sites that can be seen in Masada till today.
  14. Summers are usually hot, therefore visitors are not allowed to trek up the mountains during day time. However, it is advised that they can trek in the wee hours of the morning. Bottles of water and hat are two objects that are must to carry with themselves while trekking.
  15. Since 2007, a museum has been opened for the tourists showcasing detailed history of Masada along with some interesting artifacts.
  16. Masada is one of the most popular sites for dead sea tourists.

Masada is a site of fortifications and palaces located in Israel, near the Dead-Sea. It was considered as last stronghold, held by Jewish’s zealots. They refused to surrender to Roman Empire and preferred death to surrender. Now, Masada is well-recognized as tourists’ destinations visited by tourists from around the globe.

The Merchant of Venice: Tragedy or Comedy

sulle tracce di Hemingway

Shakespeare’ the Merchant of Venice is one of his most famous dramas. However, while most of them can be classified as either tragedy or comedy easily, this one does not fit in a single category. The reason is that while there are comic events and elements in the drama, there are tragic ones too that sometimes reach the level of absolutely horrifying. At the core of the drama are three things. The first is the friendship between Antonio and Bassanio, the second is the romance between Bassanio and Portia and the third but the most important is the bond between Antonio and Shylock. Shylock is a greedy moneylender and a complicated villain. He shows mixed character traits and that’s why at some points while he appears a bad villain, at others he is plainly a business man who amuses by his talk and quotes. Still, if the drama gets so dark and tragic at points then it is because of his cunning and villainous attitude.

The romance between Bassanio and Portia are the comic parts of the drama and the bond between Antonio and Shylock the tragic part. Bassanio is a poor noble man who loves Portia and needs money to see her. However, he does not have enough money and Antonio’s ships are out at the sea. Due to this reason Antonio is forced to seek financial assistance from Shylock who lends at the condition that if Antonio fails he will have to forsake a pound of flesh from anywhere Shylock wills. The deadly bond is struck and gives rise to a series of tragic events. While Bassanio is gone to see Portia, Antonio’s ships get caught in a storm and do not return.

He is unable to pay the cruel Jew back and therefore is forced to fulfil the bond as cruel Shylock wants. Antonio writes to Bassanio and if he has forgotten his friend. He writes that he has failed to pay the Jew and will lose one pound of flesh as per the contract. Why Shylock is bent at killing Antonio is because he has offended the Jew in the past calling him a miser and greedy person. The Jews were not treated with respect in Venice and that made Shylock strike this plan of revenge. Antonio who used to be a proud business man is forced to bend before Shylock’s will. The situation is tragic not just for Antonio and Bassanio but for Portia too. Antonio has not been able to pay his loan and will have to let the Jew have his rightful share per the contract. Bassanio is unhappy because he believes he is the cause of all this. Portia is sad because she cannot see Bassanio unhappy.

However, tragedy rises to a point and then comic things happen in the drama. Portia is a witty young woman who finds a way to defeat Shylock. The contract mentions that he can have a pound of flesh but not a pint of blood from Antonio’s body. Shylock loses his case in the court and he is punished for plotting against an innocent Christian. He loses all his wealth and property to his daughter and Antonio. Even his daughter leaves him to marry a Christian. At last everyone except Shylock is left feeling happy. Shylock is left in a poor situation because of his evil plot to get revenge from Antonio. His evil plan results in nothing but insult and misery for the Jew.

Shakespeare has balanced comedy with tragedy in the drama. He has used both the elements in it to make it interesting and have a long-lasting flavour. The cunning heart of the Jew, the innocence of Antonio, the love and romance of Portia all make the drama engaging and interesting. So, to classify it as either a tragedy or comedy would be wrong. Shakespeare’s art has however, created a great balance between the two which has seen a lot of appreciation since the time it was written. Even in the character of Shylock one can find both of the elements and while his contract ad attitude towards the poor Christian businessman are horrible, at several points he is quite hilarious with his amusing style and talk.

Famous Ships

Show me the way ...

Before the thundering Boeings and Airbuses hit the skies and made the world a smaller place, ships were the primary source for not only transportation, but also exploration and fighting wars. The exact history of boats is difficult to pinpoint, but the Noah's Ark can be cited as an example of how long ago they exist.

Famous ships can be broadly categorized on the basis of historical significance, war participation, and catastrophic shipwrecks. From an American history point of view, the Mayflower is said to be the most significant, since it bought the "Pilgrims" to Plymouth, starting from Southampton, England, in 1620. Another famous ship was the Spanish ship Amistad, which had on board 53 slaves, who revolted and killed their captors on July 2, 1839. The ship's navigator was spared so he could take the ship to Africa, but the ship arrived Long Island, New York instead. The slaves were acquitted after several trials and allowed a passage home to Africa.

The mighty Bismarck was the most powerful Nazi warship, which after being spotted by a reconnaissance aircraft, was engaged by the Prince of Wales and Hood. It sank the Hood in a matter of minutes and then escaped into the ocean, where it took a day and night of shelling by the three British ships, George V, the Rodney, and the Dorsetshire, to sink the German pride and joy. The latest famous ships include the Nimitz class nuclear powered aircraft carriers such as USS Truman that participated in the Iraq War and Hurricane Katrina relief.

From an infamous shipwreck point-of-view, the "unsinkable" Titanic preceded all, which when sank on April 15,1912, and had only 705 survivors out of the total 2227 people on board. However, few remember the sinking of the steamship Sultana on April 27, 1865, which left 1500 dead. The worst iron was that it had hundreds of Union POWs returning home after the Civil War, on a ship that had no lifeboats or life jackets.