Word police not impressed
Enough with these 14 words or phrases already, according to the annual List of Words to Be Banished from the Queen's English for Mis-use, Over-use and General Uselessness. Michigan's Lake Superior State University on Friday released the 2011 list:
• Wow factor
• A-ha moment
• Man up
• Mamma grizzlies
• The American people
• I'm just sayin'
• Facebook/Google as verbs
• Live life to the fullest
Archaeologists at Jamestown, Va., have unearthed a trove of tobacco pipes personalized for a who's who of early 17th century colonial and British elites, underscoring the importance of tobacco to North America's first permanent English settlement.
The white clay pipes were crafted from 1608 to 1610 and bear the names of English politicians, social leaders, explorers, officers of the Virginia Company that financed the settlement and governors of the colony. Archaeologists also found equipment used to make the pipes.
Researchers think the pipes, recovered from a well in James Fort, were made to impress investors and the political elite with the financial viability of the settlement. They are likely the rejects that failed to survive the ceramic firing process in a kiln.
The find comprises more than 100 pipes or fragments. Names on the pipes include Sir Walter Raleigh, who dispatched the colonists to the territory he named Virginia; Capt. Samuel Argall, a major Virginia Company investor and governor of Virginia; and Earl of Southampton Henry Wriothesley, a Virginia Company official who was also William Shakespeare's major patron.
"It really brings the people back into the picture," said Bly Straube, senior archaeological curator for the Jamestown Rediscovery Project. "We have a lot of artifacts that we can associate with types of people like gentleman or women or children, but to find things like the pipe that bears the name Sir Walter Raleigh, I mean, my goodness. … It just makes it very tangible and real."
North Korea alters the routine, airs film
North Koreans got a rare treat this week: a state TV broadcast of the popular British soccer film Bend it Like Beckham. The 2002 movie aired Sunday — a break from the regular programming of news, documentaries and soap operas in North Korea, where Western films are largely off-limits. But soccer is extremely popular in the isolated communist nation, whose men's team went to the World Cup in South Africa in 2010 and whose women's team is a regional powerhouse.
In Britain, a move to add organ donors
Drivers applying for new licenses in Britain will have to choose whether to become organ donors under a program announced Friday aimed at increasing the number of people registered. Public Health Minister Anne Milton said about 27 percent of the British public are currently registered as donors, while many more are willing to offer organs but never get around to registering. "We hope that by prompting people into making a decision we can encourage more people to register," she said.