Tony Blair's make-up secret is out
The secret of UK Prime Minister Tony Blair's famous all-year healthy glow has been revealed -- he spends almost twice as much on make-up as the average British woman. Figures released by Downing Street in answer to a parliamentary question showed that Blair spent more than £1,800 (US$3,150) on make-up and make-up artists over the past six years. In contrast, the average British woman spends £195 (US$345) a year on both make-up and skincare. The written answer was released quietly on the final day of the parliamentary session before MPs begin their summer break.
Download Robbie Williams legally
Robbie Williams may never win any prizes for originality with his hugely popular musical output but the chart- topping singer has signed a novel deal with a mobile phone network that could revolutionise the way fans buy his songs. The singer has signed an exclusive deal with the global telecom giant T-Mobile that will allow customers to download songs, exclusive live tracks and concert footage to their mobile phones. The 18-month deal is the biggest tie-up yet between a big artist and a phone company and will be watched with interest by others convinced that mobile music delivery will become an important factor in boosting flagging record sales over the next few years.
`Paris Plage' starts copycat trend
Paris Plage, the ephemeral beach set up on the banks of the Seine River that winds through the French capital, opened this week for the fourth season of a quirky project that has since spawned copycat beaches in cities across Europe and as far away as Tokyo. This year's version took off with a samba beat in honor of the year-long "Brazil in France" cultural and economic exchange. The now familiar blue-and-white beach chairs, flags and umbrellas are sprawled along a 3.5km stretch of sand and grass named this year after Brazil's legendary Ipanema, Maracana and Copacabana beaches.
Christmas but once a year, Santas say
Some 80 Santas from around the globe meeting at their World Congress debated establishing a second Christmas in July to ease their December workload, but finally decided that the holiday would be feted only once a year, the Danish Santa host said this week. "There was a proposal from the Japanese Santa Claus that was hotly debated, but the delegates, even if they were in favour of the idea, did not want to adopt it because it risks upsetting the children of the world," Denmark's Father Christmas said. "The Christmas date of Dece. 24 to Dec. 25 will not be changed, even though we are about to collapse from overwork. The tradition must be respected," he said.
Artwork stolen, presumed drunk
An artist has appealed for the return of an artwork that consisted of a bottle of water on a plinth, saying he feared it had been stolen and then drunk. US artist Wayne Hill, had devised the artwork, a two-liter clear plastic bottle filled with melted ice from the Antarctic, to highlight the dangers of global warming. Entitled Weapon of Mass Destruction it was on show at an arts festival in Devon, southwest England. "It looked like an ordinary bottle of water, but it was on a plinth, labelled, described and in the program of the whole festival," Hill said. "It was very, very clear what it was -- a work of art."
Coldplay singer `sexiest vegetarian'
Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin has been named one of the "World's Sexiest Vegetarians" in a poll conducted by a US animal rights group, officials said this week. The British husband of Hollywood movie siren Gwyneth Paltrow joined the winner of the American Idol television talent show, Carrie Underwood, at the top of an online poll of more than 13,000 people conducted by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). Martin, 28, and Underwood narrowly edged out other non meat-eating celebrities including X-Files star David Duchovny, Legally Blonde actress Reese Witherspoon, British singer Joss Stone, and actor Joaquin Phoenix.
African-American entertainer Dooley appeared on local television show Super Entourage (小明星大跟班) a few weeks ago and was told by the crew that they wanted to do a skit in blackface. Dooley, whose real name is Matthew Candler, tells the Taipei Times that Super Entourage wanted to perform a rendition of the wildly popular “Ghana Coffin Dance,” a meme that has taken the world by storm. Instead, he showed them videos about the racist origins of blackface and slavery in America, and they agreed to drop the makeup. “[I told them] about the history [behind blackface] and [said] you decide
June 1 to June 7 In February 1988, Robert Wu (吳清友) set aside NT$17.5 million to purchase two Henry Moore sculptures from London’s Marlborough Gallery. He never bought the pieces. Feeling slighted that the gallery manager initially looked down on him as a Taiwanese, he decided that night to use the money to open his own art space back home. “Without selling any art, that money could support the gallery for four years. If I feature one artist per month, that provides a stage for at least 100 artists,” Wu said in the book Eslite Time (誠品時光) by Lin Ching-yi (林靜宜).
With listicles of local attractions including Costco and numerous children’s playgrounds, I was not expecting much. Opened on Jan. 31, the Taipei MRT’s Circular Line, or Yellow Line, made life in the nation’s capital even more convenient. But judging from Internet search results, it hasn’t opened up many new tourism opportunities, unsurprising as the route mostly crosses densely populated areas and industrial parks. Places like a sports stadium with rainbow colored bleachers perfect for Instagram selfies wouldn’t do it for me either, and it’s pointless to list attractions at the connecting stops that have existed for years. As a history nerd, there
The morning after the ride, my hands ached in a way I’d never before experienced, and my palms looked slightly bruised. Flexing my fingers as I waited for my coffee to cool down, I knew exactly which part of the previous day’s excursion had done this to me. As the go-to-work rush hour ebbed, I’d set off inland on my 125cc scooter. I took Provincial Highway 20 as far as Tainan City’s Yujing District (玉井). From there, I took Provincial Highway 3 into Nansi District (楠西). The route I’d planned would take me past the eastern side of Zengwen Reservoir (曾文水庫)