Saturday, April 30, 2011

Faked Car Crashes Increase NY Insurance Rates

From The Daily News by Celeste Katz

Faked Car Crashes Jacking Up NY Insurance Rates

An increase in auto insurance fraud helped push New York's already sky-high rates up 4% last year, the Daily News has learned.

In many cases, experts say, accidents are staged and corrupt clinics submit fraudulent claims for treatment that was either not performed - or not needed.

Most of those staged accidents occur in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens, according to industry experts and state officials. The industry estimates fraud cost insurers and drivers more than $241 million last year.

Companies inundated the state Insurance Department with 12,807 complaints of suspected no-fault auto insurance fraud last year, up from 10,117 five years ago.

Friday, April 29, 2011


4th NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From VH1

Mob Wives is a docu-soap series that follows the lives of four women at a crossroads, having to pick up the pieces and carry on while their husbands or fathers do time for Mob-related activities. They are struggling with their identities, their own families and their futures.

Mob Wives is a docu-soap that follows the lives of four struggling, "allegedly" associated women who have to pick up the pieces and carry on after their husbands or fathers do time for Mob-related activities. The women are long time friends who live in New York City's "forgotten borough", Staten Island. Along the way they battle their friends, families and each other as they try to do what's best for themselves and their children. It's not easy to maintain the lifestyle they were accustomed to when the family's primary bread winner is in lock up.

Airs Sundays on VH1 @ 8/7c

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wild Otter Attacks Farmer

3rd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix


A WILD otter attacked a farmer in a rampage across a village yesterday.

The furry beast pounced on farmer Joe Burke and bit his hand before he managed to trap him in a canvas sack.But the creature then chewed through the bag and started munching on Joe's VAN.Joe,52, had to run full PELT to escape the furious otter when it turned on him as he tried to shepherd it back to water.

The rest of the viral article can be read here.

(Photo courtesy of The Sun)

Terje Sorgjerd's Time-Lapse Video of Canary Island Skies

2nd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From OMP   Mike Wall

Norwegian landscape photographer Terje Sorgjerd captured this stunning scene — and many others — in his new three-minute video, "The Mountain," which he posted to the website Vimeo on April 15.

Earlier this month, Sorgjerd spent a week on Mount Teide, a huge volcanic peak on Tenerife, which is the largest of the seven Canary Islands off the coast of northwest Africa. At 12,198 feet (3,718 meters), Teide is the highest point in Spain, which owns the Canaries. [The World's Five Most Active Volcanoes]

Monday, April 25, 2011

Ballet Double Sarah Lane Against BLACK SWAN

1st NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Third Age by Alex Heigl

Natalie Portman body double Caroline Davis speaks out about her role in Portman's new film Your Highness.

Davis, a film studies student, alleges that while filming Your Highness in Belfast, she was paid $385 dollars to dive into an icy lake for Portman.

The allegation comes on the heels of controversy surrounding Portman's Oscar win for Black Swan. Portman's dance double Sarah Lane, a soloist with the American Ballet Theatre, has alleged that she was used in "95%" of the full-body shots in the movie. Lane has claimed that she was the victim of a "cover up" and that the public was misled about how much dancing Portman actually did in the film. She claims that Portman's face was digitally grafted onto her body for the majority of the film.

Portman's fiance and Black Swan's choreographer, Benjamin Millepied, refutes the claims, saying: "she [Lane] just did the footwork, and the fouettes, and one diagonal [phrase] in the studio. Honestly, 85 percent of that movie is Natalie," in a March 23 article with the LA Times.

(Image Credit: Niko Tavernise; Inset: Joe Schildhorn/ Press)

The Approval Matrix: Week of May 2, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Steve Martin and Albert Brooks' Twitter Exchanges

3rd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

Food Curated's Ethical Slaughterhouse Video

3rd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

CADE (Part 2): The Good Slaughter: A Proud Meat Cutter Shares His Processing Floor from SkeeterNYC on Vimeo.

How Did Dinosaurs Have Sex? Dino-Style!

3rd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Slate by Brian Palmer

The American Museum of Natural History in New York will unveil an exhibition of the world's largest dinosaurs this Saturday. Some visitors may wonder how the creatures could ever eat enough to sustain their size, but the Explainer's mind is in the Jurassic gutter. How did those monsters manage to have sex?

Paleontologists know very little about how dinosaurs mated, because soft tissue rarely appears in fossils. It is highly probable that dinosaurs had a cloaca—as do most birds and reptiles—which is a single opening for urination, defecation, and reproduction. If that's the case, we might speculate that the male and female would have aligned their cloacae such that the male's penis could emerge to penetrate the female cloaca. (It's also possible that dinosaurs had no penises, and, like some birds, reproduced by squirting semen from one cloaca at another.) Modern ornithologists and herpetologists call this a "cloacal kiss." Paleontologists can only guess about mating positions, duration, and behavior. The majority view seems to be that large males like the Mamenchisaurus—a 60-foot-long behemoth featured in the new exhibition—probably mounted from behind, like modern giraffes and elephants.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

MO MATH Museum Opening 2012 In Manhattan

2nd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Near Say

The Museum of Mathematics (MoMath) is coming to the Flatiron District next year. The museum, which will be the first of its kind, has signed a lease for 19,000 square feet at 11 East 26th Street, across from Madison Square Park.

The opening projected date of the museum opening is fall 2012.

The museum is the vision of Glen Whitney, a former algorithm manager who also taught math at the University of Michigan after graduating from Harvard. Mr. Whitney and his team of 10 staff members are developing between 50 and 60 exhibits for the museum. One exhibit, called The Ring of Fire, is already traveling to museums across the country and will come to the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, N.J. this fall.

MoMath recently received a $2 million grant from Google to help other science museums build exhibits from MoMath’s designs. For more information visit MoMath’s website.

picture via UPG

Monday, April 18, 2011


1st NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

The [all the rage in Japan "worn" denim look] JeanPants feature:

  • Denim and "worn"-style underwear from CUW
  • Can be worn by men or women
  • Size: large (84-92cm, 33.1-36.2") or medium (76-84cm, 29.9-33.1")
  • Materials: cotton (95%), polyurethane (5%)
Price: $61

JPMorgan's First Quarter Profit Rises 67%

1st NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From HP by Claire Baldwin

JPMorgan Chase & Co posted a 67 percent increase in first-quarter earnings, topping Wall Street expectations, as it set aside less money to cover bad loans.

But the news was not all positive for the second-largest U.S. bank. It said it was still suffering from high mortgage losses. The bank's book of consumer loans shrank by 10 percent in the quarter, and loans to companies did not rise enough to offset that.

But the results were good enough to lift JPMorgan shares 1.2 percent in premarket trading. JPMorgan is the first of the big banks to post quarterly results, and its earnings often give investors a hint of what to expect from other financial companies.

JPMorgan said it earned $5.56 billion, or $1.28 a share, up from $3.33 billion, or 74 cents a share, in the same quarter last year.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Educate Mom on Vaginal Dryness this Mother's Day

4th NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Media Bistro and Mom 101

The blog Mom-101, by Liz, got this little Mother’s Day gem that proposes you should help mom learn more about how to solve a personal feminine problem as a holiday gift:

Pamper yourself or your mom with the comfort she deserves this Mother’s Day. Life moves too quickly. Help rejuvenate your mom with a day at the spa, indulge her with chocolates and flowers, help her relax and slow down from her fast-paced world full of deadlines, commitments and obligations.

And help her be more comfortable with Replens, A Long Lasting Vaginal Moisturizer. We all know how busy a mom’s life can be but this Mother's Day take time to educate your mom about the treatment options available for vaginal dryness. Nearly every woman will experience vaginal dryness sometime in her life, oftentimes making even daily activities unbearable. It is most often associated with the normal decline or fluctuation of the female hormone estrogen. This fluctuation can be triggered by childbirth, breastfeeding or menopause. Dryness can also be caused by stress, certain medications, or excessive exercise.

This Mother's Day take time for yourself or time to educate a woman you love about vaginal dryness and Replens!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Items, Rapper, Notorious B.I.G Had When He Died

3rd  NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From New York Mag

The LAPD's investigation into Biggie's murder was reactivated in January after new, undisclosed information was uncovered. To help the LAPD out, why don't you take a look through these newly released FBI files on the case? The bureau shut down their investigation in 2005 and has just unveiled the documents owing to Freedom of Information Act requests. Vulture hasn't had a chance to dive in yet, although Nah Right points to an "interesting tidbit, the personal items Big was carrying at the time of his murder: a bag of weed, an asthma inhaler and 3 Magnum condoms." Okay, now go — solve the crime.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


2nd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Amazon

Set in the lead-up to the racially turbulent summer of 1991 and Brooklyn's Crown Heights riots, this troubling and touching novel chronicles 18-year-old Grace's move from Trinidad to New York City in search of work and new opportunities, but her Sunday-through-Friday life as a live-in nanny is all the more stark when set against her weekends with a dirt-poor family that needs her just as surely as her demanding employers. Cinderella's wicked step-family have nothing on married-into-money Miriam, who runs Grace ragged with selfish demands, or haggard, penny-pinching Sylvia, stuck in a wretched apartment back in Brooklyn with three kids and unemployed baby-daddy Bo.

Brooklyn Public Library Offers Amnesty Deal On Overdue Books

2nd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From L Mag

If you've been sitting on overdue books, the Brooklyn Public Library really wants them back, so much so that they are offering an amnesty program. During the month of April, you can take your overdue books into any branch of the library system and they will waive your fines, as long as you hand them to a clerk at the check-in desk. (There are a few other catches; the deal does not apply to books borrowed through the program that lets you borrow books from any library in America, for example—what a gyp!)

To show they're serious, the Library will start siccing collection agencies on debtors who owe more than $25 starting May 1. You have until then to clear up your accounts, Brooklyn.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Glenn Beck Compares Self to Paul Revere

1st NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

Bristol Palin Earns $262K For Teen Pregnancy Work

1st NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From USA by Rachel D'ore

Tax documents show unwed mother Bristol Palin earned more than $262,000 for her role helping raise awareness for teen pregnancy prevention in 2009.

The most recent data for The Candie's Foundation that's posted online by research firm GuideStar shows compensation at $262,500 for the now-20-year-old daughter of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee.

Bristol Palin was 18 when she was appointed as a teen ambassador for the New York-based foundation in 2009, months after giving birth to son, Tripp. She and the 2-year-old boy's father are no longer together.

Palin family attorney John Tiemessen and foundation officials did not immediately return calls for comment.

Palin is still listed as an ambassador on the foundation's website. The blog Palingates first reported the compensation figure.

The Approval Matrix: Week of April 18, 2011

Friday, April 8, 2011

P-FUNK Drummer, Lelan Zales, Asymmetrical NOCKAUF Jeans

4th NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Nockauf and The Feast by Ganah Snavely

It might get competitive later on, but this is probably the most amazing story you'll hear all day. According to WWD, George Clinton’s P-Funk All Stars' former drummer Lelan Zales is launching a new denim line this season, Nockauf, on the premise of a reinvented waistband angle.

Nockauf Jeans feature an angled waistband that creates an edgy, sexy silhouette unlike any other pant on the market today. Nockauf’s are innovative and edgy while still being wearable.

“You can call me a dementor,” Zales said, “because I am both a designer and inventor.”

Apparently, 52-year old Zales was vacationing with his girlfriend back in 2008, noted the way her pajama pants hung off of her, and wanted to reinvent that same look but in a butt-tight, dated denim sort of way. And so, Nockauf’s trademark was invented: denim with an asymmetrical, slanted waistband.

Nockauf debuted this spring with one men's style ($140) and three women's styles ($169): skinny, straight, and boot-cut.


3rd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

Synopsis\ via Wiki Drama

Le Tong Tong had her grand wedding all planned out, and her relatives were all on standby for the big day. Then, she suddenly found herself single when her boyfriend dumped her. Not a woman who would be defeated by a minor problem as to not having a groom, she and her two friends embarked on a mission to find a husband through series of blind dates.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


2nd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From Publishers Weekly\ via Amazon

Starred Review. NYPD detective Conlon, author of the memoir Blue Blood, turns to fiction with this ambitious, sprawling epic of police life. Nick Meehan, a New York City detective slipping into mid-career burnout, takes a special case for Internal Affairs to investigate a suspected dirty cop. Meehan and his new detective partner, Esposito, look into a variety of other cases, including the apparent suicide of a recently arrived Mexican immigrant woman, gangland slayings by rival drug dealers (called "red on red" or criminal on criminal killings), and a serial rapist. In between the crime solving, Conlon examines the personal lives of his two main players, the subtle alliances and loyalties, the emotional tolls, the temptations, the shades of gray inherent to police work. The pace may be slower than the average thriller, but this expertly crafted novel will appeal to readers of literary crime masters such as George Pelecanos, Dennis Lehane, and Richard Price.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Big-Time Corruption @ Fiesta Bowl

1st NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From The New York Times

Top executives at the Fiesta Bowl funneled campaign contributions to local politicians, flew other Arizona elected officials around the country at the bowl’s expense, racked up a $1,200 bill at a strip club and even spent $30,000 on a birthday party for the chief executive, according to an investigative report commissioned by the bowl’s board of directors. The most serious revelations involve nearly a dozen employees who told investigators that the chief executive and others working for the bowl, the host of one of the nation’s pre-eminent college football games, encouraged them to make political contributions, then reimbursed them with sham bonus payments. Some said they were then pressured to lie about the practice.

The Approval Matrix: Week of April 11, 2011

Source: New York Magazine

Friday, April 1, 2011

Twenty Percent Of British People Think Lightsabers Exist In Real Life

4th NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix

From AOL

Light sabers from "Star Wars," time travel and hover boards from "Back to the Future." Many people in the U.K. believe all these things from science fiction and fantasy are, in fact, reality.

The results of a survey that opened National Science and Engineering Week in Britain last week reveal a fine line between science and fiction in the public's eye.
Here's what the survey reveals, according to Birmingham Science City, which created it. Note that in all cases, the respondents incorrectly believe the following:

• More than a fifth of adults believe light sabers exist.
• Almost 25 percent of people believe humans can be teleported.
• Nearly 50 percent of adults believe that memory-erasing technology exists.
• More than 40 percent believe that hover boards exist.
• Almost one-fifth of adults believe they can see gravity.

"We commissioned the survey to see how blurred the lines between science fact and fiction have become," said Pam Waddell, director of Birmingham Science City.

Urban Down Bicycling in Chile

3rd NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix