Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive" could save your life!

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. doctors have found the Bee Gees 1977 disco anthem "Stayin' Alive" provides an ideal beat to follow while performing chest compressions as part of CPR on a heart attack victim.

The American Heart Association calls for chest compressions to be given at a rate of 100 per minute in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). "Stayin' Alive" almost perfectly matches that, with 103 beats per minute.

CPR is a lifesaving technique involving chest compressions alone or with mouth-to-mouth rescue breathing. It is used in emergencies such as cardiac arrest in which a person's breathing or heartbeat has stopped.

CPR can triple survival rates, but some people are reluctant to do it in part because they are unsure about the proper rhythm for chest compressions. But research has shown many people do chest compressions too slowly during CPR.

In a small study headed by Dr. David Matlock of the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria, listening to "Stayin' Alive" helped 15 doctors and medical students to perform chest compressions on dummies at the proper speed.

Five weeks after practicing with the music playing, they were asked to perform CPR again on dummies by keeping the song in their minds, and again they kept up a good pace.

"The theme 'Stayin' Alive' is very appropriate for the situation," Matlock said in a telephone interview on Thursday. "Everybody's heard it at some point in their life. People know the song and can keep it in their head."

The findings will be presented this month at a meeting of the American College of Emergency Physicians in Chicago.

(Writing by Will Dunham; Editing by David Storey)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Burger King launches body spray / fragrance

from today.msnbc.msn.com By Sarika Dani
 
The way to a man's heart may be through his stomach, but the way to a woman's heart — according to Burger King — may be through a new meat-scented body spray.

While fast-food chains aren't exactly best known for selling signature fragrances, on Sunday The Home of the Whopper rolled out a men's body spray called Flame by BK. The 5-ml bottles are available for sale in Ricky's stores in New York City and on a dedicated Web site, firemeetsdesire.com.

If you're salivating for a chance to marinate yourself in flame-broiled flavor, relax: The experience can be yours for just $3.99 — a small price to pay for some seriously mouthwatering mojo.

"My assumption when I heard about it was that it would smell like french fries and burgers," said Luis Bejaran, 24, who manages a Ricky's store on Eighth Street in Manhattan. But, he said, that wasn't the case. "It's a combination of Axe body spray, TAG and this YSL cologne I have. It's one of those scents that's not sweet, and light at the same time."

While Bejaran said he would be certainly be willing to set his body a-Flame, his female co-workers were not so sure about its meaty merits. "It's not the best choice for a man," offered one.

Still, as of Wednesday afternoon Bejaran says the store had sold at least 10 bottles, and plenty more people had stopped in or called to inquire about it. Many were drawn in by the store's window display, which currently features "the Burger King guy, half-naked," said Bejaran. Only four Ricky's stores were lucky enough to get the "King" special window treatment, however.

It's true that the reclining, vaguely nauseating Burger "King" does not make for the sexiest spokesperson, but his appeal, like the fragrance itself, may lie in its ridiculousness.

On firemeetsdesire.com, Burger King takes pains make satire of the "sexy is serious" stylings of other fragrance campaigns, offering this description of the scent against a chic black background: "The WHOPPER sandwich is America's favorite burger. FLAME by BK captures the essence of that love and gives it to you. Behold the scent of seduction, with a hint of flame-broiled meat."

As with any decent marketing stunt, the whole Flame campaign has stoked the embers of opinion among fans and critics alike.

"I would not wear it out of principle," said 23-year-old Mike G., after seeing the slim silver package sporting art of a flaming heart. "It's from Burger King. I would never wear a cologne from a fast-food restaurant. It actually angers me slightly. I mean, the packaging says heartburn — what are they trying to say?"

Perhaps that beauty — as they say — is in the, er, nose of the beholder.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Model Bettie Page Dies in Los Angeles at 85

LOS ANGELES (AP) —  Bettie Page, the 1950s secretary-turned-model whose controversial photographs in skimpy attire or none at all helped set the stage for the 1960s sexual revolution, died Thursday. She was 85.

Page was placed on life support last week after suffering a heart attack in Los Angeles and never regained consciousness, said her agent, Mark Roesler. He said he and Page's family agreed to remove life support. Before the heart attack, Page had been hospitalized for three weeks with pneumonia.

"She captured the imagination of a generation of men and women with her free spirit and unabashed sensuality," Roesler said. "She is the embodiment of beauty."

Page, who was also known as Betty, attracted national attention with magazine photographs of her sensuous figure in bikinis and see-through lingerie that were quickly tacked up on walls in military barracks, garages and elsewhere, where they remained for years.

Her photos included a centerfold in the January 1955 issue of then-fledgling Playboy magazine, as well as controversial sadomasochistic poses.

"I think that she was a remarkable lady, an iconic figure in pop culture who influenced sexuality, taste in fashion, someone who had a tremendous impact on our society," Playboy founder Hugh Hefner told The Associated Press on Thursday. "She was a very dear person."

Page mysteriously disappeared from the public eye for decades, during which time she battled mental illness and became a born-again Christian.

After resurfacing in the 1990s, she occasionally granted interviews but refused to allow her picture to be taken.

"I don't want to be photographed in my old age," she told an interviewer in 1998. "I feel the same way with old movie stars. ... It makes me sad. We want to remember them when they were young."

The 21st century indeed had people remembering her just as she was. She became the subject of songs, biographies, Web sites, comic books, movies and documentaries. A new generation of fans bought thousands of copies of her photos, and some feminists hailed her as a pioneer of women's liberation.

Gretchen Mol portrayed her in 2005's "The Notorious Bettie Page" and Paige Richards had the role in 2004's "Bettie Page: Dark Angel." Page herself took part in the 1998 documentary "Betty Page: Pinup Queen."

Hefner said he last saw Page when he held a screening of "The Notorious Bettie Page" at the Playboy Mansion. He said she objected to the fact that the film referred to her as "notorious," but "we explained to her that it referred to the troubled times she had and was a good way to sell a movie."

Page's career began one day in October 1950 when she took a respite from her job as a secretary in a New York office for a walk along the beach at Coney Island. An amateur photographer named Jerry Tibbs admired the 27-year-old's firm, curvy body and asked her to pose.

Looking back on the career that followed, she told Playboy in 1998: "I never thought it was shameful. I felt normal. It's just that it was much better than pounding a typewriter eight hours a day, which gets monotonous."

Nudity didn't bother her, she said, explaining: "God approves of nudity. Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, they were naked as jaybirds."

In 1951, Page fell under the influence of a photographer and his sister who specialized in S&M. They cut her hair into the dark bangs that became her signature and posed her in spiked heels and little else. She was photographed with a whip in her hand, and in one session she was spread-eagled between two trees, her feet dangling.

"I thought my arms and legs would come out of their sockets," she said later.

Moralists denounced the photos as perversion, and Sen. Estes Kefauver of Tennessee, Page's home state, launched a congressional investigation.

Page quickly retreated from public view, later saying she was hounded by federal agents who waved her nude photos in her face. She also said she believed that, at age 34, her days as "the girl with the perfect figure" were nearly over.

She moved to Florida in 1957 and married a much younger man, as an early marriage to her high school sweetheart had ended in divorce.

Her second marriage also failed, as did a third, and she suffered a nervous breakdown.

In 1959, she was lying on a sea wall in Key West when she saw a church with a white neon cross on top. She walked inside and became a born-again Christian.

After attending Bible school, she wanted to serve as a missionary but was turned down because she had been divorced. Instead, she worked full-time for evangelist Billy Graham's ministry.

A move to Southern California in 1979 brought more troubles.

She was arrested after an altercation with her landlady, and doctors who examined her determined she had acute schizophrenia. She spent 20 months in a state mental hospital in San Bernardino.

A fight with another landlord resulted in her arrest, but she was found not guilty because of insanity. She was placed under state supervision for eight years.

"She had a very turbulent life," Todd Mueller, a family friend and autograph seller, told The Associated Press on Thursday. "She had a temper to her."

Mueller said he first met Page after tracking her down in the 1990s and persuaded her to do an autograph signing event.

He said she was a hit and sold about 3,000 autographs, usually for $200 to $300 each.

"Eleanor Roosevelt, we got $40 to $50. ... Bettie Page outsells them all," he told The AP last week.

Born April 22, 1923, in Nashville, Tenn., Page said she grew up in a family so poor "we were lucky to get an orange in our Christmas stockings."

The family included three boys and three girls, and Page said her father molested all of the girls.

After the Pages moved to Houston, her father decided to return to Tennessee and stole a police car for the trip. He was sent to prison, and for a time Betty lived in an orphanage.

In her teens she acted in high school plays, going on to study drama in New York and win a screen test from 20th Century Fox before her modeling career took off.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Music Used During U.S. Military Interrogations

(AP) U.S. military interrogators have often blasted music at detainees in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay. According to the British law group Reprieve, these are among the songs they have used most frequently:

• "Enter Sandman," Metallica.

• "Bodies," Drowning Pool.

• "Shoot to Thrill," AC/DC.

• "Hell's Bells," AC/DC.

• "I Love You," from the "Barney and Friends" children's TV show.

• "Born in the USA," Bruce Springsteen.

• "Babylon," David Gray.

• "White America," Eminem.

• "Sesame Street," theme song from the children's TV show.

Other bands and artists whose music has been frequently played at U.S. detention sites: Aerosmith, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Don McLean, Lil' Kim, Limp Bizkit, Meat Loaf, Rage Against the Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Tupac Shakur.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Huge stash of Marijuana found in ancient tomb

from foxnews.com

Duuuuuude! The world's oldest stash of marijuana has been found in far western China, according to an article in the Journal of Experimental Botany.

An ancient Caucasian people, probably the Indo-European-speaking Yuezhi whose fair-haired mummies keep turning up in Xinjiang province, seem to have buried one of their shamans with a whopping 789 grams of high-potency pot 2,700 years ago.

That's about 28 ounces of killer green bud, worth perhaps $8,000 at today's street prices, and enough to keep Harold and Kumar happy for a couple of days.

"It was common practice in burials to provide materials needed for the afterlife," lead author Ethan B. Russo, a practicing neurologist and prominent medicinal-marijuana advocate based in Missoula, Mont., tells the Canadian Press. "No hemp or seeds were provided for fabric or food. Rather, cannabis as medicine or for visionary purposes was supplied."

But the researchers couldn't tell if the weed was meant to be smoked or eaten. No pipes, bongs or rolling papers were found in the tomb.

The ancient Greek historian Herodotus relates how the Scythians, Iranian-speaking nomads who roamed the steppes to the west of the Yuezhi in the first millennium B.C., liked to throw marijuana onto bonfires to induce trancelike states. It's possible the buried shaman followed similar practices.

Monday, December 1, 2008

WKRP in Cincinnati ... For Real This Time

CINCINNATI (AP) —  WKRP is back on the air in Cincinnati — but this time it's for real.

A low-power TV station has changed its call letters to WKRP, the same as the fictional radio station in the 1970s hit series "WKRP in Cincinnati."

The station changed its call letters to promote its new digital TV signal. It formerly went by WBQC-TV.

General Manager Elliott Block says the new call letters give the station recognition because so many people remember the television sit-com.