Tuesday, April 26, 2005


A virginity worth $1.5m !?

BBC NEWS | World | Americas | Peruvian virgin turns down $1.5m:
"Inside a tiny breeze block house, beneath the dusty hills on the desert outskirts of Lima, religious paintings like the Virgin and Child and the Sacred Heart share wall space with photographs of a beguiling young woman posing as a model.

Graciela - or Gracia as she prefers to be known - has been working since the age of eight, left school at 15 and now three years later earns around $60 a month acting or modelling.

Her mother is too sick to work and she does not want her 12-year-old brother to miss school.

But Gracia says the money she earns is not enough and every month she worries about not being able to pay the bills or having to say No when her brother Guillermo comes back from school asking for money for books.

Theirs is a story like thousands of other Peruvians who live in poverty, but for one fact.

Last month, Gracia decided to sell her virginity to pay for her mother's medical treatment and to improve her family's quality of life.

"My mother was ill and my brother and me too. [And I felt] the utter hopelessness of wanting to move forward, wanting to study, be someone and you just don't get the opportunity because it's all about money," says Gracia.

"Sometimes you find yourself at a crossroads and you see no way out," she adds, staring at the terracotta painted walls.

"You stop and see there's only thing that's going to help you and perhaps it only has to happen once in your life.

"That's what I thought. And you never have to do it again.

"You have to get on with it, without looking back, because you can study, work with this money and help lots of people who are poor like me."


Almost a month after Gracia advertised her virginity for sale, her economic situation has not changed.

But her moral situation has. She says she has decided not to give up her virginity for any price.

"Mum lives with me 24 hours a day, and respects my decision because I am an adult.

"But she was giving me advice, and explaining how my life might be if I did this: What example would I give my children, what kind of man would accept me with this past, would it make me happy, this money?

"Obviously it's a necessity, but it's not everything, it's a bad necessity and it made me realise that this money wasn't going to make me happy, I could make myself happy with my own merits."

Some critics have suggested that Gracia offered to sell her virginity solely to court publicity and never actually intended to go through with it.

Only she will know if that is the case. Certainly, her arguments are convincing, but perhaps so too is her acting.

But what she has done, indisputably, is come out and say: The way many people live in Peru is wrong and I want to do something about it. "

Thursday, April 14, 2005


If anyone was worried: " Viagra ruled kosher for Passover"

BBC NEWS | Middle East | Viagra ruled kosher for Passover:
"A leading Israeli rabbi has ruled that the anti-impotency pill Viagra can be taken by Jews on Passover, reversing a previous ban.

Viagra had been deemed not kosher since 1998 under strict dietary laws over the week-long Jewish spring holiday.

Rabbi Mordechai Eliahu said the pill can be swallowed if it is encased in a special soluble kosher capsule first.

Viagra's Israeli manufacturers said they sought an answer after receiving queries from worried religious men.

Forbidden foods

The drug was previously prohibited because its coating was considered inedible over Passover, when contact with everyday ingredients, known as hametz, is forbidden under Jewish law."

As usual, when I read such requests for religious opinion or fatwas, I wonder: Who really asks these questions... and why?

Recently there was a lot of debates about the Pope and condoms, whether it is religiously allowed to blog or not, etc...
Who on Earth asks these questions?

Monday, April 11, 2005


BBC on RSS feeds: Turning the web into 'sushi belts'

BBC NEWS | Technology | Turning the web into 'sushi belts':
"The way people find websites, blogs, and other content they like on the net is changing.

While the majority still seek out sites of interest through search engines and keep addresses bookmarked, others increasingly use 'RSS' feeds.

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. It is a way of keeping automatically aware of website updates.

Like sushi restaurant conveyor belts, it delivers content to people so they can easily pick what they want to read.

Millions of news, weblogs, and ordinary websites carry easy-to-set-up RSS feeds which alert people when a site has been updated.

Keen lovers of technology and the web have been using RSS for some time as a way to wade through the millions of pages on the web.

It is now starting to come out of its niche; and the small, orange badges which indicate a feed is available on a site are becoming a familiar presence.

But many people who use the web fairly regularly will still stare blankly when asked whether they use RSS."

Thursday, April 07, 2005


NO NOT AGAIN!!!!! Two killed in Cairo bazaar blast

BBC NEWS | Middle East | Two killed in Cairo bazaar blast:
"An explosion has ripped through a major shopping bazaar in an area of Cairo popular with tourists, killing two and injuring several more.

The blast, close to Cairo's al-Azhar mosque, killed two, including one French national and injured eight other people, police said.

The explosion, at about 1700 (1500 GMT), may have been caused by a bomb thrown from a motorbike, police said.

The al-Azhar mosque is a major seat of Islamic learning in Cairo.

A number of busy shopping bazaars are crammed into the narrow streets around al-Azhar, in Cairo's ancient Muslim quarter.

Unrecognisable body

The blast went off on al-Moski Street, a narrow street of tourist shops and clothes sellers - often crammed with foreigners and Egyptian shoppers, carts and peddlers - near the main bazaar of Khan al-Khalili.

Rabab Rifaat, a woman shopping nearby, told the Associated Press news agency she heard a loud 'boom', and saw a decapitated head flying through the air.

A Frenchman was reported to have died at hospital from his injuries, while a woman's unrecognisable body was also recovered from the scene, the Reuters news agency reported.

Islamic militants in Egypt have staged attacks on tourist attractions in the past."


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?