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This too shall pass

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first_imgI came up with the idea while partying with Rennie Stennet and Willie Stargell at the ‘Fantastic Plastic’ disco in the Oakland section of Pittsburgh. One morning when I was in “recovery” mode, I had a flash of genius (which was unusual when I was battling a hangover). Willie, Rennie and I used to carry around those suede and leather wine bags filled with Sangria. Around the same time I was performing with the group “Second Movement” at a “joint” called the “Alcatraz” Lounge over on East Ohio Street. “Pops” used to frequent the establishment because he was friendly with the owner whose name was Mert, plus Willie, Rennie and I never had to pay for drinks because Mert always made a ton of loot when Willie showed up. I never knew Mert’s last name. His full name could have been Mert “Pourtheliquor.”One day I asked Willie to introduce me to someone in the media relations office so that I could be credentialed to cover the Pirates. He gave me a phone number and informed me that I could use him as a reference but that was it. Shortly thereafter I began to call and call and call. I then began to hang around the Pirates’ offices. After being blown off for over a week, I ran into the late Vince Lascheid, Pirates long time organist, introduced myself and informed him of my dilemma. A few days later I received a call from the Bucs media relations department and the rest is as they say history. Regardless of all I have written up to this point; this story is about Charles (Chuck) Tanner who just recently went to join the ancestors. All of the drama I had to endure in order just to cover the Pirates was well worth it just to have had to opportunity to meet, know and love “Skip” Tanner.At the Pirates year end media gathering in Dec. 2010, official photographer Dave Arrigo and I swapped stories about the legendary Pirates field general. At that time Mr. Tanner was still at the Jamison Medical Center in New Castle. As I was leaving the affair with my significant other, the elevator operator stopped me and informed me that “Skip” was not doing that great. I procrastinated and did not make it up to see him, for that I blame myself. Here is some free advice. If there is someone that you care for, give them their flowers and their “props” while they are still alive to receive them.I truly believe in my spirit that there were very few people that Chuck Tanner met that he did not like. There were certainly very few people that he encountered that did not like him. I don’t have nearly enough space to talk about the times right smack dab in the middle of his heyday that he found the time to encourage a young African-American sports writer trying to find his way. He did not need affirmative action to prompt him to assist you. What he did for you came from his heart. Never proclaiming or exclaiming that he was bigger or better just because. Mr. Tanner was always just himself.He proved that excellence does not have to evolve into ego. His kind and gracious spirit will live on in our hearts. Chuck Tanner did not worry about image, race or age. If you could play you would start. He did not care whether there were nine Black players, nine White players or nine Latino players starting; he wanted the best team on the field. When they were throwing batteries and hurling racial slurs at right fielder Dave Parker for being a “million dollar baby” “Skip” stuck with his beleaguered but talented player. When Willie Stargell passed away on the day that PNC Park opened Chuck Tanner said, “When you had Willie Stargell on your team, it was like having a diamond ring on your finger. Now, every opening day at PNC Park, everybody will know this is Willie Stargell’s day. He’s up there, and he knows the Pirates are opening today.”“We are family” was not just some slick Madison Avenue marketing strategy that was developed to keep the turnstiles clicking at Three Rivers Stadium. This was a true community phenomenon, a state of mind, no correction a state of spirit that had the nerve to promote the notion that men, ordinary and extraordinary men from affluent and destitute backgrounds could perform together under one banner regardless and represent a blue collar, hard working city that was in the final process of waving the white flag after heading the charge of the industrial revolution. Leading the charge of change in Pittsburgh, at least from a professional sports aspect was Chuck Tanner. I am positive that they are now waiting for Chuck Tanner to exit the dugout in heaven, lineup card in hand.(Aubrey Bruce can be reached at: [email protected] or 412-583-6741.) I was a snot nosed gumshoe wet behind the ears, wannabe sports reporter when I initially met Charles (Chuck) Tanner right after the MLB All-Star break during the summer of 1978. When I was 25, it was a very good year. That was the year that I had decided to switch gears from music performing and try my hand at sports journalism.last_img read more

Noted Author to Read Works March 12 at Monmouth U.

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first_imgWEST LONG BRANCH – The 2013 Visiting Writers Series at Monmouth University continues with a reading by award-winning author Mary Gaitskill at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12 in Wilson Hall Auditorium.In a conversation with BOMB Magazine, novelist and story writer Gaitskill said she chose to become a writer at age 18 because she was “indignant about things – it was the typical teenage sense of things are wrong in the world and I must say something.”Her first collection of stories, Bad Behavior, now a classic, made critical waves when it was first published, heralding Gaitskill’s arrival on the literary scene.One of the stories in the collection, Secretary, was the basis for a 2002 feature film of the same name starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and James Spader.Her other works include: Because They Wanted To, a collection of stories nominated for the PEN/Faulkner in 1998, and the novels Two Girls, Fat and Thin and Veronica, which was nominated for the 2005 National Book Award, National Critic’s Circle Award, and Los Angeles Times Book Award. Her 2009 collection of stories is titled Don’t Cry.Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts Visiting Writers Series brings the most celebrated poets and authors from around the world and around the area to Wilson Hall.For additional information, please contact the director of the visiting writers series, Michael Thomas at 732-263-5635 or visit online at www.monmouth.edu/arts.last_img read more

QPR v Preston: five key battles

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first_imgQPR hope to return to winning ways on Saturday when they host pointless Preston at Loftus Road. Here’s the five match-ups we believe might be crucial in determining the outcome.Jake Bidwell v Ben PringleBidwell was not at his best in the defeat at Barnsley in midweek, struggling up against Ryan Kent. However, he will hope to fare better in his battle with former Fulham man Pringle, who has started all three of Preston’s Championship matches.Yeni N’Gbakoto v Liam GrimshawThe recent signing from Metz is still adapting to English football but is likely to start on Rangers’ left-hand side again. He will be up against Liam Grimshaw, who has come in for some flak for his displays at right-back in the early games, deputising for the long-term absentee Calum Woods.James Perch v Callum RobinsonWith Grant Hall serving a ban, Nedum Onuoha is required to shift across to centre-half, meaning a recall for Perch. He will need to be on his toes against the speedy Robinson, whose goal as a substitute in last weekend’s game against Fulham earned him a recall on Tuesday.Steven Caulker v Jermaine BeckfordBorn just eight miles apart, in Feltham and Ealing respectively, these two West Londoners will relish an aerial tussle. Caulker was disappointing in the loss at Oakwell, while former Wealdstone marksman Beckford will hope to improve on his three previous appearances against Rangers, when he has failed to find the net.Sebastian Polter v Tom Clarke and Bailey WrightAt the other end of the pitch, Polter – with two goals in his first three league games – will have a significant height advantage over both Preston centre-backs. His link up play with Tjaronn Chery will again be important.Click here for our QPR v Preston quizSee also:Hall sent off as QPR are beatenBarnsley v QPR player ratingsQPR should beat Preston – and Fulham’s odds are cut after good startMcManaman ‘too expensive’ for QPR – HasselbainkPreview: QPR looking to get back on track against PrestonQPR wait for news on Gladwin injuryFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Photo library: Buildings and structures 13

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first_img{loadposition tc}Click on a thumbnail for a low-resolution image, or right-click on the link below it to download a high-resolution copy of the image.» Download Buildings & Structures contact sheet (1.1MB) » Download full image library contact sheet (10.5MB) Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Supreme Court of Appeal. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa. The country has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Supreme Court of Appeal. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa. The country has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Supreme Court of Appeal. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa. The country has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Supreme Court of Appeal. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa. The country has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Supreme Court of Appeal. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa. The country has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Supreme Court of Appeal. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa. The country has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: The Fourth Court of Bloemfontein. The city is the judicial capital of South Africa, and home to the country’s Supreme Court of Appeal. South Africa has three capital cities; the other two are Cape Town (legislative) and Pretoria (administrative). Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: Reflections of clouds in the windows of the Bram Fischer building. Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Bloemfontein, Free State province: Reflections of clouds in the windows of the Bram Fischer building. Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image BUILDINGS AND STRUCTURES 13: {loadposition bd}Having trouble downloading high-resolution images? Queries about the image library? Email Janine Erasmus at [email protected]last_img read more

Tapiwa holds her own at Wits

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first_imgTapiwa Shendelane advises her peers to believe in themselves and remember that education brings success.At the age of 15, Tapiwa Shendelane is the youngest engineering student at the University of the Witwatersrand ever.She received six distinctions in matric and believes age is nothing but a number – she goes to classes alongside her 19-year-old peers and interacts happily with them, she says.Tapiwa, who is from Thulamahashe near Bushbuckridge in Mpumalanga, is one of three 15 year olds at the university. She initially wanted to study medicine but changed her mind at the beginning of January. Engineering really challenges her, she says.Her aim is to build her own engineering firm that employs others, so creating work. And she wants to take this expertise back to Mpumalanga, bringing much-needed development to her community.At the age of 15, Tapiwa Shendelane is the youngest engineering student at the University of the Witwatersrand ever.Her advice to her peers is: have goals, believe in yourself, and education brings success.Watch Tapiwa talk about her life:last_img read more

Resignations hit Congress in Assam

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first_imgA day after the its former Chief Whip in the Rajya Sabha Bhubaneswar Kalita joined the BJP, the Congress in Assam suffered a setback with Rajya Sabha member Santiuse Kujur and former Minister Gautam Roy quitting on Saturday. Both are expected to join the BJP in the next few days.“With regret I would like to inform you that I am tendering my resignation from the membership of the party and all other portfolios given by the Congress with immediate effect. This is purely my personal decision,” wrote Mr. Kujur in his resignation letter, addressed to the Congress president.Mr. Roy, often considered the party’s backbone in southern Assam’s Barak Valley, said: “I resigned as I was not happy to see where the Congress has reached today. However, I have no grudge against any leader of the party.”He said he was “impressed” by the BJP’s performance across the country under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.There is speculation that several other Assam Congress stalwarts, including former Lok Sabha members and ex-MLAs, would be joining the BJP.last_img read more

100 per cent cut-off in some Delhi University courses irrational: Kapil Sibal

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first_imgUnion HRD Minister Kapil Sibal on Wednesday described as irrational the 100 per cent cut-off announced for some Delhi University courses.Sibal said he was upset to learn about the impossibly high cut-offs and called it an irrational way of looking at admissions.Watch video of best collegesHe assured students that there was no need for panic as he was in touch with the college authorities to rationalise the cut-offs.Sibal spoke to Delhi University Vice-Chancellor Dinesh Singh and asked him to look at rationalising the cut-off lists. Irrational cut-offs could be a setback for the education system, he told Singh.The minister said the vice-chancellor had assured him that the cut-offs would come down.In the first list announced on Tuesday, the Sri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) pegged the cut-off for its hugely popular B.Com (Honours) course at 100 per cent for students who had not studied commerce in Class XII.For B.Com (Honours), Hindu College expects applicants to have scored between 95.5 per cent and 99 per cent.The high cut-offs have left hundreds of Delhi University aspirants disappointed.But SRCC principal P.C. Jain said there was nothing absurd in insisting that students from the non-commerce streams score perfect marks in all their subjects.”We get the best students from across the country and getting 100 per cent in the aggregate of your best performance in four subjects is no longer impossible in Board exams,” Jain said on Tuesday.Jain’s statement does not tally with the Board results in various states. In Uttar Pradesh, topper Akash Yadav secured 92.3 per cent. In Karnataka, of the over five lakh students who appeared for the Class 12 exams, fewer than one hundred scored over 95 per cent.advertisement- With inputs from Mail TodayFor more news on India, click here.For more news on Business, click here.For more news on Movies, click here.For more news on Sports, click here.last_img read more

10 months agoLucas Digne enjoying Everton family atmosphere

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first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Lucas Digne enjoying Everton family atmosphereby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveEverton fullback Lucas Digne admits he enjoys the family atmosphere at the club.Despite a hectic schedule of four games in ten days the French defender can’t wait for the madness to start against Tottenham.“It will be my first time playing on Boxing Day! But I’m very happy to be playing over Christmas” says the full back – seen delivering presents to sick children at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool with other members of the Everton squad.“Christmas is about spending it with your family – and Everton is my family. For me, it’s perfect because you can play football and then after you spend the moment with your family.“My parents and my brother are coming to England this weekend and to stay for the holidays.“I feel very good. I’ve been available to play every game and the manager has given me a lot of confidence.“Since I arrived at the Club, my team-mates have been amazing with me. They’ve helped me with my English and to understand everything. When you feel good off the pitch, you can feel good on the pitch.” last_img read more

Albertashot Ice Blue a psychological thriller with a Canadiana twist

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first_img Twitter Advertisement Advertisement “John and Arielle live on a beaver farm,” says Somers, taking a break from shooting in Okotoks earlier this week. “They breed them for reclamation of land. So, the level of Canadiana? There’s beavers in this. You have a psychological thriller and beavers.”Beavers may or may not play a central role in the plot, but it seems clear that Somers will be giving the film a distinctive sense of place. It’s not just Canadiana, but distinctly Albertan. Much of it is shot on a rural farmhouse near Millarville, which should give Ice Blue a decidedly big-sky-above-the-foothills look.“I look upon it as a character,” Somers says. “The landscape is definitely a character that really enhances the whole story. We shoot an awful lot in dusk and dawn, and that’s also really important to this.” Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Sandi Somers describes Ice Blue, her debut feature film, as “very Canadiana.”How Canadiana?Consider the major setting, the farmhouse home of protagonist 16-year-old Arielle (Sophia Lauchlin Hirt) and her father John (Billy MacLellan). Login/Register With:last_img read more

Wheres Model Code of Conduct

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first_imgAs the race to Lok Sabha 2019 revs up, all political parties have amped up their campaigns. Every General Election has witnessed grand announcements and promises made by competing political candidates. The Indian election is a huge affair; and over the years, it has been the unrelenting work of the Election Commission of India that has made it possible for a nation as populated and diverse as ours to conduct free and fair polls. This time, however, there are some stark anomalies that seem to be dogging the elections. Also Read – A special kind of bondThe Election Commission brings in the Model Code of Conduct all parties and candidates must strictly adhere to. This time, however, we see the ruling party flouting its norms with alacrity. Take for instance the announcement surrounding Mission Shakti by the Prime Minister. The fact that India now has the capability (we had the prowess since 2012) to conduct anti-satellite tests. The PM first tweeted that there would be a major announcement, after which he addressed the nation and apprised the citizens that India had shot down a satellite in space. We should be proud of such an empowerment of India’s defence and space accomplishments but the timing of the announcement, as expressed by many, seemed to be in clear violation of the Election Commission’s Model Code of Conduct. Also Read – Insider threat managementEven though the Model Code of Conduct came into effect on March 10, we also now hear that the railways are serving tea in cups bearing PM Modi’s campaign cry, ‘Main Bhi Chowkidar’! Is that also not yet another violation of the code? The interestingly-timed biopic based on Modi’s life from ‘chaiwallah to PM’ is also slated to hit the silver screen on April 5. The film titled ‘PM Narendra Modi’ and starring Vivek Oberoi will release at a theatre near you just before the first phase of the seven-poll Lok Sabha elections starting on April 11. In the last four and a half years, we have witnessed the systematic degradation and loss of face of several historic Indian institutions. Reserve Bank of India, Central Bureau of Investigation, Central Information Commission, Central Vigilance Commission, and the Supreme Court (to some extent) have had their actions questioned. Now we have the Election Commission of India under the scanner. Internationally, the Election Commission has won laurels and praise for the extensive work that it undertakes every five years in India. So much so, that the Election Commission has helped other nations to conduct polls. But this year, it is the toughest fight yet for the institution as it will have to prove its impartiality and non-partisan nature. Parties and candidates will over-reach; they will slyly and cunningly want to reach out to the masses with messages that will not adhere to the Model Code of Conduct. Will the Election Commission look the other way? Or will it waste crucial time before cracking down on such violations? Various committees that are looking into the violations of the Model Code of Conduct take up time after the damage is already done. The Lok Sabha polls this time is likely to be the most bitterly fought one in the recent history of the Indian democracy. The onus is now on the Election Commission to uphold its own diktats and ensure that the common man does not lose faith in the democratic process. (The writer is a journalist and media entrepreneur. The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more