Thursday, April 30, 2015

Peyton Manning -or- Ryan Leaf: Superstar -or- Bust?

After the 1998 N.F.L. draft produced one of the greatest busts in history, what have we learned about the science of evaluating human talent — on and off the field?

Manning or Leaf? A Lesson in Intangibles

Say the name Bobby Thomson and before long someone is sure to bring up his 1951 partner in baseball history, Ralph Branca. Ever since the 1986 World Series, Mookie Wilson and Bill Buckner have gone together like a hot dog and a beer (or perhaps more like oil and water, if you’re a still-mournful Boston Red Sox fan). Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa are forever joined in grace by their 1998 pursuit of a home-run record, and in disgrace by their reliance on performance-enhancing drugs. And what figure-skating fan can hear about Nancy Kerrigan without thinking of Tonya Harding, the two being linked by a bizarre episode of attempted kneecapping in 1994?

In much the same way, any conversation about football that mentions the splendid Peyton Manning is bound at some point to turn to his onetime doppelgänger, Ryan Leaf. In 1998, Messrs. Manning and Leaf were blisteringly hot prospects as they entered the National Football League’s annual draft — college quarterbacks of exceptional promise, either of them certain to be that year’s No. 1 pick. As recalled in the latest weekly video documentary from Retro Report, that was exactly how the 1998 draft played out. Mr. Manning was selected first, by the Indianapolis Colts. Mr. Leaf was chosen next, by the San Diego Chargers.

That is where similarities between the two men dissolve. Peyton Manning went on to become one of the best pro quarterbacks of all time, capturing five most valuable player awards and leading teammates to three Super Bowls. Ryan Leaf? For all his physical prowess and an $11.25 million signing bonus, he became a synonym for an absolute bust. He played in a mere 25 games across four seasons. His passes resulted in many more interceptions than touchdowns. After football, his life skidded off the road. He had a pill problem. In 2012, he began serving a seven-year sentence in his native Montana for breaking into a house in search of painkillers.

So, with the 2014 pro football draft upon us this week, does it boil down to a matter of character?

The Colts seemed to think so. In Mr. Manning, a member of a family that qualifies as pro football aristocracy, the team believed it had a master of control and poise. Mr. Leaf was the stronger athlete in many respects, but he turned out to have a 10-cent emotional quotient to go with his million-dollar arm. He was hot-tempered and at times lackadaisical in his training habits. The focus on character — “intangibles” being a favored word — is reflected in a current movie, “Draft Day,” with Kevin Costner playing a football team’s general manager who is more concerned with a prospect’s inner qualities than with his throwing arm.

Character is an issue in all sports and, for that matter, in other endeavors. Perhaps it weighs more heavily in football because an unusually large number of players, 11, must meld into a single unit. Cliché though this may be, the team is a chain that is often only as strong as its weakest link.

How shall one assess a vicious racist who gets along with almost no one, is quick to use his fists and is thoroughly disliked by even his own teammates? Not a sound prospect, many would say. But what if we call him Ty Cobb, who had the highest career batting average — .366 or .367, depending on whose stats you use — in Major League Baseball history? Would you drop a bundle of cash on an ill-disciplined fellow who is given to overindulgence and who as a boy was deemed by those in charge of him to be “incorrigible”? What if we say his name is Babe Ruth?

The N.F.L. has managed to find room for players with criminal records, often for acts of violence. In some past years, the league had so many players under indictment that its games could have been carried by Court TV. A 2012 study by a professor and a student at Hamilton College in upstate New York concluded that a player’s running afoul of the law was less significant as an indicator of future performance than run-ins he may have had with coaches and teammates.

The quest to assess intangibles is not likely to end. Nor is it confined to professional sports. To cite but one example, some defense lawyers rely on consultants who are supposedly expert in sizing up people quickly to help pick the “right” jury.

One such lawyer is Gerald B. Lefcourt of New York. Yes, he sometimes calls on those specialists, he said in an interview. But “the benefit is deselection rather than selection,” Mr. Lefcourt said. In other words, “it’s more to get you to understand who shouldn’t be a juror” than who should — an unacceptable type for him being someone who is, say, “very government-oriented or a compliance type.” Still, in the end, “you go with your gut,” Mr. Lefcourt said. “Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn’t.”

Which is exactly what the football pros say, too. — Clyde Haberman | New York Times

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Monkey Island — The Real Planet Of The Apes

The Real Planet Of The Apes (Documentary)

Our crew traveled to remote Liberia to discover 'Monkey Island,' an area inhabited solely by former lab tested chimpanzees who survived disease and two civil wars. We go to the island, interview the locals and meet the scientists involved in the testing facility 25 years ago.

This documentary is a Motherboard production, made possible by 20th Century Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 23rd, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 23rd, 2015

Count down the top ten plays from Thursday night's playoff action.
S. Curry w/ One of the Greatest Three's of the Century!

Top 5 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 22nd, 2015

Top 5 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 22nd, 2015
Check out the top five plays from Wednesday.
Blake "Human Highlight Film" Griffin

Jared Leto As The Joker

Jared Leto — Hollywood actor turned rock star, as The Joker

Jared Leto As The Joker

Jared Leto is the lastest Hollywood star to don the role as Batman's nemesis — The Joker.

In the past, Jack Nicholson played the villain in Tim Burton's Batman (1989) and the late-Heath Ledger won an Oscar for his portrayal of Batman's arch-rival in Christopher Nolan's epic The Dark Knight (2008).

Leto — along w/ co-stars Will Smith, Cara Delevinge and Jai Courtney, will be starring in Suicide Squad (2016) | Directed by David Ayers — who's also directed Training Day (2001), Harsh Times (2005), End Of Watch (2012), Fury (2014) — the highly-anticipated film hits theaters on August 5th, 2016.

Suicide Squad (2016)

SYNOPSIS: A secret government agency recruits imprisoned DC Comics Supervillains to execute dangerous black ops missions in exchange for clemency.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Godfrey Gao — Asian Male Supermodel

Godfrey Gao — first Asian male to model for the fashion brand Louis Vuitton
Supermodel And Actor Godfrey Gao Interview

What has been the highlight of your career so far? Where are you taking it next?
The highlight would be being the first Asian male in the 157 year history of Louis Vuitton to feature as a campaign face. Additionally, playing a part in The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones and attending its red carpet premiere in LA – Comic Con San Diego also comes close!  Going forward, I’d say my highlight was attending Baselworld 2015 with Links of London, and I hope that through this collaboration, I’ll be able to do even more fruitful and fun things! On the acting front, I will also have more opportunities to work in Hollywood as we are planning some superb, upcoming projects that I am really excited about!

Tell us about your journey in becoming one of the faces of Links of London. 
The journey has been overwhelming, but it’s a journey that I’ll remember for a lifetime. It all started out from attending many Folli Follie events as a special guest star to attract more female clients within China. I would like to hope that, because of the enjoyable working relationship we had in the past through these events, when it came time for them to think about a male representative for their Links of London brand, I was the one they decided to choose. 

Links of London

What is it about the Links of London brand that stands out to you?
The fact that the brand is a genuine representation of the modern English Gentlemen, but with a twist of traditional English tastes and characteristics.

You plan to cross over to Western cinema and television. What do you see as the greatest challenge and most exciting aspect of this? 
I have been meeting with many directors and producers in Hollywood lately, as we all know China is a key market of the world at present; being an actor with recognition there allows me to have the honour of being considered for many interesting projects. The challenge I expect as an actor would definitely be the switching of acting styles as the East and the West have such different styles of delivery that the audience is accustomed to. Therefore, when working on different projects in catering to varying audiences, I must always be mindful of this.

What’s your favourite thing about London? 
The food…! London offers a huge variety of cuisines from all around the world, featuring fusion and fine cuisine choices. You will have realised by now that I am a big foodie. The city itself is also very beautiful; we had the chance to wander around the city a bit before and during our Links of London campaign shooting; the mix between the traditional and the modern was amazing. In Brick Lane, the vintage markets preserve the essence of old English styles; at the same time, Regent Street gave me a beautiful glimpse of how future trends interact with English cultural traditions.

Growing up with varied cultures must have been an enriching and grounding experience. Tell us about your favourite memory as a child?
Well, growing up in North Vancouver was very memorable! I was in the same class as many children from different countries and cultures. This really gave me an international perspective at an early age. One of my favourite memories is that, despite how I was not so fluent in English, the local North Vancouver kids immediately invited me to play basketball and football with them. This welcoming and warm gesture has been embedded in my memory since those days.

Links of London
Tell us about your relationship with your dad – apparently, you have said before that he is even more stylish than you? 
Yes, we share the same clothes, that’s how close we are! He has influenced my style since childhood as he would always go to work wearing different suits, ties and dress shoes. We were always very involved in sports together; every weekend and as a family, we would go swimming, rollerblading, biking, and so on. We would always be borrowing each other’s t-shirts, sports wear, shorts, and the like.

Who inspires you the most and why?
My mother – she’s been the one who has always believed in me and is always telling me to pursue my dreams, take chances and not be afraid! This is so I don’t miss out on those key opportunities. She’s taught me how to be humble, polite and a gentleman, which carried me throughout my life. Because of her, I am a curious person, always asking questions, continually learning and building up my knowledge. 

Many consider you to be a pioneer for entertainers, actors and models for the Asian overseas community. How do you feel in relation to this? 
I think they are too generous with this comment, but I am truly honoured. I also do feel that there are many more prestigious pioneers before me. Take Sessue Hayakawa for example; he was the first Japanese actor in American, French, German and British films and he was the first Asian actor and Asian leading man to find stardom in North America and Europe! Another very memorable and notable person would be Bruce Lee, who also broke through the American market and chased his dream to become the No.1 action star in the world. To this day, he is still considered one of the No.1 action stars to have ever lived. So, when I think about pioneers like these, it fuels and inspires me to push forward and become part of the next generation’s!

Where do you see yourself in ten years’ time?
Hopefully still doing what I am doing, being as happy doing it as I am now, and living life to the fullest. 

What was your most memorable interaction with a fan? 
One time, in Mexico City for The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones final premiere, over 10,000 fans of the franchise showed up and everyone wanted to shake hands, take selfies and “marry me”! While taking a picture with a particular fan, an overwhelming thought hit me! At that moment, I realised that I was a part of something special in their hearts. It really gave me a sense of accomplishment knowing that what I am doing has positively influenced the lives of so many.
What is the one thing you cannot live without?
Music, it brings you up from feeling down; it encourages you to dance when you don’t want to move; and it keeps the human soul alive! I use music to relax, let loose, de-stress and also zone me in and zone me out! It brings me to another place where I can concentrate either on or off work. It’s a universal tool which I cannot live without.

411: Godfrey Gao's father is Taiwanese while his mother from Malaysia

What is your ultimate tip to achieving success in career and life?
There are a few mottos that I usually go by. They are: don’t be afraid to push your boundaries; failure is the most successful inspiration; don’t let other people’s opinions affect your goals; and always be humble.

Which character have you played that you emphasise or relate to the most with in your experience as an actor?
There is a TV mini series which I just shot last week, unfortunately I can’t say too much about it, but it will be shown online this year and will be about my upbringing in Canada. — Yingsey Wang | NeeHao

Thursday, April 23, 2015

How Manny Pacquiao Can Beat Floyd Mayweather, Jr.?

The Fight Of The Century | May 2nd, 2015 in Las Vegas (147 pounds)
Floyd Mayweather Jr. (47-0, 26 KO) -vs- Manny Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 KO)

How Manny Pacquiao Can Beat Floyd Mayweather Jr.

What will it take to conquer the world’s best boxer? Oscar De La Hoya, Roy Jones Jr. and others weigh in.

Boxing people are virtually unanimous in picking undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr. to stay that way come May 2. And yet, few expert jaws will drop if Manny Pacquiao puts the first stain on Mayweather’s 47-0 record.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. after knocking down Juan Manuel Marquez in 2009.

At age 36, Pacquiao is two years younger than his rival. His hand and foot speed are on par with Mayweather’s. And though the Pac-Man lags far behind Mayweather defensively, he has a decided edge in punching power.

Still, Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, acknowledges that his charge will have to come up with “the perfect fight” to win the upcoming megabout at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

What would the perfect Pacquiao fight entail? A number of top current and former boxers gave their opinions.

The Golden Boy’s Perspective

Besides being a former six-division world champion, Oscar De La Hoya has a unique distinction: He won on a judge’s scorecard against Mayweather. De La Hoya lost a split decision to Mayweather in 2007.

But Pacquiao retired De La Hoya after eight rounds in 2008. “If Mayweather fights the Pacquiao who fought me, he is in for some trouble,” De La Hoya said.

Mayweather-De La Hoya in 2007

The conventional view of this fight is that it is a matchup of power (Pacquiao) against elusiveness (Mayweather), but De La Hoya sees Pacquiao’s movement as pivotal. “Mayweather has never fought a lefty who moves in and out, side to side like Pacquiao,” De La Hoya said. “Pacquiao’s footwork is the key. Also, he has to make Mayweather open up and engage, then punch when Mayweather is punching.”

De La Hoya recommends jabbing over Mayweather’s defensive guard. “And bring that great left of his down the middle.”

The Man Who Shook Mayweather

Hall of Famer Shane Mosley went the distance against both Pacquiao and Mayweather and lost. But in the second round of his 2010 tussle with Mayweather, Mosley landed a short right hand that shook Mayweather to the soles of his boxing boots.

Mosley staggered Mayweather in 2010.

Mosley is convinced that it wasn’t just a lucky shot. The problem is keeping it up for 12 rounds.

“Mayweather has an incredible defense and makes great adjustments,” Mosley said. “But a lot of people act as though he can’t be hit. I think I proved that is not true. When I hit him, he was really hurt. But he grabbed and I couldn’t finish him off.”

Mosley’s prescription: “Pacquiao has to keep busy. Punch from angles.”

The View From the Left

Robert Guerrero—a left-handed fighter, like Pacquiao—is one of the few southpaws Mayweather has faced in recent years. In 2013, Mayweather defeated Guerrero in a lopsided decision, demonstrating an ability to adapt to lefty opposition.

Mayweather during the Guerrero fight.

“Mayweather’s reaction time is amazing,” Guerrero said. “He sees what you are about to throw and is out of there before you can punch.”

Guerrero’s counsel is as much psychological as physical. “Pacquiao has to be very aggressive, but he can’t afford to get frustrated when he misses.”

Punch, Punch, Punch

Throughout the fight world, there is one common piece of advice for Pacquiao: Throw a ton of punches.

“Like 100 per round,” said Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, whose only loss came against Mayweather in 2013. In terms of sheer numbers, Mayweather throws far fewer punches than other 147 pounders, but he is so precise—and so adept at not getting hit—that he connects with more shots. The only way to overcome it, boxers say, is with volume.

That said, “pressure is not just a matter of throwing a lot of punches,” former welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi said. “You have to make the other guy feel the fear of being hit. You have to be firing hard shots. Pacquiao did that the whole fight against [Miguel] Cotto, but he has not done it since then.” Pacquiao’s 12-round technical knockout of Cotto was in 2009.

Said Alvarez, who fights the tough James Kirkland on May 9: “Does Manny still have that much energy? We’ll see.”

Boom Boom to the Body

Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini was the quintessential in-your-chest boxer. Asked what kind of strategy he would suggest, Mancini said, “Look at the first Mayweather-[Marcos] Maidana bout. Floyd does not like to fight at a fast pace. Pacquiao has to dictate the tempo. Put the pedal to the metal for three minutes every round.”

Pacquiao in training in Los Angeles last week

Mancini noted that Mayweather likes to lean to his right, which puts him in the line of fire of Pacquiao’s left.

Mayweather also likes to fight in space. When opponents get too close for comfort, he will put up his left forearm in their neck or chest. “When he does that,” Mancini said, “Pacquiao has to rip a hook to the body.”

Be Careful

All agree that Pacquiao has the foot speed to disrupt Mayweather. But will Pacquiao use that footwork or just recklessly go for it?

If Pacquiao chases Mayweather around the ring, looking to plant that one big left, it figures to be a long night for him—or perhaps a short one, as was the case in his sixth-round knockout loss in 2012 to Juan Manuel Marquez.

“Pacquiao has to throw combinations—but not long combinations,” said legendary former champion Roy Jones Jr. “Two or three punches at time. Floyd is the best counter-puncher in boxing, and if Pacquiao throws more than three-punch combos, he is going to catch a hard counter.”

The Final Analysis

“There is no one way to beat a guy like Mayweather,” said Sugar Ray Leonard, one of the greatest welterweights of all time, a fighter with whom Mayweather is often compared. Leonard once beat Floyd Mayweather Sr., the man who bequeathed Floyd Mayweather Jr. his defensive repertoire.

Pacman may be the only boxer w/ the power & speed to finally hurt and potentially put a stop to
Pretty Boy's reign as the undisputed pound-for-pound best boxer alive

If Leonard were advising Pacquiao, he would tell him, “Make him respect you. [Don’t] fall prey to his antics on the ropes because he is one of the best counter-punchers out there.

“It will be kind of a cat-and-mouse game. A chess match. I would throw more body shots than most people throw,” Leonard said. “But again, there’s just not one way to beat Mayweather.” — Gordon Marino | The Wall Street Journal

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 21st, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Playoffs: April 21st, 2015

Count down the top 10 plays from Tuesday night in the NBA.
John Wall's reaction to the Playoff Block of the Year!

The Most Dangerous Movie Ever Filmed — ROAR (1981)

Real Animals, Real Bites, Real Blood In "Roar"

When Hollywood makes a film about humans and big cats these days, usually the ferocious felines are fake, created on computers. That's what makes the recently unearthed movie "Roar" so captivating.

In what may have been the most dangerous movie production ever, the cast and crew survived 70 animal attacks. The movie never made it to American theaters, until now, CBS News' John Blackstone reports.

Filmed over five years in the late 1970s, it is all real. Real animals, real bites and real blood. John Marshall, who co-starred in the film with his family, said it is "probably the most dangerous" movie ever made.

Also in the film was his step-mother, Tippi Hedren, best known for her starring role in Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds," and her daughter, Melanie Griffith, herself an emerging young actress at the time.

The film also starred and was directed by John's father and Hedren's husband at the time, Hollywood producer Noel Marshall.

"In hindsight, he was a madman," Marshall said.

The cast and crew worked with more than 100 wild animals, including lions, tigers, leopards and elephants, that they raised themselves, first in their Los Angeles mansion and then on a ranch north of the city.

Before filming even started, one of the lions clamped its jaws on Marshall's head.

"I got 56 stitches in the head, and it took six guys 25 minutes to get the lion off me," Marshall said. "You know, we probably should have figured out then that maybe this was gonna be a problem."

On the first day of filming, during a fight scene between full-grown male lions, his father was the victim.

"He runs in there to break up the fight, and then a lion bites him through the hand," Marshall said. "And then, if you watch really closely, you can see he ... shakes the blood off and shakes, and then he goes in and he breaks up the fight again."

Griffith was attacked twice.

"This is the scene where Melanie is on the kitchen floor with boomer," Marshall said.

The lion grabbed her hair with its teeth and wouldn't let go. Later Griffith was clawed in the face, requiring over 100 stitches and reconstructive surgery. The film's cinematographer needed 200 stitches in his scalp. Hedren fractured her leg falling off an elephant.

Now an animal rights activist, Hedren is working to pass a bill in Congress that would prohibit most private possession of big cats.

She has expressed regret that her family lived with the dangerous animals.

"I still, when I watch the movie, you know, have nightmares for a day or two after, you know, watching it," Marshall said.

Neither Hedren nor Griffith are promoting the film's re-release. In a statement to "CBS This Morning," Hedren said: "It is far more productive for me to focus on the positive things that I am doing now."

The movie cost $17 million to make and grossed just $2 million when it was released overseas in 1981. It was never shown in American theaters until now.

"I knew eventually somebody would figure this film out," Marshall said.

Be assured that no animals were harmed in the making of this movie, but the same can't be said for the humans. — CBS

The Hardcore Story Of Judge — There Will Be Quiet (Part 1 - 4)

In 1991, at the height of its popularity, the New York hardcore band Judge broke up, leaving a long and storied career of incredible music and hyper-violent gigs for the history books. In the decades that followed, Judge's meager output became hardcore punk 101 for much of the growing scene who built upon their metal-tinged riffs and attitude.

While the legend grew, lead singer Mike Ferraro virtually disappeared, only to reemerge in 2013 at Webster Hall to headline one of the most respected hardcore punk festivals in the country, Black N’ Blue Bowl. Noisey caught up with the revered frontman during, before, and after his triumphant return to the stage in this four-part series. — VICE

In the first of Noisey's four-part series There Will Be Quiet: The Story of Judge, Noisey talks with mythical NYHC vocalist Mike Ferraro, better known as Mike Judge. Ferraro recounts his early days and unforgiving upbringing, his road toward straight-edge, and how an introverted kid found his way to punk rock.

Special Thanks to: Eric X Edge, Joseph Cammarata, Michael Distelkamp, Eric Blomquist, Chad Timmerick, Chuck Miller, Bri Hurley, Jeff Ladd, Ken Salerno, Larry Ransom, Brian Maryansky, Mikey Garceua, Jim Brown, Larry Ransom, Brian Balchak, Jeff Terranova, and Jordan Cooper.

Formed as a reaction to the "nice guy" approach by his former hardcore band Youth of Today, Mike Ferraro created JUDGE to have a darker approach and follow the Oi street punk movement.

With lyrics that were profoundly less positive and reflected a more hardline stance, the band's legend and success grew only to be met with escalating violence at gigs and rumors of a so-called "militant" frontman with nefarious ties.


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Top 5 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 20th, 2015

Top 5 NBA Plays Of The Playoffs: April 20th, 2015
Here are the top five plays from Monday.
Jimmy Butler w/ the flush

Monday, April 20, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 19th, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Playoffs: April 19th, 2015 

Check out the top 10 plays from day 2 of the 2015 Playoffs.

Blake Griffin's MONSTROUS DUNK over hapless victim — Aron Baynes

The Worst Fish in America: Asian Carp

The Worst Fish in America: Asian Carpocalypse

VICE News correspondent Thomas Morton investigates Asian carp — a slimy, ugly, and often gargantuan species of fish that has taken over many waterways in the United States.

First introduced in the US in the 1960s to control weeds and parasites at aquatic farms in Arkansas, the bottom feeders eventually escaped and made their way through the Mississippi River system, eating almost everything in their path and severely damaging ecosystems across the Midwest. 


Today, government officials are concerned that the fish will invade the Great Lakes, destroy more ecosystems, wreak havoc on the region's multibillion dollar fishing industry, and spread to almost every major waterway in the Northeast.


VICE News traveled across Illinois to see how people are dealing with the Asian carp invasion, visiting the Redneck Fishing Tournament — where the sole mission is to catch as many carp as possible — touring a processing plant trying to monetize the fish, and then heading to Chicago, where we learned that Asian carp are a symptom of a much larger issue.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Night: April 18th, 2015

Top 10 NBA Plays Of The Playoffs: April 18th, 2015

Here are your top 10 plays from Saturday's NBA playoff action.

The Power Of Love by Jennifer Rush (1984), Air Supply (1985), Laura Branigan (1987) & Céline Dion (1993)

"The Power Of Love" by Jennifer Rush (1984)

DID YOU KNOW? On October 12th of 1985, American Pop/Rock singer Jennifer Rush was at No.1 on the UK Singles Chart w/ her smash hit, "The Power Of Love" — the ballad was originally written in 1984. 

"The Power Of Love" by Jennifer Rush (1985)

Despite rising to number one in various countries, "The Power of Love" failed to become a significant US hit — despite performances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and American Bandstand, it stalled at No. 57 on the Billboard charts.


"The Power Of Love (You Are My Lady)" by Air Supply (1985)

Next-up, the platinum-selling Australian duo Air Supply covered "The Power of Love" in the Summer of 1985 — changing the song's title to "The Power of Love (You Are My Lady)" because Huey Lewis and the News also had a song named, The Power Of Love on the charts and perhaps, to clarify that it was a male's version of song ♫ I am your lady / You are my man ♫ was aptly-switched to, "You are my lady / I am your man" by the incomparable vocalist Russell Hitchcock.


"The Power Of Love" by Laura Branigan (1987)

In 1987, multi-platinum singer † R.I.P. Laura Branigan (July 3rd, 1952 — August 26th, 2004) R.I.P. † covered Jennifer Rush's song and put her powerful & raspy-voiced stamp on one of the most covered ballads in music history. Branigan's version received moderate success — reaching No. 26 on the Billboard charts in 1987.


"The Power Of Love" by Céline Dion (1993)

Finally, it was Céline Dion's turn w/ the help of legendary producer David Foster — securing her very first No. 1 song in the U.S. — enjoying platinum-selling & world-wide success w/ her version in 1993.

And there you have it ladies & gentlemen, one of the most covered songs that you probably did even know about — and if you don't know, now you know [bleep]!

† † †

Saturday, April 18, 2015

"Making Love Out Of Nothing At All" by Air Supply

"Making Love Out Of Nothing At All" by Air Supply | Written by Jim Steinman

I know just how to whisper
And I know just how to cry
I know just where to find the answers
And I know just how to lie
I know just how to fake it
And I know just how to scheme
I know just when to face the truth
And then I know just when to dream
And I know just where to touch you
And I know just what to prove
I know when to pull you closer
And I know when to let you loose
And I know the night is fading
And I know the time's gonna fly
And I'm never gonna tell you everything I've gotta tell you
But I know I've gotta give it a try
And I know the roads to riches
And I know the ways to fame
I know all the rules and then I know how to break 'em
And I always know the name of the game
But I don't know how to leave you
And I'll never let you fall
And I don't know how you do it

Making love out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all
Making love out of nothing at all

Everytime I see you all the rays of the sun are
Streaming through the waves in your hair
And every star in the sky is taking aim at
Your eyes like a spotlight
The beating of my heart is a drum, and it's lost
And it's looking for a rhythm like you
You can take the darkness from the pit of the night
And turn into a beacon burning endlessly bright
I've gotta follow it 'cause everything I know
Well, it's nothing 'til I give it to you
I can make the runner stumble
I can make the final block
And I can make every tackle at the sound of the whistle
I can make all the stadiums rock
I can make tonight forever
Or I can make it disappear by the dawn
And I can make you every promise that has ever been made
And I can make all your demons be gone
But I'm never gonna make it without you
Do you really want to see me crawl
And I'm never gonna make it like you do

Making love out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all
Out of nothing at all, out of nothing at all

"All Out Of Love" by Air Supply

"All Out Of Love" by Air Supply 

I'm lying alone with my head on the phone
Thinking of you till it hurts
I know you hurt too, but what else can we do?
Tormented and torn apart

I wish I could carry your smile in my heart
For times when my life seems so low
It would make me believe what tomorrow could bring
When today doesn't really know, doesn't really know

I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you
I know you were right, believing for so long
I'm all out of love, what am I without you?
I can't be too late to say that I was so wrong

I want you to come back and carry me home
Away from these long lonely nights
I'm reaching for you, are you feeling it too?
Does the feeling seem oh so right?

And what would you say, if I called on you now
Saying that I can't hold on
There's no easy way, it gets harder each day
Please love me or I'll be gone, I'll be gone

I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you
I know you were right, believing for so long
I'm all out of love, what am I without you?
I can't be too late to say that I was so wrong

What are you thinking of?
What are you thinking of?
What are you thinking of?
What are you thinking of?

I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you
I know you were right believing for so long
I'm all out of love, what am I without you?
I can't be too late, I know I was so wrong

I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you
I know you were right believing for so long
I'm all out of love, what am I without you?
I can't be too late, I know I was so wrong

I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you
I know you were right, believing for so long
I'm all out of love, what am I without you
I can't be too late to say that I was so wrong

I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you
I know you were right

Friday, April 17, 2015

Elite Chinese Female Bodyguards

Meet The Female Bodyguards That Protect China’s Elite

China's booming billionaire population has developed a penchant for personal bodyguards, who often serve as status symbols as well as muscle. Female guards, valued for their covert presence, precision, and elegance, are in particularly high demand at the moment.
VICE China recently visited Beijing's Yun Hai bodyguard training school to see how this fierce fighting force is trained.

† † †

Female Bodyguards Latest Accessory For China's Rich
  • Number of female recruits training to be bodyguards on the rise
  • Female bodyguards are in demand among China's elite
  • Women said to blend in better than male bodyguards
  • The training is extremely tough and some students quit
Yang Donglan has had an unusual career trajectory. 

The 22-year-old once made a living selling cosmetics, but a year ago she switched her make-up brushes for nunchucks, undergoing a grueling training program to become a bodyguard. 

"I can go out with the bosses and see a lot of things. It's eye-opening," she told CNN. 

Yang completed a course at Tianjiao International Security Academy, a Beijing-based training camp founded in 2008 to train bodyguards capable of serving the growing numbers of China's elite. 

She had to crawl through mud in the freezing winter cold, learn to handle a firearm and stay awake for 24 hours in what she refers to as "devil training." 

"I didn't do a lot of exercise before and when I first started, I had trouble breathing while running but I eventually caught up," she said.

Booming Market

Chen Yongqing, the academy's founder and former bodyguard, said he spotted an opening and decided to jump on what has become a booming market. 

In 2013, China had 317 billionaires (in U.S. dollars), second only to the United States, according to a ranking compiled by the Hurun Report, a Chinese version of Forbes' rich list.

"We not only give our bodyguards physical training, they are also provided training on things like wine tasting so that they can communicate effectively with their bosses," he said. 

"They not only serve as bodyguards, but sometimes as a boss' personal assistant."

Chen says that the number of female students is on the rise, adding that woman bodyguards have an advantage over their male counterparts, particularly as the number of female millionaires and billionaires increases.

"Female bodyguards are more appealing to female employers or family members of male employers," he said.

Yang says that employers prefer female bodyguards because they don't stand out. 

"It's easier for us to hide. People don't realize we are bodyguards," she says.

"Some guys are really tall; you can easily tell that he is a bodyguard. Also, girls tend to be better at taking care of people." 

She is reluctant to divulge any details about her own boss, saying "loyalty is everything" in her job. 

The training, which last for three weeks and costs up to 12,800 yuan ($2,100), is not for the faint-hearted and attracts women from different backgrounds.

Brutal training

Recent graduates Xu Si and Zhang Min both aspired to join the military when they were younger, but worked in sales and teaching before they became bodyguards.
Xu describes the training as brutal. In the first few days, she had to crawl through mud and jump into freezing water. 

"I was trembling, and an 18-year boy quit in the middle," said Xu, adding that the other female recruits were her biggest encouragement.

Others enroll simply for the experience.

Dong, a white-collar professional who only gave her family name, told CNN that she hasn't decided whether she wants to be a bodyguard, but she believes the experience was valuable, allowing her to learn to be tough and persistent. 

Chen said that many factors had led to the increase of female bodyguards -- a low employment rate, good payment rates, and the chance to meet VIPs and have other eye-opening experiences -- but the most important, Chen said, was the growing confidence of women in China today.

"Women today are more confident in taking careers that are usually perceived as male-dominated," Chen said.

Contrary to popular belief, Chen says that fewer women quit the course than men.
"Most of our girls stick it out to the end," he said. 

Yang has been working as a bodyguard for almost a year and says she has no plans to change to a different career despite the risks involved. 

"It's my duty to protect and act fast," Yang said. "I think I would stick to the job no matter what. It's a journey." — CNN
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