Archive for the Explosive News and Results Category

France won FIFA World Cup 2018!

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , on July 16, 2018 by vincentloy

Congratulation, France! It must be a very festive and joyful atmosphere now in France for it has just won the World Cup! It defeated Croatia 4-2 in the final held yesterday in Russia. France took the cup once again after 20 years as their last win in this prestigious tournament was back in 1998. This is their second win in the history of the tournament. Although losing in the final, but we should give a big round of applause to Croatia. It is a small country and has ranking much lower than its competitors in football, and yet managed to go through all the way to the final. It is already a wonderful achievement.

This marks the end of Russia 2018 World Cup. No more football fever or staying up late for the matches. I didn’t watch any of the matches this time unfortunately. I’m not that interested into football and the timing is not good (most of the matches are on late night or past midnight). I originally planned to watch the final but I couldn’t even do so as I was stuck in a traffic congestion on my way back to Singapore from KL last evening. I’m expecting to reach home at about 11pm just in time for the final, but I ended up reaching home at 1am. The match ends exactly at 1am.

In the history of the World Cup, only 8 countries have won before. They are Brazil, Germany, Italy, Argentina, France, Uruguay, England and Spain. They are all European countries. Asian countries just couldn’t perform to their level in this sport and I wonder why. Brazil won the cup for the most times at 5 while Germany and Italy are right behind at 4 wins. Germany which won the previous edition in 2014 got eliminated in the group stage this time to the surprise of everyone. Other powerhouse countries like the ones which have won before (mentioned above) also lost and none of them made it to the final besides France (which eventually won the cup).

France has just celebrated Bastille Day (National Day for France) on Saturday (14th July) and this World Cup win the next day is just simply amazing. Must be an awesome weekend for the French. With the World Cup 2018 now concluded, attention now slowly shifts to the next one which will be held at Qatar in 2022. Another 4 years to wait for all the football fans. Nevertheless, there are still many other football championships besides than World Cup to watch like UEFA Euro, etc.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

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Half of the year is gone, and so is the current on-going World Cup.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , on July 1, 2018 by vincentloy

The month of June has ended and that means half of year 2018 is gone. Things come and go at lightning speed. I couldn’t believe that I have finished my thesis about 8 months ago, graduated in a beautiful ceremony at Perth and went for a trip to China 5 months ago, and have worked in this new office in Singapore for 2 months already. In no time or to be exact, just 6 months from now, we will bidding farewell to 2018. That is quick.

Half of the year is gone and so is the current on-going FIFA World Cup 2018. The round robin stage is over with all countries having gone through matches within their assigned group. One of the major shocking news is that the previous champion, Germany has lost at this stage to people’s disbelief. People are now talking about this champion’s curse whereby the previous winner will usually lost in the next edition. It happens to many countries in the history of the World Cup too coincidentally.

We are now in the knockout stage at round of 16 before proceeding to the quarterfinals. Famous teams like Portugal and Argentina failed to succeed here and that means a surprising early goodbye to famous footballers like Ronaldo and Messi. A lot of good teams were already eliminated. England looks to have a good path ahead to get closer to the podium, Brazil seems to be making a comeback and will not face Germany this time around, Sweden and Spain are strong teams so far, and the host nation, Russia is still in the game.

It looks likely that there will be only intense matches to come before its climatic final on 15th July. So far, I have not watched a single game of this once-in-a-four-years tournament as I have no particular excitement for it and also I do not have a lot of free time for it. I think I will be only watching the final. Anyway, I am still updating my blog here with some info about it since it is a prestigious and a very popular sporting event. When the tournament reaches the later stages, it’s time for some predictions.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

A dramatic week after the historic election. Good things started to pour in for Malaysia.

Posted in Explosive News and Results on May 16, 2018 by vincentloy

The dramas that unfolded in this past one week after the Malaysia 14th General Election are as exciting as the election day itself. The opposition pact, Pakatan Harapan which won the election with a simple majority to people’s surprise yet delight is now the federal government of the country. It’s a very welcoming change. The former Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak resigned as the chairman of Barisan Nasional which is now on the opposition side to take the responsibility for leading the party into its first ever defeat in election at federal level.

He didn’t actually immediately resigned. In fact, in a press conference a day after the election, he didn’t even announce formally that he accept the loss and did not congratulate Pakatan at all. He then immediately planned a vacation oversea (in Indonesia). After being barred from leaving the country by the current Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, he had no choice but to quickly inform the public that he will resign. All hail to the present Pakatan government for some quick actions including barring Najib from leaving. He certainly can’t leave with all the misconduct and crime that he has potentially done in the past during his tenure as the Prime Minister. The previous high-ranking officials who are believed to be aiding Najib in his misconduct are removed and investigated too. This is ‘not seeking revenge, but to act based on the rule of law’. This is what Tun Dr Mahathir said. That’s my Prime Minister.

After having a delayed sworn in ceremony as the 7th Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir had attended a lot of press conferences, had received Sultan of Brunei who becomes the first foreign leader to come to Malaysia to congratulate him (next to meet is Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong this coming Saturday), and had made some drastic changes as promised earlier in the Pakatan manifesto. The burdening Goods and Services Tax (GST) will be abolished effective next month. This is a very happy news to all Malaysians as it means that things will be getting cheaper from next month onward.

And one major event that has happened today is the release of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim from prison following a royal pardon by Yang Di-Pertuan Agong as requested by Tun Dr Mahathir and his Pakatan government. He is finally a free man now and I’m looking forward to him entering into the politic once again. He needed some time to rest and recover for now and this will allow for a one year or two year period for Tun Dr Mahathir’s leadership to bring about important changes before Anwar take over. It’s the happiest day for people fighting for justice for Anwar and also for Anwar’s family including his wife, Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah (current Deputy Prime Minister) and his other family members. It’s at the right timing as the family is reunited to celebrate the beginning of fasting month.

So many good news and all of that happened only within one week after the election that gave Pakatan the power to do so. All these are not possible if Barisan Nasional continues to win. I appreciate Tun Dr Mahathir’s effort and quick actions in these 7 days. He certainly doesn’t look like a 93-year old man and is still capable of leading the country into greater height with all those energy and determination. As for the ‘frog’ incidents (people from Barisan Nasional wanted to jump over to Pakatan Harapan), I certainly believe that these people should be rejected because they do not have principles and they will do no good to serve the people. Accepting them (and more of them) will turn Pakatan into BN 2.0 and that is bad. Fortunately, Tun Dr Mahathir heard people’s voices and decided not to accept these people. There were also the issue of two Sabah Chief Ministers previously and is now resolved in favour of Pakatan.

All Malaysians have been actively following the political news these few weeks. I am one of them. And for now, I’m looking forward to more great news coming from the government (I have to get used to label Pakatan as the ruling government now rather than the awful BN).

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

History is made: The opposition won Malaysia’s GE14!

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 10, 2018 by vincentloy

Yes! Yes! Yes! I woke up today early in the morning before work with a big smile on my face. History is made. The opposition pact (Pakatan Harapan) has won the Malaysia’s 14th General Election. It’s a historic and unprecedented win! I knew the opposition this time is going to give a good fight with Barisan Nasional but I still predict that Barisan Nasional will win in the end due to their strong base in several states like Sabah, Sarawak and Johor. I’m actually in a bit of disbelief (but seriously very happy) that Barisan Nasional is defeated. It shows that we simply just can’t stand with BN anymore.

Pakatan Harapan (opposition pact comprising of several parties – PKR, DAP, Pribumi and Amanah) won a total of 113 out of 222 parliamentary seats in the country. A simple 112-majority is achieved to form the next government. That figure rises up to 122 after including 8 seats won by Parti Warisan Sabah and 1 seat from an independent candidate who are also in support of Pakatan. Barisan Nasional on the other hand won only 79 parliamentary seats, heavily down from 133 seats they won previously in 13th General Election back in 2013.

Pakatan won 6 states (Selangor, Penang, Kedah, Melaka, Negeri Sembilan, Johor), PAS (an Islamic party who depart from opposition pact previously and becomes an individual opposition party) won 2 states (Kelantan, Terrengganu) while Barisan won only 3 states (Perlis, Pahang and Sarawak which state election was held earlier). Sabah and Perak will observe a hung assembly respectively.

Barisan’s fortress in Johor, Sabah and Sarawak collapses while Pakatan gains more seats and even retains previous seats with much bigger majority. ‘Chinese tsunami’ back in GE13 causes BN to lose two-third majority and the popular votes. This time, add that with ‘Malay tsunami’ (many Malays are now also seeing how bad BN-led government is) and BN lost big. They deserved it. History is made. This is the first time in 61 years of history of Malaysia since gaining independence in 1957 that the opposition pact is finally winning the election at federal level. The country erupted with joy and cheer with news coming in from late last night that Pakatan has won. I’m in a very joyful mood today! And I’m getting jealous of the Malaysians getting to enjoy two more public holidays (today and tomorrow) to celebrate Pakatan’s victory.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who was once the fourth Prime Minister is coming back to become the seventh Prime Minister of Malaysia. A very beloved figure, he played a huge role on persuading voters to vote against UMNO and BN, the coalition which he once led. At age of 93 this year, he is the oldest elected leader in the world. Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah will be his Deputy, and this marks the first time ever that Malaysia is having a female Deputy Prime Minister. Well, this is also the first time ever for Barisan Nasional to be sitting on the opposition side. Haha…

Thank you to all the voters! You make a great choice. It’s a new Malaysia now and I’m hoping that this Pakatan-led government will bring huge contribution to the country and all Malaysians. Abolish GST, review certain China-linked contracts, giving royal pardon to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and paving the way for him to become the 8th Prime Minister, bring Najib and his gang involved in previous scandals or wrongdoings to courts for investigations, eliminate corruption, further develop the country, and make Malaysians proud again. Bye Bye BN and all the best for Pakatan to lead Malaysia into a brighter future ahead!

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ crosses US$ 1 billion in record time.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 6, 2018 by vincentloy

You must be joking if you told me that you haven’t watch the ‘Avengers: Infinity War’. You must be belong to the 1% of the world population if you haven’t and didn’t plan to watch it, or you are in China where the movie will only be released this coming week. It is the biggest movie of the year so far and is expected to remain so despite some upcoming major releases like ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ and ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’. You can check out my review for ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ is my previous post.

As predicted, this particular movie that saw Marvel superheroes assembled together to take on Thanos broke multiple box office records. It has the biggest worldwide opening at US$ 640.5 million, easily dethroning the previous champion in this record; ‘Fate of the Furious’ that gained US$ 541.9 million in its worldwide debut. The 640.5 million does not even includes China, the second largest market in box office as the movie will only has its premiere in that country on May 11th if I’m not mistaken.

Besides that, the movie has now accumulated over US$ 1 billion in global box office and is the 34th film in history to do so (unadjusted for inflation). ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ is the fastest film to reach the milestone, as it only needs 11 days to do that. This is calculated from April 25th, where the movie had its first ever release to today (May 6th, Sunday). It is the second movie of the year to join the 1 billion dollar club, the other being the ‘Black Panther’ which is also from Marvel. What a successful year for Marvel. Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ and ‘Deadpool 2’ will also be released later this year.

Besides than doing well in the box office, ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ is also getting positive reviews. It currently has 84% rating from critics and 92% audience score in Rotten Tomatoes, 68% in Metacritics and 8.9/10 from IMDB. Well, DC will be very jealous of these achievements. Their previous film ‘Justice League’ (released last year) that saw a similar assembly of superheroes too only raked in US$ 658 million in its final grossing. Very disappointing. DC, ‘in time, you will know what it is like to lose’ (quote from Thanos).

Let’s get back to Marvel. So what do you think ‘Infinity War’ final box office intake would be by studying its current impressive run in the entire world. I think the movie will end at around US$ 1.8 billion and will be the fourth highest grossing film in history (after Avatar, Titanic and Star Wars: The Force Awakens that have each grossed over US$ 2 billion). I don’t think ‘Infinity War’ is capable of hitting 2-billion. It may have a chance to get near to 1.9 billion. It all depends on whether people will get back to the cinema to watch it the second time or not.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Full winner list for the 37th Hong Kong Film Awards, and my quick opinions for some categories.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2018 by vincentloy

The 37th Hong Kong Film Awards was held yesterday to honor the best of Hong Kong films in 2017. I was very free on the Sunday’s evening and so I watched the whole awards ceremony which lasted for almost 4 hours (definitely overrun). I am not interested in most parts of the ceremony because I actually didn’t watch any of the nominated films (no love to Hong Kong films last year, I only watched very few but not the nominated ones). I am only excited and curious on who will win the best actor and actress this time. Here below is the full list of winners and nominees along with my comments in several categories:

Best Film from Mainland and Taiwan
The Great Buddha (Taiwan) (WINNER)
The Bold, the Corrupt, and the Beautiful (Taiwan)
Youth (China)
Duckweed (China)
Wolf Warrior 2 (China)

Best New Director
Kearen Pang — 29+1 (WINNER)
Jonathan Li — The Brink
Chapman To — The Empty Hands
Derek Hui — This Is Not What I Expected
Chan Tai-lee — Tomorrow Is Another Day

Opinion: I think this category should be removed because it is way too early to reward first-time director. There can be many other ways to reward first-time director rather than an award immediately.

Best Visual Effects
Henri Wong, Eric Xu — Wu Kong (WINNER)
Park Young-soo, Kim Wook — Journey to the West: The Demons Strike Back
Jang Seong-ho, Park Young-soo, Son Oh-young — The Thousand Faces of Dunjia
Yee Kwok-leung, Chui Tak-piu, Jules Lin, Loki Ho — Shock Wave
Victor Wong, Eman Tse — The Founding of an Army

Opinion: When you do a movie about the mythical Monkey King legend and you place in heavy amount of CGI, you will win. The quality of visual effects in Asia is still quite far behind compared to Hollywood production. Every CGI scenes look fake especially in these kind of fantasy movies.

Best Sound Design
Kinson Tsang, George Lee — Paradox (WINNER)
Tu Du-chih, Wu Shu-yao — Our Time Will Come
Kinson Tsang, Yiu Chun-hin — Journey to the West: The Demons Strike Back
Nip Kei-wing, Ip Siu-kei — Shock Wave
Hao Gang, Wang Chong — Wu Kong

Best Original Film Song
“An Unheard Melody” — Concerto of the Bully (WINNER)
Composer: Peter Kam
Lyrics: Keith Chan Siu-kei
Performer: Ronald Cheng
“Fake a Smile (For Hector)” — 29+1
Composer: Subyub Lee
Lyrics: Subyub Lee
Performer: Subyub Lee
“Flowers in Blossom” — Love Education
Composer: Kay Huang
Lyrics: Lam Kwun-fan
Performer: Sitar Tan
“Jeung Seung Si Sau” — Vampire Cleanup Department
Composer: ToNick
Lyrics: Leung Pak-kin, Gingerlemon Cola
Performer: ToNick
“When I Love You” — This Is Not What I Expected
Composer: Chan Kwong-wing
Lyrics: Han Han
Performer: Cheer Chen

Best Original Film Score
Joe Hisaishi — Our Time Will Come (WINNER)
Wong Ngai-lun, Janet Yung — 29+1
Peter Kam — Concerto of the Bully
Veronica Lee — The Empty Hands
Kay Huang — Love Education

Best Action Choreography
Sammo Hung — Paradox (WINNER)
Li Chung-chi — The Brink
Yuen Cheung-yan, Yuen Shun-yi — The Thousand Faces of Dunjia
Ku Huen-chiu — Wu Kong
Yu Kang, Yuen Bun, Yan Hua — Chasing the Dragon

Best Costume & Make Up Design
Bruce Yu, Lee Pik-kwan — Journey to the West: The Demons Strike Back (WINNER)
Man Lim-chung, Polly Chan — Our Time Will Come
Bruce Yu, Lee Pik-kwan — Wu Kong
Yee Chung-man, Bruce Yu, Kwok Suk-man — Chasing the Dragon
Dora Ng — This Is Not What I Expected

Best Art Direction
Man Lim-chung, Billy Li — Our Time Will Come (WINNER)
Yoshihito Akatsuka, Liao Huei-li, Guo Zhongshan — Journey to the West: The Demons Strike Back
Irving Cheung — The Empty Hands
Eric Lam — Wu Kong
James Cheung — Chasing the Dragon

Best Film Editing
Li Ka-wing — Chasing the Dragon (WINNER)
William Chang, Shirley Yip — In Your Dreams
Azreal Chung — Shock Wave
Mary Stephen, Kong Chi-leung — Our Time Will Come
Wong Hoi — Paradox

Best Cinematography
Jason Kwan — Chasing the Dragon (WINNER)
Nelson Yu — Our Time Will Come
Tam Wai-kai — The Empty Hands
Mark Lee Ping-bing — Love Education
Kenny Tse — Paradox

Best Screenplay
Sylvia Chang, You Xiaoying — Love Education (WINNER)
Kearen Pang — 29+1
Ho Kei-ping — Our Time Will Come
Pang Ho-cheung, Jimmy Wan, Luk Yee-sum — Love Off the Cuff
Cheung King-wai — Somewhere Beyond the Mist

Opinion: Since Sylvia Chang won here, it looks like she will lose the best actress trophy later. It’s okay because she has won it before many years ago.

Best New Performer
Ling Man-lung — Tomorrow Is Another Day (WINNER)
Larine Tang — The Yuppie Fantasia 3
Stephanie Au — Love Off the Cuff
Hanna Chan — Paradox
Rachel Leung — Somewhere Beyond the Mist

Opinion: I didn’t watch the film, but I am already amazed by Ling Man-lung’s acting just by seeing the short clip of his performance as an autistic son in ‘Tomorrow Is Another Day’ alone. Hence, I think he deserved this award.

Best Supporting Actress
Deanie Ip — Our Time Will Come (WINNER)
Joyce Cheng — 29+1
Estelle Wu — Love Education
Susan Shaw — Vampire Cleanup Department
Baby Bo — Somewhere Beyond the Mist

Opinion: Deanie Ip is a wonderful actress and it’s lovely to see her return to the stage again after winning best actress few years ago.

Best Supporting Actor
Philip Keung — Shock Wave (WINNER)
Philip Keung — Concerto of the Bully
Yasuaki Kurata — The Empty Hands
Paul Chun — Love Off the Cuff
Gordon Lam — Paradox
Yasuaki Kurata — God of War

Opinion: I have seen quite a number of Hong Kong movies in the past with Philip Keung in it. In most of those movies, he is not that noticeable because he is always playing average roles. Hey..not this time. This time, he got a role that won the recognition he deserves.

Best Actress
Teresa Mo — Tomorrow Is Another Day (WINNER)
Chrissie Chau — 29+1
Zhou Xun — Our Time Will Come
Stephy Tang — The Empty Hands
Sylvia Chang — Love Education

Opinion: Teresa Mo deserves this award. She has placed a lot of effort in Hong Kong film industry in all these years. After failing to win in previous occasions (has been nominated several times in the past), she finally prevailed this time. I’m glad for her. She too is a wonderful actress. I particularly like her comedic roles (although this award-winning role is not).

Best Actor
Louis Koo — Paradox (WINNER)
Ronald Cheng — Concerto of the Bully
Andy Lau — Shock Wave
Tian Zhuangzhuang — Love Education
Ling Man-lung — Tomorrow Is Another Day

Opinion: I already expected this. Louis Koo has been the frontrunner in this category after winning several best actor prizes in some other awards earlier for his role in ‘Paradox’. He has been nominated several times in the past too (but never win before) and no one is of doubt that he is a lead actor material. His time came and I’m happy for him winning his first Film King  in Hong Kong Film Awards. He has also won TV King many years ago from TVB.

Best Director
Ann Hui — Our Time Will Come (WINNER)
Kearen Pang — 29+1
Herman Yau — Shock Wave
Sylvia Chang — Love Education
Wilson Yip — Paradox

Opinion: Ann Hui again. She is a great director but at this point, I’m tired of hearing her name again. She has won the best director for a total of 6 times (most wins in directing). I think the voters tend to choose only the familiar name in this category (and also in some other categories too). This is discouraging to other directors who also did great jobs.

Best Film
Roger Lee, Stephen Lam, Ann Hui — Our Time Will Come (WINNER)
Alvin Lam, Andy Lau, Chan Pui-wah, Esther Koo, Alice Chan, Jeffrey Chan, Simon Li, Thomas Tang, Chang Bin, C.K. Wong, Xingbo Guan — Shock Wave
Patricia Cheng — Love Education
Wong Jing, Donnie Yen, Andy Lau, Connie Wong — Chasing the Dragon
Soi Cheang, Paco Wong — Paradox

Opinion: Yet, another film by Ann Hui winning best film again. Usually those artistic and historical movie (and usually boring) will win. I’m not against it but again, I’m tired of seeing the similar type of movie taking the top honor. The voters should opt for innovative (boundary pushing) or truly moving (warm and relatable) works next time.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

14th General Election on 9th May 2018

Posted in Explosive News and Results on April 10, 2018 by vincentloy

The Election Commission today has announced that the polling day for Malaysia’s 14th General Election falls on 9th May 2018. Many immediately voiced their unhappiness (including me) as it is a Wednesday and that would be very inconvenient for many voters. Many past general elections were held on weekend to enable more voters to come out and cast their vote. This time, the commission chose a weekday for the crucial election to everyone’s surprise.

This means that I will not be able to cast my vote as I will be working in Singapore. If the election is held on weekend, I may be able to return to Malaysia to vote. I am very eager as this is my first time voting but since it now falls on a weekday, I’m left disappointed as I will not be available to cast my vote.

The present government has been working on a lot of dirty tactics recently to ensure their victory in this general election. First, they quickly passed the anti-fake news law in the Parliament to limit the freedom from the opposition and the public with power to jail people if they deem the information is a lie (they can twist anything and said the fact that is against them as a lie easily). They also immediately passed the redelineation proposal by the commission that pushes the government’s effort on maximising gerrymandering further in the country. For example, this constituency which are historically in favour of the opposition saw huge increase of voters to group all the opposition votes into just a single seat. A seat from the opposition party that has 150 000 votes as opposed to a seat from the ruling coalition that has less than 10 000 votes. The proportion is so off. This is evident also in the previous 13th General Election when the opposition pact indeed won more popular votes than the ruling coalition but ended up having very little number of seats in the Parliament as compared to the ruling coalition. The Election Commission is obviously colluding with the present government. No further proof needed.

Just on a day before the Prime Minister announcement on the dissolution of Parliament, one of the opposition parties called Pribumi which is led by Tun Dr Mahathir is served a notice of temporary dissolution by the Registrar of Societies. This is another obvious act to hinder the opposition from excelling. This does not dampen the spirit of the opposition pact but actually heighten the fire in their supporters. And finally, now the date of the polling is set on Wednesday. This is another trick by the authority to prevent many people from casting their votes. 9th May 2018 is also not declared as a public holiday so far. People will be occupied with works while Malaysians from oversea or even from other states (known to favour the opposition more) will not be able to return home to exercise their right. With lesser number of votes, this will reduce the chance of the opposition (Pakatan Harapan) winning popular votes and inching closer to majority in the Parliament. And let’s not forget all the pointless money-giving events held recently by the ruling coalition to win people’s heart. I couldn’t believe that many people still falls for it.

So, for those who are able to make it on 9th May 2018, please make the right choice by voting against the ruling coalition (Barisan Nasional). They have ruled the country for over 60 years with all the known corruption, crony-ism, race-based politics, laziness and various other scandals. They have never been replaced and this is the time for it. The country needs that particular ‘change’ now. Although the opposition pact do have their own problems and troubles too, but let us give them a chance.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)