Brian Cox dines at Balliol

first_imgLast week, Brian Cox attended Balliol’s Snell Dinner as a guest.Cox is currently a Professor at the University of Manchester and a particle physicist involved with CERN. He is also the presenter of a number of BBC science programmes on astronomy and physics. His legacy is not confined to the realm of science: in the 1990s he was involved as a keyboard player for D:Realm.Balliol JCR President Alex Bartram, said,“I think his presence – and that of the many other eminent and distinguished guests at the dinner – reflects how Balliol, 750 years on, is still very much holding its own in the glamorous world of academia.”Though as JCR President Bartram was lucky enough “to have the opportunity to sit a few places along from Prof Cox”, for some members of the JCR, catching a glimpse of the professor required more extreme dedication.One second-year commented, “Apparently someone waited outside with a lighter for ages to light his cig, which is creepy.”Phoebe Grant-Smith, Lottie Dodd and Andrew Kirkman sneaked round the back of the SCR in order to get a glimpse of the eminent scholar. Grant-Smith said, “Waiting in the freezing cold (it was snowing at one point!) and getting odd looks from the SCR was definitely worth it when he appeared!”Cox signed a book for Kirkman amongst others, and agreed to have a photo with the girls. Grant-Smith continued, “In my babbling, starstruck state, I did tell him about my mother’s Brian Cox cuddly toy which was a joke Christmas present from my brother, although I only realised how creepy this sounded when his response was, ‘I’m not sure you should be telling me this…’”Olivia Baddeley also gave her account of the evening: “He was a bit tipsy, and I was a bit starstruck, so I couldn’t think of anything cool or interesting to say when we started talking about thermodynamics and his new TV show.”Baddeley revealed that they discussed the wine at dinner: “He said it was great and asked us to take a sip (we then basically had an indirect kiss with him, which we were very excited by).We said that the wine is normally awful so they must have brought out the posh stuff for him. He was lovely.”last_img read more


Driving forward

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BLOG: Pennsylvania’s Agreement with Airbnb is a Win for All

first_imgBLOG: Pennsylvania’s Agreement with Airbnb is a Win for All SHARE Email Facebook Twitter By: J.J. Abbott, Deputy Press Secretary Economy,  The Blog The major online home-sharing company, Airbnb, recently agreed to begin collecting and remitting the state’s 6 percent hotel occupancy tax on behalf of hosts in Pennsylvania.This will streamline processes and reduce a burden on hosts who wish to list their homes on Airbnb.Since Airbnb is an industry leader in home-sharing, this will hopefully motivate other sites to do the same.Home-sharing, like ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft, improves consumer options and convenience, as well as creating competition that ultimately benefits consumers.As Governor Wolf said, this is a win-win for hosts and the commonwealth.The agreement with Airbnb places Pennsylvania at the forefront of states responding to the sharing economy and will help to level the playing field across the lodging industry.Pennsylvania is the first state in the mid-Atlantic region to establish a statewide agreement with Airbnb to allow the company to voluntarily collect and remit hotel taxes.We now join a growing number of states — including Connecticut, Florida, North Carolina, Alabama, South Carolina, Oregon and more than 150 municipalities globally — where Airbnb is voluntarily collecting and remitting taxes on behalf of hosts and guests.This agreement is expected to generate nearly $1 million in new revenue for the commonwealth to help fund vital state services.center_img June 17, 2016 Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: read more


Rare inner-city renovator sparks flood of calls off overnight listing

first_imgThis Spring Hill house was built in 1880. Picture: The house is on 266sq m of prime land. Picture: from newsMould, age, not enough to stop 17 bidders fighting for this home2 hours agoBuyers ‘crazy’ not to take govt freebies, says 28-yr-old investor2 hours ago The house is crying out for an upgrade but can be rented out as is for land bankers. Picture:“We’ve been inundated with enquiries,” he said. “We put the listing on last night and we’ve woken up to whole lot of messages to follow up on.”Spring Hill’s limited stock of houses so close to the city centre always saw strong demand, he said, with only about 10 on the market right now.“It’s just the old law of supply and demand. Because these are quite rare, buyers are prepared to pay a premium for them. We’ve got some interstate investors looking at buying them as well as interstate people looking at relocating here.”Mr Turnbull said there was strong rental demand for houses in the area post renovation – ”something like this one would rent out straight away” – but also demand for unrenovated rentals. There is more than enough rooms to park several cars. Picture: This historic Spring Hill renovator, built in 1880, hit the market last night priced at offers over $797,000. Picture: HISTORIC renovator cottage on the edge of Brisbane’s CBD is so rare that it sparked a flood of calls within hours of listing overnight.The three bedroom Spring Hill house, which was built in 1880, was listed at offers over $797,000.It’s about a kilometre from Queen Street Mall in the heart of the CBD, and an even closer walk to the bustling restaurants of Eagle Street Pier and Fortitude Valley nightclub scene.Agent Michael Turnbull of Lowest Commission told The Courier-Mail that the location was superb, with callers seeing major potential to add value to the site. The Brisbane CBD is literally right there. Picture:“What a lot of our clients do is buy the property and land bank, putting in a tenant for 12 months for cashflow while they decide what to do. Even if you don’t get top rent, in five to 10 years’ time it will be worth $1m.”Mr Turnbull said there was also interest from DIY couples as well as families wanting to be in the vicinity of great schools in the area which include Brisbane Grammar, Brisbane Girls Grammar, St Joseph’s College Gregory Terrace, Kelvin Grove State College and St James College, while the Queensland University of Technology also has its main campus in the CBD zone.“It’s a lovely quiet street and we’re doing all inspections by appointment.”*Follow Sophie Foster on Twitter or Facebooklast_img read more


Third Dakota Tour title, first Super Nationals crown highlight Zevenbergen’s 2016 campaign

first_imgKupper Chevrolet Dakota Classic Stock Car Tour Champion Elijah Zevenbergen. (Photo by Tom Macht,, Iowa – Elijah Zevenbergen returned to familiar surroundings to win the Kupper Chevrolet Dakota Classic Stock Car Tour for the third time in four years.Then he made his first-ever visit to Boone Speedway and won on IMCA’s biggest stage.“The Dakota Tour is a nice little vacation. We have some friends out there,” said Zevenbergen, from Ocheyedan, Iowa. “Williston and Nodak are my favorite tracks on the tour and were two that got rained out, but nonetheless we won at Dickinson and Mandan, so it was a good tour.”His week at Boone was even better as Zevenbergen topped the Saturday night IMCA Speedway Motors Super Nationals fueled by Casey’s main event.“It was kind of a standing joke in the pits, people asking me why I was there because I’d never raced at Super Nationals before,” he said. “It was a pretty crazy deal, no doubt about it, but I had a lot of good people helping me.”“Super Nationals was the biggest win of my career. It was pretty surreal. To win with all those good drivers there was a huge honor,” he continued.His 11 feature wins were a single-season career best. In addition to Boone, Zevenbergen made starts at 15 tracks, scoring late-season victories at Arlington Raceway’s Joe Voss Memorial and on opening night of the Iron Cup at Park Jefferson Speedway.“I’m not a points racer. I like to bounce around. It might be noon on Saturday before I decide where I’m going to race,” he said. “We had a phenomenal year. “Everything just fell into place.”Starts: 3Wins: 2Additional Top Fives: 0HIS CREW: Parents Loren and Sue Zevenbergen, girlfriend Kim Cuadros and friends.HIS SPONSORS: Z Machine, Mega Inc., Bow Tie Auto Repair and D & K Transportation, all of Ocheyedan; and Raveling Inc. of Melvin.last_img read more


Bleach: Don’t doubt Bo, UW in 2009-10

first_imgUp on a pedestal with tailgating, gambling and calling for Donovan McNabb’s job, the fresh start of a new season brings out one of the most noble of sporting traditions for fans.Namely, delusional optimism from hordes of fanatics who have bought into the preseason hype and believe this season could finally be “the year” for their team.This is the part in the column where I should be mocking those suckers. I mean, how can anyone talk themselves into success for the Lions, JaMarcus Russell or the UFL? Fans this stupid are the reason we spiraled into a recession, right?Unfortunately for this hypocrite, the team starting a new season right now is Bo Ryan’s Badgers, and I have been drinking the Kool-Aid on Bo long before I was drinking Keystone from a Solo cup. Simply put, I see big things for Wisconsin basketball in 2009-10.So this is what it’s like to belong to a horde…While I’m not normally a homer — at last count, I have taken 376 cheap shots at Bret Bielema in my column — Ryan’s bio shows off statistics Bill Clinton couldn’t even twist.?At 94-38, Ryan has the best winning percentage of all time in Big Ten conference games. Bob Knight (whoever that is) comes in second place on that list.?In eight seasons at UW, Ryan qualified for the NCAA Tournament every single time, reaching the Sweet 16 thrice and the Elite Eight once.? The Badgers have won either the Big Ten season or Big Ten tournament title five times in eight years.?Ryan was recorded on video doing the “Soulja Bo.”Despite this mountain of evidence to trust Bo, the national media (AP Top 25) has determined the Badgers will finish behind Michigan State, Purdue, Michigan, Ohio State, Illinois and Minnesota.Michigan State and Purdue I will give you.As for the rest of the teams on that list, however, they haven’t invented a word strong enough for me to express my disbelief. I am colossally baffled.Ryan’s teams have never finished lower than fourth in the Big Ten in eight years of coaching. Unless my math is off, the Badgers have been slated to come in seventh at best.There are two potential reasons for this gross oversight. Perhaps the AP voters believe the Big Ten will be the SEC of football and the AL East for baseball combined.Or…They have drastically underestimated Wisconsin once again.The Badgers boast a pair of senior guards in Trevon Hughes and Jason Bohannon, who finished second and third, respectively, in scoring for UW. In college hoops, advanced guard play is crucial to controlling the pace of a game, something the Badgers got better at as the season progressed last year.Both Bohannon and Hughes bring reliable shooting from outside and on the free throw line, while Hughes led Wisconsin in steals averaging 1.4 thefts per game.As for the bigs, UW lost two key players from last season in graduated seniors Marcus Landry and Joe Krabbenhoft. Both players finished with strong careers, helping Wisconsin advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Krabbenhoft earned a special place in every fan’s heart with his hustle, defense and grit, while helping the UW offense as an underrated passer. Landry led the team in points per game and dunks that brought the alumni out of their seats.All that being said, the loss of the two senior leaders could help the Badgers with the addition-by-subtraction method.I know, I know, this must be blasphemy. Krabbenhoft has more stitches than I have brain cells, my loyal haters will say.Still, when you get beyond emotion as a way of analyzing basketball, there were serious disadvantages to having Landry and Krabbenhoft fulfill the role of your top two players.As the leading scorer for Wisconsin last season, Landry is the natural person to look to when you need a big basket in crunch time. Unfortunately, Landry’s offensive skill set — a power drop step and a turn around jumper at the baseline — weren’t exactly ideal for putting his team on his back.Landry was most valuable when he was scoring off offensive rebounds, not as a guy you run the offense through.With Krabbenhoft, they will hurt trying to replace his defense, rebounding and leadership. They will be glad to get his jump shot off the floor, however.Ryan’s swing offense is predicated on big guys shooting threes and guards posting up to exploit smaller defenders — or little men who simply don’t know how to defend on the block. With Landry and Krabbenhoft combining to make only 41 3-pointers in 33 games, defenses could sag off them and clog up passing lanes.This is where UW will be different this season. In starting juniors Jon Leuer and Keaton Nankivil inside, the Badgers can put five men on the floor who will be given the green light to bomb away from the outside.I’m aware Leuer’s final numbers from beyond the arc were subpar (30 percent), but the 6-foot-10 junior can score from anywhere on the floor and led UW in scoring efficiency last season — averaging a point every 2.4 minutes.And anyone who understands basketball knows he is primed for a breakout year.The person to benefit most from the departed seniors, however, will be Nankivil. Playing only 14 minutes a game with workhorses in front of him, the Madison native did what any good backup does: defended, grabbed a rebound here and there and sank the few shots given to him. But as he flashed against Purdue, Nankivil has one of the prettiest jump shots on the team, connecting on 9-of-14 beyond the arc and 82 percent from the charity stripe for the season.With Nankivil and Leuer in the starting five, Bo’s offense will swing once again.The Big Ten may be deep and talented, but betting against Ryan has never turned out well.Let me just say, “I told you so” four months early.Michael is a senior majoring in journalism. Doubt the magical powers of Ryan? E-mail him at [email protected]last_img read more


Russia 2018 Tickets on Sale to Nigerian Fans from Thursday

first_imgFans can now beat many countries in securing World Cup tickets. At the moment, only seven other countries apart from hosts, Russia have secured tickets to the lead FIFA event.The qualified teams are Iran, Japan, Mexico, Belgium, Korea Republic and Saudi Arabia.But while many countries are still battling for tickets, individual fans worldwide can obtain theirs from 10:00 Nigerian time tomorrow. According to a media release by FIFA, the tickets will be exclusively on sale on“We have put in place a ticketing system that will enable all fans a fair chance to secure tickets. Throughout history, fans have made a key contribution to the fascination of the FIFA World Cup.“Russia promises to be a unique continuation of this history, with outstanding organisation and a great atmosphere in the stadiums,” said FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura.According to the release, World Cup tickets will be available during the sales phases. There will be the first sales phase which is divided into two stages.During the first period of sales phase 1, which starts this Thursday and run through to October 12, fans will be able to submit their ticket applications.During this sales period, it will make no difference whether they submit their applications on Day 1, the last day or any time in between, as all applications will have the same chance of being successful.In cases where the number of tickets applied for exceeds the available inventory, tickets will be allocated by a random selection draw process.All successful, partially successful and unsuccessful applicants will be duly notified of the outcome of their applications by November 16.From November 16 to 28, tickets will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. The second phase of tickets sales will begin after the Final Draw of the 2018 FIFA World Cup on December 1.Like the first phase, it will also have two stages. This will comprise a random selection draw period from December 5 to 31 January 2018 and a further first-come, first-served period from 13 March to 3 April 2018.Tickets purchased during sales phases 1 and 2 will be delivered free of charge to fans in the weeks leading up to the tournament, with deliveries planned to start in April/May 2018. This is however subject to change.There is also a window for last minute sales which will be implemented on a first-come, first-served basis from 18 April to 15 July 2018, the day of the 2018 FIFA World Cup final.FIFA also explained the types of tickets that will be available. In the first phase of tickets’ sales, individual match tickets for a specific matches, will be available for all matches from the opening game through to the final.Also, there will be venue-specific ticket series and ticket strips for a specific stadium. These strips include the group matches (except the opening match), the round-of-16 match and the play-off for third place played at the specific venue of choice.For instance, the venue-specific ticket series for Luzhniki Stadium includes three group matches and one round-of-16 match. It does not include the opening match, semi-final or final.There will also be team-specific ticket series. These are ticket strips for fans to follow the national team of their choice. Team-specific ticket series are available as packages that include three to seven matches and can only be requested during sales phase 1.There is a fourth ticket sale category which is in line with the ticketing policy implemented at the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups. Residents of the host country will exclusively benefit from this special price category.The mode of payments for the tickets in the first two phases will be by Visa card which is the Official Payment Services Partner of FIFA.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more