The Lycos 50 Blog: News from the Pop Culture Fast Lane
Wednesday, 27 August 2008
Dave Freeman, the man who co-wrote the best selling adventure travel guide, 100 Things To Do Before You Die has passed away at the age of 47. Freeman tragically died after falling over and hitting his head at his home in Venice, California. The advertising agency executive wrote the book in 1999 with his friend, Neil Teplica, after collecting odd locations on a travel website they ran. The bold travel guide suggested the world’s craziest places to visit, including nude night surfing in Australia and taking part in the loudest yelling competition in North Carolina. The self proclaimed bachelor like to travel alone, believing he met more interesting people and ended up at stranger,better places that way. In the book he states, “This life is a short journey. How can you make sure you fill it with the most fun and that you visit all the coolest places on earth before you pack those bags for the very last time?”
Judge Rules Copyright Owners Must Consider 'Fair Use'
When a Pennsylvania woman posted a clip in 2007 of her toddler dancing to Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy,” on YouTube, Universal Music Corporation forced her to take it down due to copyright issues. Since then, a federal judged ruled music companies and other copyright holders must consider “fair use” of their materials before demanding YouTube and other video-sharing websites remove content. On August 20 the ruling by U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel was the first in the nation to require the owner of a creative work to consider whether the product is significant enough to have an affect on the market share before ordering the web host to remove it.
The world’s tallest woman, Sandy Allen passed away at the age of 53 on August 13. Allen’s death occurred in a nursing home in her hometown of Shelbyville, Indiana. The 7’7’’ woman’s height was caused by a tumor against her pituitary glad that produced extra growth hormones. In 1977, Allen had surgery to remove the tumor and prevent any further growth. A family friend, Rita Rose, said Allen was proud of her height; “she embraced it. She used it as a tool to educate people.” Allen used her height to inspire schoolchildren and others to accept those who are different.
Two Georgia residents, Matthew Whitton and Rick Dyer, who lead bigfoot-tracking expeditions, claim to have found the body of what appears to be a bigfoot in the woods of northern Georgia. The men claim they have a body, photos and DNA evidence of the 7-feet tall, 500 lb. mammal. On August 15th the men will reveal their findings at a news conference in Palo Alto, where they intend to present DNA evidence that will prove the carcass is that of a bigfoot. Other characteristics of the bigfoot released include physical similarities to humans, its footprint is 16 ¾ inches long and the length from the palm to the tip of the middle finger is 11 ½ inches long. Whitton, a police officer in Clayton County, Georgia and Dyer, a former correctional officer, are not stating where the body was found or where it is now. Tom Biscardi, a veteran Bigfoot tracker, went to Georgia to view the find states DNA tests are being conducted and a team of scientists will study the body, but declined to name any scientists involved.
Entertainment Weekly reports Seth Green and frequent collaborator, Breckin Meyer, are closing a deal to join the cast of Heroesfor a series of episodes. The pair, who write and star in the animated comedy show Robot Chicken, will appear in a series of episodes in the forthcoming third season. Meyer and Green are rumored to play two comic-book enthusiasts who cross paths with an un-disclosed hero. Green's screen credits include the Austin Powers series and The Italian Job. Meyer has featured in Garfield, Road Tripand Clueless.
Academy-award winning musician, Isaac Hayes, was found dead at his home in Memphis, Tennessee on August 10. The 65-year-old funk-soul legend was found unresponsive on the floor in his home next to a treadmill that was still running by family members around 1:00 p.m., states Shelby country sheriff spokesman Steve Shular. "We don't believe there was any foul play," Shular said. "Based on the statements by family members that Mr. Hayes had been treated of late for a number of medical issues, we believe that led to his death today. There are no plans for an autopsy." Hayes was a talented singer, songwriters and composer. Hayes won an Oscar in 1972 for best original song for the theme from Shaft. He was renowned for his characteristic baritone voice and mastery of several instruments, including the saxophone and the piano. His guest star appearances included TV shows "The Rockford Files" and "Miami Vice." He also appeared in feature films such as "Escape from New York" and "Hustle & Flow." In 1997 he began voicing the role of chef in the animated Comedy Central cable ' series "South Park," but quit in 2006, apparently because of a conflict with Scientology, a religion he followed since the mid 1990s.
According to the Official Airline Guide (OAG), customers can expect reduced flight availability and seats in the upcoming year. In response to high oil prices and the global credit crisis, airlines are set to cut 59.7 million tickets available in comparison to October-December of 2007. Reduced availability will likely force up ticket prices, routes will be scrapped at 275 airports around the world and 3,500 fewer plans will be needed. America will be hit the worst with a reduction of 20 million seats, while Europe will loose 5.5 million seats. Steve Casley, the chief executive of the OAG, states, “The data speaks for itself. It took a good three years for the industry to recover from the downturn in 2001 when it had 5% drop in capacity and a 7% drop in flights. From our statistics, it looks quite possible that we may be facing a far more severe global downturn than we have experienced before. The industry's resilience will be pushed to its limits in the coming months.”
Extra! Hires Mario Lopez! Perez Hilton is reporting TV gossip show Extra is replacing hosts Dayna Devon and Mark McGrath with Mario Lopez. Veteran Devon will stay on as a special correspondent and backup host while McGrath departs from a three-year stint to return to his music career. His band Sugar Ray is currently recording a new album, which w ill be documented by Extra. The show will return for its 15th season next month.
The infamous meddling mother Sophia on the Golden Girls, Estelle Getty, died on the morning of July 22. The 84 year-old costarred on the Golden Girls from 1985 through 1992 as the opinionated Sophia and also appearing on four other TV series including The Golden Palace, Nurses, Empty Nest and Blossom. Getty was 47 when she got her first significant role in an off-Broadway musical called Torch Song Trilogy, playing Harvey Fierstein’s acidic mother. She was an active supporter of gay right and in fundraising for AIDS research. Getty retired in 2000 after revealing she suffered from Parkinson’s disease and only two years later announced she was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.
Elizabeth Ann Kommes, 30, of Iron Mountain Michigan, was arrested and charged with drunk driving and bribery of a public official. According to onlookers, the woman left a Wisconsin Dells parking lot intoxicated, driving a red Pontiac Grand Am with Michigan license plates reading, “TROUBLE.” When Kommes was stopped by officers and given a sobriety test she allegedly offered the officer $10,000 plus sexual favors to let her go. This is Kommes fifth drunk driving offense on top of being on probation for possession of three pounds of marijuana, she faces up to six years in prison and $20,000 in fines.