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In love with Cinque Terre

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The word “Cinque Terre” is the name given to the five lands or villages along the Eastern Ligurian Coast on the Italian Riviera. The villages from north to south are known as Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore, which each has a unique and picturesque landscape. It is named as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and also protected as a National Park and National Marine Sanctuary. The best way to experience the beauty of Cinque Terre is simply by walking on the breathtaking trails from one village to another.

For our Cinque Terre vacation, we picked to stay at the sublimely romantic Vernazza for its remarkable beauty. Since most places to stay in Vernazza are located up on the hills, we therefore have to climb hundreds of stairs to get to our bed and breakfast (B&B), and some of the stairs are very steep. Some rooms are on higher floors and accessible only by small spiral stairs. As seen in many forums, a lot of tourists are complaining about quickly getting tired going up so many stairs especially when carrying heavy backpacks. I ended up taking a rest for a while before reaching our B&B. It’s a very good exercise. The view from the top of the hill near our B&B was incredibly stunning. We could see different parts of the Vernazza village with an amazing view of the blue Mediterranean sea. The gorgeous scenery instantly refreshed our minds and we couldn’t wait to explore the villages. Right after dropping our backpacks at our B&B room, we went for a walk and stopped at a small gelateria to get my first gelato at Cinque Terre. The gelato was probably not best but still considered okay to satisfy my craving.

Next, we headed to Manarola by train to have a lunch at Tratoria dal Billy. Thanks to V, a friend of mine whom we met a couple days before at Basel, Switzerland, and who recommended this superb restaurant. Perched high on the southern cliff, this small restaurant has a spectacular terrace that grants a magnificent view of the ocean surrounded by vineyards and pastel-color buildings of the Manarola village. We ordered their homemade squid-ink pasta with local seafood (which was their special dish of the day), and their grilled fish served with potatoes and local white wine. The homemade pasta was very fresh and flavorful. We could savor the blended rich taste between the pasta and the mixed fresh seafood. Billy serves simple homemade dishes made from fresh high-quality ingredients. It is definitely a must-visit restaurant in case we revisit Cinque Terre in the future.

After the delightful lunch, we spent some time checking the nearby ancient San Lorenzo Church, which has a traditional Basilica design and is embellished with a rose window, a bell tower and a wall overlooking the Mediterranean ocean. Then we continued walking down the road and, after twenty yards, we followed a wooden railing leading towards the seafront. An impressive sight along the path was a finely crafted vineyard and lemon groves. The scenery was so marvelous. We never imagined that it could be that beautiful.

There exists a famous easy hiking trail along the coast line that connects all five villages. The trail is twelve kilometers in length, with spectacular seaside views. Hiking the entire trail takes about five hours. Via dell’ Amore (The Lover’s Way) between Manarola and Riomaggiore is the easiest hiking trail in the Cinque Terre. So, without a doubt, I chose to walk this easiest trail. Hehehe… The trail has a wide path and is nicely paved, which makes it easy for almost everyone to do this hike. Walking along the path, we enjoyed great views of the ocean and the steep rocky cliff. We stopped several times admiring the view and capturing some pictures.

Arriving at the Riomaggiore village, we first checked out the church of San Giovanni Battista whose design is a typical local style (similar to the San Lorenzo Church in Manarola) with a white stone rose window on the front wall. We then continued walking towards Marina just to sightsee, take pictures and relax.

After leisurely walking for a half day, I started to crave for another scoop of gelato again. So, at Riomaggiore I grabbed one cup of lemone and fragola gelato, which tasted much better than the one I had previously in Vernazza. Being in Italy with the ubiquity of gelaterias enabled me to eat gelato every single day during my entire stay in Italy. Ahhh… I was extremely happy! I would ensure to have at least two scoops of gelato everyday! Yay…

Time flew by so fast, and it showed 5pm already. We planned to enjoy the sunset from a ferry going straight to Monterosso. Boarding the ferry along the Cinque Terre coast line is the best way to get an amazing panorama of the colorful houses and vineyards perched against on hill. We then hurriedly moved to Riomaggiore ’s Marina to wait for the ferry to come ashore. At that time, many people were sunbathing on the rocky beach and some were even swimming in the cold sea water. Brrr…

source: foodtravelblog

Defriending can bruise your 'digital ego'

By Breeanna Hare, CNN

(CNN) -- If you harbor a bit of angst over Facebook friend requests gone unanswered, a surprise "defriending" or being deserted by your Twitter followers, you're not alone.

Elaine Fogel has amassed more than 500 connections on LinkedIn, a professional networking Web site, by extending invites to those who appear to fit her wide array of career interests.

"Ninety-nine percent of the time, people just say yes," she said.

But then came "this one woman" who Fogel encountered on one of the 40-plus discussion groups she belongs to on LinkedIn. The woman offered interesting opinions, so Fogel sent her an invitation to join her network.

"She sent an e-mail saying, 'I only connect with people I know, and hopefully our paths will cross one day,' " said Fogel, of Phoenix, Arizona, her voice still carrying notes of disbelief. "I read that, and I said, 'Oh, my God, I've been rejected.' "

Fogel echoes other users who have felt the twinge of hurt and surprise from social media rejection. Some may think hers is an overreaction -- it happened online, with a woman she didn't know -- but recent research shows that our "digital egos" can bruise as easily as we do in person. In fact, rejection online may have the potential to sting even more.

"People tend to think that these relationships are trivial and not very deep, but this is what we're moving towards, having a lot of our communications play out over the Internet," Purdue University social psychologist Kip Williams said. "That's the way it's becoming; this is how we interpret our worth. People care how many [online] friends they have."

Or, increasingly, how many Twitter followers they have. This year, a third-party service launched Qwitter, which allows Twitter users to determine who's stopped following them and which tweet may have turned them off.

Experts say rejection on social networks can hurt worse than an in-person snub because people are usually more polite face-to-face than they are online.

"I think the thing that is often clearly worse online is when it's relatively anonymous, and people use that as a cover and are more cruel than they would be otherwise," said Jean Twenge, a San Diego State psychologist who has studied the way social networking affects personality development.

Online rejection also doesn't lessen the physical reaction we have to emotional pain.

"Pain is divided into two components," said Baldwin Way, a UCLA researcher who studies the way human brains respond to social rejection.

"If you put a red-hot poker on your arm, one part of your brain says, 'This pain is on your arm,' and the other part says, 'Ow, that hurts' and is less concerned with where it is and more concerned about the emotional meaning of it," he said. "That [second] part also seems to be activated when someone's left out or excluded and rejected."

To Way's surprise, that neurological reaction holds true even when the rejection comes in a digital form, lacking the real-world body language, vocal intonations and other aspects that can influence the way rejection is perceived and felt.

"If you'd asked me a few years ago if you'd get the same effect online as you would in person, I'd say no way," Way said. "I thought doing something in person would have stronger effects than doing something online, but interesting data has come out in the last few years that show mental representations are just as powerful as the real thing."

These data include Williams' "cyberball" studies, which ask a participant to play a virtual ball-tossing game with two other icons. In one study group, the participant plays the game for the entire six minutes, but in the second group, he or she is included for only a fraction of that time and then ignored. The second group reports feelings of anger and lower levels of self-esteem.

Whether participants believe they're playing with humans doesn't appear to affect their feelings of rejection.

"Even when people get rejected by the computer, they feel bad," Twenge said.

Kenneth Loflin, a student who participated in Williams' study, got so frustrated by his fellow players that he gave the computer screen an offensive gesture.

"I'm a people person, and I like people to like me," he said.

The study also affected the way Loflin interacts online. Out of the 1,200 friends he has on Facebook, 400 of them he doesn't really know, many of them being friends of friends.

"I thought about defriending them, but I didn't want them to feel how I felt" during the "cyberball" game, Loflin said.

By contrast, Bruce Hammond doesn't have a problem giving the rejection slip to Facebook hangers-on.

"For the most part, the people that I'm defriending are the people that I don't have a relationship with: the people I haven't talked to in 15 years," said Hammond, 30, of Chicago, Illinois. "I don't let someone know if I'm going to defriend them. I just do it."

Similarly, Hammond doesn't expect any of his Facebook contacts to let him know before giving him the ax. If someone rejected him in real life, he would ask why the person felt that way, but when the relationship is online, his thinking changes.

"If I come on [Facebook] tomorrow and see I have 425 friends instead of 426, I'm not going to go through my list and see who did it and be upset with them," he said.

Cecilia Sepp, a Washington, D.C.-area consultant, said she avoids the issue entirely by limiting her online network to about 100 friends.

"I don't have a problem with defriending because I don't accumulate [enough] to have a high number," Sepp said.

"When I first heard that defriending was beginning on social networks, it was through a blog post by someone who was shocked that this person had defriended them because they didn't understand why," she said. "The person wanted to know had they done something, had they said something, should they ask, 'What did [I] do?' "

Sepp believes that online "defrienders" should extend the courtesy that Fogel's LinkedIn rejecter gave her: an e-mail explanation.

"You have no facial expression online; you have no tone of voice online; it's very easy to misinterpret phrasing in an e-mail. You have to be very careful about your wording and be more explicit with people when you're making or removing connections," Sepp said. "That's why it's so important to connect with people that you actually know."

source: CNN.com

Is Trick-or-Treating Dangerous?

By Laura Fitzpatrick

Halloween strikes fear into parents' hearts for reasons that have nothing to do with scary costumes. Hospitals have been offering to X-ray candy for decades, and this year a forensic lab in DuPage County, outside Chicago, will inspect suspicious sweets using technology that's usually reserved for homicide, sexual assault and burglary. Health officials are warning against letting kids scoop up candy with their germy hands, lest they spread H1N1 flu to other revelers. In Bobtown, Pa., spooked officials have banned trick-or-treating altogether. But is trick-or-treating really dangerous?

The most persistent Halloween bogeyman is tainted candy from strangers. The parental panic may stem from around 1964, when a woman handed out dog biscuits, steel-wool pads and ant poison (clearly marked with a skull-and-crossbones logo) to teenagers she deemed too old to be trick-or-treating. The horror story refuses to die down. "In recent years, there have been reports of people with twisted minds putting razor blades and poison in taffy apples and Halloween candy," Ann Landers wrote in 1995.

But were the reports true? For all the anecdotal evidence, the notion that psychotic strangers pose a danger to children has been repeatedly debunked. Only two children are known to have been killed by poisoned Halloween loot. In both cases, the perpetrators were family members who tried to exploit the trick-or-treating urban legend to throw police off their trail. Plenty of parents call poison centers to report concerns related to Halloween, says Gail Banach, director of education at the Upstate New York Poison Center in Syracuse, but overall complaints don't spike. And other experts agree that the concern is overblown. In 1985, Joel Best, a professor of sociology and criminal justice at the University of Delaware, studied media reports going back to 1958 and found no evidence "that any child has ever been killed or seriously harmed by a contaminated treat picked up in the course of trick-or-treating." Most of the 100 or so cases of alleged poisoning over the past 50 years, he adds, were probably hoaxes. "You can't prove a negative. You can't prove that it's never, ever happened," Best says. "[But] if it was happening, it would make the news."

So is there any likely candy-borne danger? Well, yes: eating your way to a bellyache. Dr. Tony Woodward, chief of emergency medicine at Seattle Children's Hospital, expects to see a few of those cases in any given year. "When they have a ton of candy in front of them, they're going to eat it," he says. Experts recommend filling kids up with snacks or dinner before sending them out so they'll be less tempted to nosh on sweets.

But even though candy doesn't pose much of a threat, trick-or-treating does carry safety hazards. According to the American College of Emergency Physicians, common Halloween injuries include eye wounds from sharp objects and burns from flammable costumes. The Poison Center's Banach notes that kids can have allergic reactions to face paint or makeup. "We always recommend that if you're using that kind of product, you test it out on a patch of skin before you put it all over your child to be the Incredible Hulk," she says.

But the biggest Halloween danger of all is car accidents. Children are more than twice as likely to be killed by a car while walking on Halloween night than at any other time of the year, according to a study by Safe Kids USA. Such tragedies are often preventable. Parents can make sure that costumes aren't too long, shoes don't make a child prone to tripping and masks don't restrict their vision. And parents of young children should accompany them on the walk around the neighborhood to keep them safe. "A lot of kids don't know the right way to cross the street because they're not walking anywhere on a regular basis," says Nichole Hodges, home safety coordinator for the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. "This may be a good time to provide that education as parents."

Ultimately, getting a child's candy X-rayed can't hurt — as long as parents aren't too preoccupied with overblown threats to watch out for real ones. "We do want to check the candy," says Hodges. "At the same time, we have to focus our energies on how kids are actually getting hurt."

source: Time.com

Cartoons of the Week October 31, 2009 - November 6, 2009

source: Time.com

The Hunt for Tuna: A Tough Catch

By Krista Mahr / General Santos City

Tuna on sale at Tokyo's Tsukiji market, the biggest fish and seafood wholesaler in the world. Japan consumes some 80% of the 60,000 tons of bluefin caught on average worldwide each year

Nearly every day at dawn, John Heitz falls a little bit in love. Leaning over a 150-lb. (70 kg) yellowfin tuna, the 55-year-old American, whose business is exporting fish, circles his forefinger around its deep eye socket. "Look how clear these eyes are." He traces the puncture where the fish was hooked, and the markings under its pectoral fin where it struggled on the line. "Sometimes," Heitz says, "I see a good tuna, and it looks better to me than a woman."

Heitz, a blond Illinoisan who sports a fading Maui & Sons T-shirt and a tuna tattoo on his bicep, is an out-and-out tuna man. That's why he lives and works in General Santos City in the southern Philippines, one of the planet's great tuna-fishing ports. By 6 a.m. on an August morning, the heat at the docks — a raucous, clanging, blood-and-guts tangle of 10,000 buyers, sellers, porters and men whacking rusty knives into silver skin — is unforgiving. Boat crews crouch in patches of shade on deck, smoking and waiting for their wages. The boats' hulls, sloshing with bloody ice water, are almost empty, only a few shiny bellies lolling in the slush. Porters have already hoisted thousands of tuna onto their shoulders and carried them to the exporters; they swarm around the fat, fresh ones whose slick layer of slime still smells like the ocean, and whose scales gleam with a hint of the yellow flush they had when blood was pumping inside them.

It's one of the few quality hauls of yellowfin that has come in all week. Heitz jumps into the scrum of insults and jokes flying between the buyers and the sellers. Quality testers sink metal rods into the fish, pulling out samples of pink meat that they rub between their thumb and forefinger and smell. The biggest and best tuna will go for about $700 wholesale, and get whisked away to be washed, beheaded, gutted and packed with dry ice to catch the 10:30 a.m. flight to Manila. By the next day, the fish will be in Tokyo, Seattle or California. By the next night, its meat will be poised between chopsticks. (more..)

source: Time.com

The Omega-3 Battle: Which Margarine Is Healthier?

By Tara Kelly / London

Think of omega-3s as the oils that keep our brains and hearts from getting rusty. Hundreds of studies show that these essential fatty acids can help prevent cardiovascular disease and some scientists believe they are also beneficial for the brain and nervous system. But not all omega-3s are created equal. The ones with the biggest health benefits are found in fish like salmon and mackerel, which have the two long chain fatty acids docosahexaenoic (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic (EPA). Plant-derived omega-3s — the fatty acids found in flax seeds, olive oil and some leafy greens — don't contain these specific fatty acid chains. While they're also thought to be good for the heart, they don't have quite the same effect on the body as their fish-derived cousins.

"Both types of omega-3s are essential for our health because the body cannot make them on its own. [But] people who regularly consume fish have less chance of dying from heart disease. For plant-derived omega-3s, the suggestive evidence is unconvincing and more research needs to be done to make stronger claims," says Dariush Mozaffarian, an assistant professor of medicine and epidemiology at Harvard Medical School.

The difference between the two groups of omega-3s is now at the heart of a debate in the European Union. In 2007, the European Parliament passed a law allowing companies to tout the health benefits of omega-3s on their food products without having to differentiate between the plant-derived and fish-derived kinds. With the trial period due to expire in January 2010, the European Commission, the body that recommends which legislation will go before the Parliament, approved a proposal in October to make the statute permanent. The Parliament will decide on the issue in January.

Some experts are wary of the proposal, though. A group of 20 scientists from seven countries who specialize in fatty acids have warned it could allow food manufacturers to deceive consumers. They say that without clear labels, companies can use plant-derived omega-3s in their products and pass them off as the superior, fish-derived omega-3s. "They would be able to pour in cheap plant oils, but imply that they deliver the same health benefits as fish oils," says John Stein, a neurophysiology professor at Oxford University and one of the scientists urging the European Parliament to vote against the proposal and instead set up a scientific committee to advise on omega-3 food labeling.

Thanks to a love affair with French fries and cheeseburgers — not fish and vegetables — most Westerners' diets don't contain enough omega-3s. On top of that, we eat too many processed foods, which contain another fatty acid that hinders the body's ability to absorb omega-3s. This is one reason why food manufacturers have started putting more omega-3s into foods like margarine, mayonnaise and eggs in recent years.

Unilever, which sells margarine containing omega-3s, insists that its labels are accurate. The Anglo-Dutch company makes two different types of margarine, both of which it says are healthy. It produces margarine with omega-3 plant oils for vegetarians and margarine with omega-3 fish oils for people who eat fish, clearly stating on the labels which type of fatty acids are in each spread. "It's not a competition between these different omega-3s — all are essential for the diet, " says Anne Heughan, Unilever's director of external affairs for Europe. Moreover, she says, Unilever is within the guidelines set by the European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA) on nutritional labeling.

But the scientists say the EFSA guidelines only deal with a product's health claims about omega-3s, not its nutritional content. "We've got two types of claims in play at the same time. Health claims are about the effect on the eater, nutrition claims are about what is in the food. Pointing to the health claims alone is technically legal, but substantively misleading," says Jack Winkler, a professor at the Metropolitan University of London and another of the scientists who is against the E.U. law.

The debate hasn't reached the same level of specificity in the U.S. The Food and Drug Administration has given food companies the freedom to tout the health benefits of omega-3s without differentiating between the plant-derived and fish-derived kinds. Instead of worrying about food labels, scientists there are questioning whether the omega-3 benefits of fish consumption outweigh the risks of getting too much mercury. The FDA has taken a tough stance, advising women who are pregnant, nursing mothers and young children to avoid eating fish that is high in mercury, such as swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish, and to limit consumption of albacore tuna to six ounces per week.

source: Time.com

Visit Animals at Zoo

Nine-year-old bull elephant Assam makes its first steps in Budapest Zoo and Botanic Garden on October 30, 2009 as the 3-ton animal is let out to the open-air outlet today by local tenders. The new resident of the zoo arrived on Wednesday from Bellewaerde Park of Belgian Ieper Zoo after a 21-hour trip by special shipment.

Nine-year-old bull elephant Assam receives an apple in Budapest Zoo and Botanic Garden on October 30, 2009 as the 3-tonne animal is let out to the open-air outlet today by local tenders. The new resident of the zoo arrived on Wednesday from Bellewaerde Park of Belgian Ieper Zoo after a 21-hour trip by special shipment.

Whirl, a two-year-old-Amur tiger, plays with a pumpkin at the Brookfield Zoo in Brookfield, Illinois October 28, 2009. Zookeepers fed pumpkins to the zoo's lions, tigers, bears and gorillas, in honor of the upcoming October 31 Halloween holiday.

In this photo released by the Wildlife Conservation Society, a snow leopard plays with a pumpkin placed in its habitat as part of an animal enrichment activity at New York City's Central Park Zoo, Friday, Oct. 30, 2009. Snow leopards are native to the mountainous regions of Central Asia.

Josefa, a 37-year-old female polar bear, licks frozen fishes given to her as a birthday treat at her enclosure in the Buenos Aires Zoo October 30, 2009.

A 22-day-old lion cub growls at a man at the zoo in Russia's southern city of Stavropol October 30, 2009.

Nine-year-old bull elephant Assam makes its first steps at Budapest Zoo and Botanic Garden on October 30, 2009 as the 3-ton animal is let out to the open-air outlet today by local tenders. The new resident of the zoo arrived on October 28 from the Bellewaerde Park of the Belgian Ieper Zoo after a 21-hour trip in a special container.

Four month old elephant "Rani" and her mother "Thura" are pictured in Hagenbeck's zoo in Hamburg, northern Germany on Friday, Oct. 30, 2009.

An elephant named Kamraithong, age 5, sprays water on a giant Krathong as a symbolic apology to the goddess of the river during a news conference at the Dusit zoo in Bangkok October 30, 2009. The festival Loy Krathong falls on November 2.

credit photo: AP, Reuters, Gettyimages

Kris Allen's 'Live Like We're Dying' Video Due Next Week

Kris Allen has confirmed that he will make public the music video supporting his single 'Live Like We're Dying' Friday, November 6.

Kris Allen has revealed when an accompanying music video for his single "Live Like We're Dying" will come out. "Hey everyone the video for live like were dying is gonna be out nov 6! Watch it!" he wrote on Twitter.

"Live Like We're Dying" is the lead single off Kris' self-titled album "Kris Allen" and has been played on radios since September 21. It is a cover version of The Script's 2008 song which didn't make it to the band's debut album "The Script" but appeared in a b-side of their mini album "We Cry".

The album is slated for November 17 U.S. release. Snippets of its thirteen tracks have been made available for stream on Amazon Germany earlier this week. Four of them have been showcased live at Dolphin's Tailgate Stage Sunday, October 25. Most recently, a footage showing the album's photo shoot has been found.

Kris Allen will perform at New York City's Z100 Christmas Ball on December 11. He will be joined by David Archuleta, Jordin Sparks, Taylor Swift, John Mayer, Justin Bieber, The Fray, Boys Like Girls, Pitbull, Owl City and Jay Sean.

Album photo shoot:

Preview of 'Smallville' 9.07: Jor-El in Person

In 'Kandor', Clark gets physical with Tess when he finds out that she and Zod had collaborated on kidnapping his father.

The episode of "Smallville" where Jor-El finally appears in person will be airing next week. Portrayed by Julian Sands, the father of Kal-El arrives at the Kent farm in search of his son but meets Chloe instead. Clark realizes Jor-El is alive and on Earth and races to find him before Zod does.

Convinced the Blur is Jor-El, Zod enlists Tess' help in finding him to force him to reveal the secret to his powers. On the preview, Clark is seen confronting Tess to the point that he holds her up in the air by the neck. Titled "Kandor", the episode is airing on November 6.

Jor-El was previously only featured as voice. Actor Terence Stamp had been providing voice for the character since 2003 and was last heard in this season's episode called "Echo".

'Ghost Whisperer' and 'Medium' November 6 Previews

Melinda is seeing something that she had never seen before while Allison is racing against the time to save people from being blasted.

After an episode paying homage to horror films, "Ghost Whisperer" and "Medium" will return next week with "Devil's Bargain" and "New Terrain" respectively. Melinda is brought to a striptease bar since the ghost had a side job as a dancer while she was alive. Meanwhile, Allison is taken to a bank in her vision.

In "Bargain", Jim, surprised by his colleague's nonchalance to a paranormal encounter, suspects that he is involved in a med student's sudden disappearance. Meanwhile, Melinda senses trouble when Aiden continues to mention his fear of "the shadows." Emily Rose guest stars as Tina Clark, the murder victim who seeks Melinda's help.

In "Terrain", when Allison's car is wrecked, the SUV she rents turns out to have some unusual features, including a satellite radio that allows her to hear other people's conversations. Faith Prince guest stars as Lauren Portman whose daughter, Jamie, causes the damage to Allison's car. Todd Louiso meanwhile, guest stars as suspected bank robber, Troy Sanborn.

Ghost Whisperer

Fresh 'New Moon' Clip Offers Scene From Bella's Birthday Party

Premiered on MTV's movie special 'Ulalume: Howling at New Moon', the one minute snippet from 'The Twilight Saga's New Moon' features Kristen Stewart's Bella opening the gifts from the Cullens.

Sneak peek into the highly anticipated "The Twilight Saga's New Moon" keeps on coming. Following the outing of an extended kissing scene clip and a Wolf Pack sizzle reel, a brand new snippet has been brought forward by MTV. Debuted on MTV's "Ulalume: Howling at New Moon" on Friday, October 30, the footage is focused on Bella's birthday party at the Cullens.

The one minute clip features the scene wherein Ashley Greene's Alice presents Kristen Stewart's Bella with the gifts each of the Cullens prepares for her. The snippet also offers a look at the moment Kellan Lutz as Emmett teases Robert Pattinson's Edward as he says "Dating an older woman, huh?"

The clip aside, Extra has caught up with Dakota Fanning and discussed on her portrayal of Jane in the "Twilight" sequel. "I think it's more fun to play a bad person than a good person," the 15-year-old shared on filling the shoes of her Volturi member character. "She almost blows your mind how evil she is."

On the occasion, the Tom Cruise's co-star in "War of the Worlds" also talked about wearing red contacts and white powder for her part. "I thought I was pale before I did the movie," she gushed, "but I realized that I'm not!"

Directed by Chris Weitz, "The Twilight Saga's New Moon" is penned by "Twilight Saga" screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg. It follows Bella when she is left abruptly by Edward. Being unguarded from outside threat and devastated following his departure, Bella is comforted by her growing friendship with Jacob. Taylor Lautner returns as Jacob. The movie is due to arrive in theaters across United States on November 20.

"New Moon" Clip - Bella's Birthday Party:

Miley Cyrus Describes Her 'Sex and the City 2' Shooting Experience

While the 'Hannah Montana' star talks about how it is making a cameo in the 'Sex and the City' sequel, Bette Midler sets record straight on her cameo speculation.

Miley Cyrus has shot her cameo part for "Sex and the City 2" in mid-November, and she has taken it to KIIS-FM morning radio show to share her shooting experience. On Friday, October 30, the star of "Hannah Montana" told Ryan Seacrest, "It was like the best job I'd ever been on. It was a total dream come true."

The daughter of country crooner Billy Ray Cyrus continued on praising some of the stars of the romantic comedy. "It was so cool. Working with Kim [Cattrall] was a really cool," the 16-year-old actress/singer shared. "And Sarah Jessica Parker was like the nicest person in the world."

Miley also talked about the filming process for her part that lasted less than two hours. "I didn't end up shooting until 11 p.m.," she said. "It was awesome - I got a free trip to New York. I hung out in New York all day and then I got to go to the set. I literally shot for an hour-and-a-half, and it was done."

Miley Cyrus was captured on camera shooting her cameo part at the Ziegfeld Theatre in New York City on October 16. She was seen in a red carpet scene with Kim Cattrall, wearing matching metallic dresses and knee-length boots. The only difference spotted from the two's outfits is the neck accessory they were donning.

On another news related to the "Sex and the City" sequel, E! Online reported that contrary to words on the street, Bette Midler will not be seen having a cameo in the movie. Setting the story straight was the comedienne herself. "My daughter was a PA on the movie," she explained on why she was spotted on the film's set with SJP. "It was a big thrill for her. She had a great time. She loves the business."

"Sex and the City 2" has all four leading ladies of the original series, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis reprising their role as Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte respectively. Chris Noth also returns as Big, and writer/director/producer Michael Patrick King is back to his post. Principal photography was kicked off in New York in September. This sequel is set for U.S. release on May 28, 2010.

source: aceshowbiz.com

Miley Cyrus Approves of Taylor Swift and Taylor Lautner

Miley says she doesn't know if the two Taylors are dating, but is happy for them if they really are a couple.

Though having no idea if her best friend Taylor Swift is really dating Taylor Lautner just like what rumors on the street say, Miley Cyrus is wishing them the best should they are a couple. "The Taylors? Oh, I don't know. I'm not into the drama. I have no idea," she told Chicago's B96 morning show during a tour stop earlier this week. "I mean, if he's happy and if she's happy, sounds good to me."

Miley went on revealing, "I've known Taylor [Lautner] since I was really young." She continued, "When he did '[The Adventures of] Sharkboy and Lavagirl,' it was between me and somebody else, and then I ended up doing 'Hannah Montana', so I've known him for, like, a really long time."

Taylor Swift and Taylor Lautner have become the subjects of dating speculation ever since they are billed to star as lovers in next year's flick "Valentine's Day". Not bothering to confirm or deny that they are embarking a real-life romance, they keep adding fuel to the mounting dating talks with their close bond. They, moreover, are often photographed together.

source: aceshowbiz.com

Lady GaGa Plans to Dress Down on Halloween

"I'm just going to go as myself and no one will notice it's me and I'll just get really drunk with all my friends," so says the singer.

Widely recognized for her unique fashion sense, Lady GaGa nevertheless plans to dress down on Halloween. "I'm hoping I can just not dress up and go out unnoticed," she told Billy Bush in an interview for "The Billy Bush Show".

"I'm just going to go as myself and no one will notice it's me and I'll just get really drunk with all my friends," she revealed, adding no further information about her plans for the holiday. Above all, she stated, "I'm excited for this year because I found out that some people will be dressing like me."

In related news, it has been reported that Lady GaGa's bizarre fashion choice has earned her the Stylemaker Award. She will receive the prize at the 13th Annual Accessories Council Excellence Awards on Monday, November 2 from the hand of fashion designer Marc Jacobs. The event is slated to be held at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York.

Often spotted wearing outrageous outfits while performing on-stage and at several star-studded events, GaGa brings the style to her daily life. She always pairs her dresses with unique accessories even for just casual outings.

source: aceshowbiz.com

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