ABC News(HOUSTON) — The hurricane season in the eastern Pacific Ocean officially is the most active since 1971. Hurricane Willa, now a Category 4 with winds reaching 155 mph this morning, is nearly a Category 5, which has winds of at least 157 mph.Major resorts in Mexico are under a tropical storm warning, although it appears the worst of the hurricane might miss major resort areas including Mazatlan and Puerto Vallarta. The hurricane is expected to hit Mexico’s Pacific coast as at least a Category 3, potentially creating life-threatening storm surge and flash floods farther inland. Some regions could see up to 2 feet of rain.The storm is expected to weaken after passing over the Sierra Madre mountains, after which the remnants of Willa likely will bring significant rainfall to Texas. Some portions of southern and central Texas could see as much as 4 inches of rain this week. Heavy rain also is possible in Louisiana and Mississippi.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
Written by FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailAurelien Meunier/Getty ImagesBy ABC News(NEW YORK) — Cristiano Ronaldo has tested positive for COVID-19, the governing body of soccer in Portugal announced Tuesday.The 35-year-old Portuguese soccer star is “doing well,” doesn’t have any symptoms and is currently self-isolating, according to a statement from the Portuguese Football Federation. Due to the positive test result, he will not take part in his country’s UEFA Nations League match against Sweden on Wednesday.Following Ronaldo’s diagnosis, the remaining players of Portugal’s national soccer team were tested for COVID-19 again Tuesday morning and all results came back negative.Portugal coach Fernando Santos will train them Tuesday afternoon at the Cidade do Futebol complex near Lisbon, according to the statement.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved. October 13, 2020 /Sports News – National Cristiano Ronaldo tests positive for COVID-19 Beau Lund
“Poilâne is my favourite living Frenchman!” proclaimed one of the world’s favourite dead Spaniards, Salvador Dali, in 1977, or so the Poilâne bakery claims on its website. Of course, the master surrealist was still alive and well and chomping at the staff of life when he bestowed this accolade on one of France’s then foremost bakers, Lionel Poilâne. Even though this artist and artisan may have shared little in common, both carved a profitable trade from their non-conforming talents.Having resisted mechanisation and industrial processes, instead, ploughing an isolated furrow by cultivating its own craft methods, the Poilâne bakery has always been something of a “black sheep” in France, says Apollonia Poilâne, heir to the ?15m turnover business. Thrust into the front line at the unbaked age of 18, following the tragic death of her father in a helicopter crash in 2002, she also inherited a reputation as heavyweight as one of Poilâne’s hefty 4lb sourdoughs.Now 22 years old, Apollonia is undaunted by carrying the mantle of this top-end bakery. She knew from a young age that she wanted to be involved in the business.”Ever since I was a child I used to say to my father ’I want to take over the business, I want to take over the business!’” she exclaims in a light French accent laced with an American twang, picked up while studying economics in the States. And she never felt any pressure to continue the family’s bakery lineage.”My father was forced into the business so there was a strong effort from him not to do the same to me,” she recalls. “I grew up in this company, my crib was made from a bread basket, and learning more about breadmaking techniques is what drives me on a daily basis.”Hailed by many as one of the best bakeries around, it’s certainly one of the most expensive, at nearly £10 for a white sourdough loaf. The slowly-slowly approach Poilâne takes to building on that reputation is perhaps unsurprising given that its empire has extended to just two shops in its native Paris in more than 70 years of trading, and a third in London, which opened in June 2000 – a short walk from Victoria Coach Station – and now accounts for about 20% of total turnover. There are presently no plans to open any more shops.Much is made of ’retro-innovation’ – the term coined by Lionel, who took over from founding father Pierre Poilâne in the early 1970s, to describe Poilâne’s approach to baking as using the best of old and new methods. There is decidedly more ’retro’ than ’innovation’ at work. The unhurried evolution explains a limited array of breads, around a dozen, with only half delivered wholesale to restaurants, delis and stores.New product development is something of an alien concept, with no new products in the past four years. Though Apollonia does not rule out introducing new products, the focus is very much to continue what it does best. Each shop has its own production on-site and the only machinery with a plug is a mixer and a slicing machine.”We arrived at a level a long time ago and decided the best way of making bread was to use a mechanical mixer as that gives us a homogenous dough; but we also use a wood-fired oven, which is on the retro side,” she explains. “Our motto is ’quality rather than quantity’ so we stick with a small amount of products that we do well, rather than adding another dozen that are so-so.”Apart from water, all ingredients used are the same as those sourced in France for the Paris outlets, including the original sourdough starter, which “astonished the customs people when my father brought it over on the Eurostar!” she recalls. So how does she source the right ingredients?”Nuh-uh, that’s one of the house secrets!” she laughs. What we do know is that the flours used contain spelt from wheat grown by farmers who, it is claimed, use lower levels of nitrogenous fertilisers by ploughing the topsoil in as late as possible; no pesticides are used; the stone-ground flour preserves 85% of the original grain and contains 15% bran; an aromatic salt is sourced from the marshes of Guérande in Brittany; and a wood-fired oven, modelled on a 19th century French type, helps flavour the crust. All this culminates in the unique flavour and a loaf that retails at a price to scare the life out of a typical British consumer used to paying pennies for their crumb. Do people ever drop their jaws at the price?”Not to my knowledge,” she replies, clearly used to defending this question. “I’m sure it does happen but it’s our job to explain to people all the work that’s been put into the bread. Compared with a 250g baguette made industrially, yes, it is expensive. But it’s a 4lb bread, with top-quality ingredients, hand-made and we take the time to do it well. The quality justifies the difference.”The staff of lifeAny trained bakers hoping for a job in this esteemed establishment would have been better off skipping school. All training is in-house and Poilâne requires a clean slate – only people with no baking experience. Lionel Poilâne put the nine-month development programme in place. In month one, the apprentice simply observes the baker; by month nine, the roles are reversed.”Ideally, our bakers would not have touched a loaf of bread in their lives,” says Apollonia, before quickly correcting herself: “I should say, will not have been bakers in their past! Our methods – although simple – are unique. People have forgotten how to use their five senses when they make bread. This is what we emphasise. It’s easier to train a baker from scratch than it is to retrain.” Drop-out rates are virtually non-existent.Twenty people work in the London bakery across sales, deliveries and production. Not all are French – Brits, Poles, Czechs and other nations are represented. Poilâne’s client base is “very heterogeneous, and mainly British,” but a French speaker is always on hand to placate her country folk. “At one point, we didn’t have any French-speaking staff and it created a scandal in the French community. This was embarrassing, because if they are too lazy to learn English, then why are they here in the first place?!”With competition hotting up on the high streets for French breads, with the likes of bakery chain Paul stepping up its expansion plans in London and beyond (British Baker, 18 August, pg 8), does she train a keen eye on her competitors, French or British, around the capital? A Gallic shrug and a “not really” is her reply reflecting her confidence in the bakery’s products, techniques and process.”My father and I shared the same vision for this company, to perpetuate quality over quantity,” she says. “My aim is to one day hand over the company – and it is a long-term aim – to the next generation of Poilânes. In the meantime, it is my job to do everything possible so that the company not only sustains itself but booms.” Whether that takes the form of another shop or a new product, she’s not yet decided, before adding, in a spirit in keeping with this septuagenarian business: “These decisions cannot be taken lightly.” n—-History: Founded by Pierre Poilâne in 1932Owner: Third generation Apollonia PoilâneProducts: 1.9kg sourdough, raisin, rye, walnut, 1.9kg decorated breads, milk, brioche, butter cookies, apple tarts, turnovers, custard cake and pain au chocolatTurnover: ?15m, 20% of which is in the UK. Wholesale accounts for roughly two-thirds of turnoverWholesale: Waitrose, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols, delis and restaurants Locations: Two shops in Paris, one in London, with on-site bakeries—-=== Consumer watch ===Would you shop at Poilâne? Two who do…Constance Andel, paralegal and information specialist from Austria:”I’ve been shopping here for more than three years and I’ve tried many different kinds of bread in the UK. This is the best. It’s a lot cheaper than Harrods or Selfridges. The croissants are amazing and I love to come here and treat myself.”Bearne Ruth, pensioner, originally from Jerusalem:”I’ve been coming here since it opened. I buy the croissants regularly but they’ve usually all gone by 3pm. I know people who order this bread from Los Angeles and I’ve been to the Paris shops. You must try the apple tart!”…and two passers-by who don’tJoe Bastick-Vines, unemployed, Streatham, London:”I don’t see why anyone would spend a tenner on a loaf of bread. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing better than a nice loaf, but I’m just as happy buying Kingsmill at the supermarket for a pound. Unlike the French and the Italians, I don’t think the Brits are generally bothered about the quality of our bread – certainly not on a day-to-day basis.”Catherine Harvey, HR assistant, Wandsworth, London:”I work nearby and must have passed it many times. I’ve never been in but I like nice bread and pastries so maybe I’ll try it. I’m not surprised at the price though – around here, people generally have lots of money to spend.”
Representatives from the aviation, shipping, haulage and construction industries met with Environment Minister Thérèse Coffey and Treasury Minister Robert Jenrick as part of the government’s call for evidence on red diesel.Launched in May, the call for evidence is seeking views on whether red diesel for non-road mobile machinery discourages the purchase of cleaner alternatives. It forms part of the government’s world-leading Clean Air Strategy – currently out for consultation – which aims to cut air pollution from all sources.Red diesel, the fuel used by non-road mobile machinery gets different tax treatment to the diesel used in cars and vans. But it still produces the same nitrogen dioxide, a toxic gas that inflames the lining of the lungs. !!nEnvironment Minister Thérèse Coffey said: Although it is often thought red diesel is mainly used in the agricultural sector, 75% of it is used across a range of other industries, including rail, shipping and in construction, mining and airport support vehicles. It also costs the public purse £2.4 billion each year, compared to if duty was charged at the main rate.The Call for Evidence closes on 24 July 2018. Red diesel used for agricultural purposes and for fishing vessels is not in the scope of the call for evidence. This week Robert Jenrick and I met industry representatives to hear what they are doing to improve air quality. With red diesel accounting for 15% of all diesel consumption in the UK, industry has a key role to play in reducing the harmful emissions. We must all play our part in looking after the environment and cleaning up our air.
An online platform to help small and medium businesses (SMEs) land the right funding has launched in the UK. Fundbird uses a short and simple application form to guide SMEs on what type of finance they need to make sure they speak to an appropriate lender.The platform covers plenty of financial solutions from secured loans and unsecured loans to asset-based finance, invoice finance, peer-to-peer lending and start-up loans. It offers funding solutions from top alternative lenders including Crowdcube, Funding Circle and MarketInvoice. Several more will be added by the end of the year.Since its soft launch earlier this year, Fundbird has already helped more than 1,000 SMEs to find alternative financing across a variety of sectors.Sharon Argov, chief executive and co-founder, said: “Small businesses are essential to our economies. Our mission is to bridge the gap between alternative finance providers and SMEs.“Despite the rise of alternative finance models, extending their options far beyond the banks, the range of choice can be daunting for SMEs which don’t have the time to dedicate to exploring this new landscape. We want to make this new world of finance accessible for everyone.”
Jennifer Lim (Chinglish) and Jodi Long (Flower Drum Song) will star in the previously reported Manhattan Theatre Club production of Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig’s The World of Extreme Happiness. Tony winner Richard Greenberg’s The Swing of The Sea is now also set to receive its world premiere next spring as part of MTC’s 2014-15 season. Both productions will play limited engagements at off-Broadway’s New York City Center—Stage I. View Comments Helmed by Lynne Meadow, Greenberg’s The Swing of the Sea will begin previews on May 26, 2015 and officially open June 16. Greenberg received the Tony for Take Me Out and his other recent Broadway credits include The Assembled Parties, which was also directed by Meadow. Patriarch Max has died, leaving behind two sons, Brett and Alec, and a lover Vivi. All three reunite for one evening in Vivi’s New York apartment. Secrets, passions and ghosts of the past emerge for this trio as each of them faces an uncertain future. Along with Lim and Cowhig, the cast of The World of Extreme Happiness will include Ruy Iskander (The Dance and the Railroad, TV’s Gotham), Francis Jue (M. Butterfly, TV’s The Good Wife), Andrew Pang (The King and I) and Jo Mei. Directed by Eric Ting, the play follows Sunny (Lim), a woman determined to escape her life in rural China and forge a new identity in the city. Previews will begin on February 3, 2015, with opening night set for February 24. Prior to the New York run, the show will play the Goodman Theatre in Chicago with the same cast, September 13 through October 12.
By Mike IsbellUniversity of Georgia”You need to hear this frog,” the caller said. “I’ve never heardone make a sound like this.”I’m always interested in strange things in nature. Maybe thisfrog was something special. I decided to check it out.Bill met me out in the yard of the old frame house. We walkedover to a 5-gallon bucket he had out under a huge shade tree.Inside the bucket was the frog. After a few misses, Billretrieved the frog from the bucket.The big bullfrog Bill was holding was a good 5 inches long, andthat didn’t include its legs. Bill placed the frog on the groundand began to rub its back. The old frog raised itself off theground and arched its back, like a bow, and began to emit a veryunfroglike sound.Just like a catDarned if it didn’t sound just like a cat. And a very mad cat atthat.Now, I’m no frog expert, but I told Bill I suspected the catsound the frog was making was probably a cry of distress becauseit was caught. I told him I would try to confirm my suspicionwith someone who’s an expert.”I don’t guess we need to contact ‘Ripley’s Believe It or Not’just yet, huh?” Bill said jokingly.”No, I wouldn’t just yet,” I said.Toads and frogsToads and frogs range from just above the Arctic Circle to justabout the southern tips of Africa, Australia and South Americaand on many islands, including New Zealand. They’re the mostwidely distributed of all the amphibians.The typical toad has warty skin and short legs for hopping, whilethe typical frog has smooth skin and long legs for leaping. Butthere are no hard-and-fast rules for distinguishing a toad from afrog.Bullfrogs prefer larger bodies of water than most other frogs.You can find them in lakes, ponds and sluggish streams. You canusually see them along the water’s edge or amid the vegetationwhere they can hide.’Jug-o’-rum’Their deep, soothing, “jug-o’-rum” sound is what you would expectfrom bullfrogs.My research on frog sounds led me to Whit Gibbons in Aiken, S.C.Whit’s a reptilian and amphibian expert.He confirmed my suspicion that the sound was a distress cry ofthe frog. Whit said it’s a sound some bullfrogs will make inresponse to a predator. He didn’t know if all bullfrogs make itor just certain frogs.But evidently it’s rare to hear one.A bullfrog that sounds like a cat. Isn’t that the frog’s meow!(Mike Isbell is the Heard County Extension Coordinator withthe University of Georgia College of Agricultural andEnvironmental Sciences.)
Painters, carpenters and home renovators who renovates will benefit by attending a training Aug. 10 in Macon that will explain new Environmental Protection Agency regulations for lead-based paints.Offered by University of Georgia Cooperative Extension and Greenville Tech, the training will be held from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. at Central Georgia Technical College. The EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule took effect April 22 and affects contractors, property managers and others who work in housing or childcare centers built before 1978.Participants will learn how to minimize lead dust generation and soil contamination during maintenance, renovation and remodeling projects. Following these procedures will reduce the risk of lead exposure to employees, children and residents.Participants in the class will perform hands-on activities and be tested at the end of the class. Those who earn a passing score will be certified as renovators, a certification that is valid for five years.The cost of the course is $260 and is limited to the first 20 registrants. For more information, or to register, go to the website www.fcs.uga.edu/ext/housing/training/lead_training.php.
Photo Courtesty of Don McCullough via FlickrThis week in THE DIRT: a new documentary film profile’s Emma “Grandma” Gatewood’s 1955 thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail, much needed repairs come to the Blue Ridge Parkway, a dairy farmer in North Carolina is sentenced for dumping cow excrement into the French Broad river, and a National Park visitor is tazed in Hawaii while flying a drone.Emma Gatewood was the first woman to ever complete a solo thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail, and she did it in 1955 at the age of 67. Now a new documentary is portraying her astonishing feat.“It’s been a long road to bring this project to fruition, but we’re almost there,” Filmmaker Bette Lou Higgins told the Chronicle-Telegram of Lorain County Ohio.Higgins and others began making the film—a documentary they’re calling ‘Trail Magic’— back in 2009. It will be officially debuted during a two-day event, May 28 and 29, at the TrueNorth Cultural Arts Center in Sheffield, Ohio.The Blue Ridge Parkway will be seeing some much-needed repairs thanks to a joint funding efforts from Congress and the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. Both the foundation and Congress are providing $357,370 in matching funds for a total of $710,035 in improvements. Slated projects include rehabilitation of the Mount Pisgah amphitheater, repair and restoration of historic structures at Johnson Farm near milepost 86, and the repair and restoration of the historic Polly Woods Ordinary near Peaks of Otter, Virginia.A dairy farmer in North Carolina has been sentenced to four years of probation and six months of home detention after discharging cow feces into the French Broad River. William “Billy” Franklin Johnston is the owner of one of North Carolina’s largest dairy farms—Tap Root Dairy, LLC. Johnston, a Mills River town council member and acting board member on the North Carolina Department of Agriculture, was personally fined $15,000, while his company is being ordered to pony up $80,000 and placed on a strict environmental compliance plan.Beyond the Blue Ridge: A ranger at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park used a stun gun to subdue a park visitor after the visitor refused to bring down a drone he was flying over a large pool of lava. The altercation represents an ongoing debate about drone use in National Parks. The National Park Service says that drone’s have been used to disturb scenery and harass wildlife and prohibited their use back in June of 2014.
According the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), the water in Crooked Run, a tributary of the Coal River in Boone County, West Virginia is now safe to drink after coal slurry leaked into the water supply on March 23.Coal slurry is the after product of washing coal with water and different chemicals before shipment of the coal. West Virginia DEP Division of Mining and Reclamation says the leak came from a burst pipe that spilled coal slurry for three hours; however, it is unknown how much slurry was released into the river.Residents reported the water of the Coal River appearing oily black and jelly-like. The closest water processing plant is in Lincoln County 17 miles downstream followed by the St. Albans treatment plant 35 miles down stream. Both of these facilities were immediately shut down while the spill was being investigated. The coal plant was also closed. Lincoln County’ water facility reopened their facility the following Friday after finding the waters chemical levels were at the standard level.