Crazy World: 100-year-old works as office 'boy'
A man working in London is the oldest office boy after it was revealed that the employee a century old and has been working for 86 years.
The gentleman retired at the age of 66 but was extremely bored with his life and hence decided to take up a new job with a security company. That was 34 years ago and he is still employed by the same firm, reports Daily Mail.
The 100-year-old man is not ready to hang up his hat yet. The renowned flirt makes tea at work and loves his work. "I do some filing, shredding documents, answering the phone, photocopying and making the tea for the girls," he told the daily.
The centurion has two children, four grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.
Posh museum goers turn up nose at poor family
FRANCE: France's culture ministry has demanded an explanation from the Musee d'Orsay after a family visiting as guests of an anti-poverty group were asked to leave because snooty fellow visitors complained that they smelled.
ATD-Quart Monde, who had treated the hard-up couple and their 12-year-old child to a tour of the museum on Saturday, described the family's ejection from the celebrated museum as blatant discrimination.
"It shows what the poorest people have to put up with on a daily basis," said the organisation's spokeswoman, Typhaine Cornacchiari. "When poverty is written on your face you do not get treated the same way.
"Women who stink of perfume don't get asked to leave. No-one calls security when you see people pontificating in front of paintings."
According to Cornacchiari, the family were first asked to leave a room dedicated to the works of Van Gogh after being told "their smell was bothering other visitors."
The family moved to a less crowded space but were shortly approached by four security guards who surrounded them and escorted them to the exit.
"There was no scene because our volunteer did not want to add to the humiliation of the family," Cornacchiari added.
The museum's director has been asked to send a detailed account of what happened to Culture Minister Aurelie Filippetti, a statement from her ministry said.
The museum's management expressed "deep regret" over the incident, stressing that it contradicted its social outreach programmes that allowed 140 groups to visit the temple of impressionism in 2012.
It added that the group's tickets were refunded. (AFP)
Dog helps woman give birth
UK: A hospital in UK allowed a patient's dog inside the maternity ward as the woman gave birth to her baby.
The decision was made because the medical staff thought that the pet dog 'Barney' would have a calming effect on the woman, reports The Telegraph.
Some of the hospital's staff members were appalled when they found later that no additional cleaning tasks were carried out after the woman gave birth after two-hour labour at St Michael's Hospital in Bristol.
The staff were informed prior to the incident about the dog being allowed inside the delivery room. The hospital's top management called the dog a 'therapy dog' even though the woman's case was a normal one.
Some sections of the medical staff are now left wondering if this would become a common occurrence. However, the head of midwifery defended the decision by saying that barney was a certified 'Pets As Therapy' dog and he regularly visits hospital patients with his owner. Barney was present in the delivery room as therapy dog and not merely as a pet.
The slender need not apply at this gym
US: At Downsize Fitness health clubs, the treadmills are wider, the head trainers are weight-loss veterans and new members must be at least 50 pounds (22.7 kgs) overweight.
It's all about creating a more welcoming environment to battle the bulge and drop the excess weight.
Francis Wisniewski, a hedge fund manager, started Downsize Fitness in 2011, when he was struggling to lose weight and found himself intimidated by one-size-fits-all gyms.
"I figured if I was uncomfortable, a lot of people must be. Overweight people feel like they're on display," said Wisniewski, who has gyms in Dallas and Chicago.
His inspiration came from the hit television reality show "The Biggest Loser."
"We wanted to make it the ‘Biggest Loser' in real life," he said. "Most people would be successful if they could spend 15 weeks just exercising. In real life we have jobs. You go to the gym one hour, five times a week and change your diet."
The gym provides nutritional counseling, and the equipment is built for heavier people.
"A lot of equipment supports only up to 350 pounds," he said. "Ours is over 600. And our personal trainers are used to working with overweight people. Two of our head trainers have lost over 100 pounds on their own."
Wisniewski said people can lose 50 pounds in six-to-12 months of training.
"We didn't want people who need to drop 20 pounds for a wedding," he added.
Comfort and camaraderie are what matter to Dave Chiscon, a 38-year-old Chicagoan who joined Downsize Fitness in late August.
"I walked in and people my size were really working out hard," said Chiscon. "We're all in the same boat. We're all moving in the same direction."
Chiscon, who has lost 30 pounds in four months, said the gym is the highlight of his day.
"I work hard and I burn 1,200 calories," he said.
Along with his cardio and resistance routines, he's become a fan of group fitness classes, such as yoga, Pilates and boot camp.
"At other gyms, if I'm doing jumping jacks and my belly flops out of my shirt, I would stop," he said. "At this gym I don't care. The woman next to me is doing the same thing."
Gary Liguori, an expert in exercise science with the American College of Sports Medicine, called Downsize Fitness a unique behavioral approach for getting people active because they don't have to worry about being self-conscious.
He said historically overweight people have not been successful with exercise and it's not unusual for them to feel intimidated at gyms. (Reuters)
Strapped for cash, Malawi puts presidential jet up for sale
MALAWI: For sale, presidential jet, 15 years old. Perfect flying condition. $13.3 million. Contact Malawi for details.
Cash-strapped Malawi on Monday announced that it will be inviting bids for President Joyce Banda's jet, as it tries to raise much-needed revenue.
"The Malawi government has decided that the jet should be disposed of 'on as-is basis' to an interested individual or firm," the president's office said in a tender notice.
The Dassault Falcon 900EX, built in 1998 and which seats 14 passengers, was in "perfect flying condition", according to the notice.
Bids open on February 20.
Late president Bingu wa Mutharika controversially acquired the jet five years ago, despite poverty in the southern African nation.
At the time Mutharika said it was "cheap to run", despite his country depending on aid inflows for almost half its budget.
Former colonial power Britain, Malawi's main bilateral donor, reduced its aid to Malawi by £3 million ($4.4 million) after the purchase.
Banda vowed to sell the plane as a cost-saving measure when she succeeded Mutharika after his death last April. (AFP)
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