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Morrison favoured for top spot at Liguanea Club Open squash tournament

first_imgKINGSTON: Rising star Julian Morrison served off as the favourite as the 2016 Liguanea Club Open squash tournament, which got under way on Monday night. The former Caribbean junior champion is among 38 players vying for top honours in the week-long competition. Although highly touted, Morrison can take nothing for granted as the tournament employs a handicap format which creates a level playing field regardless of the competitors’ experience and skill levels. In addition, male and female players are going head to head as the competition has a gender-neutral draw. Facing stiff odds due to the handicaps, Morrison beat Roger Grant 21-19, 21-19 to start his campaign on the right note. The senior national team player has come into the competition razor-sharp, having played two highly competitive overseas tournaments within the last two months. However, the wide open field of competitors includes senior national team member Nathlee Boreland, who beat Mark Haddad 21-19, 21-19 in first round action. Also in contention is the skilled and strategic Stewart Maxwell, who defeated Alan Johnston 21-19, 21-19. Other early winners include Dave Morrison, who beat Nicola Guy 9-21, 22-20, 21-18 and Andrew Shim, who stopped Stuart Reid 21-16, 21-13. Tournament director David Harrison said the handicap format will keep spectators guessing right up until the final match. “We’re talking about a situation where the most skilled and experienced players are on even footing with any other contender, so every match is unpredictable,” he explained. “The Liguanea Club Open is always one of the most exciting tournaments on the squash calendar, and we anticipate that the 2016 competition will continue this tradition,” Harrison added. The competition, which began on Monday night, will run until Saturday, October 1, at the Liguanea Club in New Kingston. The early rounds will be played up to today and then the quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals will be held tomorrow, Friday and Saturday, respectively. Matches start at 5:30 p.m. each evening. The 2016 Liguaea Club Open Squash Tournament is sponsored by Total, UHY Dawgen, Avis, Lifespan, KLAS ESPN Sports FM, Epic Technologies, Jamaica Biscuit Company and Cari-Med.last_img read more

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Kobazzie Talks Politics, Music

first_imgKobazzie: “It is my prayer and hopes that President George Weah will place keen attention on the fight against corruption, nepotism, and wasteful spending.”–Wants President Weah to tackle Corruption, nepotism and wasteful spendingPolitics is not something that HipCo rapper Kobazzie loves to get involved with. But the current political trend in the country has changed his orientation.The artist, currently in the USA, says although he doesn’t love getting involved into a political discussion, that doesn’t mean he cannot speak out when the need arises.In a wide-ranging interview, the Afrobeat recording artist spoke to the Daily Observer about issues he believes need to be tackled; the alleged missing billions of Liberian dollars and his music career. “Corruption, nepotism and wasteful spending need to be tackled”The “Drink on Me” crooner noted that Liberia’s major problems are caused by corruption, nepotism, and wasteful spending.“It is my prayer and hopes that President George Weah will place keen attention on the fight against corruption, nepotism, and wasteful spending.“These areas, if left untouched, the country will not develop. Year in, year out, the situation will still be the same. Once Liberia is still a poor country, the majority of the citizen’s will remains poor. The only way to turn things around is to actually reduce corruption, nepotism and wasteful spending to the lowest level since it cannot be eradicated totally,” the singer said.Kobazzie, who is one of the few home-based Liberian recording artists with a university degree said it doesn’t make sense that Liberia, being a poor country, has government officials driving luxury cars which cause tens of thousands of dollars to purchase and maintain.“We are a poor country, so there is no need to act like we are rich. If President Weah places serious attention on cracking down on wasteful spending and corruption, his government can save enough money to invest in youth development, health, agriculture, and education. It is sad that the government is currently struggling to raise funds to invest in these sectors when half of the country’s money goes to areas that are not necessary,” Kobazzie added.On nepotism, which involves the appointment of close family and friends, the artist said the practice is causing the government to lose thousands of dollars, probably millions, by paying salaries to people who are unqualified and unable to do the job.He also said: “Better things will happen if more qualified people are given the job, and this is only possible through a crackdown on nepotism. More unqualified people are in government because their brother and sister are in a position to give them a job; therefore the situation much stop.”On alleged missing LS16 billionAs for the alleged missing L$16 billion Liberian banknotes, Kobazzie could not say whether he believed if the matter is true or not.The singer and songwriter noted that his thought will be shaped after reviewing the investigative team set up by the president to investigative the matter.“For now, I don’t have a definite view on the missing money. I’m waiting on the investigative team’s report to decide. However, if I were the president, I could have set up an independent investigative team to probe into the alleged money matter for more transparency and accountability.“Right now, people don’t trust the government’s ability to conduct an independent probe, so there is a need for a special independent team to investigate the money matter. I trust the President’s ability to take the country from poverty to prosperity; however, he just needs to double up a little bit.  We need him to take more concrete action to solve our problem. The sooner he acts, the better,” he said.Debut album in the pipeline Kobazzie, a native of Lofa County, revealed that he is currently working on his debut album which is expected to be out anytime soon.“I’m cooking something good but I’m in no rush to drop it. I’m taking my time because I want it to be of quality. You know what I mean, something good. Something that the people love,” ,” the Bounce singer noted.The album in question and which the artist has not decided to name yet is expected to be 12-track exclusive new songs.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Govt’s pittance is sugar workers’ death knell – Dr Ramsaroop

first_imgPresident David Granger has this week demonstrated his most callous disregard for sugar workers in Berbice when, in response to the laying off of more than four thousand, it was announced that those would receive half of their severance pay in January, with a promise of receiving the other half by the end of the year.Even worse, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, in making the announcement, said the Administration has set aside $100 million as a sort of revolving fund for the cane cutters and others who are now jobless to start up their own businesses.Economic Advisor to the Opposition Leader, Dr. Peter Ramsaroop, made these damning statements in response to the announcement made by Moses Nagamootoo on Wednesday as the National Assembly met.According to the Business Economist, “This is a blatant demonstration of the unconscionable, authoritarian nature of the current Administration, now full on display; and things are about to get worse. The writing is already on the wall: sugar workers have effectively been left in the wayside.”Economic Advisor to the Opposition,Dr Peter RamsaroopDr Ramsaroop said it is now clear that this Government intends to get out of sugar altogether, and has now “washed its hands on the thousands that have been laid off… “They will be given a pittance to hush (them) for a few days; but what happens when that runs out?” he asked.In making the observation this past week, Dr Ramsaroop told this publication that the coalition APNU-AFC (A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance for Change) Administration’s callous disregard for those not considered its constituents must not be taken lightly.Dr Ramsaroop’s statements were made in relation to the four thousand sugar workers laid off in the sugar belt. Juxtaposing this figure with the slim margin of votes with which the coalition had won the last general elections, he said: “Having alienated a large section of its own voters, the David Granger-led Administration has demonstrated that it holds no qualms about putting over four thousand sugar workers on the breadline.“I have warned on several occasions last year, the writing is on the wall, and it is now clearer than ever in 2018.”The financial analyst was adamant that 2018 will in fact prove to be one of the most difficult years for middle and low income Guyanese, as well as the business class, since the policies of the Administration have been ad hoc and deleterious at best.“Remember: Jordan had to back-pedal on VAT on education,” he reminded.In sounding alarm bells over the hardships to be experienced in the coming year, Dr Ramsaroop pointed out that Guyana is not expected to receive any money from oil until 2020. “But what happens this year?” he asked. “The economy is still contracting,” he answered his rhetorical question.Pointing to the dangerous consequences of such massive layoffs as obtained at the start of this year, the Economic Advisor said there will be a documented increase in not only robberies and other such criminal acts, but personal and domestic violence.“People are already frustrated over the nonsense this Government is doing now. Imagine: four thousand persons now jobless!” he declared.Dr Ramsaroop told this publication that persons must be careful to ensure they “do not lose sight of the bigger picture: Granger is showing his hand — that he is not interested in votes to get back into office.”The Economic Advisor has predicted that during the course of this year, taxation will stifle businesses further, and will remove even more disposable income.“But this does not worry Granger…I am sure they are planning to rig the elections. We all, as citizens, have to be diligent and prevent this,” he admonished.Dr Ramsaroop has also cautioned that the loss of four thousand jobs in one section of Guyana alone – Berbice — can only inevitably lead to an uptick in desperation and other untoward consequences; and that the Administration will resort to violence.He recalled a recent sitting of the National Assembly wherein Police were called in to remove a Member of Parliament for standing his ground on a position taken – which stand he described as nothing illegal.Dr Ramsaroop recalled, too, the heavily armed ranks that accosted protestors recently in Berbice as agitation begun building over the wanton dismissals.“This Government has been arming its Police Force and soldiers — known loyalists of the current Administration — and they will use that firepower against the citizens of this country (who) dare to speak out against the atrocities,” Dr Ramsaroop has predicted.He insists that this Administration’s contempt was again on full display when Agriculture Minister Noel Holder told sugar workers over the weekend that 9,000 persons could have been fired instead of 4,000.“Imagine, he tells them nothing about a plan for jobs. The Special Purpose Unit was supposed to be responsible for finding alternative forms of employment. They have now taken possession of four estates, all with the intention (to) put on sale.”Dr Ramsaroop confidently predicts that in the elections’ years ahead — Local Government Elections in 2019 and General Elections in 2020 — the Administration intends to raid the treasury in a bid to entice some voters; while its control of the elections machinery will be abused with the intention of rigging the elections in a bid to secure control over Guyana’s short-term oil destiny.According to the analyst, next year and 2020 will get worse. “But the writing is already on the wall for this year…. In 2018, Guyanese will be reminded of the economic hardships that a PNC Government brings.”last_img read more

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Anna Nicole Smith is dead, lawyer says

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (AP) — Anna Nicole Smith, the pneumatic blonde whose life played out as an extraordinary tabloid tale — Playboy centerfold, jeans model, bride of an octogenarian oil tycoon, reality-show subject, tragic mother — died Thursday after collapsing at a hotel. She was 39. She was stricken while staying at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino and was rushed to a hospital. Edwina Johnson, chief investigator for the Broward County Medical Examiner’s Office, said the cause of death was under investigation and an autopsy would be done on Friday. Just five months ago, Smith’s 20-year-old son, Daniel, died suddenly in the Bahamas in what was believed to be drug-related. Seminole Police Chief Charlie Tiger said a private nurse called 911 after finding Smith unresponsive in her sixth-floor room at the hotel, which is on an Indian reservation. He said Smith’s bodyguard administered CPR, but she was declared dead at a hospital. Through the ’90s and into the new century, Smith was famous for being famous, a pop-culture punchline because of her up-and-down weight, her Marilyn Monroe looks, her exaggerated curves, her little-girl voice, her ditzy-blonde persona, and her over-the-top revealing outfits. Recently, she lost a reported 69 pounds and became a spokeswoman for TrimSpa, a weight-loss supplement. On her reality show and other recent TV appearances, her speech was often slurred and she seemed out of it. Some critics said she seemed drugged-out. “Undoubtedly it will be found at the end of the day that drugs featured in her death as they did in the death of poor Daniel,” said a former attorney for Smith in the Bahamas, Michael Scott. Another former Smith attorney, Lenard Leeds, told the celebrity gossip Web site TMZ that Smith “always had problems with her weight going up and down, and there’s no question she used alcohol.” Leeds said it was no secret that “she had a very troubled life” and had “so many, many problems.” “She wanted to be like Marilyn her whole life and ironically died in a similar manner,” Leeds said. Monroe died of a drug overdose at age 36 in 1962. Smith attorney Ron Rale told The Associated Press that he had talked to her on Tuesday or Wednesday, and she had flu symptoms and a fever and was still grieving over her son. “Poor Anna Nicole,” he said. “She’s been the underdog. She’s been besieged … and she’s been trying her best and nobody should have to endure what she’s endured.” The Texas-born Smith was a topless dancer at strip club before she entered her photos in a search contest and made the cover of Playboy magazine in 1992. She became Playboy’s playmate of the year in 1993. She was also signed to a contract with Guess jeans, appearing in TV commercials, billboards and magazine ads. In 1994, she married 89-year-old oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II, owner of Great Northern Oil Co. In 1992, Forbes magazine estimated his wealth at $550 million. In a 2005 interview with ABC, Smith recalled meeting Marshall at what she called a “gentleman’s club’ in Houston. “He had no will to live and I went over to see him,” she said. “He got a little twinkle in his eyes, and he asked me to dance for him. And I did.” Marshall died in 1995 at age 90, setting off a feud with Smith’s former stepson, E. Pierce Marshall, over his estate. A federal court in California awarded Smith $474 million. That was later overturned. But in May, the U.S. Supreme Court revived her case, ruling that she deserved another day in court. The stepson died June 20 at age 67. But the family said the court fight would continue. Smith starred in her own reality TV series, “The Anna Nicole Show,” in 2002-04. Cameras followed her around as she sparred with her lawyer, hung out with her personal assistant and interior decorator, and cooed at her poodle, Sugar Pie. She also appeared in movies, performing a bit part in “The Hudsucker Proxy” in 1994. After news came of Smith’s death, G. Eric Brunstad Jr., the lawyer who represented Marshall, said in a statement: “We’re very shocked by the news and extend the deepest condolences to her family.” In a statement, Playboy founder Hugh Hefner said: “I am very saddened to learn about Anna Nicole’s passing. She was a dear friend who meant a great deal to the Playboy family and to me personally.” Smith’s son died Sept. 10 in his mother’s hospital room in the Bahamas, just days after she gave birth to a daughter. An American medical examiner hired by the family, Cyril Wecht, said he died accidentally of a combination of methadone and two antidepressants. Last month, a Bahamas magistrate scheduled a formal inquiry into the death for March 27. Meanwhile, the paternity of Smith’s now 5-month-old daughter remained a matter of dispute. The birth certificate lists Dannielynn’s father as attorney Howard K. Stern, Smith’s most recent companion. Smith’s ex-boyfriend Larry Birkhead was waging a legal challenge, saying he was the father. Debra Opri, the attorney who filed his paternity suit, said Birkhead “is devastated. He is inconsolable, and we are taking steps now to protect the DNA testing of the child. The child is our No. 1 priority.” Smith was born Vickie Lynn Hogan on Nov. 28, 1967, in Houston, one of six children. Her parents split up when she was a toddler, and she was raised by her mother, a deputy sheriff. She dropped out after 11th grade after she was expelled for fighting, and worked as a waitress and then a cook at Jim’s Krispy Fried Chicken restaurant in Mexia. She married 16-year-old fry cook Bill Smith in 1985, giving birth to Daniel before divorcing two years later.last_img read more

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Encino-Pasadena bus now gets North Hollywood stop

first_imgThe North Hollywood stop came about after the San Fernando Valley’s Service Sector, a community arm of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, asked the city in November to pick up commuters there, said Philip Aker, transportation planner for the city’s Department of Transportation. Since then, traffic planners from Pasadena, Glendale and Burbank have approached the MTA about developing a similar express line from North Hollywood to the Gold Line, said Michael Brewer, San Fernando Valley Service Sector development manager. A study for the new route is under way, Brewer said. The line would have just four stops from start to finish and longer operating hours than the city’s Commuter Express, which makes nine stops and runs four hours a day. Running every 20 minutes in the morning and afternoon, Burbank buses also take passengers from the North Hollywood transit station to the TV and film studios just miles away. Still, the new Commuter Express stop in North Hollywood worked out well Monday for Irma Barrera, who leaned against a palm tree at 7 a.m. as she waited for it. The bus drops her off near a Pasadena home she cleans. NORTH HOLLYWOOD – A bus line that has shuttled San Fernando Valley commuters directly to Pasadena since 1991 expanded Monday to include a key stop – the meeting of the Orange and Red lines. For 16 years, the Commuter Express 549 traveled nonstop from Encino to Pasadena. But the city’s Department of Transportation added the North Hollywood stop to make it more accessible to the thousands of public-transit users who make their way through the Orange/Red line terminus daily. The timing couldn’t have been better for Deborah Watson of Valley Village, who doesn’t have a car. The bus drops her off across the street from her job at Nestle in Glendale and makes fewer stops than other ones she’s tried. A one-way ticket is $2.20. “It is easy,” she said with a grin. “For me, it’s more convenient than other buses,” she said. “It’s very good for me.” On board the snazzy white bus, passengers sit in plush gray seats and read, do crossword puzzles or listen to music. The bus provides a reprieve from the traffic outside its windows, said Vanessa B. Williams, who takes it from Encino to her job as a customer service and collection agent in Glendale. “It’s a lot easier for me not to drive and battle the traffic,” Williams said. “It makes such a big difference. I’m not all uptight when I get to work.” sue.doyle@dailynews.com (818) 713-3746160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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Redondo stuns Compton

first_imgCOMPTON – Alex Tucker has made some memorable shots, but few as meaningful as the last one he made Saturday night. Tucker, Redondo High’s senior point guard, inbounded the ball with 19 seconds to play and the score tied. He whittled down the clock, then drove to the basket for a layup with seven tics remaining. After Tucker scored, Compton coach Tony Thomas called for a time out with 5.3 seconds to play. During the time out, officials reset the clock at 7 seconds. Redondo coach Tom Maier protested. When play resumed, Compton’s Tony Sandoval drove the length of the court. Time out was again called at 2.5 seconds to play, and this time, officials reset the clock to 3.5 seconds. Derozan inbounded the ball. Compton’s top scoring threat struggled for three quarters before finding his touch in the fourth, but his potential game-winning 3-pointer fell short and hit the rim, and Redondo escaped. Tucker, who scored 18 points, said it was one of Redondo’s most satisfying victories. “I couldn’t pass so I just went to (the basket),” Tucker said. “They had some fast-break points and (DeRozan) had some fast-break dunks, but we wanted to slow it down against them and see if we could coax them into some mistakes. Every time we play on the road, it seems like it’s always this tough at the end.” Redondo survived when Demar DeRozan missed a 3-point attempt as time expired and shocked host Compton with a 51-49 victory in a CIF State Div. II SoCal Regional victory. Redondo (28-5) advanced to face Mater Dei, a 77-53 winner over Scripps Ranch Saturday in the Southern California Regional final Saturday at 4 p.m. at UCLA. center_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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Barcelona determined to land ‘priority’ target ahead of Liverpool – reports

first_imgMarca claims Barcelona could even try to snap the 23-year-old in January in an attempt to beat other clubs to negotiating with him when he’s a free agent.It looks as if there will be competition to get Rabiot’s signature however, after it emerged Liverpool made contact with Rabiot’s mum, who is also his agent, about a potential move to Anfield.Rabiot’s PSG travel to Liverpool in the Champions League group stage on September 18. targets Rabiot refused to sign a new deal with PSG in the summer LIVING THE DREAM LATEST Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Barcelona still view Liverpool target Adrien Rabiot as a priority target, according to reports.The midfielder has been linked with a move to a number of top European clubs as his contract with Paris Saint-Germain expires next summer. Man United joined by three other clubs in race for Erling Haaland REVEALED IN DEMAND targets Cavani ‘agrees’ to join new club and will complete free transfer next summer moving on 1 Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January The biggest market value losers in 2019, including Bale and ex-Liverpool star Latest Transfer News Kevin De Bruyne ‘loves Man City and wants to keep winning’, reveals father Tony Cascarino backs Everton to sign two strikers for Carlo Ancelotti RANKED Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ last_img read more

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MAJOR BOOST FOR LYIT AS MASSACHUSETTS DEVELOPMENT CENTRE ANNOUNCED

first_imgS Senator announces new partnership with LYIT- Senate President Therese Murray announced today the expansion of the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center (M2D2) to Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Dubbed “M2D2 Northwest,” the successful medical device incubator will now hold incubator space at the Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT) and the Clinical Transitional Research and Innovation Centre (C-TRIC). Photo- Clive Wasson.Massachusetts Senate President Therese Murray announced today the expansion of the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center (M2D2) to Donegal.The successful medical device incubator will now hold incubator space at the Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT) and the Clinical Transitional Research and Innovation Centre (C-TRIC).The opening of international medical device incubator space is the direct result of previous trade missions to Northern Ireland and Ireland led by President Murray. “Massachusetts holds international recognition as a premiere research and development center for life sciences, biotechnology and medical devices,” President Murray said at LYIT today.“This exciting collaboration will offer assistance to Massachusetts-based companies looking to break into the European market while also attracting European companies that want to launch clinical trials in Massachusetts. Our shared goal is to create an environment where research, innovation and commercialization can all take place and this is a big step forward for innovators and entrepreneurs in Massachusetts and beyond.”Founded in 2008, M2D2 is a joint UMass Lowell and UMass Worcester initiative designed to accelerate the development and launch of new medical device companies. M2D2 provides business development counseling, engineering and prototype development support, as well as clinical and regulatory path guidance, and has assisted more than 100 start-up companies and entrepreneurs since its inception.In addition to following M2D2’s business development model, M2D2 Northwest will provide “soft landing” services for start-up companies and entrepreneurs based in Ireland and Northern Ireland seeking to do business in Massachusetts, and Massachusetts companies seeking to do business abroad. “UMass serves a vital role as an economic engine for Massachusetts with a statewide annual economic impact in excess of $6 billion,” University of Massachusetts President Robert Caret said.“Our focus on entrepreneurship and the development of new products and services provides us with a unique opportunity to contribute the talent and resources of the university to startups, here and abroad, that will lead to their success and sustainable economic development for Massachusetts.”“I want to congratulate everyone involved in launching this initiative,” UMass Lowell Executive Vice Chancellor Jacqueline Moloney said. “Given M2D2’s track record of success and the potential benefits that such collaboration offers, for years to come.”Letterkenny Institute of Technology President Paul Hannigan, welcomed M2D2 to LYIT, “We are proud to be part of this unique initiative and look forward to a future successful partnership. This collaboration lays the foundations using a proven formula for medical companies to thrive and develop. Of course, it offers a corridor for medical device companies to connect to the US and for US companies to enter the European market.“This partnership presents exciting possibilities for the commercialization of new ideas which will drive economic growth, knowledge exchange, research and student experience. We can now say categorically that the North West is a hub for medical device innovation.” The partnership between UMass, Northern Ireland and Ireland will also include a monthly programming exchange between the universities and opportunities for research by faculty and graduate students researchers and shared grants.MAJOR BOOST FOR LYIT AS MASSACHUSETTS DEVELOPMENT CENTRE ANNOUNCED was last modified: September 12th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Finding role models

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals Sure, women who are strong and capable show up in the media, too, but not in nearly the same proportion as men of similar accomplishments. A recent study by the White House Project, a nonprofit, nonpartisan group dedicated to advancing women’s leadership, found that women make up only 14 percent of guests on morning news shows. Their limited visibility reinforces any personal doubts we may harbor about how much power women wield. Seeing is believing, and if we don’t see it, it’s hard to expand our notion of what women are doing already, never mind what more we can take on in the future. “Our biggest challenge is to change our consciousness,” Naomi Wolf, author and social critic said at a recent appearance at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. “We need to get it that women are no longer in the co-pilot seat. Women are flying the plane.” Even Air Force One, thanks to “Commander in Chief,” the new hit television show starring Geena Davis as the nation’s first female president. It is startling to see a woman demanding that her hesitant male vice presidential pick take her call, then attending to her teenage daughter and finally, at the end of a long, productive day, being comforted in their White House bedroom by a sympathetic, supportive husband. I admit it: As I watch the series, I often catch myself wondering, “Is this really possible (absent the near-perfect dialogue, which no one can spew consistently), or is it pure Hollywood fantasy?” If “Commander in Chief” shows us the future, www.newsonwomen.com, focuses on the present. Started by Alice Krause, formerly a commercial banker at Chase Bank, and her daughter, Molly, this unique site shows that “amazing women are doing amazing things every day.” Recent posts feature women whose accomplishments, especially gathered together on one site, demonstrate a tremendous amount of clout, women like Myrtle Potter, former president of Genetech; Valerie Jarrett, chairman of the Chicago Stock Exchange Board; and University of Pennsylvania President Amy Gutmann. Another site dedicated to publicizing women’s work is www.womensenews.com, which recently ran an article on Leaders Take Flight, a New Jersey company that teaches female executives how to fly small aircrafts in an attempt to boost essential skills, such as being aware of your options. Tune into these new media options and let your imagination soar. Hail to the chief! Leslie Whitaker is co-author of “The Good Girl’s Guide to Negotiating.” Write her at goodgirls@contentthatworks.com. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Dear Readers, Where can working women find other women to look up to? Men looking for successful role models need not embark on a search mission. Men of accomplishment are evident everywhere, staring at you from the pages of magazines and newspapers, being interviewed on television and even walking the line in movies and chasing goblets of fire. A quick comparison of the dominate images in a recent Sunday edition of The New York Times illustrates the discrepancy between the typical coverage of the sexes. A huge photo of Samuel Alto, President Bush’s latest nominee to the Supreme Court, a portrait of two Warner Brothers Entertainment executives and an illustration of Abraham Lincoln and four friends were the most prominent male images. The only section with women on the front page was Sunday Styles, which displayed the lovely faces of eight young women under the headline “Who Is America’s Next Top Model, Really?” last_img read more

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Flatrock Passive: Wrapping Up the Air Barrier

first_imgIn the previous post we were beginning to install the OSB air barrier on the interior side of the 2×8 stud walls. Once all joints are caulked with acoustical sealant and then taped, the OSB will act as both an air barrier and a vapor retarder.It didn’t take long to decide that lifting these heavy sheets (each sheet of 1/2-inch OSB weighs about 46 pounds) and attaching them to the ceiling using muscle power and a dead man support was out of the question. Our local Princess Auto had a drywall lift on sale so we bought it (see Image #2 below).We started in one corner of the building. One person on a ladder guiding the other where to push the drywall lift loaded with a sheet of OSB worked great. Our first sheet was cut so that the edge of the sheet could be nailed under the underside of the roof truss. Using a framing nailer armed with 2 3/8-inch nails was the way to go. A hammer and nails was just frustrating. The second run of OSB was offset so the joints were staggered. There were 42 sheets of OSB in the ceiling, which took about eight hours for us to complete.After the ceiling was complete, the next task was to install the OSB on the walls. Luckily we already had a plan in place for this because we had completed the installation on the main level. The batt insulation had already been installed upstairs so all we had to do was start at one corner and install the sheet goods one at a time. Sealing around windows and doorsWith the date for our blower-door test set within the coming week, we had some major work to complete with air sealing around the windows and doors. Like all of the details for the air barrier, there is a redundant system for air sealing. First, the gap between the window and the buck gets a good bead of spray foam. This will provide some air sealing as well as some insulation to the gap. Next, a backer rod is installed. Finally, the backer rod is caulked to the door jambs/header and the window buck.Overall, its not a hard detail to implement… unless there’s not enough space between the window frame and the buck.When the windows were installed, we worked to ensure there was an even space all the way around. Don’t trick yourself into thinking that framing is accurate. It is not. Once a square window goes into a framed opening we quickly saw the bucks weren’t as square as the windows. We had to rob space at one corner of the window in order to get an even space at the opposite diagonal corner. With the longest window (9 feet), this lead to a 1/4-inch gap at the window corner.Low-expansion polyurethane foam was the first step in air-sealing windows and doors.My experience with the window installation is that Kohler doesn’t provide for enough space when specifying windows. They specified the rough opening should be 3/4 inches larger than the window frame. With framing inaccuracies being anywhere from 1/8 inch to 1/4 inch (especially as studs are drying, cupping, and warping), that’s simply not enough room to play with. A full inch would be better and would lead to a better installation, with gaps wide enough to work with.In any case, I had no other option but to work with the space left. Luckily, my spray foam gun has tips which can be inserted into fairly narrow openings. The big issue is seeing how much spray foam you are actually applying to the space between the buck and the window. Using a flashlight helps, but with really deep bucks it was really hard to see. I was using a low-expansion foam so I just had to spray enough so the bead touched the window/door and the buck.After some expansion there was still enough room to push backer rod in place. We caulked the backer rod to the door and the stud opening. For large gaps, we opted to caulk one side of the backer rod to the window/door and caulk the other side to the stud opening. On gaps smaller than 3/8 inch, the gap was filled with caulk.Because of the uneven spacing between the windows and the bucks, we needed a selection of backer rod. I picked up backer rod with thicknesses from 3/8 inch to 3/4 inch for the windows. Backer rod should be about 1/8 inch larger than the gap it’s filling in order for it to be effective. The rod should compress enough that it stays in place. Working around the window I transitioned from one size backer rod to another, pushing it in place with my fingers first and then pushing it firmly against the spray foam using a 4-inch broad knife.It is really amazing how effective backer rod is. The gap at the bottom of one of the sills was too narrow to spray foam. Because the bottom of the window was not caulked (for drainage) we could feel air entering the building from outside (it was a particularly windy day again). My only option here was to insert layers of backer rod. Pushing lengths of backer rod into the gap immediately stopped the air from entering, so I know it is doing the job it was meant to do. Sealing the seamsAfter the OSB was fastened it was time to start air-sealing the seams. The technique is straightforward: simply caulk the seam with a 1/4-inch bead of acoustical sealant and then roll 3M 8067 tape on top (see Image #3 below). After rolling the tape I used a J-roller to apply pressure to the tape and the bead of acoustical sealant. This flattens the acoustical sealant and pushes it into the seam. The walls were completed using the same procedure.Corners… those darn corners! They are a real pain to work with. The 3M tape is too floppy to work with in a corner. Blueskin, on the other hand, is pretty easy in comparison. First, the corner was primed with Bakor Hi Tac Primer. To make an inside corner I simply cut a square of Blueskin, and ran a half cut through the center. After a simple fold it was ready for install (see Images #4 and #5 below).There was an interesting conundrum with the upstairs wall. The OSB is attached to the bottom side of the trusses, then strapped with 2×4 before drywall is attached. In order for the ceiling to be the right height for drywall and to allow for about 1/2 inch of play at the bottom, the exterior wall had to be about 99 1/8 inches high. This height is not standard. Because of this, a single sheet of OSB wasn’t high enough to reach to the top of the wall. We had to add a 3-inch-wide strip all the way around the top of the 2×8 wall. This lead to a minor problem: How to seal the upper corner of the wall with Blueskin? My plan was to run the Blueskin 4 inches down the wall and 2 inches onto the ceiling. This would effectively cover two joints at the one time.Blueskin doesn’t have a split paper backing. Using a straightedge, I could score the paper backing if I cut lightly with a utility knife. 3M tape was too hard to work with in the corners. Blueskin is firmer and easier to place. We came up with a two-person system that allowed us to lay about 8 to 10 feet at a time. We primed the surface with Bakor Hi Tac Primer before applying the self-adhering membrane.The key here is to work slowly and methodically. Trying to rush leads to a bad installation with a lot wrinkles and folds. Even working slowly allows some folding. With some experience working with the material, we eventually were able to minimize wrinkling, mainly through careful observation as we were applying the tape. Overall the installation went pretty smoothly (see Image #6). The trick was to angle the bottom of the sheet against the bottom wall plate, wedge it with a foot and use hand force to compress the insulation while pushing the OSB in place against the studs. Nailing initially (with a framing nailer) at the plate holds the sheet in place. Working our way across and up the sheet with nails on 24-inch centers completed the job. If we overlapped with a window we found that scribing around windows and then cutting to fit worked best. RELATED ARTICLES Questions and Answers About Air BarriersOne Air Barrier or Two?Service Cavities for Wiring and Plumbingcenter_img Editor’s Note: This is one of a series of blogs by David Goodyear describing the construction of his new home in Flatrock, Newfoundland, the first in the province built to the Passive House standard. The first installment of the GBA blog series was titled An Introduction to the Flatrock Passive House. For a list of Goodyear’s earlier blogs on this site, see the “Related Articles” sidebar below; you’ll find his complete blog here. BLOGS BY DAVID GOODYEAR Insulation and an Air BarrierInstalling Windows and DoorsFoam Sheathing and Window DetailsFraming and Air SealingA Well Insulated SlabFootings and Frost WallsA Final Design and Energy ModelingAn Introduction to the Flatrock Passive House Air-sealing the rim joistsAir-sealing the rim joists called for a two-component spray foam (see Image #7 below). Initially, I was going to get a contractor to do this for me. However, after exploring my options, I decided to do it myself. We used a 600-board-foot kit that we purchased at our local Home Depot. We were equipped with a disposable suit, a respirator, safety glasses, and a set of nitrile gloves.Working in the rim joist space is difficult. Space is limited, which makes it hard to orient the spray gun and also makes it hard to see where you are spraying. It took some time to get the application right. Spraying on 1/4 inch to 3/8 inch gives about 1 inch when the foam has fully expanded.We sprayed the corners first then the surfaces as specified in the instructions. We sprayed a second coat after a couple of hours to ensure we had about 2 inches of foam as specified in my construction drawings (see Image #8 below). Spray foam can suffer from issues during the curing process, which can lead to non-uniform R-values. In places where the foam was protruding, I cut it off to inspect the quality. The pieces that were cut were randomly sampled. The inside of the the samples looked almost like XPS insulation. There were no large voids or bubbles so I am pretty confident that the application was good. Spray foam is expensive but about half the price if you do it yourself. A few final detailsSome final details included sealing around the ERV duct vents (see Image #9 below). First, I applied a bead of acoustical sealant around the duct, sealing it to the OSB sheathing. Next was a Roflex gasket from 475 High Performance Building Supply, pushed back to the OSB and tape-sealed with 3M 8067. The same application was completed for our wood stove air intake.In preparation for the blower door test, all duct openings, pipe stubs, etc, were sealed with tape and plastic. According to my Passive House designer, the area included in the thermal boundary is 5,906.8 square feet. Based on the PHIUS standard, I need to hit 0.05 cfm/sq. ft. for a total of 295.34 CFM at 50 pascals of depressurization. This is a hard target to meet but I feel that we have implemented the air-sealing details accurately, so we are hopeful!With the air-sealing details completed, we feel a sense of accomplishment and a sense of uncertainty.last_img read more