Friday, January 25, 2013

This and last week in the US

January, 18th - Lance Armstrong unveils the truth
Timothy A. Clary /AFP/Getty Images
Lance Armstrong admits doping to Oprah Winfrey. It was the first question she asked him, and he finally said yes. 'In all seven of your Tour de France victories did you ever take banned substances or blood dope?'  After denying it for years, Lance Armstrong stately plainly and without emotion that he did use drugs to help him win seven Tour de France titles during THIS interview with Oprah Winfrey. In the second part of Oprah Winfrey's interview, the disgraced cyclist wells up as he speaks about his son's denials of his doping. Armstrong also gives his thoughts on receiving the sporting equivalent of the 'death penalty' and how he still harbours hopes to return to competition one day. Source: The English Blog and The Guardian (abridged and adapted) 

January, 20th - Barack Obama's swearing-in ceremony
Under the Constitution, a president’s term ends at noon on January 20th, and the new president has to be sworn in on the same day. The presidential inauguration usually takes place in public, but when Jan. 20th falls on a Sunday, presidents have shifted the public ceremony a day and opted for a swearing-in at the White House, which is what happened this year. Thus the ceremony took place in the Blue Room at the White House, and Obama took the oath of office on Michele Obama's family bible (see photo here and watch the video).
January, 21st - Barack Obama's 2nd term inauguration ceremony
January 21st, which also happens to be Martin Luther King Day, will see a more lavish public reenactment. This public swearing-in is expected to draw about 800,000 to the National Mall to watch the poetry, music and oratory outside the U.S. Capitol and will include several nods to this president’s place in history as the first African American to hold the office. Obama plans to place his hand on two Bibles, one owned by the slain civil rights leader and another used by Abraham Lincoln at his swearing-in on March 4, 1861. Source: The English Blog (abridged and adapted)

The swearing-in ceremony at the White House - Larry Downing-Pool/Getty Images
The Inauguration Ceremony at the Capitol - Getty Images
January 21st - MLK Day
Since it was first observed nationwide in 1986, the holiday commemorating the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr has served as a reminder of his legacy to the causes of civil rights, nonviolent opposition and community service. There are plenty of events to check out on the day itself and over the weekend, including live-music tributes, museum exhibits, readings and more. Celebrations will be observed throughout New York City. Source: Time Out New York (abridged)

Photograph: Elena Olivo
January, 24th 
Remembering the first Macintosh
Photo via Tim Cameresi
On January 24th, 1984 - 29 years ago - Steve Jobs demoed the first Macintosh. Open Culture originally posted THIS video back in 2009, and it seems like the right time to bring it back. It captures the first of many times that Steve Jobs thrilled audiences with the promise of what technology could deliver. The video takes you back to January 1984, when Jobs demoed the first Macintosh. A young Jobs, sporting a bow tie and a fuller head of hair, could barely hold back his smile and some tears, and the crowd simply couldn’t contain its enthusiasm, giving Jobs a five-minute standing ovation. That’s where the video ends, fading happily and suitably to black. We’ll miss you SteveSource: Open Culture (abridged and adapted)

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