November 4, 2012 |
Flight Behavior A novel Barbara Kingsolver Harper: 436 pp., $28.99 Strange things are happening in Appalachia. The natural world as we know it is coming to an end, overheated by human greed. "Global warming" is a dangerously loaded expression in the rural, Republican-loving, God-fearing Tennessee of Barbara Kingsolver's didactic and preachy new novel, "Flight Behavior. " The people of the fictional Feathertown have been taught by talk radio that it's a big-city scam concocted by Al Gore.
October 3, 2012 |
With Proposition 37 -- to label genetically engineered food -- on the November ballot in California, there's obviously a raised level of debate about whether such food is truly safe for human consumption. The evidence doesn't indicate any harm, but a 2009 editorial in Scientific American complains that too much of the research is controlled by the companies that produce the bioengineered seed. Concerns have been raised about possible allergenicity; on the other hand, some genetically engineered food has been designed specifically to remove properties that cause allergic reactions.
August 3, 2012 |
LONDON -- The long goodbye for Michael Phelps is turning into the golden goodbye. Phelps won his third gold medal of the London Olympics with an emphatic statement in the 100-meter butterfly, winning in 51.21 seconds. He was seventh at the turn and put on his trademark finish of power. "I didn't have a good finish, didn't have a good turn," he said. "But, you know what, I'm not going to nit-pick my races right now. I'm just happy to be able to defend that title. All of my 100 flys have have been within two-tenths of a second.
August 1, 2012 |
LONDON -- World champion Jiao Liuyang of China consolidated her hold on the 200-meter butterfly Wednesday by winning the event at the Olympics, taking the gold in 2 minutes 4.06 seconds. American Kathleen Hersey had been considered a serious threat to win based on her impressive showing in the semifinals, in which she had the fastest qualifying time, but she finished fourth in 2:05.78. The event was highlighted by a slice of history. Spain's Mireia Belmonte won the silver, her country's first medal at these Games and said to be the first swimming medal ever won by a Spanish-born woman.
July 31, 2012 |
LONDON -- It came down to the last stroke. And Michael Phelps came up just short, resulting in a shocking reversal of fortune. Chad le Clos, a 20-year-old from South Africa, touched the wall first in the 200-meter butterfly. Phelps' silver ties him with Soviet gymnast Larissa Latynina for the most Olympic medals won by an individual, at 18. This ended Phelps' bid for three consecutive Olympic gold medals in his pet event, the one that put him on the map. The 200-butterfly got him to the Olympics for the first time in 2000, and Phelps had not lost the race at the Summer Games since placing fifth in Sydney.
July 30, 2012 |
LONDON -- There would be none of this too-close-of-a-call-type thing for Michael Phelps in the men's 200-meter butterfly Monday night. Phelps won his semifinal heat in the event he has virtually owned for more than a decade. He had the fourth-fastest time, 1 minute 54.53 seconds, but was a mere 0.28 seconds behind leader Takeshi Matsuda of Japan, who won the other heat. American Tyler Clary, a first-time Olympian, recorded the fifth-fastest time, 1:54.93. Phelps is the two-time defending Olympic champion in the 200 butterfly and holds the world record in the event.
July 28, 2012 |
LONDON - Dana Vollmer broke Olympic and U.S. records in the women's 100-meter butterfly on Saturday morning, setting the stage for a challenge to the world record. Vollmer blew away the qualifying field, posting a time more than one second faster than all of her competitors. Her time of 56.25 seconds beat the American record she set at last month's Olympic trials (56.47) and beat the Olympic record set by Inge de Bruijn of the Netherlands in 2000 (56.61). "I'm really happy with that," Vollmer said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 10, 2012 |
As quests go, the one Thousand Oaks garden designer David Snow embarked on is a doozy. For six months, Snow has devoted himself to saving the reputation of America's most beloved butterfly by getting the world's largest maker of pesticides to change its ways. Specifically, Snow wants Ortho to change the labels on its "Bug-B-Gon" and "Flower, Fruit and Vegetable Insect Killer" so they no longer feature images of the striking monarch butterfly caterpillar under the ominous vow, "guaranteed results.
June 28, 2012 |
OMAHA - Tyler Clary was halfway through his race, and that shopping trip sure looked like a waste of money. His sister and his girlfriend spent Thursday afternoon buying dresses and shorts for London. Clary had not yet qualified for the Olympics, but surely that would be a matter of time. Or not, considering the 200-meter butterfly at the U.S. trials had 50 meters to go, with Clary in fourth place. "I was thinking damage control," said his mother, Stacy. "I was just going into mom mode.