The Top Five

Britten Fay

–       Moscow airport bombed

Whatever the intentions were of the supposed suicide bomber who detonated a bomb in Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport on Monday, killing at least 35 people and injuring more than 100 others, a few things are sure: the Russian government will swing into a frenzy of look-busy action, actual politics and policy are unlikely to change and air travel in Russia will become an exercise in misery and futility.

As in the U.S., voices will be raised, money will be spent, fists will pound passionately into palms in public forums but mostly people will just be annoyed  at new inconveniences rather than really examine and change the behaviors and conflicts that give rise to these actions.

–       Two in Illinois face possible felony charges for recording police

What might a 60-year-old artist and a 20-year-old former stripper have in common?  Both of them are facing up to 15 years in prison. The charge? Eavesdropping on police.

Tiawanda Moore recorded her conversation with an Internal Affairs officer as she was filing a sexual harassment complaint against another police officer.  Christopher Drew was arrested for selling art without a permit and recorded the incident.

Evidently Illinois legislators and police have forgotten whom they work for or even what country this is.  Be careful what you do around police these days but be vigilant against these intimidation tactics.

–       Vivian Maier: 1926-2009

An amateur street photographer for 40 years, Maier was completely unappreciated in her time. Not because she wasn’t talented, but because when she wasn’t roaming the streets of Chicago and capturing tiny, perfect moments, she was squirreling the prints and negatives away for no one to see.

We are only now learning how amazingly talented she was, and completely by accident.  Real-estate agent John Maloof was hunting for historic photographs when he stumbled across a box of more than 30,000 of her negatives at an auction.  He is gradually unveiling her work to the world online at and the site hints at a documentary film of her life.

–       Jack LaLanne: 1914-2011

The seemingly immortal fitness guru Jack LaLanne succumbed to pneumonia on Sunday, he was 96 years old.

College students of this generation may not have heard of the man who made a habit of towing boats behind him when he swam in the icy waters around San Francisco and who could probably do more push-ups than several people less than half his age combined.

In this era where cutbacks start in schools and the first program to go is typically physical education, the oft-caricatured fat American needs a new super hero.  LaLanne, a self-described junk food junkie as a teenager turned his and others’ lives around.  But who will pick up the torch?

–       “The Daily”

James Murdoch, son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch recently announced the creation of a newspaper that will bridge the old world of static media with the digital, mobile model.

Available soon, The Daily is the only news source built from the top down specifically for the iPad and will have a subscription fee of $0.99 per week.

The digital newspaper will be independently staffed and will create its own news rather than redistribute stories from other news sources.  Murdoch intends to hang his hat on the quality of The Daily’s journalism rather than on gimmicks and gadgetry of typical apps.