Prairie Post

5 things you absolutely must know today

Subscribe to 5 Things You Absolutely Must Know Today

Email Address: 

David Bowie loses battle with cancer at 69

David Bowie, 69, died Sunday night, peacefully and surrounded by family, ending his 18-month battle with cancer. The iconic, fearlessly creative, insightful British singer released a video for his new song Lazarus on Friday, but has otherwise kept a low profile over the last few years. Celebrities and politicians have begun expressing their condolences, including British Prime Minister David Cameron and Kanye West. Representative Steve Murray has asked the public to respect the privacy of Bowie’s family at this time, meaning no further details surrounding his death have been released. Many songs deserve mention in such a brief, but for this writer, who was 17 when it came out, I’m afraid of Americans off Earthling is on repeat. [Source: Globe and Mail]

Starvation taking toll on Syrian town awaiting aid

Five more people have reportedly died of starvation in the town of Madaya, a Damascus suburb awaiting the arrival of food aid, which, apparently, is on its way. Médecins Sans Frontières reported the deaths and said that if food doesn’t come soon, 200 currently malnourished people could become critical. Residents have resorted to eating leaves and grass, and children are getting doses of sugar serum to keep from becoming malnourished. The Syrian government granted access to Madaya following worldwide condemnation for the conditions residents of the town are being forced to endure. Since the occupation in July, only one shipment of food in October has been allowed entry. Madaya has been seized by troops loyal to Bashar al-Assad, who is using starvation as a war tool to incite anger towards the rebels behind the civil war. The international committee of the Red Cross said it would deliver food, and has called for the Syrian government to allow access to all areas requiring aid. The World Food Programme said it is putting together convoys of food for Madaya, Fua, and Kefraya. The aid is set to arrive sometime on Monday. [Source: Guardian]

Controversy abounds over Sean Penn’s interview with druglord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman

Actor Sean Penn interviewed Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman in October of last year. Guzman is perhaps the most wanted fugitive in the world, and is being held responsible by Mexican officials for the majority of heroin and cocaine present in the U.S. He escaped from a maximum-security prison in July, after his cronies chiselled a 1.6 km tunnel to his shower stall. He was captured on Friday, one day before the interview appeared on Rolling Stone’s website. Guzman spoke with Penn about his involvement as the head of the world’s largest drug-trafficking organization, which has been linked to thousands of deaths and public executions. The interview was allegedly setup with the help of Mexican actress Kate del Castillo and was conducted at an undisclosed location. Authorities say the interview helped them locate the fugitive. Guzman’s hideout was raided days after the interview, but forces didn’t take the shot as the fleeing druglord was with a woman and child. The magazine has come under fire since the publication of the controversial piece on Saturday. Some believe Penn should have alerted authorities. Some believe the magazine should never have given Guzman vetting privileges. Others pan Penn for not extracting anything particularly interesting from Guzman, and that the piece was more about an a-list actor meeting a drug kingpin at a secret location. [Source: National Post and Rolling Stone]

Star Wars-themed workout designed to create franchise fans

“Awaken Your Inner Force” is a workout routine involving lightsabers. The program was designed in December at a New York gym by instructor Amira Lamb, who did so at the behest of Lucasfilm, the company behind the Star Wars franchise. Apparently, the film company wanted to get gym buffs otherwise not interested in spending their money on viewing the films interested in spending their money on viewing the films. Or, to get Star Wars fans to the gym. The New Yorker writes: “In the studio, Lamb led the group into Lunge Like Luke. The exercisers assumed the lunge position, light­sabers held high, then brought their back knees forward while lowering their sabers, and reassumed the lunge, light­sabers lifted, as fast as they could. Between exercises, the class did plié squats, guided by breathing. The group dropped the lightsabers on the floor and jump-squatted over them to perform Lightsaber Leaps. For the Skywalker Press, the participants assumed a downward-dog position, moved into a plank, brought the left leg forward, returned to a downward dog, and then repeated the sequence with the right leg.” [Source: Death and Taxes]

Video: watch National Geographic footage of bees hatching


For more interesting stuff, follow @spectatortrib on Twitter. And find us on Instagram, too: @spectatortribune.  

Follow this link to subscribe to 5 things you absolutely must know today: