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Taking Names: Lauper returns to Japan for concerts, support
Miss Lauper arrived in Tokyo on March 11, 2011, just as the massive quake struck northern Japan. She stayed to perform her concerts as planned, even though fears of radiation from a tsunami-stricken nuclear power plant in Fukushima caused many other performers and visitors to flee. She said she stayed to console survivors with her music, according to the Associated Press.
She’s back in the country to perform again. Miss Lauper said Monday that she is urging people to buy things from the disaster-hit areas to help people there get back on their feet.
Miss Lauper, who arrived earlier this month, traveled to the tsunami-hit areas, including an elementary school to donate cherry trees and play with the children; visited a temple; and explored a music store whose elderly owner fixed a tsunami-damaged piano.
She said she was struck by how people in Fukushima seemed to be shaken by radiation fears and feel isolated. She also raised concerns about a decline in visitors in the north, especially Fukushima.
The government has been criticized for confusion, delays, miscommunication and attempts to play down the severity of the nuclear accident, the worst since the 1986 disaster in Ukraine’s Chernobyl. The earthquake and tsunami destroyed vital cooling systems at the plant, resulting in the melting of three reactor cores and a large release of radiation, forcing about 100,000 people to evacuate.
Many residents of Fukushima are concerned about the effects of the radiation, especially on children.
Miss Lauper said the government “should come clean with what the real deal is” so people know the truth. “When you don’t know, you are fearful, and you feel powerless. Information is power.”
Beyonce, JayZ enjoy concert in New York
It was a Sunday “fun day” for Beyonce and Jay-Z: The new parents enjoyed a concert by R&B singer Terius “the Dream” Nash in New York.
According to the Associated Press, the top music couple jammed to the singer-songwriter in the VIP section of SOB’s, a small club that houses a few hundred people.
The Dream co-wrote and co-produced Beyonce’s massive hit “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It).” He also worked his magic on Rihanna’s “Umbrella,” Justin Bieber’s “Baby” and Mariah Carey’s “Touch My Body.”
He performed a number of his own hits Sunday night, including “Shawty Is a 10,” “Falsetto” and “I Luv Your Girl.” He’ll release his fourth album, “Love IV MMXII,” later this year.
The Grammy winner thanked the crowd for coming out, saying: “I know some of ya’ll got kids at home.”
Beyonce and Jay-Z have a daughter, Blue Ivy Carter, who was born in January.
Patrick Schwarzenegger injured in skiing accident
The 18-year-old son of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver said he has been treated for injuries after getting in “a little ski accident” in Idaho.
Patrick Schwarzenegger tweeted Saturday that he had received stitches “down the back and but” after the accident, and he also thanked doctors who he said cared for him in Sun Valley.
He provided a link to a photo he posted to the social-networking application Instagram, showing a deep cut on his lower back. He also said he had been bruised in the accident but did not provide details on how he got injured.
A spokesman for Ms. Shriver did not provide details.
In 2006, Arnold Schwarzenegger broke his leg in a ski accident at Sun Valley while he was governor of California.
James Cameron to dive to Earth’s deepest place
A calm James Cameron has broken his own record with the world’s deepest solo submarine dive, plunging 5.1 miles in the Pacific Ocean near Papua New Guinea, the filmmaker said Thursday.
But that’s nothing. Later this month, he said, he plans to descend to the deepest place on Earth.
Mr. Cameron is aiming to plunge to the bottom of Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench of the Pacific Ocean, 200 miles southwest of Guam. It’s 6.8 miles deep. Humans have been there only once before, when a two-man U.S. Navy team went for just 20 minutes in 1960.
The “Avatar” and “Titanic” filmmaker said he wasn’t frightened when he dove nearly that far in a practice run Wednesday that lasted 3 1/2 hours on the bottom.
“Certainly not nervous or scared during the dive,” Mr. Cameron told the Associated Press in a ship-to-shore phone interview. “You tend to be a little apprehensive ahead of the dive about what could go wrong. When you are actually on the dive, you have to trust the engineering was done right.”
Later, he acknowledged that the bone-crushing pressure at five miles and seven miles deep “is in the back of your mind.”
Mr. Cameron is using a one-man, 12-ton lime-green sub that he helped design called Deepsea Challenger. He is partnering with the National Geographic Society, where he is an explorer-in-residence.
“The deep trenches are the last unexplored frontier on our planet, with scientific riches enough to fill a hundred years of exploration,” Mr. Cameron said in an earlier statement.
Mr. Cameron, who has been an oceanography enthusiast since childhood, has made 72 deep-sea submersible dives, including 33 to the Titanic, the subject of his 1997 blockbuster. A 3-D version of “Titanic” comes out April 4, timed to the 100th anniversary of the ship’s sinking.
• Compiled from Web and wire service reports.
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Let it snow
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