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WPDH 2022 Spring Fling Concert with Ace Frehley

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The inaugural 2022 Spring Fling WPDH concert featuring Ace Frehley and special guests Tokyo Motor Fist (featuring members of Danger Danger and Trixter) will take place at The Chance on Saturday evening, March 5, 2022. Tickets are on sale now.

In the wake of the SOLD OUT WPDH Winter Blast concert with Dokken in December, the WPDH Spring Fling will be another great show that will sell out!

Former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley is a member of the Rock n Roll Hall of Famer. The “Spaceman” performed with Kiss from the band’s inception in 1973 until 1982. He began a solo career after leaving Kiss and eventually returned to the band for their very successful reunion in 1996. Ace continues to record and to tour with his solo group. His last release was the cover album titled Origins, Vol. 2 in 2020, with guest appearances from Lita Ford, Cheap Trick’s Robin Zander, John 5 and former Kiss guitarist Bruce Kulick, among others. The album features covers of bands like the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Humble Pie, Jimi Hendrix, the Kinks and Deep Purple, among others. Ace Frehley’s 2022 tour will feature Ace and his band performing solo and Kiss classics from his 50-year career with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. To learn more about Ace and his current band, check out the official Ace Frehley website. here.

Tickets for Ace Frehley with Special Guests Tokyo Motor Fist are on sale now and available at the Chance Box Office at 845-471-1966 and Thechancetheater.com

Presented by WPDH and Loaded Concerts

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More and more artists are coming back on stage.

Who should and shouldn’t consider a personal loan to pay off vacation debt?

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If you’ve found yourself with vacation debt this year, you’re not alone: ​​more than one in 3 Americans (36%) incurred vacation debt this year, for an average of $ 1,249, according to LendingTree . Plus, it’s often difficult to pay off this debt: A recent NerdWallet survey found that 29% of shoppers who put freebies on a credit card in 2020 carried this debt throughout that year.

An option to pay off that vacation debt that could save you money? Obtain a personal loan, although it can be risky. If you have good credit, a personal loan can be a much more affordable way to finance your vacation purchases instead of a credit card. “If you can qualify for a personal loan of around 5% or 6%, that’s much better than the average credit card, which charges over 16%,” says Ted Rossman, senior industry analyst at CreditCards.com . And a personal loan can make even more sense if you consolidate other high interest debt, such as loan consolidation and credit card debt. That said, it’s not the right option for everyone, and there are risks. Here is what you need to know.

See what rate you may be entitled to

Because personal loans can help borrowers access a significant amount of money, sometimes at a relatively low interest rate, Jacob Channel, senior economic analyst at LendingTree, says they can be a good way to cope. to high interest vacation debt. But it depends on what rate you might get: while someone with great credit may get a 5% or 6% rate, others may be offered more than 20%.

Get multiple quotes

“If vacations come and go and your card balance is large, do some research and use a debt consolidation calculator to see if consolidating will save you money. If you’re looking for a personal loan, pre-qualify with a handful of lenders to get an idea of ​​what rate and loan amount you’ll qualify for, ”says Annie Millerbernd, Personal Loans Expert at NerdWallet.

Don’t forget the fees

Another thing to consider when taking out a personal loan is the fees. “The costs to watch out for are origination costs,” Millerbernd explains. “Personal lenders who charge a origination fee often take a percentage of the amount you borrow on the loan before it reaches your account. This is something to consider if you are trying to borrow a specific amount, because with a set-up fee, you could end up running out of a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, ”says Millerbernd.

Don’t use a personal loan for the wrong reasons

While personal loans, if you get low rates, can make sense for dealing with high interest debt, Millerbernd notes that they are a significant liability for short-term discretionary purchases. “Everyone is eager to get out and travel these days, but even the smallest personal loans often have repayment schedules of a year or more,” says Millerbernd.

Don’t use a personal loan as a quick fix

If you’re someone who “is considering using a personal loan as a temporary dressing to free up your credit card limits for additional overspending,” Channel says you should consider other options such as credit counseling. Instead, use a personal loan to save money and build better financial habits in the future.

Consider alternative solutions

Another, perhaps cheaper, way to pay off vacation debt is to use a 0% interest balance transfer card. “This will give you a few months without interest to work on your debt, which can take the pressure off. However, you need strong credit to qualify, ”Millerbernd.

Budget to avoid needing loans like this in the future

Channel says the best way to deal with vacation debt is to stay organized and diligent in paying it off. If you’re taking out a personal loan, you’ll need a plan to pay off that personal loan – “look at debt repayment strategies like snowball and avalanche methods,” Millerbernd says – and avoid spending more than you pay off. you can afford for your credit card. This type of planning can be built into your budget.

Make a different plan on how you will handle vacations in the future

“I’m not a big fan of taking on retail or vacation debt. I prefer to see people avoid taking on vacation debt. There may be cheaper ways to celebrate, like buying fewer gifts or giving homemade gifts, ”says Rossman. So in the future, set a good budget and stick to it. “Maybe you and your family can only buy for the kids… or maybe you can create a secret Santa and buy for someone else rather than the whole group. You can also volunteer time by offering to babysit your sister’s children so that she and her husband can have a date without having to pay a babysitter, ”says Rossman.

People love to play games. Use these 4 psychological tips to retain customers.

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Opinions expressed by Contractor the contributors are theirs.

Most of us love to play games. Whether it’s a sports game like baseball that we play in a stadium or a digital computer game, games have the potential to become a vital part of our lives. But games also have implications beyond the realm of pure entertainment: they can influence user behavior and help businesses reach critical milestones.

Gamification is the technique of using elements of game design in contexts not related to gaming. The term “gamification” has become a buzzword in recent years. Today, many startups and companies are introducing gamification into their products to influence user behavior. Gamification helps achieve a crucial business goal: it gets people to make the decisions that businesses want them to make.

Why are companies introducing gamification?

User emotions play a huge role in how users think and experience products. A positive emotional response from using a product is likely to lead to better user satisfaction. Gamification works because it engages users emotionally (it triggers users’ emotions and feelings). Well-designed gamification triggers dopamine; it makes people happy and excited when they interact with a product. These sentiments motivate users to continue using the products and have a positive impact on user retention rates. Users return to the product to receive a new portion of positive emotions.

Related: How Gamification Engages Customers and Employees

The psychology of gamification

Psychology is present in any activity that influences user behavior, and gamification is no exception. When gamification naturally creeps into a product, it doesn’t force users to make a decision – it guides them to it. Users don’t think they need to perform routine tasks, but rather think they are playing a game where the tasks are a natural part of the product experience.

Here are four psychological engines that can help you create good gamification.

1. Awards

Nir Eyal, investor and behavioral economist, developed a methodology called Hook Model. The model describes the creation of habitual behaviors through a four-phase loop cycle that consists of a trigger, action, reward, and ongoing investment. Basically, the Hook Model is all about creating a user habit. However, it is only possible to create such a habit when the user receives a valuable reward. It is therefore important to understand what drives customer behavior and what is important to them.

A simple example of a cycle of usual behavior can be seen in many coffee chains. Customers receive a new stamp every time they purchase coffee from a particular chain. Customers know they will receive free coffee when they collect a certain number of stamps, so they become loyal to this channel.

In digital products, it is possible to use similar mechanisms – adding loyalty points in products that users can redeem for discounts or introducing a different membership level for different numbers of completed tasks (e.g. bronze , silver and gold) which will give users rewards (i.e. 5%, 10%, 15% off).

Related: 3 Secret Reasons Your Brand Needs A Rewards Program

2. Sense of accomplishment

The feeling of accomplishment is one of the most powerful psychological factors in human behavior. The Zeigarnik Effect, named after Soviet psychologist Bluma Zeigarnik, claims that people remember unfinished or interrupted tasks better than completed tasks. By gracefully reminding a user that they still have a task in progress, you motivate them to complete that task.

A good example of the Zeigarnik effect in digital products is a progress bar that visualizes the user’s progress in a task they have started. For example, it could be progress in learning a new skill or a new language. Learning a new language is a huge task. By breaking it down into steps, showing users their progress towards the goal, and adding playful intent, you motivate them to complete the task.

Another example is the introduction of achievement milestones in product design. For example, a product might have a system of levels that users go through (start with level one and move up to level 10). When each next level is more difficult than the last, it motivates users to work even harder towards the next goal. Whenever users reach the next level, they experience a positive sense of accomplishment which creates a positive habit of using a product.

3. Competitive spirit

Humans are competitive by nature – competition is ingrained in our DNA. Competition with other people can increase our motivation and improve our productivity. Psychologists often call competition an “extrinsic incentive” because the motivation to accomplish a particular task is external rather than internal. In other words, when people see how other people behave in specific activities, it motivates them to work harder for better results, but as soon as the competition is over they might stop doing it.

The leaderboards are a good example of this real world pilot. Ranking helps us determine who is performing best in a specific activity. But it is possible to embed rankings in digital products to motivate users to perform particular tasks. For example, by entering a ranking in a fitness tracker app, you encourage users to improve their training results. This technique can lead users to master a particular exercise. As the players master the game and achieve better results, they also receive positive feedback from the community.

Related: The Gamification Used By Some Employers To Recruit Candidates

Gamification is also rooted in social influence. People need to see the results of their work so that they can share it with those around them. It is possible to motivate users to perform particular tasks by giving them a badge, a visual representation of achievements, which they can show to their friends and family. Badges become virtual status symbols as they indicate how users performed particular activities.

4. Social bond

Humans are social animals and we like to be part of special communities. This psychological aspect translates well into gamification. User engagement can be improved if you can make users feel like part of a community when they interact with your product. In digital products, it is possible to develop social relationships by adding membership to particular groups in exchange for certain activities. For example, users must complete X activities before receiving an invitation to the top members area.

Gamification is a powerful tool that, when used correctly, can have an extremely positive impact on a business’s bottom line. Psychological factors such as reward, sense of accomplishment, competitive spirit, and social relationships can help you create a more engaging user experience. When people feel good about interacting with your product, they’re more likely to be motivated to use it over and over again.

But like any other design technique, the real magic of gamification is in the detail. When designing a new product and want to introduce gamification, you should always start by identifying the primary readers (activities that users want to perform using your product). Only after that, you need to introduce game elements that will reinforce these activities. If you achieve this goal, you will create an experience that feels natural to you.

Fake rolls of cigarettes smuggled to dodge Tk 1,000 crore in tax

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In December last year, Chattogram Customs seized fake rolls of cigarette tape or counterfeit revenue stamps worth around Tk 230 crore in two shipments of offset papers imported from China by two shell companies based on Chattogram.

Following the seizure, customs authorities in an investigation found that racketeering had previously released 13 such consignments.

According to customs officials, the entry of stamps, typically used in cigarette packs, has caused the government to recognize a loss of at least Tk 1,000 crore in revenue.

According to the rules set by the National Board of Revenue (NBR), companies must collect the tape rolls from the Security Printing Corporation (Bangladesh) Ltd, which is the main government stamp printer in Bangladesh.

The tax administration derives its income from the sale of stamps and therefore it is not possible to purchase or import such items from any organization other than the SPCL.

Modhumati Associates Ltd, the only customs clearance and shipping agent engaged in importing goods from the same Chinese company by Bappu Enterprise and Arafat Enterprise, shut down its website after the cargo was seized.

Chinese exporter Digi Anti-Fake (Shenzhen) Co Ltd, where the shipments originated from, also shut down its website.

Sharfuddin Miah, deputy commissioner in the Audit Investigation and Research (AIR) section of Chattogram Customs House, told TBS: “These published rolls of tape may be available on packs of cigarettes currently on the market or in possession of importers and cigarette dealers.

Customs authorities filed two separate cases against the Bappu company and the Arafat company on December 16 and December 23, respectively, with the Bandar police station in connection with the seizure of the tape rolls.

In a letter to the NBR chairman on Jan.4, Chattogram Customs House commissioner Mr Fakhrul Alam said there was a need to verify the samples after collecting them from the depots of dealers, retailers and businesses. suspects in the respective districts.

“Immediately before the stock of imported counterfeit tape rolls runs out, it is possible to collect suspicious samples from the depots of the respective resellers, retailers and suspicious companies and test them with the SPCL to find out which companies are involved. in stamp forgery, “he added.

The letter also mentioned that the matter should be investigated by VAT detectives, customs intelligence services and VAT commissioners to determine what needs to be done to prevent such fraud.

The customs authorities have formed a five-member committee headed by Md Shahidul Islam, co-director at the Directorate of Audit, Intelligence and Investigations of the VAT, to investigate the case.

The committee has already requested details of the bank accounts of the two companies.

Munawar Mursalin, deputy director in the Audit, Intelligence and Investigations Directorate of VAT and member of the investigative body, told TBS: “We are investigating the introduction of fake tape rolls. We will find out what other organizations are involved in this circle. “

Md Jahedul Kabir, head of the Bandar police station, said the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) was investigating the two cases.

Shahnewaz Khaled, CID’s Chattogram Metropolitan Police (SP) superintendent, said: “We are collecting various documents and attempts are underway to arrest those involved in the incident.

Tape roll import companies only exist on paper

The official address of Bappu Enterprise has been mentioned as being in the GA Bhaban of Anderkilla in the port city. However, no organization by that name was found at the address.

Abul Kalam Azad, president of the GA Bhaban Businessmen Welfare Association, said there was no organization called Bappu Enterprise in the building.

The address of another importer, Arafat Enterprise, was mentioned as being at Quader Tower in the Jubilee Road area of ​​Chattogram town.

Bappu Barua and Mohammad Arafat Hossain, owners of the two importing companies, could not be reached on their phones.

In several calls, the number of Md Elias, Managing Director of Modhumati Associates, retrieved from the C&F Agents Association website was found turned off.

On December 14, customs authorities seized the batch of Bappu Enterprise at the port of Chattogram.

A week later, on December 22, Customs found false rolls of tape in a shipment of offset papers brought in by Arafat Enterprise from China.


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Novak Djokovic obtained medical exemption after testing positive for Covid-19 in December, court documents show

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Development comes as the tennis The world number 1 is confined to a temporary detention center in Melbourne as he begins a desperate legal challenge against the cancellation of his visa before the tournament.

“Mr Djokovic had received a letter from Tennis Australia’s chief medical officer on December 30, 2021 recording that he had been granted a ‘medical exemption from COVID vaccination’ on the grounds that he had recently recovered COVID, “the document said. noted.

Djokovic’s first positive PCR test was recorded on December 16, 2021, and after showing no signs of fever or “respiratory symptoms,” he then applied for a medical exemption to compete in the Australian Open, according to the court file.

In a letter dated December 7, which was leaked to reporters on Friday and cannot be independently verified by CNN, it appears tournament organizers falsely informed unvaccinated players that they could enter Australia for participate in the grand slam.

The letter states that a confirmed Covid-19 infection within the past six months as well as a covering letter from a doctor or public health authority would be considered valid documents for a medical exemption. Players have been invited to submit their nominations no later than December 10, the document said.

The advice appears to contradict advice in a widely reported letter sent by Australian Health Minister Greg Hunt to tournament director Craig Tiley in November, stressing that a Covid-19 infection in the past six months was not responding to entry requirements without quarantine.

READ: Novak Djokovic fans are fighting to get him out of his hotel. Inside, the refugees wonder if they will ever leave

Court documents released on Saturday, which were submitted to court ahead of Djokovic’s hearing on Monday, confirmed that the 34-year-old – who has previously expressed his opposition to vaccines and Covid-19 vaccine warrants – was not vaccinated on arrival in Australia on January 5.

After being questioned by the Australian Border Force, the communication states that Djokovic’s exemption was found to be invalid under Australian Biosafety Act because his “previous infection with COVID-19 is not considered to be a medical contraindication to vaccination against Covid-19 in Australia ”.

A “medical contraindication” is granted in specific situations where a drug, procedure, vaccine or surgery should not be used because it may be harmful to a person’s health.

Djokovic’s visa was subsequently canceled on January 6 at 4:11 a.m. local time, under section 116 (1) (e) of the Migration Act, which “allows the cancellation of a visa when the licensee poses a risk to the health, safety or good order of the Australian community, or to an individual within the Australian community. “

Lawyers for Djokovic argued in the submission that the nine-time Australian Open champion had every reason to believe he would be allowed into the country because he “held a visa without any relevant conditions … had received the certification of a medical exemption from vaccination from the tournament organizer … and had received a document from the Ministry of the Interior informing him that he met the conditions for an arrival without quarantine. “

READ: Nick Kyrgios criticizes Novak Djokovic’s “really bad” treatment amid visa dispute

The “Home Office document” referenced by Djokovic’s lawyers relates to the Australian Travel Declaration (ATD) form, which must be completed by all passengers arriving in the country at least 72 hours before departure.

According to the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization’s Expanded Guidance on temporary medical exemptions for Covid-19 vaccines, an exemption may be granted to visa holders in certain cases involving a “PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, where vaccination may be postponed until 6 months after infection. “

However, Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters on Thursday that Tennis Australia was informed in a letter dated November 2021 that unvaccinated players with recent Covid-19 infection would not be allowed to enter the country.

Speaking at a press conference Thursday, Morrison said the 34-year-old “did not have a valid medical exemption” to avoid compulsory vaccination for arrivals in the country.

Djokovic’s legal team has requested an urgent injunction against the decision by Australian border forces to revoke his visa. The country’s Federal Circuit Court has adjourned the decision until Monday on whether he will be allowed to stay in Australia or be deported.

Photos show Djokovic was unmasked at events the day documents show he tested positive

Several images posted by the official social media accounts of the Novak Foundation show Djokovic, who was not wearing a mask, participating in a panel discussion in front of an audience.

The images are dated December 16, when Australian court documents show he tested positive for Covid-19. None of the other participants wore a mask.

On December 17, the Belgrade Tennis Association’s Facebook page posted several photos of Djokovic posing with a group of young people at a tennis awards ceremony. One photo shows at least 26 people, most of them young, posing with him. Local Serbian media widely reported that Djokovic participated in the youth awards ceremony.

On the same day, Djokovic posted a photo of himself with a plaque on his official Instagram account.

The caption reads: “It is an honor to receive my own Serbian stamp. Thank you to my generous country for this rare gift! I am honored! I am delighted to share that we will be partnering with the Serbian National Postal Service on the projects of @novakfoundation for every child to have the opportunity to go to kindergarten 🙏🏼. Thanks for everyone who put this together. Now @jelenadjokovicndf and I are going to bring home stamps for the children to write to Santa Claus . “

It is not known if Djokovic was aware of his test results before showing up for any of these events. CNN has reached out to representatives for Djokovic for comment.

A number of players have lent their support to Djokovic as the visa saga continues, including Australia’s Nick Kyrgios and American John Isner.

In their native Serbia, the Djokovic family staged a protest outside the country’s National Assembly in Belgrade earlier this week. Djokovic’s father, Srdjan, said authorities were holding his son “captive”, a claim denied by Australian Home Secretary Karen Andrews.

“He’s free to go anytime he chooses to, and Border Force will make that easier,” Andrews told ABC on Friday.

“It is the responsibility of every traveler to ensure that they have all the necessary documents to enter Australia.”

CNN’s Niamh Kennedy, George Ramsay and Jennifer Hauser contributed to this report.


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Exclusive: Many Guantanamo detainees resettled in legal limbo, according to analysis | Guantanamo golf course

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Around 30% of former Guantanamo detainees who have been resettled to third countries have not been granted legal status, according to a new analysis shared exclusively with the Guardian, leaving them vulnerable to deportation and limiting their ability to rebuild their lives .

Of the hundreds of men released from Guantanamo since the prison opened 20 years ago, around 150 have been sent to third countries under bilateral agreements negotiated by the United States, as their country of origin was considered dangerous to return.

Publicly, the United States has pledged to transfer them in a humane manner that would ensure their rehabilitation after years of incarceration – and, in many cases, torture – without charge. But many remain in a legal limbo, unable to work or reunite with their families, and have been subjected to years of detention. Others were forcibly returned in dangerous conditions.

The new data was produced by human rights organization Reprieve, which supports former prisoners, and illustrates how the lawlessness that has marked the prison from the start can follow the men for years after their release. The analysis indicates that around 45 men did not receive residency documents during their resettlement.

Ravil Mingazov was held at Guantanamo for over 14 years before being transferred to the United Arab Emirates on the last day of the Obama administration. A Russian Muslim Tatar who had been harassed by authorities because of his religion, he feared returning home, where UN human rights experts warned he was at risk of torture. He was assured that he would live freely in the United Arab Emirates after a short stint in a rehabilitation center. Instead, he was held in solitary confinement and severely abused, according to his family and lawyers.

Ravil Mingazov, before being detained at Guantánamo Bay. Photography: Reed Smith

Her 23-year-old son Yusuf Mingazov spoke to the Guardian from his home in London. “I’m not saying Guantanamo is a good place. It is one of the worst places in the world, one of the worst prisons. But compared to the United Arab Emirates right now, it’s a beautiful place.

Last year, fears of forced repatriation grew after Russian authorities visited Ravil’s mother in Tatarstan to produce travel documents. Monitored phone calls to relatives have stopped. A UN opinion compared Mingazov’s case to incommunicado detention and enforced disappearance, holding both the United States and the United Arab Emirates responsible. A State Department spokesperson said concerns about the matter had been raised with the UAE government.

Martina Burtscher, a social worker at Reprieve, said meeting the needs of former detainees became much more difficult when the Trump administration removed a State Department office dedicated to the Guantánamo shutdown. This office was headed by a special envoy responsible for finding solutions for the remaining men and monitoring the living conditions of the resettled people.

Without the office, there was no way to put pressure on host governments, who “now had a free hand” to do whatever they wanted with the men, Burtscher said. “Who are you calling in the State Department to try to follow up?” You can go to the US Embassy in the host country, which I have tried to do in several places. The answers were largely the same: “It’s not our problem anymore. The men are now at [mercy] of their host countries, and we are sure that their human rights are respected.

For many former inmates, this was not the case. The United Arab Emirates deported 22 other men to their countries of origin, Yemen and Afghanistan. One of the Yemeni men is detained by a militia; one of the Afghans died of “torture, ill-treatment and medical neglect in Guantanamo and the United Arab Emirates”, according to a UN report. In 2018, Senegal forcibly repatriated two men to Libya, where they were held by militias. They have since been released but remain “vulnerable to further detention,” according to Reprieve.

Other ex-prisoners may be nominally free in host countries, but without papers they often cannot work, travel or see their families. Mansoor Adayfi, a Yemeni sent to Serbia in 2016, complained about continued surveillance and other restrictions, calling life after detention “Guantánamo 2.0”.

Mansour Adayfi.
Mansour Adayfi. Photography: Slavoljub Milanović

The State Department spokesman said the government is raising concerns with host countries when it is not clear that former detainees are being treated humanely.

The Biden administration has not reinstated the role of special envoy for the closure of Guantanamo. Only one person has so far been released under Biden, in his native Morocco, and 13 detainees are eligible for the transfer.

Ambassador Daniel Fried, the special envoy during Obama’s first term, said monitoring the progress of resettled detainees was a central part of the job. “We knew the status of each transfer to a third country. I knew the one who got married and where he worked and who his wife was, ”he said.

“There are Guantanamo problems that will never go away,” Fried continued. “The way you deal with this is to step up and make sure that the people who were there – if you found them eligible for the transfer – are getting the support they need. “

MLK Day 2022 religious events in Youngstown, Ohio

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Reverend Lewis Macklin

I share a flashback from 1978! My seventh grade math teacher at Adams Junior High School sent my home an Impairment Report because my grade was a “B” and he felt my potential was an “A”!

When my grandmother opened the mail, she came to school immediately, out of the blue, wearing white chipped-leather go-go boots, a plaid poncho, gauchos, a wig that exposed her gray hair. natural and had a cigarette in his hand! I might add that it contrasted sharply with my tie outfit, white shirt with cufflinks and blue suede Stacy Adams; accessorized with a briefcase. Indeed, I was not the “average” seventh grade student and my peers attest to this truth even today. It didn’t take long for word to spread around the building that there was a crazy woman looking for me.

With the teacher and administration gathered in the main office, like Tyler Perry’s Madea, my freestyle rapper grandmother says, “You eat my bread, I’m gonna break your head!” To the approval of the deputy director who shared: “You are my mother in a way!” I knew now was not the time to correct it and say it’s my grandmother. Yet I still couldn’t imagine all this drama for a B grade! Needless to say, my final mark was an A-minus – no bragging, just fear to death!

I share this memory when I recently discovered that Mr. Joseph A. Sculli Jr., my former math teacher, has passed away. He gave me a lesson in life, especially in personal responsibility and expectations, which I have never forgotten. He was small in stature but tall in integrity. I am grateful for the lesson in life that I still embrace today. Hopefully my family understands the source of my “extra-ness”. More so, I am grateful to have shared my appreciation with Mr Sculli for the frank challenge of never accepting minimum standards. Don’t settle for good when you can be taller. May his memory remain a blessing.

Another flashback

I was browsing through old files and fondly remembered that the Mahoning Valley Association of Churches was once responsible for the weekly programming of “Reflections”, WKBN-TV’s inspirational messages from religious leaders in the area. . I had the honor of participating in 1998 and here are the two shared sermonettes:

  • “Unlike Superman, our Lord has x-ray vision that goes beyond reach and focus. He is able to look past our faults and examine our needs. Trust his all-seeing eyes. His supernatural sight is shared with his superlative love for us.
  • “We can be likened to coupons, each having redeeming value by the hand that holds it. You are appreciated and worth the savings. His hands covered with nail scars bear the marks to prove it. It has been declared: “Do not be afraid for the Lord has redeemed you and called you by your name; you are his. ‘”

It is my renewed hope and interest that MVAC, under the leadership of Dr Thomas Sauline, considers re-establishing these inspiring expressions delivered by the religious community.

Martin Luther King: Civil Rights 54 Years Later

A Martin Luther King worship service is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. on January 16, 2022, at the Price Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church, 920 Dryden Ave., and will be broadcast live. There will be selected readings from local youth and special music. The preacher for the service will be the Reverend Dr. Marvin McMickle of Cleveland, a revered theologian, preacher, pastor teacher and author. Dr McMickle recently retired as President of Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, Dr King’s alma mater.

People are urged to check online if they are not vaccinated. Temperatures will be checked at the door. Masks must be worn.

A Martin Luther King workshop is scheduled from 8:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. on January 17, 2022, at the First Presbyterian Church of Youngstown, 201 Wick Ave. The opening session will be broadcast live. There will be focus groups on criminal justice, health care and youth empowerment. Dr McMickle will be in attendance and will examine the impact of the redistribution.

We thank co-organizers Jaladah Aslam, Reverend Kenneth Simon and Penny Wells for coordinating these efforts with the MLK Planning Committee, which meets year round.

As the National King’s Day approaches, we must revisit the message Dr. King shared in the pursuit of the beloved community. It continues to require that all hands be on the bridge to make this a reality. King once said, “What makes me happy is that this is not a nigger struggle. God has inspired many of his white children in this struggle, and they are here with us.

He went on to say, “We must always make it clear that the tension in our nation is not just a tension between black males and white males, but it is a tension between justice and injustice.”

That said, we must continue to build coalitions and foster collaborations to advance justice for all. We are wrong if we view the civil rights movement as a program led and embraced only by African Americans. Dr. King cultivated relationships that extended beyond his Baptist roots. In particular, the Jewish community responded to King’s call and made a significant difference. During many marches, Jewish demonstrators marched side by side with blacks. Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, a prominent Jewish theologian, was a friend of King and was pictured walking with him on the march from Selma. He presented the Prize for Judaism and World Peace to King in 1965.

This relationship forged efforts beyond marching and protest, such as helping to found and fund the NAACP, the United Negro College Fund, the National Urban League, and the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee. Let us not forget that we must continue the fight for freedom and justice for all. May the visual of this rendition of The Balm in Gilead Inc.’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing” inspire you to keep the dream alive. As it is written in Amos 5:24: “But let righteousness flow like waters, and righteousness like a brook which flows always. “

A summit experience

The Youngstown Playhouse will present The Mountaintop, a fictional tale of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s last night on Earth. Named after his last speech and taking place at the Lorraine Hotel on April 3, 1968, the production reveals the human side of MLK Jr. The performance, directed by James Major Burns, will star Tae Stubbs as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Tasia Ford as Camae, a housekeeper for the hotel.

The Mountaintop, written by Katori Hall, will take place on the weekends February 18-20 and February 25-27. Friday and Saturday performances are at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday mornings will start at 2:30 p.m. Guests are encouraged to stay afterward for a stakeholder discussion moderated by Thomas Fields, a communications specialist for Case Western Reserve University.

A passing thought

America took a New Years Eve hiatus to honor the legacy of artist Betty White. A few days earlier, the community was discussing their next centennial celebration. The passing three weeks before this milestone supports my position: “Don’t wait to celebrate! »Live each day like the last because there are no repetitions. Share, show and express your love to those you meet daily and ALWAYS KEEP THE FAITH!

Reverend Lewis W. Macklin II is the senior pastor of Holy Trinity Baptist Missionary Church, chaplain of the Youngstown Police Department, president of the Baptist Pastors Council and local coordinator of the African American Male Wellness Walk in the Mahoning Valley. He resides in Youngstown with Dorothy, his marriage and ministry partner. They share the love and joy of six children and eight grandchildren and their mischievous dog, Sir Winston.

– All Bible quotes are New Living Translation, unless otherwise noted.

Calgary Carolina Hurricanes Brady Skjei Andrei Svechnikov

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The Carolina Hurricanes extended their winning streak to five games on Friday night at PNC Arena, overcoming a very slow start to beat the Calgary Flames 6-3.

Brady Skjei stayed warm in 2022, scoring one goal and collecting three points for his second big game to open the new year. Andrei Svechnikov added two goals, while Frederik Andersen kept Carolina in the early game with great saves. Derek Stepan, Tony DeAngelo and Jesper Fast also scored goals.

After the victory, Carolina head coach Rod Brind’Amour, Svechnikov, Fast and Skjei spoke to the media via Zoom.

Here’s what they had to say:

Rod Brind’Amour

On getting the win after a slow start: I kind of thought it was going to happen. We played a very good team that plays fast and hard. We were coming out of this long break. As much as you talk about it, you have to be in the rhythm. It just took us a while. Freddie kept us in the game during that first half, and we were lucky to come out 1-1 for sure.

On the success of the penalty kill: We expect to kill a penalty. You’re not going to kill them all. You’re gonna have a bad bounce and they’re gonna have a good play. Tim [Gleason] did a great job stepping in and putting his mark on it. The guys really took it to heart. They are very proud of it. We had some breakdowns and our goalie made some big saves. But that’s a crucial part of the game, especially in a game like tonight where if they get one on the power play, it’s a different game.

On the objective of Fast which opens things: We said that all week and before the game. It’s another thing to go out there and experience it. It’s not even that we were slow, we just weren’t up to it. It was a turning point. It was ‘ok, we are not playing very well, but we are not down’. The second half was the exact opposite. He totally rocked, and we kind of had our legs. I thought it had been taken from them during the entire period. It was the difference in the game, for me. We were able to capitalize on our opportunities in this second period.

On Skjei’s offensive production and the escalating guys: This is what we must have. We need everyone. We talk about it all the time. If we want to be that team that we all expect to be and want to be, everyone has to contribute. Brady can skate, shoot. It’s not really surprising to me that he’s able to do that. Obviously, you don’t expect it to happen at this rate. But if you really watch his game, he still has chances to score pretty much every night because he always comes in really well.


Andrei Svechnikov

On the rust and on if they just shook it off: Of course, we were a little rusty because we haven’t played for five days. Of course, we feel it. You are not in good shape. And of course, the first half was not our best. But thank goodness we came out in the second half and I think we played a good game after the first half.

On him to score goals: Yes, always when you score you become more confident. It hasn’t been lucky for me the last 10 games probably. I tried to shoot, but it wasn’t right. Thank goodness I scored a few goals today. We will see from there.

On Andersen’s play in the first period: For sure. If you watch Freddie every game, he’s the best player on our team. When they go to our net you always know Freddie is going to save him. Nice to have him here for sure.

Shorthanded by picking it up: Yeah, I have to stop taking penalties. That’s for sure. I’ve been good with it lately. Today I just broke my stick and I couldn’t do anything. I don’t know, maybe I shouldn’t hold it a bit. I have to stop to take penalties. I just have to stop doing this for sure.


Fast jesper

Why the penalty kill is so good: I just feel like we’re on the same page. Everyone knows what to do. We’ve been keeping the same duets for a long time, so it’s easy to read each other. This is a difficult work. We’ve been on a good roll so far. Special teams are very important at the moment. We just have to continue to be good in these situations.

On his goal at the end of the first period: Freddie was exceptional in the first half. I had the impression that they were overtaking us. It is not acceptable to allow 21 shots or anything in the first half. We were happy to have a 1-1 game after the first period.

On his goal of opening things up: You always get energy after scoring a goal. Especially during this time when we also needed a goal. It allows us to regain our confidence and move our legs a bit more because I felt like we were standing still with a lot of turnovers in the first half. Like you said, I feel like we became a little different team after the first half there. We really deserved the lead we got in the second half.

On if the key arrives just in front of the net: Yes, this is where you score a lot of goals. I’m just trying to put my body in front. Today I was lucky to have a stick on the puck and a good rebound. Just try to be in the right areas.

On the penalty frustrating the Flames: Sure. You want to kill as many seconds as possible. If you can keep the puck that’s great. A few shifts there [Jordan Staal] and [Sebastian Aho] hold the washer. If you kill the next 20 or 25 seconds, that’s cool.


Brady Skjei

On the net looking wholesale for him right now: It looks good. I obviously had some really nice looks throughout the split. I just had the chance to take advantage of these opportunities. Hopefully I can keep finding those spots and putting the puck in the back of the net.

On if we can expect one goal per game from him: No. No. I would love. We’ll see how long it lasts, but I would say the betting odds that it lasts are pretty low. We will see but no.

On what makes the penalty so good: I just think everyone is on the same page. Obviously the goalie is a big part of it, and Freddie has been amazing for us. Everyone seems to be on the same page, working hard, walking into lanes so they don’t have Category A shooting lanes. It feels good. We must continue. So far, to start the season, we’ve been doing very well on the penalty kill.


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Groups recruit COVID sniffer dogs to detect virus on tour

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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues into its third year, a new technique has emerged to detect positive cases during large-scale tours and concerts – and it’s being done on all fours.

In a bid to keep their tours from shutting down, musicians have started recruiting trained dogs capable of detecting the coronavirus in crew members or anyone else with backstage access.

“People say, ‘What is this dog doing? “” said recently Jerry Johnson, CEO of Bio Detection K9 Incorporated, which oversees the training program that contracts the dogs. Rolling stone. He explained that after about six weeks of training, dogs learn to sit up when they detect the virus on someone’s hands or feet. “It surprises them and they’re pessimistic, but if you understand the instincts of a dog’s behavior it makes a lot of sense. Dogs sniff each other to see if that other dog has a virus. We train them to look for something that would interest them anyway.

With the current increase in positive cases and groups looking to avoid canceling tours once they have already started, dogs are in high demand. Metallica used dogs for their fall 2021 shows in Fort Lauderdale and Atlanta, as well as their 40th anniversary concerts last month in San Francisco. Various groups plan to follow, including Tool and the country singer. Ashley McBryde.

The success of dog training is proven. Last fall, during an Eric Church tour, several crew members who thought they were negative actually tested positive via detection of the dog. “So far touch wood, the dogs have taken it out of the park,” said John Peets of Q Prime, the management company that represents Church and Metallica. Rolling stone. “We haven’t had a missing dog. Dogs are more accurate than tests.

Currently 12 dogs are in service, with seven or eight more in training, and the program has now been fine-tuned so that dogs can detect the highly transmissible Omicron variant by sniffing an individual’s mask, not their hands or feet. And not only are the dogs more effective than regular testing policies, they’re also cheaper, around $ 2 per person according to Johnson, and, as Peets notes, “friendlier.”

2022 Classic Rock Tour and Festival Preview

More and more artists are coming back on stage.


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What Is Debt Consolidation And Is It A Good Idea?

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CNN Underscored examines financial products like credit cards and bank accounts based on their aggregate value. We may receive a commission if you apply and are approved for a product, but our reports are always independent and objective.

According to Experian 2021 Credit Report, US consumers with credit card debt have an average balance of $ 5,525, while the average credit card interest rate is currently well above 16%.

For people in arrears, high debt and a high Annual Percentage Rate (APR) can combine in the worst possible way, often creating a cycle of high interest debt payments that consumers cannot escape. And, even for those who can Keeping up with monthly payments, too much credit card debt can prevent them from reaching other financial goals, like saving for the future.

Either way, debt consolidation offers a way out of credit card debt that is much less serious than bankruptcy. You just have to be prepared to create a plan and stick to it until you are debt free. If you want to get out of debt for good, read on to find out how debt consolidation can help.

If you’ve been trying to plan your way out of debt or make more money but nothing seems to be working, debt consolidation might be the answer you’re looking for. With debt consolidation, you will essentially be swapping out the loans and credit card balances you have for a new loan product with better rates and terms, thus reducing your monthly payments or making it easier to allocate more. from your money to reducing principal on debt, or both.

Essentially, with a debt consolidation, you take out a new loan and use the proceeds from that new loan to pay off all of your old debts, and then make monthly payments only on the new loan. Broadly speaking, there are three financial products that consumers use for debt consolidation:

  • Debt Consolidation Loans, also called personal loans, allow you to refinance your debts into a new loan with a fixed interest rate and fixed repayment term.
  • Balance Transfer Credit Cards allows you to consolidate your debt on a new credit card that offers 0% APR for a limited time.
  • Home equity loans can help you consolidate your debt into a new loan product backed by the value of your home.

Whichever product you decide to use, remember that debt consolidation only really works if you stop taking on more debt. If you consolidate debt with a personal loan or credit card with balance transfer and continue to charge more for purchases on other lines of credit, debt consolidation is probably a waste of time.

Debt consolidation may or may not be a good idea. It all depends on how seriously you take the process and whether you have the discipline to carry it out.

As an example, let’s say you currently have $ 5,525 in credit card debt at an APR of 19%. In this scenario, you could pay $ 100 per month for this debt for 133 months – or more than 11 years – before it is paid off. During this period, you would have paid more than $ 7,701 in interest.

But what if you consolidate that $ 5,525 of debt into one personal loan? Although personal loans vary, most allow you to borrow money for 2 to 7 years. Personal loans also come with fixed interest rates, fixed repayment terms, and fixed monthly payments.

In this example, you may qualify for a 60-month personal loan with an interest rate of 7%. In this case, you would pay off your balance with a monthly payment of $ 109 for five years (60 months). During that time, you would pay approximately $ 1,039 in interest payments. That’s a huge savings of over $ 6,000.

You can also consolidate your debt with a credit card. However, it’s important to note that while balance transfer credit cards offer an introductory 0% APR on transferred balances, the longest possible term currently offered is 21 months. After that, your interest rate will revert to the normal APR, which will always be high.

For this reason, a credit card balance transfer is only a good idea when you have an amount of debt that you can pay off during the card introduction period. If you need more time to get your debt under control than a balance transfer allows, you should consider a personal loan instead.

Finally, you can also consolidate your debt with a home equity loan that uses your home as collateral. In many cases, this can be a good idea, as home equity loans can come with low fixed rates, as well as a fixed monthly payment and a fixed repayment term. Remember, you need good credit to get a home equity loan, and you can lose your home if you default on your payment.

But, in any of these cases, if after consolidating your debt, you overspend and accumulate an additional $ 5,000 in debt on the same original credit card that you used before that you can’t afford to pay that $ 100 in monthly payments on this debt, you will end up paying $ 4,985 in additional interest. Add that interest to the extra $ 5,000 of debt and your situation will be worse than you started with. This is why it is so important to stay disciplined and not keep spending more than you have when pursuing debt consolidation.

There are other debt consolidation options you can consider, some of which offer help from third party companies. For example, you might consider signing up for a Debt Management Plan (DMP), which takes place when a credit repair agency helps you negotiate interest rates and pay off your debts over a period of time. determined.

Just note that DMPs are not for everyone, and there is nothing credit repair agencies that offer DMPs can do that you cannot do on your own. Additionally, a number of credit repair agencies have gotten a bad reputation, so be sure to do plenty of research before you embark on this route.

Another alternative is debt settlement, which is a process that helps you pay off your debts for less than you owe. However, it is essential to know that debt settlement companies ask you to stop paying your debts while they are working on your behalf. Not surprisingly, this can cause considerable damage to your credit score that can last for years.

Debt management becomes considerably easier when you have a reasonable interest rate and a monthly payment that matches your income. A big part of what debt consolidation does – it helps you transfer high-interest debt to a new financial product on better terms.

Another benefit of debt consolidation is that you can reduce the monthly payments you make. If you’re currently trying to cope with five or six credit card bills, consolidating debt with a personal loan company or peer-to-peer lender can help you make the jump to just one payment per month. .

With that in mind, several factors can determine if debt consolidation is right for you. These include:

  • Your solvency: You will need good credit or better to qualify for a personal loan at the best rates and conditions. If your credit is poor, you may not be eligible for a new loan with better rates than you currently have.
  • Your desire to repay debt: Debt management takes time and effort, and full debt repayment can take years. If you are not serious about debt consolidation, a debt consolidation loan may not leave you in the best position.
  • Your ability to avoid new debt: For your debt consolidation to be successful, you must stop accumulating more debt. While you are paying off your debt consolidation loan, you should only use cash or debit. At the very least, you should use credit sparingly.

So, should you consolidate your debts? If you pay credit cards with high APRs, debt consolidation may be just what you need. Remember, you will only pay off your debt if you make a plan, and most importantly, if you stick to it. If you take out a personal loan and continue to take on credit card debt, you could end up worse off in the long run.

Get all the latest personal finance offers, news and tips at CNN Underscored Money.


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