Archive for May, 2013

I am participating in the Killaloe Pink Ribbon 10K run for cancer. I have set up a secure charity website for anybody interested in donating to this worthy cause: Killaloe Pink Ribbon Run.


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Ethiopia (/ˌiːθiˈoʊpiə/; Amharic: ኢትዮጵያ?, ʾĪtyōṗṗyā, officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Eritrea to the north, Djibouti and Somalia to the east, Sudan and South Sudan to the west, and Kenya to the south. With over 86,000,000 inhabitants, Ethiopia is the most populous landlocked country in the world and the second-most populated nation on the African continent. It occupies a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres (420,000 sq mi), and its capital and largest city is Addis Ababa.

Ethiopia is one of the oldest locations of human life known to scientists and is widely considered the region from which Homo sapiens first set out for the Middle East and points beyond. Tracing its roots to the 2nd millennium BC, Ethiopia was a monarchy for most of its history. Alongside Rome, Persia, China and India, the Kingdom of Aksum was one of the great world powers of the 3rd century. In the 4th century, it was the first major empire in the world to officially adopt Christianity as a state religion.

During the late 19th-century Scramble for Africa, Ethiopia was the only African country beside Liberia that retained its sovereignty as a recognized independent country. It was one of only four African members of the 20th-century League of Nations established following World War I. When other African nations gained their independence following World War II, many of them adopted the colors of Ethiopia’s flag. Addis Ababa became the base for several global non-profit organizations focused on Africa. In 1974, at the end of Haile Selassie I’s reign, Ethiopia became a federal republic ruled by a military junta known as the Derg, based on communism. In 1987 Mengistu established the Ethiopian People’s Democratic Republic which survived until being defeated by a coalition, loosely called the EPRDF. It has ruled since 1991.

Ethiopia is a multilingual and multiethnic society of around 80 groups, with the two largest being the Oromo and the Amhara, both of which speak Afro-Asiatic languages. Ethiopia’s ancient Ge’ez script, also known as Ethiopic, is one of the oldest alphabets still in use on the continent. The Ethiopian calendar, which is seven years and about three months behind the Gregorian calendar, co-exists alongside the Oromo calendar. The majority of the population is Christian and a third is Muslim; the country is the site of the first Hijra in Islamic history and the oldest Muslim settlement in Africa at Negash. A substantial population of Ethiopian Jews, known as Beta Israel, resided in Ethiopia until the 1980s but have since gradually emigrated to Israel. Ethiopia is also the spiritual homeland of the Rastafari movement. Nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites have been designated in the country.

Ethiopia is one of the founding members of the UN, the Non-Aligned Movement, G-77 and the Organisation of African Unity, with Addis Ababa serving as the headquarters of the African Union, the Pan African Chamber of Commerce and Industry, UNECA and the African Standby Force. Despite being located at the headwaters of the Nile, Ethiopia underwent a series of famines in the 1980s, exacerbated by civil wars and adverse geopolitics. The country has begun to recover, and it now has the largest economy by GDP in East Africa and Central Africa.

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Heineken Cup 2012-13.

The 2012–13 Heineken Cup was the 18th season of the Heineken Cup, the annual rugby union European club competition for clubs from the top six nations in European rugby. The tournament began with two pool matches on 12 October 2012 and ended with the final at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin on 18 May 2013.

Leinster, who became one of only two clubs ever to win two consecutive Heineken Cups in 2012, attempted to become the first club ever to win the competition three straight years. However they were eliminated at the pool stages, the first defending champions to do so since London Wasps in 2007–08. Toulon won an all-French final 16–15 against Clermont Auvergne.

Quarter Finals

Clermont Auvergne 36 Montpellier 14 at Parc des Sports Marcel Michelin, Clermont-Ferrand
Saracens 27 Ulster 16 at Twickenham, London
Harlequins 12 Munster 18 at The Stoop, London
Toulon 21 Leicester 15 at Stade Mayol, Toulon

Semi Finals

Clermont Auvergne 16 Munster 10 at Stade de la Mosson, Montpellier
Saracens 12 Toulon 24 at Twickenham


Clermont Auvergne 15 Toulon 16 at Aviva Stadium, Dublin

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The All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship 1892 was the sixth series of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, Ireland’s premier hurling knock-out competition. Cork won the championship, beating Dublin 2-3 to 1-5 in the final.

At the Gaelic Athletic Association’s (GAA) annual congress held in Thurles on 13 January 1892, some changes were made to the existing rules of the game. Firstly, a goal was made equal to five points. Secondly, teams were reduced from twenty-one to seventeen players. Perhaps most importantly of all, it was also decided that county champions, when representing the county, were allowed to select players from other clubs within the county.

A total of just three teams contested the championship.
Dublin (Flag-Davitts) were the only team to enter the Leinster championship and were declared the winners unopposed.
Only two counties, Cork (Redmonds) and Kerry (Kilmoyley), contested the Munster championship.
There were no provincial championships in either Connacht or Ulster.

Munster Final

Cork 5-3 Kerry 2-5 at Killarney Pk. Killarney

All Ireland Final

Cork 2-3 Dublin 1-5 at Clonturk Pk. Dublin

Dublin left the field after a disputed goal and Cork were awarded the title.

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The 1891 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship was the fifth staging of Ireland’s premier Gaelic football knock-out competition. Dublin were the champions.

Ulster Semi Final

Cavan 3-9 Antrim 0-0 at Armagh


Cavan 0-7 Armagh 1-1 at Smithborough, Co. Monaghan
Game replayed due to an objection

Final Replay

Cavan 1-11 Armagh 0-0 at Smithborough

Leinster Final

Dublin w\o Kildare at Clonturk Pk. Dublin

Munster Final

Cork 1-5 Waterford 0-4

All Ireland Semi Final

Dublin 3-7 Cavan 0-3 at Clonturk Pk.


Dublin 2-1 Cork 1-1 at Clonturk Pk.

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Estonia Listeni/ɨsˈtoʊniə/ (Estonian: Eesti), officially the Republic of Estonia (Estonian: Eesti Vabariik), is a state in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Finland, to the west by the Baltic Sea, to the south by Latvia (343 km), and to the east by Lake Peipus and Russia (338.6 km). Across the Baltic Sea lies Sweden in the west and Finland in the north. The territory of Estonia covers 45,227 km2 (17,462 sq mi), and is influenced by a humid continental climate. The Estonians are a Finnic people, and the official language, Estonian, is a Finno-Ugric language closely related to Finnish and distantly to Hungarian.

Estonia is a democratic parliamentary republic divided into 15 counties. The capital and largest city is Tallinn. With a population of 1.29 million, it is one of the least-populous member nations of the European Union, Eurozone and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Estonia has the highest gross domestic product per person among the former Soviet republics. It is listed as a “high-income economy” by the World Bank, is identified as an “advanced economy” by the International Monetary Fund, and is a member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. The United Nations classifies Estonia as a developed country with a very high Human Development Index, and the country ranks highly in measures of press freedom (3rd in the World in 2012), economic freedom, political freedom and education, and is one of the lowest in religiosity. Estonia is often described as one of the most wired countries in Europe.

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Man has always had an inquisitive nature. From the first time ancient man set foot outside his cave, he has wondered what was over the next ridge. As time has passed this metaphorical ridge has brought us around the world, to the deepest parts of the ocean, to various subterranean worlds, we have mastered flight, and travelled out of this world.

So it seems fitting that Chris Hadfield has finally made a recording in space. There has been constant speculation about travelling to Mars, and possibly looking into the idea of setting up interplanetary colonies. However, the lack of funds required to fund this technology is hampering this goal. The lack of recent major manned activity in space has led to loss of public interest in space programmes. Chris Hadfield intervention via social media outlets has been a breadth of fresh air to a forgotten industry.

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