2015年9月30日 星期三

cystic fibrosis, polycystic ovaries, pathogens, defect, foolproof, filibuster-proof majority, Child-Proof Toy Fair, obstructionism

 Senate's Leader Sets Showdown Over Changes to Filibuster


Senators emerged from a closed-door meeting saying they were confident an agreement could be reached Tuesday to end the standoff over a change to filibuster rules, though no deal had been struck.

 On June 19, 1964, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was approved after surviving an 83-day filibuster in the United States Senate.

Reid Promises To Take on the Filibuster
After months of GOP obstructionism, the Senate majority leader has vowed to hold hearings about dismantling the filibuster, although reform will probably to be delayed until "next Congress."
However, DFL boss Christian Seifert cautioned that no early-warning system could be fool-proof.
"While the early-warning system is in place, no federation in the world is 100 percent safe against organised crime gangs who want to manipulate matches," Seifert said.

Obama Tactic Shields Health Care Bill From a Filibuster

The president’s new stance suggests he may be much less willing to compromise on health care, his top legislative priority, even if it means a partisan fight.

German Inspectors Try to Child-Proof Toy Fair

Lethal Legos. Death-inducing dolls. Nasty Nintendos. Gruesome games and
action figures made to kill and maim -- not necessarily in that order.
Good thing there are officials to keep the Nuremberg Toy Fair safe.

The DW-WORLD Article

Is Your Kid's School Lunch Safe?
An investigation into why the government failed to include ground beef destined for schools in a wide recall last summer raises questions about whether enough is being done to ensure the food children eat is free of pathogens.

Sprint Slows Defections, but Loses $478 Million
Sprint’s cellphone service lost 801,000 of its most profitable customers in the third quarter, compared with 991,000 in the second quarter.

Bank of America
plans to offer bonuses to Merrill Lynch brokers that could amount to as much as 100 percent of the annual revenue they generate, in an effort to keep them from defecting after it completes its takeover of the investment firm, Bloomberg News reported.

Senator Arlen Specter's surprise defection from the Republican Party to join the Democrats was the lead story in all the papers. Assuming that Al Franken is eventually seated as senator from Minnesota, that gives the Democrats a 60-person, filibuster-proof majority in the Senate and will ease passage of key Obama administration priorities like health care reform and capping carbon emissions. Political considerations motivated Specter's switch; he said internal polling showed that his chances of surviving a Republican primary challenge in 2010 were "bleak."

"We estimate that one in every five women in the UK have polycystic ovaries and therefore research such as this is critical to help us to better tackle the disease."

A new genetic study of over 200,000 women reveals the underlying…

defect (LEAVE) Show phonetics
verb [I]
to leave a country, political party, etc., especially in order to join an opposing one:
When the national hockey team visited America, half the players defected.
The British spy, Kim Philby, defected to the Soviet Union/defected from Britain in 1963.


━━ n. 亡命; 変節, 脱党[会].

Show phonetics
noun [C or U]
Over the years there were hundreds of defections to the West/defections from the East.
Recent changes in policy have resulted in large-scale defection from the party.

defector Show phonetics
noun [C]
She was one of many Communist Party defectors.

defect (FAULT) Show phonetics
noun [C]
1 a fault, problem or lack in something or someone that spoils them or causes them not to work correctly:
All R45 aircraft have been grounded, after a defect in the engine cooling system was discovered.
There are so many defects in our education system.
It's a character defect in her that she can't ever accept that she's in the wrong.

2 a physical condition in which something is wrong with a part of someone's body:
She suffers from a heart/sight/speech defect.
The drug has been shown to cause birth defects.
Cystic fibrosis is caused by a genetic defect.

  1. cystic fibrosis,《病理(学)》嚢胞(のうほう)性線維症.

defective Show phonetics
describes something that has a fault in it and does not work correctly:
defective brakes
defective hearing/eyesight
a defective gene
I think that argument/theory is defective.


━━ n. 【医】病原菌, 病原体.
path・o・gen・ic ━━ a. 発病させる, 病原となる.
pa・thog・e・ny ━━ n. 発病, 病因.

Institute admits lax handling of pathogens

A state laboratory handled hundreds of hazardous pathogens beyond its capabilities, ordered workers to keep the dangers secret, and did not tell part-timers about the potentially lethal risks, The Asahi Shimbun has learned.
photoShingo Ichimura, right, a vice president at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, apologizes with other officials Wednesday for lax management of pathogens. (THE ASAHI SHIMBUN)
The violations of inhouse rules and the clandestine practices continued for years at the International Patent Organism Depositary (IPOD) in Tsukuba, Ibaraki Prefecture.
As of 2001, IPOD kept about 300 types of pathogens that could damage human health, including some considered as potentially lethal as the anthrax bacteria, according to internal documents obtained by the newspaper and other sources.
Part-time workers at the facility were assigned to test and cultivate the pathogens in facilities not well equipped for infection prevention.
A senior IPOD official who pointed out the risks to management was repeatedly told not to tell others. And the government's supervisory entities took no steps even after learning of the fact as early as 2001.
Officials of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), to which IPOD belongs, apologized at a news conference Wednesday.
"There were defects in our management, and we are in deep remorse," one executive said.
AIST Vice President Shingo Ichimura said the organization would apologize to former workers even though "it has turned out that there were no health problems."
AIST falls under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
IPOD is commissioned to receive and preserve cells and microorganisms relevant to patent applications.
Until 2004, IPOD's internal rules said the lab could accept only pathogens classified on the lowest biohazard level of the World Health Organization's standards.
IPOD facilities were not sufficiently equipped for infection prevention required under WHO standards for pathogens of hazard level 2 or higher.
But according to the documents obtained by The Asahi Shimbun, IPOD kept 296 strains of pathogens banned by the inhouse rules as of 2001.
Three strains--two Brucella strains and one glanders (Burkholderia mallei) strain--that the lab received after 1984 belonged to the potentially lethal level 3.
Up until 1999, eight workers, including female part-timers, were assigned to test or cultivate those level-3 pathogens in ordinary labs.
They were not informed of the strains' potentially lethal risks, according to sources.
In addition, anyone could enter the IPOD facilities.
AIST executives said the inhouse rules were not well known among IPOD workers in those days. The executives also ruled out any infection from the three level-3 strains.
A senior IPOD official learned of the problems in 2001 and asked AIST, the industry ministry and the Patent Office to take measures.
Around that time, fears of bioterrorism using anthrax bacteria, a level-3 pathogen, were raging in the United States. The official also called for steps to confirm the health of former workers.
But Ichimura, then at the AIST's planning headquarters, repeatedly told the official not to act without further instructions from him nor to discuss the matter with others, the sources said.
Ichimura gave similar instructions to other IPOD officials in an e-mail message. The Asahi Shimbun obtained a copy of a message apparently sent by Ichimura.
Ichimura admitted to the newspaper that IPOD did accept pathogens in violation of its rules and had (part-time) workers test them.
"But we concluded that telling the truth would have given psychological damage to those who tested them without knowing anything," he said. "So we didn't tell them."
In 2004, IPOD isolated the level-3 strains in a fire-resistant, sealed cool box. It also improved its equipment so that it could deal with level-2 pathogens.
In June this year, the revised infectious diseases prevention law took effect, making the three level-3 strains at IPOD subject to anti-terrorism regulations.
The regulations only allow facilities with sufficient infection prevention systems to keep level-3 strains.
IPOD disposed of its strains on May 31, one day before the revised law went into force.
Meanwhile, the whistle-blower, who has since retired, repeatedly called the Patent Office and others for steps to rectify the situation, apparently using lists of pathogens in IPOD's care.
The official was then criticized for taking out "(confidential) information" and was urged to sign a written pledge to never again violate the law on public servants, the sources said.
At Wednesday's news conference, Ichimura said AIST will try to locate former workers and apologize for "not telling the truth."
AIST would also apologize to Tsukuba city, officials said.(IHT/Asahi: October 18,2007)
這foolproof 是1902年在美國針對汽車開始使用的: The car...is comparatively "fool-proof".

(of a plan or machine) so simple and easy to understand that it is unable to go wrong or be used wrongly:
I don't believe there's any such thing as a foolproof scheme for making money.
This new video-recorder is supposed to be foolproof.

"...However, the group raised fears that the new service could invite bogus comments from people posing as others. While it promised to "work with each author to confirm their identity individually" - by the traditional methods of contacting the organisation affiliated with the author, contacting local officials, or collaborating with journalists - it did admit "no method is foolproof". In which case, anyone wrongly attributed should contact news-comments@google.com..."

Misquoted? Hit back with Google

THE Democratic Party may yet scrape a 60-seat filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. A run-off race takes place in Georgia on Tuesday December 2nd where Saxby Chambliss, the sitting Republican, failed to win the 50% of the vote required to retain his seat under state rules. A prolonged recount is expected to end in Minnesota where Norm Coleman, the sitting Republican senator, may possibly be unseated by Al Franken, a comedian. The race may yet be decided in the courts. Another prolonged recount in Alaska recently handed a victory to the Democratic candidate, Mark Begich, over Ted Stevens, the long serving Republican who was convicted on corruption charges shortly before the election.


━━ n. (外国に侵入する)略奪兵; 海賊; 議事妨害(者).
━━ v. 略奪[侵攻]する; 海賊行為をする; 議事を妨害する.
fil・i・bus・ter・er ━━ n.

-proof (PROTECTED)
protecting against, or not damaged by, a particular thing:
a bullet-proof vest
a waterproof/wind-proof jacket
adjective FORMAL
No household security devices are proof against (= protect completely against) the determined burglar.
Her virtue would be proof against his charms.

verb [T]
to treat a surface with a substance which will protect it against something, especially water

facial, facilitate or countenance, Craniofacial, facial angle/hair

William Frederick Poole, Class of 1849, is best known for his accomplishments as a librarian. But if his bust in the Linonia and Brothers Reading Room at Sterling Memorial Library is a fair likeness, he also had truly epic facial hair.

He did not want his executors" to facilitate or countenance the writing of any biography of me." p.242

1976 羅慧夫離開馬偕醫院,十二月六日轉任長庚醫院擔任創院院長兼整形外科,成立第一個顯微中心、美容中心。
1989十二月繼續其醫療理念,捐款三百萬成立羅慧夫顱顏基金NCF, Noordhoff Craniofacial Foundation)以幫助顱顏患者。

Craniofacial - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Craniofacial - Cached
Craniofacial (cranio- combining form meaning head or skull + -facial combining form referring to the facial structures grossly) is a term typically used to describe ...

coun·te·nance  (koun'tə-nəns) pronunciation
  1. Appearance, especially the expression of the face: The question left him with a puzzled countenance.
  2. The face or facial features.
    1. A look or expression indicative of encouragement or of moral support.
    2. Support or approval.
  3. Obsolete. Bearing; demeanor.
tr.v., -nanced, -nanc·ing, -nanc·es.
To give sanction or support to; tolerate or approve: The college administration will not countenance cheating.

[Middle English contenaunce, from Old French, from contenir, to behave. See contain.]


Translate countenance | into German | into Italian
Definition of countenance


  • 1a person’s face or facial expression:his impenetrable eyes and inscrutable countenance give little away
  • 2 [mass noun] support or approval:she was giving her specific countenance to the occasion


[with object]
  • admit as acceptable or possible:he was reluctant to countenance the use of force


keep one's countenance

maintain one’s composure, especially by refraining from laughter.

keep someone in countenance

help someone to remain calm and confident: to keep herself in countenance she opened her notebook

out of countenance

disconcerted or unpleasantly surprised: I put him clean out of countenance just by looking at him


Middle English: from Old French contenance 'bearing, behaviour', from contenir (see contain). The early sense was 'bearing, demeanour', also 'facial expression', hence 'the face'

Search Results

facial angle
1. (Anatomy) the angle formed between a line from the base of the nose to the opening of the ear and a line from the base of the nose to the most prominent part of the forehead: often used in comparative anthropology
2. (Anthropology & Ethnology) the angle formed between a line from the base of the nose to the opening of the ear and a line from the base of the nose to the most prominent part of the forehead: often used in comparative anthropology

2015年9月29日 星期二

tort, doomsayer, repartee, indifferent to negligent, line one's own pocket(s)

Chan Lowe / South Florida Sun Sentinel

The Lonely Death of Sabrina Seelig

The family of Sabrina Seelig says she suffered an agonizing death because the care she received at a Brooklyn hospital was indifferent to negligent.

A 1976 triptych by Francis Bacon brought $86.3 million on Wednesday night at Sotheby’s, becoming the most expensive work of contemporary art ever sold at auction and a retort to doomsayers who had predicted that the art market would falter seriously this season because of broad economic anxieties.

A 1976 triptych by Francis Bacon

The most popular exhibit at the American Museum of Tort Law is dedicated to explaining the McDonald’s hot-coffee lawsuit.
The museum presents the idea that personal-injury law isn’t a way to line lawyers’ pockets but a way to hold the powerful to account.

line one's own pocket(s)

Fig. to make money for oneself in a greedy or dishonest fashion. They are interested in lining their pockets first and serving the peoplesecond. You can't blame them for wanting to line their own pockets.


(dūm''ər) pronunciation One who predicts calamity at every opportunity.

n. Law
Damage, injury, or a wrongful act done willfully, negligently, or in circumstances involving strict liability, but not involving breach of contract, for which a civil suit can be brought.

[Middle English, injury, from Old French, from Medieval Latin tortum, from Latin, neuter past participle of torquēre, to twist.]

[名]《法律》(人体・財産・名誉などが傷つき補償請求ので きる)不法行為.

noun [U]
quick and usually amusing answers and remarks in conversation:
Oscar Wilde's plays are full of witty repartee.

おうしゅう 応酬

an answer; 《返事》a reply; 《やりかえす》(a) repartee [retort]; an exchange ((of cups))
~する reply; retort; exchange.


  • レベル:社会人必須
  • 発音記号[néglidʒənt]
1 (勤務・義務などを)怠りがちな, 怠慢な;不注意な;ずぼらな, 無頓着(むとんじゃく)な, 無関心な;(行為などが)投げやりな((of, in ..., in doing))
a negligent student
be negligent in dressone's work
He is negligent of punctuationhis duties].
2 ((文))((通例限定))〈人のふるまい・服装などが〉飾らない, 自然な
with negligent grace
in a negligent pose

2015年9月28日 星期一

abbey, thereof, cloister, gulag, to bare,

  Mr. Xi started his transformation in the equivalent of the seventh grade in the August 1 School, a cloistered boarding school largely reserved for children with parents in the senior ranks of the party and the military. When Cultural Revolution militants shut it down, heended up at the No. 25 School, which was a hotbed of discontent with the party elite, said Qian Peizhen, chairwoman of the school’s alumni association.

Why Surveillance Draws Little Outcry
Daniel J. Solove, a privacy expert and professor of law at George Washington University, discusses the public response — or lack thereof — to recent disclosures about government eavesdropping.

North Koreans Use Cellphones to Bare Secrets
Citizens feeding information about life in their country to the outside world is something of a revolution for a brutally efficient gulag state that has forcibly cloistered its people for decades.

Record in a memorandum for the consulting statistician's review, full information concerning every doublet that you find, and the adjustment thereof.

Downton Abbey 唐頓莊園


A general term used to describe the buildings inhabited by a community of monks or nuns. See monastery.An abbey (from the Latin abbatia, which is derived from the Syriac abba, "father"), is a Christian monastery or convent, under the government of an Abbot or an Abbess, who serves as the spiritual father or mother of the community.

━━ n. 修道院; 修道院の修道士[女]たち; 〔英〕 (the A-) (主に)Westminster寺院.
Abbey National アビー・ナショナル ((英国の住宅供給組合)).
Abbey Theatre (the ~) アベー座 ((Dublinの劇場)).

A monastery or convent; particularly the church thereof.
abbey: Plan of abbey of St. Germain-des-Prés, Paris, 13th cent. A, church; B, cloister; C, city gate; E, chapter house; F, chapel; G, refectory; H, cellars and presses; I, abbot’s lodging; K, ditches; L, gardens

abbess:女隱修院院長:(本篤、熙篤等)女修會院長的專稱。男隱修院院長為 abbot。
abbey:隱修院:依教會法所建立的獨立會院;若干會士聚在一起,與外界隔離,在會院內一同祈禱和工作,共度團體獻身生活。例如香港大嶼山的嚴規熙篤會聖母神樂院於1999年9月5日昇格為院牧級隱修院(abbey),由中國教會史上首任院牧 abbot江恩澄領導。參閱 abbot。
abbey nullius:聖座直轄隱修院。參閱 abbot。
Abbey of St. Jerome for the Revision and Emendation of the Vulgate:訂正通俗(拉丁文)聖經本之聖業樂修院:於1932年由教宗碧岳十一世成立,為宗座永久性委員會之一。
abbot:隱修院院牧(長):源自阿拉美語,意為「父親」,為本篤會和熙篤會等隱修院的院牧(長)。包括男隱修院之院牧(長)職務、尊位、權利、 特權、管區、任期。為終身職,由全院會士投票選舉產生,但可退休或辭職。中華民國前外交總長陸徵祥曾晉升為比利時聖安德隱修院之院牧。依據新法典,院牧 (長)能夠因特殊環境,接受教宗委託,以牧人身份管理某一地區的天主子民,一如教區主教,其管區稱為自治會院區 territorial abbacy(法典370)。
abbot, titular:名譽隱修院院牧(長);領銜隱修院院牧(長)。
abbot general:總院牧(長):遵守相同規則的男隱修院之首長。

thereof Show phonetics
adverb FORMAL
of or about the thing just mentioned:
Please refer to the Regulations and in particular Articles 99 and 100 thereof.


of the thing just mentioned; of that:the member state or a part thereof

  1. A covered walk with an open colonnade on one side, running along the walls of buildings that face a quadrangle.
    1. A place, especially a monastery or convent, devoted to religious seclusion.
    2. Life in a monastery or convent.
  2. A secluded, quiet place.
tr.v., -tered, -ter·ing, -ters.
  1. To shut away from the world in or as if in a cloister; seclude.
  2. To furnish (a building) with a cloister.
[Middle English cloistre, from Old French, alteration (influenced by cloison, partition) of clostre, from Latin claustrum, enclosed place, from claudere, to close.]

adj., bar·er, bar·est.
  1. Lacking the usual or appropriate covering or clothing; naked: a bare arm.
  2. Exposed to view; undisguised: bare fangs.
  3. Lacking the usual furnishings, equipment, or decoration: bare walls.
  4. Having no addition, adornment, or qualification: the bare facts. See synonyms at empty.
  5. Just sufficient; mere: the bare necessities.
  6. Obsolete. Bareheaded.
tr.v., bared, bar·ing, bares.
  1. To make bare; uncover or reveal: bared their heads; baring secrets.
  2. To expose: The dog bared its teeth.
[Middle English bar, from Old English bær.]
bareness bare'ness n.

pop up, pop Prozac, pop-up restaurant, champagne corks were popped,

The first around-the-world flight was completed on this day in 1924. Ninety-one years later, scientists are attempting to do the same thing—this time with a solar-powered plane
A revolutionary solar-powered aircraft touched down recently at Moffett Airfield, in the heart of Silicon Valley. No champagne corks were popped, however, for it...

The family that pops Prozac together stays together, perhaps, but the family that piles into an old Volkswagen bus the color of a banana surely has more entertainment value.

Katie Grand, the stylist’s stylist and editor of the eagerly anticipated new magazine called Love, is all about her friends. So when she decided to hold a tea and treasure hunt, she turned to David Waddington, a co-owner of London’s pop-up restaurant FLASH, for the site.

Mr. Blakeman is far from the average disgruntled Hollywood hack. A former deputy assistant to President Bush, he served in the White House until 2004. He has appeared as a character in the HBO docudrama “Recount” and pops up frequently as a commentator on Fox News and other cable outlets.

pop up phrasal verb INFORMAL
to appear or happen, especially suddenly or unexpectedly:
She's one of those film stars who pops up everywhere, on TV, in magazines, on Broadway.
The words 'Hard disk failure - program aborted' popped up on the screen.

pop-up Show phonetics
noun [C] (ALSO pop fly)
in baseball, a ball which is hit very high in the air but not very far

pop-up Show phonetics
pop-up machine/book, etc. a machine, book, etc. which has parts that push out from a surface or from inside:
a pop-up toaster
a pop-up children's book
See also pop-up (menu).

pop-up restaurant 臨時暫時冒出的美食餐廳


  1. Emerging quickly from a recessed or concealed position when activated: pop-up gun emplacements.
  2. Rising to form a three-dimensional structure when a page is opened: pop-up illustrations in a children's book.
  1. A device or illustration that pops up.
  2. Baseball. See pop fly.
adj. - 彈出的, 彈起的
n. - 打到內野或易被接殺的高飛球
  • pop-up menu 彈出式操作指引
  • pop-up utility 彈出式使用程式
  • pop-up window 彈出式視窗

Idioms: pop up

Suddenly appear, as in After a brief warm spell all the flowers popped up, or He's constantly popping up where he's least expected.


  1. Slang.
    1. To take (drugs), especially orally: “To calm a case of the jitters . . . the bride popped Valium” (People).
    2. To have (a drink): popped a few beers after work.

tone down, summery, autumnal

China to EU: Tone Down Yuan Criticism
Chinese premier Wen Jiabao asked European Union leaders to tone down their attacks on Beijing in an escalating battle over the value of the world's key currencies, amid a meeting of Asian and European leaders in Brussels.

Merkel papers over coalition cracks with summery words Chancellor Angela Merkel gave a cheerful performance at her traditional pre-holiday press conference on Wednesday, despite facing questions about awful opinîon polls, fleeing state premiers and her fractious coalition.

“No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face."
― from Elegy IX, "The Autumnal," The Complete English Poems ByJohn Donne
The adjective summery has one meaning:Meaning #1: belonging to or characteristic of or occurring in summer
Antonyms: autumnal (meaning #1), wintry (meaning #1), vernal (meaning #2)

  • 発音記号[sʌ'məri]

[形](-i・er, -i・est)夏の, 夏らしい;夏向きの.
tone down
Make less vivid, harsh, or violent; moderate. For example, That's a little too much rouge; I'd tone it down a bit, or Do you think I should tone down this letter of complaint? This idiom uses tone in the sense of "adjust the tone or quality of something," as does the antonym, tone up, meaning "brighten or strengthen." For example, These curtains will tone up the whole room, or This exercise is said to tone up the triceps. [Mid-1800s]

takeaway, under way, bran tub, disturbing, trash, Ice Cream Tubs,Whirlpool Tubs

Pro-independence parties have emerged with a majority of seats in the regional election in Catalonia but they fell short of their target to capture 50% of ballots cast.
(Image from Reuters)

Support for independence plateauing but still holds a warning for Madrid

bran 糠

bran tub
n (in Britain) a tub containing bran in which small wrapped gifts are hidden, used at parties, fairs, etc


━━ n. ふすま, ぬか.
bran tub 〔英〕 ふすま桶 ((パーティーなどで,中のふすまに隠した景品を手探りで探して遊ぶ)).

monsterWhen Jeffrey Katzenberg came to San Francisco earlier this month to screen clips from his forthcoming film, he issued a warning: "What you are about to see may be disturbing to watch." Disturbing, that is, to people who love the City by the Bay.
In East Hampton, inns dating back more than a century are getting makeovers that preserve working fireplaces, traditional woodwork and beams, but add modern touches like whirlpool tubs and iPod docking stations.

Whirlpool Tubs
600 x 455 - 47k - jpg

  1. 桶,木盆
  2. He grows roses in tubs on the terrace.
  3. 一桶(或一盆)的量[(+of)]
  4. They consumed a tub of beer.
  5. 【口】浴缸;洗澡
  6. I take a cold tub every morning.
  7. 【口】行進緩慢的舊船
  8. I've been at sea for four lousy weeks in this tub.
  9. (放冰淇淋等的)塑料杯,紙杯
  10. The child is eating a tub of ice-cream.
  11. 礦車,礦斗;井筒支架

From the Fringe | 31.08.2007

Deadly Ice Cream Tubs Blamed for German Hedgehog Deaths

Think of your favorite activity or food and imagine that you die doing it or eating it. Most of us will agree that this would be a good way to go. The hedgehogs of Nuremberg don't agree, however. Because they're dead.

It used to be that fast food only presented potential health risks to human beings. Of course, if a person were to only eat fast food, never exercise and supplement their fatty intake with sugar-enriched soft drinks, then they would only have themselves to blame. These days, the risks are even lower to humans after many companies rediscovered the consciences and began offering healthier options, therefore making themselves even less culpable.

Despite the efforts made to keep fast-food loving humans alive and avoid lawsuits, there continues to be a demographic that suffers at the hands of globalized takeaway chains. These customers have a more immediate threat to their health. Not only are they facing a future filled with weakened joints, voluminous sweat pants and potential heart disease, the ice-cream loving hedgehogs of Nuremberg are facing strangulation and death.

Hedgehogs get added dollop of death
Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: "One little lick won't kill me...will it?"
It seems that it's not only humans who can't get enough of McDonald's McFlurry ice creams. Those soft ices mixed with all manner of delicious toppings are truly one of the fast food chains more brilliant ideas and a cornerstone of 21st century civilization. However, this has not gone unnoticed by Nuremberg's more prickly residents who have discovered for themselves those chilly scoops of heaven.

It seems that the local hedgehogs are crazy in love with McFlurry's and in their deranged pursuit of discarded ice cream treats are putting their lives at risk. While it is unknown what a diet of ice cream can do to a hedgehog -- apart from making rolling into a ball a more laborious exercise -- it is not the product itself which is proving deadly but the receptacle.

After finding a number of hedgehogs dead with their heads stuck in McFlurry containers, local authorities and McDonald's bigwigs have been put on alert. It seems that when attracted to the discarded tubs, the hedgehog deliriously follows his or her nose into it in search of a sweet reward. After licking up the remains, the hedgehog then tries to reverse out of the tub only to find that its quills get stuck in the plastic ring around the entrance. Trapped with no escape, the hedgehog slowly starves to death.

Making packaging more spine friendly
Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: "Can you order me a McFlurry? They won't serve me"
After coming to this conclusion and receiving disturbing data from other countries where the deadly phenomena has occurred, McDonald's has vowed to protect even its non-human customers by making its packaging more hedgehog-friendly.

The McDonald's boffins at the company's German head office in Munich have come up with a potential life-saving feature which they hope to introduce to McFlurry containers by the beginning of 2008. The stiff plastic rim is to be replaced by a softer substance and the tub will be of a folded cardboard construction which will allow the tub to come apart at the bottom.

The deadly design has been in circulation for six years and while there will still be many of these potential death-traps on the market, no more will be made, according to a McDonald's statement.

However, until the offending tubs are removed from service, the threat remains. Once they have been replaced, the only worries the ice-cream loving hedgehogs will then have will be whether or not they can get their overweight bodies across the road in time to avoid oncoming traffic.
DW staff (nda)

disturb (WORRY) Show phonetics
verb [T]
to cause someone to be anxious or upset:
Some scenes are violent and may disturb younger viewers.

disturbing Show phonetics
making you feel worried or upset:
The Home Secretary described the latest crime figures as 'disturbing'.
The following programme contains scenes that may be disturbing to some viewers.

disturbingly Show phonetics
Pollution has reached disturbingly high levels in some urban areas.
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A key fact, point, or idea to be remembered, typically one emerging from a discussion or meeting:the main takeaway for me is that we need to continue to communicate all the things we’re doing for our customers[AS MODIFIER]: the takeaway message

Idioms: under way

1. In motion, as in The ship got under way at noon[c. 1930]
2. Already started, in progress, as in Plans are under way to expand[c. 1930]

trash Show phonetics
noun [U]
1 INFORMAL something that is worthless and of low quality:
I can't believe that someone of his intelligence can read such trash!
There's only trash on the television tonight.

2 US FOR rubbish:
The trash really stinks - why don't you take it out?

trash Show phonetics
group noun [U] US INFORMAL
an insulting way of referring to a group of people you consider worthless:
We don't have anything to do with the people in the apartment below us - they're trash.

trash Show phonetics
1 to throw away, destroy or severely damage something:
I simply trash that sort of mail.
The guys got angry and trashed the bar.

2 to criticize something or someone severely:
The boss completely trashed her work, in front of everyone.

trashy Show phonetics
adjective INFORMAL
worthless and of low quality:
Why do so many people watch such ridiculous trashy programmes?