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In the small study, published in the Aug. 1 issue of Environmental Science and Technology, researchers found that nearly 30% of the 62 printers they tested — including laser printers from Canon, HP, Toshiba and Ricoh — emitted high levels of ultrafine toner particles, which were potentially as hazardous as cigarette smoke. In one Brisbane office, the authors found, the concentration of particulate matter per square inch was five times higher during working hours than nonworking hours, and about 3.5 times higher inside than outside, where a freeway ran 130 yards from the building.

Read more of “Is Your Printer Making You Sick?” by Coco Masters, published August 07, 2007 at Time Health.

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It’s something nearly everyone’s been tempted to do at least once. You see someone else’s throwaways on street and think — that would look nice in my place.

“As far as I knew it was a piece of garbage sitting on the curb,” Paul Lawrence said.

But what Lawrence didn’t know when he decided to pick up a discarded air conditioner sitting on the sidewalk in Middle Village, Queens is that once trash hits the curb, it’s technically city property.

And he was breaking the law.

“There was a lady here. I asked the lady can I take the air conditioner. She said go ahead take it. It’s garbage,” Lawrence said.

But not only was he fined $2,000 by a sanitation officer who watched him do it, the car he was driving was impounded. And its owner — Lawrence’s Aunt, 73-year-old Margaret Colavita, was also slapped with a $2,000 fine.

“I said what is this and she said well we have to serve you with this. You’re the owner of the car and it says I gave him permission,” Colavita said.

Department of Sanitation officials said it’s not always illegal to pick up something from the street. It’s only when you’re driving a vehicle that the law gets triggered. Recycling is a revenue source for the city and sanitation officials said the law was “designed to deter organized rings of recycling thefts” that cost the city more than $300,000 a year.

“As the commodity price goes up, theft of that commodity goes up,” Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty said.

Lawrence insisted he wasn’t stealing, but agreed repeat criminals should be punished. However, he said a $2,000 fine for a first-time offense is excessive.

“Two thousand dollars is a pretty hefty fine and I don’t know what law was broken,” Bloomberg said.

Lawrence said he now knows all too well and plans to fight his fine in court. Last year the sanitation department issued 280 summonses for breaking the law and impounded 136 vehicles.

From “NYC Man Fined $2,000 For Taking Discarded Garbage” by Kathryn Brown, published July 12, 2010 at CBS 2 News.

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According to the Chinese Zodiac, the Year of 2010 is the Year of the Tiger, which commences on February 14, 2010 and ends on February 2, 2011. The Tiger is the third sign in the Chinese Zodiac cycle, and it is a sign of bravery. This courageous and fiery fighter is admired by the ancient Chinese as the sign that keeps away the three main tragedies of a household. These are fire, thieves and ghosts.

People that are born in the Year of the Tiger are generally well liked because of their charismatic personalities. Often, failing at a given duty or being unproductive in his personal or professional life can cause a Tiger to experience a deep sense of depression. A Tiger is always at their happiest when they endeavor to climb the ladder of success. Attaining the top spot is his foremost purpose; being in a position of power is her ultimate goal. They are quick learners, need to be challenged and often prefer to work alone. Some Tigers tend to change careers more frequently because they get bored quite easily. They are natural born leaders and perform at their best if working towards positions of power and influence. So once there is no further room for progression, they will often move on to something else.

From Yearofthetiger.net

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The number of disabled veterans has jumped by 25 percent since 2001 – to 2.9 million.

From CBS News

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What is the Digital TV (DTV) Transition?
Currently, many over-the-air stations are broadcasting in both analog and digital TV formats. By June 12, 2009, all full–power TV stations will broadcast only in digital. The DTV transition will affect those who watch free over-the-air television (through a rooftop antenna or “rabbit ears”). If you watch over-the-air programs on an analog TV, you must take action now.

Why are broadcast stations switching to digital?
Federal law requires the switch, which will free up the airwaves for police, fire, and emergency rescue communications, allow broadcasters to offer programming with better picture and sound quality and offer more programming choices, and allow for advanced wireless services for consumers.

What should i do to be ready?
You have three choices:

1. Connect your analog TV to a digital-to-analog converter box
Your local broadcasters may make the transition before the June 12th deadline, and some already have. So be ready. Digital-to-analog converter boxes are in stores and have a one-time cost of $40-$70. To help you pay for the boxes, the U.S. Government is offering two $40 coupons per household. (Please note that these coupons will expire 90 days after mailing). For more information on the coupons, visit www.DTV2009.gov, or call 1-888-388-2009 (voice) or 1-877-530-2634 (TTY). Plus, you should not need a new antenna if you get good quality reception on analog channels 2-51 with your existing antenna. Or

2. Buy a digital television (a TV with a built-in digital tuner)
You do not need a High Definition TV (HDTV) to watch digital broadcast television. You only need a digital TV (or an analog TV connected to a digital-to-analog converter box). Plus, you should not need a new antenna if you get good quality reception on analog channels 2-51 with your existing antenna.Or

3. Subscribe to a paid TV service
If your TV set receives local broadcast stations through a paid provider such as cable or satellite TV, it is already prepared for the DTV transition. Cable companies are not required to transition or switch any of their channels to digital. However, if you have an analog TV that does not receive local broadcast stations through your paid provider, you will need a digital-to-analog converter box to watch digital broadcasts on that TV.

From Federal Communications Commission

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Lo Mein

1 lb. lo mein noodles or linguini
3/4 c. beef, chicken or pork, cut into strips
1 carrot, sliced thin
1 c. coarsely shredded cabbage
1 sm. can mushrooms (regular or Chinese)
1/2 bamboo shoots, cut into strips
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. sugar
2 tbsp. oyster sauce
1 clove garlic
3 tbsp. cornstarch
1 tbsp. sherry or rice wine

Boil noodles according to package directions. Wash with cold water. Set aside.

Mix last 6 ingredients in a cup and add the meat strips. In a wok or large pan, add 1 tablespoon sesame oil and heat. Add the prepared vegetables and heat, tossing with wooden spoon, until crispy. Remove from pan.

Add 1 tablespoon oil to wok and saute garlic until brown. Add meat and cook until done. Do not over cook. Discard oil. Combine all ingredients in wok and season to taste with oyster sauce.

From Cooks.com

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The Tsingtao Brewery was founded in 1903 by German settlers in Qingdao, China. Since its introduction, Tsingtao® Beer has enjoyed impressive sales growth and has always been the number one beer in China. Introduced to the United States in 1972, Tsingtao soon became the top-selling Chinese beer in the U.S. market and has maintained this leadership position ever since.

Tsingtao Beer has a pleasant aroma and a well-balanced taste. Its high-malty flavor and well-hopped character make Tsingtao a refreshing complement to any Chinese meal. Tsingtao is produced with spring water from Laoshan, a mountain area famous throughout China for the purity of its water. Tsingtao ingredients include the highest quality hops, as well as the finest yeast and barley imported from Australia and Canada.

From Tsingtao Beer

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You’re invited on a FREE tour of the New York City Chinatown Garbage. Did you know you could make art out of dead animals? YES! The tour is going to show you how to collect dead animals from the garbage in Chinatown to make your own personal taxidermy! This is the first NYC CHINATOWN GARBAGE TAXIDERMY TOUR! You will learn how to dig in the garbage for dead animals. You can make art out of these animals. It’s really cool! They’ve found everything from sharks to frogs to plain old unidentifiable crap. Sometimes they find nothing interesting, but that is what makes it fun. You never know! RSVP is appreciated but not required. RAIN OR SHINE.

Date: Thursday, March 27th, 2008
Time: 9pm
Meet: The Southeast Corner Of Canal Street And Lafayette Street, NYC

Find more information at the Chinatown Garbage Tour website.

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The Chinese astrological cycle begins with the year of the Rat; consequently those born within this category like to be first, pioneers, at the forefront of the action. Rat people are born under the sign of charm and aggressiveness. They are expressive and can be talkative sometimes. Rats usually have more acquaintances than real friends and they revere and cherish those close to them.

Qualities include occasionally mean, narrow-minded and surburban in outlook, but nevertheless honest. Being quick witted, the Rats get more accomplished in 24 hours than the rest of us do in as many days. They are confident and usually have a good instinct. Stubborn as they are, they prefer to live by their own rules. It won’t be an easy task to work with those born in the year of Rat. But why?

This is simply because they are perfectionists. Rats are very organized and talented. Perhaps that is why they make a good businessman or politician. Unfortunately, as soon as the Rat earns money, he spends it. The Rat is not romantic, but he is sensual and loving. Lastly, they are very loyal and devoting to their families.

From Better Chinatown Society, a volunteer-based organization dedicated to the improvement of New York’s Chinatown.

See the 9th Lunar New Year Parade & Festival featuring elaborate floats, marching bands, lion and dragon dances galore, Asian musicians, magicians, acrobats and procession by local organizations, Sunday, February 10th, 1PM – 5PM. Starts at Little Italy and goes through the main streets of Lower Manhattan/Chinatown.

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Graffiti – the term comes from both the Greek term “Graphein” meaning ‘to write’ and the word ‘graffiti’ is plural of the Italian word “Graffito” meaning ’scratch’ and its history can be dated back to prehistoric cave man wall drawings, it can be seen as a human ‘need’ for communication – “Graffiti represents man’s desire to communicate” (Wechsler vi).

Graffiti has become a prominent force in urban settings in the late 20th century and mention of the word conjures up many different images in people’s minds – is it art or is it vandalism? a cause of the urban decay or a product from it? The scope of attitudes towards graffiti is wide and controversial. It should be asserted here that many graffiti writers do not call their work graffiti, but rather writing. Iz the Wiz, a writer explains that “graffiti is some social term that was developed (for the culture) somewhere in the 70’s” (Writing From The Style Underground 6).

An excerpt from “Urban Expression… Urban Assault… Urban Wildstyle… New York City Graffiti” by Pamela Dennant, Thames Valley University (London), American Studies Project, 1997.

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