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New airport body scanners are less intrusive PDF Print E-mail

Wooden human figure

Stand still, dummy, while we scan you

Scanner images will now look less like a naked you, because only a virtual you will be on display that looks like a store dummy or undressed blow-up doll.

New and revised full-body airport scanners, created by OSI's Rapiscan Systems, will be a bit more considerate than previous scanners. They’ll just show security examiners a less human and more robotic image of you. If they suspect any item on your body image, the scanner will highlight it, and screeners may opt to take you aside for a more thorough personal search.

OSI, which calls the new generic images avatars, has replaced or updated 194 scanners at 51 airports to date. So, maybe when you go on your next flight, you won’t have to cringe at the near-naked image of the real you up on that scanner screen. You'll see only a digital dummy of about the same size and shape, but not shaking with embarassment.

 

 
Philly Liberty Bell area to get new hotel PDF Print E-mail

Liberty Bell

The Kimpton hotel chain plans to revitalize an old building just a short walk away from the famed American icon. Guest rooms will have a clear view of the famed Liberty Bell and Independence Hall in downtown Philadelphia.

The 11-story Lafayette Building on the Fifth Street side of Independence Mall will be fully refurbished at a cost estimated to be $70 million to become a 270-room boutique hotel.

The closest major chain hotel in the very busy tourist area is the Omni at 5th and Chestnut Streets. No actual construction has started on the new hotel, and no opening date has been announced yet.

 
Is that a boa constrictor in your pocket, or .... PDF Print E-mail

Boa constrictor

Pardon me, but isss thisss ssseat taken?

We’ve heard of the “Snakes on a Plane” movie, and it was sort of slinky fun. But, how would you feel if this smuggler with 95 snakes sat next to you on the flight?

Malaysia's Kuala Lumpur Airport security agents discovered 95 live baby boa constrictors in a piece of carry-on luggage on a flight that was about to take off. They had been warned about the snake guy, because he was part of a worldwide smuggling operation that sold exotic animals throughout the world.

Along with the boas, the carry-on bag also contained other snake species and a small turtle. So, next time you fly and the guy next to you acts a bit slithery, you may want to ask the flight attendant to move you to another seat.

 
NYC erects statue honoring WWII VJ Day kiss PDF Print E-mail

Sailor kissing nurse

Actual 1945 photo and 2010 statue

If you’ll be in New York City,  join in on the celebration of the 65th anniversary of the end of World War II. While many activities marked the victory during August, WWII officially ended on September 2, 1945.

The city’s famous focal point, Times Square, now features a giant 26-foot statue created by sculptor Seward Johnson, based on a Life photographer’s famous sailor-nurse kissing scene photo on what was called VJ Day, marking Japan's surrender. You can’t miss it if you’ll be near 44th Street and Broadway.

In mid-August, the city put on its annual Kiss-In on Times Square, and thousands of kissing couples showed up by the statue to imitate the historic moment. The participants ranged from young GIs just back from Iraq and Afghanistan, all the way back to WWII veterans who were actually there on the Square celebrating on that joyful day.

 
Another kid attempts round-the-world sailing PDF Print E-mail


Kids in boat

What’s next? A two-year-old using diapers as sails

For seniors who are leery about taking their very first cruise, they should consider the latest brave kid attempting to circumnavigate a la Magellan.

A 14-year-old girl from Holland sailed out of Portugal in the latest quest to become the youngest person to sail solo around the world. In recent months, a 16-year American girl tried to earn the Guinness title. She had to be rescued just a few days into her voyage.

So, landlubbers, next time you’re tempted to sign up for that three-day cruise, forget your fears and go for it!

 
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