Lights Out

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In honor of Fred Rogers' 84th birthday, a look back at 23 years of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood intros.

[thanks lauren!]

RIP: Chaleo Yoovidhya, at 89

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RIP: Chaleo Yoovidhya, at 89
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Chaleo Yoovidhya, creator of the world-famous energy drink Red Bull, passed away today of natural causes. He was 89.

The self-made billionaire, listed by Forbes as the richest man in Thailand, launched Red Bull (Krathing Daeng in Thailand) in the 70's through his company, T.C. Pharmaceuticals. It was an instant hit among truck drivers and construction workers.

In the early 80's, Chaleo was persuaded by Austrian entrepreneur Dietrich Mateschitz to introduce the drink in foreign markets. Mateschitz, then an international marketing director, would make frequent trips to Thailand, and found that "one glass [of Krating Daeng] and the jet lag was gone."

Chaleo partnered with Mateschitz, and Red Bull quickly took flight. It is currently sold in over 70 countries. 

[bbc.]

This Is All Kinds Of Wrong of the Day

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This Is All Kinds Of Wrong of the Day
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This Is All Kinds Of Wrong of the Day: Calls for the reform of Morocco's penal code were sparked over the weekend as news spread of a teenage girl who had committed suicide after being compelled to marry her rapist.

In Morocco, a rapist can "opt out" of a prison term by marrying his victim, so long as the victim and their family agree. Despite this clause, many say victims are often strong-armed into marriages they want no part of.

16-year-old Amina Filali's father, Lahcen, blamed the marriage on pressure from the courts. "The prosecutor advised my daughter to marry," he told the online news site goud.ma. "He said: 'Go and make the marriage contract'."

According to Amina's mother, the girl complained on more than one occasion that her husband/rapist was beating her, but was advised to be patient. On Saturday, Amina could no longer take the abuse, and made the decision to end her own life by swallowing rat poison.

Moroccan woman, galvanized by Amina's tragic death, have taken to the streets and launched petitions to demand that criminal law be changed to make it explicit that rapists cannot be allowed to marry their victims.

Moroccan law is known for being relatively female-friendly, compared with the rest of North Africa. Despite this, nearly two-third of all Moroccan women experience violence in their lifetimes, and many attorneys are ignorant of recent pro-women reforms, such as the raising of the marriage age from 15 to 18.

[latimes / blogpost / photo: aljazeera.]

RIP: Yoda, at 15

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RIP: Yoda, at 15
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Yoda, winner of the 2011 World's Ugliest Dog contest, passed away Saturday at the age of 15.

Proud owner Terry Schumacher initially mistook the Chinese crested-Chihuahua mix for a rat when she found her abandoned behind an apartment building. 

"I will miss her funny little ways," Schumacher said in an email to the Hanford Sentinel. "Her memories will live on forever."

Yoda took home the coveted World’s Ugliest Dog title at the 23rd iteration of the world-famous event, hosted annually at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California.

[sentinel / photo: ap.]

RIP: Jean "Moebius" Giraud, at 73

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RIP: Jean "Moebius" Giraud, at 73
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RIP: Jean Giraud, better known as the influential French comic artist Moebius, passed away yesterday at the age of 73. He had been battling cancer for some time.

Giraud leaves behind a legacy spanning multiple generations: From his Harvey and Eisner Award-winning Western comic series Blueberry, through his acclaimed Silver Surfer miniseries, Parable, to the genre-defining conceptual artwork he contributed to such modern sci-fi and fantasy classics as Alien, Tron, The Fifth Element, The Abyss, and Willow.

Both Blade Runner and The Empire Strikes Back (as well as other Star Wars episodes) were also heavily influenced by Giraud's unique style, the latter even featuring the artist's design for the Imperial Probe Droid.

"We've lost two great artists," said the French cultural minister, referring to Giraud and his alter ego Moebius. "Through his influence and his dazzling images, he made comic books the 9th art form that has stayed with me throughout my life."

[cathr / photo: ouadah.]

RIP: Robert Sherman, at 86

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RIP: Robert Sherman, at 86
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RIP: Legendary Disney songwriter Robert Sherman, best-known for his work on such classic films as Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and The Jungle Book, passed away Monday in London. He was 86.

Together with his brother Richard, Sherman co-wrote many enduring Disney a

RIP: Ralph McQuarrie, at 82

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RIP: Ralph McQuarrie, at 82
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RIP: Ralph McQuarrie, a conceptual artist best known for designing several key Star Wars characters including Darth Vader and Chewbacca, passed away today in Los Angeles. He was 82.

In addition to his influential work on the original Star Wars trilogy -- indeed,