Little China

A community of dwarves has set up its own village to escape discrimination from normal sized people.

Everyone in the mountain commune in Kunming, southern China, must be under 4ft 3ins tall and they run their own police force and fire brigade from their 120 residents.

Now the group has turned itself into a tourist attraction by building mushroom houses and living and dressing like fairy tale characters.

"As small people we are used to being pushed around and exploited by big people. But here there aren't any big people and everything we do is for us," said spokesman Fu Tien.



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US tourist hitches rickshaw, weds driver in a week

A 26-year-old American tourist travelling in India hitched a ride in a rickshaw last week and married the driver a few days later.

Whitney from Chicago met her prince charming in Jaipur in Rajasthan, a state west of the capital famous for its stately palaces, after hailing a motorised rickshaw and hiring the driver for her stay in the city, the Mail Today newspaper said.

"On the third day, he surprised me by popping the question," Whitney told the paper. "'I want to spend the rest of my life with you', he told me. I fell in love."

After meeting last Saturday they were married on Wednesday in a simple ceremony. Whitney was pictured in the paper, standing with new husband Harish Hotala, wearing a traditional sari that covered her head.

The paper said Hotala was "a cabbie with a difference," however. "Though a school dropout, he is fluent in English and owns three autorickshaws," it said.

Whitney, whose surname wasn't given by the paper, is to fly back to the US on September 30 to face her parents.

"My father was surprised but my mother took it sportingly," she said.



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Indonesian woman-gives-birth-to-19-pound-baby

According to sources, hundreds of gazers flocked in a hospital at Indonesia to have a glimpse of the country’s largest recorded baby, weighing 19.2 pound. The baby boy was born to a diabetic mother.

According to the sources, the operation process regarding the delivery of the new born baby named Akbar Risuddin took as many as 40 minutes thereby delaying the entire process. Sources revealed that Alauddin’s unusual weight and size made the operation more complicated and hazardous. But as they say “all’s well that ends well”. It has been reported that the mother and the baby boy are both in good condition. The spectators who flocked in to catch a glimpse of the baby boy who was born on Monday measuring 24 inches were literally stunned to see the incredible Indonesian boy. They gathered at the Abdul Manan hospital situated in the town of Kisaran in the province of North Sumatra.
The doctors are speculating that Risuddin’s unusual weight is due to his mother’s excessive glucose content at the time of pregnancy. Sources revealed that Risuddin is the third child of his father Muhammad Hasanuddin at mother Ani. Risuddin’s two brother’s weighed 11.6 pounds and 9.9 pounds during their birth, which is also quite phenomenal. The doctors revealed that Risuddin has a strong appetite. “He is greedy and has a strong appetite, nursing almost non-stop,” said Dr. Sitanggang.

The record was previously held by a 14.7 pounds baby boy, residing at the outskirts of the capital Jakarta in the year 2007. But with Risuddin’s arrival, the country has found a new record holder.



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Miss Singapore World 2009 Ris Low

UPDATE: July 2012

Ex-beauty queen Ris Low jobless for 3 years after fraud conviction

More than three years after Ms Ris Low was convicted of credit card fraud, the former beauty queen told Chinese media that she was still jobless.

The 22-year-old told Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao that she has been helping her parents, doing administrative work at their renovation company. She added that she has also been taking courses in accounting, business management and hotel management.

In May 2009, the ex-Miss Singapore World was found guilty of five charges of misappropriation, cheating using illegally obtained credit cards and impersonating their users' identities, and was sentenced to 24 months of supervised probation.

She lost her title after her conviction, stepping down as Singapore's representative to the Miss World beauty contest.

UPDATE:22 AUG 2011
Ris Low: Singaporeans are very 'kiasu' and 'kiasi'

Former beauty queen Ris Low criticised Singaporeans in a recent interview.

At the interview with Malaysian newspaper "The Star", Ris Low criticised Singaporeans, saying we are kiasu, kiasi and heartless people who will not extend any help to those in need.

She said, "The pace of life here is very fast, everyone is very stressed, very kiasu and very kiasi".

The two are well-known Singlish terms typically used to describe those who want to be the first to get everything (kiasu) and those afraid to get into trouble (kiasi). In Hokkien, kiasu literally means "afraid of losing" and kiasi means "afraid of dying".

She cites an example where Singaporeans are kiasu.

She said Singaporeans are always attracted to long queues. People think there is definitely something good to be had so they will join the queue even if they don't know what they are queuing for.

On being kiasi, she said Singaporeans like to discuss politics in private, but do not dare express their views openly.

Ris was also asked about the best thing of being a Singaporean. On this, she said the Singaporean passport allows us to travel to many countries without applying for visas.

And the worse thing of being a Singaporean? She said that Singaporeans have no compassion for those with a past, and she is the perfect example.

Ris hopes that every Singaporean will protect our own. She added that almost every beauty queen has been mercilessly criticised by "cowards hiding behind their computer screens".

"They bully us and say we're ugly. They step on us and try to look taller. This is very upsetting."

Ris was also asked to name a unique Singaporean trait.

"When you need help, everyone just stares and does nothing", said Ris.

She cited an example where she witnessed a car accident. She went to help the injured and asked the uncles and aunties standing around to help call an ambulance. No one helped - they were all busy copying the license plate numbers of the accident vehicles.

Another time, she was waiting for a cab when a man pulled down her skirt. No one helped her and the molester got away. The incident made her feel like a fool.

Finally, she laments that Singaporeans are so intent on wealth and power that they have lost their heart.

UPDATE: 15 OCT 2010
Hurt by comments about her weight, former beauty queen Ris Low goes on an extreme diet to lose 8kg in two weeks

Ris Low: 'We've done it. But I must say, I'm still not very interested in sex."

PEOPLE online were bitching about her and calling her fat.

Some close friends even told her the same thing to her face.

'It made me quite angry,' admitted 20-year-old dethroned local beauty queen Ris Low.

'I felt like retorting, 'You all think slimming down very easy ah!'

That was in May.

Low, who is 1.72m tall, tipped the scales at '60-plus kg' at that time and attributed the extra kilos to her blossoming new romance.

So she decided to act.

'I made up my mind to show everyone I can do it...Just give me two weeks,' said Low.

Last month, 'on the spur of the moment', she went on a dangerous crash diet of just one apple a day every day for two weeks.

By the end of it, she said she managed to drop nearly 8kg, bringing her weight down to 58kg.

The sudden diet made her suffer from occasional dizzy spells, said Low.

It's something that nutritionists warn against - that it is not healthy to lose so much weight so suddenly.

Low has since resumed her normal food intake of three meals a day, albeit in a highly disciplined fashion.

'I take mostly vegetables and fruit,' she said. 'And I try to avoid carbohydrates and protein.'

When she visited The New Paper office last Wednesday, Low looked a far cry from the chubby, slightly stocky girl we last met in May.

Slim and sexy, she glowed in the skimpy white cheongsam-style dress she wore to our interview and happily posed for pictures.

Her new figure - reminiscent of her bygone Miss Singapore World 2009 pageant shots - was not lost on the editors of local lad mag FHM Singapore.

In this month's issue of the magazine, Low came in at No. 56 on its annual list of 100 Sexiest Women In The World 2010.

She was ranked above actresses like Eva Longoria (No. 57), Milla Jovovich (No. 58), Natalie Portman (No.79), Lin Chiling (No. 78) and Zoe Saldana (No. 96).

She also beat local celebrities like Jade Seah (No. 60), Nadya Hutagalung (No. 67), Melody Chen (No. 68) and Sylvia Ratonel (No. 80).

According to Mr David Fuhrmann-Lim, 43, the senior editor of FHM Singapore, the 100 female celebrities were selected after a month-long online poll conducted on the local FHM website.

Sexier than Longoria

'Ris' name came up in our poll,' he said.

While he declined to elaborate how the editorial team decided on the rankings, he emphasised that 'visibility over the past year definitely counted'.

'We didn't include Ris in as a joke, that's for sure,' he added.

Low was candid about her rare opportunity to share the limelight with so many Hollywood and Asian sex symbols.

'I'm super surprised. The judges must be kayu (Malay for dumb),' she said without hesitation.

'To me, a lot of these stars are perfect women. You'd need to have Lin Chiling's figure and Angelina Jolie's lips to be considered sexy,' she added.


She self-deprecatingly added that she can be 'hiao' (Hokkien for vain), but would hardly associate herself with sexiness.

'From young, my build has been athletic and sporty,' explained Low. 'I have a muscular, firm body type which doesn't really fall into the sexy category.'

That said, she does not think it's a total fluke that she cracked the list.

'Well, I've got curves, long legs, rather big breasts and perky buttocks,' she said, pointing out the attractions that could have possibly gained her brownie points.

'Also, it's down to personality.

'I'm not stuck up and I don't pretend to be another person when facing the media or public.'

Her 31-year-old property agent boyfriend, whom she has been dating since February but whom she declines to name, likes her, whatever her shape or size, she said.

'His favourite phrase is, beauty is in the eye of the beholder,' said Low. 'Last time, when I was fat, he'd praise me for having a nice figure. Now that I'm slimmer, he says I have a 'nice' figure too!

'It's like, to him, everything about me is 'nice', from my eyes, the fact that I don't use perfume...Sometimes, I just want to smack him!' she exclaimed in a mock angry tone.

Perhaps, sexiness is a by-product of the increasingly close bond she shares with her boyfriend.

Low - a final-year student at the Management Development Institute of Singapore, where she is pursuing a diploma in health science - gamely revealed that she and her beau are now 'physically intimate'.

In other words, she's no longer a virgin.

'We've done it. But I must say, I'm still not very interested in sex,' said Low.

In January, she claimed to be a virgin when she was appointed the youth spokesman for local condom brand Espire Condoms.

Her contract with Espire has since expired.


RIS Low is truly, madly, deeply in love. Looking radiant in a turquoise sundress, the 20-year-old dethroned beauty queen, best known for coining the word “boomz”, was clearly in a good mood when she met The New Paper recently for an interview.

“I’ve put on 10kg after my pageant days,” she admitted, attributing the extra weight to love.

“Every time I go on a date, it will be good food, wine and fattening stuff – no wonder I’m fat,” she said self-deprecatingly.

At one point, she even hummed Nat King Cole’s classic ditty to herself: “L is for the way you look at me, O is for the only one I see...”

The man responsible for Low’s state of unbridled happiness is a 31-year-old property agent whom she has been seeing since February.

She described him as “tall (1.8m), bearing a resemblance to Leslie Cheung (the late Hong Kong singer-actor), soft-spoken, accommodating and introverted”. What impressed her most, she said, was that he doesn’t judge or question her past.

Low, who is in her final year of diploma studies at the Management Development Institute of Singapore, was found guilty of credit card fraud last September and is serving a two-year probation.

She became an Internet sensation after coming up with the strange word “boomz” during a RazorTV interview, and was mocked for her poor English. She also lost her Miss Singapore World title after her conviction came to light.

“He never once asked me, ‘Why did you do that last time?’” she said.

“I don’t like it when people ask me that question – it’s over, and I have given my reasons (to the media). I’m not going to repeat it five million times.

“My boyfriend and I don’t like to dwell on what has already happened. The future is what’s important.”

UPDATE:23 APR 2010
Former Singaporean beauty queen Ris Low does not mind marrying an ugly man as long as he is rich because he can then opt for plastic surgery, reported China Press.

Low, who had to quit the Miss World 2009 contest after being exposed as a credit card cheat last September, was among women featured in an online television survey which showed that Singaporean women preferred men with money over looks.

“Even if he doesn’t, I still don’t mind. As long as he is rich, it means I’ll be leading a better lifestyle.

“He can buy anything for me and I no longer have to worry about money. This is how realistic life can be,” she said.

Low said a man whose income matched a woman’s expectation would automatically be accepted, regardless of his looks.

UPDATE: 3 APR 2010

When you think of former Miss Singapore Ris Low, you cannot help but think of the word she made famous -- 'Boomz'. STOMPer Ho says there is even a Boomz T-shirt now.

19-year-old Ris Low first shot to infamy when she displayed her poor command of English during a RazorTV interview, mispronouncing words like red ('rad), bikini ('bigini') and prints ('preens'), as in leopard prints.
She also came up with a new word -- 'boomz' -- which has become a subject of ridicule among netizens.
"It's catchy, and we all love to hate it, but more and more Singaporeans are starting to use it.

"In fact, there is now a brand of T-shirt called 'boomz' and judging from the looks of it, the boomz phenomenon will continue!"

Update: 23 Sept 2011
A horse named Boomz

A horse name Boomz own by Ris Low boyfriend is running in race 4 tomorrow in kranji.
the track commentators and clockers say he is well prepare and look solid in trainning
both Ris and her connection too is quite confident Boomz can win and will be there tomo.

UPDATE: 23 Mar 2010

Ris Low recounts molest

DETHRONED beauty queen Ris Low was standing by a stand at Park Mall last Wednesday when a man in his 30s came up beside her.

The 20-year-old claimed that the man then grabbed her arm and dragged her to a quiet spot behind a pillar before pulling down her tube dress and groping her right breast.

When she sought help from member of the public at the taxi stand, the man scooted off.

Ris has since asked for the CCTV footage from the mall and lodged a police report.

Watch RazorTV's interview with Ris as she recounts the incident.

UPDATE: 15 Jan 2010
Ris Low seeks to improve image with safe sex, condom campaign
FORMER beauty queen Ris Low has morphed from being a wayward youth to a champion of troubled teens.

Miss Low, 19, who was appointed as a youth ambassador by a home-grown condom distributor yesterday, is taking a private course in counselling.

On her mission in life, she said: 'I'm learning how to counsel people with problems such as depression, anxiety and even sexual problems. Someone they can relate to is me.'

To hone her skills, she is working part-time as a clinic assistant in an Aids clinic, spending three days a week counselling patients and teaching them how to use condoms correctly.

She will also conduct talks on safe sex in schools and other public arenas, and use her blog and other social media to spread the message in her role as youth spokesman for Singapore-based firm Zander Asia, distributor of Espire condoms.

Safe Sex with Ris Low from clicknetwork on Vimeo.

Former beauty queen Ris Low gives a lesson on safe sex, condoms, and erm, warm jelly.

Ris Low FHM Singapore December 2009

RECENTLY crowned Miss Singapore World Ris Low, 19, had earlier been found guilty of credit-card fraud.

The beauty queen was convicted of five charges of misappropriation, cheating using illegally obtained credit cards, and impersonating their users' identities.

The first-time offender was sentenced in May this year to 24 months of supervised probation, said a Subordinate Courts spokesman in response to a query from my paper.

Another 60 charges were taken into consideration for the purposes of sentencing, he said.

Court documents show that Miss Low spent a total of more than $2,400 on at least four separate occasions, using at least three different credit cards in April and May last year.

She bought two gold anklets worth almost $1,000, a $698 mobile phone, and food and drinks at a swanky restaurant.

It is not known how she obtained the credit cards.

my paper understands that her previous employer, a healthcare company, made a police report about her in April last year.

It suspected that Miss Low, who worked there for five months as a patient-service assistant, had used credit cards belonging to its patients. It asked her to leave the following month.

Before leaving, she was said to have returned a part - an unspecified sum - of the total amount she had spent using the cards.

When contacted, Miss Low, now a student, said that she was "not in a position to comment".

Miss Ris Low was crowned Miss Singapore 2009 on Friday 31 July 2009.

The organiser of the Miss Singapore World pageant, ERM World, did not respond to queries as to whether it was aware of her criminal record during the pageant.

The international Miss World pageant will be held in Johannesburg, South Africa, in December.

It is unclear whether Miss Low will be allowed to leave the country to take part in it.

UPDATE: 29 SEPT 2009

Miss Singapore urges everyone for forgiveness

Miss World Singapore 2009 Ris Low, who was revealed to be a convict of a credit card fraud, has reportedly asked people to forgive her.

Many Singaporeans wanted her to be stripped of her title, while others requested her not to represent Singapore in the finals of the Miss World pageant to be held in South Africa in December.

China Press reported that Low pleaded to be given a second chance, and asked for forgiveness from Singaporeans.

She had declined a phone interview but later sent an SMS to the reporter to apologise to Singaporeans, reports the Star Online.

Last Friday, Low turned emotional during an interview after the fraud was exposed.

Two months before the Miss World Singapore pageant, Low was sentenced to 24 months’ probation for using illegally obtained credit cards to purchase jewellery and a handphone and dining at posh restaurants, running a bill close to 8,000 dollars.

However, the daily reported that the probation is not considered a conviction.

UPDATE: 30 SEPT 2009
Miss Singapore World resigns after lingerie fraud

Beauty queen Miss Singapore World has given up her crown after it emerged that she had stolen credit cards to go on a shopping spree for lingerie, according to Reuters. Ris Low had come under public pressure to be stripped of her 2009 title, after local media reported she stole seven credit cards last year while working at a medical clinic, buying goods worth about S$8,000 ($5,662) including gold anklets and phones.

Organizers of the pageant ERM World Marketing said she had resigned on Tuesday of her own accord. She will no longer represent Singapore at the Miss World finals to be held in South Africa in December, but her replacement has not yet been decided.

Low had also been criticized for her poor English, mispronouncing "bikini" in a recent video, leading others in multicultural Singapore to spring to her defense and soul-searching on websites about the national character.


Ris Low accuses runner-up Claire Lee for backstabbing her

Claire Lee, first runner-up want to personally embody a person who possesses both beauty and intelligence, who is actively engaging different people from many different cultures.” Lee herself is a multi-linguist, fluent in languages such as Thai, French and German.

Dethroned beauty queen Miss Ris Low is now accusing the runner-up Miss Claire Lee of backstabbing her by leaking to the media about her being on probation for credit card fraud.

She also claimed that Miss Lee had faked her back injury to save herself from embarrassment if she is not chosen by the organizers to be the next Miss Singapore World by pageant organiser ERM World Marketing.

Miss Low said she was doing all this to get back at Miss Lee, 23, for exposing her credit card crime to the media.

‘It’s an eye for an eye. I know it was her because eyes can see, ears can hear and heart can feel,’ she said.

She claimed that she told Miss Lee about her being under probation some time during the pageant. ‘She (Miss Lee) was feeling down at the time. I told her that I’m under probation to show her that her life is not that bad,’ she said. ‘I trusted her, but she stabbed me in the back.’

When contacted, Miss Lee said: ‘I feel so hurt and disappointed. I was the only one who stood by her and defended her when people criticised her. I’ve done nothing to hurt her.’

She suspected that Miss Low is ‘making up stories’ either because of her bipolar disorder or to make herself ‘look less bad’ in the face of the controversy surrounding her in the past two weeks.
The endless mudslinging between the contestants in public will not only tarnish their already battled image, but also provide fodder for the state media to boost their flagging readership.

ERM World has so far tried to stay clear of the spat between the two. It will announce the new Miss Singapore World shortly next week.


Largest sum came from Ris, says ERM

DETHRONED Miss Singapore World Ris Low spent about $12,000 on buying advertisements and tables for the pageant.

This has led to some unease about how she may have won the title.

Ms Tracy Lee, the event director of pageant organiser ERM World Marketing, confirmed that Ris, 19, had spent the most among the finalists, but strongly denied that it had any part in influencing the result.
She said it was pure coincidence that the biggest spender had won the title.

Ris' short reign has been plagued by controversy - first over her poor diction and then over revelations of her credit-card fraud conviction.

She gave up her crown earlier this week following public outcry over her suitability to represent Singapore in the Miss World finals in South Africa.

Ris' family and supporters bought 10 full-page ads in the 52-page programme booklet for the Miss Singapore World finals in July.

A flip through the booklet shows that she had the most number of advertisements of the finalists.

Ris told The New Paper yesterday that each full-page advertisement costs $750, which would make the total cost $7,500.

It is understood that a half-page advertisement costs about $325.

Apart from Ris, only three other finalists had advertisements in the programme booklet.

First runner-up Claire Lee, 23 and second runner-up, Miss Pilar Arlando, 19, each had one half-page advertisement paid for by their respective sponsors or supporters.

Another contestant, who was not placed in the top five, also had placed one half-page advertisement.

In addition, Ris' family, friends and supporters bought three tables at about $1,500 per table, which would have amounted to $4,500.

Ms Lee said the full proceeds from the table sales go to the Down Syndrome Association of Singapore.

Ris said she didn't think that her spending had any impact on the judges' decision to pick her as the winner.

'It doesn't matter if you buy tables or advertisements. There is no such thing as buying over the judges. The truth is being twisted here,' she said.

She maintained that she won the pageant on her own merit.

'The judges like me and that's why I won. If the judges didn't fancy me, do you think I could have won so many titles?'

She added: 'I don't think I spent the most of all the contestants.'

When pressed on who else spent more, she said: 'I have no idea, I really cherish friendships I made during the competition. But it seems like someone is out to sabotage me.'

First runner-up Claire Lee also observed that Ris' number of advertisements was noticeably more than the rest of the finalists.

However, another contestant we spoke to, Miss Oxy Ong, 20, an undergraduate, did not get her supporters to buy any ads or tables at the finals.

Yet, she was placed in the top five.

She said: 'I can't comment on Ris or on the others, but I didn't spend money because I would rather spend the money on grooming and training.'

She said she didn't know which contestant spent the most money, and added: 'I'll rather compete fairly on my own strengths and capabilities.'

This is not the first time that pageant organiser ERM has been embroiled in such a controversy. In August last year, The New Paper reported on similar allegations in the Mrs Singapore pageant, which is also organised by ERM.

Then, several finalists banded together to complain that the winner was the contestant who spent the most at the finals.

Ris Low, 19, winner
10 full-page ads in booklet:$7,500
Three tables at finals : $4,500
Total raised: $12,000

Claire Lee, 23, first runner-up
A half-page ad in booklet: $325
Four seats at finals: $600
Total raised: $925

Pilar Arlando, 19, second runner-up
A half-page ad in booklet: $325
Seats at final: Not known

Miss Arlando could not be reached

It was reported that the winner who walked away with five titles had booked six tables, placed eight advertisements and garnered 17,710 votes (with 10 votes costing $3).

Denied allegations

When contacted then, Ms Lee flatly denied the allegations that the winner is the one who spent the most.

She said then: 'The titles had nothing to do with the amount the contestants spent on the pageant.'

She said the judges were not aware of how many tables or ads the contestants had paid for.

Ms Lee added that such amounts were paid out of the contestants 'own free will' and was 'not compulsory'.

Pageant veteran Mrs Patricia Ng, 37, who runs grooming business Glamour Beaute Consultancy, has participated in more than 10 pageants, including those by ERM.

Mrs Ng joined the Mrs Singapore pageant twice, once in 2001 and in 2006.

In 2001, she did not spend anything on the finals. Three years ago, when she bought 10 tables at about $800 each, she managed to win the Mrs Singapore United Nations title and went on to represent Singapore overseas in United States.
That led to her winning the Mrs United Nations International title.
She bought tables at the time because she said: 'I felt like I had no choice.'

Claire Lee, the first Runner-Up of Miss Singapore World. Yet to be decided if she will replace Ris Low, but what do you think?

Miss Singapore World first runner-up Miss Claire Lee, who was unfairly accused by dethroned winner Miss Ris Low of leaking to the press news about her probation has gamely put the unhappy episode behind her and flown off to Bangkok today to do charity work.

AsiaOne brings you an excerpt from the interview where Ris Low talks about her views on Claire Lee.

UPDATE:10 OCT 2009

Miss Pilar Carmelita Arlando is now Miss Singapore World

Pilar Carmelita Arlando is the new Miss Singapore World 2009, the pageant organiser announced in a press release late Friday afternoon.

Organiser ERM Marketing World decided not to select the first runner-up, Ms Claire Lee, as the new Miss Singapore World due to her claims of injury and inability to stand for long hours.

Ms Arlando, 20, was the second runner-up of Miss Singapore World 2009 held earlier this year in July and her ascend to the throne comes 10 days after Ris Low's official resignation as Miss Singapore World 2009.

The newly-crowned beauty queen, who remained mostly silent throughout Ris Low's saga, told Lianhe Wanbao that she "felt moved by the decision [of the organisers] and is proud of the title.

She said: "I've always told myself that I have hope."

ERM decided that Ms Arlando would a better choice as "the international pageant will be physically and psychologically demanding and it would be best that [Ms Claire Lee] remain to recuperate in Singapore."

ERM explained in the media release that the contest agreement does not bar it from exercising discretion in selecting from any of the finalists of the contest.

The company said: "The contest agreement does not bind us legally to automatically select the first runner up take over the winner should the winner fail to fulfil her duties.

"In this instance, there were two runners-up to choose from."

ERM also added: "[Pilar's] parents have been interviewed and they reassured us that she has no criminal records or probation order to keep."

Ms Arlando, who also won Miss Personality and Miss Abry awards, is the only girl in her family. She is mixed as her father is of Chinese-Indian descent and her mother is a of Portuguese and Dutch descent.

The new Miss Singapore World 2009 is also a student at MDIS, studying for her Diploma in Travel, Tourism and Hospitality Management.

When Lianhe Wanbao asked about her relationship with Ms Ris Low, she replied: "We are in the same school and see each other often. We are quite good friends."

UPDATE: 17 Dec 2009
Ris Low named CNN's 25 most influential people in Asia

Singaporean beauty queen Ris Low has been named as one of Asia's 25 most influential people by Cable News Network (CNN).

According to a Shin Min report, the international news network pointed out that while there were many big events in 2009, there were also many "unusual" and very influential people.

In CNN's list of 25 most influential people, the people who have made the list range from awe-inspiring heroes to scandal shockers.

Amongst them is 19-year-old Ris Low who coined the infamous word "Boomz".

CNN said Ris Low is singularly responsible for giving Singapore its catchphrase of the year, and named her "Catchphrase queen".

Ris first made headlines in August this year for her poor command of English during an interview with RazorTV. Subsequently, it was revealed that she was convicted of credit card fraud and sentenced to two year's probation. Then, she told the Straits Times that she suffered from bipolar disorder and eventually stepped down as Miss Singapore World in September.

But two months after the uproar had died down, The New Paper reported that New Urban Male, a local casual wear store, had cashed in on Ris' controversies with a series of Boomz T-shirts.

UPDATE: 27 Dec 2009

Ris Low wants to reinvent herself

Now, the ex-beauty queen is still in the news. She was recently ranked as one of the 25 most influential people or groups in Asia this year, by a division of the United States news network CNN. Earlier this month, she revealed that she was planning to organise her own beauty pageant and has even found a new job as a clinic assistant.

She now wants to reinvent herself — as a social worker and a tourism ambassador.

She told The Sunday Times last week that she had met the Singapore Tourism Board to discuss promoting Singapore “in terms of fashion sense”.

She has also signed up for a nine-month part-time diploma in certified counselling psychology at the Academy of Certified Counsellors.

“One of my ambitions is to help people and do voluntary work.”

Low, who has had a boyfriend for the last few months, plans to get married in two years. She says her life has changed for the better despite the bad press and her army of critics.

“More people recognise me now. As for my critics, they aren’t the ones having the last laugh, because they made me popular.” — The Sunday Times



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A jealous boyfriend bit his girlfriend's ear off

Stefanie's ear was bitten off by her ex-boyfriend

A jealous boyfriend bit his girlfriend’s ear off when she broke up with him.
Schoolgirl Stephanie (19) dumped her partner Mike J. (29), who later returned in a fit of rage to permanently disfigure her an a Mike Tyson-style attack.

The biter has just been given a suspended one year’s sentence in court.

Stephanie, a petite high school student from the city of Jessen, was with Mike, a construction worker, for nearly two years.

She said: “Mike was insanely jealous. Promises of love and then beatings, kisses and then tantrums.”

After discussing the situation with three other schoolmates on a class trip she decided to break things off.

That same night Mike rang her doorbell.

“I thought he wanted to talk again, but he fell on me and as I was lying on my side he bent over and bit me in the left ear…

Doctors were unable to re-attach the missing portion of the ear.

“It hurt like hell and there was blood everywhere. On the rug I found the piece of ear that Mike had bitten off and spit out,” she said.

Unfortunately, doctors were unable to reattach it.

Did the ex-boyfriend use fellow Mike, boxer Tyson, as a role model?

The former world champion’s attack on Evander Holyfield’s ear became notorious around the world.

The ex, Mike J., has just recieved a suspended one year sentence in court.

A district court in Dessauhanded down the sentence to Mike J., who in addition will have to pay Stephanie €1,600.

Mike J. still denies the claims and is set to appeal.



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The Princess And The President: Fact Or Fiction?

The stakes are high. Will it add to the list of famous lovers of the late Princess of Wales on behalf a little borrowed from former President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing? The statement is tedious. To summarize: the bodyguard Barry Mannakee, Professor riding unchivalrous James Hewitt, who told in a book, Princess in Love, passion of four years, the banker Philip Dunne, David Waterhouse, David Kerr, the master of 'rugby team Will Carling, Oliver Hoare, the antiques, not forgetting the Pakistani surgeon Hasnat Khan, the last lover, Dodi al-Fayed, and even the butler Paul Burrell, who saw fit to sell its intimate memories.

Diana, Princess of Wales († 36) - did she have a secret fling with Giscard d'Estaing (83)? A novel by the former French President suggests that may have been the case.

Eighty-three-year-old former French president Valery Giscard d'Estaing has brightened the days of his long retirement by writing a romantic novel about a French leader's affair with a Welsh princess.

To be published next month, Giscard's "The Princess and the President" recounts the secret and passionate love of two characters clearly modelled closely on both himself and the late Diana, Princess of Wales.

Recast as President Jacques-Henri Lambertye and Princess Patricia of Cardiff, the pair meet at the closing dinner of a G7 summit at a time when the young British royal has been left miserable by her husband's adultery.

- I kissed her hand and she gave me a questioning look, her slate-grey eyes widening as she tilted her head gently forward - the presidential first-person narrator recounts, according to an excerpt published Monday in Le Figaro.

Valery Giscard d'Estaing and Lady Di in Versailles in 1994

According to the newspaper, Giscard's book rises above the level of a well written romantic novel because of the wealth of detail he is able to supply about the French and British characters and the palaces in which they meet.

The "Princess and the President" will be released in Paris in French on October 1
As befits a member of the prestigious Academie Francaise, the president also alludes to the literary classics such as Alexandre Dumas' tales of the love between French princess Anne of Austria and the Duke of Buckingham.

But the book will most likely cause the biggest stir as the latest to cash in on the
posthumous Diana publishing industry, particularly as it includes a playful hint that there might be an element of truth in the story.

According to Le Figaro, the book opens with the phrase "Promise kept" and ends with: "'You asked me for permission for you to write your story,' she told me. 'I give you it, but you must make me a promise ...'."

The "Princess and the President" will be released in Paris in French on October 1 by
publishers Fallois-Xo.

Here are some extracts from the book :

“I kissed her hand and she gave me a questioning look, her slate-grey eyes widening as she tilted her head gently forward.”

“I stood up and pushed back my chair to allow the Princess of Cardiff to sit down. She thanked me with one of those oblique looks that revealed all her charm.”

“The Morning Telegraph’s front page headline which I translated wrote: ‘The Princess of Wales spent night at French president’s castle.”

“I can still hear her speaking to me in English. It’s not my memory that brings it back, it’s her voice: ‘I wish that you love me’.”

“I returned to the Elysée and walked up the steps, my head on fire and my heart
sparkling with happiness.”

All of France is wondering – is there a link to reality in the book?

The author is remaining silent for now.



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Emmy Awards 2009

The low-rated shows “30 Rock” and “Mad Men” shared the spotlight again, but most of their stars were snubbed as the acting awards went to repeat winners or surprise choices.

Tina Fey, the creator and star of NBC’s “30 Rock,” failed to defend her best comic actress title. She lost to Australia’s Toni Collette, who plays a woman with multiple personalities in Showtime’s “United States of Tara.”
Fey’s co-star, Alec Baldwin, was the only one of 13 nominees from either “30 Rock” or “Mad Men” to win an acting prize, in his case for playing a bumbling network TV boss.

Still, “30 Rock” was named best comedy for a third year, and “Mad Men” best drama for a second. Both prizes were announced at the end of the three-hour ceremony.

“Phew! That was a nail-biter,” said Fey, accepting the big prize for “30 Rock,” which won just five of the leading 22 Emmys for which the cult favorite had been nominated.

“Mad Men,” whose audience is about 2 million on the niche cable channel AMC, won just three of the 16 Emmys for which it had been nominated. Last year, the period saga made history by becoming the first series from a cable network other than HBO to win the Emmy for best drama.

"Stars of the US small screen gathered in Los Angeles for the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards. Advertising industry series Mad Men walked away with best TV drama for the second year running."
"30 Rock won its third consecutive award for best comedy series. Its star Alec Baldwin also took the prize for best actor in a comedy series."
"Although Tina Fey failed to win the award for best comedy actress in 30 Rock, she did pick up the award for best guest actress in a comedy series for her impersonation of US politician Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live."

"Lost star Michael Emerson took the award for best supporting actor in a drama series, while Jon Cryer's role in Two and a Half Men earned him best supporting actor in a comedy series."

"For the second time, Glenn Close was awarded the Emmy for best actress in a drama series for Damages. Muriel's Wedding star Toni Collette also won the award for best actress in a comedy series for her new show, United States of Tara."

"Cherry Jones was named best supporting actress in a drama series for her role as the US President in 24. But her co-star Kiefer Sutherland lost out in the lead actor miniseries/movie category to Irishman Brendan Gleeson."

"Drew Barrymore was nominated for her role in TV Movie Grey Gardens, based on the life stories of the eccentric aunt and first cousin of Jackie Onassis, but lost out to her co-star Jessica Lange."
"Michael J Fox won an award for his guest appearance in drama series Rescue Me. It was his fifth career Emmy after winning past awards for his roles in Spin City and Family Ties."

"Singer Justin Timberlake also picked up the Emmy for best guest actor in a comedy series for his appearances on Saturday Night Live, beating the likes of Steve Martin and Beau Bridges."

Complete list of winners at Sunday’s 61st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards:

Drama Series: “Mad Men,” AMC.

Comedy Series: “30 Rock,” NBC.

Actor, Drama Series: Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad,” AMC.

Actress, Drama Series: Glenn Close, “Damages,” FX Networks.

Actor, Comedy Series: Alec Baldwin, “30 Rock,” NBC.

Actress, Comedy Series: Toni Collette, “United States of Tara,” Showtime.

Supporting Actor, Drama Series: Michael Emerson, “Lost,” ABC.

Supporting Actress, Drama Series: Cherry Jones, “24,” Fox.

Supporting Actor, Comedy Series: Jon Cryer, “Two and a Half Men,” CBS.

Supporting Actress, Comedy Series: Kristin Chenoweth, “Pushing Daisies,” ABC.

Miniseries: “Little Dorrit” PBS.

Made-for-TV Movie: “Grey Gardens,” HBO.

Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Brendan Gleeson, “Into the Storm,” HBO.

Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Jessica Lange, “Grey Gardens,” HBO.

Supporting Actor, Miniseries or Movie: Ken Howard, “Grey Gardens,” HBO.

Supporting Actress, Miniseries or Movie: Shohreh Aghdashloo, “House of Saddam,” HBO.

Directing for a Comedy Series: “The Office: Stress Relief,” Jeff Blitz, NBC.

Directing for a Drama Series: “ER: And in the End,” Rod Holcomb, NBC.

Directing for a Variety, Music, or Comedy Series: “American Idol: Show 833 (The Final Three),” Bruce Gowers, Fox.

Directing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special: “Little Dorrit: Part 1,” Dearbhla Walsh, PBS.

Variety, Music, or Comedy Series: “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart,” Comedy Central.

Reality-Competition Program: “The Amazing Race,” CBS.

Writing for a Comedy Series: “30 Rock: Reunion,” Matt Hubbard, NBC.

Writing for a Drama Series: “Mad Men: Meditations in an Emergency,” Kater Gordon and Matthew Weiner, AMC.

Writing for a Variety, Music, or Comedy Series: “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart,” Comedy Central.

Writing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special: “Little Dorrit,” Andrew Davies, PBS.

Host, Reality or Reality-Competition Program: Jeff Probst, “Survivor,” CBS.

Original Music and Lyrics: “81st Annual Academy Awards: Song Title: Hugh Jackman Opening Number,” ABC.

List of winners in the creative arts categories

Guest Actor in a Comedy Series: Justin Timberlake, “Saturday Night Live,” NBC.

Guest Actress in a Drama Series: Ellen Burstyn, “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Swing,” NBC.

Guest Actress in a Comedy Series: Tina Fey, “Saturday Night Live: Presidential Bash 2008,” NBC.

Guest Actor in a Drama Series: Michael J. Fox, “Rescue Me: Sheila,” FX Networks.

Governors Award: Sheila Nevins, HBO Documentary Films president.

Animated Program (for Programming One-Hour or More): “Destination Imagination (Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends),” Cartoon Network.

Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour): “South Park: Margaritaville,” Comedy Central.

Art Direction for a Multi-Camera Series: “How I Met Your Mother: Shelter Island, Not A Father’s Day,” CBS.

Art Direction for a Single-Camera Series: “Pushing Daisies: Dim Sum Lose Some,” ABC.

Art Direction for a Miniseries or Movie: “Grey Gardens,” HBO, and “Little Dorrit,” PBS.

Art Direction for Variety, Music, or Nonfiction Programming: “American Idol: Episode 821-822,” Fox, and “2008 MTV Video Music Awards,” MTV.

Casting for a Comedy Series: “30 Rock,” NBC.

Casting for a Drama Series: “True Blood,” HBO.
Casting for a Miniseries, Movie, or Special: “Little Dorrit,” PBS.

Choreography: “81st Annual Academy Awards: Musicals Are Back,” ABC, and “So You Think You Can Dance: Adam and Eve/Silence,” Fox.

Cinematography for a Half-Hour Series: “Californication: In Utero,” Showtime.

Cinematography for a One-Hour Series: “The Tudors: Episode 303,” Showtime.

Cinematography for a Miniseries or Movie: “Little Dorrit: Part 1,” PBS.

Cinematography for Nonfiction Programming: “Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations: Laos,” Travel Channel.

Cinematography for Reality Programming: “Out of the Wild: The Alaska Experiment, What Did I Sign Up For?” Discovery Channel.

Commercial: “Heist,” Coca-Cola.

Costumes for a Series: “Pushing Daisies: Bzzzzzzzzz!” ABC.

Costumes for a Miniseries, Movie, or Special: “Little Dorrit: Part 3,” PBS.

Costumes for a variety/music program or a special: “So You Think You Can Dance: Episode 415-416A,” Fox.

Directing for a Variety, Music, or Comedy Special: “Beijing 2008 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony,” Bucky Gunts, NBC.

Directing for Nonfiction Programming: “Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired,” Marina Zenovich, HBO.

Main Title Design: “United States of Tara,” Showtime.
Makeup for a Series, Miniseries, Movie or a Special (prosthetic): “Grey Gardens,” HBO.

Makeup for a Single Camera Series (non-prosthetic): “Pushing Daisies: Dim Sum Lose Some,” ABC.

Makeup for a Multi-Camera Series or Special (non-prosthetic): “MADtv: Episode 1405,” Fox.

Makeup for a Miniseries or a Movie (non-prosthetic): “The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler (Hallmark Hall of Fame Presentation),” CBS.

Music Direction: “Streisand: The Concert,” CBS.

Music Composition for a Series (Original Dramatic Score): “Legend of the Seeker: Prophecy,” Syndicated.

Music Composition for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special (Original Dramatic Score): “Into the Storm,” HBO.

Original Main Title Theme Music: “Great Performances,” PBS.
Picture Editing for a Drama Series (Single-Camera): “Breaking Bad: ABQ,” AMC.

Picture Editing for a Comedy Series (Single or Multi-Camera): “30 Rock: Apollo, Apollo,” NBC.

Picture Editing for a Miniseries or Movie (Single-Camera): “Taking Chance,” HBO.

Picture Editing (Short Form): “81st Annual Academy Awards,” ABC, and “Stand Up to Cancer,” ABC, CBS and NBC.

Picture Editing for a Special (Single or Multi-Camera): “Chris Rock: Kill the Messenger,” HBO.

Picture Editing for Nonfiction Programming: “This American Life: John Smith,” Showtime.

Picture Editing for Reality Programming: “Project Runway: Finale (Part 1),” Bravo.

Hairstyling for a Single-Camera Series: “Mad Men: The Gold Violin,” AMC.

Hairstyling for a Multi-Camera Series or Special: “Dancing With the Stars: Episode 709,” ABC.
Hairstyling for a Miniseries or a Movie: “Grey Gardens,” HBO.

Creative Achievement in Interactive Media - Nonfiction: “The Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Digital Experience,”

Creative Achievement in Interactive Media — Fiction: “The Dharma Initiative,”

Lighting Direction (Electronic, Multi-Camera) for Variety, Music or Comedy Programming: “American Idol: Finale,” Fox.

Variety, Music, or Comedy Special: “The Kennedy Center Honors,” CBS.

Special Class Programs: “Beijing 2008 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony,” NBC.

Special Class — Short-format Live-Action Entertainment Programs: “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog,”

Special Class — Short-format Nonfiction Programs: “Writer’s Draft,” Fox Movie Channel.

Children’s Program: “Wizards of Waverly Place,” Disney Channel.

Children’s Nonfiction Program: “Grandpa, Do You Know Who I Am? With Maria Shriver,” HBO, and “Nick News with Linda Ellerbee: Coming Home: When Parents Return from War,” Nickelodeon.

Nonfiction Special: “102 Minutes That Changed America,” History.

Nonfiction Series: “American Masters,” PBS.

Reality Program: “Intervention,” A&E.

Exceptional Merit in Nonfiction Filmmaking: “The Memory Loss Tapes,” HBO.

Writing for Nonfiction Programming: “Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired,” HBO.

Sound Editing for a Series: “Battlestar Galactica: Daybreak (Part 2),” Syfy.

Sound Editing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Special: “Generation Kill: The Cradle of Civilization,” HBO.

Sound Editing for Nonfiction Programming (Single or Multi-Camera): “102 Minutes That Changed America,” History.

Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (One Hour): “House: House Divided,” Fox.

Sound Mixing for a Miniseries or Movie: “Generation Kill: The Cradle of Civilization,” HBO.

Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (Half-Hour and Animation): “Entourage: Pie,” HBO, and “Weeds: Three Coolers,” Showtime.



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Bride went berserk because of her lost wedding dress

A bride-to-be in the Lower Saxony city of Osnabrück went berserk in a dry cleaner’s shop upon discovering her wedding dress had been stolen.
Brazilian-born Rosinerie Bensmann told the newspaper Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung the stress of losing her treasured gown just two days before the nuptials was too much to bear.In its native Brazil, it is not uncommon for a wedding dress (buy long before the wedding) as a sort of dowry.

“She freaked out, screamed at the owner and ripped clothing from the stands,” the paper said. “An employee of the dry cleaner’s called the police out of fear, and it took six of them to get her out.”

The bride found another gown to wear on loan, but said it would be impossible to replace her original gown, which she bought 15 years before her wedding.

“The dress is gone and was our responsibility,” the store owner told the paper. “It’s clear that we will pay for it.”



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Food for the Japanese

Well, they are wonderful people! They eat everything that runs, crawls and jumps

A recipe book recently published by Shoichi Uchiyama may be quite an eye-opener for many people in this sense. But be prepared before opening the 256-page book — some of the 64 color photos of bug recipes may leave you feeling a little queasy.

The meals in the pictures range from huge cockroaches soaked in pink vinegar soup, half-raw fat hornet larvae, huge moth pupae simmered with sugar, and a pizza covered with giant water bugs, spiders, caterpillars and adult hornets.

Uchiyama, who lives in Tokyo and holds a food sanitation license, has his own reasons to justify his bug-eating crusade. He argues that insects are almost the perfect food for human beings, were it not for our emotional aversion — nurtured by society — to insects.

"Everybody says bugs taste good even if they taste them only once," said Uchiyama, who organizes a number of bug-eating meetings through his popular Web site, Konchu Ryori Kenkyu (Bug-eating Recipe Studies) at

To get his point across, Uchiyama recently published the book "Tanoshii Konchu Ryori" ("Enjoyable Bug-eating Recipes"), featuring 80 bug-eating recipes in Japanese, Western and other ethnic styles, as well as bug-based desserts.

Academic studies have shown insects are rich in nutrition and many are even more nutritionally balanced than meat or fish, Uchiyama pointed out.

In addition, they grow much faster and require less feed than animals and fish, and leftover vegetables are enough to farm many kinds of bugs. They grow in small spaces and don't compete with human beings over food, Uchiyama said.



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