Friday, April 20, 2007

1986 all over again...Viva Argentina!

Being a medium is fulfilling, but the honest truth is that I would give up my talent for talking with the dead just for one chance to play with the Argentine national soccer team. I'm that much a fanatic. See, though I was born in NYC, both my parents are from Argentina, and I was raised in Buenos Aires. FĂștbol (soccer) is our religion.

In the summer of 1986, I was an 18 year-old virgin who had just graduated from High school. None of that mattered, however, as in my hands I had tickets to the World Cup in Mexico.

Still today, I consider the summer of '86 as the greatest summer of my life. Argentina won the World Cup and I lost my virginity to a stripper.

The seduction began on June 22, 1986. I was in the stands of Mexico City's Estadio Azteca when Argentina, led by Diego Maradona, scored the two most famous goals in World Cup history. The best part of this amazing game was that the victim of both of Maradona's goals was none other than England. If you are an Argentine soccer fan, there is no greater rivalry or joy than trouncing England and their aspirations of a second cup.

The first goal was the infamous Hand of God goal, and as I was celebrating it, I got into a row with a pair of British hooligans who almost threw me over the second level balcony 80 feet below to what would have been my certain death. The second of Maradona's goals is called the Goal of the Century. I can still remember crying like a new bride after Maradona scored it.

Two days ago, Argentina's future soccer genius, Lionel Messi, scored a goal so similar to Maradona's World Cup spectacular, that the whole world is once again hailing him the next Maradona and savior of soccer. God must love Argentina.

This year I'm turning 40, and for my midlife crisis purchase, I am going to skip buying a Porsche and instead aim my sights to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Maybe, just maybe, I'll be able to relive the summer of '86. The only trick now will be getting my wife to let me bring that stripper along. ;-0

Here is a video comparison of Maradona's 1986 goal and Messi's 2007 goal side by side. Viva Argentina!

The Two Billion Pound Psychic

If me not having won the lotto in nearly 99 different attempts wasn't proof enough, here comes more evidence that I do not rank very high on God's list of favorite psychics. London's Daily Mail is reporting this story.

It was a stroke of good fortune he probably didn't see coming.

A feng shui master – or Chinese fortune-teller – will inherit the £2 billion fortune of Asia's richest woman.

Nina Wang, the eccentric Hong Kong tycoon, has apparently made Tony Chan Chun-chuen her sole heir.Nicknamed 'little sweetie' for her braided pigtails, mini-skirts and giggly persona, Mrs Wang, 69, died earlier this month from cancer.

Her decision to leave her vast wealth in the hands of an outsider, while shunning her family, is sure to lead to a court challenge.

Media reports had suggested that Mrs Wang, who had no children, had drafted a will in 2002 pledging much of her estate to charity.

But a revised will drafted last year, as she battled cancer, named Canadian-educated Chan, who advised her on feng shui, as the beneficiary, according to the well-placed source.

She reportedly added a clause to the will insisting that he use the wealth he has inherited in a 'good and proper way'.

Mrs Wang, ranked the 154th richest person in the world by Forbes magazine last year, had a life touched by tragedy.

In 1990, her husband Teddy was abducted by gangsters and never seen again. A Triad gang admitted in 2005 that he had been murdered and his body dumped from a boat into the South China Sea.

She stirred controversy by waging a legal war against her father-in-law, Wang Din-shin, to secure her husband's billions - even though he had not been confirmed dead.

Mrs Wang won the eight-year legal battle in 2005, securing full control of the estate and of Hong Kong's largest private property developer, Chinachem group, in a probate saga that captivated the city of seven million with tales of illicit affairs.

When asked whether Chan would get all the money, the source stressed again that he was the 'sole beneficiary' and that all of Mrs Wang's estate, including that of her husband 'gets paid on in sequence' to him. The source would give no further details.

A statement is expected from Mrs Wang’s lawyer today.

Chan, a fortune-teller to the stars, is understood to have been introduced to the businesswoman by a fellow tycoon and to have been involved in her funeral arrangements.

The ceremony was held on Wednesday morning and was attended by politicians and tycoons, including Macao casino magnate Stanley Ho, who arrived at the funeral home in a line of gleaming Rolls-Royces and other luxury cars.

Hundreds of white wreaths lining the pavement filled the air with the scent of flowers while, inside an altar was covered with more blooms.

A heart-shaped wreath of red roses bore Mrs Wang's smiling portrait and a flower-covered hearse transported her body to the crematorium.

In her lifetime, however, Mrs Wang was renowned for her thrift. She and her husband often claimed they had no time to spend money and that they preferred fast food to fine dining.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Meditation Moment #1

I used to co-host a radio show called In Good Spirit, and every now and then I would poke fun at the self-anointed gurus of new age meditation. I've always said, if you can't laugh at yourself, you're obviously looking in the wrong mirror.

So, take off your shoes, dim the lights, get into the lotus position and hold your nose -

Meditation Moment #1 (voice by Marcel)

Hey, Big Lender!

Like many people, I'm interested in the world beyond my front door. I've been fortunate in my life to have travelled to over 30 different countries, both as a tourist, as an adventurer and as a glutton for the human spirit. Lately, responsibility and finances have sidelined my travels, but my wanderlust has never subsided.

In truth, my heart aches to be on the road. My Austro-Hungarian grandmother use to tell me that we come from Gypsy blood. Imagined or real, I believed this story. Without a doubt, I have the traveler spirit coarsing through each and every one of my cells. Put me on a plane, train, ship or bus and I am transformed into a poet of passion, politic and possibility.

Today, I'm elvoving from cultural spectator to international lender. I've decided to take $50.00 and become a micro-lender. I want to make a difference, support international entrepreneurs and connect with my universe once again. Thanks to groups like Kiva, I can invest my $50.00 anywhere in the world with just a ckick of the mouse. Take a look...

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Science of Mind

I'm happy to announce a belated "Welcome Back" to Matthew Cromer and his very informative blog, Science is A Method, Not A Position, otherwise known as AMNAP.

In his most recent posting, Matthew Cromer continues his analysis of reductionist thinking with a thought provoking post on The Mental Universe...
"The 1925 discovery of quantum mechanics solved the problem of the Universe’s nature. Bright physicists were again led to believe the unbelievable — this time, that the Universe is mental. According to Sir James Jeans: “the stream of knowledge is heading towards a non-mechanical reality; the Universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine.