Friday, February 5, 2016

Fun New App: Confessions of a Kitty Collecting Addict

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 4:00 PM

A screenshot of cartoon cats in the Japanese game app called Neko Atsume: Kitty Collector.  The app was created by Hit-Point Co., Ltd. - NATALIA NAVARRO
  • Natalia Navarro
  • A screenshot of cartoon cats in the Japanese game app called Neko Atsume: Kitty Collector. The app was created by Hit-Point Co., Ltd.

Whether you're a fan of cats or a general fan of adorable animations, I have a game for you.

Neko Atsume: Kitty Collector is a Japanese cat game that has been sweeping through our iPhones in the cutest and most relaxing way. The app, rated number 104 on the Apple App Store free top charts, has become a main focus for many blogs, as well as my own daily life.

Think you might enjoy putting out virtual food and toys and waiting for virtual cats to arrive in your virtual yard? I definitely do.

First, you have to set up your yard. Then tiny cats, all with a different preset names, interests, and personalities will begin to visit, leaving fish treats as a reward for your kindness. You can then use those fish treats to buy more goodies for them. If you are lucky (and generous), a rare and limited-edition cat may visit you.

I am not too embarrassed to say that I've spent days saving up for the highest quality animated food and cat accouterments. Only the best for my (digital) kitty cats!

But be warned: this could happen to you. If you need help succeeding in this a cat-eat-cat world, visit gameskinny.com.

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Zona Politics: How Will Climate Change Affect the Oceans?

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 3:00 PM

ZonaPol2-4-16Fin_1_1 from Zona Politics with Jim Nintzel on Vimeo.


On this week's episode of Zona Politics: UA professor of geosciences Joellen Russell talks about how climate change is affecting the world's oceans. Then we talk with two writers who will be appearing at this year's Festival of Books: Kathryn Ferguson, author of The Haunting of the Mexican Border, and Margaret Regan, author of Detained and Deported: Stories of Immigrant Families Under Fire. 

You can catch the show at 8 a.m. Sunday morning on the CW Tucson, Channel 8 on Cox and Comcast and Channel 58 on DirecTV, Dish and broadcast. You can hear it at 5 p.m. Sundays on KXCI, 91.3 FM. And you can watch it online here or at zonapolitics.com.

Here's a transcript of the show:

Hello, everyone. I'm Tucson Weekly senior writer Jim Nintzel and we're here to talk Zona Politics. Today, we're once again highlighting the UA College of Science spring lecture series on climate change. Joining us in the studio is Joellen Russell, a U. of A. associate professor of geosciences, who specializes in studying the impacts of climate change on the world's oceans. Dr. Russell, welcome to Zona Politics.

(Russell) Thanks for having me.

(Nintzel) So what got you interested in studying the oceans?

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Need Some Fresh Air? Try These 3 Things to do Outside This Weekend

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 2:00 PM

The recent storm brought wind and rain, but it also brought some beautiful weather for this upcoming weekend. Enjoy it:

click image An amateur astronomer observes the night sky at the 23rd Annual Star Party in 2013. - GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, MICHAEL QUINN
  • Grand Canyon National Park, Michael Quinn
  • An amateur astronomer observes the night sky at the 23rd Annual Star Party in 2013.

1) Mount Lemmon SkyCenter SkyNights Program
 


Check out the largest public viewing telescope in the Southwest any night this weekend. A five hour "tour of the universe" up on Mount Lemmon is $60.

The event is held nightly at the Mount Lemmon SkyCenter (9800 Ski Run Road) from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Reservations are required through skycenter.arizona.edu.

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Union Workers in Tucson, Phoenix Go On Strike Against US Foods

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 1:05 PM

MARIA INÉS TARACENA
  • Maria Inés Taracena

More than 200 union members in Arizona employed by US Foods declared an unfair labor practice strike last night as negotiations for a new contract with one of the nation's largest food service providers has been stalled for months.

Members of the Teamsters Local 104 Union have been working without a contract since October 2015. The union's negotiating committee and US Foods tried to come up with an agreement throughout the summer. As the last contract reached its expiration date, the Teamsters "overwhelmingly" rejected US Foods' "best final offer," says Kevin Thomas, member of the Teamsters' negotiating committee.

"We had some additional days to negotiate, and there was no movement. We are trying to explain to the company that working without a contract is not benefiting the members. These folks have families, they are part of our community. You can't go on with your life without some type of job security as far as health benefits...pension...[and] wages," he says.

According to the Teamsters, US Foods negotiated in "bad faith" and discriminates against workers affiliated with unions. US Foods is currently under investigation with the National Labor Relations Board for violations of federal labor law, such as disciplining union workers and refusing to hire union members, the Teamsters say.

Thomas wasn't able to provide specifics on the contract that was on the table, and the exact reasons the Teamsters rejected US Foods' final offer. "I don't want to negotiate through the media," he says. 

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Casa Video Top 10

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 1:00 PM

bigstock-popcorn-round-frame-cinema-ic-71876242.jpg

Listen up: I'd never say one needs an "excuse" to get themselves a bowl of buttery, wonderful popcorn—but if you find grease stains all over your tax documents, maybe the situation could use some work?

It's movie time. Here's a list of the 10 movies most rented from Casa Video last week:


1. The Martian

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Club Camera Tucson Hosts Photography Workshops at Agua Caliente Park

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 12:00 PM

“Happy Hands,” an ancient petroglyph from the Paria Canyon of northern Arizona, is one of the featured images at “Lensmasters." - JAMES CAPO
  • James Capo
  • “Happy Hands,” an ancient petroglyph from the Paria Canyon of northern Arizona, is one of the featured images at “Lensmasters."
If you're looking to get out of those house and fine tune those photo skills all in one go, Club Camera Tucson has some events for you. Beginning on Wednesday, Feb. 5 and continuing throughout the month, the local camera club will be sponsoring three different workshops that will focus on different aspects of shooting outdoors at the historic Agua Caliente Park (12325 E. Roger Road).

On Wednesday, Feb. 10, Club Camera landscape and nature photographer James Capo will offer tips for taking "Better Backyard Bird Photography." The workshop runs from 9:30 until 11:30 a.m.

Then, on Thursday, Feb. 18 from 10 a.m. 'til noon, Capo will be teaching the "Shoot Better Landscapes" workshop, with an emphasis on composition and light in natural settings.

Finally, on Wednesday, Feb. 24, you can learn the "Top Tips for Better Travel Photos" from the club's president Steve Dell. The final workshop, which begins at 10 a.m., will teach how to shoot pictures worthy of travel magazines on your own vacation. 

The workshops are open to all skill levels with tips that work for almost any camera, with both classroom and hands-on instruction. All workshops are free to Pima County Natural Resources Parks and Recreation (NRPR) annual passholders or $5 for non-passholders, with free entry to the park and gallery included. Registration is required in advance, and can be made through Pima County's website by clicking "Register Now."

The workshops are sponsored in conjunction with an fine art photography exhibit titled “Lensmasters: Life and Landscapes of the Southwest,” which is on display at the Ranch House Art Gallery at the park from Feb. 6 through March 2. A "Meet the Artists" reception will take place on Sunday, Feb. 14 from 1 until 3 p.m.


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Daily Physical Activity Bill Given Short Shrift at the Legislature, Again

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 10:50 AM

COURTESY OF PUBLIC-DOMAIN-IMAGE.COM
  • Courtesy of public-domain-image.com
Once again, Tucson's Steve Gall pushed for a bill to promote daily physical activity in elementary schools. (Full disclosure: Steve is a friend who keeps me up-to-date on his volunteer work with kids in Tucson and his efforts to get some kind of state legislation passed promoting daily physical activity.) This year it's HB 2066, a very modest bill indeed. It doesn't mandate daily physical activity. It simply requires that governing boards of school districts and charter schools hold a public meeting to consider adding daily physical activity to K-5 students' schedules. It can be "structured or unstructured physical activity inside or outside of the classroom," meaning the activity might be as simple as a teacher having the kids stand at their desks and do some movement between other classroom activities, or going outside and playing on their own for a few minutes. (The only thing that doesn't count is recess connected with lunch time.) And if the boards decide not to implement the program, that's fine, so long as they consider it.

According to Steve, House Speaker David Gowan assigned the bill to the Education Committee, but committee chair Paul Boyer wouldn't give it a hearing.

To put this in perspective:

The physical activity bill HB 2066 says schools should consider allowing kids aged 5 to 10 be given some time to move their bodies a little during the school day. Every study says it's not only good for their physical development, but it increases their abilities to concentrate in class. The boards just have to consider the idea and decide whether or not they want to implement it. The bill died before it got a hearing.

Last year, the legislature passed the American Civics Act which requires every Arizona high school student to memorize 100 facts about U.S. history and civics, then show they have crammed the facts in their heads long enough to pass a test. If they don't pass, they don't graduate. The bill got lots of positive local and national press.

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Arivaca Residents Monitor Border Patrol Checkpoint on HWY 286 to Document Possible Racial Profiling, Other Abuse

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 9:30 AM

Members of People Helping People in the Border Zone stationed at a Border Patrol checkpoint on Arizona Highway 286, about 26 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border at Sasabe. The group is in an ongoing campaign to oversee checkpoint activity, document possible civil rights violations and ultimately shut down interior checkpoints. - MARIA INÉS TARACENA
  • Maria Inés Taracena
  • Members of People Helping People in the Border Zone stationed at a Border Patrol checkpoint on Arizona Highway 286, about 26 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border at Sasabe. The group is in an ongoing campaign to oversee checkpoint activity, document possible civil rights violations and ultimately shut down interior checkpoints.

In the three decades Carlota Wray has lived in Arivaca, she says she had never felt uncomfortable until Border Patrol interior checkpoints and immigration enforcement agents began to appear in the area.

To either enter or leave the community—located 11 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border—she, and other Arivaca residents, have to pass through at least one of two checkpoints.

It offends Wray, who was born in Mexico but is now a U.S. citizen, to constantly be questioned on her immigration status as she drives in and out of Arivaca. One time, even after answering she is a citizen, the agent still demanded to see an identification for proof, she says. 

On Thursday, Wray and other fellow members of the organization People Helping People in the Border Zone completed day 2 overseeing a Border Patrol checkpoint on Arizona Highway 286—roughly 26 miles from the border at Sasabe. This is the second checkpoint near Arivaca the group has targeted to monitor to collect data on possible civil rights violations, harassment, racial profiling, and overall the effectiveness of interior checkpoints. The ultimate goal is to shut them down.

"They are here, and they are not going anywhere. It is worse than a nightmare," Wray says, adding the interaction with Border Patrol is tougher for community members of color. "Their presence interrupts our lives. It steals our peace. The community was tranquil, we were in peace. Now we are at war with them."

Even though the previous day several Border Patrol agents said they did not mind having PHP members watching from the other side of the highway, when the group showed up to the checkpoint Thursday afternoon, they were welcomed by a "no authorized entry beyond this point" barrier—approximately 180 feet from the area where border agents inspect vehicles driving north from Sasabe. From that distance, the interactions were inaudible. And, when people crossed the line, a BP agent would come by and say they had to remain behind the white rope, and that the barrier was set up as a precaution.

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Staff Pick

Make 'N Take--Edgar Allen Poe Mural Coloring Event

Join us in creating a community mural commemorating the works of Edgar Allen Poe. Participants will color… More

@ Eckstrom-Columbus Branch Library Fri., Feb. 5, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. 4350 E. 22nd St.

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