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Affectionately dubbed Jam by fans of the show, Jim (John Krasinski) and Pam (Jenna Fischer) start out as just friends and coworkers, though its clear theyre meant to be more. After a lot of pining and a few major obstacles — including Pams engagement to Roy and Jims romance with Karen — they get together in season four, which later leads to a wedding and two kids. They face some growing pains in season nine when Jim takes a job in Philadelphia, but love and hard work keep them going.
KARACHI, June 15: The first monetary policy under the new government may not see a change as indicated by the State Bank in its latest report which stated that weakening external account posed a serious challenge to monetary easing.
The third quarterly report of the State Bank issued on Thursday gave an in-depth analysis of the interest rate scenario.
“While inflationary concerns eased to a greater extent, weakening external account posed a real challenge to further monetary easing,” said the report.
The State Bank would announce monetary policy on June 21. Following a 250 basis points cut in the policy rate during the first half of the year, the SBP kept the rate unchanged at 9.5 per cent in the last two monetary policy decisions in February and April 2013.
“Specifically, SBP’s liquid foreign exchange reserves declined by $3.7bn during July-March FY13, and the rupee lost 3.9pc of its value against the dollar,” said the report.
Bankers said the new government could raise large amount of money through different sources before the new fiscal year and that the borrowing would be inflationary.
The expected borrowing could ease up circular debt which made the energy crisis more painful and severe.”The continuation of fiscal weaknesses as evident from increasing government borrowing from the banking system also weighted in favour of cautious monetary easing,” said the SBP report.
While there is no immediate upside risk to inflation, adverse developments on the external front and government’s reliance on bank financing remains major concern to inflationary outlook, said the report.
“Currently, developments in both these sectors are complicating the monetary management.”
At the aggregate level, broad money supply (M2) grew by 9pc during July-March FY13 compared to 8.1pc during the same period last year.
However, major source of this monetary expansion has been high government budgetary borrowing from the banking sector. Specifically, the government borrowed Rs836.4bn from the banking sector during July-March FY13, compared to Rs932.8bn during the same period
In fact, commercial banks could not mobilise enough deposits to match the government’s appetite for funding over the period of analysis.
This, combined with the servicing of external debt (other than IMF) and SBP’s foreign exchange interventions, kept rupee liquidity in the
market under pressure.
Under these circumstances, the SBP has been injecting liquidity through open market operations. The volume of OMOs has been hovering around Rs500 billion since September 2012, which is substantially higher compared to the same period last year.
“The provision of liquidity to the system was also necessary to ensure the pass through of monetary policy decisions – ie to ensure that banks reduce the cost of private sector borrowing,” said the report.
The impact of the decline in lending rates was partially diluted, since real cost of borrowing remained almost constant, ie inflation adjusted weighted average lending rates.
Since energy crisis is the top priority the new government, it has planned to borrow from banks and markets to settle the circular debt that amounts to Rs500bn. Bankers said the plan carries “inflationary virus within it.”
Gaming amp; Entertainment
The failure of BioShock Infinite: Writing games like movies
Op-Ed: Its high time game developers respected the medium they work with.
The sliding door buzzes and rumbles open. The guard calls out: “Come on, you’re next.” I stand up from the waiting area pews, where I have stowed my bag, watch and jewelry in a locker, and step forward. I enter the trap, a room between outside and inside worlds. I turn my pockets inside out, remove my shoes, walk through the metal detector and receive an ultraviolet stamp on my wrist. Every few months for 12 years, I have visited a Massachusetts prison to teach creative writing to a group of locked-up men.
The visits begin with a welcoming. The men rise from their circled chairs and thank me for coming to their cramped classroom. They hurry to get me tea or instant coffee and animal crackers, for which they have chipped in. They pass around a baggie of what my grandmother called penny candy: caramel squares and peppermint wheels, root beer barrels and Atomic Fireballs. Take a minute to breathe, they urge me. How’s your moms, your son?
After we’re settled, we go around the circle for a check-in. I had a visit. I moved cells. I worked on my garden plot. I worked on my appeal. They tell their mostly mundane news, each one finishing up with And with that, I’m in, conveying his commitment to the group’s efforts while passing the focus to the next man.
After everyone has spoken, we turn to our afternoon’s work with meditation. “Close your eyes,” one of them says. “Picture yourself in a green meadow, feeling the sun, the grass, the summer breeze.” He banishes the wasteland of prison and conjures color, life, peace. When we have returned from our imagined freedoms, I offer up a writing exercise:
Write about a toy or game you played with as a child, revealing something important about your experience.
One speaks of playing with the Lone Ranger and Tonto on his bedspread, enacting dramas of power and race. Another remembers the toy backhoe, a miniature version of the one his father drove on a chain gang down South. One recalls playing checkers with his granny while she schooled him about life. And one seems almost free again as he talks about riding his yellow bicycle into the wind, away from the safety and constraints of home.
Write about when you ceased to be a child.
One was claimed at age 13 by the streets, as one parent succumbed to mental illness and the other disappeared. Another left boyhood behind at 12, when the only way to fulfill his duty as the eldest child — to bring home the items on his mother’s grocery list — was to switch supermarket price tags. Some were initiated by drinking, drugs or sex; others tie the shift to the right to drive, or vote. For one, the lynching of an uncle signaled the passage from boy to man.
Write about your neighborhood. Write about the stories you were told, a family journey, an act of generosity. Take us step by step through something you do well. Define masculinity. Write about a time when you were lost. Capture a memory through the sense of taste.
Their possessions and freedoms are few, but their memories are abundant. For three charged hours, through their writing, they become visible. They become more than their worst things.
Together, they excavate a home, a reference point, a goodness that was sown, a point at which they lost the way. They discover something to draw upon in a world defined by absence, where they grapple with the pain and loss they have suffered and caused. We push on, identifying ways to make the leap from life to fiction, and coaxing out detail. They probe for what matters, showing compassion, owning responsibility. Writers dream of going to the heart of things, and I am amazed at the brief access I’m given to the inner lives of men.
Early on, I struggled to reconcile what I knew about their crimes with what I saw and heard in that classroom. Now I try to hold before me the truths of their offenses, alongside the truths of the brotherhood, honesty and generosity I see them call forth. The forces that bring us to our present lives are tangled and complex. Each of our stories contains both wrongdoing and grace, and it is not my job to unravel the skein of their guilt, to judge or absolve. I am here as a witness. I am here in the name of story and its power to transform.
When we are done with the telling and the listening, with the Lone Ranger and bicycles tearing free, with all the things that grow us up and heal and haunt us, we go around the circle to check out, each person stating, according to the group’s custom, a feeling and a blessing.
Today I feel good, one says. You got me to remembering some things. You made me laugh, Helen. You made me think. Another says, softly, I’m grateful you took this time to come, when you could be out in the summer sunshine. I hope you get those papers corrected. I hope your moms feels better soon. I hope you get home safe.
We say goodbye until next time, and soon I am standing at the razor-wire fence, ready to go back through the trap, while they return to their cells and work at resuming their hard postures and concealing what we have just urged out into the light. What is home for them, I wonder, and what kind of safe return is possible?
I have finished writing the novels about prison that first inspired me to volunteer. But I still go. The men compel me. Something large happens as we write and talk together in that room, separated from the rest of the world. These men bring forth their best selves, and I, too, am the awake, compassionate me. Far too often I half-listen, already on to the next errand, the next place I need to be. Too busy to extend myself. Too pressed to pay attention. I fail to see the woman who has dry-cleaned my clothes or sold me my coffee, the man who pumps my gas. I fail to wonder at the past life of the woman making her way slowly across the street on her walker, or to imagine the private yearnings of the man-child with the snapback hat and sagging pants who slouches by the door of the subway train. With all the disconnection, discourtesy and relentless motion of the free world, it can be hard to recognize, let alone love, your fellow human beings.
A feeling and a blessing. I hope you know the power of your words and stories, I would like to tell the men who have revealed their youthful toys and games, and relived their crossings into manhood. Your humanity has been visible to me, I am saying to you here, on this page, and I see that you are more than your worst things. I hope you get home safe.
And with that, I’m in.
Helen Elaine Lee is the author of the novel “The Serpent’s Gift” and a professor of comparative media studies and writing at M.I.T.
Anne D. Neals recent commentary deriding St. Marys College of Maryland unfairly paints the school with the same broad brush her organization has used to criticize colleges nationwide (Cautionary campus tale, May 30).
Ms. Neals group, the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, states on its website that American higher education has generally abandoned its obligation to prepare graduates who have the knowledge and understanding to take up meaningful roles in our free society.
I disagree, especially in regard to St. Marys College. As an English major there who graduated in 2005, I studied calculus and biology to fulfill core curriculum requirements. I also took intensive literature and Spanish language courses, studied abroad to expand my horizons and explored other relevant topics such as political science, history, anthropology and womens studies. I also completed the schools Paul H. Nitze Scholars program for leadership and community service, which required an in-depth senior thesis, as do many majors at St. Marys.
A study released today found New England was last in the nation in college graduate retention, a figure the study said could be attributed to better job prospects in other parts of the country.
Released by the New England Public Policy Center at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, the study compared the rate college graduates remain in their state of education throughout the country, and found only 63.6 percent of graduates in New England still lived there a year after graduating the lowest rate in the country.
In 2008, nearly half of all students who received their degrees in Massachusetts left the state, while 80 percent of graduates left Vermont, the study said.
Its not immediately known why the Detroit Lions want to sponsor a college football bowl game. Its pretty obvious why college football wants the Detroit Lions to sponsor a college football bowl game (hint: when it comes to college football the answer is unequivocally always money).
The opportunities for this game are immense and delightful. This is the first time the NFL has had a chance to get its hands on the madness of bowl season, and the prospects of a Big Ten-ACC matchup leading to a 13-7 Rutgers vs. Wake Forest final cannot be ignored.
But will Detroit be the only NFL city trying to get in the act? Its a copycat league after all, so surely swarms of other teams will try to get a bowl game of their own. Here are four possible options as we at SB Nation try to imagine the possibilites.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Bowl, by Celebrity Hot Tub
It took an hour after I called for the police to finally send someone out, and the officer who pulled up didnt seem terribly sympathetic.
You reported a bowl fraud, is that correct?
I nodded, and gave him the background. Back in 2008, Id just been laid off, but I was trying to put a good face on things and see it as an opportunity to try something new. A recent inheritance had given me some money to play with, so why not start my own business? It was around that time that I heard the radio ad:
LOVE SPORTS? LOVE BEING YOUR OWN BOSS? WANT TO BE RICH? I MEAN OUTBACK STEAKHOUSE FOR BREAKFAST RICH? WARREN SAPP HAS THE ANSWERS FOR YOU! COME TO WARRENS EASY BOWL OWNERSHIP SEMINAR THIS SATURDAY AT THE AIRPORT MARRIOTT. TICKETS ARE ONLY FIFTY NINE NINETY FIVE AND WILL SELL OUT! DONT MISS THE CHANCE TO CHANGE YOUR FINANCIAL DESTINY.
Sixty bucks? Even if it was a scam, Id easily pay that to see Tampas most legendary defensive lineman. And oh, he was silver-tongued. Warren told us all how bowl games were the last truly unregulated investment opportunity in America. He had diagrams and charts, all of which suggested we couldnt lose money on these bowls even if we tried. Id never felt so excited, so powerful. Before I knew it, I was sitting with one of Sapps Bowl Licensing Experts, running the numbers, and an hour later, I was the first CEO of the Tampa Bay BucBowl.
Of course, the excitement was all a mirage. Shipment of the bowl was delayed by a customs agent strike in Thailand, they told me. When it finally did show up, two months late, it was missing several pieces and had the VIN scratched off. I was confused, and angry. This wasnt what Warren had sold me on, but when I called the company, they reviewed my contract. In my fervor, I hadnt noticed that Id only signed on at the Conference USA Level, which entitled me to one (1) refurbished bowl game, as is, to which purchaser waives any warranty, express or implied, of merchantability or fitness.
They couldnt refund my money, but, I was told, for an additional $20,000, I could upgrade to the Coastal Division Level, which came with three years of repair coverage and a signed photo of Warren sacking Elvis Grbac. At that point, I didnt see much other choice.
I never heard from Sapps company again.
The police say theyve got my complaint on file and theyll contact me if anything turns up. Im not expecting to hear from them either.
The Cleveland Browns Bowl, by Martin Rickman
Lets remember the plight of the abandoned plans for the Cleveland Browns Bowl, which was certainly supposed to happen in 1995, I bet.
They were locked in. They made all the t-shirts. They even bought a super cool banner that was weatherproof and four-color. I mean, this was serious stuff.
But we all know what happened next. Art Modell hated college football. Go look it up on an internet search engine. He thought it was gimmicky, and he had a long-standing feud with Bill Snyder that stemmed from a hearts game. Art Modell held grudges, and he was one of the more illogical owners in the NFL.
It drove him mad thinking about amateur football players prancing around soiling the field he built. He couldnt sleep. He lost about 30 pounds because he couldnt even enjoy a pastrami sandwich at his favorite restaurant, Slymans. The only thing he could think about was how he would have to replace every single blade of grass and bench and room anyone associated with college football came into contact with. It would leave him bankrupt. The team would have to fold.
So he moved the team to Baltimore to avoid playing the game. The contracts were signed. The futuristic holographic cups were shipped. It was the only way out. Everything associated with the Cleveland Browns Bowl was buried in a tunnel under Lake Erie, never to be spoke of again. Rumor has it Jonathan Mikan had a Cleveland Browns Bowl keychain, but no one has seen him since 1999.
Today, everyones favorite subprime lender, Dan Gilbert, is assuredly spearheading the charge to revive the Cleveland Browns Bowl. Hes assuming Jimmy Haslam is going to get the boot, and hes taking all his assets and his bow ties and his clout with the local politicians to build his very own Olympic village, where First Energy Field will be the crown jewel.
There will be plenty of table games and booths to refinance your mortgage, and if youre really lucky, Gilbert will hire you at $10 an hour to join his
army idyllic community, which is a future somewhere between the streets of The Running Man and The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.
The St. Louis Rams Bowl, by Ryan Van Bibber
Ive got it, Jim from marketing said. Well have a bowl game.
And with that, the result of a slight detour in an otherwise dour sales meeting, the St. Louis Rams Bowl was born.
The Rams blitzed the community with outreach, part of the effort to rebrand the team that most of St. Louis forgot it had. Encouraging a state full of chubby kids to Play 60 with Smuckers jelly was only moving the ball so far. It was the marketing equivalent of Pat Shurmurs offense.
There had to be some way to awaken the regions latent football fans, elevate the teams image and maybe show voters just how essential a football stadium could be.
Rams owner Stan Kroenke had bought the Outdoor Channel, satellite televisions most popular outdoor channel. His network landed a deal to broadcast the game. It got wedged between a Ted Nugent special and a show about SWAT teams.
Eyebrows raised when Illinois got permanently inserted into the mix. Mizzou, now part of the SEC, had snubbed the offer, even if it meant no bowl game for another five years. So its now Illinois versus whatever team boasts Charlie Weis on its staff.
Early ticket sales struggled. Suburban moms boycotted the game due to its broadcast on a channel propped up by the gun lobby. Hunters skipped the event because it ate up a three-hour block of their favorite shows. And, nobody really watches Illinois football games.
So here it is, the St. Louis Rams Bowl on life support. The next call to be made is to the Cardinals, to see if they can hold their annual winter autograph session in the main lobby and replay 2011 NLCS highlights on the big screen. Eventually, the Rams Bowl will go the way of the citys NBA and MLS efforts, turned away by the Provel cheese mafia that runs the city, buggered by a rash of parking lot break-ins and ignored because it is not baseball.
The Atlanta Falcons Bowl, by Jason Kirk
Its contractually supposed to be any SEC team vs. any SEC team, but it always ends up just being an aging Deion Sanders and Tim McKyer lateraling an intercepted ball back and forth for three hours while everyone wonders why the PA is playing Saliva instead of Pastor Troy.
Also, every bowl scout only goes to games already being held inside the city of Atlantas perimeter, because, as has been noted, aint nothing outside I-285 but fuckin trees. This means Clemson gets recommended every year, because Clemson plays here like four times a season, approximately.
Also, everything is sponsored by Chick-fil-A, not because the Chick-fil-A Bowl feels jealous or threatened, but because nothing within 20 miles of the state capitol is not sponsored by Chick-fil-A.
Also, the roof looks like this, except it says replace with animation bowl game.
Now its your turn!
How would your teams bowl game go? Pretty great, I bet!
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More than half the workforce will have at least one office fling in their working life.
But while many work romances blossom into serious relationships – even marriages – more often than not they end in tears.
One of Australias leading employment lawyers, Kate Jenkins, says managing the legal fallout from office relationships is a growing issue for businesses in the US.
There, more than one in three workers have to tell their boss if they become intimately involved with a colleague.
In Australia, bosses are still clinging to the dont ask, dont tell approach.
Often its very secretive and private, and sometimes its an affair that is being kept secret for a good reason, Ms Jenkins said.
Smitten co-workers are the gossip gold of the workplace, and their relationships can make or break a career.
But for bosses, Ms Jenkins says navigating the office affair can also be an HR nightmare.
In Australia recently weve had a lot of high-profile bullying and sexual harassment cases and a lot of them have arisen out of office romances gone wrong, so its a very tricky area for employers, she said.
Theres a lot of examples my clients have of very startling sexual harassment incidents in the car park, at the Christmas party, which was really an aggrieved lover trying to rekindle the flame.
In the United States it is now standard practice for workers to disclose any intimate relationships with colleagues.
This often involves written agreements, or so-called love contracts, which bind couples to clear rules of engagement in the workplace – and even more critically, protects the company from any future legal fallout.
In stark contrast to the United States, most Australian bosses are so mortified at the prospect of having to discuss such intimate details, it is an issue still largely ignored by companies – at their peril.
Managers say they dont want to be having this conversation, Ms Jenkins explains.
Theres a really strong sense that this is peoples personal lives and its got nothing to do with work. And that is simply not how things are playing out now.
Theres a lot more people working late, lots more social events, lots more blending of work and personal lives.
I think we have a high prevalence of sexual harassment exactly because we have a high prevalence of consensual relationships.
Always an elephant in the room
But its not just the lovesick couple companies should worry about. Even if an affair does not end in tears, it still has an impact on everyone in the office.
People start relating to those in the relationship differently. They dont trust the people in the same way they did previously because they know pillow talk exists, organisational psychologist Dallas Burgess said.
Theres always an elephant in the room.
The excruciating awkwardness of the office romance is rich pickings for comedy shows like The Office.
But Mr Burgess says TV sitcoms also reflect the reality. Extra-marital affairs and office romances are now so commonplace there need to be rules – and that goes for bosses as well.
People spend more time at work during their waking hours than they do at home, Mr Burgess said.
And there are more women in the workplace. But unfortunately there are still a lot of men in the workplace who see the organisation as their own personal playground.
It may be the behaviour of senior executives that will finally force Australian business to take workplace romances more seriously.
And that, Ms Jenkins says, will make life just a little less squeamish for everybody.
I think some of the cases that have involved senior people have caused boards to realise that they need to be a bit more actively interested if theyve got a senior person who has a reputation for playing around, she said.
But in terms of costs [on a] day-to-day basis I think the morale issues and the disruption to workers feeling uncomfortable and accidentally walking in on a compromising position, all that has an ongoing cost to business.
West Valley Colleges park management program teaches students how to save lives and survive in the wilderness. Now, because of state budget cuts, its the 43-year-old program thats in need of saving.
Department chairman Chris Cruz predicted the program could be eliminated as soon as June 2014. He and the other instructors are trying to recruit enough students to keep the program funded and alive.
The park management program is one of a handful of career technical education programs that West Valley is considering cutting. The perception, Cruz said, is that it is not as important as the standard academic programs such as history, math and English. But that perception is inaccurate, he said, especially in the Bay Area–an environmentally and park-rich environment that depends heavily on the programs students and graduates, Cruz said.
Started in 1970 by John Nicholas and Tom Smith, two coaches in the physical education department, the park management program is the colleges oldest career program and is comprised of students from high school-age to those with masters degrees in other fields.
Theyre coming to us because theyre doing whats in their hearts, said instructor Kim Aufhauser. They want to work in the woods.
Aufhauser is one of 12 faculty members in the program, and like the others, is also a practitioner in various fields, from mountaineering to biking and climbing. He is a 16-year-veteran of the National Park
This offseason we will count down various topics from Monday through Friday, bringing you the top five of the important and definitely some not so important issues in college football. Its the Doc Five, every week until we will thankfully have actual games to discuss.
GREATEST COLLEGE PLAYERS WITH QUIETEST NFL CAREERS
NO. 5, PAT FITZGERALD
Sometimes a players college legacy is defined by what he does, or doesnt do, in the NFL.
It isnt fair. A college greats exploits shouldnt be flushed because of a poor NFL career. In many ways college football and the NFL are two different games. Thats why there are so many candidates for this Doc Five, which were culling from 1980 on (We wont consider those who chose to pass on pro football – no Charlie Ward here – but those with the biggest gaps between college stardom and NFL success). There are way too many examples from generations ago to pare down to a list of five. It wasnt too uncommon many years ago for a player to turn down the NFL for a military career, some other career field or another football league. Four of the first five Heisman winners never played a down in the NFL.
But over the past three decades or so, the lack of a pro career has changed the perception of some college players who deserve better. Like Pat Fitzgerald.
Fitzgerald is a memorable name in recent college football history because of the astounding success Northwestern had when he was its middle linebacker, but over the years hes probably become a little underrated. The Bronko Nagurski Award and the Chuck Bednarik Award were each established in the early 1990s to go to the defensive player of the year in college football. The only two-time winner of the Nagurski Award is Pat Fitzgerald. The only two-time winners of the Bednarik Award are Paul Posluszny and … Pat Fitzgerald.
Fitzgerald was a great college player, one of the most decorated defensive players of of the past 20 years and a College Football Hall of Fame inductee. He also never played a down in the NFL.
Fitzgerald was signed by the Dallas Cowboys and cut before his rookie season started. He worked out for the New Orleans Saints, and then-coach Mike Ditka got him started on the coaching path. Heres how Fitzgerald explained the exchange to ThePigskinProject.com:
#34;I know I ran poorly, and Coach Ditka was here with the Bears when we had our run and all that stuff,#34; Fitzgerald told the site,#34;and he put his arm around me and said I know you had a great career at Northwestern, but I think it might be time you want to think about using that degree. And that statement resonated with me, I mean here’s somebody I had the utmost respect for, I thought Maybe he’s right.
#34;So I came back home, I came up and saw Coach Barnett, and we sat down, and I said, I just got a sour taste in my mouth right now, and I kind of feel like I’m beating my head against a wall. I’m a great football player, I’m not a great athlete, I had my shot, it didn’t work, I got cut right there at the end, and I’ve got this taste in my mouth from football that I just don’t like.#34;
We all know this wasnt a sad ending. Fitzgerald eventually came back to Northwestern as head coach and has built the Wildcats into a very solid program.
Back in the day, he was also one of the few players in college football history to win major awards in back-to-back years. Think of all the great defensive players in college football over the last 20 years – none of them can match Fitzgeralds accomplishment of consecutive Nagurski Awards.
Fitzgerald wasnt athletic enough to play linebacker in the NFL. That doesnt change that he was an all-time great college linebacker, even if his lack of a NFL career has obscured that a bit.
Previously on #34;Doc Five#34;
4. Ken Dorsey
3. Rashaan Salaam
2. Jason White
1. Tim Tebow
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