When the winner of the Campionato Mondiale Della Pizza (Pizza World Championship) in Parma, Italy was announced, a few years back it wasn’t a local chef who was crowned champion — it was a pizza maker from Down Under.
Johnny Di Francesco competed against 600 chefs from 35 countries and was able to emerge as World Pizza Champion thanks to his margherita pizza.
The winning pie from “Mr. Pizza” was made from ingredients including peeled tomatoes, cheese, garlic, olive oil and salt.
“It’s exciting to win a world pizza competition in Italy, the home of pizza. Amazing,” Di Francesco told the Herald Sun Confidential. “I was up against the best pizza makers in the world and I did everything right on the day.
My dough was perfect, the ingredients were the same I use in my restaurant every day. I didn’t do anything extraordinary. I did what I do in Brunswick every day.”
Di Francesco used Italian-imported flour, buffalo mozzarella and fresh basil on the prize-winning pizza.
“It’s great to put Australia on the map. You don’t have to go to Europe or Italy to get quality pizza.
We make world class products right here,” Di Francesco said. “My struggle has been trying to educate the Australian public about pizza. I want to keep it traditional.”
When U.S. Navy hospital corpsman Marshall Peters returned from a tour of duty in Kandahar, Afghanistan, in 2010, he couldn’t sleep. He felt depressed and anxious, and hated being around crowds or loud noises.
Like many veterans returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan, Peters was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.
Then, he started working with Lundy, a golden retriever he named after his former roommate who was killed in action.
Through the nonprofit organization Warrior Canine Connection, Peters and other veterans with PTSD, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and other health problems started training service dogs for other disabled veterans.
The soldiers report that the dog training helped ease their symptoms and made it easier to readapt to society.
“I found myself no longer relying on the antidepressants, anti-anxiety meds or medication for sleep that I was taking before to ‘treat’ my PTSD, depression and insomnia,” said Peters, who was honorably discharged from the Navy in 2012.
“I didn’t know at the time that what I was doing with the therapy dogs was therapy for myself at well.”
Continue reading at…via Tanya Lewis – Live Science.
“I saw the Red Baron shot down,” he had proudly told his sons and wife in later years.
I wonder how this gentle man with dark hair, brown eyes and fair complexion from a Queensland property survived the mental anguish and horror of the Great War on the front lines and in battle at Viller-Bretonneux.
He showed no physical signs of PTSD and as far as his family knew he coped well.
Joseph signed up in the 8th reinforcement of the 41st Battalion, which was sent to Belgium and later redeployed to the 52nd Battalion to go to France to face the front lines.
This Battalion was ripped to shreds and annihilated shortly after arriving to the bitter cold and the smell of rotting food and stench of death.
The remaining few men were withdrawn and rested.
Did these men feel relief to be getting out of the front line or did they feel guilty that they were leaving new mates behind? Either way they were again re-deployed to the 13th Battalion and rushed to a new crisis near Albert. Would their luck run out?
Due to an error they were withdrawn and marched 27 km through the dark of night, guns popping in the distance, rosemary wafting through the air.
Silently marching, on full alert. They arrived to the sickening news that Pozieres, Thiepval and Albert had been captured.
They went onto fight at Villers-Bretonneux. This Battalion again was hit hard and had lost too many men. The surviving soldiers were redeployed for the final time. Their odds of survival getting less with each re-deployment.
We can’t even imagine the horror as this group of men already battle scarred were again massacred and slaughtered by the 1000’s. They would have been frightened and traumatized seeing more mates laying in the fields, screaming in pain, dying terrible deaths.
The smell of blood drenching the soil would make any person dry reach and throw up.
It makes us cry, thinking about it, these men lived it. The smell of burning bodies is something that never leaves you, and something I will never forget myself. It stays in your nostrils for days. I couldn’t imagine smelling that smell for months on end.
They fought bravely and for their mates that had fallen, they fought for their country and mother land, this was the last stand.
“The Red Baron has been shot down,” someone yells. Everyone cheers and morale is lifted. Surely the end is in sight. The men stayed and fought until the end of the war a long seven months later.
Thirteen of the original men that left Australia came home to their families and loved ones.
Joseph has left his legacy behind with three sons, one daughter, ten grandchildren, and countless great-grandchildren and great-great grandchildren.
We would not be here if it weren’t for these brave men.
Rest In Peace Grandad.
Lest we forget.
In Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Eva Green, the French actress (see above) is treacherous, deadly and alluring enough to turn a polar ice cap into a cloud of steam.
Her character has a name – Ava Lord – but she might as well be called simply Femme Fatale. She is just the latest in a long line of cinematic devil women who beguile viewers as surely as they beguile their weak-willed prey.
But the femme fatale doesn’t just give audiences a delectable taste of forbidden fruit. Dr Catherine O’Rawe of Bristol University is the editor of an academic survey of the subject, Femme Fatale: Images, Histories, Contexts, and she argues that such fictional seductresses reflect society’s mixed feelings towards independent women.
“The figure of the female temptress is as old as Eve,” says O’Rawe.
“But the femme fatale as we understand it emerged in the late 19th Century, when the term was applied to a range of fin-de-siècle figures such as Salome, Rider Haggard’s She and Bram Stoker’s female vampires.
What’s striking is that these figures arose at the same time as concerns about emancipated women occupying the public sphere.”
There were similar concerns in the air during the femme fatale’s big-screen heyday. The movies have always featured wicked women: in 1915, Hollywood’s original ‘vamp’, Theda Bara, ensnared and destroyed a respectable Wall Street lawyer in A Fool There Was.
Photo: Rita Hayworth.
But it was in the 1940s that such film noir classics as Gilda, The Killers, Murder, My Sweet and Double Indemnity brought us the definitive femmes fatales: Rita Hayworth, Ava Gardner and Barbara Stanwyck at their most hazardously alluring.
Photo: Veronica Lake
Sometimes evil, sometimes in thrall to a villainous male, the vamp in these films used her hypnotic eroticism to get what she wanted – up to and including murder.
She may have been a fantasy, says Dr Ellen Wright, a film noir specialist at the University of East Anglia, but she personified real issues.
Ingrid Bergman photographed during the filming of her first film Munkbrogreven (The Count of Monk’s Bridge).