Friday, January 21News That Matters

Tag: Awards, Decorations and Honors

Quiet Awards Season Has Hollywood Uneasy

Quiet Awards Season Has Hollywood Uneasy

Business
The Academy Awards were created in 1929 to promote Hollywood’s achievements to the outside world. At its pinnacle, the telecast drew 55 million viewers. That number has been dropping for years, and last year it hit an all-time low — 10.4 million viewers for a show without a host, no musical numbers and a little-seen best picture winner in “Nomadland.” (The film, which was released simultaneously in theaters and on Hulu, grossed just $3.7 million.)Hollywood was planning to answer with an all-out blitz over the past year, even before the awards season. It deployed its biggest stars and most famous directors to remind consumers that despite myriad streaming options, theatergoing held an important place in the broader culture.It hasn’t worked. The public, in large part, remains reluctant to re...
Meet the Beauty Queens of Al Dhafra

Meet the Beauty Queens of Al Dhafra

LifeStyle
“Camel No. 1! Camel No. 1!”I had just arrived at the Al Dhafra Festival, and young boys in kanduras, or long tunics, were running toward my car, shouting as they pointed their index fingers in the air. In the distance, two men rode camels, each pulling another of the animals on a leash. One of the camels was draped in a gold-tasseled winner’s blanket.Behind the men, slowly making its way across the sand dunes, was a large convoy of honking pickup trucks. Men and boys stood in the beds of the vehicles and leaned out of all the windows, waving and cheering, many of them filming the scene on their phones.Without a second thought, I left my little rental car behind — I wouldn’t have gotten far in the deep sand, anyway — and jumped on the back of the nearest pickup. I wanted to be part of this ...
He Knows the Ballon d’Or Winner. No, He Won’t Tell.

He Knows the Ballon d’Or Winner. No, He Won’t Tell.

Sports
In truth, of course, many of the names have a clear majority behind them. “For the men, maybe 20 or 22 players will be obvious to everyone,” he said. “We discuss the final eight or 10. The meetings can be long, two or three hours, but we need everyone to be proud of the final selection. It is not just the list of the chief. And we try not to forget anybody: We worked out a couple of years ago that, between us, we had watched 1,000 games or more that year. To be on the list at all is something very serious.”Once something approaching a consensus has been reached, France Football sends its shortlists to its jury of more than 170 vote-wielding journalists around the world (as well as announcing them in public) in early October.It is at this point that the veil of secrecy descends. The jurors ...
Angels’ Shohei Ohtani Wins AL MVP Award

Angels’ Shohei Ohtani Wins AL MVP Award

Sports
Shohei Ohtani was extraordinary this season. Ohtani, the Los Angeles Angels’ two-way star, smashed 46 home runs, drove in 100 runs and posted a .965 on-base plus slugging percentage, trailing only Toronto’s Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in the American League. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, Ohtani was also his team’s best starting pitcher, amassing a 3.18 earned run average and 156 strikeouts in 130 ⅓ innings over 23 starts.On Thursday, Ohtani’s historic efforts were rewarded with the A.L. Most Valuable Player Award. He joined the former Seattle Mariners star outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, the 2001 A.L. M.V.P., as the only Japanese players in Major League Baseball history to earn the award.Ohtani received all 30 of the first-place votes for the award, which is presented annually by the Baseball W...
Bryce Harper Wins Second NL MVP Award

Bryce Harper Wins Second NL MVP Award

Sports
Bryce Harper knew just how to endear himself to the locals when he joined the Philadelphia Phillies in 2019. He signed a contract without an opt-out clause, showing loyalty to a city that demands it. He adopted the Eagles as his favorite football team, dropping the hated Dallas Cowboys. He formed a bromance with the most beloved creature in town, the Phillie Phanatic, paying regular tribute to the mascot with headbands, cleats and even a green sport coat.Yet the surest way to the heart of any fan base is to be the best player in the league. Harper did that this season, and the baseball writers certified it on Thursday. They voted Harper as the winner of the National League’s Most Valuable Player Award for the second time of his career, and his first as a Phillie.Harper, a right fielder who...

Randy Arozarena and Jonathan India Win Rookie of the Year Awards

Sports
They came into this season with wildly different levels of major league experience, but outfielder Randy Arozarena of the Tampa Bay Rays and second baseman Jonathan India of the Cincinnati Reds are leaving it the same way, with each being named the winner of his league’s Rookie of the Year Award on Monday.The awards, which are given annually by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, hardly came as a surprise: Arozarena (4.1) and India (3.9) were the top rookies in the majors in wins above replacement and each played a central role in his team’s success this year.Arozarena, who led American League rookies in hits (145), runs (94), doubles (32), stolen bases (20) and on-base plus slugging percentage (.815) received 22 first-place votes, beating out his fellow finalists, pitcher Luis G...
Nearly $7 Million Awarded in First Earthshot Prizes

Nearly $7 Million Awarded in First Earthshot Prizes

Technology, World
LONDON — Costa Rica and the city of Milan on Sunday were among the first to be awarded one million pounds, or nearly $1.4 million, for their sustainability and conservation efforts as part of a newly established environmental prize presided over by Prince William and Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge.The award, known as the Earthshot Prize, gives funding to nominees developing solutions in five areas: nature conservation, waste management, ocean revival, air quality and climate change.The ceremony comes as climate change is top of mind, ahead of a United Nations summit meeting in Glasgow this month that will gather an estimated 20,000 delegates from nearly every country in the world to discuss how to mitigate the impact of climate change. Organizers of the new prize are hoping it will become ...
Myriam Sarachik, Physicist Who Plumbed Magnetism, Dies at 88

Myriam Sarachik, Physicist Who Plumbed Magnetism, Dies at 88

Technology
When Dr. Sarachik insisted, Dr. Kusch arranged for her to have an interview at Bell Labs.In the 1980s, Dr. Sarachik explored how some two-dimensional materials, generally insulators that do not conduct electricity, could turn into metallic conductors, something theorists said was impossible.She also led experiments about the quantum behavior of molecules that act like magnets. The work demonstrated that the north and south poles of these molecules, each consisting of a couple hundred atoms, could spontaneously flip at cold temperatures where such flips were forbidden by classical physics.Other physicists had tried to show this as well. But at the time, the materials consisting of these molecules could be made only as powders. The magnetic fields of these crystal specks pointed in random di...
For a Broadway Torn by a Pandemic, a Split-Personalities Tonys

For a Broadway Torn by a Pandemic, a Split-Personalities Tonys

LifeStyle
PONIEWOZIK I would question whether the theater is more inherently “noble” than TV or any other art form. But another argument, another day. More to the point, if the theater wants to celebrate its hard work and creative spirit, you can rent a nice hall for that and do it privately. If you expect a broadcast TV audience, your obligations are different — no one is entitled to the attention of millions of people. But I agree that (to my surprise) the first, industry-awards part actually did a better job of conveying the excitement and electricity of being in a theater!GREEN The “concert” half, not a bad idea in theory, was in fact so poorly routined and timed that it erased all the gains of the “awards” half. The final 30 minutes, which felt like an entire additional day, was a train wreck o...
Is Jeff Bezos Really an Astronaut?

Is Jeff Bezos Really an Astronaut?

Technology
About six years ago, Michael López-Alegría, then president of the association’s United States chapter, and Andrew Turnage, the group’s executive director, started discussing the idea of such pins.NASA has given pins to its astronauts since the earliest days of the space program“But none of the other agencies have anything like that,” Mr. López-Alegría said. “So we thought about something, you know, as a universal pin, because that seems only fair that other countries ought to have something to wear as well.”The association sidestepped the “astronaut” quandary by using the term “space travelers” instead. “There’s some variety of opinions within the membership and we shied away from using the word ‘astronaut’ on the certificates that accompany these pins,” Mr. López-Alegría said.He presented...