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Walk On Project.

Walk On Poject es una organización no gubernamental creada hace el 13 de octubre de 2008, día en el que a Jontxu, un niño de en aquel entonces, 6 años, le diagnosticaron una enfermedad rara.

Desde ese día los padres, Mikel y Mentxu, comenzaron a moverse empezando, como no, por el colegio, La Salle- Ybarra y alrededores.

logo Walk on Project

Poco a poco el fenómeno WOP se fue expandiendo hasta llegar, cómo no a las redes sociales y medios de comunicación.

En el campo de las redes sociales, encontramos un blog la página web oficial, el blog, twittter y una página en facebook.

En cuanto a medios de comunicación, Mikel y Mentxu han filamdo varios vídeos y han hecho varias entrevistas a periódicos como El País y en programas radiofónicos.

logo Walk on Project

Para recaudar fondos, ya que al ser una enfermedad rara toda ayuda es poca, anualmente se celebra un WOP Festival en el que grupos de música, cantantes o celebridades de cualquier tipo participan en un ambiente festivo que dura un fin de semana. Todo el dinero que se recauda va destinado a la fundación Walk On Project y la ayuda de los voluntarios al corazón de Jontxu. También es posible la compra de camisetas o sudaderas cuyo día es el 13 de octubre, día en el que todas las personas se ponen una de esas camisetas en señal de apoyo a la familia.

Esta organización, a pesar de tener una gran importancia y jugar un papel muy importante en el campo de la medicina debido a su trabajo por involucrarse en la investigación de enfermedades raras, no es muy conocida modo que, este post, va dedicado a vosotros, para que veáis que cerca de nuestros hogares también se puede hacer mucho.

Minnesota, land of 10.000 lakes

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment

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When we talk about the USA, the first thing our imagination draws is the New York  skyline with hundreds of skyscrapers, thousands of people walking across the 5th avenue shopping, talking on their phones and the typical yellow taxi waiting at us at the John F Kennedy airport in New York. But of course, that’s only the picture created by Hollywood movies, which doesn’t really show everything and not even beautiful states from the USA that are barely named. As an example of this we have Minnesota.

Located in the Midwestern of the United States, Minnesota is known as “Land of 10.000 lakes” due to the tremendous amount of lakes distributed all around the state. The economy is based in agriculture producing sweet corn, sugar beets and green beens, and it is the first state in the farm-raised turkeys.

Hardly can anybody think that the origin of Minnesota is related with Indians, as we tend to relate the Indians with southern states such as Texas, Oklahoma or Arizona. But there is evidence that the Chippewa Indian colony lived there before the Europeans arrived. A clear evidence of this is the name of several counties located in the southeast called Kandiyohi or Chippewa. Later on, the French arrived to Minnesota followed by the British. And by 1800 it became the home for many Scandinavian and German immigrants who were looking for new land.

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The climate changes in each season, having an abrupt temperature change between summer and winter. While the temperature in summer reaches easily 30 degrees, the winter is harsh reaching -20 degrees and with several blizzards that cover the landscapes with white snow. Fall and spring have slightly mild temperature. Due to the particular climate if the area, there is a special bird called the Common Loon, which has become the State Bird as it only inhabits in Minnesota.

The metropolitan area is focused in a particular area called the Twin Cities due to the closeness of the two main cities Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Even if Minneapolis is the most known and populated city, Saint Paul is the economic and political capital. In that area is located the main attraction for tourists: The Mall of America. It was until 2006 the biggest shopping mall in the world with more than 500 stores, an indoor amusement park, aquarium and daily events such as celebrity book signing or performance of famous singers.

Besides the consumerist attraction, Minnesota is the perfect state for outdoor activities. The long Mississippi riverside has beautiful walks. Even if it is a plain state, there are hills adequate for skiing and snowboarding, and the plain lands are a great opportunity for those who like bike rides around the lakes.

Overall, Minnesota is a traditional and conservative state distinguished from the regular image that people have about the USA. Its green and plain landscapes and just the simplicity of the state makes Minnesota a quiet and calm place for anyone who wants to visit it.

REFERENCES:

  • Peterson, M., 2005. Minnesota Memories and Images, Cambridge, MN: Adventure.
  • Ryan, G. & Beyer, S., 2004. Minnesota impressions, Minneapolis: Farcountry.
  • Anon, Minnesota. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minnesota.

ELVIS PRESLEY.

Elvis Presley (Tupelo, USA, 1935 – Memphis, id., 1977) was a rock and roll singer and actor. Born into a modest family, the young Elvis Presley was forced to work from an early age. At the age of eleven, and at his insistence, his parents gave him his first guitar.

 

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In 1948, his family moved to Memphis, one of the centers of musical activity in the country. When Elvis was barely nineteen, the producer Sam Phillips, owner of Sun Records, decided to edit on a single containing the themes “That’s All Right” and “Blue Moon of Kentucky”. This first attempt opened the doors of a country music radio show, Louisiana Hayride, with an emission spectrum comprising thirteen states.

In 1955, with its increasing popularity, Elvis Presley joined the RCA label. The 1956 was a key year for the course of Elvis, thanks to the song Heartbreak Hotel, which sold three hundred thousand copies in three weeks and ended up being the first of his gold records. He also released his first LP, titled “Elvis Presley”, which reached one million copies sold, and committed for seven years with Paramount studios, eager to hire a teen idol and pop back then caused hysterics among attendees to their concerts.

 

His television appearances began to be common and the amounts paid by them reached record figures in the history of the medium. Parallel to his rise to fame, some conservative sectors of American society tenaciously opposed both the character and his music, which branded him perverted and immoral, especially following his famous hip movement, whose impact was so immediate that the singer was nicknamed Elvis Pelvis.

 

The culmination of the meteoric year 1956, was released on November 16 in New York with great success “Love me tender”, the first film that starred Elvis Presley, and the Wall Street Journal wrote an article that highlighted the $ 22 million the associated merchandising their image had collected up to that point.

ELVIS PRESLEY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elvis Presley in Viva Las Vegas (1964)

 

In March 1957 acquired the Graceland mansion in Memphis, which eventually became a place of pilgrimage for his countless admirers. In 1958, at the zenith of his career, he was drafted into the army and intended to West Berlin, where he met Priscilla Ann Beaulieu, with whom he would marry nine years later.

 

Elvis Presley graduated in March 1960 and immediately resumed his artistic activity, to string together a long series of number one in the U.S. charts with titles like “It’s now or never” or “Are you lonesome tonight?” and starring no less than ten films, among which include “Girls, girls, girls” (1962) and “Viva Las Vegas” (1964).

 

In the second half of the decade started the “British invasion” that groups like The Beatles starred and which involved some erosion in the popularity of the singer, compounded by an apparent artistic crisis which lasted until 1968, when he was offered to star in a TV special , which became one of the biggest hits in the history of the small screen.

 

The first years of the 1970s, however, accounted for Elvis Presley a new creative slump, aggravated by his addiction to drugs and seclusion in his fantasy world that became particularly his Graceland mansion. In 1973 he divorced Priscilla Beaulieu and his image became clearly excessive tone that characterized his last appearances: exaggerated pompadour, overweight and white leather suits with rhinestones.

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After falling unconscious several times on stage, officially died of a heart attack, no doubt a consequence of his excesses. Despite its rapid decline, Elvis Presley has become an icon of the twentieth century and one of the most important figures in the history of popular music, as evidenced by its more than one hundred gold records, platinum and multiplatinum.

Categories: Uncategorized

A really special lighthouse

The emblematic Tower of Hercules is not only the symbol of A Coruna (Galicia), the city where it is placed, but the oldest lighthouse of the world that is still working. Its beautiful facade, its story and the unique views that can be obtained from the top of the Tower, make it receive thousands of visitors every year. In addition, this lighthouse is also famous for having been declared World Heritage site. Read more…

Categories: Arts, History

Fashion in France

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment

As everyone knows, France has always been the queen of fashion, the perfect style’s image.

Throughout the last century, France became the most representative of the country in the world of fashion, cosmetics and perfumery. Many or even all French brands are the leaders in these areas.

From haute couture to prêt à porter, from luxury perfumes to the cheapest, the whole spectrum of this sector has been held by French companies, some of which are world leaders. Brands such as Chanel, Christian Dior, Lacoste and Du Pareil have made this country a reference.

Nowadays, France continues inspiring the irresistible clothing brands such as Yves Saint Laurent, Pierre Balmain, Lanvin …

Now I will give a brief summary of those companies which I think have inspired the fashion trends of other nations.

COCO CHANEL

Gabrielle Chanel was born in 1883 and she had, a sad childhood. Nicknamed Coco, or Mademoiselle, she had great strength of character. In 1910 she decided to open her first store, the store was called Chanel Modes.

Coco Chanel was not like any other. She invented the “sport” mode, she did not draw her models, it assembles on the client, she created a new silhouette, she also dared using the jersey for the first time, she cut her hair and appeared in trousers…

Aggressive for those days. She was always one step ahead of the trends of those days. In 1924 she created the a new perfume company and also a jewelry workshop to support her mode.

During the Second World War, Gabrielle Chanel withdraws.

It was not until 1983 and the arrival of KARL LAGERFELD that it was possible to see the brand of Chanel revived. He gives a new impetus to the fashion house while keeping the legacy of Mademoiselle Chanel. Today, it also represents the brand.

LOUIS VUITTON

Louis Vuitton was born in France in 1821 and finally moved to Paris, where he began his first steps as an apprenticeship with a bag manufacturer. One of his first achievements was to conquer the refined taste of the Napoleon III’s wife, Empress Eugenie, and from there, nothing was the same: that allowed him to capture the attention and taste of prestigious personalities. Finally his brand was born in the year 1854 as the reference point of leather goods, handbags and suitcases mainly. Like all great, the brand began to be forged and is today one of the most imitated brands.

In 1885, Louis Vuitton opened a store in London. In 1978, he managed to conquer Japan, the market of excellence luxury. Meanwhile the United States is the second largest market, where the brand has 85 stores.

In advertising campaigns, it is possible to see the most prestigious models in the world of fashion, few names: Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Stephanie Seymour, Eva Herzigova, who put their face and body to represent this brand

Nowadays the brand has 322 stores and is present in 52 countries. To do their job the brand leather workshops in France, Spain and California, and even today, most of these products are manufactured according to traditional methods, which characterize and distinguish this great company.

CHRISTIAN DIOR

Christian Dior consolidated his fashion brand as one of the most prestigious in the world. French couturier was also a visional in his time and has revolutionized haute couture with his style dubbed as “New Look”.

Dior began studying political science and music because the insistence of his parents, but he had other motivations.

The family business went bankrupt, so he decided to become a fashion model’s illustrator. He started selling his drawings to various newspapers of Paris, but he found a job in 1938 as a designer in the business models of Robert Piguet.

In 1946, he set up his own Parisian couture company with financial assistance from the textil manufacturer Marcel Boussac. The following year, he presented his first collection that marked the evolution and became known as the “New Look.”

The style of the French couturier made his point to create an image of a  very feminine woman with mid-calf skirts, tight waist and narrow shoulders.

Following the introduction of this new style, the fashion designer opened a year later an office in New York and with later the company would expand to other major cities such as Milan, Tokyo, Shanghai , Hong Kong, Boston, Los Angeles, Honolulu, Las Vegas or San Francisco.

Black, blue and white are Dior’s favorite colors, who kept every detail accompanied by exquisite elegance and refined. After his death in 1957, the company continued with successors as Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Bohan and Gianfranco Ferre. John Galliano is now who deals with the design of models of the brand.

¿Qué es la literatura?

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment

La pregunta “¿Qué es la literatura?” no es necesariamente una de esas preguntas que puede ser simplemente respondida una única vez y para siempre. Para preguntarnos “¿Qué es la literatura?” conviene preguntarse también cómo cobran sentido las palabras, y cómo se establece el significado de las palabras y su definición. Esto implicaría tener en cuenta tanto el ámbito de la filosofía como el de la lingüística.

Read more…

Las empresas españolas y la crisis

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment

De acuerdo con la Real Academia Española (RAE), crisis es, en su sexta acepción, escasez, carestía, y, en su séptima acepción, situación dificultosa o complicada. Ambas tienen en común una connotación económica propia del momento en el que vivimos actualmente y recuerdan a lo que todos los grupos sociales y medios de comunicación hablan y opinan a diario como expertos.

En un marco de crisis económica-financiera mundial, el contexto de España se caracterizaba por una economía sostenida en gran medida en la industria de la construcción. De hecho, en 2005 representaba el  20% del PIB.

Gráfico Cabe destacar que la Ley del suelo de 1998 supuso un importante cambio, puesto que eliminaba muchas trabas administrativas en la urbanización de terrenos y permitía que la tasación del precio del suelo quedara sujeta a las leyes de oferta y demanda.

Sin embargo, realmente, el hecho que marcó un antes y un después en la economía española fue la llegada de la moneda única europea en el año 2002. Aunque según las teorías de Ricard Vergés, fue la repatriación de capitales evadidos que, según se acercaba la llegada del euro, fueron blanqueados mediante la compra de inmuebles.

Además, los bancos y cajas de ahorro concedían un gran número de créditos, algunos de ellos con mucho riesgo, actividad favorecida por una bajada histórica del tipo de interés. Lo que ocasionó que se introdujeran miles de millones de euros en la economía española procedentes de bancos extranjeros. Dinero que se invirtió fundamentalmente en la construcción de infraestructuras y viviendas. Se produjo una especulación que infló la burbuja inmobiliaria y, finalmente, sufrió un pinchazo.

En esta crisis no solo se ve afectado el sector de la construcción, sino todos y cada uno de todos los demás. Otros de los agravantes de la crisis han sido, entre otros, la baja productividad y competitividad de las empresas españolas con respecto a las de otros países europeos, el elevado gasto público durante varios años y la corrupción política.

Así, en 2008 la economía española entró en recesión, alcanzando su mínimo durante el segundo trimestre de 2009. En ese momento comenzó a recuperarse y en el segundo trimestre de 2010 algunas personas llegaron a aclamar que la economía española estaba saliendo de la crisis, aunque desgraciadamente se ha demostrado que no.

Socialmente, por un lado, otro factor muy característico de esta época es la crisis de confianza que se ha producido. No se refiere únicamente a la desconfianza del inversionista, sino a la de la sociedad en sí.  Esta última juega un papel fundamental en la economía, ya que en una época como la que estamos viviendo se pierde poder adquisitivo y se deja de consumir para poder ahorrar y/o sobrevivir. Por otro lado, han surgido algunos movimientos sociales como el 15M, manifestaciones y/o huelgas en distintos puntos de la geografía española. Todos ellos, además de cuestionar el sistema político, han reivindicado el modelo económico y productivo de este país.

Centrándome en la empresa española, los efectos de la crisis han sido devastadores para ella en términos generales, sobre todo para las pequeñas y medianas empresas (pymes).

La demanda ha disminuido por la crisis de confianza generada y también por medidas del gobierno como las dos subidas del IVA llevadas a cabo en 2010 y 2012. Otra de las medidas adoptadas ha sido el aumento de la recaudación del impuesto de sociedades. Entre otros, el importe mínimo pasa este año y el próximo del 8% al 12% y los créditos fiscales por las pérdidas sufridas en años anteriores se reducen.

Muchas empresas, además, se han encontrado con problemas de financiación y eso, unido a las pérdidas sufridas, las ha llevado a la quiebra. Otras, en cambio, se han visto obligadas a reducir los costes mediante expedientes de regulación destop ERE empleo (EREs), a contratar mano de obra más barata o recortar algunos gastos. De cualquier manera, algunas empresas intentan encontrar su oportunidad en esta época haciendo realidad la famosa frase “la necesidad gudiza el ingenio”. Las empresas se han dado cuenta de que es el momento de mover ficha, por ejemplo, en algunos sectores se están aplicando constantes descuentos o se ha absorbido la subida del IVA para intentar aumentar la demanda de sus bienes o servicios.

Sin embargo, hay que destacar que existen grandes empresas como Inditex, que pueden considerarse excepciones. Esta cadena ha ganado 944 millones de euros en el primer semestre de 2012 gracias a su expansión por Asia y América, superando las previsiones.

En mi opinión, la economía española se ha debilitado hasta límites insospechados. Solo hace falta echar la vista atrás para darse cuenta del notable cambio que ha sufrido España en los últimos años, no solo en lo que al sector económico se refiere, sino también en política y sociedad.

Sea como sea, en estos momentos se debate entre si pedir el rescate es lo más acertado o no. Yo creo que España debe pedirlo. España se encuentra económicamente hundida, y da la impresión de estar yendo precipitadamente cuesta abajo y sin frenos. Sin embargo, al aceptar que nos rescaten, nos estamos sometiendo a una serie de restricciones y recortes aun más exigentes. Entonces, la pregunta que me hago es: ¿Merecerá la pena? Sí. Cierto es, que aumentará la deuda que tenemos con los demás países europeos, y seguramente el IVA subirá aún más. Sin embargo, llegados a este punto en el que hay 4.705.279 parados no nos queda otra salida.

Lo que más me ha llamado la atención no solo son las consecuencias económicas de esta crisis, sino ver cómo una sociedad puede cambiar radicalmente a causa de las alteraciones que tenga tal país en su economía. Atrás quedaron las esperanzas de tener un nivel de vida como el de nuestros padres, en el que se tiene una segunda vivienda para veranear y uno o incluso dos coches de alta gama. En conclusión, mi reflexión es: ¿Qué nos depara el futuro? ¿Cómo viviremos dentro de unos años? Son cuestiones que me intrigan e incluso angustian, pero habrá que esperar para darles respuesta.

Referencias

RAE, Real Academia española (2012). Último acceso 14/12/12. Disponible en: http://www.rae.es/rae.html

BOE, Boletín Oficial del Estado (2012). Ministerio de hacienda y administración públicas. Último acceso 14/12/12. Disponible en: http://www.boe.es/boe/dias/2012/05/17/pdfs/BOE-A-2012-6499.pdf

ELECONOMISTA (2012), Inditex supera als previsiones. Último acceso 14/12/12. Disponible en: http://www.eleconomista.es/interstitial/volver/acierto/empresas-finanzas/noticias/4258458/09/12/Inditex-gano-944-millojnes-en-su-primer-semestre-el-32-mas-.html

INE (2012). Último acceso 14/12/12. Disponible en: http://www.ine.es/

 

Categories: Economy
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