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The Chartreux is a rare breed of domestic cat from France and is recognised by a number of registries around the world. The Chartreux is large and muscular with short, fine-boned limbs, fast reflexes, they are known for their blue water-resistant short hair double coats which are slightly nappy in texture and orange- or copper-colored eyes. Chartreux cats are known for their "smile": due to the structure of their heads and their tapered muzzles, they appear to be smiling. Chartreux are exceptional hunters and are prized by farmers; as for every French cat with a pedigree, the first letter of the official name of a Chartreux cat encodes the year of its birth. All Chartreux born in the same year have official names beginning with the same letter; the code letters rotate through the alphabet each year, omitting the letters K, Q, W, X, Y, Z. For example, a Chartreux born in 2011 would have an official name starting with the letter G; the Chartreux is mentioned for the first time in 1558 by Joachim du Bellay in a poem entitled Vers Français sur la mort d'un petit chat.

There is another representation of a Chartreux in 1747 in the Jean-Baptiste Perronneau's painting Magdaleine Pinceloup de la Grange into which the cat is painted as a pet, quite rare at this time. There is a legend that the Chartreux are descended from cats brought to France by Carthusian monks to live in the order's head monastery, the Grande Chartreuse, located in the Chartreuse Mountains north of the city of Grenoble, but in 1972, the Prior of the Grande Chartreuse denied that the monastery's archives held any records of the monks' use of any breed of cat resembling the Chartreux. Legend has it that the Chartreux's ancestors were feral mountain cats from what is now Syria, brought back to France by returning Crusaders in the 13th century, many of whom entered the Carthusian monastic order; the first documented mention of the breed was by the French naturalist Buffon in the 18th century. The breed was diminished during the first World War and wild populations were not seen after World War II.

A concerted effort by European breeders kept the breed from extinction. The first Chartreux were brought to the U. S. in 1971 by Helen and John Gamon of La Jolla, California. In 1987, the Cat Fanciers' Association advanced the Chartreux breed to championship status. There are fewer than two dozen active Chartreux breeders in North America as of 2007. Famous Chartreux owners include the French novelist Colette, Charles Baudelaire and French president Charles de Gaulle. Chartreux cats tend to be quiet making noises such as mewing or crying, some are mute, they are quite observant and intelligent, with some Chartreux learning to operate radio on/off buttons and to open screen door latches. They take about two years to reach adulthood. Chartreux cats are playful cats well into their adult years. Chartreux are good with other animals, they are non-aggressive, good travelers and very healthy. Chartreux tend to bond with one person in their household, preferring to be in their general vicinity, though they are still loving and affectionate to the other members of the household.

The mascot of the world's largest jazz festival, the Montreal International Jazz Festival, is a blue Chartreux affectionately named'Ste Cat', after the festival's hub, Sainte Catherine Street in Montreal. Gris-Gris, Charles De Gaulle's cat, who followed him from room to room. French writer Colette made one of her Chartreux the heroine of her books "La Chatte" and "Les Vrilles de la vigne." Fogle, Bruce. The New Encyclopedia of the Cat. New York: DK Publishing Inc. ISBN 0-7894-8021-2. Siegal, Mordecai; the breeds. Chapter 2 in The Cornell Book of Cats: A Comprehensive and Authoritative Medical Reference for Every Cat and Kitten. Second edition. Edited by Mordecai Siegal. Villard:New York. ISBN 978-0-679-44953-9. Simonnet, Jean; the Chartreux Cat. Translated by Jerome M. Auerbach. Paris: Synchro Company. ISBN 978-2-9506009-0-5. Helgren, J. Anne. Encyclopedia of Cat Breeds, 2nd Edition. Barron's Educational Series. ISBN 978-0-7641-6580-1. CATS, Alice Buckland. TAJ Books. ISBN 978-1-84406-101-3. CFA profile Chartreux Cat FAQ Chartreux Cat Pisica Chartreux

United States Snooker Association

The United States Snooker Association is the internationally recognized governing body of the sport of snooker in the United States, with its current headquarters registered in Berkeley, California. Founded in 1991 by the British-born Michael Collins, the association functions as a non-profit organization to govern and sanction both professional and non-professional snooker in the territory of the United States; the association's objectives are to promote and develop the sport of snooker in the United States, to create a structure capable of supporting international championships in the United States, to encourage and foster skilled American players to represent the United States at home and abroad. The USSA is affiliated in the United States to the American CueSports Alliance, at international level is a member of the International Billiards and Snooker Federation, the Pan American Billiards and Snooker Association, the World Snooker Federation. Despite its name and national scope, the USSA is not in any way related to or recognizes the game of American snooker, a amateur, recreational ruleset promulgated by the Billiard Congress of America.

As of 2015, the USSA participates in the joint World Snooker and IBSF Pan-American Snooker Championship. The USSA elected a new Board of Directors for two-year terms during a meeting on February 11, 2013, with the following positions filled: Executive Director - Alan Morris President - Ajeya Prabhakar Vice-President - Tom Kollins Secretary - John Lewis Treasurer - Bob Jewett Directors - Michael Collins & Joseph Mejia The USSA stages the annual United States National Snooker Championship, with the winner and runner-up gaining automatic selection to represent the United States in that year's IBSF World Snooker Championship. To be eligible to compete in the Championship, a player must be a citizen of the United States, in accordance of the rules of the IBSF; the USSA Tour, introduced in 2009, is a series of scheduled snooker events throughout the season which are sanctioned by the USSA and played at various snooker clubs and billiard rooms across the United States. Any snooker player from around the world may compete in a USSA Tour event, except for those who are current professional playing members of the World Snooker Tour.

2009 USSA Tour schedule and results 2010 USSA Tour schedule and results 2011 USSA Tour schedule and results 2011-12 USSA Tour schedule and results 2012-13 USSA Tour schedule and results - the Official Website of the United States Snooker Association

Battle of Zanzibar

The Battle of Zanzibar was an encounter between the German Kaiserliche Marine and the British Royal Navy early in the First World War. While taking on coal in the delta of the Rufiji River in German East Africa, the German cruiser SMS Königsberg learned that a British cruiser, HMS Pegasus, part of the Royal Navy's Cape Squadron sent to counter Königsberg, had put in at Zanzibar for repairs. Königsberg's captain, Commander Max Looff, decided to attack Pegasus. On 20 September 1914 Königsberg sailed past the picket ship HMS Helmuth at the entrance to Zanzibar harbour. Helmuth was unable to warn Pegasus of Königsberg's approach, with the result that when Konigsberg opened fire she took Pegasus by surprise; as a result, Pegasus suffered severe damage before she was able to return fire. Königsberg's guns out-ranged those on Pegasus, unable to damage her opponent; the one-sided battle ended in a German victory, Pegasus sank that day, having lost 38 crew dead. Shortly after the outbreak of the First World War, on 19 September 1914, Commander Max Looff of the light cruiser SMS Königsberg was coaling in the Rufiji Delta, when he learned from coast watchers that a British warship had entered Zanzibar harbour.

Looff assumed the cruiser at Zanzibar was either HMS Astraea or HMS Pegasus and ordered an immediate attack. As Königsberg had been resupplied, she was prepared for battle. Königsberg left on the afternoon tide for her run to Zanzibar; the protected cruiser Pegasus, under the command of Captain John Ingles, had just left the company of HMS Astraea and Hyacinth for repairs at Zanzibar to her boilers and engines. At Zanzibar, the British had armed the captured German tug HMS Helmuth with a 3-pounder gun and posted her as a picket ship at the entrance of the harbor. Königsberg had been built in 1905 and was armed with ten 10.5 cm quick-firing guns, ten 5.2 cm anti-torpedo-boat pieces and two 18 in torpedo tubes. Pegasus—a Pelorus-class protected cruiser built in 1897—was armed with eight QF 4 inch guns, eight 3-pounders and two 18-inch torpedo tubes, her complement consisted of 234 men. At dawn on 20 September, Königsberg entered the southern end of the Zanzibar approaches and sailed past the picket ship Helmuth, firing a few warning shots as she passed.

Helmuth could neither stop the Königsberg from entering the harbour nor warn Pegasus of the German cruiser's approach. Once Königsberg came within 9,000 yd of Pegasus, she began firing salvos. Pegasus sat at anchor in Zanzibar Harbour, preparing steam and at that moment, was helpless. For about 20 minutes while Königsberg fired, Pegasus remained stationary. Pegasus did raise the White Ensign and began firing, but her shells splashed into the water well short of Königsberg; the light cruiser continued forward and fired until the range had closed to within 7,000 yd. One of the first British sailors wounded was gunnery officer Lieutenant Richard Turner, who suffered both of his legs being mangled by shrapnel. Despite his injuries, Turner rallied his men; the British continued their futile fight for around 20 minutes more, taking additional hits from Königsberg, the majority landing on Pegasus' deck. Her ensign was shot away during the fight; because the Germans were always at least 2,000 yd beyond the range of Pegasus' guns, no British rounds struck Königsberg.

Pegasus began taking on water. All hope of defeating the Germans having gone, Ingles struck his colours and gave the order to abandon ship. Pegasus sank. After Königsberg had finished with Pegasus, she fired a few parting shots at Helmuth, whose crew managed to abandon ship before one of the German cruiser's salvos struck the tug. Having achieved a clear victory, Königsberg headed back for the Rufiji Delta; the Royal Navy's losses were Pegasus Helmuth damaged. Thirty-eight British sailors on Pegasus had died. Staff Surgeon Alfred J. Hewitt was on the deck of Pegasus from the beginning to the end of the battle, aiding wounded sailors and marines. Captain Ingles recognized Hewitt's courageous behaviour in a report on the action. Although Helmuth had taken a hit from Königsberg, the damage to the tug was minor and her crew managed to reboard her after Königsberg had sailed off. Only one man on board Helmuth died; the hospital ship Gascon and the Scottish merchant ship SS Clan Macrae rescued the survivors of Pegasus.

Twenty-four of the British sailors that died in the battle were buried in a mass grave in the naval cemetery on Grave island, while 14 others were laid to rest at the town's cemetery before being moved in 1971 to the Dar es Salaam war cemetery. The British salvaged six of Pegasus' guns from the wreck and used them in the East African land campaign. Although Königsberg had suffered no hits or casualties, Looff's plans to continue the offensive were soon cut short. One of her main engines failed; the British were watching the port of Dar es Salaam so she had to return to the Rufiji River delta to await the overland transport of spare parts. The British soon blockaded her, they damaged her beyond repair in the Battle of Rufiji Delta when they were able to bring up the monitors HMS Mersey and Severn that July. East African Campaign


The Advisory and Arbitration Service is a Crown non-departmental public body of the Government of the United Kingdom. Its purpose is to improve organisations and working life through the promotion and facilitation of strong industrial relations practice, it may do this through a number of media such as arbitration or mediation, although the service is best known for its collective conciliation function –, resolving disputes between groups of employees or workers represented by a trade union, their employers. Acas is an independent and impartial organisation that does not side with a particular party, but rather will help the parties to reach suitable resolutions in a dispute. Today, the employment world has moved away from large-scale industrial disputes that characterised the late 1970s to the mid-1980s, when Acas became a household name. Accordingly, Acas' emphasis has shifted towards helping businesses to prevent problems before they arise, by means of, for example, its telephone helpline and training sessions.

Furthermore, much of Acas conciliation work is now focused on individual complaints to an employment tribunal. The service's roots lie in 1896 when the government launched a voluntary conciliation and arbitration service, which gave free advice to employers and unions on industrial relations and personnel problems. There was a name change in 1960, to Industrial Relations Services, again in 1972 to Conciliation and Advisory Service. Up to this point in its history the service remained under the Government's wing. In 1974, the service was renamed the Conciliation and Arbitration Service and separated from government control, with an independent Council to direct it.'Advisory' was added to its name in 1975 to reflect its full range of services finally in 1976 Acas was made a statutory body by the Employment Protection Act 1975. In 2010, there was speculation that the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government's plans to reduce the number of Quangos might threaten Acas, but the organisation survived the cuts.

The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill, laid in Parliament in May 2012, contained a number of proposed employment law changes, including the introduction from April 2014 of a new'Early Conciliation' service under which all claims relating to alleged infringements of individual employment rights will come to Acas in the first instance, rather than the Tribunals Service. Acas will have a short window of opportunity to try to help to resolve the issue before the needs to apply to a Tribunal. Although funded by the Department for Business and Industrial Strategy, Acas is a non-departmental body, governed by an independent Council, responsible for determining Acas' strategic direction and priorities, ensuring its statutory duties are carried out effectively; this allows the service to be independent and confidential. The Council consists of the Chair and eleven employer, trade union and independent members, appointed by the Secretary of State for Business and Industrial Strategy. Acas' current Chair is Sir Brendan Barber, former General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress.

Sir Brendan replaced the former Amicus Deputy General Secretary Ed Sweeney as Chair in 2014. Acas' day-to-day operations are managed by its Chief Executive and a management board that includes its national and regional directors. Acas' current Chief Executive, Susan Clews, was appointed in November 2018, replacing Anne Sharp, in post since 2013. Acas has around 800 staff, based in its London head office and 11 main regional centres across England and Wales. Acas' chief conciliator is David Prince. 1974: Jim Mortimer?: Professor Sir John C. Wood 1981: Pat Lowry 1987: Douglas Smith 1993: John Hougham 2000: Rita Donaghy 2007: Ed Sweeney 2014: Brendan Barber Official website

Otto Schmidt-Hofer

Otto Schmidt-Hofer was a German sculptor who worked during the late 19th century and early 20th century. His work was Neoclassical and Art Nouveau between 1893-1914 and Art Deco from 1915 until his death in 1925. Schmidt-Hofer was born in Berlin, German Empire, in 1873, he studied at the Royal School of Art and in the educational department at the Berlin Museum of Decorative Arts, founded as the Deutsches Gewerbe-Museum zu Berlin in 1868. He specialized in genre sculpture featuring working people doing normal everyday tasks and activities, he produced a number of sculptures of blacksmiths and masons at work, women harvesting fields with scythes, athletes. A number of the pieces he cast were of figures in the nude, popular during the era he worked in. Schmidt-Hofer was a member of the National Association of Artists in Germany, he produced several Neoclassical statues in patinated bronze and held membership in the Reichsverband bildender Künstler in Germany. Versatile, Schmidt-Hofer was able to transition from works produced in the Art Nouveau era and pivot to doing a number of Art Deco sculptures during the latter portion of his career between 1915 and 1925.

One sculpture, among his large career output of Art Deco sculptures, was The Entertainer. The statue, cast in four variations – one being chryselephantine and the other being all bronze – was among the best of the work he produced; the Entertainer features a beautiful, svelte young lady wearing a jewel-laden costume in the midst of a stage performance. Schmidt-Hofer produced a small version of the statue, mounted on a Brazilian green onyx pin dish; the full array of Schmidt-Hofer's plentiful sculpting skills are displayed in this artwork which he completed c. 1920. Schmidt-Hofer died in Berlin, Weimar Republic, in 1925. Along with other German sculptors of the period such as Iffland and Schmidt-Felling, Schmidt-Hofer takes his rightful place as one of the premier Neoclassical, Art Deco, Art Nouveau sculptors that Germany has produced

Madan Gopal Singh

Madan Gopal Singh is an Indian composer, lyricist, screenwriter, film theorist and polyglot. He is Senior Fellow at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi while on leave from Satyawati College, where he taught English literature. Son of well-known Punjabi poet Harbhajan Singh, Madan Gopal Singh has written and lectured extensively on cinema and cultural history besides performing the world over as a singer with his ensemble Chaar yaar. Madan Gopal Singh wrote dialogues and lyrics for critically acclaimed Punjabi film Qissa by Anup Singh. Singh is a scriptwriter, having written films like Rasayatra on the well-known Hindustani classical vocalist Mallikarjun Mansur – a film that won the National Award for the best short film in 1995; the film was directed by Nandan Kudhyadi. He wrote the screenplay and lyrics for a feature-length film, Ekti Nadir Naam, based on the life of the late Ritwik Kumar Ghatak; the film won the G. Aravindan Award, the Silver Dhow at the Zanzibar International Film Festival 2002.

He wrote the Toona adaptation from Baba Bulle Shah, rendered by Shubha Mudgal for Mira Nair's Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love, he wrote dialogues for Kaya Taran, a film based on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. The film was directed by Sashi Kumar and won the G Arvindan Award 2004, he wrote lyrics for the Aman Ali Ayan Ali album of lounge music, produced by Times Music, 2007 and for Ustad Amjad Ali Khan's compositions sung by Pankaj Udhaas, Yaara produced by Music Today October 2007. Madan Gopal Singh has composed and sung the poetry of Rumi, Shah Husain, Sultan Bahu and Bulle Shah and has translated contemporary poets such as Bertolt Brecht, Federico García Lorca and John Lennon his Imagine which he translated into Hindustani – and sung them extensively, he has sung for films like Mani Kaul's Idiot. As a singer, he travelled with the legendary Kurdo-Persian singer Shahram Nazeri to ancient Sufi towns such as Isfahan and Kermanshah, he performed at the 2nd Sufi Soul World Music Festival held in Lahore, Pakistan in 2001.

Singh was invited to Washington as a presenter-performer. In all, he gave/made/conducted 28 concerts and workshops, he composed music for the documentary film on Kashmir- Paradise on a River of Hell directed by Meenu Gaur and Abir Bazaz. He composed music for Sabiha Sumar's celebrated Khamosh Pani – a French-German-Pakistan coproduction that won the Best Film award at the Locarno Film Festival, 2003. A CD of live recording of his music titled Concert for Noor was produced in 2012 by the Noor Inayat Memorial Trust, he composed music for Fana'a – Ranjha Revisited – a musical by Navtej Johar showcased at various places world over. He composed music for Beyond Partition – a film by Lalit Joshi, South Asian Cinema Foundation, London. Among other places he has performed at the Town Hall Festival, Italy.