Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 26 October 2014





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Government Gazette

Just cry to improve your physical and mental health

Laughing your sides out is one way of reducing your mental stress, so they say. But do you know that the reverse, that is by crying, also is considerd as a therapy for the same mental condition.

In Japan, people gather in groups attend what they call 'crying seminars' which are conducted by Takashi Saga, who refers to himself as a 'tears sommelier'. "Selecting wines that match food is similar to my job," he said. "I introduce books, movies and videos that touch the people's emotion."

"Crying doesn't have a good image in Japan," Saga added. "People believe you should not cry in front of people, that it's weak." So twice a month, Saga organises a 'ruikatsu' - a crying for joy seminar. When people get emotional and cry, he believes that life's burdens, tensions and frustrations melt away. "Laughing can only release stress at that moment. But studies show the stress release from crying lasts for a week. Crying is better for your physical and mental health."

Some scientific studies have proven that when we cry for emotional reasons, our tears contain the same kind of hormones released by the body during physical stress. Most people start his sessions with a poker face and a 'try and make me' kind of attitude. But the activities that Saga plans for his class always ensure that no one leaves dry-eyed.

For instance, this one session started off with a traditional story teller narrating a sad tale. This was followed by a video of emotional scenes with Whitney Houston's 'I Will Always Love You' playing in the background. Pretty soon, everyone in the room was crying. Aya Nemoto, a participant, said: "The story about parent and child touches my emotion, and I can't stop crying. I released my stress here."

Football craze ends, now it's Motoball!

This popular sport is largely played in Europe,where many countries even have national teams. Some of the best players in the world are from Russia.

This game is a combination of football and motorcycles.Called Motoball it is played at a regular football field, complete with goalposts.

There are two teams of five players each - four riders and a goalie, who is the only one not riding a bike.

The players on motorcycles chase a large ball that is 40 cm in diameter and weighs about one kilogram.

As the bikers speed towards the ball, they stop the motorcycle with just one foot and draw the other foot back to kick the ball.

The matches are officiated by two referees, assisted by two linesmen.

A match is split up into four 20-minute periods.

The goalies stand in a red area that is marked as a driver-free zone. The rest of the grass, mud or concrete field is pretty much free for the eight riders to run after the ball, at speeds as high as 65 miles per hour. Expert manoeuvrability skills and lightning-fast reflexes are key in Motoball matches, as is the ability to shoot the ball accurately from the motorcycle seat.

There are a few rules set in place for safety, like no smashing, but that doesn't keep the players from getting hurt.

Former Russian player Boris Loginov, said: "It is one of the least dangerous motorcycle sports. The most terrible things that happen are broken legs and broken collar bones. Sometimes a goalie breaks his hand."

"I find it a pleasure to play because it is very dynamic, the quick changes of situation and the goals," said Sergei Chasovskih, another player from the '80s. Although Sergei was good at hockey and soccer, he chose this sport over the others. The 250 cc bikes that the players use are specially designed for the sport, customized according to the rider's size.

A Spanish company currently manufactures the bikes, supplying them to almost all the major Motoball clubs in France, Germany, Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Lithuania and the Netherlands. France alone has over 15 clubs, which are all commissioned by the French Motorcycling Federation. The favourite sporting season in France is during the summer (March to October).

Motoball is the reigning sport in several small cities and towns throughout Russia as well. But the first game ever was played in 1929 in the French town of Dijon. The game turned out to be so popular that it spread within a decade to England, the Netherlands, Spain and Belgium.

The first official match took place in 1963, in what was then known as the Soviet Union. And it was in this region that the sport got completely entrenched.

As you can guess it's no dainty game. It's a crazy mixture of noise,fumes and daredevil stunts that players perform on their motorcycles.

Spider under his skin

Creeping or getting under someone's skin is an idiom that means to bother or to irritate a person.As an example you can say "He really gets under my skin.I know he is bothersome but don't let him get under your skin".

Can you imagine such a thing really happening.This story is not fiction but it may make your skin crawl. This instance is not idiomatic but realistic and the invader here is a spider.

The person who experienced this unbelievable incident is Australian Dylan Thomas, 21.He was on a vacation in beautiful Bali, Indonesia when one morning he suddenly woke up and found a mysterious red trail stretching up his abdomen, which continued to creep higher throughout the day.

"It was as if someone had scratched me with the tip of a knife," he said.

Concerned, Thomas visited a hospital, where he was told it could be a small insect bite.

"So according to the doctors I've come down with some mystery condition," he said in a Facebook post on Oct. 12 that included a photo of the scar." Later that day, Thomas posted another photo that showed the scar beginning to ooze.

"Well after running tests and putting things inside my stomach they finally found out it was a tropical spider that's been living inside of me for the past three days, managed to get it out luckily," Thomas wrote in a follow-up Facebook post, showing off his freshly bandaged scar.

"Haven't felt so violated in my life before! Just glad it's all over."

The match-head-sized tropical spider had burrowed into Thomas' skin through his scar from when his appendix was removed recently.


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