For NBA’s Lin, all pun and games
New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin has taken the basketball world by storm.
February 13th, 2012
05:44 PM ET

For NBA’s Lin, all pun and games

As the stock rises (literally) of the red-hot New York Knicks, much of the credit has gone to former bench player and superstar du jour Jeremy Lin.

Aside from his meteoric scoring average – 26.4 points a gamein the Knicks' current five-game win streak – basketball pundits have had a field day with clever variations of his name.

Some of them have been gems – Linsanity (sorry Vince Carter). Others, (Lin’d of the Lost,  Really, Yahoo?). Other monikers have clanked like so many shots at the rim: Lin-ter the Dragon? Lin's teammate Amare' Stoudemire, no stranger to nicknames, told ESPN recently that at he actually was fond of the most accurate one. "I like Lin-sanity," he said.

"That's what it is right now. It's really a madness right now around New York, and it's been out of control with him and what he's doing. He's very well-received because he's a humble guy and he loves to play the game." From Lin himself, according to ESPN: Super Lin-tendo. Ahh, we see what you did there.But what about the other linsational (uh-oh) names out there? Here’s a rundown of the monikers popping up on social media:

Linderella – Well played, from Mike Allen, well played.
There's even a Lin Word Generator. At the click of a button you can broaden your vocabulary in lin-tastic ways.
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Filed under: Sports • U.S.
Man says passport copied on iPad gained him entry into U.S.
January 4th, 2012
04:01 PM ET

Man says passport copied on iPad gained him entry into U.S.

[Updated at 5 p.m. ET Friday] U.S. Customs and Border Protection says the "assertion that a traveler was admitted into the U.S. using solely a scanned image of his passport on an iPad is categorically false."

The Canadian man who made the claim had a driver's license and a birth certificate, "which the [U.S. border officer] used to determine identity and citizenship in order to admit the traveler into the country," CBP said in a statement released this week.

Scanned images are not accepted forms of identification, the CBP said.

[Initial post, 4:01 p.m. ET Wednesday] Forgot your passport? There’s an iPad for that.

At least in the singular case of a Montreal photographer who left home without the important document on his way to the United States. Martin Reisch said he was able to show a scanned copy of his passport to an American border guard and was given entry into the U.S., according to news reports.

To be sure, the incident was not without trepidation. "There was a slight hesitation; he didn't really seem like he was impressed," Reisch told CBC News. But the guard soon gave him back his iPad, and he was on his way to Vermont.

But isn't this a technological breakthrough? Could this be the Apple-white dawn of a new age of digital facsimile?What would Steve Jobs have thought?

“He’d probably say: ‘Here’s something to work on for the future.’ Maybe have some kind of digital certification or encryption to let people travel like this,” Reisch told The Montreal Gazette.

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Filed under: Canada • U.S. • World
Baby, it's cold outside at last
Kentucky had two multivehicle accidents Monday, including a 30-vehicle pileup that shut down southbound I-75 in Grant County.
January 3rd, 2012
03:20 PM ET

Baby, it's cold outside at last

Are you experiencing winter weather? Share your images.

Admit it. You were wondering when to pull out the winter coat. The wait is over. A bone-chilling arctic freeze swept through much of the South and Northeast on Tuesday.

It was the first sign of a winter that had played coy up until then. Weather conditions around the nation emphasized that a new year had indeed begun. Gone were the balmy afternoons and Windbreaker jackets that we needed up until recently. It was the first day back to work for many across the United States and baby, it’s cold outside at last.

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Ax Monday: NFL's Rams, Tampa Bay coaches fired
Tampa Bay's Raheem Morris watches from the sidelines Sunday during his team's 45-24 loss to the Falcons.
January 2nd, 2012
02:10 PM ET

Ax Monday: NFL's Rams, Tampa Bay coaches fired

One day after the conclusion of the NFL regular season, league owners got their turn to even the score in some ways. The St. Louis Rams dumped head coach Steve Spagnuolo and General Manager Billy Devaney on Monday. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers canned head coach Raheem Morris.

And the ax may continue to fall, according to news reports around the league. Several coaches have been on the proverbial hot seat in recent months. On Monday, Tampa Bay and St. Louis stopped fumbling around.

On the team’s website, Rams owner E. Stanley Kroenke thanked the engineers of the team’s 2-14 season “for their dedication to the St. Louis Rams organization over the past several seasons.

"No one individual is to blame for this disappointing season and we all must hold ourselves accountable,” he said. “However, we believe it's in the best interest of the St. Louis Rams to make these changes as we continue our quest to build a team that consistently competes for playoffs and championships."

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Filed under: Football • Peyton Manning • Pro football • Sports • Uncategorized • World
Massachusetts man in critical condition in state's first human rabies case in 75 years
Massachusetts public health officials suspect the man contracted rabies from a bat at his residence.
December 30th, 2011
01:59 PM ET

Massachusetts man in critical condition in state's first human rabies case in 75 years

A Massachusetts man is in critical condition after contracting rabies, the state’s first human case of the disease in 75 years, a Public Health Department spokesman confirmed to CNN on Friday.

The Barnstable County man is in his 60s and is not being identified, Health Department spokesman John Jacobs said.

Health officials suspect the man, who is in Cape Cod Hospital, contracted the virus from a bat at his residence. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are performing tests to confirm the species, according to a Health Department news release.

The man’s family may have been exposed and are being treated, CNN affiliate WCVB reported.

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Tsunami debris spotted along West Coast
Debris is littered along the Japanese coast months after a tsunami and earthquake struck the island nation.
December 29th, 2011
12:21 PM ET

Tsunami debris spotted along West Coast

Ten months after a tsunami devastated parts of Japan, some of the island nation’s debris has washed up on North American shores, according to news reports.

On Vancouver Island, B.C., The Sun newspaper reported that wreckage from Japan began appearing this month. "In or around Dec. 5th the first item or two of some consequence was found," Tofino Mayor Perry Schmunk told the newspaper. "Some lumber came ashore that had Japanese export stamps on it."

Two weeks ago, CNN affiliate KIRO in Seattle showed video footage of what it said was debris from the March 11 tsunami - at least 10 Japanese buoys - on the Washington coast. “That’s about as good as the evidence gets for first arrivals,” retired oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer told KIRO.

More reports of mundane Japanese items - such as bottles and toothbrushes - popping up along North American shores are beginning to emerge.

But that’s just the beginning, experts say.

Physicist Michio Kaku said Thursday that it is vital to understand the sheer size of the Japanese debris field in the Pacific Ocean.

“First, you have to understand the size and scope of this problem. The debris field from this Japanese tragedy is the size of the state of California,” he said.

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Filed under: 2011 tsunami • Environment • Japan • U.S. • World
Third infant reportedly sickened by rare bacteria
Investigators probing a rare infection for a possible link to powdered infant formula have come up empty.
December 28th, 2011
07:27 PM ET

Third infant reportedly sickened by rare bacteria

An Oklahoma infant is the third to be sickened by a rare bacteria that can come from baby formula, according to news reports Wednesday.

The baby is from Tulsa County and has fully recovered from Cronobacter sakazakii, CNN affiliate KYTV reported.

The child was fed a different brand of baby formula than Enfamil, the kind that has been linked in news reports to the death of 10-day-old Avery Cornett in Missouri, according to KYTV.

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Filed under: Consumer safety • U.S.
December 28th, 2011
01:47 PM ET

U.S. fighter jets intercept aircraft near Washington

Two F-16 fighter jets were dispatched by the North American Aerospace Defense Command to intercept a civilian aircraft near Washington, D.C., NORAD said Wednesday.

The incident happened about 12:15 p.m. ET after the aircraft failed to establish radio contact, the agency said in a press release.

“The civilian aircraft re-established communications and was allowed to continue on its way without incident,” NORAD said.

Out of an abundance of caution, officials are being vigilant about security concerns around the holidays.

iReport: Witness describes fatal crash of F-18 jet in 2008

After the 10-year anniversary of 9/11 in September, two fighter jets were scrambled after reports of air passengers acting suspiciously on two flights. Although no problems occurred, authorities sent F-16s to shadow the flights just in case.

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December 28th, 2011
12:23 PM ET

Meet Siku: Polar bear cub, heart- and ice-melter

What’s white and black and has people fawning all over? Meet Siku, a polar bear cub born in captivity in Denmark.

The cute cub is being reared by handlers at the  Scandinavian Wildlife Park because its mother isn’t producing the milk to feed him. Since his birth last month, Siku has become a Web star. He has his own page on the Scandinavian Wildlife Park website and he’s even on Facebook.

Park director Frank Vigh-Larsen says he's stunned by the cub's rapid transformation into an Internet sensation.

Video footage posted on YouTube of Siku bottle-feeding, rolling around and snoozing has been viewed more than 2 million times in six days, he told CNN, and the cub gained thousands of friends on Facebook within the space of a few hours.

As of Wednesday, at 36 days old, Siku has just opened his eyes and weighs in at 4.2 kilograms (9.2 pounds), more than five times his initial weight, his handler said.

"He's just a little solid cannonball," Vigh-Larsen said. "He's doing well."

Such growth is a testament to the dedicated care Siku is receiving. For the first three weeks, Vigh-Larsen fed the cub every two hours - and still feeds him every three hours, meaning the keeper gets little sleep.

In the new year, two other wildlife keepers will start to care for him, too, in shifts, making sure the cub is never alone during the first 12 months of his life.

Siku's popularity comes at a time when the plight of polar bears is at its peak. Corporate giant Coca-Cola recently launched a campaign in conjunction with the World Wildlife Fund to raise awareness about arctic conditions that threaten polar bears.

Siku, which means “sea ice” in Greenlandic, an Eskimo language spoken in Greenland, is thriving under a bottle-feeding program instituted by the park’s keepers.

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Ahead of the curve: The next 7 days
December 25th, 2011
04:07 PM ET

Ahead of the curve: The next 7 days

Here is a look at some of the stories that CNN plans to cover this week:

North Korea plans Kim Jong Il funeral

The funeral for North Korea's longtime leader Kim Jong Il is scheduled for Wednesday, CNN has learned.

North Koreans continue to pay respects for their late leader with military sites, factories and public buildings flying flags at half-staff -– part of the repressive country's 11-day period of mourning.

North Korea said Friday that it would admit delegations from the South that wish to visit Pyongyang to express their condolences, according to a statement posted on a government website run by the North.

"We will guarantee all convenience and safety of the South Koreans during their visit," said the statement on uriminzokkiri.com, dated Thursday, adding that the North would open to the delegations "all air routes and land routes through Kaesong," its industrial park, some 45 kilometers (27 miles) north of Seoul, South Korea.

Seoul has made a number of gestures as it tries to navigate the uncertainty created by the North's leadership transition. Pyongyang has named Kim's youngest son, Kim Jong Un, as the "Great Successor" to his father.

GOP presidential candidates ready for caucus season

With the caucus season set to begin in Iowa in less than two weeks, GOP presidential hopefuls Ron Paul, Michele Bachmann and the rest may well work through the holidays to gain an edge.

Gingrich, whose rise in the polls in recent weeks has been overshadowed by Paul, lowered his expectations recently for an Iowa victory.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Politics • Sports • U.S. • World
Giant cannibal shrimp worry Gulf Coast watchers
Black tiger shrimp may pose a huge problem for the Gulf Coast shrimp and oyster industry, an expert says.
December 16th, 2011
01:22 PM ET

Giant cannibal shrimp worry Gulf Coast watchers

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the Gulf of Mexico, a new menace, this one striped like a big cat, is preying on aquatic life: The black tiger shrimp.

The biggest saltwater shrimp in the world, black tigers “are cannibalistic as are other shrimp but it’s larger so it can consume the others,” Tony Reisinger, country extension agent for the Texas Sea Grant Extension Service, told CNN on Friday.

Because of the threat of disease, the predatory intruder poses a problem for the native shrimp and oyster population of the Gulf, Reisinger said.

"Our oystermen right now are hurting because the oyster season is shut down due to a red tide. But this (black tiger) shrimp poses other concerns,” he said.

Appearing more than 25 years ago, the black tiger’s sudden reappearance is a mystery.

“The first time they started appearing was in the late 1980s on the East Coast,” he said. “Then they disappeared in 1991.”

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December 16th, 2011
12:07 PM ET

N.C. soldier reportedly last to die in Iraq war

David Hickman was a star football player in McLeansville, North Carolina. He was a quiet man with a larger-than-life presence. He also holds the distinction of being the last soldier to die before the official announcement of the end of the Iraq war. That fact has made him a part of history, CNN affiliate WGHP reports.

Hickman, an Army specialist, was remembered Thursday by friends as the U.S. marked the official end of the war.

President Obama commemorated the milestone with an appearance at Fort Bragg, where Hickman was stationed before being deployed in September.

Obama, Panetta honor Iraq war troops

"As your commander in chief, and on behalf of a grateful nation, I'm proud to finally say these two words, and I know your families agree - welcome home. Welcome home,” he told cheering troops.

The coincidence did not go unnoticed by Hickman’s friends, who spoke to WGHP.

"That is so like David. He wasn't going to go out quietly. He's going to go down with a place in history," said his friend Logan Trainum. "He wasn't the loudest one in the room, but he was the most noticed one in the room. He just had that presence about him."

Home and Away: Share your tributes to fallen troops

Even in death, Hickman was making his presence known, his friends said.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Iraq • Military • U.S. Air Force • U.S. Army • War
Hubble telescope shows 'Snow Angel'
December 15th, 2011
02:43 PM ET

Hubble telescope shows 'Snow Angel'

Far, far away in an isolated part of the Milky Way lies a star nursery housing a celestial spectacle so beautiful that the Space Telescope Science Institute has taken to calling it a “Holiday Snow Angel."

Spectacular images and video released by the NASA-built observatory Thursday show a star-forming region in the constellation Cygnus (the Swan) nearly 2,000 light years from Earth.

In official terms, Sharpless 2-106 (doesn’t have the same ring, does it?) gets its looks from an extreme confluence of heat and motion and features a ring of particles that “acts like a belt,” according to a press release. The hourglass-like shape in the middle is created by gaseous particles orbiting the star.

Don't be fooled by the cute name, Hubble spokesman Ray Villard told CNN Thursday in an email.

"Though we nickname this a ‘Snow Angel’ there is nothing angelic about what's happening in the picture," Villard said. "A super-hot star much larger than our sun has twin blowtorches of hot gas shooting out into space. The star is destined for a short life and will then explode as a supernova, disintegrating everything around it."

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Filed under: NASA • Science • Space
U.S. satellite firm says it has first image of Chinese aircraft carrier
Digital Globe released this satellite image Wednesday, showing what it says is the first look at the Chinese aircraft carrier Varyag.
December 15th, 2011
10:49 AM ET

U.S. satellite firm says it has first image of Chinese aircraft carrier

A photograph of what is purported to be China’s first aircraft carrier has renewed speculation about its military intentions, according to news reports.

U.S. satellite imaging firm Digital Globe said Wednesday on its website that it had captured an image that appears to be the Chinese aircraft carrier Varyag during drills in the Yellow Sea.

The Varyag was reportedly constructed by the USSR in the 1980s but fell into the hands of the Ukraine. The Chinese purchased it sans weapons and navigation systems under the guise of wanting to turn the vessel into a casino, according to a BBC report in August.

Huntsman: China is 'no ally' of the U.S.

The sea trial is the second for the aircraft carrier, which roused international interest on November 29 when it left the port of Dalian in the Yellow Sea. Defense Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng said at the time that the military exercises were a "routine arrangement," Xinhua reported.

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Filed under: China • Politics • World
Roundup of sex-abuse allegations: Penn State, The Citadel, Syracuse, Oklahoma
Jerry Sandusky arrives at court Tuesday in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, before waiving his preliminary hearing.
December 14th, 2011
05:54 PM ET

Roundup of sex-abuse allegations: Penn State, The Citadel, Syracuse, Oklahoma

Two former university officials are scheduled for a preliminary hearing Friday in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in connection with the Penn State sex scandal.

Former Penn State Athletic Director Tim Curley and Vice President Gary Schultz were charged with lying to the grand jury and failing to report to police what current assistant football coach Mike McQueary told them he saw.

Meanwhile former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, who is accused of sexually abusing boys, remains "totally prepared and committed to proving his innocence" after waiving his right to a preliminary hearing Tuesday, his attorney said.

Meet Karl Rominger, newest Sandusky attorney

"We're ready to defend. We've always been ready to defend," attorney Joe Amendola said outside the Centre County Courthouse after the hearing. "There have been no plea negotiations. There will be no plea negotiations. This is a fight to the death. This is the fight of Jerry Sandusky's life."

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Filed under: Crime • Justice • U.S.
Study: Number of U.S. married couples at record low
Brides are in abundance in some places, like Colombia this month during a mass wedding, but nuptials are down elsewhere.
December 14th, 2011
05:00 PM ET

Study: Number of U.S. married couples at record low

The number of married couples in the United States is at a record low, according to the latest figures from the Pew Research Center.

Numbers released Wednesday show 51% of American adults are married, a 5% drop from the previous year in new nuptials. The median age that people get married has risen to 26.5 years for brides and 28.7 for grooms.

Read the Pew Research Center report on marriage

The numbers reflect an increase in other living arrangements that have taken hold for American adults, such as cohabitation, divorce, single parenting and the rise of grandfamilies.

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South Korean 'comfort women' mark 1,000th rally for Japan apology
South Korean women who say they served as sex slaves during World War II rally Wednesday in Seoul, South Korea.
December 14th, 2011
09:41 AM ET

South Korean 'comfort women' mark 1,000th rally for Japan apology

A group of elderly South Korean women, backed by hundreds of supporters, Wednesday held their 1000th rally in protest of the Japanese government’s treatment of them during World War II, according to news reports.

Ahn Seon-mi, leader of the Korean Council for the Women Drafted for Military Sexual Slavery by Japan, told CNN in an e-mail Tuesday that the group seeks several things from Japan. “No. 1 is acknowledge the war crime,” she said.

“Reveal the truth in its entirety about the crimes of military sexual slavery,” she said, including rewriting the history books to accurately reflect what happened.

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Filed under: Japan • South Korea • World
Need a holiday pick-me-up? Dial-A-Carol students voice support
Students take a break from harmonizing Tuesday at Snyder Hall at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
December 13th, 2011
06:02 PM ET

Need a holiday pick-me-up? Dial-A-Carol students voice support

College students are lending their voices this week to spread holiday cheer - and you can hear them in your ear.

Students at Snyder Hall at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign are completing a marathon phone-in, called the Dial-A-Carol, in which they take calls 24 hours a day from all over the world and play or sing a requested holiday tune for listeners.

The ritual, conducted annually during finals week, will last until 11:59 p.m. Wednesday.

Collegians shuffle in and out to take part in the student-run program, which is in its 51st year. For students like sophomore Kurt Hanson of Lake Zurich, Illinois, it’s a labor of love.

“I’ve been here since 9 a.m.,” Hanson said. “We all got here after our 8 a.m. finals, and we’ve been singing.”

The group then broke into a gleeful rendition of “Feliz Navidad,” complete with several of them making drum sounds and the like.

Phone lines were “blowing up,” Hanson said, after the Dial-A-Carol phone number was posted on social networking sites Twitter and Reddit.

The Dial-A-Carol  number is 217-332-1882. The students will sing to every fifth caller.

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Filed under: Illinois • U.S.
Report: NBA nixes Chris Paul trade to Clippers
Monday's failed negotiations mark the second time in a week that a Chris Paul trade to Los Angeles fell through.
December 12th, 2011
04:24 PM ET

Report: NBA nixes Chris Paul trade to Clippers

An NBA trade that would have sent New Orleans Hornets guard Chris Paul to the Los Angeles Clippers is off, Sports Illustrated reported Monday.

New Orleans would have gotten second-year Clippers guard Eric Bledsoe, center Chris Kaman, second-year forward Al-Farouq Aminu and the Clippers' 2012 first-round draft pick in a blockbuster move that would have made both teams long-term contenders.  But the league, which owns the Hornets franchise, also wanted guard Eric Gordon thrown in the deal, and the Clippers balked, according to SI.

New Jersey Nets owner vies for Russian presidency

Now the Hornets may get to retain an unhappy superstar that is certain to bolt to another team in a matter of months.

While the NBA reviewed the deal Monday and said no,  it may not be over. There are rumblings that litigation could be filed by Paul's representatives and the union, according to ESPN.

“People close to this trade, and even around the league, think the league is driving such a hard bargain because they really do not want to move Chris Paul outside of New Orleans,” ESPN’s Chris Broussard opined Monday on air hours before the NBA announced its decision.

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December 12th, 2011
12:03 PM ET

The Reads You Need: Xavier-Cincinnati brawl: 'gangstas' or 'thugs'?

Editor's note: Each day, we'll bring you some of the diverse voices from our site and across the Web on the stories causing ripples throughout the news sphere.

In the aftermath of the nasty end-of-game fight Saturday between the Cincinnati Bearcats and No. 8 Xavier Musketeers, commentators are up in arms themselves. And things got more serious Monday: Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters said, “My office will review this matter to determine whether any criminal charges are appropriate.”

Eight players were suspended in all, four from each college basketball team. Three Cincinnati players got six-game suspensions for their roles in the brawl, including forward Yancy Gates, caught clearly on video throwing a haymaker.

The incident came at the close of the Crosstown Shootout series,  a rivalry game that has been played between the two city schools since 1928.

Perhaps adding insult to injury, Xavier players who were involved in the brawl and obviously still amped up were allowed to address the media afterward.

“If somebody put their hands in your face or try to do something to you, where we’re from, you’re going to do something back,” said guard Mark Lyons, who got a two-game suspension. “We’re not going to sit there and get our face beat in by somebody like Yancy Gates. … We won't let that happen.”

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