SCHWARZENEGGER BREAKS RIBS IN FALL
Tough guy Arnold Schwarzenegger has broken several ribs in an accident on his motorcycle in Santa Monica, Calif. A publicist for the 54-year-old star says he was treated at the St. John's Health Center following the accident. She gave no further details. In an official statement Schwarzenegger told his fans not to worry and noted that his family's planned ski trip to Sun Valley will go on as planned. His latest movie, "Collateral Damage," was to have been released this fall, but its opening was postponed in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. It's now due out in February.
GALWAY TO BE KNIGHTED THIS WEEK
Flute virtuoso James Galway will soon be Sir James Galway. As a matter of fact, his Web site -- jamesgalway.com -- already refers to him as "Sir." In ceremonies at Buckingham Palace, scheduled for Wednesday, the Belfast-born musician is being recognized for his contributions in building international bridges through his performances during the past two and a half decades. Galway's repertoire, though largely in the realm of romantic and classical music, also has taken him into the world of country and even a collaboration with Sir Elton John. Immediately after receiving his knighthood, his publicist says that Galway will fly to the States to record "Christmas Glory," a TV special that will be broadcast in the U.K. on Christmas Eve. Long associated with RCA, Galway first became known as a virtuoso piccolo player with various London-based orchestras. In 1969 he was named principle flute with the Berlin Philharmonic. Galway first attained international attention when he "went solo," bursting onto the music scene in 1975. His services became so much in demand that he made more than 120 major concert performances that year.
WILLIE'S SONG GETS BOTTLED
For years Willie Nelson has opened his concerts with a rousing rendition of "Whiskey River." Now a Kentucky distiller says it's coming out with a bottled version of the song, Old Whiskey River bourbon. The company, Heaven Hill Distilleries of Bardstown, says it will also have a major hand in funding future Nelson tours. A big merchandising blitz is planned to kick off the brand. Marketing, according to the news provider country.com, includes bandannas, T-shirts, hats and Nelson-style braids. Several months ago, in a pre-kick off event, Nelson accepted the first bottle off the labeling line. He also met with farmers in the area who grow the grains used in the bourbon. By the way, Nelson's next touring event is Jan. 22, when he will begin a three-night gig at New York's Irving Plaza venue. His latest album, "The Great Divide," is due out in February.
LOST KAMEHAMEHA PORTRAIT FOUND
Missing for years, a classic portrait of Hawaiian King Kamehameha the Great has turned up in the home of the son of the late painter Jean Charlot. The Honolulu Advertiser says that the watercolor painting, done in 1816 by Russian artist Louis Choris, is one of three done in a single session. The other two have been in the possession of collectors for years. There has always been speculation as to the whereabouts of the third, now found in Hawaii in the possession of John Charlot, a professor of religion at the University of Hawaii-Manoa. His father reportedly was contacted about the painting after the publication of a book he wrote on the subject in 1958. Local collectors and historians say the newly found portrait could be worth a million dollars.
HIGH COURT LETS STAND 'SNEAKED' STUDENT PRAYERS
The Supreme Court says it will let stand a lower court ruling that allows students at Jacksonville, Fla., high schools to continue voting on whether to have an uncensored message presented at graduation ceremonies. According to published reports, the recent practice of the students assigning "chaplains" to speak at graduation exercises has been criticized by some groups as being a back-door attempt to install prayer into public ceremonies. A group of students and their parents had taken the issue to a Florida court. Countering the claim that the messages were prayers, the local school board said that the statements being made were secular in nature and did not violate rules about prayer in public schools. I spoke with the group Americans United for the Separation of Church and State and discovered that the issue continues to be tricky and containing many gray areas, even in light of the high court's decision. Still, prayer in public schools is possible if the concept is not suggested or sanctioned by school officials and is proposed by the students themselves, under some circumstances.
BOSTON PLAYERS DIP INTO ARCHIVES
It's being called one of the most important compilations of classical music of the past few decades. It's a massive collection of historic performances by the Boston Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra says the new release is a 12-CD set covering nearly 60 years of recordings. The package is called "Symphony Hall Centennial Celebration." The recordings are taken from radio and TV broadcasts of the venerable aggregation and contain some of the orchestra's genuine performance triumphs. For example, heard is the world premiere of Bartok's "Concerto for Orchestra" under the baton of Serge Koussevitsky in 1944. Leonard Bernstein's "Symphony No. 2" is included from a 1949 broadcast, with Bernstein at the piano. The compilation lists for $225 and is available through the orchestra's Web site or through most online retailers, such as Amazon and Yahoo.
UPI DAILY SURVEY QUESTION NO. 221
Well, the Salvation Army bell ringers are out, so it must be getting close to Christmas. Here in Las Vegas the locals think it's cold. I think it's brisk. I haven't smelled burning leaves, nor gone on a hayride, nor shoveled snow, nor been hit with slush from a passing truck getting too close to the curb. So, in light of that, here is today's question: "Is it my imagination, or has this year flown past ... or what!" Put YEAR in the subject line and send to firstname.lastname@example.org via the Internet.
RESULTS OF QUESTION NO. 216 (FAMOUS)
Last week we wondered if you're related to anyone famous. Here are some of the replies: Minveryork says "I am related to Lindsay Davenport, the tennis player. Also to a former member of Congress." UR says that on her father's side she's related to the late cosmetic icon Max Factor. I wonder what he used to give as Christmas gifts? Jan is related to country singer Lorrie Morgan. Neat! SJ is a descendant of Queen Victoria and wonders if that means she's related to the current royals. Janet made friends with singer Jim Yoemans when he accidentally dialed her machine by mistake and left his number. Of course she called! Keke's brother's godfather was Mario Lanza's brother-in-law and is good friends with the current attorney general of Illinois. Debra knew many Detroit sports figures through her managing an upscale apartment complex. Finally loubabe comes through again, related to Philo Farnsworth, the man who REALLY invented television and was left unrecognized. Well, loubabe, I never was a fan of John Logie Baird or Vladimir Zworykin. A flood of replies. Sorry if I missed yours. GBA.