Looking Ahead

Looking Ahead | News to watch in the weeks to come

Issue: "Geo-gizmos," April 25, 2009

Columbine anniversary

April 20: On April 20, 1999, Columbine High School students Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold rampaged through their Colorado high school, killing 12 fellow students and injuring another 24 before killing themselves. Two new books-Columbine by Dave Cullen and Columbine: A True Crime Story by Jeff Kass-were published as the massacre's 10-year anniversary approached.

Dual royal anniversary

April 21: Queen Elizabeth II will have to share her 83rd birthday festivities with the anniversary of another English royal. On this day in 1509, Henry VIII was crowned King of England after the death of his father, Henry VII, on the same day. During his reign, the colorful king had more wives than could be counted on one hand, founded a church to annul his own marriages and, according to one count, executed more than 70,000, including many political enemies.

Jacko's life goes on sale

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April 22: If Julien's Auctions can jump one last legal hurdle, the much anticipated Michael Jackson memorabilia sale will commence on April 22. Apropos of the oddness of the King of Pop, the auction process has been fraught with legal wranglings. An auction official said Jackson's estate hired him to auction about 2,000 items taken from the star's Neverland Ranch outside of Los Angeles. But then Jackson filed a lawsuit to get the items back, saying the auctioneer basically stole them. In court, though, at least one judge has honored the contract and dismissed Jackson's motion for a delay. If the auction proceeds, it could net the pop star millions of dollars-presumably to pay down debt.

Trillion-dollar plan

April 25: Fresh off receiving a pledge for $1 trillion, the International Monetary Fund will hold spring meetings with the World Bank in Washington, D.C. On the docket: how the agencies can leverage the $1 trillion pledged at the recent G20 summit for propping up the failing financial systems of smaller nations across the globe. On the same day, Iceland-a nation hit hard by the banking crisis-will hold parliamentary elections to form a new government.

English adds a seventh digit

April 29: Nearly a week after the anniversary of the death of the great wordsmith William Shakespeare, one language think tank estimates the English language will adopt its millionth word. The Global Language Monitor has tracked the language for years and has a countdown on its website. Of course, more conservative lexicographers like Merriam-Webster may disagree. One of the newest words according to the GLM? "E-vampire," which describes any electrical device that consumes energy in standby mode.

Obama's hundredth day

April 30: Ever since Franklin Roosevelt used his first 100 days in office as a campaign position, it has served as a benchmark for successive presidencies. And for President Barack Obama, the rules are no different. April 30 will mark 100 days since Obama's inauguration and a deadline for the new president to fulfill a bevy of campaign promises.


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