Washington Post: Beijing Beat


By Ian Sherr

More of china’s people wander their country and the world seeking work, love and community. Yet Beijing’s new magnetism pulls at them. Watch stories of hustle, stress, and solace on the streets of Beijing and beyond.


(Beijing Beat was produced for the Washington Post’s “Emerging Voices” project, and published on the front page of the Washington Post website for nearly a week during the Beijing Olympic Games. The entire project is available at the Post’s website, here.)

Skepticism as US hunters claim ‘Bigfoot’ find




By Ian Sherr

PALO ALTO, California (AFP) — Two US men on Friday claimed to have found the body of “Bigfoot,” the legendary ape-like creature that has been the subject of decades of hoaxes and dubious sightings.

Matthew Whitton and Rick Dyer claimed before a crowd of sceptical reporters that they were hiking in a northern part of the US state of Georgia in June when they stumbled upon a body near water.

“I recognized it was unusual right away,” Whitton told the press conference in Palo Alto. “The first thing that pops into your head is that it’s Bigfoot.”

The body was said to be seven-feet, seven-inches tall and weigh more than 500 pounds. The men claimed to have stored the body in a freezer.

Photos of the “corpse” were posted at www.searchingforbigfoot.com. Advertising on the Web page Friday offered Bigfoot T-shirts and films.

bigfootxReports of Whitton and Dyer’s “find” appeared across national print and US media on Friday, with many experts suspicious of the men’s claims.

Jeffrey Meldrum, a prominent Bigfoot expert and professor of anatomy and anthropology at Idaho State University told Scientific American.com he doubted the find was legitimate.

“I’m extremely skeptical about this bigfoot claim,” he said. “What I’ve seen so far is not compelling in the least, and I think the pictures cast grave doubts on their claim. It just looks like a costume with some fake guts thrown on top for effect.”

Bigfoot, also referred to as “Sasquatch,” tells of a gargantuan, elusive furred creature that walks upright and lives in remote forests in the Pacific Northwest of the United States and Canada.

Georgia is in the country’s south.

Many scientists believe Bigfoot is folklore instead of fact.

Biscardi says he has been tracking Bigfoot since 1971 and speaks of his efforts on an internet radio show.

(By Ian Sherr. Published Aug 15, 2008, on the wire with the Agence France-Presse, here. Photos published with the San Francisco Chronicle, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and CNN .)

300 Dates in 24 Hours? No sweat.


By Ian Sherr

SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) – Francesca Salcido went on 300 dates in 24 hours without breaking a sweat.

Her encounters with aspiring beaus happened online at SpeedDate.com, a US start-up built on a belief that it doesn’t take more than 90 seconds to find a life partner.

“We may be using webcams and Internet technologies, but you’re still trying to find that chemistry,” SpeedDate co-founder Dan Abelon told AFP. “And if it isn’t there, you just move on to the next person.”

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