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"I am the Bicycle Bandit": Terminally-ill ex-cop confesses to 20-year-old mystery

<p>In a startling twist to a 20-year-old mystery, 73-year-old Kym Allen Parsons, a terminally-ill former police officer and firefighter, has admitted to being the notorious "Bicycle Bandit" who terrorised South Australian banks and residents for a decade.</p> <p>Parsons' confession came just days after receiving approval for voluntary assisted dying (VAD) and being provided with a VAD kit by SA Health.</p> <p>Parsons, who has stage 4 cancer and who had previously denied the charges, changed his plea to guilty during a Supreme Court session on Monday, ending years of speculation and investigation. His sudden admission of guilt follows a plea bargain brokered by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and his counsel after the VAD approval was granted.</p> <p>In a tearful apology read to the court, Parsons expressed deep remorse for his actions, acknowledging that his behaviour was both irrational and without excuse.</p> <p>"I have no excuse for my behaviour," he told the court. "My reasoning was illogical and irrational over that time, and over the past 10 years I have tried to rehabilitate, seek help and forgiveness and demonstrate my shame in distressing actions.</p> <p>"I was fearful of confessing my past and destroying their [my wife and family's] love and trust in the person they knew.</p> <p>"I do not expect your forgiveness, and I humbly ask you accept my sincerest apology and deepest remorse."</p> <p>Despite Parsons' request for bail ahead of his sentencing, Justice Sandi McDonald deemed his crimes too severe for continued freedom and ordered his immediate custody. His access to the VAD kit while in custody remains uncertain.</p> <p>The courtroom was filled with Parsons' victims and their supporters, many of whom had worked at the banks he robbed. Some were victimised multiple times. One victim described the lasting impact of being robbed at gunpoint, detailing the immense trauma and the development of an auto-immune disease likely induced by stress. Other victims recounted struggles with PTSD, anxiety, depression, and ongoing trust issues.</p> <p>Parsons had been scheduled for trial in February on charges of armed robbery, attempted armed robbery, and firearms offences, with prosecutors alleging he stole over $250,000 from 11 banks between 2004 and 2014. DNA evidence was cited as a link to the crimes. His guilty plea and impending death are expected to ignite a legal battle over his $2.4 million estate, involving prosecutors, his heirs, and his victims.</p> <p>Previously, Parsons had been granted home detention due to his terminal stage 4 cancer diagnosis, after significant weight loss while in custody. His defence lawyer, James Marcus, stated that Parsons pleaded guilty to provide closure to the victims and their families.</p> <p>Parsons' sentencing is scheduled for June 28, marking the conclusion of a complex and emotional case that has gripped the state for years.</p> <p><em>Images: ABC News / SA Police</em></p>

Legal

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AFL great's son in induced coma after mystery brain infection

<p>Geelong great Peter Riccardi has revealed his son, Osca, was briefly put on life support after suffering a mystery infection on the brain. </p> <p>Speaking on the podcast Beyond The Boundary, the former AFL player revealed that his son became suddenly ill a fortnight ago. </p> <p>“A couple of Sundays ago (Osca) came home, been out with a few of his mates, he’d been to the beach, went out for dinner, went out to play 10-pin bowling ... and said he was going to bed,” Peter Riccardi said. </p> <p>“Then halfway through the night he was up, he was vomiting, he was feeling a bit crook ... we just thought he was run down.</p> <p>“But come lunchtime, he couldn’t talk, he could hardly walk.”</p> <p>He added that they were extremely lucky his wife Mel worked from home that day and rushed Osca straight to hospital, where they found some "swelling" on his brain following a scan. </p> <p>Doctors also found that he had a sinus and ear infection and glandular fever  all “rolled into one”.</p> <p>“Whether the swim did something with his ears and went into his brain, I’m not 100 per cent sure, yet,” Riccardi said.</p> <p>“They put him an induced coma for three days. He was in ICU (Intensive Care Unit) for four days.</p> <p>“But he’s back home now recovering ... you wouldn’t know that two weeks ago, watching him on life support, and seeing him now, it’s amazing what they do in there.”</p> <p>The podcast hosts then asked how scary the situation was for Riccardi and his wife, and he responded: “It was, yeah ... obviously they have got to prepare you for the worst (outcome)."</p> <p>“That was probably the worst thing to hear, because we didn’t know how he was going to come out of it.</p> <p>“But again, like I said, if Mel had gone to work that day, he wouldn’t be here today.</p> <p>“We’re pretty lucky, we’re pretty lucky.</p> <p>“It must have been a mother’s intuition or mother’s instinct to stay at home that day.”</p> <p><em>Image: Facebook/ Geelong Cats</em></p>

Caring

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Why it’s still a scientific mystery how some can live past 100 – and how to crack it

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/richard-faragher-224976">Richard Faragher</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-brighton-942">University of Brighton</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/nir-barzilai-1293752">Nir Barzilai</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/albert-einstein-college-of-medicine-3638">Albert Einstein College of Medicine</a></em></p> <p>A 35-year-old man <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18544745/">only has a 1.5% chance of dying in the next ten years</a>. But the same man at 75 has a 45% chance of dying before he reaches 85. Clearly, ageing is bad for our health. On the bright side, we have made unprecedented progress in understanding the fundamental mechanisms that control ageing and late-life disease.</p> <p>A few tightly linked biological processes, sometimes called the <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23746838/">“hallmarks of ageing”</a>, including our supply of stem cells and communication between cells, act to keep us healthy in the early part of our lives – with <a href="https://theconversation.com/the-secret-to-staying-young-scientists-boost-lifespan-of-mice-by-deleting-defective-cells-54068">problems arising as these start to fail</a>. <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34699859/">Clinical trials are ongoing</a> to see if targeting some of these hallmarks can improve <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31542391/">diabetic kidney disease</a>, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29997249/">aspects of</a> <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33977284/">immune function</a> and age-related <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30616998/">scarring of the lungs</a> among others. So far, so good.</p> <p>Unfortunately, big, unanswered questions remain in the biology of ageing. To evaluate what these are and how to address them, the <a href="https://www.afar.org/">American Federation For Aging Research</a>, a charity, recently convened a series of <a href="https://www.afar.org/imported/AFAR_GeroFuturesThinkTankReport_November2021.pdf">meetings for leading scientists and doctors</a>. The experts agreed that understanding what is special about the biology of humans who survive more than a century is now a key challenge.</p> <p>These centenarians <a href="https://www.statista.com/chart/18826/number-of-hundred-year-olds-centenarians-worldwide/">comprise less than 0.02% of the UK population</a> but have exceeded the life expectancy of their peers by almost 50 years (babies born in the 1920s typically had a life expectancy of less than 55). How are they doing it?</p> <p>We know that centenarians live so long because they are unusually healthy. They remain in good health for about 30 years longer than most normal people and when they finally fall ill, they are only sick for a very short time. This <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27377170/">“compression of morbidity”</a> is clearly good for them, but also benefits society as a whole. In the US, the medical care costs for a centenarian in their last two years of life <a href="https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/series/sr_10/sr10_198.pdf">are about a third of those of someone who dies in their seventies</a> (a time when most centenarians don’t even need to see a doctor).</p> <p>The children of centenarians are also much healthier than average, indicating they are inheriting something beneficial from their parents. But is this genetic or environmental?</p> <h2>Centenarians aren’t always health conscious</h2> <p>Are centenarians the poster children for a healthy lifestyle? For the general population, watching your weight, not smoking, drinking moderately and eating at least five servings of fruit and vegetables a day can <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27296932/">increase life expectancy by up to 14 years</a> compared with someone who does none of these things. This difference <a href="https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld5801/ldselect/ldsctech/183/18305.htm#_idTextAnchor012">exceeds that seen</a> between the least and most deprived areas in the UK, so intuitively it would be expected to play a role in surviving for a century.</p> <p>But astonishingly, this needn’t be the case. <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21812767/">One study</a> found that up to 60% of Ashkenazi Jewish centenarians have smoked heavily most of their lives, half have been obese for the same period of time, less than half do even moderate exercise and under 3% are vegetarians. The children of centenarians appear no more health conscious than the general population either.</p> <p>Compared to peers with the same food consumption, wealth and body weight, however, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29050682/">they have half the prevalence of cardiovascular disease</a>. There is something innately exceptional about these people.</p> <h2>The big secret</h2> <p>Could it be down to rare genetics? If so, then there are two ways in which this could work. Centenarians might carry unusual genetic variants that extend lifespan, or instead they might lack common ones that cause late-life disease and impairment. Several studies, including our own work, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32860726/">have shown</a> that centenarians have just as many bad genetic variants as the general population.</p> <p>Some even carry two copies of the largest known common risk gene for Alzheimer’s disease (APOE4), but still don’t get the illness. So a plausible working hypothesis is that centenarians carry rare, beneficial genetic variations rather than a lack of disadvantageous ones. And the best available data is consistent with this.</p> <p>Over 60% of centenarians have genetic changes that alter the genes which regulate growth in early life. This implies that these remarkable people are human examples of a type of lifespan extension observed in other species. Most people know that <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28803893/">small dogs tend to live longer than big ones</a> but fewer are aware that this is a general phenomenon across the animal kingdom. <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26857482/">Ponies can live longer than horses</a> and many strains of laboratory mice with dwarfing mutations <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29653683/">live longer than their full-sized counterparts</a>. One potential cause of this is reduced levels of a growth hormone called IGF-1 – although human centenarians <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28630896/">are not necessarily shorter than the rest of us</a>.</p> <p>Obviously, growth hormone is necessary early on in life, but there is increasing evidence that high levels of IGF-1 in mid to late life <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18316725/">are associated with increased late-life illness</a>. The detailed mechanisms underlying this remain an open question, but even among centenarians, women with the lowest levels of growth hormone <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24618355/">live longer than those with the highest</a>. They also have better cognitive and muscle function.</p> <p>That doesn’t solve the problem, though. Centenarians are also different from the rest of us in other ways. For example, they tend to have good cholesterol levels – hinting there may several reasons for their longevity.</p> <p>Ultimately, centenarians are “natural experiments” who show us that it is possible to live in excellent health even if you have been dealt a risky genetic hand and chose to pay no attention to health messages – but only if you carry rare, poorly understood mutations.</p> <p>Understanding exactly how these work should allow scientists to develop new drugs or other interventions that target biological processes in the right tissues at the right time. If these become a reality perhaps more of us than we think will see the next century in. But, until then, don’t take healthy lifestyle tips from centenarians.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/172020/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/richard-faragher-224976">Richard Faragher</a>, Professor of Biogerontology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-brighton-942">University of Brighton</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/nir-barzilai-1293752">Nir Barzilai</a>, Professor of Medicine and Genetics, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/albert-einstein-college-of-medicine-3638">Albert Einstein College of Medicine</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/why-its-still-a-scientific-mystery-how-some-can-live-past-100-and-how-to-crack-it-172020">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Retirement Life

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Leap of imagination: how February 29 reminds us of our mysterious relationship with time and space

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/emily-ohara-874665">Emily O'Hara</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/auckland-university-of-technology-1137">Auckland University of Technology</a></em></p> <p>If you find it intriguing that February 28 will be followed this week by February 29, rather than March 1 as it usually is, spare a thought for those alive in 1582. Back then, Thursday October 4 was followed by Friday October 15.</p> <p>Ten whole days were snatched from the present when Pope Gregory XIII issued a papal bull to “restore” the calendar from discrepancies that had crept into the Julian calendar, introduced by Julius Caesar in 45 BCE.</p> <p>The new Gregorian calendar returned the northern hemisphere’s vernal equinox to its “proper” place, around March 21. (The equinox is when the Earth’s axis is tilted neither toward nor away from the sun, and is used to determine the date of Easter.)</p> <p>The Julian calendar had observed a leap year every four years, but this meant time had drifted out of alignment with the dates of celestial events and astronomical seasons.</p> <p>In the Gregorian calendar, leap days were added only to years that were a multiple of four – like 2024 – with an exception for years that were evenly divisible by 100, but not 400 – like 1700.</p> <p>Simply put, leap days exist because it doesn’t take a neat 365 days for Earth to orbit the Sun. It takes 365.2422 days. Tracking the movement of celestial objects through space in an orderly pattern doesn’t quite work, which is why we have February – time’s great mop.</p> <h2>Time and space</h2> <p>This is just part of the history of how February – the shortest month, and originally the last month in the Roman calendar – came to have the job of absorbing those inconsistencies in the temporal calculations of the world’s most commonly used calendar.</p> <p>There is plenty of <a href="https://theconversation.com/leap-day-fixing-the-faults-in-our-stars-54032">science</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/explainer-the-science-behind-leap-years-and-how-they-work-54788">maths</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-a-seasonal-snarl-up-in-the-mid-1500s-gave-us-our-strange-rules-for-leap-years-132659">astrophysics</a> explaining the relationship between time and the planet we live on. But I like to think leap years and days offer something even more interesting to consider: why do we have calendars anyway?</p> <p>And what have they got to do with how we understand the wonder and strangeness of our existence in the universe? Because calendars tell a story, not just about time, but also about space.</p> <p>Our reckoning of time on Earth is through our spatial relationship to the Sun, Moon and stars. Time, and its place in our lives, sits somewhere between the scientific, the celestial and the spiritual.</p> <p>It is <a href="https://shop.whitechapelgallery.org/products/time">notoriously slippery, subjective and experiential</a>. It is also marked, tracked and determined in myriad ways across different cultures, from tropical to solar to <a href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/pou-tiaki/300062097/matariki-and-the-maramataka-the-mori-lunar-calendar">lunar</a> calendars.</p> <p>It is the Sun that measures a day and gives us our first reference point for understanding time. But it is the <a href="https://librarysearch.aut.ac.nz/vufind/Record/1145999?sid=25214690">Moon</a>, as a major celestial body, that extends our perception of time. By stretching a span of one day into something longer, it offers us a chance for philosophical reflection.</p> <p>The Sun (or its effect at least) is either present or not present. The Moon, however, goes through phases of transformation. It appears and disappears, changing shape and hinting that one night is not exactly like the one before or after.</p> <p>The Moon also has a distinct rhythm that can be tracked and understood as a pattern, giving us another sense of duration. Time is just that – overlapping durations: instants, seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, years, decades, lifetimes, centuries, ages.</p> <h2>The elusive Moon</h2> <p>It is almost impossible to imagine how time might feel in the absence of all the tools and gadgets we use to track, control and corral it. But it’s also hard to know what we might do in the absence of time as a unit of productivity – a measurable, dispensable resource.</p> <p>The closest we might come is simply to imagine what life might feel like in the absence of the Moon. Each day would rise and fall, in a rhythm of its own, but without visible reference to anything else. Just endless shifts from light to dark.</p> <p>Nights would be almost completely dark without the light of the Moon. Only stars at a much further distance would puncture the inky sky. The world around us would change – trees would grow, mammals would age and die, land masses would shift and change – but all would happen in an endless cycle of sunrise to sunset.</p> <p>The light from the Sun takes <a href="https://www.skyatnightmagazine.com/space-science/how-take-light-from-sun-reach-earth">eight minutes</a> to reach Earth, so the sunlight we see is always eight minutes in the past.</p> <p>I remember sitting outside when I first learned this, and wondering what the temporal delay might be between me and other objects: a plum tree, trees at the end of the street, hills in the distance, light on the horizon when looking out over the ocean, stars in the night sky.</p> <p>Moonlight, for reference, takes about <a href="https://www.pbs.org/seeinginthedark/astronomy-topics/light-as-a-cosmic-time-machine.html">1.3 seconds</a> to get to Earth. Light always travels at the same speed, it is entirely constant. The differing duration between how long it takes for sunlight or moonlight to reach the Earth is determined by the space in between.</p> <p>Time on the other hand, is anything but constant. There are countless ways we characterise it. The mere fact we have so many calendars and ways of describing perceptual time hints at our inability to pin it down.</p> <p>Calendars give us the impression we can, and have, made time predictable and understandable. Leap years, days and seconds serve as a periodic reminder that we haven’t.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/224503/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/emily-ohara-874665"><em>Emily O'Hara</em></a><em>, Senior Lecturer, Spatial Design + Temporary Practices, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/auckland-university-of-technology-1137">Auckland University of Technology</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/leap-of-imagination-how-february-29-reminds-us-of-our-mysterious-relationship-with-time-and-space-224503">original article</a>.</em></p>

Technology

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"Do you hear it?": Worldwide hum global mystery baffles scientists

<p>A perplexing phenomenon known as "The Worldwide Hum" has been capturing the attention of scientists and citizens alike, as an unusual low-frequency noise continues to puzzle experts.</p> <p>This mysterious hum, first recorded in 2012, has been reported by thousands of people worldwide, sparking investigations, online discussions and even <a href="https://www.thehum.info/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">the creation of an interactive map</a> documenting instances of the enigmatic sound. As researchers strive to unravel the mystery, individuals share their experiences, raising questions about its origin and effects.</p> <p>Described as a low rumbling or droning sound, "the hum" is often likened to the idling of a car or truck engine. What makes this phenomenon particularly intriguing is that it is not universally heard, with reports of the hum being exclusive to certain individuals.</p> <p>Some claim it is more pronounced at night than during the day, and louder indoors than outdoors. One Reddit user even compared it to the low-frequency vibrations felt when a passenger jet flies overhead.</p> <p>Since its first documentation, more than 6,500 instances of the hum have been reported globally, with new cases continually emerging. The interactive user-generated World Hum Map and Database Project <span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">captures the experiences of those who have encountered the sound, providing a comprehensive overview of its widespread occurrence. In some regions, authorities such as the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) have conducted investigations, as was the case in the NSW Waverley Council ten years ago. Despite these efforts, the source of the hum remains elusive.</span></p> <p>Individuals affected by the mysterious noise often find solace in online communities, where they share their experiences and discuss possible explanations. Some describe feeling as though they are "going insane", and say that the psychological impact of the persistent hum is actually very severe.</p> <p>Facebook support groups have become a platform for individuals to connect, share anecdotes and speculate about the origin of the sound. Theories range from the mundane – such as the use of headphones causing collective tinnitus – to more complex environmental factors.</p> <p>While tinnitus, a symptom of auditory system issues, has been proposed as a potential explanation, it does not account for the collective experience of the hum. Various theories, including industrial plants, ocean waves, lightning strikes and the proliferation of mobile phone towers, have been suggested over the years. However, none of these explanations have gained widespread acceptance or provided a conclusive answer.</p> <p>Dr Glen MacPherson, who initiated the World Hum Map and Database Project, experienced the hum firsthand on Canada's Sunshine Coast. Having debunked the idea of "hum hotspots", Dr MacPherson theorises that the hum may be a subjective phenomenon, akin to tinnitus, originating from within the individual rather than an external source. His 11 years of research highlight the complexity of the mystery, challenging initial assumptions and pointing towards the need for further investigation.</p> <p>As "The Worldwide Hum" continues to captivate the curiosity of scientists and citizens worldwide, the quest for understanding remains elusive. While theories abound, the true origin of the hum remains unknown, leaving both experts and individuals alike intrigued by a phenomenon that transcends geographic boundaries and defies conventional explanations.</p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

Body

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Hunt for Cinderella! Mystery shoe left at Prince Christian's party sparks search

<p>A mystery shoe left at Prince Christian's <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/family-pets/unseen-pics-of-prince-christian-mark-his-18th-birthday" target="_blank" rel="noopener">18th birthday party</a> inside Christianborg Palace has sparked a search for a real life Cinderella. </p> <p>In the hours after the ball, which saw royalty from around the world attend, the Danish royal household posted a photo of the gold stiletto that was left behind from one of the high profile party guests. </p> <p>The post read, "Is it Cinderella who forgot her shoe last night?"</p> <p>The caption continued, "When the guests at Her Majesty the Queen's gala dinner yesterday had gone home, this lonely stiletto shoe was left at Christiansborg Castle."</p> <p>"The owner is welcome to contact you to get it back."</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/CydeENrNum2/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CydeENrNum2/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by DET DANSKE KONGEHUS 🇩🇰 (@detdanskekongehus)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The ball was attended by Crown Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik, along with Christian's younger siblings Princess Isabella, 16, Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine, both 12.</p> <p>His uncle Prince Joachim, who relocated to America in August, was also there with his wife Princess Marie and their three youngest children Count Felix, 21, Count Henrik, 14, and Countess Athena, 12.</p> <p>A number of future monarchs were also present including royals from Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands and Belgium.</p> <p>Thankfully, the owner of the shoe was found, with Anne-Sofie Tørnsø Olesen, from Denmark's Egedal region, coming forward to claim the golden stiletto. </p> <p>And it turns out, she left it at the palace on purpose after being inspired by the story of Cinderella who marries her prince after long search.</p> <p>"I thought it was a bit funny myself, and I talked to my family and friends about it before, and they agreed that I should do it," Tørnsø Olesen, 18, told local Danish publication Se &amp; Hør.</p> <p>"It's such a chance you won't get again."</p> <p>She said she was keen to get the shoe back because it was "a memory from a great evening".</p> <p>The lost shoe, by Danish brand Deichmann's Catwalk collection, sparked an immediate flurry of comments on the royal family's Instagram page.</p> <p>The shoe brand said, "If the princess comes from a long way, we will gladly give her a new pair".</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images / Instagram </em></p>

Beauty & Style

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Bec Judd's son taken to hospital with mystery illness

<p>Bec Judd's seven-year-old son, Tom, has been hospitalised due to an undisclosed medical condition, as the concerned mother shared on her Instagram account.</p> <p>In the recent post, the 40-year-old WAG posted a heartwarming picture of Tom comfortably lying in a hospital bed. In the photo, Tom flashed a smile at the camera, clutching his teddy bear and savouring an ice cream treat. However, Bec did not reveal the specific reason for Tom's hospitalisation in her social media update.</p> <p>With a hopeful tone, Bec wrote, "Onwards and upwards, Tom," and expressed gratitude to Nurse Becky Bell for her care and support during this challenging time.</p> <p>Bec Judd, a mother of four, shares her children with her ex-AFL star husband, Chris Judd. Alongside her recent family concerns, Bec has also been actively involved in charitable endeavours. She disclosed her plans to contribute 25,000 meals to Food Bank Victoria, an organisation dedicated to addressing food insecurity. Bec's involvement extends beyond her vocal support, as she is using her design skills to create a unique spatula for fundraising purposes. The entirety of the proceeds from the spatula sales will be donated to Food Bank.</p> <p>In Bec's own words, each spatula sold translates into an impressive "25 meals on the table", with the ambitious goal of providing "250,000 extra meals by Christmas". She encouraged her substantial following to support the cause by considering the spatula as a unique Christmas gift option. Not only will buyers acquire an original Bec Judd creation, but they will also make a significant contribution to their community.</p> <p>This charitable campaign features other notable personalities, including New Zealand culinary expert Ben Shewry, radio and TV presenter Chrissie Swan, and Australian pastry chef Kirsten Tibballs.</p> <p>In addition to her philanthropic efforts, Bec Judd has been making appearances on the celebrity edition of <em>The Amazing Race</em>, where she teams up with her sister, Kate Twigley. During a recent interview on KIIS FM's Jase and Lauren show, Bec recounted some of the show's more challenging moments, including an encounter with elephant dung.</p> <p>"It was interesting; they really threw us into these challenges that were quite foul, like shovelling poo, and I was like, where are the gloves?" Bec shared. "You know, I worked at The Alfred Hospital; I have four kids, I've got a puppy. I'm used to vomit and poo and secretions, but we always had gloves and masks, so it was okay. But this is bare hands, and I was not happy about it."</p> <p>In a recent trailer for the Ten reality show, Bec also revealed her germophobic tendencies, adding a layer of intrigue to her adventures on <em>The Amazing Race.</em></p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Caring

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Cancer is rising in under-50s – but the causes are a mystery

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ashleigh-hamilton-1468163">Ashleigh Hamilton</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queens-university-belfast-687">Queen's University Belfast</a></em></p> <p>Cancer is often thought of as a disease that mostly affects older people. But worrying new research shows that cancer in younger adults is a growing problem. The study found there’s been a nearly 80% increase in the number of under-50s being <a href="https://bmjoncology.bmj.com/content/2/1/e000049">diagnosed with cancer</a> globally in the last three decades.</p> <p>Also of concern are the types of cancers being seen in younger adults – with this latest study and previous research showing that cancers thought of as typical of older age groups are now increasingly being diagnosed in younger people. These include <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31105047/">bowel cancer</a>, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31331685/">stomach cancer</a>, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32144720/">breast cancer</a>, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30733056/">uterine cancer</a> and <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35053447/">pancreatic cancer</a>.</p> <p>This is worrying because some of these cancers – particularly <a href="https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/pancreatic-cancer/survival">pancreatic</a> and <a href="https://www.cancer.org/cancer/types/stomach-cancer/detection-diagnosis-staging/survival-rates.html">stomach</a> cancer – have low survival rates, due to the fact they’re often diagnosed at a late stage. Research has also shown that bowel cancer tends to be <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29564176/">diagnosed at a more advanced stage</a> in young people compared with older adults.</p> <p>While it’s clear from this latest study that cancer is becoming more common in those under 50, experts still aren’t entirely sure what’s causing this rise.</p> <h2>Early-onset cancer</h2> <p>The study investigated cancer cases in people under the age of 50 (termed “early-onset cancer”) from 204 countries and regions. The data analysed was collected between 1990 and 2019. The researchers were interested in knowing not only the incidence of early-onset cancer, but what types of cancer had the highest burden in under-50s.</p> <p>They found that in 2019, there were 3.26 million cases of early-onset cancer diagnosed worldwide – a 79% increase since 1990. The authors also predicted that by 2030, the number of under-50s diagnosed with cancer would increase by a further 31%.</p> <p>Breast cancer was the most common early-onset cancer in 2019, but incidences of prostate and throat cancers increased at the fastest rate since 1990. Liver cancer decreased the fastest over the same time period.</p> <p>The number of deaths due to early-onset cancers also increased from 1990 to 2019 – although less quickly than the rate of diagnosis, with 1.06 million deaths worldwide in 2019, an increase of 28%. The cancers with the highest number of deaths in 2019 were breast, lung, bowel and stomach cancers. The age group at greatest risk of early-onset cancer were those in their 40s.</p> <p>In 2019, early-onset breast cancer had the highest burden for women, while early-onset lung cancer the highest burden for men. Women were disproportionately affected in terms of death and poor health from early-onset cancer in low- and middle-income countries.</p> <p>The study also shows that while the highest number of early-onset cancer cases were in developed countries such as western Europe, North America and Australasia, many cases were also seen in low- and middle-income countries. Death rates were also higher in low- and middle-income countries.</p> <p>The main limitation of this paper is the variability of the data collected by different countries, making it difficult to measure its completeness. Nonetheless, it is still useful in getting a picture of global health.</p> <h2>Unknown causes</h2> <p>There’s no single explanation for why cancers are rising in under-50s.</p> <p>Some cancers in younger people happen as a result of a genetic condition – but these only <a href="https://aacrjournals.org/cancerres/article/80/16_Supplement/1122/641186">account for a small number of cases</a> (around 20%).</p> <p>Lifestyle factors such as the foods we eat, whether we drink alcohol or smoke, and being overweight are all linked to an <a href="https://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/risk">increased risk</a> of many types of cancer. Research indicates that these factors may be contributing to a rise in <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33524598/">early-onset colorectal cancer</a>, for example. Whether this is true for other types of early-onset cancer remains unknown.</p> <p>Some people affected by early-onset cancers may live healthy lifestyles. This suggests there are probably other reasons for the increase that have not yet been discovered.</p> <p>It’s clear from this research that the landscape of cancer is changing. While the incidence of early-onset cancers is increasing, cancer in this age group is still much less common than for those over-50. Early-onset cancers account for only around a tenth of <a href="https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/incidence/age">new cases in the UK</a>. But though the numbers are still relatively low, this doesn’t mean the trend we’re seeing isn’t of concern.</p> <p>It will be crucial now to ensure there’s greater awareness of early-onset cancers. Most younger people, and even healthcare professionals, don’t necessarily put cancer at the top of the list when symptoms develop. It’s important for people to see their GP if they notice any new symptoms, as detecting cancer at an early stage leads to a better prognosis.</p> <p>Urgent research into early-onset cancer is also needed at a national and international level. The underlying causes are probably different depending on a person’s sex, ethnicity and where they live.</p> <p>On a personal level, there are many things you can do to reduce your risk of developing cancer. <a href="https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/causes-of-cancer/can-cancer-be-prevented">Following a healthy lifestyle</a> remains important. This includes eating a healthy diet, stopping smoking, exercising regularly, reducing your alcohol intake, being safe in the sun and maintaining a healthy weight. If something doesn’t feel right with your body or you experience any new symptoms, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as you can.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/212834/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ashleigh-hamilton-1468163"><em>Ashleigh Hamilton</em></a><em>, Academic Clinical Lecturer, Centre for Public Health, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/queens-university-belfast-687">Queen's University Belfast</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/cancer-is-rising-in-under-50s-but-the-causes-are-a-mystery-212834">original article</a>.</em></p>

Body

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"We did it!" Mystery behind Fifi Box's wedding dress unveiled

<p dir="ltr">Fifi Box has been spotted in a wedding dress and veil while holding a bouquet in Las Vegas, leaving many to believe she has tied the knot. </p> <p dir="ltr">While on a work trip, the radio host and her co-host Brendan Fevola and Nick Cody went to see Adele perform at her resident show in Vegas. </p> <p dir="ltr">In order to get Adele’s attention, Fifi dressed in wedding attire and made a sign, despite having no intention of getting married. </p> <p dir="ltr">Explaining the stunt on their radio show on Monday morning, Fifi explained, “We went to Adele last night, Fev and I did have to try and get her attention. So that was the mission, can Adele speak to us.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“We know that halfway through the show she walks through the crowd and chats to people, and what we had noticed in a lot of news stories was that it’s people who had signs or had just gotten married.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Last week, the radio team had put a call out to their listeners to ask for suggestions on how they should get Adele’s attention at the show, with one person suggesting they dress up and act as newlyweds. </p> <p dir="ltr">“So I wore the wedding dress and the veil, I had a bouquet and we had a sign that said ‘I walked down the aisle to your song today’.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Fifi then played a clip of the show in which you can hear Adele target the faux newlyweds and say “Congratulations!” while performing one of her hit songs. </p> <p dir="ltr">“We went to great lengths, but I'm going to point this out,” Fifi said. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Our mission was to get Adele to speak to us, and she looked me in the eye and said ‘congratulations’. We did it! Pretty cool to get a call out from Adele.”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Instagram</em></p>

Music

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Block stars' tease mystery new TV show

<p><em>The Block</em> stars Ryan and Rachel Carr have teased a new TV show with exclusive behind-the-scenes photos of their young family being filmed by a camera crew. </p> <p>The season 18 runners-up  took to Instagram on Wednesday to share the exciting news. </p> <p>"A busy little day in our house today," the caption read. </p> <p>The lovebirds, both aged 37, uploaded a gallery of images, including one where the couple were playing with their young children in their backyard as a camera crew filmed the happy family. </p> <p>In another photo, the couple teased fans as they were seemingly deep in conversation, while their two daughters played on the swing set, and their son was perched on Rachel's lap. </p> <p>"Lots of exciting things happening in our house," they captioned the photo with three star emojis. </p> <p>In a third pic, the couple posed by a stairwell with their three kids, as the film crew took a bunch of pictures, possibly for promoting the show. </p> <p>The photo was captioned: "It's always a fun time with this lot." </p> <p>The couple were dressed casually, with <span style="background-color: #ffffff; font-family: graphik, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 16px; letter-spacing: -0.16px;">Ryan in a pair jeans which he matched with a blue pull over, and Rachel looking like a chic mum in a pair of dark slacks </span><span style="background-color: #ffffff; font-family: graphik, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 16px; letter-spacing: -0.16px;">and a brown top.</span></p> <p><span style="background-color: #ffffff; font-family: graphik, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 16px; letter-spacing: -0.16px;">Details of the project are currently unknown. </span></p> <p style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px 0px 5px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 16px; vertical-align: baseline; color: #323338; font-family: Figtree, Roboto, Rubik, 'Noto Kufi Arabic', 'Noto Sans JP', sans-serif; background-color: #ffffff; outline: none !important;">The couple gained popularity after they came in second on <em style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; outline: none !important;">The Block </em>last year.</p> <p> </p> <p style="box-sizing: inherit; margin: 0px 0px 5px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 16px; vertical-align: baseline; color: #323338; font-family: Figtree, Roboto, Rubik, 'Noto Kufi Arabic', 'Noto Sans JP', sans-serif; background-color: #ffffff; outline: none !important;">They managed to sell their five-bedroom, three-bathroom home in Gisbourne for $4,250,000, pocketing $169,000 of profit from the sale.</p> <p><em><span style="background-color: #ffffff; font-family: graphik, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 16px; letter-spacing: -0.16px;">Images: Instagram</span></em></p>

TV

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Mystery object washed up on WA beach finally identified

<p>Ok space enthusiasts and beachcombers. Here's one for the X-Files – Intergalactic Travel edition.</p> <p>Picture this: A strange and baffling object, looking like it's straight out of a sci-fi flick, decided to take a little trip to Green Head beach, about 250 kilometres north of Perth on the pristine WA coastline.</p> <p>As soon as the locals caught sight of this extraterrestrial-looking thingamajig, the news spread like wildfire, and it made international headlines faster than a speeding rocket, with all kinds of fascinating theories popping up as to what on <em>Earth</em> (or not on Earth) it could be.</p> <p>Was it a UFO? A top-secret government experiment gone awry? Well, turns out it was nothing that exciting. The Australian Space Agency put on their Sherlock Holmes hats and deduced that this enigmatic piece of debris probably came from a satellite launch vehicle. Eureka! Case closed!</p> <p>Of course, when something weird and otherworldly shows up on your doorstep, you can't be too careful. So, the local authorities played it safe and put the object under police guard for an entire week. (Better safe than sorry, right?)</p> <p>And who needs a red carpet when you have a front-end loader to transport your newfound cosmic artifact? The experts were summoned to figure out where this space junk came from, and they concluded it was most likely a fuel tank from some rocket launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation. </p> <p>Professor Alice Gorman from Flinders University explained to <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-07-31/australian-space-agency-identifies-space-junk-green-head/102669472" target="_blank" rel="noopener">ABC News</a> that this fuel containment vessel was meant to fall off after launch. And it turns out that statistically, we've been pretty lucky not to have had more collisions with falling rocket parts. Imagine explaining that to your insurance company? "A rocket booster landed on my house. Is that covered?"</p> <p>But here comes the tricky part: What to do with all of this space garbage? Should they ship it back to India like some interstellar postcard, or leave it Down Under as an intergalactic souvenir?</p> <p>While India is technically (and legally) responsible for their space debris, they could decide to gift it to Australia if they so choose. It could be like an exotic space decoration for the country - "The Land of Kangaroos and Rocket Wreckage."</p> <p>Even better, the Green Head community itself appear to have come up with a few fabulous ideas. Forget the Sydney Opera House: let's make the space debris a tourist attraction! Move over, Eiffel Tower - we've got our own piece of space history right here.</p> <p>The WA Premier even suggested storing it next to space debris from NASA's Skylab space station (remember that?) in some kind of attempt to build a cosmic cabinet of curiosities. </p> <p>Of course, the local council is also very keen on keeping this celestial treasure. They're hoping the Indian government won't come back to claim it, to the point that everyone in the surrounding Shire of Coorow is buzzing with excitement over the possibility of having their very own space souvenir to draw crowds of star trekkers.</p> <p>And so while the mystery of the object on the beach has been solved, the debate over its fate is just beginning. Will it become a star attraction in a local park? Or will it be shipped off to India like an interplanetary package return? Only time will tell.</p> <p><em>Images: Nine News</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Mysterious liquid turns popular rock pool green

<p>A mysterious liquid has turned a popular public rock pool at Cronulla beach fluorescent green.</p> <p>The liquid, believed to be a natural fluorescent dye, fluorescein, was seen pouring into the usually clear waters of the pool on Friday.</p> <p>The dye is often used to help experts track the flow of water to identify any leaks and has low toxicity, which means it is harmless despite the daunting colour.</p> <p>“We believe the discolouration is likely to be fluorescein dye, which is commonly used in plumbing/drain testing and dissipates quickly once diluted,” a spokesperson for the New South Wales Environmental Protection Authority said.</p> <p>According to Australian dye manufacturer, Tintex, the dye is also used to “locate leaks in plumbing, tracing pipe locations, detect drain damage and water pathways,” and is odourless and non-toxic to the environment.</p> <p>However, in a safety data sheet, Tintex has also warned about the potential health effects which include eye irritation, skin irritation, irritation of the digestive tract and respiratory tract irritation.</p> <p>Many locals are cautious despite the claim that the dye is mostly harmless.</p> <p>One user wrote on a Facebook page for Cronulla locals that dye was “legal to use in a stormwater drain”.</p> <p>“Doesn’t look good whatever it is,” another responded, while other cautious residents replied that they wouldn’t swim in the area until the dye fully dissipates.</p> <p><em>Images: Facebook</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Melissa Caddick mystery officially laid to rest

<p>A corner has revealed missing fraudster Melissa Caddick is dead but it’s difficult to determine when and how she died.</p> <p>Deputy State Coroner Elizabeth Ryan released her findings after a lengthy coronial inquest examined the circumstances surrounding the 49-year-old’s mysterious disappearance.</p> <p>“I believe it’s appropriate at the outset to say I have concluded Melissa Caddick is deceased,” Ryan said as she handed down her findings at the NSW Coroner’s Court in Lidcombe.</p> <p>However, Ryan said it was tricky to make an accurate finding as to how, when and where she died.</p> <p>Caddick disappeared from Sydney’s eastern suburbs in November 2020, hours after her Dovers Heights mansion, which doubled as her place of business, was raided by the AFP and ASIC.</p> <p>The corporate watchdog had accused Caddick of operating a Ponzi scheme and misappropriating $24 million, including from her friends and family, to fund a lavish lifestyle including holidays, designer jewellery, clothing and shoes.</p> <p>The case has sparked a number of conspiracy theories and even inspired a television series.</p> <p>The inquest examined Caddick’s final hours, the actions of her husband Anthony Koletti, and the police investigation.</p> <p>The court heard that Caddick had taken her own life by jumping off the cliff at Rodney Reserve, approximately 500 metres from her home, on the morning of November 12, 2020.</p> <p>Caddick was heard walking out her front door at about 5:30am before disappearing and failing to turn up to a court appearance the following day.</p> <p>However, Koletti did not report his wife missing to the Rose Bay Police Station until 11:45am on November 13 - 30 hours since she was last seen.</p> <p>Amid his evidence, Koletti told the court he was under the mistaken belief he had to wait 24 hours to report someone missing.</p> <p>“Did you delay reporting her missing until that point in order to give her time to try to go somewhere?” Counsel assisting the coroner Jason Downing asked.</p> <p>“No,” Mr Koletti said.</p> <p>NSW Police Sergeant Trent Riley told the court during the inquest that he found it “extremely strange and unusual behaviour” that Koletti had initially told police he did not want them to come to his house or go to the station to make a statement.</p> <p>“I thought it was strange that a husband would ring the police station, report his wife missing from two days ago and wasn’t prepared to come to the police station and didn’t want police to go around and speak with him because he had too much work on that day,” Sergeant Riley told the court.</p> <p>Sergeant Riley also told the court that Koletti provided conflicting versions of when he had last seen his wife alive.</p> <p>He described Koletti as, “evasive, vague and inconsistent”.</p> <p>Colette has been consistently critical of the ASIC investigation.</p> <p>In an affidavit tendered to the court, he claimed he and Caddick were denied food, water and medical attention during the 12 hours when ASIC and AFP were present at their home.</p> <p>However, the court heard that during the raid, Caddick drank a protein shake, Koletti made her several coffees and they occasionally smoked cigarettes in their backyard.</p> <p>In a statement, he said, “I believe (Caddick) died as a direct result of ASIC’s negligence, cruelty and inhumanity.”</p> <p>Despite conceding Caddick was responsible for defrauding millions of investors and that they were allowed to be in their home on the day of the raid, he still maintained ASIC was responsible for her death.</p> <p>In February 2021, a foot washed up on Bourdna Beacon on the NSW south coast which was later identified as Caddick’s.</p> <p>The court had previously heard that Caddick’s shoe was covered in 250g of goose barnacles when it washed ashore.</p> <p>An expert's report stated the barnacle growth suggested the shoe would have been free floating on the surface of the water for three-seven days before washing up.</p> <p>The court heard that it’s possible the shoe drifted on the ocean floor for several months before floating to the surface and onto the beach.</p> <p>Oceanographer Dr David Griffin said that according to calculations using ocean currents, it’s plausible the show went into the water at Dover Heights and was found 400km south three months later.</p> <p>Pathologist Jennifer Pokorny told the inquest in a statement that it was not possible to determine the full extent of Caddick’’s injuries as there were no other remains aside from the decomposed foot.</p> <p>She added it was also not possible to determine a cause of death.</p> <p>Forensic psychiatrist Dr Kerri Eagle told the inquest that after reviewing Caddick’s medical record, along with witness statement, it appeared she had narcissistic personality disorder.</p> <p>She said that for people suffering from the disorder, their self-esteem and sense of well-worth latches onto external admiration and impressing others.</p> <p>Dr Eagle revealed to the court that as a result of being charged, Caddick would have also been in danger of losing her work and the “respect and admiration” of others.</p> <p>She told Ryan that when ASIC raided her home, it was possible it had a “very huge” impact on her self-esteem.</p> <p>“Ms Caddick appeared to experience problems with low mood, depression and anxiety and problems coping with extraordinary stress … the low mood symptoms persisted as long as the stress persisted,” Eagle said.</p> <p>She also noted that people with similar disorders have been known to take their own lives after a “major insult to their self-esteem”.</p> <p><em>Image credit: Instagram</em></p>

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13 Titanic mysteries that may never be solved

<p><strong>Was it even the Titanic?</strong></p> <p>Everyone agrees that a luxury liner set sail on April 10, 1912, and sank five days later, taking the lives of around 1500 of the 2223 passengers aboard. But that’s pretty much where the consensus ends. Some insist the ship that sank wasn’t the Titanic, but rather, the nearly identical R.M.S. Olympic.</p> <p>As the story goes, the Olympic had been damaged in an accident the year before, but in order to score a bigger insurance payoff, the ships’ common owners passed off the Olympic as the Titanic and then deliberately sank it. While there are lots of holes in this Titanic theory, serial numbers found on parts of the ship that didn’t sink support it.</p> <p><strong>Did a fire actually seal the ship's fate?</strong></p> <p>A recent documentary offers credible evidence that the Titanic (let’s just call it that, for argument’s sake) had been damaged by a coal fire, which had been raging for three weeks before the ship even set sail.</p> <p>The damage would have weakened the hull of the ship, thus hastening the ship’s sinking when it collided with an iceberg. (If it collided with an iceberg, which is another Titanic mystery we discuss below.)</p> <p><strong>Why was the captain speeding?</strong></p> <p>For decades, people believed that Captain Smith was speeding through the iceberg-heavy waters of the North Atlantic because he wanted the Titanic to cross the Atlantic faster than her sister ship, the Olympic.</p> <p>But in 2004, the Geological Society of America published an academic paper by engineer Robert H. Essenhigh with a different theory: It claimed the real reason the Titanic’s captain was speeding was to burn coal as quickly as possible in order to control the coal fire mentioned above.</p> <p><strong>What caused the ship to break into two pieces?</strong></p> <p>On September 1, 1985, oceanographer Robert Ballard discovered the wreckage four kilometres below the ocean surface, along with the surprising news that the ship had broken in two before sinking. Previously, everyone had thought that the ship sank intact after colliding with an iceberg while speeding recklessly through icy waters near the coast of Newfoundland.</p> <p>Ballard’s discovery led to a new theory: that the ship’s splitting into two pieces, which “may have been the difference between life and death,” was the result of design flaws and the skimping on quality materials by the owners and/or builders.</p> <p><strong>Did a torpedo sink the Titanic?</strong></p> <p>Most believe that the Titanic sank after hitting an iceberg on April 14 (regardless of other contributing factors). But not everyone. Some think that the Titanic was torpedoed by a German U-boat. This theory doesn’t seem all that far-fetched considering that three years later in 1915, a German U-boat did sink a passenger ship, the Lusitania.</p> <p>However, it’s possible that torpedo theorists are confusing the Titanic with the Lusitania. It’s also possible that they’re confusing the Titanic with the Olympic, which had sustained damage after colliding with a military vessel in 1911. Still, the presence of several other ships in the vicinity of the Titanic’s sinking leaves the question open.</p> <p><strong>Was there even an iceberg?</strong></p> <p>Assuming the Titanic didn’t collide with, and wasn’t torpedoed by, another ship, it’s safe to believe that it hit an iceberg, right? Not necessarily. Professional mariner Captain L.M. Collins maintains that if the Titanic had hit an iceberg, it would have gone down in mere minutes.</p> <p>Instead, Collins and his followers believe that the Titanic must have hit a hidden floe of “pack ice” (multi-year-old sheets of ice floating near the ocean surface) that had made its way into the Atlantic from the Arctic Ocean. Collins points out discrepancies in eyewitness accounts, which may actually be due to various natural optical illusions. If only the crew had binoculars, right?</p> <p><strong>Why didn't the crew have binoculars?</strong></p> <p>Surely, if the crew had binoculars, they would have seen the danger in time to change course. But the Titanic’s entire supply of binoculars was locked away in a storage compartment. And a crew member who had been transferred off the ship just before it set sail had the key.</p> <p>The crew member later claimed he “forgot” to hand over the key. But did he forget? Or did he deliberately hold onto it? And if so, was it to further the insurance fraud mentioned above? Or was it something else entirely?</p> <p><strong>If there was a warning, why didn't anyone take it seriously?</strong></p> <p>Even without binoculars, the Titanic might have had time to change course before its collision if someone had warned the crew. But here’s the thing: Someone did warn the crew. An hour before the collision, a nearby ship, the S.S. Californian, had radioed to say that it had been stopped by “dense field ice.”</p> <p>However, the Titanic’s radio operator, Jack Phillips, never conveyed the warning to Captain Smith. Some say the message was deliberately conveyed as “non-urgent,” but we will never know for sure since Phillips went down with the ship.</p> <p><strong>Did the Californian have something to do with it?</strong></p> <p>This cruise liner was less than 20 kilometres away from where the Titanic sank. It sent a warning to the Titanic about the dangerously icy conditions, which may have been relayed as a non-urgent matter.</p> <p>Later, the Californian crew reportedly ignored the Titanic’s distress signals, although they claimed they were not aware of those signals because their radio operator had gone off duty. Did the Californian really not notice what was happening within plain view?</p> <p><strong>The "third" ship</strong></p> <p>The Californian may not have been the only ship that ignored the Titanic’s distress signals. A Norwegian ship, the Samson, may have been nearby as well.</p> <p>In fact, some believe that the Samson was closer to the Titanic than the Californian but ignored her distress signals in order to avoid prosecution for illegal seal-hunting. This is a popular theory among defenders of the Californian’s captain, but whether it’s true remains a mystery.</p> <p><strong>Did J.P. Morgan plan the whole thing?</strong></p> <p>Some who believe the Titanic took the place of the damaged Olympic blame financier J.P. Morgan, who was one of the owners of the company that owned both ships. Morgan was one of the wealthiest people on the planet at the time, and he wielded considerable power.</p> <p>In addition, he was a last-minute no-show on the Titanic’s sole voyage. Why did Morgan – and his entire family – not end up on the ship? Did he know what was going to happen? Did he plan it?</p> <p><strong>Was it a murder plot?</strong></p> <p>Some believe the sinking had nothing to do with insurance money, but rather that J.P. Morgan engineered the sinking to kill off his rivals: Jacob Astor, Isidor Straus, and Benjamin Guggenheim, all of whom perished aboard. But how did Morgan plan to pull it off? Neither the insurance theory nor the murder theory takes that into account.</p> <p><strong>Why weren't there enough lifeboats?</strong></p> <p>“No matter what caused the Titanic to sink, such a massive loss of life could probably have been avoided if the ship had carried sufficient lifeboats for its passengers and crew,” notes History.com. So then why did the uber-luxury liner have only 20 lifeboats, the legal minimum? Why did the ship’s owners decide to ignore recommendations to carry 50 per cent more lifeboats?</p> <p>If the sinking were “merely” an insurance scam, how can the devastating lack of lifeboats be explained? This seems to dovetail more with a murder plot. But it also could be nothing more than cost-cutting on the part of the ship’s owners.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article originally appeared on <a href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/food-home-garden/13-titanic-mysteries-that-may-never-be-solved-2?pages=1" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Reader's Digest</a>. </em></p>

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Masterchef’s greatest mystery finally solved

<p>A former <em>Masterchef </em>contestant has satisfied the cravings of curious viewers all across the world by finally revealing what becomes of each episode’s leftovers. </p> <p>The cooking competition regularly sees contestants create extravagant dishes to offer the show’s trio of judges - Melissa Leong, Jock Zonfrillo, and Andy Allen. And as any member of the audience can attest, the three rarely polish off an entire plate of food, leading many to wonder - since the show’s inception in 2009 - what happens to the rest of the meals. </p> <p><em>As Now To Love</em> have reported, ‘doggie bags’ are Masterchef’s most encouraged waste prevention manoeuvre. While the judges reportedly eat “most” of what’s on offer, and the contestants will have a small sample of each others’ creations, the take-home bags are the final step towards dealing with any leftovers hanging about when filming wraps. </p> <p>Melissa Leong was the one to spill the beans on the leftover situation while speaking to New Zealand’s <em>Stuff</em>, telling them that while filming she only ever tries enough to trust her own judgement, and that “sometimes when something is especially tasty it is very difficult not to go back for a second, third or fourth bite, but part of the job is exercising restraint.''</p> <p>''I'm not going to lie, there are definitely days where I do not need to have dinner or lunch because I do most of my eating on camera.''</p> <p>And when it comes to the dishes themselves? Clean up is a one man job, with <em>Masterchef</em>’s executive producer Margaret Bashfield revealing that Leigh Dowling, their dishwasher, “washes everything you see.</p> <p>"He's the happiest bloke on the team, even when he gets pots that are horribly burnt on the bottom."</p> <p>With the show gearing up for its 15th season, and a focus on ‘Secrets &amp; Surprises’, the crew are bound to have their work cut out for them, as well as a few changes to navigate along the way.</p> <p>The high-pressure series will have a shorter runtime than in its previous 14 seasons, taking a step away from its two month marathon as the showrunners aim to keep audiences engaged over the course of the competition.</p> <p>The pressure will be on for the new batch of contestants from the moment they step into the kitchen, as Melissa declares in the series’ promotional material, “we’ve loaded up the biggest surprise ever on day one of the competition”, before revealing that celebrity chef Jamie Oliver will be joining the cast. Additionally, competitors are set to face some of the biggest challenges ever seen on <em>Masterchef</em>, life-changing dishes, and guest judges some could only dream of ever cooking for - or, as the case may be, preparing a scrumptious bag of leftovers for. </p> <p><em>Images: Twitter</em></p>

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Lara Worthington puts wedding dress mystery to rest

<p>When Lara Worthington - née Bingle - married actor Sam Worthington in 2014, it was a very private affair. </p> <p>The ceremony was held in Melbourne, and no more than 10 guests witnessed the exchanging of vows - which, apparently, they wrote themselves. The couple didn’t even hire an external caterer for their reception, with Lara’s mum overseeing the food instead. </p> <p>As the model explained to <em>Marie Claire</em>, “my mum instilled in me that it’s important to maintain a little bit of mystery. I think it’s hard in this day and age to achieve.”</p> <p>“We tend to try to keep our lives as normal as we can,” she made a point to add. “I don’t think about that stuff [the tabloids] ever. I don’t make it my reality.”</p> <p>And while many respect the couple’s desire to keep their private life to themselves, one detail about the day has eluded fans of the couple for almost a decade, begging the question “Lara, where the bloody hell’s your dress?” </p> <p>With no photographers at the event, and no magazine spread typical of a celebrity wedding, speculation is all anyone has had to work with. That, and a post from right after the event, when Lara uploaded a picture of herself in a charging room wearing a white Louis Vuitton gown. </p> <p>In the years since, Lara had kept tight-lipped, until <em>Marie Claire</em> finally got the answer out of her - the infamous dress seen on the then-7-months-pregnant Lara was, in fact, her wedding gown. </p> <p>“I bought it in London a couple of days before we were about to get married,” she explained. “It was lucky they had something to fit me because I was seven months pregnant with Rocket at the time. I don’t recommend being pregnant and getting married. </p> <p>“I still have the dress and would never part with it.”</p> <p>Lara - who has since moved to New York with her family, husband Sam and their three beloved children - is rumoured to have been able to secure the dress through certain connections forged as “Australia’s fashion darling”.  </p> <p>And while fashion is something that Lara clearly holds close to her heart - having explained in her interview that “fashion is something that, without saying anything, you can show your personality through” - her new life in America seems every bit as special. </p> <p>“I love the culture of living in New York with the boys,” she confessed. “We don’t have a car, so they ride their scooters home from school, which is a nice change from the LA bubble. </p> <p>“We often stop at museums or an art gallery on the way home from school, which I love because I didn’t get to experience that when I was growing up. The boys love the Museum of Natural History, although they’re also like, ‘we’ve been there five times now, can we not?’”</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Beauty & Style

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Woman spots dead husband in restaurant's new promo video

<p>A seemingly innocent promotional Facebook advertisement has prompted a slew of theories online, after a woman claims to have seen her dead husband sitting in a restaurant. </p> <p>An Indian restaurant by the name of Spice Cottage, located in West Sussex in the UK, has been flooded with social media comments after posting a video of their bustling business. </p> <p>The video shows happy diners tucking into meals as waiters attend to customers in the clip, which ends with a round of applause for the staff. </p> <p>After the video was shared to Facebook, a woman by the name of Lucy Watson commented a strange question, asking, "How old is the footage? My late husband and his son are on the first shot and he died in 2014??"</p> <p>A reply from the restaurant said, "Hi Lucy, sorry to hear this. This footage was recorded last week.'"</p> <p>The post has now amassed hundreds of comments from social media users, who swapped theories about the bizarre mystery. </p> <p>One person demanded an update from Ms Watson on her husband's death, while others chose to look on the lighter side as the jokes rolled in. </p> <p>One Facebook user said, "He wasn't dead. He was just in a korma."</p> <p> </p> <p>Another wrote, "I was there on this day and the flat bread that I ordered arrived after our main course, it was my late naan."</p> <p>Both Ms Watson and Spice Cottage have yet to comment further on the mystery. </p> <p><em>Image credits: Facebook</em></p>

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Reward in mystery murder of billionaire couple tops $52 million

<p>The deaths of Canadian billionaires Barry and Honey Sherman have been a mystery right from the start.</p> <p>On December 15, 2017, a realtor giving a tour of the couple's Toronto mansion around midday discovered their bodies, fully dressed, beside their indoor basement swimming pool.</p> <p>They were semi-seated side by side, with belts tied around their necks and attached to the railing of the indoor pool according to police. Barry Sherman was 75 and his wife Honey was 70.</p> <p>The story made headlines across the globe, as police called the deaths suspicious.</p> <p>Theories have swirled about who might have wanted to kill the founder of Canadian generic drug giant Apotex and his philanthropic wife – being one of Canada's richest couples.</p> <p>Investigators have worked to connect the dots however, five years later, no arrests have been made. On this week's anniversary of the killings, the Shermans' son offered an additional $25 million (A$37 million) for information leading to an arrest.</p> <p>The reward is now $52 million.</p> <p>"This week marks the five-year anniversary since my parents were murdered in their home. Every day since then has been a nightmare. I have been overwhelmed with pain, loss, and sorrow and these feelings only continuously compound," Jonathon Sherman said in a statement announcing the reward money.</p> <p>"Closure will not be possible until those responsible for this evil act are brought to justice," he added.</p> <p>The victims' prominence meant the case was high profile from the start. At the time of his death, Forbes estimated Barry was worth $4.5 billion.</p> <p>The Shermans' wealth, vast investments and philanthropy work saw them cross paths with Canada's business and political elites, their funeral was attended by thousands of people, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Kathleen Wynne, premier of the province of Ontario.</p> <p>At the service an emotional Jonathon Sherman took the stage, with his three sisters, and slammed speculation that their parents died by suicide.</p> <p>Police later concluded someone had killed them, only six weeks after the bodies were found, Toronto police announced a review of evidence showed they were victims of a homicide, saying they believed the couple was targeted.</p> <p>With no forced signs of entry to the property, it's possible someone had a key, had access to the lockbox that held the keys or was known to the couple, Gomes said.</p> <p>In 2021, police asked for help identifying a shadowy suspect.</p> <p>After years of silence, police made a shocking announcement on the fourth anniversary of the couple's deaths last year, sharing a video of a shadowy person caught on security video walking on the snow-covered sidewalks in the couple's North York neighborhood.</p> <p>The Sherman children say the lack of answers adds to their grief. It's been five years since the murders and there have been no major developments. True crime podcasts have even have tried to unravel intrigue surrounding the deaths.</p> <p>In a statement to the CBC, her brother, Jonathon Sherman, echoed the same sentiment, saying the family will never get closure until the killer is brought to justice.</p> <p>The siblings reminded the public of the $52 million in reward money and pleaded for anyone with information to contact the Toronto Police Service.</p> <p><em>Image: AP</em></p>

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