2018 Billabong Pipe Masters Invitational Day 1 Called ON


BANZAI PIPELINE, Oahu/Hawaii (Wednesday, December 12, 2018) – After four consecutive lay days at the Billabong Pipe Masters in Memory of Andy Irons, the final stop on the 2018 World Surf League (WSL) Men’s Championship Tour (CT) has been called ON in building 6-to-8 foot NW swell with improved offshore easterly winds. The Men’s Pipe Invitational, the 32-man trials that award the top two finishers a wildcard into the main event, will start at 8:00 a.m. HST. The Women’s Pipe Invitational, a single-heat Final, will be on standby for a possible run today.

“The Men’s Pipe Invitational trials event is on starting at 8:00 a.m. local time,” said Renato Hickel, WSL Deputy Commissioner. “We have six-to-eight foot NW swell with improved winds. The Men’s Pipe Invitational today will determine our two wildcards into the Billabong Pipe Masters. We are also putting the Women’s Pipe Invitational on standby for a possible finish today.”

Pipe Invitational Will Determine Two Wildcards for Billabong Pipe Masters
The first competition day of the Billabong Pipe Masters will feature the Pipe Invitational, a 32-man trials event that awards the top two finishers a wildcard into the main event. With a $ 60,000 prize purse on the line, but more importantly, a chance to play spoiler to the World Title, the Pipe Invitational will kick things off in dramatic fashion once competition begins.The 32-man draw is comprised of the top 12 finishers from the 2018 Volcom Pipe Pro, four Hawaii athletes off the International QS, four from the regional QS, six event wildcards, four standout Pipe performers, the 2017 Pipe Invitational defending event winner, and a Vans Triple Crown of Surfing contender. Names like Billy Kemper (HAW), 3x Jaws Challenge winner and reigning Big Wave Champion; former Pipe Invitational winners Finn McGill (HAW) and Dusty Payne (HAW); North Shore big wave standout Jack Robinson (AUS); and Hawaiian notable Mason Ho (HAW) fill the roster, alongside young guns like Wyatt McHale (HAW), 17, Justin Becret (FRA), 17, and Barron Mamiya (HAW), who have also earned their place in the lineup.

Women’s Pipe Invitational on Standby for Today
The Women’s Pipe Invitational is on hold for today and could potentially run after the Men’s Pipe Invitational. Four athletes will compete in a single-heat Final for the prestigious win.

For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.

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Kanye West called out on Twitter for being on his phone during Broadway performance


Being on your phone during a stage production is considered pretty rude, especially if it’s opening night, and even if you’re Kanye West.

The artist was called out on Twitter by one of the stars of Cher-inspired musical The Cher Show, Jarrod Spector, for spending time on his phone during Monday’s opening night performance.

West was attending the show with his wife, Kim Kardashian West, a couple that weren’t ever going to blend in with the crowd — or the cast.

“If you look up from your cell phone you’ll see we’re doing a show up here,” tweeted Spector, who plays Sonny Bono, while the performance was underway. Read more…

More about Kanye West, Theater, Musical, Broadway, and Musicals



Brain cells called astrocytes have unexpected role in brain ‘plasticity’

Researchers have shown that astrocytes — long-overlooked supportive cells in the brain — help to enable the brain’s plasticity, a new role for astrocytes that was not previously known. The findings could point to ways to restore connections that have been lost due to aging or trauma.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily


Newport Beach Launches Shark Detection System Called ‘Clever Buoy’

New Shark Deterrent Technology: “Clever Buoy™ is an autonomous marine monitoring system developed by the Australian company, Smart Marine Systems (SMS).  The system is an ocean monitoring platform that specializes in detecting large marine life using state of the art sonar and identification software systems to relay critical information to authorities responsible for beach safety.” www.sharkmitigation.com

What It Does: Alerts are immediately sent to lifeguards if a shark is detected via the optus network. Marine life is detected by a groundbreaking sonar system that SMS created. Once the shark is detected by the clever buoy, a real-time message is sent.

How the Clever Buoy works and detects sharks.
How the Clever Buoy works and detects sharks.


A More In-Depth Understanding: “The monitoring system is designed to be deployed beyond the surf zone and utilizes multibeam sonar transducers that are mounted on the ocean floor coupled with newly developed detection software to scan for marine life.  The system creates a “virtual net” at the deployment locations and once an object is detected in the area, the software interrogates the target’s swimming pattern to determine the type of object and potential species.

If the target is determined to exhibit shark like movement patterns, information is transmitted to lifeguards within seconds notifying them of the target and the location via a real-time mobile application with automated notifications and warning information.” www.sharkmitigation.com

The Goal: This process is a noninvasive alternative to current shark defense methods worldwide. What makes this method different is its efficiency, it is economical and lastly humane.

Clever Buoys goal by installing this technology into our oceans is to reduce the risk of beachgoers in the water and ultimately protect humans and marine life cohesively.

Permanent Solution? “The stability and robustness of the current Clever Buoy™ platform has been verified to sustainably operate in open ocean conditions 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, autonomously monitoring marine life and alerting the presence of large animals which could be a threat to beach users.” www.sharkmitigation.com


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Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson have reportedly broken up, called off the engagement

Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson’s whirlwind romance may be over.

The celebrity couple has split and called off the engagement, sources told TMZ.

“It was way too much too soon,” a source told People. “It’s not shocking to anyone.”

The 25-year-old singer and 24-year-old “Saturday Night Live” funnyman…

/entertainment – New York Daily News