Monthly Archives: April 2017

The Negative Effects of Technology on the Planet – Our Cultural Vision is Driving the Destruction

The negative effects of technology are numerous. In our march to progress we have degraded the natural world. Forests are chopped down, topsoil is washed away, rivers are polluted and our waste is dumped in the oceans.

On the surface this appears to be a relatively recent problem. If we went back 100 or 200 years it would seem that mankind treads quite lightly on the planet. On face value the culprit is industrial technology. However this is not the case. The culprit is our cultural vision; our cultural vision wields technology in a destructive fashion.

Prior to civilization all cultures on the planet saw themselves as belonging to the world; they were a part of it. These cultures had varying degrees of technology. Some were very primitive, others quite complex.

But the negative effects of technology were non existent. All technology was exercised within certain natural laws. Civilization changed this. Instead of seeing man as a part of nature people saw man as a separate and higher order of being. Thus the rest of nature merely existed as a resource for man’s benefit.

Due to this world-view civilization used their technology to subjugate nature. Indigenous societies never did this. Using technology in order to bend nature to man’s will is what creates negative effects. The negative effects of technology are not inherent in the technology itself; it is what we use it for that is the issue.

For most of civilization’s history the negative effects of technology were localized. When the Phoenicians destroyed the forests of what is now Lebanon the trauma was local. When the Greeks and Romans collapsed due to the exploitation of their land with advanced technology the effect was local.

Destruction of the natural environment has been taking place since the birth of civilization yet it is only now that we are seeing it on a global scale. Our industrial technology has progressed to the point where we can do more damage in 100 years than we could in 10,000. But again this is not a problem of the technology. It is the fact that our cultural vision sees us as separate from nature that allows us to destroy it.

Nobody knows if industrial technology is sustainable because we have never used it in a sustainable manner. But perhaps it is possible to do so.

The way our culture operates is unsustainable. If we cannot find a way to operate a complex society within natural laws then we will inevitably return to a much simpler existence. We cannot blame technology for our own shortcomings. We are holding the technology so it is up to us to use it for good and not for the destruction of the planet.

Source by Thomas Ryaner

Seventies Eccentrics

There was an abundance of eccentric personalities in the late Seventies, and Olga Deterding, the Shell oil heiress was one of them. She wasn’t as wild as the characters in “Frantic”, my nostalgic novel about the early ’70’s (‘A lion coat clad white girl, with waist length black Japanese hair, was leaning against the stage, mouthing excruciating obscenities from her exquisitely shaped lips. …. every time this creature from a lost planet opened her shaggy lion coat, she was totally nude underneath’), but she came pretty close. Olga was an enthusiastic socialite, and at the opening party of Wedgies nightclub in Kings Road, was so sloshed like she regularly was, that she spent most of her time crawling around on the floor underneath the tables. This anti-social behaviour was regarded as the norm in those days, so nobody cared if she made a fool of herself. One person who did was a German girlfriend, who was staying with me at the time. She thought it was shocking that this middle-aged woman was making a spectacle of herself. Maybe members of café society were hesitant to reprimand an heiress, but my girlfriend had no idea who anybody was and even if she did, she wouldn’t have cared less. ‘Get up immediately! You are making an idiot of yourself. Can’t you see that everyone is laughing at you,’ my Teutonic friend barked. Olga Deterding might have been inebriated, but she actually listened and managed to pick herself up from the floor, and plonk herself down on a chair where she promptly fell of again.

She entertained lavishly in her multi-storey penthouse in Piccadilly, opposite the Ritz hotel, which was ideal for parties. She once gave an after show party for her equally eccentric crony, Quentin Crisp after his sell-out, one-man show at the Duke of York. If I recall correctly, the penthouse walls were painted a glossy white and the décor, consisting of realistic sheep sculptures nibbling at the grass coloured carpet was a topic of conversation. Olga was single (her exes included Alan Whittaker), and similar to women of ‘a certain age’ was regularly escorted by members of the gay community, which included Quentin Crisp. Olga was a louche socialite, from whom everyone ran away from when she was peaking in a fit of drunken exhibitionism. But, she possessed a heart of gold, unlike a lot of ‘ladies who lunched’ in those days. The majority of them lionised their hairdressers and fashion designers, and were committed to the art of looking amazing. Olga was past caring what she looked like while she lurched from one party to another. At least she was dressed for dinner when she choked to death on on a piece of meat, while dining out in a club. Her premature exit made the headlines.

Copyright: Frances Lynn, 2006

Source by Frances Lynn

Prospects of Wearable Technology

Ever wondered that our mobile phones may turn into earrings which serve the purpose of a phone receiver and a neck piece used as a speaker? Technology; A highly dynamic field is changing as we read this. The recent trend in technology is seen in the gadgets which can be worn by us, hence the name wearable technology.

Unlike PDAs (Personal Digital Assistant) which are hand held gadgets like mobile phones and cameras; Wearable gadgets are attached to clothing and can be used as accessories or adornments. Although the advancement in this technology is relatively new, the concept has exhausted since decades. One of the earliest inventions in this department was the transition of a traditional pocket watch to a wrist watch in 1904 by Louis Cartier.

Latest technology devices:

A very recent development in the wearable technology is the release of "Google Glass" by the IT giant Google. The glass was invented with a purpose to provide smartphone like computing in an accessory which can be worn anywhere and can be hands free to use. Based on the Android Operating system, input mechanisms are the touchpad on the side of the glass and a voice commander microphone. The glass has the ability to take photos and record videos and compatible applications are also being customized for this device.

In an answer to Google's foray into Wearable Devices, Apple is planning to release iWatch in 2014. The concept is to wear your iPhone on your wrist. With designers adding in the Apple button and a SIM card support, this is one of the top-notch, high-end technology to capitalize on.

Android based SmartWatches were introduced by Samsung Gear Live and KG G Watch. The Moto 360 is a venture, which will be released by Motorola for the tech-savvy generation. Its stylish looks and android platform will definitely give the other SmartWatches in the market, a tough competition.

Why Wearable computers?

With technology developing at high intensity the consumers are getting more demanding in terms of innovations. Here companies are looking to fulfill these demands and bank on the success of their products in the market.

Wearable technology is a field allowing users to use technology while on the go without interfering with the normal tasks.

The main aim of the device is to make it convenient to be used and handled with freedom to any movements and habits of the person.

The industry is still growing and there is a huge scope for future research and endless opportunities.

Applications in industries:

In Military- Sensors placed inside the military suit will help in detection of the soldier's location and the health and damage faced.

Medical technology- Latest innovations include headsets which measure brainwaves and wearable sensing devices to monitor personal health.

Education- Devices like Autographer, Keygloves and Google glass are instrumental in the education industry in the teaching and learning process.

Fashion- Designers are keen on creating a rage for wearable technology in the fashion industry by developing apparel with LED technology, accessories like SmartWatches and glasses to keep this as a trending subject.

Sports- Sportswear is being redefined with the invention of 'Alert Shirts' which have been designed to let us in on what the players feel, by transmitting signals through Bluetooth smartphone app. The recently concluded FIFA too, saw this phenomenon, where the referees promised 'Goal Control' SmartWatches which helped them determine if the ball crossed the goal line, by the use of high speed goal cameras at each goal post.

Source by Priya Ravinder

The History of the Abaya

The traditional abaya is a plain black robe worn by Muslim women to cover their regular clothing, It could be described as a long-sleeve robe-like dress and it is the traditional form of dress for many countries of the Arabian peninsula including Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates. In Iran the abaya is referred to as a chador and in South Asia a burqa.

The abaya covers the whole body except the face, feet, and hands. It can be worn with the niqab, a face veil covering all but the eyes.

The origins of the abaya are vague. Some think that it existed as long as 4 000 years ago in the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia and when Islam arose in the seventh century C.E., the religion absorbed local veiling practices into its culture, probably due to the dressing traditions of the women of Arab Jahiliya.

In those days women wore dresses that revealed their necks, chests, even breasts as well as other parts of their bodies. They also drew their veils backwards while leaving the front parts wide open (understandable in the crushing desert heat). Consequently, when Islam arrived, they were ordered to draw their veils forward to cover their chest and to protect women from acts of disrespect.

Some think that the idea of ‘the covering’ was more about class than it was about religion. In pre-Islam urban centers of the Arabian Peninsula veiling was seen as a sign of privilege and a luxury afforded to women who didn’t have to work. They were distinguished from slave girls and prostitutes, who were not allowed to veil or cover, and nomadic and rural women too busy working to be bothered with something so impractical as a face veil and extra layer of clothing.

Source: Laura of Arabia,

Today, the strictest interpretations of Islamic Shari’a law dictate that Muslim women should wear full body coverings in front of any man they could theoretically marry. This means that it is not obligatory in the company of father, brothers, grandfathers, uncles or young children and does not need to be worn in front of other Muslim women.

Abayas come in a multiplicity of types and design, and different styles and colours are favoured by women from particular regions according to specific religious and cultural interpretations.

  • A Head abaya rests on top of the head and extends below the ankles, ensuring that a women’s body stays completely hidden.
  • Black abayas are more commonly worn in Middle Eastern countries, especially Saudi-Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar.
  • White abayas are populary worn in Far Eastern Muslim countries.
  • Coloured and embroidered abayas are becoming increasingly popular in Jordan, western countries and now also in Middle Eastern countries too.

Although black is the preferred colour in some countries Muslim women can generally wear whatever color they like as long as it does not generate unnecessary attention. For this reason earth-tones are popular choices.

Muslim women often wear designer labels underneath their outer garments and increasingly they want to wear fashionable outerwear too. Devout need not mean drab. Fashion designers are waking up to this and specialised stores, websites and fashion shows are springing up, top European fashion labels including John Galliano and Blumarine have recently showcased models wearing couture abayas.

The abaya has come a long way in 4,000 years!

Source by James Brack

The World’s Five Worst Olympic Countries

1. Cuba- Drugs & Scandals

Unfortunately, Cuba is already a nightmare in the Olympic Movement. Why? Since 1964, Cuba has produced athletes with a huge superiority complex and strong anti-American feeling. They have showed this anti-Olympic feeling many times. Angel Volodia Matos Fuentes, a Cuban taekwondo athlete, is the only athlete in the Olympic history that has hit a referee. This sportsman kicked a referee in the face after he lost a match at the 2008 Olympics. “We didn’t expect anything like what you have witnessed to occur. I’m at a loss for words. This is an insult to the Olympic vision, an insult to the spirit of taekwondo and, in my opinion, an insult to mankind”, said Yang Jin-suk (World Taekwondo Federation secretary). Angel won a gold medal at the Summer Olympic Games in 2000.

In Atlanta in 1996, the Cuban’s women’s volleyball team quarreled with the Brazilian team during the semi-finals. This is why Regla Radameris Torres Herrera, who has received several offers to become a top fashion model in Italy, was suspended and could not play for several months. Cuban players of women’s volleyball are famous for their aggressiveness against rivals.

Cuba’s Javier Sotomayor Sanabria will be remembered as one of the worst examples in the world sports community. In 1988, Prensa Latina -Cuban news agency- announced that in its annual poll of sportswriters Javier Sotomayor was named “Cuban Athlete of the Year”. He beat out Felix Savon (boxing), Jorge Fis (Judo), and Ana Fidelia Quirot (track & field). Javier, known as “Soto”, was one of the most successful athletes in the history of the Cuban Revolution.

On September 8, 1988, Javier -whose country had boycotted the Summer Olympics in 1988- set a world record in the high jump. A year later he set another world record (2.45 m / 8′ 1/2″). Under the direction of Jose Godoy, a Soviet-educated professor, he won almost all his competitions in the 1990s.

In 2001, Javier Sotomayor, in one of a series of exhibitions tournaments, tested positive for a muscle-building steroid. “The decision to let him compete again is like a hit in my face”, said Arne Ljungqvist (vice president of the IAAF).Two years ago, Javier also had tested positive for drugs at the 1999 Pan American Games in Winnipeg (Canada). However, he had been exonerated by the Cuban Olympic Committee. Furthermore, Fidel Castro Ruz -Cuba’s dictator- denied that Javier had taken cocaine. In an article in Granma (Communist party daily), Javier said ” I’m innocent. I have only seen that substance in the movies. I´m the victim of maneuver, a dirty trick”.

Unlike Ben Johnson and Linford Christie, Javier received a special treatment by the IAAF. He was banned by the IAAF for only 11 months. Thanks to this, Javier Sotomayor could compete at the 2000 Olympics, where he won a silver medal. Three European countries, Norway, Finland and Denmark, criticized this controversial decision. “If you test positive and get suspended, you shouldn’t get a reduced sentence just because you’re a famous track athlete”, said Patrick Sjoberg, a former world record holder in men’s high jump.

2. Myanmar- Sports & Dictatorships

Olympic sport can unify a country like Myanmar -an Asian country which has many ethnic conflicts. However, it -pop. 52 million- has one of the world’s worst Olympic teams. In the last fifty years, three dictatorships have destroyed the Olympic spirit in this land of friendly people. For unknown reasons, Myanmar did not compete at the 1976 Summer Olympics in Canada. In 1980, Sue Khin finished in 47th place in the marathon at the Moscow Summer Games. Four years later, Myanmar -it officially changed its name from Burma in 1989- sent 1 athlete (boxer) to Los Angeles (USA). In 1996, Myanmar was represented by only 3 athletes (athletics and shooting).

At the 2006 Asian Games in Qatar, Myanmar finished 27th in the unofficial team standings (behind China, Bahrain, Hong Kong, Mongolia, Jordan, Lebanon, etc). In an interview, Khin Maung Lwin, secretary of the Myanmese Olympic Committee, said “Our NOC has worked in close collaboration with the respective national sports federations to make all the necessary preparations for participation in Doha 2006. We have selected the athletes who showed their best form and achieved top results from that 23rd SEA Games for the 15th Asian Games Doha 2006. As a founding member of the Asian Games Federation in 1949 and the Olympic Council of Asia, we believe the Asian Games is a very important tool for the development of the youth of Asia and for the promotion of international respect, friendly and goodwill…”

3. Albania – Enver Hoxha’s Legacy

What is the reason why Albania does not produce world-class athletes? Albania is well-known for its indifference to sports. It is one of the few European countries that have not Olympic champions. Albania was one of the most unsuccessful countries at the 2008 Summer Olympics in the People’s Republic of China.

Like Mao Tse-tung (Chinese dictator, 1949-1976) and Pol Pot (Cambodian tyrant, 1975-1979), Enver Hoxha did not support friendly relations with the International Olympic Committee. From 1950 to 1985, Enver Hoxha -one of the bloodiest dictators of the 20th century- gained a reputation as an anti-Olympic leader in the world. During his Maoist dictatorship, Albania boycotted seven Olympic Games (Rome ’60, Tokyo ’64, Mexico City ’68, Montreal ’76, Moscow ’80, Los Angeles ’84, Seoul ’88), seven Mediterranean Games (Beirut ’59, Naples ’63, Tunis ’67, Izmir ’71, Algiers ’75, Split ’79, Casablanca ’83) and other international events (Winter Games, World University Games, World championships, European tournaments). In 1985, two weightlifters had defected to Yugoslavia (currently Serbia).

Since 1991, the new government does not have interest in sports and recreation. This European nation is losing its best athletes, who are choosing to live abroad, and not returning to Albania. Many Greeks athletes have Albanian descent: Leonidas Sampani (weightlifting), Sawa Lika (track and field), Pyrro Dimas (weightlifting / Olympic champion, 1992, 1996, 2000), Mirela Manjani (athletics). At the World Championships in 2003, Mirela won a gold medal. Albania has been a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) since 1959.

4.Taiwan is not Ethiopia

Who was the last world-class athlete of Taiwan? Her name: Chi Cheng (1959-1972). This Olympic ambassador has been called “the Eastern Flying antelope”. At the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City, in October, she, who studied and trained in California, won a bronze medal in the 80 meter low hurdles. Two years later, she broken the world records in the 100m (11,00 seconds) and 200m (22,44 seconds) in July 1970, but she failed in the Olympic Games in 1972. Unexpectedly, she had an injury. Chi Cheng was the favorite to win the gold medal in the 200m. To prepare for the Munich Games, she competed in Asia, Europe and the United States. In 1972, she announced that she was retiring from athletics. In 1971, she was elected “World Athlete of the Year” by the Associated Press. In this election, she beat Edson Arantes do Nascimento, one of the greatest athletes of all time. Since 1972, Taiwan continues to celebrate Chi Cheng’s world records.

Unfortunately, Taiwan can not produce world-class athletes.

This Asian country -also known as ROC, Chinese Taipei, Republic of China on Taiwan or Free China- has 10,000 stadiums, 1,850 swimming pools, 1,420 tennis courts, 14,252 sports parks, more than 762 gymnasiums, nearly 9,100 basketball and handball courts, and 87 cycling tracks. With more than double the budget of Jamaica, Ethiopia and North Korea, Taiwan only has won two gold medals (1960-2008). At the 1996 Games, Chinese-Taipei sent 71 athletes and won one silver medal (tennis table).

They have not learnt the experience of South Korea, whose athletes have won 85 gold medals-its best unconventional diplomacy in the world. A good example for a country which does not have full diplomatic relations with 180 nations. Chinese Taipei -one of the developing world’s most successful democracies- is only recognized by 23 countries: Belize, Burkina Faso, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Gambia, Guatemala, Holy See, Haiti, Honduras, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Nicaragua, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Sao Tome & Principe, Swaziland, Tuvalu.

5. Iceland- A country without Olympic Champions

Iceland – a nation in the North Atlantic near the Arctic Circle- has never won an Olympic medal in the Winter Games. It is one of the oldest Olympic countries in the world (IOC member since 1921). Ranked by the United Nations as one of the richest countries in the world, Iceland has several sports facilities- indoor stadiums, winter Olympic arenas, sports parks and swimming pools. Many people can not believe that one of the richest nations in Europe can not win a winter Olympic medal. Unlike Iceland, Liechtenstein -an area the size of District of Columbia- has won two Olympic titles and 58 World championships. Iceland -it is slightly larger than South Korea- took part in 15 editions of the Winter Games between 1948 and 2006. Glíma, a traditional wrestling, is the national sport of Iceland.


-Agacino, Ricardo. “30 años”, Cuba Internacional, Habana, diciembre de 1988

-Almanaque Deportivo Mundial 1976, editorial America, Panama,

1976 – “Castro defends fighter facing ban”, The Miami Herald, August 26 2008

-Encyclopaedia Britannica Book of the Year: 1977, 1981, 1984, Encyclopaedia Britannica, Chicago

-The World Almanac and Book of Facts: 1975-2007, The World Almanac Books, New York

-Guevara Onofre, Alejandro. Enciclopedia Mundototal, editorial San Marcos, Lima, 1999

——–“La silenciosa caída del deporte cubano” (The silent fall of the Cuban sport ). Lima, 5 de septiembre del 2005

-Human Development Reports: 1996-2007

-Martinez Perez , Pedro. “Desarrollo deportivo en Cuba”, Granma, Habana, 28 de mayo de 1978

-The Republic of China Yearbook. Taiwan 2002

-Urbano, Fernando.”Del Batos a Montreal”, Cuba Internacional, Habana, junio de 1978

——“Derecho al deporte”, Cuba Internacional, Habana, julio de 1976

-2004 Athens Official Report Volume 1, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, 2005

-2000 Sydney Official Report Volume 2, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, 2001

-1984 Los Angeles Official Report Volume 2, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, 1985

-1980 Moscow Official Report Volume 2, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, 1981

-1976 Montreal Official Report Volume 1, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, 1977

Source by Alejandro Guevara Onofre

How to Talk Like a Gangster – Learn 1920s Slang For Your Next Party!

Roaring twenties gangster and flapper parties are popular and fun. They are a chance to dress up in glamorous fashion from the 20s, relive the danger and drama of speakeasies and bootlegging, and celebrate an era of new found freedom and excess. But if you want to add even more authenticity to your next gathering; learn some slang from that amazing decade and mix into your party conversation! Here are a few popular words or phrases from the 20s to get you started.

1. Bee’s knees – Refers to a really great person, thing, idea, etc. Where as today you might say something is super cool, back then it was the bee’s knees. Example party usage: Wow! Your flapper dress is the bee’s knees!

2. And how – Means that you strongly agree with something. Like when someone says that your onion dip is delicious, you could reaffirm that statement with an enthusiastic “and how!”

3. Don’t take any wooden nickels – A phrase used as advice not to do anything dumb. For instance, if one of your friends says they’re thinking of challenging others at the party to a moonshine drinking contest, “don’t take any wooden nickels” would be an appropriate response. Then be sure to translate and tell them in plain, modern English that they really should NOT do that!

4. Hooch – Another word for bootleg liquor. Even though Prohibition is no longer in effect, you can get into the spirit of your roaring twenties party when you offer your guests some hooch! The good news is you don’t have to actually serve bad, home brewed beer because if you’re of age it is legal to just go buy some good stuff.

5. You slay me – Something you’d say when you find something funny. Of course when you find something funny, you can just laugh to indicate that you are amused. But at a gangster party, you have the perfect excuse to follow up your laughter with the cool line, “you slay me!” No one should waste an opportunity like that!

6. Spifflicated – In other words, drunk. Have fun with the guests who’ve had a few too many and try and get them to say that they’re spifflicated! This alone is sure to provide some interesting entertainment.

7. Juice joint – This was another name for a speakeasy. A speakeasy, of course, was an establishment that illegally sold liquor during Prohibition. When hosting a gangster party it’s fun to pretend that your party is taking place in a juice joint.

8. Glad rags – This refers to dressy clothes fit for a night on the town. When you invite people to attend your roaring twenties party, make sure to tell them to have their glad rags on when they come.

Source by Michelle Muggli

Cashmere or Lambswool Jumpers – Why Natural Fibres Are Best

It might be the soft drape of cotton, the warmth of lambswool or the luxury of cashmere. Whatever the appeal, the natural fibres of cotton, lambswool and cashmere offer a special experience that cannot be matched by synthetics.

No one knows exactly how long cotton has been used by mankind, but archaeologists have found scraps of cotton cloth in caves in Mexico that are at least 7.000 years old. Cotton was grown and made into cloth in the Indus River Valley in Asia as early as 3,000 years before the birth of Christ. The Egyptians were also weaving and wearing cotton textiles around the same time.

Today, cotton is one of the world’s most widely grown crops. The comfort and softness of cotton – which is derived from cellulose fibres – is due to its excellent absorbing qualities. Cotton garments quickly absorb perspiration, thus keeping the wearer more comfortable.

Good quality cotton has a matte lustre, a pleasant drape and feels smooth and warm to the touch. One of cotton’s less popular characteristics is that it can wrinkle very easily, but technical innovation has led to the creation of a number of cotton treatments which can be used to treat cotton fabric so that it will retain that crisp, freshly ironed look for much longer

The sheep’s ability to stay dry and warm in freezing weather and pouring rain was also spotted by mankind many centuries ago. Wool is a great insulator and highly water resistant. This is because wool fibres, unlike hair or fur, have a hard, water-repellent outer layer that surrounds each hollow fibre.

Of all the types of wool available, lambswool is the highest quality of sheep’s wool available. Lambswool is taken from sheep at their first shearing, normally when they are about six or seven months old. Lambswool offers unequalled softness and its fibres are smoother, tougher and more elastic than other wool types. Because of these properties, lambswool fibres are typically used in the production of clothing worn close to the skin.

Like cotton, lambswool fibres can absorb moisture without becoming damp or clammy, while the hard outer layer on each lambswool fibre protects against moisture. Water is repelled, but humidity is absorbed and this helps lambswool clothing to maintain a comfortable, even body temperature.

Lambswool is a wonderful heat insulator. The crimp of the wool produces insulating air spaces that retain heat next to the body while the hard outer surface of lambswool fibres moves liquid moisture away from the body. Because lambswool has this ability to regulate temperature and let the body breathe, it is ideally suited to changing weather conditions and the vagaries of the British climate.

Lambswool also has superior spinning properties, making it easy to fashion and shape. Meanwhile, the flexibility of lambswool fibres allows garments to mould to the body, whilst still retaining their shape.

In an age where allergies are commonplace, lambswool has another important benefit. It is not well-known that lambswool is also the most hypoallergenic of all wools. Lambswool is even resistant to dust mites making lambswool clothing an ideal choice for sufferers of common allergies and asthma.

Cashmere wool, known for its exquisite softness, is derived from fine haired Kashmir goats that live in the coldest, least hospitable parts of the planet such as the remote mountain ranges of China, Mongolia and Tibet. Each animal only produces around 150 grammes of cashmere per year – hence the luxury status and added expense of cashmere products.

Cashmere goats produce a double fleece consisting of a fine, soft under coat of hair mingled with a straighter and much coarser outer coating of hair called guard hair which cannot be used.The cashmere fibres must also go through a series of complex de-hairing, washing and carding before it is ready for use.

The natural crimp of cashmere fibers allows the fibres to interlock during processing and means they can then be spun into an exceptionally fine and lightweight fabric. The crimp of the fibre correlates with the fineness of the spun yarn and the softness of the finished product. The fabric retains the loft of the fibres which means that cashmere is wonderfully warm, but has hardly any weight.

The good news is that all of these natural fibres can be successfully blended with synthetics; yet still impart their own unique characteristics. In many instances, the addition of man-made fibres to cotton, lambswool or cashmere can actually enhance their natural qualities. Cotton, for example, is less susceptible to creasing when blended with other fibres.

There is also cost to take into account. Luxury and quality always come at a premium price, but the blending of cotton, lambswool or cashmere means they can be within everyone’s price range.

Source by Ian Bowland

Men Forced To Pee Like Girls

I’m a fashionable guy. Always have been. I am both cheap AND fashionable. How is that possible? I am lucky to have a body on which clothes look good. Often I can wear even cheap clothing and look good, as long as the cheap clothing fits. I wear clothes that look good but don’t cost an arm and a leg. This includes my underwear.

The underwear I have been wearing for years fit well and looked good but are getting old and wearing out. It’s time to buy new underwear. Unfortunately, the new version of my existing underwear has changed; I tried two different sizes and both sizes suck and fit badly. Hence, my going upscale and considering switching to expensive designer men’s underwear, boxer briefs. In a cool camouflage pattern.

I was considering buying Calvin Klein boxer briefs. They weren’t cheap so I wanted to make sure about fit, comfort etc. No, you can’t go to the department store, rip open a package of men’s underwear and try them on. Thus, buying underwear is always a risk. And, all too often the brand you wore for a decade has changed, is made in some cheap-labor country, doesn’t fit well and is of much lesser unacceptable quality. Junk. And unwearable.

And, no, I do not wear tidy whities and haven’t since high school. And I’ve tried a number of brands of briefs and none fit well. I have insanely spent hundreds of dollars unsuccessfully trying to find underwear that looks good AND fits.

I checked amazon and they offered the Calvin Klein brand and style. In my size. I zoomed in on the item and it looked like good quality and the reviews said they were a good and accurate fit. So far so good. I could not, however, tell from the photo if they had a side or top opening in the pouch for ease of urination. I definitely wanted that. I asked the question of the amazon “community” and received an answer promptly. “No, there is no opening in the front”. What? Without a front opening how does a guy unzip his pants and take out his penis to pee? There is no opening in the front of the underwear to do that? That means that a guy has to unzip and unbuckle and unbutton his pants, pull down his pants, then pull down his underwear just to pee. And, standing up, that’s not convenient. Or quick. Or, with your pants falling down around your ankles, not good for your balance. The other alternative is to do all that and sit down on the toilet and pee. Pee like a girl. Hey, underwear manufacturers, I don’t want to go through pulling down my zipper, undoing my belt, unbuttoning my pants and pulling down my underwear just to take a leak! And I CERTAINLY don’t want to do all that and then sit on the toilet and pee like a girl! When men only have to urinate real men pee standing up!

In taking away the front opening, men’s underwear designers are taking away our manhood! Men’s underwear designers are taking away our manhood and turning us into girls! When I have to urinate I just want to easily and quickly and safely whip out my penis – through my fly – and whiz away into the toilet! Standing up. Like a man.

That being the case, I am definitely not buying these Calvin Klein boxer briefs. What will I do for underwear? I don’t know. Maybe I’ll go commando, and not wear underwear at all. Ugh. Or maybe I’ll try “Depends” incontinence underwear and just pee in my pants.

Source by Andrew Lawrence

Most Powerful Gemstone for Money

Gone are the days when gemstones used to be just symbols of fashion. Today, people wear gemstones for specific purposes, as these stones have different vibrations and charges. Gem experts advise different gemstones for people with specific goals in life like improved income, higher levels in job, improvement in health, buying of real estate and many more. Some gemstones are so powerful that you will start seeing results as soon as you start wearing them. Do you want more money to flow in your life? Are you looking for financial prosperity? Are you frustrated because you are hard-pressed for funds? Here is some good news for you. Citrine crystal could be the answer for your problems!

Features of citrine crystals

These crystals contain the power of the sun and are the most recommended healing crystals for clarity of human mind today. This crystal is transparent and comes in light yellow, golden yellow or brown shades. Citron is the name given to lemon in French. These crystals have been named from this word, as they are mostly yellow in colour. The yellow component of the precious Quartz stone is called citrine crystal. You can also find these crystals in orange or deep reddish orange shades.


There are some characteristics that are exclusive to certain kinds of crystals. In this vein, let us look at some of the main properties of these crystals. They also help the human mind to think creatively and are known for helping people with financial well-being. It makes people aggressive and encourages them to try out newer and wealthier opportunities that they were apprehensive of trying earlier.

Benefits of using these crystals

One of the major benefits of these crystals is that it attracts cash. Therefore, it is highly recommended for people who are looking for improvement in financial health in their lives. It doesn’t need extensive maintenance like other crystals. Therefore, you don’t have to spend much of your time and money while cleaning these crystals. You can keep citrine crystals in the place where you usually put your money in. Businessmen can keep these in cash boxes so that their profitability increases to a considerable extent.

It is for this very purpose that this crystal is known as the “merchant’s stone”. However, one important point to note is that these crystals work better when you meditate for a while before using them. The citrine crystals are also known to bring about abundance of mental peace and relaxation in one’s life. This is one of the few crystals that come with a flurry of benefits. Some of the purposes for which these crystals are used are the following:

Increases creativity

Improves overall physical and mental energy

Increases confidence and intelligence

Removes all kinds of negative energy

Increases productivity at the workplace

Helps in great interpersonal relationships

Helps in accumulating as well as maintaining wealth – not many stones help in maintaining finances; therefore, citrine is indeed quite special

So what are you waiting for? Get your hands on these crystals and see magical transformations happening in your life within a short span of time.

Source by Rahaventhan Kaliappan

James Bond Girls – What Defines a Bond Girl?

James Bond girls are envied by women and adored by men. Their sophisticated beauty, scantily-clad bodies, and uncanny intelligence have made them as iconic as the man who swept them off their feet, James Bond.

In a spectrum of James Bond films, we have seen good Bond girls, evil Bond vixens and sadistic henchwomen, all of whom pushing the boundaries of fashion and bending gender roles. And in every film, we see James Bond become enmeshed between two beautiful ladies who would either end up as his lovers or as his enemies. In fact, nearly all Fleming’s Bond novels and short stories would include two or more James Bond girls depicted as catalysts to reinforce the plot.

It is also remarkable how these James Bond girls change the definition of beauty that transcends race, color and identity. All Bond women are considered beautiful in their own fashion. Always confident and smart, the girls in Bond’s life are no newbie when it comes to sexuality. In films, they proudly flaunt their stunning figures in gowns or in most cases, in their underwear and bikini. One of the most remembered James Bond girl scene would probably be Giancinta Johnson’s first encounter with our favorite secret agent. Clad in a stunning orange bikini, the first black Bond girl instantly had James Bond ‘loving the view of the sea’.

Bond girls are almost always defined by names with sexual innuendos—Pussy Galore, Kissy Suzuki, Sukie Tempesta and (how could we forget?) Xenia Onatopp. The reason behind this is not really explained, but it sure is enough to make audience remember these girls’ names if not their roles in Bond’s conquest to save the world. Likewise, these girls are not innocent when it comes to sexual ventures in any way. More often than not, they are actually as experienced in terms of that turf as 007 is.

Although James Bond only seem to hook up with these femme fatales for the thrill of a night, two of them actually managed to win his heart and even drove him to complete revenge mode. In the movie, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Bond married Contessa Teresa, who was unfortunately killed at the end of the film. Then, there’s Versper Lynd from Casino Royale who is supposedly the first woman the Bond has loved. However, their fiery love also fizzled out as Vesper killed herself in the end.

From the Tatiana Romanova to Vesper Lynd, these James Bond girls are never to be undermined. Behind the sultry eyes, big hair and perfect bodies, there’s an independent spirit in every one of these girls. Their roles in the agent’s might range from good to the most psychotic, but without them, Bond films will never be quite the same.

There is no question about it. Women whom James Bond comes across with are monolithic personification of female empowerment. They can adapt to any environment they are dealing with. Often tough and cunning, James Bond girls present the looks to die for and the guts to be lethal.

Dangerously beautiful—This is what defines a James Bond Girl.

Source by Joel Owens