Pedophile – Characteristics and Behavior Patterns


o In spite of increased reporting most people imagine a child molester as some ugly, old or deranged man in a trench coat coaxing children to come to him in exchange for some candy. They do not think of Uncle Gus or Aunt Milly, the neighbor next door, the friendly clergy person, or trusted family friend. They do not think of mom, dad, cousins, siblings, grandparents or in the case of single parents, their significant other. These misconceptions are the only reason sex offenders can continue to sexually abuse children.

o The widespread misconception that child molestation consists primarily of children being seized from the street and forcibly molested is the lowest incidence of child sexual assault Although these incidents do occur, 99% of child sexual abuse survivors know their assailant, who uses their status and knowledge of the child to intimidate and persuade the child into submission and compliance.

o The most common response when I speak about the prevalence of sexual child abuse is in the form of denial: "I do not have to be concerned about that in my community. That would never happen in my family."

o Through numerous case studies, the Department of Justice has developed characteristics and behavior patterns of a pedophile. These characteristics and behavior patterns include, but are not limited to the following:

Is most often an adult male – 80% of children are sexually abused by family members – the father is the most prevalent followed by uncle or grandparent and step-father or significant other.

It is usually married.

Works in a wide range of occupations, from unskilled laborer, corporate executive, doctor, lawyer, judge or clergy.

Relates better to children than adults.

Socializes with few adults unless they are pedophiles.

Usually prefers children in a specific age group.

Usually prefers either males or females, but may be bi-sexual.

May seek employment or volunteer with programs involving children of the age of his / her preference.

Pursues children for sexual purposes.

Frequently photographs or collects photographs of his victims, either dressed, nude, or in sexually explicit acts.

Collects child erotica and child-adult pornography:

To lower the inhibitions of victims.

To fantasize when no potential victim is available.

To relive his sexual activities.

To justify his activities. (The depiction of others engaged in these acts legitimizes them in the pedophile's mind.)

To blackmail victims to keep them from telling.

May possess and furnish narcotics to his / her victims to lower their inhibitions.

Sometimes recognizes that he / she is acting inappropriately and understands the severity of it, but is unable to stop him / herself because it is a compulsion.

Goes to great lengths to conceal his illegal activity.

Goes to great lengths to present him / herself as an exemplary person; developing a persona of goodness above reproach, thus thwarting any suspicion of wrongdoing –especially against a child, whom they have judicially professed great care and concern. Michael Jackson is society's emperor with no clothes.

Rationalizes his / her illicit activities, emphasizing his / her positive impact upon the victim and repressing feelings about the harm he / she has done.

Often portrays the child as the aggressor. This usually occurs after the child realizes that by withholding "sexual favors" the child will obtain what he / she desires, such as new toys, clothing, or trips. Joey Buttafuoco, the Long Island body shop owner who gained notoriety in the 1990's when his teenage victim shot his wife; used the 'blame the victim' defense that she would not leave him alone, as if she were the adult and he a minor.

Talks about children as one would talk about an adult lover or spouse.

More often than not, sex offenders are child molestation survivors; frequently seeks out children at the age or stage of physical development at which he / she was molested.

Often seeks out publications and organizations that support his / her sexual beliefs and practices.

Usually corresponds with other pedophiles and exchanges child pornography and erotica as proof of involvement.

Is usually non-violent and has few problems with the law (pedophiles are more often than not respected community members).

To protect children from sexual abuse parents / adults need to know: What sexual abuse or incest is; What to do; and How to teach self-protection. Self-protection offers a direct and effective way to empower children to help themselves. Since the perpetrator cunningly and with forethought sets the stage to perpetrate this crime in secrecy, who is better able than the child to protect him / herself. Sex offenders say they can sense a child to victimize; they sense this by the child's demeanor, body language and facial expressions. Sex offenders choose victims who they assume will keep the secret. No child needs to fall prey to these cunning predators. If I'd Only Known … Sexual Abuse in or out of the Family: A Guide to Prevention is the one book every parent / caretaker needs to keep children safe. This book describes Seven compelling parent approved and child tested techniques to thwart would-be sex offenders.


Source by Dorothy M. Neddermeyer, PhD

Mobsters – The Cotton Club






In the 1890's, Harlem was the land speculator's dream. The elevated railroad lines that had been extended to 129th Street in Manhattan, had transformed the area from the hinterlands to what was called "The Great Migration."

At the time, black families lived mostly in the area between Thirty-Seventh Streets and Fifty-Eight Streets, between Eighth and Ninth Avenues. The upper crust of society viewed Harlem as the next step for the upwardly mobile, and as a result, splendorous townhouses costing thousands more than comparables downtown, were being built as fast as the Harlem land could be purchased by the land speculators.

By 1905, the bottom of the Harlem real estate market fell though the floor. The land speculators were forced to face the fact that the townhouse had been built too quick, and that the prices were far above what the people were prepared to pay for them.

On the verge of bankruptcy, the land speculators used tactics that today would be illegal. They decided to rent their buildings to black tenants, far above what they would charge white tenants. Then, in a frenzy to recapture their losses, the land speculators approached white building owners and told them if they did not purchase vacant buildings they would rent them out exclusively to blacks, thereby reducing the value of the white landowner's properties. The white landowners did not bite, so the land speculators made good on their promises. Whites began moving out of Harlem in droves, replaced by black families who had never lived in such a fine neighborhood before. Black churches followed their congregations from the slums of Manhattan to the splendor of Harlem, and by the early 1920's, Harlem was the largest black community in the United States.

However, most blacks could not afford the high rents charged by the white building owners, so they took in tenants, causing two and sometimes three families to live in a one, or two-bedroom apartment. Coinciding with the overcrowding of Harlem, came the influx of illegal enterprises, such as numbers runners, houses of prostitution, and drug dealers. This was counteracted somewhat when prosperous blacks, mostly in the entertainment business, decided Harlem was where they could showcase their talents in a neighborhood filled with people of their own race. Fritz Pollard, noted All-American football player, who made his money in the real estate, moved to Harlem, as did fellow All-America football player Paul Robeson – destined to hone an outstanding career acting and singing on stage. They were quickly followed by famous singers like Ethel Walters and Florance Mills, and Harlem was ready for a renaissance equal to that of the glowing White Way on Broadway.

However, when there was money to be made, white gangsters like Dutch Schultz and Owney "The Killer" Madden were ready to jump in and take the profits, by force if necessary, which is the way they did business anyway. Schultz muscled his way into the Harlem numbers business, chasing out such black notables as Madam Stephanie St. Claire and Caspar Holstein. And during the height of Prohibition, Madden had his eyes on the perfect place to sell his bootleg booze: The Club Deluxe on 142nd Street and Lenox Avenue.

The Club Deluxe was owned by former world heavyweight champion Jack Johnson, the first black heavyweight champion of the world. Whereas, Johnson was proficient with his fists, Madden and his formidable crew were good with guns, knives, and bats. A few choice words, backed with the threat of violence, with few meager bucks thrown in, and Johnson handed over Club Deluxe to Madden and his partner / manager George "Big Frenchy" DeMange. The two gangsters renamed it The Cotton Club.

Not to totally insult a black man with the prestige of Johnson, Madden threw Johnson a bone, and let him hang around the joint, resplendent in a tuxedo. Johnson would smile and tell everyone who asked that he was the assistant manager under DeMange.

To understand why such a great heavyweight boxer like Johnson would cower before Madden, who was barely five-foot-five-inches and 140 pounds after a huge dinner, one would have to be made aware of Madden's background.

Owen "Owney" Madden was born at 25 Somerset Street, in Leeds, England, on December 18, 1891. In need of work, his father moved the Madden family to Liverpool. In 1903, when young Madden was only 12, his father died, and his mother re-located her family to America, settling on the West Side of Manhattan, in a neighborhood called "Hells Kitchen."

Madden fell in with a boisterous gang known as the Gophers. He became proficient in the favored crimes of the era: robberies, muggings, and labor racket beatings. In order to hurt and intimidate, Madden's favorite weapon was a lead pipe, wrapped in newspaper.

Madden made a ton of money in a racket called the "insurance business." As the president of his own "insurance company," Madden would visit the local establishments and tell the business owners that the owner needed "bomb insurance," in case foreigners, or maybe even Madden himself, decided to bomb the businessman's store. The business owners caught wind quick, and paid Madden what he demanded. If they did not pay Madden, that's businessman's stores would go up in flames and debris in a matter of days, and sometimes even hours. While Madden was a member of the Gophers, and making tons of money in his "insurance business," he was arrested 44 times, but not once did he ever go to prison.

When Madden was 17, he earned his nickname "The Killer." A poor Italian immigrant did nothing wrong, except cross paths with Madden on a street in Hell's Kitchen. In front of a crowd of his fellow Gophers, and whomever else was standing on the street that day, Madden pulled out a gun and shot the Italian dead. Then Madden stood over the dead body and announced to the assembled crowd, "I'm Owney Madden!"

By the time he was 23, Madden had at least five other murders to his credit. Hence the nickname – "The Killer."

However, Madden thought he was bulletproof, until November 6th, 1912, at the Arbor Dance Hall, which was in the heart of the territory controlled by the Gopher's rivals: the Hudson Dusters. Madden strolled into the hall by himself, like he had nary a care in the world, during a dance given by the Dave Hyson Association. Madden was watching the proceedings from the balcony, when eleven Hudson Dusters surrounded him and shot Madden six times. Madden was rushed to the hospital, where a detective asked Madden who had shot him.

"Nothin 'doin,'" Madden said. "It's no business but mine who put these slugs into me. My boys will get them."

By the time Madden was released from the hospital, six of his eleven assailants had already been shot dead.

While Madden was recuperating from his wounds, one of his fellow Gophers, Little Patsy Doyle, figured he'd take control of Madden's gang. Doyle was also intent on taking back his former girlfriend, Freda Horner, who now was the sole property of Madden. Miss Horner told Madden about Doyle's intentions, and as a result, Madden told Miss Horner to tell Doyle she would be glad to meet him for a date at a saloon on Eighth Avenue and 41st Street. When Doyle arrived, dressed to the nines and all smiles, two of Madden's gunmen shot Doyle dead.

Being the obvious suspect, Madden was arrested three days later for the murder of Little Patsy Doyle. At Madden's trial, he was shocked to discover that Miss Horner had betrayed him too. Miss Horner testified in court that it was Madden who had set up the Doyle murder. As a result, Madden was convicted and sentenced to 10-20 years in Sing Sing Prison. He did only eight years, and was released in 1923, just in time to strong-arm Jack Johnson into selling him the Club Deluxe, aka- The Cotton Club. By this time Madden was big into bootlegging with his partner Big Bill Dwyer, and the Cotton Club was the perfect place to sell their illegal hootch, especially their famous Madden No. 1 beer, which was considered the best brew in New York City. They took in a legitimate guy named Herman Stark as their front man / partner / stage manager, but the show within the show was completely run by Madden and DeMange.

According to Jim Haskins book The Cotton Club, when Madden and DeMange took over the joint they redid the entire interior "to cater to the white downtowner's taste for the primitive." The club was made over in "jungle decor," with numerous artificial palm trees dotted throughout the spacious establishment, which had seating for 700 people. The most exquisite draperies, tablecloths, and fixtures were purchased, indicating this was a "plush late-night supper club," and the exorbitant prices highlighted that fact. The menu was varied. Besides the traditional steaks and chops, the Cotton Club cooks drummed up Chinese and Mexican dishes, as well as "Harlem" cuisine like fried chicken and barbecued spareribs.

DeMange presided over the front door like a tyrant. One rule was perfectly clear. Although the waiters, busboys, bartenders, cooks, service personnel, and performers were all black, no black people were allowed inside as customers. (The name itself – The Cotton Club – came from the light brown color of undyed cotton.) The chorus girls had to be "tall, tan, and terrific" which meant that they had to be at least 5-feet-6- inches tall, light skinned, and no older than twenty-one. The girls also had to be expert dancers, and at least be able to carry a tune. For some unknown reason, there was no color-shade restriction on the black male dancers, who were all proficient in "high-stepping, gyrating and snake-dancing."

To show how strict Madden and DeMange were about their policy of segregation, about a month before their second grand opening, (The Cotton Club was closed by Prohibition agents for a while, ever though the local cops were on the pad), the following job interview took place. Present were Madden and DeMange, along with their choreographer Althea Fuller, and their orchestra conductor Andy Preer. The girl being interviewed was Queenie Duchamp.

DeMange to Madden: Boss, when is the club going to be ready to open?

Madden: The pigs will not cause us trouble for a time. They know if we're forced to close for bootlegging they will not get their bonuses. As it is, they're missing the extra padding and the boys have been complaining to the Sarge. Yeah, they've learned their lesson. As for the club's show … let's ask Althea and Andy.

DeMange to Preer: Andy, how's the pit? Ready for next month's opening?

Preer: We will be. If Althea gets her girls ready, the pit is ready to stomp.

Althea Fuller: Boss, we had a setback. One of the girls went and found a "moral conscience." She's following her sister, a Garveyite, back to Africa. Shame, she was a looker in the front line. Do not worry, Boss, I've already got replacements ready to audition for you today. One of them looks promising and comes with a recommendation. She's in the front row, third one in … Queenie Duchamp. First, let's see if she can remember the steps she was taught this morning.

(Andy Preer leads the orchestra in "I've Found a New Baby" and 5 dancing girls audition. Queenie Duchamp is third from the left.)

Madden: Keep the third and the fifth. The other girls are too dark and short. Althea, make sure you grill them about rules and rehearsals. We are NOT running a gut bucket operation here.

(Madden leaves with his bodyguards)

Fuller: Queenie, come here. You got the job on a few conditions.

Queenie: Anything you want Miss Fuller.

Fuller: Number one – No booze, No boys, No drugs. No exceptions.

Queenie: Yes, Miss.

Fuller: Number two- Rehearsals are Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday starting at 1:00 pm sharp. All rehearsals are MANDATORY and lateness will not be accepted. I do not know what you've heard, but rehearsals here are grueling and performances are long with many elaborate costume changes. That means you can not afford to be draggin 'your ass around here. Make sure you eat and get your rest. Do you understand?

Queenie: Yes, Miss Fuller.

Fuller: Number three – No mixing with the patrons. There are about 700 whitefolk that walk through those doors every night. And according to Mr. Madden, they only have one goal here and that's to spend money. They come here to hear the best Negro music and dance numbers in the city. They might act like they want to be your friend after a couple of drinks, but they do not. Mr. Madden does not want the races mixin 'and as far as I'm concerned, I think that's better for business anyway.

DeMange: If a white customer starts to give you a problem or tries to make a connection with you, tell me. I'll take care of it. It's happened before. Sometimes these rich people get a couple drinks in them and they think they own the world. Do not worry about it, just let me know. We run a tight ship here.

Queenie: Yes, Mr. DeMange. No problem Ms. Fuller. I am an entertainer and I understand the importance of practice. In fact, I'm a singer, a blues singer! If you ever need a singer ….. (Ms. Fuller and Mr. DeMange look at each other.)

Fuller: Look, missy. Your goal here is to dance, smile and follow the rules … not sing. Got it?

Queenie: Yes, Miss Fuller. Got it.

Fuller: Another thing … stay out of trouble. You're a looker and the club world can be dirty and dangerous. It does not have to be though. Keep to yourself and whatever you do, stay out of Mr. Madden's way. If you do this, you'll be fine. Now go to wardrobe for a fitting.

Queenie: Yes and Thank you, Miss Fuller.

The Cotton Club was an immediate success with the downtown swells. On opening night, the Fletcher Henderson band entertained the crowd (Henderson's band was the house band until June 1931). Through radio broadcasts originating nightly from the Cotton Club, Henderson's band was such a success, he became one of the most sought after band leaders in America. Following Henderson was the Duke Ellington Band (until 1934), and then Cab Calloway and the Cotton Club Orchestra.

Despite the fact the only booze served on the premises was Madden's No. 1 beer, customers were allowed, even encouraged, to bring their own booze they had obtained illegally elsewhere. Of course, the management had a hefty set-up charge, which included the glasses, ice, and the mixers. If a customer came unprepared and still wanted booze instead of beer, the doorman, and sometimes even a waiter, came in handy. A bottle of champagne could cost a customer $ 30, and a bottle of scotch – $ 18, a kingly sum in those days. But the customers were well-healed, and nobody ever gripped about the prices; at least, nobody who cared about their continued good health.

After a while, DeMange and Madden lightened up a bit on the "no-black-customers-allowed" policy. This happened in 1932, right after WC Handy, known as "The King of the Blues," was denied admission, even though the Duke Ellington Band was inside playing songs that Handy had written. Ellington pleaded his case to Madden, and Madden agreed to loosen his policy. But just a little bit.

Light-skinned blacks were now allowed in as customers, and a few darker blacks, who were famous entertainers themselves. However, blacks in mixed parties was a definite no-no.

Writer and photographer Carl Van Vechten wrote, "There were brutes at the door to enforce the Cotton Club's policy which was opposed to mixed parties."

Jim Haskins wrote in The Cotton Club, "Only the lightest-complexioned Negroes gained entrance, and even they were carefully screened. The club's management was aware that most white downtowners wanted to observe Harlem blacks, not with mix with them."

Even famed comedian Jimmy Durante displayed blatant racism when he said, "It is not necessary to mix with colored people if you do not feel like it. You have your own party and keep to yourself. But it's worth seeing. How they step ! "

Durante went as far as to intimate that blacks were innately more violent than whites. "Racial lines are drawn here to prevent possible trouble," Durante said. "Nobody wants razors, blackjacks or fists flying. And the chances of war are less if there's no mixing."

In 1933, after he settled a little problem with the IRS, and with Prohibition now over, Madden decided to call it a day. He handed over the reigns of the Cotton Club to DeMange, and hightailed it to Hot Springs, Arkansas, where he opened a hotel / spa, which became the favorite hideout for New York mobsters on the lam from the law. In fact, when New York Mafioso Lucky Luciano was in hiding, because a bulldog special prosecutor named Thomas E. Dewey had a warrant for Luciano's arrest on a trumped-up prostitution charge, it was at Madden's resort where Luciano was finally arrested after four months on the run.

Of course, Madden was still a silent partner with DeMange in the Cotton Club, but the huge profits would soon diminish, before coming to a halt in Harlem.

It started with the Great Depression, which had cut down dramatically on the disposable income of the rich, and the formerly rich. Downtown revelers who had frequented the Cotton Club came less often, and when they did come, they spent less money. These same revelers got caught up in the street gang mentality, and as a result, an avalanches of bullets stared flying in Harlem; whites shooting blacks, blacks shooting whites, and members of the same race slinging shots at each other. With so much lead zinging though the Harlem air, white-oriented Harlem clubs like the Cotton Club suffered a dramatic decrease in attendance.

In addition, no area of ​​America was affected more by the Depression than Harlem. By 1934, according to the New York Urban League, more than 80% of Harlem residents were on "Home Relief," which we now call Welfare. The Reverend Adam Clayton Powell fanned the flames of racial tensions when he started leading boycotts of white-owned stores in Harlem, in order to force them to hire more black workers. Despair and resentment sprung up in the streets of Harlem, and this lead to a fateful day in Harlem history.

A dark-skinned, 16-year-old Puerto Rican named Lino Rivera was sulking around the streets of Harlem, out of work and desperately looking for a job; any job. To pass the time, he took in a movie, then went to the Kress Department Store on 125th Street. There he spotted a knife he wanted. But the knife cost ten cents and Rivera did not have ten cents. Rivera had just snatched the knife and put it into his pocket, when a male employee of the store grabbed Rivera, and a scuffle ensued. While the two men were battling and another white employee tried to subdue Rivera, a crowd of black shoppers surrounded the fight, obviously favoring Rivera. During the melee, Rivera bit the thumb of one of the white employees. The injured man shouted, "I'm going to take you down to the basement and beat the hell out of you."

Big mistake.

Within minutes, the rumor had spread on the streets of Harlem that two white men were beating a black boy to death. This false rumor received dubious confirmation, when a blaring ambulance pulled up in front of the Kress Department Store. It made no difference the ambulance was there for the white man who had the severely bitten finger.

That night the streets of Harlem erupted in total bedlam. Born out of resentment of the Depression, and the dismal way white people had been treating black people in Harlem for years, hundred of blacks rioted in the streets. They looted white-owned stored and pilfered merchandise as if they had an absolute right to take it.

The perception to the downtown whites was that Harlem was no longer safe for them to venture into, even to see the wondrous entertainment at the Cotton Club. In addition, black musicians and entertainers no longer considered the Cotton Club as the top of the heap. It became a place where the entertainers could start their careers, but once they got noticed, they went on to bigger and better things. Business became so bad at the Cotton Club, and other Harlem clubs that catered to the white downtown crowd, such as Small's Paradise on 7th Avenue, that Harlem's Cotton Club closed its doors for good on February 16th, 1936.

DeMange and Herman Stark, with Madden's blessing from Hot Springs, moved the Cotton Club downtown to Forty-Eighth Street and Broadway, to a space formerly occupied by the Harlem Club. The new Cotton Club was an immediate success. It had its grand re-opening on September 24th, 1936. Cab Calloway and Bill "Bojangles" Robinson performed that night, as did Avis Andrews, the Berry Brothers, and the gorgeous Katherine Perry, who was so light-skinned she could easily pass for white.

Because it was so accessible with its new Midtown location, the Cotton Club was raking in the cash. In the third week alone, it grossed more than $ 45,000, and in the first sixteen weeks, the average weekly gross was $ 30,000. The prices in the new joint were higher than the Cotton Club's in Harlem. A steak sandwich rose from $ 1.25 to $ 2.25. Scrambled eggs with Deerfield sausage rose from $ 1.25 to a $ 1.50 and lobster cocktails went from $ 1.00 to $ 1.50.

Still DeMange and Stark kept packing them in.

One price that did decrease was the Cottons Club's cover charge. In Harlem, in order to keep the "undesirables" away, the cover charge was $ 3 per table. However, since blacks very rarely crossed the "Mason-Dixon Line" of 110th Street, the new Cottons Club's cover charge was $ 2 per table during dinner time, and nothing after that.

The new Cotton Club continued to thrive until the summer of 1939, when the Internal Revenue Service hit the club's management with indictments for income tax evasion. The indictments hit the Cotton Club Management Corp, including Herman Stark – President, George Goodrich, – Accountant, and Noah Braustein – Secretary-Treasurer, with four counts of failure to pay, and embezzlement of taxes. If convicted, all three men could face up to 25 years in prison, and fines of up to $ 20,000 apiece. Amazingly, because he was just listed as an employee, Frenchy DeMange escaped the indictment. At trial, the Cotton Club Management Corp. was found guilty, but the three officers escaped conviction. Still, Stark had to fork over a hefty fine to the government, in addition to $ 3,400 owed in back taxes.

At the start of 1940, it was obvious that the Cotton Club, and Herman Stark, had money problems. Besides the high Midtown rent and the effects of the Depression, the unions, especially the musician union, had a stranglehold on Stark and his profits. Before his problems with the IRS, Stark was skimming money off the top to make up for any shortfalls the unions and the high entertainment payrolls caused. But with the government watching the Cotton Club like a hawk, skimming was now impossible.

The Cotton Club closed its door for good on June 10th, 1940. Stark and DeMange gave no official reason, but as one columnist put it, the main reason was, "the lack of the famous, old filthy lucre."

Yet, that explanation would be too simplistic. Of course money was a problem, but also America's taste for music like Duke Ellington's and Cab Calloway's was changing too. The younger generation of Americans were enthralled with the new jazz and "swing" styles of white bandleaders like Tommy Dorsey, Artie Shaw, and the "King of Swing" – Benny Goodman.

The Cotton Club was a great idea whose lifespan had reached its conclusion. The black entertainers who had cut their teeth working at the Cotton Club, people like Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, and Lena Horne, all went on to establish long and wondrous careers. But the concept of a night club with all black entertainment no longer appealed to the white mainstream of America.

The Cotton Club closed because it was a concept that had blossomed, then like a gilded rose, slowly died.

Still, the memory, and the impact of the Cotton Club on society will linger as long as song and dance remain an integral part of our American culture.


Source by Joseph Bruno

Never Show Your Weakness – Keeping Eye Contact



There is a lot of emphasis on eye contact during interactions with people. But the advice given is often mechanical with an instruction booklet.

The importance of eye contact is evident when you are with somebody who is wearing sunglasses. It feels awkward and uncomfortable when you can not see their eyes.

The eyes are an instinctive focal point. And we can usually define a person's character by their eyes. For example when you look at a killers photograph (Mira Hindley and Ian Brady- prime examples) you get the feeling of "evilness" just by their eyes.

Not only is eye contact important, but also NOT giving eye contact. Somebody can not give you eye contact because of negative emotions like sadness, boredom or depression. It can also be a sign of shame or guilt. So either way you slice it- the eyes convey a lot, whether you give it or whether you do not.

And women go on eyes and eye contact for attractiveness in a man. I've never asked a girl how they judge a guy by his eyes, but apparently they do. Maybe it could be a result of the eye contact a guy gives? Like when he looks into her eyes, he's making her feel weak and vulnerable, depending on his hidden intentions anyway.

In any case, we know eyes are important and we need to be able to look at them. In the same respect, people need to see OUR eyes so they feel they can trust you and see you in your entirety.

Try this …

Walk out along the street and hold eye contact with people as you go about your day. People will be walking past and have their heads down, but try it.

Uncomfortable? Feel a pressure to look away?

Now try it wearing sunglasses.

How much easier is trying to get eye contact when you are behind sunglasses? Does it feel a bit more comfortable?

The sunglasses are like a mask. It's a hell of a lot easier to try looking people in the eye because you know they can not do the same to you. If you want a spiritually sexual innuendo, they can not penetrate your soul.

It's amazing how just the simple act of covering your eyes can allow you to feel a bit more powerful and confident.

So what does this tell you?

Eye contact is easy when we feel we are hidden from view. But why would we hide? Or why would we divert our eyes from sustained eye contact?

Simple- because we feel vulnerable and unconfident. We feel people can know everything about us. On the other hand they are a means to avoid being challenging. When somebody gets into a rage and they want to attack, they often give no eye contact before they lash out. They do not want to give away any signals.

So ask yourself what you are communicating when you avoid contact.

1) You are vulnerable and low in status.

2) You feel inferior to the other person so you do not want to appear challenging or draw attention.

3) Both of the above suggest little or no confidence.


Another point is the fear initiating something. A beautiful girl has just walked into the room. Now you can look at her for hours if you wanted to. That is- until she stops in conversation and looks your way.

"Busted! ABORT!"

You know that if you held eye contact you would have to go and do something. You would have to initiate. And on top of that, you feel vulnerable that you have put your interest out there. She knows you find her stunning to admire, but the thought of actually having a conversation with this fear gets you nervous. Once again, it comes down to feeling inferior and not wanting to initiate anything.

I try to avoid any eye contact, cuz if I do that then it opens the door for conversation like I want that – Eminem


Okay, so it is not a mechanical process. It is done automatically, in the same way that diverting your eyes is automatic. It all stems from how you feel about yourself, because that is what you unconsciously communicate.

If you did not feel inferior with the gorgeous girl across from you, you would gladly welcome her eyes coming in your direction. You would see that as a green light to initiate.

When you feel firm about a decision and you feel strongly about it, then you would not care about giving looking somebody in the eye if they disagree with you. You would not see it as a challenge to shy away from.

So the first obvious step for being comfortable with looking somebody in their eyes is to desensitise yourself to it. By that I mean do the walking down the street thing, and give eye contact to as many people as you can.

However, this is where your fear of 'what could happen next' might trigger off. You might think to yourself, "Shit. This could actually lead to a conversation. What do I do then ?!", and because of that you divert your eyes to avoid leading into it.

You've got to ask yourself where your discomfort comes from. Are you feeling vulnerable and unconfident about yourself? Or are you fearing the consequences- like conversation, initiating something, a guy squaring up to you etc?

There would be no point in going out and giving eye contact unless you feel confident and secure about what could happen next.

Remember, you use your eyes to communicate non-verbally. It is an act of subliminally initiating something with somebody else. And only the people who feel confident and powerful within themselves can naturally give it.


Source by Sean Adams

The Pentateuch, Law of Moses or Torah



It is believed that the name Pentateuch "the first five books of the Old Testament, the book of the Law" (The Columbia Viking Desk Encyclopaedia, 1964, p.1402) was first found in the letter of Elora of a second century Gnostic, Ptolemy and passed into Christian use. These books are called The Law (Torah) or the Law of Moses by the Jews. (Everyman's Encyclopedia, 1978). It would be difficult to overestimate the role that the Pentateuch has played in the course of biblical scholarship. In all likelihood, these first five books in the Bible – Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy- have been subjected to scrutiny more than any single block, with the sole possible exception of the Gospels (Knight and Tucker, 1985).


The word Pentateuch derives from the Greek pentateuchos "five-volumed (book)", following the Jewish designation "the five-fifths of the law". Jews call it the Torah, that is instruction, often rendered in English Law as it is called in the New Testament (Greek nomon; example, Matt. 5:17; Luke 16:17; Acts 7:53; 1 Cor. 9: 8). According to Lasor, Hubbard and Bush (1982), the Pentateuch was "the most important division of the Jewish canon, with an authority and sanctity far exceeding that attributed to the prophets and writing" (p.54). They observe that the books of the Pentateuch are not 'books' in the modern sense of independent self-contained entries, but were purposefully structured and intended as part of a larger unity; therefore the term Pentateuch is not only convenient but necessary. However, granted this fact of the unity of the larger corpus, the conventional five-fold division is important not simply as a convenient means of reference to the material, but because there is clear editorial evidence establishing just these five books as genuine subdivisions of the material. Despite marks of real disparity and complexity in structure and origins, far more primary and important is the overarching unity which the Pentateuch evidences. A careful reading of the Pentateuch will reveal, beside a definite unity of purpose, plan and arrangement, a diversity – a complexity – that is equally striking.


The traditional view according to Halley (1962) is that "Moses wrote the Pentateuch substantially … with the exception of the few verses at the close which give an account of his death, and occasional interpolations made by copyists for explanatory purposes" (p 0.56). This is in consonance with the view of Childs (1979). A modern critical view is that of a composite work of various scholars of priests made about the eighth century BC, for partisan purposes, based on oral traditions, the principal redactors of which are called J (for Jahweh / Yahweh, the personal name of God ), E (for Elohim, a generic name for God), D (for Deuteronomic) and P (for priestly). Each is claimed to be unique. However, "this view is not supported by conclusive research or evidence, and intensive archaeological and literary research has tended to undercut many of the arguments used to challenge Mosaic authorship" (The NIV Study Bible, 1984, p.2). Jews and Christians alike have held Moses to be the author / compiler of the Pentateuch.


The Pentateuch consists of the first five afore-mentioned books of the Bible. It must be observed that the first phrase in the Hebrew text of Genesis 1: 1 is bereshith [in (the) beginning] which is also the Hebrew title of the book. The English title, Genesis, is Greek in origin and is derived from geneseos 'birth', 'genealogy' or 'history of origin'. Genesis therefore appropriately describes its contents since it is primarily a book of beginnings. 'Exodus' is a Latin word from Greek exodos, meaning 'exit', 'departure'. Leviticus receives its name from the Greek translation of the Old Testament (Septuagint) meaning 'relating to the Levites'. It mainly concerns the service of worship at the tabernacle which was conducted by the priests who were the sons of Aaron, assisted by many from the rest of the tribe of Levi. Exodus gave the directions for building the tabernacle and Leviticus the laws and regulations for worship there including instructions on ceremonial cleanness, moral laws, holy days, the Sabbath year and the Year of the Jubilee. The English name of the book Numbers comes from the Septuagint and is based on the census lists found in it. The Hebrew title of the book (bedmidbar, 'in the desert'), is more descriptive of its contents. It presents an account of the thirty-eight year period of Israel's wandering in the desert following the establishment of the covenant of Sinai. The word 'Deuteronomy' (meaning the repetition of the law '), the name of the last book of the Pentateuch, arose from a mistranslation in the Greek Septuagint and the Latin Vulgate of a phrase in Deuteronomy 17:18, which in Hebrew means 'copy of the law'. The error is not serious however since Deuteronomy is, in a certain sense, a repetition of the law.

Generally, the unity of the Pentateuch must be stressed when discussing the content. This is created by an interest in the historical narrative forming the Pentateuch's backbone and framework and into which the blocks of legal texts have been placed. A clue to this narrative's central role and importance is the fact that the Old Testament events most frequently cited in the New Testament as the background and preparation for God's work in Christ are precisely that sequence of divine acts from Abraham's call through the kingship of David. Summaries or 'confession' of this sequence of divine acts plays a central role in Scripture. The basic details confessing God's saving acts on behalf of His people could be illustrated thus:

i. God chose Abraham his descendants (Acts 13:17; Josh.24: 3) and promised them the land of Canaan (Deut. 6:23)

ii. Israel went down into Egypt (Acts 13:17; Josh. 24: 5-7; Deut. 6: 21ff; 28: 8)

iii. God brought Israel into Canaan as promised (Acts 13:19; Josh.24: 11-13; Deut. 6:23; 26: 9).

This is but the narrative backbone of the Pentateuch in miniature. The plan that unifies the different elements forming the building blocks of the Pentateuch includes: promise, election, deliverance, covenant, law and land. It is realistically observed that "the one element universally present and central to these credos … is the Exodus, representing Yahweh's deliverance and the historical realization of His election of Israel as His people" (Lasor, Hubbard, Bush, 1982, p. 55).

The Pentateuch has two major divisions: Genesis 1-11 and Genesis 12- Deuteronomy 34. The relation between them is one question and answer, problem and solution; the clue is Genesis 12: 3. This structure not only elucidates the binding unity of the Pentateuch but also reveals that the structure began stretches far beyond the Pentateuch itself. The end and fulfillment lie beyond Deuteronomy 34 – indeed beyond the Old Testament. It could be safely asserted that probably no where does the Old Testament set forth an ultimate solution to the universal problem which Genesis 1-11 so poignantly portrays. The Old Testament indeed does not arrive at full redemption. When the Old Testament ends, Israel is still looking for the final consummation when hope shall be fulfilled and promise become fact. The juncture of Genesis 10-11 and chapters 12ff., Is not only one of the most important places in the whole Old Testament but one of the most important in the entire Bible. Here begins the redemptive history that awaits the proclamation of the good news of God's new redemptive act in Jesus Christ; only then will be found the way in which the blessing of Abraham will bless all the families of the earth. The Pentateuch is truly open-ended, for the salvation history which commenced awaits the consummation in the Son of Abraham (Matt. 1: 1) who draws all people to Him (John 12:32) punctuating the alienation of humanity from God and from one another.


The purpose of the Pentateuch was a leading into the realization by God that He was the Creator and Sustainer of the universe as well as the Ruler of History. It testifies to God's saving acts, the central act being the exodus from Egypt. God invaded the consciousness of the Israelites and revealed Himself as the redeeming God. Knowledge of God as Redeemer subsequently led to a knowledge of Him as Creator; understanding the Lord as the God of grace consequently prompted an understanding as the God of nature after He displayed control over nature as evidenced in the plagues, the crossing of the Red Sea and sustenance in the wilderness. It must be stressed that God's grace was evident not only in deliverance and guidance, but in the giving of the law and the initiation of the covenant. Israel's supposed pledge of obedience, oath of loyalty to God and His will is her response. One must hasten to note that this response is a gift of God's grace. The Pentateuch stands or better still possesses a rich inner unity recording God's revelation in history and His Lordship over history and testifying to Israel's response and disobedience. It generally witnesses to God's holiness which "separates Him from men, and His gracious love, which binds Him to them on His terms" (New Bible Dictionary, 1962, p.909).


Although several themes could be identified between Genesis and Deuteronomy, unique but inter-related, intertwined and invaluable ones could be identified. These include election, creation, fall / sin, covenant, law and exodus. Israel was God's elect. According to Stott (1988), the Bible is "sacred history – the story of God's dealing with a particular people for a particular purpose" (p.45). They were convinced that God had done this for no other nation (Ps. 147: 20). Great thinkers of Greece (including Plato, Socrates and Aristotle) ​​are not the focus but scriptural record concentrates on men like Abraham, Moses, David, Isaiah and the prophets to whom the word of the Lord came, and on Jesus Christ, God's Word made flesh. Abraham's call has a present day significance to us and should not be slightly regarded as an event of the past. Election – God's special choice of individuals- basically contains two subsidiary features; promise and responsibility. Abraham is promised descendants, given the land of Canaan as his children's inheritance and promised a great name in the future. God's special favour was to rest not only on Abraham and his family but to all men through him (Gal. 3:29).

God's promises to Abraham therefore were not for the selfish enjoyment of a selected few but could benefit others if used responsibly. It is incontrovertible that God's choice of Israel has a missionary purpose. A covenant, in the Hebrew context, covered all human relationships and not a limited definition of a matter of legal documents and sealing-wax in the modern mind. This bond united people in mutual obligations. Naturally, people's relationship to God should be expressed in covenant terms. Covenant terms could be used to describe three unique occasions in the Pentateuch:

i. God's promises never again to destroy the world with a flood (Gen. 9: 9)

ii. God's promises to Abram (Gen. 15:18; 17: 4)

iii. The Sinai Covenant established with Moses and summarized in the 'book of the covenant' (Ex.24: 4).

It must be borne in mind that although covenants were generally between equals, religiously it denotes a relationship between Creator and a lesser partner. However, the theological significance of the covenant must be highlighted. Based on initiative of God and implying a new revelation of the Creator, it made moral and ritual demands upon the people.

Taylor (1973) realistically observes that "the idea of ​​law is central to the Pentateuch and … it gives its name to the book as a whole" (p.124). It basically covers the Ten Commandments (Decalogue – Ex. 20; Deut.5) and associates with these various collections of laws classified as:

i. The book of the Covenant (Ex. 21-23)

ii. The Holiness Code (Lev. 17:26)

iii. The Law of Deuteronomy (Deut. 12:26)

Since Israel was part of the Eastern Mediterranean culture and shared in the ideas and experience of her neighbours, several similarities could be noted especially with the Code of Hammurabi. The differences however made Israel's laws distinctive. They could be summarized thus:

i. Uncompromising monotheism (that is relating everything to the one true God)

ii. Remarkable concern for slaves, strangers, women and orphans (the underprivileged)

iii. Community spirit based on the covenant relationship shared by all Israel with the Lord

In a brilliant summary, Cornfeld (1961) observed that "Hebrew law appears from its earliest times to stand on a higher ethical level and postulates moral human relationship which do not seem to be equalled in other Near Eastern Legislations" (p.213). Israel must approach God with a due sense of His moral and spiritual distinctiveness. The elaborate sacrificial system generally found its fulfilment in the solitary sacrifice of Christ – the perfect Lamb of God- through whom sins are not only forgiven but atonement made for all men eternally (Heb. 10: 1-18).

The exodus must be put in proper perspective. Described in Exodus 1-12, the Jews view it as the great intervention or saving act of God which later generations reminisced. This miraculous intervention was God's act of victory of the gods displaying total supremacy. Recalled annually in the Feast of the Passover, subsequent generations were reminded that they were initially members of a slave community mercifully redeemed from bondage. They were encouraged to use this as a deterrent, especially when curses reward disobedience. The historical significance was definitive. God could repeat His initial act. In Isaiah 51: 9-11, Israel looked for a second exodus while in exile in Babylon.

The afore-mentioned themes are never submerged in the Pentateuch. Probably, the only other theme (which recurs in depressing regularity) is Israel's obstinate and persistent sinfulness. Among other things, they were slow to accept Moses as their deliverer, grumbled about hardship and desired to 'go back to Egypt'. Not even Moses was immune and was punished by not being allowed to lead God's people in the promised land.


Together, the five books trace Israel's origin from the earliest times, through the patriarchs; then the Exodus and Sinai periods prior to the entry to Canaan; they also contain much legal instruction. God's response to sin is consistently a blend of judgement and mercy. Beyond the immediate discipline of Adam and Eve, and confusion of tongues at Babel, God tempers justice with salvation. It is understandable therefore that in spite of man's path, God called Abraham to be the channel of grace and revelation to all mankind.


Childs, B. (1979). Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture. Philadelphia: Fortress Press.

The Columbia-Viking Desk Encyclopedia (1964). New York: Dell Publishing Co.

Cornfeld, G. (1961). Adam to Daniel. New York: The Macmillan Company.

Everyman's Encyclopedia, Vol. 1. (1979). London: Dent and Sons.

Halley, HH (1962). Halley's Pocket Bible Handbook: An Abbreviated Bible Commentary. Minnesota:
Zondervan Publishing.

Knight, DA and GM Tucker (1985). The Hebrew Bible and its Modern Interpreters. Minnesota:
Fortress Press.

Lasor, WS, DA Hubbard and FW Bush (1982). Old Testament Survey: The Message, Form and
Background to the Old Testament. Michigan: Williams B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

The New Bible Dictionary (1962). London: The Inter-Varsity Fellowship.

NIV Study Bible (1984). Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House.

Stott, J. (1988). Understanding the Bible. London: Scripture Union.

Taylor, J. (1973). The Five Books. In The Lion Handbook to the Bible. Herts: Lion Publishing.


Source by Oliver Harding

How to Wear a Cross Body Bag


Cross body handbags are one of the most popular fashion trends in recent years, with this design being able to be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. There are also numerous high street and designer options in many different styles, which means that there really is a style that will suit everyone and fit all different types of budget too.

This kind of handbag, however, can be relatively difficult to style, with many people not knowing whether it is more suited for a day look or an evening look, or if it suits their particular body shape. Others can be concerned with how large the bag should be, or how low it should hang.

The first thing to bear in mind is that cross body handbags are a great practical option; that is to say they are much more about a blend of style and practicality rather than just a stylish accessory. These are the bags that you will take out shopping with you, or on a day out when you need your wallet, sunglasses, makeup, cardigan, your phone and a spare pair of ballerina flats.

Of course, these bags – like every type of bag – will vary in size and how much you can fit in them, but the fact remains that they are a practice absolution that can hold all your essential stuff and be easy to wear.

The golden rule to styling any bag to suit your body shape is to choose one that is in proportion to your body. This is, in fact, a golden rule for anything you wear on your body, but is especially true of these accessories as they make up an eye-catching part of your outfit.

If you are petite in size, it is best to therefore go for cross body handbags that also smaller in size, so you are not overpowered by a large bag that can make you look like you are labored with a mail man's sack! Larger ladies can wear larger designs, as this will put their figures into proportion, whereas smaller bags can make them look larger by comparison.

Although many are concerned that their bag simply holds all of their things rather than puts their body in proportion, this is something to bear in mind if you are styling an outfit that you want to look great in, perhaps for a special occasion or a date .

It is important to consider how you wear your cross body too, as straps that are too long can make the item very uncomfortable and impractical to wear. On the other hand, straps that are too short can be both uncomfortable and stylish in their own way.

The solution to this is searching for a bag that suits your height. Ideally bags should hang by your hip or above, with one of the most popular looks at the moment involving the bag hanging by the wearer's midriff. If the strap is too long, however, there are several things that you can do to remedy the situation.

One of these is to alter the strap of the bag yourself, although this will require some skills and you can risk ruining the bag. Look online for tutorials from fashions who can give you step by step instructions on this depending on the material that your bag is made from.

Another solution – and an extremely trendy one – is to simply tie a knot in the top of a strap that is too long beforehand it. This knot is actually a style statement in itself, and makes a great addition to a casual or grungy outfit.

Our final tip for styling cross body handbags is remembering to match your outfit with the level of elegance that your bag has. A school like satchel can look great as a casual day look, but will look out of place on an evening out. For the latter occasion however, a delicate cross body adorned with chains or crystals can look very fitting.


Source by Nanci Miller

Moving to Australia – Top Tips For South Africans


Do not get lost

GPS's or SatNavs are becoming very popular as a means of finding your way around when you are driving. They retail from about $ 200.00. If you have already bought a GPS in South Africa, you can download all the Australia maps for about $ 100.00. A map book or "Street Directory" costs under $ 30.00. These are invaluable for getting to know the suburbs and layout of your city, even if you have a GPS. The two most popular ones are Gregorys and UBD, both produced by Universal publishers. "Whereis" and "Google maps" are web based route planners. They are useful when planning a trip to check the distance and how long it will take.

Protect yourself from the sun

Australia has a very high rate of skin cancer. Even with all the warnings a lot of people expose themselves to too much sun in the middle of the day. Primary schools have a "no hat no play" policy for all students. The Cancer Council has a wide range of products to help prevent damage from the sun. You will see a lot of kids wearing rash vests (rashies) on the beach and at swimming pools.


If you bring an older TV from SA it might not work. Although Australia also uses the analogue PAL system, the audio signal is a different frequency so you will get a picture but no sound. TV channels in Australia are also broadcast in a digital signal. (Analogue is to be phased out by the end of 2013). To receive this signal you can buy a digital set top box for about $ 80, and as long as your TV has an audio and video RCA input you can connect it up. The picture is superior because it is digital: no ghosting or fuzziness. You need a decent aerial on the roof, but most houses and apartments already have one. Most new LCD or Plasma TVs in Australia come with a built in digital tuner but check this if you decide to buy one.


Your normal FM / AM radio that you bring with will work perfectly. As of August 2009, Digital radio has been launched in the major cities. This means that if you have a digital radio, even the AM stations such as ABC Sydney can be received in digital format, so the quality is much better. They are still expensive, (prices start $ 150.00 around) but prices should start coming down in the short term.

Filling up with petrol

There are no petrol pump attendants in most metropolitan areas, it's all self-serve. Some smaller towns still have pump attendants. It is a bit daunting at first, but take someone who is experienced the first time you go to fill up. Once you have filled up, remember the number of the pump, go inside to the counter and pay. You can pay with cash or card. There is no price standardisation on petrol. The price fluctuates throughout the week, and in Sydney it is generally cheaper on Tuesdays and early Wednesday mornings. The service stations ( "servo's") also have shops similar to those in South Africa where you can buy basic foodstuffs, necessities (like chocolate) and the newspapers. The large supermarket chains like Coles and Woolworths also own about 80% of the petrol stations around Sydney. They have fuel discount offers to encourage you to shop at their grocery stores then buy petrol at their outlets. If you spend more than $ 30.00 at the Supermarket at any one time, you get a discount voucher which entitles you to a 4c per litre discount when you pay for your petrol. On Tuesdays all around Sydney you will see cars queuing right into the street at Woolworths and Coles / Shell petrol stations, and the independents are almost empty. Do not get sucked into this mindset. Even if you have a large car like a Ford Falcon or Holden Commodore with a 70 L tank, and even if you were filling up from empty, you would only save 70 x 4c = $ 2.80. If you fill up twice a month like me, you would only $ save 5.60 a month! If you drive a large 4×4 with a 100 L tank, you would save $ 4.00 if you filled up from empty. With a small car and a 45 L tank you would only save $ 1.80. In my opinion it's not worth the hassle to queue, I prefer to go to an outlet that is not as busy and pay a bit more.

Water usage

Depending on the level of restrictions, you may or may not be allowed to water your garden with a hand held hose and a trigger type nozzle. In Sydney at the time of writing, level 3 restrictions are in force so hand-held hoses can be used for gardens on specific days before 10 am and after 4pm. Buckets can be used at any time. You can be fined if you are caught watering out of permitted hours. Again, depending on the water restrictions in your area you may be allowed to wash your car with a hose, as long has it has a trigger type nozzle. There are commercial car wash bays where you can wash your car yourself, or the automated kind that is common in South Africa.

Doing your Washing

If you come from a city like Johannesburg where the air is relatively dry, you may find humidity a problem even in Sydney. (Brisbane is much worse, more like Durban). A clothes drying rack and a tumble drier are essential. Products such as "Damp Rid" to be very useful to put in cupboards to absorb any excess moisture and prevent musty smells.

Furniture and appliances

Try to bring all your own furniture, (as long as it is free of wood borers and other pests) but do not worry too much about small appliances such as toasters, steam irons and kettles. They are relatively cheap because of the strong Australian Dollar, and because many of the appliances are made in China. Appliances made in Italy or Germany cost a bit more. Washing machines, fridges and tumble driers cost a little more but are still good value. The voltage in Australia is the same as in South Africa, but the plugs are different. Bring a few multiplugs with you from SA, then replace the South African style plug on the end of the cable with an Australian one. This way, you can plug your old appliances into the multiplug without having to change all of your plugs at once. When you are more settled in you can start changing the plugs on individual appliances.

Daylight saving

This is a great concept that is observed in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, and the Australian Capital Territory and has been synchronised across these states. Western Australia began a three year trial of daylight saving in December 2006 but in a recent referendum, people of WA (mainly the rural population) voted overwhelmingly against it becoming permanent. Queensland and the Northern Territory do not observe daylight saving. Daylight saving starts on the first Sunday in October and ends on the first Sunday in April. The clocks are advanced one hour in October then put back one hour in April. It takes a bit of getting used to at first, but the benefit is that in summer it only gets dark around 8.00 pm, so people can go to the beach after work, play outdoor sport, work in the garden and so on.


Most councils have very good public libraries with many resources. Once you register you can access your account online and reserve or renew books. Many libraries have a type of "post box" outside so that you can return books after hours. Most libraries have computers with internet access and some are now "WiFi" enabled so you can bring your own laptop if it has a built in wireless device.


Many of the main arterial roads in the major cities have tolls. Most toll roads have done away with manned toll booths: they only have an automatic toll system. It is a very good idea to get an E tag. The device sticks to the inside of your windscreen and is linked to your registration number. You can apply online and the device will be posted to you (Oh … did I mention how reliable and secure Australia Post is?). When you first apply for one, you pay a deposit and an initial "top up". When the balance drops to a certain value it is topped up from your nominated credit card or current account. In other words when you drive past a toll sensor, your tag beeps and the value of the toll is debited from your account automatically. You get a pdf statement emailed monthly to you.

Very first world!


Source by Vic Chatterton

Virginia Woolf and 'A Room of One's Own'


Virginia Woolf published her extended essay, the six-chapter, 'A Room of One's Own', in 1929, based on a series of lectures she had delivered the previous year at Girton and Newnham, the two women's Colleges at the University of Cambridge. By then, an established and esteemed novelist, the theme she was exploring was 'Women and Fiction'. Published just ten years after women had gained suffrage in Britain, the book is regarded as a precursor to the voluminous feminist literary activity in the later years of the 20th century.

In spite of the lack of a formal academic background, Virginia Woolf was a well-read autodidact. She uses a narrative form of an imaginary young woman named Mary given any of three surnames, researching the topic of 'Women and Fiction'. She concludes that minimally a woman needs 'a room of her own' (lockable) and some cash to live on (500 a year in Mary's case). What she is clearly saying, after a careful historical analysis of lives led by men and women in relation to each other in the past, and up to the day of her deliberations, is that women are deprived of artistic and literary expression because of their economic , personal, and social subordination by men, and not because of a lack of innate ability or talent.

The purpose of this essay is to analyse, and comment upon the author's extensive use of binary categories beginning with the central, historically loaded, categorization of the differences between men and women. Although two sets of binaries, reason / emotion, and fiction / fact, are delved into in this essay, Woolf's awareness of the complexities of apparent binary categories is far more extensive and will be examined more closely in the following paragraphs.

Although there does not appear to be 'opposites' in nature, dualism seems to be deeply rooted in language and human thinking. Binary opposites or polarizations are not always logical opposites but are necessary for the units of language to have value and meaning. Following Saussurean structuralism, it is generally held that 'binary opposition is one of the most important principles governing the structure of language', while 'paired contrasts' are not always 'opposites', in any exact sense, they are believed to be necessary as a means of ordering the 'dynamic complexity of experience'. Most linguists believe that 'binary opposition is a child's first logical operation'. Another powerful influence on binary thinking in the West was Descartes' mind-body dualism.

Binary thinking is also hierarchical. One of the two terms is considered positive and the other negative. Religious thinking can not exist without the polarisation of guilt and innocence. Structuralists believe that the world is organised into male / female constructs, roles, words and ideas. For example, masculinity (phallus) is associated with dominance and femininity (vagina) with passivity. Post-structuralists seek to deconstruct the whole edifice of binary thinking, not allowing one to be intrinsically superior to the other, giving instances of binary opposition contradicting itself and undermining its own authority.

However, there is increasingly a consensus forming that such 'antitheses' are aspects of a deeper unity and 'all so-called opposites such as reason / emotion and spirit / substance is merely' apparent 'binary opposites' (Forceville, 1996). Woolf's essay, having utilised a plethora of binaries in her exposition, concludes with the acceptance of that 'deeper unity' in her acknowledgement of 'manwomanly' and 'woman-manly' qualities in human nature.

Enough has been said about the fundamental significance of binary thinking in the use of language until recent times that it is no wonder that Woolf's essay is filled with many instances of the complexities between apparent binaries. Of course, the main concern when talking of 'Women and Fiction' is of defining and delineating the subject. Woolf shows that this is no easy matter. In the course of her investigations by reading books written by men on women, she unearths many 'fictions' like the insistence on the inferiority of women on all fronts. Such views are not based on 'fact'. Woolf dramatizes the effect of discrimination and disempowerment of women by asking the reader to imagine an equally gifted sister of Shakespeare. Prevented from achieving any of her creative aims and ambitions, Judith Shakespeare commits suicide only after what women from time immemorial were expected and permitted to do, give birth.

Since Woolf's lectures are given from a personal point of view and has no pretensions to being academic, she implores her audience not to expect a neat conclusion. She uses a fictional device to present her argument based very much on facts she gathers at the British Museum Library. At the Oxbridge college she visits, presumably by invitation, figures like the Beadle, Fellows and Scholars whom she introduces almost casually in Chapter One return at the end, emphasising their relevance to the narrative and her subject matter. She was debarred from trespassing on their 'turf', both literally and metaphorically. She was also not admitted to a library there because of her sex. She confronts and questions binaries such as illusion and truth. She also dichotomizes pre-war and post-war sensibilities. She describes the trees and the river at Oxbridge as vague and resigned at sunset, while becoming glorious and expectant in the morning. She also addresses the binary qualities of 'laughter' and 'anguish'. Her thought processes are clear and well articulated mainly because of her use of such binary signifiers.

The binary theme continues with her contrasting the sumptuous lunch given at a well-endowed male preserve at Oxbridge with the rather 'poor' meal for dinner at a female college. While gold and silver are said to be 'buried' within the 500-year old grand buildings patronised by Kings and nobles, the women's college built in the 1860s had a struggle to raise the initial 30,000. She contrasts the safety and prosperity of men against the poverty and insecurity of women throughout history reflected in every facet of their lives.

In Chapter Two, she deals with the binaries of interest and confusion as well as amusement versus boredom allied with the roles of masculinity and femininity. When she speaks of the freedom from fear and bitterness that the inheritance from Mary's deceased aunt gave her, she can also contrast that with the pity and tolerance ( 'toleration') she feels for womankind from her position of freedom. Reflecting on the culinary pleasures she enjoyed the previous day, she wonders why men drink wine while women drink water. She also contrasts two types of anger she felt over Prof von X's peroration over 'The Mental, Moral and Physical Inferiority of the Female Sex'. Her anger at the treatment of women at first was a complex emotion of disgust while it then transforms into a 'simple and open' anger that she could use constructively.

By the time she reaches Chapter Three, she has not unearthed any facts, but only opinions totally detrimental to women (fiction). She now turns to historians (fact). She refers to Prof. Trevelyan's 'History of England'. There she finds the abominable treatment of women by men during Elizabethan times regarded as the norm. Wife-beating was a regular practice. Marriages were pre-arranged to suit the men. Contrastingly, women who were portrayed in literature possessed personality and dignity denied to the ordinary middle-class woman. Women 'burnt like beacons in works of all the poets from the beginning of time.' While women in literature, like Antigone, Cleopatra, Lady Macbeth and Emma Bovary could be 'heroic or mean', 'splendid or sordid', 'infinitely beautiful or hideous in the extreme', the average woman was a complete nonentity, hidden from view . Binaries abound in this chapter as in 'women are imaginatively of the highest importance' while 'practically she was completely insignificant'.

When we reach Chapter Four, we come across the struggles of Lady Winchilsea with poetry, with Aphra Behn having more success with her plays. This further supports Woolf's insights into why and how women were denied free expression. Woolf first uses the word 'incandescent' with which she describes the creative mind, as a quote from Lady Winchilsea. She needed for her mind to have 'consumed all impediments and become incandescent.' But unfortunately it was 'harassed and distracted with hates and grievances'. Aphra Behn was the first woman in England to make a living by her writing, although her personal life is not said to have been worthy of emulation. However, Behn opened the way for the 18th century women novelists like the Bronte sisters, Jane Austen and George Eliot. In describing them and the novels of the early 19th century Woolf speaks of their virtues in binary terms as swift not slovenly, expressive without being precious.

In Chapter Five Woolf introduces a representative contemporary woman fiction writer she calls Mary Carmichael. This is an imaginary figure chosen to show what is lost in writing from a position of defensiveness and protest. Woolf lauds the fact that Carmichael is no longer self-conscious of being female in her imaginative writing. There are binaries like 'heavenly goodness' and 'hellish depravity', compared with writing that is 'serious, profound and luminous' with others, 'lazy-minded and conventional'. She advises contemporary women writers to 'illumine your own soul with its profundities and its shallows, and its vanities and its generosities'. Although Carmichael's fiction may be 'pulped by the publisher in ten year's time', Woolf is confident that her successors in another 'hundred years' would have achieved their full and glorious potential.

In Chapter Six Woolf describes a man and woman approaching each other from opposite sides of the street. The setting is a London street viewed by the author from her apartment window. They get into a taxi and are driven away. For Woolf this is a symbol of the binaries coming together. The strain she had being going through over the last two days eased, and she now has an insight into the 'unity of mind'. As Coleridge had said, great minds are androgynous. The true creator is 'incandescent' and 'undivided'. Sex-consciousness stands in the way of creativity. She says that 'it is fatal for anyone who writes to think of their sex.' She finally arrives at the conclusion that good writing flows from a marriage of opposites. Gender, masculinity / femininity is no longer relevant. Honest, creative and lasting fiction arises from a mind that is uncluttered and can face facts.

Virginia Woolf has engaged in a thorough examination of many binary concepts including masculinity / femininity, reason / emotion, and fact / fiction in her extended essay ostensibly dealing with women and fiction. This brief analysis reveals her arriving at the conclusion that it is the androgynous mind, which is 'naturally creative, incandescent and undivided' that can arrive at 'truth' by 'bringing together many varieties of error'. Her understanding of the vagaries and complexities of binary thinking reflected in this book shows her to have been one of the pioneering, formative minds of her time.


Source by Migel Jayasinghe

Timeshare Buyer's Remorse – Costly Mistakes When Buying a Timeshare on Vacation


Every year people like you and I take much needed vacations at beautiful vacation destinations around the world. We all seek change from our daily lives in places that will allow us to find peace and tranquility spotted with enough exciting activities to raise our spirits and bring joy to our lives.

The vacation of your dreams can be a financial nightmare if you fall prey to buying a costly timeshare on vacation!

While on these glorious respites many of us encounter the main street peddlers and hotel lobby kiosks offering free or low cost sport adventures, theatre tickets or the like. The deals are real and can be a lot of fun. Who would not want to go on a helicopter ride to a remote waterfall on Maui for $ 29? But be aware, there is a catch!

In exchange for these deals you are required to give up 2-6 hours of your prime vacation time to visit a timeshare resort and participate in a timeshare sales pitch staged with fun emotional tugs on your heart, champaign toasts and not so obvious social pear pressure . Your experience is choreographed from the moment you arrive with the goal of having you feel excited to have paid $ 20,000 to $ 50,000 or more for the right to spend one or two weeks a year for life at their glorious resort not to mention all the added features and benefits that are piled on to close the deal.

With deference to Winston Churchill, Never, Never, Never, Never, Never, Never, Never buy a timeshare at Retail during one of these sales pitches! Go ahead and partake of their free or low cost bribes to get you into their presentation but I implore you to NEVER buy a timeshare at Retail on vacation.

A real world example of a friend who did not follow my advice and lost $ 19,000!

My friend, let's call him Keith to protect his real identity, and his family of four headed south to Florida for a well deserved vacation near a well known family entertainment complex. Keith and his wife, wanting to show their children a good time, stopped by the activity center at their hotel and were offered a tremendous deal on prime local activity parks that the kids would really enjoy. They agreed to the "2 hour presentation" the next day.

You know the story; they bought the timeshare with a view of the pool at a very nice local resort. Excited they were already planning their visit next year and all the things they would do again as they enjoyed their stay at this fabulous resort.

Now Keith knew I owned several timeshares and upon his return home he promptly tells me about his prize timeshare purchase. My first words to Keith were, "If you do not do another thing I ever ask you please use the grace period you have by law and cancel your timeshare purchase today, in fact right now, please, please, please!" In our discussion I found out Keith paid cash for the timeshare (from an inheritance) and he and his family still had that dear in a headlight focus on all the joy their $ 25,000% 2B Retail purchase would bring to them. And they did get the unit with the view of the pool!

Suffice to say Keith was not listening well when I explained how I was positive I could find him a similar timeshare to buy, if not the same timeshare resort, for pennies on the dollar. Keith at least agreed to mention our conversation with his wife that evening but I knew in my mind he bought the choreographed presentation hook, line and sinker.

That evening I did some online research and within 10 minutes I found a re-sale unit in the same resort for about $ 6,000. Do the math. $ 25,000 minus $ 6,000 equals a $ 19,000 cash savings. Keith could buy 3 more weeks at same resort and have a full month for his $ 25,000. So I emailed the details to Keith and to my dismay but with no surprise I got the response, "Well we talked it over and I am sure you found a good deal but the family was really excited and we did get the pool view, and we did have the money, so we are going to keep the one we bought. Thanks for your help anyway. "

No amount of logic was going to change Keith's emotional decision. With a little more research I am convinced I could have found him the same or comparable resort at $ 2,000 or $ 3,000. Sad but true I lost yet another battle. You see this scenario is played out over and over each and every day and I feel for the millions of dollars that are spent on Retail timeshare purchases when just down the street or online you can purchase the same or comparable timeshare units at pennies on the dollar .

Buyer's remorse is your best opportunity to save thousands of dollars.

Within a couple of years, circumstances change for a high percentage of timeshare owners. These changes cause these owners to re-evaluate their need for a timeshare, especially if they financed the retail cost. They soon find out that the glorious timeshare they bought 2 years ago for say $ 25,000 can now only be sold for at the most $ 10,000 if they are really lucky. So if they financed they are upside down, owing more than they could get for the timeshare (does this sound familiar relative to the circumstances of the sub-prime mortgage meltdown?).

Distraught with this reality, a high percentage of these upside down timeshare owners abandon their timeshare obligations and most end up on the timeshare re-sale market, for sale by lenders, real estate brokers and third party agents, hence the opportunity for you and I to buy these same excellent timeshare properties at pennies on the dollar.

I know about buying timeshares on the re-sale market because that is what I have done several times over. The Islands of Maui, Hawaii and Kauai as well as mainland locations Scottsdale, Arizona, Horseshoe Valley, Canada and other great locations, all bought NOT at Retail. In fact I bought them at $ 2,000 or less and as low as $ 99. That's Pennies on the Dollar! Some will tell you that timeshares are a poor investment. I have to agree that they are not an investment like buying real property. As a vacation tool timeshares are a great investment if, and only if, you buy them at pennies on the dollar.

Save your cash and buy on re- sale market!

Make wise decisions as you seek the ultimate joys of vacations in fabulous locations around the globe. Pack your emotions about timeshares while on vacation and keep your wallet closed. Wait until you are home to seek out opportunities to buy the same or substantially similar resort properties on the re-sale market allowing you to save lots of cash or buy even more timeshares. Never, Never, Never, Never, Never, Never, Never buy a timeshare at retail during one of these sales pitches while on what should be a fun vacation!


Source by Terry Allison

Book Review – Vanessa Greatorex's Wilmslow Through Time


Wilmslow Through Time by Vanessa Greatorex (Amberley Publishing £ 9.99)

Wilmslow, home to almost 40 000 people , including celebrities such as Alex Ferguson and Coronation Street's Bill Roach, is the subject of a new book, Wilmslow Through Time, by Chester author and historian, Vanessa Greatorex. Using photographs from 1890 onwards, plus captions, the recent history of the bijou Cheshire town is captured in storybook form.

Now home to luxury car sales rooms, and the rich and famous (detached homes there can cost anything up to £ 6m), the town's former milling industry factories, and humble worker's dwellings, earn their place in Greatorex's century of images and comment. Modern Wilmslow's prosperity and comforts come at the cost of significant visual interference in the form of road markings, cars, lampposts and telegraph cabling, and some pretty awful modern architecture, as the pictures of Church Street show. However, the author is careful to delineate the reasons – usually dereliction, sanitation or fire damage in previous decades – for new build and demolition. Overall, a clear picture of continuity is presented in the book, with the key points of architectural interest and natural beauty being preserved through time, and forming the basis of Wilmslow's reputation of well-established exclusivity.

Award-winner Greatorex's typically succinct prose conveys a wealth of interesting and indeed entertaining snippets. On the Grove Street Jaw-Droppers page, for example, a 1970 photograph of the only camel to have walked the Wilmslow streets sits beside a recent shot of the equally strange-looking Barclays bank, which the author archly describes as more of a "seaside pavilion than a bank ". A very real sense of personal engagement with the town, and its people, is evident throughout. The reader can not but share the author's huge disappointment upon failing to locate a breathtakingly beautiful scene – the regimented line of riverside winter poplars, along with their symmetrical still water reflection – of a 1905 T.Baddely sepia photograph.

As a writer of thrillers myself, I was especially interested to see that, in true Midsomer Murder tradition, there is a dark flipside to the bucolic idyll suggested by photographs such as the Wilmslow Carnival pipers and horse drawn floats bearing costumed villagers. In 1984, Wilmslow made international headlines as the site of the Lindow Man, whose astonishingly well-preserved body was found in peaty, common ground just outside of Wilmslow.

Greatorex finishes her book with an arresting image of the dig for his remains, complete with inset of a pathetic, crumpled, high-born, young man who had been ritualistically murdered and his body dumped in the Wilmslow mud. The shadow cast by his tragedy reaches through time: in addition to Lindow Man, the excavations unearthed a skull fragment which prompted local man Peter Reyn-Bardt confess to the murder of his wife in the 1950's. He was convicted, even though the skull fragment belonged to an Iron Age (some archaeologists argue, Roman) Wilmslow woman.

Wilmslow Through Time is more than a well -presented, highly readable work. It is a labour of love by a highly accomplished researcher and writer whose clear affinity and affection for the landscape of her childhood is evident in this meticulously sourced and well-presented series of anecdotes and images.


Source by Charlotte Pickering

The Discreet Millionaire


Who do you consider rich? At what income are you considered rich? For now we'll put aside the platitudes that say you're rich if you have your health, a happy caring family, close supportive friends and many interests. Of course these are the reasons we live for and money can not buy those treasures. But as Spike Mulligan once said "Money does bring you a more pleasant form of misery."

These characteristics of the vast majority of millionaires in the United States may surprise you:

  • Live in a less than $ 400,000 house.
  • More likely wearing a Timex watch.
  • Pay $ 15 or less for a bottle of wine.
  • Never paid more than $ 400 for a suit.
  • More likely to drive an Acura than a BMW.
  • Spend little on trendy brands and luxury items

Figures from the Tax Policy Center say if your annual household income is $ 107,628, you are in the top 20% of income earners. If you exceed $ 148,687, you are in the top 10%. The top 5% earn over $ 208,810. And if your household income is over $ 521,411, congratulations. You are one of those "1% ers" and likely demonized by those who view hard work and risk-taking as a matter of luck or good genes. However, like a company, your personal balance sheet should be the determining factor. If you make $ 200,000 a year it does you no good if you're spending $ 210,000.

You may in fact just appear rich instead of actually being rich.

For example the Take – recent news about to NBA legend 's Alan Iverson. Shockingly, a man who before age 35 had amassed a fortune more than the average person will see in a lifetime had blown it all. To quote from the article: "Iverson blew through his money at an alarming rate on gaudy jewelry, expensive cars, and other frivolous purchases. In 2012, a Georgia judge garnished his wages to satisfy a $ 859,896.46 debt to a jeweler."

Huh? Almost a million dollars to a single jeweler! Here is a man who not only looked rich but actually was rich. But because the desire to look rich overwhelmed him, he is now begging for change on the street. He does stand to get $ 30 million from a trust, but not until age 55. It will be interesting to see if he learns his lesson, if he can survive until then. My guess is that $ 30 million will be gone before he reaches "official" retirement age.

This is why net worth is a far better gauge of true wealth than income. The Federal Reserve Survey of Consumer Finances indicates a net worth of $ 415,700 puts you in the top 20% of households. You are in the top 10% if your net worth is $ 952,200. (Dr. Thomas J. Stanley – author of The Millionaire Next Door – says that one in eight American households has a net worth of $ 1 million or more. That's close) If your net worth totals $ 1,863,800, you are in the top 5%. And if you have a household net worth of $ 6,816,200, ta daa- you are in the top 1% … and possibly frowned upon by redistributionists who resent folks that live beneath their means, save regularly and handle their financial affairs prudently.

Most millionaires are quite the opposite of being big spenders. They spend far less than they can afford on all commonly owned assets. The want to-be's, on the other hand, (people with average or higher than average income but little net worth) are merely "aspirational." They buy expensive clothes, top-shelf wines, luxury cars and often more house than they can comfortably afford.

It's ironic the very same thing that makes them APPEAR rich prevents them from ever BEING rich.

How then do you become rich if you are not currently? The basic formula is pretty simple: Maximize your income (by upgrading your education or job skills). Minimize your liabilities (by living beneath your means). Save the difference in an IRA or 401K (I know easier said than done.) And follow proven investment principles.

Sure you must learn to be frugal. But eventually becoming financially free, to be able to do and go wherever you want, not have to depend on a bonehead of a boss or the federal government is what I consider rich. What a feeling.

Some people refuse to change, but the bottom line is clear: If you want to be rich, you have to stop appearing like it and actually start living like the many real millionaires you will not see on TV.


Source by Joe Sabatucci