Top 5 Luxury Wedding Venues in New York City


When a couple makes the decision to wed, life changes; planning a wedding is one of the most fun, most stressful and most complicated thing a couple will experience. From the start, couples must decide where they want to get married, what type of wedding they want to have, how many guests they want to invite and what type of budget they have to work with. Many couples can do this easily, while others have a little more difficulty. Fortunately for all engaged couples looking to wed in New York City, there are five luxurious, fabulous wedding venues that offer not only a perfect wedding location, but professional assistance that helps to make the planning process simple and much more enjoyable.

The Plaza Hotel

Luxury weddings in New York City are not complete without a breathtaking view of Central Park. The Plaza Hotel is one of the most legendary and luxurious venues in New York City; it is so fabulous that many a celebrity has married in this gorgeous, luxury location. Some famous couples to wed at the Plaza Hotel include Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones. The hotel provides a location for both a couple's ceremony and reception and the venue includes dinner, drinks and a wedding cake in the $ 375 per person price. Additionally, the chance to hold the ceremony in the legendary Terrace Room will run an additional $ 12,000. Couples will also receive a complementary night in the honeymoon suite and suites for the bridal party to prepare for the big moment, the day of. Both the Grand Ballroom and the Terrace Room are decorated with intricate works of art, columns, and deep, rich colors that embody the luxury and sophistication that is the Plaza Hotel.

The Plaza Hotel
Fifth Avenue at Central Park South
New York, New York 10019
CPS Events at the Plaza

The Four Seasons Park Avenue

Couples who want to have a high-end wedding ceremony and reception that spares no expense, but offers an intimate, romantic appeal will love the luxurious accommodations of the Four Seasons Park Avenue. Reality television star Bethenny Frankel married husband Jason Hoppy in the Pool Room of the Four Seasons restaurant on her hit Bravo television show. More intimate than large locations, the Four Seasons Park Avenue is every bit the luxurious, glamorous location that brides and grooms want on their big day. The Four Seasons Park Avenue has two wedding packages in the Pool Room, which features a sparkling pool in the middle of the gorgeous room. The first is a black tie wedding package for 80-120 guests for $ 275 and 22 percent tax per person; the second is the package for less than 80 guests, which $ runs 235 per person.

Four Seasons Park Avenue
57 E. 57th Street near Park Ave.
New York, New York 10019

Mandarin Oriental

High atop the Time Warner Center is the Mandarin Oriental, the luxury wedding venue with floor to ceiling windows and uninterrupted views of all of Central Park and the New York City skyline from the 36th floor. For $ 350 and 22 percent tax per person, couples will get to hold their ceremony and reception, a three course dinner with champagne and the bridal suite to get ready and for the couple to spend their first night as husband and wife.

Mandarin Oriental
80 Columbus Circle at 60th Street
New York, New York 10019

Cipriani 42nd Street

Imagine holding a wedding in room that makes guests feel as if though they've gone back in time to classic Renaissance inspired Italy. Large columns, high ceilings and intricate detail that looks like it took years to create engulf the room at Cipriani's 42nd Street. This luxury wedding venue is not for those who want small and intimate; this is for those who want over the top luxury and a sense of fabulous that not just any couple can pull off. For $ 300 per person plus 23 percent tax per person, couples will have their ceremony and reception. Decoration fees are an additional $ 10,000 and there is no cake or bridal suite included. However, there is also no cake cutting fee at this luxury venue.

Cipriani's 42nd Street
110 E. 42nd Street between Lexington and Park Aves.
New York, NY 10019

The American Museum of Natural History

The Rose Planetarium in the American Museum of Natural History offers the perfect backdrop for a luxury wedding ceremony. Weather permitting, cocktails are served on the Arthur Ross Terrace, with views of Manhattan that are breathtaking. The clean lines and modern feel of the museum provide an intimate feel for any wedding, even if the guest list includes hundreds. The fee for this location includes a $ 3,500 membership fee, $ 11,000 admission fee, $ 1,000 Terrace fee, $ 235 per person for dinner and $ 52 per person for an open bar, excluding tax.

The American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, New York 10019

Luxury wedding venues in New York City are so swanky and fabulous that everyone wishes they could wed in such luxury and class. With so much to choose from, along with the assistance of in house event planners, each of these luxury venues cost a pretty penny, but they also allow couples to relax and leave the hard work to the professionals so all they have to do is show up and enjoy their wedding.


Source by Simon Marsh

The Dead Rabbits Irish Street Gang


The Dead Rabbits Irish Street gang, of the middle of the 19th Century, was as vicious as any gang in the history of New York City. They ruled the squalid area of ​​Lower Manhattan called the Five Points, and if a member of any other gang dare set foot in their territory, bad things happened to them very fast.

There is some dispute as to how the Dead Rabbits got their name. One version is that the word "Rabbit" sounds like Irish word raibead, meaning a "man to be feared." "Dead" was a 1800's slang word that meant "very." So a "Dead Rabbit" is a "man to be very feared."

Another version is that the Dead Rabbits were an offshoot of a older gang called the "Roach Guards." Two factions within the Roach Guards constantly quarreled, and during a fistfight at an especially violent gang meeting, someone threw a dead rabbit into the room. When the fighting subsided, one group took the name "Dead Rabbits," while the other kept the name "Roach Guards." Predating the present street gangs the Crips and the Bloods by more than a 125 years, to mark which group a man belonged to, a Dead Rabbit wore a blue stripe on his pants, while a Roach Guard wore a red stripe on his pants.

Besides the Roach Guards, the Rabbits' arch enemy was the Bowery Boys. On July 4th, 1857, the Rabbits and the Bowery Boys squared off at the corner of Bayard and the Bowery. The incident started, when a embattled policemen, being chased out of the Five Points by a group of Rabbits, ran into a Bowery Boy's saloon. The Rabbits followed the policeman into the dive, and were beaten back by an angry group of Bowery Boys.

The Bowery Boys took offense at their turf being invaded, so a large group of Bowery Boys marched into the Five Points area. They were cut off by a battalion of Rabbits and a two-day war started, with as many as a thousand combatants fighting with hatchets, knives, stones, and even guns. The police sent in reinforcements, but they were beaten back by both gangs and told in no uncertain terms to mind their own business. The war swayed back and forth into both territories, with Canal Street being the boundary line.

By the end of the second day, the two gangs were near exhaustion, and the Seventh Regiment of the National Guard was called in by New York Mayor Fernando Wood. The National Guard, joined by the New York City Police, busted into what was left of the skirmish and started cracking the heads of the weary warriors. When the dust settled, eight gang members were dead and hundreds more were injured.

This did not end the animosity between the Bowery Boys and Rabbits. In August, 1858, on the corner of Worth and Centre Street, a small group of Bowery Boys were pummeled by a larger group of Rabbits. As the Bowery Boys ran off licking their wounds, two unsuspecting men exited a house at 66 Centre Street. They walked right into the path of the angry Rabbits, and thinking these two men were Bowery Boys coming back for more, the Rabbits descended upon them with a vengeance. One man was able to escape, but Cornelius Rady was not so lucky. He was hit in the back of the head with a rock from a slingshot and died soon afterward. Rabbit Patrick Gilligan was arrested for Rady's murder, but it is not clear if indeed he was convicted.

The Civil War started two years later and many of the gang members were drafted, against their wills, into the war and sent to far away places, mostly in the South. When the war ended, the Rabbits were either dead themselves, or in no physical condition to continue tormenting the streets of Lower Manhattan. But in New York City, the creature that it was, and in some cases still is, other street gangs soon followed to take the place of the Rabbits.


Source by Joseph Bruno

What Makes London Such A Great City To Visit?


London is a massive city, it is at the forefront of modern culture. It leads the way in fashion, art and entertainment. The city also has charming traditional elements from double deck red buses to old, beautifully designed buildings. It is a city for everyone: children marvel at their favorite pop stars in Madam Tussauds. Young adults enjoy the bright lights and cutting edge nightlife of Picadilly Circus and the West End. More mature visitors love to take in the rich culture by visiting the likes of Buckingham Palace.

You can get around the city in one of the iconic black cabs which provide a very spacious and comfortable ride, or take a city tour on a double deck bus. The London Underground subway system is a very convenient mode of transport too, there are day passes which make long tours very inexpensive. The weather is milder than much of the UK, so it is often pleasant enough for a stroll around the streets too. The charming architecture of the old buildings combines with lively street performers in Covent Gardens for a perfect afternoon stroll.

Although a busy city, London has an excellent tourist infrastructure. A fantastic way to start the day is by riding on the London Eye. Located just south of the river Thames, it gives an amazing view of the whole city. It is centrally located and close to many more tourist attractions, in the summer why not continue by taking a walk over London Bridge towards the Houses Of Parliament. In winter you could take refuge in a traditional English pub.

A trip to London would not be complete without a visit to Buckingham Palace to watch the changing of the guards. Nearby Hyde Park is an excellent place for a stroll and an escape from the crowds elsewhere. There are literally hundreds of attractions which make London one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world.


Source by Guy Mendelson

Learn Street Magic Tricks


Magic got its start in the street. Before magicians became popular with the upper classes during the 1800's, virtually all magic was performed on the street for any passerby who would stop to notice. Nowadays there has been a return to street magic, with many magicians filming themselves walking around and performing tricks for unsuspecting pedestrians.

Street magic is any magic that can be performed on the street with spectators in close proximity. Elaborate sets and large props can not really be used in street magic, so coins, cards, and other close up illusions make up the majority of street performances.

One trick that can be performed almost anywhere and absolutely stuns spectators is "The Jumping Toothpick". This trick is incredibly simple and requires only two toothpicks.

In "The Jumping Toothpick" you lay one toothpick across another on the edge of a table. You can then make the toothpick move, jump, and even flip over, seemingly with telekinetic powers.

Begin by pinching the edge of one toothpick between your thumb and index fingers like you are making an "OK" sign, with the toothpick extending towards your pinky. Then place the fingernail of your middle finger against the side your thumb is touching. You should now be able to put pressure against the toothpick with the nail of your middle finger.

Hold this first toothpick parallel to the edge of the table. Lay the second toothpick so that one end is resting on the table, and the other end is resting perpendicularly on the toothpick you are holding. Now for the secret: Use your index finger to push the toothpick you are holding against the nail of your middle finger. Squeeze hard and create some tension. Now slide your middle finger towards your index. If you are creating enough tension against your nail, it will "pop" as you slide back.

This pop will cause the second toothpick to jump into the air. A really good pop will make the toothpick flip over or even send it flying. The rougher the toothpick is, the better effect you can get. The trick can be performed with wooden matches as well.

You must really apply a lot of tension to get the trick to work properly, and your hand may even shake. So when you perform the trick, talk about how you must focus your "powers". This gives you a good excuse to be tensing your hand so much.

With your free hand you can employ some misdirection by pointing your palm towards the toothpicks or making finger movements. This will take spectators' attention away from where the magic is really happening. It may even cause them to look for strings or ask you to perform the trick without your free hand floating.

What makes "The Jumping Toothpick" such a great trick is that it can be performed anywhere with a table and toothpicks or matches. Considering the amount of time people spend in eating establishments you'll have a lot of opportunity to impress your friends with this one. It also requires almost no skill.

Another trick that has been used heavily by street magicians in the past decade is Balducci levitation. This trick was popularized by Ed Balducci and allows the performer to seemingly levitate a few inches off the ground.

Achieving the effect is simple. However, the magician's position in relation to the audience is incredibly important. This trick will not work except with a small, tightly grouped crowd.

You stand with your back to the crowd and feet together at a 45 degree angle. If you think of where you are standing as a clock, then your feet would be pointing at about 2 o'clock, with the audience at 6 o'clock. Your front left toe should be completely out of view.

To levitate, simple lift yourself off the ground and support the weight with your front left toe. Hold it for a few seconds, and then return to the ground. You must try to make your feet appear parallel to the ground and each other.

As you return to the ground, bend your knees a little bit to exaggerate the effect. What really makes this trick believable is the performance. Act as if the levitation has taken a physical toll on your body. Do some Tai Chi as part of your "preparation", whatever you can come up with. If performed correctly the audience will be stunned.

These street magic illusions can be performed anywhere, anytime, for anyone. They are both simple effects that produce absurd results. The toothpick trick can be learned in a matter of minutes, with the Balducci levitation it takes a while to figure out the nuances. Both are relatively simple though, and with some dedication can be learned with no problem.


Source by Jacob T Anderson

Guest Friendly Hotels in Pattaya


Pattaya is a city with multiple personalities. For some it is a place to learn about Thai culture, for many it is a shopping paradise, for families it offers a host of activities that everyone can enjoy and for a millions of single men, it's a nightclub centre and a place to meet some of Thailand's most beautiful women.

You can meet Thai girls at bars, go-go bars, at the beach or just about anywhere in this friendly town. The question that guys often ask is where do I find a guest friendly hotel. If I want to invite my new friend back to my hotel, does the hotel welcome an extra guest, is it "girl friendly" or will I be charged a "joiner fee"?

5 Star Hotels

While many people think of Pattaya as Asia's most vibrant nightlife centre, this is just one part of the tourist activities in Pattaya. Judging by hotel bookings, the lion's share of hotel revenue is from older couples and families. Hotels target their business at one or more of these tourist groups, so you'll find that the 5 star hotels and family oriented hotels like the larger resort hotels are generally not guest friendly. There's one notable exception, Pattaya's top rated hotel, the Rabbit Resort on Dongtan beach offers hospitality to all visitors, including their friends.

Walking Street Hotels

If you're looking for a guest friendly hotel you'll find that virtually all of the hotels, guesthouses and apartments close to the night life areas are guest friendly. In the Walking Street area you'll find a good choice of popular and highly rated hotels.

On Soi Diamond, the street with more than a dozen go-go bars, there's Diamond Beach Hotel, Galaxy Suites and Green View Serviced Apartments. Just nearby on Soi 14, there's the Grand Hotel, with 80 rooms in a choice of styles, and Jasmine Hotel with 62 rooms, recently refurnished and a new indoor swimming pool, one of the highest rated Pattaya hotels on Trip Advisor. On Walking Street itself, there's the Walking Street Guesthouse just above Sweethearts Go-Go and P.72 Hotel, with the street level bar that opens onto Walking Street. A great place to sit and watch the activities on Walking Street before going out for the evening.

Soi Buakhao Area Hotels

The Soi Buakhao area is another popular nightclub area. Here you'll find an interesting mix of guest friendly hotels and guesthouses for visitors and apartments for Thais who work in the nightclubs and bars.

On Soi Buakhao itself, you'll find Katesiree House, Laguna Buakhao House with Thai style furniture, Target Regency Guesthouse, and Rabbi's Elephant Guesthouse which is also a meeting place for the Pattaya Golf Society.

Just off Soi Buakhao on Soi LK Metro mingled with the go-go bars, coyote bars and beer bars you find a bunch of guest-friendly hotels and guesthouses. If you like to hang out with aliens you'll love Armageddon Guesthouse and Bar, and there's Irish Rovers Guesthouse and Kilkenny Hotel with an Irish flavour. Close by you'll find the popular Stags Head Guesthouse, and in the corner of the street, there's Pasadena Lodge with a choice of 20 beautifully furnished rooms, in 4 different room styles.

Just across the road there's Soi Chaiyapoon, famous for Crazy Daves café that serves breakfast 24 hours / day and Neeroys late night restaurant that offers fish 'n chips and English style curries. Guest friendly guesthouses do not get much friendlier than Canterbury Tales Café that has a bookstore and restaurant on the ground floor. Just further down the street, near the popular Maggie May's bar there's Chaiyapoon Inn & Restaurant.

A more Comprehensive For guide to Guest Friendly hotels in the Pattaya area Hotels , and a guide to the city's nightlife, lands check out my website at .


Source by Rick Gilmore

A Review of Boyz N the Hood: Signs Stereotypes and Critical Analysis


Boyz N the Hood is a classic African American film that can be critically analyzed through the lens of race and gender issues in the media. The first thing that I noticed when watching the film through such lens was the usage of common signs throughout the film that were found on the street and around the neighborhood. These signs served as a visual reinforcement to the paths that these young kids were on in the neighborhoods in which they grew up.

For example, immediately after a title card displaying a dismal statistic directly correlating with the theme of Boyz N the Hood was followed by an opening shot of a red "Stop" sign on the street over which an airplane flew past as if to signify the rest of the world is going on not giving a care in a world to the issues that the children in this neighborhood are facing.

There was also a "One-Way" street sign in the background of two shots when the children were either walking to or from school. There was also a glaring red "Wrong Way" sign just before the dead body, which serves as a message that the crime committed is not the right way of doing things, and also a subtle visual hint that these kids are going down a one- way path that can lead them the wrong way in life. To top it off the writer and director made sure to add yellow police caution tape in order to signify to the audience that these types of scenarios in this film and in real life deserve our cautious attention; however, in the film the kids ignored the caution tape which leads to the next few scenes of Trae losing his temper and being sent to live with his dad who teaches him how to use caution and ultimately sets him on a path in which he is able to rise above all the warning signs displayed and reiterated throughout this film indicating that there was only one way, the wrong way, to live and survive in this neighborhood. Near the end of the film, there was one more sign that stood out by the dead bodies of the guys who killed Ricky that highlighted the word exit. However, I was glad to see a title card at the very end of the film with uplifting information stating that Trae went on to college at Morehouse University in Atlanta, GA. The use of the street signs, statistics and written information was always in this movie. Although I had never paid much attention to them before, it could be possible that they served to engrave this powerful message about these Boys who grew up in this neighborhood into my psyche when I since a younger girl watching this film at different stages in my life .

Now that I watched it this week, I was saddened to see the drawing of the elementary school aged students portraying a colored man in a white t-shirt with his hands up facing a what seems to be a black and white police car. This movie was produced back in 1991 and more nearly twenty-five years later in 2015, black men are still being profiled, brutally harassed, and killed by police officers even when they're hands are up in the air with no weapon on or near their bodies. That hurts.

Addressable stereotypes in this film includes the use of the term Indian as a slip of the tongue by a white female American teacher who quickly corrected her mishap by rephrasing her terminology to Native Americans during her reference regarding the early settlers of America.

Another stereotype perpetuated in this film is that of the Self Hating Black Man portrayed as the African American cop in this film who hates "niggas" like Trae in his own words.

Another issue brought to light in this film focuses on humans with physical disabilities like Little Chris who was stuck in a wheelchair throughout his adult life. Just a dialogue of one word, "Mannn …," with a sincere expression of disappointment highlights how people with physical limitations are often left out during a mission by those who are mobile and without limitation as in the scene in which Little Chris sees the rest of his friends drive off to go search for the guys who killed Ricky.

I think that Native Americans are still stereotypically referred to as Indians in the media. However, I think the self-hating black man stereotype is less perpetuated now than it was in the past. Nonetheless, the self-hating black man stereotype has been replaced by other stereotypes about stereotypical features of black men that could cause black men to hate or devalue themselves if left unaddressed.

Finally, I think that thugs in films are often still depicted as violent African Americans and, or minority men who assault people recklessly similar to the stereotypical roles found in Boyz N the Hood depicted by minor African American characters like the youthful teenagers in the gang who stole Ricky's football when he was a kid.


Source by Danielle Ross

American Mobsters – The Forty Thieves Street Gang


Based on "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves," the Forty Thieves was considered to be the first organized gang in New York City. In 1825, the gang was formed at a produce store located on Centre Street, just south of Anthony, now Worth Street, in an area called The Five Points. The proprietor of the store was Rosanna Peers, who sold rotting vegetables out front, and ran an illegal speakeasy in the back, that sold rotgut liquor at prices much cheaper than licensed establishments. Soon the joint became a haven for pickpockets, murderers, robbers and thieves, and a dour gentleman named Edward Coleman arose as their leader.

Coleman gave out strict assignments to his men, with quotas on which and how many crimes he expected each man to commit. If after a period of time, a man did not meet his quota, he would be banished from the gang, and sometimes even killed, as a message to others about the importance of meeting quotas.

Coleman's downfall was precipitated by one of the gang's few legal ventures, the Hot Corn Girls. Coleman would send out scores of young pretty girls onto the streets, carrying baskets filled with hot roasted ears of corn. The Hot Corn Girl, dressed in spotted calico and wearing a plaid shawl, would walk barefooted in the streets, singing; "Hot Corn! Hot Corn! Here's your lily white corn. All you that's got money. Poor me that's got none. Come buy my lily hot corn. And let me go home." The Hot Corn Girls were not allowed off the streets by Coleman until every single ear of corn in their basket was sold.

All the Hot Corn Girls were fairly attractive, and the prettiest ones were fought over by the amorous young men mingling on the streets. The best looking one of the lot was called "The Pretty Hot Corn Girl" and Coleman fell for her hard. After fighting off several other suitors, Coleman married her, then he put he back out on the streets selling corn. But after she consistently did not meet her quotas, Coleman felt, in order to save face and be consistent in his orders, he had no other choice but to kill her, which he did. As a result, Coleman was arrested and convicted of murder. On January 12, 1839, Coleman became the first man to be hanged at the newly constructed Tombs Prison.

After Coleman's death, the men in the gang drifted into other street gangs, like The Plug Uglies, the Dead Rabbits and the Bowery Boys. In the early 1850's, a juvenile street gang sprung up in the Five Points called the Forty Little Thieves, which consisted of homeless children of both sexes from the ages of eight to twelve, who emulated the escapades of their former members. They were led by Wild Maggie Carson, only twelve years-old herself. Like their forefathers, The Forty Little Thieves soon outgrew their gang and became assimilated into the older, more famous gangs.

Except for Little Maggie Carson, who was adopted off the streets at fifteen by an honorable family, eventually married a well-do-do gentlemen, and lived happily ever after. Or so they say.


Source by Joseph Bruno

How Window Treatments Influence Feng Shui


Windows can let chi or good energy in or block it depending on the window coverings. If you have a nice view, you will want to let the chi in, but if your window looks out on to a busy street, with cars driving almost right up to the widow before they make a turn, then you will want to bring out the big guns of feng shui and block that negative chi, also known as sha chi. Here are the most common kinds of window coverings and how they influence the feng shui of a room.


The difference between curtains and drapes is that curtains can not close all the way. Curtains are a good choice where you do want to let in some light, but do not need to block the view. If you do want to block the view out the bottom half of the widow, use a bistro curtain to hang down from the bottom half of the window. This is especially good when you have a nice view in the distance, but do not want to look into your neighbor's cluttered yard.


Drapes are good for bedrooms – the soft yin energy of drapes makes for good relaxing sleep. Drapes are also helpful in terms of feng shui if a window is near, behind or right across from your bed. In the situation of the close window, or the window behind your head, the chi is too active and can make you restless and unable to focus (this also happens in offices). In the case where the window is across from the bed, it may be draining chi out while you sleep. Drapes insulate you from these adverse affects. They will also keep the heat in, which is good feng shui symbolism for holding on to your money.

Vertical Blinds

These are best for east, south-east and south parts of the home. The vertical stripes of these blinds evoke tree energy, which is excellent for "get up and go" feelings like starting a new career, or for children's rooms. Vertical blinds will also help a low ceiling feel taller, which is good for the overall flow of chi.

Roller Blinds

The fabric in these blinds gives them more yin energy than the plastic sometimes used for vertical blinds. Use different colors and patterns to influence how roller blinds affect the feng shui of a given room depending on its position in the bagua (the map of different kinds of energies). Roller blinds also have the nice quality of being semi-translucent, so they are a very good choice in a situation where you want to screen a bad view, but still need some natural light.


These are the equivalent of the "big guns" mentioned before. In feng shui, shutters block almost as well as a wall. They block out light better than even thick drapes. It is nice to get the kind that do open to allow for a bit of air flow. Incidentally, opening the windows of your house on nice days is a superb way to enliven the chi of the whole house. It is good to preserve that option by keeping all the windows openable.


Source by Katie Hoffman

Writing Essays – New View in Joyce's Short Story, Clay


James Joyce's famous short story, " Clay," was published in 1914 in his collection of short stories titled, Dubliners.

Like literally every other short story ever published, "Clay" makes a strong old view value statement early on and then shows a new view reversal of that old view at the end. Let me demonstrate a three-step method that helps you analyze any short story using those concepts and that will help you get started writing literary essays:

# 1- EARLY ON, STRONG STATEMENT: At the beginning of a short story, a strong value statement, an old view, is given by or about the main character, asserting an evaluation or describing some characteristic, goal, or desire.

The very first sentence identifies a goal or desire of the main character:

The matron had given her leave to go out as soon as the women's tea was over and Maria looked forward to her evening out.

In the description of Maria's getting ready to go out for the evening, as she's preparing and serving tea for the women of the Dublin by Lamplight laundry, two strong old view value statements are made ​​about two important characteristics of Maria,

  • Maria, you are a veritable peace- maker!
  • Mamma is mamma but Maria is my proper mother.

Because of the strength of the first old view value statement, we are given expectations of finding out how Maria was a strong-willed, clever, resourceful peace-maker, one who could bring peace to any troubled situation. And we expect from the second one to find out how she was Joe's proper mother in all the idealistic ways that the phrase suggests.

# 2-IN MIDDLE, SUPPORTING / UNDERCUTTING: In the middle of a short story, the old view is supported or undercut with descriptions, conflicts, and resolutions that set up the new view at the end.

DESCRIPTION: Many descriptions occur throughout the story that undercut the old views, so we'll have to zero in on those with the clearest impact on the old view – new view relationship in the story.

In the beginning of the story, there's a mixture of short descriptions of Maria's character, her past, her plan for her trip to Joe's house that evening, her relationship to Joe and Alphy as their nursing maid and nanny, how Joe and Alphy got Maria her the job at the laundry, Joe and Alphy's presently strained relationship, the happenings at tea time, and Maria's thoughts while dressing to get ready for her evening out.

During the tea-time meal, Lizzie Fleming said Maria was sure to get the ring and, though Fleming had said that for so many Hallow Eves, Maria had to laugh and say she did not want any ring or man either; and when she laughed her grey-green eyes sparkled with disappointed shyness and the tip of her nose nearly met the tip of her chin.

Since Lizzie had said, Maria was sure to get the ring … for so many Hallow Eves, it is plain that Lizzie had long wanted for Maria to get the ring, get a man, and get married. So did Maria. Though Maria says she did not want any ring or man either, her laughing with disappointed shyness says otherwise. She always wanted to be a proper mother , to raise her own family, but she never quite got the chance of getting married, which would have made ​​that possible.

And what's up with the description of Maria's laughing and the tip of her nose nearly met the tip of her chin, which occurs again two sentences later, as well as at Joe's house, when she's being blindfolded to play another fortunetelling game? It must be important, though it's not clear how. Maybe it just emphasizes her disappointed shyness about her relationships with men and her feelings about wanting to get married.

Right after Lizzie Fleming's prediction, Then Ginger Mooney lifted her mug of tea and proposed Maria's health while all the other women clattered with their mugs on the table, and said she was sorry she had not a sup of porter to drink it in.

This description is important to bear in mind at the end of the story. I'll bring it up in my discussion about the story's ending, later.

CONFLICT: In the beginning, it was clear that Maria was always sent for when the women quarreled.

RESOLUTION: Why? Because she talked always soothingly: 'Yes , my dear,' and No, my dear. 'It was Maria's soothing niceness, her way of passive peacemaking, which always resolved conflicts at the Dublin by Lamplight, not any cleverness of persuasion or strength of personality that earned her the status of veritable peace-maker.

CONFLICT: In the middle of the story , when Maria went to a downtown pastry shop on Henry Street, the stylish young lady behind the counter, who was evidently a little annoyed by her, asked her was it wedding-cake she wanted to buy. That made ​​Maria blush and smile at the young lady; but the young lady took it all very seriously.

RESOLUTION: Maria's solution to the little conflict-she blushed and smiled. Her soothing did not really solve the conflict, but it did smooth it over. More passive niceness.

CONFLICT: Near the end of the story , the girls could not find a nutcracker for Maria and Joe got upset about it.

RESOLUTION: Maria nicely said she did not like nuts and they were not to bother about her. Again, passive soothing, not solving.

CONFLICT: When Joe and his wife tried to push beer and wine on her, Maria tried to refuse.

RESOLUTION: … but Joe insisted. So Maria let him have his way.

Once again, Maria solved a conflict by being nice and passively giving in to others, just smoothing things over.

CONFLICT: Maria thought she would put in a good word for Alphy. But Joe cried that God might strike him stone dead if ever he spoke a word to his brother again.

RESOLUTION: Instead of being a proper mother and a peace-maker with her ​​'children,' Joe and Alphy, Maria said she was sorry she had mentioned the matter. As she noted earlier in thinking about the Joe-Alphy conflict, but such was life, and Maria certainly was too passive and not peace-maker enough to resolve the situation.

# 3-AT END, A NEW VIEW REVERSAL. At the end of a short story, a new view reverse of the old view is usually revealed.

When Maria gets to Joe's, there 's another Irish fortune-telling game (called Puicíní: "poocheeny"). In the game, a blindfolded person is seated in front of a table on which several saucers are placed. The saucers are shuffled, and the blindfolded, seated person then chooses one by touch. The contents of the chosen saucer supposedly foretell the person's life during the following year: water meant travel, a prayer book meant the priesthood or a nunnery, and a ring meant marriage.

In being blindfolded to play this game, Maria laughed and laughed again till the tip of her nose nearly met the tip of her chin -more evidence of the disappointed shyness we saw earlier. At first, her hand touched a soft wet substance with her ​​fingers … Somebody said something about the garden … Mrs. Donnelly said … that was no play … Maria understood that it was wrong that time and so she had to do it over again: and this time she got the prayer-book.

As just one happening of the evening, just a game, the incident seems innocent enough. But what is soft and wet and comes from the garden? Clay, which is the title of the story. And clay is soft and passive and moldable by whatever pressures it. Does not that describe Maria?

Where's the strong veritable peace-maker or the proper mother who molds others, who directs and guides and blesses her children through thick and thin? This incident is a strong undercutting of those old views and reminds us of her indecision in buying cakes downtown and chatting with the stout gentleman on the tram, where all she could do was favor him with demure nods and hems.

And she gets the prayerbook in the game, not the ring. That's appropriate for Maria because, as Joyce shows us time and again, she truly can not handle much of anything else.

The strongest suggestion of Maria never getting a man and never, therefore, having the chance to be a proper mother, is when she sings a song at Joe's request at the very end. The song brings to mind Maria's life compared to the life of the woman whose words she is singing. The song was, "I Dreamed that I Dwelt," and two lines in the song remind us of the women at tea time: And of all who assembled within those walls, That I was the hope and the pride.

You'll recall that at tea time Ginger Mooney lifted her mug of tea and proposed Maria's health while all the other women clattered with their mugs on the table.

That kind of clattering with their mugs on the table is probably also very like how those in the song would express That I was the hope and the pride, when they assembled within those walls. Where else would they assemble to express such hope and pride except in a banquet hall? Feasts and banquets would be the natural setting , and the rich feasters would, no doubt, toast the rich woman Of a high ancestral name with clattering and banging their mugs on the table, just as the poor, unwed mothers of the laundry did at tea time for their nice, poor friend, Maria.

The song was about a woman with riches and a high ancestral name. And the woman in the song felt That you loved me still the same, referring to some rich man, no doubt. Of course, that was the exact opposite or reverse of practically penniless Maria, who, blushing very much as she began singing, was very much aware that she was very poor, worked in a laundry for unwed mothers, and could not even handle a common conversation with a common man on a tram without losing her wits and her plum cake.

At the story's end, Joyce suggests once again that Maria is, in fact, the new view reverse of a strong-willed peace-maker with persuasive powers for solving conflicts, which the women of the laundry believed she was. As to being my proper mother, Maria 's letting Joe manipulate her so many times-past and present-actually show that she had not even been a strong substitute mother, let alone a "proper mother."

The fact is, Maria's entire character -as developed more fully in the middle and end of the story-is the new view reverse of the two strong character descriptions given at the beginning. Maria is actually as weak and passive and moldable and non-propagating (not giving of life, as a proper mother would be) as the title of the story suggests: She was lifeless, passive, moldable clay. Perfect fit.

Based on our discussion, here are some sample thesis statements to give you a few ideas for writing a strong essay on Joyce's short story, "Clay:"

  • Joyce's story "Clay" shows us the theme that, 'Anyone who gives up too many personal choices to others can become sterile, unproductive, and incapable of controlling their own lives.'
  • Joyce shows with Maria in his story "Clay" that society may think we are one way, when we are, ironically, exactly the opposite.
  • James Joyce's "Clay" provides ample evidence in little conflicts throughout the story that Maria lacks the strength others think she has as a peace-maker and a proper mother, especially at the end.
  • The short story "Clay," by James Joyce, uses imagery in descriptions at the beginning, middle, and end to hint of Maria's true character of weak, moldable clay, not strength.
  • "Clay" by James Joyce uses symbolism in the story's title, in the holiday games, and in the song at the end to show that Maria is weak, not strong, and that she's not what she's labeled as being by her friends.


Source by William Drew Jr

The X 22 Super Pocket Bike – Is it Truly Street Legal?


The X 22 super pocket bike is quite a sleek piece of machinery, and has become quite popular among pocket bike enthusiasts everywhere. With its air-cooled, 4 stroke, 110cc engine, it can take a 200 pound rider to speeds exceeding 60 miles per hour … but is it truly equipped with all that it needs, without any major modifications at all, enough to be registered as a street legal vehicle in most states? And if there are any modifications needed, what would they be?

The X 22 super pocket bike is a bit larger than what one might imagine a pocket bike to be, but the fact is that not all pocket bikes are street legal – with those that are not, it is usually due mostly to things like the size of the bike … many pocket bikes are really quite tiny, even having only a 45cc engine, while still others are even electrically powered, and thus only legal in off-road or race track situations. However, once you get into the gasoline powered 110cc engine class bikes, the type that are not so small that you can pick one up over your head, things can be quite different.

Complexity of the machine, and the safety factors which can be addressable by it while driving on public streets are a major factor here. This is where the X 22 super pocket bike can stand up to the rules and regulations required to be met. Coming already equipped with front and rear suspension, blinkers, brake lights, head lights, speedometer, horn, front and rear hydraulic disk brakes, a self recharging battery, and an air-cooled 4 stroke engine with dual exhaust (meeting the internal combustion engine requirements of most states), this is actually one of the most readily street legal pocket bikes on the market right out of the shipping crate, without requiring any major modifications at all. However, you may need to make the minor modification of adding rear view mirrors in order to comply with local safety inspection laws – you'll need to inquire about this with your local DMV office, as well as your state's regulations involving helmet laws in your area.


Source by Jesse Robinson