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Sustainable Burial Versus Death By Chemical

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by Rudy DeesArticle Categories: ,

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“I would request that my body in death be buried not cremated, so that the energy content contained within it gets returned to the earth, so that flora and fauna can dine upon it, just as I have dined upon flora and fauna during my lifetime.”Dr Neil Degrasse Tyson made this statement ever so eloquently during the Poetry of Science discussion alongside Prof Richard Dawkins.In death, I too, want to be buried in, or left on the ground where animals, plants and decomposers could find nourishment from my now-unneeded remains. I want my organic remains to be recycled and my energy therein returned to the Earth I so dearly love. A sort of reincarnation, if I may.Moreover, we could eliminate row upon row of dark, dreary depressing headstones, and avoid the toxic impact on the environment. For example, did you know: About 800,000 gallons of formaldehyde-based embalming fluid are buried in […]

How My Worst Haircut Turned Out To Be A Great Experience

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by Carrie De SimasArticle Categories: ,

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Every three years, I lop off all my hair and donate it to be turned into a wig for a cancer patient. A few days ago, I did it again. Nine inches of healthy hair snipped off. This hair was then put into an envelope and mailed to a company that will turn it into a wig for someone undergoing chemotherapy.My aunt is currently undergoing chemo and is wearing an array of colourful scarves until the treatment is done. Then she will wear a wig to help her feel more like her usual beautiful self until her own hair grows back in again.I (thankfully) cannot imagine the tremendous feel of not-yourself-ness that goes along with this entire process. After all, we gals tend to identify strongly with our hair. There is a multi-million dollar industry built around it. So while dealing with all the emotional and physical ramifications of cancer, […]

Killer Cancer to End All Life

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by Rudy DeesArticle Categories: ,

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Cancer. A word that is associated with fear. When we hear the word cancer we have visions of a painful, sometimes slow, eventual death.What is cancer? Cancer cells are cells gone wrong. Mutations (i.e., random changes to the normal cell) in genes can cause cancer by accelerating cell division rates or inhibiting normal controls on body systems. These cells no longer respond to many of the signals that control cellular growth and death. Over time, cancer cells become increasingly resistant to the controls that maintain normal tissue (i.e., divide more rapidly and become less dependent on signals from other cells). Eventually, cancer cells break through normal tissue boundaries and spread to new sites in the body causing tissue/organ failure and eventually killing the host (or person).Gaia is host to many living systems. Many of these life forms are under tremendous stress which threatens their very survival.One very specific life system […]

Bribery—An Endorsed Parenting Strategy (How to Survive Kindergarten)

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by Carrie De SimasArticle Categories: ,

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My son just finished his first day of junior kindergarten. Thanks to the nature of my business, he had been home with me from the day of his birth until now. I had him in social classes like gymnastics and cooking to help him make friends and socialize but otherwise, he had my complete attention.    Kindergarten was the first time where I wasn’t right there. When my husband and I picked him for lunch, he didn’t want to go back—despite the allure of the water table and the blond girl who had already taken a shine to him. So I talked to him and we worked out a deal: If he went to the afternoon portion of kindergarten, we would take him to Mastermind and let him pick out a special toy for being so brave. He agreed, reluctantly. At three o’clock he came flying out the class door […]

How to Save The World in Five Minutes Or Less

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by Karyn ConnorArticle Categories: ,

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This week, I had to have my annual physical checkup including my least favorite part: blood work.Thankfully, my doctor’s office employs the most talented nurses who are able to stick the needle in without so much as a pinch, every time. I joked with her (only partially joking, truth be told) that she should freelance her services out. I gladly would have paid her whatever she wanted if she had been willing to do all my pregnancy blood work. For anyone who has had a baby, you know that this means you are essentially a pincushion for nine months.Then, she told me something spectacular. She lives in a condo not far from the doctor’s office. This building is home to many seniors who use the doctor’s office where she works. When she knows they need blood work done, she will often stop by in the morning, take their blood in […]

When Understanding People Goes Too Far: A Relationship Survival Guide

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by Carrie De Simas Article Categories: ,

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In our information obsessed society we are all hunters of information. We scour social media looking for the next great tip. We read books to lend insights into our business ventures and we look for cues to better understand the other people around us.    The smartest of us will strive to find clues and insights into how to better interpret people’s behaviors and words so we can more safely and successfully maneuver our personal and business relationships.   The expression is to not judge people until we have walked in their shoes. The word judgment means coming to a conclusion after evaluating the available information. So judgment, like understanding, is a form of belief in our insights into another person’s actions, words or motives.   My father is a well-known therapist. He has often said that if you really understand a person you can never truly hate them. If his words are […]

Makeup and Confidence. What Does Your Mascara Say About You?

Stuart Miles

by Carrie De SimasArticle Categories: ,

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I recently entered a debate with a woman who wears a bucket-load of makeup. Her son had once told me that she wears makeup because it makes her pretty. I have always felt badly for her, for having to use artificial substances in that manner. Artificial substances create artificial feelings. Thus, when you are a woman like this, you only feel beautiful when you are caked-up. As entrepreneurs and marketers, we need to be aware of what our image says to other people about us. For women, makeup can be an enhancement, but it can also be to your detriment as well. You cannot proclaim to the world that you are a strong and confident woman when you hide your true self beneath layers of artificiality. Make up—like a mask— conceals the truth of what lies beneath. If you are confident, you don’t need to literally hide your face from […]

When Fiction Inspires Change: How To Face Your Dragon

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by Rudy DeesArticle Categories: ,

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Recently I read Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner and as a result faced my own metaphorical dragon. Until this moment I never owned a kite thus I was colorless and stuck on the ground. Stuck with a past I had yet to face. However, that all changed when I took on the dragon. Thirty-eight year old Amir, the main character in the novel, takes on his dragon by returning to his native Afghanistan to face his past. The story uses the kite as a metaphor to describe Amir’s journey; the kite at the beginning of the novel illustrates Amir’s cowardice and his reluctance to confront his fear: The bully Assef. Amir’s past catches up with him as he is reminded that there is “A way to be good again…” and that is to take on Assef—his dragon—and find his redemption, his courage, and his self-worth. Hosseini ends the novel with […]

Fact versus Truth – Do You Know the Difference?

Stuart Miles

by Carrie De SimasArticle Categories: ,

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Fifty Shades of Grey made headlines all over the fiction-reading world as a book, then trilogy, then as a movie. But what’s interesting from a marketing perspective is that depending on who promoted the books, the series was either a sensual fantasy, an erotic romance, or erotica. Same book, different genres and tags.  What many people don’t inherently understand is that there is a difference between fact and truth. Watch what I mean: Sugar is fat free.  Total fact. I swear. Look at the nutrition label on any sugar bag whether white, yellow or brown sugar. Fat free. But wait, don’t go to town on it quite yet. Because the truth is that sugar is also highly caloric and calories turn into fat. So yes, the fact of the matter is that sugar is fat free (yay!) but it is made up of empty calories that very quickly turn into […]

Advice on Writing Fiction Without the “God Crutch”

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by Rudy DeesArticle Categories: ,

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How did your social psychology training and your work as an advice columnist affect your novel about a woman forced to endure life’s harshest loss? SKP: As Kylie’s Heel was being written and revised many times over nearly a decade, and as my own non-theistic views became firmer, the focus of the novel evolved a bit. My social psychology training taught me to take account of facts, credible studies, science, and so on, and I wanted to include that focus. Somehow I got the idea of incorporating a Q&A column into the novel, where Kylie could be absolutely direct about her beliefs. I certainly expected that there were enough readers who think like I do, or who would be interested in an unusual novel like this, that a focus on an atheist woman’s struggles would be a positive marketing point. Throughout Kylie’s Heel, you have shown that people can survive great […]