what she likes on a whim of a rainy day monday

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London Fog Women’s 36″ Snap Front Down Coat with Multi Pattern Quilt and Hood

Being painfully sensitive to the cold, I wanted a coat that should be: (1) long enough to cover my thighs but not below the knees; (2) warm enough to guard me against the frigid temperature; and (3) fashionable enough to wear it with style. Out of my considerable time of research into such dream coat came this wonderful coat that satisfied all of the above requirements, dovetailing Sophia Lauren’s idea of beautiful and practical clothing: “A woman’s dress should be a like a barbed-wire fence: serving its purpose without obstructing the view.” I love it, onlookers love it as well. Guess I made a good purchase this time 🙂

PS: Consumerism never appeals to me; what’s more, I don’t get paid by Amazon by writing this product review. But since I write what I like much out of sheer egotism, hence this bullet review of my new lovely coat that has become my winter armor. 

 

 

 

 

‘Legally Haunted Houses’ by Dylan Clearfield – review

Legally Haunted HousesLegally Haunted Houses by Dylan Clearfield

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

For a person like me who likes to read genuine supernatural stories free from dramatic accounts of witnesses, psychic, paranormal investigators, and/or parapsychologists, this is a perfect read consisting of historical cases in France, England, Canada, and the States that were rendered haunted by the court of law.

For example, the case of Stambovsky v. Ackley in the appellate division of New York Supreme Court has become a bedrock case law of caveat emptor, which is literally translated as “Let the buyer beware,” meaning that the buyer alone is responsible for checking the quality and suitability of goods before a purchase is made. The appellate court ruled that since the buyer should not/could be able to ascertain a condition in which haunting occurred upon reasonable investigation in due diligence on the buyer’s part, the plaintiff Stambovsky was awarded the rescission of the contract of sale of the house.

All of the stories contained in this collection of the cases are recorded in historical as well as legal documents, which weigh heavily against sensational TV programs and hyped-up accounts of psychics and the like in its genuineness. And it’s a light read readers can finish at one setting. Mind you, truth can be scarier than fiction.

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BBC History Magazine – review

https___www.discountmags.com_shopimages_products_normal_extra_i_8533-bbc-history-cover-2019-january-1-issueThis magazine deserves of its honors in History and Literature: the prime qualities of the articles it features on every monthly issue result from its writers who appear to master the Art of Practical English (along with the writers of The Spectator) that should exemplify all others, especially here in the States, where big words and intricate sentence structures are modus operandi of fine writing. In addition to the beauty of writing, the magazine deals with many an interesting historical fact that strikes the chords of the present era, making us realize that as long as the human race exists, human nature remains unchanged. To top it all off, this magazine is a lovely read easily and perfectly downloaded on a Kindle Fire in its entirety and keeps you amusing company on the train and at a coffee shop.

 

P.S. Happy Friday proffered me a delicious respite at the office today. Then came one of those inconsequential e-mails sent by Amazon asking its Prime members about a review of goods or a book one had ordered. As a way of improving Craft of Writing and compensating for recent lack of writing activities under the pretext of my learning a new trade and exerting my herculean power on  a long commute to and from home, I deemed it productive to write this bullet review of this great magazine that has become a darling of my regular routine reads. How much I wish I could write like the writers of this intelligently entertaining magazine! Hence, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s axiom always resonates within me: “Still achieving, still pursuing, Learn to labor and Grow…”

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‘On Talking Terms’, by Turid Rugaas – review

On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming SignalsOn Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals by Turid Rugaas

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Calming signals are genetically inherited canine language used for  communicating with each other to maintain healthy social hierarchy, since dogs, like their wolf ancestors, are pack animals dependent on sensory input, such as olfactory, auditory, and visual perceptions. Accordingly, dogs communicate with themselves through body motions, such as turning their heads to the other side (as a goodwill gesture in greeting between two dogs), lifting a front paw (showing peaceful intentions), yawning (as a way of reducing stress), bowing (releasing tension), etc. In this book, Ms. Turid Rugaas, an internationally acclaimed Norwegian canine behavioral counseling trainer, primarily focuses on the needs of understanding these signals from dogs as their way of communicating to and with their canids and humans alike. In the context of regarding the essence and importance of calming signals from dogs, this book offers a visual glimpse of what they are like with pictures of the dogs in each accordant motion, which I find helpful to perceive it.

However, the book does not provide the reader with more in-depth knowledge on the calming signals on the grounds of scientific terms; rather it is more of a pamphlet introducing the basic concepts of the calming signals. In fact, this book of less than 100 pages recounts the author’s personal experience with her beloved dog Vesla, who had been her faithful and effective assistant in helping other dogs’ behavioral problems solved, in her close observation of their calming signals expressed and exchanged. It is needless to say that such personal experience saturated with her firm conviction in positive training of dogs is deemed highly valuable and thus contributes significantly to the purpose of this book, which I wholeheartedly appreciate as a kindred spirit. But it is also equally tantalizing to whet my desire of discovering more about the origins of the calming signals, the comparison with those of wolves in terms of evolutionary aspects, and more examples thereof.

In summary, this book is a lovely quick read about dogs’ calming signals at a glance. In addition, the reader cannot help agreeing to the author’s view of dogs not as her subordinates to be trained with dominance but as her “children” who need love and patience because dogs as being of conflict-solving nature want to keep us in their company by trying to speak to us through calming signals. So if you just want to see what these calming signals are about in a nutshell, this is an informative and affectionate read.

‘Prince Brat and the Whipping Boy (TV Movie 1994)’ – review

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The Unlikely Duo in tandem

Tales of mistaken or traded identities between either by the irony of fate or whimsical voluntary submission bespeak our desire of realizing dreams and desires in one fell swoop without drudgery of going through rules and conformations of social norms and mores. From The Prince and the Pauper to Cinderella and to The Trading Places, the basic story lines contextualize the instant social mobility of improving one’s social status and the essence of human nature laid bare in dealing with new milieus. But forget the verbiage of latent sociological theory and academic analysis because after all, we all know that such wish for rapid social escalation is only father to the thought. So why not continue to enjoy the world of wishful thinking entertainingly translated on screen for the sake of art, such as this delightful movie Prince Brat and the Whipping Boy (AKA The Whipping Boy)?

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Guess who’s the prince?

The movie has a charm of Mark Twain’s The Prince and the Pauper and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, giving it impression of a spin-off from the two stories in all likelihood. But what makes it worth the viewing are the characters whom you find difficult to dislike and the detailed background setting that conjure up the spirit of the time and bring out the personalities of the characters delightfully rendered on screen. The young prince is not really a brat but a lonely child who needs love and attention from his ever busy king father. The prince’s impudent pranks are signals for sending emotional SOS to the king who puts the security of his kingdom before the attention to his one and only child. And there’s a young rat-catcher about the same age as the prince who accidentally finds himself in an emotional strife between the Royal Highnesses as a whipping boy for the unhappy prince. What happens next is the gem of this movie in their subconscious quest for their cherished ends, their treasures at heart, through their eventful journey together in the unlikely duo of the prince and his whipping boy.

All in all, it is a little cute feel-good movie intended for all ages about what’s really important in life. Yes, we all may know the answer to it, but it really touches us in the denouement of the movie, leaving us with a feeling of warmth, affection, and jolliness, chiming the emotional, sentimental bells of our childlike imagoes. That said, if you want a movie that takes you away from your worries and sadness arising out of living adult life for some time, this movie might do good for you as it did for me for the day.