Renaissance and Neoclassical Historical Arts

Renaissance is a cultural movement that started in Europe during the early 14th to 17th century or a period between the Classical and Modern era. More than its cultural essence, the Renaissance period was known for its developments in art, painting, philosophy, architecture and other intellectual aspects. It was an era that witnessed the largest growth and development in Western Europe.

A1. Renaissance art took its shape from the social conditions that existed at that time that carved Europe’s political structure. The cultural rarity of Italy existed, as there was no political form during the early modern period that resulted in artistic and academic advancements. This freedom opened gateways to trade and commerce across the globe that brought wealth in Italy through commissioning its artistic work.

Renaissance artists looked for human emotions and realism in art. They focused on making human portrays with a natural background. They took the Humanism approach, placing more emphasis on man than god, which was reflected in their sculptures and paintings. The Early Renaissance period focused more on creating sculptures on the basis of personality and behavior, whereas the High Renaissance was more towards balance and drama. Renaissance artists were greatly inspired by Roman and Greek art that used nude human bodies of personality in their art. Their attempt to gain perfection in human arts for expression, personality, and emotions reduced social hierarchies in the status of people resulting in everybody wanting to learn and share their ideas and skills.

A2. Neoclassicism was a predominant movement during the mid 18th century and the late 19th century in European art and architecture. It focused on the western classical art forms of ancient Greece and Rome. It was partly a movement that had initiated as a reaction to the Baroque and Rococo styles. It became a predominant part of academic art that continued into the 19th century to become visible as museums of neoclassical architecture.

Neoclassical art aimed in reviving the European Age of Enlightenment that was the Greek and Roman classical art forms. It aimed to contain the ‘purity’ of Roman arts and criticized Baroque and Rococo styles. Neoclassicism gained importance in France and England spreading towards Sweden. It made use of the classical essence relating to courage and nationalism.

Neoclassicism aimed to resurge classical styles through usage of sharp colors and classical subjects. They avoided light and soft colors in their paintings that depicted calmness and grandeur. Neoclassicists revived the Greek painting styles by using mosaics, columns, engravings and other ornamental elements in their work.

A3. Renaissance signified the rebirth of arts, science, and medicine and was an era that was responsible for most radical developments and movements in Europe. So much so, that it is also used to describe other major cultural and historical moments. Classical Renaissance gave birth to the Baroque style that was more dramatic and direct. Therefore Neoclassicism was nothing but a reaction to the Baroque style so as to preserve the purity of ancient Roman arts. Moreover, neoclassicism remained one of the foremost in academic arts.


  • Renaissance period was known for its Humanist approach in art while neoclassical art focused on more classical and pure elements of style;
  • The Renaissance period brought about radical developments in arts, philosophy, and medicine while neoclassical art was foremost in academic arts;
  • Renaissance artists believed in more natural and expressive nude sculptures of art while neoclassical artists incorporated ornamental elements in their work;
  • The Renaissance period opened gateways to new ideas and developments, while the neoclassicism period focused on retaining the Age of Enlightenment.

A3b. The Renaissance era was one of the most influential and flourishing period during the 15th and 16th centuries and gave birth to major cultural developments for almost three centuries. Renaissance art was born out of an evolving civilization whose quest for Realism and scientific perfection resulted in some of the greatest works and achievement in arts, science, architecture, and philosophy. The distinguishing feature of Renaissance art is its dedication to classical arts with a renewed interest in Roman styles that included naked human sculptures with no landscapes in a natural environment. It was an important era that brought wealth to Europe and its artistic freedom enabled skilled artisans to flourish.

A3b1. Leonardo Da Vinci

Leonardo Da Vinci (1452-1519) was one of the greatest artists of the Renaissance period. Also known as the ‘Renaissance Man’, was born in Italy and was a renowned painter who became a polymath in many fields such as music, science, mathematics, and botany. He is considered as one of the greatest diversely talented persons to have lived. Mona Lisa is one of the most renowned works of his time that was greatly appreciated. The Mona Lisa is a 16th century half-length portrait that was made in oil and of a seated woman.

Andrea Appiani (1754-1817) Born in Milan, was an Italian neoclassical painter. He trained under Carlo Maria Giudici and learnt painting by copying sculptures. His best works are in the church of San Maria presso San Celso and the royal palace at Milan. Among some of his works of oil paintings are Venus and Love, and Rinaldo in the garden of Armida.

A3b2. Madame Hamelin (1776-1851) was one of the neoclassical painter Andrea Appiani’s work that bears a similar resemblance to Leonardo Da Vinci’s Monal Lisa. Both are half-length oil portraits of women who are half-seated that reflects the natural facial expressions wherein their hands are folders bearing similar artistic values and styles to one another.

A3c. Neoclassicism reached its most influential period in arts during the 1780s to 1850s. New archeological discoveries and settings paved the way for classical themes that also resulted from the reaction of the Rococo styles. Neoclassicism retained its classical antiquity and co-existed with its much opposite form of Romanticism art. Artists of the neoclassical era replaced religious and mythological objects with realistic, simple, and bold ones. IN the 1830s, the Neoclassicism era was replaced by Romanticism.

Bodybuilding 101 – Vocabulary

For newbies in bodybuilding, these terms may be new to you. What is one repetition? What is one-rep max? Here is a list of vocabulary you hear a lot when it comes to bodybuilding.

– Power

Power refers to your muscle strength. It is measured by how much weight you are able to lift.

– 1RM or one-rep max

One-rep max is the heaviest weight you can lift properly for only one repetition. If you can lift the weight more than one time it is certainly not one-rep max.

– Endurance or stamina

Endurance is the muscle ability to withstand the workload you put to it. You have better endurance than your buddy if, for instance, you can do bicep curls twelve times, and your buddy can only do it six times.

– Specificity

Don’t confuse this with the common myth that you have to do sit-ups to burn belly fat. Specificity only applies to weight training to increase strength and muscle size. To increase your chest strength, you train your chest muscles. You train a specific muscle group to increase its strength, endurance, or volume.

– Overload

To increase muscle strength and endurance, you have to work your muscle beyond its ability. Increasing the intensity of exercise can be done in many ways: adding weight, repetitions, reduce rest time between sets, and many more. If you don’t overload your muscle in any ways, it is not going to grow any stronger.

– Repetition

One repetition means one full range of motion of lifting and lowering the weight. For example, one repetition of barbell curl is lifting your forearms towards your chest and lowering it to initial position. That is called one repetition.

– Failure

Failure is a condition when you can no longer lift the weight in your exercise. You reach failure when you cannot perform even one more repetition. If you target yourself to do 10 repetitions in one set of exercise, you have to lift heavy enough such that you reach failure at the tenth repetition.

– Recovery

There are two types of recovery, the first is the recovery that happens when you rest between sets. For example, after performing 10 repetitions in one set of exercise, you rest for one to two minutes before performing another set of exercise. The other type of recovery is the one that happens when you rest between your training days. After working one group of muscles in a training session, you rest the muscle group for 48 hours before training them again.

– Set

Performing one set of exercise means performing a number of repetitions of exercise movement without any break. For example, performing one set of dumbbell curls means performing 10 repetitions of dumbbell curl before putting the it back to the rack.

– Routine

A routine describes the usual exercises you perform in your training session. It refers to what kinds of exercises you do, how many sets per exercise, how many repetitions per exercise, how much rest time between sets, etc. It’s important to modify the routine once in a while to keep your muscle from adapting to the routine.

So Many Scooters, So Little Time

When Razor Scooters first burst on to the scene in 2000, many thought they would disappear into oblivion never to be heard from again. Instead, a whole new category of kids’ recreational gear was born.

The original Razor Scooter is still Razor USA’s best selling item, though the company has launched a dizzying array of new products such as the “PowerWing Caster Scooter”, the “RipStik”, the e-Series Electric Scooters, the “Dirt Quad”, “Scream Machine”, “Pocket Mod” and many others. Some even speculate that Razor will one day come out with its own line of electric cars.

In the wake of Razor’s phenomenal success, many copy cats emerged to rival the original Razor Scooter such as the “Mico” Scooter, the “Xootr” and many Chinese knock-offs. RazorUSA even introduced various models based on the original push scooter concept. Despite the competition, Razor continues to dominate the push scooter market both in terms of popularity, variety and durability. Consider this review from a mom on “So are they still cool? Absolutely!! We’re the neighborhood hangout for kids of all ages, and they all flock to the razor scooter. Only the coolest of the cool have these… (oh, I can’t believe I said that!)… “

So far, Razor’s list of push scooters includes the following:

2-Wheeled Scooters

o A Scooter

o A2 Scooter

o A3 Scooter

o Pro Model Scooter

o Cruiser Scooter

o Carvr Scooter

o A5 Lux Adult Scooter

3-Wheeled Scooters

o Kiddie Kick Scooter

o PowerWing Caster Scooter

Given all the choices, which one is best for you or your loved one?

Over the past several years, I have made a living selling Razor Scooters. Based on my experience, here are my recommendations:

By far, the most popular model we sell is the Razor “Pro Model” Scooter. The “Pro Model” is well designed, is sturdy, looks cool and can take a beating. This scooter was designed by the Razor Team riders themselves, so it’s built for stunt and trick riding. This scooter is for more advanced riders aged nine on up, though the manufacturer says the scooter is fine for kids as young as five.

Beginners should start with the “A” Scooter which closely resembles the original Razor scooter from 2000. It’s portable, easy to ride and comes in a variety of colors like Red, Black, Green, Blue and even Pink. It’s also very inexpensive – never more than $30. Variations on this scooter include the “A2” and “A3”. The “A2” includes a wheelie bar so riders can begin performing stunts and can add a bit more variety to their riding. The “A3” is like the “A2” except it has shocks on the front wheel and larger 125mm wheels – it’s sort of the Cadillac of the A series Razor Scooters. These scooters are for kids five and up according to the manufacturer. There is also the Purple “A2” Scooter for those looking for a truly unique ride.

For toddlers, Razor makes the “Kiddie Kick” Scooter which has three wheels and is made for four to five year olds who want to familiarize themselves with the world of kick scooting. Because it has three wheels, it’s easy to stand on so kids don’t need to have fully developed balancing skills to ride it.

For the latest in new scooting technology, there is the Razor “PowerWing” which has suddenly become very popular as it represents another twist on the evolution in asphalt recreation that has come to dominate urban landscapes since the invention of the skateboard in the 1960’s. You’ve probably seen the commercials for the “PowerWing” on TV, but if not, you can do a search on YouTube and find a copy there. The “PowerWing” is still so new that kids are figuring out how to turn it into a stunt riding apparatus; no doubt we’ll see some interesting tricks performed on it in the coming months. The “PowerWing” is good for kids aged six and up.

The “Carvr” scooter is a very weird hybrid between a skateboard and a scooter. It’s barely worth mentioning in my opinion since it’s not a good seller at all and it really looks like a mutant “scootboard” that should be put out of its misery – fast. No doubt RazorUSA will discontinue this item some time in the near future.

What about teenage and adult riders?

Again, the Pro Model scooter is the most popular young adult scooter that we sell since it has become a kind of urban phenomenon that rivals both skateboarding and BMX. The stunts riders perform on this unit are really amazing and there are hundreds of YouTube videos out there to prove it – a small fraction of which are on our web site. Because of its broad appeal, the “Pro Model” Scooter is a great ride for kids young and old – even college kids use it as a commuter vehicle between classes.

If your interest is primarily transportation, then you’ll want to check out Razor’s line of larger scooters – the “Cruiser” Scooter and the “A5 Luxe” Scooter. The “Cruiser” Scooter is cool because its larger wooden deck gives it a classic feel and can accommodate bigger feet. It also has larger 140mm wheels giving it a bit more height.

The “A5 Luxe” Scooter with 200mm wheels is by far the closest thing Razor has to a push commuter vehicle. We just started selling this scooter and already we’ve seen it gain traction quickly. Even I want one! I’m sure we’ll see this scooter pop up across campuses and even office parks nationwide in coming months. It’s easy to carry and because it’s foldable, it can be taken on the subway and even right up the elevator. Once Razor adds the cup holder, you may just want to ditch your car.

GR-4N Cuisinart Grill Review: A Time Saving Device for Cooking Small Meals

I have never tried an electric grill before. It happened that I’ve got one for the birthday. Its model code is GR-4N and it is made by Cuisinart company. Internet sources says that there is another model GR-4 produced by the same brand and GR-4N is tuned and improved version of it. Let me do a short review of my Cuisinart grill.

First of all I would like to say that the concept of an electric grill that has floating top was a discovery for me. Manual refers to the cooking space as of 200 square inches. In real life you have to split this number in half, because there is a 100 square inches plate on the bottom of the grill and another 100 is at the top. I would say that you will be unable to grill more than three large panini sandwiches at a time. The device is optimized for feeding up a group of two to four people. You have to buy bigger grill in case your family is larger.

What I like about my Cuisinart grill is its simple but classy style. Although it is not going to win any design competitions, it looks good and will fit organically in almost every kitchen. Stainless steel looks very good when trimmed with black plastic. Other good things are the cooking plates. Those have non-stick covering and can be removed from the grill for cleaning. Each side of the plate has its own “setting”: one is for “grill” mode and the other is for “griddle”. I was pleased with the fact that Cuisinart grill is being shipped with a very handy scraper specially designed for cleaning of the ridged side of the cooking panels.

Cleaning of the plates was an easy thing to do. Non stick surface works well and wiping with dump cloth was enough for me. Heavy cleaning can be done in a dishwashing machine.

Controls are simple and clear to understand. There are just three knobs on the front panel: the one in the center sets the cooking mode while left and right are used for setting up the temperature. There are two ways to set the heat: by degrees or by preset values like low, medium and high.

There is a lovely color lightning system built in the center knob: it is red when Cuisinart grill is heating up and turns to green when the desired temperature is reached an it is time to cook.

Excessive oil and grease removing system was one of the major problems of an old version of this griddler, but not anymore. Redesigned by Cuisinart engineers it is working fine in GR-4N. Grease is now sliding down easily and it is just matter of minutes to get it cleaned.

If you’d ask me about the downsides of the Cuisinart grill I would mention the following: the heat up time is pretty long. Maybe it is just about my particular GR-4N but it usually takes around 7-8 minutes to reach 320 degrees. Another issue would be the fact that non stick surface on plates is really sensible. You have to take good care of it, because I have a few spots where it already broke off. I am pretty sure that in just a year of daily usage that covering will be gone completely.

Temperature sensor is not that precise as you would expect. It might be wrong for about 20 degrees in both directions. This is might be not an issue when grilling sandwiches but crucial in case of cooking meat.

The GR-4N Cuisinart grill is advertised as a 5-in-1 feature device, but I was using it for cooking just a limited number of meals:

  • hamburgers are just outstanding when grilled in Cuisinart grill. All you have to do to turn frozen burgers into tasty bits of food is to set the device to run with the temperature of 340 degrees and wait for seven minutes. Juicy, smelly and tasty hamburgers are ready! There is no need to worry about the excessive grease: it will be collected with improved catcher.
  • it works very well for making panini but you need to gain some experience in setting up the temperature. Once it is done your sandwiches will be perfect. Famous grill marks come out just like in the adverts and the ingredients are being heated nicely. Maybe a bit heavier top would be nicer to have, but you can always add some pressure manually.
  • even the Cuisinart grill is losing its heat rapidly, it is suitable for baking pancakes. Be prepared to have one side of the pancake to be baked a bit more that the other. Don’t be too hard on GR-4N with this because it wasn’t designed to do the baking. Just treat it as a little bonus feature.

My summary would be the following: GR-4N Cuisinart grill fits perfectly for feeding the family of two, three or four members with a various types of delicious food. Device is built well, looks good and allows you to save a lot of time. With a 5-in-1 features it would be a nice addition to any kitchen.

Pegasus – A Memoir About Dream Image Work

I first encountered Robert Bosnak’s dream work technique at the C. G. Jung Institute in Boston and was later invited into a private dream group that met around a woodstove in the upstairs of his barn in the suburbs of Boston. This group deeply explored the unconscious lives of the group members. Huddled in a small circle under blankets, we only knew one another by sharing our dreams. Here I learned more about archetypal symbolism. Universal symbols can contribute to a dream’s meaning, not always by translation but by seeing the dream on the mythic level. Joseph Campbell once said in an interview, myths are society’s dreams.

Throughout all of known history, archetypes are repeated, albeit in different forms. Archetypes are dynamic forces, identified for instance, as The Divine Child, The Wise Old Man or Woman, The Devouring Feminine, The Hero, The Underworld, Trickster, Shadow, among others.

When we can look at our lives mythically we are able to accept the more difficult passages as the continuum of inevitable change. The Dark Night of the Soul is equivalent to the Nigredo in alchemy, descent into the depths, and whether it is one of sorrow or trauma, this stage is a universal one for the hero or heroine of many a myth. When we see our particular pain as a rite of passage rather than a termination, we then have the courage to confront the situation with the dragon or witch (or job loss or lawyer), understanding and feeling which part of ourselves is resisting growth.

In Bosnak’s private group we learned to apply more pressure to the vessel by questioning the dreamer; we went into the discomfort of difficult images, watching psyche autonomously at work. One discovery was to see how the dream expanded under this “heat” and in the two hour sessions we spoke of personal stories as well. All the members were able to enter the twilight consciousness under the pressure of intensive questioning.

Sometimes there were silences when everyone had fallen into the image as if it were a black hole. Sometimes active imagination would cause new images to appear. Returning to earlier scenes after feeling emotional release, we found they had changed and often enough, the monster was quelled. Most of the detours a dreamer took turned out to be relevant, resonating in a new manner. This exploration each week felt like a sacred ceremony. Even when we’d sat for long duration with a grotesque image, a mass murderer, a river of maggots, an explosive planecrash, sexual molestation, bloody wars-there was a deep sense of mystical participation in a ritual and the group bonded tightly.

Sometimes synchronistic phenomena accompanied the work and we were eerily spooked. Once an airplane dream summoned low-flying jets overhead. A dream of insects produced a large horsefly in the room. Or noises would occur at significant moments- the hum of the furnace kicking on, a neighborhood siren or barking dog, a fit of coughing, a trio of sneezes occurring at precise moments when the pressure cooker contained related imagery.

There was the contagion of laughter and tears too, usually at the unimaginable pain that the human psyche represses. Dreams exaggerate but the range of orphans, rag dolls, deformed babies, tree stumps, vile reptiles, severed limbs, earthquakes and floods was not infrequently disconcerting, especially to the dreamer. Occasionally the group dreamt in synch, animal dreams, diving dreams- eroticism. I recall once when we journeyed into space and hung there like the floating fetus in the film “2001.” In the luxury of time spent on a single dream, every nuance was followed.

Often we left these meetings dazed, smiling abashedly at one another when we finally opened our eyes. There was also a cautious respect for distance and the absolute understanding the work was confidential. I felt privileged to be a part of this dream cult and stayed with this group for four years and next to my son, it became the most important thing in my life. We led each other through questions about atmosphere, time of day, colors, sounds and sensate images. One dream I experienced there demonstrates the transformative aspects of the work. Here is the dream:

I’m on a beach, the beach I walk daily near home. It ‘s evening and I’ve just left a party where there were a lot of macho men annoying as well as rejecting me. I come down to the beach in a sullen mood when a huge German shepherd comes out from a rock and begins barking at me as if he is preparing to attack. I am terrified. I grab a stick and thrust it between his teeth, beginning to wrestle with him for the stick. I think if I engage him in play, he might see me as a friend. I throw the stick for him to fetch and as he chases it, I lean back against a rock. It seems I can relax, for I have befriended the wolf. As I lean back, the rock begins to move and I realize I am pulled upward on the back of a horse, side-saddle. The horse is white and has wings; it spreads them and lifts me up with it as it ascends into the sky. I am awed and amazed as I awaken.

The group spent a long time getting me to feel the instincts of the dog. The value of “archetypal amplification” here is shown when we realize the dog is often a psychopomp guiding us through the underworld. Think of Anubis, the Egyptian god with the dog’s head. I was still in the lower realms with my negative masculine complex, wrestling with my demons so-to-speak, and yet all the freedom, the sky the horse flies into, to me was significant. Some of the group actually laughed at the bizarre fairy-tale ending to this dream-riding a Pegasus off into the stars!

When I amplified the archetypal meaning of Pegasus. I was surprised to learn that the winged horse was born from the blood that flowed at the beheading of the Medusa. If Medusa is the hag, the dark side of the feminine, the devouring bitch, she gives birth, nevertheless, to the beautiful Pegasus who represents-unbeknownst to me, my favorite art form, poetry!

Later I came across the essay “Horses With Wings” by the poet, Denise Levertov. Pegasus’s father is Poseidon, the god of the sea-“… undifferentiated energy… a source of life but also of terror” (Levertov 125).

Levertov also informs us that “… Medusa’s legends place her as a manifestation of the Earth Mother’s terrible and devouring aspects…” (126). Furthermore “The word Gorgon relates to gargle, gurgle, and gargoyle: Medusa is called “a shriek personified’ ” (127). Pegasus was born of the neck of the Medusa, an intermediary place between mental and physical capacities. In fact “… it was not until the moment that Medusa’s blood, spurting from her neck, touched earth that he became manifest” (129). Levertov associates the Medusa’s face with “… snakes and claws, wings and scales… gorgonic features” which “correspond to the quaking magma of emotion” (133).

Emotion is often the catalyst for the poet’s creation. Levertov speaks of Pegasus as intuitive, as a metaphor for the poem rather than the poet” (134). I saw that my dream demonstrated how the material of the underworld could be transformed into something expressive. “To say that the poem, as well as the poet, is animal means that it has its own flesh and blood and is not a rarefied and insubstantial thing” (134).

Pegasus, then is poetry, born of a “fusion of opposites.” The image emerges at the greatest point of tension. “Pegasus strikes his hoof on a stone and releases a fountain… the fountain of poetic inspiration henceforth sacred to the Muses” (129). He flies upward, like my imagination always reaching higher.

Levertov’s essay amplified my dream. The symbol of the Pegasus in its archetypal meaning was not something I consciously knew. Although I had studied mythology and knew of Pegasus in several myths, I didn’t know his significance and had not related to him as a symbol for this peculiar little hobby I had of writing poems. In alchemy the gold is transformed from the work that is done on the lead, the “Nigredo,” the dark night of the soul. I was not yet riding Pegasus in my life but I was mining the soul and facing the music, or dirge if-you-will, of my own darkness. That we can turn our demons into diamonds was not a new idea for me, yet I had not seen it happen in concrete terms like these images presented.

My dream showed how the unconscious is not time-bound. It would be a few years before I would publish a book that transformed loss into something outside of me with its own authority. Apparently, I was wrestling with the dog.

The dream group became my religion, where I felt touched by spiritual energy. It was where I witnessed conjunctions resonating like a hall of mirrors, where I received communion both with the material and with the group members. Over those years everything in my life deepened. I saw that dreams came from my daily world and their hooks into my feeling world grafted my nocturnal images.

Through the active imaginative work we make stories of our memories in ways that can’t be proven true. Memory itself is imaginative in its selection, unique to each individual. As I told a dream and the stories that ran beneath it, only my imagination could effect psychological changes. We do indeed create our reality and that reality is relative. From this I learned how wrong we are in judging one another. I saw how dreamwork could open a person to the possibility of altering a worldview. We can choose to end our victim hood by re-experiencing the feelings of the past and revision them in such a way as to make us capable of joy where sorrow had been.


Levertov, Denise. “Horses With Wings.” What Is A Poet? Ed. Hank Lazer. Tuscaloosa: The University of Alabama Press, 1987. 124-134.

Functions of Steel Fabrication Companies

A Steel Fabrication Company mainly specializes in the building of machinery and equipments by cutting, shaping and assembling components made from raw materials. They purchase steel and fabricate products according to the specific structural design requirements of the projects. Thus an accurate picture of each steel element and connections between them with appropriate dimensions can be ascertained.

Another important task they do is steel detailing. For this they usually employ the services of a steel structural detailer who creates the necessary drawings required to build and fabricate the structure. Sometimes this work is outsourced to engineering firms.

Steel fabricators are usually proficient in the manufacturing of sturdy steel frames, cutwork grills and decorative motifs. They usually cater to commercial as well as industrial demands. The beams used for stairways, decks, platforms etc are usually fabricated products.

Before you entrust work to a particular steel fabrication company, you need to make sure that they know the intricacies of the trade. Check out the quality of equipment used for the various processes involved in the fabrication. Most modern fabricators use laser cutting devices which give an accurate and smooth edge on steel.

Steel fabrication companies will never experience a dearth of good projects since today’s construction industry makes use of a lot of pre-fabricated steel in their designs due to their ease in assembling and the minimum construction waste involved.

Many of the steel fabrication companies are based in China and India mainly due to the low cost labor available here. But this is not the only criterion; the staff is highly skilled and trained to provide the best in fabricated steel with high degree of precision exercised in every component delivered.

The fabrication company has to employ a number of staff like welders, assemblers, fabricators and Production and Quality control staff for performing the various processes involved in fabrication.

Basic Principles of Teaching Any Instrument – 10 Tips on How to Teach a Music Instrument

Imagine you have just bought yourself your first state of the art computer. It is a very complicated machine. When you get it home, which of the following would your instinct lead you to do?

A) Open the manual and read it thoroughly before switching on.

B) Phone up a friend who has got the same machine and ask them to come around and teach you how to use it.

C) Switch on and work it out through trial and error.

In fact, you would probably learn to operate your computer over a period of time using a combination of the above. Nevertheless, one of those methods is probably more dominant than the others. Reflect for a moment on whether you think your own preferred learning style influences your teaching style.

Your pupils will also have their own instinctive preference. Some will be punctilious, will want to read their tutors carefully and will instinctively learn in an intellectual and methodical kind of way. Some will depend very much on you and your guidance and show little of their own initiative. And some will want to try everything out, play a lot by ear and generally want to learn in a more creative kind of way.

The following suggestions provide a summary of effective teaching practice. They represent a basic philosophy that successful teachers adhere to, even without conscious analysis of their own methods. It is impossible to be entirely comprehensive and you may be able to add further thoughts; it is really a matter of common sense.

1. Understand clearly in your own mind what it is you intend to teach and what you expect your pupil to learn. A little forward planning goes a long way!

2. Make your explanations clear; use language, analogies and illustrations appropriate to the age (and interests) of your pupil. Be prepared to explain the same problem in a number of different ways.

3. Make sure everything you teach is relevant and progressive.

4. Teach one thing at a time and ensure that it is understood before proceeding.

5. Ensure pupils have sufficient strategies for constructive and independent practice.

6. Revisit and reinforce new material (a weak link in the chain, which you may not notice at first, may come back to haunt both you and your pupil in the future).

7. Divide tasks into smaller manageable units if pupils are experiencing difficulties.

8. Use your pupil’s existing knowledge, skills and experience to make connections to new ideas.

9. Proceed from the known to the related unknown.

10. Always try to relate theory and aural to the particular repertoire being studied.

Traits And Characteristics: Scorpion Men and Women

“Scorpio” is the astrology sign of extremes and intensity and the “Scorpions” can be best defined by the keywords; Loyal, Passionate, Resourceful, Observant, Dynamic, Jealous, Obsessive, Suspicious, Manipulative and Unyielding. They are in fact very deep and intense people who have a cool, detached, and unemotional air to the globe; yet, lying underneath is the significant strength, incredible power, intense passion, and a strong determination with a persistent drive.

“Scorpions” are considered to have a very penetrative mind. It is not surprising if they ask questions, as they are trying to dig deeper and figure things out to survey the situation. They constantly want to know why, where, who, when and any other possible detail they can possibly know.

“Scorpions” easily get worn out of the games that other people try to play and even they are very conscious of it. They tend to dictate and dominate anyone who lets them down. The person whom a Scorpio compliments and respect is treated with amazing kindness, loyalty and generosity by them. Also, “Scorpions” have great secrecy and obscurity. This trait magnetically draws people to them.

The traits of “Scorpions” are below mentioned:

Independence Trait

They are intensely independent. They strive to accomplish anything they put in their mind and they won’t give up easily and are perfectly apt to being on their own.

Friendship with Scorpions

Their relationships are a series of extreme ends. They can be downright moody for no noticeable reason. Also, “Scorpions” are known for their possessive nature and jealousy but on the other hand, extremely loyal.


Scorpions possess an excellent memory.They can hold a grudge against someone who harmed them; in fact a Scorpio rarely forgives and forgets and will even go as far as get revenge on the person.


On the other hand, they always remember a kind gesture forever and repay it whenever needed. Be honest with a Scorpio friend and in return, you will achieve an amazing friend you will never forget and be loyal to you and never make fake promises.

Sense of Humor

“Scorpions” have truthful and shocking sense of humor than that of any other zodiac sign and this quality turns Scorpio into an amazing, influential, interesting friend, which can be trusted.

Scorpions and Business

They turn out to be excellent doctors, surgeons, scientists and leaders. In-fact, they are perfectly suited to any form of business that makes a difference in the world which greatly impacts people and society. In business, they tend to easily gather wealth and make very wise business decisions although they are very conservative about spending their money.

Scorpions and Temperament

“Scorpions” are extremely ambitious, persistent and determined which is shown through a power hunger, controlling attitude. The key to this success lies in their flexibility. They are very adaptable and versatile as well as stern competitors pooled with their powers of observation. With their excellent memory, they will recall facts and whenever necessary, bring them to the table at the time of need.

Scorpions Deep Inside

They are very much capable of hiding their true feelings and motivations; they are blessed with the ulterior motives or a hidden agenda.

Emotional Quotient

“Scorpions” are deeply emotional. Their emotions are intensified whether good emotions or bad. Hallmarks of this turbulent astrology sign are negative emotions of jealousy and resentment.


They are extremely intuitive; they have a great understanding of the mystery and the supremacy of the human mind.


They have a fear of failure which they keep hidden extremely well.


They are very wary about trusting anyone, a person needs to gain their trust and this gets built up over time and once all the ‘trust tests’ have been passed, Scorpions love deeply and intensely; underneath the cool exterior, energies and emotions keep on constantly flowing.

Scorpions simply in a Nutshell:

Scorpion Woman: “The Scorpion” woman has great appeal, attraction, allure, and inner strength. She is able to overcome any obstacle in her life; self-confident and self-possessed and thus men are drawn to her for that reason.

“Scorpion” woman is intensely private, discrete and secretive; will learn everything about you, but won’t give you her details. She is very emotional, very demanding and very demonstrative, full of flair and intrigue, ultimate seductive and flirtatious woman.

She is weary of trusting another person; may not flaunt it, but she always wants a close committed relationship. She is possessive, full of mystery, sensuality and passion.

Scorpion Man:

The “Scorpion” man is extremely sensitive and feels lonely and unfulfilled, but he will never let a woman know about all this. If you want a close relationship with him be sensitive and affectionate to him appeal to his emotions only, but do not attempt to lead him on because he will see this and never forgive you for this.

They are also very moody and their mood swings like a pendulum on a clock; make excellent protectors and saviors and you always feel safe under his shining, ardent and energetic power. They are intensely passionate about everything around him, including love.

If you look at the facade, he looks totally calm, quite composed. Never mess with a “Scorpion” man unless and until you are sure that this is the man, you want to be with. They are jealous and possessive to the extreme. Don’t even think of teasing him with another man; He will erupt like a volcano and your male friend may end up in the hospital.

On the other hand, there is hardly any person on this globe who can resist the magnetic personality of a “Scorpion” man. Keep in mind that the term loyalty is always synonymous with “Scorpion” man and relax as how much he charms the other women, he will always remain dedicated to you.

Waste Disposal and Waste Management

Waste disposal is either placing waste in water or onto land. Waste is taken to facilities where the waste is permanently contained and can prevent the release of pollutants into the environment. When disposing of solid waste, it often is placed on land in a landfill. Liquid waste is disposed of in injection wells that bury the refuse deep under ground. These wells are closely monitored to prevent leakage of harmful pollutants into the drinking water.

America alone generates nearly 208 million tons of solid waste per year and it is only expected to increase. Each person actually generates about 4.3 pounds of waste per day. Even though we have developed many different ways to dispose of refuse, there is still no absolutely safe way to remove and store trash.

History of Waste Disposal

The disposal of waste wasn’t always so carefully monitored. In the 18th century in England and France, people with carts were paid to carry trash out of town and dispose of it. Benjamin Franklin spurred the first municipal cleaning system in Philadelphia in 1757, making the dumping of trash in open pits a routine action. However, since then our trash has become more complicated and can’t simply be placed in a hole in the ground. We have many different types of trash and they must be disposed of properly to prevent contaminating the environment.

Types of Waste

There are many different types of waste and it is classified according to its physical, chemical, and biological characteristics. One of the major ways it is classified is by consistency; whether it is solid or liquid waste. To classify as a solid waste the material must contain less than 70% water. This classification often encompasses materials such as; household garbage, industrial wastes, mining waste, and some oilfield wastes. Liquid wastes must be less than 1% solid and is often from wastewater. Wastewater often contains high levels of dissolved salts and metals. Sludge is the final consistency classification; being somewhere between a liquid and a solid. Sludge often contains between 3 and 25% solids and the rest of it is made up of water dissolved materials.

The Federal government classifies waste into 3 categories; non-hazardous, hazardous, and Special wastes. Non-hazardous waste does not pose any immediate threat to health or the environment. This category includes household refuse. Hazardous wastes can either be ignitable/reactive or leachable. This means that hazardous waste is either flammable or has the potential to leach toxic chemicals. Special wastes have very specific guidelines to regulate it. Examples of Special Waste would be radioactive waste and medical waste.

How do we dispose of it?

There are a variety of ways that we dispose of trash and waste. Landfill use is the most common and can account for more than 90% of the countries municipal waste. However, landfills have been proven to contaminate drinking water in some regions. Landfills are the most cost-effective way of disposing; collection and transport represents 75% of the total cost involved. In modern landfills, the garbage is spread thin in compacted layers and then is covered by fresh earth. Landfills minimize pollution by lining the hole, contouring the fill, compacting and planting the top cover layer, diverting drainage, and by choosing sites that are not often affected by flooding or high groundwater levels. Clay is the best type of soil for a landfill because it is less permeable than other types of soil. Some materials that are disposed of in landfills can be solidified into solid materials like cement, fly ash, asphalt, or organic polymers.

Garbage is also disposed of using incinerators. This method is more costly but safer than a landfill. Modern incinerators can destroy nearly 99.9% of organic waste material. Many thermal processes recover energy from the solid waste that is incinerated. Pyrolysis, the process of chemical breakdown can produce a plethora of gasses and inert ash. Incinerators that burn garbage have been known to contaminate the air, soil, and water. Many communities near incinerators object to them for fear of possible harmful emissions.

Hazardous waste is also pumped into deep wells inside the earth. This is called waste injection. Many people are strongly opposed to this because it has caused explosions and even earthquakes in the past.

Organic materials that contain little or no heavy metals can be detoxified biologically. This is often done by composting and land farming; where waste materials are spread over a large area of land so that microbes can easily work to decompose them. However, hazardous wastes must be detoxified before they leach into the groundwater causing water contamination.

Recycling solid waste is not a new idea. In prehistoric times, metal tools were often melted down and recast. These days, recyclable materials are removed from municipal waste by shredding, magnetic separation of metals, screening, and washing. Composting involves the preparing of waste and breaking down the organic matter using aerobic microorganisms. This has lead to many municipalities and garbage collection agencies to require their customers to separate recyclable items from other types of household waste.

Another type of waste is livestock waste. It is created by large livestock companies. These generate more than 30 times the waste that humans do. Yearly, livestock waste accounts for 1.375 billion tons of refuse. The Environmental Products and Technologies Corporation has developed a system to reduce the amount of livestock waste. With their Closed Loop Waste Management System they can turn animal waste into commercial quantities of pathogen free, nutrient dense, soil building materials.

The Future of Waste

Currently, the best way to reduce the amount of waste that must be disposed of is to prevent its creation. Consumers must protest against the production of needless waste and push the movement for using and producing recycled products. These strategies to reduce waste may cost us more upfront but we will pay a lesser price in the end. Reducing waste can add extra years in which we can live on this planet healthfully.

Love in the Times of AIDS


Author: Dr Mark Hunter: An Assistant Professor in Social Science/Geography at the University of Toronto.

Publisher: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press

Reviewer: Bhekisisa Stalin Mncube


LOVE in the times of AIDS is a valuable ethnography of Mandeni, a peri-urban town in the northern part of the province of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. The town epitomises the devastation wrought by the aftermaths of HIV/AIDS. According to the 2008 HIV/AIDS prevalence figures, 39% of women tested positive for HIV in KwaZulu-Natal. There is still no discernible change in statistics since then.

The book presents arguments about why AIDS epidemic surfaced so rapidly in South Africa. It combines ethnography and history to illuminate the deep connections between political economy and intimacy – a broader term than sex that extends analysis into fertility, love, marriage, and genital pleasure.

The book lays bare the devastation of families wrought by HIV/AIDS amid disintegrating communities fuelled in part by rising unemployment, poverty and hopelessness. This book is a potent manuscript that offers a glimpse of that twilight zone between courage and fear; love and death; and hope in the mist of hopelessness. The story is profoundly distressing; yet one find solace in its powerful narrative, academic analysis and engaging manner including the author’s personal anecdotes of his stay in Mandeni.

Mark Hunter spent over five years living and working in an informal settlement in Mandeni. As part of his in-depth study: Hunter conducted interviews, surveys, collected love letters, cell phone text messages, oral histories and archival materials. This allowed Hunter to detail the everyday lives and emotions of those infected and affected by the virulent epidemic. In the process he learned IsiZulu language, and developed a deep understanding of its nuances: hence he used more than hundred IsiZulu words to bring to bear the emotion and cultural meaning of the words spoken by his subjects in a manner that offers them dignity while enriching the experience of the reader.

The central argument of the book: AIDS is a social problem that is embedded in uneven development, skewed resource allocation, rapid urbanisation, housing backlogs in emerging towns, apartheid urban design, rising levels unemployment and poverty. Hunter argues that to explain South Africa’s rapid rise in HIV prevalence, we must note that intimacy, especially what he calls the materiality of everyday sex, has become a key juncture between production and social reproduction in the current era of chronic unemployment and capital-led globalisation. In other words, as unemployment has cast a cruel but uneven shadow on the country, certain aspects of intimacy have come to play a more central and material role in the “fleshy, messy and indeterminate stuff of everyday life”. Through Hunter’s study of history and his training as a geographer, he is able to map a link on how first apartheid, and then chronic unemployment have become entangled with the ideas about femininity, masculinity, love and sex that have created an economy of exchange (deadly cocktail) that perpetuates the transmission of HIV/AIDS.

He firmly tells us that the drivers of the epidemic are deeply rooted in the fault lines of the society, and it is these fault lines that need to be tackled. AIDS stands, Hunter suggests, as a symptom of all ills rooted in colonialism and apartheid that have not transformed since the dawn of democracy in 1994. It is an indictment on the new South Africa, 16 years after its birth.

To explain the connection between the political economy and intimacy – what I call: the hierarchy of ubufebe multiple sex partners – Hunter’s study reveals shocking antics of men and women in Mandeni. He tells of classification of multiple lovers – a main boyfriend/girlfriend being known as istraight. The istraight is entitled sometimes to sex (no prior HIV test required) without a condom and that the entitlement extends less to ishende (secret lover) and, or, isidikiselo (secondary lover).

Another fascinating find in Hunter’s field work is a special role of sugar daddies (traditionally men who sleep with younger girls). He describes these girls’ relationship with sugar daddies as more than just “casual” or “secondary”, but providers of material support. One of Hunter’s interviewee explains: When he comes to me he will ask if I am involved. Then I will either tell him that I am single, or that there is someone I am involved with, and that he will be the second one. Then to the third one I won’t say he is the third; I will say that he is number two. In this hierarchy of ubufebe (refers to sexually loose woman; or Isoka lamanyala for a man) each man is linked to specific expenses (e.g., “one each for money, food, and rent” or “ministers of finance, transport, and entertainment). On the other hand some boys can provide sex with men for material rewards. These providers could entirely be different to istraight, ishende and isidikiselo. It is this economy of exchange that enables the historical gender inequalities, apartheid male centred economy, rising women urbanisation, chronic housing shortages as well unemployment to seamlessly fuel the transmission of AIDS. Unless, the book seems to suggest, the South African government tackles the structural economic stagnation, coupled with its gender blind social services delivery – the Abstain, Be faithful and Condomise maxim (ABC) of AIDS will remain a non-starter.

To this end, Love in the times of AIDS offers an outlet for expression, contemplation, and a deep understanding of fault lines of AIDS transmission. It is also a moving obituary of those who succumbed to the virus while the former South Africa President Thabo Mbeki dithered. This book is a blueprint for authorities to understand AIDS beyond the bio-medical approach: AIDS as a social problem. The book is a must read for policy makers, AIDS activists, and all those who care about the future of our country.

REVIEWER’S NOTE: All material facts have been checked by the author.

Bhekisisa Mncube is a freelance/media consultant based in South Africa.

Internal Scar Tissue

Internal scarring. If only we could see the interior of our bodies as easily as we see the exterior. Our lives and the problems we encounter, especially when it comes to our health, would be so much easier to solve! Unfortunately, when it comes to the intricate workings of the machine inside of us, we truly see through a glass darkly. When health issues arise, we are forced to seek out medical assistance. Radiation imagery provides that look inside, which often paves the way to solving a health issue. Other times, however, even the best of medical imagery and blood work provide little to no clue to a problematic condition.

Internal scarring–adhesions–can cause life altering, debilitating symptoms that often leave the physician baffled after all medical tests have been concluded. Adhesions elude the eye of standard medical imagery and can only be diagnosed by diagnostic laparoscopy. The physician who suspects adhesions may suggest “exploratory surgery” or diagnostic laparoscopy. He may feel the need to have a look at internal organs. Unfortunately, however, this is rarely the case. Most adhesions sufferers will spend seven to ten years (on average) in search of an answer to their pain before learning they suffer from internal adhesions. In most cases, the sufferer is the one who usually stumbles on to information that leads him back to the doctor with the request for diagnostic laparoscopy.

Still yet, even if surgery is performed and adhesions are found, the journey to wellness is usually far from over. Though the surgeon may remove adhesions during laparoscopy surgery, if an adequate barrier is not used after adhesions are removed, the tissues begin to adhere once again. Adhesions are, after all, bands of scar tissue that form as the body’s natural method of healing; thus surgery without an adequate barrier is almost always an effort in futility.

For reasons yet unknown, some adhesions continue to grow, branching out like a vine, entrapping everything in its path. If you have seen a telephone pole or other structure encased by a wild vine, you know much of the pole or structure is no longer identifiable. In severe cases of adhesions, the surgeon must painstakingly remove adhesions just to find the organs that have been taken over by abnormal scar tissue growth.

Organs that have been compromised by scar tissue can play havoc on one’s life, as the internal organs are designed to move freely within the body. Scar tissue encasing the bowel can cause nausea and vomiting or a full blown bowel obstruction. Scar tissue on the diaphragm can cause breathing problems or a general shortness of breath. Adhesions on fallopian tubes can cause infertility problems, as well as severe pain during menses. Overall, adhesions that become problematic can destroy a person’s life, much as was true in the case of my daughter who suffered fourteen years–often in agonizing pain–before we learned the true culprit behind her debilitating pain–adhesions.

Maxxis Bighorns

Maxxis Bighorns are a mud terrain tyre that has been on the market now for several years. The previous Mud Terrain tyres by Maxxis were known as Maxxis buckshot’s. Maxxis have already proved that their tyres are brilliant on quads and racing cars, meaning there is no reason not to expect a great 4×4 Tyre for driving a 4×4 in the mud! I purchased 5 Maxxis bighorns on My Hilux about a year ago now, and I have been using them both on road and off-road on the beach, dunes, rocks and mud.

What pressure should I run my Bighorns at?

This should be largely decided by the weight of your car, and the terrain that you are driving on. For on road use, the Maxxis Bighorns have a maximum rating of 35 PSI. Generally, the bigger the tyre that you have on your car the less pressure that you need in them on the road. Of course, you ought to check and test with what works best. I run my Maxxis at 30 PSI on the road (being a light Hilux and they wear well at 30). On the beach I will usually drop them down to 15 PSI, but I won’t hesitate to let them down to 10 if I am struggling in soft sand. If I am just driving on rocks or through mud I usually just let them down to around 18 PSI. Of course, if your car is heavier you might need to keep them pumped up more, but just do some research and testing to see what works. For Beach Driving, in between 15 and 18 PSI is generally the right pressure on larger four wheel drives.

The biggest mistake I see people doing is not letting their tyres down when they are off-road. This is especially important when you are driving on sand, as it increases your footprint dramatically, and makes your car float on top of the sand rather than digging down. If you have tyres pumped up tight, then they tend to sink down and dig holes. When driving through bushland, it’s much easier to get a puncture in your tyre if you are running them at a high pressure. You can take a normal balloon that is not pumped up much and push it onto a sharp rock (carefully) and it will not burst. Get the same balloon and pump it up tight, and it will pop the second you touch it on the rock. It’s really the same principle with tyres, and letting them down to the correct pressure will save you a lot of money in the long run.

Are Maxxis Bighorns any good in sand?

Some people find mud tyres work better than standard tyres on sand, and others find the opposite. The fact is with Maxxis Bighorns, you shouldn’t struggle on the beach. My set is 12.5 inches wide, which gives them a slightly bigger footprint anyway. The trick with these tyres is to let them down enough so that they work effectively. If that means letting them right down to 15 pound, then so be it. I find that they love to dig holes (because of the aggressive tread)  but they tend to pull through soft sand. Just make sure they are let down to a safe level which doesn’t overwork your car.

You can get bead locks, which will prevent this, but they are an extra expense and may not be legal where you live to drive on the road. If you are a big sand driver, then perhaps purchasing a set of all terrains would be a better idea. However, in terms of compromise between a tyre which is exceptionally good in the mud and on rocks, the Maxxis Bighorns do very well.

What pressure can I drop them down to if I need to?

I haven’t needed to drop my tyres down to anything below 10 PSI. If you really needed to though, you could probably safely drop them down to 5 PSI for getting out of a sticky situation. It’s not advisable to drive like this for long without bead locks; make sure you pump the tyres up a bit once you are out of trouble. Always remember if you are really in trouble, a set of tyres is probably worth less than the value of your car. If the tide is coming up, then wrecking a set of tyres will usually be worth it to get out of trouble! I always advise having a set of Max Tracks or some shade cloth with you to help get out in soft sand anyway. Make sure you have a good Car Air Compressor for when you are done four wheel driving.

Do they wear well?

I have heard a number of people mention that their Maxxis Bighorns did around the 80,000km mark. I have done just over 17,000 on my Maxxis Bighorns, and they have worn very little. Brand new, they come with 14.5mm of tread, and mine still have around 12mm left. My set look to do evne more than 80,000km which is great! Of course, if you drive purely off-road then they will obviously wear quicker. It also depends on how you drive. If you like spinning your wheels on rocks and taking off quickly from the lights then they will not last as long either.

Something I highly advise is proper tyre rotation. When you spend over a thousand dollars on rubber, you want to make sure that they are going to last as long as possible. I even include my spare tyre in the rotation, because otherwise you end up with a brand new tyre in a few years time that has hard rubber and a tyre that isn’t reliable anyway. You may as well use it, and include it in the rotation. The more regularly you rotate the tyres the longer they last, but 5,000 to 10,000 intervals will do just fine.

Tyre Rotation:

I normally rotate the front right to the back right. The back right goes to the spare. The spare goes to the front left, and the front left goes to the back left. The back left goes to the front right, and after 5 rotations you are back at the start. Different people will have different opinions on the best way to do it, so be sure to do your research. Overall, just make sure that the tyres are not staying in the same place for too long, because they will wear out much quicker if they do.

How strong are Maxxis Bighorns?

In terms of the sidewall rating, they are not as strong as some of the tyres that you can purchase today. I would suggest that if you are going to do a trip across Australia, maybe look for some other tyres than the Maxxis Bighorns (depending on where you are going). In saying this, they are not weak tyres. I have only damaged one, when a rock dented in my rim and pinched the tyre a little. It put two cuts through the rubber, but it doesn’t leak. The side grabbers work very well, especially on slippery clay or rocks.

Maxxis Bighorn Price

Maxxis Bighorns are very cheap compared to other brands. They are not the cheapest mud terrain tyre, but they are definitely in the lower part of prices. The more expensive tyres include BFG Goodrich muddies, Goodyear Wranglers and Cooper STT’s. Whilst these may be good tyres, they are considerably more expensive. I purchased my 5 Maxxis (33 x 12.5inch tyres) for the same as a friend purchased smaller Cooper STT muddies. It’s a fairly big saving point, but entirely up to what you need the rubber to do.

Maxxis Bighorn Comparison

Earlier this year, the 4×4 Action team in Australia did a comparison of mud terrain tyres. The only thing that they really missed out on was wear after several thousand kilometres, but none of the tyres that they tested were damaged. The number one winner was the new BFG Goodrich muddy, and second place was the Maxxis Bighorn. This was taking into consideration a huge number of factors such as braking ability, on road handling, noise, sand, mud and rock driving as well as a few other bits and pieces. They really do perform very well.

Where is the best place to get them from?

This depends largely on where you live, but you can visit Bob Jane, Ian Diffen and various other places. I believe Tyre Power and those that don’t normally stock Maxxis are able to order them in, but they are usually more expensive. Just shop around and find the best price, then take it to someone you know and see if they will beat it. I paid just under $300 each for my 33 x 12.5 Maxxis Bighorns, but you should be able to get them for a bit less if you look around. The cheapest place for these great tyres is eBay.

Are Maxxis Bighorns any good?

My overall opinion of these tyres is that they are huge value for money. When you consider the big price difference, and the wear that you get out of them, they are great. I love the fact that they are great in mud, they look good and they don’t break the wallet to get a set. In fact, I paid the same amount for my tyres as my dad did for a set of normal highway tyres for his Pajero, and they will do more kilometres than his! In terms of a comparison between other 4×4 Accessories that I have fitted and these tyres, I made a good decision in getting the Maxxis. In fact, if you look around for reviews on the four wheel drive forums for Maxxis Bighorns, almost everyone says that they are great value. My next set of tyres will definitely be a set of Maxxis Bighorns.

How to Know If a Man is Into You? Really Effective Ways to Know Whether He Likes You Or Not

How many times have you been heart- broken for barking up the wrong tree? While some of us are lucky in love many of us are very confused and mistake courteousness for curiosity and interest. When a man is just being courteous you jump the gun and conclude that he likes you and begin to invest your feelings in him. The result is heart break. Here are a few ways to find out if a man is into you before you begin your emotional investment.

What does his smile say

A smile says a lot. If a man really likes you his smile is going to be deep and genuine and not like the formal smiles that are dished out to everyone. See if his smile is reaching his eyes and you have a hit.

Does he try to find out about your personal life

During a conversation does he try to find out about your status; if you are single or dating anyone? And if you say that you are dating he goes on to enquire of it is serious or if you are testing waters. This clearly indicates an interest in you and he is simply waiting for a go ahead.

Does he let you know of his single status

A man will also let you know of his status though not very overtly. For example, he might tell you that he has plans to go for a movie this weekend “alone”. That is the keyword that you have to latch on to and work.

Does he lean in to talk to you

You will find that if a man is interested in you then he will lean into you when he has to say something. You might also find him trying to whisper something to you and with that pretext he will lean closer.

Is he mirroring your behavior

When two people are interested in each other, they mirror each other. So, if he is into you, you will find him coming forward if you lean in or if you sit back then he does the same.

Does he touch you lightly

If you find a man lightly touching your elbow, you arm or your leg during a conversation in a very casual manner then he is totally into you.

Has he been “showing up” unexpectedly?

You know that a man is into you completely when he begins to show up unexpectedly at places that he knows you are at. He will try not to make his intentions obvious to avoid embarrassment but he either has been asking around about your whereabouts or has been paying very close attention to what you have to say both of which clearly indicate that he is into you!

How to Become a Famous Singer Songwriter

If you sing and play an instrument then by now you must have dreamed of being a part of the music industry, and make it big as a singer songwriter. However, no matter if you play rock, country, pop or another style of music and you had music lessons all your life, you know all the tips and tricks for making a great melody, you might still stumble from time to time and have what it’s called a writer block.

Now, if you want to make it into the music business and be a hit songwriter, you can’t really afford lacking ideas and inspiration. You need to have great songs and work hard, but what can you do when you’re blocked and can’t write?

There are some methods and tools which you can use that will help you write a good song. And with a new song that sounds amazing, you are sure to capture the attention of some big fish. If you want to become a famous singer songwriter you need to have great songs – without it, you won’t make it and won’t get any music awards ever.

So, what are the secrets behind being a hit songwriter? What do other singer songwriters have and you don’t? Well, first of all it’s not about songwriting techniques, songwriting competition or something else. It’s all about melodies.

Let me tell you a story. Not so long ago, a young man had a lyric in his head – just a single verse, not a whole song. He took that single lyric and made it into a chorus, and also used it as a title for the melody. He then took his guitar and played a simple chord pattern that became the chorus. With that simple piece of music, he began lyric writing – just a verse at first, then the bridge. He started recording his chorus, verse and bridge. The lyrics were catchy, the melodies were perfect and the whole song was easy to listen. He then added another verse, and the song was done. Once went with his song to the recording studio, he added some nice beats, some other instruments, and with the help of songwriting software, he managed to make it really professional sounding. He sent this song as a demo along with other of his own songs. Overnight, his song became a hit single, a favorite song for the youth, and his music career took off.

The above story can be your story. Learn from it, as it explains the songwriting process, and if you stick to the above songwriting tips and tricks, you’ll have an album in no time. Song writing is a skill that can be learned, and as a singer songwriter you should be able to write songs fairly easy. This is not the ultimate method for writing songs, but if you listen to other artists that have a huge audience, you’ll notice that their songs are mainly chorus driven.

Benefits of Using Carrara White Marble

Carrara marble is one of the most commonly used building and sculpting materials in the world. The stone is quarried in Italy in white and gray color and shipped throughout the world as blocks. These blocks are then shaped and cut into counters, tiles, statues and thresholds. When choosing these White Marble Tiles for use in your home, consider the different benefits of the marble.

Mostly everyone’s choice for interior decoration tiles culminate upon Carrara Marble. So, if you want to add an artistic touch to your house or office, Carrara White tiles are your best option. Whether you need tiles for walls, flooring or slabs for countertops, these stones are the ideal answer due to their durability and color.

All that you need to invest in the care of the White Marble Tiles is a weekly mop-up or cleaning with water and drying-off in order to avoid any stains. And, also ensure that any spillage is dealt instantly.

Carrara marble is unique because of the veining found in it. These elements have benefits of their own. The stone’s background can be called white, but it is actually light gray in color with gray veins spread across the entire length. These veins are helpful in hiding any wear and tear, if it ever occurs with the stone. Other benefits included disguising dirt and adding an element of interest to the marble.

From the point of cooling, marble has is a helpful feature in your home. Since the stone takes a long time in order to get warmed, you can always enjoy the cool floors during hot weather conditions. The light color of the marble reflects most of the heat keeping the home cooler.

The marble once polished adds elegance to the entire home. The marble has been in use for centuries due to its looks and beauty, thus adding a traditional touch of classics to your home.

Carrara White marble is one of the most commonly used marbles in homes, which emphasizes that you will always be able to find the right shape, size and finish that you want to use in your home. Whether in slabs or in mosaic tiles, this marble is easy to find with any finish from any stone or marble dealer.

Moreover, due to easy availability, these White Marble Tiles are not highly expensive in the market. In comparison to other popularly used white marbles including Bianco Venatino and Callacato, this marble costs around 50 percent less.