Saturday, March 9, 2019

5 Video Games You Should Play Before You Die

5.) Halo 3 (2007)
Why: The Halo series is one of a kind. It brought friends together to blast one another in an epic space combat. Halo 3 is perhaps the best of the series when it came to the glorified multiplayer, with a dramatic storyline with absolutely scr888 no shortage of opera music cues and a hardy character customization. Many titles still try and replicate what Halo did and it just can't be matched.

4.) Minecraft (2011)
Why: Minecraft is one of the best-selling video games of all time, so you would have to be living under a rock as a gamer to have never come across it. You get to create your own world basically and do whatever you want. If you think it, then you can create it. The nice thing about Minecraft is it is offered on almost every platform, including smartphones. This game is good for letting your mind wander and become an artist.

3.) Super Mario 64 (1996)
Why: Mario is one of the most known titles, but anyone can tell you this might be the best game in the franchise. The game is not like any of its predecessors because this was the first 3D platform game in the series. It is a bigger world than the ones before and the additional moves and jumps Mario can do makes the game fast-paced and more exciting. There are a total of 120 stars and the game has a ton of replay value. Mario platformers are still being made today and none of them still cannot come close to how good this game was.

2.) Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (1998)
Why: Everyone has their favorite Zelda game, but Ocarina of Time encompasses the best features from the glorified series. There is a huge world that you have the freedom to explore, a magnificent score, and a truly remarkable origin story. The dungeons are not too challenging, but intricate enough to not get too mad when you can't figure a puzzle out.

1.) Pokémon X and Y (2013)
Why: Whether you are a kid or an adult, with this franchise that never seemed to matter. Pokémon revolutionized what it meant to make characters like Pikachu come alive. They modernized the handheld multiplayer gaming and made it what it is today. X and Y is one of the newer titles, which is great because the game never stops using the old characters the adults grew up on.

Monday, December 3, 2018

A New Way to Think About the Idiot Next Door

For the last 20,000 years, give or take a few, philosophers
and politicians have been dreaming up solutions to problems
with the idiots next door or with those moving in.
You may be more familiar with those problems in the last
thousand years. Remember the Crusades?  If you scan the
history between 1000 and 1500 AD, the news sounds eerily
familiar.  So does the geography.
It might lead you to think there is no hope for peace in the
human psyche.  There seems to be a built in resistance to
rational behavior.
 Credit Devianart

The French sociologist, Jean Braudrillard pointed out in
1981 that New York's twin towers were the epitome of
everything the West stands for.  In 2001 he argued that the
West would never defeat Islamic fundamentalism because it is
the consequence of American superiority and a lack of
alternatives to the new world order. The more successful the
war on terrorism is, he wrote, the more terrorists would be
produced. (The Australian, March 9, 2007)
Some called him the idiot next country.
Hope springs eternal in the human breast, if not in the human
brain.  Brain research in the last ten years shows that our
thoughts at any given moment are more like a drunken chorus
line than a military parade passing in revue.
David Brooks of The New York Times writes, "The mind is not
a centralized thing. There are dozens of thoughts, processes
and emotions swirling about and competing for attention at
any one time." (New York Times, July 24, 2007)
The attempt to be rational can be an exercise in futility.
Accepting this fact is a first step in accepting the idiot next
Brooks points out that most political and social disputes
grow out of different theories about the self.  He contends
that there is no concept of self that exists before society; that
each of us is profoundly shaped by our own little society.
The beliefs of our homes and neighborhoods are buried in
our subconscious minds by an early age. Brooks writes,
"When people communicate, they send out little flares into
each other's brains.  Friends and lovers create feedback
loops of ideas and habits and ways of seeing the world."
Credit Wallpaperask

You've heard of peer pressure.  It's real.
"The research documenting the spread of the obesity epidemic
from friend to friend," writes Ellen Goodman in the Boston Globe,
"leapt from the sober annals of the New England Journal of
Medicine to the front pages of newspapers everywhere."
(Boston Globe, August 2, 2007) This got the researchers,
Christakis and Fowler, in hot water.  How could a friend
influence another friend to get fat? Actually, they simply
reported after years of research that close friends of the
same sex fundamentally affect each other's points of view and
behavior. All together, they create a norm.  You remember high
school, don't you?
Guru entrepreneurs lecture to their audiences: "If you want to
be successful, change your friends.  Hang out with successful
It doesn't change, either, after you die.  Your habits, values
and ideas stay alive in the minds of your living friends and
relatives.  Recently I overheard a woman in her eighties
say, "My father always said ..."
Because we are the sum of our particular little society and
because we are not wholly rational, we often fight the idiots
next door.   Worse, we attempt to do good (by reforming them)
but often fail.  We assume the idiots next country share our
perceptions and values.
Credit Search

Consider programmed attempts to eradicate poverty.  As
Brooks says, "The habits that are common in the underclass
areas get inside the brains of those who grow up there and
undermine long-range thinking and social trust."  The programs
that do work recognize such habits and distrust and address
them first.
Programs that rehabilitate felons address self-concept head on.
Consider attempts to create democracy in the world and thereby
provide freedom.  Who is defining freedom?
In 1980 a student from communist China came to America.
When in an ice cream store he complained about the
number of choices in flavors. "Too much work," he said.  "Too
many decisions everywhere.  Americans work too hard."
We may say we want something in the abstract, but when we
get right down to it, what we really want is embedded and defined
in our subconscious.  That's why we think our neighbor with a
different set of perceptions is an idiot.
A new way to think about him is to think about what was drummed
into his head before age seven as well as what was drummed into
yours.  Repetition sells.
My father used to say, "All the world's a little queer,
Martha, except thee and me, and sometimes even thee."

Monday, August 6, 2018

Family So Different From One Another?

It has been said that children should be like pancakes; you ought to be able to throw the first one or two away. While this may sound cruel to the first-born, there is a ring of truth to the idea that we make a lot of parenting mistakes with the first child. Fortunately, we aren’t allowed to throw our children away. Unfortunately, they have to suffer our inexperience until we’re able to manage to gain better parenting skills.
One of the primary ideas behind the Childhood Affirmations Program is to give parents skills they need so they will make fewer mistakes. Because we all have the opportunity to change and grow in the seventh stage of life, we still have the opportunity to discover what we didn’t learn about parenting when we were growing up, or haven’t yet learned as an adult. None of us is perfect, we all have a growing edge, some rough part of our personality that may be getting in the way of parenting well. The good news is that it’s never too late to learn.
That’s why I hope you’ll check out the Strategies for Raising Resourceful, Resilient, and Compassionate Children, which I developed after my children were raised. I hope your learning curve can rise more sharply than mine did.
Circumstances Change
If parents divorce when a child is two-months old, that rupture in the fabric of the family will leave a different-sized hole in the life of a child than would be true if the child were four, or ten, or eighteen. The same is true of stresses on a family that occur because of a major loss, such as the loss of a job, the loss of a house in a flood, the death of a sibling or a parent. Both the event itself and the age of the child when the event occurs will impact different children differently.
Similarly, a parent who had been a full-blown alcoholic, and then entered a recovery program and turned his life around, will have a different impact on his children depending on their age (as well as their temperament, of course, since some will be naturally more sensitive to his change in behavior than other children will be).
Children Help Choose Their Role in the Family
It seems to me that one of the most significant influences in creating different children in the same family comes from the fact that we all have two basic psychological needs; one is the need to belong and the other is the need to be special. When the first child is born, the temperament of that child will help determine the role she plays. For example, if she is naturally easy-going and eager to please, her parents are likely to talk about that trait, which reinforces it, since she receives positive attention by continuing to do what she is temperamentally programmed to do anyway.
Let’s say she then has a little sister who is naturally a bit more excitable and inquisitive, causing her to be told “no” a lot and to get into trouble. When the first child is then referred to as “our compliant child,” both children can discover a role for themselves that sets them apart. The first by being “good” and the second by being “not-so-good.”
There are other combinations, of course. There is the child who is referred to as the “sports enthusiast” in the family and the child who is “our quiet scholar.” Each role brings a distinction to that child, even though the characteristics that set him or her apart aren’t really that significant. But the perception of everyone involved perpetuates a label that gives each child a feeling they aren’t like their brother or sister. They are special.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Why Are Children in the Same Family So Different From One Another?

Discover what factors create a personality and give each of us a different perspective on life.
“When I approach a child
He inspires in me two sentiments:
Tenderness for what he is,
And respect for what he may become.”
—Louis Pasteur
One of the questions I am most often asked is, “How can two children having the same parents have such extremely different personalities and interests?”
We ascribe many differences to gender. Other times, it is easy to see how a child born physically challenged will be different than siblings who are blessed with strong physiques. Also, we recognize the importance that basic intelligence plays in the ease with which a child learns. One child may be particularly bright and enjoy school, while for his sibling, who has dyslexia, school is a struggle, although that child may star in another way.
Nevertheless, although siblings may be the same sex, equally intelligent and equally capable physically, when their parents are through playing The Parenting Game, there are several reasons why their “products” look, sound, and act differently.
Our Temperaments Are Different
We all come of out the chute, so to speak, with a particular point of view concerning what life is all about. These inborn characteristics—shyness, moodiness, intensity, extroversion—shape the way we approach the experiences that, in turn, help shape who we become.
For example, there are some children who enter each new experience with great enthusiasm, while others, who come equipped with a brain structure that makes them much more reticent, wait to see how things unfold before they venture forth. The manner in which each child enters into potential experiences will influence what each of them will get out of life.
Not long ago we took grandsons to Disneyland. The oldest is a very loving and gentle child, but he holds back in new situations and tends to be frightened of things he doesn’t understand. Because of his temperament, he didn’t care for the music and animation on the “Small World” ride and cried in “Pirates of the Caribbean.” His younger brother, on the other hand, who rushes into new adventures with abandon, loved everything.
At the end of the day we wanted to go on the Haunted House ride and knew the only sensible plan was to allow the older boy to watch the fireworks with another adult, while the rest of us went into the scary house. The younger child was thrilled and the older boy enjoyed the fireworks, although a couple years before then he had been frightened of the noise and it took several experiences before he agreed that fireworks were fun to watch.
Although both boys enjoyed their Disneyland adventure, they will have different memories of the day simply from having different perspectives with which they experienced the event.
What’s “In” and What’s “Out” Can Change Quickly
We can easily see the difference between cultural norms in one century and the next. Yet even within a decade there can be shifts that allow one sibling an experience the other sibling doesn’t get. For example, advancements in areas as diverse as technology and fashions keep a parent on her toes as she experiments with encouraging or discouraging her children’s use of the latest products, often before there has been time to test their full impact.
Before September 11, 2001, many parents taught their children that the United States was a secure country. After that fateful day, their sense of invincibility was shattered and they weren’t sure what to tell their children. Therefore, for many people this event changed the way they parented; perhaps the new reality caused them to create more anxious children than would be true for siblings who had come into the family in less frightening times.
Parents Grow and Learn New Parenting Tricks

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

The Magic of Walt Disney

The Magic of Walt Disney

“Think of the happy things.  It’s the same as having wings.”
– Walt Disney

I’m reasonably sure Walt Disney never heard of The Law of Attraction, but he lived the principles brilliantly every day of his life.
Walt lived his life as a grand adventure, dreaming big dreams, with no interest in being “sensible” or playing it safe.  As a farm boy growing up in Missouri, his father insisted he stop dreaming and get a “real job” in a factory. The world continues to be delighted he ignored his father’s advice and followed his heart.
As a young man he arrived in Hollywood with little more than pocket-change, the clothes on his back, and a dream.  Always believing anything was possible, he focused on dreams rather than obstacles.  Even when his first creation, Oswald the Rabbit, was stolen from him, he stayed true to his Dream – Believe – Dare – Do credo and soon produced that world-famous character, Mickey Mouse.

* Live with Unfailing Optimism.  In 1923, following the bankruptcy of his first business, he left Kansas City for Hollywood.  Unconcerned by past failures or financial woes, Walt traveled first class.
* Unleash your Imagination.  Disney and his Imagineers drew on the boundless resources of the imagination to create what had never existed before and, in the process, brought joy and inspiration to the world.
* Believe Anything is Possible.  As Walt is quoted as saying, “actually, it’s kind of fun to do the impossible.” Rather than seeing reality as it was, Walt saw it as it could be, as he wanted it to be.

* Stay Focused.  Walt’s intense and passionate focus enabled him to turn his big, bold, beautiful dreams into even bigger, bolder, more beautiful reality.

* Take Risks.  In 1937, Walt risked the studio to produce Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs – the first, full-length animated film.  Everyone – except Walt – expected it to be a total flop.  In 1955, Disneyland (the world’s first theme park) was considered to be a colossal business gamble.

* Do What You Love.  According to Dick Van Dyke, Disney always greeted his work with the enthusiasm of a ten year old boy.
* “Plus” Everything You Do.  Disney made people feel special by giving them more than they paid for and delivering more than they expected.  With his commitment to excellence and attention to detail, he would “plus” every experience, then he would “plus the plus.”
“All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.”
– Walt Disney


Your dreams can come true too if you DREAM – BELIEVE – DARE – DO.  Make a list right now.
* Start with your DREAM.  What do you want?  Why do you want it?
* Write out why you BELIEVE you will attain it.  If you don’t completely believe it right now, write out what you would need to believe in order to realize your dream.

* DARE.  What risks are you willing to take based on your rock-solid belief in your dream?
* DO.  What are you willing to do to become a vibrational match to your dream?  What are you willing to do to keep your thoughts positive and focused on your dream?  Are you willing to listen for and take inspired action?
The thing I most loved about Disney movies as a kid was that the good guys won and everyone lived happily ever after.  These themes reflected Walt’s belief in a magical world where dreams really do come true.
Walt Disney dreamed big dreams and pursued those dreams with courage, optimism and perseverance.  How about you?  Remember:  “If you can dream it, you can do it.”  – Walt Disney
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You Won't Regret Visiting The Met

Touring new places and seeing new things is definitely lots of fun and New York City is among the most interesting places you can go. New York has been referred to as the "city that never sleeps" and right now there are numerous New York City attractions to see while you are there. So when you happen to be checking out one of the greatest cities in the USA make sure to check out some very interesting locations.

 It may take a little bit of research to find the very best sights and develop a plan that will incorporate all of them, but once you get to New York you will be happy you did. There's much to do within this city, and a little organization with a New York pass will allow you to maximize your time.

 The Empire State Building is one of the New York City attractions you won't want to miss. This building is usually available right up until 2am and the final elevators going up at around 1:15am. This gives you plenty of time to go there and view all of it.

 The view of the town from the top of the building at nighttime is simply breathtaking. The Empire State Building stands out as an architectural success for numerous reasons. It is 1453 ft and 8 9/16 inches from the bottom to the top of the lightening rod, and there are 1860 stairs from street level to the 102 floor. Additionally, on a clear day you can see for up to eighty miles from the top of this structure, and the lights up there change color for holidays and specific events.

 One of the biggest New York City attractions that everybody knows is the Statue of Liberty. The Statue was a gift to New York from France and it took 4 months to put together the 350 parts when she showed up back in 1886.

 People can once again visit the crown with an additional fee hike up the 354 stairs to get to it. Liberty Island, where the statue is situated, is free of charge, but you need to buy a ticket for the ferry to get to the island. There is always plenty of room to run and explore on the island in addition to free ranger guided tours. You can even buy meals there or bring a picnic lunch along. Whenever you are searching for something for you to do in New York, this is always a great option.

 New York City attractions meant for the fine art or history fan include many different galleries and museums: the Museum of Modern Art, the Met and the American Museum of Natural History are some of the most popular ones. You can easily take days checking them out. And, of course, what visit to New York could be full without going to Rockefeller Center. In addition to a great deal of shopping opportunities on the plaza, the Top of the Rock has a few of the finest views in the town.

 So if you are in the area for a weekend break or a month, there are many destinations to keep a person occupied and to make a trip an exciting one. Regardless of what time during the day or night, you are sure to discover something to do when you visit New York City.

What did you do on your vacation?

Elizabeth:  Barry and I went camping at the island.  We did some hiking and had a great campfire.
Ryan:  How did you travel?
Elizabeth:  We took the subway to 33rd Street, then we took the ferry to the island.  It ended up taking us only an hour each way. 
The first conversation had very short answers with little information.  The second one asked for more detailed information and invited Elizabeth to open up more. 
Close-ended questions elicit a one- or two-word answer.  This type of question usually begins with words like when, where, which, who, do, and are. 
It’s much better to ask open-ended questions that encourage people to generate longer and more interesting conversation.  Open-ended questions usually begin with words or phrases like what, how, why, and in what way.
Examples of Close-Ended Questions and Open-Ended Questions
Close-ended question: Who are you going to vote for?
Open-ended question: Why are you voting for that candidate?
Close-ended question: What kind of a job do you have?
Open-ended question: How did you get interested in your line of work?
Close-ended question: Did you like the last speaker?
Open-ended question: What did you agree with that the last speaker said?
Close-ended question: When did you start playing baseball?
Open-ended question: What do you like best about baseball?
As the other person is talking, make appropriate comments to show that you’re listening and understand what they’re saying: “Really?  Wow, that’s something!” “I didn’t know that happened.”  “I’ll bet that was fun!”
If you use two these tips in your upcoming conversations, you’ll find they go more smoothly.  In general, people love to talk about themselves, and by making sure the other person talks at least half the time and asking open-ended questions, most people will feel you’re a brilliant conversationalist.