Watch a Video of British Artist Banksy in Gaza

Originally posted on TIME:

British graffiti artist Banksy, known for his subversive street art, released a two-minute video from war-torn Gaza on his website Wednesday.

“Make this the year you discover a new destination,” it wryly says, in the style of a tourism video. But instead of sandy beaches, it offers viewers a glimpse of what a Gazan sees “well away from the tourist track”: tunnels, rubble and children gazing at some of the 18,000 homes destroyed last July in Israel’s Operation Protective Edge.

The video also spotlights several of Banksy’s latest graffiti pieces, including images of children swinging from a surveillance tower, a parent grieving over a child in a bombed-out setting, and a kitten donning a pink bow.

“A local man came up and said ‘Please – what does this mean?’ I explained I wanted to highlight the destruction in Gaza by posting photos on my website – but on the internet…

View original 28 more words

NeSi/SeNi misunderstandings

This post was inspired by the following video by EJArendee.

Never mind the language.

I personally feel that one of the reasons Jay (an ESTP) or any Se Ni combo user in general may perceive someone (say, an INTP) trying to ‘bring them down’ to reality could be due to misunderstandings and differences of interest in their interaction with a Ne Si user.

According to my personal understanding of the functions so far, the Se Ni combo tends to favor a ‘risk and reward’ kind of attitude with Se handling data from the physical, present reality for Ni to access so it can plan towards the outcome it wishes to achieve. The Ne Si combo on the other hand is relatively keener on ‘sustainability’ with Si trying to keep the most favorable existing conditions functional for as long as possible and Ne supporting that notion by generating possibilities which would allow that to happen.

(Note here that ‘favorable values/outcomes’ may vary depending on each person in question’s Ti Fe/ Fi Te combination and order of preference.)

In doing so, Ne comes up with several alternate scenarios in order to point out any and all hindrances or consequences so that Si can find its way around them in order to ‘sustain’ whatever existing condition/property/etc it values as long as it can. With Ni Se, the process is reversed with Ni pointing Se in which way to head and Se forcing its way through with little regard for what existing values/conditions/properties are lost in the meanwhile.

In retrospect, one can assume that Se feels patronized by Ne’s attempts to help Se avoid road blocks and sustain its existing properties/conditions during the course of its journey to its Ni ideal. This of course, is due to Ne assuming that Se values its existing condition/property. However, the former is wrong in this assumption as it is designed to compliment Si, not Se. Because of this, Se may feel ‘trapped’, like its being ‘held back’ from reaching its Ni ‘full potential’ or ‘being brought down’ when discussing his ambitions in the presence of Ne.

Of course, alternatively it could just be a case of some jealous lowlife actively trying to bring you down because they feel threatened by you and what they think you have the potential to accomplish. That possibility may hold true regardless of type of said lowlife, in which case screw him.

Kore…

Chapter 1: Aftermath

An exasperated sigh catches Charon’s attention as he rows dutifully across the waters of Styx, making his way towards the castle. His wrinkled hands slightly loosen their grip on the oars as he turns to face the defeated form of the lone passenger hunched behind him. The god of the underworld sat there with his eyes cast downwards, shoulders slumped and lips formed into a grim line, his silken black cape waving lightly in the wind. The ferryman remains silent as his gaze travels to the damaged chest plate on his master’s bronze armor and recalls where Eros had shot him with his deadliest dart. Hades was left draped over a sea of flowers until Cerberus, his loyal three headed hound had carried him back to the underworld.

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It was seldom that his master allowed himself to engage in luxuries like daydreaming, lest the belly of Tartarus starts to throw a fit and unjudged shades hoard the bank of Lethe. His name may strike fear in the hearts of men and gods alike, but he was more responsible than those wretched mountain dwellers for they spent centuries committing themselves to hedonistic pursuits while turning a blind eye to mortals starving to death, pleading for their help. Only once in his kingdom did their tortured souls finally find peace. In due time all were judged and either whisked away to the fields of Asphodel or thrown in the womb of Gaia for eternity.

Broken from his stupor by the sound of his master heaving another sigh, Charon looks over him concerned, brows furrowing. One thing is for certain, the king has definitely not been the same.

Hades lightly throws his head backwards to rest it over the edge of the boat. Slowly, he opens his eyes and beckons the ferryman to come close. He complies and descends to meet his master’s gaze. Where used to be two unfathomable pits of darkness now rested embers that burned as red and warm as the throne of Helios. Charon gasps involuntarily, earning him a sad smile from Hades. ‘Dear friend..’ he murmurs, ‘I had a strange dream.’ ‘Of what, Sire?’ He asks of his master. ‘The stars.. they ask to borrow the light that adorns my eyes when i see her smile.’ Breath hitches in the ferryman’s chest as he watches the love struck king of the underworld stare at the swirling black waters underneath, eyes glazed over by an element unknown to the servant by his side.

‘This trip has proven to be quite troublesome..’ He exhales.
‘Troublesome indeed, Mi lord.’

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Note; A series of one-shots inspired by the tale of Hades and Queen Persephone. Setting is right after Hades first encounters her playing with the Nymphs and gets shot down by Aphrodite’s son. Constructive criticism is welcome. Flaming is not. 

Art by Sandara.

Product Review; KISS InstaWave

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No longer do we need a professional to style our hair to perfection. Instantly create beautiful, long-lasting curls with just the touch of a button with the KISS InstaWave, a fully automatic tangle-free curler from KISS Hair Appliances.  Easy for anyone to use, from any angle, with any hand. Features a Curl Dial with left/right curl directions. Automatically shuts off after 90 minutes and offers 2 heat settings with a low/high switch with maximum temperature of 420.

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As you can see, on the left we have plain crinkled up hair, tired of being twisted up in a bun and on the right a fabulous head of curls. I used a heat resistant serum as well as some leave in conditioner before using the Instawave by the way. Do keep in mind that I prefer more tousled, looser curls so that is why my waves are not as prominent as those featured on the box.

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What I really love about this product is that its dual directional switch allows you to hold it with any hand to get the kind of curl you desire. No longer do you have to suffer from cramped shoulders while getting ready in the morning nor does it require the guesswork involved in wrapping your hair on a curling rod. Just place an end on the curl dial and let InstaWave do the work for you. You can easily switch between curling right and curling left to create the most natural looking curls.

The KISS InstaWave retails at about $59.99 at KISSinstawave.com. This is the official site that will allow you to purchase this product from either Target, Ulta, or Amazon.

To feature your product or brand in my blog, please contact me at marium_shaikh@ymail.com

One Lovely Blog Award Nomination!

I have been nominated by Naba Iqbal of SheCorner and Umaima Mehtab of DudettesTalk for the One Lovely Blog Award. Thank you both very much for your kindness.

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THE RULES

  1. You must thank the person who nominated you and include a link to their blog.
  2. You must list the rules and display the award.
  3. You must add 7 facts about yourself.
  4. You must nominate 15 other bloggers and comment on one of their posts to let them know they have been nominated
  5. You must display the award logo.

7 FACTS ABOUT ME 

  1. Im running out of facts to list.
  2. I question what constitutes as a fact.
  3. Im lazy and so not looking forward to commenting on 15 posts.
  4. You probably hate me by now.
  5. Im out of Ramen.
  6. My laptop’s battery is dying.
  7. Nearing a mind block.

NOMINATIONS

  1. cateyesredlips
  2. desirablepurity
  3. xcluelessbeautyx
  4. 99cupcakes
  5. blingblitz
  6. erincampbellblog
  7. whatfatemahsay
  8. talkerblogger
  9. thereviewsister
  10. makeupmedusa
  11. purplexdme
  12. asqgenerates
  13. anaali25
  14. alvinasblog
  15. beautyanddewdrop

My Top 5 Anime Vampires

5, Staz from Blood Lad

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“The vampire, Staz C. Blood, is one of the most powerful district bosses in the demon world, fending off everyone who dares challenge him. But secretly, Staz is also quite obsessed with human culture, especially video games, manga, and everything that comes from Japan.

When Staz makes a decision that he wants something, he’s known for always accomplishing his goal and getting or doing whatever it is that he set out for. So, when the young Japanese girl, Fuyumi, wanders into the demon world by accident and dies, Staz declares that he’ll help bring her back to life and is determined to do just that. And in helping her he also gets the chance to travel to the human world, somewhere he’s always dreamed of going.” -MAL

What sucks blood and makes the ladies swoon? A vampire. And whats better than a vampire? A vampire that’s also an Otaku. Lazy, sarcastic and socially clueless, Staz lands the spot of number 5 on my list of top 5 anime vampires.

4, Saya Otonashi from Blood Plus

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“Saya is the main protagonist in the series Blood + who hunts chiropterans using a katana. It is implied that she is the last remaining vampire and called’ the only remaining original.’

Saya has no weakness to sunlight, although it is unknown if she has any of the other vulnerabilities often attributed to vampires.She does, however, become distressed when she encounters religious paraphernalia and angry when people mention God in her presence.” -MAL

On number four we have what i would consider to be one of my favorite anime heroines of all time. Saya is sensible, smart and kicks serious chiropteran butt. Yes the story line of Blood Plus is a bit unconventional than most other anime centered around vampires but having a strong female protagonist as this the show proves no moment a waste.

3, Ozaki Toshi from Shiki

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“The dean of the hospital in Sotoba, Toshio resigned from university hospital, returning to take up his father’s position when he passed away. He is fondly given a nickname, “Waka-sensei”, by his colleagues as well as the residents. Toshio has a dislike to both his mother and his late father, as both of them often put reputation of the Ozaki family before anything else.

He is childhood friends with Seishin Muroi and Mikiyasu Yasumori. He is a 32 years old chain smoker and is married to Kyouko who manages an antique shop. He is baffled by the mysterious deaths and swears to solve the case and protect his village. One of the two main protagonists in the series.” -MAL

Okay, i know, i know.. So he’s not technically a vampire. Still, the dude is the dean of a hospital at freaking 32, figures out the real cause of all the deaths in the area, comes up with a master plan and leads a freaking genocide against the vampires killing people in his village all while relying solely on the power of his brain against supernatural beings. The guy deserves this spot.

2, D from Vampire Hunter D; Bloodlust

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 “D is a Dhampir, the half-breed child of a vampire father the legendary Vampire lord and human mother, therefore he makes the ideal vampire hunter. He is renowned for his consummate skill and unearthly grace, but feared and despised for his mixed lineage: born of both races but belonging to neither. Often underestimated by his opponents, D has surprising power and resourcefulness, possessing most of the strengths and only mild levels of vampiric weaknesses. Unlike most Dhampirs, D is able to live as a “normal” human, though marked by his unearthly beauty and powerful aura, and thus rarely accepted by humans.

His only notable weaknesses are that he is, while not unfeeling, emotionally remote but sometimes sentimental. He is also (far more rarely than other dhampirs) randomly susceptible to sun-sickness, a severe type of sunstroke, about once every five years. Otherwise, D does not suffer from vampiric weaknesses usual to Dhampirs, possessing an imposing supernatural aura to his opponents and godlike reflexes surpassing even vampires.” -MAL

The first anime centered around Vampires that i saw was incidentally the Vampire Hunter D movie made in the 80’s, a while before my birth. Then as of the year 2000, the series went through a fantastic revamp to bring us the second movie. Namely, Vampire Hunter D Blood lust. I’ve always admired this character for its awesomeness and even is vulnerability to the part of him that’s human, but Bloodlust brought out all the positives ten fold. In Bloodlust we get to experience his struggle with himself more so than before. The fights are intensified and the amount of detailing in his character design is simply breath taking, all contributing to him securing the spot at number two.

1, Alucard Hellsing from Hellsing and Hellsing Ultimate

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“The secret weapon of the Hellsing organization, Alucard is a vampire, specializing in killing other vampires. At first glance he seems to be nothing but a rather odd gunman, but when he truly unleashes his powers, it becomes quite clear that he is not a mortal. 

After walking the night for half a millennium, he is constantly seeking a worthy opponent, and with his powers of regeneration, strength, and shape-shifting, not to mention his army of familiars, he lays waste to any of his master’s enemies. However, beneath his cool and heartless exterior lurks a dark and tragic past, and a longing for the only thing an immortal can never have..” -MAL

Ultimate Vampire, Bird of Hermes, Vlad Dracula III, Vlad Tepes, No-Life King, Count, Dracula, Vlad the Impaler, The Count, Zamiel, Arucard, Monster, King of Vampires, Abyss General, The Impaling Prince, True immortal, Hellsing’s trump card. Call him what you will but no one trumps the most bad ass vampire of them all. His name alone is justification of why he is and shall remain Number 1.

Honorable Mentions

Link Meier from Vampire Hunter D Bloodlust. Dude's a perfect example of a gentlemanly lady killer.

Link Meier from Vampire Hunter D Bloodlust. Dude’s a perfect example of a gentlemanly lady killer. To hell with the likes of Edward Cullen. This is how romance is done right.

Mochizuki Jiro from Black Blood Brothers. At first glance a bishounen imitation of Alucard but look deeper and you'll find a noble warrior and a caring older brother.

Mochizuki Jiro from Black Blood Brothers. At first glance a bishounen imitation of Alucard but look deeper and you’ll find a noble warrior and a caring older brother.

And Kaien Cross... the only remotely sensible character in Vampire Knight, also the only one you dont wanna grab by the shoulders and shake until they snap out of their angst. Again, not technically a vampire but still deserving of a mention

And Kaien Cross… the only remotely intelligent and witty character in Vampire Knight universe. Also the only one you dont wanna grab by the shoulders and shake until they snap out of their angst. Again, not technically a vampire but still worthy of a mention.

Brand Review; Dave’s Killer Bread

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Who doesnt love a good sandwich? And whats more important than good bread in order to make a good sandwich? Not much. Dave’s Killer Bread started out in 2005 and quickly became the favorite organic bread at their local Farmers Market in Portland, Oregon. Less than a decade later, they are the number 1 best-selling organic bread in the country. All of their breads are organic, Non-GMO Project Verified, and packed with killer taste and texture. Dave’s Killer Bread is known for its trademark explosion of seeds, delicious chewiness, and high quality ingredients. But the company strives to be more than just bread makers—they believe in creating lasting change for the bread industry, their communities, and their employees.

Available in 12 varieties in major grocery chains across 17 states and parts of western Canada, Dave’s Killer Bread packs a punch with delicious flavors loaded with seeds, ancient grains, and whole grain nutrition. Each slice also contains as much protein as one egg! A loaf of Dave’s Killer Bread retails between $5.00 and $6.00.

Seeded Honey Wheat is the first Non-GMO Project Verified honey wheat bread on the market. With 5g of fiber and protein, the sweet taste and crunchy texture of Seeded Honey Wheat will make it an instant family favorite. With 21 Whole Grains and Seeds Thin-Sliced, you don’t have to sacrifice taste and nutrition when watching calories. Loaded with grainy texture and hearty flavor, 21 Whole Grains and Seeds Thin-Sliced only has 60 calories per slice. Packed with a whopping 6 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber per slice, Good Seed™ has the boldest texture and sweetest flavor of all of their breads.

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As someone who was given the opportunity to review Dave’s Killer Bread collection, the possibilities to enjoy these were endless. From just plain, to toasted, and of course with hot or cold sandwiches! Toast your bread and add a topping of peanut butter, Nutella, or Jam, whichever you perfer. Create a cold sandwich. Put turkey and Swiss, ham and cheddar, or hummus and feta with cucumber between two slices and enjoy. Or even whip up a hot sandwich like grilled cheese, or tomato and mozzarella with basil.  I put my ideas to good use.

I have been using this supply for about over a month now and there have definitely been changes in my family’s health. First of all we feel more active than before and our digestive health seems to have improved by a long shot. Secondly, ever since we started using organic bread we have become much more conscious about our diets and now we cant stand regular white bread. Yes the price is a bit on the higher end however, as the saying goes, you have to lose something to gain something. With Dave’s Killer Bread, you gain health, flavor and peace of mind for the well being of your family.

To feature your product or brand in this blog, please contact me at marium_shaikh@ymail.com

Exuviance Performance Peel AP25

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The creators of the original Glycolic Acid peel introduce a high performance peel that is safe and easy to use at home. The Exuviance Performance Peel AP25 contains a 25% blend of Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) and Polyhydroxy Acids (PHA) including Glycolic Acid, Mandelic Acid and Gluconolactone. Performance Peel AP25 not only works at skin’s surface to exfoliate dead, dull surface layers, it also stimulates the process of cell renewal among all layers, to reveal fresher, healthier cells.

With regular use, up to twice a week, this peel has been clinically proven to refine pore size and smooth texture, visibly diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, improve clarity and brightness, brighten and even skin tone and provide an all-over healthy glow, suppleness and smoothness to skin.

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A 25% blend of AHAs and PHAs including Glycolic Acid, Mandelic Acid and Gluconolactone that exfoliates dead, dull surface layers, and stimulates the process of cell renewal among all skin layers, to reveal healthier cells. Clinical studies after one month of twice weekly use when used with an Exuviance PHA regimen indicated that a 100% of users saw improvement in fine lines and wrinkles and 94% of users saw more even skin tone, texture and radiance after one month of twice weekly use of this high performance Alpha Hydroxy Acid peel.

Before use, first cleanse the face with a gentle, effective cleanser such as Exuviance Purifying Cleansing Gel.
Step 1. Apply a Step 1 Activator Pad over the entire face, avoiding eye area, lips and any area of sensitivity. Then discard pad. Carefully monitor the skin’s response to the Peel by observing any redness or discomfort, including stinging, burning, itching, tightness, tingling and peeling.
Step 2. Apply a Step 2 Neutralizer Pad to the face after 10 minutes, or sooner if you experience bothersome redness or discomfort. Apply over entire face (avoiding eyes and lips), and then rinse the face thoroughly with water.

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You may leave the Activator Solution on your skin for up to, or as long as 10 minutes, and no longer than 10 minutes. Some people may experience some bothersome dryness or stinging during the 10 minute time frame the activator solution in on their face. For those skin types we suggest applying the Neutralizer Solution earlier than 10 minutes, or as soon as you experience the stinging sensation if you find it bothersome.

As with all Hydroxy Acid peels, a slight tingling sensation is expected, but if this sensation is too much, we recommend neutralizing the peel sooner than the total 10 minute time.
Follow with a moisturizer such as Exuviance Evening Restorative Complex.

The Exuviance Performance Peel AP25 contains 12 peels. A 6 week supply, which can be used up to twice a week on face, backs of hands, neck, chest and body. Fragrance-Free, Dye-Free, Paba-Free. Available for retail at $75  here.

To feature your product or brand in my blog, please contact me at marium_shaikh@ymail.com