Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Greece Defaults

Things are getting interesting:

Greece crisis live: 

Greece Becomes First Developed Country To Default To The IMF

Who Are We Trying To Please?

I have been thinking how strange it is that women are often so eager to please other people/other women while ignoring their own husbands.

Examples abound: the husband states his preference for long hair while the girlfriends encourage the wife to get a haircut. The father thinks his grown-up daughter could better stay home with her children while the mother eagerly volunteers to babysit. The husband earns a decent income and doesn't like for his wife to get distracted from her domestic duties while she agrees to babysit the neighbour's children for less than the minimum wage. The wife allows her mother to interfere into the family affairs etc etc.

The husband nearly always seems to come last, after children, parents, neighbours, girlfriends and pets. Somehow it doesn't strike me as right.

The men are all different, of course, some even want their wives to work and don't care for a cozy home. Yet, the majority of them seem to want the same thing: the wife who takes care of her appearance and isn't a slob, well-behaved children,an organised household, meals on time and as little drama as possible. Doesn't sound like too much to me.

It can be different for two-income couples where the wife is a career woman and earns the same amount of money as her husband, but if the husband is the chief breadwinner, the family welfare (including children and pets) depends on him. Even from purely pragmatic considerations, it makes sense to defer to his opinions and tastes more than to that of a girlfriend or a neighbour lady.

It's probably the reason while feminists want every woman to have a career, so that she isn't dependent on her husband and doesn't have to please him as they seem to be allergic to an idea that women should do anything at all for men or even treat them halfway decent.

That brings me to another point, namely the error of some men who think that they can have a (full time) working wife and still be the head of the household. The law has pretty much done away with the power the husbands once held in marriage, so the only power that they still wield is economic, by being the provider. Once your wife isn't dependent on you any more, any marital submission on her part isn't much more than role-playing.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

The Spirit Of Man

There must be something worth living for
There must be something worth trying for
Even some things worth dying for
And if one man can stand tall
There must be some hope for us all
Somewhere, somewhere in the spirit of man

Thursday, June 25, 2015

From The Home Front

Enough with negative things, here is something to make you smile: my kitty was helping me with doing housework last week. I have been pretty busy with my housecleaning project, with my knitting and with visiting.

The upstairs is done more or less, last week I tackled the living room as in washing the windows, pillow covers and such and all together trying to make the living area look presentable again. It was so much work I couldn't finish in all on Thursday, my designated cleaning day and was planning to continue this week, but due to all this visiting and the return of summer I got some sort of a burnout.

I'm planning to finish it next week, though and start working on the dining/kitchen before we go on vacation. I'm also planning to finish the summer cardi I have been knitting this past year and hopefully sew a skirt. I'll try to make another historical research post before we leave.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Some Interesting Links:

Captain Capitalism:
Maximum Freedom, Maximum Responsibility

The Retro Homemaker:
Happy Father's Day

What's Wrong With Equal Rights:
Too Much Interference in the Family

Home Living:
Things I Missed By Being Away From Home

Pope buys into "global warming"

Upon Hope:
The Problems of Monarchy

Old Southern Garden:
Guidelines For Dress And Comportment

Taki Mag:
A Fireable Thought

Bruce Charlton's Notions:
The importance of NOT talking about sex

DISCLAIMER: My linking to certain sites/blogs doesn't mean I agree with and/or endorse everything on them.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Is Drinking Beer Manly?

Actually not. While beer is generally promoted as a "manly man" drink, it's anything but. In fact, drinking too much beer has a potential to turn a guy into a girl. According to this article, beer contains phytoestrogen which lowers testosterone levels in a human body,  but makes estrogen levels higher. Hence the growth of "beer gut" and "man boobs".

It's not all, unfortunately. Beer also contains barley, which is a prolactin, the hormone that promotes breast growth in females and lactation. While alcohol in general has a tendency to decrease testosterone level in males (WARNING: language), beer seems to be especially damaging.

How comes then that beer got its "macho drink reputation"? Here the story gets somewhat tricky. Originally beer was brewed using such plants as yarrow, bog myrtle and marsh rosemary which were both mentally and sexually stimulating and Germanic men used to drink it before going into battle. Strange enough, it was Catholic Church which had monopoly on its production. German protestants being both anti-Catholic and apparently of a more puritanical bent, took a law forbidding to use sexually stimulating herbs while producing beer and substituted them with hops instead.
(According to Wikipedia, the process of substituting  the traditional herbs with hops started earlier than the Reformation, though).

Interesting enough, according to this blog, Ancient Romans didn't care for beer and preferred to drink wines and mead instead of it. So guys, considering the information above, think twice before you open that beer bottle/can:)

Thursday, June 18, 2015

A Selfie With A Tote

I made this tote bag a couple of days ago:

Now I can do my grocery shopping in style!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

For Greater Glory

Last weekend my husband and I watched a movie called For Greater Glory, which had been recommended to me by Mark Moncrieff. As fas as I could understand, it was Mexican - American production, directed by Dean Wright (the same man who did visual effects for such films as Titanic, Gone In 60 Seconds, Lord Of The Rings and Chronicles Of Narnia). For Greater Glory which ran in Mexico under the name Christiada, was his directorial debut.

The movie tells us the story of Christeros, Catholic rebels who fought against the government of the Mexican president Plutarco Ellias Calles, after he started enforcing rigourous anti-religious laws. The events depicted in the movie stretch from 1926, when "the Calles Law" which stated that every priest criticising the government would get a 5 year prison term, is signed and the churches throughout the whole country of Mexico close their doors to 1929 when the church bells start ringing again and the civil war between Christeros and Federales finally ends.

It is based on real events though it takes some artistic liberties when portraying the historical characters, and has a definite Catholic bias which caused the movie to be criticised, though there isn't much said about the tenets of the Catholic faith itself. The film focuses mainly on the (true) story of a boy called Jose Luis Sanches who joins the rebels after witnessing the execution of a priest and dies a martyr's death in the end, and General Enrique Gorostiera (a real historical character) who is hired by the rebels to exercise central command, and is basically an action movie, with elements of drama.

I found it very interesting from the historical point of view, but because of the tragic events shown in it (especially the gruesome scene of torture and murder of Jose Luis) the movie is not what one would call nice family entertainment for a Saturday evening. Another problem with the film was that the producers basically tried to cram a lot of events into 2.5 hours which necessarily meant that some parts of it were rather sketchy and some plot lines ended rather abruptly,with the result of some critics saying that the movie was more educational than involving or would better function as a mini-series.

In my opinion, For Greater Glory still manages to convey the atmosphere of that time period and does overall a decent job in showing the historical events little known outside Mexico and creating the convincing images of the main characters, though it lacks a certain depth. I would recommend to to everyone interested in history.

Here is the trailer:

For Greater Glory

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Summer Fashion Trends

As illustrated by this magazine (Simplicity Naaimode):


50 shades of blue:



Striking motif:

I'm planning to try my hand at a couple of those. Which one do you like best?

Friday, June 12, 2015

A Brief Note

I haven't disappeared! I was busy with rearranging some things on my blog. Tomorrow I'm planning to write a post on summer fashions, with pictures.

Stay tuned...

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Real Patriarchy

One topic which is always bound to attract a lot of attention is that of sex. In fact, I'm sure I'd get many more readers if only I wrote posts on "great tips for marital sex" or discussed the details of my own private life with my husband or gave dating advice or something similar. While having great sex life is beneficial for any marriage, some people tend to demonstrate an obsession with sex normally only typical for horny teenagers.

In fact, I'm reliably informed that all and every marriage problem can be explained by one thing: wives refusing to have sex with their husbands. If only they stopped doing it, the divorce rate would go down immediately. Does your husband cheat on you? Watch porn? Spend too much money? Call you names? If only he had more sex, he wouldn't do any of this! Heck, some folks speculated that Andreas Lubitz crashed the plane into the mountain because he couldn't get enough you know what (that in Germany, the country where the prostitutes advertise their craft in local newspapers).

While the idea that any wrong thing a man does can be explained by him being not satisfied sexually is rather simplicistic, to say the least, nevertheless, the discussions raise a serious issue, namely that of what in the more discreet era used to be called "marital rights" or "marital debt". In the past, the wife refusing "marital rights" to her husband was grounds for divorce.

However, this right came with responsibilities attached: namely, the wife was entitled to be financially supported by her husband. Traditional marriage was based on property rights: in a traditional marriage contract the wife exchanged her sexuality and the products thereof, i.e. children for life-long financial support of her husband. That's why the wife could divorce her husband on grounds of abandonment (non-support) but not on the grounds on his infidelity alone, but the husband could get a divorce on the grounds of the wife's adultery (though some countries allowed legal separation in the case of the husband's infidelity).

In fact, this system still exists in more patriarchal countries, such as India. Some time ago there was a controversy about an article written by an Indian man who attacked the concept of "marital rape" which is currently not acknowledged by Indian law. He stated that since sex outside marriage is criminalised in India and Indian men have a duty to support their wives financially, the wife has to perform her marital duty or otherwise file for divorce.

Here is an excerpt:

Rights come with duties. A woman in India has a right to maintenance even when husband is sick, and incapable of earning or is unemployed. He is duty bound to pay his wife alimony even after divorce. The Indian Courts have held that a man must “beg, borrow or steal” but he must maintain his wife. Then why shouldn’t a man have right to have coitus with his wife if he is duty bound to maintain her?

(emphasis mine) 

Well, I'd say it's a two way street. If the wife isn't supposed to ever deny her husband, as some men claim, even when he is being a total jerk, then a man must "beg, borrow or steal" but maintain his wife, even after divorce. That's what a real patriarchy looks like. Something tells me that not everybody complaining on the net about the wickedness of modern wives would like it.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Terrace Makeover

My husband was productively busy last weekend. We finally got something like summer (one day of extremely warm weather, then the temperature dropped back to +17*C) so he used an opportunity to work in our little garden.

Here are some before and after photos. Before:


 My tomato plant:

Now we can drink tea there in style!

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Summer Modesty 2015

There is a reason God gave people clothes! Check this article:

U.S. melanoma rate double what it was 30 years ago

Some excerpts:

The incidence of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, has doubled in the U.S. in the last 30 years and is on track to remain high unless Americans take more precautions to protect themselves from ultraviolet radiation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Tuesday...
Non-Latino whites had the highest incidence of melanoma by far, with 24.6 cases for every 100,000 people...
Through age 49, women were more likely than men to be diagnosed with melanoma, the report said. This is partially due to the popularity of indoor tanning among younger white women — nearly one-third of white women between 16 and 25 visit a tanning parlor at least once a year, according to a 2013 study in JAMA Internal Medicine.

It's also probably due to the sort of clothes (or lack thereof) that young women are wearing nowadays, compared to 30 years ago. Covering yourself isn't probably such a bad idea, after all. You may be called a prude, but at least, you'll stay alive.

Men aren't off the hook, either:

From age 50 on, however, the incidence was higher in men, who are less likely to use sunscreen or other forms of sun protection, the CDC study said.

Men often have to work outdoors and tend to get partially undressed when the weather is hot which is probably not such a good idea, after all.

The mortality rate due to melanoma remained relatively constant between 1982 and 2011, but the incidence of the disease doubled during that time period, the CDC researchers wrote.
They projected that the total number of new melanoma cases would rise to 112,000 by 2030 if present trends continue.
The good news, as the article reliably informs us, is that it doesn't have to be!

In the Australian state of Victoria, a comprehensive skin-cancer-prevention program called SunSmart prevented more than 9,000 cancers and more than 1,000 deaths over a 15-year period, they noted. If a similar program were adopted in the U.S., it could prevent an estimated 230,000 cases of melanoma between 2020 and 2030.

Do we really need a government program to encourage people to cover up when going outside in summer? Draw your own conclusions and don't forget that

Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the U.S., and it’s usually the result of exposure to ultraviolet light, the CDC says.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

It's Year 1908 Yet Again!

And it's summer, too - the 11th of July. The students of the University of Delft have a celebration. The theme is medieval Italy, so it was a sort of a Renaissance fair:)

This issue of De Prins has an article about life in Indonesia,  a story about a gentleman whiteknighting for a pretty girl who turns to be a thief and some cool photos, as the one below featuring rock climbing in England:

and the new railway water tower, designed by Mr. Humbolt from Cologne:

The idea of beauty contest is apparently more than a hundred years old. In 1908, you could enter your kid for one and get a chance to win 100 f:

The kid on the left won. He (or at least, I think it's a he) wouldn't be my first choice, but may be, I'm just being mean. Or the beauty standards change. Or whatever:)

We then encounter an article about the city of Alkmaar and another sentimental story about a young lieutenant. Those young lieutenants seemed to be the staple of the romantic fiction of the period. As usual, he is deep in love-connected problems. After a fight with his spoiled fiancee he leaves and breaks her heart. They meet again 12 years later, she a young widow, he a colonel (he made quite a career). She apologises. He apologises. They marry. Happy End!

Below is the photo of Queen Mother in Rhenen after a charitable visit:

And some of our officers who took part in horse riding competition:

From left to right, 2nd lieutenant C.H. Labouchere (10th prize), Mr. Lachlan, a member of the welcome committee for foreign participants, Colonel Punt, a jury member, 1st lieutenants Mathon and Van Welderen Baron Rengers, who both took part in the competition.

Some other highlights are this picture of the then recently deceased K.J.G. Baron van Hardenbroek van 's Heeraartsberg and Bergambacht, the chairman of the Dutch Red Cross:

and a photo from a regatta organised by Dutch Royal Marine:

We then come to the next chapter of the novel by Ms. Heimburg about the difficult paths  (Langs moeilijke Wegen)  of Henk van Buchen, a young lieutenant whose bride-to-be ditched him because he refused to leave the army. Here is what his father said when he heard about her ultimatum to his son (translation mine):

...our ancestors  all served the king...all Van Buchens were proud that they could serve the king and fatherland. We have always been poor and not one of us married for money. And you, my only son, the last one bearing the come to ask me if you should put aside your uniform? And why? Because of a pair of pretty eyes and a bag of money?...This girl doesn't love you, Henk! The woman who is in love says: wherever you go, I will go...Tell her that she must follow the ages old law, that she must follow you, that your honour as a man, your pride as an officer forbids you to follow her. 

The last picture I'm going to post is one of Father Kieft and his seven sons working in a field:

They  were apparently already featured that winter while skating. And that was about all for today, till next time!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Housewives Should Be Protected

We live in the times of cognitive dissonance when the Western countries are doing their best to publicly deny the existing reality and  reshape the world according to their egalitarian delusions theories. One of this theories is the complete sameness of men and women, except for their reproductive organs. The real biological differences are minimised and we are all supposed to pretend that women want exact same things as men and if they choose different things, it's due to brainwashing and/or discrimination.

In this shiny brave new world, all women are supposed not to care about home and motherhood, but to be good, obedient cogs in the consumerist machine "productive citizens taking part in the modern economic system". In fact, the article about make-believe jobs in France I previously linked to, says, among other things, that people without jobs "risk being disconnected from the workplace and society", with no distinctions being made between men and women. So here you have it, a housewife and mother apparently becomes a pariah by virtue of not having a job.

And yet, despite propaganda, despite ridicule, despite hostility, many women still choose exactly this path in life: full time motherhood. Full time motherhood means that you spend years outside of the modern working world. Whatever credentials you may have acquired, whatever working experience you may have obtained, it all becomes obsolete after several years outside of workforce. Add to this the fact that in countries such as mine a woman after certain age becomes practically unemployable unless she has some highly marketable skills, and the picture becomes even more dim.

Luckily, in my neck of woods we still have laws protecting widows and orphans (which feminists would love to abolish), so that, theoretically, there is never a need for a mother to work. That is, unless her husband decides to divorce her. Than she is out on her own.

Now there is a whole internet movement dedicated to castigating evil women who all supposedly divorce their husbands "for cash and prizes". I'm well aware that such wicked women who commit adulteries and falsely accuse their husbands exist in real life. I personally know a couple of them. I also know women whose husbands just walked away one day because they decided they weren't in love any more. Guess what, neither men nor women have monopoly on sin and wickedness.

There is, however, one difference. In most families, even those where the wife works, the husband is the primary breadwinner, which means that the loss of his income will pretty much reduce his wife to the state of poverty. Many a man complains about unfair amounts of child support they have to pay, yet they never articulate any reform program beyond the idea that child support should be totally abolished.

I suggest looking at the situation from a different angle. In a society where the women are equal producers, there would be theoretically no need for the father's income at all and yet, despite all these years of feminism, married women with children are still largely dependent on their husbands' salaries. Outside of some Stone Age type societies, do matriarchies really exist? Is it not utopian to expect to have a successful, industrial society which is matriarchal with women not depending on men at all? Will all the children be raised by the state? What will men's role be in such a society? Do we really want it?

Patriarchal family with heavy father's investment is vastly superior for raising children and building productive, modern societies. For such a family to be able to function properly, we need the mother to be home or at least, work part-time, which means, she most probably won´t have an income comparable to her husband's and will thus be a dependent. In such a situation, what happens if we abolish alimony and child support? Should a husband have a right to simply discard his wife whenever he feels like it?  Should he have no obligations at all? And finally, what do you think her male relatives who will probably be burdened with supporting her from now on, will think of the arrangement?

Well, someone will say, it's the 21st century after all, and the woman can search for employment. Well, then you try it. Try to find a job as a 45+ woman who spent the last 15 years staying home in the modern economy. May be, it's different in the USA, I don't know, but here the big chance is you'll end on welfare in a government project getting your food and clothes from charity.

The most typical objection I hear is that it´s mostly women who file for divorce these days so they deserve nothing, should lose their kids and starve. First, the one who files for divorce isn´t always the guilty party. If the husband commits adultery or simply walks out the door and disappears, and  the wife files for divorce, who is the guilty party? Second, contrary to what certain men say, not all fathers want to be primary caregivers of the kids, especially when they are small. Some are perfectly happy to surrender the custody to the ex~wife.

The obvious solution to the problem of the `frivolous` divorce is to make divorce difficult once again. Abolish no~fault divorce. Let the judge determine who is the guilty party. Let the guilty party lose custody of children. Now, that would obviously change a lot of things. And yet, in the traditional society where the women by default don´t work, it still would mean that the husband would have to pay some maintenance to his guilty ex, as it used to be the custom before.

To frame this issue as `men vs women` is to simplify it. As usual, it´s men vs other men. In a patriarchal society, some man will always be burdened with the responsibility of providing for the woman, either her husband, or her male relatives. Or may be, the tax~payer, who will continue subsidising the make~believe jobs?

Monday, June 1, 2015