Wednesday, May 27, 2020

You Can't Have It Both Ways, Gentlemen!

Here is an example of young woman being basically called a golddigger because she wants to marry a guy with a stable income and stay home.

By men calling themselves traditional no less. I guess their idea of "tradwife"" doesn't include a breadwinner husband to provide for her. They will whine about how bad and materialistic modern women are while forgetting one thing: marriage in traditional societies is much more a money-based transaction then in our modern liberal one, where most women have their own income or can easily get a job when needed.

Most women in the 1950s or before didn't marry chronically unemployed losers. At least, not on the level of lower middle class and higher. I personally own a Dutch 1960s book on manners which includes a section on proposing to a girl. The would-be husband is then supposed to be interrogated by the girl's father about his family connections going all the way to Grandpa and about his own income perspectives. Until early 1960s, the parents over here had the right to veto any marriage of children under 30 (yes, 30!)

Romantic stories written in the 1930s-1950s show that a "decent man" wouldn't propose to a girl until he could offer her at least the same standard of living as she enjoyed in her father's house (I read somewhere that in countries like Iran it's still an expectation).

Yes, things changed, I'm aware of that. Now it's common for young girls to waste the best years of their lives on penniless work-shy "artistic" types and for mothers of nursing infants to leave them in the stranger's care and help pay the mortgage and the bills.

Yet, it's rather amusing that there are men around us who ostensibly wish for return to "patriarchy" without intention to fulfill a traditional patriarchal man's duty: to provide for his wife and kids. Do some women have unrealistic expectations? Sure. Some men do, too, btw. However, it's a perfectly reasonable thing for a young woman who wants this kind of life to expect that her husband has a steady income and a house which he can afford without her cosigning the mortgage papers. 

It would be a lot easier, btw, if young people of both sexes put some money aside before marriage instead of spending it on night clubs and vacations, and if their parents  (and grandparents) did the same, like it's still happens among Easterners.

Once again, you can't both have your cake and eat it, too, and it's true for both men and women.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

What Did I Do Today?

I baked this:

And here is  the recipe.

I only changed a couple of things this time. I used plain full fat yogurt (3.2%) instead of Greek yogurt (10% fat) and I used 1tbsp of bottled lemon juice instead of freshly squeezed one. I didn't adjust sugar amounts at all which means that the pie is rather on a sweet side. And, it's really delicious!

Monday, May 25, 2020

Visiting A Roman Villa

These pictures from our last year vacation in Germany were supposed to accompany the book review about the Roman kitchen. The villa is authentic and not a reconstruction:

Friday, May 22, 2020

Roman Kitchen

A book review. I bought this book by Jutta Meurers-Balke and Tuende Kaszab-Olchewski during my last vacation in Germany, in August 2019 and it took me about a year to read it. I would have enjoyed it much more if it were in the language I could understand better than German.

Anyway, it starts with a short introduction about Roman colonies all over the world and then switches to Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium, later called CCAA, a Roman province situated somewhere between and around modern Cologne and Bonn. We get a short historical review about the life there in pre-Roman times, archeological discoveries concerning Romans, and general info about their food and meals.

Next chapter goes into great detail about Roman dining rooms, their furniture, their kitchenware and their kitchens with colour photos and drawings. We also learn about what the army ate and where they kept their oil and fish sauce.

Then the real fun starts as each food group is given its own chapter: grains and bread, legumes, vegetables, fruit, nuts, meat, poultry, eggs, fish, spices, herbs, olive oil, honey and the drinks. I learned that Romans ate all sorts of nasty stuff like wolves (yes, wolves!) and that being to a great extent lactose-intolerant, they mostly consumed dairy in the form of cheese and left milk drinking to Germanic barbarians. They also had some disgusting ceremonies with wine and wine mugs in the form of (I'm sorry to say it)  Priapus (don't let your minor children google it).

Makes you wonder why the EU authorities promote this Roman stuff so much, lol!

The last chapter deals with the transition period between the Roman times and late Middle Ages, and says among other things, that a) the population switched from cereal to livestock farming and hunting and they started consuming more meat than grain (kinda goes against paleo diet theories) and b) they started drinking less alcohol due to the influence of the Church.

I'd recommend this book to everyone interested in Romans and able to read German:)

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Careers For Future Housewives

What to do before you find your dream husband:

Job ideas for the future homemaker

 The future is not female, the future is family. Alena Kate Pettitt

Friday, May 15, 2020

Pandemic 10$ Shopping Challenge

Another great video from Quaint Housewife:

She is so creative and inspiring, I always enjoy watching her.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Corona Crisis, Vaccines, Bill Gates And Other Fun Things

That stuff is fascinating.

Well, we had a great discussion about vaccines, so I thought we should probably have another one:)

I watched a video by a young Dutch doctor yesterday who was wondering whether it's true that our normal life can't be resumed until we have a vaccine against corona virus, why doesn't the government promote healthy lifestyle more and whether a person without any medical education like Bill Gates should be in the business of promoting medical treatments like vaccinations. I would say that it sounds like reasonable questions.

We are now about 2.5 months into this crisis and it's evident that there are many things we still don't know for sure about this new disease. Before proceeding I'd like to put a disclaimer first. I'm not a doctor. I have some very basic medical education and I'm not licensed currently to practice medicine in any form. If you have any health problems you should seek help from qualified specialists anyway and not rely on stuff you read online. Below is my opinion based on my interpretation of facts (or what the news reports present as facts).

So what do we actually know? I think few would still doubt that this new sickness exists. It's also obviously different from flu in some ways and probably more infectious and more lethal. How much more? We don't know. Some say it has basically the same fatality rate, while others will claim anything from twice to 10 times as lethal.

The reason we don't know for sure it's because generally, only people with certain symptoms are tested, and then some will claim that the tests can give either false positives or false negatives, so they aren't 100% reliable. We also don't know exactly how many die as not everyone who dies with corona symptoms is tested, while on the other hand, some terminally ill patients who get covid-19 and who would probably die anyway are written down as the victims of the epidemic.

So as you all can see, it's a mess.

We do know about things like viral load (the more virus particles you get, the sicker you become) and that hand-washing and social distancing help, and also that the majority of new infections happen indoors, not outdoors (especially in care facilities), so the lockdowns in all probability helped slow the spread.

We also know that the primary risk group are the elderly (defined as everyone over 70 here) which some attribute to the vitamin D deficiency, chronically sick (especially heart and lung diseases) and obese/overweight (here they stated early on that 80% of fatalities were overweight, not sure if it changed later), so yes, the campaign about healthy diet and lifestyle definitely couldn't hurt.

As for vaccines, whether you are pro- or against them, a simple look at history will tell you that even before vaccines, most people didn't die during an epidemic. Even during plague, only about 1/3 of the population died. Some people are naturally not susceptible to (some) diseases while others will get only slightly sick. Otherwise, the mankind would have died out long ago. Also, when you look at the situation in the Third World countries where I doubt that everybody is up-to-date on their vaccinations, tetanus isn't the death case number one (but pneumonia is).

Again, from history we know that the infectious diseases come and go. Some circumstances like wars, natural disasters, overcrowding etc can cause outbreaks but after some time, they tend to subside and life goes more or less back to normal. Thus, stating that life could never ever be normal without an anti corona vaccine is probably somewhat exaggerated.

 However, modern liberal, open-borders, constant travelling, socialising and eating out society generally took a hit and without vaccine, we can't really say when it will get back to normal completely. Some people will still continue to be very cautious even after the restrictions are lifted, so in that sense, yes, without the feeling of safety provided by this vaccine life probably never will be the same again.

Should people be worried about potential vaccination campaign? Personally I could relate. It takes years normally to create a vaccine and establish its safety (and still many will complain about side effects, sometimes severe) and yet we are told in the news that an anti Covid19 vaccine could be on the market in a couple of months. How safe will it really be? And how effective?

There is still no effective vaccine against common cold (which they say is related to coronavirus) and and even though we have a malaria vaccine (again, something which is said to somehow resemble the covid-19 disease, they even use antimalarial medication to treat it) , it's relatively ineffective. In such a situation, I fully understand the reservations many people have about essentially, playing the role of a laboratory rat.

Do various political actors, including governments use the current situation to try and achieve some objectives/gains? Yeah, why not? Isn't it like this with basically everything that happens? Never let a good crisis go to waste. So if you are in the business of producing/selling vaccines, you'd naturally want to sell a new miracle cure, wouldn't you?

 If you are an opposition party, you could try and score some points by attacking the current government for its inaction or too zealous action, depending on the situation. One thing is sure, the common folk aren't given all the facts and they never will be, and another fact is that the opposition isn't always righteous and alternative media could try to spin the situation for some profit, too.

I think we should all try and behave reasonably in the current situation. Use your common sense, take rational precautions, don't go too deep into the rabbit hole. If you are a supporter of traditionalism, should you really be that upset about the current state of affairs?  Liberalism right now is taking a hit everywhere. Borders are closed. Bugman lifestyle cancelled. Pandemics happen, just like hurricanes and tsunamis. Natural disasters aren't a conspiracy. But taking vitamin D supplement can't harm, either:)

Anyway, that's my thoughts on the current events. You can share yours in the comments!

Friday, May 8, 2020

Teenagers Then Vs Now

Teenagers in the late 1970s

Interesting. I do agree we as a society have a problem, and not only with teenagers. It often starts by young children already.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Vaccinations: For Or Against

We had a demonstration today against, among other things, vaccinations. Apparently, there is a story doing rounds on the social media that Microsoft (WHO, Bill Gates, you name it) is planning to inject everyone with a microchip under the guise of vaccination against corona. I have friends in other (European) countries which tell me something similar.

Of course, I think that the story itself is ridiculous nonsense typical for conspiracy theories spread on (chiefly) American "truth" websites, but it doesn't change the fact that there is still a big controversy surrounding vaccines, their side effects and how useful they really are in preventing dangerous diseases. Personally I don't think that vaccination should be mandatory.

Some of these vaccines (such as the one against flu) have a high failure rate, while others protect against diseases that even 20 years ago, weren't considered dangerous at all (like chicken pox). I can perfectly well remember myself having it and recently read with great surprise on an American site (here it's still not offered last time I checked) how chicken pox is a horrible horrible disease and the urgent need to vaccinate against it. With such wildly exaggerated stories spread by  health experts, it's easy to understand why so many people don't trust the official medical advise on the issue.

Another problem with vaccines appears to be that the immunity they give is restricted to several years, unlike the natural immunity against diseases like measles which lasts the whole life. Still, there is a big difference between say, measles, and tetanus, or polio. Yes, I'm aware of the story that polio wasn't really eradicated by the vaccines, and is still lurking somewhere, but the fact remains that since the vaccination programs started there has been no  polio outbreaks here in Europe. In fact, since 1994 there have been no polio cases in the Netherlands at all. And those in the 1990s who got it were Christians who had refused vaccinations because of religious reasons.

Personally I don't see any connection between faith/religion and the decision to well or not vaccinate. For me, it's purely the question of health. There are many dangerous diseases out there, but there are also well-documented vaccine complications (and no, I don't think the parents of the vaccine victims are just lying for some nefarious reasons).

In my opinion, it is possible that many of these diseases are less dangerous than we are told and could be controlled by the historically proven methods such as quarantines, stricter border controls and the like, but as we are now witnessing with corona, it would make the modern way of life (globalism, consumerism, open borders and generally bugman lifestyle) if not impossible than at least, more difficult, and that is the real reason the authorities are pushing them.

The funny thing is that the same people who protest against vaccines also protest against quarantines which is how infectious diseases have been traditionally dealt with, but it's a topic for another discussion...

So what do you think about vaccines? Feel free to share!!!

Saturday, May 2, 2020

From The Home Front: Corona News May 2020

So how have we all been doing? I'm glad to tell you that the situation is slowly getting better. Though they are now performing 4 times as many tests as a couple of weeks before, the infection rates appear to be slowing down.  There are fewer people dying and fewer in IC. Supermarkets are full once again, and even flour and paracetamol are back on the shelves.

Dentists and IKEA got open this week, and both have it very busy:) Primary school children will go back to school again 11 May, though not for the full week, and kids under 12 are allowed to practice team sports, while children aged 12-18 are allowed to practice sports where social distancing is possible. They will review the rules again 20 May and I hope that the shooting range will finally get open so that my husband can practice again.

All the restaurants, pubs etc are still closed and will probably stay so till the end of summer, however many now serve takeaway. Campings are getting open, too. All the nail polish studios and hairdressers are still closed, I'm getting quite good at cutting hubby's hair, lol! You're still supposed to practice social distancing, not have too many visitors at the same time etc etc, but everyone is slowly getting more relaxed.

I think the current crisis highlighted some problems with modern economy. Manufacturing and agrarian sector, supermarkets, stores which sell essential goods are all doing fine, and the hardest hit of all are superficial branches such as entertainment (professional football, theater etc),  vacations, restaurants and so on and so forth. If a country's economy is for a big part service economy which is dependent on tourism and endless consumption of luxury goods/unnecessary services such as exotic vacations and endless eating out, there will be trouble.

Same is true when the economy is dependent on import too much. Luckily, we still have a lot of own production and are to a great degree food secure, with the exception of wheat which we partly buy from Germany and France. I don't know about the latter, but Germany will keep on trading with us so here we are safe, though I hope we'll increase wheat growing in the near future.

I'm quite impressed by the way our Prime Minister has handled it so far.  Though we were largely unprepared in the beginning, the government quickly took all the necessary measures, improved IC capacity and did everything possible to restrict economic damage. We aren't out of it yet, but there is light in the end of the tunnel.

How is it going in your neck of woods? Feel free to share!