Must You Blame Cowlicks For Bad Behaviors?

Cowlicks are inherent to humans and animals. Having two cowlicks is believed to be a sign of a person’s imminent bad behavior. Behavior is actually influenced by different factors. For a child to develop good behavior, it is his parents’ duty to raise him properly.

Cowlicks, or hair whorls, are hair sections that grow opposite to the direction of other hair strands.  There is a noticeable sticking out of hair or unusual movement of a tuft of hair due to cowlicks.  Cowlicks usually appear on the crown of a person’s head, yet there are also cowlicks that appear on the sides, on the forehead, and on the nape.

They form early in life — in utero — and once you have a cowlick, you’re stuck with it unless you lose your hair.

Bad hair day? Experts explain curse of the cowlick By Cari Nierenberg

Cowlicks are thought to be hereditary and they may also affect both genders. Since men usually wear short hairstyles, their hair whorls are more visible. Most women prefer long hair and thus cover the seemingly stubborn cowlicks atop their head.  There is no escape from them and every one of us is endowed with at least one hair whorl.  In fact, people actually have two cowlicks but only one will be quite visible while the other is obscured. You might even think that cowlicks have their own strange habit of going against the flow.  A cowlick has a spiral pattern that is probably caused by the confusion of the hair on whether it should go to the left, right, front or to the back.  If you are very much concerned about your looks and your hair, cowlicks will certainly be an issue for you.  You will always find your cowlicks to blame each time you wake up on a bad hair day. The good news is that you can search the internet to find numerous styling tips and strategies to achieve your preferred hairstyle and for taming your cowlicks.

Theories concerning the cause of right- or left-hand preference in humans vary from purely learned behavior, to solely genetics, to a combination of the two mechanisms. The cause of handedness and its relation to the biologically specified scalp hair-whorl rotation is determined here.

Human Handedness and Scalp Hair-Whorl Direction Develop From a Common Genetic Mechanism

Cowlick Topics Of Discussion

Cowlicks seem to be involved in issues other than looking good and keeping a fashionable hairstyle.  One is the association of cowlicks to a person’s handedness (on whether he uses the right or the left hand for writing and performing tasks). According to Amar KLar, a geneticist, about 90% of people are right-handed and their hair whorls are found oriented in a clockwise direction. The remaining 10% left-handed people have their cowlick on counter-clockwise direction.

If a child has two or more cowlicks, the child will be a rascal.

Portuguese Cultural Beliefs

Now here is another topic and issue concerning cowlicks.  If your child has two cowlicks, then you should be alarmed because sooner or later, that child will bring trouble. That was how most of us were raised to believe; a superstition, a tradition that has been in circulation since time immemorial.

Personally, I don’t agree with this crooked belief. I have a niece who has two noticeable cowlicks at the crown of her head. Is she a rascal, you may ask? A definite no! Our little Thea is a sweet, adorable, obedient and cute angel.

The most common structural (morphological) features found in the ASD children included:

  • Sandal gap toes (59%)
  • Facial asymmetry (46%)
  • Abnormal non-frontal hair whorl (39%)
  • High narrow palate (37%)
  • Attached ear lobes (35%)
  • Hypermobile joints (33%)

Physical Features Of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Perhaps the association of Cowlicks with unruly behavior of children can be rooted from the fact that an abnormal hair whorl is one of the physical characteristics of Autism.  Autistic children manifest unruly behaviors. Nevertheless, hair whorls and cowlicks are not the only indicative signs of Autism.  Among the other characteristics of this condition are large eyes, unusually wide tongue and random squealing.  It is, therefore, not fair to judge or even to forecast that a child will grow up to be a problem for parents simply because of double cowlicks.

Children are inherently curious and energetic. It is normal for them to do some things that parents disapprove of. Back to my niece, Thea, she is sometimes moody, especially if she was not able to do what she wants such as playing with a toy or eating ice cream on her own.  Even adults get into a bad mood if denied something he or she wants.  Cowlicks, double cowlicks for that matter, are not the excellent basis of a child’s rascal behavior.  Besides, it is now known that all of us have two cowlicks. Its just that the majority of individuals only one cowlick visible.

Humor Break:

The Proper Behavior

A priest at a parochial school, wanting to point out the proper behavior for church, was trying to elicit from the youngsters rules that their parents might give before taking them to a nice restaurant.”Don’t play with your food,” one second-grader cited.”Don’t be loud,” said another, and so on.”And what rule do your parents give you before you go out to eat?” the priest inquired of one little boy.Without batting an eye, the child replied, “Order something cheap.”

Influences on Bad Behavior

  • Biological. Various factors affect and influence the behavior of a child. It could be due to the genes the child has inherited from the parent but, still, the honing of one’s behavior will still depend on other factors.
  • Parental.

Stressed mothers-to-be are more likely to have unruly, hot-tempered children, researchers have found.

Stress In Pregnancy ‘Makes Child Unruly’: Mother’s Anxiety Can Raise Baby’s Risk Of ADHD

According to Wikipedia.com, parenting is described as the process of promoting the physical, social, intellectual and emotional development of a child. Raising a child, that is what parenting essentially is.  A mother who is pregnant with a child is already considered a parent. Although the child is still unborn, the child already lives, albeit, inside the womb. Whatever the mom does while she is pregnant has a direct effect on the child in the womb.  If the pregnant mother eats healthy foods, then her child also receives proper nutrition and therefore develops and grows properly.  If the mother smokes or drinks alcohol while pregnant, then she endangers the well-being of her baby.  If, while pregnant, a mother experiences great amounts of stress, then the stress hormone levels in the womb also increase; thus, affecting the brain development of the unborn baby.  This then would result to higher chances of the child developing disorders like ADHD and other behavioral problems.  Parenting continues after the child is born and whatever he sees and experiences from his parents inside the home will have an impact on his behavior.  If the parent shows bad behaviors inside the home such as quarreling and lying; the child will grow up harboring these same attitudes.

  • Social. When a child starts to go to school, he starts to socialize with other children having different personalities and upbringings.  Whatever behavior is in a child’s peer group may also manifest in his own personality.
  •  Environmental.  A child’s environment encompasses his home, his school, and his entire surroundings.  If there is frequent domestic turmoil at home, the child will behave in response to the insecurity he feels or receives at home.  If in school he also feels unsafe, he will also behave in accordance to what he experiences like teasing or bullying from a classmate.

In essence, parents have a major influence on a child’s behavior, not cowlicks or unruly hair. It is the duty of parents to care for their children, to rear them, look after them and watch over them.  A much as we want our children to follow and obey us, we have to understand that our children also have their own minds. It is natural for children to be curious and inquisitive. It is normal for them to have an overflow of energy. Let us allow them to experience how it is to be a child. In case our child shows signs of bad behaviors, then let us thinks of ways on how to teach discipline and good behavior to our children.  Some old-fashioned parents still implement corporal punishment in disciplining their children, but the negative effects of corporal punishment are immense so parents should come up with a gentler, creative and effective means to instill discipline on their children.

  • The Stare method.  This method I can personally endorse as this method worked and still works well for me and my daughter.  Whenever she does something that I do not approve, I simply give her the glare and she knows that she should stop misbehaving already.
  • Some children can be tough and would not easily give in when his parent glares at him. For this, maintaining eye contact will be helpful.  Try not to blink or look away to show the child you are really serious.
  • You can also try the reward suspension technique to teach discipline.  If two children often quarrel about who will dominate the TV remote, then keep them from watching TV until they both learn to compromise with one another.

Children need the love and understanding of their parents. Your child needs to have a good model to show him what good behavior is. What he sees from his parents while growing up will be instilled in his mind forever.  Show your child how to be good and he will imitate you. If he shows signs of unruliness, then act immediately to correct it. Do not wait until your child has already grown before teaching him good values. The best way to go about it is to communicate with him. Speak to him in a loving way and help him understand that his behavior is not good. Just like what a biblical passage from Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train your child of the right path he should go; when he grows up and becomes old, he will still stay on this path you taught him to tread.”

Popping the Spot on the Danger Zone

In a world where vanity is advertised, we are overwhelmed by the want to look perfect. We resort to sorts of treatment just to look like the next top model. But while worrying about beauty on the surface, the dangers that await us lay skin deep. Find out how a zit can be lethal.

Let’s be honest. Who out there doesn’t get tempted to pick acne off the most visible part of the face? However, if you are worried about having to walk around with a zit on your nose, getting rid of it should be the least of your problems. Out of curiosity, I asked people around if they ever developed the habit of picking pimples. These three were the reasons that went with the answer YES;

  1. Yes, it is a bad habit to break.  This comes from highly self-conscious people, especially the young and adolescent. In today’s society, even the prepubescents are wont to battle the threats of facial disfiguration. Meaning, the more “photoshopped” their faces look, the better.
  2. Yes, accidentally. Sometimes, this is an excuse. Mostly, however, we couldn’t help it if the zit is within the range of our normal body movements. It can be anything from blowing the nose, wiping the face, biting the upper lip – and before you know it, you’ve left a gaping pore on your face.
  3. Yes, it was an old habit until something worse than a pimple happened. This is where you’ll stop and consider before squeezing out that ugly pustule.

The Danger Triangle of the Face

As I have asked around, I realized that not everyone knows about the “no-no” zone of the face. It seems that most of us are more familiar with the T-Zone. The T-Zone is the area of the face that produces the most oils. It forms the letter T with the horizontal line going across the forehead and the vertical line going down the bridge of the nose. Now remove that horizontal line. Start from the top of the nose bridge and forming a triangle, towards the corners of your mouth – this is the “Danger Triangle of the Face”.

The reality here is that we are too focused on caring for what is immediately seen. This is so because we have more knowledge about the T-Zone and how to take care of it than the Danger Triangle. We all know how the T-area is often the most susceptible to white heads, black heads, breakouts, redness or sunburn yet we do not seem to actually be worried about the risks happening under the skin.

The Danger Triangle is a guide where even the slightest spot must not be touched, ideally. Just imagine yourself walking over inverted land mines – the triangle being the area where the mines are planted. Anything that touches the triangle and goes “kaboom” produces a mighty implosion underneath the skin. You wouldn’t even know what happened until the effects come to the surface.

The Science Behind The Spot

Dr. Martin Spiller, DMD tells us about a mere tooth problem that became a Cavernous Sinus Thrombosis. In layman’s terms, it is the presence of a blood clot (or clots, if you are ‘lucky’) in the cavernous sinus. The cavernous sinus is a small area in the human skull that houses important nerves for the movement and sensations of the eyes and the areas of the mouth. Bordered by the temporal and sphenoid bones is a network of thin-walled veins that makes up the cavernous sinus.

Going back to the ache in the upper teeth, the threat became an abscess, which became thrombus, and which eventually became a hysterical facial mess. What kind of mess? Your eyes spilling out of your swollen sockets, enlarged nose and deformed cheeks are the likely damages if you are “fortunate” not to be dead.

The danger comes from the fact that the middle part of the face has veins outside and inside the skull that communicate with each other. These veins are valve-less, which allows a reverse draining system so the blood flows back to the parts of the brain. Therefore, if you had a pimple and popped it open to inadvertently invite bacterial contamination, you can only imagine where else the infection can possibly go to. The possible dangers could could be as simple as a headache, eye problem, and fever. From there, more serious afflictions could develop such as sepsis and muscle paralysis. All these complications could lead to the worst-case scenario – death. If diagnosed at an early staged, infections could be treated with intravenous antibiotics in high doses.

spotless skin
Spotless

On-the-SPOT Treatment (What you could do instead)

  • Use petroleum jelly. Some skin specialists advice the use of petroleum jelly or mineral oil from petroleum. Although you can just imagine how that will add more grease to an already oily skin, there is no study that shows that it promotes acne growth. Skin health experts have seen how petroleum jelly has induced acne in some cases but not generally. So if you have a readily acne-prone skin, you might want to avoid cosmetics rich in petroleum-based content.
  • Cover up. If you don’t feel like showing around a nose red enough to match that of a Christmas reindeer, you can neutralize. You can find this kind of help from an oil-free, hypoallergenic concealer. This cosmetic is a very reliable cover-up makeup, which is also a spot treatment for pimples as its active ingredient is sulphur. Some variants of the cosmetic even exfoliate and reduces oiliness. Naturally, you have to blend it well to your skin color. You don’t want to do a haphazard daub that will make the zit even more obvious later on especially under the sun’s heat. More importantly, find a good brand that you can rely on without having to risk any skin aggravation.
  • If you ask me – don’t touch it! For most women who aren’t prone to acne, breakouts usually happen within the menstrual cycle. For both men and women, it can occur during times of stress. If unavoidable, allow that slight imperfection on your face once in a while. Let it take its due course to mature and dry off and before you know it, it’s gone. This also goes for anyone who is heavily burned with facial acne. No matter how thoughtfully invented, anything applied to your skin for cure can enter the danger triangle, into your blood stream and into your brain.

With or without the spot problem, remember to always be tidy. Make sure your hands are clean when dealing with facial hygiene especially around the danger triangle. If you have any skin problems, consult a good skin health professional. They can also help to remind you that something so little as a zit can also cause something as lethal as death.

Do Violent Video Games Make People Violent?

Video games have been in existence for many decades. Growing concerns about their negative influence are high. Are they directly linked to youth violence or not?

Graphics and animation software today allow programmers to develop far better graphics and animation effects that provide a realistic experience for video game players. While this brings delight to the players, it has posed a much greater concern for the critics. In fact it has reinvigorated the debate that blames this technology to the increase of violence in the country.

These are just some incidents:

There are many more video game crimes and related controversies similar to these.

The media have their hands full. There are an increasing number of laws created against video games and a barrage of lawsuits filed against game developers. Parents are dragging their kids away from Xbox360, Wii, PlayStations, and computers because they seriously believe this technology affect their kids’ behavior and lead them to commit crimes. But the question is, does this prove that these so-called violent video games cause an increase in violence especially among youths? Aren’t there many other factors at play?

The truth is, researchers are in conflict…

Others say that there is plenty of evidence that shows a link between these acts of violence and the long-term anti-social behavior. They claim the exposure to violence in childhood, the same as when they are exposed to media and television violence, increases their likelihood to behave aggressively and do crimes in adulthood. For them, it is not linked to early symptoms of aggressive behavior, problems in parenting styles, factors related to socioeconomic status and environment safety.

Repeated acts of violence desensitize the natural aversion to violence that that child would otherwise have. And if the game rewards violent acts, but not non-violent ones, the child begins to think violence is not only acceptable but desirable. The longer a child is exposed to violence, the more ingrained these attitudes become. There’s a widespread but false belief that violent games are healthy because they allow kids a way of venting their aggression. They don’t.

Kids, Violence and Computer Games

They theorize that young people may have difficulty distinguishing between what is real and what they experience in the game – most of which are just extremely graphic. Anti-game activists and researchers claim this is what leads them to act out what they have experienced in games. The age and experience of these players allow them to be easily influenced. Social Learning theory states that aggressive video games stimulate aggressive behavior and that long exposure can lead them to be desensitized to violent imagery and human suffering.

Dr. Craig Anderson, a psychologist from the Iowa State University of Science and Technology, claims that violent video games provides a chance for learning and practicing aggressive solutions to conflict situations. In another research, he also paired up with Dill, another researcher and the result was similar. They found out that aggressive personalities are the cause for “aggressive and delinquent behavior.” His research has been one of the most frequently cited and published researchers in video game violence. He also made a team with other researchers Bartholow and Carnagey and same results came out. Steven Kirsh, another researcher also had another study with a group of third and fourth graders and found that these type of games make children react with more hostility compared to children who do not play.

While these studies suggest physiological arousal, increased anti-social behavior and aggression-related feelings and thoughts, many experts argue there is generally a lack of quality studies which can be relied upon and that the video game industry has become an easy target for the media to blame for many modern day problems.

In a study conducted by the US government, the conclusion states that violence in video games is not linked with aggressive tendencies and that other factors are at play.  In fact, there are many benefits one can get out of playing games including its capability to help players deal with stress and anger. Surprisingly, in spite of the studies showing contrary results, some researchers are still continuing to argue that gaming is dangerous.

Jason Della Rocca, executive director of the International Game Developers Association reiterates:

Oh, it was those video games that brainwashed him”’ That’s much easier than saying our society is messed up, people don’t take care of each other, teachers aren’t in control, there’s rampant bullying, and there are no parents at home because they have to work two jobs.

Playing the Blame Game

In order to know the effects of violent images, a study conducted at Ryerson University and published in The Journal of Applied Cognitive Psychology, tested gamers and non-gamers of both genders for their ability to recall shocking images from a selection of benign pictures. Theoretically, those “desensitized” to violence should be less likely to remember the unpleasant images, but the results showed they were just as disturbed as the non-gamers. This suggested that those people of sound mind, able to distinguish fantasy from reality, did not equate video game violence to actual violence.

This is precisely the reason why we all have to take responsibility especially as developers, players and parents. We need to look into statutes and policies related to age requirements and limitations, language, and explicit materials to inform the users of what the game contains and the probable consequences that may or may not result from playing these games.

After all who’s to say that without this technology there would have been a much steeper drop in violence? There is no substantial evidence supporting the theory that the more the number of game sales increase, the violent crimes incidences also increase.

In fact, it just shows the opposite. It seems that just like the “weapons effect” – which led people to believe that guns turn people into dangerous aggressors and used by anti-gun advocates as a strong basis – studies on video games have simply led many to be unconstitutionally deprived of playing video games.

Video games are not the culprit. Or are they?

References:

  1. Video Violence: Villain or Victim?”, Guy Cumberbatch, London Video Standards Council, 2004
  2. “It’s Not the Media”, Karen Sternheimer, Westview, 2003
  3. Benedetti, Winda (2008-02-18). “Why search our souls when video games make such an easy scapegoat?”MSNBChttp://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23204875/. Retrieved 2008-08-2
  4. Wright, Brad (2004-02-18). “Sounding the alarm on video game ratings”. CNN.com. Retrieved 2007-12-10.
  5. Anderson, C. A., & Dill, K. E. (2000).Video games and aggressive thoughts, feelings, and behavior in the laboratory and in life. Journal of Personality & Social Psychology, 78(4), 772-790.
  6. Kirsh, Steven J. Seeing the world through “Mortal Kombat” colored glasses: Violent video games and hostile attribution bias. Poster presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Washington, DC.
  7. John Sherry (2001). Effects The effects of violent video games on aggression: A meta-analysis. Human Communication Research, 27, 409-4319

 

Three Reasons Why ‘The Hunger Games’ Is One of the Most Important Films of 2012

Breaking box office records is one thing, but there are more reasons why The Hunger Games is not only turning out to be one of the best films of 2012, but also a film adaptation that stands tall over its young adult counterparts that made it to the big screens.

There’s no stopping the Hunger Games steamroller.

The film adaptation of Suzanne Collins‘ widely popular young adult fiction lords the box office for the third consecutive week, raking in $33.5US million in addition to its already cool $426US million sales since its opening week.

Certainly, the odds are definitely in the favor of The Hunger Games. But whether its success is sheer coincidence or a premeditated plan, the film has already laid the groundwork for another successful franchise in the annals of Hollywood films.

Aside from its record-shattering first week, which saw the film rake in $211.8US million – the highest opening week for a movie not released during the summer (the previous distinction belonged to 2010’s Alice in Wonderland at $210.1US million) – The Hunger Games has a lot more going to it than just breaking bank.

The star-in-the-making performance of Jennifer Lawrence.Prior to the opening of the movie, casual moviegoers may not be familiar with Lawrence, who plays the female protagonist Katniss Everdeen in the film. Even a quick look at her rather less than prolific filmography and it’s easy to dismiss her as one of those actresses favored by producers because her anonymity makes her cheap commodity to offset the bloated production costs.

However, it’s also easy to overlook the fact that, just this past year’s Academy Awards, she was nominated for the Best Actress category in her gripping performance  as a daughter of a catatonic mother in 2010’s independent film Winter’s Bone.

A nod from the most prestigious award-giving body in film costs more than cents, mind you.

Lawrence’s abilities to command presence on screen and embody the struggles demanded from her role as seen from Winter’s Bone fits perfectly in The Hunger Games, where Katniss is forced to participate in a game in which survival is the only option.

While critical reviews of the film were generally positive, it was Lawrence’s performance that received praise. Among the many reviews, Peter Travers from The Rolling Stone offers his accurate sentiments towards Jennifer Lawrence, the actress:

Lawrence reveals a physical and emotional grace that’s astonishing. Give her the deed, because she owns this movie. It’s not just that Katniss makes Twilight’s Bella Swan look like the wimp she is, it’s that Lawrence, 21, is an acting dynamo with the skills to let us into Katniss’ searching mind…My advice is to keep your eyes on Lawrence, who turns the movie into a victory by presenting a heroine propelled by principle. She makes Katniss revolutionary.

The Hunger Games

With the roll she has been riding, expect Lawrence to receive lucrative and challenging roles in the near future than would make her an Oscar winner in the process.

The breakthrough of Josh Hutcherson. The guy who played Peeta Mellark in the movie has been in the  industry for so long that you may have seen one of his many films – the family-friendly Zathura, the heart-wrenching The Bridge to Terabithia, and either from the campy The Journey to the Center of the Earth franchise, to name a few.

In case you’ve seen the films but failed to identify Hutcherson as part of the cast, don’t worry. Despite playing the lead characters on the aforementioned films, he neither possesses the look nor the superb acting chops that gets you noticed in the business.

However, a person will eventually reap what he or she sows, as the saying goes. After paying his dues as an actor since the age of 10, he is rewarded a role of a lifetime, playing the love interest of Katniss in Hunger Games.

Similar to Lawrence, Hutcherson needed a bigger stage to showcase his acting skills and receive recognition. Due to his believable performance as a love-struck hero who finds himself underneath Katniss’ shadow, he won CinemaCon’s 2012 Breakthrough Performer of the Year and NewNowNext’s Next Mega Star awards. Not bad.

The glorification of reality television by society.  Regardless of whether you like reality television or not, its novelty lies in how its cast reacts towards certain situations without following a script. Assuming that what we see on TV is real, the genuine emotion shown in one of these gimmicky shows captures an untamed spirit that even Daniel Day Lewis or Meryl Streep, at their peak, would find difficult to emulate.

It is this very characteristic of reality television that The Hunger Games is criticizing in its story.

Although reality television, in general, is irreparably dumb and bound to waste your time, they at least have an interesting premise that draws viewers into the shows. Some are goldmines in terms of offering alternative programming on the boob tube (Survivor, The Amazing Race) while most scrape the bottom of the barrel and manufacture the reality part of it to make the show watchable at the very least (Keeping Up with The Kardashians, Jersey Shore).

The latter is an example of how worse television has gotten since its inception – the shows feed on the mindlessness and irrational love of the masses for mediocrity that plagues society. While I personally do not hate reality television as a viewing genre, I do feel that it is used incorrectly as it gravitates to the less compelling values found in television.

In a way, the Games, used by the Capitol as a device to supplant further uprising from the 12 districts, serve as opium for the masses – a mindless drug that satisfies the selfishness of people that holds hegemony in society. The way that the Games are celebrated is similar to how the public make a big spectacle out of American Idol, especially during its first few seasons. (Again, not that it’s a bad show, but is it deserving of that much attention?)

It has come to a point that reality television has become much more ruthless in delivering crass content to viewers and is becoming no different to the mindless killings shown on the Games. Somehow, in some way, shape, or form, reality television has got to stop, or at least mend its ways.

How about you, dear reader? What do you think makes the film important? Or it is just one of those run-of-the-mill young adult flicks that are no different to the reality television it criticizes? Feel free to comment below. But before you do that, may luck be ever in your favor.

Pit Bull: Why Punish the Breed for Man’s Deed?

In today’s society, pit bulls remain to be the most misunderstood dog breed. This started in the 80s when this breed lost his tag as man’s best companion and used as a weapon of choice by gangs and drug lords. Moreover, it was bred to fight for everybody’s entertainment. I do hope that after reading this article, your perspective towards this breed will change.

The term pit bull, which is known by many, is a generic term for a bulldog mixed with several breeds. It has its share of difficulties when it comes to popularity. This breed has been one time tagged as America’s sweetheart during the early 1900s. Together with the development of suburbs, pit bulls were part of almost every American family.

This breed was seen as lovable, trustworthy, friendly, and brave. They were treated as regular dogs back then and not as pit fighters. If you do some research, you will see hundreds of vintage photos of a family taking care and loving this poor and misunderstood animal.

Pit bulls even showed up on posters, magazine pages, and advertisements. There were pit bulls that became heroes and famous by saving countless lives during the civil war like Stubby, a brown and white American pit bull and Weela, saving several individuals, horses, and a cat during the severe flood which occurred in Southern California back in 1993. It was just sad that quite a few recognizes the traits that this innocent animal truly has.

The American Pit Bull Terrier

The American pit bull terrier is a product of breeding a bulldog from different varieties of terriers to achieve specific qualities like the strength and athleticism of a bulldog and the persevering trait of a terrier. Terriers are bred to hunt pest in any condition whether facing injury.

This trait is what the early breeders look up to when selecting dogs to enter for dogfights. In the 1800s, in England, similar dog breeds of today’s pit bull were used to “bait” bulls as a form of entertainment to ease the hardship of life. Not until 1835, bull “baiting” was banned as it was considered inhumane and illegal. Man played a key role on how society looks at pit bulls negatively. Man has been breeding and training them to be aggressive for their own entertainment and satisfaction.

Aggression = Pit bulls ?

The dictionary defines aggression as destructive behavior caused by frustration. Being hostile is another. People tend to relate pit bulls to aggression.

Once they see you walking with a pit bull they will warn you to be very careful as it might hurt you or somebody else. It’s so sad to hear these words from people like them; they who have not experience owning a pit.

As per the study, the “lock jaw” connotation for pit bulls is nothing but a trash. The jaw of a pit bull does not have any characteristic to lock once it bites. Another myth busted I should say. Do you think I myself will risk walking with my pit bull if I know he is aggressive as others think?

sasha the pitbull

Taking care of a pit bull really depends on the owner on how he or she will take care of it. I believe if you show calmness and kindness, your pit bull will show it too. Your pet will feel how you want him or her wants to feel. If you show aggression, for sure your pet will also show aggression.

Always remember, not just pit bulls will show aggressiveness, any breed of dog will do if you do not show respect to their owners and their turf. It such that the media has been treating the pit bull with prejudice to sell off airtime and newspapers.

As a proof:

A 2008 report on media bias by the National Canine Research Council (full report here) compared the type of media coverage given for dog attacks that occurred during a four–day period in August 2007 with intriguing results:

On day one, a Labrador mix attacked an elderly man, sending him to the hospital. News stories of his attack appeared in one article in the local paper.
On day two, a mixed–breed dog fatally injured a child. The local paper ran two stories.
On day three, a mixed–breed dog attacked a child, sending him to the hospital. One article ran in the local paper.
On day four, two pit bulls that broke off their chains attacked a woman trying to protect her small dog. She was hospitalized. Her dog was uninjured. This attack was reported in more than 230 articles in national and international newspapers and on the major cable news networks.
You will notice how the media can influence other people and legislators to be biased on how they will treat innocent living creatures.

What do I think?

Speaking based on my firsthand experience, our pit bull, Sasha has not shown any aggressiveness towards us or any other member of the family. We

 

got her when she was 2 months old. She still thinks and acts like a puppy although she has grown bigger at 9 months. Whenever she is inside the bedroom with us; she still climbs up the bed and sleeps with us sharing the space when she was still a little one. Sasha is so lovable and full of humor. She always brings smile to your face whenever you see her.

Recently we adopted another pit bull named Halo; he is 5 months older than Sasha is. Our first meeting with him was on the day we took him home. Halo never showed a single aggression even though we were complete strangers. Thanks to the previous owners who did well on raising him.

Once home, I immediately took him for a walk to established the bond. I entered the house before him to show that I am the master of the house. You see, there are basic rules in handling dogs in which not most of us are aware of. Halo immediately became friends with Cody, our mixed Japanese Spitz, and Husky who helped him cope up faster with his new home, our home. Halo even made friends with Cuddles, our adopted black cat.

I do hope that sharing this article will enlighten some of you folks to never judge the breed instead, love the breed.

Surf’s Up: Ranking the Best Internet Browsers

If you think you’ve got Internet browsers all figured out, think again. Although there are popular browsers out there commonly used by web surfers, there are some that showcase better features and have more upside than the ones you already know at the moment. On this post at Lifetickler, we crack down how these browsers measure up against each other.

With the Internet expected to grow exponentially with better services and site usability as we move forward, so too will the demand of users for an even more convenient online experience. People want speed and the elimination of lag time, among other conditions, when surfing the Internet.

This is where Internet browsers, known as software applications used to access the “World Wide Web” on your desktop computers or smartphones, come into play.

best internet browsers
Internet browsers are a dime a dozen, but only a handful are heavily used. Nonetheless, competition remains tight among top­tier web browsers,making it next to impossible to determine the clear­cut winner in this brutal browser race.

What are the criteria that internet browsers follow?

In reviewing some of the best internet browsers, below are the important factors that users value when surfing the Internet:

  • Speed – Convenience comes in faster load times. The quicker the browser starts up and operates, the better the experience will be for users.
  • Security – Malicious attacks from malware and viruses have long been a problem of Internet users. Thankfully, the best internet browsers provide enough protection to prevent users from getting their computers infected and information leaked.
  • Ease of Use – Although all Internet browsers are generally user­ friendly as far as surfing the net is concerned, some have a steep learning curve when it comes to accessing their different functions.
  • Expandability – Each browser hosts an exclusive collection of downloadable extensions and add­ons with the intention of increasing user experience.
  • Support – Some publishers roll out the latest version of their web browsers to maintain their position as one of the most competitive, if not the best, browser for download.

Breaking down each browser

Now that we’ve settled the categories to be used for evaluating Internet browsers, below are five of the best and popular browsers to be pitted against each other.

Mozilla Firefox

One of the first free and open source web browsers, Firefox was considered as the best Internet browser years after its 2004 release. In early 2011, Mozilla has tirelessly tweaked Firefox to accommodate the discriminating tastes of users, having revamped its interface and security starting with Firefox 5 as part of their rapid release developmental cycle.

More impressively, Firefox hosts the best collection of the most helpful and versatile extensions and add­ons for casual users, developers, Internet marketers, and others.

One of the criticisms made against Firefox is its excessive use of computer memory, bogging down the load time and user experience. Although Mozilla Firefox has improved speed approximately six times more than the obsolete Firefox 3, the strain it puts on the computer’s RAM remains to be an issue.

Verdict: Firefox has been plagued with heavy memory usage which greatly affects user experience and load speed. However, this web browser is the best choice for users into web development, as the downloadable extensions and customizable features let them run amok with developing the codes and performing on­ and off­page optimization on their websites.

Apple Safari

Dedicated to the Mac and iPhone, Safari balances user­friendliness and interface – a hallmark of Apple products. Compared to previous versions, the improved Nitro JavaScript, page caching, and DNS fetching of the latest Safari allow for faster browsing.

The Safari Reader converts web pages into printable documents with just a click of a button. This is advantageous for users tired of being bombarded with ads, widgets, and sidebars that disrupt page viewing.

The current collection of add­ons still has room for improvement, especially now that developers can freely create customized extensions. On the other hand, the bookmarks bar and smart URL bar help elevate the browser but not enough to put it over the top.

Verdict: Safari is hands down the best browser for Apple products. It embodies the core values of design and usability in its construction and function, but bursting the Apple bubble reveals shortcomings in the browser that ultimately provides an incomplete experience for the user.

Google Chrome

Chrome has perhaps single­handedly caused the seismic shift of attention on web browsers from being aesthetically pleasing to lightweight, fast, and reliable. Unsurprisingly, Google’s approach to search engine is applied to Chrome, with its sleek and minimalist interface contributing to extremely fast loading times.

Users can open, drag, and detach opened tabs from the current window with little to no problem at all. When a tab crashes down, others are not affected and still maintain accessibility for the user.

The Omnibox serves as the address and search bar at the same time. This feature even attempts to guess the site and keyword you’re planning to visit and search, respectively. Chrome takes the distinction of havingdownloaded items appear below the window instead of having a pop­up window appear on your screen.

If I were to nitpick on Chrome for any weakness, then it has to be its lacking collection of extensions (which has improved tenfold since the browser’s release) and rather plain security features.

Verdict: Surfing the web should be fun and simple, and Chrome is the browser that effortlessly does both. There’s a reason why this is arguably the browser of choice by casual users, and if you ever get your hands on Chrome, I’m pretty sure you will agree.

Opera

Google’s tabbed browsing was actually first developed by Opera in its attempt to create a richer browsing experience.

Also part of Opera’s mission to achieve usability with their current version is their exclusive collection of functions that separate them from the rest. Turbo increases loading speed when turned on, Unite lets you share web pages with other Opera users, and Link consolidates all bookmarked pages from Opera browsers into a single source. All these features create a unique web experience that no other browser will be able to emulate.

Verdict: Why Opera lacks a solid base of supporters is beyond me. Its feature ­rich interface and attempt to separate itself from the mold holds so much promise not just as a web browser, but as an industry shaker. If it continues to tread the road it brazenly walks, then expect Opera to become a major player in the years to come.

Microsoft Internet Explorer

Whereas its previous versions focused on the browser frame that compromised performance, the latest update has pushed the IE to the upper echelon of Internet browsers.

The Chakra JavaScript engine and GPU inclusion have immensely improved IE’s speed, stability, and user experience. The frequency of the browser crashing has been reduced, if not eliminated, thanks in part to the Hang Recovery and Crash Recovery features that reloads tabs to their last good configuration.Bad sites are immediately blacklisted upon visiting and leaving them with Tracking Protection. Advertisers have their hands tied from tracking user activity with the Do Not Track feature.

Verdict: Internet Explorer has shown tremendous improvement that it’s easy to overlook issues with its speed and ease of use. Nonetheless, this browser is the dark horse that could supplant Mozilla and Google from their positions as the best browser around.

To recap the top five web browsers in the market, below is a table that ranks all browsers based on the criteria mentioned earlier.

Criteria 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th
Speed Chrome Safari IE Opera Firefox
Security Firefox Chrome IE Opera Safari
Ease of Use Chrome Safari Opera Firefox IE
Expandability Firefox Chrome Opera Safari IE
Support Chrome Firefox IE Safari Opera

Despite the seemingly lopsided dominance of Chrome and Firefox on almost all categories, the margin of error is so close that even the 5th placers have nothing to be ashamed of. All of the featured browsers bring something different to the table, and it is up to you as web user to figure out what suits your needs.

Give us your opinion on what you think is the best Internet browser in the market by commenting below.

It Takes Only A Miracle To Walk On Water…Or Does It?

Believing in miracle upholds our faith, but if you wish to walk on water as Jesus Christ did; there is a scientific approach that will allow you to do so.

As the Christian world celebrates the season of Lent, believers across the globe commemorate the life, works and sufferings of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is during these times when miracles performed by Jesus are also recalled and reflected upon.  One of the miraculous acts by Jesus is when he walked on water.

Jesus walking on water is accounted  in the Bible’s New Testament  several times within the three of the four Gospels.  One account can be found in Matthew 14:22-23 and two more accounts in John 6:16-21 and Mark 6: 45-52. It was about that stormy night, the disciples were so scared when Jesus appeared walking on the water to their rescue.

Believers truly deem this story as a significant tale about keeping faith in the Lord; that no matter how hard or difficult life can be, one only needs to trust in the Lord and all will be well. Such is the perception of believers, but certainly not the skeptics and doubters.  In essence, Christ performed a miracle by walking on water whereas normal humans simply sink and drown.

Nowadays, almost everything is researched and studied and every mystery is unraveled.  The miracles that the Lord performed are no exceptions to the ever-seeking minds of humanity.  Call them skeptics, but perhaps these people are merely trying to have a thorough understanding about things.  What was thought of as something that can be defined as solely a miracle has been given a new concept and understanding.

Walking On Ice

In a news article by Libby Fairhurst, one can read

The New Testament story describes Jesus walking on water in the Sea of Galilee but according to a study led by Florida State University Professor of Oceanography Doron Nof, it’s more likely that he walked on an isolated patch of floating ice.

http://www.fsu.edu/news/2006/04/04/ice.walk/

Doron Nof, the head of natural scientists’ team, is a well-known expert in his field. This scientific study referred to in the news article was conducted by a team of scientists in an attempt to provide a paleolimnological explanation for the walking-on-water miracle.   A paleolimnological study involves the re-enactment of paleoenvironments of different inland waters like lakes and streams. This particular study shows that the unique and rare combination of optimal atmospheric and water conditions caused the development of localized freezing occurrence called ‘springs ice’.

because the water directly above the plume created by the salty springs does not convect when it is cooled down to 4°C, freezing of the region directly above the salty springs was possible during periods when the climate in the region was somewhat cooler than it is today. We refer to this localized freezing situation as ‘springs ice’.

http://doronnof.net/files/kinneret.pdf

Sea of Galilee was its old name. Now it is called lake Kinneret by modern Israelis.  About  1500 to 2500 years ago, that area, which is now the northern part of Israel, could have been a natural spot where springs ice formation occur.  According to the study, at the time when Jesus walked on ice, the then cold temperature may have plummeted for a brief span of time.  Such a floating patch may have been difficult to recognize amidst the unfrozen water in the surroundings.  Again from the study, the unfrozen water consisted of plumes from the salt springs found along the western shore of the lake in Tabgha. It is in Tabgha where a great number of archaeological discoveries associated with Jesus were uncovered.

In the team’s analysis, it was thought that there was an immediate frigid air blast that descended over the lake thereby dropping the temperature down to -4°C for about two consecutive days. This condition matches with the chill that has been present for a century or more (even including the decades when Jesus is believed to have lived).  Provided that these atmospheric conditions happened at the same time over the lake, then the floating patch of ice is likely to have been formed.  This perfect combination of the atmospheric condition is apparently miraculous. The odds of it happening today is once in every 10,000 years.  Nevertheless, the prevailing climate during those years of Jesus’ life was highly favorable to the recurrent formations of springs ice.  Nof reiterates that they are merely trying to explain how the freezing processes may have occurred and not exactly explain the miraculous biblical story.

Fun-time:

“There once was a priest, a minister, and a rabbi fishing in a boat together.

One day, the priest said, “I’m thirsty,” and stepped out of the boat. He then walked on water and took a drink from a booth on the beach.

The next day, the minister said, “I’m thirsty,” and stepped out of the boat. He then walked on water and also took a drink from a booth on the beach.

On the third day, the rabbi said, “I’m thirsty”. But as soon as he stepped out of the boat, he drowned.

The minister looked at the priest and said, “Think we shoulda told him where the rocks were?”

Non-miracle Walking on Water

Part of many Science classes is the lesson about ‘Non-Newtonian’ fluid.  It is a kind of fluid with variable viscosity depending on the applied force or stress to it. A very common and popular example is water with dissolved cornstarch. What is interesting about the Non-Newtonian fluid is that when you punch the water, it will behave like a solid due to the stress introduced by the force of the punch. The atoms of the liquid have re-arranged themselves.  Your hand will not go through the liquid but, if you dip your hand ever so slowly, it can penetrate the substance.  Abruptly remove your hand and it will once again harden.

In Trenton, Michigan, the students from Arthurs Middle School performed an experiment on Non-Newtonian fluid. This was featured in the news article by Anne Sullivan:

It was a science experiment, not an experiment in the kitchen, and it had students walking on water. Actually, they were running, jumping, dancing and turning cartwheels and summersaults. Those who attempted to walk sank.

http://www.thenewsherald.com/articles/2010/06/05/news/doc4c0a66b302a37165213511.txt

In Conclusion

The biblical story about Jesus’ miracle is indeed an inspiring story that is seemingly not right to question. Nevertheless, man possesses the trait that keeps pushing him to discover many things and find a scientific basis for certain happenings.  The gospel’s miracle account is indeed fuel for everyone’s faith. If you want to walk on water too, you do not necessarily need to pray for miracles nor do you also need to follow Criss Angel’s illusion that uses glass. Instead, mix a lot of cornstarch with water and you will have the most amazing trick of all.