Independence, Motherhood and Feminism in Kate Chopin’s "The Awakening" in this year

“Awakening” (In Chopin C. “Awakening and Other Stories” Random House, New York, NY: 2000) involves issues of feminism whereby Edna Pontellier, the center of the American Creole/New Orleans story, often and perplexedly reflects on her role of mother-of-two who is married to a well-off and often traveling (for business or pleasure) brokerage-business husband (Leonce Pontellier). The book garnered a lot of controversy for many decades after it was written in 1899, but eventually became and has endured as Kate Chopin’s most famous work.

The community views Leonce as the epitome of the ideal husband, for Leonce greatly adores and provides for wife and children, he is quite consistently concerned about the welfare and happiness of his household. Yet Edna does not look at Leonce as her choice of husband, she says their marriage was accidental, that as she was growing up there are particular men that came around her that she would have wished to take her hand. Leonce is disciplined, insistent and low-toned, often dissatisfied about Edna’s attention to the children and other household issues, more so because he is often away on business and Edna has a lot of help, Leonce sometimes causes Edna to walk off and cry.

Perhaps Edna was the precursor of the modern era American woman…one who is prevalently independent (or at least longs to be), one who has more power in making decisions about what she prefers, one whose identity is not predominantly defined by wealth, looks, family, husband, or children. In her state of psychological disillusionment (“An indescribable oppression, which seemed to generate in some unfamiliar part of her consciousness, filled her whole being with vague anguish” [179]), Edna’s love for the two boys she gave birth to is uncharacteristically distant, the mother’s instinct seemingly weak, the kids have more fondness for their father. “If one of the little Pontellier boys took a tumble whilst at play, he was not apt to rush crying to his mother’s arms for comfort….Mrs. Pontellier was not a mother-woman…” (181).

The author Chopin hence paints a picture of a soul plagued by a mixture of feminist and psychological issues. It is to be remembered, that even in this age of feminist liberation, providing men who love and care for their wives and children are still held in high esteem and are still in high demand. Chopin implicitly displays that female emancipation and longing can be of numerous forms. Further, Chopin often compares and contrasts main characters in terms of their beauty and body textures/ forms, illustrating that this issue has been strong in the United States for centuries.

“[Edna] was rather handsome than beautiful…face…captivating by reason of a certain frankness of expression and a contradictory subtle play of features” (174). Chopin writes of Edna’s companion and friend Adele Rattignolle (as somewhat contrasted with Edna) that, “…her beauty was all there, flaming and apparent…two lips that pouted…the grace of every step, pose, gesture… (182). Many writers have noted that Kate Chopin was not a suffragist and did not join any feminist movements; and indeed, many feminist writers reduce the value of the aesthetic features and comparisons of women, aspects that can remind of Hollywood vagueness.

Eventually, Edna wants to leave her family big house and settle “…in a four-room house along the corner” (294). A woman who had great difficulty at learning how to swim, one who is still sophomoric at it, Edna will ultimately find disturbing comfort in introspectively walking alone to the sea, in taking off all her clothing, reflecting on her life and swim into and allow herself to be swallowed by the sea, a fatal blow to the self-possession and psychological emancipation that she sought. Edna was born a reserved child, she was miserable and felt stifled, her marriage and sketches did not reach the standards she wanted them, there was something lacking in her “ideal, loving family; her comfort and big house,” the lustful affair with the lad Robert the conspicuous and philandering son of Madame Lebrun the property owner was full of gaping holes and would not last. Edna did not fit in the conventional mode of the beginning of the 20th Century American dream woman. She instead provides a window into what the woman, over the numerous decades to come, would perhaps evolve into as the individualist and the emancipated female.

In “Awakening,” Edna Pontellier is supposed to be one of the most fortunate women in the world. She has a present, fidel, hardworking and earning, capable, loving husband, who sired with her two male kids, she does not have to go outside of home to work. Yet, she is dissatisfied with her status quo, a rich homely situation that many women crave to be in. The narrator is telling us that women are complex persons, each of individual personality, one size does not fit all; needs and interests, and ambitions of each woman vary. Edna is horrifyingly distant from the two boys she gave birth to. “If one of the little Pontellier boys took a tumble whilst at play, he was not apt to rush crying to his mother’s arms for comfort….Mrs. Pontellier was not a mother-woman…” (181). But indeed women (and female animals) have been known to neglect and even kill their children, reasons for which vary from psychological to dislike for tending to offspring. Women have been known to chase down and drown their children in bathtubs (Andrea Pia Yates, in 2002, drowned all five offspring in a bathtub; she has had a history of post-partum depression and psychosis), or let a car-full of their children roll into a river and get them drowned (Susan Smith, in 1994 did this to her two sons).

Edna Pontellier had two sons, she drowns herself in the end. Women have been known to leave their enviable husbands and children in a comfortable life, and fall for top-notch criminals who are locked up in prison. Edna mentions wanting to leave her comfortable home and enviable family, and living in a smaller habitation down the street “…in a four-room house along the corner” (294). Post-partum depression has been mentioned about women, and in Edna’s case it seems to have become indefinite. Many women, even in the contemporary times long for biological or at least adoptive motherhood. Still, there are those who opine their biologically begetting children as one of the most unfair ways a woman is exploited as a painstaking residence of a baby during gestation. Human gestation is a trying experience, compared to that of most other species (consider squirrels and rabbits). Human fetuses comparatively have many defects, miscarriages are common. At the same time the man does not have the burden of carrying the child to childbirth and keeping a sleep-ridden eye on the child. The fathers of the child sometimes wander away, abandoning their offspring.

Edna portrays that a woman can want much more than a family of children and a husband, perhaps she was a lesbian who had not discovered herself as one. She was at least discontented with her husband Leonce who comes off as conventional, disciplined, and inflexible. This discontentment is understandable…it happens. But why the distance from her offspring, and then the lustful interest in the young man Robert, eventually adultery? Edna will always be an enigma! Perhaps Edna suffered from multiple-personality disorder, something psychological irked her. Perhaps she longed to be the independent free woman, one who had the freedom to love or have sex with her choice of person, the precursor of the 20th and 21st Century independent and upstanding woman free to express her sexuality and stick to her preferences. Edna, many times in subtle ways, brings forth into question, feminism in the context of individuality, sexuality, marriage, freedom and choice, reproduction and child-rearing, spousal attachment and power, and the context and role of marriage in a woman’s life. Edna brings it out that each female is of unique individuality, of personal talent and likes that beg to be fully uncovered so she need not be comfortable with how society compartmentalizes women, more so as wives, mothers, home-makers, and as cherished articles of beauty and ownership.

How to Play Craps with the Power Pressing System in this year

Craps is the casino game that everybody is curious about. It’s big and looks complicated, and when people are winning, it’s the loudest place in the casino. Like any casino game some luck is involved in winning, but the flexibility and choices that craps players have allows them to position themselves to play aggressively when the dice get hot.

One of the things that makes craps so interesting is that you can interact with the game according to your own strategy. You can set goals that might be completely different from the player next to you but you both can be winning. Once you understand the basics of play, you can become like a gymnast, who can move backward and forward on the balance beam. If you choose, you can put all your moves together and devise a routine.

An avid sect of players employs the power pressing craps system. Power pressing is the general term to describe playing craps in an aggressive manner that steadily increases the size of bets. House money (money generated by winning bets at the casino) is the preferred source of money for fattening the bets. It is classic reinvestment of profits.

The “power” in the term power pressing refers to the determination with which bets are increased. The player will rarely receive any change after a number has won because all the winnings are reinvested in the bet. Some power presses even require that the player chip in a few more bucks in order to achieve the next desired betting level. Power presses can be done to one number or multiple numbers at the same time.

To distinguish between regular old pressing and power pressing, think of pressing as speeding a bit on the highway when you are late for work. Power pressing is more like automobile racing. You want to draft behind the car in front of you and build as much momentum into your system as possible before swinging out ahead and making the big win.

In order to begin power pressing, you need to have one or more place bets. Place bets are the most suited to power pressing because they win the first time the number rolls, unlike come bets, and the player has the option to reclaim the entire bet.

Now that you have some place bets in action, you can begin power pressing. The following scenario will serve as an example of the power pressing technique.

Basic Six and Eight Power Press

The six and the eight are the most common numbers to attempt to power press. This is because, after the omnipresent seven, the six and eight are the most common rolls and therefore the numbers amenable to rolling repeatedly. Having your place bets win two or more times is key to successful power pressing and winning.

  1. You start with $6 bets on the six and eight. Your initial goal is to achieve $12 bets on the six and eight after only one win on either the six or eight.
  2. The six rolls while the bet is in action, and the $6 place bet wins $7.
  3. You say “press the six and eight” and GIVE THE DEALER $5.
  4. The dealer will take the new $5 injected into the system and put it with the $7 payoff, which equals $12. This will become the new $12 bet on the six. The original $6 on the six will be added to the $6 on the eight and thereby create a second $12 bet on the eight. If the eight rolled instead of the six in this scenario, the same things occur.
  5. So far, you have invested $17 (original $12 bets plus the $5 for the power press) and have $24 in action. The next time the six or eight rolls, you will be paid $14. Now your investment has been recouped except for $3, and the next win will be pure profit of $11. Winning the $11 relies upon sixes or eights rolling three times without the seven rolling when the bets are active.

Remember, the key to maximizing winnings is making bets bigger while you’re winning.

A Beginners Guide to CB Radio – Don’t Sabotage Your Experience Before It Begins in this year

Citizens band radio or more commonly called “cb radio” offers many type’s of radio experiences for such as small number of legal to use channelized radio frequencies. As an example you man want a c.b. In your car or in your home. Perhaps you might have a business reason, you may be interested in starting a new hobby, whatever it may be.

This article is written for beginners in cb radio or people who may be thinking of getting a radio. I will cover what kind of radios are best to get when starting out and why and if you decide to try out the hobby what happens to most new comers. Don’t worry it only hurts your pocketbook.

Almost all CB radios have a channel selector on its face and some kind of lighted indicator showing a number, generally 1-40 or 1 -23. The radios with 23 channels are older and unless you get one for really cheap or free, I would not purchase one of these units. There are alot of fine older units out there but for reasons Ill explain later, you should get a newer setup. If it doesn’t make sense just read on it will all become very clear to you.

Mobile Vs. Base Type Units

CB’s, for the most part, come in two flavors, base or mobile types. The mobile units are smaller but can have all the features of a base radio, equal power output, however, there is one draw back to the reduced size and that is the size of the control knobs on the front. Generally speaking, base radios have bigger knobs and in most cases more of them when compared to the mobile unit. What does this all mean? If you have fat pudgy beer drinking fingers, fiddling with small knobs in heavy traffic may prove to be a complete pain in the butt. That choice will be up to you.

Almost every mobile CB radio has an internal speaker, generally on the bottom of the radio. These speakers are garbage. They are overrated, cheap and sound bad. Consider an external speaker when space is available.

Some base cb radios will have a speaker built in, they sound better than the mobile but again a quality external speaker should be considered as well.

Most base station radios also have an internal power supply. It is something to consider when purchasing a setup. Mobiles are designed to run from a car battery so generally have no 110 volt plug. Base units, on the other hand, have built-in power supplies and it’s easy to to just plug them in. If you decide to use a mobile as a base station just remember that you will have to get a 12 volt power supply or have a spare car battery handy.

Range distances on mobiles are also much less compared to base station due to the size of the antenna.There are glass mount cellular look- alike antennas to 8 foot ┬╝ wave antennas. The minimum length for a mobile setup to begin to perform decently is 40 inches. Anything less is a waste so that cellular look-alike might look cool, but it won’t have a very good range, maybe a mile or so.

Basically what it boils down to is the larger and higher up your antenna is physically, the further the range of your radio will be assuming everything is working properly.

C.B. Radios as a Road Trip Companion

A cb radio in your car can be a very valuable tool. You can get tons of real time road information from truckers, you don’t really even have to talk. Just listening will yield a lot of stuff about road conditions ahead, you will hear about accidents or traffic jams way before any broadcast band gets the info. The best part is almost all the time you can hear where any speed traps may be. The draw back to all this wonderful information is what you have to hear in between the reports. It’s not something you want to you kids to hear generally. If you don’t care and its just you and you wife or girlfriend then turn it up and join in. It can make a long drive seem short when your yacking the whole time. You may even be able to make a report if you see something first. The one question I hear the most from truckers is about the status of the roadside scales. You can talk all the mess you want on the radio but do take notice as you pass scales on the other side of the road you are driving on. For example, if you are traveling north on a freeway, look for scales on the southbound side. Check to see if they are open or closed and pass that information on as you drive up the road to the truckers and continue your rhetoric.

C.B. Radios as a Base Station

And still another side to CB radio is the base station. You will find that there is generally a “local channel” in almost any city. There you will find normal people to tweakers and anything in between and like the truckers you most likely don’t want you kids to hear what comes peoples mouths.

Having a base station usually means a larger antenna, which equates to considerably longer communications in terms of distance. Even with a 4 watt radio (the F.C.C. Legal limit) it’s not uncommon to 10 or 20 miles. If you live in or close to a larger city, there will be lots of people at what would seem to be all hours. The CB never closes.

CB Begins to Overtake your Life

So you get your base running and get out there. It becomes instantly addicting. Friday nights will be spend more in the garage drinking beer and talking on the radio. You will hear lots of things about radio and receive advice from many people. One of the first things almost every CB’er wants are modifications to the radio. Generally to be louder and have big signals at the receiving stations are the 2 most common modifications with being louder quite possibly being number one.

Being Louder? What Does that Mean?

Here is where the line is drawn between what is technically correct and what people want. It is true that a “stock” radio will be able to be heard at a receiving end, but the real question with regards to the human psyche is how it is heard.

You can equate modifications on a CB radio to having a car and by changing certain parts or modifying the engine, wheels, tires and so on, will enhance it’s performance and make your experience driving the car more pleasurable. It becomes validated even further when a friendly street race is won. This is absolutely no different than the modifications to a CB radio where fellow CB’ers take notice that your voice in their speaker is louder than others. Often refered to as “Tree Top Tall or Walkin the Dog and Kickin’ the Cat.” You get the idea.

It is here where your first questions will need to be answered. I am of the opinion that having a great microphone is important first. It won’t take long for you to hear of the infamous Astatic D104 base microphone. (be aware that there is a mobile version which is loud but it’s tonality sucks) The base version is an impressive looking piece and has a reputation of being a “loud” microphone meaning that all you have to do it plug it in and instantly your loudness will change, and it will from the stock microphone for sure.

I think that the D104 is a good microphone and it is loud, however, it’s tonality is not acceptable due to its pre-amp (the electronics contained in the base of the unit). When I use the word tonality I’m referring to how well it’s amplifying in terms of sound quality not necessarily loudness. Of course there are many more variables than just the microphone’s pre-amp but if the microphone doesn’t have the capability to capture and reproduce a natural, tonally pleasing sound or your shot at better than average audio is gone right there. At this point you may as well hammer a screw into a wall with a wrench. It won’t make much difference what mods you make to the radio if the microphone can’t keep up.

Radios that I Think are Great Starter Units

I have to say that there are many great radios out there. I have created this list based on

  1. Cost vs. Performance
  2. Availability of parts
  3. Popularity
  4. Ease of finding shops that work on the models
  5. Abundant information available and easily accessible
  6. Good resale value

Cobra

25/29 Classic, LTD

148 GTL

Cobra 2000 GTL – Base Unit

Cobra 142 GTL – Base Unit

Uniden

PC 66/76

Uniden XL

President Washington – Base Unit (There are two versions) one with one meter or dual meters. The unit with one meter is almost a cobra 148/2000 – There are some slight differences technically but the version with dual meters is nothing like any of the radios listed here despite it’s same name. If you end up with an obscure radio, the time a tech will need to review the schematic and come with some mods either may or may not be possible or just too costly to justify.

Example One: You buy an obscure radio for 40 dollars in a working, stock condition. Next you get a D104 and I ll just say it’s 60 dollars. You take the radio to the techs place, he/she has little experience with this model. If the tech doesn’t have the schematic, you will have to provide one or wait and it will cost more money, say 15 dollars. Now wait more till the tech figures out a modification. Or perhaps he/she just gives it a “tune up” (that is left to be interpreted by anyone as to what it really is) and charges you 40. So after 155 dollars you have a D104 and a radio that really has nothing done to it. When people ask you about your radio setup (and they will) you will find yourself making excuses why you have that radio as in “I got it cheap”.

Example Two: You buy a Cobra 25 or 29 for 40 dollars + D104 for 60. The tech has done many of these radios, probably has all parts on hand and can do some good mods in just a few hours. It may cost 75 dollars but look at the math. It adds up to 175 total but you have your radio back in a very short time, the modifications will have made a tremendous difference and your loving life. When people ask you about your setup, your proud of it and Instead of making excuses you talking about taking it to the next level, moving up in the CB world. It can make or break your CB radio experience. Trust me on that one.

Want to Avoid Having a Doctor Drill Out Your Eye? Wear Good Safety Goggles! in this year

You read that right. I recently had the (dis)pleasure of being on the receiving end of a drill bit in the doctors office. And yes, the drill was the cure, not the ailment!

Here’s the story…

I had a rare weekday off last month and took advantage of it by making some progress on the restoration of a 1963 Corvette Split Window. I’m still in the disassembly process, so much of the time is spent removing and cleaning up grungy parts. This involves first a bath in a parts cleaner and then usually some liberal polishing with a wire wheel on my bench grinder. Now, wire wheel grinders can really be nasty since the individual wires sometimes let go and fly toward you with dangerous speed. Think little needle shaped bullets.

So I always wear safety goggles. It’s something that’s just been ingrained in me since my teenage days of helping my dad and uncles in the garage. Those were the days of wood shop style goggles. You know, the really ugly ones that look more like snorkeling masks? Anyway, the safety glass industry has made big fashion advancements since then and many safety goggles now look more like cool sunglasses. So that’s what I was wearing while grinding on a rusted Corvette tie rod on my day off. But it wasn’t enough.

The problem with those cool looking goggles/glasses is that they don’t wrap tight to your face. They’re better than standard glasses, but still leave gaps, both above and below. And that gap below is the path a stray sliver of metal took to hurtle into my left eye. I felt it of course, but it was a very tiny particle and didn’t bother me any more than a piece of sand or dirt from a wind storm. I kept working on the Corvette and didn’t think much more about it that night.

The next morning when I woke up my eye still hurt. Again, just the feeling that some little spec was in there and wouldn’t get out. Or I thought maybe I had just scratched the cornea and it would heal up. The human eye heals extremely fast.

To the doctor I go

But two days later the pain was no less. Having my wife look closely with a magnifying glass, she was able to actually see the spec. She couldn’t tell what it was, but it seemed stuck in the actual cornea of my eye, not just floating around. Of course this was a Saturday, so I reluctantly headed over the the Urgent Care to sit in an uncomfortable chair for 2 hours.

When the doctor finally got to me and peered at my eye with his slit light it only took him 15 seconds to guess what happened. He said he sees it quite frequently. The tiny sliver of metal was hot when it left the grinding wheel, so when it hit my eye it actually melted it’s way in and stuck there. That’s why normal tears and eye drops wouldn’t budge it.

So then the fun starts. He puts a drop in my eye that numbs it up. This is a weird feeling I can tell you. He leaves the room (probably to take another sliver out of the next guy’s eye) and returns after the drop has had a chance to really do it’s work. Then he turns down the lights and uses this device to hold my eye open. It looked like a carryover from the medieval days. The doctor then pulls up his tray of picks, needles and other sharp, shiny instruments. He picks out the sharpest one and comes toward my eye with it.

OK, at this point I’m still calm…mostly. At first I thought there was no way I’d be able to keep my eye from flinching as he brought the needle sharp pick near it. But the numbing drops actually worked to counter my natural reaction to blink. Well, that and the device prying my eye lids open. So he starts picking at the sliver of metal. Each time he tried to get it out my vision would shift and blur as the needle actually rotated my eye ball!

Finally it came out and I breathed a sigh of relief that the worst was over. But no, that wasn’t quite the case.

The dreaded EYE DRILL!

The doctor explained that the metal spec had been in my eye long enough that it actually started to rust. Through a magnifying mirror he let me look in my left eye with my right. You could actually see a slightly darkened halo in my cornea where the spec had just been. And apparently rust is toxic to your cornea, so letting it fix itself wasn’t an option. So, do you know how they get rust out of your eye? They drill it out!

The drill is a small hand held job. It reminds me of the drill the dentist uses, which of course doesn’t help my state of mind at this point. The doctors tells me to relax (yeah, right!) and then starts drilling into my eye. What I learned later is that it’s more like grinding, not drilling. The idea is to grind/drill away all the areas where the rust has spread. Once the toxin is removed your eye heals over the spot where they drill. Basically, it’s the lesser of two evils. The drill does damage, but it’s damage you can recover from. Leaving the rust there would do more damage as it spread.

It all turned out fine, but it’s definitely not something I want to repeat. So, now when I work on readying my Corvette for sale or anything else in the garage that has the potential for flying pieces, I wear a complete face shield. I still wear my cool looking safety goggles just because it’s habit, but I have a full face shield sitting right by the grinder that I can put on over the safety glasses. You should consider it too if you spend any time in the garage. Your eyes aren’t exactly replaceable!

The Allure of the Exotic Leather Handbag in this year

Big name brands can be found in most wardrobes. Some are more costly than others and all exude a certain allure. The attraction of the timeless exotic leather handbag however has a special place.

Genuine exotic leather bags are made of materials not commonly available due to geography, ease of breeding and capture, sensitivity of the animals being farmed, climate, tanning processes or simple ease of working with the material after it has been tanned into a hide.

For a certain price exotic leather goods actually represent value for money. Desired by the world’s elite, exotic leather bags and related accessories represent the finest way a woman can spend money. Lower priced products often contain a number of markups from manufacturer through distributors, wholesalers, retailers and ending up on the laps of consumers for a price disproportionate to the product. Added to this the extent to which these products are marketed in the press and you can see why women are overpaying for the “luxury” of carrying around an object of desire.

The relative size of the exotic leather goods industry means it is not widespread but rather confined to clear market segments that conform to the restraints applied by nature. When and where you can obtain a finely handcrafted exotic leather handbag says a lot about the destinations you have travelled to. As clearly fitting in the category of handbags that reflect your professional/leisure interests, nothing tells a story like the Ostrich leather bag.

Crafted from the finest full aniline tanned skins available and styled in timeless classic silhouettes, these bags almost represent an investment more than a simple bag purchase.

When choosing such a fine product the interior is as important as the outside features and looks of the bag. Provided you look after your Ostrich handbag it will provide you with years of service and that elusive status only fine jewelry is accorded by being able to be passed on from generation to generation. When choosing be sure to look out for pockets in all the right places and ease of access as well as security.

Only a few crafting houses exist in the world today able to reproduce exotic leather bags and accessories according to such time-honored traditions only a few craftsmen employ today.

How to Make Your Father of the Bride Speech Funny and Memorable With These Great Speech Jokes in this year

You can easily work a little bit of humor into your Father of the Bride Speech by using a few clean and tasteful Father of the Bride Speech Jokes. This is the perfect opportunity for you as the father of the bride to add to the magic of this special day in your daughter’s life. How do you manage to blend emotion, sincerity and a bit of humor into your father of the bride speech? Let’s have a look at how you can use father of the bride speech jokes and add a bit of sentiment in your speech.

Who To Include In Your Father of the Bride Speech and Jokes

Your Family: You can easily include jokes about your family relating to the wedding in your speech. I’m sure they’ll have no problem with that.

The Bride: No father of the bride speech would be complete without mentioning a few funny incidents from her childhood or later in her life. This always adds a little extra sentiment and meaning to your speech!

The Groom: Include the groom and weave in a joke or two about how he met your daughter of how he proposed to her. This will make him feel part of your family and appreciated! Drop a few pearls of wisdom and you’ve got the right mixture of sentiment and humor.

The Wedding: No wedding ever goes without a mishap or two. Put a little extra twist on these little small mishaps and use them in your speech. There is always a little nugget or two that maybe caught your eye. You can use this in your speech to add a more personal touch to your father of the bride speech.

3 Savvy and Exciting Ways To Include Humor In Your Father of the Bride Speech

1) Use Funny Wedding Anecdotes – A Wedding Anecdote is a short story with a humorous ending. You can either make up your own anecdote or use a well-known one like the following

The Promise of Marriage

“Molly and Peter have been married for almost 48 years and have raised a brood of 12 children and are blessed with 23 grandchildren. When asked the secret for staying together for such a long time, Molly replies: Many years ago we made a promise to each other: The first one to pack up and leave must take all the kids.”

2) Use Wedding Limericks – A limerick is a light or humorous small verse. It is very easy to write a limerick and you can even try to make your own limerick for the wedding. Here is an example of a wedding limerick by Graeme King.

“The bride threw her floral bouquet

but somehow it went the wrong way

it fell in the lap

of a very nice chap

who received three proposals that day!”

3) Use Wedding One-liners – There is numerous wedding one-liners available for you to use in your speech. It is best to start off your speech with a punchy one-liner to grab the attention of the guests and to act as an ice-breaker. Here is examples of a few wedding one-liners you can use:

  • A man is incomplete until he is married. After that, he is finished
  • Words to live by – do not argue with a spouse who is packing your parachute
  • If a man opens the door of his car, you know either the car is new or the wife is new

Wedding Reception Protocol – Who Says What and When? in this year

A wedding reception can be formal or informal, but you must make sure you do it right — in other words you should follow the normal wedding reception protocol as that is what people will expect. Note however that the protocol is not as rigid as you might think, and can be regarded more as a set of guidelines. But what is the traditional wedding reception protocol?

A formal wedding reception is normally held in the restaurant of a hotel where facilities and staff are on-hand for a full sit-down meal — sometimes still referred to as the “wedding breakfast“. An informal reception with a buffet menu can be a less expensive option.

When the guests arrive at the reception, they should be greeting by a receiving line. This is normally the bride’s mother and father, the bridegroom’s mother and father, the bride, and finally the groom — in that order. If there is a large number of guests you might want to simply have the bride and groom welcoming the guests.

Guests are then normally presented with a drink, and when everyone has arrived they can start to look for their name cards in the dining area. The bride and groom should have sorted all this out well in advance, and the only point of protocol here is that at a formal wedding reception there is normally a top table for the principal members of the wedding party.

At some point the cake is normally cut — this is either at the end or part-way through. The bride holds the knife in her right hand, with the groom’s right hand on hers, and then the bride’s left hand on top of that. This is a big photo opportunity and the couple will have to stand in that position with a smile on their faces for several minutes! The cake is then whisked away by the restaurant staff to be cut up ready to be given out at the end of the reception as people are leaving. You may want to rescue the top tier to save for the christening of the first-born.

After the cake-cutting comes the highlight of the reception: the speeches.

The first to speak is the bride’s father. He will normally say a few words and then propose the main toast: “Health and happiness to the bride and bridegroom” (or something similar).

The bridegroom then responds, thanking the bride’s parents and the guests, and he ends by proposing a toast to the health of the bridesmaids.

The best man then speaks, replying for the bridesmaids, reading out the congratulatory cards and telegrams. The best man will also relate some stories about the groom (and bride, if they are friends too).

That is it as far as tradition is concerned but, if they wish, the bride, bride’s mother, and the maid of honor (chief bridesmaid) can all make speeches — but it is best to check with the bride and groom first.

Any and all of the speeches can be serious or humorous, but giving a speech is a high-stress activity for many people. You may want to consider using a pre-written speech. This is worth considering, and there are several web sites offering such material, and you can edit what they give you to make it completely suitable and applicable to your wedding reception. Getting someone else to do the work is not only a great time-saver, but relieves you of the large amount of stress — and you can have confidence that what they give you will work. Such pre-written speech templates can be bought for next to nothing — and trust me: paying for them is worth it as they have been created and honed by professionals.

If there is to be dancing, the bride and groom are first on the floor. they are followed by the maid of honor and the best man, and then members of both families.

At some point the bride and groom will slip away to change into “normal” clothes and will then return to say good-bye before heading off on their honeymoon. Just before they leave, the bride throws her bouquet into the air — and tradition has it that the female to catch it is next in line for marriage. Sometimes the groom will toss the bride’s garter to the men, and the one who catches it is then expected to place it on the leg of the girl who caught the bouquet.

The bride and groom then get into a car that has been decorated by other guests and drive off into the sunset for their honeymoon and the rest of their lives together.

Finally, remember that the whole point of the wedding is for the benefit of the bride and groom, and that wedding reception protocol is, after all, just a set of guidelines. It’s what the guests will be expecting, so if you plan to deviate from tradition it’s probably best to let everyone know in advance so as to avoid disappointment.

Plan it carefully, then relax and enjoy yourselves!

Practical Tips to Obtain Defendant Driver’s Cell Phone Records In Car Accident Injury Lawsuits in this year

Background: using cell phones while driving is an inherently unsafe: Everyone knows now that it is unsafe to drink and drive, but the effects of cell phone use while driving are perhaps even more devastating, because the use of cell phones while driving is so wide-spread. According to the a National Safety Council fact sheet, drivers using cell phones account for nearly 25 percent of all motor vehicle crashes annually. In fact, research has shown that driving while using a cell phone is comparable to the devastating effects that alcohol causes to the motoring public. See, A Comparison of the Cell Phone Driver and the Drunk Driver, Human Factors, Vol. 48, No. 2, Summer 2006, pp. 381-391. Sadly, 81 percent of driver have admitted to using a cell phone while driving, according to the National Safety Council fact sheet.

In bringing your motions to compel cell phone records, it is important to bring the above-referenced documents to the attention of the judge hearing your motion. It is also crucial to let juries know of these dangers, because it will affect how the jury views the defendant’s conduct, even in cases where the defense admits to liability in a rear-end collision. It is not enough to stipulate to liability and let the defendant escape accountability to the jury for the despicable nature of using a cell phone while driving. If our firm finds out that the defendant was using a cell phone, we will attach a punitive damages cause of action to the complaint, alleging that doing so was despicable conduct within the meaning of Civil Code section 3294. If you have clear facts showing that there was cell phone usage, by all means, include a punitive damages allegation with the original complaint, so that you are not forced to make a motion to amend your complaint to allege punitive damages.

Don’t get timed out: It is important to recognize the key defense that the defendants possess and neutralize that defense immediately: timing. It can often take 6 months or more to get cell phone records from the time that you first notice the deposition duces tecum until you have the records in your hands. In most aspects of a personal injury case, the defense will try to stall and delay the case until it is time for trial, and discovery has closed, leaving the plaintiff with holes in her case. That is particularly true with cell phone records. The defendant will claim to have forgotten his cell phone number and the name of his cell phone carrier. He will claim to have lost his cell phone records. The cell phone carrier will throw up road blocks, too. In most cases, the judge won’t let you get the cell phone records from the carrier until you have demonstrated due diligence in getting the records from the defendant himself.

As you will see in this article and the associated subsequent articles, there is a long process for seeking these documents through written depositions, written discovery, meet-and-confer letters, amended responses by the defense, followed by more meet-and-confer letters, and ultimately, your motion to compel. If you don’t lay the foundation, or move too quickly, the discovery judge will deny your motion to compel. So be sure to build into your discovery plan ample time to go through the whole process. Compelling cell phone records is like baking a layer cake; you have to build it one layer at a time.

Also, keep in mind that if you want to amend your complaint to allege punitive damages, California Rules of Court, Rule 3.1324, will require you to demonstrate good cause why your motion was not brought earlier. Don’t hand the defense an easy escape due to lack of diligence in bringing the motion to amend the complaint to allege punitive damages pursuant to Civil Code section 3294.

Start your hunt right away: Look for indications of cell phone usage on the part of the defense very early on in the case. Start with the intake with your client. Include a question about cell phone usage on the part of both your client and the defense in your intake questionnaire.

If your client knows that the defendant was using their cell phone, your client will usually tell you, because by now most people are aware that using a cell phone while driving is despicable conduct, particularly if the defendant was not using the phone in a hands-free way. If you client does not mention cell phone usage, be sure to ask your client about cell phone usage in the same way that you would screen for drunk driving, because, as mentioned above, cell phones are the new drunk driving and can change the entire course of the litigation, as we will see. Insurers are willing to waive liability and settle early where their insureds were using their cell phones at the time of the collision in the same way that they do with drunk driving cases.

Sometimes clients will have seen the defendant on their cell phone a few minutes before the incident happened, for example, if they were passing the defendant and were later rear-ended by the defendant, so probe your client’s memory as to the first time that they saw the defendant, and think about if they saw any signs of the defendant using the cell phone.

After speaking with your client, think about other sources of information about the collision. Look at the police report, of course, to see if the reporting officer noted cell phone use. Contact all of the witnesses listed in the report to see if they noticed the defendant using a cell phone. Be sure to ask your clients and the witnesses if they saw the defendant appearing to speak to himself, because even hands-free driving is distracted driving, and the above-cited studies show that a driver’s response time is reduced even with hands-free usage. As if they saw the defendant gesturing while driving, because of course many people will gesture with their hands while on the phone.

Even if your client and the witnesses are unable to state that they saw direct evidence of cell phone usage, such as the defendant holding a cell phone to his ear or talking to no one while driving alone, it is possible to infer cell phone usage where the defendant has no logical story to explain their odd driving behavior. For example, if your client sees the vehicle coming up on them from behind and failing to slow down, your client might not have time to focus their gaze on the driver before impact, but the fact that the driver doesn’t slow down is a flag indicating that the driver was distracted. Weaving is of course another example of distracted driving, as is odd variations in speed. You will need all of these facts to persuade a discovery judge that there are some indicia of distracted driving before the judge will let you compel the defendant’s cell phone records.

File suit early: If you see flags indicated distracted driving, file suit immediately. You will need to begin the process of investigation through formal discovery immediately, because insurers are going to fight this discovery battle tooth and nail, as they are aware that the public is disgusted with distracted driving, and that distracted driving will open up their insured’s personal assets, creating a conflict. Of course, it is exactly this kind of conflict that you want to create for the purpose of leveraging a decent settlement for your client.

If you see flags indicating distracted driving, consider serving a deposition notice on the defendant 20 days after service is effected on them, pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure section 2025.210(b) which provides in pertinent part as follows:

2025.210(b) The plaintiff may serve a deposition notice without leave of court on any date that is 20 days after the service of the summons on, or appearance by, any defendant. On motion with or without notice, the court, for good cause shown, may grant to a plaintiff leave to serve a deposition notice on an earlier date.

The prevailing wisdom is that you should serve form interrogatories by mail after receiving the defendant’s answer, but it is exactly that kind of supposed “common sense” that you want to avoid in these cases. You want to send the defense a signal that you are different, and they should not expect “the usual” from you in any aspect of this case. It also sends the defense a signal that you are not going to permit them to enjoy their primary defense tactic, that of stall and delay. This practice also gives you access to the defendant before the defense adjuster and defense attorney have had extra time to help the defendant formulate false testimony. In their haste to prepare an answer, the defense might not have time to screen the defendant for cell phone usage, and so the defendant might be unwary of the need to prevaricate about his cell phone usage.

After serving the complaint and summons, fax and mail the defense adjuster to let them know that service has been effected, and let them know that you expect a timely answer to the complaint. Then serve the deposition notice, and again fax and mail the defense with a letter saying that you expect the defendant to appear on the date noticed for the deposition. Make sure that you give yourself enough time to actually get the deposition notice served. Code of Civil Procedure section 2025.270(a) requires 10 days’ notice.

The defense attorney will likely phone you to say that there is a conflict in their schedule, but you should politely and persistently insist on an early deposition for the defendant. When the defense attorney asks what the rush is all about, tell them that it is the plaintiff’s job to move the ball, and that the defense should expect to see this pace continued all throughout the case. Do not, of course, talk about your interest in getting discovery of cell phone usage at this point. The defense will not understand why you are pushing the case so quickly, and it will make them start to question their assumptions about what is “normal” in a case, including their “usual” evaluation of the ultimate case value.

The purloined letter, hidden in plain view: You are going to want to include a duces tecum demand with your deposition notice. In that duces tecum demand, you are going to want to ask for cell phone records. Be sure to bury the request for the cell phone records in the middle of the demand somewhere, well after the usual request for photographs and statements of the plaintiff and witnesses, etc, unless you have alleged punitive damages in your complaint, in which case the cell phone usage will be front and center. Be sure to serve along with the deposition subpoena set of form interrogatories, a standard request for production of documents, a set of specially-prepared interrogatories, if that is needed in your case, and a request for admissions. All of these documents can be served any time that is 10 days after service of the summons on the defendant. See C.C.P. sections 2030.020, 2031.020, and 2033.020, respectively.

It is important to serve a standard set of requests for admissions, along with the deposition notice and the other documents. The requests for admissions should certainly ask the defendant to admit the facts of liability from your client’s perspective, and should ask them to admit the ultimate fact that the defendant is at fault for causing the collision. This is particularly true if the case is a rear-ender, because the defense attorney will oppose the motion to compel cell phone records on the basis of that the cell phones are not relevant in a rear-end collision. When the defendant denies liability in the request for admissions, as they inevitably will, you now have ammunition to show the discovery judge that liability is disputed, and therefore the cell phone records will go to the issue of fault.

Be thorough in deposing the defendant on how the collision happened: If you have spotted one of the flags of distracted driving, typically the defendant will not admit cell phone use. You will need to first lay the foundation for the erratic driving. Be sure to begin the deposition with a benign tone toward the deponent. Don’t clue them into the fact that you are going to press them later in the deposition, because they will become defensive, and they won’t give you the key facts that lay the foundation for the flags of distracted driving.

The defendant will typically admit that they rear-ended your client, if that is the case, but they will gloss over the facts leading up to the impact. You will definitely want to ask them when it was that they noticed that your client was stopped, and what they did to avoid the collision. You can ask them lead-in questions such as “it sounds like you were a bit distracted” or “it sounds like your attention drifted off of the road for a little bit.” Then, ask them if their windows in the car were rolled up or rolled down. Ask them if their radio was playing. Ask them if they had some trouble keeping their vehicle in their lane.

Then ask them if they were using their cell phone at the time of the collision. If they say no, ask them when the last time was that they used their cell phone before the collision. Ask them where they kept their cell phone. Was it attached to their belt? Was it in a purse or brief case? If there were other occupants in the defendants’ vehicle, be sure to set their depositions for a time immediately following the defendant’s deposition, so that the defendant will be clued into the fact that his fabrications might be contradicted by other sworn testimony.

Sample duces tecum demand in commercial driving cases: You can count on the defendant to be evasive in deposition. It is not uncommon for the defendant to say that they don’t remember their cell phone number or the name of their cell phone carrier! If that is the case, you will need to make sure that you have requested collision reports and bills of lading applicable to the shipment that the defendant was carrying, in case the driver’s cell phone number is there. Here is some language that would cover those items:

All written collision reports prepared by defendant Donald T. Driver pertaining to the subject collision.

All drivers’ time sheets, log books (regardless of form) involved in recording the subject tractor truck’s usage and mileage by all drivers in the 72 hours prior to the subject collision.

Don’t assume that the defense attorney will object to the collision report prepared by the driver. It might be that the defense attorney will need to use the collision report to refresh the recollection of the driver, and so might give up the collision report, rather than argue that it was an attorney-client communication prepared by the driver for the insurance adjuster to prepare for litigation.

Sample language for special interrogatories seeking the defendants’ cell phone info: If the defendant claims in deposition to have forgotten their cell phone number or the name of their carrier, you will need to serve specially-prepared interrogatories to elicit that information. Here are some sample questions:

State the name of all mobile telephone carriers used by defendant Donald T. Driver on the date of the subject incident which is the subject of this lawsuit.

State the name of any mobile telephone carrier with whom defendant Donald T. Driver had a contract for mobile telephone service on the date of the subject which is the subject of this lawsuit.

State the mobile telephone number(s) of any mobile telephone(s) for which defendant Donald T. Driver had active service on the date of the subject incident.

State the name of the mobile telephone carrier providing service for each of the mobile telephone numbers for which defendant Donald T. Driver had active service on the date of the subject incident.

State the mobile telephone number(s) of any active mobile telephone(s) provided to defendant Donald T. Driver by his employer on the date of the subject incident.

State the name of the mobile telephone carrier providing service for each of the mobile telephone numbers provided to defendant Donald T. Driver by his employer on the date of the subject incident.

Was defendant Donald T. Driver using a mobile telephone for driving directions at the time of the subject collision?

Was defendant Donald T. Driver using a mobile telephone for voice communications at the time of the subject collision?

Was defendant Donald T. Driver using a mobile telephone for text communications at the time of the subject collision?

Was defendant Donald T. Driver using a mobile telephone for any purpose at the time of the subject collision?

When was the last time before the subject collision that defendant Donald T. Driver used a mobile telephone for any purpose?

IDENTIFY the last person that defendant Donald T. Driver spoke with by mobile telephone preceding the subject collision?

As used in these interrogatories, “IDENTIFY” means to provide the name, address, and a telephone number of the person to be identified.

Sample language requesting cell phone records: Below is an example of language that you can use in requesting cell phone records. Be sure to include questions that are both narrowly directed to the time of the collision, as well as questions that are broader, so that the defense won’t say that they don’t have records which are precisely that exact. Bear in mind that the defendant will typically say that they are not in the possession, custody, and control of the requested records. Your primary purpose in requesting these records is to demonstrate to the discovery judge that it will be necessary to compel the defendant to sign a release of records, because the defendant will, by that time, have answered these questions saying that they don’t have possession of the records. In most cases, the only custodian of the records will be the carriers, but you have to set up the defendant by asking these questions first.

Produce all contracts for the delivery of mobile telephony service entered into between defendant Donald T. Driver and any mobile telephony carrier which was in effect at the time of the subject collision.

Produce all contracts for the delivery of mobile telephony service entered into between defendant Donald T. Driver’s employer and any mobile telephony carrier which provided service for defendant Donald T. Driver’s use in effect at the time of the subject collision.

Produce any and all billing statements in the possession, custody or control of the responding defendants for mobile telephony service used by defendant Donald T. Driver for mobile telephony service which was in effect for the billing period which covered the date of service for May 1, 2008 [insert the date of your subject collision].

Produce any and all billing statements covering the period of 10:00 a.m. through 2:00 p.m. on the day of the subject collision for mobile telephony service used by defendant Donald T. Driver.

You are going to have to customize the language above to fit your case. If the collision happened at 12:00 noon, for example, you will want to go back to 10:00 a.m. and forward to 2:00 p.m. to make sure that you get the data for the subject call, in case the parties or the reporting police officer got the time of the collision a bit off.

Conclusion: It may be a long haul to get cell phone records in car accident litigation, start now: You can count on both the defendant and the defense attorney to fight tooth and nail to prevent you from getting your hands on the requested cell phone records. Start your hunt early, or you will find that you are right up against the discovery cut-off without your records, or without adequate time to amend your complaint to allege punitive damages.

7 Ways You Are Destroying Your Car in this year

Your car is one of your most valuable assets. It takes you to and from the places that make you money, pay your bills, feed your family, and more. For this reason, you should be taking extra care of your vehicle if you want it to last a long time. There are many ways you can damage your vehicle, so it is important that you develop good car care practices early on in your driving career.

Many drivers have developed habits that they think are helpful, but actually do more harm. Continue reading to learn the top 7 ways you are ruining your vehicle without even knowing it, and what you can do if it is no longer suited for the road.

1. Revving the Gas

Many drivers believe they can warm the engine up faster by revving the gas pedal over and over again, but this is not good for your vehicle because it leads to engine damage. If it is cold outside, it is best to allow your vehicle’s inner fluids to warm up; but revving the engine is not the right way to do it.

2. Riding the Brakes

Many people also have a habit of “riding the brakes”, which basically means slightly adding pressure on the brake pedal while driving so that they can stop instantly at any time. This practice, often executed on downward hills, is highly damaging to a vehicle’s overall braking system. Driving at lower speeds will help eliminate the urge to keep your foot on the brake petal at all times.

3. Failing to Decelerate at Bumps and Potholes

Speed bumps, potholes, and other surface blemishes can be highly destructive to a vehicle’s suspension and undercarriage parts if you fail to significantly reduce your speed while passing over them. In fact, potholes should be avoided at all costs. Speed bumps should be driven over, cautiously and slowly.

4. Habitually Driving With Low Fuel

Gas prices are certainly a bummer, but you do not want to drive around with $10 in your tank at all times. Be sure to always fuel up all the way at every fill-up in order to prevent forcing your vehicle to use the old, mucky fuel at the bottom of the fuel tank at some point in time. This will lead to engine damages and clogged filters.

5. Suddenly Starting and Stopping

Whether in rush hour traffic or in a big hurry to not be late to work, you do not want to resort to sudden stopping and starting, over and over again. This habit of driving puts a lot of pressure on the internal workings of the braking system and rotors, and significantly increase fuel consumption.

6. Driving With Improperly Inflated Tires

Proper tire inflation is heavily significant to the overall safety and performance of a vehicle. Not only are improperly inflated tires unsafe, they will eventually cause other damages to a car. Be sure your tires are not over or under-inflated by checking the levels regularly with a manual tire pressure gauge.

7. Neglecting Regular Scheduled Maintenance

Routine car maintenance, such as inspections and fluid chances, are imperative for vehicle safety, performance, and longevity. Be sure to have your car serviced according to the instructions in the owners’ manual if you want to avoid unsafe driving conditions and repeated repair costs.

Is Your Car Done For?

If you are guilty at damaging your vehicle beyond the possibility of repair, you still can bring home a profit to use toward a new vehicle. Simply sell your junked car for cash on the spot at any local junk cat buyer! Regardless of age, make, model, or condition, a professional junk car buying company will pay you cash for the recyclable scrap metal inside your vehicle.

There Are Many Benefits Of Using Custom Wheel Spacers in this year

The wheel spacer that get fitted on to a vehicle are attached in between the wheel and the hub of the vehicle. When you get to use the custom wheel spacer, you can even have more benefits as against the ones which are readily available in the market and you go for a direct fitting. You can get a better road clearance with the custom spacer and the cornering of the vehicle during the taking of turns also become easier. The customized ones fit into your vehicle much better creating better effects. They are very much ‘make and model’ specific to give the best results.

Enhanced safety features

Many people prefer to use larger wheel spacer for their cars. When you use the wheel and the rims that are bigger in size than the normal ones, the look of the car gets enhanced. The balance of the vehicle also improves with better road grip. The spacers which are customized allow greater road clearance for the vehicle. The car becomes safer to travel in. There are many sellers who are making the customized spacer which are very specific to your car manufacturer and the model you are using. You can get the details of these customized wheel spacers in the web pages of the manufacturer.

Your vehicle gets an impressive look

With the usage of the customized spacers, you can be able to get an enhanced look of your vehicles. You otherwise car that used to possess an ordinary look gets a facelift through this installation. The wheel spacer when they are fitted onto the car make the wheel to protect outwards. It renders a robust and aggressive look to the vehicle. The car looks more masculine. This effect is prominent in the sports cars too. All the better-looking cars are seen to have good wheel spacers.

Get better control of the car

The maneuvering of the car becomes easier with the introduction of wheel spacer. With the attaching of the custom spacer, you can have a better control of the car. When the car wheel protrudes out, the grip of the wheels rise. The wheels are spaced away from the axle giving the sturdiness to the car. When the car travels at high speeds there are lesser chances of the car turning over. Taking turns also become easier and the car dies not topple. The balance of the car makes it easier to maneuver the car at high speeds. When the car has to be cornered, the larger wheel spacer again render help for easy moving of the wheels.

Change the bolt pattern

With the use of custom wheel spacers, the bolt pattern of the wheels can be changed. The original hub may have a certain bolt pattern. When you attach the spacer, the spacer may have a different bolt pattern over it. With the change in the pattern, the look of the wheel changes. The wheel can also be fitted on more firmly to the hub through the wheel spacer in between. This will again add to the safety issue.