Difference in Retail Therapy …

On behalf of the female species I just want to say this:

The female of the species in every culture, in every corner of the globe has one hobby, one pastime that is normally very high on the agenda – the shopping. It is not so much of the actual getting of the goods, but to just to be able to look at everything available, to walk about with your friends and have a quality cup of coffee in a cafe with the right ambience. To be at your leisure is the most important factor in the whole equation. Huh? Sounds complicated, this feminine maths and the female logic to the uninitiated, does it? Aahh, tis plain as mud.

I have two daughters who are all grown-up these days, yet still when we get together, we like to go browsing in the stores in whichever country we will meet. It does not necessarily mean that we will buy that much as it is more to get a feel of the locale. It is a culture test of a kind as what is in the stores speaks volumes to the one that is so inclined.

The word ‘therapy’, in Retail Therapy, means in its original language, Greek,

therap-, –therapeutic[s], –therapeutically, –therapy, –therapies, –therapist

(Greek: heal, cure; treatment; service done to the sick, a waiting on).

So true. Retail therapy could be said to be a ‘service done to the whole business world and the world economics‘, for tis really mostly the females that keep the retailers on the High Street going. This link has the ‘scientific’ – read: rather on the dull side – explanations on the High Street. Neither do I think that even if the net domain is called High Street with tons of stores and goods online that it is equal to the real retail therapy experience! No way.

Now a question

“WHO ARE THESE CONSUMERS that keep the world’s markets going?”

The answer:

LADIES, naiset, DAMEN, femmes, WOMEN, frauen ….

It is a fact universally acknowledged that it is the women in every country who mostly do the shopping and so they are the consumers that these statistics are talking about and whose shopping habits they reflect!

We should be given a credit for doing such a noble thing to help the world economy in every country. I suggest the NP aka The Noble Prize* in The Retail Therapy for the best candidate searched with the right criteria et cetera. The NP in Retail Therapy could be a section of the NP in the Economics, for example.

I have been called Queen of Retail Therapy, but I will tell you that those days are long past & gone! Truly. Seriously, now, do mean it. No joking. Actually. Rii :))

PS.
I do vouch 100 per cent that she had a swell of a time every single second of those 3 hrs and 26 mins, because the RT is a cheer for her and not a chore like tis to him,  who is suffering every split-second of those 6 mins, as he dashed into the store & out!! Her money was better spent, I say.

* Nominations taken. 🙂

(My) Fashion Trendsetters: GRACE KELLY

I don’t want to dress up a picture with just my face.
Grace Kelly


(This video has lovely pictures of Grace but i do not like the music so just do like i do: turn the sound off and enjoy the most fabulous photos of her!!)

“We all knew from the beginning there was something about Grace”
– Mum Margaret Kelly, from Princess Grace: A Biography, 1976 (Quoted in Hello Magazine online tribute to her).

”Her Serene Highness Princess Grace of Monaco, née Grace Patricia Kelly, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on November 12, 1929. She was the third child of a family of four. Her father, John Brendan Kelly, was a businessman and an Olympic rowing champion ; her mother’s maiden name was Margaret Majer. She was the niece of American playwright, George Kelly, a Pulitzer prize winner.

Miss Grace Kelly’s scholastic studies took place at Raven Hill Academy Philadelphia, a convent run by the Sisters of the Assumption, and later at Stevens School, also in Philadelphia. Strongly attracted to the theatre, she attended the American Academy of Dramatic Art in New York, and graduated after two years. Her debut as a stage actress took place in New York, where she played the role of Raymond Massey’s daughter in Strindberg’s play, « The Father ».

After several parts in the theatre and on television, Grace Kelly went to Hollywood. There she experienced a dramatic rise towards the heights of the artistic career. Among her films were « High Noon » – « Mogambo » – « Dial M for Murder » – « High Society » – « To Catch a Thief » – « The Swan » – and « Country Girl », for which she received an Oscar in 1954, the highest American Cinema Award.’’ (Prince’s Palace of Monaco site online)

“Grace Kelly was ”characterized by an innate sense of style, classic beauty and inherent good taste. Always atop the “world’s most beautiful” lists, admired as a fashion leader and setter of trends, She “graced” the pages of many a glossy magazine with a dazzling smile, warm, enigmatic eyes and vivacious expression. “Grace Kelly style” is a well-known, well-used phrase in the English lexicon signifying incomparable beauty and all that is chic, natural and lady-like.” (Fashion Era.com)

Grace’s wholesome yet sophisticated look — neat twin sets, full skirts, and pearls — was perfect for the 1950s. It even caught the eye of fashion designer Oleg Cassini, to whom she was unofficially engaged before she met Prince Rainier. Kelly bag was born out of Grace’s desire to hide her pregnancy!* First produced in 1935, it was not until 1956 that the bag’s reputation became positively stratospheric when the newlywed Princess Grace of Monaco was famously photographed for the cover of Time magazine trying to shield her pregnant belly with a classic Hermes bag. The bag in question thereafter became known as the Kelly in her honour, and shot to global bestseller status, where it remains today. Fashion commentators at the time were quite clear about the association of bag and star: carrying a Kelly bag screamed class and old money, both then thought to be highly desirable. (Daily Mail online)

CELEBRATION of GRACE on October 15-26 in 2007 was 25 years since her death at the age of 52 in 1982. ”To commemorate the 25th anniversary of Grace’s tragic death at 52, the principality of Monaco is staging a major retrospective starting at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco (July 12 through September 23) and culminating in a special Sotheby’s exhibition in New York City titled “Grace, Princess of Monaco: The Life and Legacy of Grace Kelly” (October 15 through 25). Sotheby’s also will be conducting an auction during the Princess Grace Foundation-USA Awards Gala on October 25” (Harper’s Bazaar online)

According to the Newscom Australia her son Prince Albert said: “For my sisters and myself, this exhibition will revive happy memories we shared with our mother, who was a peerless woman.”

In the 1920’s, Somerset Maugham wrote: “Monaco is a sunny place for shady people”. That was all to change the day Grace Kelly married Prince Rainier of Monaco on April 19,1956.

“I’d like to be remembered as a decent human being and a caring one” Princess Grace, 1982

I have compiled a selection of these fashion trendsetters of mine and here are the others in that link plus an entry on The Little Black Dress in this link here.

Keep so well and swell. Rii xx

Sources:
* http://www.visitmonaco.com/mtny/style_icon.html
* http://img.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2007/10_01/gracekelly0710_468x390.jpg
http://www.harpersbazaar.com/magazine/feature-articles/princess-grace-0807
http://www.visitmonaco.com/mtny/life.html
http://www.visitmonaco.com/mtny/home.htm
Wikipedia on Grace Kelly http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grace_Kelly
http://www.who2.com/princessgrace.html

HOORAY 4 WOMEN!

They used to give us a day –it was called International Women’s Day.

In 1975 they gave us a year, the Year of the Woman.
Then from 1975 to 1985 they gave us a decade, the Decade of the Woman.

I said at the time, who knows, if we behave they may let us into the whole thing. Well, we didn’t behave and here we are. Bella Abzug (1920-1998)

International Women’s Day has been observed since in the early 1900’s, a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies. Great unrest and critical debate was occurring amongst women. Women’s oppression and inequality was spurring women to become more vocal and active in campaigning for change. Then in 1908, 15,000 women marched through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay and voting rights. (International Women’s Day online)

In an article entitled ‘International Women’s Day protests highlight violence, inequality’ there is among other things this:

”Calls to end forced marriage, domestic abuse and job discrimination marked International Women’s Day on Saturday as demonstrators took to the streets worldwide.”

And this the advice in North Korea to their ladies:

’Communist North Korea marked International Women’s Day in its own way by urging its women to reject Western fashions and to “set good examples” in their clothes and hairstyles. “Women must set good examples in all fields of culture and custom, including clothes, hairdos and language,” Rodong Sinmun, the official daily of the North’s ruling Korean Workers’ Party, said in an editorial.’

Even this was in the above article: “French President Nicolas Sarkozy called for an end to pay inequality between men and women, and pledged to institute financial sanctions to address the problem.” — That’ll be the day, I say, when the pay will be!

If you want something said,
ask a man;
if you want something done,
ask a woman. (Margaret Thatcher)

This is what is urged in one of the sites where I got articles for this entry:

”So make a difference, think globally and act locally !! Make everyday International Women’s Day. Do your bit to ensure that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding.”

This said as even today — and every single day — thousands of Baby Girls are terminated in the womb of their mothers, just because they are Girls, when the parents wanted boys… So many females have been ‘finished’ that the imbalance ratio on males-females is in millions in certain countries and is increasing alarmingly each day.

Take good care. Rii 🙂

© The portrait of The Girl in Cameo is by Riihele. All rights reserved.

Further read in the International Museum of Women online.

Knitting or Stitch ‘n Bitch

“Those of you who feel knitting has changed your life, welcome to the club. I can think of no better occupation to reveal your own creativity.”

Kaffe Fassett

Wikipedia defines knitting as “a method by which thread or yarn may be turned into cloth. Knitting consists of loops called stitches pulled through each other. The active stitches are held on a needle until another loop can be passed through them.”

We had to learn knitting at schools in Finland from very early ages it being compulsory; I do have to admit that my ’products’ at that time were the most sorry sights ever! Really. What I managed to produce after much sweat ’n toil was one mitten, one sock instead of pairs of the same as required, a whirly-twirly scarf that looked like waves, and so on; you get the picture, for I absolutely disliked handicrafts then. That we had a sour teacher on the subject who did not like me, did not help either, it must be said.

Then years later I moved to Sweden where the girls were very partial to knitting and sewing — surprise, surprise!! as the reputation of the Swedish females would bring to one’s mind something totally different interests, eh?! — I learned to love the knitting, sewing et al. And from then on I have been doing my own patterns and whatnot, I absolutely love knitting nowadays.

Ireland, had I in my mind’s eye painted as, THE land of great yarns with the numbers of sheep the land has grazing in the fields, but when I reached the shores of the Emerald Isle, the selection was minuscule and pitiful to the ultimate as far as a variety of yarn was concerned. Sure, the meat of the mutton et al was and is ab fab over there, but as I said…The Irish, of course, are spectacularly gifted at spinning the verbal yarn, that is well-known world over.

It is funny as in ha-ha! to see that when the males want to ‘beat’ the women in females’ own games aka in cooking, etc., and even knitting — even though, Ezer Weizman said this: ‘Honey, have you ever seen a man knitting socks? ’ — they quickly become super celebrities as is Kaffe Fassett. What a brilliant name for kaffe in Swedish means coffee, by the way, and the beverage of choice in knitting sessions many a time. Here is what I found about KF on the net:

”Kaffe Fassett is known as the U.K’s King of Colour and Design – for interior and garden decoration, needlepoint, knitting and mosaic designs; also for his award-winning 1998 Chelsea Flower Show garden. Now he is designing sets and costumes for the Royal Shakespeare Company. His books include magnificent examples of tapestry, knitwear, painting, patchwork, fabrics and the latest mosaics, but the emphasis has to be on his original and daring use of colour.
Born in San Francisco, Kaffe Fassett’s earliest influences were the beauty and colour of his mother’s garden. In 1964 he moved to England and gardens are still what he loves most.” (Radio National Australia)

Great chefs carry their sets of knives, able artists carry their brush sets, and serious knitters have their knitting needle cases!

Stitch ‘n Bitch is a brilliant book of 258 pages on all things as per title; seriously, it seems like a handy guide to everybody who wants to have a fun and comprehensive reference on this grand pastime.

This is an absolutely hysterically funny video about knitting made by sharp-witted Finns:

”No longer shall I paint interiors with men reading and women knitting. I will paint living people who breathe and feel and suffer and love.”
Edvard Munch

Tis for now, Rii — who finds that knitting eases the frazzled nerves very much indeed!!

Fabulously in-vogue pages of knitting et al on Vogue online:
http://www.vogueknitting.com/vkm/?q=node/79
http://www.vogueknitting.com/vkm/

Victoria and Albert Museum great links:
http://www.vam.ac.uk/index.html

Other handy links:
http://www.knittinghelp.com/
http://www.knittinghelp.com/videos/learn-to-knit
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knitting

LITERACY or Love of Reading

“What I can think about, I can talk about. What I can say, I can write. What I can write, I can read.
I can read what I can write and what other people can write for me to read.”

Professor Roach Van Allen

The picture, – do click at it to make it clearer, please – that I used as the lead photo, is the list of countries by literacy rate as included in the United Nations Development Programme Report 2005. Four countries lead the chart of literacy world wide with 100 per cent literacy rates Georgia, Finland, Luxembourg and Norway. Both The USA and UK are on # 21 with 99 per cent; as are Australia, France, Ireland and Germany. India is # 145 with 61 per cent. China is # 67 with 93,5 per cent.

The UNESCO literacy estimates provide basic information on the number and percentage of adults (aged 15 years and older) and youth (aged 15 to 24 years old) who are literate and illiterate. They indicate the dimensions and patterns of illiteracy within each country according to gender and age-groups, so as to aid in policy- and decision-making with regard to measures to be taken to raise the literacy level of the population. These estimates in a way reflect the performance of the national education system, as well as the quality of the human resources within a country in relation to their potential for growth, contribution to development, and quality of life.

What constitutes literacy aka literacy as defined by UNESCO:

1. A literate person is one who can with understanding both read and write a short simple statement relevant to his everyday life.
2. Literacy is not the simple reading of a word or a set of associated symbols and sounds, but an act of critical understanding of men’s situation in the world.
3. Literacy is not an end in itself but a means of personal liberation and development and extending individuals educational efforts involving overall inter-disciplinary responses to concrete problems
4. A literate person is one who has acquired all the essential knowledge and skills which enable him to engage in all those activities in which literacy is required for effective functioning in his group and community and whose attaining in reading, writing and numeracy make it possible to use these skills towards his own and his community’s development.

The United Nations defines illiteracy as the inability to read and write a simple sentence in any language. So, these literacy rates refer only to basic, not advanced, literacy. UNESCO Portal for the International Literacy Day. September 8 was proclaimed International Literacy Day by UNESCO on November 17, 1965. It was first celebrated on 1966. Its aim is to highlight the importance of literacy to individuals, communities and societies with celebrations taking place around the world.

An estimated 781 million adults live without basic literacy skills, of whom two-thirds are women. In addition, approximately 103 million children have no access to school and are therefore not learning to read, write or count. All these figures mentioned in the previous sentence total more or less one billion so to put in a way that it is easier to fathom: 1 in 6 in the world cannot read, write nor count! How very tragic that the wonderful pleasure of literacy is ’denied’ these folks, methinks.

This is an extract of an old article called ’Gestures not enough to teach the world’ on Guardian online site dated September 8, 2000, but still it is very relevant:

“We have been here before. The high-level conferences, the firm commitments, the hand-wringing, the international agreements that promise the earth and deliver next to nothing – all have been part of the backdrop to the campaign for debt relief. Now there is a threat that the campaign for universal primary education could go the same way.

One third of the world’s population — that is 2 billion people — live in countries which have fewer telephone lines in total than Italy — with a population of less than 60 million! Around 90% of telecommunications traffic takes place between rich countries, while 50% of the world’s population have never made a phone call. As the knowledge economy takes root in the coming years, this lack of access will take a heavy toll and widen the divide still further.

A computer is not much use to a child who cannot read. Out of a global population of 6 billion, 880m adults are illiterate, two thirds of them women, most of them in south Asia. All these figures underestimate the full extent of the literacy problem, perhaps by as much as half. They are based on school attendance figures, and ignore the problem of the numbers of children who leave school functionally illiterate. In Africa, where increasing numbers of children will be out of school unless there is emergency action by western institutions, a new generation of adult illiterates is set to create a dangerously marginalised section of society.

Even in the industrialised world illiteracy is a problem, with almost a quarter of young adults in the US having difficulty reading all but the simplest of texts. In the developed as in the undeveloped world low literacy invariably means poverty and the spiralling problems of drugs, violence and insecurity which go with it.”

Debunking myths about the “Third World” (This video has most fabulous graphics)

“If we talk about literacy, we have to talk about how to enhance our children’s mastery over the tools needed to live intelligent, creative, and involved lives.” (Danny Glover)

Tis for now from Rii – who loves to read & write. xx

These are some of the great links that I used in this article and for further reading:

http://www.literaturepage.com/
http://www.uis.unesco.org/en/stats/statistics/literacy2000.htm
http://dir.yahoo.com/Education/Literacy/
http://www.literacyconnections.com/InTheirOwnWords.php
http://www.literacyconnections.com/
http://www.vocabvitamins.com/

Literacy Exchange: World Resources on Literacy
Nation Master site that has all kinds statistics on all kinds of things!

PICTURE PERFECT: OUTRAGEOUS


This week’s theme on

PICTURE PERFECT

is

OUTRAGEOUS

This luxury pair of gloves for the discerning housewives fits the bill spot-on, methinks! The hands belong to my Baby Daughter, by the way. GO GIRL!!

This very chic Chick doing the dishes and the clearing up is my Little Baby Girl. I say, one must dress up properly with one’s pearls, rings, and fur to do even the most menial of tasks, as one must not let the standards ever to drop. Becki – my Big Girl took the picture.

Isn’t it just hilarious to that these kind of posh washing-up gloves were made or even thought of?!! I like them. Well done, Heli. Keep it up!

HELINKTSET.jpg picture by Riihele

HAVE A WONDERFUL WEEKEND!
Rii xx

© Photo: All rights reserved

SONNET of Chaucer: Legende of Goode Wimmen

For thy trespas, and understond hit here:
Thou shalt, whyl that thou livest, yeer by yere,
The moste party of thy tyme spende
In making of a glorious Legende Of Goode Wimmen, maidenes and wyves,
That weren trewe in lovinge al hir lyves;
And telle of false men that hem bitrayen, That al hir lyf ne doon nat but assayen

(Legend of Good Women or as he wrote: Legende of Goode Wimmen)

Isn’t it just wonderful? I do love the way the words are so recognizeable even today when one considers that these lines were written sometime between 1385-1386! As you know, I do love words and the beauty of languages  is in the expressions and the use of words, and this is no exception, for it really appeals to me very much indeed.

Chaucer wrote in continental accentual-syllabic metre, a style which had developed since around the twelfth century as an alternative to the alliterative Anglo-Saxon metre. Chaucer is known for metrical innovation, inventing the rhyme royal, and he was one of the first English poets to use the five-stress line, the iambic pentameter, in his work. The arrangement of these five-stress lines into rhyming couplets, first seen in his Legend of Good Women, was used in much of his later work and became one of the standard poetic forms in English. His early influence as a satirist is also important, with the common humorous device, the funny accent of a regional dialect, apparently making its first appearance in The Reeve’s Tale.

Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1343 – October 25, 1400) was an English author, poet, philosopher, bureaucrat courtier, and diplomat. Although he wrote many works, he is best remembered for his unfinished frame narrative The Canterbury Tales. Sometimes called the father of English literature, Chaucer is credited by some scholars with being the first author to demonstrate the artistic legitimacy of the vernacular English language, rather than French or Latin. His name is derived from the French chausseur, meaning shoemaker.

The Prologe of IX Goode Wimmen

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A thousand tymes have I herd men telle,

That ther is Ioye in heven, and peyne in helle;
And I acorde wel that hit is so;
But natheles, yit wot I wel also,
That ther nis noon dwelling in this contree,
That either hath in heven or helle y-be,
Ne may of hit non other weyes witen,
But as he hath herd seyd, or founde hit writen;
For by assay ther may no man hit preve.
10 But god forbede but men should leve
Wel more thing then men han seen with ye!
Men shal nat wenen every-thing a lye
But-if him-self hit seeth, or elles dooth;
For, god wot, thing is never the lasse sooth,
Thogh every wight ne may hit nat y-see.
Bernard the monk ne saugh nat al, parde!

A possible indication that his career as a writer was appreciated came when Edward III granted Chaucer a gallon of wine daily for the rest of his life for some unspecified task. This was an unusual grant, apparently, according to Wikipedia where this information comes from. Chaucer had a very interesting career as a diplomat, author, poet et al so there is so much what one could write on him but this is it for now.

Rii xx

Source: Wikipedia