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August Wilson - The Most Compulsive and Strident Voice From the Black American Theatre

Sunday, June 29, 2014

August Frederick Kittel Wilson, a prolific American writer whose plays, like Eugene O'Neill's, Arthur Miller's and Tennessee Williams' are produced throughout the U.S. regularly soon became the most important voice in the American theater after Lorraine Hansberry, a position that he maintained until his death in 2005 with a string of acclaimed plays starting from Ma Rainey's Black Bottom first exciting the theater world in 1984.

August Wilson mostly relies on the "4 B's": the Blues; fellow playwright, Amiri Bakara; Argentinian author, Jorge Luis Borges, and painter, Romare Bearden to tell what in his estimation he needs to tell in writing his plays. Apart from this, he has no particular method of writing his plays.   

The blues have always had the greatest influence on Wilson, as he himself confessed in an interview with Sandra G. Shannon: "I have always consciously been chasing the musicians, It's like our culture is in the music. And the writers are way behind the musicians... So I'm trying to close the gap."  1

Wilson was also greatly influenced by playwright Amiri Baraka, who was part of the Black Art movement of the 1960's. Through Baraka's writing, Wilson "learned sociology and political commitment" and  to include the emotions of anger and violence in his works. But far from supporting Baraka's advocacy of a violent revolution, Wilson believed that African Americans need to develop a "collective self-reliance grounded in black history and culture" a preoccupation which seems more akin to that of his other mentor, Jorge Luis Borges.  

Wilson  was influenced not only by good writing but also by art as he claimed, that when he saw the painter Bearden's work that was the first time that he saw black life presented in all its richness. He was so moved that he there and then resolved  that he wanted to do just that-as he wanted his plays to be the equal of Bearden's canvases.  Wilson thus started creating authentic sounding characters that have brought a new understanding of the black experience to audiences in a series of plays, each one addressing African Americans in each decade of the twentieth century.  

Although Wilson's plays have not been written in chronological order, the consistent and key theme in each of them is the sense of disconnection suffered by blacks that have been uprooted from their original homeland, first from Africa and then their moving northwards away from the Jim Crowism of the slave holding south for the northern industrializing cities of Chicago and New York.

Wilson lamented that by their failure to develop their own tradition, which should be a more African response to the world, [African Americans] lost their sense of identity.  Wilson has felt therefore that black people must strive to know their roots in order to understand themselves and then regain their lost identity. His plays have therefore been geared to demonstrate the black struggle to either gain this understanding and thence their identity-or escape from it.  
Each of his ten plays set in a different decade of the 20th century enables Wilson to explore, often in very subtle ways, the myriad and mutating forms of the legacy of slavery.  Each one of this cycle called "The Pittsburgh Cycle" or  his "Century Cycle,"  set in a different decade, depicting the comedy and tragedy of the African-American experience then,  is unprecedented in American theater for its concept, size, and cohesion. Nine of them are set in Pittsburgh's Hill District, an African-American neighborhood that takes on a mythic literary significance like Thomas Hardy's Wessex, William Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha County, or Irish playwright Brian Friel's Ballybeg.  

Although the plays are not strictly parts of a serial story, some characters appear (at various ages) in more than one of them. Children of characters in earlier plays may even appear in later ones. The character Aunt Ester, a "washer of souls" who is reported to be 285 years old in Gem of the Ocean, which takes place in her home at 1839 Wylie Avenue, and 322 in Two Trains Running and who dies in 1985, during the events of 'King Hedley I1 is the most frequently mentioned in the cycle. In another, Radio Golf , much of the action revolves around plans to demolish and redevelop Aunt Ester's house, some years after her death.  

The plays often include an apparently mentally-impaired oracular character a different individual in each play - for example, Hedley [Sr.] in Seven Guitars, or Hambone in Two Trains Running. Most of the ideas for the plays have come from varied sources such as images, snippets of conversation, or lyrics from blues songs captured by Wilson's ever-vigilant writer's eye and ear. As a result of the influences from his immersion into the blues music culture, virtually all of his characters end up singing the blues to show their feelings at key dramatic moments in his plays.  

The play Fences evolved from his seeing an image of a man holding a baby, and Joe Turner's Come and Gone from the depiction of a struggling mill hand in a collage by acclaimed black painter Romare Bearden, whom Wilson has cited as having a particularly strong influence on his work.  

Born Frederick August Kittel in the Hill District of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on April 27, 1945, Wilson, the fourth of six children, grew up in a black slum in a two-room apartment with no provision for hot water or a telephone above a grocery store at Bedford Avenue in an economically-depressed neighborhood inhabited predominantly by black Americans, as well as Jewish and Italian immigrants.  

His father a white German immigrant baker, also named Frederick August Kittel, seldom spent time with his family. as Wilson reveals that his father very rarely came around. So he grew up in his mother's household in a cultural environment which was black. His mother, Daisy Wilson, an African American cleaning woman from North Carolina, whose own mother had walked north from North Carolina to Pennsylvania in search of a better life, had to raise her six children relying on welfare checks and wages from house cleaning jobs thus managing to keep them clothed, guided, schooled and fed. According to him, she had a very hard time feeding Wilson and the rest of her children. But in spite of all that. Wilson admitted that he had a wonderful childhood. ...For as a family, they did things together: saying the rosary every night at seven o'clock., sitting down and having dinner at a certain time. ...and being that they didn't have a TV, listening to the radio.

August Wilson's induction into the racism and race-consciousness that was to be a constant theme in his works  started in the late 1950s, when his mother married a black man, David Bedford, causing them to move from the Hill to a then predominantly white working class neighborhood, Hazelwood, where they encountered racial hostility with bricks being thrown through the windows at them. Though there was now racial unity if not harmony in the home, the relationship between Wilson and his stepfather was rocky even when he was a teenager. An ex-convict whose race prevented him from earning a football scholarship to college, David Bedford would become a source for Wilson's protagonist Troy Maxson a former baseball player blocked from the major leagues by segregation in his play Fences, which won my interest in August Wilson a few years ago.  

August Wilson's literary career owes much to his mother who taught him to read very early, a process which to Wilson was transforming:him enabling him to unlock information and to be better able to understand the forces that are oppressing you. Learning to read at the age of four, Wilson consumed books voraciously,  at first reading the Nancy Drew mysteries his mother managed to buy for the family. When he was 5 years old, he secured his first library card from the Hill District branch of the library on Wylie Avenue. He made such good use of it that he soon wore it  out and cried when he lost it. At the age of 12 he was already a regular. client in the library. Wilson was not an exceptional student. He was so distracting that he soon developed a reputation for yelling answers out of turn in class.

His mother sent him to St. Richard's parochial school in the Hill, and then to Central Catholic High School in Oakland. As the only black student there, he was constantly taunted and harassed. Threats and abuse drove him away in 1959,  just before the end of his freshman year but the next school at which he enrolled, Connelly Vocational High School proved unchallenging.    

So he switched to Gladstone High School, which was just across the street. Though he was supposed to move to the 10th grade but because he hadn't graduated from the 9th at Central, he had to take 9th grade subjects. As the work was well behind what he had already done, he was bored and remained complacent until he decided he wanted to get into the after-school college club run by one of the teachers.

It was that teacher who, doubting that a black child could do that well on his own, writing such a well-written 20-page term paper on Napoleon as Wilson submitted accused him of plagiarism. This mostly white parochial high school also gave him a harsh dose of racism often finding notes on his desk which read "Nigger go home." Sick of this he dropped out in the 10th grade in 1960 at the age of 15 and for a while not telling his mother.

"I dropped out of school, but I didn't drop out of life,"  as he recalled leaving the house each morning and going to the main branch of the Carnegie Library in Oakland "where they had all the books in the world. ... I felt suddenly liberated from the constraints of a pre-arranged curriculum that labored through one book in eight months."

At home, Wilson's family had to endure racial taunts at the mostly white Hazelwood area of Pittsburgh. At age 15, Wilson began to educate himself, beginning in the "Negro" section of the public library, reading works by Ralph Ellison, Richard Wright, Langston Hughes, Arna Bontemps, and other black writers,  Wilson made such extensive use of the Carnegie Library to educate himself that they later awarded him a degree, the only such one they have  bestowed anyone.  

Like Richard Wright ,Wilson was caught up in the power of words. His fascination with language made him an avid listener, soaking up the conversations he overheard in coffee shops and on street corners, and using the titbits of conversations to construct stories in his head.

By his late teens, Wilson had dedicated himself to the task of becoming a writer. For by this time, he knew what he wanted to be, a writer, even though this created tension with his mother, who wanted him to become a lawyer. But when he continued to work at odd jobs, she got so fed up with what she considered his lack of direction that she forced him out of the home.  He then got enlisted in the U.S. Army for a three-year stint in 1962, but somehow got himself discharged a year later, and went back to working odd jobs such as porter, short-order cook, gardener, and dishwasher  

August Kittel changing his name to August Wilson thus honoring his mother after his father's death in 1965 marked the symbolic starting point of his serious writing career. For that same year he bought a used typewriter, paying for it with twenty dollars that his sister, Freda, gave him for writing her a term paper on Robert Frost and Carl Sandburg. It was also the year that he discovered and first heard the blues, when he heard a tune sung by Bessie Smith entitled "Nobody in Town Can Bake a Sweet Jellyroll Like Mine."  He was mesmerized by the emotions that Smith's sassy delivery exuded. The source of his artistic vision could thus be traced to this time. The blues had a big impact on Wilson, for through the blues, as well as his experiences listening to the tales of the older folks, he learned that  "both the history and culture of African Americans had their roots in an oral, rather than a written tradition. By stages it would lead to the understanding that this oral tradition consists of an extended riposte to a set of values and codes imposed on blacks by white America".  These two things stimulated his literary and theatrical prowess.    

His literary development moved up one stage further when at the age of 20 Wilson moved into a boarding house, rented a room and began writing lines of poetry on paper bags while sitting in a local restaurant, gathering inspiration from tales swapped by elderly men at a nearby cigar store. Here he got the other important part of his education. For "Pittsburgh" as he once described it  "is a very hard city, especially if you're black," so each day which he said was rough. had to be continually negotiated. to the deprivation was that he grew up without a father.So when he was 20, he went down onto Centre Avenue to learn from the community how to be a man.

That community provided many fathers for him in-- the old men chatting in Pat's Place or on street corners; the inhabitants of the diners where Wilson sat and listened; like-minded friends with artistic inclinations. His true father was both the small community that nurtured him and the larger Pittsburgh that, by opposing, stimulated and defined his artistry.

Furthermore, Wilson expanded his literary landscape by immersing himself in the works of Dylan Thomas and John Berryman as well as in Amiri Baraka's poems and plays which he loved because of their lively rhythms and street-smart language.  

Wilson's literary education continued at Pittsburgh's Halfway Art Gallery, where he found an audience for his poetry, and became acquainted with some of "Pittsburgh's black literati." Together they formed the Center Avenue Poets Theatre Workshop. In the late '60s, as a part of this talented group of poets, educators and artists of the future, young men, whose regular haunts were at the Halfway Art Gallery and the Hill Arts Society, Wilson remembered that  he always had a napkin and a pencil ready by him.  Although some of his poems were published in some small magazines over the next few years, he failed to achieve recognition as a poet.   

Earlier on we identified mostly literary and artistic influences on the works of August Wilson. Apart from these there were ideological as well as political influences on his life and works much of which came from Malcolm X. Malcolm X  bore such a strong influence on Wilson that he gave him the sense of direction he needed to resist the easy temptations of the streets. For it was Malcolm X who offered the young fatherless Wilson a vision of black manhood.  It is as a mark of his devotion to him, that Wilson even possessed an album of his speeches which one expects he must have been listening to over and over again thus forming part of his linguistic landscape along with those familiar voices and discussions in the pubs and restaurants he frequented.

According to Wilson himself: "When we saw or heard Malcolm we saw or heard ourselves. Whatever the self was: Malcolm the Bad Nigger. Malcolm the Boisterous. Malcolm the Defiant. Malcolm the Brave. He was all these and more" It is then not surprising that this theme pervades Wilson's male protagonists, as each seeks to "survive as a black man in America" .

The writings of Malcolm X  in this way had great influence  on the orientation of Wilson and on his writings. Wilson through him took up the banner of cultural nationalism which meant black people working toward self-definition, self-determination, as Wilson put it. "It meant that we had a culture that was valid and that we weren't willing to trade it to participate in the American Dream."  He became involved in the debates of the '60s and continued up to his death to consider himself "a black nationalist and a cultural nationalist."  following various black identity movements and fighting for social justice.  

From poetry which he did not have such a successful publishing record in, August Wilson moved on to the area where he was to gain his fame, theater. August Wilson first became aware of the theater through Pearl Bailey in Hello, Dolly, around 1958, 1959. "My mother was in New York and brought back the program, her first and only Broadway show." But his first brushes with theater had been off-putting. In 1965, he saw a 30-minute excerpt of The Rhinoceros at Fifth Avenue High School. "That was the first theater I recall, and I wasn't impressed." He met some of the actors in John Hancock's 1966 Pittsburgh Playhouse company, but he stayed for only 20 minutes of Bertolt Brecht's A Man's a Man.  But in 1968, when Mr. Penny wrote a play and the Tulane Drama Review had a special issue on black theater "... was the first time I'd seen black plays in print -- there hadn't been any plays on the Negro shelf at the library. So we did them all."

In 1969 Wilson and his friend Rob Penny, a playwright and teacher, founded the black activist theater company Black Horizons on the Hill District of Pittsburgh  focusing on politicizing the community and raising black consciousness. Through this theater formed to promote "black self-awareness," Wilson produced and directed plays that "challenged both the aesthetic and the ideological premises of the reigning Caucasian theater". Black Horizons also gave him the chance to present his own early plays, mostly in public schools and community centers.  

His first play, Recycling, drawing on the unhappy 1972 termination of his 1969 marriage to Brenda Burton.was performed for audiences in small theaters and public housing community centers,  Soon thereafter, his friend Claude Purdy moved to St. Paul to work with its black theater group, Penumbra, inviting Wilson to join him.

In 1976 Dr. Vernell Lillie, who had founded the Kuntu Repertory Theatre at the University of Pittsburgh two years earlier, directed Wilson's one-act play The Homecoming.  When Wilson saw that same year Athol Fugard's Sizwe Banzi is Dead, a comic-tragic account of life under apartheid at the Pittsburgh Public Theater was the first time he saw a whole, professional play.

Wilson, Penny, and poet Maisha Baton also started the Kuntu Writers Workshop to bring African-American writers together and to assist them in publication and production.   

To find the voice that would make him famous as a playwright, Wilson thought that he needed to gain distance from his roots which opportunity came in 1978 when he visited his friend Claude Purdy in St. Paul, Minnesota in response to his earlier invitation to join him. Purdy urged Wilson to write a play and Wilson felt more ready than ever before for as he told the New York Times.. "Having moved from Pittsburgh to St. Paul, I felt I could hear voices for the first time accurately.." . In ten days of writing while sitting in a fish-and-chips restaurant, Wilson finished a draft of Jitney, a play about jitney drivers set in a gypsy-cab station in Pittsburg which he submitted to the Minneapolis Playwrights Center and which won him a $200-a-month fellowship.  Jitney was revised more than two decades later as part of his 10-play cycle on 20th century Pittsburgh. 

At Saint Paul, Minnesota Claude Purdy helped him secure a job writing educational scripts for the Science Museum of Minnesota where he was also writing short plays for its Children's Theater.  Wilson's satirical play, "Black Bart and the Sacred Hills,"  a musical satire based on the story of the life of an outlaw of the Old West was adapted from his poems at Mr. Purdy's suggestion and became an item in a  workshop production four years later..  

Though the drama written during this period does not show much genius, "Yet behind the self-consciousness of these early works is a notable ease with words and a poetic melding of the colloquial and the profound"   

In 1981 Wilson moved to Seattle where he would develop a relationship with Seattle Repertory Theatre which would ultimately be the only theater in the country to produce all of his works including his ten-play cycle and his one-man show How I Learned What I Learned.    

Wilson once explained that St. Paul and Seattle -- cool, northern, Scandinavian cities -- appealed to him precisely because of their unlikeness to Pittsburgh, allowing him to look back more intently at the true material of August Wilson Country, source of his rich stream of stories, characters, images and conflicts.

August Wilson died on October 2, 2005 at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle after in a rare and dramatic moment, initiating a month long wait for his departure after he announced on August 26, 2005, through his hometown newspaper, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, that he had been diagnosed with liver cancer in June 2005 and had been given three to five months to live. The previous December, August Wilson's thoughts had turned to mortality at his approaching 60th birthday when he said, "There's more [life] behind me than ahead. I think of dying every day. ... At a certain age, you should be prepared to go at any time."When in May 2005, he was diagnosed with liver cancer and the next month his doctors determined it was inoperable, he showed that he was indeed prepared, telling the Post-Gazette,  "I've lived a blessed life. I'm ready."

Wilson has won many prizes and awards including two Pulitzer Prizes, best drama, for Fences in 1987 and for The Piano Lesson in 1990; seven New York Drama Critics Circle Awards for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, 1984, for Fences, 1987, and for Joe Turner's Come and Gone, 1988; Tony Award, best drama, for Fences, 1986-87; American Theater Critics Award, 1986, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1998 and Harold Washington Literary Award, 2001. 

August Wilson had received many honorary degrees, including more than two dozen honorary doctorates  with one from the University of Pittsburgh where he served as a member of the University's Board of Trustees from 1992 until 1995. He also had Rockefeller and Guggenheim Fellowships, a National Humanities Medal, the 2003 Heinz Award in whereHumanities and Arts and the only high school diploma issued by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. He was a member of both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Wilson received the Freedom of Speech Award at the 10th Annual U.S. Comedy Arts Festival held in Aspen, Colorado, and sponsored by HBO.

On October 16, 2005, the Virginia Theatre in New York's Broadway theatre district was renamed the August Wilson Theatre, the first Broadway theatre to be named after an African-American. In addition, a street has been renamed August Wilson Way.

The historic home of the playwright at Bedford Avenue,where his mother raised him and her other children was dedicated as an official state historic landmark on May 30, 2007.

He was buried in Greenwood Cemetery in suburban Pittsburgh on October 8, 2005. His survivors, his third wife, costume designer Constanza Romero, and his two daughters, Sakina Ansari and Azula Carmen were amongst friends, relatives, writers, producers as well as City officials at the graveside.

WORKS CITED

1. Shannon, Sandra G. The Dramatic Vision of August Wilson. Washington, D.C.: Howard University, 1995.

Further Reading

Books

  • Black Literature Criticism, Gale, 1992.
  • Contemporary Dramatists, 6th ed. St. James Press, 1999.
  • August Wilson: A Casebook (Casebooks on Modern Dramatists, Volume 15), edited by Marilyn Elkins, Garland Publishing (November 1, 1999),
  • Elkins, Marilyn. ed. August Wilson: A Casebook. NY: Garland, 2000.
  • Gates, Henry Louis, and Alan Nadel. eds. May All Your Fences Have Gates: Essays on the Drama of August Wilson. U of Iowa, 1993.
  • Shafer, Yvonne. August Wilson: A Research and Production Sourcebook. Westport CN: Greenwood, 1998
  • Shannon, Sandra G. The Dramatic Vision of August Wilson. Washington, DC: Howard UP, 1996.
  • Shannon, Sandra G., MacMillan, Palgrave,.August Wilson and Black Aesthetics, (2004)
  • Wang, Qun. An In-Depth Study of the Major Plays of African American Playwright August Wilson: Vernacularizing the Blues on Stage. Lewinston, NY: Mellen, 1999.
  • Wolf, Peter. August Wilson. NY: Twayne Publishers, 1999.

Periodicals
  • African American Review, Vol. 27, No. 4, 1994, pp. 539-59; Spring 2001, p. 93.
  • Esquire, April 1989, pp. 116-27.
  • New York Times Magazine, March 15, 1987, pp. 36-40, 49, 70; September 10, 1989, pp. 18-19, 58-60.
  • Theater, Fall-Winter 1984, pp. 50-55.

Resources on August Wilson:  
Comprehensive August Wilson Website.

Reuben, Paul P. "Chapter 8: August Wilson." PAL: Perspectives in American Literature- A Research and Reference Guide. URL: http://web.csustan.edu/english/reuben/pal/chap8/wilson.html.

Getting Debt Consolidation Loans With Bad Credit: A Superior Solution To Financial Crises?

Saturday, June 28, 2014

The impact of a slow cash flow can be highly destructive, leaving debtors in facing serious financial crises. It is not so much a payment or two is missed, but the late payment fees that stack up make catching up very difficult. At a certain stage, a solution needs to be found, and a debt consolidation loan, with bad credit pushed aside, can be the perfect one.

We say that poor credit scores are pushed aside, it is not because they are completely ignored, but because their significance is not enough to have an application turned down. However, securing large loan approval is far from easy when credit scores are low, making consolidation a more practical option than a large personal loan.

There is a variety of advantages that a debt consolidation loan has over other loan types. And if the right terms and conditions can be secured, it can provide the perfect solution to a financial crisis.

Consolidation: The Ideal Solution

It can seem counterproductive to take on a large loan when already struggling to clear existing ones, but it must be understood consolidation does not simply mean getting another loan. It actually means completely restructuring debts to ensure a more manageable repayment schedule is adopted.

Of course, getting a debt consolidation loan with bad credit does not have quite the same hurdles that other loans might. It is, after all, designed to aid those already in financial hot water. So, while securing large loan approval might be difficult normally, the fact consolidation is the purpose of this loan makes it more accessible.

The key advantage of a debt consolidation loan is that all existing debts are cleared, and replaced by a single debt. When 5 or more loans are involved, it makes debt management easier, reduces the risk of missed repayments, and ultimately lowers the overall cost of the debt.

Consolidation: Source Options

Applying for a debt consolidation loan with bad credit comes with no kind of guarantee, though the chances of approval are very high if conditions are satisfied. However, consolidation is provided through two different sources, and the right one depends greatly on your particular financial situation.

The first option is an independent lender, whether a traditional bank or a private lending firm. These involve an application process, with an application completed and submitted. But even after securing large loan approval, how the funds are used is left to the borrower.

The second option is to use a professional debt consolidation company, which does not actually provide a debt consolidation loan but effectively takes over your finances. The company will buy out all of your debts then take payments from your account as reimbursement. The service can be very strict, but it ensures discipline.

Consolidation: Source Decision

So, how can the right source option be decided upon? Well, as mentioned, it comes down to the extent of your financial crisis. In many cases, simply buying out the existing debt and replacing it with a single loan is the move that is needed. And with the chances of getting a debt consolidation loan with bad credit so high, is the most common.

But this is really only a practical option when the debt is not too high and the practical aspect of buying debts out is pretty straightforward. In more complicated situations, with debts of $75,000 or more, a consolidation company is best.

Securing large loan approval independently is very difficult in this case, but a company can more effectively negotiate terms for a buyout and then offer a rigid repayment program, thus ensuring a more effective result than just getting a debt consolidation loan could produce.

Five Types of Blueberry Plants and Their Characteristics

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Introduction

There are five types of blueberry plants commonly grown. This article list and discusses these and their characteristics. Some examples of popular varieties for each type is also listed.

1. : Northern Highbush Vaccinium corymbosum -- These are high chill varieties for zones 3-7 with 800 to 1,000 chill hours needed. The Northern Highbush Blueberry is a species of blueberry native to eastern northern United States. They are high chill varieties and are the most extensively planted blueberries in the world. If these northern high-bush varieties do not get the required number of chill hours they will not produce. These bushes are rated zone 3 through zone 7 which includes most of the Central, Western, mid-West, and Eastern United States as well as some parts of Canada. These varieties display bush shapes from short and compact to tall and open. The berries range in size from ¼" to over 1" in diameter, and in color from dark blue to light blue. Northern Highbush blueberries require a minimum of 800 chilling hours for proper fruit set. All cultivars are self-pollinating but will produce better crops if more than one variety is planted.

Some examples include:

  • Bluecrop is recommended for growing in zones 4 to 7.
  • Bluegold is also sometimes listed as a half high variety because of it short height and parentage. It is recommended for growing in zones 4 to 7.
  • Blueray is recommended for growing in zones 3 to 7.
  • Duke is recommended for growing in zones 4 to 7.
  • Elliott is recommended for growing in zones 4 to 7.
  • Hardyblue is recommended for growing in zones 4 to 8.
  • Jersey is recommended for growing in zones 4 to 7.
  • Legacy is recommended for growing in zones 5 to 8.
  • Patriot is also sometimes listed as a half high variety because of it short height and parentage. It is recommended for growing in zones 3 to 7.
  • Rubel is a wild Highbush type cultivar. It is recommended for growing in zones4 to 7.

2.: Southern Highbush (Vaccinium corymbosum hybrid) -- Southern Highbush are specifically hybridized to produce superior fruit, soil adaptability, heat tolerance and low winter chilling. The Southern Highbush blueberry is a cross between Northern Highbush blueberries and native Southern species, giving it a greater range of adaptation than either of its parents. The Southern Highbush tolerates a wider range of soil conditions and temperature variations. The fruits are smaller than Rabbiteye blueberries but no less tasty.These are low chill varieties for use in zones 5 to 10 with 150 to 800 chill hours required. Most Southern Highbush are self-pollinating, but the berries will be larger if two varieties are planted together. These varieties have low winter chilling requirements. "Chilling" is a measure of accumulated hours of temperatures below 45°F but above 32 degrees F in the dormant season.

Some examples include:

  • Jubilee is recommended for growing in zones 5 to 9.
  • Misty is recommended for growing in zones 5 to 10.
  • Oneal is recommended for growing in zones 5 to 9.
  • Sharpblue is recommended for growing in zones 7 to 9.
  • Sunshine Blue is recommended for growing in zones 5 to 10.
  • Golf coast is recommended for growing in zones 6 to10.
  • Ozarkblue is recommended for growing in zones 5 to 9.

3. : Half-High Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum x V. angustifolium)
Half-High Blueberries is a term used for a grouping of blueberry bushes with similar characteristics They are the result, as the name might signify, of crosses between Northern Highbush and Lowbush blueberries selections from the wild.. They will grow only 2 to 4 feet tall. These are generally high chill varieties for Zones 3 to 7 and need 1,000 to 1,200 of chill hours. In recent years, Agriculture Research Stations have released many new "half-high" blueberry plants. All these varieties have the "wild" flavor of their parents. The Half-Highs were bred for exceptional cold hardiness but are truly outstanding ornamental landscape plants wherever they are grown. All theses varieties have amazing fall colors. In general, these bushes will partially be able to pollinate themselves, though they will always do better with another variety with which they can to cross-pollinate.

Some examples include:

  • Northcountry-- Its parentage is (G65X Ashworth) X R2P4 Univ. of Minnesota. It grows successfully in zones 3 to 7.
  • Northsky--.Its parentage is (G65 X Ashworth) X R2P4 Univ. of Minnesota. It grows successfully in zones 3 to 7.
  • Northland - Its source is Michigan Univ. It grows successfully in zones 3 to 7.
  • Polaris - Its parentage is Bluetta X (G65 X Ashworth). It grows successfully in zones 3 to 7.
  • Bluegold -- Its parentage is Blue Haven X (Ashworth X Bluecrop). It grows successfully in zones 4 to 7.
  • Friendship - Its source is a Seedling of native plant found growing near Friendship, WI. It grows successfully in zones 3 to 7.
  • Patriot - Its parentage is US3 X Earliblue Univ. of Maine. It grows successfully in zones 3 to 7.

4. : Wild Lowbush Blueberries (Vaccinium angustifolium sp.) these are high chill varieties for zones 3 to 7 and need 1,000 to 1,200 chill hours. Wild Lowbush Blueberries are a native fruit crop to Atlantic Canada, Quebec and the state of Maine. Wild Blueberries have grown naturally for thousands of years. They are short in stature and unlike their Highbush cousins, are primarily spread by rhizomes or underground runners, which give rise to new roots and stems. A mature planting can form a dense ground cover. Profuse white blooms yield small-sized light blue fruit with the distinctive "wild" blueberry taste. Annual pruning is not necessary but they respond well if two-thirds of the growth is sheared back every second or third year in late winter. They are great candidates for landscape borders.

Some examples include:

  • Top Hat is Lowbush, dwarf type cultivar. Top Hat is strictly used for ornamental landscape and container purposes. It is recommended for growing in zones 3-7.
  • RUBY CARPET is a Lowbush selection developed by the state of Maine. It is recommended for growing in zones 3-7. The height of plants will be 4 to 6 inches at maturity and spread outward to create the red carpet.

5. Rabbiteye blueberries, Vaccinium ashei These are low chill varieties for Zones 7 to 9.
Rabbiteye blueberries have grown in popularity all across the South. Part of the reason for the popularity of rabbiteye blueberries may be that few major pests of rabbiteye blueberries have been identified. Rabbiteye varieties are resident to the southeastern United States.Rabbiteye plants are more vigorous, easier to be cared for and live longer, than the majority of southern variety. They can handle drought superior to Highbush blueberries. They can grow adequately in soils with a lower amount of organic material in them. Rabbiteye blueberries are usually firmer than southern varieties with thicker skin. The seeds tend to be somewhat more distinct than Highbush. Their after harvest shelf life is exceptional and usually superior to Highbush. The demand for blueberries has increased as more is known about the health benefits of blueberries. Southerners have often not discovered the outstanding quality of rabbiteye blueberries.

Pest of rabbiteye blueberries

A gall midge, is a newly discovered pest of rabbiteye blueberries in the southeastern US. Midge larvae feed inside and destroy flower buds the result is low yields. Rabbiteye blueberry cultivars differ very much in their resistance to blueberry gall midge infestation. Powderblue and Brightwell are highly resistant to flower bud damage; Climax, and Tifblue are moderately susceptible; and Premier is highly susceptible. Most southern Highbush blueberry cultivars are highly resistant to flower bud damage.

Some examples include:

  • Premier- It is an early mid-season ripening rabbiteye producing high yields of firm delicious fruits. They are recommended for growing in zones 7 to 9.
  • Climax- It is a mid-season ripening blueberry with great flavor! The fruits are firm and an excellent choice for fresh and process markets. They are recommended for growing in zones 7 to 9.
  • Powderblue- It is one of the most attractive rabbiteye blueberries that is late maturing. The fruits are medium size and easily removed from the plant. The flavor is sweet. They are recommended for growing in zones 7 to 9.
  • Brightwell- It is a late ripening berry with excellent quality. Flavor is good the fruit size and berry appearance is attractive for fresh markets. They are recommended for growing in zones 7 to 9.
  • Tifblue- It is a late ripening variety. Tifblue has been the most widely planted blueberry in the southeast, because it is productive and has firm fruit. They are recommended for growing in zones 7 to 9.

Summary

There are a number of different types of blueberries that are suitable for different purposes and growing zones. The one thing they all have in common is their high antioxidant capacity and health benefits. You should grow your own pesticide free blueberries. They can be purchased from a reputable on-line source. Purchase those that are best suited for your growing zone.

How Bankruptcy Can Help Your Financial Troubles

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

When you are in a bad financial situation, you could feel afraid and unaware of where to get help to try to get your financial life back on track. However, there is certainly hope for those looking for ways to their head above water. Filing for a bankruptcy in Akron is achievable and will help you start anew. It is true that bankruptcy is not something to take lightly, but it is not a horrible process. Many individuals worry because bankruptcy will stay on their credit for up to 8 years, but chances are, your credit is already bad and it usually takes that long just to fix it if you continue to only make the minimum payments on your debt. That's when bankruptcy can be a wise decision.

There are several different forms of bankruptcy. You will need to apply for the bankruptcy process that will fit your situation, so it's imperative that you hire an attorney who can advise you of the right steps to take and guide you through them, too. Filing for bankruptcy is a big deal with many things to consider and understand. If you would like to go about filing for bankruptcy the right way, don't be afraid to ask for help from a professional. When it comes to bankruptcy, you will need to know your state laws and how that will affect your application. Additionally, you will need a list of the money you owe, assets and exemptions. There will be fees that are connected to filing for bankruptcy. A legal professional can advise you about the fees you've got to cover when filing for bankruptcy.

That's why sitting down with someone who can represent you legally a very good idea when it comes to filing for Akron bankruptcy. Going at it alone can be quite a big chore. The laws can be daunting and confusing, and you don't want to miss something important that will cause the court to deny your application. A bankruptcy professional is skilled in filing for bankruptcy and can explain to you everything you need to know as well as all that you will need to file for. They will discuss the different options as well as benefits and drawbacks to filing.

The most significant benefit of filing for bankruptcy is that most of your debt will be cleared and you will be permitted to begin anew. The collection agencies will cease calling and you can finally get some peace. But the moment you file for bankruptcy, you must stay on the right track and avoid going down the same path you followed that caused your previous debt. After some time, you will be able to correct your credit, but it's a great idea to note that people who file for bankruptcy are at risk for needing to file for it again. This occurs because they fall back into their old undesirable habits, and they don't bother to get credit counseling help after filing the first time. It's essential to seek credit counseling following your bankruptcy so that you can move forward, instead of running into the same issues on your own.

If you feel filing for bankruptcy will be right for you, contact legal representation in Akron to help you through all of the necessary steps. While bankruptcy isn't something that anyone should take lightly, obtaining the help you need to get you through it will be very beneficial.
At zero cost for you, the Rubenstein Law Firm offers a consultation with an experienced

Insurance Marketing: Take Your Bio From Stale To Stellar

Monday, June 23, 2014

How well does your professional bio showcase your abilities? Does it tell your personal brand story? Is it current and compelling?

Unfortunately, most insurance professional bios are stale and boring. They lack heart, depth and inspiration. Company profiles are often riddled with tired clich├ęs and insurance industry jargon. And the typical executive bio is no better than a resume - a bulleted list of jobs and skills that can easily be forgotten.

A descriptive and well-written business bio puts a personal face on your offering and makes insurance prospects feel more comfortable and at ease. It clearly conveys your credibility and demonstrates your success, giving your prospects faith that you can really deliver on your promises.

Professional bios are multi-talented insurance marketing pieces. They can be incorporated into insurance websites, brochures and sales sheets. They can also be used for:

  • Insurance article bylines
  • Speaking engagements
  • Professional introductions
  • Networking
  • LinkedIn and other social networking profiles

Professional bios are highly recommended for insurance executives, insurance agents and anyone else who strives to develop and market a personal brand. In fact, some innovative, service-driven insurance companies display bios for all customer-facing employees on their websites.

BIO Dos

  • Use vivid examples of your capabilities.
  • Include objective measures of your successes.
  • Incorporate a few interesting quotes.
  • Keep the writing formal and in third person.
  • Customize your bio for each potential audience.

BIO Don'ts

  • Avoid long resume-style lists of job titles.
  • Don't write in the first person.
  • Resist the urge to be verbose. Most bios can be completed in one to two pages.

Isn't it time to tell your professional story in a way that's relevant and interesting to your target market?

Net-Centric Air Traffic Management System Explained

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Net-centric, in its most common definition, refers to "participation as a part of a continuously evolving, complex community of people, devices, information and services interconnected by a communications network to optimise resource management and provide superior information on events and conditions needed to empower decision makers." It will be clear from the definition that "net-centric" does not refer to a network as such. It is a term that covers all elements constituting the environment referred to as "net-centric".

Exchanges between members of the community are based not on cumbersome individual interfaces and point to point connections but a flexible network paradigm that is never a hindrance to the evolution of the net-centric community. Net-centricity promotes a "many-to-many" exchange of data, enabling a multiplicity of users and applications to make use of the same data which in itself extends way beyond the traditional, predefined and package oriented data set while still being standardised sufficiently to ensure global interoperability. The aim of a net-centric system is to make all data visible, available and usable, when needed and where needed, to accelerate and improve the decision making process.

In a net-centric environment, unanticipated but authorised users can find and use data more quickly. The net-centric environment is populated with all data on a "post and share before processing" basis enabling authorised users and applications to access data without wait time for processing, exploitation and dissemination. This approach also enables vendors to develop value added services, tailored to specific needs but still based on the shared data.

In the context of Air Traffic Management (ATM), the data to be provided is that concerning the state (past, present and future) of the ATM Network. Participants in this complex community created by the net-centric concept can make use of a vastly enlarged scope of acceptable data sources and data types (aircraft platforms, airspace user systems, etc.) while their own data also reaches the community on a level never previously achieved.

How are decisions different in a net-centric environment?

Information sharing and the end-user applications it enables is the most beneficial enabler of collaborative decision making. The more complete the information that is being shared and the more thorough its accessibility to the community involved, the higher the benefit potential. In a traditional environment, decisions are often arbitrary and the effects of the decisions are not completely transparent to the partners involved. Information sharing on a limited scale (as is the case in the mainly local information sharing hitherto implemented) results in a substantial improvement in the quality of decisions but this is mainly local and improvements in the overall ATM Network are consequential rather than direct.

If the ATM Network is built using the net-centric approach, decisions are empowered on the basis of information available in the totality of the net-centric environment and interaction among members of the community, irrespective of their role or location, can be based on need rather than feasibility.

Since awareness of the state (past, present or future) of the ATM Network is not limited by lack of involvement of any part as such, finding out the likely or actual consequences of decisions is facilitated, providing an important feed-back loop that further improves the quality of decisions on all levels.

Looking at things from the collaborative decision making (CDM) perspective, it is important to realise that net-centricity is not something created for the sole purpose of making CDM better. Net-centricity is a feature of the complete ATM system design, providing different benefits to different aspects of air traffic management operations. It is when collaboration in decision making exploits also the facilities made possible by the overall net-centric ATM Network, that the superior quality of decisions becomes truly visible.

The concept of services

In traditional system design, information technology (IT) was often driving developments and the functionality being provided in some cases became a limitation on the business it was meant to support. Service orientation is the necessary step to separate the business processes from the IT processes and to enable business considerations to drive the underlying IT requirements. Aligning IT to the business rather than the other way round improves business agility and efficiency.

"Service" in this context is defined as "the delivery of a capability in line with published characteristics, including policies." This refers to the ATM services required and not the underlying (technical) supporting services and physical assets that need to be deployed. In other words, service refers to the business services and not the information technology services.

Well designed business services must exhibit a number of characteristics that describe the service being offered sufficiently well for the service consumer(s) to clearly understand the service and hence to want to make use them.

On the business level, contracts and service level agreements that put the service in the proper context are very important as they cover not only the function(s) that will be performed but also the non-functional terms and conditions to which the consumer and provider have agreed.

There are several business processes that can be identified in the context of air traffic management. Some are related to the aircraft themselves (e.g. turn-round), others concern the passengers and their baggage. These and all other business processes require specific services to progress and complete in accordance with the business objectives of the process owner. Cleaning and refuelling of the aircraft, passenger check-in, security checking, etc. are just a few examples of the business services that need to be provided in order to achieve the objective, in this case a timely and safe departure.

When viewed on an enterprise level, a given service once defined is often reusable across the enterprise where identical or similar processes are found, resulting in a major potential for cost saving.

The services so defined will then set the requirements for the underlying IT support.

The effects of net-centric integration

The term "integration" is often associated with "centralisation" and the elimination/rationalisation of facilities. While from an economic perspective integration may indeed mean all of the above, net-centric integration is about empowering better decision making through the creation of the complex, networked community of people, devices, information and services that generate benefits to all members of the community without necessarily changing the mapping (nature, number and location) of the community members.

At the same time, net-centric integration enables superior business agility and flexibility so that community members may evolve and change (drop out or new ones come in) in response to the changing needs of the users of the system concerned.

In the net-centric context it is not integration as such that changes the enterprise landscape. Such changes, if any, are the result of the economic imperatives that need to be met and which can now be met based on the improved business agility.

The end-user aspects of net-centric operations

One of the less understood aspects of traditional decision making is that it is not really possible to realise when decisions are based on less then full and/or correct information. The garbage in/garbage out principle applies also to the decision making process. At the same time, the effects of less than good decisions may not be immediately visible. In many cases, poor decisions will affect the efficiency of the overall operation without the negative effects even being traceable to individual decisions. So, while everyone may be doing their very best, the result may still be far short of the quality that would be otherwise achievable.

When the scope and quality of data upon which decisions are based is expanded and improved, the quality of decisions improves almost automatically. The decision makers will notice the expanded possibilities and ultimately the success of the enterprise will also improve in a visible way.

When net-centric operations are introduced, the potential for improvement and the options for achieving the improvement multiply considerably. In the more restricted environment, end-users will have been asking for more information and tools to make using data easier. More often than not, their wish went unfulfilled due to lack of data and/or poor quality and the consequent poor performance of the tools that may have been created. The shared environment under net-centric operations brings all the data anyone may ever wish to have. The services are defined on the basis of the business needs and will also support the tools end-users need to properly interact with net-centric environment, integrating into a coherent whole their individual decision making processes.

In a way a well implemented net-centric system is transparent to the end-users. In particular, they do not need to concern themselves with the location of data they require or the quality thereof. Information management, that is part of the net-centric environment, takes care of finding the information needed and also its quality assurance.

End-user applications are the most visible part of net-centric operations and they can be built to satisfy end-user needs in respect of any process that needs to be handled.

In the ATM context, vastly improved controller decision making tools, safety nets and trajectory calculation are only a few examples of the possible benefits.
The institutional implications of net-centric operations

International air navigation is by definition a highly regulated environment and regulations provide some of the most important pillars of both safety and interoperability. The net-centric and service oriented future ATM environment possesses a number of aspects which by themselves provide powerful drivers for proper regulation. It is important to note that the institutional issues associated with net-centric operations are wider than just CDM and hence early efforts to address the CDM related aspects will benefit the whole of the ATM enterprise. The items of particular relevance are summarised below:

o Wide scope of information contributors - The information needs of the future ATM Network, including the scope of that information, will result in a multitude of new information sources/contributors and/or new types of information being obtained from various information sources.

o Air and ground integration - In the traditional ATM set-up, the coupling between ground and airborne systems are normally very loose or non-existent. Once the net-centric ATM Network is realised and aircraft become nodes on the network, a completely new regulatory-target regime is created in the form of the integrated air/ground ATM elements.

o Information sharing - The value of using shared information is one of the main reasons why System Wide Information Management (SWIM) for the future net-centric ATM environment is being defined. There are however legitimate requirements for protecting some information in one or more of several ways, including de-identification of the source, limiting access, etc.

o Integration of diverse airspace use activities - Airspace is used for various purposes and civil aviation is just one of those. Specific military usage (not all of which involves aircraft operations) as well as various civilian projects and missions employ information that is even more sensitive than the normal business or security sensitive information categories. Their proper protection is essential if the military and other operators generating such sensitive information are to be integrated into the overall ATM process. This aspect poses a specific challenge since not only is the information possibly in a military/State security domain but the regulatory domains may also be nested in different organisations that need to be brought together for and under the SWIM umbrella.

o Disappearance of the difference between voice and data - In the mid- to longer time frames, the expected traffic levels will make the move to almost exclusive use of digital link communications inevitable. This does not mean the disappearance of voice communications on the end-user level. However, a reliable communications system that can serve the voice and data needs of the future ATM environment is by definition digital and hence even voice messages will be transferred via digital means. Hence a convergence of the regulatory regimes for voice and data communications will be inevitable.

o Global interoperability - Aeronautical information has always been global in nature but the strongly limited access and product oriented philosophy has contained the issues of global interoperability. The net-centric approach of the new ATM environment will create large islands of shared information which must however be able to interoperate between each other as well as with legacy environments, constituting a new, global need for proper regulatory regimes.

o Common information pipes for passenger and operational communications - In the traditional analogue environment, aviation has enjoyed dedicated communications means and this tradition was carried over to a certain extent also into the new digital communications technologies. The dedicated "pipe" in air/ground communications is certainly a reality today but the same cannot be said of the ground-ground communications links. The early point to point connections have been replaced in most applications by leased lines which, for substantial segments, are in fact shared with other, often not aviation, users. The drivers behind this change are obviously cost effectiveness considerations. Although early attempts to provide in-flight passenger connectivity have not proved the commercial success many had forecast, it is already visible that in the not too distant future, personal communications needs will evolve to the point where people will demand uninterrupted connectivity even on relatively short flights. Since such demands will always fetch a premium price, it stands to reason that combining the operational and passenger connectivity needs onto a single air/ground pipe could be commercially attractive. While the technology to do this safely will certainly be available, the regulatory aspects will have to be explored in time to ensure that the actual solutions used meet all the safety and other requirements.

o The value of information - Information is a valuable commodity and in the competitive environment of aviation this commodity is of course sought after by many partners, including others than only aircraft operators or airports. The essential safety contribution of information in air traffic management creates an especially complicated web of relationships, some commercial some not, some State obligations some voluntary, and so on that need to be properly regulated with a view to ensuring cost recovery while not discouraging information use.

o Cost effectiveness - Although not always thought of as a driver for regulation, a proper regulatory environment will favour cost-effective, user oriented solutions.

o Training and personnel licensing - The information sharing environment of SWIM will require experts who are conversant not only with the requirements of air traffic management and aircraft operations but also the information technology aspects of the new approach to managing information. This has implications in the construction and approval of training syllabuses, examination fulfilment criteria as well as the qualification requirements. The need for refresher/recurrent training also grows and needs to be part of the overall regulatory regime.

o Standardisation - System wide sharing of information in a net-centric environment requires that the data be the subject of proper standardisation on all levels. This is the key to achieving global interoperability in the technical as well as the service/operational sense. The development and use of the necessary standards can only be realised under a proper regulatory regime.
All the above aspects imply the creation of a regulatory regime that is aligned with the specific needs of a net-centric operation and which is able to regulate for safety and proper performance, including economic performance, appropriate for the new digital environment. Trying to apply traditional methods of regulation without taking the new realities into account is counter productive and must be avoided. This is an important message for both the regulators and the regulated.

The aspects of regulation to be considered include:

o Safety
o Security
o Information interoperability
o Service level interoperability
o Physical interoperability
o Economics
In terms of who should be regulated, thought should be given to at least:

o The State as data provider
o Licensed providers of services, including network services
o Licensed data sources
o Licensed providers of end-user applications
o User credentials and trusted users

It is important to answer also the question: who should be the regulator? This must be agreed in terms of:

o International rules and global oversight
o Licensing rules and global oversight
The types of regulatory activities that need to be put in place concern mainly compliance verification and certification; quality maintenance; and enforcement and penalties.

As mentioned already, the above institutional aspects concern more than just CDM, however, for CDM and in particular information sharing to work in the net-centric environment, they need to be addressed as a prerequisite of implementation.
The technical implications of net-centric operations

On the conceptual level, net-centric operations mean the sharing of superior quality information as part of a community and acting on that information to improve decisions for the benefit of the individual as well as for the network (the networked community). Obviously, this type of operation must be enabled by a proper technical infrastructure.

This technical infrastructure is often thought of as a network with the required band-width and reliability; it is true that the replacement of the one-to-one connections that characterise legacy systems with the many-to-many relationships of the net-centric environment does require a powerful network that fully meets all the quality requirements, but there is much more to net-centricity than this.

The management of the shared data pool, including currency, access rights, quality control, etc. brings in a layer of technical requirements that sit higher than the network as such.

If we then define 'information' as 'data put in context' it is easy to see that creating the information from the shared data constitutes yet another layer of required technical solutions. These are often referred to as intelligent end-user applications. Tools which end-users can call upon to perform tasks they need for successfully completing their missions. End-users may be pilots, air traffic controllers, flight dispatchers, handling agents or any other person or system with a need for the shared information. In all cases, the end-user applications collect and collate the data needed to create the information required. This then may be a synthetic display of the airport on an EFB, a trajectory on a what-if tool display or a list of arrivals for the taxi company and so on.

End-user applications are scalable to fit, both in functionality and cost, the specific needs of the end-user for whom they are created. This scalability enables the end-user applications to run on different networked devices from simple PDAs through airlines systems to on-board equipment.

It shall be noted that one of the most important characteristics of a net-centric environment that technical solutions must support is that the requirements against equipment are driven by the services/functionality they must provide and NOT by their actual location in the network. As an example, the integrity of the data used to build a trajectory and the quality of the application used to manipulate/interact with the trajectory will depend on the use that will be made of the trajectory and not per se on whether the application is running on the ground or in an aircraft.

This adaptability of the technical solutions to the actual needs (rather than location in the network) leads to important cost saving opportunities.

Net-centricity - the essence of the future

The net-centric approach to system design is not a silver bullet. It is just the environment that enables properly managed information to be exploited to the full and provide the enterprise with the agility it needs to constantly adapt to the changing world for the benefit of the customers and the enterprise itself.

It is the end-user applications built to work in the net-centric environment that come closest to being the silver bullets...

How to Get Online Liability Insurance Quotes

Friday, June 20, 2014

Public liability insurances are imperative for any business venture, big or small. However, getting a public liability insurance is not as easy as 1-2-3. Owners need to determine the cost of insurance coverage for their company. There are conventional ways to do it like going to the insurance company directly or calling them one by one through phone. Yet, these ways are time-consuming. Business owners are busy people who need to attend to a lot of things. To make things easier and convenient for them, they can get online public liability insurance quotes straight from the net

In order for a business owner to get online public liability insurance quotes, they need to provide information regarding their business. The following which will be discussed are the 8 most important details needed by the insurance company. The first detail is the type of business. The next point is the incorporation of the business whether it is a sole proprietorship, partnership or, a limited company, among others. The third detail is the ratio of annual sales to the inventory.

The fourth information required are the particulars regarding any liability claims that the company had dealt with the past, if ever there are. It includes details on the case such as the situation, date of occurrence, and the cost paid. The next detail is the location of the business - whether it is in a commercial or an industrial area. It is then followed by points wherein the business will take in subsidiary organizations.

The seventh detail required to get an online quote is the information about the exact number of employees so as the agent can identify the premium. It includes the number of clerical employees, directors, and business partners. And the last, but definitely not the least point, is the preferred starting day of the policy.

After the completion of the public liability insurance online quote, the owner is expected to get a quote conformation sent directly to their e-mail address. Business owners can send information on their enterprise and get online quotes from several insurance companies. That way, they will have a chance of selecting the best insurance company that can provide their business the appropriate and most suitable public liability insurance.

Businesses and its owners should not be easily enticed to get the cheapest insurance policy: getting these types of offers are not all the time efficient as expected. Yet, expensive insurance policies are not advisable as well. It will be beneficial for them to make an online research for reviews on different online professional liability insurance quotes to get the best among the rest.

Things To Consider Before Installing A Credit Card Machine

Thursday, June 19, 2014

It is a well known fact that the business owners must accept the credit card payment. The customers do not carry the cash along with them. They prefer paying through their credit cards. If a business owner does not have this facility to offer, he would be discouraging many potential customers. However, a few things must be kept in mind before installing a credit card machine. They are elaborated as below:

Installation and Usage

The machine must be easy to install and use. You should check if the merchant account provider would assist you in the installation. The manuals are provided by these providers. You should read them properly and ask providers about the correct usage.

Reputation of the Merchant Account Provider

Various companies are available in the market offering these services. It is highly recommended to choose the one with a good reputation. The company must have a clear record with Better Bureau Business (BBB). You may find that the registered and legitimate companies are unable to satisfy the customers. You should check the reviews of the company on the internet. After doing a proper research, you can choose the best one.

The Supplies

It has been noticed that the merchant account companies may offer you better deals. They sell other supplies such as paper rolls, printing heads along with the card machine. You may get attracted to opt for these offers. However, if you buy from a wholesale office supplier, you will be able to save a huge amount. Moreover, you will have better and more options for these supplies.

Warranty

It is suggested to check the warranty conditions of the seller. You should not buy the machine if the seller does not offer the warranty. The terms and conditions must be clear before you buy a card machine. It is also a good idea to review the terms of more than one company so that you can choose the most appropriate provider.

After Sale Service

The after sale services are vital for any business owner. If there is any problem with the machine, the provider must be able to rectify it on time. The business should not get affected by any technical fault. You should only choose a company which is known for it’s after sale services. This will ensure the smooth business operations.

Benefits of Credit Card Machine

It is important to get a credit card machine for every business owner. A few of the benefits are mentioned below:

• The business owner will experience more buyers.
• The sales will increase with the rise in the number of potential customers.
• The business will grow with more profits
• The customers would have more confidence in your services
• The reputation of your company would be built

Credit card has become a vital part of our life. It has made our lives much easier than ever before. Now, card machine has facilitated both the customer and business owners with its advanced features and functionalities. If you want to search a reliable provider, you must connect to the internet.

Horse Whispers: Fact or Fiction, Myth or Legend?

The term, "horse whisperer" originated in the early nineteenth century and first referred to an Irish horseman named Daniel Sullivan. Eventually making a name for himself in England for his ability to rehabilitate intractably vicious horses, spectators noticed he would square up and face the troubled horse seeming to whisper the horse into a calm submission. The public began to call him a horse whisperer.

The early horse whisperers were sought out by great numbers of people needing advice and help with their equine counterparts. That need is still in high demand today. Here in the United States the practice of horse whispering developed in the Pacific Northwest and Rocky Mountain areas. The better known horseman of that time were two brothers known as Tom and Bill Dorrance. These two practitioners of horse whispering would prove to have a profound influence upon today's horse world and the practice that has become better known as Natural Horsemanship.

One such individual profoundly influenced by the Dorrance brothers is Ray Hunt. Ray has been a pivotal character in the landscape of Natural Horsemanship. His unwavering pursuit to grasp the concepts, philosophies and spirit of the Dorrance brother's approach to the horse did not go unanswered. Hunt has perhaps been the most instrumental horseman in propelling natural horsemanship into the consciousness of horse enthusiasts around the world. Ray Hunt died in March of 2009 at the age of 79. The world lost a great horseman. The horse lost a good friend.

Like the Dorrance brothers, Ray Hunt left this world a legacy as well, his gift of sharing what he knew about the horse and showing them, "the way". One of Ray's beneficiaries is one of Florida's best kept secrets in the horse world, Ronnie J Ford. He is a horseman well defined by his experience and knowledge and most assuredly touched by the time he spent with Ray. In the spirit of Ray Hunt's legacy, Ronnie Ford is first and foremost an advocate for the horse and will be quick to tell you, "I'm just trying to improve the lives of horses, one owner at a time".

Ronnie recalls an incident which took place in Wauchula, Florida where Ray was holding a clinic. "Ray was mounted, watching all of us in the arena. There were probably twenty-five to thirty horses and riders. Now, you have to understand, I teach all my horses that what ever may be going on "out there" ain't none of their business. My horses are taught to pay attention to me and they won't get into trouble. So,I was riding my stud horse, Jo around the arena. Everything was going along just fine until this guy on a red gelding came by me and Jo. Well, this gelding just decided to reach out and tag Jo. Well, Jo didn't have too much of a response and we just continued on. Jo never missed a step and he never paid any mind to the riders and horses we were passing or the ones passing us. We were riding around the arena and Ray just happened to be watching about the time that red gelding approached us. All of the sudden, Jo decided to take issue with that gelding! It happened so fast and because Jo didn't have much of a response when the gelding tagged him back there, I figured that was the end of it. Evidently, Jo kept an eye on that gelding and an opportunity to teach him he wasn't going to get away with that, so Jo got after him. I collected Jo and simmered him down but Ray came riding up about that time and asked me for Jo's reins. I gave over the reins to Ray and Ray went to gettin' after him pretty good and he was crawlin' my a** along with it! Ray rode my butt the rest of the day. He never let up. Well, at the end of the day when we were sittin' around discussing things, Ray started in on me again, right in front of everybody! Ray wasn't gonna let it go and that was pretty certain. Well, the next mornin' I loaded up Jo and a mare that was in full season. When we got to the arena, I unloaded Jo, saddled him up and unloaded the mare. I put the mare on a lead rope, mounted Jo and trotted over to Ray. He looked up at me and I asked him, "Ray, did you see what happened before Jo went after that gelding?" Ray said, "No, guess I didn't". So, I explained how that gelding went after Jo and what he saw was a very delayed response on Jo's part. I said, "This mare here? She's in full season and this stud horse knows she ain't none of his business. I probably deserved everything you gave me yesterday, but this stud horse didn't"! As Ronnie retells this encounter his blue eyes are lit with a smile that told of his fondness for Ray Hunt and the old man's passion and wisdom.

"Ray Hunt is the best horseman this world has ever seen. I leaned a lot from that old man. He even taught me something one day he never knew he did. Ray had a sayin' he liked to use a lot: 'You go through the mind to get the feet to move." Ray was inside a horse trailer with the horse trying to get him to unload. The horse was so scared and had so much fear of that trailer, Ray was having a very difficult time getting him in there. As I watched Ray with this horse, a revelation tapped into my senses and I realized a profound truth: Sometimes a horses mind is so cluttered with fear that you just can't go through the mind. That day Ray taught me a valuable piece of information that he never knew he did. I learned that sometimes you have to bypass the chaos and get straight to the point to get the success you want."

Ronnie is referred to by many as a horse whisperer. He is noted for his ability to work magic with horses. When faced with praise by spectators he falls humble and says there's nothing special about what he does, praising instead, the horse for it's magnificence, it's intelligence, grace and spirit. He says, "You just have to understand that a horse does what makes sense to him. If a horse exhibits bad behavior, it's because some human taught him how to do it. If he can learn that, then I can teach him to do something different and replace the wrong behavior or response with a desired one."

There are those who say, "Ronnie is spooky, the things he can do with horses, I have seen the man stand in the round pen and literally cause a horse to suddenly stop with only his eyes!" If asked, "Do you really whisper to horses?", Ronnie would tell you he rarely talks to the horses at all. The only thing you're likely to hear him say to the horse is something along the lines of, "Good for you"! But he will tell you that he understands that it is his obligation to the horse to know what he wants the horse to do and how to ask it. The horse has it's own language, once you understand something about that, then you'll be on your way to a better line of communication."

So, in conclusion yes, there are horse whisperers in existence today. In spite of the horse whisperer's longevity in our history and the supposed secrets revealed, one thing remains clear: what ever it is they are saying, it is exclusively for the benefit of the horse and if we are to capture any understanding at all for ourselves, we will have to listen closely to something above a whisper.

How To Get The Most From Your Tax Return

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

There are many things that you can do to help maximize your tax return without doing anything that could be considered tax fraud. Tax time is often one of the most stressful times of the year because everyone is trying to gather their information together in order to file be able to get some money back to use for regular household goods and other items. Many people feel unnecessary anxiety and stress during this time of the year. So if you are going to be able filing your taxes you might as well learn how to get the most money back possible to make it all worthwhile.

There are many different tax tips that can help you to maximize the most out of your return and make the most money that you possibly can. For most people the reason that they feel so much stress is that they have not properly prepared prior to figuring out how to file their tax return. If you know what you are doing and are prepared and ready for it then it can be easier than expected to get things done. The following are some tips that can help you to get the maximum return.

One thing that you can do is hire someone to file your taxes for you. Professionals know what they are doing and get paid for being able to maximize your return. In some cases if you find out that you could have gotten more back then you will actually get your money back so you are really not going to lose anything. A lot of people make the mistake of trying to do their own taxes and they end up committing tax fraud which can have strict penalties under the law.

The next thing that you should consider is making sure that you write off all of the necessary expenses. This is something that can be confusing when you are filing but once you take the time to learn more about it then it will be easily understood. You can actually deduct travel expenses that are work related, union dues, and a variety of additional fees which can help you to get the most money back each year.
Another thing that you can do is claim the medical expenses that you have each year. If you have paid a considerable amount of money out because of an injury or illness then you might be able to get more back on your return to help with covering some of these expenses. This can even include travel to and from MD appointments and other medically necessary things.
Finally you can claim your charitable contributions. Any money that you give to charity is helping to qualify you for a big tax break. You should know that you have to keep detailed records and that you have to give a certain percentage of your income in order to be able to claim this expense but it is something to consider because you can use your money to help others or organizations that are helping others.

Travelling in the Arabian Peninsula

Sunday, June 15, 2014

It may seem in the days of mass tourism and cheap worldwide flights that no stone has
been left unturned in our pursuit of the unexplored. However, Arabia still offers much
in the way of mystery and exoticism.

If you are brave enough to venture into this unknown, a feast of surprises await the
senses. The scenery is the first to strike. The picture-postcard desert is home to an
astonishing array of mountain landscapes, deep and rich forests, bursting and
colourful coral reefs, endless date plantations and lush green wadis, plus of course
miles and miles of undiscovered, untouched and truly breathtaking beaches.

Perhaps the most striking aspect of this fascinating region is its ascension from a 3rd
world barren landscape to a series of prosperous, emerging nations in a little under 30
years. The Peninsula is far from a large plateau of sand and sun. The cultural legacy of
the great civilisations can be seen and felt everywhere in the ancient cities, temples
and fortifications such as the Beit Sheikh Isa bin Ali on Bahrain's Muharraq Island, or
the Madain Saleh embedded in a rock face deep in the heart of the Saudi Arabian
desert.

So what activities might one engage in? Truly world-class golf resorts such as the
Montgomery in Dubai, thrilling 'dune-bashing' (4x4s driven expertly over dunes at
high-speed), wildlife safaris such as watching green turtles invade a beach at dawn to
lay their eggs, snorkelling and scuba diving some of the planets most breathtaking and
undisturbed coral reefs, or perhaps mountain trekking or desert safaris, meeting the
indigenous Bedouin people for a cup of steaming arabic coffee with dates along the
way.

What To Think About When Considering A Self Directed 401k

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Working hard throughout life creates a great opportunity to increase income and funds gained throughout those years. Nonetheless, protecting and providing for a business or individual’s future with larger amounts of money is sometimes equally as complicated, if not more so, than using a modest income. There are many different types of retirement programs and 401ks available, but some feel that they do not have all the control over their assets that they need with some of them. A self directed 401k might be the best option for you if you are looking to handle your own assets. A self directed 401k will not only provide the security associated with other kinds of 401ks, as well as still allow the individual or company to maintain control over the investments. It usually is necessary for an individual or company owner to engage a knowledgeable professional to help them navigate through the process of establishing and implementing the use of a 401k. With the service of these experienced professionals you will be able to have any questions or concerns addressed about what decisions will need to be made, control of the money and where your investment funds are going.

The writing and planning process is among one of the ways that an individual can take control of their own finances with a self directed 401k. By creating your own plan you can fully utilize the freedoms and flexibility that a self directed plan offers. An agency will help, of course, with explanations of terms and direction for what types of decisions are most likely in the best interest of those writing a 401k. The ultimate decisions and power rests, nevertheless, with the plan holder. This allows those who are assisting in the writing of the self directed 401k to remain as helpful and unbiased as they can be. The agency could also help lay out what factors may affect the available options to a person. One example is, if you are 49 or older you could contribute at a higher level to your 401k and those that are younger then 49 are limited in the amount they could contribute. This is all focused on helping to provide for the longer term and ensure that all who are involved are taken care of. Additionally it is much easier for individuals to bring investments for different companies or firms together and merge them into one 401k. This allows the person or owner to successfully make decisions that concern their assets, allowing for greater control while lowering the red tape.

One of the main functions of agencies that assist in planning this style of 401k is to help in keeping them current. This is an important function of a 401k, because once the details of where investments should be and what to do with them is worked out, all the documentation will have to be kept in compliance with all government rules. This makes it much easier to retain control of assets and ensures that the documents written reflect both the newest legislations and also the most current decisions of the plan writer. Agencies that help to write these documents completely understand the need for all of these services to take place on a regular basis, which is why they monitor the documents or plans and notify individuals of changes that may need to be made. People are able to fully retain control over their earnings for their entire life with a self directed 401k due to the fact any detail associated with it can be monitored and taken care of as the need arises.

Rajasthan Desert Tour Packages - Best Way to Feel the Glory

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Rajasthan, the desert state of India is renowned across the globe for its desert landscapes, forts, palaces, culture, cuisines, fairs and festivals. It is the pulsating destination of India tourism where tourists come in large number to enjoy the charm of natural glory and heritage culture. Rajasthan desert tour package is the best way to surf through leftover legacies of the royal kingdoms. This customized tour is of 17 nights and 18 days in which all the popular tourist destinations of this state are covered. The destinations which can be explored on this tour are Delhi, Mandawa, Bikaner, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Bhuj, Zainabad and Ahemdabad.

The tour begins from Delhi. This is one of the most vibrant cities of India where tourists can witness the perfect blend of modern and traditional culture. It is a wonderful city which enthrals tourists with its historic sites, beautiful monuments and vibrant cultural heritage. The popular tourist attractions of this place include Red Fort, India Gate, Qutub Minar, Humayun Tomb andJama Masjid.

Jodhpur
Jodhpuris one of the popular tourist destinations of Rajasthan. It is known across the globe as the Sun City. This beautiful place is renowned across the globe for its scenic desert landscapes and number of monumental buildings which are the living testimonials of yesteryears. The well known tourist attractions of this place are Umaid Bhawan palace, Mandore, Mehrangarh fort, Mahamandir temple and Jaswant thada.

Jaisalmer
This is an exhilarating destination of Rajasthan tourism popularly known as the Golden city. The enthralling charm of this place lies in its exotic sand dunes, camel safaris, magnificent forts, temples and captivating havelis. Large number of tourists comes here throughout the year to enjoy their vacations amidst scenic natural vistas of desert. The popular tourist attractions of this are Patwon ji ki haveli, Nathmalji ki haveli, Jaisalmer fort, Sam sand dunes and Desert national park.

Bikaner
This is another popular tourist destination of Rajasthan renowned across the globe for its desert landscapes, beautiful palaces, rich cultural heritage and temple festooned with intricate sculptures. Scores of tourists come here throughout the year to enjoy the fun and thrill of camel safari which is the best way to enjoy the beauty of barren desert landscapes. The popular tourist attractions of this place are Junagarh Fort, Karni Mata Temple or Deshnok temple, Ganga Golden Jubilee Museum, Laxmi Niwas Palace, Lalgarh Palace and Jain Haveli.

Ahmedabad
This is another popular tourist destination covered in this tour package. It is the capital of Gujarat state situated on the bank of river Sabarmati. The captivating charm of this city lies in the interwoven charm of history, art and culture and imposing architectural monuments. This place is also known as the Manchester of India because it is the largest denim producer in the world.

Online Installment Loans-great Financial Opportunity With Swift Repayment Terms

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Repayment terms of loan often let you face the mess and dilemmas. If you are looking for the ideal financial solution that fulfills your financial woes with easy and flexible repayment terms, here are online installment loans for you. This is the pertinent financial aid that let you overcome your financial hassle with complete swiftness and comfort. Now, the assistance of these loans let you access the quick money without any wastage of time and efforts.

Online installment loans, as its name says can be availed with the ease of online application method. Do not leave the comfort of your home or office. Compare the various loan quotes available at online financial market to grab the affordable deal. There will be no faxing hassle and no preparation of documents is involved. Fill the form with details and submit it online. Approval will be given to you within least possible time and funds will be right in your checking account to use.

If your credit status are affecting with several adverse factors such as CCJ, arrears, insolvency, foreclosures, bankruptcy, late payments, missed payments and so on, you can still approved with installment loan online. This loan comes to you without any credit checking process that let all types of borrowers to get this loan assistance. Whether you are a good creditor or bad creditor, you can simply enjoy this loan deal with ease.

The back of online installment loans let you secured the loan money ranges from $100 to $1500. The funds that you can borrow depend upon your monthly income as it is secured against your payday. There is no collateral demand as it is short term in nature. Cover your any type of financial emergency with easiness.

When you are having some cash crisis that is affecting your financial status, check out online installment loans for swift support. The assistance of these loans simply removes your small and temporary financial worries and let you enjoy your life with ease and convenience. Chuck your financial hassle with this loan assistance that is quite simple and fast in nature with the internet.

The Great Pyramids of Egypt - A Legacy of Diligence and Imagination at Work

Sunday, June 8, 2014

"From atop these pyramids forty centuries look down upon you" - Napoleon Bonaparte 1798

The great Pyramids of Giza defy age. Though there are over 100 pyramids throughout Egypt, these behemoths with a monstrous height of nearly 500 ft. and covering over 13 acres of land stand out proudly piercing the landscape, a core source for the rest of human history.

On the edge of Cairo, the Pyramids of Giza loom above the grey blur of the city's skyline which merges seamlessly behind them. The 3 Pyramids of Giza were built as tombs to hold the physical bodies of the pharaohs Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure, best known by their Greek names respectively as Cheops, Chephres and Mycerinius. The greatest of these is the pyramid of Khufu (Cheops), who moved his court and residence here from Memphis when he became king of Egypt. Arguably, this is one of the best man-made structures in the world. Named by Herodotus as one of the 7 Wonders of the World as early as the 5th Century BC, it is the first and only survivor!

The Pyramids were shaped to imitate the Benben, a similarly shaped stone found in the earliest temples, which symbolized the primeval mound from which life emerged. According to Egyptian mythology, the sun god, Re, rose from the primeval mound to create life, thus the pyramids' shape was directly associated with Re. By ancient Egyptian cosmology, Re reigned in the East, so that the rising of the sun, hence life, was linked to the eastern bank of the Nile. Here the towns and temples of ancient Egypt were built. The west bank, the domain of the darkly-aspected god Set, was associated with the setting sun, or death. It is here, on the very edge of Set's domain that the Great Pyramids sit.

The construction of pyramids started with a surge of building which began during Egypt's 3rd dynasty between 2650-2575BC. Royal pyramid building ceased entirely during the reign of the New Kingdom after 1295BC. Pyramid construction evolved during this period and was the result of centuries of experimentation, development and cultural adaptation as it became standardized. The pyramid complexes included a main pyramid with a surrounding courtyard, a much smaller cult pyramid housing the king's soul, a mortuary temple set next to the main pyramid, and an enclosed wall and walkway leading to a valley temple, and in some cases, smaller subsidiary temples or tombs for family members.

Pyramid construction adhered to strict orientation of cardinal points and its alignment had to conform to true primary coordinates by stellar measurements. In terms of size, technical construction accomplishments, cardinality and the organization required for their construction, the Great pyramids represent a phenomenal effort.

Beyond the pyramids, the mystical apparition of the Father of Terror, the Sphinx, continues to guard over the royal burial chambers of the pharaohs, keeping its secrets to itself.

Today, the Great Pyramids serve as a backdrop for continuous bustle and activity, including, among others, artistic displays, musical performances and races. The most exhilarating activity, however, is a climb up the pyramid steps. Of the many, many steps, each as high as a table (2-5 ft.), a climb up is a muscle-straining, excruciating, exhausting and very worthwhile experience!

The pyramids, a symbol of long-lasting durability, were already as ancient to such visitors as Alexander the Great as ancient Greece is to us today.

4 Ways You Can Keep Your Staff Motivated

Any business or company owner is aware that one of the factors that lead to better individual performance, staff productivity and a pleasant work environment is employee motivation. But the question is always how to do it right. If you are having a hard time trying to get your staff fired up and a little more enthusiastic about a certain project or about their work as a whole, then you will find these pointers very useful.

Keep an Open Line of Communication. Communication is a very effective way of letting your employees that they are part of the company and that their opinions and suggestions really matter. It is human nature to feel motivated when they feel important and needed. Also, by taking the time to talk to your staff, you may even get some ideas that you have never thought about. More often than not, hearing ideas that are out of the box can give you an idea of how you should set the direction of your company.

Think about What Could Make Them Happy. Always looking for ways to motivate your workers may end up really tiresome on your part. You will do something and your workers get motivated for a while, but then you will have to think of another way to make them more productive again. Instead of always looking to motivate your employees, why not just try to keep them happy? There are many companies out there that actually pay just around the minimum wage, but can still get the best out of their staff. The secret is that the workers are happy. Make them feel taken care of by offering free meals or coffee and even holding an out-of-town event once a year where all their families can come together.

Share the Company’s Success with Your Employees. Profit sharing has always been a really powerful in keeping employee productivity and motivation. Experts say that profit sharing plans are meant to giving employees that feeling of being part of the success of the company. This is usually done by giving the workers unexpected bonuses for every deal made or project completed. Aside from the payroll, employees are surprised with cash bonuses or gift packages. By investing in this, you can rest assured that your workers will be inspired to work even harder and more productively.

Don’t Discourage Your Workers from Complaining. While most company owners are more likely to hire new workers than to keep those whiners in the company, some wise CEOs believe that there are still good things they can get out of their employees’ complaints. You can definitely encourage your staff to voice all their complaints by either talking to the HR head or even writing an anonymous letter to you. This is an excellent way of knowing what how your staff feel about your system and the company in general. It is also through this feedback that you can figure out which aspects of the company should be improved or changed. In the end, it will still be you who will benefit the most from this.

By: Cedric Loiselle

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