Sunday, June 25, 2017

Tracing One's Roots Via Family History GENEALOGY

The family has always been considered as the strongest force in the society. Known as the most fundamental civilization in the world, it defines the rise and fall of every community and group. In whatever culture, the family has always played a major role in unifying the people of its race. Even in today’s modern era when the limits of socialization are starting to get shattered and the boundaries of communication are slowly disappearing, the family remains basic in every human life. Nobody is so independent and free as to be able to exist without a family.

English: The Genealogy of Abraham according to...
The Genealogy of Abraham according to the Bible (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today’s world is one which is highly characterized by individualism and eccentricity. Many people are concerned with moving on into the future and the majority is actually living for tomorrow. You may think it just usual for today’s generation to bother less about their origin, about who they really are, where they come from, and issues concerning the past. Ironically, however, there is a growing interest about the search for people’s ancestors. Family history genealogy is gaining more and more attention from those who are after their past life and relatives.

Genealogy can be considered as the science of relationships, simply because this field deals with the tracing of a particular person’s family and relatives, both in the past and in the present, alive or dead. People venture out in the search for their families because of various reasons. Some may want to find a kin who has been lost due to circumstances beyond their control. Concrete examples were those involved in the World War who were forced to leave their homes for safety and spent the rest of their life wandering in foreign lands. Others, on the other hand, engage in this endeavor because of the desire for material possessions and power. Believing that they may be perhaps connected to someone of great influence, they risk the chance for the hope of something good in return.

Genealogy and the search for one’s history may vary in depth. This can be as simple as tracing the names of people related to you, forming a family tree, and indicating to which specific family in your clan a particular person belongs. Or, this can also be as deep as researching and finding out the personal life of each family member that you are able to find. 

Modern technology has made family history genealogy more interesting and has opened a wider door for those people who are serious about their family search. The science of heredity and the study about DNA have made it even more possible for two persons to determine if they belong to the same line of ancestry. Various online sites are also available now to aid people find practically anybody with just the entry of simple facts. There are even computer programs which have been specifically designed for this purpose.  

The search for one’s family, history, and past can be a whole lot of fun. Starting one is easy, and this can be done using different means. The experience is like a treasure hunt that will lead you to unknown and exciting places, and you will never know what you will discover and what treasures await you at the end of your adventure.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Aboveground POOLS: Your Cleaning Options

All across the United States, there are many homeowners that have pools in their backyards.  Unfortunately, not all backyards are the same.  This means that although your neighbor’s pool may require only a small amount of maintenance and cleaning, yours may require more. Regardless of the debris in your backyard, your pool will need to be cleaned. You just may have to clean it more often than others.  Whether you clean your aboveground pool on a regular basis or whenever it needs it, you will have to purchase pool cleaning supplies.

Photo: Wikimedia

Pool cleaning supplies are often considered a pool accessory.  This is because when you purchase an aboveground pool, cleaning supplies are typically not included. Therefore, you will need to purchase your aboveground pool cleaning supplies separately.  If you are a new pool owner or if you have never purchased pool cleaning supplies before, you may be wondering what supplies are right for your aboveground pool. To find the perfect cleaning supplies for your pool, you are advised to familiarize yourself with all of your options.

One of the ways that you can familiarize yourself with cleaning supplies, for aboveground pools, is by browsing through the products that are currently available for sale. You can easily do this by visiting the website of an online pool supply store or by visiting your local pool supply store.  In addition to pool supply stores, you may find other retailers, including sports stores and department stores, that carry pool cleaning supplies. 

While browsing through the cleaning supplies at a pool supply store, is a great way to learn about cleaning products, it will not necessarily keep you informed. Anyone can look at a store shelf or a product description, but those things will not enable you to determine which products are the easiest and most effective ways to clean your aboveground pool. That is why you may also want to consider using the internet to research pool cleaning supplies.

When using the internet to research pool cleaning supplies, it is likely that you will find manual cleaning supplies and automatic cleaning supplies. Popular automatic cleaning supplies include pool vacuums.  Pool vacuums are an ideal way to clean your pool with as little hassle as possible.  There are some vacuums that may also be considered manual; however, there others that are completely automatic. Pool vacuums that can operate without your assistance are often referred to as robotic pool vacuums.  

If given the opportunity, most aboveground pool owners would choose to have automatic cleaning supplies.  However, not everyone prefers to go with the most modernized equipment.  If you are one of those individuals, you may want to examine manual pool cleaners. Many times, these manual cleaners include skimmers and scrub brushes.  

While you may only want to purchase one type of aboveground pool cleaner, you may want to consider purchasing both. Despite the fact that automatic pool cleaners are nice, they do take some time to clean the pool. This means that if you are looking to take a quick swim, you may not have time to clean your pool.  If you have a skimmer or another similar product on hand, you could easily give your pool a quick clean before going for a swim.

Whether you are interested in purchasing manual cleaners, automatic cleaners, or both, you are advised to do so right away. The longer that your pool goes without cleaning; the harder it will be to clean. That is why it is advised that you always have the adequate amount of pool cleaning supplies or equipment on hand. 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

10 Reasons To Do A Basic BOATING Course!

Boating is a great adventure on any type of boat and is being enjoyed by many on a daily basis, but with that comes a great responsibility. It is not mandatory to do a boating course at this time but there are some very good reasons to get your self informed about the rules of the road.

A group of people riding a wooden boat off a b...
A group of people riding a wooden boat off a beach in Venezuela. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1) You will learn about safety equipment and what you are required to have on your boat before you undertake any boating excursion. This is very important because what you don’t have with you could make the difference between being able to handle a situation or not. Also, that outing for the day could cost you if the sheriff stops you to spot check your boat and fines you for not having all the safety equipment required for your specific boat.

2) You will learn that driving a boat is vastly different from driving a car. You are dealing with air and water currents. If you have never docked a boat you may think that it is easy, until that is, the current is pulling you in the opposite direction that you want to go. Understanding air and water currents will help you learn how to dock your boat.

3) Knowing how to work with lines and tying knots is part of boating. You have to be able to secure a boat properly. If your boat gets away, it is amazing how quickly the current will take it out of your reach and you will probably require the assistance of another boater to help you get to it. So learn your knots.

4) You will learn what the channel markers mean. We learned the hard way the first time we went out on a boat and ran aground outside the markers. We also had no clue what the red and green markers meant on the poles. This you also learn on the course.

5) There are speed limits on certain water ways but unlike the roads, they may or may not be posted. Ignorance may not be enough to get you out of a ticket.

6) Using charts for coastal navigation can be a life saver. It’s your road map that helps you stay away from the shallows and shows where all the markers and bridges are, and by using measurements you can calculate the distance and time it will take to get somewhere. It can be valuable tool for navigation.

7) Just like on the roads, there is the right of way. On a boating course you will learn who has the right of way and why.

8) Every boat should have a horn. You may hear one long toot or 2 short toot and so on, and you’ll learn what they mean.

9) There are boating regulations and laws that must be followed by all boaters, for example, (and I have seen this rule broken so many times) you are not allowed to sit on the bow of the boat with your feet hanging over board. There are many more regulations to learn and not knowing them can cost you.

10) Anchoring a boat is not just a matter of plopping it down to the sand. There is a mathematical technique applied to anchoring that has to do with the size and length of your boat. Knowing how to do this correctly will give you that extra insurance of knowing your boat is going nowhere until you want to move it.

There are different ways to enjoy pleasure boating such as the fast pace of ski boating or the slow pace of a trawler, kayaking or canoeing. In whatever way you want to do it, it is a good idea to know the rules of the road. Then you can avoid potential situations and get on with the fun of being out there with all that sky, sun, water, family and friends.


Sunday, June 4, 2017

HORSE Language

Yes, horses have a language of their own, and unfortunately many of us are not as aware of it as we should be.  It's a big mistake to not to know their language, as it could mean problems for us in the long run.  Every swivel of the ear(s), hip movement, tail flick and facial expression means something.  This is the language horses use to speak to other horses and to us - if only we would listen.

Staranzano(Italy), Cona Island. A human approa...
Staranzano(Italy), Cona Island. A human approaches a semi-wild horse using body language understood by the horse. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We need to know what OUR body language says to them first before we can understand them. Flapping arms while trying to get the halter on will cause concern. Running at them in a pasture rather than walking up to them calmly can make them think -  predator chasing me. We've all heard about bombproof horses - sorry, there isn't any such thing.  Something, some time will spook your horse - any horse.

In the meantime, keep your body language quiet, slow, easy and calm.  If you are calm, this helps your horse remain calm.   

Horses speak to us with all body parts and that includes the front and back end.  Both ends can cause us untold grief if we do not pay attention to what they are saying.  For instance, most of us know that when a horse has both ears pinned back flat something is really wrong.  Chances are they are either frightened or angry.  In most cases it is anger.  So watch the front and rear very carefully.  Caution is best even if you think the horse may be listening to something behind them or bored.  Once you really know your horse well, you will know what the ears are saying.  

Ears perked up and forward mean they are focusing their attention on something and are either up to some mischief or they are on high alert about something they see, hear or smell.  Remind your horse you need his attention, especially if you are riding and the ears whip forward. 

Brushing and caring for your horse is THE major bonding experience between humans and equines.  Don't ever underestimate how powerfully you are communicating to your horse about YOU when you brush him. 

Sunday, May 28, 2017

CHESS Rules Then and Now

The exact origins of chess are still unclear though others believe that the game was based on the Indian Chaturanga, which literally means "four" and "arm".

An example of early-style Staunton Chess Set
An example of early-style Staunton Chess Set (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The ancient "chess" game used pieces that are slightly similar to modern chess, as well as movements. However, the rules of such a game are yet to be clarified.

In every game there are rules and chess in not an exception. In fact, there are several rules that
govern the competitive and recreational game. However, the question really is, where did the rules came from and how were they developed?

During the 16th century, the rules of modern chess took form in Italy. Since then, the rules of the game have evolved continuously. Going back centuries in the past, before the modern rules even took form in Italy, chess was played very slowly, with some games lasting for several days. There are other variations of the rules that began to change the shape of the game during the 1300s. The most notable, though originally unpopular, change in the rules was the ability of the pawn to move two squares during the first move instead of one.

After 1475 A.D., there are new modifications in the rules that further led to the evolution of the game. For instance, the queen was introduced and made a powerful new piece. This eventually led to the additional value attached to the previously considered minor tactic called the pawn promotion.

In Chaturanga, the war elephant has also evolved into the bishop, thus providing more range. The noticeable changes in the rules also gave way to the rise of figures that are "unwarlike". Eventually, chess moved closer to the court and ordinary household due to the departure of pure military symbolism to the game, which was noticeably prevalent in India and Persia.

Rise of the Modern Chess Rules

Specifically during the Middle Ages, a new set of rules for the game had emerged. Within this principle, both the rook and the king acquired the privilege to castle, which is a variation of the move, called Castling. Since the pawns were given the chance to move two squares during the first move, the en passant rule was consequential. More so, the pawns gained the capability to be promoted to a higher rank if they were able to reach the eighth rank.

Aside from those rules, there are other three guidelines that were introduced, which eventually
changed through the years. Firstly, there was the stalemate rule that forever changed the outcome of
chess games several times. Secondly, the threefold repetition was also added. Lastly, the fifty move rule was also added, in which a draw can be claimed if there has been no evident pawn movement and capture of any piece during the last fifty numbers of moves.

Since then, the rules of the chess game have been slightly altered until the early 19th century, during
which the game reached its current form. Nowadays, the fundamental chess rules are widely accepted among both international and national chess governing bodies, like the USCF or the United States Chess Federation and the FIDE or the World Chess Federation.

However, even if the rules of the chess game has evolved, the basic objective of the game remains the
same - to threaten the opponent’s most valuable piece, the king, with a checkmate.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

The History of ARCHERY

The heroic effort of archers at the battlefield helped several kingdoms win wars. Archery although obsolete today has helped men since ages. Since ages people have used archery to conquer their enemy and to tame wild animals.

full-length, facing left, with bow drawn, abou...
full-length, facing left, with bow drawn, about to shoot an arrow, includes several types of targets
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Studies have shown that archery was widely being used in ancient civilization.  Archery history shows that earlier arrows were made of pines which had a long fore shaft that had a flint point. Till date, archaeologists have found the oldest bow in Denmark.  Arrow shafts have been found in many places across the globe in Egypt, Sweden, Denmark and India.

Bows and arrows are the main constituents of archery. Archery history reveals the fact that the bows were developed in either early Mesolithic age or late Paleolithic age.  Pines were used for making arrows.  
Archery was highly developed in Asia and other Islamic kingdoms.

People were specially trained in archery; these archers were used in the battlefields. In fact before the development of firearms archery served as primary weapons. Different types of bows and arrows were manufactured and accordingly they had different range.

The archery history is full with saga of great archers. These archers have played a major role in the ancient civilizations of Egypt, India, Greece and Persia. 

The archery bows which were commonly used were: longbow, shortbow, flatbow, recurve bow, crossbow and compound bow. Longbows were very long bow.  The length generally matched the height of the archer and in some cases even exceeded the height of the archer.  

The limb of the Flatbow is wider and the cross-section is rectangular in shape. Shortbow is shorter in length, is light-weight and have a short range. It was basically used for hunting purpose. In crossbow the limbs are mounted in a horizontal manner and not in a vertical manner. The compound bow is designed in such as manner that the archer is at his ease while mounting the bow. 

Shaft, arrowheads, nock and fletching constitute an arrow. Aluminum alloy, carbon fiber, wood and fiberglass are used for the construction of the shaft. 

The shaft should not be too flexible; it should be straight and easy to handle. At present arrows made of carbon alloys are popular and are being widely used by the archers.  In fact arrows used in popular sports events like Olympic are made of carbon alloys. 

Sight shooting and instinctive shooting are the two methods adopted by an archer while shooting an arrow. In instinctive shooting the archer completely concentrates on the target while shooting the arrow. It requires a lot of practice; this method of archery was popular during the early phases. 

However, later bows with adjustable pins were developed; these pins could be adjusted by the archers to aim a target. This is called as sight shooting and is easy as compared to instinctive shooting.


Later when the firearms were developed it replaced archery.  Firearms were found to be superior to archery; it was more lethal, it had long range and also using it wasn’t too difficult.  In fact hose kingdoms which did not know to use firearms had to suffer heavily on the battlefield.

Archery history indicates that men since time-immemorial have been devising ways to lord over others. 

Sunday, May 14, 2017

The Golden Age of COMIC BOOKS

By and large, the accepted time frame for the golden age of comic books ran from a period from the 1930's through the mid-1950's. It was a prosperous time for the American comic book realm. Many of today's super heroes were inaugurated during this stage. Super heroes flourished in the golden age of comic books. Superman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, Batman, 

Robin and Hawkman were some of the heroes that a new company called Detective Comics or DC comics, launched. During the 1940's a precursor to Marvel Comics, called Timely Comics, introduced their version of the super hero genre. They included Captain America, The Human Torch and The Sub-Mariner. Ironically, the Captain Marvel comic books from Fawcett Comics outsold Superman and his associates during the golden age. There were literally hundreds of super powered and non super powered heroes that came and went. 

Beware 01
Beware 01 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The advent of world war two helped propel the comic book industries popularity. It was an inexpensive means to relax, read and imagine the good guys prevail over the bad guys. In those days, Superman regularly helped the allies thwart Hitler and the axis powers. What better way to defeat the enemy than to watch the heroes in action? Defeating Hitler was on everyone's mind, and the stress relief comic books provided was helpful to a young man in a foreign land engaged in daily battles.

Superman, Batman and Robin helped the war effort by advertising war bonds. Uncle Sam may have wanted you, but the super heroes lending themselves to the war propaganda helped the cause. Which one was more influential in the golden age of comic books: a sickly looking old man who wanted you to fight, or young powerful super heroes that could do incredible damage to the enemy?  The answer is evident.

The war was significant and powerful in the development of the super heroes during the golden age. However, there were other factors too. There were comic books during that period that were not based on super heroes. The genre started to change during the latter part of the golden age, especially after World War Two. Westerns were taking firm root in society as the readership declined for the super heroes. Horror, romance, satire and science fiction all filled the vacuum that was left during the decline. The downward trend was precipitated by, in my opinion, the ambiance of the times with McCarthyism and books being published that suggested comic books and their ilk were detrimental to the society's young people minds.  

The introduction of the funny comics during the golden age were well-liked too.

Bugs bunny and Donald duck premiered. The funny comics instilled laughter in the audience and that was important. The importance of laughter during stressful times cannot be overstated. The atmosphere was rife with the arrival of the cold war and the atomic age. Bomb shelters littered the country. With that being said, the funny comic books helped people express amusement in their daily routine. 

Whatever genre people chose to read, the Golden Age of comic books influenced the shaping the comic book market.