While Tangerines and Oranges are in demand these days because of the nutrients (e.g. Vitamin C) they feed our bodily systems, boosting our stamina and immunity particularly during winter season, their beautiful color is likewise the latest craze in town, particularly in fashion and design!
Officially recognized as the company to select the Color of the Year , Pantone Color Institute has chosen “Tangerine Tango” as the 2012 color of the year. As described by Pantone, Tangerine Tango is something deep orange or what they specifically call “spirited reddish-orange”.
Preferably, I go for subdued pastel colors, girly-lady like type thing, but I can be fearless enough to try bolder colors such as orange. Actually, I like orange color per se, as it gives shine and brightness to the surroundings. Even in food, if I see something of the same color range, I am attracted to it!
My fondness for orange color is actually evident in myusefultips.com slide banner from fashion, sports and other categories (which by the way I noticed this only now!). Did you guys observe it as well? The use of such color was never planned, probably it was my subconscious mind leading the team and working at that time!
For fun's sake, I checked if I do actually have some things with orange color in my belongings. Voila! I found a red-orange (what Tangerine Tango is all about) silk pleated haltered JAIPUR blouse dress which I got last year from Burlington Factory, a Laura Rowe necklace with matching earrings and bracelet, a winter knitted hat, an Asian wooden/rubber back massager, a bath sponge, headband, crayons and marker, and a plastic cosmetic case from Clinique. Wow! Do I have all these?
I know most of us wouldn't dare to wear orange in this winter time of year. We normally see people in subways, streets and work places, wearing clothes in black, gray, or blue shades of color. Maybe, we can set these colors aside for now. How about making a bolder statement for the sake of recognizing orange as the color of the year! Let's do it by showing something with orange color like an orange scarf, a bonnet or hat , belt, tie, or any accessories. It only would not add color to our lives, but it would also give us a shot of vigor and push to what we want to accomplish!
Come on guys, I dare you now! Let's flaunt the orange hue!
How would you feel if you were the subject of scrutiny, embarrassment and humiliation in public? Darn, right? You see, in any humiliation, there are always two faces of the coin, a sad face and a happy face, i.e, there are always two opposing parties involved. Sure, you may already have an idea what I'm driving at , but if you decide to continue reading this, you will clearly understand the perspective from my side.
I am not going to dwell on petty embarrassments like fashion blunders, farting in subways and in other public places, being insulted by a professor in school, being bullied by an arrogant classmate, office mate or boss, or just an annual naked “freedom” run of a certain fraternity or sorority organizations. These kinds of shameful incidents could be merely considered as a sheer joke or a hoax to treat or trick a particular group of audience, as an excuse to ignore the feelings of shame. These forms of humiliations, at least, could also serve as a challenge to strive more and be successful in the long run.
But, there are moments in our lives that we face a sense of ignominy as a consequence of our bad moves or by other people's wrongdoings which we end up bearing the brunt, and which could have adverse impact on our persona as a whole, our self-esteem, and particularly on our health, such as stress, depression or in worst case, tragic incidents.
Thus, what will be discussed here rather is the type of embarrassment or humiliation faced in public trials wherein the entire personal background information and properties of the person concerned are being exposed, investigated, questioned, showed and reported via the tri-media, thus affecting not only the reputation of the person being probed but also that of his or her extended families, despite the person's declared innocence. The said trial could involve so-called “big ticket” illegal activities such as malversation, corruption, bribery, immoral acts and the like, allegedly committed by certain top managers in Government or by the “big fishes” in large quasi-public or private institutions.
The televised long hours of public hearings regardless of the venue (be it judicial or legislative ) and the valid provocative interrogations posed upon by the investigating body could very well affect the physical, psychologicall and emotional state of the person subject of the probe, irrespective of whether the person is guilty or not. Gathering the relevant materials to prove one's innocence and responding to the queries are definitely tedious and mind boggling on the part of the person being questioned. The person's private life will be uncovered, without consent, especially if the pertinent documents (Internal Revenue Tax Payments, Transfer Certificate of Titles for real estate properties, Statement of Assets and Liabilities, etc.) are publicly accessible and available. There are times though that the investigating body via the media will attempt to unravel the person's deepest secrets, dirty or not, so as to find out if there's something that could directly or indirectly affect the person's integrity, especially so if he or she has obviously committed wrong but still keeps denying the allegations.
Most of the time, people being subjected to public trials with media coverage are the who's who in Government and other large institutions implicated in scandals and irregularities. The investigating body and its staff will look for data from all possible sources to the extent of even utilizing irrelevant information, which turns out to be helpful in finding out if there's something that could affect the person's reputation at the end of the day. In this case, the media serves as an ally of Governments in a way but of course there may be other selfish reasons behind media's involvement. Media people would not waste their air time minutes on “small scale” transactions by the way. They would always be present in celebrated or sensational cases, even willing to use their prime time to telecast the event, and also trying to unearth provocative information about the person in question for certain reasons, which sometimes could be perceived as going beyond their journalistic responsibilities. This is the reason why people being probed feel so embarrassed, harassed, and humiliated, leaving with no option and as advised by their lawyers and cohorts to exercise their rights of privacy and privileges against self incrimination. But we all know that the said rights and privileges under the law must be beyond any cloud of doubt so as not to raise further questions from the probing body and the public as well, otherwise, it would only make the person being investigated look like blameworthy.
I have witnessed people being questioned in congressional enquires, people in power who have been accused of amassing government funds or diverting funds contrary to law . Even if the person is confident that he is innocent, the fact however, that there are allegations against him and he or she is being invited to shed light on the issue, is already humbling on his part. How much more if there are substantial proofs and credible witnesses that could pin the person down? The legislative and judicial proceedings can be so vexing and wearisome, as such I can simply understand the sorrows and agonies of these people. Some of them became frail and sickly due to sleepless nights, and of course aside from the reputation damage caused by the said enquiries, impacting on the person's future career , political life and professional growth. But these are harsh realities of life, one has to pay penalties for a wrongdoing and these investigations merely serve as preliminary step of the never ending legal process.
We've read two recent examples about the allegations thrown at two men of esteem and respect, the IMF Chief Executive Dominique Strauss-Kahn and NY Representative Anthony Weiner in relation to sex related scandals. But due to the said allegations, these men were forced to leave their high-profile posts and may have probably lost their self-dignity and pride, by just a “click of their fingers”, their fault so to speak! Imagine, these people worked for so many long years to build their unquestionable and honorable reputation but because of the said humbling experience, all what they have, seemed to have all gone, including their much loved professions and some close friends around them, i.e., on the assumption that so called honor, reputation and laurels are still important to them.
Another situation pertains to that of a Cabinet Secretary and a top brass military chief who committed suicide because of severe depression as a result of the enquiries related to corruption in the military. I could only surmise that he was not able to manage the televised blow-by-blow proceedings which basically downgraded his stellar academic and professional background due to serious allegations hurled at him and his family. It was a tragic incident as he pulled the trigger on his head, his blood flowing on his mother's grave. Just like the investigative committee and the public observing the hearings, I don't have any idea whether the man was guilty or not, he was supposedly still innocent until proven guilty in court, but what happened was truly saddening and shocking. Similar tragic incidents of this nature also happen in other countries. Japanese officials guilty of irregularities for example do opt to commit hara-kiri (death penalty), due to shame and embarrassment.
In a scenario where the person being questioned appeared to have committed or actively participated in the alleged crime based on evidences presented, the public opinion can easily be elicited and overwhelming. Press freedom, the role of media and public perception are highlighted in this case. This is where people are in awe on how the person involved was able to squander the resources of government in so many years without being discovered immediately. The social networking sites are quite successful in polarizing and provoking its readers to comment on this kind of issues.
While investigations of this sort have many drawbacks, two of which are sometimes labeled as plain political grand standing or witch hunting, we can't also deny the fact that most of the times, the allegations can apparently be true at the end of the day, after a court ruling is served convicting the accused even if it started only from a simple hearsay or mere allegations . As others would say, where there's smoke, there's fire and that small things come from big things. As such, these kinds of deliberations in any investigative venue are warranted in order to catch those people who have allegedly contributed to a particular country's economic downfall because of inefficiency, unethical behaviors and corruption. This is where the joy and success of trial by publicity comes in. The investigative body with the help of the media and the public can be efficient in disclosing information that would be able to assist Government in curbing and eradicating the said illegal activities through formulation of new reforms, enhancement of existing laws and enactment of new laws.
There have been studies which showed that public opinion really matters in effective governance. Transparency and accountability are deemed important in any major government transactions. People handling projects or any operations for that matter should be accountable for whatever is lost and should pay the price for what has been badly done. The said incidents are not isolated, it is also happening in any parts of the globe. Inviting and bringing accountable people for any alleged wrongdoing to any investigative body for questioning should always be welcomed. It should not be considered as a “slap on their faces”. In fact, it should serve as a grim reminder not only to the accused person but for all of us, to learn from our mistakes. Who knows, the one being invited could even treat the same as a slap on the faces of the members of the investigative body, especially if he or she is truly innocent about the accusations.
However, there are times that we question ourselves, why should we be worried or feel humiliated if in our hearts we can prove to the whole world that we are innocent and has got nothing to do with the allegations? Why would we be afraid and stressed out in responding to valid and offensive queries, for the betterment of our Governments? Wouldn't we be proud to participate in said deliberations? WHY?
Sure, oceans are really deep! But what the heck love got to do with it! Candidly, these two songs just popped out of my mind and as you decide to go through reading this post you may as well be thrilled of the circumstances surrounding the subject matter.
It is simply amazing that one can actually compose a sentence, a paragraph or even a title of an article using lines from songs or even labels of certain songs, just like what I have for you now. The topic consists of two-pronged subject: “Ocean Deep”, a love pop song and What’s Love Got To Do With It, a slow rock ballad! While they don’t belong to the same category as far as music genre is concerned, the gist of the songs is quite interrelated, it concerns LOVE. I didn’t have any idea beforehand that these songs were both released in 1984 and turned out to be hits during the period, 1985 and onwards and that makes it more amazing! What a coincidence!
This is what I intend to write about, something that is universal regardless of age, looks, religion, race, nationality or stature in life, whether rich or poor or in other words something that is applicable to all ….it’s the most beautiful gift God has given us and the most wonderful moment we’ve encountered in our lives and that is LOVE. Every single person has the right to love, to express one’s feelings and emotions, although in different fashions and comfort zones. As the saying goes, it is better to have loved and lost than never been loved or have never loved at all (emphasis underlined).
My thoughts would primarily delve on the subject songs and how it relates to a person’s love life, the feelings or emotions when the person is in love. For simplicity however, let’s not dig into the semantics of emotions and feelings, let’s treat it as one and the same. While the subject matter may not be my forte, I can more or less give out or share my thoughts based on personal and other people’s experiences in general. Besides, tackling this matter now is timely as some of my kith and kin are growing up and are on the verge of committing themselves to a lifelong relationship, which is normal by the way. I felt it is my responsibility to lay down the ins and outs and show them the value of the sweet and bitter experiences on the subject, in retrospect.
Okay, some of you may know that the deepest part of the ocean is the bottom of the trench and even if it’s cold and dark in there, there is life, light and warmth in it. While there may be imminent danger when you jump into the ocean, the more you dive into its deepest part however, the more you explore its beauty and treasures . Same thing happens when a person is truly in love. He or she begins to appreciate the other‘s strengths and accomplishments and learns to accept his/her weaknesses. A person in love tends to lessen his/her must haves and can’t stands and shorten the laundry list, so to speak. He or she tends to really get deeply involved with the person he/she loves. Hence, there are no limits and boundaries, no conditions set and that makes love as the quintessence of life.
People may be searching “high and low” for the man and woman of their dreams. They may be lucky to find their Mr. and Ms. Right but not everyone is lucky enough to find it instantly. It is difficult to hunt for true love. Sometimes, there are people who really work hard for it and there are times it just comes unexpectedly like a thief in the night! A friendly relationship with someone you love makes a person’s life more colorful and exciting. People in love tend to be brave to show their feelings for each other. A mere holding hands and spending even a short time with someone you most like, makes your day happy and inspiring. A mere touch says it all – it gives words of affirmation of your endearing love to a person, and that is an amazing mystery to me. However, not every boyfriend or girlfriend relationship is a bed of roses. There are challenges along the way and one has to be prepared for it. After the good old happy days, there may be some sorrows along the way but don’t let it bring you down. It is all right to allow yourself to feel the pain when the person you love breaks your heart. As a matter of fact, when such things happen, it would even be a blessing in disguise which only shows that probably that particular person is not really meant for you at all. Thus, you may treat the “pain” of the heartbreak as an opportunity to make you a better person and learn from it as you move on and by the time you meet another wonderful person and experience falling in love again, you are ready to face it head on!
One important factor to consider in a relationship is to take the “baby steps”. Not that you take your boy or girl easily and the relationship for granted, but just don’t overdo it. This may be considered an old school and a bit of a conformist as far as love relationship is concerned. For youngsters, especially the ladies, it is always best to confide with a member of the family, or your parents, or your concerned buddy, when it comes to matters of the heart. They would be able to guide you in your decision making and hopefully enlighten your troubled and confused heart. You have to face the fact that even in this avant garde days, it is always good to practice what is good and best for you. There are men, if not most of them, would really want to “win” you right away, so to speak, but if you show your true love, sweetness and care to them even without too much intimacy, they will always love and respect you in return. They will always be there for you no matter what and these are the type of men who are worth keeping for. I’m not saying that doing so is a sure perfect thing and I know some people will disagree with me on this but it depends on the circumstances actually. What I wanted to say is that there is nothing wrong to wait for someone who will bring you to your marriage life, through thick and thin, and therefore it would be good to both use your heart and wisdom before surrendering and giving all of yourself to someone who appears to be only after his glory!
Falling in love is the most wonderful feeling ever, whether it is shallow or deep. There’s nothing wrong with expressing love be in words or deeds. The risks and consequences associated to it may always be there but what's important is that you have loved the way it should be!
Below are videos showing rendition of two beautiful songs by Mr. Cliff Richard and Ms. Tina Turner, respectively, courtesy of You Tube. While the lyrics may not be perfectly written, I just love the melody of the songs -classic and it makes me fall in love all over again!
If you like it too, please share me your thoughts!
Now the buzzword in the blogosphere for Public-Private Partnerships (PPP), P3s have re-emerged as a result of the global economic crisis and as one of the fiscal reforms adopted by certain Governments throughout the globe, primarily to expand needed infrastructures and generate revenues for priority expenditures, among other objectives.
I came to know P3s when I used to head an office on an ad-hoc basis which serves as a technical staff to the Chairman of a cabinet-level policy making body overseeing privatization related matters. It was during this time when the non-performing assets under the first wave of privatization have been bailed out and almost been disposed of. The Government, in consultation with multilateral agencies, was exploring other possible options on how to attract foreign investors to manage and operate its existing public utilities which were in dire need of fresh funds to expand and enhance its operations. Additionally, these corporations posed as major factors for the persistently large budget deficit purportedly due to mismanagement and bad policies, which turned out to be a major problem not only to the Government but to the entire economy as well.
P3s are simply one of the privatization strategies under the third wave of privatization. In the 90’s, P3s would normally involve large scale transactions and initiatives meant for big-ticket public utilities in the water, power, transport, airports and the like. It could be undertaken via joint venture arrangements, build-operate-transfer schemes and its variants, including financing through the private sector or individuals (e.g. bonds). It differs from privatization, in its strictest sense, as the latter primarily involves a full or partial transfer of ownership, management or operation of state-owned assets or shares of stocks to the private sector with the view that the latter can effectively and efficiently handle and operate said assets and companies. Just like in the fashion industry, privatization has latest trends and innovations and in this case, P3s are considered as the avant-garde and arty ways of allowing the private sector to build, manage and operate the needed infrastructures or to engage in social services (health and educations sectors) in collaboration with Governments for economic development, so to speak. Through the years, P3s have evolved and these days, they are also being employed for other non-public utility, small and medium scale transactions (i.e. providing cheaper medicines, encouraging people to plant more, etc. ) which could likewise assist developing economies in meeting their MDGs.
So, how would P3s be part of the cause of the UN under its MDG? Briefly, MDG Goal No. 8, Target 8f, calls for global partnership for development in cooperation with the private sector, specifically in information and communications. This is especially true and imperative in least developed countries where information technology and telephone systems are lacking but are essential to effectively address key humanitarian challenges such as health, education and other social services. The US Government and other more affluent nations like the European Union, in partnership with the UN and other private foundations have started and continued to encourage initiatives that supported the MDGs by reducing child mortality through immunization, improving maternal health, preventing malaria deaths, launching state-of-the-art information and communications technology, promoting opportunities for adolescent girls in the developing world, and helping the poorer nations to have access to clean energy. However, despite these aids from rich donor countries and private foundations and agencies, the developing countries are still struggling to overcome global challenges and meet the MDG targets. Hence, the need for developing economies and its Governments at all levels to strive to attain the MDG via P3s for the people’s well being.
While socio-economic development is the primary responsibility of the Government, the private sector and likewise the citizenry can also make the first move to complement the efforts of the Government, specifically on areas of healthcare, education, pension funds and other socio-economic services. On the other hand, there were instances wherein even if the Government and the private partners are willing and able to institute and implement changes but if the majority or the affected people cry no, consequently the purpose is defeated. There will always be skeptics and oppositions along the way and as such, it is always best to gain public support and acceptance for such complicated and large scale financing arrangements especially in the provision of social services. Thus, I believe that all stakeholders should be involved in this undertaking coupled with appropriate policies, transparency and disclosures and right directions to make P3s-related activities successful.
Public-private partnerships in industrialized countries like the US have been proven to be advantageous and essential in helping the poorer nations. As a matter of fact, NYC area alone has thousands of large and small non-profit organizations and foundations which help or even initiate various socio-economic projects in least developed economies. The UN Foundation itself have had successful partnerships in the past embarking on P3s, making both the public and the private sectors work together through them. One of its recently launched project is the Girl Up Campaign which basically helps adolescent girls in developing nations in certain areas such as health care and life skills education to keep them from violence. The Girl Up Campaign has adopted a unique way of partnering with the private sector, not under the traditional “corporate partnership” but thru other means. Under its existing set up, American girls are given the opportunity to interact with their counterparts in the other side of the globe who are not as fortunate as they are. This is just one example of a PPP activity undertaken by a large organization, like the UN Foundation. However, it is also equally worth noting that there are small non government organizations here in NYC which have been actively helping families in poorer countries even before the formulation of the MDG. One case in point is the advocacy of Orphans International which, for the past years, has partnered with corporate or individual donors to provide monthly stipends for the financial, health and educational support of certain poor families of the orphaned child in a developing country. Orphans International has been able to send orphaned kids to school, including after school tutoring and has provided decent shelter to them. It also exposed the kids to information technology from around the globe via the internet. This is also one excellent way of achieving certain goals of the MDG.
While providing aid and delivering the needed social services to poor countries are laudable, it may be necessary to monitor the progress of said donations, particularly on how it helps the marginalized groups. Otherwise, the benefits of P3s may not be received and felt by the lowly and the disadvantaged, especially if “chunks” of foreign assistance are being wasted or diverted to few people’s pockets.
In my involvement on privatization for the past decade, the private sector investment have had contributions to economic growth in a developing country, including, among others, deepening the capital market, generating revenues, broadening ownership base, attracting foreign investors, which leads to generation or increase in employment . In the same manner, private sector participation related activities especially in the water and the power sector have provided enhancements, although there were some hitches and perceived anomalous transactions found down the road ( I refrain to elaborate on this, in the next succeeding blogs perhaps). While water and electricity were serviced to the poorest sector of the urban community, the impact on their lifestyle was minimal as the provision of said services was limited. On the part of the Government, there were financial and related risks (e.g. market risks, foreign exchange risks, and other negative shocks) associated to said P3s, leaving the Government shouldering the bills and the public consumers paying more, especially if government guarantees have been provided!
The benefits of P3s could have fruitful impact on and could be meaningful to the lives of the poorer sector of the society if the proivision of social services is done propery, as earlier mentioned. The payback of P3s are evident and clear to the poor if: a) they will have access to communications technology so they can easily be in touch with health services; b) they will have access to energy that will make them productive and that the poor children can study their lessons and do their assignments at night; c) they will have access to farm- to-market roads so farmers can deliver their produce on time and sell the same fresh to consumers, thereby earning more; d) they will have access to clean water and sanitation so as to prevent them from acquiring diseases and so on and so forth.
As previously indicated, while the Government is accountable for delivering public services and infrastructure, the private industry has a crucial role to play in helping the Government steer the economy, much more in alleviating poverty thru designing and building the needed infrastructures and in the provision of social services sans guarantees from the Government.
With this, I say “kudos” to the private sector who has the genuine “heart and soul” to sincerely help the Government of poorer nations, ESPECIALLY to those with no hidden dubious agenda!
Please let me know your thoughts about this article. Thank you!
I didn’t have the slightest hint in my life that I will be given the chance to observe fashion in a large metropolis like the Big Apple. With a year of experience in the city’s fashion industry and a daily late afternoon stroll before going home, along the busy street of 7th Avenue, NY’s fashion district, it was a sight to behold watching people from all walks of life strutting their fashion stuffs. I saw people wearing all sorts of style, from formal coat and tie/ladies power suits to rugged denim jeans and shirts, along the sidewalks of the street. It was as if I were in the front seat of a major project runway where all the people in the sidewalk were real life models, showcasing their best for the show.
As I am a “fashionista” by heart (though not in its strictest sense), I cherished those moments because the said experience gave me some pointers on how fashion can affect the overall outside physical appearance of a person. But as time goes along, I was no longer appreciating everything I see, I started to look a little closer, stopped , took count and I was surprised to pinpoint based on my standards lots of fashion faux pas. I am neither a fashion expert nor a fashion model/celebrity, but I know I have this innate fashion flair to distinguish which of these styles are appropriate or not.
For those not so familiar about the term “faux pas”, it is a French word which literally means “false step”. Mr. Webster and the online dictionary defined it as a social blunder or indiscretion, a violation of accepted social norms. It is pronounced as “ fo pɑ”. In fashion, it is like wearing things that shouldn’t be put on together, or wearing something which doesn’t suit to a particular built or wearing something with stripes and polka dots with a leather jacket and fur feathered hat as an extreme example!
Committing mistakes in fashion is but natural since not all of us are gifted with fashion sense. As I said before, fashion is more of an art than a science. It is what we make of ourselves, how we fashion ourselves and how we show off our own sense of style. It encompasses various things, from a powerful high avant garde to a fashion mistake such as a mere run in a panty hose or a piece of tissue paper stuck at the back of your skirt or dress or even at the bottom of your shoe! Oh yes, everyone makes mistakes! Some of you may have fallen victim to said fashion blunder at some point in your life! It happens and really funny, right? As a matter of fact, even highly fashionable people like ramp models and famous celebrities do likewise display occasional fashion blunders. We have noticed that in gala and awards shows, some of them experiment certain goofy styles which turn out to be bizarre, awfully bad and messy. And it is even more embarrassing on their part. So guys, there’s no need to worry if sometimes you commit said mistakes! It is okay as long as the lessons learned from these slip-ups shall eventually serve as your guide and reminders next time around. The rule of thumb is, if you feel uncomfortable with yourself, with your outfit, then something must be wrong and needs to be rectified.
Having said all these, the observations I’ve gathered during the one-year stint commute to and from the fashion district of the Big Apple presented various fashion blunders. Notice that the following list of fashion hard and fast no-no’s are the ones common, still true and haven’t quite changed at all despite the constant transformations in the fashion world.
Helpful Tips to Avoid Fashion Faux Pas
1. Dress to the nines according to your built – Take an inventory of your closet and make a list of things you need. If you’ve gained extra pounds and developed sort of a “muffin top” or a “beer belly” around your waist from the nocturnal doldrums last winter time, spare the skinny jeans and the small size pencil skirt you’ve used to adore as for sure it would be too tight in you. You might just end up turning like a stuffed turkey! I have observed this before and even now, wherein some working girls would have the guts to show off their dangerous curves and unwanted bulging bellies, making them look ludicrous!
On the other hand, I have seen people, both men and women, wearing loose or oversized garments so as to hide figure flaws probably not knowing or ignoring the fact that doing so would only highlight their imperfection and worse would even make them look bigger. Sure, it is comfy to sport loose fitting shirts and blouses but there are other options available to explore, such as wearing an inner blouse/shirt with a blazer or a jacket on it that has curvature down to the waist or a blouse with seam which could make you feel sexy and perfectly fit your body form to a T!
Similarly, I have also seen ladies as skinny as fashion models sporting super too-tight jeans or undersized clothes. Actually, it was funny to see it because there were as if a wigwam or a pyramid in between their pencil-thin shaped long legs. It just doesn’t look good at all and definitely not stylish!
As mentioned in my earlier blog (How To Power Dress in the Work Place), power dressing has evolved and is currently more relaxed. There are some trendy clothes that are just fine for a workplace and there are some too which are fashion faux pas. Don’t ever wear cocktail-look a like dresses to the workplace. This would include too short figure hugging dresses or low-cut tops or dresses with frills and laces.
As for the shoes, it was previously suggested in my blog that for office use, shoes with “chunkier heels, maybe an inch or two can add chic and confidence to oneself. Wearing flat shoes, sandals or even flip-flops to office is considered a fashion faux pas. Likewise, do not wear strappy sandals which are more appropriate for night out escapades.
2. Dress to the nines with appropriate underclothes – Especially during late spring and summertime, I have often seen people along the streets of NY not only showing some of their bare skins but also their underclothes or “undies”. Clean, new or ultra chic undies, if exposed to the public, become a fashion blunder. The more it becomes disgusting if the undies are worn out, stained, and untidy to look at (eewww!). Probably you have heard this reminder from you grannies or moms to be cautious in wearing underclothing, that as much as possible there’s a need to wear clean and proper undies to avoid embarrassment because you just don’t know when to encounter mishaps along the way.
Another blunder which I have seen around involves some people wearing clear bra straps in a strapless top or dress. Likewise, wearing dark colored undies, e.g brassieres, with a see through white or light colored dresses or blouses on it, revealing a silhouette of their private properties, shouldn’t be an option. Take note that undies, as the term implies, are meant to be kept inside and not for public eyes consumption. Oooops, sorry for the conservative views! But, don’t get me wrong, I super love undies with cute frills and laces but you may agree with me that it would be awkward for men and women parading around with visible lines and their undies like briefs, thongs, etc. peeking out of their jeans or from the edges of their skirts! To me, they’re totally inappropriate and nothing more!
Likewise, sports bras shouldn’t be worn under a dress or for any everyday attire, they’re designed for working out!
3. Dress to the nines with proper accessories – In particular, women have a fetish when it comes to fashion accessories, Said accessories include, among others, hand bags, shoes, hosiery, headbands, ribbons, jewelries, gloves, watches, bracelets, bangles, belts, shades, and the like. Said accessories could either enhance or complement one’s clothes or it could ruin one’s persona.
A classic example is the use of pantyhose. I for one use them for protection from my shoes and I’m comfortable with them either psychologically or emotionally. I also think that wearing panty hose makes my legs look better, shapelier and sexier. The real faux pas is the manner of wearing it. I have seen some people wearing either too small or too big of hosiery whether it be stockings, leggings or tights. If it’s too small, you will run the risk of highlighting the obvious or if it’s too big , you may appear like a bag lady with the hosiery sagging down your thighs and legs. Note that the seam of the stockings should be discretely tucked away from the opening especially if you’re wearing an open-toed shoes. Ensure that that the color of the pantyhose should match the hem of your skirt at least. Lastly, please put away your stocking with holes and don’t dare to use it to make a difference! It’s just tacky, tacky and tacky!
On the other hand, some people think that showing bare legs is cool and trendy. But actually another blunder is baring your legs itself. In fact fashion experts encouraged to use pantyhose and in fact even displayed these accessories in their runway shows.
The use of “bling” or jewelries, I am not sure about this. Personally, I am not really into gold or silver pleated jewelries. I believe in the saying, simplicity is beauty. However, if you have a nice designer gold watch (probably Gucci), go and flaunt it, that would be great to match with your office or night out attire. It’s definitely a no-no to wear so many gold or bright colored accessories, if you want not to look like a clown! A pair of cultured pearl earrings or necklace would be perfect for a formal occasion or office use.
It should be noted that having same colored accessories is not at all necessary. Coordination is the right term. As long as you have the art of coordinating as well as contrasting colors and designs with your outfit and the accessories, you won’t go wrong. A correct choice and manner of wearing accessories with the desired outfit will surely give you a presentable stylish look.
Now that you have these things in mind, another point to keep in mind is regarding body care. While you may have the fabulous fashionable clothes and accessories in town but have forgotten to physically clean up yourself, then that’s a baloney! That’s like cleaning the front yard of your house and not properly fixing up the mess inside. A mere stain on your dress can give a lasting impression. Proper and good hygiene is definitely a requirement: clean well trimmed finger and toe nails, a well-combed hair, fresh breath and a clean washed flawless face with a slight make-up , will surely make you go a long long way!
Therefore, to avoid fashion faux pas, we should be able to accept who we are, our imperfections but on the other hand learn to use the said imperfection to an opportunity to change and look better by wearing what fits us properly so we can be stylish and be able to exude the needed confidence. Once we have been able to acquire the habit of dressing well for fashion, this could stay and be our style for 2010 and beyond!
In the U.S. and in certain parts of the globe, Mother’s day is normally celebrated every 2nd Sunday of May each year. Thus, Mother’s day in 2010 falls on the 9th of May. However, in other countries, Mother’s day is commemorated at different times of the year. Some observe it as early as February, others in March and October, and would you believe others in December! While there may be reasons for celebrating various dates for Mother’s day, I could only surmise that this is probably because Mothers should be loved and appreciated not only for one day but each day of the year. Besides, motherhood is a 24/7 pro bono thankless job, it’s a lifetime responsibility!
Last March, I wrote an article on International Women’s Day wherein I mentioned in passing about my mother as an epitome of an ideal homemaker and an empowered woman in her own right. In fact, in some related write ups, I also noted certain factual events referring to my mother. That is how I would want to show to the whole wide world how our parents, especially my mother have molded us in our younger years to become better persons despite their absence when their children had to move out and stay in another place for higher studies and greener pastures. The shadow of our mother was always there to remind us of the do’s and don’ts even if she's not physically present to guide us in our daily chores.
Supposedly, I should be giving you some useful tips on how to celebrate Mother’s day, or I should have been providing you some practical tips to make Mothers happy on the said day or which awesome cool gifts Mothers would really love. Unfortunately, I won't do it this time. Rather, I would allot this space in recalling my Mom since childhood days whom I’ve truly loved and missed a lot. This is in honor of her relentless performance and wonderful achievements, being a wife and a mother. I have always been so sentimental when it comes to my Mom. As a matter of fact, while I was composing this blog, I couldn't help but cry, with tears kept flowing down my cheeks.
So, let me share with you my reminiscence of my mother, my siblings’ mother, how she fared as far as motherhood is concerned.
Basically, our mother was a beautiful woman with simple wants and needs. Coming from the countryside and far from the hustle and bustle of city life, she devoted most of her time rearing her 9 children, making us, her family, a priority even if she had other things to do on her own – her means of living and the like. She had served as the disciplinarian in the family in contrast to my father who was busy earning a living.. But mind you, my father was equally a loving and caring father –he played with us, joked with us, he was more of an extrovert type of person, so to speak. He was loved by people, by his comrades, by his lawn tennis mates, and oh yes, by his social drinking buddies! The truth is, I can write so many anecdotes and amazing experiences about my Dad. Sorry, Dad I had to mention this….I know you’ve loved us, even up to now, I can feel it in my heart.
Here are some of my recollections of my mother’s persona:
1.Our mother was selfless, very kind hearted generous woman yet tough and strict.
I remember when we're still kids, my mother would have to gather us to pray the Angelus every 6 pm each day and wouldn’t start the prayer if one is missing in the group. If someone is not around and is still playing outside with friends, she would go out of the door and had this amazing way of calling us. It sounded like a twit of a bird or a whistling sound which we knew that it was her, that it was time for us to be home. I’m not sure if my siblings would still remember these things. It’s sort of a bit funny or could be the sweetest sound but it was also of a concern because I knew there was an accompanying responsibility and at times a price we had to pay for not being at home on time! And believe me when we prayed, we couldn't just sit anywhere and participate in the praying, we had to be with the group and kneel down just what she did. Otherwise, we would get a word of caution or warning from her!
As a very kind hearted woman, she was so accommodating to anyone, especially the lowly and oppressed, knocking on our door begging for food and clothes. She would invite them inside, fed them and gave them out slightly used old clothes, sometimes with an extra small sum of money, making people leave our house with happy faces. She couldn’t bear the sight and the thought that poor people leave her house in sorrow. I remember another instance where we would welcome some people in our home on an honor-system basis, to the extent of allowing them to stay with us for years and treat them just like a member of a family. In fact, these people were sent to school and in exchange, they would do certain household chores, just like what we did at home – running household and/or personal errands.
2. Our mother was a self-reliant, independent and a hands on person.
She was very hard working woman, an all around, do-it yourself person- a very good cook wherein some of my favorites include the very tasteful home made cakes (torta) baked in an old style fire furnace, sweet and salted rice cakes (suman), cassava cakes, fish escabeche (originally a Spanish recipe), beef stew with tomato sauce and other ingredients, tapas, her own “adobo” recipe, green seaweed/sweet potato leaf salad added with vinegar and onions, steamed tarot and yams and so many more. She was our chef and we would be her assistants, preparing the ingredients but we’re more interested on the taste test side of it!
She was our hairstylist and continued to be when ever we’re home. In fact, she was the one who first cut our hairs and did our first curls. There were times that we would try to beat each other and fall in line for the hair cut during weekends. Trust me, she was very good at it, and she could truly style the hair the way we wanted it to be. Probably she was forced to learn it by herself because almost of her children are girls except for one boy. And oh yes, even our only brother got his first taste of a haircut from her!
3.Our mother was a businesswoman in her own right.
I recall when my older siblings had to go to college. She established a small variety store so as to augment the family’s earnings. I also learned and acquired from her my business acumen, the wholesale/retail consignment method and the pricing strategies. She may not be an MBA degree holder but it was great that my first informal business know-how emanated from her. She was intelligent and I’ve discovered that she was among the top of their class during her school days.
I have also first learned from her about the barter system. She may not be aware of the technical parlance, but yes she knew how to trade our things in exchange for commodities. An instance is when poor farmers would go to the city center to trade their crops in exchange for clothes, blankets and other things they needed in their respective homes, my mother would engage in said activities. In fact, even without the traded goods, she would end up giving the needed things to these poor men and women.
I mentioned in my previous blog that my mother knew how to fashion dresses for her young children, especially when she had her first sewing machine. If she finds time, instead of buying ready made clothes, she would do the measurements, sketched the dress and made a pattern on a piece of large paper before sewing it. She didn’t go to a formal fashion school, it was more of a self-taught learning skill. She did not only sew some of our dresses but also for some small projects like curtains, for small windows and pillow cases, for home use.
4. Our mother was a very patient, relentless and pious woman.
Ever since I was a child, I observed my mother would wake up in the wee hours (3 or 4 am) of the morning, kneel beside her bed and pray the Holy Rosary and other devotional prayers. This habit of hers continued up to her heydays. During her mid younger days , I would hear her murmurs, silently saying her intentions pleading to God for mercy and forgiveness. Except when she’s indisposed, she would hear mass every day and brought us bread or any food which she bought on her way home. To her, the day would not be complete without attending the Holy Mass and receiving the Holy Communion.
Married to a man who was fond of being with friends- with peers who were like a family to him, having drinking spree with them, and getting drunk at the end of the day, was an agony to my mother. Lifting up everything to God, served as an outlet to her worries, and oh yes, her prayers were granted – it worked after so many years! Our father’s drinking spree has diminished and they both have a very good time together.
She was so patient and persevering, especially in dealing with my father’s whims like food to prepare, office clothes to wear and so on and so forth. She would gladly do these things sans complaints even though she was already exhausted just so to avoid further arguments.
My mother was my first teacher and catechist. I first learned from her about God and everything about spiritual beliefs. She first taught us the basic prayers and the Angelus and later the Holy Rosary with the Litany. Even without deliberate memorization of the said prayers but because of the constant praying of the Holy Rosary, I was able to memorize the mysteries and would you believe the litany as well which up to now I recite it by heart! For us young kids and teens then, we didn’t grasp the full significance of the said prayers – it appeared said things were repetitious and were imposed on us! It was only when we were growing up that we’re able to recognize the beauty and the importance of praying, especially the Holy Rosary. Truth is, I am now applying the lessons learned from my mother in my class telling them how prayers are important in our lives. I almost forgot another very good trait which I’ve learned from our parents – that after praying, we approached them, kissed them and placed their hands on our foreheads for blessings and as a sign of respect. Thereafter, the younger siblings would then go to the older ones and do the same thing.
Our mother was involved in church related organizations. As a matter of fact, she became one of the sponsors or “hermanas” during feast day celebrations. This is the reason why majority of her children are now actively involved in civic and socio-related activities.
She was my first music teacher too. She loved to sing and had a sweet voice. Hmmm, my good voice must have come from her, kidding aside! Oh yes, she had this skill of doing second voice thru the so-called “owido” (playing it by ear) which I realized just now that I have also acquired it from her. And more oh yessessss, she danced gracefully too!
5. Our mother was our first faithful doctor/nurse, mentor, critic, and our best friend ever.
I recall when we were sick during our younger days, our mother was the one who was there awake all night by our side, caring for us, cooking and feeding us our favorite food, giving us the needed medicines to make us well and healthy. She was there to provide moral support whenever it was time for her children to give birth and taught them how to bathe and care their first babies. It was just so frustrating that I wasn’t there by her side when she needed me most. I know from the deepest of her heart, she would understand me, just what she had been – a very considerate person.
She was our critic even during her golden years. Whenever she saw us not in proper attire, if we're showing a little some of our skins, she would jokingly call our attention to change our dress. And if she liked it, she would just sit there in the corner quietly looking at us with a smile dancing upon her lips. I knew she was keeping her praises for us to herself. She was not really outspoken as far as flattering and pleasing people are concerned. As I said, she was more on the “critiquing” side!
She was our best friend ever. When our Dad first left to join Our Creator, our mother was wandering from one of her children’s place to another. Even in her older years, she tried as much as possible to travel and visit her children and be with them for a month or so. She would initiate the planning of a reunion for all of us and I can still vividly recall how she looked very happy, anxiously waiting for us at the gate whenever it was time for our flight arrivals. She had plans in mind with one of my sisters as her partner. We would go to a beach for a swim, visit tourist places, or just simply stay at home discussing various issues or even ending up in arguments! Oh yes, we’re normal creatures, especially in a female dominated place – we had misunderstandings- the so called siblings rivalry – and she would be the arbiter! But overall, it was a great feast for all of us with the delicious food served on the table just like the parable about the rich father who prepared nice things for his prodigal son to return to his home!
Our mother’s last birthday and final days of her life
On her birthday, we planned for a grand celebration for her. We offered gifts, flowers, and delivered our extemporaneous personal messages which she gladly accepted with a modest smile. We designed a program and had the presentations recorded on video, and oh yes there was even a banner greeting with her photo on it mounted on the wall of the hotel’s ball room. She was very excited about it, as if she was celebrating her 18th birthday. I recall we sang the song “Through the Years” with a twist and had it re-worded so as to suit the occasion. How I wish I could have written this before and delivered a well thought meaningful birthday message during that time. I am sure she would only smirk at it but would be proud of me silently at the same time! Actually, my mother was happy and contented just by seeing her children completed their studies, and have turned into successful adults.
When I last saw her, my mother was still feeling great. When I bade farewell to her, she kissed and hugged me tightly as if she wanted me not to go but I simply ignored it and set aside the emotions brewing at that time. Our communications then were limited and undertaken thru telephone calls and internet conveyed messages. There were always the friendly reminders from her – the love and care of a mother to her child, until the gloomy sad news that she followed and be with Dad and her Creator in Heaven, after a decade. I would have wanted to say my deepest sincere apologies to her for my shortcomings, for my limitations and weaknesses. I would have wanted to say a quadrillion thanks for all the love and sacrifices. I would have wanted to share with her more of my time and tell her how much her child deeply loved her, but she could no longer hear it, feel it! That time was the most difficult, unhappiest and terrible moment of my life, in fact till now. But when I think of my mother when she was alive, it gave me emotional and spiritual healing, because I know she will always be there to offer prayers for her children, to offer birthday masses for her children and to comfort them when in trouble and in despair, no matter what, against all odds!
To my Mom, my heartfelt Happy Mother’s day greeting to you!
I could have written a novel about my mother. But I have to end it here with the following quotes by E.Cook:
I miss thee my Mother! Thy image is still
The deepest impressed on my heart.
As the saying goes, life must go on. But having said all of the foregoing, I trust you have learned something from it. So to all of you out there, awesome cool mothers all over the world, I wish you all a happy and wonderful Mother’s day!
The Brief Useful Tips
Here are some helpful tips for you children and husbands out there:
1. Shower your mother/wife with lots and lots of love and affection – that’s what she’s waiting for!
2. Put together a bouquet of amazing surprises that you can deliver to your mother, including small things like being with her the whole day, offering to cook her favorite food, taking her out for shopping and simply re-assuring her of your unwavering love and support throughout the rest of her life, among others.
3. Arrange a surprise party for her , with the husband and the children participating and a lot more.
Incidentally, today is the birthday of my Dad. Happy , Happy Birthday Dad!
Please offer prayers for the repose of his soul, and my mom's too. Thank you
Almost anywhere in the world, the lessons learned from the financial debacle experience have more or less helped shape people’s conservative spendinghabits , especially on both luxury and non-luxury items. One affected area which may not be considered indispensable to some people is fashion and its related accessories. However, for fashion die-hards and enthusiasts, it would almost be unbearable not to be updated with the fresh trends taking into account the degree of influence fashion mags, runways and the who’s who in fashion have on them. They would always find ways and means on how to stay on top of the craze come hell or high water!
Spring and summer seasons are the best times of the year to get out and enjoy frolicking under the sun, having fun with our family and friends. It is the time when we want to wear our best summery and breezy clothes and show some “skins” and feel good about ourselves regardless of age and body type. Basically, it is the clothes we pick and wear that would give us that confidence we need, as long as it is glam, trendy and stylish. Hey, hey, hey, you might say, but how can I have glam and fashionable clothes without spending thousands of green bucks and ruining my cash flow just to have a complete makeover of my wardrobe? Well, there is a solution to that. As I said in my previous blog, a real chic “fashionista” doesn’t have to be an ardent fashion follower , there’s no need to buy expensive clothes and accessories, instead make an effort to be a trendsetter- from professional to fun and cool look !
So, to be a trendsetter in a tough economy requires someone to be smart and creative. A genuine fashionista is the type of a person who at a snap of a finger, would be able to determine which outfit is appropriate. However, for those who are not as “savoir-faire” as the rest, there’s no need to fret about it- as you can simply check
yourcloset and examine which actually can be utilized and fitting for the season. For spring and summer time, you may take out and keep aside black ensemble and those with dull and dark colors and replace it with your existing brighter, bolder, hot, trendy yet cool outfit and accessories which lay still in your wardrobe.
The Budget-Friendly Tips – Fashion Must Haves
1.If you’re a dressy person like me, you may opt to wear clothes with floral prints and some super cute accents such as ruffles, ribbons and bows . While 2010 fashion color is turquoise or in shades of blue, white and pink colors are still preferred by many. These colors are soothing to the eyes and would reflect an appearance of femininity, youthful innocence, fun and excitement! It doesn’t have be a pure white or an all pink outfit, it could be matched with a printed or plain
stuff. I am sure you have some beautiful sun dresses, blouses or skirts in pastel colors of blue, pink, white, yellow and some earthy tones with some cute accents and a touch of flair . A nautical striped outfit may also
be good to look at.All theseform part of my existing favorites
A spaghetti sundress with a style on hemline,
an off-shoulder printed dress for office wear and night out ,
a chiffon printed blouse with dainty ruffles, a weekender dress for worship/mall window shopping , a tank topand a jogging pantsfor a lighter moment!
2.For simpler yet modern style,capris , workwear denim, ripped jeans, and wide leg trousers which you may find in your closet are cool substitutes. They can be used during these times of year. Yes, you’ve heard it right, ripped, torn and peek-a-boo denim shorts and jeans are still in – from last year’s success in the streets- it is here once again!If you don’t have it and wouldn't want to spend your hard-earned money for ripped jeans but would have wanted to explore wearing it, you can actually cut up your old jeans and let the fringes from the cut hang.
3.A cardigan for a charming spring/summer dress for office wear or a boyfriend jacket and blazer with sleeves rolled up is super cool, especially for spring and mild summer night.
4.Check your shoe rack and select onepair for partyor social networking gatherings, a pair of workheels, sneakersortennis shoes for a brisk walk, sandals/wedges/clogsand flip flops,that would fit and match most of your clothes. Spring and summer times are just perfect to show off your wow shapely legs and nice neat toes!
5.As an alternative to your large and oversized bags, you may wish to use your smaller, bright colored trendy bags still hanging in your closet.
6.Sunglasses, scarves, hats or umbrellas are definitely necessary, especially during warm summer days.
7.A swimsuit or any related beach apparel for your beach, cruise or weekend getaway.
8.Aside from a pearl stud earrings, you can wear chandelier earrings this year. It is okay to wear chandelier earrings if you’re comfortable with it as it adds glamour to formal (night out) or informal outfits (e.g. white shirt and jeans) . However, if you’re not used to wearing earrings , it is also fine – a simple natural clean look perfectly fits for summer time.
9.Go to your nearest beauty parlor and have your hair styled. This is an inexpensive way to stay in fashion!
With all these tips in mind, you’re now set to go out and show that individuality of yours. I am sure you will have a brighter, cooler, and trendy spring and summer time! So, what are you waiting for? Come on, flaunt it!
This new released book jointly authored by Lucy Danziger and Catherine Birndorf may be more or less interrelated with my earlier write up about tips for staying young, living longer and aging happily. The suggested tips which were spelled out in the said particular blog could very well echo the approaches mentioned in the book on how to make every woman’s life and dreams a reality – despite the blotches, weaknesses, trials and tribulations encountered in every room in the house.
The said book is a short story, a metaphor which basically describes all about women’s dreams, complications, frustrations and successes in life represented by the different rooms in a typical house. The bottom line is, it suggested certain strategies for every room in your life, particularly on how to be happy , something that is not easy thing to do as it requires a lot of patience and perseverance – the core values crucial to getting there -to the road of joy and happiness.
The book describes each room in the house, as follows:
Basement – this part of the house is considered as the most spacious part and it serves as foundation of the house. Memorable moments of the family since childhood happen in this room, that is why some of the family’s memorabilia are stored in this place.
Family Room – this is where members of the family gather around to discuss on family related matters and issues, whether happy or sad events in life.
Office Room – this is where the financial transactions (e.g. payment for bills, daily expenses, number of hours spent at home and work) are taken into account.
Kitchen – this is where food is prepared for nourishment and domestic chores are divided and assigned.
Living Room – this is where social life is mostly spent with friends, with officemates, neighbors, and other social related activities are being held.
Bath Room – this is where major issues of women such as beauty, vanity, weight, fashion and the like are discovered.
Children’s Room – this is where the issues about the kids (their school needs, personal necessities, peer pressures, ) are discussed, including the decision onwhether or not to have and nurture kids, among others.
Bed Room – this is where intimacy, romance, sex and personal relationships between husband and wife or between partners are explored and shared.
Attic- this is where the expectations of the family have for each other from childhood to adulthood.
My comments on the book:
Comment No. 1
Of the 9 rooms described above, I noticed that the authors excluded a Prayer Room, so to speak. They may have their reasons why, probably it was overlooked or it was intentionally not considered at all as a major place of a house. Considering however, that the subject being discussed is about happiness, it may be imperative that a space or a small room in a decent average home should have been allotted for the family’s spiritual growth. If one is spiritually mature, it could have been easy to lessen the stresses and resolve the problems encountered in the other rooms.
The Prayer Room is like a war room where the key members of the family, especially the mother or even all the members could visit the room each day or at times to discuss with God and formulate strategies on how to battle the said stresses and problems. We should be reminded that mortals as we all are, we should make God as the center of our lives—-after all, our purpose here on earth is to know, to love and to serve God.
As the saying goes, the family that prays together, stays together. If I may quote Mother Teresa’s words…”Be sure to teach the families to pray all together, for the family that prays together stays together, and if they stay together, they will love one another…”. I strongly believe with the said proverb because our parents (especially my Mom), taught us when we were still kids to be prayerful. We pray all together and I would say that it was this time that our spiritual journey began.
I often tell the kids in my class that when we lift up our problems and open our hearts to God through prayers, we are in effect strengthening our relationship with and faith in Him. And when there is someone more powerful to help, there is that sense of comfort and the feeling of inner peace and security enveloping on one’s self. As indicated in my other blog, talking to God through prayers or meditation, regardless of one’s religion, is the most peaceful and inexpensive way of releasing the daily burdens and stresses in life. When we have inner peace in ourselves, we become detach to self-centeredness, materialism, worldly desires, and greed (which are at times the roots of troubles in the house), and in the end we become happier, healthier and loving creatures of God.
Obviously, the book is applicable and is being addressed and compared to the life of an average to upper working class woman who has a house of her own (either thru sale or lease) and could relate to what the authors would like to imply.
As such, this book is not meant for majority of the people in the world living under the poverty line (80% of humanity lives on less than $10/day), who can still afford to smile, especially the women, even in the midst of problems and difficulties. These poor women have no rooms to spare, they do not live in an impeccably clean houses – sometimes they live in a shack with no dividers and everything are done in a tiny square room- which is even way far from the situation of a problematic working woman living in a cramped, messy and fully packed studio room in NYC. So, how on earth can these people do it? How are they able to survive? These are amazingly beautiful people!
What I would like to impart here, is that regardless of one’s stature, a person can still be happy, can still smile, even with sadness and pain , if armed with the right attitude, their being able to adapt to thorny situations and how they perceived and dealt with it. If I may quote again what I said in my earlier article, a positive outlook in life is essential for a happy contented life. The less privilege people, the women in particular, do not fret and lament of what ever hardships they're experiencing in life. I can say these things in view of my actual dealings with people in the rural areas or even in metro slums or the so-called informal dwellers, specifically in developing economies. These are the women who are the true heroines, who have mastered the art of coping with sad realities of life, who have accepted that it is part of the system, that their happiness does not come in the form of material possessions or the things that can be bought in the consumer market place. Rather, their pleasures and wants are simple: they are happy that they are alive and intact, that they can eat together even with just one serving of fish and rice on the table, and that they can still afford to love one another. These are the people who are happy and grateful for all the things being provided to them, and that this kind of attitude has a trickle down effect to their neighbors, and ultimately to the community, so to speak!
Finally, I would like to say that LOVE is the key to all the doors and rooms in the house, to all things. This is the probably the joy that we would want to see in a house to make it a home. Peace and happiness are in our HEARTS and in our HEARTS is where LOVE is. Without LOVE, then everything will turn awry. LOVE IS BEAUTIFUL!
Comment No. 3
Nevertheless, I would still recommend this book especially to the young urban professionals or “yuppies” to consider this book as a guide or framework in deciphering their successes, failures and emotional issues, and eventually reaching happiness at the end of the day for as long as they seek Divine guidance..
About the Book and the Authors:
Launched/published early this March 2010, the book has a hard cover and with 288 pages. Danziger, L – is the Editor-in-chief of Self magazine. Birndorf, C. – is a psychiatrist, especially for women’s health and the founding director of Payne Whitney Women’s Program at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center.
My passion for fashion which goes back to childhood days has impacted on my outlook towards wearing style. I remember when we were kids, I used to draw and cut out paper dolls and dressed them with colored and various designs/styles of clothing made of paper and other materials which I could see around the house. Instead of buying ready made clothes , our mother would at times purchase clothing materials from a local Chinese merchandise store and since she had a little knowledge of sewing, she would create dresses during weekends for her 7 girls just to keep us up with the trend.
Through the years, my passion for fashion has evolved into different stages until my first encounter with the term “Power Dressing”.One of my friends introduced me about it and it was during that time that I was doubly working hardon my way up the ladder. At first, it sounded intimidating to me until she finally said that actually I was already wearing exactly the said kind of corporate work-wear, based on her own assessment. I can vividly recall, it was a (slightly above the knee) black pencil rayon skirt, a fuchsia pink long sleeves blouse with a black accentuated blazer, a cultured pearl necklace and a one-inch high heeled black closed shoes, I was wearing. We were then on our way to the board room to assist our principals for a high level cabinet meeting. Confirming what my friend said, one of our male colleagues in the said meeting said to me: “You look great in there”! That I thought what she called “Power Dressing!”
So, what is power dressing? I would like to quote some definitions found on the web:
1.It is a style of clothing intended to make the person seem authoritative and competent, especially in professional settings in business, law and government.
2.It is a stylish and expensive clothing style intended to convey the impression of assertiveness and competence.
As can be gleaned from the aforementioned definitions, it appears that power dressing or PD (my newly coined acronym for it) refer to costly style of clothing predominantly worn by women belonging to the top echelons of the society (e.g. Margaret Thatcher, Hillary Clinton, etc.) or by women who in their own style have been able to exude a feeling of power and authority. These are career clothes or the so-called power suits designed by internationally renowned designers or by your local wannabe designers.
But just like my passion for fashion, PD has likewise evolved since it started in the late 70's. There are schools of thoughts from fashion gurus on what PD should be in its modern context. It seems that the PD has now turned out to be less formal and with lower maintenance compared to the conventional PD. The current power dressing is more flexible and modern and it somehow caters to all levels of workforce and as such may be good to the entire manpower complement, both male and female.
As the experts say, power dressing is all about appearing confident, capable and assertive at work.
To achieve this dressing style, the following are suggested simple tips on how to power dress in any work environment:
Dress professionally – Regardless of your stature in the workplace (whether you are newly hired, a rank-and-file, senior staff or part of the management), you have to think of the clothes you need to wear – clothes that would reflect your personality in a positive and professional way. It doesn't have to be a designer-labeled suit, it can be a dress with a blazer on it. Another option which I used for office wear is a cardigan sweater to match with some of my sleeveles office clothes, especially during summer and not so busy days. Never wear tee shirts with jogging pants and sneakers on or with your bermuda shorts with a flat shoes. Some people can be so at ease with the management and their officemates that they do not care anymore what they wear to the office.
Keep it versatile – Mix and match your core and prized fashion wardrobe with several colored plain shirts or printed blouses to make an impact on your personality. It also provides you multiple options or choice of clothes to wear on a daily basis. In my case, I used to have two very good suits which I normally wear for meetings outside the office. Sometimes, I would change the inner blouse depending on my mood for the day.
Ooze that confidence – Be smart and confident. Feel good about yourself and feel comfortable of wearing your office attire whatever form it is. When you're confident on what you wear, you tend to be more confident in dealingwith peers and clients.
Keep it simple but chic and stylish – Okay, I would say black ensemble is simple but broaden your spectrum of black, black, black! I noticed that majority of the women workforce tend to wear black office attire, not only here in New York but even in the financial districts of major cities in the world. Some have tried other colors like red, navy, gray or beige but these colors appear monotonous. Lighter or pastel colors can be explored to have a fresher look. Keep in mind that color can uplift your spirit and make you more dynamic though the day! It is all right to add style to your clothes but without weakening professionalism.
Never dress to impress – Wearing stylish clothes just so to impress your boss or someone is not within the realm of power dressing. Remember you are in the workplace, your utmost duty is to be productive, i.e., produce and deliver the needed results. You are rated according to your work performance, ability and character but not your outfit.
Avoid flat shoes and sandals – Shoes with "chunkier" heels, maybe an inch or two can add chic and confidence to yourself. It makes you literally stand out from the rest, look taller and gives you that feeling of stability and a confident walk. One reason why I suggest wearing "plumper" shoes is that wearing high heeled stiletto shoes can be a problem to some particulary those using public transport, i.e., walking several blocks just to get to the bus stop and to the office.
To complete your empowered woman look, you can add accessories to a minimum level coupled with a handbag that would go perfectly well with yourdress and shoes.
Therefore, as long as you dress appropriately with flair, feel confident about yourself and act professionally (with hardwork and dedication), then you are set for success!
Incidentally, some of the renowned designers (Dolce and Gabana, D. Versace, Jil Sanders, etc.) who participated in the 2010 Milan Fashion Week appears to set the stage for the comeback of power dressing, this time with a twist! Hence, this blog!