Monthly Archives: August 2007

Top 10 Greatest Hoaxes of all time

Written by 2spare.com

A hoax is an attempt to trick an audience into believing that something false is real. We came up with a selection of the Top 10 Greatest Hoaxes of all time:

The Surgeon’s Photo of the Loch Ness Monster

Ancient Scottish legends spoke of a giant sea monster that lived in the waters of Loch Ness. In 1934, Colonel Robert Wilson, a highly respectable British surgeon, said that he noticed something moving in the water and took a picture of it. The resulting image showed the slender neck of a serpent rising out of the Loch. The photo came to be known simply as “The Surgeon’s Photo” and for decades it was considered to be the best evidence of the monster.

It wasn’t until 1994, when Christian Spurling, before his death at the age of 90, confessed his involvement in a plot, that included Wetherell and Colonel Wilson, to create the famous photo. Apparently Wetherell’s motive was revenge, since he was humiliated years earlier when the supposed monster’s footprints he found were nothing but dried hippo’s footsteps.

Hitler’s $6 million-dollar diary

On April 22, 1983 the German magazine Der Stern announced that it had made the greatest Nazi memorabilia find of all time: a diary kept by Adolf Hitler himself. And this was not just one thin journal.

The magazine had paid 10 million German marks ($6 million at that time) for the sixty small books as well as two “special issues” about Rudolf Hess’ flight to the United Kingdom, covering the period from 1932 to 1945.

However, within two weeks, the Hitler Diaries were revealed as being “grotesquely plump fakes” made on modern paper using modern ink and full of historical inaccuracies, the most obvious of which might have been the fact that the monogram on the title page read ‘FH’ instead of ‘AH’ (for Adolf Hitler). The diaries were actually written by Konrad Kujau, a notorious Stuttgart forger of Hitler’s works, who was sentenced to 42 months in prison.

The Jewish master plan to dominate the World

The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a text purporting to describe a plan to achieve global domination by Jews. Following its first publication in 1903 in the Russian Empire, numerous independent investigations have demonstrated that the document is a hoax; notably, a series of articles printed in The Times of London in 1921 revealed that much of the material was directly plagiarized from earlier works of political satire unrelated to Jews.

In Russia, it helped to the idea that the Bolshevik movement was a Jewish conspiracy for world domination. On WWII, The Protocols became a part of the Nazi propaganda effort to justify persecution of the Jews. It was made required reading for German students.

Today, many Arab governments funded new printings of the Protocols, and taught them in their schools as historical fact. In Syria, The Protocols is currently a best-seller, and government-controlled television channels occasionally broadcast mini-series concerning the Protocols.

Idaho, the US state with a made-up name

Idaho it’s perhaps the only state to be named as the result of a hoax. When a name was being selected for new territory, eccentric lobbyist George M. Willing suggested “Idaho,” which he claimed was a Native American term meaning “gem of the mountains”.

It was later revealed Willing had made up the name himself, and the original Idaho territory was re-named Colorado because of it. Eventually the controversy was forgotten, and modern-day Idaho was given the made-up name when the Idaho Territory was formally created in 1863.

The Alien Autopsy footage from Roswell UFO crash

On 5 May 1995, Ray Santilli, a London-based film producer, presented for the first time his alleged “Alien Autopsy” footage to media representatives and UFO researchers. The body was suggested to belong to one of the aliens picked from the supposed Roswell UFO crash site in 1947. The footage became world-known inmediatly.

he debate on whether the autopsied body is a very realistic mannequin, a girl with a genetic disorder (such as progeria or Turner’s syndrome), or a real alien is still going on. Pathologists have also questioned the techniques being used in the supposed autopsy. Ironically, the best evidence against the film comes from one of the background details. On one wall of the autopsy room, there is a type of warning sign that was not produced until 1967, two decades after the alleged event.

Fox TV produced a programme debunking the video as a hoax a couple of years later and, in 2006, a British comedy movie called “Alien Autopsy” was released, on the subject of Santilli faking the autopsy footage, who was apparently involved in the movie’s production, which if so would suggest that the autopsy footage was indeed faked.

The fossil that embarrassed British Paleontology

The so-called Piltdown Man was fragments of a skull and jaw bone found in 1912 from a gravel pit at Piltdown in the English county of Sussex. The fragments were claimed by experts of the day to be the fossilised remains of a hitherto unknown form of early man.

From the British Museum’s reconstruction of the skull, it was proposed that Piltdown man represented an evolutionary missing link between ape and man, since the combination of a human-like cranium with an ape-like jaw tended to support the notion then prevailing in England that human evolution was brain-led.

In 1953, 41 years later, the Piltdown man was finally exposed as a composite forgery: it consisted of a human skull of medieval age, the 500-year-old lower jaw of a Sarawak orangutan and chimpanzee fossil teeth. The identity of the Piltdown forger remains unknown.

The Catholic Pope that turned out to be a woman

John Anglicus, a ninth century Englishman, travelled to Rome, became a Cardinal, and when Pope Leo IV died in 853 A.D., he was unanimously elected pope. As Pope John VIII, he ruled for two years, until 855 A.D. However, while riding one day from St. Peter’s to the Lateran, he had to stop by the side of the road and, to the astonishment of everyone, gave birth to a child. It turned out that Pope John VIII was really a woman. In other words, Pope John was really Pope Joan.

According to legend, upon discovering the Pope’s true gender, the people of Rome tied her feet together and dragged her behind a horse while stoning her, until she died. Another legend has it that she was sent to a faraway convent to repent her sins and that the child she bore grew up to become the Bishop of Ostia. It is not known whether the story of Pope Joan is true.

The “Chess Machine” that fooled Napoleon

The Turk was a famous hoax which purported to be a chess-playing automaton first constructed and unveiled in 1769 by Wolfgang von Kempelen. He first exhibited the Turk at the court of Austrian Empress Maria Theresa in 1770, and later took it on a tour of Europe for several years during the 1780s. The Turk defeated prominent world-figures, such as Napoleon Bonaparte and Benjamin Franklin.

The cabinet had doors that opened to reveal internal clockwork mechanisms, and when activated the mechanism appeared to be able to play a strong game of chess against a human opponent. However, the cabinet was a cleverly constructed illusion that allowed a chess master to hide inside and operate the mannequin. Consequently, it won most games.

The buying of the Catholic Church by Microsoft

In 1994 a press release began circulating around the internet claiming that Microsoft had bought the Catholic church. The release quoted Bill Gates saying that he considered religion to be a growth market and that, “The combined resources of Microsoft and the Catholic Church will allow us to make religion easier and more fun for a broader range of people.” Under the terms of the deal, Microsoft would acquire exclusive electronic rights to the Bible and would make the sacraments available online.

Microsoft had to issue a formal denial of the release on December 16, 1994. This was the first internet hoax to reach a mass audience using the internet. The authors of these hoaxes remain unknown.

The Martian invasion that frightened the World

The War of the Worlds, is a radio adaptation by Orson Welles based upon H. G. Wells’ classic novel, was performed by Mercury Theatre on the Air as a Halloween special on October 30, 1938. The live broadcast reportedly frightened many listeners into believing that an actual Martian invasion was in progress. It has been called the “single greatest media hoax of all time“, although it was not intended to be one.

Contemporary newspapers reported panic ensued, with people fleeing the area, and others thinking they could smell the poison gas or could see the flashes of the fighting in the distance. Several people reportedly rushed to the “scene” of the events in New Jersey to see if they could catch a glimpse of the unfolding events, including a few astronomers from Princeton University who went looking for the “meteorite” that had supposedly fallen near their school.

It is sometimes said that the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was first received in skepticism as a consequence of the radio performance. Amazingly enough, the drama has been rewritten to apply to other locations and rebroadcast, with similar results:

– A 1944 broadcast in Santiago, Chile caused panic, including mobilization of troops by the governor.

– A February 12, 1949 broadcast in Quito, Ecuador panicked tens of thousands. Some listeners, enraged at the deception, set fire to the radio station and the offices of El Comercio, the capital’s leading newspaper, killing twenty people.

7 Strategies to Raise Your GPA this Semester

Written by John Wesley

stack of booksGetting straight A’s won’t guarantee success, but it sure doesn’t hurt. A high GPA will help you make more money, pursue further education, or change career paths. If you’re going to spend many thousands of dollars on a college education, you might as well make the most of it. Right?

Being smart will help you get good grades, but it isn’t required. Neither is studying nonstop. The key to academic success is being disciplined and efficient in your study habits. These 7 strategies will help you raise your GPA while minimizing stress and overall study time.

1. Go to class – I know this one is mind-numbingly obvious but it’s important. Many professors lecture directly from PowerPoint and post the slides to the internet. This makes it tempting to skip class, download the lecture notes, and learn the material on your own. Although you can probably get away with this in easy courses, you’ll face problems in challenging ones. By skipping class, you miss out on a few important things:

  • Detailed verbal explanations that are key to understanding the material
  • The chance to ask questions and listen to the Q&A of other students
  • Special announcements
  • Opportunities for extra credit

It’s also important to consider how skipping class affects your reputation. In most classes, grades are somewhat subjective. This means that the grader’s perception of you can make or break your grade. If you frequently miss class, you’ll be perceived as someone who lacks respect for the professor and the subject matter. Why should they give you the benefit of the doubt or round that B+ up to an A-?

2. Sit in the front row – Not only will sitting in the front row build self confidence, it will automatically engage you in the lecture. You’ll appear to be an eager student and highly visible to the teacher. This will help your academic reputation and make it more likely you’ll develop a relationship with the professor. You’ll have a much easier time maintaining focus and will feel more like a participant than a passive observer.

3. Take notes by hand
– Another unfortunate side effect of the PowerPoint revolution is that it discourages students from taking notes. Taking notes by hand will improve your grades because a) it forces you to pay attention, and b) the physical act of writing aids memorization. If you take notes, you’ll find it much easier to stay engaged. Your notes also provide a point of reference that will help you build a mental link between a written concept and the professor’s verbal explanation. This is key for efficient studying.

4. Do a weekly review
– A common problem students encounter is trying to learn an enormous amount of material right before the midterm or final exam. This is practically impossible. You’ll find it much easier if you take a gradual approach to studying. At least once a week, review your notes starting from the beginning of the course. This only needs to take 15 or 20 minutes, just enough time to build familiarity with the material.

By doing a weekly review you’ll gradually memorize everything and will better understand how one concept builds on the next. Putting in small amounts of effort on a consistent basis will drastically reduce the amount of studying you need to do right before the test.

5. Go to office hours – Professors and TA’s usually make themselves available at regular times during the week for students to ask questions about assignments. Do yourself a favor by taking advantage of this opportunity. First, attending office hours will motivate you to get ahead on your work and prepare questions to ask. This will give you a huge edge in understanding problems that aren’t clearly explained in the lectures. Second, it will build your reputation as a high-effort student who deserves high grades.

6. Find smart people to work with
– In courses that involve group work, this is essential. No one wants to get stuck with a bunch slackers, have to do all the work themselves, and end up with a poor grade to show for it. The quality of the your learning experience is directly related to the attitudes of the people you work with. Working with smart people will facilitate discussion. The best way to understand an idea is talking about it with other intelligent people.

Who you work with also affects your academic reputation. If you associate with students that aren’t interested in learning, teachers and graders will assume you feel the same way. It’s also a great way to connect with people who have similar interests and ambitions.

7. Avoid all-nighters
– Generally, having to pull an all-nighter means that you slacked off all semester and need to fit 3 months of learning into one day. If you use a gradual study strategy this will never be necessary. All-nighters don’t work! Yes, it might be possible to get a good grade if the course is easy, but it’s much more likely that your grade will be significantly lower. All-nighters harm performance because they make you tired and stressed. You’ll also forget most of what you learn right after the test, decreasing the practical value of your education.

Top 10 Tech Toys for the Filthy Rich

Written by Matt Schneiderman

filthy_rich_07_main.jpg

Just as cell phones are becoming ever more powerful ?bergadgets, and flat TV screens get larger even as their prices drop, so, too, do the gadgets of the upper crust further distance themselves from the trinkets of the masses. For better or worse, most of the guts of even the priciest pieces of tech are pretty much the same as those of the glitterati – even if the oil sheiks and Level III Scientologists of the world can afford to house those guts in 24-karat gold inlaid with Babe Ruth’s bone fragments.

Still, sometimes the superrich get what they pay for, or at least far more bang for their Black AmEx swipe than the Wal-Mart shoppers can get on layaway. Here are the 10 most extravagant electronics for the techy bajillionaires on your gift list, and be sure to come back tomorrow for our companion piece, the 10 Gadgets You Can Actually Afford.

10_ultimate_ears_11.jpg

10. Ultimate Ears UE-11 Earphones

Bespoke suits, custom-made shirts, fitted ball caps – nothing bought off the rack can match the like-a-glove fit and comfort of customized men’s wear. The same perfection holds for customized in-ear monitors: earphones that require a visit to (or from) an audiologist to make a wax impression of the canals to shape precise molds, resulting in intrusive, yet perfectly comfortable ‘buds.

UE’s $1,150 phones are the company’s most sophisticated pro models yet, housing not a double but a quad armature speaker configuration with a three-way crossover. The results – delivered via dual subwoofers, a midrange driver, and a tweeter directly into your eardrum – is the most precise sound capable short of a miniaturized Christina Aguilera living in your brain. Ultimate Ears UE-11

9_krell_kid.jpg

9. Krell KID iPod Dock

When it comes to iPod docks, there are a lot of them: No audio-equipment manufacturer wants to be without one. So high-end component maker Krell introduced its own $1,200 entry this past January, attracting attention as the most expensive iPod accessory – an erroneous qualification, seeing as how there’s BMW that docks a ‘pod. No matter. Krell left out its supersensitive tubes when developing the Krell iPod Dock (disparagingly nicknamed by the acronym KID), instead optimizing the output of the iPod’s digital-to-analog converter. Otherwise, the KID serves its simple purpose of passing along iPod (or auxiliary Zune or other input) signals with panache, offering balanced outputs, bass and treble adjustments, and video out for the discerning entertainment rack. Krell KID

8_audiotechnica_ath_w5000.jpg

8. Audio-Technica ATH-W5000 Headphones

When buying audio equipment, the rules of diminishing returns inevitably require we budget-minded folks avail ourselves of the cost-value proposition. Yes, $100 headphones sound better than $20 headphones, but do they sound 5 times better? And does that mean that $1,500 headphones sound 15 times better than $100 headphones? Of course the answer is not frickin’ likely. But when cost is no option, plugging in a pair of bass-heavy Bose phones into a $7,000 receiver is tantamount to casting Charlize Theron as the She-Thing in FF3.

Audio-Technica’s $1,670 striped ebony-cased cans (that’s wood – better material for producing richer sound) enhance acoustics, output precise audio fidelity, and reduce noise. Leather ear fittings provide a comfortable hold, but not even the unique wood-y look of the things can communicate “rich audiophile” anywhere outside a specialty show, nor can they diminish the dork factor of DJ-style headphones. Audio-Technica ATH-W5000 headphones

7_remod_eggpod.jpg

7. modPod Egg Chair

Fans of Men in Black (the movie – not the comic book, and definitely not the kid’s cartoon show) may recognize the iconic Egg Chair. Everyone else will recognize it from breakfast. And while the unique retro design isn’t conducive to test-taking, it’s rather ideal for sound immersion – hence, the iPod integration with surround sound speakers. Each chair is custom upholstered in a choice of fabric, adding to the appeal/cost; a model with shaken-not-stirred rumble action goes for $1,800. modPod Egg Chair

6. Bentley Humidor

6_bentley_humidor.jpg

Nothing says, “I have money to burn” like a smoldering cigar. True tobacco aficionados keep their imported-at-great-human-and-fiscal-cost Cubabos in unnecessarily expensive humidors. This $6,400 jobby is cased in solid walnut, spiced up with Burr Walnut veneer and details of ebony and silver; a premium Credo humidity regulator (humidifier and hydrometer) – ostensibly the mechanism that justifies its gadget designation – is the best of its kind. A winged Bentley logo adorns the front to remind guest tokers that his other car is a lot more impressive than whatever you rolled up in. Bentley Humidor

5_Vertu_Ferrari_limited_editi.jpg

5. Vertu Ascent Ferrari 1947 Cell Phone

If the iPhone is the Mercedes sedan of cellies – superperforming, aspirational, slobber worthy – than this $7,500 phone is the? Ferrari GT – a showy, overstated midlife crisis wrapped up in metal and leather. “Exclusive handset crafters” Vertu (a subsidiary of flashy-forward cell maker Nokia) has tweaked the styles of its Ascent line to feature various automotive masterpieces; the individually numbered Ascent Ferrari 1947 phone gets its cues from the GT models of that obsessive Italian carmaker’s lineup, pairing hand-polished titanium with red and black leather, tarted up with black lacquer racing stripes and a to-scale aluminum brake pedal adorning the back.

Beyond sleek, racy good looks (we’ll grudgingly give it that), the Ascent, like all Vertus, connects directly to 24-hour concierge service, providing tech support and “creative and relevant solutions” to customers via a dedicated button – ostensibly saving the pampered class the trouble of texting GOOGLE for Web-accessible information. Vertu Ascent Ferrari 1947 Cell Phone

4_golden_shuffle.jpg

4. Xexoo Gold-Plated iPod Shuffle

The ubiquitous iPod provides a blank palette ripe for ostentatious individualized prettying up – graphic stickers, laser engraving, plastic molding and the like. How, then, to best enhance the appearance of the stylish gadget in a truly over-the-top fashion? Perhaps German company Xexoo looked to C-3PO for inspiration, as their solution involved covering up the base, pedestrian materials (plastic, aluminum) of Apple’s music players with gold – gold plating, to be precise.

A $19,000 Shuffle makes the most of little, adding diamond bling to its otherwise-$10,000, red carpet-worthy, 18-karat-covered accessory. 24-hour tech support – including damage repair and replacement worldwide – sweetens the deal, though for the price of 240-song storage on one Xexoo Shuffle, his majesty could also purchase Shuffles for each of his 240 servants/mistresses. Xexoo Gold-Plated iPod shuffle

3_steinway-speakers.jpg

3. Steinway Lyngdorf Model-D Handmade Music System

Steinway & Sons built its reputation on building flawless pianos like its concert grand Model-D. Peter Lyngdorf has built his reputation on building high-end hi-fi equipment. Put them together and the result is a $150,000 sound system, a completely digital, ultra-high-end beaut capable of reproducing a full symphony without any sound loss – thereby scaring the bejesus out of beyond-their-prime oboists who’ve been phoning it in for decades.

Each speaker tower weighs 500 pounds, has four 12-inch drivers, two 5-inch midranges and a single ribbon tweeter. The hefty cost includes a visit from a sound technician to do the installation and configuration to ensure that Mr. Moneybags can hear every last piccolo inhalation from any point in his listening room. The Model-D all but requires a shrine to audiophile addiction. Further ratcheting up the exclusivity, Steinway is hand-making just 100 systems, keeping the pristine pieces out of the hands of latecomers as well as us commoners. Steinway Lyngdorf Model-D Handmade Music System

2_tulip_otazu_ego.jpg

2. Tulip Ego Diamond Notebook PC

Dutch company Ego has seen the future in laptop design, and it looks like a purse. As with high fashion, utility and practicality are boring when it comes to luxury gadgets – hence the wholly underwhelming tech specifications of these Tulip Egos: single-core AMD Turion processor, 12.1-inch screen, blah blah blah. But they are so gorgeous, darling!

Women and fancy boys can customize their pocketbooks, er, notebooks with their choice of skin (leather or other fabric) and by integrating designs like embroidered initials or symbols into the case – all tailor-made. And while prices start at $5,000, the gem of the appropriately branded Ego is a $350,000 diamond-encrusted Tulip. It’s named for the flower-shaped icon consisting of 470 diamonds Krazy-glued to the lid, certain to attract jealous looks from socialites and diamond thieves alike. Tulip Ego Diamond notebook PC

1_Super_Frontech_LCD.jpg

1. Fujitsu Super Frontech Vision LD Display

Sure, there are 100-plus-inch flat screens out there, but Samsung, Sharp and LG aren’t likely to sell you one no matter how much scratch you bring to the electronics show. But anyone with a half-million holiday bonus (or 63 million Japanese Yen) still burning their extraordinarily large pockets can get their hands on (if not their arms around) this whoppingly huge-ormous 231-inch display consisting of huge LEDs. And as opposed to a Jumbotron, the 16-million-color monitor accepts a myriad of inputs, including DVI. Just don’t expect to see larger-than-life Katherine Heigl standing in your living room in full HD: the resolution’s a paltry 512 x 288 pixels, requiring a viewing distance of at least 15 feet. Fujitsu Super Frontech Vision LD display

The 10 Biggest Mistakes Freelancers Make, and How to Avoid Them

Written by Leo Babauta

No freelancer is perfect – not me, not you, not even the best of us. We all make mistakes, all the time, and if we’re smart, we learn from them.

Some mistakes, however, are more crucial than others, and if we can correct or avoid those mistakes, we’ll survive. We’ll still make other mistakes, but they won’t hurt as much.

Let’s take a look at some of the most essential mistakes that freelancers, new and old, often make, and how to avoid them.

Missing deadlines. I wrote more on this topic in this post, but basically, your ability to put out quality work and meet deadlines is what makes your reputation. And as a freelancer, your reputation is all you have. If you miss deadlines too often, you will soon see your clients going elsewhere. How to avoid: Make deadlines one of your top two priorities (along with putting out great work), overestimate how long it will take you, break the project into smaller steps, and be accountable every step of the way.

Charging too little. New freelancers, especially, undervalue themselves and charge less than they’re worth. That’s OK if you’re just breaking into the business, and don’t have any previous work or reputation to point to. But once you’ve got some stellar work under your belt, don’t be afraid to ask what you’re worth, otherwise you are selling yourself short. And you’ll be working too much just to pay the bills. (See this article for more.) How to avoid: It’s good to find out what the market avergage is, and charge a little more. This tells clients that you’re good. A good way to do the math is to figure out how much you want to make, and how many hours you realistically plan to work. Then charge based on those numbers.

Lack of preliminary research. This is research before making your pitch, not before completing the assignment. Often a freelancer will contact a potential client and make a pitch, without really understanding the client or his needs, and without knowing how this project will add value to the client. This approach will get you very little business. How to avoid: Research the client thoroughly before making contact. The Internet is a great way to do that, of course. Know what the client does, the client’s market, what the client’s goals are (in general), and figure out how you can help the client meet those goals. How will you add value? Direct your pitch at those issues.

Choosing the wrong clients. The client-freelancer relationship is an important one, and there are many issues that can make a client the wrong client, or the right client, for you. Those include the market they’re in, they’re working style, how difficult they are, how likely they are to pay your rate, how much work they require, their ability to pay on time without hassle, and more. If you choose the wrong client, you will make less money, be unhappy, and work more. How to avoid: Select clients carefully. Again, research them, talk to other freelancers who’ve worked for them. When contacting a client, think of it as a two-way interview – they are trying to decide if you’re right for them, but you should also be trying to decide if they are right for you. Do your first assignment or three on a trial basis, to see how things work out. Every now and then, evaluate your clients to see if they’re worth the trouble.

Getting too personal. It’s good to be friendly with a client, but keep it professional. You don’t want to be best friends. You shouldn’t be too formal, either, but if you become personal, two things could happen: 1) one of you could get hurt or angry at the other based on a business decision; or 2) the client might think you’re unprofessional. Either one is bad for business. How to avoid: Start any correspondence on a formal basis, and then get friendlier depending on how the client handles communication. Don’t be afraid to be friendly, but at the same time, don’t go beyond business, and don’t cross the line into unprofessionalism.

Letting off steam. If there is a problem with a client, some freelancers have a tendency to vent their frustration – at the client. For example, if an editor decides not to run my article, I might show my frustration and displeasure in a very angry way. This is bad. It will harm your professional reputation, both with this client and with future clients. And it will lead to decreased business over time, if you continue this mistake. How to avoid: If there is a problem with a client, and you are angry or frustrated, do not communicate right away. Let your steam off some other way, through talking to a friend, through exercise, through eating a carton of ice cream. But don’t do it at your client, or anyone else in your professional world. Bite your tongue. Then, when you’ve calmed down, communicate with your client in a non-emotional, professional manner – preferably in a positive way, but clearly, so that future problems can be avoided.

Not proposing a follow-up idea. Often a freelancer will complete an assignment, and then move on to an assignment with another client. Perhaps the freelancer hopes that the assignment that he completed was so amazing, the client will be knocking down his door the next day. Unfortunately, that often doesn’t happen. If you don’t provide the basis of future business, you might not see it. How to avoid: when you complete an assignment, propose a follow-up idea for future work. If you don’t hear back, follow up.

Not having multiple income streams. Relying on one or two clients is always a bad idea. If your main client drops you, or reduces his freelancer budget, or goes out of business, you’re out of luck. And now you can’t pay your bills. How to avoid: Always have multiple income streams. You might start with one freelance client (we all do in the beginning), but don’t rely on that as your primary source of income until you’ve added more clients. And if you can get other sources of income streams (a full- or part-time job, another business, your spouse’s income, advertising on a blog, selling a product, Amway), you should work hard to do so. It will make your income much more stable and reliable.

Allowing yourself to slack. Let’s face it: some days, we don’t feel like working. And that’s fine, if we plan for that flexibility, and make up for it on other days. But too many days of slacking, and soon you aren’t getting any income. And you’re missing deadlines. Not good. How to avoid: It’s fine to give yourself flexibility, so that you can work when you feel productive, but if you have deadlines to meet, don’t let yourself slack off. Push yourself to meet the deadline, and work in bursts to motivate yourself.

Failing to be yourself. Often we take work because we need the income, but it doesn’t align with who we are. And we feel awful about it, and slowly we begin to hate ourselves. Until we no longer want to do the work. How to avoid: Seek, from the beginning, to find work that aligns with your values, that allows you to be who you are. Being fake and dishonest, to others and to yourself, gets you nowhere. Be sincere in your interactions with others, and don’t be afraid to say no to stuff that doesn’t fit who you are. Always strive to find work you love.

19 Things I Learned From Movies

Written by Pradeep

1. If being chased through town, you can usually take cover in a passing St Patrick’s Day parade – at any time of the year.

2. All beds have special L-shaped top sheets that reach up to armpit level on a woman but only waist level on the man lying beside her.

3. All grocery shopping bags contain at least one stick of French bread.

4. Once applied, lipstick will never rub off – even while scuba diving.

5. The ventilation system of any building is a perfect hiding place. No one will ever think of looking for you in there and you can travel to any other part of the building without difficulty.

6. Should you wish to pass yourself off as a German officer, it will not be necessary to speak the language. A German accent will do.

7. The Eiffel Tower can be seen from any window of any building in Paris.

8. A man will show no pain while taking the most ferocious beating but will wince when a woman tries to clean his wounds.

9. When paying for a taxi, never look at your wallet as you take out a note – just grab one at random and hand it over. It will always be the exact fare.

10. If you lose a hand, it will cause the stump of your arm to grow by 15cm.

11. Mothers routinely cook eggs, bacon and waffles for their family every morning, even though the husband and children never have time to eat them.

12. Cars and trucks that crash will almost always burst into flames.

13. A single match will be sufficient to light up a room the size of a football stadium.

14. Medieval peasants had perfect teeth.

15. All single women have a cat.

16. Any person waking from a nightmare will sit bolt upright and pant.

17. One man shooting at 20 men has a better chance of killing them all than 20 men firing at one.

18. Creepy music coming from a graveyard should always be closely investigated.

19. Most people keep a scrapbook of newspaper cuttings – especially if any of their family or friends has died in a strange boating accident.

~Tx Sarasa

Images That Changed The World

Collected by PinGuy

Some people might be offended or upset by these images but this isn’t my intentions I just want it to be thought provoking and enlightening, and for people to talk about the past and to never forget, because we need to learn from past events other wise we will keep repeating history.

If the image has a link it will take you to a video/documentary about the history of the image and the title of the image will take you to Wikipedia.

Execution of a Viet Cong Guerrilla [1968]

This picture was shot by Eddie Adams who won the Pulitzer prize with it. The picture shows Nguyen Ngoc Loan, South Vietnam’s national police chief executing a prisoner who was said to be a Viet Cong captain. Once again the public opinion was turned against the war.


By Eddie Adams


The lynching of young blacks [1930]

This is a famous picture, taken in 1930, showing the young black men accused of raping a Caucasian woman and killing her boyfriend, hanged by a mob of 10,000 white men. The mob took them by force from the county jail house. Another black man was left behind and ended up being saved from lynching. Even if lynching photos were designed to boost white supremacy, the tortured bodies and grotesquely happy crowds ended up revolting many.


By Lawrence Beitler


Soweto Uprising [1976]

It was a picture that got the world’s attention: A frozen moment in time that showed 13-year-old Hector Peterson dying after being struck down by a policeman’s bullet.


By Sam Nzima


Hazel Bryant [1957]

It was the fourth school year since segregation had been outlawed by the Supreme Court. Things were not going well, and some southerners accused the national press of distorting matters. This picture, however, gave irrefutable testimony, as Elizabeth Eckford strides through a gantlet of white students, including Hazel Bryant (mouth open the widest), on her way to Little Rock’s Central High.


By Will Counts



Triangle Shirtwaist Company Fire [1911]

The Triangle Shirtwaist Company always kept its doors locked to ensure that the young immigrant women stayed stooped over their machines and didn’t steal anything. When a fire broke out on Saturday, March 25, 1911, on the eighth floor of the New York City factory, the locks sealed the workers’ fate. In just 30 minutes, 146 were killed. Witnesses thought the owners were tossing their best fabric out the windows to save it, then realized workers were jumping, sometimes after sharing a kiss (the scene can be viewed now as an eerie precursor to the World Trade Center events of September, 11, 2001, only a mile and a half south). The Triangle disaster spurred a national crusade for workplace safety.





Phan Th? Kim Phúc [1972]

Phan Th? Kim Phúc known as Kim Phuc (born 1963) was the subject of a famous photo from the Vietnam war. The picture shows her at about age nine running naked after being severely burned on her back by a napalm attack.


By Hu?nh Công Út



Kent State [1970]

The news that Richard Nixon was sending troops to Cambodia caused a chain of protests in the U.S. colleges. At Kent State the protest seemed more violent, some students even throwing rocks. In consequence, The Ohio National Guard was called to calm things down, but the events got out of hand and they started shooting. Some of the victims were simply walking to school. The photo shows 14-year-old Mary Ann Vecchio kneeling over the body of Jeffrey Miller who had been shot by the Ohio National Guard moments earlier.


By John Paul Filo



Tiananmen Square [1989]

This is the picture of a student/man going to work who has just had enough. The days leading up to this event thousands of protesters and innocent by standers were killed by their own government because the Chinese people wanted more rights. He tries to stop the tanks in Tiananmen Square by standing in front of them and blocking them from passing, the tank driver didn’t crush the man with the bags as a group of unknown people came and dragged him away, we still don’t know if the man is alive or dead as the Chinese government executed many of the protesters involved. China is still controlled by a communist regime.

There are two well know photos taken of the protester by two different photojournalist, so I thought I would show both images and give both photographer credit for there work as many people think that both images where taken by the same person.


By Stuart Franklin

By Jeff Widener



Thích Qu?ng ??c [1963]

Thích Qu?ng Ð?c was a Vietnamese Buddhist monk who burned himself to death at a busy Saigon intersection on June 11, 1963. His act of self-immolation, which was repeated by others, was witnessed by David Halberstam, a New York Times reporter, who wrote:

    ” I was to see that sight again, but once was enough. Flames were coming from a human being; his body was slowly withering and shriveling up, his head blackening and charring. In the air was the smell of burning human flesh; human beings burn surprisingly quickly. Behind me I could hear the sobbing of the Vietnamese who were now gathering. I was too shocked to cry, too confused to take notes or ask questions, too bewildered to even think…. As he burned he never moved a muscle, never uttered a sound, his outward composure in sharp contrast to the wailing people around him.”


By Malcolm Browne



Portrait of Winston Churchill [1941]

This photograph was taken by Yousuf Karsh, a Canadian photographer, when Winston Churchill came to Ottawa. The portrait of Churchill brought Karsh international fame. It is claimed to be the most reproduced photographic portrait in history. It also appeared on the cover of Life magazine.


By Yousuf Karsh



Albert Einstein [1951]

Albert Einstein is probably one of the most popular figures of all times. He is considered a genius because he created the Theory of Relativity, and so, challenged Newton’s laws, that were the basis of everything known in physics until the beginning of the 20th century. But, as a person, he was considered a beatnik, and this picture, taken on March 14, 1951 proves that.


By Arthur Sasse



Nagasaki [1945]

This is the picture of the “mushroom cloud” showing the enormous quantity of energy. The first atomic bomb was released on August 6 in Hiroshima (Japan) and killed about 80,000 people. On August 9 another bomb was released above Nagasaki. The effects of the second bomb were even more devastating – 150,000 people were killed or injured. But the powerful wind, the extremely high temperature and radiation caused enormous long term damage.





Hiroshima, Three Weeks After the Bomb [1945]

Americans — and everyone — had heard of the bomb that “leveled” Hiroshima, but what did that mean? When the aerial photography was published, that question was answered.


And here is a ground view of the destruction.



Dead on the Beach [1943]

Haunting photograph of a beach in Papua New Guinea on September 20, 1943, the magazine felt compelled to ask in an adjacent full-page editorial, “Why print this picture, anyway, of three American boys dead upon an alien shore?” Among the reasons: “words are never enough . . .


By George Strock



Buchenwald [1945]

George Patton’s troops when they liberated the Buchenwald concentration camp. Forty-three thousand people had been murdered there. Patton was so outraged he ordered his men to march German civilians through the camp so they could see with their own eyes what their nation had wrought.





Anne Frank [1941]

Six million Jews died in the Holocaust. For many throughout the world, one teenage girl gave them a story and a face. She was Anne Frank, the adolescent who, according to her diary, retained her hope and humanity as she hid with her family in an Amsterdam attic. In 1944 the Nazis, acting on a tip, arrested the Franks; Anne and her sister died of typhus at Bergen-Belsen only a month before the camp was liberated. The world came to know her through her words and through this ordinary portrait of a girl of 14. She stares with big eyes, wearing an enigmatic expression, gazing at a future that the viewer knows will never come.





V-J Day, Times Square, [1945]

or “The Kiss”, at the end of World War II, in US cities everybody went to the streets to salute the end of combat. Friendship and unity were everywhere. This picture shows a sailor kissing a young nurse in Times Square. The fact is he was kissing every girl he encountered and for that kiss, this particular nurse slapped him.


By Alfred Eisenstaedt


Casualties of war [1991]

Image of a young US sergeant at the moment he learns that the body bag next to him contains the body of his friend, killed by “friendly fire”.

The widely published photo became an iconic image of the 1991 Gulf war – a war in which media access was limited by Pentagon restrictions.


By David Turnley



The Falling Man [2001]

The powerful and controversial photograph provoked feelings of anger, particularly in the United States, in the immediate aftermath of the September 11 attacks. The photo ran only once in many American newspapers because they received critical and angry letters from readers who felt the photo was exploitative, voyeuristic, and disrespectful of the dead. This led to the media’s self-censorship of the photograph, preferring instead to print photos of acts of heroism and sacrifice.

Drew commented about the varying reactions, saying, “This is how it affected people’s lives at that time, and I think that is why it’s an important picture. I didn’t capture this person’s death. I captured part of his life. This is what he decided to do, and I think I preserved that.”9/11: The Falling Man ends suggesting that this picture was not a matter of the identity behind the man, but how he symbolized the events of 9/11.


By Richard Drew



U.S. Marines raising the flag on Iwo Jima [1945]

Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima is a historic photograph taken on February 23, 1945, by Joe Rosenthal. It depicts five United States Marines and a U.S. Navy corpsman raising the flag of the United States atop Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima in World War II.

The photograph was extremely popular, being reprinted in thousands of publications. Later, it became the only photograph to win the Pulitzer Prize for Photography in the same year as its publication, and ultimately came to be regarded as one of the most significant and recognizable images of the war, and possibly the most reproduced photograph of all times.


By Joe Rosenthal




Lunch atop a Skyscraper [1932]

Lunch atop a Skyscraper (New York Construction Workers Lunching on a Crossbeam) is a famous photograph taken by Charles C. Ebbets during construction of the GE Building at Rockefeller Center in 1932.

The photograph depicts 11 men eating lunch, seated on a girder with their feet dangling hundreds of feet above the New York City streets. Ebbets took the photo on September 29, 1932, and it appeared in the New York Herald Tribune in its Sunday photo supplement on October 2. Taken on the 69th floor of the GE Building during the last several months of construction, the photo Resting on a Girder shows the same workers napping on the beam.

Here’s a rare image by the same photographer showing the workers sleeping on the crossbeam.


By Charles C. Ebbets

Migrant Mother [1936]

For many, this picture of Florence Owens Thompson (age 32) represents the Great Depression. She was the mother of 7 and she struggled to survive with her kids catching birds and picking fruits. Dorothea Lange took the picture after Florence sold her tent to buy food for her children. She made the first page of major newspapers all over the country and changed people’s conception about migrants.


By Dorothea Lange



Omayra Sánchez [1985]

Red Cross rescue workers had apparently repeatedly appealed to the government for a pump to lower the water level and for other help to free the girl. Finally rescuers gave up and spent their remaining time with her, comforting her and praying with her. She died of exposure after about 60 hours.


By Frank Fournier



A vulture watches a starving child [1993]

The prize-winning image: A vulture watches a starving child in southern Sudan, March 1, 1993.
Carter’s winning photo shows a heart-breaking scene of a starving child collapsed on the ground, struggling to get to a food center during a famine in the Sudan in 1993. In the background, a vulture stalks the emaciated child.

Carter was part of a group of four fearless photojournalists known as the “Bang Bang Club” who traveled throughout South Africa capturing the atrocities committed during apartheid.

Haunted by the horrific images from Sudan, Carter committed suicide in 1994 soon after receiving the award.


By Kevin Carter



Biafra [1969]

When the Igbos of eastern Nigeria declared themselves independent in 1967, Nigeria blockaded their fledgling country-Biafra. In three years of war, more than one million people died, mainly of hunger. In famine, children who lack protein often get the disease kwashiorkor, which causes their muscles to waste away and their bellies to protrude. War photographer Don McCullin drew attention to the tragedy. “I was devastated by the sight of 900 children living in one camp in utter squalor at the point of death,” he said. “I lost all interest in photographing soldiers in action.” The world community intervened to help Biafra, and learned key lessons about dealing with massive hunger exacerbated by war-a problem that still defies simple solutions.


By Don McCullin



Misery in Darfur [2004]

It’s an image which depicts a depressed, shoulders-down figure of a child in a cluster of what remains of her family.

The very weather-beaten arm of her mother goes over her left shoulder and there are the very small weather-beaten hands of the child, who is about five or six, clinging on to this one piece of security that she has, which is the weather-beaten hand of her mother.

The mother is not in the image, she’s in the background. But then slightly further in the background you see the other hands of her brothers and sisters as they wait in this village.


By Marcus Bleasdale



Tragedy in Oklahoma [1995]

The fireman has taken the time to remove his gloves before receiving this infant from the policeman.

Anyone who knows anything about firefighters know that their gloves are very rough and abrasive and to remove these is like saying I want to make sure that I am as gentle and as compassionate as I can be with this infant that I don’t know is dead or alive.

The fireman is just cradling this infant with the utmost compassion and caring.

He is looking down at her with this longing, almost to say with his eyes: “It’s going to be OK, if there’s anything I can do I want to try to help you.”

He doesn’t know that she has already passed away.


By Chris Porter



How Life Begins [1965]

In 1957 he began taking pictures with an endoscope, an instrument that can see inside a body cavity, but when Lennart Nilsson presented the rewards of his work to LIFE’s editors several years later, they demanded that witnesses confirm that they were seeing what they thought they were seeing. Finally convinced, they published a cover story in 1965 that went on for 16 pages, and it created a sensation. Then, and over the intervening years, Nilsson’s painstakingly made pictures informed how humanity feels about . . . well, humanity. They also were appropriated for purposes that Nilsson never intended. Nearly as soon as the 1965 portfolio appeared in LIFE, images from it were enlarged by right-to-life activists and pasted to placards.


By Lennart Nilsson



First Flight [1903]

December 17, 1903 was the day humanity spread its wings and rose above the ground – for 12 seconds at first and by the end of the day for almost a minute – but it was a major breakthrough. Orville and Wilbur Wright, two bicycle mechanics from Ohio, are the pioneers of aviations, and although this first flight occurred so late in history, the ulterior development was exponential.


By John T. Daniels



Earthrise [1968]

The late adventure photographer Galen Rowell called it “the most influential environmental photograph ever taken.” Captured on Christmas Eve, 1968, near the end of one of the most tumultuous years the U.S. had ever known, the Earthrise photograph inspired contemplation of our fragile existence and our place in the cosmos. For years, Frank Borman and Bill Anders of the Apollo 8 mission each thought that he was the one who took the picture. An investigation of two rolls of film seemed to prove Borman had taken an earlier, black-and-white frame, and the iconic color photograph, which later graced a U.S. postage stamp and several book covers, was by Anders.


By William Anders

9 Survival Tips for College Freshman

Written by eyeRmonkey

University of Oregon Again
Photo by eyeRmonkey

These days, It seems like I meet a new college freshman every couple of weeks. I always wish I could pass along all the lessons I accumulated during my first year of college. And thanks to the wonders of the interwebs, I can! My experiences were at the University of Oregon, but I think they are applicable anywhere. I suspect that some of these lessons need to be experienced first hand to have any effect on you, but I still think they are worth sharing. Here’s my advice (in order of importance):

#1 The first week defines the rest of the year

I feel like this is the most important piece of advice I could offer, but I also know it’s the hardest thing to control. During the first week, be more outgoing that you normally would. Over the first couple days, meet and talk to every person in the dorm for at least a couple minutes. The best way to develop a community is to do everything as a group for the first week.

Let me give you a breakdown of how things went in my dorm for the first week and how I heard things went in every other dorms:

My dorm:

  • Every time we had to go to some mandatory orientation thing, we went as a group and invited every single person on every floor to join us. Whenever someone wanted to go out to get food or go to 7/11, they gathered a bunch of people to go with them.
  • The second or third night we were there, we all found ourselves in the lounge just sitting around sharing cool stories for that summer and from our varying pasts. We all told something about our town or our lives.
  • Everyone always had their door open (when they were there) and didn’t mind if anyone walked in and started a conversation.

Other dorms:

  • Almost no one left their door open when they were there.
  • Those who did leave their door open would get offended if you walked into their room without permission.
  • Most people would be lucky to know the names of half the people on their floor.

Every time I heard another story like that about other dorms, I was shocked. It just made me more and more thankful that we had developed a great community during the first week we were there. People from other dorms loved our dorm because we were such a tight group. As time went on, people separated into “clicks” as you would expect, but the friendliness that everything started out on was always present.

#2 Organize Study Groups!

Study groups are amazingly helpful! Find two, three, or four other people who you have class with and get together before assignments are due. You assist one another, make suggestions and help motivate one another. I can only begin the name the numerous benefits! Here are a few:

  • You can’t procrastinate your assignments or skip them entirely. If you have a set meeting time to do you homework or paper with the rest of your group, then you have no way to put it off.
  • For math/science classes, it’s easy to get stuck on a problem and want to give up, but when there are others there to help you, you have no reason to stop.
  • For writing intensive classes, brainstorming works wonders. Come to the study group with a few possible thesis statements ready and bounce them off your partners.
  • Helping others on their homework helps you solidify your knowledge.

Here’s what you need to do: During the first week of classes, introduce yourself to the people around you in your lab or discussion classes. When you receive your first assignment, talk to anyone you’ve met (or just random people who look friendly!) and arrange a date a few days before it’s due to get together and do it as a group. After that, it’s easy! Now you know them and can continue organizing study groups!

#3 Study for tests!

Finals
Photo by ?reg

This may seem like an obvious one, but it’s also one of the most important. It’s easy to procrastinate anything when you’re in the dorms. There’s always someone to hang out with or somewhere to go. I don’t know about you, but I never studied in high school. That bad habit followed me into college. As I walked into my midterms and finals, I became really anxious and I realized what a bad idea it had been to only study for 15 minutes.

It wasn’t until finals of Spring term that I realized how extremely helpful it was to put a sincere effort into studying. I got an A on all my tests that term. Midterms and finals are worth a majority of your grade in most classes, so that’s where your efforts should be focused. I studied a few hours for each test (with my study groups *nudge nudge*). When I walked into each test, I was no longer anxious because I was confident that I knew most of the answers. Part of the reason I was so confident is because I knew what kind of tests the professors were going to give, so I knew how to study. Some of my finals were just a combination of the questions from the midterms.

#4 Get involved

I spent most of my freshman year giving free hugs and it was fantastic, but I sometimes wish I had done more. Obviously the opportunity to join clubs and attend events will always be there, but freshman year is the ideal time to start. There are always tons of events on the bulletin board in your dorm. Some are specific to your dorm/complex, some are specific to a certain club and some are for everybody. Find some that interest you, grab some friends, and go to them!

#6 If you don’t like your roommate, switch

You may come across as rude, but I watched people suffer for nine months with a roommate they despised, and it’s not a pretty sight. Don’t be too hasty to switch roommates though. College is about new experiences, so if you think you could learn something new from staying with your roommate, then tough it out. If you know you’ll never be able to stand them, then switch right away.

#7 Go to sporting events

I’m not into sports and I didn’t go any of the games last year. In hindsight, I really wish I had. I definitely plan on going to some this year. Most colleges will give you tickets for free if you are student (U of O does!). The only catch is that you usually have to wake up early to stand in line to get tickets for the good games, but that’s half the fun!

#8 Figure out housing for the next year

Decide if you want to have a house or apartment for the next year. Start looking for people you think you’ll want to live with. After you get back from winter break, ask people if they want to room with you and start looking for the place you’ll want. That’ll give you plenty of time to make arrangements with your future landlord. Don’t wait until the last minute.

If you’re looking for an apartment, check out this nifty tool that searches craigeslist and displays the results on a map for you.

#9 Don’t buy books until you need them

Textbooks
Photo by Vaedri1

Every term, you will usually need to buy $50-$250 worth of books. At the end of each term, I realized that there were some books that I hadn’t even opened once. During my last term, I decided not to buy any books until I needed them (I already had the math book that I needed). I waited until the professor required (not suggested) a reading out of the book. I ended up only buying one book that term and I split the cost with one of my dorm mates who was in the class with me.

Take this advice with a grain of salt. Obviously you need to buy math books to do your assignments. Some books sell out and are hard to get a hold of, so you might not want to wait on all your books. Also, I don’t do as much of the reading for classes as I should, so my definition of needing the book is probably different than someone more studious.

When you do have to buy a book, split the cost with someone in your dorm and share the book when you have to use it. This will save you a bundle of money. Always buy used books when you have the option.

That’s all I have! If you find this useful, leave a comment and let me know. If you have some of your own tips for dorm life or for college life, please share them!

Be on the look out next year for a Sophomore version of this blog about how to live in a house or apartment and deal with bills/rent, parties and neighbors.

Update: I’m as perplexed as the rest of you about where #5 disappeared to. Perhaps it’s absence is just another lesson: Don’t write papers at 4 in the morning the day before they’re due (because that’s about what time I wrote this blog).

10 Killer Job Interview questions and Answers

Written by Carole Martin

Behind every interview question there is a concern or another question. Your job is to process the question thinking about what the interviewer’s concern might be. In other words, why is the interviewer asking you this question?

Q#1 – How long have you been looking for a job? (Concern – is there something wrong with you that other employers have picked up?)

A#1 – “After I was laid off from my last job, I took the opportunity to take some time out to examine my career goals and where I was going with my life. I have just begun my search in the last few weeks. I have a definite goal in mind and have been selective about the positions I consider. Your company and this position are of great interest to me.”

Q#2 – How did you prepare for this interview? (Concern – are you interested enough to do some research, or are you going to “wing it”?)

A#2 – “When I found this position posted on the internet (monster.com) I was immediately interested. I checked out the company website and mission statement, looked at the bios of company founders and executives, and was impressed. Once I had the interview appointment, I talked with friends and acquaintances in the industry. And, I’m sure I’ll find out a lot more in today’s meetings.”

Q#3 – What is your salary expectation for this job? (Concern – Can we afford you? Can we get you for less than budgeted?)

A#3 – “I’ll need more information about the job and the responsibilities involved before we can begin to discuss salary. Can you give me an idea of the range budgeted for this position?”

Q#4 – How do you keep current and informed about your job and the industries that you have worked in? (Concern – Once you get the job do you continue to learn and grow – stay challenged and motivated?)

A#4 – “I pride myself on my ability to stay on top of what is happening in my industry. I do a lot of reading – the business section of the newspapers and magazines. I belong to a couple of professional organizations and network with colleagues at the meetings. I take classes and seminars whenever they are of interest, or offer new information or technology.”

Q#5 – Tell me about a time when you had to plan and coordinate a project from start to finish. (Concern – behavioral questions – seeking an example of specific past behavior)

A#5 – ” I headed up a project which involved customer service personnel and technicians. I organized a meeting to get everyone together to brainstorm and get his or her input. From this meeting I drew up a plan, taking the best of the ideas. I organized teams, balancing the mixture of technical and non-technical people. We had a deadline to meet, so I did periodic checks with the teams. After three weeks, we were exceeding expectations, and were able to begin implementation of the plan. It was a great team effort, and a big success. I was commended by management for my leadership, but I was most proud of the team spirit and cooperation which it took to pull it off.”

Q#6 – What kinds of people do you have difficulties working with? (Concern – ability to be flexible and work in a diverse environment?)

A#6 – “In my last three jobs I have worked with men and women from very diverse backgrounds and cultures. The only time I had difficulty was with people who were dishonest about work issues. I worked with one woman who was taking credit for work that her team accomplished. I had an opportunity to talk with her one day and explained how she was affecting the morale. She became very upset that others saw her that way, and said she was unaware of her behavior or the reactions of others. Her behavior changed after our talk. What I learned from that experience is that sometimes what we perceive about others is not always the case if we check it out.”

Q#7 – We expect managers to work more than 8 hours a day. Do you have a problem with that? (Concern – are you a work-aholic or a person who requires balance?)

A#7 – “I have no problem working long hours. I have worked 12 or 14 hour days. What I have found works for me is to work smarter, not necessarily longer. My goal is to get the job done, whatever that takes, in the most efficient manner.”

Q#8 – When have you been most satisfied in your career? (Concern – what motivates you? Or demotivates you?)

A#8 – “The job before the one I am currently at, was my most rewarding experience for me. I worked in a wonderful team environment. There was a lot of camaraderie. I worked with a team of four people and we did some really original thinking. It is that kind of environment I want to be involved in again.”

Q#9 – Why do you want this job? (Concern – are you using the shot-gun approach to job search or do you really know what you want?)

A#9 – “I’ve been very careful about the companies where I have applied. When I saw the ad for this position, I knew I found what I was looking for. What I can bring to this job is my seven years of experience, and knowledge of the industry, plus my ability to communicate and build customer relationships. That, along with my flexibility and organizational skills, makes me a perfect match for this position. I see some challenges ahead of me here, and that’s what I thrive on. I have what you need, and you have what I want.”

Q#10 – We are ready to make an offer. Are you ready to accept today? (Concern – we don’t want you to go away and think about it and change your mind – we want you.)

A#10 – “Based on my research and the information I have gathered during the interview process, I feel I am in a position to consider an offer. I do, however, have a personal policy that I give myself at least 24 hours to make major life decisions. I could let you know by tomorrow.”

There is no way you can accurately predict the questions that will be asked in an interview, but you can be ready and prepared by thinking about the factors that might concern an interviewer or employer before the interview.

——————

Carole Martin, America’s #1 Interview Coach, is a celebrated author, trainer, and mentor. Carole can give you interviewing tips like no one else can. Get a copy of her FREE 9-part “Interview Success Tips” report by visiting Carole on the web at The Interview Coach http://www.interviewcoach.com

7 Ways to Grow the Action Habit

Written by John Wesley

cyclists People at the top of every profession share one quality – they get things done. This ability supercedes intelligence, talent, and connections in determining the size of your salary and the speed of your advancement.

Despite the simplicity of this concept there is a perpetual shortage of people who excel at getting results. The action habit – the habit of putting ideas into action now – is essential to getting things done. Here are 7 ways you can grow the action habit:

1. Don’t wait until conditions are perfect – If you’re waiting to start until conditions are perfect, you probably never will. There will always be something that isn’t quite right. Either the timing is off, the market is down, or there’s too much competition. In the real world there is no perfect time to start.You have to take action and deal with problems as they arise. The best time to start was last year. The second best time is right now.

2. Be a doer – Practice doing things rather than thinking about them. Do you want to start exercising? Do you have a great idea to pitch your boss? Do it today. The longer an idea sits in your head without being acted on, the weaker it becomes. After a few days the details gets hazy. After a week it’s forgotten completely. By becoming a doer you’ll get more done and stimulate new ideas in the process.

3. Remember that ideas alone don’t bring success – Ideas are important, but they’re only valuable after they’ve been implemented. One average idea that’s been put into action is more valuable than a dozen brilliant ideas that you’re saving for “some other day” or the “right opportunity”. If you have an idea the you really believe in, do something about it. Unless you take action it will never go anywhere.

4. Use action to cure fear – Have you ever noticed that the most difficult part of public speaking is waiting for your turn to speak? Even professional speakers and actors experience pre-performance anxiety. Once they get started the fear disappears. Action is the best cure for fear. The most difficult time to take action is the very first time. After the ball is rolling, you’ll build confidence and things will keep getting easier. Kill fear by taking action and build on that confidence.

5. Start your creative engine mechanically – One of the biggest misconceptions about creative work is that it can only be done when inspiration strikes. If you wait for inspiration to slap you in the face, your work sessions will be few and far between. Instead of waiting, start your creative motor mechanically. If you need to write something, force yourself to sit down and write. Put pen to paper. Brainstorm. Doodle. By moving your hands you’ll stimulate the flow of ideas and inspire yourself.

6. Think in terms of now – Focus on what you can do in the present moment. Don’t worry about what you should have done last week or what you might be able to do tomorrow. The only time you can affect is the present. If you speculate too much about the past or the future you won’t get anything done. Tomorrow or next week frequently turns into never. As Ben Franklin said, “Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today.”

7. Get down to business immediately – It’s common practice for people to socialize and make small talk at the beginning of meetings. The same is true for individual workers. How often do you check email or RSS feeds before doing any real work? These distractions will cost you serious time if you don’t bypass them and get down to business immediately. By becoming someone who gets to the point you’ll be more productive and people will look to you as a leader.

It takes courage to take action without instructions from the person in charge. Perhaps that’s why initiative is a rare quality that’s coveted by managers and executives everywhere. Seize the initiative. Be a crusader. When you have a good idea, start implementing it without being told. Once people see you’re serious about getting things done they’ll want to join in. The people at the top don’t have anyone telling them what to do. If you want to join them, you should get used to acting independently.

10 Love Songs That Could End Your Relationship

Written by David Morgan

The list of “___ Worst Love Songs” comes up every so often both on the internet and in actual print, and one would think there’s nothing left to say. Well, this time we’re going to do things slightly differently. This list will be comprised of love songs (good and bad) that if you tried to designate one of them as “our song” with your girlfriend, that action would become your last as a couple. You would be dumped on the spot.

Obviously, something like “United States of Whatever” wouldn’t be a good “our song” because it’s not even a love song to begin with. The following are all legitimate love songs that — for one reason or another — are unsuitable for couples. However, right off the bat I should tell you that the perennial favorite by Meat Loaf, “I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That),” will not be found on this list. It absolutely is one of the worst love songs, but it is played out and is an easy target. Same goes for, “Every Breath You Take,” by The Police. Now that the ground rules are set, we can proceed, and with some different contenders for a change.

LoveFool by the Cardigans

This 90s favorite encourages deceit in relationships and it’s the kind of song that gets stuck in your head if you’re not careful. That combo could make for an unpleasant afternoon/marriage.

If You Wanna Be Happy by Jimmy Soul

How on Earth do you explain liking this song to your girlfriend? You certainly can’t tell her that she’s ugly, but is telling her, “don’t worry, you’re the pretty woman that will ruin my life,” that much better?

Paradise by the Dashboard Light by Meat Loaf

Basically, we’re legally obligated to put one Meat Loaf love song on the list, and this is a strong contender. Meat Loaf gets to have sex with a woman by telling her that he’ll love her till the end of time. The refrain becomes “and I’m praying for the end of time.” As much as we all love ragging on “I Would Do Anything…” this one’s actually pretty fun, and the late Phil Rizzuto provides play-by-play commentary of Meat Loaf trying to score with this girl.

Yeah! Oh Yeah! by the Magnetic Fields

One might question whether or not this is a love song at all, but it was released on the album 69 Love Songs, which makes it fair game. It’s about a man who enjoys mentally torturing his wife and eventually kills her while telling her that her whole life was a lie. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Only the Good Die Young by Billy Joel

It’s never explicitly stated that the girl in this song is underage. But there’s reference to confirmation which usually takes place in the early teen years, and you can’t help feeling a little dirty thinking about Billy Joel trying to convince a young Catholic girl to give it up.

Hooked on a Feeling by David Hasselhoff

Originally performed by B.J. Thomas and later by Blue Swede, the David Hasselhoff version is maybe the most infamous rendition of this love song. Granted, a lot of what’s wrong with this song is its music video, but just knowing it’s David Hasselhoff singing is enough to sterilize any inherent romantic content.

My Best Friend’s Girl by The Cars

Being in love with your best friend’s girlfriend can only lead to trouble of one sort or another. Admittedly, your friend is a dick for stealing your girlfriend (“she used to be mine”), but move on. Also, if you’ve actually stolen your current girlfriend from your best friend, don’t play her this song to remind her of your victory.

Never Gonna Give You Up by Rick Astley

Ah, Rick Astley. The scrawny British fellow with the voice of a much larger black man. We can all admire his pipes if not his song-writing ability. This is an unacceptable song because your woman should have at least a smattering of taste. (Ed. note: However, if you are a gay man, and you enjoy sexing your lover while wearing an ascot, this may be your jam. Also, you do not exist. Sigh!)

Tim I Wish You Were Born a Girl by Of Montreal

This is sort of a sweet song, for those of you lonely heterosexuals out there who wish your best bud had been born with female anatomy. It’s basically a platonic, heterosexual love song between two men. That said, it cannot be brought up in any situation. You can’t say to your friend, “Hey, listen to this song. I wish we could be like this,” because it would make things weird. Even if you and your friend were gay it wouldn’t make any sense because if he had been born a girl you’d no longer be into him. And you can’t tell your girlfriend you wish she was born a girl because that doesn’t make any sense either. So, this song is unfortunately very limited in scope.

Don’t Go Home with Your Hard-On by Leonard Cohen

Go ahead. Download it.

On a personal note, I asked my girlfriend for a suggestion for a tenth song and she said that if I made this “our song,” we would not make it. We both really enjoy the song, it’s just that the lyrics depicting his mother as a prostitute and about your erection not melting in the rain make it kind of a poor choice to play at a wedding.

No doubt there are some notable songs missing from this list, so comment and tell us what you would add. You could turn it into a mix-tape to give to your girlfriend for her birthday if/when things are starting to go downhill and you don’t feel like spending money on a real gift.