Monday, December 29, 2014

Debates about basically nothing

As the year approaches its end, it would be very pertinently to ask, what happened this year, what we have achieved, what new and unusual is awaiting ahead. And such thoughts are not vain: a year passed, leaving a lot of different events, good and bag, behind. The fourteenth year of the New Millennium will not be left behind as something grey, forgotten or better-to-forgret. At one point, a lot of things happened, and on the other, nothing tremendous. What I mean is, let's suppose you live a hundred years since now, and studying history. You are preparing yourself for the exam. You know that in the morning of the next day your teacher will ask you: "Okay, my darling, tell me what happened one hundred years before now?". And you will stand at the backboard, shy, not knowing what to say.
Lies. In this publication I'll try to explain why.
A New Year tree, decorated in front of
"Motherland" cultural center, Kovrov
Weather is kidding.
"A little Venice" in Kovrov
after the rain on 18 Dec.

A lot had happened this year. If you are wondering what exactly, I'd suggest you to visit the YouTube website and watch the so-called viral video there, under the name "YouTube Rewind: Turn Down for 2014". Check it: it's already there and had been for twenty days already. This is, to be said, a completely different topic to discuss. At some point that video represents the modern culture, and how the year outgoing will be remembered in future. Remember the 2114 history lesson: what after watching that video will you come up with to tell the teacher?
Victory square memorial under reconstruction.
Building governance house-building combine's
brand crane.

Obviously, it's all about the culture. The culture, as you know, can be divided into two types: popular and elite. It is commonly confused that the popular culture is "cheap, inexpensive and so-called "dirty" - i.e. not morally and ethically right, but meeting the needs of the majority", while the elite culture is "best but inaccessible, velvet, glamorous, &tc." Again wrong. The difference is, the popular culture represents the common interest, like the video to which I've linked you above represented the videos uploaded on YouTube this year, which were watched most of the times. This is a great illustration of popular culture for it represents what music did people generally listen this year, what videos and entertainment did they like. Elite culture is something very different. It can't be measured with numbers: page visits, newspaper or magazine circulation, &tc. Let's suppose you are a big fan of making snowmen. It is your most adored bobbie: you know which weather is the best to make a snowman, what humidity, and things like that, you know how exactly to make and what to decorate it with, so it is best. And the snowmen you make are masterpieces. There are a very few people who can make snowmen like you do. And this is what elite culture is. It's not about numbers because it's not for everyone.
One of the abandoned industrial buildings, 
center of Moscow (Garden ring, Novinsky blvd).

If someone asks me on which of the
cultures I am more focused, which
one of them do I find my favorite, I
will not give the certain answer.
Maybe because I love both. For the
first, I write. To be more specific, I
like essays or anecdotes more.
From the things I wrote this year,
mostly everything is to be read
for/by children, which doesn't
automatically mean that it wouldn't
be interesting for other audience.
It's popular.

In such warm, where did the ice cubes came from?

For the latter, it's a number of things.
To illustrate, who knows that I love
skateboarding? I've opened this field,
which is sport, hobbie and passion at
the same time, for myself very
recently, and found it enough exciting
to devote a lot of my time, efforts and
energy to it. This year I became a
really big its fan, but I don't
mention it because not all my readers
are interested in it.
This culture is, again, elite.

Is that tree an addition to the porch?
Returning back to the modern history, this year I was a New York Times newspaper subscriber. I do not regret it, because every day I had a number of articles to read. After enjoying them, I did not put the paper in the recycling bin, as many do, but collected it for future reference, because almost every article was interesting and specific to the topic it was about. I just came ip with a thought that I've collected a very big and detailed history textbook for this year.
20th of December. Sunset on Volgograd avenue.

New Year tree made of golden balls - who said it's too mainstream? Atrium, 22nd of December.
Architecture changes, toilet remains!
The construction being unfinished for 5th year or more.

CAT is high.

Just a photo. Greetings to those who is
still reading captions. Butovo, 24th of Dec.

The subway introvert.
Fur money. Used to be a currency once.
"Are you paying with cash, credit or fur?"
From State Historical Museum.

As I predicted, this year was a kind of "fairy-talish", especially in my works. I wrote a lot of children stories as well as same stories for grown-ups; anecdotes, non-fiction essays and many, many more. Mostly my works were focused on children. I wrote about them and for them. And some of my short stories, which I'm the best in, were already rated by my younger relatives.

In State Historical Museum, the antique lighting attracted my attention as well.

 Another question, which appears on such pre-New Year days is, what are we looking forward to see in the year following? This is not less important. The attitude, with which we will see the New Year in will remain with us for its entire length. Will Smith once said, "If every morning you will wake up with a thought that this day something great will necessarily happen, it will." This suggestion is, without any doubt, true. The moral attitude is sometimes the most powerful weapon as well as demotivation.

Exhibits of State Historical Museum.
So, what the year ahead will surprise us with? My predictions are, with a lot of pleasant things. Looking back in history and analyzing political and economical situation of the World in modern times,  it seems to me that at present time we are reaching some sort of civilization peak, which will occur during next three years with the continuance to the next six years. The situation will not only remain stable, but will continue to improve. Maybe in six years something will change, maybe the economical crisis will start, maybe the war will ignite, or the volcano in Yellowstone will erupt, who knows? Anything can happen. But for six more years humanity will live calmly and happily. And the three years ahead, especially next one, will bring a lot.
in Kovrov railway terminal.
The shops and food court

To be more certain, we can expect a lot in popular and elite culture. A lot of new, different and hence interesting. My personal forecast is very positive, at least before early 2021. We should expect more innovations in both real and virtual cultures: we will see a lot of new musicians, artists, and other cultural figures which will be adored. A lot of new will be introduced into the Internet culture as well: many bloggers, YouTubers, critics, essayists, and other persons will appear under the spotlight, showing their talented works.
I congratulate you with the beginning of the New Year, and wish you much health, happiness, love and wealth. One more year I will sincerely be with you here on Blogger, as well as on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram. It is very likely that I will broadcast myself through some other sources; in that case, I will announce.

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Monday, December 1, 2014

First Aid for Asphyxia

My personal interest in asphyxia as a process in animal organism, its causes and effects grew since I've been a second-grader. Those stories which completely scared my seven-year-old perception, about the people who died from swallowing the food in a wrong way and causing fatal asphyxia, made me sitting now writing this. Both my Grandmother and my homeroom teacher at school told the story which happened in the middle of the last century in then-called Soviet Union. In both of them, a guy died from swallowing food in a wrong way, causing it to block the air from flowing into the lungs. Scientifically, it is called asphyxia due to obstruction in wind pipe. In my Grandma's story, the guy she told about was alone in his home with nobody around when having dinner and ending up so tragically. In my teacher's story, the guy was eating out in a restaurant full of people, and nobody was able to help him due to lack of this basic knowledge. In both cases the ambulance, obviously, as a matter of principle couldn't arrive on time. It is scary to imagine how many people died from swallowing food and blocking the wind pipe. After listening to Grandma and my class teacher, I thought that everyone in the World has some friend of his friend of her aunt's friend who knows a person who died this way. Every single person probably heard this story from different sources at least twice in his life. If such typical story was told frequently enough, why couldn't it happen to anybody?
The second time I understood how important it is this summer, when I almost suffered asphyxia myself a couple times, but fortunately, I coughed it out. Coughing is, clearly, the first reaction of the organism on wind pipe blocking. And there is a clear reason, which I will write about later. Both of the times I was completely shocked by understanding how close the death can be. Both of the times I understood that I could have just passed away, which was terrible not only because such death is so agonizing (three or more minutes of infinite suffer, of grabbing the air which can't be breathed with hands, either being alone or watching the scared and panicking faces of those who can't help; three or more minutes of torturous pain without air, before falling into eternity), but also because I won't be able to complete all those things I've planned to do next hundred or so years, what can as well be said about all those who died young.
As stated before, asphyxia can be only caused by any physical object which falls into the wind pipe and blocks it. This object can be as small as a grain of sand since the wind pipe is literally designed only for providing air into lungs. It happens when swallowing food: generally unexpected and not accompanied with anything. When in elementary school, we used to fool around with my classmates everywhere, including canteen. The teacher told us that story to warn us about the danger of laughing, or jumping, or doing any staff like that while eating. Generally she was right: asphyxia usually happens when a person makes extra movements while eating (laughter, which includes very frequent movements of diaphragm, is the most dangerous in this case), but not necessarily. A lot of deaths were reported, when witnesses reported the victim calmly sitting and eating or drinking, not being in a rush or anything.
The most dangerous thing here is lack of knowledge. Below, I will give the exact instructions on what should be done in such case. But before we continue, I'd like to give the brief intro. Imagine yourself having asphyxia. Right now. And suppose that you as well have no idea what to do. You are alone. In those couple minutes, when you, panicking, still can control your movements, what will you do?
It obviously makes no sense calling or Skyping somebody, since you can't talk, or looking it up in medical encyclopædia (again if you have one), for going to contents page, looking it up, reading the article and learning takes time. Here, a few things can help: either texting somebody who might know or Googling it. Both of the things are the most wise things you could do, but not at all more helpful. Let's take the first one. How long will it take you to text a friend of yours who works for ambulance? How long it will take him to respond? Remember, seconds count. Above that all, even the most mentally strong person is likely to start panicking in such situation. Would you choose Google? Great! Try to type in Google search, or Bing, or whatever, the name of this article. Do it, right now. As you can see, the search results for "first aid for asphyxia" are the scientific articles, or police death reports, or essays like this one. Looks like you lost again, my friend, to your own death.
So here is what you should do. First of all, you should not procrastinate and learn this now. It's not an exam where you can learn something the night before. If in reality it will never happen to you, my congratulations, you were born under a lucky star and you are the 99+% of people who never suffered asphyxia. But how can you know? If you evidence somebody who is not as lucky as you are, things can't be easier. Stand behind the poor one, wrapping his arms around the waist. Grasp the fist with your other hand, and place the thumb of your fist against the abdomen (belly), slightly above the navel and below the rib cage. Now imagine that you hate the victim as much as you can because he killed both of your parents, your wife and children. Your punches may be painful for him, but it's more important that you beat the alien object off his throat.

<<...Press your fist into the victim's abdomen with a quick upward thrust. Repeat several times if necessary till the foreign body is expelled out of the windpipe. When the victim is sitting, the First Aider [i.e. you] stands behind the chair and performs the same manœuvre. If the victim is lying, turn him supine (face up). Facing the victim, kneel astride the victim's legs. With your hands one on top of another, place the heel of your bottom hand over the abdomen (belly) between the naval and the ribcage. Press into the victim's abdomen with a quick upward thrust repeat several times, if necessary. Should the patient vomit, place him on his side and wipe to prevent asphyxia. Following the expulsion of food particle/foreign body it may be necessary to give artificial respiration. ...>>

For the information provided above, I highly thank the Web Health Center. From this source I've learned exactly what I wanted, and as I wrote before, I believe it could have saved many lives if it was on the top Google search results. The information provided on their web page, "Different kinds of asphyxia" are useful for absolutely everyone, and I highly encourage you to visit it right away. Drowning, smoke poisoning and things like that are as well called Asphyxia, happen much more frequently. People commit suicide by hanging themselves as well, which is the number one case of suicides.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Flickering Boston

It's only the middle of November, but in Boston the winter holiday reparations are already done duly. Since last Wednesday I started noticing the colorful lights and decorations around the city.

I have a pleasure today to introduce you a new place in Somerville - Pearl street. Somerville is a small suburban town in Boston Metro area. I wouldn't call it so cozy to live though it's better than a number of Boston's surrounding towns. The Metro Area, basically, illustrates the common urbanization of America, which will be my future topic. For today I'll share the photos from Pearl street.
I live on Everett avenue (which is, however, a very short sidestreet and has nothing to do with a definition of avenue), and before I discovered the Assembly station, I used to commute from Sullivan Square. It takes roughly the same time to get to both of them from my home

One of the streets parallel to Boylston, as seen from Public Garden's fence.

Trees, now naked, in Boston Public Garden.

Common area design suggestion. Boylston street.
It's only the middle of November, but in Boston the winter holiday reparations are already done duly. Since last Wednesday I started noticing the colorful lights and decorations around the city.

Hallway design suggestion. Boylston street.
Returning back home late in the evening, when t off the electric multiple unit on Sullivan Square station to walk on the Pearl street again and see how it looks at night.

Sullivan Square station, MBTA Orange line.

Bright porch on the corner of Parker and Hadley streets, Somerville.

Another porch, even brighter, in Somerville.
Newly built East Somerville community school looks modern both in the day and at night: