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Why aren't all single-use plastic bags banned?

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello everyone!

A few months ago I came across a post on Instagram, that made me think of this issue. I'll share the post with you later, in a different entry. 

Well, i thought about it before, but I somehow didn't have the right muse around me to write about it. I think the time is better now. 

Many types and shapes of plastic

I won't dive into what plastic is made of. We all know there are many different types and forms of plastic out there, and i believe this wiki page is only an opener for a whole can of worms on the topic.

Here, in the images below, you can see some types and shapes plastic can take:

  • the hard shell of a mouse and of a regular pen
  • the soft-cover protecting the wires of a mouse, 
  • the faux-leather cover of an agenda (that i use as a planner AND mousepad),
  • my home-pants made of 100% polyester that you get a small snippet of as well (flowery blue, in the lowest part of the image) 
  • a pencil - the green one (the blue pencil is made of the traditional wood)

In these images, most of the mentioned plastics can be used just once. Granted, they can be used for a VERY long period of time. I have to find a recycling program for the mouse, and I'll most likely keep the agenda -as I recorded some memories in it as well. 

The plastic pencil is both useful (when writing or drawing) and wasteful (when sharpening), but it has just 1 life as well. When it becomes too short to still sharpen/write with, I'll have to somehow discard it. 

I got the pants as already worn, but they were still in a good shape. When I'll be done wearing them, I can turn them into something else, until the fabric can no longer be used. 

Speaking of clothes, I have 2 more types of plastics to show you. Well, one is a repeat, while the other is not. 

The vest is made of faux-fur and the coat of faux leather and has a polyester lining. These items too, can be used for an extended period of time. Additionally, they can somehow be reused when they can no longer be used as clothes. 

So, overall, this type of plastic is a tiny bit less problematic.  

Soo ... single-use plastic bags?

I'm not sure where in the world you live, and what the situation is with single-use plastic bags over there. In Romania, these are seen everywhere, especially when you go do your groceries. just look here:

This is a typical plastic shopping bag. It used to be free of charge, now it costs a few cents, depending on the store. They say this bag is single-use. Well, it is not really, unless it breaks. 

I often reuse these when shopping and sometimes as trash bags, when they become a bit too worn out. This particular bag is filled with other plastic bags, and many households across the country have a big plastic bag filled with other (smaller) plastic bags.  

The irony is that most single-use plastic shopping bags of certain compositions have been banned. They have been replaced with "bio" single-use plastic bags. I'll show you one below:

This bag is for fruits and vegetables. it's very soft to the touch, breaks easily, and I'm not 100% sure, but i think it disintegrates quite rapidly once it gets punctured. Currently, shopping bags are very similar to the touch to this 'bio' bag. I still re-use these for lightweight trash, if they didn't already break. 

I made 1 bag for fruits and vegetables, but as you can expect, I forget to bring it with me when shopping. And it's not even guaranteed I'll buy such goods. 

Now, the biggest offenders

I'm not even done, because these previous items can be re-used or have prolonged use if you care to spend less and have a creative spirit. 

Now, I'll show you the biggest offenders of plastic products. 

Cling film!

Cling film is indeed a pretty decent invention for covering foods when putting them in the fridge, or for the sandwiches you make for your lunch break. It probably has other uses that I'm not aware of. 

Regardless, this item should be banned! Or people should stop buying this product altogether! It can be replaced with at least 3 other items:

  1. casseroles with lids: These can be used to store food in the fridge and to take your lunch in. These can easily be washed and reused. I wouldn't recommend the ones made of hard plastic, but it's not very convenient to carry glass stuff around. Maybe metal containers can do the trick here, but I'm not sure they still exist. 
  2. lids or plates used as lids: These can be used only in the fridge. These are more accessible to those who don't always have a fridge full, and they can occupy more space. 
  3. zip-lock bags: Yes, they're still plastic, not great, but if we carefully handle these, they can serve for a long(er) period of time compared to cling film. 
Plastic bottles!

This bottle held apple cider vinegar. When you walk into any store, you'll see hundreds if not thousands of plastic bottles: for beer, oil, sodas, milk, laundry and dish wash, and on and on. 

These are BIG one-time plastic use offenders. Granted, some of these products cannot be sold in a different type of container. 

I think that all stores should request buyers to come with the old/empty bottles when buying a new product of the same type (regardless of brand), or else be forced to pay more. The empty bottles should be collected and recycled. 

I know some people re-use plastic bottles for various things, mostly instead of a traditional pot for plants. This is great, but not everyone has a green thumb or is creative enough. 

Packaging!

There are SO many items packaged in plastic! Above you can see a bag of frozen mixed vegetables and 3 small containers (I'm not sure what to call them), for milk for coffee. 

The bag above is a single-use bag that should be banned. it's too small to be reused and breaks quite easily when not careful. The only re-use i can think of is for the above-mentioned lunch if it comes as a sandwich. I must admit, I'm not sure what can it be replaced by, and therefore it can be spared for some time. 

Trash bags!

I saved the worst for last and i don't even know what to say here. We literally buy these bags to throw them away! Make this make sense because it doesn't make any sense to me!  

As far as i saw here, these rarely have a 'bio' version. And even then, they're way more expensive than 'regular' trash bags. It's also not a guarantee those 'bio' bags last for less time in nature. 

P.S.! 

I know there are also single-use plastic plates, glasses, straws, and cutlery, however, i don't own any such items anymore. Precisely because of their single-use attribute. Additionally, it's not healthy to eat out of re-usable plastic plates either - plastic can leech into the food. This is akin to slow poisoning.  

I don't think paper is a good alternative to plastic, especially not the plastic/paper combo we see on some products. We need to cut trees to make paper, and we need trees to breathe cleaner air. Also, many animals rely on trees to survive. 

I think that paper could be recycled easier than plastic and it decomposes faster when left out in the open. Maybe we could make packaging out of bamboo instead? 

I didn't watermark these pics as I didn't see the need to, but they were taken by me in june/july of this year (2021).

See you next time! 

©Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Going out for some drinks when the restrictions lift

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello all!

It's been a while since i posted. Well, i do blog for fun, not really for money, and I'm a freelancer, so this makes sense. 

We all know what happened in 2020. the lockdown wasn't easy and hit Romania in mid-March.
I don't think I need to explain what the lockdown means - we all know at this point. The only open places were supermarkets, drugstores, hospitals, along with some restaurants that do deliveries, such as pizza places. 

Walking the dog, taking a short stroll around our buildings, especially those with dogs, and helping the elderly were the main activities that we were allowed to partake in. It goes without saying that buying groceries, meds, or doctor appointments were also allowed but had to be restricted to the minimum. Going to work, for 'essential workers' was also allowed, of course. 

The times were hard on everyone. How hard was it for me? read here -link to post 1 of struggles. 

We also had to write a document stating where we went and why. This was a nightmare in itself. Why couldn't we just send a text or something to some call center or I don't know, somehow make things easy like in South Korea? Those without the paper risked heavy fines. 

When restrictions lifted, things became more bearable. clothes stores opened later than restaurants and cafes, of course. Even these places opened only if they gave food/drinks as a takeaway. 

the streets were eerie and empty the first time we ventured further away from home for a coffee:

The city looked beautiful, despite it being deserted. It looks as if the zombie apocalypse just hit or ended. The messed-up sidewalk is a sight to behold. Welcome to Bucharest, baby!

These two images are the 'entrance' so to speak, of the Old Town. Everyone gathers here during the weekend, but not only. When there's no pandemic or restrictions, of course. 

Of course, not everyone dared to go out just yet. I like the image above the most. It is also in the BEST area in the country to own property (aka an apartment). Some 5 years ago it used to look different. The blue building on the left didn't even exist.

This is another area of the city, across the street from the University of Bucharest. There are maybe 4 statues there? of various important historical people. 

These 2 images are from the Old Town. It'd obviously the same street from 2 different points.

The coffee we got was from Tedd's. I remember it as being just meh, but after 2 months of confinement, it felt like some sort of luxury. 

That's not the only place where we could find something to drink. Somewhere close to the University of Bucharest, there's a small bar called Rainbow. It serves cocktails and coffees, and not only. Most of the stuff they serve is take-away. 

I believe this is the first time we found it and we had to order something. A frappe, a fresh fruit juice, and a mojito, i believe. Drinking in public is allowed in Romania. You could get in trouble if you're getting very drunk/wasted. Besides, it's difficult to tell what the transparent drink is - perhaps some tonic water with lemon/lime, ice, and some mint for kicks, haha. 

The fresh juice is of catina (Seaberry?). It's apparently rich in Vitamin C and this helps fight this virus that messed up our lives. It' one of the best fresh juices I tasted, and it's amazing on a hot summer day. 

We couldn't sit at any table, just on benches or wherever else we could. 

I remember ordering some food from this fancier restaurant, Van Gogh. Here are some pics of the place:

Cases started increasing as soon as people were allowed to go places and do things, due to the rules relaxing further. 

One of the first things we purchased after the lockdown, was a VERY cute backpack. It's cute in my opinion, at least.

In July, we were allowed to sit at terraces with appropriate distancing. We had a raspberry gin tonic i believe and a very traditional Romanian dish.

The dish is polenta mixed with cheese, bacon, and eggs. I forgot if it had anything else added. It was delicious, rather a large portion and I was barely able to finish it. Polenta is rather filling, to begin with. 

Going out for some drinks when the restrictions liftGoing out for some drinks when the restrictions liftGoing out for some drinks when the restrictions lift

Over the winter, most restaurants were again closed for the most part, as well as the theatres. There were no events taking place either. Especially not the Christmas market. We thought we might have it at first, but then it was confirmed they canceled it. 

As the weather improved this year, the authorities started allowing more and more businesses to restart their activities as well. Even events started to slowly take place. 

We finally went and sat at cafes this year, after getting vaccinated. We had both cocktails and coffee-based drinks, just like before.

I missed this matcha latte! I only found one other place that makes it, Handsome Monk. I did order it from there once, but it sucked. :( 

I just don't understand why they don't bring napkins anymore, now that they started having customers again. The napkins you can barely see in the picture above with our drinks? I had to ask for them! 

One of the most exciting things we did this year after everything opened, was going to see a movie! 

The movie we saw was The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It

At the movies, there was just one more couple. This place didn't run any ads before the movie, and it was pitch black. Also quite cold inside. I started shaking and not out of fear. I was actually not really scared.

There are a few other things I want to share in the (hopefully near) future, such as the visit to the City Hall. OOOH!

The entry will come maybe next week or in 2 weeks. 

until next time, bye~~~

©Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved. 

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My china collection: part 2 - ARPO

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello everyone!

I wanted to share something else today, but I kinda like to mix things up and not talk about the same topic in consecutive entries. 

So, in this entry, I talked about the china items I have 2 of, as for couples. I promised i'd present to you my ARPO collection as well. 

ARPO used to be a Romanian factory manufacturing fine porcelain items - plates, sets for coffee or tea, and decorative items. The factory is now defunct and its demise was the fall of communism back in 1989. This is a short presentation of the company, by Wikipedia, in Romanian. You can easily translate using Google Translate (not sponsored) or any other translation service. 

If you click this link, you'll see a selection of items made by ARPO. 

Ok, so now let's talk about my collection. I remember that I saw a youtube video in which the creator was saying that if you want to feel good, you should surround yourself with items that you enjoy seeing. In another video, the creator was saying that we all have a set of good things we keep for special occasions

She was saying that we all know that those special occasions rarely happen, and we should just use those special items. And I realized she was right. 

I don't know how I decided that I really like the porcelain plates made by ARPO. I think I just looked up the brand once I had some items in my possession, to try and learn more about it. 

I think my collection started with this set for coffee. It currently contains 4 cups, 6 plates, bowl for sugar with a lid, tall coffee pot with a lid, and a cup to pour milk from. 

My china collection: part 2 - ARPOMy china collection: part 2 - ARPO

You probably think that i don't have the coffee pot and the other items I mentioned. But you're wrong. 

The thing is that at the end of 2020, an aunt of Anna's died. She had no children, so Anna's family is in charge of figuring out what to do with the woman's possessions, which are not many. 

As it happens, she also had a set of this coffee set, but with different flowers. I took the set and gave it a good clean, and put it in my collection. in a storage box because i don't have enough space to display them. And i have other coffee or teapots to use instead. 

Well, here are the remaining and doubles of this set, if this makes any sense at all. Obviously, the set with the smaller monochrome-blue flowers belonged to the dead aunt. 

My china collection: part 2 - ARPOMy china collection: part 2 - ARPOMy china collection: part 2 - ARPO

This blue set is the latest addition to my collection, as you can imagine. 

Now I'll show you the plates I have.

i already shared these plates in my previous post. I had 2 of them back then. Now I have 3, as 1 came from MIL maybe around Christmas. 

These are shallow, almost flat dishes. They're for serving semisolid or solid food on. 

My china collection: part 2 - ARPOMy china collection: part 2 - ARPO
My china collection: part 2 - ARPOMy china collection: part 2 - ARPO

I also have this set of 5 plates I got last year from my friend's mother. These plates are a bit deep, ideal to serve soup in. If you click on the image, you'll see the plates better. 

I don't like these plates as much as the other items in the collection, but what can I do. 

My china collection: part 2 - ARPOMy china collection: part 2 - ARPO

I almost forgot this plate. This is my favorite and needless to say I keep it as safe as I can. This picture doesn't do it justice, in my opinion.

The stamp on the back is also barely visible. It says ARPO and then a name. I can make out "C. Beargee" or maybe "C. Bearger", all in capital letters. 

The flowers on this plate have a texture to them, while the plate is as smooth as it gets. This is a shallow plate, almost flat. I forgot when and where this plate came from. 

My china collection is not done. My next entry will have to be on the remaining items that are either random sets or one of a kind. 

Stay tuned for that! 

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Many people struggle

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello everyone. 

This is a rather sad entry. I'm not in a very good mental state right now. 

I think I started battling depression a few years back. I haven't been to any therapists until this year. I will soon start some treatment for this. I just need to go wait until my next appointment in about 3 weeks. 

I also suffer from anxiety and I'm pretty sure I have some BPD traits as well. Click here if you don't know anything about BPD. In any case, from a social point of view and as far as employment goes, it's not a very good thing to have a paper saying you have BPD or any other issues that could mean you're not emotionally or mentally stable. ok, moving on now. 

Almost everyone struggles. And everyone who struggles makes an effort to hide it. of course, depending on the severity of the problem, some hide it better than others. Some simply can't hide it. Some lose battles with themselves.

pic from july 2017

For me, things went really bad in 2020, when the shit hit the fan with the virus and we were all confined in our homes, and businesses closed. When the martial law was implemented illegally, about a week in - I forgot how long it's been, maybe 2 weeks? a month? i considered jumping out the window. 

i was very close to doing it. Living on the 5th floor, with granite tiles on the sidewalk downstairs. But also some metal things for shade for the shop space on the ground floor. I'm not sure what survival chanced i'd have. i probably would have been stuck in a wheelchair if I did survive. 

Luckily for me, anna was here and I could call her and talk to her ... and she managed to at least calm me down. I'm crying again, now thinking of that evening. I'm truly blessed with her. 

i don't want to hear "oh, but others...." fuck others! I'm not others, and others don't think of me either. I'm not others- I'm ME! I'm tired of these hurtful comparisons!

when you compare a child to other children, you ARE ONLY HURTING your own child and boosting the ego of the other kid. 

pic from july 2017

when you tell your partner "oh, but the spouse of so-and-so...." you are HURTING AND INSULTING YOUR partner! you make them feel miserable! and they wonder why are you with them if you think the other person is better. and the thing is, you can't even know the real face of the other person who you think is better. 

Sorry, I went off a tangent here. but people do that when they try to explain their feelings. i suppose. it makes it easier for them. 

so, around Christmas, I started feeling a bit better, and it lasted for a while. Though PMSing started being too much like a rollercoaster. anna couldn't take my crap anymore and insisted I seek professional help. and so I did, and about a week or so ago I started taking Xanax, as the therapist prescribed. And my anxiety went down, which is great because it was almost crippling me. 

the downside of taking Xanax was that while I was no longer anxious, but i started feeling the depression more. and it was maybe more intense? blank mind, foggy brain... Actually, the fog was almost there, all white and fluffy, around not only my head but my torso as well. i could almost see it with my eyes. 

And then, this site i was playing, suddenly bans me for having multiple accounts! when they already knew there's 2 of us playing there, on 2 different accounts! they knew this for almost 11 years! it's just unbelievable! we apparently broke a rule about exchanging too many items... 

I didn't even know there's such a rule.... well, ok, there is, we broke it indeed. but this is not the point. the point is that the ban-hammer was triggered at a bad time when i was feeling very low and foggy, and that site felt safe in the morning when i was drinking my coffee.  

I've been talking to an admin, but i don't put my hopes too high for getting my account back. Now, i don't care so much anymore. I'll need another morning habit. or just use this as a reason to procrastinate less. 

To be continued...

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Very late Blog-march: Last 4 challenges

Publié le par Charly C.

Well, hello there.

We are well into the month of April and I know I haven't finished the March challenge. However, due to how this platform works, I can post this in March. ;) 

The thing is - I won't finish this challenge. Below we can see the remaining challenges.

March 27 - National cheese day

This is a French platform, run by French people. I suppose the stereotype that the French love their cheese is true if they dedicated a day to celebrate it. 

Personally, I don't live in France, so I have no idea if there is such a day celebrated, or if Cheese Day is every day. 

So, what is my favorite type of cheese? I do like cheese, so I have a favorite. 

I ate blue cheese a few times - I didn't find it bad, but also not something to eat daily, or even very often. I used to really like the Romanian telemea cheese, but not so much anymore. 

Of course, you may not or don't know what telemea is, so here is more about this cheese, from Wikipedia

Lately, I like Italian mozzarella cheese. Smoked yellow cheese is another type of cheese I like. This type of cheese is called Kashkaval and I can't recall seeing any that is white in color. Most of these are off-white or some shade of yellow.  

This type of cheese melts nicely on pizza, and any other dish you may want melted cheese on. 

March 28 - World day against endometriosis

I wish all women dealing with this problem, a lot of health. 

I wish everyone else who is not aware of this health problem, to learn about it. Also, please stop asking women "When will you get married?" "When will you have children?". 

It's none of your business. Unless YOU plan on being the 3rd wheel in the relationship or taking care of the baby with your own money and time. Not all women want to be wives or mothers. 

And women suffering from endometriosis may even have a hard time conceiving, even if they want to have babies. So, again, I repeat: Not your body, not your problem! You can ask questions and give advice only when you're very close to the person and you're concerned about their health and overall wellbeing. 

March 29 - Cinema spring

I have no idea what this means or what am I supposed to write about. 

In any case, keep an eye open and stalk my other site for at least one movie review, The Taming of the Shrew, an Italian movie. ;) I think it's a good movie for spring.

March 31 - World day of personal data protection

I think this is what it means. If this is what it means, I'll have to remind you to change your passwords often, keep them written down -in an agenda, diary, cookie jar, whatever. Do not share them with anyone under any circumstance. 

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Being a minimalist can be a bad idea in a crisis

Publié le par Charly C.

Hello! Don't take this post that seriously. Really don't. 

I am well aware I posted a few entries talking against consumerism: here - here - here

I basically was wrong in that post, at least to some extent, because we need to consume things in order to survive. 

I am against buying more than we need, I am against always buying the latest releases of anything, and against buying things simply because so-and-so promotes the item. 

Minimalism is the other extreme. There is a whole niche on youtube related to minimalism. 

I started writing this entry on the 18th day of the martial law instated in Romania. At this point, it is unclear when this "protectorate" will end. The other day they said after mid-May. we'll see.

I'm posting this a week before the martial law is supposed to ease.

The thing is, we're not allowed to go out without a pass - we can write it ourselves. who we are, where we go, why, carry the ID, and heaven forbid the paper is wrong. All the stores and malls are closed. Supermarkets, drugstores, emergency dentists, hospitals are the only operating "businesses." And also places like home renovation and pet stores. Other businesses that still operate, the post office, taxis, public transportation, delivery companies. If you need anything else, like clothes, craft supplies, you have to order online. if you have $$. 

Can you see how being a hoarder is now useful? Can you see how being a minimalist is not/was not a good idea? 

Living in a city is also not a good idea. But living in the countryside, in Romania, usually means no running water. See the image below, for a better understanding - seen first in this entry.

In any case, in the countryside, we'd be able to go out of the house, in the yard to attend to the animals, to the food we grow, to the toilet (as in most cases it's separated from the main house where we'd be living). 

As I was saying, as a minimalist, you're probably missing many things you wish you had. As a hoarder, you're probably feeling pretty secure you're not missing anything you might need. 

As a hoarder, you might have:

  • Enough food to last you at least a month
  • Enough cleaning supplies to last you through the lockdown
  • An excuse to use them all up, clean the space and become more of a minimalist
  • Various games to keep you busy and entertained
  • A variety of tools that you can use to learn a new skill or make the things you wanted but didn't have the time.

As a minimalist, you might have:

  • A lot of empty space in the house
  • Not enough food
  • Not enough supplies
  • Just computer or smartphone games
  • No tools for a new hobby
  • A hard time finding in the supermarket what you need
  • An excuse to go buy some things that occupy space, but are needed during an emergency situation
Taken on August 31st, 2019 by me.

Taken on August 31st, 2019 by me.

This "pandemic" taught me that: 

  • Minimalism is not for me
  • Hoarding is not that bad - just make sure not to go out of control
  • You can be more sustainable as a hoarder as you have more items in the house to reuse and repurpose, and you dispose of fewer things, overall. 

Now, these are just some observations. I'm not attacking or praising any lifestyle or choices. 

You might hoard lots of plates and cups, but may have just 4 pairs of shoes and 5 pairs of jeans. 

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved. 

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Victim blaming needs to stop!

Publié le par Charly C.

!!!!Trigger warning!!!!!

Please, if you are a victim of any type of abuse, AND the subject triggers you, it's best you stop reading now. The main type of abuse I will touch on is ra-pe. :( oh, and i dislike censoring myself.

I will add a picture to separate more the main/triggering part of this entry from this intro/warning.

 This article was triggered by the attitude/words/comments of a Youtube user who will stay anonymous

The subject of the video was neutral, peaceful, related to some degree to fashion. The user agreed with the video, but it was because of a wrong mindset, as the title (might) suggest. But perhaps you should not read further?

The letterboxes in a VERY creepy looking, old building in the Old City Center.

The letterboxes in a VERY creepy looking, old building in the Old City Center.

It's -September 2019- scratch that. January 2020 is here now because i didn't have enough power to write this to the end.

I didn't post in a very long time. And I honestly I can't believe I have to type this title in 2019. 

The truth is that there are still people out there that STILL blame the victims for what happened to them. 

As you already read I was watching a video on why it's important to wear modest clothing. The subject was in the right spot, nothing wrong with it -from what I could tell, nothing triggering. The author was saying BOTH men and women should wear modest clothing. There was no judgement passed towards those who don't. I literally can't recall anything wrong with the video - I really want to make this clear.

The idea was that non modest clothing gives away information about your body that others can use against you, usually through insults and body shaming. the author continued to say that insults make people feel bad (you don't have to be a genius to know this), and feeling bad can easily lead to sadness or depression and other bad stuff. On the other hand, modest clothing hides these flaws, people doesn't have such info to use against you, and will have to rely on other stuff, for instance your knowledge, personality, personal belongings, skills, so on. 

The idea is that the body is very personal and intimate, and this is why only our partners usually sees us naked - we're most vulnerable when naked. Many of us feel vulnerable in front of the doctor as well, hence some hospitals have those robes/gowns, to protect our privacy as much as possible. 

 

Whiskey at the age of 9, judging me.

Whiskey at the age of 9, judging me.

The user who triggered me was someone who answered to a comment whose author simply said they noticed how differently they (she) were (was) treated when wearing modest clothing VS when wearing more revealing outfits. I personally noticed a similar change, and i'd like to challenge those reading, to try dressing more modestly when going out or to work. 

The 2nd user came to say basically that when a woman dresses in a revealing manner, it means "she's asking for it." I honestly can't believe i just wrote that. It was 2019. it's 2020. i can't believe there are still people out there who STILL think this way. 

Men AND women are STILL guilty of thinking like that, and teaching their children to think the same. This is why the majority of sexual abuses go un-reported. How come are women thinking this way? I have no idea, but they do. Not believe me? just research the case of the 2 female tourists in Australia who almost got killed and one raped, but managed to escape and the culprit also got arrested. The judge was a woman, she found him guilty on several accounts, except rape! WHAAAT...? HOW??? 

There are some countries where society is still very conservative, and perhaps the citizens can't think outside the box. Romania is one of them, sadly. But this is not a good excuse. It will never be an excuse. 

Victim blaming needs to stop!

I want to make something clear:

The only thing people are asking for when putting clothes on, revealing or not, and then going out, is to be left the heck alone. not to be cat-called, followed around, flirt with or worse.  

There are the older generations who think like that, and i can accept we can't really change their way of thinking. But we can change the mind-set of the younger generations. We also have means of getting informed or of informing others. 

Both conservative men and women should understand once and for all that nobody wants to be abused. in any kind of way.

especially not sexually.

And you know what? men also get sexually abused -by women or other men. these abused men surely didn't ask for it, and some of the ones abused by other men, are not even gay.  

Victim blaming needs to stop. it needs to go back to where it came from because the 21st century doesn't need it. it doesn't belong here anymore. 

If you have a child, or know someone younger than yourself in your family, try and show and tell them that it is not OK to blame the victim for what happened to them. Nobody wants bad things to happen to them. Tell them it's also not OK to catcall or try and flirt with someone just because they dressed in a revealing way. Try to tell them that when they grow up, they should try and help those who are being harassed or pestered in any way. 

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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At 13, they're STILL children

Publié le par Charly C.

This post was triggered by one of the youtubers I watch, but I would prefer NOT to name her.  Back in February or so, she posted the video of her wedding day and the full name of her husband was (accidentally) revealed. This enabled the users of a certain gossip forum to discover the uncool way in which he makes money. Or better said, of how he became rich. 

The man runs 2 sites, each aimed at readers of a specific gender. The site with a predominantly male audience has some ... controversial  sections, which raised a lot of eyebrows for some of the youtuber's fans. 

At 13, they're STILL children

One of the controversial sections was presenting various pretty looking female models and actresses. So far, nothing wrong, right? Remember this site has a male audience? Well, the women features in this section were half naked and some even fully naked. A little presentation of the model was also provided - it includes her name and her age. With the help of Google, anyone can learn what type of model or actress the featured ladies were. Some of them played in adult movies. 

Not going to talk about the morals of those ladies, as they need to survive too. The striking problem was that several of the ladies there were actually UNDERAGE! Furthermore, some of them were as young as 13 or 14! Yes, 13 or 14  year old CHILDREN were talked about on that site. In this section I talked about! These CHILDREN are indeed models, but they're still 13 or 14 and at this age, they're children!!!

CHILDREN!!!

Most of the pictures were taken off of the featured lady's social media, specifically Instagram. I don't think anyone even asked for permission to use the images. But, I'm not here to talk about the legal implications - and I'm mostly speculating on the subject. I'm here to talk about the moral implications of showing pictures of CHILDREN among the pictures of scantily clad adult women who appeared in adult movies, on a site for men! 

To make things worse, the pictures of the selected CHILDREN were the most questionable as well. They included poses that somehow accentuated their butts, half unbuttoned shirts, upskirt shots, uniform skirts with a button undone and pushed down a little, and the list goes on. How their parents agreed to have those pictures taken, is anyone's guess. 

At 13, they're STILL children

So basically that site is like an online Playboy or other similar publication, for readers in Hong Kong. Do I need to explain what most (probably all, but don't want to use a blanket statement) men do when reading magazines like Playboy? 

Do you think it's normal for ADULT men to lustfully look at questionable pictures of CHILDREN? I don't think it's normal. I personally don't think CHILDREN should be featured on a Playboy-like platform. Does anyone remember the scandal that followed after it was discovered that one of the playboy bunnies, living in Hugh Hefner's mansion, was 17 years old?17! not 13, not 14. The media was up in flames because a 17 year old was living there (she most likely appeared in the magazine too, I forgot the details). Or when Britney Spears was taken photos in her underwear for the cover of that magazine? (The photographer locked himself with Britney in her bedroom. How did her parents allow it, is unknown, and subject for another time.) But in this case, we're talking about 13 year old girls, CHILDREN!!! 

One of the "articles" about one of the CHILDREN said "her body is nothing to write home about because she's underage." O.O If she's underage YOU DO NOT COMMENT ON HER BODY!! full stop. 

The issue was brought to the attention of the youtuber and her husband. What did they do? NOTHING! At first they ignored the comments, deleted them, and then DENIED!!!!! this is true.. People had screen captures of HIS site, and he was STILL denying it's a shady thing to do. 

She released a 30 minute long video in which she explained that this is the culture in East Asia. She ALSO said she doesn't see anything wrong with the articles (not that she knows written Cantonese), with the pictures nor with the site in general. VERY few people believed her, so she talked again in her next video about the issue. In the 2nd speech (posted at the beginning of her video) she mentioned she doesn't visit the site and that she doesn't necessarily approve of it either.  It also appears that her husband, as the OWNER of the site didn't know such articles and pictures were posted. Or better said that MINORS were chosen for them, even though it's him who should have given clear instructions in relation to what gets posted on HIS site and what doesn't.

At 13, they're STILL children

In the end it appears the articles with minors were removed. The decision was only done to appease the upset fans and followers. It wasn't done because he thought it was the right thing to do. 

People with such thinking usually have low morals or no morals at all. While there's an age difference of at least 10 years between them this speaks nothing of his morals. The fact that he liked her to dress like a school girl, or at least to make herself look as young as possible when together, DOES speak volumes about his morals. 

The issue happened back in February. I don't know what stopped me from finally speaking about it. Sometimes I believe it's better to speak about it later than never. Not that it really matters anymore, I did start writing this piece back in February - I just have no idea why I didn't finish it. Now I hope I did. 

 

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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A disappointing school festival a la japonais in Bucharest

Publié le par Charly C.

So, first things first. This entry is WAAAAY overdue, oops, as the event took place in March 2018. I was so disappointed with it made me delaying talking about it. But I still have the pictures, and I think the idea was rather cute, though some might find it  a bit ... of a cultural appropriation, and you'll see why in just a second. 

A bit of a background

In February of last year, I saw the ad for a school festival, done in Japanese style. In Japanese, "bunkasai" means "Cultural festival ." I believe this was the 2nd or 3rd edition of this bunkasai, and was inspired by the school-life of Japan - most likely because this is the only school in Bucharest teaching Japanese. I learned about the event from Facebook, and it seemed interesting enough to go check it out. Gotta say that such festivals are not done over here, unless things have changed, and I didn't get the memo. 

inside and around the schoolinside and around the schoolinside and around the school

inside and around the school

As you can see fro the above pictures, there was snow on the ground because a couple of days before, a snow storm hit us. 

About the Event

The Facebook ad was mentioning all sorts of attractions at this festival, such as sushi, a haunted house, workshops with origami, caligraphy, drawing and not only, as well as (maid) cafes - basically what you'd expect to see in an authentic event in a Japanese school.

Everything sounded great, at least on screen. But of course, the reality was ... different to say the least.  It was disappointing ... and a bit cringy. Mostly because it looked like a cheap imitation of the real thing - with which i'm familiar only from manga and anime, where it looks different. Add to this, the fact that some of the students organizing the whole thing, were wearing yukata (=a type of kimono worn in summer, made of thin fabrics) in winter! Just no! 

We went there towards the end of the day, and this meant that most of the stuff were over or sold out, if you wanted to buy something. This added to the disappointment. To enter the haunted house [or room, better said] we had to wait in a long line, and we just didn't feel like waiting. 

Let me show you some more pics from that event, though they're not great in any way.

the halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted roomthe halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted room
the halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted roomthe halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted room
the halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted roomthe halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted room

the halls were decorated with large paintings made on paper. art from the drawing workshops, various writings from the calligraphy workshop, and the entry to the haunted room

I hope any future similar events will improve. I also think other schools could get inspiration from it and make their own unique events, or events that are more connected to Romania's identity and cultural heritage. 

We didn't spend a lot of time there, so we left. We went to McDonalds at Unirii Square. We got some fries that we gave to the seagulls on the river. It took them a couple of seconds to eat the fries. I don't have enough pics, and the ones I have are not even good enough, but I hope you like seeing some birds.

A disappointing school festival a la japonais in BucharestA disappointing school festival a la japonais in BucharestA disappointing school festival a la japonais in Bucharest

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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Seaside adventures in August

Publié le par Charly C.

We wanted to relax for a bit and get out of city. Since we have Ciel we can't go on a vacation like most people: Ciel needs someone at all times and it's not familiar with strangers. He also barely eats by himself.

We decided to leave for the seaside in the morning and return at night. With all the preparations I still had to return to get a scarf I forgot. When we got to the train station we learned the train would be 45 minutes late, but in reality it was an hour late.

While we waited, we got some pretzels for the road, as to avoid spending a lot of money on food.

Seaside adventures in August

The train was also over sold so we had to stand because there were no more seats available. Luckily A found a chair in first class and sat for most of the ride. Our tickets were for 2nd class. The train was also fast and had some air conditioning.

 

When we got to the resort, we found the beach quite fast. We had to find a seat as this was one of the most popular resorts at the seaside, so it was packed!

The first views of the Black Sea. there was a small lake in the resort, by the beach.The first views of the Black Sea. there was a small lake in the resort, by the beach.The first views of the Black Sea. there was a small lake in the resort, by the beach.

The first views of the Black Sea. there was a small lake in the resort, by the beach.

Here, we have too pay for chairs and umbrella, but not if we sit directly on the sand. However, we need umbrella and they're only available next to the chairs. The price was some $6 for a chair and they only take cash. The guy charging for the seats was gypsy and we suspect him off having stolen my phone.

 

I had the phone on me some 5 minutes before finding the right place, and I noticed it gone after the guy left. I also kinda felt something.. Like something was sliding up at the back of my pants, but I ignored the feeling.

 

The guy returned to see if we found cash, and in telling him we don't have cash, just the card, he started to be verbally agressive. Then we openly accused him off stealing, and he insulted us. We left and I managed to use A's phone to lock mine. Then I asked a to text my phone and ask for it to be returned. A lifeguard called us and met A and returned the phone. But! The lifeguard had no business to be in the place where it went missing. I literally walked between other chairs and the lifeguard has no reason to do so. Here claimed he found it.

 

I think the phone was returned because they couldn't use it or resell if it was blocked. I'm glad I have my phone back, but I lost some videos I took in the train, for I also erased it's data.

Seaside adventures in AugustSeaside adventures in August

In the end we managed to find some other chairs and we didn't pay for those. We stayed some 2 hours there I think.

 

We managed to go in the water and it felt nice as it was warm, despite the rather dangerous waves. Lifeguards were constantly on the lookout for people going too far and calling them back. The limit to the deep water was set pretty close to the shore too.

 

We found a place to eat and rest and recharge the phone a bit. Then we went on the beach again. This time we went in a different area and were forced to pay for chairs as there was no sand, just smashed seashells that were cutting into our feet. We spend some extra 2 hours there with constant visits to the shore. Of course I collected some seashells too.

Seaside adventures in AugustSeaside adventures in AugustSeaside adventures in August

Then it was time for us to return. Before leaving, we bought a bag, some sun glasses for A's mom, some sewing needles for me, a rabbit keychain, and some bracelets.

 

The return train had seats for us, but it was smelly! There was little luggage space too though we only had 2 bags and As purse. The trip was also longer and most of it happened in the night. There was a really beautiful sunset though. Once in the city, some 3 hours later, we managed to catch the last bus home too.

 

 

Seaside adventures in AugustSeaside adventures in August
Seaside adventures in AugustSeaside adventures in August

I fell asleep as soon as I got home, after checking on Ciel and seeing he actually ate by himself. He does that when he stays alone for too long.

© Charly Cross 2013 - present. All rights reserved.

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