Danger – Leather Soles of Shoes Can Be Treacherously Slippery

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LEATHER SOLES

This article explains why you don’t want to wear leather sole dress shoes. The basic reason is that leather is slippery, even when dry.

DRESS SHOES

Dress shoes must serve two functions. First, they should look dressy so that you radiate class and good taste to all who see you. This is especially important if you’re an attorney going to court or meeting clients. Your shoes and haircut will be inspected at these encounters. So you want your shoes to look dressy. Black leather is the best choice for the uppers of your shoes. But what about the soles?

LEATHER SOLES

Leather soles look great but are slippery, even on dry surfaces. Especially when new, they can be hazardous to your health because you can slip when walking on a hard floor, a street, or even a concrete sidewalk!

There are modifications that you can make to leather soles to render them a little less slippery, but these solutions are ultimately unsatisfactory. We’re talking about cutting a crisscross pattern into the leather soles with a sharp knife, or adding rosin to the soles the way boxers used to do to their boxing shoes. Neither solution is adequate. (Incidentally, most boxing shoes today are no longer made with leather soles, indicating that in the world of professional boxing athletes have learned the lesson of avoiding leather soles altogether.)

WHY RUBBER IS BETTER

Rubber soles are better than leather because they provides superior traction on every conceivable surface, including ice and snow. With modern technology, there’s no reason why a dress shoe should have a slippery leather sole. For example, Florsheim provides F-LITE EMAX rubber outsoles on some cap-toe dress shoes. A slightly more casual example is the Nunn Bush Maxwell black leather dress shoe. One of the nicest designs is the Prada ebony leather logo detail cap-toe Oxford with rubber soles, which retailed for $472 in 2011. Other quality dress shoes are also available with rubber soles.

If a shoe’s rubber soles don’t look too sporty, that is, if they don’t have corrugations or obvious sneaker-like patterns that can be seen from the side, then they’re a good choice. A manufacturer who knows about the value of rubber soles and how they provide better traction, is a manufacturer who will also take care of other details, such a style and construction.

It’s incorrect to say that only a leather sole looks dressy. Rubber soles can be constructed to look as dressy as leather, and they’re significantly more comfortable and safer than leather. As image consultants for attorneys and people from all walks of life, we advise clients to not only look dressy but also to wear comfortable safe footwear, and this means well designed rubber soles.

Copyright (c) 2011 William Cane

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Cider Making Process

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Cider for me is the best alcoholic beverage, from when I was sipping a shared bottle of white lightning in the local park (we’ve all done it) to enjoying a cold one at the pub during the summer months it always has had the same refreshing, relaxing and rejuvenating effect. My appreciation of this beverage has lasted year after year, so this article will hope to enlighten you just a bit more on what is cider, how cider is produced, and what is is the best cider. I hope it’s useful.

Cider is a renowned drink throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland; it comes in a range of forms from the traditional dry cider to the sweet cider, which allows it to be enjoyed by a whole range of individuals.

Most apples grown are suitable for cider making, though in a region like Kent cider-makers prefer to use a mixture of eating and cider apples or just cider apples if you are in the West Country.

On collection of these apples they are immediately grounded down in to what is known as a pomace or pommage. This process back in the day would of been undertaken at cider mills by hand or using either water or horse power. These days most cider presses are electrical, with the whole process looking to ensure the pomace is only exposed to air for a limited amount of time.

After this the all important fermentation process takes place, this is done at a temperature of 4-16 degrees C, which is low for most fermentations but is beneficial to cider at this temperature. Before the fermentation process consumes all the sugar, the cider is moved to a new vat, leaving dead yeast cells and any other undesirable materials at the bottom of the old vat.

Finally the last stage of fermentation creates a small amount of carbonation, which can be enhanced by adding some extra sugar. After a three month fermentation period the cider is ready to drink, but it is commonplace to leave it in vats for up to two years.

They are then removed from the vats and bottled. In some larger-scale cider production they have ciders produced from different varieties of apple, which in this case the cider may be blended to accord with market taste. When the cider is bottled usually some extra sugar is added for sparkle. Cider bottles are normally used but some home brewers use beer bottles, which work well and are inexpensive.

The West- Country is known as a leading cider producing region and one of the best (in my opinion). The majority of ciders in this part of the United Kingdom are known as Scrumpy which is a local term for small or withered apple. They are over 25 Cider produces in Somerset and then following is Cornwall who is another big Cider county for the West Country.

In Cornwall there is a range of traditional ciders such as the previous mentioned Scrumpy Cider which is a strong cyder that can be bought medium dry and medium sweet at 7.4% alcohol volume.

Recently a new Cider has started becoming popular across the UK. The beverage that I speak of is the Cornish Rattler. This cider was originally only available in draught format, but after requests from numerous customers they have now bottled it. Made to be different in taste and appearance, this cloudy Cornish cyder is 6% ABV and sparkling. It was voted Best Bottled Cider at ciderfestivals.co.uk 2008. If I was to recommend you try any Cider it would be the Cornish Rattler, I feel its taste retains the original Cider taste but then adds certain delicate sweetness which is not sickly and compliments the original cider taste well.

So with Rattler now available in your local retailers I would recommend you go and check it out, if you like cider you won’t be disappointed.

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Scott Pilgrim Review

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In the past few years the Hollywood interest in comic book films has continued to crescendo with huge critical and financial successes such as the Spiderman, Iron Man, and Batman franchises. Aside from being overly saturated by testosterone, such hits have lined summers with blockbuster after blockbuster by sticking to a generic story telling structure of origin stories and world threatening conflict to provide enough action to coerce the adrenaline to come out and frolic. But top tier names are only so plentiful, so the surge in comic book popularity led to various graphic novels getting translations to the silver screen in the form of Watchmen, Sin City, and most recently Kick-Ass. These films focus heavily on action, but the visual flourishes in these films are much more prominent and distinctly separate them form the larger hyped films. So when a director whose claim to fame is his astounding ability to deftly blend genres tackles a film that asks him to combine the entertainment of high action sequences with the charm of a niche graphic novel when I reach a killscreen am I going to want to press continue?

Edgar Wright’s follow up to Hot Fuzz details the life of titular protagonist Scott Pilgrim as he literally fights for the love of Ramona Flowers whilst seeking success with his band Sex Bob-Omb. So, naturally, the film is an action film, correct? Well, not exactly. Edgar Wright makes comedies, and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is stuffed to the brim with more big laughs and subtle touches than I have had the pleasure of seeing since Superbad. But the film, it’s certainly not a comedy, as the central relationship is far too much of a driving force. So essentially Scott Pilgrim is a video game meets a graphic novel makes love to a comedy spawns a romance and genetically engineers an action film, donning a musical thong. So I can naturally expect this film to have tonal inconsistencies, but Wright avoids this incredibly common pitfall by keeping the film moving at such a rapid pace, and really packing each and every frame with such a completely realized vision that it never has time to stray from the mood set from the opening Universal logo.

What I notice in this film, and even in Wright’s former films, is exactly how much care is placed in every shot. Each use of pixelation, each blur, every censor, all the logos and the outfits, they all establish the world so perfectly. The visual aesthetic works wonderfully with the editing and other visual flairs of the film which include segments that play out at graphic novels and other forms of visual media. But what stands out the most on a visual level is the jaw dropping fight sequences. Each one plays out so differently and allows Wright to showcase a range of film making techniques and styles that synthesize action with comedy, even meshing with music when the script calls for more flashy fights. The more time I have to sit with these sequences and really consider how visually intensive the scenes are, while still maintaining a delightfully charming low budget look, the more I admire the film.

And of course there’s the soundtrack. Anchored by Beck and Broken Social Scene serving a stand ins for Sex Bob-Omb and Crash and the Boys, respectively, the variety of sounds are an absolute delight while still feeling natural and unforced in the context of the film. But not only do the songs serve the overall tone of the film, they also enhance the action and comedy. Rarely have songs ever felt so integrally tied to a film that is not a musical. I suppose the easy comparison to make is to the score in I Am Love; despite the shift in intensity and purpose, the film is elevated incredibly by the use of a very specific type of music employed in a simply masterful manner. But beyond the soundtrack is the film’s score, a string of wonderful compositions littered with signature video game sounds that play lightly in the background of many scenes. These effects create such a wonderfully engulfing mood that I found myself completely sucked in every moment.

However, despite my gushing so far the film is certainly not without its flaws. While the film runs at a neat, and incredibly quick, two hours, I did get the feeling that a complete story is not entirely present. Now I am aware that the film is based on pre-existing source material, so I was able to fill in a few of the holes, but even with this background knowledge I did not find myself incredibly invested in all of the plot lines. Wright juggles so many characters that I was not surprised to see some catch the short end of the stick. The Kim character is treated as such a removed character that one of the emotional pay offs does not work much at all. Perhaps having her not be important is meant to show the distance between her and Scott, which does add up but still does not make the plot nearly as satisfying as many of the other threads running throughout the film. The movie needs room to breathe, to completely bring life to all of these characters, and to better reinforce the intensity of the central romance. These aspects are not the strongest, but one of the strengths in O’Malley’s series of graphic novels is in the ability to insert quietly beautiful meditations on love amidst the action, and the film does capture the occasionally sickeningly, yet always infectious, feelings of human connection near perfectly.

Another aspect of the comic that is captured in the film, and can stand alone without reading any of the graphic novels, is the character of Scott Pilgrim. Scott is meant to be sympathetic, but we are also asked to realize that Scott is both ignorant to the world around him, making him kind of a self centered dick. Cera brings this sense to the character wonderfully, combined of course with Wright’s inventive way of conveying to the audience how exactly Scott’s mind if working. As a viewer I do not always condone Scott’s actions, but I can understand them, and the commentary on the illogical human mind is wonderfully woven in to the film, as well as the idea of a society that promotes such behavior. Of course these qualities all rely on the right type of delivery and Michael Cera further cements his status as the best comedic actor of all time by perfectly delivering Scott’s lines while still conveying his disconnect with his environment. For much of the film Cera does remain in his comfort zone, and the film does really benefit from him doing so, but he does also have big scenes in the action sequences and he further proves his ability to be legitimate ‘actor,’ depending on one’s definition of the art form. Scott is not the drastic change that the Dillinger character is in Youth in Revolt, but not only is he in top form in this film, his ability to work with the fight choreography, both on the ass kicking and ass kicked ends, is simply stunning and further sells what are likely the most enjoyable action sequences I have ever seen.

The film’s diverse cast also boasts a ton of other talented actors, but the one that practically steals the show is Kieran Culkin. He impressed me in Lymelife, though I was certainly not prepared for simply how excellent he would be in the role of Wallace Wells, Scott’s roommate. He floats through scenes with such poise and precision, delivering his dialogue with such sincerity and charm. His performance is truly a sight to behold. Jason Schwartzman is also excellent doing Jason Schwartzman, and actually all members of the League of Evil Exes play their character uniquely and wonderfully. A few of the secondary characters in particular were a huge hit with my audience as well. The females in the film are enjoyable as well, but very few are given very much to do. I wish that more time could have been spent with Envy Adams, not only because Brie Larson is mighty pretty but also because her The Clash at Demonhead performance contains one of the best tracks in the film, and the sequence between her and Scott is even more emotionally resonant. The stand out of the females is found in the form of Ellen Wong as Knives Chau, a heartbreakingly impressionable Scott super fan girl who exists as a wonderfully satirical spin on Caucasian perspective. Many of the supporting characters play one note roles, but each and every one plays that note pitch perfect.

Coming out of the film I was unsure of exactly how much value I found in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, but as I started writing about the film I not only learned that I enjoyed the film far more than I had initially imagined, but the film is also considerably more admirable than I had realized. The startlingly inventive construction and editing are enough to make Wright’s latest film a truly uniquely enjoyable experience, but the film’s ability to capture such raw moments of beauty in a minefield of laughs cements Wright’s status as one of my favorite filmmakers, despite the abysmal Shaun of the Dead, and – finally – left me completely satisfied after seeing a comedy…as much as the label is applicable. At its worst Scott Pilgrim is a masterclass of filmmaking, but this film exists, on practically every level, as a film constructed for me to love. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is imaginative, inventive, and a film that truly exists as a representation of the time which spawned it while still holding enough timeless qualities to make it one of the year’s finest.

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