Monthly Archives: April 2015

Rude date? Here’s how to handle them

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So you've gotten dressed up, you've made an effort and then your date is rude to you. How exactly do you handle it?

First dates can be disappointing at times for a number of reasons. Maybe you didn't feel the spark or the conversation wasn't as interesting as when you were talking online; these are some of the more standard first date problems.

But what if it's worse than that? What if you thought things were going to go well after getting to know someone online and then your date turns out to be quite rude?

Rudeness comes in many forms. They could make a flippant comment about something you've said that they may not realise is rude or they could be totally direct. Either can leave you a bit taken aback, especially if you are on a first or second date.

Here are some ways to deal with the situation:

Have them clarify what they mean

If a comment was quite off-the-cuff and may not have been meant in the way you received it, it may be a good idea to get them to clarify what they mean. This will give them the opportunity to realise that what they said may have been rude.

You may find that they mean it exactly how they said it, giving you a better insight into their personality and helping you to decide whether there's any point in seeing them again.

Take a break

If someone is being directly rude or putting you down for any reason, whether it's how you look, what you do or the things you like, it might be a good idea to remove yourself from the situation. 

Simply popping to the bathroom can help you to calm down and ensure you don't react in a negative way. You can make a situation much worse by being hot-headed about it, so giving yourself a chance to evaluate what your date said away from them can really help.

It can also give you the time to work out how you want to deal with the situation. You may want to bring it up with them when you leave the bathroom or you might want to wait and see if they say anything else. Once you have a clear plan of action, it is much easier to go back to your date.

Talk about it

If you really are angry enough to bring it up, it is a good idea to try and be as non-confrontational as possible. Rather than getting angry, explain that what they said made you uncomfortable, playing up the fact that you came on the date to have a good time.

If you get angry or use a negative tone, the date could deteriorate incredibly quickly. Instead, be clear about why it upset you, but let them know that you're aware it probably wasn't the result they intended. This will help to diffuse the situation while their response will tell you a lot about them.

Ideally, you don't want to put your date on the defensive as that could mean things get ugly. If you're not sure how to bring it up, this is a good time to use the bathroom trick.

Leave

If they continue to be rude or make you uncomfortable after you've brought it up with them, if might be a good idea to simply call it a day. Thank them for meeting you and explain that you don't think it's going to work out. 

If you do this, it might be a good idea to pay your half of the bill first, so as not to set them off any more. It isn't a good idea to just disappear without addressing why you don't want to continue with the date as this can lead to an awkward conversation down the line.

If you are clear in your reasons, they should hopefully be accepting of them – after all, no one wants to be on a date when the other person isn't into it. If they aren't calm and gracious about it, leave anyway; you don't want to feel threatened into staying.  

So you've gotten dressed up, you've made an effort and then your date is rude to you. How exactly do you handle it? First dates can be disappointing at times for a number of reasons. Maybe you didn't feel the

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Helena Bonham Carter’s children ‘smarter due to classical music’

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We've all heard that listening to classical music might help boost your IQ and it seems that even some celebrities have taken this to heart. Helena Bonham Carter has recently revealed that she played Mozart to her children when they were in the womb, suggesting that this has resulted in her kids being clever.

The actress told Classic FM that she playedclassical music to her little ones throughout her pregnancies in an effort to stimulate their learning as early as possible. She says it is this that has led to her children being "unbelievably clever".

She told Classic FM:  “I basically played Mozart and violin concertos again and again because it stimulated the inner ear of the unborn baby.

“And everything that they promised happened to both my children. They came out alert, unbelievably clever, and very relaxed.”

The Cinderella star has two children with director Tim Burton – Nell (seven years old) and Billy Ray (11 years old). 

It seems natural that she introduced them to classical music as early as she could as Helena is a self-confessed fan of the genre. She told the radio show that she finds the music to be genuinely relaxing, helping her through everyday life. 

Helena isn't the only person to believe that classical music could help to stimulate children's learning. The 'Mozart effect' was first referenced to in a scientific study that was published in 1993. 

The study found that teenagers performed better in reasoning tests when listening to Mozart's 1781 Sonata for Two Pianos in D major, compared to those who listened to another musical genre or were in a silent room.

While the study didn't look at the effects of the music on babies, it did suggest that if college students were to listen to Mozart for a few minutes before a test, then they tend to do better than those who do not.

This may not have been proven explicitly, but a little classical music never hurt anyone. 

We've all heard that listening to classical music might help boost your IQ and it seems that even some celebrities have taken this to heart. Helena Bonham Carter has recently revealed that she played Mozart to her children when they

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Video game composers entered into Classical FM Hall of Fame

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The music of video games has grown in popularity over the years, with more intricate compositions being created to accompany the more involved games that are being created. While video game compositions may not previously have been counted as classical music, this seems to have changed.

Several video game composers have now been inducted into the Classic FM Hall of Fame, showing that the genre is just as influential as music that has long been defined as classical.

The Hall of Fame poll hasn't altered much in the 20 years that it has been running, with many classic composers remaining in the spots for a number of years. However, the great works of the genre have been shaken up a bit with the introduction of 12 composers from the video game genre. 

Coming in at number nine on the list of 300 entries is Nobuo Uematsu, composer of music for the Final Fantasy series. He managed to beat composers that have become legends, including Bach, Mozart and Tchaikovsky.

Nobuo Uematsu's compositions for the Final Fantasy series have become iconic among fans, with copies of the soundtracks often selling as fast as the games themselves.

Just missing out on the top ten is Jeremy Soule, who came in at number 11 for his musical compositions for the Elder Scrolls series. Kingdom of Hearts composer, Yoko Shimomura earned the number 30 spot, while the team that creates the music for World of Warcraft came in at number 53.

One composer managed to earn a total of three spots on the Hall of Fame poll. Grant Kirkhope has been placed at number 13 for Banjo-Kazooie, 41 for Viva Pinata and earned the spot at number 51 for Kingdom of Amalur: Reckoning. The composer was also named as being the most popular composer for under 35s.  

Other video game composers entered into the list were Koji Kondo at number 84 for The Legend of Zelda, Glen Stafford at 163 for Starcraft, and Gustavo Santaolalla for The Last of Us at 193. Nobuo Uematsu appeared on the poll again at number 118 for Blue Dragon, while the Halo series composer Martin O'Donnell came in at number 244. 

As well as the Final Fantasy game series appearing on the list, the film The Spirits Within was also noted, with composer Elliot Goldenthal being honoured at number 259.

The music of video games has grown in popularity over the years, with more intricate compositions being created to accompany the more involved games that are being created. While video game compositions may not previously have been counted as classical

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How to know who to ignore online

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Online dating is a great way to meet people, whether you want a relationship or simply to broaden your friendship circle. However, just as with any form of dating, you tend to come across a few frogs before you meet a prince or princess. 

While there are many people out there who genuinely want to get to know you and make a connection, others are only interested in one thing or use online dating as way to troll people. It is best to avoid these individuals at the earliest opportunity as they will only waste your time and could leave you feeling bad about yourself and the whole process of online dating.

But how do you identify the trolls from the sincere messages? Here are a few ways to tell that a person may not have the right intentions:

It starts with a picture

You can almost guarantee that if someone starts off by sending you a picture of their body or a certain part of their anatomy, they aren't in it for a relationship. No one should send you pictures like this unless you ask them to down the line, and they definitely shouldn't be sending you to them in place of a 'hello'.

The same thing goes if they start talking to you and almost instantly ask you for an inappropriate picture. This implies that they're only after one thing and have no real interest in getting to know you.

It is a good idea to refuse to send a picture in a simple and straightforward way, going so far as to block them if they continue to pester you or start harassing you. For those that start off by sending inappropriate images, you should block them instantly to avoid any other unwanted attention. 

Topics of conversation

It isn't just photos that can be inappropriate, certain topics of conversation can also be incredibly unwelcome. 

If someone starts a conversation with something sexual or brings up the topic shortly after your conversation begins, it is probably a sign that they aren't interested in a relationship at all. This is especially the case if they get angry when you ask them to stop those types of comments.

You want to feel comfortable talking to someone, so if they bring up topics that make you feel awkward, it isn't worth continuing the conversation.

What's in a word?

It isn't just a topic of conversation that can leave you feeling uncomfortable, the language someone uses can leave you feeling like you want to end a conversation too. If someone starts insulting you, whether because you don't message them back straight away or if you won't send them a picture, it shows they aren't the person you want to be with.

A lot of people think it is okay to talk like this online as they are protected by their screen, and while they may be perfectly nice in person, you don't want to risk that they aren't. You can learn a lot about a person by how they act online.

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

If someone you've spoken to a couple of times finds you on other social media platforms without you giving them your online handles or full name, this can be a bit creepy. 

The chances are you'll check up on someone once you know their name – after all, you want to check they are a real person, as well as who they say they are – but this is very different from searching for a person before you have this detail.

If you haven't told them what social media sites you are on and haven't included links to them in your profile, let alone your last name, you might want to be wary about those that seem to find you online so quickly.

Online dating is a great way to meet people, whether you want a relationship or simply to broaden your friendship circle. However, just as with any form of dating, you tend to come across a few frogs before you meet

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The cat’s meow: Classical music ‘helps calm felines’

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A previous study found that classical music could help relax dogs, but now research has also found that the music can help cats relax. In fact, it seems that violins are the instrument of choice for calming down felines.

Researchers have discovered that Samuel Barber's Adagio for Strings can help to calm cats down. It was also suggested that the music may help with their recovery following veterinary procedures.

The Portuguese study saw researchers fitting earphones to 12 cats' ears to allow them to listen to music while having surgery at a vets. Two-minute bursts of pop, rock and classical music were played while the cats were undergoing neutering surgery, with scientists measuring the cats' reactions while they were anaesthetised. 

Their reaction was monitored using a heartbeat monitor, as well as respiratory measurements and tracking pupil dilation.

It was discovered that pop music – Natalie Imbruglia's Torn – was less effective at keeping the cats calm, while rock music – AC/DC's Thunderstruck – actually increased their stress levels. The classical music was the best at helping them relax.

Previous research has found that listening to music can help people to feel less stress and pain; however, this is the first time it has been shown that it could have the same effect on felines.

Dr Miguel Carriera, a veterinary surgeon at the University of Lisbon, Portugal and leader of the study, said: "After reading about the influence of music on physiological parameters in humans, I decided to design a study protocol to investigate whether music could have any physiological effects on my surgical patients…

"During consultations I have noticed, for example, that most cats like classical music, particularly George Handel compositions, and become more calm, confident and tolerant throughout the clinical evaluation."

Other studies have suggested that cats prefer classical music as a whole, citing the fact that the tempos and frequencies match purring as a probable reason.

A previous study found that classical music could help relax dogs, but now research has also found that the music can help cats relax. In fact, it seems that violins are the instrument of choice for calming down felines. Researchers

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