In any new endeavour or chapter of life, it’s natural to feel out of place or overwhelmed.
It’s a part of the human experience to question our ability to adapt and contribute.
However, creating and nurturing connections can serve as a lifeline, steering us through uncharted waters with newfound courage.
Embracing vulnerability by stepping into the unfamiliar takes bravery.
It’s a conscious choice to remain open and present, acknowledging that the value of your contribution isn’t diminished by inexperience or doubt.
Your participation adds variety and perspective to the world, enriching the human tapestry with your unique Learning and growth are perpetual, and no prescribed timeline dictates when you can begin to make a difference.
Every moment is an opportunity to influence and be influenced, to teach and to learn.
Being “qualified” is often just an artificial barrier we place in our way.
By remaining engaged, your presence weaves into others’ lives in ways beyond immediate perception.
Sometimes, the impact is subtle, yet it can resonate deeply within the lives you touch.
This interconnectedness is a testament to the importance of each person’s role in the collective journey of growth and discovery.
Courage doesn’t always roar; sometimes, it’s the quiet decision to keep going, even when doubts cloud the skies of your resolve.
It’s the boldness to advance, step by step, armed with conviction, even when fear whispers to take the more straightforward, well-trodden path.
Looking back, you will realise that it is this exact choice—to persist, to learn with both intensity and gentleness—that forges character and wisdom
It’s these very qualities that become your silent allies, equipping you for future challenges and opportunities.
It’s in the interplay of presence and connection that you understand that every season of life has invaluable lessons to offer, shaping you to become ready for whatever lies ahead.
So, while the journey may be uncertain and the path ahead may be veiled, remember that showing up and connecting can be a profound declaration of your place in the world.
One day all the employees reached the office and they saw a big piece of advice on the door on which it was written: “Yesterday the person who has been hindering your growth in this company passed away. We invite you to join the funeral in the room that has been prepared in the gym”. In the beginning, they all got sad about the death of one of their colleagues, but after a while, they started getting curious to know who was the man who hindered the growth of his colleagues and the company itself.💥💥
The excitement in the gym was such that security agents were ordered to control the crowd within the room. The more people reached the coffin, the more the excitement heated up. Everyone thought: “Who is this guy who was hindering my progress? Well, at least he died!” One by one the thrilled employees got closer to the coffin, and when they looked inside it they suddenly became speechless. They stood near the coffin, shocked and in silence, as if someone had touched the deepest part of their soul. There was a mirror inside the coffin: everyone who looked inside it could see himself.💥💥💥
There was also a sign next to the mirror that said: “There is only one person who is capable of setting limits to your growth: it is YOU.” You are the only person who can revolutionize your life. You are the only person who can influence your happiness, your realization and your success. You are the only person who can help yourself. Your life does not change when your boss changes, when your friends change, when your partner changes when your company changes. Your life changes when YOU change, when you go beyond your limiting beliefs when you realize that you are the only one responsible for your life. “The most important relationship you can have is the one you have with yourself”.💥💥💥💥
Honourable: The world is like a mirror: it gives back to anyone the reflection of the thoughts in which one has strongly believed. The world and your reality are like mirrors lying in a coffin, which show any individual the death of his divine capability to imagine and create happiness and success. It’s the way you face Life that makes the difference.💥💥
Few things are as iconic as a bottle of Coca-Cola. In fact, as early as 1949, a study showed that fewer than one percent of Americans could not identify a bottle of Coke by its shape alone. That is a pretty big flex if you ask me. Today it’s impossible to think of not being able to take bottles or cans of Coca-Cola home with us from the store, but once upon a time Coca-Cola was only available at soda fountains. In 1899 two lawyers set about to change all that and would put into motion the creation of an icon.
Joseph Whitehead and Benjamin Thomas were lawyers from Chattanooga, Tennessee, and in 1899 they went to Coca-Cola headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, to try and get the rights to bottle Coca-Cola, which had, as mentioned earlier, only been available at soda fountains. They successfully signed a contract, and bottling plants sprung up.
These first bottles were simple, straight bottles, of brown or clear glass, with “Coca-Cola” with their swooping script embossed on them. However, other cola companies attempted to dupe consumers with similar names and script, like “Koka-Nola.” Changes were made, and eventually a paper, diamond shaped label was created and applied, however, as the bottles were often sold in barrels of cold water, the labels came off. Plus, Koka-Nola copied the label design too.
On April 26, 1915, trustees of the Coca-Cola Bottling Association voted to put $500 toward creation of a uniquely designed bottle that was “so distinct that you would recognize it by feel in the dark” and “lying broken on the ground.” A pretty tall order! Between eight to ten glass companies in the United States took up the challenge to meet those two unique requirements.
One company was Root Glass Company of Terre Houte, Indiana. Two of their employees, Earl Dean and Clyde Edwards set off to do research to come up with a winning design. In their research they found an illustration of the cocoa bean. Inspired by the bean’s curve and ribs, Dean sketched out what would soon become one of the most recognized icons in America. And while they may not have been thinking of ergonomic design at the time of creation, the bottle is extremely pleasant and quite satisfying to hold.
The patent for Dean’s design was granted on November 16, 1915, but what is especially interesting is that the patent was submitted without the Coca-Cola name on it. This was done to ensure the secrecy of this new and inventive direction by Coca-Cola.
Early the next year, a committee of bottlers and Coca-Cola officials had a meeting to choose a design. Root won, and production shifted to begin manufacturing and bottling the new patented design. In addition to its unique shape, the company chose to colored glass called “German Green” which was later renamed “Georgia Green” after the location of Coke’s headquarters.
Soon, the bottle with its unique and patented design (finally leaving Koka-Nola in the dust) was making its way into the hearts and soon homes of Americans and the world.
Coca-Cola had already been making calendars with attractive young ladies on them for years, and for the 1918 calendar they decided to feature their newly designed bottle. The ad featured two women, one holding the soon to be iconic bottle, while the other held the flared glass that Coke was served in at soda fountains, likely to further connect the bottle with the product as it was at soda fountains.
In 1919 however the glass was gone, with only a woman holding a bottle. Each year the image changed, sometimes a soda fountain glass would be there, sometimes it wouldn’t, but what remained constant was the presence of the uniquely curved and green tinted bottle. The bottle was here to stay.
By the 1920s, home refrigeration was becoming more common, and in 1923 Coca-Cola put six bottles into an easy to carry carton, thus inventing the six-pack. Because one could now easily take home multiple bottles, in 1928 bottle sales surpassed soda fountain sales. Coke would later create larger bottles, known as “King Size,” still in the iconic shape, for consumers to take home.
Probably due to the fact of the 1949 study of nearly 100 percent of Americans being able to identify a bottle of Coke by silhouette alone, the Coca-Cola bottle became the first commercial product to appear on the cover of TIME, on May 15, 1950, proving its incredible impact on the world.
Even though Coca-Cola had toyed with the idea of putting their refreshing bubbly concoction in metal cans before World War II, the idea was shelved due to metal being needed for the war effort. It wasn’t until 1960 that Coke was introduced in a can. However, to ensure consumers knew it was the same product that came in the bottle, the bottle’s image was put onto the can.
Decades passed, and Coke had to renew their patent, which they did, but soon they decided their bottle was worthy of trademark. It’s not the norm for packaging to receive trademark status, but on April 12, 1961, the Coca-Cola bottle received its trademark, further ensuring its legacy as a true American icon.
You can even catch a glimpse of Coca-Cola’s bottle history at Disneyland in the windows of the Coca-Cola Refreshment Corner on Main Street.
Over 100 years later, the Coca-Cola bottle is a staple of Americana, pop art, and consumerism. After all, what other soda can you identify by just its shape alone?
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#AceNewsDesk – Prologue: In 2019, the cinematographer Peter Nelson made a documentary of the fate and plight of honeybees
The film starts with numerous semi-trucks carrying hundreds of hives for the pollination of almonds in California or fruits and vegetables and nuts in California and elsewhere in the country by Evaggelos Vallianatos
I was startled seeing these giant trucks loading and unloading hives like large square bricks. I could see a factory in action or a busy harbor loading and unloading goods.
But behind the lights and sounds and dust of trucks loaded with about 400 to 450 hives speeding in highways or unloading them on farmers’ land, there is an extremely important story. The Pollinators documentary does tell this dramatic story truthfully, effectively, and well. The story is about the trials of both honeybees and beekeepers — and the rest of us, whether or not we are protecting this extremely important insect, Apis mellifera, or we keep renewing the license of agribusiness to keep killing them. A review of the film insisted that, “The trials of the humble honeybee are magnified to epic proportions in the meticulous, magnificent documentary “The Pollinators.”
The story of the pollinators
Yes, the documentary was meticulous and honest. Beekeepers, some family farmers, and biologists spoke openly about the prevailing practice of moving hundreds of hives from all over the country to farms everywhere in the country with pollinating needs. These farmers are growing vegetables, nuts, and fruits and almonds. This includes the gigantic one-million acre almond plantation of California.
But was the documentary magnificent? Not really. The story is tragic, revealing some truths I learned during my 25-year service at the US Environmental Protection Agency. Indeed, I was so thunderstruck by the willful negligence of EPA senior political officials in granting approvals to chemical warfare-like neurotoxic pesticides / biocides, that I wrote a chapter on honeybees in my book, Poison Spring: The Secret History of Pollution and the EPA.
The tragedy comes on stage in the almond fields of California. Almond trees demand huge amounts of water, which California does not have. The almond trees bloom in February – March. Two hives are necessary to pollinate one-acre almond grove. Thus, about 2 million hives must be under the almond trees to pollinate one-million acres of almond trees in California. A beekeeper in the documentary says, “The almond pollination[in California] is the biggest pollination event in the U.S. bee industry. It takes almost the entire national bee supply.”
Neurotoxic pesticides are killing honeybees
Honeybees are essential for pollination for several reasons. Native pollinators are on the verge of extinction. Pesticides of conventional farming have been wiping them out. The documentary is more diplomatic, saying: “The native pollinators are in deep trouble… because they can’t move away from agriculture… in certain places their populations have plummeted. One, the rusty patched bumble bee, was just listed as an endangered species and a lot has to do with agriculture and pesticide use, in particular.”
Honeybees are no less threatened by the dope drugs of the farmers, pesticides. I remember my ecological colleagues at EPA wring memo after memo to their supervisors telling them that neurotoxins don’t mix with honeybees. The stuff then came under the chemical names of organophosphates and carbamates, both siblings to WWI chemical warfare agents. Eventually, those neurotoxins were phased out, only to be replaced by equally deleterious neurotoxins known as neonicotinoids. The Clinton administration gifted to agribusiness these horrific chemicals. Large farmers embraced these lethal weapons. Needless to say, neonicotinoids remain the killers of choice for honeybees. The Pollinators documentary paints this painful picture of neonicotinoids:
“The neonicotinoids take years to degrade in the environment, and what that means is, you’re going to continue to poison the bees for many years after you apply these pesticides. Neonicotinoids basically work by breaking down immune system, cause the insects to lose their memory, make them sick. Whether it’s the insect or it’s a human, you know, your immune system’s broke down, you don’t want to eat, and that’s exactly what we got going on inside these honeybee hives, and, eventually, you know, we’re going to somebody’s funeral.”
EPA in the Biden administration may be rethinking (or, most likely, playing politics) in “regulating” a festering and dangerous ecological and public health reality in America. What is at stake includes the survival of the priceless honeybees, healthy farming in the form of organic farming, and hundreds of endangered and threaten species. Its latest study of 3 neonicotinoids, dated May 5, 2023, raise the threat these chemicals pose to endangered species, though I don’t thing EPA is serious. Its study suggested that the danger from neonicotinoid (in large use since the 1990s) may be limited to a small number of endangered and threatened species. Besides, EPA described the danger as “adverse modification.” As if neurotoxic neonicotinoids would modify rather than kill a honeybee.
Why honeybees are important
Honeybees have been close to humans forever. The ancient Greeks even had a god, Aristaios, to protect them, along with cheesemaking, shepherding, and olive oil making. Honey and pollination have always been precious gifts of nature. Aristotle wrote about honeybees in his History of Animals.
The beekeepers of the documentary, The Pollinators, explained the importance of honeybees, zeroing on the pesticide enemies of bees:
“Bees are important for all kinds of reasons. They’re important because we’re not capable of making all kinds of thing grow by ourselves. It’s not some kind of magic, it’s a deep biological process, of which, bees are a part. But bees are also important to us because they’re a very good kind of sentinel signal for the trouble that we’re in. There they are every day, out in the world, foraging through every cornerof the rural landscape.
“It was shocking how much pesticide and the diversity of pesticides that we were finding — herbicides, fungicides, growth regulators, insecticides, all of them showed up in samples that we collected and looked at across the country…. Wax, it turns out, is almost like a fossil record. The wax combs that the bees live in, that they put their food in, that the brood is produced in, accumulates, and holds onto these pesticide contaminants, and so it’s very hard for a beekeeper who’s doing crop pollination to protect their bees from pesticides — very hard… pesticides seem to be playing a key role in the downturn of our bee populations…. Some of the stuff we’re using is a neurotoxin that’s gonna destroy our health and children and everything else, but we’re spraying it ’cause somebody has more say and more power than we do…. Populations of honeybees are dying at levels that are unprecedented and very concerning.
So, we have been seeing between 33% and close to half of the colonies in the U.S. dying every single year, which is disturbing…. We can learn a good deal from bees about the health of the landscapes that we inhabit. And sort of secondarily, we can learn a good deal about the folly of setting up our agriculture in quite the way that we have.It looked so efficient and concentrate everything in the ways that we’ve done it, but that turns out to be a false efficiency. It is the cheapest way to produce pork or corn or whatever else, but that cheapness comes at a high price, and that price is the loss of the agricultural diversity, redundancy, resiliency, that is really beyond price. You know it’s the thing that we’ve built up over 10,000 years of agriculture, and now in a kind of hundred years of industrialization, we’ve managed to get rid of most of it.”
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