Reviews roundup: Meet Me in the Bathroom; Eureka; What We Lose

The Strokes – New York’s finest – in January 2006.
 The Strokes – New York’s finest – in January 2006. Photograph: Stephen Lovekin/WireImage

“Every scene needs a chronicler like Lizzy Goodman,” was Jim Carroll’s wholehearted recommendation, in the Irish Times, of Lizzy Goodman’s Meet Me in the Bathroom: Rebirth and Rock and Roll in New York City 2001-2011. The book is “a meaty oral history”, “a wild read” and “strikes all the right notes. As oral histories go, this is one of the very best.” In the Observer, former music journalist Barbara Ellen admired Goodman’s ability “to marshal a veritable army of interviewees who’re not only prepared to talk, but also to gossip, muse, digress, ramble, even bitch and fume, to build the most accurate picture”, making the book “beautifully paced, vivid, informative and compelling”. For the Sunday Times’s Lise Verrico, it was exhaustive at more than 600 pages, and “full of colourful characters, catty comments and incredible candour”.

Anthony Quinn’s novel Eureka also looks back at a swinging time, in this case London in the 1960s, with characters including acid casualty screenwriter Nat Fane. It is part three of a “loosely linked and hugely enjoyable trilogy”, explained Peter Stanford in the Observer, but “works just as well as a standalone”. Stanford found mysteries, wit and entertainment aplenty, but reassured readers: “If Eurekais beginning to sound too clever by half, rather like a 60s counterculture film, what brings it all delightfully together is Quinn’s flawless, easy-going prose. He never once puts a foot wrong either in the wealth of period detail or in giving each well-drawn character their distinctive voice. Clever, certainly, but in just the right measure.” The Mail on Sunday’s Hephzibah Anderson described it as a “pleasingly melancholic romp [which] gallivants towards a dark mystery”, and the Times’s Siobhain Murphy decided that “Quinn’s immersive approach to his historical fiction means we’re soon woozy with the sounds and sights of that significant year”. Not the Daily Mail’s John Harding, though. “[The 60s] are unconvincingly evoked here, with pop music limited to the Beatles and references to Mr Fish fashion and hula hoops feeling tacked on,” he wrote. “The book is padded out with excerpts from Nat’s film script. Let’s hope it never gets made – it’s as flimsy as a go-go dancer’s miniskirt.”

Critics were also divided over the debut novel by Zinzi Clemmons, What We Lose, about a light-skinned black woman living in the US. “Luminescent,” raved Lucy Scholes in the Independent. “Sometimes fierce and angry, other times quiet and tender, it’s a story about identity organised around [a] central, momentous loss – that of a parent – that expands and contracts, as with the beating of a heart, to encompass meditations on race, sex and love … Intelligently and impressively conceived, and beautifully told.” “A memoir trying hard to pass itself off as fiction,” complained Claire Allfree in the Daily Mail. “Clemmons, who shares a lot of biography with her narrator, has a bracingly clear-eyed view on racial politics and the psychological dissonance of living between two cultures, and the tension between her steady prose and turbulent emotions is beautifully sustained. Yet I found it frustrating … Clemmons has yet to make this territory her own.” But the Sunday Times’s Phil Baker was impressed, on balance, finding that “sometimes the result feels like a struggle between grief and pretentiousness, but the frankness and intelligence of the writing win out”.


I Have Anxiety, and This Household Activity Has Helped Me SO Much

“Clean house, clear head” rings so very true with me. As someone who is at a constant war with their anxiety, I’m always seeking healthy, straightforward ways to face my mental health head-on. My whole life, I’ve been what people jokingly called a “neat freak,” a trait that I got honestly from my mom. I’m the person people roll their eyes at when I genuinely say that I like to clean. Still, I never realized the value of cleaning beyond a spotless home until I skipped my Saturday morning ritual after a long week and discovered how off-balance I felt.

If you suffer from extreme anxiety, you know the feeling of panic that comes over you when things just don’t feel right and you don’t know how to fix them. It’s easy for your whole world to feel off-kilter if just one element of it is disrupted, but cleaning your home can actually help your mental state right itself and restore balance. When I clean my house from top to bottom, I go into a quiet (and private) zone where I let all of my anxieties take the back seat to the task at hand. It’s restorative for me, and best of all, I’m left with a sparkling house when all is said and done. Here’s how cleaning can help your anxiety.

Cleaning is like meditation.

Nothing helps clear my head of all my frantic thoughts more than putting on music to block everything out and allowing myself to get into the complete cleaning zone. By concentrating on a simple task, I’m able to drown out anxiety by doing something productive and basic. If you’re able to focus on your task and force all other negative thoughts out, cleaning can truly have a similar effect for some that meditation does.

It sets you up for a better day or week.

Coming home from a stressful day of work to house full of clutter, dirty dishes, and cat hair forming Texas-sized tumbleweeds of hair can cause me to feel like I may unravel completely. My home is my sanctuary and safe zone, so when I return to find it clean and clutter-free, my mind is more at peace. Spending time over the weekend to give your home a deep-clean can have a major effect on your anxiety, because it takes away a potential element of stress that may be the final straw on a particularly anxiety-ridden day.

It keeps you active.

Although exercise can help anxiety, it’s not always for everyone. Unfortunately for me, the more anxious I am, the less prone I’ll be to exercise, which can be a vicious cycle. However, cleaning your home is a way to do light exercise, keep your heart rate up, and allow your body to release endorphins, all without having to step foot in a gym.

It yields tangible results.

Anxiety can cause you to be completely overwhelmed. There are times when I feel like there is so much to do, I end up getting stuck on how to start, and I get even less done because of my inability to get past feeling like I’m drowning in unfinished tasks. Cleaning is a simple to solution to this problem. In scrubbing down the bathroom sink or vacuuming the floor, you’re able to see tangible results. The manifestation of your hard work is right before your eyes, and this physical evidence of your efforts can be an extreme comfort for an anxious mind.


Learning to Pick Locks Taught Me How Crappy Door Locks Really Are


About a month ago, I picked up a training lockpick set. I’ve always been curious about how lock picking works and how difficult it really is. In the process of learning, I discovered not only how easy it was, but how to look beyond the lock when it comes to protecting my home.

Before you get too hopeful, no this won’t be a guide on how to pick locks.We’ve done that already during our Evil Week series, and we still think it’s good to learn how security measures are broken so it doesn’t happen to you. However, understanding how locks work isn’t the same as keeping them safe. And protecting against a lock pick isn’t the same as securing your home.

Most Locks Are Stupid Easy to Pick

When I first got my lockpick set, it came with a set of keys on a ring locked to the lock itself. It was almost a challenge. “You want the keys to this lock? You’ll have to pick it first.” To my surprise, I had the lock open inside of five minutes. Granted, this was a transparent lock that’s specifically designed for training. If this were a regular lock on an actual door, it would have taken me considerably more time (and it did, the first time I tried it), but I was amazed at how simple it was. In fact, with a little practice, I was raking the pick across the pins in one quick motion and unlocking it in seconds. I still have a harder time picking locks in Fallout 4.

Naturally, my next thought was “Is this what’s protecting my house?” So, I decided to research a bit into how much door locks differ from this training padlock. The answer? Not much. There are some ways that locks can be made more pick resistant. For example, some Medeco locks use pins that not only need to be elevated to the correct height, but also need to be rotated a certain way before the lock will open. Of course, “pick resistant” locks are just that. They make it harder to pick a lock, but it’s by no means impossible. It just might take a little longer. More importantly, common door locks usually don’t have these features.

So, how do you know if the lock on your home can be picked easily? The ANSI Grading System is a good place to start. This is a voluntary, independent grading system that the lock industry uses to self-evaluate how good a lock is at preventing break ins. Grade 3 locks are the weakest, rated as the minimum required for residential security (which should give you an idea of where your house’s lock ranks on the security totem pole), while Grade 1 locks are the strongest.

Out of curiosity, I decided to look up how secure the lock is on my home. I have a Yale double-cylinder deadbolt. It’s easily the nicest lock of any home I’ve ever lived in, and it’s still only an ANSI Grade 2. It’s better-than-average for a residential lock, but it’s still not the best you can get. If you want the best lock on the block, Grade 1 is where it’s at. These locks include pick resistant features, tougher materials, and reinforced strike plates. However, as we’ve discussed before, putting a fancy lock on your door may just advertise to thieves that you’ve got some cool stuff in your house. If you’re going to get a Grade 1 deadbolt, at least make sure it doesn’t look much different from normal ones.

Once I started learning about lock picking, I found myself in a few forums dedicated to teaching the art. The more I explored, the more I learned that while lock picking is a fun hobby, it’s not the most efficient way to bypass a lock. Modern pin tumbler locks have been around for centuries, and people have found better ways of breaking into them. Here are just a few methods:

  • Bump keys: A bump key is like a regular key, with slots for the pins filed far enough down to fit any lock. A quick bump is all it takes to line up every pin in a lock and open it. It’s scary easy. While each bump key still has to match the profile ridges, most home locks use only a few key shapes to begin with. Bump keys can be made from regular blank keys you find at your local hardware store or you can buy ready-made bump keys online. Hell, you can even 3D print bump keys, if you were so inclined. A thief with a few of these on his key ring could easily open most home locks. Worse yet, he might not even look like he’s breaking in. He might just look like he’s fiddling with a particularly stubborn lock.
  • Lock snapping: Some locks are vulnerable to a particularly nasty type of attack called lock snapping. With this technique, applying a small amount of pressure in the right way would actually break a lock in half, rendering it useless. This is a big problem in certain parts of the UK, where many homes were equipped with fragile cylinder locks that could be broken with minimal force. This technique was so common, professional thieveswouldn’t bother picking the lock. Most locks aren’t going to be vulnerable to this type of attack, but by the time it was discovered, millions of homes already had these flawed locks installed.
  • Credit cards: If you’ve ever wondered why you need a deadbolt on top of a regular lock, it’s because of this. With the credit card method, you can wedge a small, flat piece of plastic in between the door and its frame. If the lock you’re opening has a slanted edge (which allows you to close an already-locked door behind you), you can force it open enough to pry the door open. Deadbolts don’t have this slanted edge and must be locked using a key, so they can’t be opened this way. Yes, this is the method used in every movie and TV show ever, and yes it does actually work sometimes.

All these methods are only about bypassing locks. That doesn’t even come close to all the ways that someone can break into a house. If you’re an experienced thief that’s looking for the easiest way to get through a locked door, any one of these methods will be more efficient and easier than kneeling in front of a door with a couple of thin pieces of metal, gently moving tiny pins that you can’t see into place. Lock picking, as a means of break-in, is really a last resort.

Most Thieves Break In Without Picking Your Lock Anyway

Once you learn how easy it is to pick (or bypass) a lock, it’s easy to get hung up on preventing it. After all, every thief in their right mind would learn this skill if it were so easy, wouldn’t they? As it turns out, not really. According to theWashington Post, the most common home burglaries are committed by male teenagers who live within a couple miles of your home. In other words, these aren’t pros. They’re brats.

Impulsive criminals tend to use more brute force methods to get into a home, rather than tediously picking a lock. Thieves might simply kick the door down (which reinforced strike plates are designed to prevent), smash a nearby window, or enter through the back door that you forgot to lock (whoops). According to FBI statistics, as of 2010, a full 60.5% of all burglaries involvedforcible entry, which includes either breaking doors and windows, or threatening the occupants inside.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that door locks are useless. It’s true that if someone wants in badly enough, they can find a way to get in. However, smashing windows or kicking down doors is a surefire way to get noticed. Threatening people directly is even worse if you get caught, since it comes with additional charges. If those are the only options a thief has, they might be more willing to go to your neighbor’s house with the key under the mat, instead of yours.

Security Is All About Outsmarting Someone Else

Years of movies and video games taught me that picking locks was what all master thieves do. It’s so cool, and you look smart doing it. And I will admit, it’s fun to learn and practice. I feel a little better knowing that if I’m ever locked out of my own house, I have an option besides sitting on the sidewalk and whimper until my girlfriend comes home.

However, learning how to pick locks didn’t teach me a damn thing about how to stop a thief. Instead, I learned how thieves really operate. The more I researched how to get into locked rooms, the more I understood how a would-be criminal would approach the problem of getting into my house. With that knowledge, I found a few key takeaways:

  • Making your house less attractive is the best deterrent. If a thief wants to get in, your lock isn’t going to stop them. So make sure they don’t want to get in. Don’t leave the giant boxes for all your expensive gadgets next to your trash can. Keep your blinds closed. And as attractive as they may be now that you know how easy locks are to pick, don’t put those crazy expensive smart locks on your doors. All that says is “I have stuff worth stealing in here.”
  • Make it hard to hide outside your home. Lock picking isn’t attractive because it takes time. The more time a thief spends outside your home, the more likely they are to be spotted. Make it even easier to spot a thief(and thus more likely they won’t try) by installing automated motion lights outside. Reduce the amount of shrubbery near your front door. The more hidden your front door is, the easier it is for a thief to sneak in.
  • Hide your valuables, even inside your home. Don’t stop your home security at the front door. Assume a thief can still get inside if they want to (because they can), and hide your most important valuables. You can also leave a bit of cash lying around to give a thief an easy score, which might discourage them from trashing the house to find your real valuables elsewhere.

Learning how to pick a lock was a fun exercise. It gave me insight into how the basics of physical security work, but it also helped highlight what really matters. When it comes to protecting your home, you don’t have to build a fortress. You just have to outsmart the person who’s trying to break in. Whether that’s by convincing them you’re not a good target, or simply minimizing the damage done if they break in, the more you can think like a thief, the better you can protect yourself from their attacks.\


[Source: HFN]

Stand by means of Me Lamp with the aid of Tarapera


Stand via Me Lamp made by using herbal materials are blended via a manner that combines the commercial with the hand-crafted.

With wood strength and iron will, I stand with the aid of you so I allow you to make out words and give that means to awesome standards. My motive in life? To enlighten your studying and eventually your dreaming. as long as there are books and light, I swear I’ll stand with the aid of you.

natural substances are blended thru a system that combines the commercial with the home made, to carry to particular lifestyles gadgets designed to intrigue you. object’s fundamental body is designed to act as a canvas on which art can take place. This unique fusion of utilitarian – day by day item – ornamented with art is meant to introduce items of a selected aesthetic in a single’s daily recurring.

Inaugurating our cooperation with Greek artists, we comprise in our creative crew the upcoming cutting-edge artists Blemobill and Ourania. by way of sketching their characteristic styles on every one of the gadgets, they give them a completely unique value.

Residing with Lexington e book extract: ‘What coloration method to me’

Living with Lexington bedroom

What colour manner to me

colour approach the entirety. one of a kind shades generate special moods. it is easy to trade a room through color, and to create a specific ecosystem with the right coloration. creating a sense of calm and concord in a room is fundamental; then extraordinary hues may be used to enlarge the room’s character.

shade has always stimulated me. i am someone who can keep small colour samples, really because I think they are so exceptional. i can make them into patterns, and integrate them just for fun. I truly like all colors, and it is so excellent that with one’s favourites there are limitless possible combinations. The equal colorations look absolutely new when blended with a brand new coloration.

What could life be without color? perhaps a chunk less complicated, but virtually extra dull. using colour is a way to affect and layout our surroundings. via the use of various colours, we can create completely exclusive moods as well as awesome variety inside the design of rooms.

To me, it is essential for colors to offer a experience of calm and harmony. A white background is my favorite, but it can not be allowed to make matters look cold.
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indoors design requires a distinct palette of colors. blending too many makes the room appearance jumbled and creates a feel of restlessness. A coherent colour palette also creates opportunities for variation, the usage of one-of-a-kind accessory colors.
residing with Lexington bed room

Brigitta Wolfgang Bjørnvad / residing with Lexington

My basis colorations

basis coloration #1 — WHITE

White and light colorations are my basis. it’s no longer constantly essential to begin with shiny white, that can every now and then be too harsh. it is better to pick out an off-white with a chunk of gold or grey instead. i take advantage of an off-white colour as a foundation plenty — we name it snow white.

bear in mind portray take a look at areas within the room if you’ll be the use of shiny white or off-white with elements of gold or gray. The light inside the room is decisive to how it will look. White may additionally look mild yellow or grey, relying at the lighting fixtures inside the room. Paint a small location in the room and notice how it’s far tormented by the mild. understand that mild moves unique partitions in exceptional ways, so it is probably a great concept to test the paint out on more than one wall.

basis color number 2 — BLUE

My different basis color is blue, in all its colours. Blue and white is a conventional — you by no means get uninterested in this mixture. Stripes, checks, plant life, photo prints — you may integrate anything if the colours are matched right.

My desire for blue comes principally from the ocean and sky. The variety of blue colorations is inexhaustible. there are such a lot of sun shades to pick from. team up blue shades with other colorations. This makes an elegant impact.

remember that even light-blue hues look dark on big surfaces. Combining severa one-of-a-kind sun shades of blue produces a very satisfactory impact, however it’s critical for them to shape a harmonious whole.

foundation shade range 3 — BEIGE

Beige is a non-shade to a variety of humans. I assume that emphasising beige may be lovely: while joined with different colours, it creates a feel of calm and harmony. a totally white room can be harsh, but it softens a extraordinary deal if you mix white and beige. Camel and caramel are exciting versions of beige. They can be mixed with white, and provide a piece greater contrast than a lighter beige.

do not be terrified of letting the beige shades lean closer to the darker give up of the dimensions. This adds weight and concord to white. when the usage of light beige colours, make certain they don’t lean an excessive amount of in the direction of pink or inexperienced. another time, the mild in the room is extraordinarily important to how color is perceived.
living with Lexington spring mattress with gray shade scheme

Brigitta Wolfgang Bjørnvad / dwelling with Lexington

foundation shade variety fourgray

gray is an alternative to beige. It makes a more subdued influence, however on occasion it is able to seem a piece bloodless. In the ones cases it’s better to select beige. grey also offers a conventional feeling, and it tones down the marine appearance of blue and white if that’s what you want. Blue, gray, and white lend elegance to decor.

I additionally assume that you may blend grey and beige. this does not paintings for numerous human beings, however if you discover sun shades that paintings harmoniously together, it makes a subdued and stylish impact.

grey creates a experience of beauty. it’s great to combine specific greys collectively. pick out a dark charcoal grey rather than black if you want a clearly darkish hue — it creates a miles extra subdued feeling. grey is extraordinarily first-class in fabric that soak up mild in different ways, which include velvet. a grey velvet pillow on a white couch right away makes the sofa fashionable.


foundation colour wide variety 5purple
dwelling with Lexington pink striped desk cowl

Carl Johan Rönn / residing with Lexington
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crimson is the foundation coloration that i use the least. purple has so many institutionseverything from an apparent summer hue to the colour that includes an entire season, namely, Christmas. Even if you need to take it easy with pink, it’s nonetheless part of my foundation — what could the yank flag be without pink?

including red in a adorning detail in a room is placing. It is probably a carpentry detail painted crimson, a pillow, or something else. move crazy with pink accessory merchandise all through the season — why not incorporate numerous varieties of pink at Christmas rather than just traditional Christmas red?
living with Lexington colored striped patterned seaside towels

dwelling with Lexington

accent hues

there are numerous accent colours, and people we’re attracted to differ from season to season.

YELLOW — in every coloration from butter, solar, and lemon-yellow to orange and caramel — is powerful and creates a experience of warmth.

green — from tea, grass, or leaves to pine inexperiencedpresents a feel of calm.

red — from infant to bubblegum — may be flirty or soft.

BROWN AND BLACK — from earth to ash — they add weight and gravitas.

by starting with foundation colorations, you may create endless versions based totally at the season, fashion, or just your temper. With a mild foundation it is clean to discover totally new opportunities on a small price range. Pillows or throws in a brand new shade rework the residing room into a totally new space. A tablecloth, napkins, and clean plant life in a vase rework a equipped-laid table into an experience.

There are actually no guidelines or barriers for accent shades. follow your feelings and wishes. strive things out and spot what happens.