The Career Meter

By Christopher Zoukis

MSN’s homepage recently ran an article about America’s Most Successful Business Women.  On the list were such luminaries as Oprah, Meg Whitman, the novelist Stephenie Meyer (all those Vampire movies).  Even Tom Brady’s supermodel wife made the list.  It seems she’s hecka-good at investing money, which, when you stop and think about it, doesn’t really seem fair.  Not only did she get all the looks, but she got all the brains too.  Image courtesy funadvice.com

I was jealous as jelly, almost had a hissy fit.  It took two pints of Ben & Jerry’s to calm me down.

Prior to the article about Successful Business Women, MSN ran a big feature story on the World’s Richest and Most Successful Men.  The list included business men, sports stars, music recording artists, and Hollywood Moguls.  The thrust of the article was that all these guys had Great Careers.

My name was not on the list.

After sulking for a while, I got to thinking.  How come all these people had Great Careers and I didn’t?  For that matter, how come most people don’t have Great Careers?  In the course of trying to find the answer to my question, I pursued a number of different avenues.  First, I prayed about it, asking for divine enlightenment.  What is commonly referred to as Wisdom.  Nothing happened, no revelation from on high occurred.  Then, since Heaven seemed reluctant to give it up, I had a friend consult the next closest thing:  YouTube.  If you’re looking for the meaning to life, YouTube has a video about it.

Eureka!  Based on

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Passion and Fragrance

By Roja Dove

Reviewed by Christopher Zoukis

Perfume has been around a long time.  The oldest written record of perfume comes from Assyro-Babylonian texts of around 1800 BC.  The perfume was called qanu tabu.  Canaanite texts from Ugarit, circa 1400 BC, speak of a perfume designated smn mr – a liquid myrrh.  The Egyptian queen Hatshepsut had ‘white’ trees brought to Egypt around 1490 BC.  From these ‘white’ trees, her perfumers made frankincense, which was the “perfume that deifies.”  To the ancient Egyptians, perfume was the medium for wafting the soul to heaven and for putting demons and evil spirits to flight.  Image courtesy kinnelonconserves.net

Making perfume is part science, part art, and part passion.  In his book – The Essence of Perfume – Roja Dove relates how these three seemingly incompatible parts come together to form a fragrance.  And the book is as magical as its subject matter.

After providing a brief overview of perfume, Dove moves on to the birth of modern perfumery, which occurred in 1832.  That was when J. Mero et Boyveau began using solvent extraction techniques to produce essential oils.  This, along with the discovery of synthetic materials, “was the perfumery equivalent of the big bang.”

‘Methods of Extraction’ is the title of Dove’s third chapter.  Essentially, this is the scientific portion of perfumery.  In it, he explains steam distillation, solvent extraction, expression, enfleurage, and tinctures.  And he does so in very simple and very clear language.  It’s so beautifully done that it boggles the mind.  Only a writer of vast expertise could accomplish such a task. 

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