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Emerald Forest Xylitol Sweetener, 32 Ounce Containers (Pack of 2)
Emerald Forest Xylitol Sweetener, 32 Ounce Containers (Pack of 2)
Offered by Xylitol USA
Price: $29.99
2 used & new from $29.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Approach with caution... unless you like diarrhea, May 4, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I got Xyla xylitol sugar substitute because of its oral health benefits, not because I am diabetic. My routine was to add one teaspoon to my morning tea (about 16 ounces of tea), or approximately 4 grams of xylitol. I also use a xylitol-based mouthwash (Spry oral rinse) after breakfast and one piece of xylitol gum after lunch and dinner. So adding it all up my daily xylitol intake is probably about 7 grams. This is far below the daily dosages at which xylitol is supposed to cause any problems.

Why am I giving you all this detail about how much xylitol I consume? Because the more you consume, the greater the likelihood that it will have a "laxative effect." Xylitol has dental benefits because it is a sweetener that bacteria in your mouth cannot digest. This means you can have sweets without causing tooth decay. Unfortunately, whatever makes xylitol bad for bacteria also makes it pretty indigestible for humans. This means that xylitol can cause diarrhea and gas. Lots and lots of gas. Oh, and it also kills dogs, cats, mice, rats and other smaller mammals that have the misfortune to eat it.

Websites and companies touting xylitol run on and on about how it is "all natural" and "better than sugar" but I disagree. While xylitol exists in nature, and the original source material for the product is natural (birch trees in this particular case), xylitol is the result of a complex, highly industrial process. This industrial process bears no resemblance to the experience of eating a piece of fruit containing a small amount of xylitol. Technically speaking, industrial xylitol may have the same molecular structure as the natural unprocessed xylitol, but the way it gets there stretches the term "natural" beyond recognition, in my opinion.

Feel free to experiment with xylitol to prevent tooth decay and regulate blood sugar, but don't be surprised if your digestive tract can't handle this stuff. From now on I'm sticking to mouthwash which has maximum impact on teeth but minimum impact on my gut.


Xlear Spry Green Tea Gum, 100-Count
Xlear Spry Green Tea Gum, 100-Count
Offered by _AllXylitol_
Price: $7.95
10 used & new from $6.47

2.0 out of 5 stars Great concept, poor execution, April 11, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Xylitol gum is reputed to be good for your dental health -- as long as you don't consume too much xylitol per day (less than 10 grams is best to avoid diarrhea and other unpleasant GI symptoms).

I loved the idea of a green tea flavored gum -- green tea is an anti-oxidant and the flavor is unusual in this application. Unfortunately, this gum does not taste at all like green tea to me. I can't identify the taste, but green tea it is not.

I'm puzzled by all the complaints here about the flavor lasting only a few seconds. With a flavor this unpleasant, that is a distinct positive.


Coming Out of Homosexuality: New Freedom for Men and Women
Coming Out of Homosexuality: New Freedom for Men and Women
by Bob Davies
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.33
133 used & new from $0.01

3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Wishing won't make it so..., April 5, 2014
This book propagates the stupendously ignorant idea that faith in God will "cure" men and women of their homosexuality and prepare them for marriage with a person of the opposite gender. The authors may think of themselves as being Godly and well intentioned but in fact they are malicious in their results if not in their attitudes.

Sexual orientation is NOT susceptible to being changed by prayer or by any other contrived means that I'm aware of. Sexual orientation may evolve over time because of the people one meets or the experiences one has, but that is quite different from jamming a different sexuality down your own throat (pun intended) because you cling to an image of yourself that bears no relationship to the way you truly are.

There have been gay people for as long as there have been people, and anyone who is unhappy with his/her sexuality has a much saner path in life than the one advocated by this book: live a wholesome, yet a completely unapologetic, life. Don't hide, suppress or bully yourself because of ideas you cling to that have no relationship to reality. If you believe in God then you also believe He is omnipotent. If He is omnipotent then, clearly, homosexuality is part of his plan...and everything else you don't like or would prefer to avoid is part of His plan too. Whether you believe in God or not, deal with reality just as it presents itself because there is no escape from reality. It goes without saying that trying to escape what cannot be escaped is an exercise in futility and just compounds your misery...

I bought this book from a library bookstore with the sole intention of destroying it to prevent anyone else from having their thinking distorted and their misery increased by it. It was well worth the $2 I paid, and I'd buy every other copy I could find so long as the copies were pre-owned so that my money wouldn't go back to the fools who wrote and published this nonsense.


The Mountain Backpack Kitty Adult T-shirt S
The Mountain Backpack Kitty Adult T-shirt S
Offered by Pierce This 2
Price: $18.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous, February 18, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Probably this shirt was intended to be taken seriously and some people probably buy it for the "adorableness" and cuteness of the design. I warmly commend anyone who takes this shirt seriously and thinks it is sweet. But when I wear this shirt the irony is immediately apparent and people burst out laughing as I walk down the street.

This is a highly versatile garment. Whether you mean it, or you are faking it, the kitty backpack shirt is quite fabulous.


Dare to be Wrong
Dare to be Wrong
by Judith Leibowitz
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Great reading for serious AT students and teachers, February 18, 2014
This review is from: Dare to be Wrong (Hardcover)
This is a wonderfully clear and concise exploration of the thinking at the core of the Alexander Technique, and of the insights and possibilities that can unfold under the influence of that thinking. I refer to select quotations from "Dare to Be Wrong" in my own AT practice again and again. Here are two I particularly like:

“As a teacher, you pick up the moment before your brain has said, ‘Oh this is the moment.’”
“We are dealing not with the goal but the in-betweens that help us reach our goal.”

The price for this book on Amazon is inexplicably obscene. The book is in print and is available for a mere $26 plus shipping from the bookstore of AmSAT (the American Society for the Alexander Technique). Highly recommended.


The World Is Made of Stories
The World Is Made of Stories
by David Loy
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.13
67 used & new from $4.69

0 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Of questionable value, September 14, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This book does challenge one's expectations about what a book "should" be like. It is essentially a stream of consciousness rumination delivered in the form of short fragments, a meditation with little cohesion other than the slender thread of exploring the concept of stories and their relationship to culture, psychology and so on. Many of the fragments in the book -- perhaps as much as a fifth of the text -- are quotes from a wide array of authors, many of whom I'd never heard of previously. Sometimes the quotes illustrate what David Loy has himself written but quite often it's the other way around -- David Loy uses the quotes as a point of departure for a brief commentary before moving on to the next quote. I quite like quotations, but a fair number of those included here are less than electrifying; some quotations are weak enough to feel like filler, which is a feeling you don't want readers to have with a relatively short book (111 pages including the index).

The unusually heavy reliance on quotations and the lack of explicit connection between different fragments on different pages might make you feel, as I do, that the book is a rather self indulgent exercise. It can be argued that "The World is Made of Stories" camouflages intellectual laziness under a veneer of hyperactive erudition. The book is good at asking questions but not very good at taking the risk of trying to answer the questions it raises. Of course, many philosophical questions have no real answer, but that doesn't mean that readers haven't got the right to examine, rather concretely, what an author himself believes.

I think the subject of stories and their role in how we perceive our culture, our society and ourselves is a compelling one. It's not the subject here that's the problem; rather, it's the execution that is lacking.


That's the Way It Was: Stories of Struggle, Survival and Self-Respect in Twentieth-Century Black St. Louis
That's the Way It Was: Stories of Struggle, Survival and Self-Respect in Twentieth-Century Black St. Louis
by Vida Sister Goldman Prince
Edition: Paperback
Price: $17.15
29 used & new from $12.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading... an enduring witness to our racist past, September 8, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Through the eyewitness testimony of thirteen men and women, this book gives a searing portrait of the corrosive effects of institutionalized racism in St. Louis during a 50-year period. It is very upsetting, and very necessary, to read about the pain and humiliation African-Americans experienced living in a time of rigidly segregated theaters, lunch counters and bathrooms...a time during which many neighborhoods and professions were completely off limits to them. Often the "off limits" sign was actually invisible -- but it was clearly "understood" by everyone that black people just could never go there... or do that. Tales of how children experienced racism and discrimination and how they "integrated" those negative messages into their world views and self images abound in these pages and are particularly affecting.

This book is a must read for anyone interested in history, social justice or race relations. As truth telling goes, it doesn't get much better than this.


Suzuki M20 Manji 10-Hole Harmonica
Suzuki M20 Manji 10-Hole Harmonica
Offered by STAR US MART
Price: $40.00
35 used & new from $37.75

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Reeds break easily, August 14, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I am not an experienced harmonica player, but was attracted to the Manji series because my teacher favors them and they seemed to be a promising product with modern technology behind them. Unfortunately, the reeds on these harmonicas break more easily than reeds on much cheaper products such as the Hohner Marine Band. Perhaps if you're a pro and draw more skillfully than me your Manjis hold up better, but it is too costly for me to buy these Manjis and then have to replace the reed plates frequently. I will instead opt for Hohners that last longer and cost no more than the reed plates for a Manji.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 14, 2014 6:40 PM PDT


The Use of the Self
The Use of the Self
by F. Matthias Alexander
Edition: Paperback
10 used & new from $45.23

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, a must read, August 13, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Use of the Self (Paperback)
This is a highly accessible account by F.M. Alexander of how he developed and utilized the Technique that bears his name. It is clearly written and gives a sufficiently detailed discussion such that anyone with an interest in the subject can grasp the conceptual underpinnings and undeniable logic of the Technique, as well as the empirical case supporting its use. Reading the book is, of course, no substitute for taking Alexander lessons from a competent and experienced teacher -- no one should buy the book under the delusion that reading it will solve their problems or give them a real experience of the Technique itself, as apparently at least one reviewer mistakenly did.

It is true that sometimes Alexander's sentences can be overlong and ponderous, and this can make his books difficult for some readers. But I found this book highly readable and incredibly persuasive despite these modest stylistic shortcomings. If you feel Alexander's writing is too impenetrable and anachronistic, you can get some real perspective by reading Thomas DeQuincey's "Confessions of an English Opium Eater." Then you'll really have something to complain about.


Advantus Hardwood Stackable Desk Tray, Letter Size, 13.5 x 11 x 2.75, Oak Finish (CW07211)
Advantus Hardwood Stackable Desk Tray, Letter Size, 13.5 x 11 x 2.75, Oak Finish (CW07211)
Price: $16.44
22 used & new from $13.26

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poorly made, low-end product, July 5, 2013
In theory a wood paper tray is a simple item that is not complex to manufacture. But what looks simple turns out not to be, and these Chinese-made paper trays are very subpar. The wood is cheap, and the parts are poorly joined. Gaps between sections are crudely filled with wood putty that is sanded and remains quite visible, and sometimes the gaps are not filled at all. If this company makes any effort at quality control, I'd hate to see the wood trays that were rejected by their inspection team.

If you want something cheap and functional and don't care about the appearance then these trays may work for you. If you desire even a modicum of craftsmanship then you should definitely buy something else. Incidentally, these trays are sold both under the "Advantus" and "Carver" brand names. As far as I can tell the two brands are identical because they share the same product number -- CW07211.


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