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Customer Reviews: 35
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ECCO Women's Sculptured 45 Plain Dress Pump,Black,40 EU/9-9.5 M US
ECCO Women's Sculptured 45 Plain Dress Pump,Black,40 EU/9-9.5 M US
Price: $119.96
2 used & new from $119.96

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too small, too narrow -- not like a typical Ecco shoe -- great quality, attractive shoes, but disappointing!, March 15, 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I love Ecco shoes, and if you find that these shoes fit you, they are a very nice quality shoe that anyone would be proud to wear to work. Unfortunately, they were way too small. I wear (wore?) a 40 in Ecco shoes, so I ordered these in a 40. Usually in American sizing, I wear a 8 1/2 to a 9, and 40 is supposedly a 9 to 9 1/2, but in the past I've work 40s in Ecco and they fit. They other thing I liked about Ecco shoes is that they are (were?) wide enough in the toes.

Unfortunately, this beautiful pair of shoes is too small overall, and too narrow in the toes, even in my usual size 40. I'm sad that I must return them, and I don't think even a longer size would fix the problem of narrow toes.

If these were to fit you, they are a nice shoe, but buy with caution, because unless you have the right kind of foot, you'll feel like Cinderella's stepsister as you try to cram them on.

The Mindbody Prescription: Healing the Body, Healing the Pain
The Mindbody Prescription: Healing the Body, Healing the Pain
Offered by Hachette Book Group
Price: $9.99

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No joke: I read this book, and my back pain of 20 years was gone., June 17, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Okay, you've got to understand: I'm no fan of "woo" or new-agey alternative medicine, and this book is not that. I'm a diehard empiricist. Even so, what I'm going to tell you might sound weird.

Everyone, EVERYONE, who has had long-term back pain needs to read this book and try it out.

I had a back injury in 1993. It hurt off and on ever since. It disrupted my life and cost me a lot -- in stress, in worry, in wasted time, not to mention in money (for doctors, pain meds, massage therapists, etc.). This pain was a significant part of my life -- will I make it through okay on a long plane trip? Will it be okay to mop the floor? If I lie on my back to read a book for half an hour in bed, will I be miserable all day tomorrow? It affected my decisions every day.

A friend mentioned this book to me, and said she totally got rid of excruciating back pain. She is not a fan of "woo" either, so I took her seriously -- and well, I'd tried everything else already. What would it hurt to buy a $10 book?

As it turns out, I'm one of those people -- a not insignificant minority, it seems -- who read the book and their back pain goes away (my friend said it took her a few months of dedicated work, and that's pretty common too--but 80-some percent of people seem to get significant, lasting relief).

I read the book about three weeks ago, and have been pain-free ever since. You might be saying "big deal" ...but I haven't had a three-week pain-free stretch in 20 years. Also, even on days when my back didn't actively hurt, certain places -- such as my shoulders -- were always stiff and sore if you touched them. That's gone too. I keep pressing on my shoulders to show myself, "Wow this doesn't hurt a bit." This thing that plagued me for 20 years is gone.

Here's what I think is good in the book:

1. Everyone knows that "stress" can affect you negatively. For example, people who suffer from chronic back pain or headaches often feel worse under stress. What I never considered, however, is that your own nervous system _creates_ physical responses. For example, when some people are embarrassed, they blush. Their blush is real -- it's not "in their head" -- and they're not blushing deliberately or in order to gain anything. Chronic back pain -- real pain, which is not "in your head" and not something you're exaggerating or fabricating -- can arise from your nervous system in the same way as a blush, whether or not there's anything "wrong" with your back. Just as a blush can arise in some people when they're embarrassed, back pain can arise in some people when they're "stressed" -- and everyone is stressed every day. If you're not stressed, you're dead, right? Not everyone blushes, and not everyone has back pain, but people's nervous systems can create physical responses from emotions.

2. Sarno points out that injuries do heal. People break a bone, it heals, and they're fine. People sprain an ankle, it heals and they're fine. Once my back injury healed (20 years or so ago), there was no reason for it to hurt anymore, other than my own nervous system using a familiar "route" to cause pain. Then the question is, Why?

3. The author points out that many people with chronic back pain are the "nice guys" of the world. People with chronic pain are often very conscientious, do-gooder, perfectionistic, or self-sacrificing types. If it's associated with a certain type of personality, that's a red flag right there that something other than an "injury" is going on. A lot of people with chronic back pain also have a history of having been abused as children. What do these two types of people have in common? They tend to deny or minimize or not notice their own feelings. They are the types to say, "Sure I'll help you move a piano at two a.m. on Christmas in a blizzard." They don't even notice that maybe a small part of themselves would rather not move the piano.

4. The author speculates that all this do-gooding and self-denial and ignoring-of-one's-own-feelings and needs (whether it's your personality type, or whether you were raised in an abusive home, or both) also creates a constant pool of underlying "rage" (his word, which he uses a lot) from the part of ourselves that doesn't want to move pianos. Here's where it gets speculative. Somehow your body transforms this unacknowledged feeling into pain (just as "somehow" the body transforms someone's embarrassment into a blush).

5. The author also speculates that the pain serves as a distractor. Of COURSE you aren't wild about moving the piano! Your back is killing you! That's a socially acceptable reason to admit to yourself that you don't want to move the piano. Of course, you'll probably move it anyway. (By the way, the author rejects the notion of "secondary gain" -- i.e., the idea that people with chronic pain use it to get certain benefits like attention or sympathy. He believes the pain serves both as a distraction from emotional pain, and an outlet for / substitute for emotional pain you're not feeling.)

6. Something I found interesting is that people in certain times and places seem to have certain mindbody disorders that are approved by their society as being "real" things with physical causes. In Victorian times there was a lot of mysterious paralysis, but it went out of fashion once people knew more about the body and that it didn't "really" work that way. In the 1990s there was a lot of carpal tunnel, even though computers were probably easier to use (easier on the wrists) than, say, old manual typewriters where you had to bang the keys. There's a whole lot of back pain today, which often lasts years beyond an injury, and which is remarkably unresponsive to treatments and surgeries, but the medical community supports the idea that an injury you sustained 20 years ago can be hurting you today, so everyone believes that chronic back pain has a physical cause, just as everyone once believed in the paralysis in Victorian times. Almost everyone (like me) can point to an "injury" that triggered their back pain, but unlike ever other injury we've ever had, it doesn't get better. It's pretty odd, once you think about it, but everyone -- from doctors to physical therapists to chiropractors to massage therapists to other people with back pain -- reinforce the idea that it's related to a physical injury and there's very little you can do about it. This belief is extremely powerful and helps perpetuate the pain.

7. What I like most of all: I read the book, I thought about all this stuff, I decided his description fit me perfectly (my personality, the type of pain, the length of time, etc. etc.), and once I knew there was likely nothing actually "wrong" with my back, it's like the game was up. My brain gave up trying to use that as a strategy. The back pain went away, including the permanent tightness in my neck and shoulders, including the shooting excruciating nerve pain down my leg for which I was being medicated.

It. Went. Away. I'm off the medication. I'm doing whatever I want. I'm lying on my back for hours every night reading my books. I'm bending however I want. Etc. No problem.

I can never do this book justice. There's a lot more, about MRIs, about people with and without bulging discs, arthritis etc., about people who are told they have to do this or that with physical therapy, "or else" (which is pretty much reinforcing the notion that there's something terribly wrong, although plenty of people have bulging discs and arthritic changes and never have a day of back pain). You just have to read it, to see whether it fits you too. If you've had back pain for years, it probably does.

Here's what I'm not wild about.

1. The book seems very psychoanalytic to me -- to me, needlessly so. It talks a lot about "rage" and you might not be a person who really perceives that you're feeling "rage" (I'm not). But on the other hand, the book "works" so I'm not sure that anyone necessarily needs to accept a psycholanalytic explanation. I'm a nice-guy self-denier who probably, if I'm really honest with myself, truly loves to help people but doesn't enjoy moving pianos at 2 a.m.

For me, all I had to do is, every time my back started to twinge, ask myself to think hard about what I'm feeling, what's bothering me. I say it to myself -- I don't even have to go around refusing to move people's pianos. I just have to say to myself something like "I really don't like getting up at 2 a.m. to move pianos. I would rather stay in bed. I wish there was some other time -- not on Christmas, not during a blizzard -- when we could move the damn piano." I just acknowledge to myself that a part of me feels that way. I also ask my brain to stop my back from hurting, and it does. Then I go about my business. But there's no need for a psychoanalytic explanation, in my opinion, any more than there's a need for a psychoanalytic explanation for a blush or a phantom limb pain.

We don't have to understand it for it to work. Gravity always "worked" whether or not we understood it. Apparently checking in with your own emotions, acknowledging them, and asking your brain to stop sending pain messages also works. I don't quite understand it, but -- like gravity -- it's very powerful.

So -- like every other idea you encounter in life: Take what works for you, and leave the rest. I've read a bunch of other good books on this topic now too, by this author and others. My favorite so far is Unlearn Your Pain by Howard Schubiner. Only the first five chapters is available on Kindle, though, and I've ordered a hard copy of the rest of the book, so I can't review the whole thing yet.

I wish every doctor who sees patients with back pain would read this book. I wish everyone with persistent back pain would read this book and give the ideas a try. I wish tons of research were being done on this phenomenon. I wish I had come across this book 20 years ago.

Sharwoods Hot Curry Powder 102g
Sharwoods Hot Curry Powder 102g
Offered by The British Food Depot
Price: $9.56
6 used & new from $4.99

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Curry Powder Ever - wish it were more widely available, June 17, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I forget where I first got Sharwood's Hot Curry Powder, but it's the best curry powder ever and I can't live without it. After that first purchase, I could never find it again anywhere. Thank goodness for Amazon -- I think the seller sends it all the way from the UK? But it gets here promptly and in good condition. It's nice and fresh too.

Yes I know "curry powder" isn't used in "real" Indian cooking -- and I do a lot of "real" Indian cooking too. But it's great for those faux Indian dishes that a lot of people grew up with (curried chicken in a crock pot from Betty Crocker or whatever -- not "real" Indian food but still tasty). If I worried about the authenticity of my cooking, I'd never cook my spaghetti or my beef and broccoli again...anyway. Cook what you like! If you have recipes that call for curry powder, this is the stuff!!!

Here's our favorite recipe with this awesome curry powder. It doesn't end up seeming faux Indian -- it seems very "American comfort food like grandma made":

Harvest Soup

3/4 cup diced onions
4 Tbsp butter
2 large potatoes; peeled and diced
2 cups broth (vegetable broth, chicken broth, whatever)
4 cups cooked and mashed winter squash ( or two 10-oz pkg frozen winter squash, thawed)
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp (Sharwood's hot) curry powder
1 1/2 cups whole milk

Melt butter and saute onion in a large pot. When soft, add potato, broth, squash, and spices. Simmer 10 mins or till potato is tender. Mix in the milk.

When heated through, serve, sprinkled with additional paprika, with some nice chewy bread, butter, and wine. If you use the hot curry powder (there's a non-hot version of Sharwood's too, or at least there was at one time), a riesling or gewertztraminer is good with this.

And you, too, will be a fan of Sharwood's Hot Curry Powder and of this seller who graciously ships to us here in the States! :)

Roku Remote Control
Roku Remote Control
2 used & new from $29.99

4.0 out of 5 stars good replacement for a lost remote -- no problems, May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Roku Remote Control (Electronics)
This was a decent price, and although it looked a bit different from the missing remote that it replaced, it works fine, so everyone's happy with it.

Teen Vogue
Teen Vogue
Price: $10.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars my daughter likes this; so many ads, May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Teen Vogue (Magazine)
I guess since I haven't been very big on fashion magazines in recent years, I'd forgotten how much of these types of magazines are pure advertising. Almost everything. I can't believe I paid money to receive about 90 percent ads, but my daughter enjoys seeing which of her favorite celebs made it to the cover, so she's happy with it.

Zodiac K14 Sand and Silt Bag Replacement
Zodiac K14 Sand and Silt Bag Replacement
Price: $23.49
19 used & new from $17.99

4.0 out of 5 stars better than the bigger mesh bag; hard to clean but worth it, May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The mesh is finer than the mesh on the "regular" bag we used to have on the Polaris. A lot of the stuff in our pool is fine and small, so this bag catches more of it, so we like that. It's a bit hard to clean, but worth the few extra minutes of time. A bit on the expensive side for what it is.

Cuisinart CSB-75 Smart Stick 2-Speed Immersion Hand Blender, White
Cuisinart CSB-75 Smart Stick 2-Speed Immersion Hand Blender, White
Price: $30.86
64 used & new from $19.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars it works okay., May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I read the reviews where this supposedly blended hummus etc. -- well it's okay for blending thin liquids, or emulsifying fats into a drink, but I don't think it would handle hummus -- it barely handled, and with extremely messy results, a vegetable soup that needed to be blended. Meh, I mostly use it for missing coffee drinks so it's okay I guess.

Update International New Commercial Grade Stainless Steel Cups, 30-Ounce
Update International New Commercial Grade Stainless Steel Cups, 30-Ounce
Price: $5.83
23 used & new from $1.05

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars leaked badly the first time we used it, May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
A milkshake cup or cocktail mixing cup is supposed to be able to hold liquids, last time I checked. The first time I tried to use this, for bulletproof coffee, I poured in the coffee, and it quickly leaked all over the counter and the floor before I even realized what was happening. For the price, it wasn't worth the time and expense of returning, so I put it in the recycling. More money wasted. Seems to be happening more and more often lately.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 22, 2014 2:56 PM PDT

Ace Evert Offset Umbrella 8074, 10 ft, Polyester, Dark Green
Ace Evert Offset Umbrella 8074, 10 ft, Polyester, Dark Green
Price: $91.37
6 used & new from $65.90

4.0 out of 5 stars this is okay -- I like it, my husband doesn't, May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
We are trying to set this up in a somewhat small poolside area. I wanted the flexibility of being able to move the table away to accommodate more guests in the shade -- our previous umbrella fit through the middle of the table and seemed to really limit our seating arrangements and the number of people who could fit under it. So this is an improvement, in that we can move the table freely. But the base of it is much larger and much more "in the way" than it looks in the photos. And we still have to buy a base for it (sticking concrete pavers on top of it is not a workable long-term solution). My husband really doesn't like it overall. I don't like it much, but it's better than what we had, so I rate it 4 stars.

The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living:  An Expert Guide to Making the Life-Saving Benefits of Carbohydrate Restriction Sustainable and Enjoyable
The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living: An Expert Guide to Making the Life-Saving Benefits of Carbohydrate Restriction Sustainable and Enjoyable
Price: $9.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great book, great info, May 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I'd read a lot already on low carb eating and was already familiar with some (not all) of the science discussed. I found the discussion on sodium, potassium, and magnesium very valuable. It helped me see where my own eating plan was going a bit awry. I certainly would not have come up with the idea to eat more sodium on my own. The book is well-written and accessible. Two thumbs up.

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