Right Time to Cancel a Plan

Is canceling at the last minute the new fashionably late? Etiquette experts have heard the rumors and noticed that norms are trending that way.

“During the pandemic, society experienced events of all sizes being frequently canceled and rescheduled, sometimes even several times,” says Courtney Opalko, an etiquette expert and coach who launched Courtney Opalko Etiquette, LLC in 2020. “We all had to learn to be flexible, but it also made it easier and more acceptable to cancel at the last minute due to illness, crowds or unfavorable logistics.”

Jennifer Porter
, a Seattle-based etiquette expert, says the trend may have some well-intentioned roots.

Still, Porter doesn’t advise making last-minute cancelation a habitual form of self-care. What really qualifies as “a last-minute cancellation?” Etiquette experts discussed when it’s too late to bail on plans (and notable exceptions). 

Related: When Should You Select ‘Love’ vs. ‘Care’ on Facebook? What Communication Experts Want You To Know About Emoticon Etiquette

Is It Bad To Cancel Plans Last-Minute? 

Generally, it’s not good. “The problem with canceling at the last minute is that it minimizes the other party’s time and effort required to make the plan,” Porter says. “It can have adverse effects on relationships if done too often with the same person or group of friends or family.”

Professional relationships can also fray.

When we commit to a meeting or collaboration, it signifies a level of respect and dedication to the project or partnership,” says Lauren LaPointe, a corporate and personal etiquette consultant. “Frequent cancellations can convey a lack of reliability and commitment, which can erode trust and potentially harm our professional reputation.” https://32baaad605aefae8669a19a48504a7f6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

How Late Is Too Late To Cancel Plans?

It depends. As a general rule of thumb, switch your RSVP to “no” as soon as you know your plans need to change. “Any cancellation, short of a true emergency, should be communicated as far in advance as possible,” Opalko says.

OK, but what’s the cut-off if you’re feeling too tired to go to happy hour or simply don’t feel like going anymore?

“If the cancellation is due to feeling overwhelmed, overscheduled or simply no longer being interested in the event, it’s important to give two to three days’ notice, if not more.”

LaPointe says the timeframe is similar for professional obligations.

“For significant events or commitments, such as…important business meetings, canceling within 48 to 72 hours in advance is advisable to minimize disruptions and show respect for the time and effort invested by others,” LaPointe says.https://32baaad605aefae8669a19a48504a7f6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

Canceling happy hour or business meetings may cost you a relationship or money. However, pay-per-plate events like weddings, Sweet 16s and large retirement parties often require hosts to submit head counts and commit to payments in advance. So, when you blow it off at the last minute, you’re actually costing someone else money. This nuance is important.

“A formal event like a wedding requires more notice, with the minimum being at least one week prior to the event to account for catering and the final event deadline,”  Opalko says. 

Related: 10 Best Phrases for Reaching Out to Someone When It’s Been Too Long

Is It Ever OK To Cancel Plans Last-Minute?

Of course it is. There are exceptions to the above rule, including for pay-per-plate events like weddings or high-pressure business meetings.

“Life throws us curveballs on a daily basis, and no one is immune to this disruption,” Porter says.

LaPointe says some common and totally valid reasons to change plans at the last minute include:https://32baaad605aefae8669a19a48504a7f6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

  • Physical or mental health emergencies
  • Childcare crisis
  • Natural disasters
  • Illnesses, hospitalizations or deaths of loved ones
  • Legal obligations
  • Travel disruptions, like canceled flights or car accidents 

3 Tips To Help You Avoid Canceling Plans 

1. Don’t say “yes” right away

We live in a fast-paced world that loves instant gratification, but Opalko says it’s best to take a beat before texting that you’re “so in” for dinner with a pal.

“It’s OK to take time before saying yes and committing to something,” Opalko says. “Graciously thank the person for the invitation and let them know you’ll confirm with them as soon as possible,”https://32baaad605aefae8669a19a48504a7f6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

2. Check your calendar

Nix double-booking woes by keeping a digital or written calendar of your plans. Check it before agreeing to anything.

“Keeping an organized calendar really helps you know what you’ve got going on and when,” LaPointe says.

3. Do a gut-check

A commitment to self-care is great, but having an honest discussion with yourself can prevent mental health or exhaustion-related last-minute no-shows.

“It’s important to consider the tempo of your weekday, weekend, week, month or season of the year,” Porter says. “If you know that holidays are a busy time with work and family commitments, it will be important to carve out time for friends, but aim not to overtax your time, energy and budget by saying yes to every invitation that comes along.” 

Related: 12 Phrases To Use When Someone Is ‘Talking Down’ to You—and Why They Work, According to Psychologists

The 3-Step Guide To Canceling Last-Minute 

1. Pick up the phone

Text messaging offers a quick, low-confrontational way to bail, but Porter suggests sucking it up and calling.

“If you must cancel plans at the last minute, pick up the phone and make voice contact to apologize for the inconvenience and potential disappointment you may have caused by your actions,” Porter says. “If appropriate, text in advance to see if the person has a minute to talk.”https://32baaad605aefae8669a19a48504a7f6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

2. Consider bearing gifts

Canceling plans last minute can feel a bit thoughtless. A sweet gesture can put a better taste in a person’s mouth, especially if you bailed on a wedding. 

“Consider either a handwritten card of thanks and apology or a gift of some kind, like flowers and food delivery,” Porter says.

3. Offer to reschedule 

If you value the relationship, offer to reschedule. Even if you can’t recreate a pal’s big 40th birthday bash, buying her lunch can give the two of you quality time together.

“Offering to reschedule or suggesting an alternative helps demonstrate your commitment to the relationship or the plan,” LaPointe says. “It shows your willingness to make amends. You might say something like, ‘I know this is disappointing, but can we reschedule our hiking trip for next weekend? I was really looking forward to it, and I still want to make it happen.'”

Next: 10 Best Phrases for Reaching Out to Someone When It’s Been Too Longhttps://prod-native.actionbutton.co/?isNativeEmbed=true&c4e5c407-ec0c-4ba5-b873-950132d51757https://32baaad605aefae8669a19a48504a7f6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

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Effective Phrases to End Debate

Have you ever found yourself in the middle of a heated argument with a partner, friend, family member, or coworker? More common than you might imagine, arguments can quickly get out of control, and suddenly you’re both steaming and slamming doors. However, it doesn’t have to be this way. Before any disagreement escalates, take the opportunity to shift gears, so you can have a fruitful discussion instead.

We’ve all been there. Your day is going perfectly fine, and then all of a sudden, a huge argument blows up between you and someone you care about. Whether it’s a partnerfriendfamily member or coworker, arguments have this way of getting out of control very quickly. Before you know it, you’re both steaming and slamming doors.

At their core, arguments are really all about two people who want to be validated. From politics to money to scheduling issues and so much more, both sides want to be heard, and when that doesn’t happen, a fight can ensue.

Fortunately, there are some helpful phrases that can come to the rescue when you’re in the middle of an argument.

What Starts Arguments in the First Place?

“Many arguments start with a misunderstanding or miscommunication,” says Patrice Berry, Psy.D., LCP. “We often see people from our perspective and filter their words and behavior through what we would say or do instead of remembering that they are separate from us.”

Haleh Malek, Psy.D., a therapist at Harmony Place in Woodland Hills, California, also weighs in, saying, “Arguments, typically fueled by a desire for power and control, often start when someone feels strongly about a matter and wants their opinion known, and accepted, by the other person. Arguments can escalate if the person making their case feels attacked, unheard, dismissed and/or can’t find the words to express themselves.”

Even when we know someone very well, it’s still entirely possible to misread them.

Dr. Berry explains, “There are times that even when we are very close to someone, we will need to ask them to clarify their message.”

Despite the fact that, at times, arguments are an inevitable part of life, there are ways to at least reduce their frequency.

“Be aware of your emotional state and the adverse impact that feeling tired, hungry, sleep-deprived, overwhelmed or just being a little ‘off’ may have on you,” Dr. Malek says. “Such feelings might lead an otherwise rational individual to become more argumentative.”

Although it may not seem like it, Dr. Berry points out that disagreements and misunderstandings are part of any healthy relationship.

“Conflict can provide us with a chance to show empathy, practice healthy communication and set boundaries in our relationships,” she says. “Healthy conflict resolution requires emotional intelligence and maturity.”

Related: 35 Simple, Sincere Phrases To Express Empathy, According to Therapists

15 Phrases to Effectively End Any Argument

1. “I understand where you’re coming from.”

One big part of phrases that can disarm an argument is letting the other person know that they’re heard, since, as we mentioned, validation is a driving factor behind most disputes. Dr. Berry says that this particular phrase allows the other person to feel heard and signals that you understand their perspective.https://e1cccc179e9e873cc9a119ec4ebec97e.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

“This does not mean that you agree with them or that they have changed your perspective,” she says. Don’t think of this phrase as “giving in,” but rather, one that can diffuse a heated situation.

2. “Let’s agree to disagree.”

This classic statement is a great way to end an argument. Dr. Berry calls this “a more direct version” of the previous statement, and Dr. Malek says that it can help reduce tension and allow both parties to feel like they’ve been heard.https://e1cccc179e9e873cc9a119ec4ebec97e.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html

3. “We are allowed to have different opinions/views. We don’t need to argue about it.”

A disarming phrase should aim to cool things down and deescalate an argument. Dr. Malek says that these words “cool tension” between the parties and acknowledges that a resolution isn’t always required.

4. “I appreciate your perspective.”

“This is another way to let the other person know that you have heard and understand their perspective or point of view,” Dr. Berry shares.

5. “I hear you.”

As we’ve mentioned, people just want to feel like they’re being heard, whether they’re in the midst of an argument or not. Dr. Malek suggests that simply saying, “I hear you,” can validate one’s opinion.

Related: 35 Phrases To Disarm a Narcissist and Why They Do the Trick, According to Therapists

6. “You have keen insight and great ideas, but now is really not a good time to have this discussion.”

Often, a fight can benefit from stepping away and gaining some peace and perspective. Dr. Malek says that this phrase not only shows respect to the other person, but also provides a cooling-off period.

7. “I really appreciate you and what you have to say, but I think we should discuss this at another time.”

For another way to communicate respect and cool off from one another, look to this phrase shared by Dr. Malek.

8. “Can we take a break and revisit this later?”

“This can be an effective way to request a break from the conversation,” Dr. Berry says. “Often during a heated argument, it can be helpful to step back from the conversation before attempting to resolve the issue or find a solution.”

12. “It seems like we have been focusing on the problem. Let’s focus on finding a solution instead.”

Perhaps the argument needs to shift its course a bit. For this phrase, Dr. Berry says, “This is a way to change the direction of the conversation to looking for solutions and remembering that we have a common goal.”

13. “I value what you have to say, but arguing is not effective communication.”

While this phrase still shows respect, as Dr. Malek says, it can also remind both of you that lowered voices and calm words can act as better communication tools than shouting and name-calling.

14. “What I hear you say is…is that correct?”

Dr. Malek says that after saying, “What I hear you say is…”, you’ll repeat the other person’s argument or position on an issue. Adding, “Is that correct?” demonstrates that you are listening.

15. “I value our relationship more than being right.”

Do you still love or care for the other person? The answer is more than likely yes. You can remind them that you care by saying this phrase.

“This can be a way to remind the other individual of the importance of the relationship instead of solely focusing on the problem,” Dr. Berry says.


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Story about Thomas Alva Edison

Thomas Edison Biography

Thomas Edison (1847 – 1931) was an American inventor and businessman who developed and made commercially available – many key inventions of modern life. His Edison Electric company was a pioneering company for delivering DC electricity directly into people’s homes. He filed over 1,000 patents for a variety of different inventions. Crucially, he used mass-produced techniques to make his inventions available at low cost to households across America. His most important inventions include the electric light bulb, the phonograph, the motion picture camera, an electric car and the electric power station.

“None of my inventions came by accident. I see a worthwhile need to be met and I make trial after trial until it comes. What it boils down to is one per cent inspiration and ninety-nine per cent perspiration.”

– Thomas Edison, interview 1929

Short Biography Thomas Edison

thomas-edison Thomas Edison was born in Milan, Ohio on Feb 11, 1847, the youngest of seven siblings. His parents were middle class, though they were not wealthy. In particular, the family struggled when the railroad bypassed Milan, forcing the family to move to Port Huron, Michigan. He attended only three months of formal schooling – he irritated his teachers with his repeated questioning and inability to just follow instructions. He was largely disinterested at school and was mainly self-educated through reading. He took upon it himself to read every book on the library shelf. By the age of 12, he was reading Sir Isaac Newton’s famous work – Principia Mathematica. However, Edison was not impressed by the complex maths of Newton and resolved to try and make science more understandable.

As a youngster, he tried various odd jobs to earn a living. This including selling candy, vegetables and newspapers. He had a talent for business, and he successfully printed the Grand Trunk Herald along with his other newspapers. This included selling photos of his hero, Abraham Lincoln. He was able to spend his extra income on a growing chemistry set.

Unfortunately, from an early age, Edison developed a severe deafness, which ultimately left him almost 90% deaf. He would later refuse any medical treatment, saying it would be too difficult to retrain his thinking process. He seemed to take his deafness in his stride, and never saw it as a disability.

edison Edison had a big break when he saved a young boy on the railway track from being struck by a runaway train. His grateful father, J.U. Mckenzie, had Edison trained as a telegraph operator and, aged 19, Edison moved to Louisville, Kentucky to work as a telegraph operator for Western Union.

From childhood, Edison loved to experiment, especially with chemicals. However, these experiments often got Edison into difficulties. A chemistry experiment once exploded on a train, and when working on a night shift at Western Union, his lead-acid battery leaked sulphuric acid through the floor onto his boss’ desk. Edison was fired the next day.

However Edison was undimmed and, despite scrapping by in impoverished conditions for the next few years, he was able to spend most of his time working on inventions. He received his first patent on June 1, 1869, for the stock ticker. This would later earn him a considerable sum.

In the 1870s, he sold the rights to the quadruplex telegraph to Western Union for $10,000. This gave him the financial backing to establish a proper research laboratory and extend his experiments and innovations. Edison once described his invention methods as involving a lot of hard work and repeated trial and error until a method was successful.

“During all those years of experimentation and research, I never once made a discovery. All my work was deductive, and the results I achieved were those of invention, pure and simple. I would construct a theory and work on its lines until I found it was untenable. … I speak without exaggeration when I say that I have constructed 3,000 different theories in connection with the electric light, each one of them reasonable and apparently likely to be true. Yet only in two cases did my experiments prove the truth of my theory.”

– “Talks with Edison” by G.P Lathrop in Harper’s magazine, Vol. 80 (Feb. 1890), p. 425

By 1877, he had developed the phonograph (an early form of the gramophone player) This received widespread interest, and people were astonished at one of the first audio recording devices. This unique invention earned Edison the nickname ‘The Wizard of Menlo Park‘ Edison’s device would later be improved upon by others, but he made a big step in creating the first recording device.

With William Joseph Hammer, Edison started producing the electric light bulb, and it was a great commercial success. Edison’s great advance was to use a carbonised bamboo filament that could last over 1,000 hours. In 1878, he formed the Edison Electric light Company to profit from this invention. Edison successfully predicted that he could make electric light so cheap, it would soon come universal. To capitalise on the success of the electric light bulb, he also worked on electricity distribution. His first power station was able to distribute DC current to 59 customers in lower Manhattan.

Edison’s studios now took up two blocks, and it was able to stock a huge range of natural resources, meaning that almost anything and everything could be used in trying to improve designs. This was a big factor in enabling Edison to be so successful in this era of innovation.

During the fledgeling years of electricity generation, Edison became involved in a battle between his DC current system and the AC (alternative current) system favoured by George Westinghouse (and developed by Nikola Tesla, who worked for Edison for two years before leaving in a pay dispute.)

This became known as the ‘current war’ and both sides were desperate to show the superiority of their system. The Edison company even, on occasion, electrocuted animals to show how dangerous the rival AC current was.

During World War One, Edison was asked to serve as a naval consultant, but Edison only wanted to work on defensive weapons. He was proud that he made no invention that could be used to kill. He maintained a strong belief in non-violence.

“Nonviolence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.”

Edison was also a great admirer of the Enlightenment thinker Thomas Paine. He wrote a book praising Paine in 1925; he also shared similar religious beliefs to Thomas Paine – no particular religion, but belief in a Supreme Being.

Edison made many important inventions and development in media. These included the Kinetoscope (or peephole view), the first motion pictures and improved photographic paper.

After the death of his first wife, Mary Stilwell in 1884, Edison left Menlo Park and moved to West Orange, New Jersey. In 1886, he remarried Mina Miller. In West Orange, he became friends with the industrial magnate, Henry Ford and was an active participant in the Civitan club – which involved doing things for the local community. His pace of invention slowed down in these final years, but he still kept busy, such as trying to find a domestic source of natural rubber. He was also involved in the first electric train to depart from Hoboken in 1930.

Throughout his life, he took an active interest in finding the optimal diet and believed a good diet could play a large role in improving health. In 1903, he was quoted as saying:

“The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will instruct his patient in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.”

He had six children, three from each marriage. Edison died of diabetes on October 18, 1931.

Citation: Pettinger, Tejvan. “Biography of Thomas Edison”, Oxford, UK – www.biographyonline.net  Published 17th July 2013. Last updated 5 March 2018.

Quotes by Thomas Edison

“Through all the years of experimenting and research, I never once made a discovery. I start where the last man left off. … All my work was deductive, and the results I achieved were those of invention pure and simple.”

As quoted in Makers of the Modern World: The Lives of Ninety-two Writers, Artists, Scientists, Statesmen, Inventors, Philosophers, Composers, and Other Creators who Formed the Pattern of Our Century (1955) by Louis Untermeyer, p. 227

Wright Brothers Story

Wright Brothers Biography

WilburWright Orville Wright (1871 –  1948) | Wilbur Wright. (1867 – 1912)

The Wright brothers – Orville and Wilbur Wright are credited with building and flying the first heavier than air aeroplane. They achieved the first recorded flight on 17 December 1903. Over the next ten years, they continued to develop the aircraft making a significant contribution to the development of the modern aeroplane.

Their particular contribution was in the effective control of an aeroplane, through their three-axis control system. This basic principle is still used today. It was for this control mechanism that the Wright’s received their first US patent – 821,393.

Early Life of Wright Brothers

wright-brothers Orville and Wilbur had two elder brothers Reuchlin (1861-1920) and Lorin (1862-1939), and a younger sister Katharine (1874-1929). Their parents were Bishop Milton Wright (1828-1917) and Susan Catherine (Koerner) Wright (1831-1889). Their father worked as a minister in various churches, and as a consequence, the family frequently moved around. Their father encouraged his children to read widely and discuss issues. This climate of intellectual creativity and stimulus encouraged the Wright brothers to pursue a range of interests and studies. When they were young, their father bought them a small ‘helicopter’ – built in France. They later commented that this helicopter sparked an interest in flight and they sought to build similar models themselves.

Around 1885, Wilbur became withdrawn after sustaining a facial injury during a game of ice-hockey. This injury and the resulting depression caused Wilbur to give up his dreams of studying at Yale. Instead, he remained close to home, helping his father with ministerial tasks and looking after his ill mother.

However, Orville was determined to try new things, and his enthusiasm helped draw his brother Wilbur into new projects. In 1889, they designed and built a printing press which, for a short time, published a daily newspaper.

In 1892, the capitalised on the ‘safety bicycle’ boom and opened a bicycle shop; this was commercially successful and also enabled them to develop their skills as designers and engineers.

Around the turn of the century, there was considerable interest in the possibility of flight. Most of this centred on gliders. But, the Wright brothers began to explore the possibility of mechanised flight with heavier than air aircraft. For both brothers, the dream of flying became an all-consuming passion.

“For some years I have been afflicted with the belief that flight is possible to man. My disease has increased in severity and I feel that it will soon cost me an increased amount of money if not my life. I have been trying to arrange my affairs in such a way that I can devote my entire time for a few months to experiment in this field.”

Wilbur Wright, Letter to Octave Chanute (13 May 1900)

They concentrated on building a more powerful, but lighter engine and worked on an innovative design for controlling the plane once airborne.

They used funds from the bicycle shop to start testing at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. It was a windy environment which helped give planes lift off. They made extensive tests and also recorded a range of data about possible flights. Even at the turn of the Century, many were doubtful that man would ever be able to fly.

“My brother and I became seriously interested in the problem of human flight in 1899 … We knew that men had by common consent adopted human flight as the standard of impossibility. When a man said, “It can’t be done; a man might as well try to fly,” he was understood as expressing the final limit of impossibility.”

Wilbur Wright

First Flight by Wright Brothers


On December 17, 1903, the Wright Brothers made the first historic, aeroplane flight, where Orville piloted the plane (called ‘the Flyer’) with Wilbur running at the wing tip.

The first flight, by Orville, of 120 feet (37 m) in 12 seconds, at a speed of only 6.8 miles per hour (10.9 km/h) over the ground, was recorded in a famous photograph. The next two flights covered approximately 175 feet (53 m) and 200 feet (61 m), by Wilbur and Orville respectively. Their altitude was about 10 feet (3.0 m) above the ground. The following is Orville Wright’s account of the final flight of the day:

“Wilbur started the fourth and last flight at just about 12 o’clock. The first few hundred feet were up and down, as before, but by the time three hundred ft had been covered, the machine was under much better control. The course for the next four or five hundred feet had but little undulation. However, when out about eight hundred feet the machine began pitching again, and, in one of its darts downward, struck the ground. The distance over the ground was measured to be 852 feet; the time of the flight was 59 seconds. The frame supporting the front rudder was badly broken, but the main part of the machine was not injured at all. We estimated that the machine could be put in condition for flight again in about a day or two.”

Five people witnessed the first flight, including John Daniels who took the famous first flight photo.

Over the next few years, they continued to develop their aircraft. However, they were conscious of needing to gain strong patents to make their aircraft commercially viable. They became reluctant to reveal too much about their flights and disliked reporters taking photos of their designs. Their secret approach and competing claims by other aircraft designers meant that for many years their inventions and flights were met with either indifference or scepticism. However, in 1908, Wilbur began public demonstrations in Le Mans, France. His ability to effortlessly make turns and manoeuvre the aircraft caused a sea change in public opinion, and the display of technically challenging flights caused widespread public acclaim and enthusiasm.

In 1909, Wilbur made a public flight up the Hudson River in New York, circling the Statue of Liberty. The 33-minute flight, witnessed by one million New Yorkers, established their fame in America.

Achievements of the Wright Brothers

  • 1903 – first powered aircraft flight
  • 1905 – built an aeroplane that could fly for more than half an hour at a time.
  • 1908 – Orville Wright made the world’s first flight of over one hour at Fort Myer, Virginia, in a demonstration for the U.S. Army, which subsequently made the Wright planes the world’s first military aeroplanes.
  • 1908 – Wilbur made over 100 flights near Le Mans, France; the longest one, on Dec. 31, a record flight: 2 hours, 19 minutes.

The Wright’s made their first application for a patent in 1903, but it was rejected. In 1904, they hired a patent attorney, who helped them gain their first patent. However, other aviators attempted to circumnavigate the Wright brothers patents, leading to painful and costly legal battles in the courts.

In the last two years of his life from 1910 to 1912, Wilbur played a key role in the patent struggle. His family believed this contributed to his premature death from typhoid fever in 1912.

The brothers never married. Wilbur once quipped he “did not have time for both a wife and an aeroplane.” Orville Wright died of a heart attack at age 77.

The original Wright Flyer rests in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C. with the inscription.

“The original Wright brothers aeroplane

The world’s first power-driven heavier-than-air machine in which man made free, controlled, and sustained flight

Invented and built by Wilbur and Orville Wright

Flown by them at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina December 17, 1903

By original scientific research, the Wright brothers discovered the principles of human flight

As inventors, builders, and flyers they further developed the aeroplane, taught man to fly, and opened the era of aviation.”

Citation: Pettinger, Tejvan. “Biography of The Wright Brothers”, Oxford, UK. www.biographyonline.net 23rd June 2010. Last updated 7th March 2018.

The Wright Brothers


The Wright Brothers at Amazon

Short Story about Mother Teresa

Biography Mother Teresa

MotherTeresa_ Mother Teresa (1910–1997) was a Roman Catholic nun who devoted her life to serving the poor and destitute around the world. She spent many years in Calcutta, India where she founded the Missionaries of Charity, a religious congregation devoted to helping those in great need. In 1979, Mother Teresa was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and became a symbol of charitable, selfless work. In 2016, Mother Teresa was canonised by the Roman Catholic Church as Saint Teresa.

“It is not how much we do,
but how much love we put in the doing.
It is not how much we give,
but how much love we put in the giving.”

– Mother Teresa. From: No Greater Love

Short Biography of Mother Teresa

mother teresa Mother Teresa was born in 1910 in Skopje, the capital of the Republic of Macedonia. Little is known about her early life, but at a young age, she felt a calling to be a nun and serve through helping the poor. At the age of 18, she was given permission to join a group of nuns in Ireland. After a few months of training, with the Sisters of Loreto, she was then given permission to travel to India. She took her formal religious vows in 1931 and chose to be named after St Therese of Lisieux – the patron saint of missionaries.

On her arrival in India, she began by working as a teacher; however, the widespread poverty of Calcutta made a deep impression on her, and this led to her starting a new order called “The Missionaries of Charity”. The primary objective of this mission was to look after people, who nobody else was prepared to look after. Mother Teresa felt that serving others was a fundamental principle of the teachings of Jesus Christ. She often mentioned the saying of Jesus,

“Whatever you do to the least of my brethren, you do it to me.”

As Mother Teresa said herself:

“Love cannot remain by itself – it has no meaning. Love has to be put into action, and that action is service .” – Mother Teresa

mother-teresa She experienced two particularly traumatic periods in Calcutta. The first was the Bengal famine of 1943 and the second was the Hindu/Muslim violence in 1946, before the partition of India. In 1948, she left the convent to live full-time among the poorest of Calcutta. She chose to wear a white Indian sari, with a blue border, out of respect for the traditional Indian dress. For many years, Mother Teresa and a small band of fellow nuns survived on minimal income and food, often having to beg for funds. But, slowly her efforts with the poorest were noted and appreciated by the local community and Indian politicians.

In 1952, she opened her first home for the dying, which allowed people to die with dignity. Mother Teresa often spent time with those who were dying. Some have criticised the lack of proper medical attention, and their refusal to give painkillers. Others say that it afforded many neglected people the opportunity to die knowing that someone cared.

Her work spread around the world. By 2013, there were 700 missions operating in over 130 countries. The scope of their work also expanded to include orphanages and hospices for those with terminal illnesses.

“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”

—- Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa never sought to convert those of another faith. Those in her hospices were given the religious rites appropriate to their faith. However, she had a very firm Catholic faith and took a strict line on abortion, the death penalty and divorce – even if her position was unpopular. Her whole life was influenced by her faith and religion, even though at times she confessed she didn’t feel the presence of God.

The Missionaries of Charity now has branches throughout the world including branches in the developed world where they work with the homeless and people affected by AIDS. In 1965, the organisation became an International Religious Family by a decree of Pope Paul VI.

In the 1960s, the life of Mother Teresa was brought to a wider public attention by Malcolm Muggeridge who wrote a book and produced a documentary called “Something Beautiful for God”.


In 1979, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize “for work undertaken in the struggle to overcome poverty and distress, which also constitutes a threat to peace.” She didn’t attend the ceremonial banquet but asked that the $192,000 fund be given to the poor.

In later years, she was more active in western developed countries. She commented that though the West was materially prosperous, there was often a spiritual poverty.

“The hunger for love is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread.”

-— Mother Teresa

When she was asked how to promote world peace, she replied,”Go home and love your family”.

Over the last two decades of her life, Mother Teresa suffered various health problems, but nothing could dissuade her from fulfilling her mission of serving the poor and needy. Until her very last illness she was active in travelling around the world to the different branches of The Missionaries of Charity. During her last few years, she met Princess Diana in the Bronx, New York. The two died within a week of each other.

Following Mother Teresa’s death, the Vatican began the process of beatification, which is the second step on the way to canonization and sainthood. Mother Teresa was formally beatified in October 2003 by Pope John Paul II. In September 2015, Pope Francis declared:“Mother Teresa, in all aspects of her life, was a generous dispenser of divine mercy, making herself available for everyone through her welcome and defense of human life, those unborn and those abandoned and discarded,”“She bowed down before those who were spent, left to die on the side of the road, seeing in them their God-given dignity. She made her voice heard before the powers of this world, so that they might recognize their guilt for the crime of poverty they created.”

Mother Teresa was a living saint who offered a great example and inspiration to the world.

Awards given to Mother Teresa

  • The first Pope John XXIII Peace Prize. (1971)
  • Kennedy Prize (1971)
  • The Nehru Prize –“for the promotion of international peace and understanding”(1972)
  • Albert Schweitzer International Prize (1975),
  • The Nobel Peace Prize (1979)
  • States Presidential Medal of Freedom (1985)
  • Congressional Gold Medal (1994)
  • U Thant Peace Award 1994
  • Honorary citizenship of the United States (November 16, 1996),

Citation: Pettinger, Tejvan. “Biography of Mother Teresa”, Oxford, UK. www.biographyonline.net, 18th May 2006. (Updated September 2016)

Living in cities of future

Future Cities

The building that houses both the Masdar and International Renewable Energy Agency headquarters will have stores and restaurants in addition to office space, powered by 1,000sqm of photovoltaic panels. While no residential buildings beyond dormitories have been built, they are in the works. “There are various residential plots around the city, and over the coming years they will be tendered out to global architects,”Zaafrani explained. The city’s economic free zone “ with zero taxes, import tariffs or restrictions on foreign hires “ is set up to specifically attract clean energy and tech companies, clustering them together in incubator office buildings. “The number one target is people who work in Abu Dhabi and around the UAE,” Zaafrani said. “We are trying to make sure as we build up the city, there will be demand for both commercial and residential spaces. “Currently, a four-bedroom villa in central Abu Dhabi rents for around 200,000 dirhams a year, while a two-bedroom flat in Reem Island rents for around 100,000 dirhams. Over the next two years, 45,000 new flats and houses will come available.The National: English-language daily covering news, features, arts and culture across the Emirates Related article: The futurist “ Masdar City

Former Expo Site, Shanghai
Rather than building an entirely new city (although China is doing that too, by the dozens), Shanghai is taking the area that housed the 2010 Shanghai World Expo on the Pudong and Puxi sides of the Huangpu River and turning it into a city-within-a-city. While the Expo originally displaced 18,000 families, it was themed around urban sustainability and efficiency, and the city invested heavily in the sites infrastructure so it could be redeveloped after the fair was over and the pavilions dismantled. Parks, green space, water features and cultural institutions such as the large red China Pavilion, now a museum – were left to be incorporated into mixed-use projects containing apartments, hotels, offices, shopping malls and restaurants. By 2016, two hotels and some office and retail space will be completed, and in May 2013 the 50,000sqm Green Valley project broke ground. Near the China Pavilion, the project will form the central axis of the overall site with sustainable commercial space, restaurants and offices, all linked by open courtyards, gardens and other green spaces.The Shanghai housing market is rising quickly, and recently the government reacted to fears of a bubble by directing banks to stop giving mortgages to people buying their third home. The median house price in the city centre is currently 42,500 renminbi per square metre, and a new-build, two-bed flat in Pudong can start at 8 million renminbi. A one-bedroom city centre flat rents for about 6,000 renminbi per month, and a three-bed in the centre rents for 14,500 renminbi.

Victoria, British
This Canadian city across the Puget Sound from Seattle, Washington, has created an urban experiment within its borders with the Dockside Green development on the city’s harbourfront. The three neighbourhood master plan is based on the tenets of New Urbanism, with its focus on density, community and sustainability.
Dockside Wharf has been completed, and Dockside Commons and Dockside Village are not yet under construction. Streets are walkable, housing is diverse and energy efficient, and residential and commercial spaces are densely packed but close to nature trails and ponds. The three developments and 26 buildings, designed by Perkins + Will Architects, are LEED platinum certified and built on a former industrial site. Strong eco-credentials include the fact that the buildings use 55% less than water than traditional condos and were constructed using low VOC paint and eco-friendly materials such as bamboo flooring and carpets made from recycled material.Western Morning News: News and events from around Devon and the West Country
Song Do,Korea
Photo by Robert Koehler/getty

Song Do
Photo by SJ Kim/getty

Incheon Bridge
Photo by SJ Kim

Masdar City
Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP/Getty

Photo by Tony Burns/LPI/Getty

Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP?Getty

Photo by Feng Li/Getty

Photo by 2013

Photo by 2013

Photo by 2013