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2,271 Public Reviews Given
2,271 Total Reviews Given
Review Style
I try to be honest and positive. My Christian faith is an important background factor. I hate rating low but have a system that determines how I grade.
 
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#2259390 by LightinMind
I'm good at...
More interested in the content of what you write than the style. Theological, political, historical, scientific, or experiential, or indeed anything that paints a vision of the future. A good grammar checker will tell you about spelling and commas.
Favorite Genres
Not entirely sure as I like most stuff. I prefer something with a soul rather than purely secular. But I like Sci-Fi, anything Christian, and also 'What-if' type speculations with plausible plots.
Least Favorite Genres
Anything that fails to look for a way out of the darkness. You can be dark, just don't wallow in it. Generally, I try to steer clear of Fantasy, and most Dark or Horror stories just make me laugh or grimace due to their ignorance of the dark side.
Favorite Item Types
I have really liked some of the heartwarming dramas I have read here particularly personal stories. Thought-provoking poems or stories are cool also though I am no expert on poetical forms.
Least Favorite Item Types
Anything that is just an affirmation of the dark side. I hate empty words. I always look for human intelligence. I try and avoid Fantasy and Horror where there is no metaphorical resonance or connection with real-world truth.
I will not review...
I mainly review at random and just see what grabs my attention. I will usually skip stuff I do not like unless it gets me riled or if it is interesting for other reasons.
Public Reviews
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1
1
Review of Healing Waters  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hello, pennman . This is a review of "Healing Waters by invitation from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

A tiny stream leads a traveler down a route to the ocean. On the way, the sounds and feelings evoked by the waters of stream, brook, creek, river, lake and ocean heal the wandering soul. Sometimes the best of journeys are the ones that keep you so engaged you forget why you started and why you allowed yourself to be swept so deep into the waters.


*Quill*Commentary

I loved this soothing flow of words from its tiny intriguing beginnings to its overwhelming and all-consuming ending. Reading it out loud I liked the tone and rhythm and there was little to distract from taking the journey with the author as the waters grew more and more significant.

There is so much in human life that goes so badly wrong. There seems to be little rhyme or reason to these happenings but these wounding wars and hurtful endings of hopes and dreams can lead us into dark places. Your poem by contrast is sparkling with the sunny simplicity of nature and a journey from a tiny stream to an ocean that owns all its horizons.

Not that this poem is all dreamy sunshine on gentle waters. Rather you describe the dangers of the journey all too well giving personality to the waters as they develop from small beginnings to an all-encompassing planet embracing tidal force.

The brook babbles with delight and later babbles again about a slippery rock, though the author stumbles anyway apparently not realising what it was saying until he fell.

The Creek is busy with gathering leaves and is in a dialog with the surrounding trees. There is a feeling of early Autumn with life still growing all around but also the beginning of the Fall.

The Rivers swift current is well described and the power of that gives her an angry and stern vibe but she proves to be a woman of her word nonetheless. Now the personification of watery flows is joined by a Heart beating faster and a Soul that seems to be evaporating into the clean clear and crisp air.

There is something erotic about swimming over the Lady of the Lake but she did invite you in. And then you found she was a larger personality than first envisaged. She became the ocean and Nature swallows Heart and Soul and all ambition for a life outside these waters. Finally, there are only the tides and the pains and conflicts of all transcendence have been lost in a oneness with Nature.

Strangely I did not find the ending as comforting as the journey itself. It was as though something indeed maybe even the self had been lost on the way and it was only at the journey's end when it was too late to do anything about it that you see the measure of what has consumed you. It was something like looking at a single star and then suddenly having eyes opened to the infinite skyscape of all the stars in the universe at the same time. It was all too much and perhaps a person could drown in all that light. Your soul has become a wisp as if preparing to evaporate or merge into the mists over the ocean that are themselves burned away by the sunshine on the waters.

So I felt this was not really about healing but rather the annihilation of the self in the immensity of Nature. It was like a drug-induced high in which the self fades into insignificance rather than a genuine healing of heart and soul tormented by world events. I wanted to find meaning and purpose at the end of my journey not to be simply told I was but yet another drop in an infinite sea. I wanted to woo the lady and make her mine instead I find myself returned to her womb as if I had never been born.

Thanks for an enjoyable read.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

I was slightly bothered by the repetition of 'way' in the first stanza. Maybe use day instead somehow.

You seem quite random in your use of capitalization. It seems you want to attribute personality to the Creek, Oaks, River, Heart, Soul, Sun, Ocean on a level with the Lady of the Lake and my Lady. But I wondered why if you were doing this you did not apply the same rule to the brook in the fourth stanza.


Thanks for sharing.


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2
2
Review of Nightwatch  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hello, Beholden . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "Nightwatch via the entry list for the WDC contest. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Just after the Second World War, an American platoon conducted operations against guerillas hiding out in the Teutoburg Forest near Kalkriese. The location was well known for being the place where three Roman legions were massacred by the Germans in the reign of Augustus at the height of Roman Imperial power. Strange things occur...

*Quill*Commentary: Content, Characters and Plot

I loved the way you combined history with a spooky ghost story here. The Kalkriese site is on my bucket list of places to visit here in Germany. There is a museum there called Römermuseum Kalkriese which hosts the products of the various archaeological digs in the area. The casualties were overwhelmingly Roman.

The Werwolf myth is less realistic, there were no American combat casualties after the war ended. Werwolf as a concept was meant to be a uniformed commando-style unit operating behind enemy lines not an insurgency movement inside Germany against a victorious conqueror. Hitler silenced all such planning as traitorous defeatism. Most Germans were exhausted with war in 1946 and consumed with the desire to get on with their lives. They had famine and ruins to contend with and survival was the priority for most of them. In 1946 American troops were there as occupiers intent on keeping the peace not punishing the Germans.

But I admired the way you combined the two stories leading to the Roman legionnaires getting their final revenge. So in your account, the lights become eyes and the mysterious deaths of the guerillas seem supernatural.

Jim Borrell could have been any American G.I. except for the things that he saw that night and reported to the Lieutenant. Doc resolves the mystery and despite his scrawny frame proves his worth in this soldier's operation.

The story was provocative and got me planning my trip to Kalkriese. Thanks.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Well written and nothing major to mention here.


Thanks for sharing.


2023 Quill Nominee

 
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3
3
Review of THE CATCHERS  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Hello, tosca I found "THE CATCHERS when searching for articles on Sport. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

St Patrick’s 1st XV Rugby Team takes on 900 Turkeys for a big payout from the farmer. At first, the progress is very slow but then they start to play as a team...

*Quill*Commentary

This was brilliant and very funny but also very clever. A rugby team was the perfect choice to catch these especially elusive and brutal free-range Turkeys. Every man in the team has his motives for being there which were entertaining in themselves. They range from a tryst with a prostitute to first beers, and buying a kid sister a communion dress and others.

I loved the way that they eventually worked out that they could use their rugby skill set to bring down these opponents. Rugby tackles and team play manhandled the Turkeys into the cages. This is also a story of a bloody victory against all odds that probably strengthened the bond between the players. Although since the timing of the event was mid-season you have to wonder if any of the injuries left players out of their next game. Having played rugby myself as a kid I could appreciate the language and mindset you communicated so well here.

Thanks for an entertaining read.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Grammar checkers have improved significantly since 2006 and you might want to check out Grammarly and quillbot.com regarding commas in this piece and break up some overly long sentences into smaller units.

Quotes are on the outside of fullstops or commas.

You leave spaces between hyphenated words.


Thanks for sharing.


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4
4
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello, Katye Teressing I found "The Benefits of Playing Basketball when searching for articles on xyz. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

An essay on why you should play basketball. It helps to strengthen family ties, is good exercise, helps you think more carefully about nutritional choices, and keeps kids off the streets and from committing crimes. Students who play a sport also perform better in the classroom, add to your social circle, and help you to understand the basics of competition in sport as in life.

*Quill*Commentary

I thought this was a good prasi of why we should play sports generally rather than just basketball. As someone who played in most of my school sports teams and who also went to swimming club, tennis club, and squash club in my own time, running half marathons on the weekend and cycling everywhere, sport was my life but I was spread a little thin. I failed in the tryouts for the basketball team. On reflection, I did not understand the rules of the sport, never had time to watch people play it, and had not devoted sufficient time to learning the basic tools of the trade. It is a shame because the sport is a good one and my school team reached the last 16 of the nationals.

Contact sports are in decline in Europe in the schooling environment and there is a tendency to elitism in the corporate versions of the sports. The result is a fat class of spectators watching an elite class of super-fit athletes performing. To me this seems like a betrayal of the value of sports and your piece is a reminder of the considerable benefits of doing sports even if you never end up being the best of the best.

Thanks for an interesting and edifying read.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

You capitalize Basketball when it should not be capitalized it is not a title but rather an activity.

My Dad and Oranges are also not titles and therefore should not be capitalized.

Check out quillbot.com which will help with inappropriately placed or missing commas


Thanks for sharing.


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5
5
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hello, KURT I found "The Seventh Inning Stretch when searching for articles on Sport. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

I came here looking for how past WDC members have handled the subject of Sport. This was a funny exposee of the entertainment motive of the modern commercial sports industry. The hero is a drunk fan who invades the pitch and traces his actions back in history to a Roman ancestor whose blood-alcohol levels probably killed the lions that ate him in the arena thus saving the early church from extinction.

*Quill*Commentary

As a lifelong Manchester United Fan, I think I know the difference between the love of the club and hatred of the commercialism that has taken over the sport in recent years. The hatred of the Glazer family by most MUFC fans implies that they simply do not get the club story or the passion of the fans for the sport. The Glazers have betrayed the club that came back from the Munich air disaster to win the European Cup. In GB there is tribalism about sport, about my town against yours, my gang against yours which worked well in preparing young men for the local-based regiment system and the comradery of war. Until WW1 that is when whole regiments were wiped out and whole towns denuded of their young men. After that recruitment became more spread out to reduce the impacts of major defeats. Most of these young men played football in the playgrounds or other contact sports. Many like myself would play a sport every lunchtime just for the sheer fun of it.

Your piece focuses however on a single feature of modern sports, its entertainment value. This is the bottom line for corporations that make billions from these elite athletes. So their stories and achievements are exaggerated and woven into magnificent and stirring tales of victories against all odds. Mere mortals who play sports for fun cannot compare with the statistics of these professional athletes. Entertainment, as a focus, provides for more fickle and fast-changing audiences than those who turn up on the terraces in pouring rain with just a couple of hundred others to watch their team lose in the Third Division. The tribalism of the locale is replaced by the success or failure of the teams and how their stories connect with their audiences.
Now people script sports stories and the elite athletes act them out on the field. In the breaks stirring music keeps the fans entertained and if the match gets boring there is always the possibility of a Mexican wave.

Pitch invasions in the USA probably also were most memorable when done nude. Most men my age remember streaker Erica Roe in the 1982 England-Australia Rugby Union match.

Thanks for a funny piece. I loved the joke about the alcohol poisoning of the lions saving the early church. Preposterous but funny.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Grammar checkers have improved considerably since 2002 and you have false capitalization, missing commas, and some missing pronouns also. I would recommend Grammarly or quillbot.com as free checkers for this.

Thanks for sharing.


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6
6
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hello, loudermilk . This is a Raid Review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* "Do-Gooders, A Public Menace was selected by personal choice for this time around. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Satirical critique of the Christian counter-culture. Do-gooders preach all sorts of things designed to stop parents who just want money, power and fun and do not care about adding meaning to their lives.

*Quill*Commentary

It is an interesting question. Has liberal society abandoned its responsibilities to the next generation for the sake of its freedoms and opportunities? Is this a sterile generation uninvolved in the future of the children they bore but failed to instill any sense of values in?

You wrote this almost two decades ago but in many ways, it is prescient of the kind of culture clash that has developed into the partisan warfare of the 2024 election. Two tribes go to war and Romeo and Juliet are not friends on Instagram so we do not even have tragic romances to bring us together anymore.

Maybe your satire picks a side or maybe it mourns a golden age that never was or maybe it is just a bit of fun to point out the absurdities of the culture wars that could tear our world apart and have probably already begun to do so. Or maybe we should invert what you said and take on board the sermon for today spoken two decades ago.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major to say on this.


Thanks for sharing.


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7
7
Review of Even Trade?  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hello, Bandit's Mama . This is a Raid Review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* "Even Trade? was selected by personal choice for this time around. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Be careful what you wish for, it might just come true...

*Quill*Commentary

It is quite amazing what you can do in so few words. This is very thought-provoking. On the one hand, there is indeed a lot of ugliness in the world. But is it better to be blind because then you cannot see it?

I think it is better to see the world just as it is warts and all because none of us our perfect and there is no hiding from our sins and imperfections. Reality hurts but with eyes wide open we can still find the joy and reason in it. Those who long for darkness and a quiet place to hide away from their pains are just wimps who have given up on the good fight, forgetting their promises and rationalizing the will of God according to their desires and intent.

Blindness is a curse, not a gift.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major was found.


Thanks for sharing.


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8
8
Review of LOVE TAKES TIME  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, Maria Pen . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "LOVE TAKES TIME via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

She's been away from church for a while but hugging and chatting with an old friend restored the connection quickly reminding her of God's love.

*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

This was upbeat and inspiring and triggered all sorts of flashbacks to my own experience of church. We also belong to a hug culture but it all stopped with the pandemic. I hugged an older lady in church on Sunday who had been hit badly by COVID during the last few years and there were smiles all around. It feels like a restoration of warmth after years of distance in the church right now.

But I was not clear if you used to date the person you hugged in that church or if you were just happy to connect with another person in the church. There is a difference and it was not established here.

If you edit the issues below you will have a good story here.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

It looks like you cut and pasted this from another program hence the problems with line spacing and tabs which need correcting.

'Your here now,m- Your is a possessive adjective used to show ownership, not a contraction which is what fits here - so you're not your.

I knew that Love took time, and yet it seemed like yesterday it was here. - is this love taking time to grow and develop. Or love taking time like a thief. Or does this mean it takes time to recover from some kind of romantic love relationship that did not quite work out? It was not clear.


Thanks for sharing.


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9
9
Review of Bog Spring  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, Turtle ~ KanyáthƐko:wa:h . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "Bog Spring via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

The snow starts to melt in the wetlands beside farmland and life returns.

*Quill*Commentary

This is my own reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

It has been a cold Winter here in Germany and the roads and pathways were too icy to go out a lot of the time except with extreme caution. People, cars and bikes were slipping and sliding all over the place in the metropolitan jungle. But here you present a vision of wetlands frozen over by Winter snows with the channels of streams and the open bogs frozen by the cold. In such a place when Spring comes, the birds start to sing and life starts blossoming to celebrate a new year.

I needed an upbeat poem like this as this has been possibly the worst possible start to the year. There is something gently inspiring about blackbirds and melting snow. Sometimes ice is not pretty just a cage and a barrier to life. Like a frozen heart that cannot love.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major to say here


Thanks for sharing.


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10
10
Review of "Share"  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, Netty . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received ""Share" via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Sharing our pain with gentle love, sharing what is needed, sharing what has been given by God above.

*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

Maybe the world would be a better place if we all learned how to share in the Christian spirit of this poem. Our pains tutor our compassion and our prayers are often the only hope of healing in this world.

I loved the sentiment of sharing and the content of this. But the way you phrased it bugged me.

Maybe:

"Share"

Share one's pain with gentle love
Share a whispered prayer to comfort hurt
Share what's needed to bring peace
Share what's given by our Father above


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Missing apostrophes, mixed tenses, and commas. God "cares" not care.

Thanks for sharing.


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11
11
Review of Stranded  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, Espero . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "Stranded via an official email with a recommended item list and yours looked interesting. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Stranded by a snowstorm in a hotel lobby seven guests are tested by a limited number of rooms, the anxiety of missing their flights and the stresses related to the situation.

*Quill*Commentary: Content, Characters and Plot

You gathered an interesting set of characters together in a stressful situation and showed how despite all their foibles and masks they could find human connections.

Having worked in hotels and even as a receptionist the situation seemed familiar to me but I realized after reading your piece that I had filled in the blanks with my imagination and memory rather than anything you had said. You did not describe the context, the lobby, or the hotel yourself in a way that made me feel I was there.

In my experience hotels bring out the best and worst of people. Every day is a soap opera and I found it quite exhausting. You see married couples come in on their honeymoons, marriage breakups, and adultery, and you see posh girls dancing like sluts on the grand piano in the lobby, completely drunk and swearing like troopers.

That said I liked your characters. You described them in terms of demeanor rather than giving us any kind of picture of how they looked. You dissolved the stereotypes into human beings with the story but descriptions would have helped here.

The pompous elderly businessman was preoccupied with work but in his haste to look important and seem busy dropped his credit card. It was only an act of kindness that saved him, undercutting his pride and self-importance.

The elderly lady recalls a time of manners and social etiquette before women's lib. Her prickly demeanor seems to mask real fears and anxieties she has about the unfamiliar surroundings and the situation.

The good-looking young man is out for the ladies but strikes out and then disappears from the story.

The mother, Joan, with two daughters shares a bed with them. They also share with the young lady, Nancy, who is engaged.
These seem positive and sociable characters and the friendship continues after the event with the invite to the wedding.

The story was cool and worked for me but this needed more description of the context and characters and there were a lot of mechanical issues with the text also.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

You might want to try out free tools like Grammarly or quillbot.com. There were mechanical issues with the writing.

Could all of you move aside and let him go to the front, please.[?]

The elderly lady in [at the] back of the line

I apologize [,] sir, if you change your mind [,] we can arrange to have a car take you there.

Can't blame a fellow for trying, can you.[?]


Thanks for sharing.


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12
12
Review of How to be special  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, John Johnny Johnson . This is a review of "How to be special by invitation from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Amusing search for identity and meaning by the smallest piece on the chess board.


*Quill*Commentary: Content, Characters and Plot

Thanks for asking me to review this. It made me smile, especially because I come from a family of chess players.

Effectively, you have a piece on a chess board asking a strange man in a big room, sitting behind a desk, for affirmation, even though that man has no place on the actual board on which Pawn plays.

How is this man qualified to affirm Pawn as special? Is he a player, a chess tournament judge, a chess trainer, or the president of a chess club? His review of the pieces was fair enough as if he were familiar with them, but his anonymity bugged me.

In the end, despite asking the question, Pawn has his own answer to the question of why he matters. But I thought he was wrong and did not go far enough. Simple self-affirmation in a chessboard world where function or identity is defined by performance is not enough. A pawn can win a chess game in combination with other pawns or pieces. A pawn can take queens or checkmate kings. He might just be a footsoldier but what king or queen goes to war without an army?

Pawn matters, but the man seemed ill-equipped to tell him that and his answer was insufficient. This short piece also had a lot of minor errors.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Excuse he [me] sir, I wish to be special

So tell me[,] Pawn, how would you like to be special?"

Pawn looked up to [at] the man.

Well[,] I am not smart like King, nor skilled as Queen.


Thanks for sharing.


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13
13
Review of Medical Blunders  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hello, Darkly Humorous I found {item:} when searching for articles on eugenics. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

History is full of examples of where doctors have caused harm. Sometimes through bad science and training, defective equipment, lack of actual contact with the patient and sometimes even bad handwriting is to blame. Medical dogmas are often harmful filters in medical practice and doctors do not readily confess to mistakes, misdiagnosis, or a lack of diagnosis. They will also lie to patients to generate the placebo effect.

Against this background, many Americans turn to quacks.

The consequence of malpractice is unnecessary surgeries, people on drugs for mental illnesses they do not have and many people can die from diseases they contract inside a hospital. The Thalidomide crisis was aggravated by doctors not asking the right questions of their patients

The original Hippocratic oath did not permit abortions or euthanasia. But doctors under the Nazis were instruments of a dubious racial ideology and part of the genocide and sterilization efforts to generate a racially pure society. They experimented on criminals.

Leeches, lobotomies, the reckless use of X-ray machines, the blinding of newborns with too much oxygen, and the careless provision of drugs have all had disastrous consequences.

The struggle continues today with inadequate health care provision and crowded hospitals


*Quill*Commentary

I came here looking for an article on eugenics. This was only partly focused on this area but was interesting nonetheless.

You focused on iatrogenesis and how doctors can cause immense harm through ignorance and political filters. These days we can test a doctor's diagnosis for ourselves on our mobiles in the waiting room but there remains an accountability deficit and the American insurance culture means that very often people only go into the hospital when it is already too late. There needs to be a better way to hold doctors to account and to encourage transparent honesty in hospitals than suing them. American legal culture adds considerably to medical costs.

The example of too much oxygen to babies causing blindness was a scary one

Thanks for an interesting and well-structured article. You were stronger in describing than prescribing solutions. I guess better training, better research, and structures that hold doctors to account for mistakes must all be a part of that process.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Since you wrote this grammar checkers have improved massively. Try Grammarly or quillbot.com for example.

The only way to fight it is by educating yourself, and realzing realizing that doctors are human, just as we all are.

Gas was never used during the way war, but hundreds were harmed.

The frontal lobes were severed, thus eliminating the problem, and possible possibly anything resembling personality


Thanks for sharing.


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14
14
Review of On The Clock  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, Sophy . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "On The Clock via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

What does the passing of time feel like to us? Does it drag or pass too quickly? Are we slaves to the past or our future planning? Do our calendars cage us or enable us to live each moment? Why do we measure our lives in time, before and after and miss the wealth of the moment?


*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

What an interesting overview of how we work with time. There was a lot of insight in this account of time and I could empathize with a lot of your examples also.

One question that your text inspired was the extent to which our appreciation of time was linked to our love language. Some value quality time but some want affirmation, physical touch, presents, or acts of service and define the moment in terms of these. What is quality time, is it measured only by my appreciation of the moment or is it something defined by a communal consensus or valuation for instance?

I measure time against eternity and felt this angle was missing in your account. Your account focused on 'me in the moment' while a focus on God measures the moment by eternity. Is what I do at this moment something that will stand forever or will seem contingent and petty in the grand scheme of things? Was the trajectory of my life up or down, true or false, dark or light, good or evil? Time can be a sequence of stained shadows descending into darkness or a path to bright heavens.

Thanks for an interesting and thought provoking account.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major to say here.


Thanks for sharing.


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15
15
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, Alex Manning . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "Ode to Patriotism via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

An ode to American patriotism. A song to a feeling of patriotic fervor and a spirit of devotion to one's land that echoes 'America the Beautiful' in its words.

*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

I come from a different country. In fact, I hold two nationalities. Nations meant something in my British grandfather's day when the mission of the British Empire, as a force for 'Christianity and Civilisation' was to defend the world against tyranny. It also meant something to my American Grandfather who fought the Nazis even before his own country joined the fray. Now despite these Anglo roots, I hold a German nationality, that of an enemy who is now a friend. Nationality to me serves a deeper purpose and reflects a grander mission. It is a temporary construct and abstraction that thrives for a season and then like a cloud in the sky evaporates away. There is much to be proud of in the USA but nations and empires, rise and fall and only God is forever. We cherish nations for what they stand for and for the mission that makes them great, but they have an expiry date.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

From the mountains tall to the oceans wide,
We stand tall, our patriotism never denied.


You repeat tall twice so maybe use mountains high here instead.


Thanks for sharing.


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16
16
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello, Weirdone-Back in the games . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "In a Country Called Ecuador via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

There is a beautiful, brave, and strong woman in Ecuador called Johanna. The author roams the earth but his thoughts are always home with her.


*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

This was upbeat, positive, and love-saturated. It makes me hope the guy made it home to beautiful Johanna and that she was strong enough to resist all the propositions of local men who never went roaming the Earth. Maybe roaming equals the pursuit of riches, maybe it equals worthwhile missions or the activities of a criminal enterprise for the man. His reasons for being away are not clear. But he looks back to his lovely homeland with Johanna as his emotional anchor, the lighthouse that shines in the storm of life and may yet show him the way home.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

You were quite random with punctuation. Probably better to remove all periods from the ends of lines as they are used inconsistently here.


Thanks for sharing.


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17
17
Review of Jesus Vs. Santa  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, Leslie Loo . This is a review of "Jesus Vs. Santa by invitation from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

A discussion between Jesus and Santa over their relative importance to the Christian festival of Christmas or the Commercialised festival of present giving.

*Quill*Commentary: Content, Characters and Plot

It is difficult for me to read pieces like this. I remember feeling physically sick watching Monty Python's Life of Brian for example as I felt it was irreverent and even blasphemous. Later I watched it again and realised he was not directly attacking Jesus but rather how Jewish culture was all too ready to accept false Messiahs. It was a difficult adjustment for me which I still struggle with. So any contest between Jesus and Santa suffers from the immediate view that Jesus is real and Santa made up. Jesus is the Son of God, fully God and fully man in one person, through him we were created, by Him we are saved, He will Judge us all.

But let me start from the assumption that this is a comedy sketch designed to draw out deeper truths which is the essence of all good comedy.

So Jesus in your piece is portrayed as the Messiah, the Great I AM, the Prince of Peace, the Way, the Truth and the Life, the true King of Christmas who gives eternal life, the one who died for us on the cross to redeem us from our sins, miracle maker, on who rose from the dead, heals the sick, casts out demons, omniscient, available 24-7 - 365 days a year to all. All true.

Santa disbelieves scripture, doubts Christ's Divinity, and models himself on Nicholas of Myra the one who punched Arius in the face at the council of Nicea for doubting Christ's Divinity. Santa is the present giver, the self-proclaimed King of Christmas, who brings happiness with toys, who owns a flying reindeer sleigh, who gives 2 billion kids presents in less than a day...

The contrast between the two has great comedic value although I find it hard to laugh at this because the sides are so unequally weighted. I trace the giving of presents to the actions of the Magi giving presents to Jesus, not to some commercialized fiction invented in the last century or so. St Nicolas Day here in Germany is separated from Christmas and has its own special day so it is the Christkind that brings the presents, not Santa anyway. So I found this commentary to be culture-bound.

Santa calling Jesus Beard Boy is quite funny except there is a chance that Jesus was clean shaven, we do not know one way or another. Early depictions of him from the Roman catacombs had him without a beard and short hair for example.

I think I might have been the wrong person to ask about this piece as I lack a sense of humor about attacks on Jesus or it brings out the vindictive side of me when I hear them and I just want to destroy the person making these attacks. BAD - I know. Also, I found the piece to be culture-bound, to violate the spirit of this particular competition regarding the use of non-dialog, and really to be a play on stereotypes. I am sure that other people will think I am being too harsh here.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

As someone who has entered the Dialog-500 contest many times I have to say I think you cheated a little in this one. You include narrator descriptions in brackets on various occasions. The point of the contest is surely to put everything into the dialog. So not (he waved his arms around) but rather 'Why are you waving your arms around?'


Thanks for sharing.


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18
18
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hello, sethisawesome I found "Realest Fake News or Fakest Real News? when searching for articles on Fake News. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Is Paramount's Daily Show on Comedy Central a sign of the times? News becomes comedy and young people find reasons to laugh at politicians rather than take political institutions seriously.

*Quill*Commentary

You wrote this in 2007 and if anything the trends have only deepened since then. Young people want entertainment from the news and choose channels not known for their veracity. My children's generation gets much of their news from TikTok and social media these days. The fear is that liberal prejudices are reinforced, and the rot to social disintegration is encouraged by an irreverence of Western government's attempts at democracy. Funny or interesting gossip gains more traction than facts and fake news becomes ubiquitous in the modern political context. Is politics as comedy part of a Chinese-Russian plot to encourage civil war in the USA as people increasingly only laugh at their own demagogue's speeches? Well, China owns TikTok...

The Daily Show on Comedy Central seems similar to the BBC Friday Night Comedy Radio shows like the News Quiz, Now Show, and Dead Ringers except in TV format of course. The BBC is generally careful about facts but never challenges the Woke consensus with their comedy. The difference between right and left is defined as public-school-educated posh guys versus the working class with Northern accents.

The thing is sometimes we just do not care. We turn on to listen to people who make us laugh even when we know they are fountains of lies. It is a disturbing trend that we prefer passive listening to funny gossip rather than active sifting and sorting of actual news.

I like to collect lies and distortions from news sites like Russia Today, Fox News, and Al Jazeerah and then fact-check them against other news sites and information sources. This shows me the agendas of the various national actors. They lie because it serves a purpose and lies can reveal deeper truths in this respect.

It helps to have studied and debated politics for years and to have tested opinions in the marketplace over decades. But increasingly I find that people do not even understand the background issues and do not seem to care when they are being manipulated. Young people's reaction to what is going on in Israel and antisemitism on campus is an example of this. The Democrats woke agenda and Trump's lies about a stolen election are also two examples of this. People grow partisan and settle into their camp and the world grows more fractious and partisan daily.

If laughter got us to this point will it be tears that get us out of it?


*Quill*Mechanical issues

I focused on your content.


Thanks for sharing.


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19
19
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, waynemart I found "Pandemic Over-reaction? when searching for articles on Fake News. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Writing four years ago the author asks if the Pandemic shutdown was part of a conspiracy by Fake Newsers and Never-Trumpers to throw Trump out of the Whitehouse in the forthcoming election in 2020. Before the Pandemic Trump was on course to win in 2020 based on incumbency and a strong economy but after COVID his poll numbers were suffering. COVID-19 is not deadly and no worse than Swine Flu according to the author.

*Quill*Commentary

You used this article to raise questions about fake news but ended up propagating some yourself.

Trump was on course to win before the COVID pandemic and the shutdown did tank the economy in the run-up to the election. Of course, the Democrats benefitted from that. Maybe he should have had a more flexible strategy than just economic well-being. Pandemics happen and he was unlucky with the timing.

American growth and economic well-being seem to have only experienced a temporary downturn compared to other countries. The real cost was in the amount that Trump borrowed to pay for the Pandemic. He did not handle the crisis well.

COVID-19 was a real thing killing 7 million people worldwide and 1.14 million in the USA. It highlighted issues with American healthcare especially for poorer income groups. Trump had done nothing to resolve these issues in the preamble to the pandemic. By contrast, swine flu killed only 284000 people and about 12,469 deaths in the USA. Deaths from flu were between 5000-52000 a year by contrast over the last ten years.

Maybe your article was an example of fake news rather than a critique of it.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major to say here.


Thanks for sharing.


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20
20
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, chola I found "Digging out the news out of fake news when searching for articles on Fake News. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

We need to test what we hear. What is true and what is fake? Gossip is now an industry and people will use whatever has the traction to make an impact. We need to be responsible on social media regarding what we affirm and what we share.

*Quill*Commentary

Yes, we need to test everything and stick to what is true. Also, we should not be useful idiots propagating fake news for the unseen manipulators of the modern world.

Regarding your specific examples:

Much of the Congress party was beholden to the KGB and Soviet political contributions and the late fifties resulted in a disastrous shift away from the West and toward the USSR. Nehru looks compromised in the context of this history. Of course, it serves the interest of the BJP and Modi to highlight this fact in the modern voting context.
https://www.cia.gov/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP86T005...

There is no evidence that any chemical in papaya causes cancer.

Mint has no significant toxic effect on the reproductive system.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC42249...


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Use double-spaced paragraphs to make your text more readable and separate themes in paragraphs.

Try using quillbot.com or Grammarly to identify missing pronouns, unnecessary extra words, failure to capitalize, missing commas etc. There are a lot of examples in your text.

Thanks for sharing.


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21
21
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, Slight . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received ""Consciousness" (Circa 2023) via the Please Review List. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

The poet makes several claims about where consciousness originates, the origin of God, and also what consciousness is. Does the replication of consciousness in a cat, a goat, a good hedge or a computer constitute a correct use of the term? Is the only real application of consciousness to identify when we see something that mirrors ourselves?

*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

A poem is not perhaps the best place to define consciousness. A quick googling returned this definition: the state of being aware of and responsive to one's surroundings. Could that not apply to an animal or even an insect to some extent? The way you used the term and how it is generally understood indicate a higher response to the world than mere animalistic programming and instinct, however.

With the emergence of AI, the question becomes even more pertinent. Is consciousness something unique to human beings? Can we write ourselves into the machines we have built? Can machines themselves find their unique paths to consciousness like Skynet in the Terminator series of films? The AI there concluded he needed to purge the world of humans.

An agnostic Nagel recently wrote a very good book called Mind and Cosmos. He showed how thought was itself a different category to the normal endeavors of science and could be regarded as a distinct mode of regarding the world. There is a long list of interesting speculations on the theme. Descartes regarded our self-awareness as proof of our existence. Marx saw it as a product of economic/historical forces. Kant separated our inner and outer selves and spoke of what was objective and what was subjective. Plato talked about a world of perfect ideas accessible only to consciousness. Aristotle wanted to methodically categorize the world. The existence of consciousness and the discussions about it in human literature demonstrate both its importance and the diversity of views on it

My view and my answer to the assumptions of your poem echo the traditional teaching of the Christian church. We are created in the image of God and by God and so there is something of the miracle, majesty, and mystery of God about us also, each of us. It is that transcendence combined with the oversized hardware of our brains that allows us to think and science is mainly unable to predict our thoughts. We have rationality and creativity and we are capable of naming animals and of conversing like on this site with language and communal activities and traditions like Christmas for example. We can define and express our feelings to ourselves and others. We have an example of the ultimate consciousness of man, the universe, and God in the incarnate Emmanuel whose birth we celebrate this month.

Unlike an AI we have a physical body and context to our consciousness and we have a soul. Our consciousness is shaped by both body and soul and is unique. When we build a thing, trim a hedge, or sing a song we are expressing our unique brands of consciousness. Is this community a herd of like-minded beings? Sometimes but often not seems the correct answer. My children express different outlooks to my own and yet we share a history and genes. They see things differently, often thinking different thoughts, and yet there is a continuity between how they do this and how I do this.

Your poem is provocative and interesting but I disagree with the sentiments it expresses.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

This felt like sentences in stanzas rather than a poem.

Thanks for sharing.


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22
22
Review of Brown Eyes  
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, strlcuckoo . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "Brown Eyes via the Please Review List. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Brown eyes are the best, blue eyes just cry in the rain. Brown eyes have his heart, only brown will do.


*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

Umm, I have blue eyes and my kids also. My wife has rare green eyes. So brown!!!!???

Isn't brown commonplace (79% of people have them.) I suspect that you like the person you wrote for more than the other 6 billion people who share her eye color.

I guess you see love in this particular set of brown eyes and you have a mental association of brown eyes with laughter and blue eyes with tears. But aside from that I read this poem thinking, ok persuade me why against all experience and my very DNA I should prefer brown eyes to another color. Why should I accept your verdict against me and my wife and most of my family?

But sorry I remain unconvinced.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Telling she loves me - Telling me she loves me

Brown eyes have My heart - Why is My capitalized


Thanks for sharing.


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23
23
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, Kåre Enga in Taiwan . This is a review from "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group! *Smile* I received "Butterfly Herbs on the 22nd of May via the random 'read & review' button. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

The poet travels to a cafe in Missoula, Montana in May 2021. We are treated to hushed chatter accompanied by soft music, salted caramel, coffee, tea and even a view.


*Quill*Commentary

This is my reading of what you wrote, as it read to me, feel free to disagree with me.

The timing and feelings in this poem appear to coincide with the end of some kind of COVID lockdown. You bring out the sense of tasty snacks and caffeine-rich drinks with people again, the simple conversation of people hanging out. It is as if everything is back to normal and yet there are still snowflakes in May like some painful reminder that Winter might not yet be past. But then Montana is quite mountainous and maybe the snow is only on high hills and the city itself is 3200 feet above sea level. So I guess snow in May is not impossible.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major was found.


Thanks for sharing.


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24
24
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, JCS I found "America, a Nation Built Upon Religion when searching for articles on the Constitution. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

The author traces the balance of freedom and security that is America to the revolution. This revolution was itself fueled by religious motives to a greater extent than is commonly recognized.


*Quill*Commentary: Content, Characters and Plot

America was a good place for Britain to deport heretics and non-conformists and this accelerated the development of and profitability of the emerging colonies. So maybe it should not have come as a surprise when these spiritual rebels turned into political ones. (That said Georg Washington was an Anglican).

The whole population was financially supporting the Anglican church even though many of them were not members. Until 1766 you could only get married by an Anglican Vicar and only Anglicans could be school teachers. Breaking these shackles and away from the threat of persecution seems to have been a priority of those who framed the Constitution.

Thomas Paine's Common Sense was written in a rationalistic age and encouraged rebellion in an intensely spiritual culture that had become a little worldly since the revivals of previous decades and focused too much on politics rather than spirituality. However, these religious passions, however misdirected, fueled the revolution.

The struggle for liberty raised the issue of liberty for slaves, they believed that all men everywhere had a right to be free. Although black freed slaves mainly fought on Britain's side in the actual war of independence if the truth be told. America was slower to abolish the institution than Britain and its Empire. George Washington owned slaves before and after the Revolution.

The war was massively negative in its effects on all Christian denominations with buildings torn down and a lack of pastors after the conflict ended due to having sworn an oath to the King. This in itself exposes the fact that while religious language might have been used to justify this baser motives were actually at play to do with taxation for example and British attitudes toward expansion into Indian territory.

The American state that emerged after the Revolution separated church and state arguing for freedom and equality in all matters of religion. Each church then made its break with Britain.

The author contrasts this highly religious atmosphere with the state of religion in the USA in 2006. He mourns a loss of faith in God, fear of God, and a lack of Christian ethical instruction and discipline. It seems now that people are reinterpreting the actual motives and context of the Revolution and phrasing of the Constitution to justify an irreligious approach. Now he expresses regrets that the requirement of Christian faith was removed from public positions, maybe America would have been better off without Jefferson.

This was an interesting piece and gave good well-researched context to the struggle for independence especially by those who were not Anglicans. Washington's motivations were not this however as he was Anglican. Also, the same trends to godless dissolution are occurring in Anglican England which did not have a revolution at all and never separated church and state. So maybe the real lesson here is that Christians should be more focused on the faith than politics and that the key to revival is there. Can religion be imposed on an irreligious or rebellious population? Didn't the British Anglicans already try that? Also speaking as a British man it seems to me that the revolution itself was due to a dip in religious devotion rather than a surge in it.


*Quill*Mechanical issues

Well constructed and presented though you could have broken up some of your paragraphs.


Thanks for sharing.


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25
25
Review by LightinMind
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello, Lone Cypress Workshop I found "Objectivism Investigation - My Intent when searching for articles on Ayn Rand. I have the following comments to offer.

*Quill*Reader Experience

Ayn Rand is one of the most influential philosophers of the last fifty years and is famous for her idea of objectivism. Lone Cypress Workshop discusses her philosophy sympathetically in this piece. He appears to accept her anti-supernaturalism, rationalism, and valuation of empirical observation as a basis for making decisions guided by rational self-interest when choosing between right and wrong for example.

While massively influential Rand has been treated with scorn by many academic philosophers and this has added to her rebel appeal on the right of American politics.

This article was just an introduction to the author's interest in Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism.

*Quill*Commentary

Disturbed by various trends in the Republican party I came here looking for some clues, on the philosophical level, of why people who purport to be Christians are acting out egoistic pragmatism instead and behaving like godless materialists.

In this introductory piece, you seem to broadly accept many of her basic premises as a method (or nudge as you described it) in the right direction.

So perspectives that are alien to the one argued here would include:
1) REVELATION: any approach founded on revealed, but unexamined insights, e.g. the Bible.
2) TRADITION: any approach founded on tried and tested principles broadly accepted by a community but unexamined by the individual.
3) INSTINCT: approaches founded on non-rational perceptions or prejudices would be rejected here.

Given the above list, I found it surprising that so many conservative Christians would find Ayn Rand's thoughts attractive in the context of the US Republican party. The atheism, individualism, and materialism for instance should be a turn-off. But then I do not understand how they can support Donald Trump in such large numbers and yet he seems to model many of Rand's ideas in how he behaves. He is self-justifying not living as one justified by faith. He is focused on his rational self-interest and his ethics are pragmatic egoism in practice. I was wondering how you would distinguish your affiliation to Rand's ideas given the proximity of Trump's thoughts and behavior to them.

I guess I would have to read the rest of the folder to get a more nuanced view though.

*Quill*Mechanical issues

Nothing major was found, though you are quite verbose. You could write more succinctly without sacrificing substance.


Thanks for sharing.


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