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10 20 2014

Backyard grilling is a summer tradition. As soon as the weather warms up, the grills come out. Backyard grill masters stake their claim and cook everything from hot dogs to steaks. Grills used to be little more than hot coals, but today’s most sophisticated grills have plenty of bells and whistles to assist the outdoor chef.

Ellsworth B. A. Zwoyer invented charcoal briquettes in 1897, but it wasn’t until George Stephen, a Weber Brothers Metal Works welder discovered that cutting a metal buoy in half made the perfect domed grill and the top sealed in flavor. The Weber charcoal grill was born. Gas grills didn’t come along until the 1960s, when Arkansas Louisiana Gas Company employees, William G. Wepfer and Melton Lancaster, redesigned a charcoal grill and made it run on bottled propane. Other grilling milestones include the introduction of George Foreman’s kitchen grilling machines in 1994 and infrared grills for consumers in 2000. The popular choices for most outdoor grill masters are still charcoal and gas. How do you decide which to choose?

Charcoal or Gas: What’s the Difference?

There’s a lot of debate about which type of grill makes better food. There are diehard fans on both sides. Charcoal grilling aficionados tout the smoky flavor of meat. Gas grill masters love the convenience of using a gas-fired grill. What are the differences?

A gas grill is easy to use. Turning a knob fires the heat source up. Other knobs adjust the heat. Liquid propane, the fuel that heats the grill, is stored in portable tanks that are refillable. Gas grills are easy to clean. The drawback is that gas grills don’t enhance the flavor of the food.

Charcoal grilling cannot be quickly done. Building, lighting and heating charcoal briquettes takes time. Learning how to cook foods evenly without scorching takes a bit of practice. Proponents say the time and skill building is worth it because the charcoal gives meat a delicious smoky flavor. Clean up is more difficult, but charcoal grills are much less expensive than gas.

Tips for Grilling

It doesn’t matter which type of grill you choose, there are some fundamentals that will make your grilled foods taste better and save you from illnesses caused by underdone food. Food that is not thoroughly cooked can cause illness and could seriously compromise the health of people with weakened immune systems, such as young children and the elderly.

Follow these tips for a great outdoor cookout:

Make sure your grill is clean before using it. Choose a safe location for your grill. Don’t grill too close to your house, garage, fencing or any flammable substances.For thinner pieces, such as thinly sliced meat and skewers, use high heat and cook through quickly.Larger foods require slower cooking. Use indirect heat so the inside cooks without scorching the outside.Don’t guess about whether your food is done or not. Use a thermometer to make you’re your meat reaches the correct internal temperature.

10 16 2014


Yoga moves are incredibly effective at carving out an hourglass silhouette. Holding the poses engages the obliques [which cinch the waist like a corset] and transversus abdominis [which tucks in lower-belly bulge]. And deep breathing curbs the output of costisol, a stress hormone that promotes belly fat. Plus, research shows that just one yoga session can increase levels of the calming brain chemical GABA by 27 percent.

10 16 2014

Nowadays, more and more people are using the Web to shop for a wide variety of items because of convenience. If you’re one of them, do you make sure that the item you buy has a Money Back Guarantee? Having this will ensure you can return the item if you’re not satisfied or when there’s something wrong with it. This is something you don’t usually get in a physical store, no wonder people love to shop online.

10 16 2014


Did you know that sipping a blend of 2 tablespoon Apple Cider vinegar mixed with 8 oz. of  water before meals can help you shed pounds sans struggle? Research shows that the vinegar’s acetic acid boosts fat burning by 10 percent. Plus, it curbs hunger, so you won’t reach for a snack during the day.

10 16 2014

Ask any fervent TV aficionado what their top shows are and there’s a good chance The Wire will get a mention. Esteemed by industry critics, this HBO series aired from 2002 till 2008, compelling audiences for five entire seasons and showcasing a unique side to the Baltimore landscape. Missed the boat? Not a problem. You can easily pick up the series on DVD thanks to Warner Bros – click here to have a look. Below you’ll find some of the reasons why the show is so popular and what to expect once you hit Play. Enjoy!


The Rich Tapestry of Characters and Stories

Character development and plot development. Many shows and movies lack one or the other, leaving the viewer with an incomplete, unsatisfying experience. The Wire has everything covered, with exciting turn of events and fascinating characters. Each season focuses on different themes and areas of society; you’ll get to know and love or hate drug addicts, cops, drug dealers, politicians, school children and journalists. You’ll be shocked, angered, disappointed, saddened and uplifted by what happens. The one thing you won’t be is bored.

Nothing is Black and White

It’s not enough to have a wide cast of characters and stories. In fact, with too many ingredients, a show runs the risk of getting overwhelmed, complex and lost. This is not the case with The Wire. Each character is lovingly crafted and multi-layered. Each story is rich and explored in ways you never even imagined. Indeed, one of the best things about the show is that you never know what you’re going to get. Expect your favourite character to become your most hated – there are no good guys and bad guys. Warning: you may even start questioning your moral fibre as a result of watching the series.

New Perspectives

Some of the most captivating and critically successful television shows are the ones that provide rare perspectives, plunging viewers into the lives and experiences of some of society’s most mysterious or isolated figures. Whether it’s the behind-the-scenes action of a police taskforce, the dramatic events that unfold in a politician’s office, or the harsh realities of growing up in the hood, The Wire certainly takes us to places we’ve never been before. What’s more, these depictions are startlingly authentic and gritty, making them all the more powerful.

It’s Quote-worthy

One of the most lauded scenes from the entire series sees D’Angelo Barksdale, a lieutenant in his uncle’s drug empire, teaching his subordinates how to play chess. Using street slang and concepts, he likens the chess pieces to members of a crew and life in the street. This scene is just one of many brilliantly shaped scenes, full of thought-provoking discussions and quotes. Omar Little, undoubtedly one of the show’s most interesting characters, has a multitude of gems, including “A man must have a code”, “All in the game yo, all in the game” and “You come at the King, you best not miss”.

Has The Wire been recommended to you? Are you a fan? What are your favourite aspects of the series? Share your likes, dislikes and thoughts by commenting in the section below.