The Best Mexican Recipes Featuring Fish

When thinking about Mexican cuisine you perhaps think of beef and chicken before fish. Cheese, corn and tomatoes come to mind before seafood and key Mexican dishes like chili con carne, tacos and other famous dishes are more likely than fish and seafood to be the images in your thoughts when considering Mexican foods. Actually Mexicans are very partial to fish and seafood and fish is well loved in Mexico's coastal areas.

Shrimp, crab, trout, swordfish and even lobster are well loved in Mexico and parsley, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, chilies and more can be used to enhance the flavor of the fish. Not all fish dishes are spicy of course, just like not all Mexican recipes are spicy.

Cold Mexican Fish Dishes

There are just as many chilled fish recipes in Mexican cuisine as there are hot ones. Ceviche is a popular Mexican food recipe and this raw fish dish is made with citrus juice which cooks the fish, as well as other flavorings. Shrimp and crab are popular additions to Mexican salad recipes and these can also feature in layered salads.

Seafood dishes are wonderful on a hot Mexican spring or summer day and these are also popular in Mexican tourists resorts. If you want to make authentic Mexican food recipes yourself at home, it is best to use fresh fish and fresh vegetables, as well as the correct types of seasonings and spices.

Fresh herbs like cilantro and parsley feature in a lot of Mexican food recipes with fish but not all of them. Mexican cuisine is extremely versatile and fish dishes vary widely from one Mexican region to another, which should not be a surprise when you consider the huge size of the country.

Simple Recipe for Mexican Lime Baked Trout

This mouthwatering Mexican recipe is so easy to make and the trout is flavored with sesame seeds and lime juice and baked "en papillote", which means in parchment paper packets to keep the juices in. This recipe serves four people and it goes nicely with rice and a tossed green salad.

What you will need:

  • 4 whole dressed trout, 8 oz each
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 thinly sliced ​​limes
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons lightly toasted sesame seeds
  • Salt
  • Black pepper

How to make it:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Score the trout down to the bone, down one side, then season it with salt and black pepper. Warm the sesame seeds in the butter in a pan until the butter has melted completely.

Put each fish on a 12 inch square sheet of parchment paper and pour the melted butter and sesame seeds on top. Arrange the slices of lime on the trout, and then fold the parchment paper up so you have 4 sealed packages.

Tuck the ends under the fish. Put the packages on a baking sheet and bake for 18 minutes. Open the parchment paper packages at the table so the aroma and juices are released.

Five Reasons Why You Should Choose Bar Work

Shifts – It’s obvious to anyone that’s ever been to a bar that many stay open late, open early and do their best business on holidays. This is great news for people who are looking for a job that can offer them a selection of different or alternative hours. If you choose to work in a bar close to where you live, you have the opportunity to not only work your own hours but also cover shifts for other people. Overtime is likely in bars, so often just because you’re down to work for 10 hours a week doesn’t mean you can’t choose to work far more often.

Social Aspects – There are two main reasons working in a bar is such a social job. Depending on the bar you’ve chosen to work at, you could find that most of your co-workers are around the same age as you and often share the same interests. This doesn’t always happen, but it’s more likely in a bar than an office or department store where a much wider selection of people will be employed. Also, because most bars rely on a much smaller selection of staff than other forms of employment, you’ll get to know people much better.

Customers – You’re guaranteed to get disgruntled, un-talkative or even verbally abusive people in a bar quite often, but you’ll also find there are plenty more that just want to have a conservation. Bar work can be a great way of meeting and talking to people you might never talk to otherwise. Serving customers can be quite stressful at times, but it can also be rewarding – especially when you get tipped!

Skills – What most people don’t realise when they take bar work — especially people who are using it as a part time job during college – is that the skills you learn in a bar can really help you in finding a job in the future. This applies even if you want to do something completely different from bar work in the long term. Skills like time management, customer service and personal reliability all are crucial for just about any job, and working in a bar is a great chance to develop them.

Career – Working in a bar is often a part time endeavour for many people, but that doesn’t mean it can’t also be one of the first steps to a well paid career. Top jobs in the hospitality industry include managing hotels or running your own bar or nightclub. Depending on the country these can pay incredibly well and many people at the top have started at bartender level.

How to Shoot Paintball

Never shot a paintball gun before? A little concerned as to how that might go? Here's a quick breakdown on how to shoot paintballs out of a paintball gun. There are generally 3 steps to shooting a paintball, and here they are:

Fill the Hopper – With paintballs of course . Get your.68 caliber paintballs, open up the bag and pour in the paint into your paintball hopper. The hopper is what attaches to the top of your marker, and attaches to what is called the "ball breech." Fill it with as many paintballs as you think you will need. Most hoppers can hold 200 rounds, but sometimes you do not need that much, especially if you are just shooting around for fun.

Attach Your Air Source – Take you air tank, which should be specifically made ​​for a paintball gun, and screw it into your marker's ASA. ASA is an acronym, which stands for Air Source Adapter. The ASA is found at the bottom of your marker, usually under the grip. A trick to screwing in your tank is to hold your marker vertically, with the ASA pointing straight up. Take your tank and set the thread part of it (also known as the tank's "valve") into the the ASA. It should be loosely setting in it. Slowly twist the tank, but do not force it in. The tank's threads should catch on the threads of the ASA, and it should start to screw into the ASA. This is the safest way to screw in your tank, as it causes the least damage to you're the threads in the ASA, and the threads on your tank.

Safety First – Before you screw in your tank, you should make sure your marker's safety is on. If your safety is on your marker will not fire, and the trigger should feel stiff and immovable. Once your tank has been screwed into the ASA, and you hear that cool gassing up sound, then continue to the next step.

Cock, and Shoot! – If your marker is mechanical, like a Tippmann 98, then there should be a bolt protruding from the side of the marker. This is the bolt, and must be cocked back before you can shoot. Simply cock it back, turn off the safety, and pull the trigger to fire the marker!

Painting Your Exterior Wood Doors

Your exterior wood doors should be the most eye-catching aspect of the outside of your home. However, if they have not been treated to a new coat of paint for a while, they could be catching the eyes of passers-by for the wrong reasons.

With a fresh coat of paint, your exterior wood doors can look as good as new once again. And whether they're in the front, on the sides, or in the back of your home, some TLC is really the least they deserve having kept your family safe and warm through the years.

If you have some experience painting, picking out the right color might be the hardest part of the job. However, if you're less familiar with the process, you might want to read a handy guide.

One like this, that tells you how to get ready to paint, what you'll need to do to prepare your door, and how you can prime and then paint your exterior wood doors.

Getting ready to paint your wood door

Despite it appearing to be extra work, many people prefer to remove their exterior wood doors before painting. If you want to do so too, the first step is to use a flathead screwdriver and a hammer to tap the pins up out of the hinges, and then carefully remove the door.

Lay the door on some sawhorses; preferably somewhere out of direct sunlight. If you're going to paint the door outside, take note that wind could blow dust and debris onto your fresh paint where it could stick. Remember to place a tarp or paint cloth down under the door to catch any dripping paint.

Remove all of the hardware: the doorknobs, hinges, and locks. You could tape them and paint around them, but removing everything will make the job much easier and will result in a better finish.

Preparing your wood door for painting

Check the door for thick or flaking paint spots, old tape, and any other damage. Use some fine sandpaper to lightly sand away the bumps and flakes, or gently scrape with a putty knife if necessary. Be careful not to make any gouges or scratches in your wood exterior doors.

If you have glass inserts in the door, you can cover them with newspaper to protect them from the paint. Just tape down some newspaper over the glass with painter's tape.

If you have any deep scratches, dents, or gouges, you can fill them with wood filler or putty. Sand these areas afterward. Smaller cracks around panels and windows can be filled with caulk, although these should not be sanded.

Once you're done sanding, wipe down the door with a rag, which you can dampen with mineral spirits for a more thorough clean.

Painting your wood door

It's best to use a primer before painting your exterior wood doors with the color of your choice. You will not always need it, but the color will usually come out best if you do.

Carefully paint the door with the primer, starting with the edges. Paint along with the grain. Then move on to the door panels, paying special attention to the areas around the locks. Work on the centers of the panels first, and move towards the outsides. You'll usually only need one coat of primer, unless you're drastically changing the color of the door.

Once the primer has completely dried, apply the paint the same way. Two coats of paint will usually look best when using primer. Be sure to be thorough so you do not leave any spots.

Wait until the door is completely dry, which could be up to 24 hours. Then replace all the hardware, and re-hang the door on its hinges.

A new coat of paint can brighten up your exterior wood doors, breathing new life into them and ensuring they catch the eyes of passers-by for the right reasons.

Start with the proper preparation, removing your door and finding a good workspace to paint in. Then prepare your door for painting by sanding, cleaning, and getting rid of debris. Finally, paint your door; first with primer, then with paint.

Remember, your exterior wood doors do a great job looking after you and your family. So it's only fair you do the same for them, right?

Find the Right Tennis Bag for You That Meets Your Needs

Tennis bags come in all different shapes and sizes for both men and women; backpacks, totes, slings, rollers, "blinged out," sophisticated, sporty, masculine, large, medium, small … take your pick!

Ladies, you have a huge array of options that it is impossible not to find one that suites your personal style and meets your needs. Personally, I like BIG bags. One of my favorites is the Cortiglia Marina Nero Tennis Tote in black. It was featured in Tennis Magazine and Daily Candy; like all Cortiglia products, it is made with only the best materials. This is not only a tennis bag but can be a great carry on or just your everyday purse.

Maggie Mather is another great tennis bag designer; many of her bags are made of bright, vibrant colors. If you're the kind of person who likes to wear a lot of color, one of these bags would be ideal.

Jet tennis bags offer so many different types from slings, totes and backpacks in all styles and colors. The Jet Reptilian Grape Small Sling is petite and chic and perfect if you love the color pink. This bag can hold 2 racquets and the main compartment has multiple pockets for all of your accessories (keys, credit cards, id, and pens). It also features an insulated water bottle cooler and on the backside there is a built in fence hook.

40 Love Couture takes style to another level with its high quality, fashion-forward bags. One of my favorites from their line is the Crisp White Tennis Tote; it is both sophisticated and classy. It is a large tennis bag and does not sacrifice fashion for durability. It is able to hold racquets and plenty of your personal items you need to take to and from the court. This beautiful tote is also lined with Swarovski Crystal rivets along the outside; for that "bling" I was taking about. All of 40 Love Couture's products go above and beyond, meeting their personal standard, "perfection is the standard, not the exception!"

And now for the men … when I think of man's ideal tennis bag, what comes to mind is simple, masculine and convenient. Brands like Adidas, Babolat, Dunlop and many more have all created tennis bags with the man in mind.

The Adidas Barricade II Tour 6 Pack tennis bag holds up to 6 racquets in a thermal lined compartment for protection of your equipment with 2 extra pockets for gear. It is white and black with a tint of red.

Babolat's Y Line tennis bag is green and black and makes for a great tennis or travel bag. It's main compartment has an internal separation to keep all your stuff organized and even has a built in shoe compartment … very convenient.

Dunlop's Biomimetic 3 Racquet Thermo bag comes in a variety of colors with plenty of storage room; made for the serious tennis player. It's racquet compartment is designed to hold 2-3 racquets and is lined with Dunlop material designed to keep equipment cooler and drier than nylon alone.

Tennis bags come in such a wide variety, you're sure to find the one that suites you from your personal style to your needs as a player. Only does a Do Not tennis bag make going to the court more convenient, it lets you express your personal fashion by sense.

Woodworking Tips: 6 Basic Wood Joints

Almost any woodworking project will require some type of wood joint. From building beds to bookcases and just about everything in between, you will find that wood joints will be necessary. While there are many styles and even variations of each style, there are 6 basic wood joints that can be used for all your building needs.

The Butt Joint

This is the simplest of all wood joints and is used more heavily in construction projects as opposed to furniture woodworking. A butt joint uses nails or screws to butt two pieces of wood together. To create this joint, no cutting or routing is required to interlock the pieces of wood. First you should use a carpenter’s square to be sure that the two pieces of wood are level and perpendicular to each other. It is always best to use a small amount of adhesive along with the nails or screws. If you need additional strength, use corner brackets of angle irons if they will be hidden from view.

Miter Joint

If you want to hide the ends of the pieces of wood, a miter joint is the way to go. This is a weaker joint and is normally used for decorative pieces such as molding, trim or frames. If you are working on a joint that requires support, stay away from this wood joint. The most common use of the miter joint is to attach two pieces of wood at a 90 degree angle. For the best results, use a circular saw and set the angle to 45 degrees. After your pieces are cut, add some adhesive and nail the pieces together. Be care to position the nail so that it does not come too close to the edge of either piece and split the wood.

Lap Joints

If you need a strong wood joint, but the pieces of wood you are joining are different thicknesses, the lap joint is the answer. Quite simply, a lap joint requires notching of both boards. There are several types of lap joints that can be used depending on the location of the joint. If you are joining the ends of two pieces of wood, use an end lap. This requires that you saw out the end of each piece of wood the width of the adjoining board and one half the thickness of the board. When placed together you will have a strong, 90 degree joint. If you want to join the end of one board to a center section of another board, you can choose from a cross lap, middle lap or dovetail lap joint.

Rabbet Joints

This joint combines the butt joint and the lap joint and is used if your woodworking project involves cabinet, bookcases or draws. This joint is used to join the ends of two pieces of wood. To create this type of joint, cut or route a recess in one piece of wood that is the thickness of the adjoining piece and half the thickness of the board. After creating the recess, the second piece of wood will form a butt joint into the recess.

Dado Joint

The dado joint is similar to the rabbet joint, but it is used to join the end of one piece of wood to a middle section of another. This joint is heavily used to interlock the ends of shelves to the side pieces when you are building bookcases or cabinets. For this joint you do not need to cut or route the shelves. At the desired location, cut or route a recess in the side board that is the thickness of the shelf, half way through the side board. This is a strong joint and will give full support to the shelves.

Dowel Joints

This type of joint is basically a butt joint that is reinforced by interlocking wood dowels between the boards. In order to achieve a square and level joint, it is crucial that the dowels from the first board are properly aligned with the second board. It is highly recommended that a doweling jig be used. Drill the holes in each piece of wood slightly deeper than one half of the length of the dowel. This will insure that the two pieces will fit flush and the dowel will be completely hidden.

What Do You Know About Cooling Towers?

We have all seen them. They are most commonly associated with the enormous stacks that identify nuclear power plants. But the truth is that cooling towers are everywhere, coming in a variety of shapes and sizes for numerous industries. This article will focus on how cooling towers operate and where one would find them across world industry.

Cooling towers serve to remove byproduct heat from industrial facilities and push it out into the atmosphere. Most plants use heat widely in their operations (or their processes create heat as waste, in accordance with the laws of physics) and this heat must be removed – nobody wants to work in a factory that routinely gets up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Cooling towers typically either push this heat directly into their air or use water to initially start the cooling then allow the steam to jet through the towers. The method used is determined primarily by the nature of the facility.

These towers may be most commonly associated with the large smokestacks of big factories, power plants, or refineries, but they actually appear in a variety of shapes and sizes. They are defined more by functionality than by construction – meaning that they can range anywhere from a small vent at the top of a one room building to the massive structures associated with the aforementioned nuclear power. The latter of which are referred to as hyperboloid structures, and have been built to be as large as almost 700 feet tall and over 300 feet wide. The largest of these is present at the Niederassum Power Plant in Germany.

These serve a vital role in any industry as heat is an ever present issue at most processing facilities. This may be intended (such as melting down metals or burning fuel to run facilities) or as a byproduct of regular operations (machinery heating as it creates or refines products). This is not significantly different from the heat that is given off by your desktop or laptop computer as you read this article, only on a much larger scale.

I will close this article by addressing the myth that these towers are pollutive. While the towers are absolutely used by many companies that pollute our earth, it would be unfair to associate cooling towers directly with pollution. While many facilities do jet out harmful and polluted waste products via large smoke stacks that can hurt air quality and possibly even contribute to global warming (depending on one’s political beliefs on that issue), the concept of a cooling tower is based solely on removing heat. As a general rule, steam jetted into the atmosphere is not harmful to the environment. It quickly cools to normal temperature as disperses and simply rejoins the water cycle. If other harmful byproducts are incorporated or survive into the cooling process and make their way into the atmosphere via the cooling tower, this falls on the company doing the cooling, not on the technology behind the cooling tower itself. It is important to understand that the presence of a cooling tower is not equivalent to poor air quality, that lies primarily in what industry the facility participates in and how it goes about its own operations.

An Electrician Explains Arc Faults

Many people have never heard of arc faults. However, arc faults are responsible for thousands of fires each year. An electrician can help prevent fires from arc faults by installing arc fault circuit interrupters.

Arc faults happen when there is a high-energy discharge between conductors. An electrical current arcs or jumps between wires. Arcing faults are extremely hot and can ignite flammable materials around them. An electrician commonly sees this type of fault in damaged electrical cords or wiring that has been pierced or pinched. This is why you should not use staples or nails to keep an extension cord in place. This is also why you should be aware of where you place appliance cords so they are not damaged.

Other arcing faults may only be obvious during an inspection by an electrician. Wiring inside walls that have been damaged can cause arcing between wires. Arcing can also happen if the insulation around the wiring has deteriorated.

Regular circuit breakers are not designed to prevent arcing. They can not stop the arcing of electricity to prevent a fire. Instead, arc fault circuit interrupters (ACFI) are used to stop arcing. They offer a higher level of protection than regular circuit breakers. AFCIs are different from GFCIs. A GFCI would protect someone from electrocution or a dangerous electrical shock from a ground fault. An ACFI is able to detect arcs between wires. It would open a circuit to stop the arc from continuing and prevent an electrical fire.

The new electrical code requires that an electrician must install ACFIs in the bedrooms of new homes. The whole circuit in a bedroom would have the proper protection in the form of a circuit breaker. The electrical code has other recommendations of what areas should have ACFIs. The challenge for electricians is in older homes that may not be up to code and the homeowners are unaware of code revisions and changes. During a remodeling project is a good time for homeowners to have ACFIs installed.

Upgrading the electrical panel is another opportunity to install ACFIs. If you are unsure if you have ACFIs in your home, make sure to call an electrician. It is best to have an electrician install ACFIs since the wiring can be very complicated.

Along with smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors and GFCIs, ACFIs are an important investment for the safety of your home. All these different technologies are a great complement to each other and should be used together to protect your home.

Katniss Everdeen Brings Fascination To Bow Hunting for Women

Since the movie, “The Hunger Games” was released there has been an increased interest in bow hunting and archery amongst young women around the world. Archery clubs have been over run with girls wanting to be Katniss Everdeen. I daresay the most popular Halloween costume this year for girls will be Katniss with a bow and quiver full of arrows. Bow hunting has been around ten thousand years but just in the past century (and a bit) has it become a sport that women participate in. In the 1900 Olympic Game’s in Paris archery appeared for the first time for men. In 1904 in St. Louis it became an Olympic sport for women. Archery is one of the first sports to include female athletes.

There are very few resources geared toward bow hunting for women specifically. This usually is the case in sports that are dominated by men. Archery technique is basically the same for men and women. The big difference is upper body strength. Women genetically do not have the same upper body strength as men have and will never be able to out lift or out swim the top men competitors in their sports. The muscles used in archery are the same you would use for rowing and mountain climbing. Upper body strength makes a difference only in the distance and speed of your shot. In archery competition it is all about accuracy. For the men and the women the target is placed at the same distance 70 meters, which is 229.5 feet. To give you perspective that is just over two-thirds of a football field. This levels the playing field. What I found interesting is that even though the distance is the same the men and women shoot bows with different draw weights. On average the men shoot 50 pound draw weight and the women shoot 35. The men’s arrows will be flying faster than the women’s because of the physics involved but because the competition is based on accuracy they all are equal. The competition comes down to technique and the ability to relax under duress.

I see women’s archery and bow hunting for women becoming two of the fastest growing sports in the United States, if not the world, due mainly to the popularity of Katniss Everdeen. The actress Jennifer Lawrence was trained to shoot her bow in the movie by Khatuna Lorig a US Olympic archer. The other two women Olympic archers for the USA, Jennifer Nichols and Miranda Leek have been shooting since they were children. Women’s archery gained attention around the world when Amy Oliver and 12 members of Great Britain’s archery team were featured in the June of 2012 issue of Vogue magazine. It is a little known fact that actress Geena Davis, known for her roles in “Beetlejuice”, “The Fly”and “Thelma and Louise”, reached the semifinals of the USA Olympic archery trials for the Sydney 2000 Olympic games.

Finally in 2012 one of the first Olympic sports to include women is receiving the recognition it deserves. Hopefully it’s popularity among young women in the United States will “shoot” our women’s Olympic archery teams to the top of the charts.

Manual Lymph Drainage Massage – The Perfect Natural Detox Therapy

Manual lymph drainage is a light & gentle form of massage that mimics the natural movement of lymphatic fluid through the lymphatic system thereby assisting the body in the removal of toxins, cellular waste, excess proteins, bacteria & viruses. It also transports white blood cells (lymphocytes) throughout this system so that they can pick up on & fight off any signs of infection in the body.

Unlike the cardiovascular system, which has the heart to pump blood throughout the body, the lymphatic system has to rely on the manual contractions & movement of skeletal muscles to circulate lymphatic fluid through the lymphatic system. It is for this reason that sedentary lifestyles (sitting too much or getting very little exercise) lead to poor lymphatic flow & a build up of toxins which directly affect the body in a multitude of negative ways.

When the lymphatic system is sluggish or blocked, such as after surgery or an injury, we can have swelling (eg. Lymphodema after a mastectomy), an increase in the appearance of cellulite, feel tired & lethargic and are more susceptible to infections (eg colds & flu). However, when the lymphatic system works well, we feel healthy and have a strong defense against illness.

There are approximately 700 lymph nodes in the human body, all of which serve as filters which fight off infections, remove toxins & cellular waste from the lymphatic fluid before it re-enters the bloodstream

Toxins are believed by many to be the local beginnings of cancerous tissue.

It is imperative that these toxins be continually removed through the body's veins and lymphatic vessels. When these toxins are unable to exit the body properly, the possibility of cancer increases. Studies have found that women who wore brassieres (especially under wire) had an increased chance of acquiring breast cancer. It is very possible that the constant pressure that a brassiere puts on the breast tissue limits the flow of toxins (that need to be released) found in the lymphatic fluid, resulting in the increased cancer rate. The highest rate of breast cancer has been found in women who wore bras 24 hours a day, and the lowest rate in those who never wore bras. It is suggested that women should wear their bra less than 12 hours a day.

Early detection does greatly increase your odds of surviving cancer. However, waiting for cancer rather than actively participating in its avoidance can be even more detrimental to your health.

Plumbing – Drain Cleaning Services

After time, gunk and grime can slowly build up in your drains. When this happens your sink, shower, bath, and any other drain outlet slowly gets worse and worse until they are eventually clogged. Luckily there are certain services designed to come in and clean out your plumbing system so that you water will flow freely and easily like it should at all times. There are many reasons to look into a drain cleaning service. Not only to benefit you but the environment as well. Most drain cleaning services are very cost effective as well as beneficial in many ways.

One reason to look into hiring a drain cleaning service is because they are able to free up your drains in the most eco friendly way. A lot of times when a drain is clogged the homeowner takes it upon themselves to fix it. All different types of corrosive and damaging liquid and materials are flowed down the drain. All these liquids and materials can be extremely detrimental to the environment. A professional drain cleaning service is able to come in and fix your drain problem in the most eco friendly way possible. Protecting your home as well as the environment.

Another reason to look into hiring a professional plumbing service is because a lot of times the drain must be disassembled to fix the problem. And while in some cases this can be a very simple fix, the average person cannot successful handle the task. It is extremely cost effective to hire a professional. The problem can easily get out of hand and quickly get beyond the general level of expertise. Leaving you too hire a drain cleaning service to fix the problem that was created as well as the original problem. Hiring professionals are always cost effective and convenient.

There are all sorts of reasons to hire a professional plumbing services. A plumbing or drain problem can quickly get out of hand leaving you with a bigger problem than you started with. Hiring a trained professional drain cleaning service can eliminate that and fix your drain problems quickly, effectively and in an eco-friendly manner. In a lot of cases plumbing problems can be fixed rather quickly and easily. For your safety and the safety of your home, let professionals handle your drain cleaning and maintenance. The last thing you want is a broken pipe and bottles of empty drano when a few steps by the professionals could eliminate the problem altogether.

Fencing Drills – Drills At The Wall

Drills play an important part in teaching fencing and in training fencers for competition. The acquisition of any physical skill requires repetition, and the smooth execution combined with speed and accuracy required for fencing demands extended repetition. One of the oldest and simplest drills used in fencing is the drill at the wall.

As the name implies, a drill at the wall requires immobility on the part of a defender (although he or she does not have to stand literally back to the wall). The defender is placed on guard with the back foot at a set point on the strip, and is not permitted to move in any direction. The attacker comes on guard at lunge distance. When both fencers are in place, the attacker initiates an attack at fencing speed, and the defender must defeat the attack with an appropriate defense or counterattack. Both fencers know the distance and the actions to be executed. After a set number of repetitions, the fencers exchange places and repeat the drill.

This drill thus replicates one of the three defensive cases:

(1) retreating on the attack (to gain time and distance for the parry),

(2) standing in place (possible if the defender has reasonable assurance of the nature of the attack and sufficient speed to parry it), or

(3) stepping forward to parry (thereby collapsing the attackers distance and disrupting any multipart action).

The drill at the wall was a favorite drill in the classical period when retreating from an attack was considered somewhat inappropriate for gentlemen. However, in today's modern footwork oriented sport, it is of less value because mobility in the face of the attack is an assumed requirement. Even if the fencer does intend to stand and meet the attack, the point at which that occurs is in the midst of movement and is not known in advance to the attacker.

However, the drill at the wall has utility, especially if modified to reflect current competitive conditions. Three options may be worth consideration:

… First, it can be used in its original form to build confidence in attack and defense for beginners. It should not be the only type of drill used, and transition should be made quickly to exchange drills with movement. It can also be an occasional variant in the training of intermediate fencers to stress speed and accuracy of attack or quality of the parry.

… Second, the wall can be made mobile. The defending fencer can be free to retreat on the opponent's advance, with instructions to stop retreating and react to the attack or attack into the preparation at random numbers of steps. If the attacker is simply advancing prepared to attack but unprepared to react, this collapses the attacking distance, and opens up opportunities for the defense.

… Third, the drill can be shifted to front foot immobility as a last stand at the end of the strip drill. The front foot is on the strip, and the torso and rear foot are off. Now the defender can adjust distance to some degree with the rear foot and can attack or counterattack if the attacker misjudges distance or has flaws in the attack.

The drill at the wall in any form is a specialized drill in the modern fencing environment (of course, if you are a classical fencer it retains its original value). As a specialized drill for training for specific training needs or tactical cases, it retains value and should be in the coach's toolkit for building varied and effective lessons.

The Most Reliable Trucks for Carrying Timber & Allied Products

For any construction site, delay in the arrival of materials can hamper the operations. It is imperative that companies make use of dependable vehicles. Transportation of timber is an important activity in the construction industry, and thus it requires a durable and reliable truck. Traversing through dense forests and muddy tracks, timber trucks should be fully adept at carrying the heaviest of loads in severe environments & conditions. Hence, while purchasing a vehicle, one should look out for a carrier having a robust chassis with high ground clearance, which would ensure a safe driving experience on long distances. Other aspects to consider include perfect visibility, excellent maneuverability, easy entrance access, remarkable pulling power, and sufficient mirrors. Listed below are a few timber trucks that promise great performance as well as efficient transport operations:

MAN TGS

Revered as an all-rounder by its manufacturer, the MAN TGS is a reliable, safe, and economical vehicle. While the high-torque Common Rail Engines offer low fuel consumption, the MAN TipMatic automatic gear shift relieves the driver of the strain of shifting gears, and safeguards the vehicle from damage. Then there is the twelve-speed MAN TipMatic semi-automatic gearbox, which provides supreme comfort and efficiency. The innovative MAN PriTarder aids in enhancing driving safety, by rendering high braking output of 600 kW, even at low driving speeds. Adept at handling almost 90% of all braking operations, this technique provides safety, particularly when the vehicle runs on construction sites.

Volvo FMX

Bragging of a robust exterior, groundbreaking steering system, and a great suspension, the Volvo FMX performs amazingly on rough terrains and tough working conditions. Powered by an 11/13 litre diesel engine pumping out 330 to 480 hp, this next-generation construction truck is available in 4×2, 4×4, 6×2, 6×4, 6×6, 8×2, 8×4, and 8×6 configurations. Other features include I-shift gearbox, Volvo patented dynamic steering, air-suspended rear-wheel installation, hydraulically steered multi-axles, towing device, advanced driver support system, and contemporary instrument cluster. Further, the front axle facilitates the carriage of big logs of timber.

TATA SE 1613

This 16 ton 130 HP truck derives its power from a Tata 697 engine. With a ladder type heavy duty riveted & bolted chassis, this vehicle can run at a maximum speed of 102 kmph. The semi-forward design, optimized driveline, and full air S-cam brakes add to the safety features of the carrier. Other specifications include power steering, 490 Nm of torque, 6 speed gear box, cowl & cabin options, and much more.

Of course, there are several other vehicles that offer excellent solutions for transporting timber and allied products, but the ones mentioned above score well in terms of reliability. Capable of covering local, regional, and even long haul transportations, these timber trucks play an indispensable role in the growth and success of the construction business.

Pole Barns

The type of construction one chooses will depend on the barn's style. The pole barn, also known as post-frame construction, is the least expensive. The post-frame construction is done by sinking posts into the ground, with lumber connecting them horizontally. Holes are dug for the poles that are then used for the foundation, bracing and framework. Most metal buildings, today, use this type of construction. Apart from shallow-pitched roofs and single stories, one can construct two-story barns as well.

The light-frame is the second type of construction. It is used in most residential construction. The foundation has frames of "two-by" lumber (2-by-4, 2-by-6) attached to it. Light-frame construction is more expensive than post-frame because of the cost of additional lumber and the concrete foundation. Size is not a constraint for constructing light-frame barns.

The post-and-beam type, also known as timber frame, is the third type of construction. It requires long, strong timbers. It is constructed by using vertical posts and horizontal tie beams assembled into sections called bents. These are then raised and attached to a sill beam on a stone foundation. This is how the phrase "barn raising" came into being.

One can build small buildings, barns, cottages, and homes with the pole-building construction method. Today, many people buy kits to build a pole barn out of steel arches and corrugated metal sheeting to house vehicles, animals, home businesses, and supplies.

For its efficiency and functionality, few buildings have out-performed the basic pole barns. A lot of modern fittings like skylights, windows, plumbing, wiring, insulation, porches, interior walls, and cement foundations are available today, for permanent installation. Private manufacturers get orders from civilians for straightforward huts to install on their farms, orchards or estates, or from small businesses as a storage facility, showroom, garage, temporary family housing, boathouse, or barn.

The Wii Balance Board Story

It's now been just over a month since Wii Fit was launched in the United States and although response to the game has been mixed, overall it has been a huge success, showing once again why Nintendo continues to lead the video games market. In the run-up to the launch of Wii Fit, the Nintendo marketing machine went into overdrive and the buzz surrounding the game was phenomenal but what many people seemed to miss was the real innovation behind the game, namely the Wii Balance Board.

Described by some as a glorified bathroom scale, this amazing peripheral is as revolutionary as the Wii Remote was when it was first launched, and like the Wii Remote, it will have Microsoft and Sony playing catch-up as they try to bring the same functionality to their consoles. When the excitement of Wii Fit dies down, it will be the Wii Balance Board that's remembered as the device that took gaming to the next level.

But there's quite a story behind this seemingly simple piece of kit which took months to develop and went through numerous prototypes of various shapes and sizes before it became the slim white board that's found itself at home in living rooms the world over.

A Scale For Miyamoto-san

Before you can understand the thinking behind the balance board you need to take a step back to understand the original vision that resulted in the need for such a peripheral. That vision was thanks to Shigeru Miyamoto, Nintendo's Senior Managing Director.

As the driving force behind games such as Pikmin and Nintendogs, Shigeru developed a reputation for creating games based on his personal hobbies. Wii Fit is no exception as the original concept for the game came from his interest in weighing himself and recording his weight on a daily basis. This led to the start of a project called 'Health Pack' which was later to become Wii Fit.

From the onset, the challenge was how to take something as simple as weighing yourself, something he enjoyed but many would see as mundane, and turn it into an activity that could be fun for the whole family. This proved to be a major challenge for the development team which, at one point, was on the verge of being broken up.

Two Scales Are Better That One

Progress on the game was slow until one of the developers brought in two scales after seeing how Sumo wrestlers have to use two scales to weigh themselves and the team suddenly realised that it was quite fun trying to balance evenly on both of them. It was at this point that measuring balance became the central theme of Wii Fit and the team started to consider using balancing exercises as a means of keeping fit.

Initial talks with scale manufacturers received little support and the team soon realised that they would have to develop their own device. It would also have to be more functional than an ordinary scale and so the idea developed of it measuring balance on four points. At this stage the team started to realise that it could be more than just a scale but actually a game interface.

Circles, Squares And Octagons

Once the overall concept of the balance board had been decided and that it would contain four sensors, work began on figuring out the optimum shape and size of the board together with the way it communicated with the Wii console. This proved to be a long process of trial and error and a constant battle between cost and usability.

Initial prototypes of the board were circular, and then square and even at one point octagonal but it soon became apparent that these shapes were impractical especially when considering exercises like push-ups. Once again, the solution came from Miyamoto who realised that a person's natural stance before training was to stand with their feet at about shoulder width apart so it was decided that the board would become more rectangular.

The second major challenge was deciding how the balance board would communicate with the Wii console. Initially, to keep costs down it was decided that the balance board would actually connect to the Wii Remote but that was soon seen as too much of a pain and the idea dropped. Eventually it was decided to rebuild the Wii Remote's wireless component from scratch to create a wireless module that could be built into the board itself.

Once these two major obstacles had been overcome it then became a process of fine-tuning the design, making sure that the board was strong enough to stand on and that it was safe to use. The end result was the revolutionary new peripheral that we see today.

What's Next For The Wii Balance Board ?

Several members of the Wii Balance Board development team admitted that at first, they never really understood Shigeru Miyamoto's vision for such a device. But as the board took shape they began to see it as more than just an accessory that could weigh players. Even before Wii Fit was launched globally there was talk internally of possible Wiiware titles and even the possibility of a balance board version of Nintendo 1080? Snowboarding.

Fortunately for balance board fans, developers like Namco, EA Sports and Ubisoft have already committed to releasing exciting new titles in 2008. In fact, Namco's We Ski was already available with the launch of Wii Fit. Games like EA Skate It and Shaun White Snowboarding have been confirmed and more games are in the works. One thing is for sure and that is that Nintendo's latest innovation, the Wii Balance Board, has a bright future.