How to Organize Catering for Events

Catering for events yourself is a big personal responsibility which requires careful planning and onsite presence throughout the process. You will also need access to the correct catering equipment, staff and a large enough provisions for preparation and storage of the food.

Outsourcing your catering requirements for an event can help you take the stress away from event planning. Onsite Caterers will come to your site and plan a menu through with you, to tailor your event food requirements. Onsite and Outsourced Catering help can be for events such as Weddings and engagements, Proms, Cocktail Parties, Luncheons and Dinner Parties, Corporate functions, Launch parties, Shop opening, Meetings, Funerals, Christening, Communions, Confirmations and Birthday parties and family celebrations.

The taste of the food is important, but also so is the presentation of the food to guests. An outsourced caterer can let you decide on how the food is presented, as well as offering previous photos of previous events to customize to your event. Dietary requirements and ingredients for guests can be sourced and catered for such as Nut Allergies, Vegetarian or even Halal only meat. Onsite Catering can also use disaster recovery techniques to prepare for the worst situations such as power loss or weather changes to ensure your event runs smoothly as possible.

Food prepared for these events can range from a 5 – 7 Course Meal, A Buffet with Canapé's, a hog roast or even a normal sit down meal with Family and Friends! Another advantage of utilizing an onsite caterer, is they can also provide advice as well as recommend reliable supplies for other Catering needs such as Wine to go with the meal, Wedding Cake Creation and waiting staff to serve the food.

Delivering a perfect catering service means 4 steps:

  1. Designing a menu to compliment your event, theme and requirements
  2. Holding a tasting session so you can make sure the food is just right
  3. Taking care of all the little details so you do not have to worry
  4. Delivering the highest quality, freshest food that offers real value for money

It is recommended that you find a local Cater that can source local fresh ingredients, as well and liaise with local suppliers to get you the best prices for your event.

Sustainable Forestry Practices Adopted by Many Lumber Companies in the US

There's arguably nothing more visually pleasant than the smooth, natural beauty of a piece of finely crafted furniture, or the simple elegance of a beautifully finished hardwood floor. But for many years, concerns have been raised about harvesting old-growth hardwood forests for use in the furniture and building industries.

Back in the nineties, home improvement giant Home Depot was under fire for offering wood and wood products harvested using destructive lumbering practices, and even offering exotic woods taken by clear-cutting methods from endangered tropical rain forests.

To everyone's astonishment, Home Deport recorded; and today they are proud to claim that 85 percent of the wood they sell comes from sustainable forestry practices. They are an amazing example of what can happen when a major corporation chooses to adopt a responsible attitude towards the environment.

Meanwhile, many smaller companies began their business with a commitment to sustainable forestry practices, and continue their dedication to environmentally sound timber harvesting today. For instance, Morse Hardwoods , a company specializing in flooring and millwork crafted from both soft- and hardwoods, uses selective cutting to ensure the continued growth of forests, and plans each cut it makes before it cuts the harvested timber to maximize the yield from every log and to minimize waste. Morse and other small timber companies in the US have led the way to sustainable practices.

As the public becomes more aware of the importance of forest sustainability and chooses products manufactured from wood harvested in environmentally sound ways, the demand for these products will increase, and the sustainable forestry movement will continue to grow – which is good news for the environment.

Shoot For the Stars and Settle For the Moon – Forget That Noise – Let's Go All the Way!

Many people believe that we need to get our up and coming generations to shoot for higher goals, not succumb to mediocrity, and when they shoot for those tougher goals, they will not make it more than if they had not . Not long ago, the TED Conferences put forth an old video along this line of thinking, it was a rare clip from 1972, "Legendary Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl delivers a powerful message about the human search for meaning." His message was in a nut shell; "Shoot for the Stars and Settle for the Moon."

But I say; Forget That Noise – Let's Go All the Way! Yes like that famous pop hit with the lyrics; "Ya, Ya, Ya, let's go all the way," because as far as I am concerned, if you are going to go for it, do it, go all the way, not half way and then congratulate yourself. Either you are "in it to win it," or you are not. As far as I am concerned Viktor Frankl, the so-called legendary psychiatrist sends the wrong message to American youth and their coaches, teachers, and mentors.

"Do not try, do!" said Mr. Miyagi in the Karate Kid. A great quote indeed, and it is completely and 100% on the money, that's what matters in life; winning, accomplishing what you set out to do, not trying, or trying and then settling for the less, no way, not in this life time, you must make your life count. Not sure if it's just me but TED, and the people who lean far left seem to believe that simple praise of the next generation is acceptable. Propel their self-esteem with certificates and accolades.

Personally, I say these kids need a good kick in the butt, because half way, is not good enough. Our ancestors did not come half-way to get here, we did not go half way against NAZI Germany, and it's quite frankly un-American to go half way; forget that. Let's go all the way, all the way to the top, the number one slot, where we belong. We have the history, we have the genetics, we have the intellect, and we have opportunity, so there is absolutely no excuse not to.

Do not settle for less in your life, do not give up, do not give in, stand tall for what you believe in, and believe in yourself too, and then we will see you in the winner's circle, where you belong. Personally, I do not believe in second place, or going halfway way, I believe in winning and going all the way!

The Importance of Building Insurance

All lenders insist on Buildings Insurance if any property is secured against a loan. If anything adverse happens to the property (like it being burnt down), the same property can be rebuilt from the proceeds of the insurance claim. And if your property is mortgage free and a similar destruction occurs to it, you will still be protected by the insurance policy and will be able to rebuild your property from the proceeds of your claim.

All Buildings Insurances are taken out so as to have a peace of mind against misfortunes that you hope will never occur. This kind of insurance offers protection against structural damages eg roofs, walls, floors, ceilings, windows and doors. The causes of structural damages specified in policies are usually by fire, detonation, burglary or attempted burglary, malicious damage / vandalism, natural calamities like lightning, flooding, storms, earthquakes, disappearance and falling trees etc. Also included in the policies are damages on outdoor properties such as gates, fines and railroads.

But do be aware that not all policies cover all the above mentioned potential damages and each insurer will have its own exclusion due to that particular policy. Should you require any specific cover which has not been detailed in the policy then you can obtain one by paying an additional premium.

In the unfortunate event of you not being able to reside in your property until it has been deemed safe and secure for you to live in, you will need to ensure that your buildings insurance policy covers you for a suitable alternative. out on your property. Also make sure that your policy covers you for any associated architects' or surveyor's fees.

How To Make A Form For Making Concrete Bricks

It's very easy to make your own concrete bricks, pavers or stepping stones. One item you will need is a form in which to cast your project. You may need more than one and you may need them in different sizes.

Let's use a patio paver for an example. Let's say your patio design requires cement stones that are 8 x 8 and 8 x 16. Here's how you would go about making these forms very easily.

Buy some cheap furring strips at your home center. These are eight feet long and 2.5 inches wide. Also buy some 2 x 2. It's also eight feet long. Get some coarse-threaded screws 1.5 inches long.

From this stock you'll cut two pieces eight inches long and two pieces 20 inches long for each form you want to make. You will also cut four pieces of 2 x 2 that are 2 inches long. The only measurement that has to be fairly accurate is when you cut the eight inch pieces. The rest can be approximate.

Put two of the eight inch pieces together back to back. Put two 2 x 2's at each end so it looks like a capital I. Now you know where the 2 x 2's go, take one eight inch piece and put it on its end. Hold the 2×2 in the place you just had it while you pre-drill two holes and attach the screws. You want the edge of the 2 x 2 and the end of the eight inch piece to be flush. Assemble the other three ends the same way.

Put the assembled pieces back to back again in a capital I. Spread them apart until you have a measure of 16 inches between them. Now screw the 20 inch long pieces on with one screw in the middle of the 2 x 2 so you miss the screws you have already put into it.

That's all you need to make your 8 x 16 forms. When you want to use the 8 x 8 forms, just unscrew the 20 inch side pieces and measure your 8 inch pieces to be 8 inches apart. Pre-drill a hole and screw them to the 2 x 2's as before.

If you decide you want an 8 x 4, you just slide the eight inch pieces to that measure. You could use this form for any 8 by "X" size brick from one inch to 16 inches.

What about the thickness? What if you do not want cement bricks that are 2.5 inches thick? There are two ways to handle this.

One way is to only fill the forms to the depth that you want your brick to be thick. You could make a sight line on the wood to know when you've hit the right depth. If your bricks turn out to be of varying thickness, do not worry. You can compensate when you lay them.

The second way is to trim the wood to the proper width on a table saw. If you have a table saw, you can use any wood you can find, even boards from old pallets will be fine, and save the expense of buying the furring strips.

Have fun with your project!

The Facts You Need To Know About Mud Bogging Trucks

If you are a fun off-road sports fan and you find it thrilling to have a good time, you can have a great experience by riding mud bogging trucks. These vehicles are popular particularly in Canada and the United States. Riding them is a very exhilarating experience. The mud bogging sport combines the thrill of racing, the fun that comes from off-road racing, the love of performance vehicles and the love that little boys have of playing in the mud, which many adults still have.

This sport was introduced in the 1970s when lovers of off-road racing started competing against each other in muddy, boggy and dirty areas that they could find and this was mostly in swampy areas of North Carolina. Mud bogging is now an organized competition since organizers of motorsports shows picked up on it. They started including large pits filled with mud for racing in their shows and the sport became popular for both racers and spectators. This popular event is usually arranged on a monthly or yearly basis and at certain places, the competitions are held on a weekly basis. These events are great for a weekend out with your friends or your family.

The goal of the mud bogging sport is to try your best to drive through huge mud puddles. The person who is able to drive all the way through a huge mud puddle becomes the winner. If a number of drivers make their way through, the driver who took the shortest time is considered to be the winner. These trucks are usually four wheel drive since it is not possible for two wheel drives to make it through the huge mud puddles.

Mud bogging trucks also have a strong engine that is able to provide the needed power to take them through the puddles. They usually have special modifications such as very large wheels so that they can be more efficient in accomplishing the task. The mud bogging sport continues to grow each year and competitors engage in interesting actions to ensure that they become winners. For example, they modify the body of the vehicles and some even alter the tires in certain ways.

Most competitors attach lift kits on their trucks, which serve the purpose of giving the vehicles the needed elevation that allows them to clear off the mud. The other common alteration made in these trucks is the installation of larger tires that have deeper tracks. They give the vehicles more traction and enhance the chances of a driver becoming a winner in the sport. These vehicles are also turbo charged and have nitrous injections. They are like monster trucks on steroids.

The trucks are usually very attractive since they usually have shiny and sleek bodies that are in the best conditions. They then battle out in the filthy mud and come out covered in it and even if one does not become the winner, the entertainment offered is great. Bog tracks can be of various kinds; some are open, others hilly and others flat. The length of these tracks can be up to 300 feet and this is usually determined by the amount of space that the arena allows.

Nowadays, mud bogging competitions are usually held along with events that feature the driving of monster trucks since the trucks are highly similar. Equipping mud bogging trucks with the right accessories is essential in ensuring that the trucks will be able to navigate through sticky mud puddles. You can start off with the tires by ensuring you get the tires that are able to handle deep holes filled with muck.

The best tires are those that contain aggressive treads. Spaced out tread patterns allow the truck to be able to throw out the mud better. Another helpful idea is to get larger and wider tires since the rig will be able to hold on to more ground. The other thing that you should do is to seal up the electrical system. You can use vulcanizing silicone to seal up exposed areas like the distributor and other engine parts that will fail to work if they come into contact with water.

The other component that mud bogging trucks should contain for increased efficiency is a bigger gear box. It will be able to push the tires better and you can choose to get after market gear box packages. After installing bigger gear boxes, you should ensure that you grease them well in order to prevent damage. You should also consider modifying the intake system so that it will not suck in water. One way to do this is through the installation of a snorkel system, which will make it possible for the intake system to breathe in fresh air.

The other modification that you can do to a mud bogging truck is to secure the radiator. You can move it to the back of the truck so that its chances of getting damaged are reduced. In order to keep it from getting overheated, you can connect an electric fan to it. To increase traction, you can get a set of locking hubs that will allow the transmission to turn the front wheels as they turn the back wheels. This will give the truck more power to move through obstacles.

Rain-X Vs Bosch Wiper Blades

Talking about windshield wipers and comparing them may seem boring, that is, until that unexpected winter storm comes along while driving alone on a curvy highway. Sometimes we get so caught up with the major things going on with our cars that we forget about the little things.

Rain-X and Bosch are the number one and number two windshield wipers sold on the market. Although they both may look the same, the two companies manufacture distinct products that may interest consumers.

Traditional Wiper Blades

A traditional blade has plastic or metal brackets connecting the rubber part of the blade to the vehicle's wiper arm. The problem is that snow and ice usually build up on these parts, reducing the blade's wiping efficiency. Older cars use these traditional wipers and both Bosh and Rain X still produce them.

Bracketless Blades

Both companies manufacture bracketless wiper blades (beam blades). Bracketless blades have no joints or hinges, which prevents snow and ice from collecting on the blade. They are sleek in style. Bosch and Rain X design their bracketless blades to resist heavy rain, snow and ice through a beading process, which improves the driver's visibility during heavy storms. There is also a wind spoiler on both Bosch's and Rain X's bracketless products that help blades cling to windshields better and reduce wiper noises.

Okay, now let's compare Bosch and Rain X!

Rain X Latitude and Repel Blades (Bracketless)

Rain X markets their next-generation Latitude and Repel bracketless wiper blades by claiming they are easy to install, they give drivers a high-performance wipe and their frame is ice resistant. Latitudes and Repels are graphite-coated wipers with a uniform pressure design. These blades fit all vehicles and are now number one in the wiper blade market. Rain X places a wind spoiler on them to reduce wiper noise.

There is only one difference between Latitude and Repel blades. Repel blades come with Rain X's patented water beading technology, which is a chemical treatment that is placed on the windshield during installation and activates when using the wiper in wet weather.

Rain X Bracket Blades

Rain X adds galvanized steel to their Weatherbeater bracket wiper blades from to prevent rusting. The experts at Rain X claim that the Weatherbeater is "Consumer Rated best in wet weather driving visibility."

Bosch Evolution (Bracketless)

Bosch has made wiper blades for over 75 years. Their top of the line wiper blade, Evolution, is a bracketless blade made with a special blend of steel and graphite. Bosch puts two steel tension springs on the Evolution used for hugging a vehicle's windshield. This wiper has a multi-functioning aerodynamic wind spoiler that blocks snow and ice for reaching the wiper's tensions springs and uses outside air to push the blade closer to the windshield.

Bosch DirectConnect Wiper Blades

This precision cut blade uses natural rubber, and it has an aerodynamic steel frame that Bosch coats with zinc primer to resist rusting. Consumers install the blade using Bosch's trademark DirectConnect feature that gives them a one-step process when replacing the blades on their vehicles.

Bosch MicroEdge Wiper Blades

MicroEdge has all the features of the DirectConnect and includes fully enclosed tension springs for better weather protection. The blade also incorporates Bosch's trademark Quiet-Glide technology, which reduces the blade's noise when in use.

Bosch Excel + Wiper Blades

This blade has all the features of the MicroEdge and includes a dual rubber compound on the blade for harder wiping. The wiper also lasts twice as long as Bosch's other bracket blades.

Bosch ICON Wiper Blades

This blade has all the features of the Excel + and includes a pre-installed weather shield connector that protects wiper arms from rusting.

The Ideal House (Home Sweet Home)

The house was the place of the gathered and protected family from various conflicts that came from nature and from the disturbance of the bad hands.

Because of that so so we feel at home remained at home, then was needed by the atmosphere of the pleasant house.

Several characteristics of the Ideal House:

  • His atmosphere interior enjoyable.
  • The exterior had the environment that beautiful
  • The clean kitchen part
  • The clean TOILET part

In the house, the values ​​of the family and humanity was invested in a manner for generations to the individual.

As main means of a family, the existence of the house must become main attention.

Four conditions must be met to be able to be said as the ideal and healthy house.

  1. The house interior must be sufficient to be available the room for parents, the child and the guest. For the tropical area, better the attic was rather high, so as the volume of air in the room was enough. Air ventilation must be good, likewise room information must be enough.
  2. The house exterior in order to have the area of ​​the yard that was enough so as to be able to be planed the reforestation crop, the fruit, vegetables and the flower. The environment might not around the house be dirtiest pollution. Was available water facilities, electricity and continuity of the telephone. Had the road that could be passed through car to head means of the public's service like the market, the hospital, the school and the place of religious duties.
  3. The part or the kitchen of the processor of domestic food must meet the condition for the cleanliness. In this place food was processed. When the dirty kitchen, then food that was cooked dirty also and this was dangerous for the health of the member of this house of occupants's family.
  4. The condition for the four healthy homes was the existence of the clean TOILET.

Building in Toolbox Features With a Lumber Rack

Making sure that you are fully equipped with your pickup truck not only include a basic toolbox, but should also add in a lumber rack. This can help you to carry the larger items and can provide you with a different set of options for your tools. Knowing the different types of lumber racks for easier hauling on your pickup up truck and adding in the specific components that can help you to get a custom fit for carrying can then lead you to different options for hauling, carrying and enjoying the most out of a mobile toolbox.

The first set of characteristics to look for in a lumber rack is based on specific builds that are divided according to where you want to place your toolbox. For instance, a top mounted option is available for those that want to have the placement in the back carrying area. With this, you will be able to carry larger tools and can combine this with larger areas that are able to provide compartments for different tools. You can also mount a lumber rack on the side or as a crossover. The side option will usually be smaller for your tools and the crossover is used specifically for pickup trucks that come with a cover, meaning you will not have to bolt or screw in the rack to the side of the truck.

Along with these components of a lumber rack are different materials that are used for the best use. Plastic is one of the most popular options, especially with thicker and more durable options. You can also find aluminum, which can provide more durability and a stronger option for carrying devices. You can also look into steel, which will provide options for heavy use for your tools and are often available specifically for professionals.

Mezcal, Methanol, Moonshine and Myth

It's hard to separate fact from fiction from fear-mongering, when trying to understand the relationship between the Mexican agave-based spirit mezcal, and methishing poisoning resulting in blindness or death as the worst case scenarios. The purely physical science treats are in large part beyond my level of comprehension. At the other end of the spectrum one finds lay literature without references backing up claims and allegations regarding the likelihood of hangovers, headaches and the much more serious harmful effects; it's all cloaked in words and phrases like "as little as," "likely" and "probably." And it ignores aspartame.

Introduction

Is it appropriate to equate mezcal which has been produced essently safely and without incident by families in the southern Mexico state of Oaxaca for generations, with American moonshine, with deaths due to carefully adulterating a spirit for purely profit motive, with concoctions created by naive youth , or with reports from third world countries in which ignorance of safe spirit production results in imprudent means of production or the use of equipment which contaminates? It is suggested that the alarmists draw their data from such sources.

For the past 25 years I've been drinking mezcal sold at small, family owned and operated artisanal distilleries (palenques as they're known in Oaxaca), without incident. And so have my Oaxacan friends and compadres, hundreds of thousands of villagers who have been patronizing their neighborhood producers (or palenqueros), and more recently visitors to Oaxaca angry to sample and take home what they can not find at their local bars or source from retail liquor outlets.

Otherwise all I have to rely on is my cursory review of online literature (including but not restricted to International Center for Alcohol Policies, UPI, Methanol Institute, National Institute of Health / US National Library of Medicine, World Health Organization; a list of links referenced is available upon written request), and my background in social anthropology. It was my Darwinian academic training which lead me to an internet search so that I might be able to prove what I considered to be a reasonable hypothesis, and put into perspective the tall tales I was being reading. Regarding the latter, I have read that mezcal not certified by a regulatory agency is fake, illegitimate, results in hangovers, and may even lead to blindness or death from methanol poisoning. Have imbibers of agave-based spirits been extremely lucky all these years, decades and perhaps even millennia?

The two lines of thought relating to the origins of distillation in Mexico are that indigenous groups learned to distill long before the arrival of the Spanish, or, that the Spanish learned distillation from the Moors and so bought that knowledge with them in the first half of the 16th century. The former theory gives more credence to my thought process, although 450 years of trial and error and perfecting safe distillation is nothing to sneeze at.

Just like the early Zapoteco natives of Oaxaca learned to dye with the cochineal insect, and in due course presumably through trial and error that the mineral alum served as the best available mordent or fixer, it is suggested that so too did the invaders and the indigenous peoples of Mexico learn how to distill safely. Following the same analogy, it is likely that long ago wool dyed red with cochineal dramatically faded from the sun or through washing, until the best available mordent was found; and so possibly dating back hundreds of years indeed native Mexicans (and Spanish) succumbed to unwise distillation practices. They have learned the benefit of using alum; and of taking off the methanol, and using predominately clay or copper or other "safe" metal compounds during and for distillation respectively.

Methanol Explained

Even the healthiest among us, and that includes those who do not imbibe alcohol, have methanol in their bodies. Humans get it in small amount from eating fruits and vegetables. It is not only absorbed through the gastrointestinal tract, but also through the skin and by inhalation. Methanol is metabolized in the liver, converted first to formaldehyde, and then to formate (formic acid). As a building block for many biological molecules, formate is essential for our survival. On the other hand, high levels of formate buildup after excess methanol take can cause severe toxicity. An EPA assessment reported that methanol is considered a cumulative poison due to the low rate of excretion once it is absorbed.

The primary uses of methanol are for industrial and automotive purposes. It is found in antifreeze, canned heating sources, copy machine fluids, de-icing fluids, fuel additives, paint remover or thinner, shellac, varnish, windshield wiper fluid, and more. This is known as denatured alcohol. Government regulations in fact dictate the inclusion of high levels of methanol as a compound in such products, knowing its toxicity and wanting to ensure that the public buys its liquor (in which levels of methanol are controlled, as opposed to other alcohol), in order to maintain healthy tax revenue.

But Government dictates do not prevent the drinking of denatured alcohol or it being used to fortify other beverages. In fact the literature on non-commercial alcohol, which is sometimes referred to as unrecorded alcohol, cites these "surrogates" or non-beverage alcoholics, as one of three categories of drinks which potentially create health risks. They are drunk alone (ie the classic skid row cases), and used as "cocktails" when they are added for example to fruit juices. The other two are "counterfeit" products and illicit mass-produced drinks, and traditional drinks produced for home consumption or limited local trade (license or illicit). It is suggested that artisanal mezcal falls into the second part of this third category. So yes, there is the possibility of health problems arising as a consequence of consumers imbibing Mexican mezcal with higher than "safe" levels of methanol.

Spirits Health Risks in Mexico and Internally

In central Mexico, as born out in the literature, much more than anything else the singular health problem related to mezcal and other traditional alcohol consumption is alcoholism resulting in liver cirrhosis.

In an article centering upon global methanol poisoning outbreaks, the World Health Organization cited examples of adulterated, counterfeit and informally produced spirits in Cambodia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Estonia, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Libya, Nicaragua, Norway, Pakistan, Turkey, and Uganda. Mexico is conspicuously absent from the list.

In an article centering upon the quantification of selected volatile constituents in the Mexican spirits sotol, bacanora, tequila and mezcal, while methol was the most problematic compound and at times the samples taken were far above the levels recommended by international as well as national standards, two points are particularly noteworthy: methanol levels were not toxicological relevance; and, other legally acquired drinks such as German fruit spirits were found to have significantly higher methanol levels.

In an article entitled "Noncommercial Alcohol: Understanding the Informal Market," the International Center for Alcohol Policies reported that much of the perceived health risk stems from patterns of drinking such as chronic consumption and binging, use of low quality ingredients, adulteration, and lack of control during production or storage. In Russia and other republics in the former Soviet Union samagon is cheap and easy to make using household equipment. Kenya's poor fortifies its grain spirit, chang'aa, with surrogates. Brazil's national drink cachaca or pinga is sometimes fortified using industrial alcohol, some of which have been noted above.

And what about the United States' reowned moonshine, the unusually high alcohol content spirit typically made using corn mash as the main ingredient? Poorly produced moonshine is contaminated primarily from materials used in still construction, such as employing car radiators as condensers (glycol from the antifreeze or lead from the connections). In addition, methanol can be added to the spirits to increase strength and improve profits.

The 1994 reported poisoning from ingesting mezcal produced in the Mexican state of Morelos cite the spirit having been spiked with methanol. It is suggested that this was an aberration, though of course is noteworthy. Somewhat surprisingly, there was slightly little reported about the incidents, and they have not to my knowledge received attention in the brochure English literature centering upon methanol poisoning.

As suggested, methanol is not the only potentially harmful constituent. Lead as well as other toxic metals can poison not only as a consequence of employing unsuitable distillation equipment but also through the use of a contaminated water source. Volatile compounds such as acetaldehyde or higher alcohol can be produced in significant amounts due to fault in production technology or microbiological spoilage. There have been occurrences of certain fruit and sugarcane spirits containing the carcinogen urethane.

When is Methanol Safe?

Returning to methanol, one must now ask what is the safe maximum level of its ingestion. It was only in 1981 that the sugar substitute aspartame was approved for dry goods, and two years later for carbonated beverages. It is made up of three chemicals: aspartic acid, phenylalanine, and methanol which makes up a whopping 10% of its composition. The absorption of methanol into the body is sped up when "free methanol" is ingested, and this form of the chemical is created from aspartame when it is heated to above 86 degrees Fahrenheit (ie when making sugar-free Jello). In 1993 the FDA approved aspartame as an ingredient in numerous food items that would normally be heated to above that temperature.

The EPA recommends consumption of no more than 7.8 grams of methanol daily. While the amount of aspartame in a diet soda can vary, it has been reported that a single can produce 20 mg of methanol in the body. It is no wonder that aspartame accounts for over 75% of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA. Chronic illnesses can be triggered or worsened by ingesting aspartame. The range of afflictions reported is alarming.

The current regulation for the maximum amount of methanol in mezcal is.3 of a gram per 100 ml. It is an arbitrary standard. Query how much mezcal one must ingest to reach the EPA maximum limit of methanol of 7.8 grams daily. The FDA states that as much as.5 of a gram per day of methanol is safe in an adult's diet. Should the Mexican standard be higher, or lower?

It is no wonder that the study referred earlier identifying volatile constituents in Mexican spirits, did not find toxicological relevance in the face of analyzing samples far above recommended levels. Furthermore, as distinct from household foodstuffs and drink containing aspartame, ethanol (ie mezcal) serves as an antidote for methanol toxicity in humans.

Conclusion

There is indeed confusion in the literature concerning recommended maximum levels of methanol and at what level health risks kick in, both dealing specifically with Mexican spirits, and where they are noted purely tactically or not at all. However there is also considerability:

1. There is a paucity of reliable research and resulting literature stemming in large part from the fact that statistics regarding non-commercial spirits are essentially non-existent for various reasons (ie unrecorded since no precise government or other reliable quantitative figures exist);
2. There is a lack of collaboration between local authorities, NGOs and international experts;
3. Methanol poisoning is reliably rare in circumstances where traditional, safe distillation processes which have been passed down through generations are practiced (ie through Mexico, current United States moonshine operations, etc .; subject to 1., above);
4. There are umpteen other reasons why there are health risks associated with both license and illicit spirit production;
5. There is a concern that strict government controls encourage the consumption of non-commercial or informally sold alcohol and increase harm;
6. High quality artisanal non-commercial traditional spirits are by and large safe, both away from and notwithstanding the issue of quantity of methanol;
7. They often determine an extremely important part of local culture, often with ceremonial significance (ie consumed in a plethora of rite of passage events), and provide a source of national pride.
Aside from my Darwinian suggestion that the days of dangerous mezcal production have long passed, and acknowledging the issue of still construction, it is noteworthy that almost all artisanal distilleries in Oaxaca consist of either copper alembics or similar production equipment made in equally standardized and carefully monitored workshops and factories; Egypt in clay pots. In both cases they are essentially free of harmful levels of chemical compounds.

If there is a lesson to be learned, it is that one should never drink artisanal mezcal, commercial or otherwise, while consuming government authorized products containing aspartame.

How Carpets Effect Allergies

Do not Toss' em … They're Awesome!
The science of indoor air quality is very interesting and relatively new. In the past, the focus was on the quality of the outside air and the interest was in lower emissions of all types into the air.

Since we now spend more time indoors – an average of 80% of our time – indoor air quality has become a concern to the EPA, as well as government and private health organizations.

Following the energy-saving efforts of the 70's and 80's, buildings and homes are now much more air-tight, leaving little opportunity for diluting the indoor air with fresh air from outside. Indoor air has so become more polluted.

But what's the connection between indoor air quality and carpets? In the past, doctors recommended that their asthma and allergy-suffering patients remove carpeting from the home. It was erroneously thought that carpeting exasperated their conditions. Recently, the EPA performed a study of hundreds of homes, schools and office buildings and concluded that the choice of carpeting as a floor covering was actually beneficial in the fight against asthma and allergies. When scientifically tested, the air in the "breathing zone" above carpets was found to contain fewer allergens than the air above hard surfaces.

Carpet tend to collect and hold the allergens out of the air, where they remain, until the carpet is vacuumed or professionally cleaned. In contrast, allergens that settle on hard surface flooring tend to be redistributed to the breathing zone with normal foot traffic or the simple act of running a broom over the flooring surface.

One unfortunate result of the EPA's study is that we now know that many families removed carpeting from their homes in an effort to reduce allergy symptoms, only to find that they gained no improvement in their conditions. Their carpeting was an asset, rather than a reduction, to the quality of their indoor air.

In concluding that carpeting is a benefit to indoor air, the EPA now recommends that carpeting be cleaned at least every 6 months – in most homes – to rid the carpeting of these allergens. A carpet that is not regularly maintained has a reduced ability to collect indoor air pollutants.

Tips for Reducing Indoor Allergens

Following, are some tips for reducing indoor allergens in your home and specifically, in your carpeting – helping you to keep your "home sweet home" a healthy one for you and your family:

Vacuum, vacuum, vacuum. This can not be stressed enough. You should vacuum at least twice a week, more often if you have pets.

Vacuuming helps rid your carpeting of dust, dust mite feces, animal hair and dander, human hair and dead skin, mold spores, dead bugs and abrasive sand and soil. Make sure that you use a vacuum cleaner that has a high efficiency HEPA filtering system and ensures that the brush setting is low enough to agitate the carpet fibers.

Do not sweep your hard surface flooring. Sweeping redistributes allergens into the air. Vacuuming your floors, followed by a damp mop or swiffer, will help keep the air your family breathes cleaner.

Adopt a no shoes policy in your home. This will keep outdoor pollutants from entering the main areas of your home. You may also consider adding an air-scrubber as this machine will continuously circulate the air in your home through the air filters, removing airborne particulates. Make sure that you change the filter often. Also consider using high-efficiency HEPA air filters in the furnace and adding filters to the intake and output ducts to further reduce circulation of contaminants.

Follow these simple tips, and not only will you have a healthy home, but your carpeting will last longer also.

(Some statistical information contained here was collected from the EPA)

Possible Problems Encountered In Raising Cattle

If you are planning to raise cattle for farming or business purposes, you must determine first your purpose and what breed of cattle would you like to grow. Because each breed of cattle has different needs to attend to. If you do not know the kind of cattle you have then it will be a big head ache for you.

When you tend to raise cattle for beef industry your first problem is the adequacy of the area you are going to keep your cattle. The fact that human population is making land area conduced so giving a little space for farmers and livestock growers to raise their livestock it would be a great trouble for you. Cattle need to graze and should be put in an open field. When I say open field it does not mean that you can have just a few square meters of land area. It denotes hectares and hectares of land area. However when raising a cattle for farming land area is not an issue, farmers can just put their cattle at their backyard for fattening purposes.

Another mind boggling issue is the capital to sustain the cattle business. When you raise cattle for business you must see to it that you have an amount of money to sustain your business especially when you do not have a hundred hectares for pasture. You need to buy feeds for them. Not just food but other supplementary needs of your cattle depending on the breed you got. Contrary to cattle business, cattle for farming do not need that much capital. Farmers will just look for hays and fresh grass to feed them.

Weather is another factor a cattle raiser should take into account. Granting that the farmer has a vast land area for his cattle, the primary concern of the cattle drawer is daught. Too much heat from the sun would destroy the grass which is the cattle's basic food supply. Instead of minimizing operating expenses, cattle raiser would be forced to spend extra amount for feeds due to the scarcity of grass for the cattle to graze.

Disease and Parasites are also an issue that cattle growers burdened themselves. Disease like FMD (Foot and Mouth Disease), Mad Cow disease and other animal illness continue to beothersome to livestock growers. Although there have been vaccines it still is a threat especially to small time cattle growers with limited capital.

Here is a few of the contributing problems in cattle raising that have been laid down, would farmers and cattle growers should attend seminars and lectures governing this in order to be aware of the arising problems. Awareness is the key for a successful cattle raising business.

How to Save Money Using Carpet Remnants

If you are looking to redo the carpeting in your home, you may wish to consider using carpet remnants in some of the rooms. This is something that may sound strange at first, but you would have surprised at the quality you can find following this money saving method.

All rooms are equipped with a TV, cable / satellite channels and a mini bar. Instead, this is a very popular method that people and contractors use in the smaller rooms such as bedrooms, offices, and dens. The do this for several reasons, all of which will help you understand why using such remnants can be very worth the little extra time it takes to find them either online or in the store.

First, you can save a lot of money by using carpets remnants. You can save over 50% versus traditional, full length carpeting, which can obviously add us in our current economic environment. Not only that, but you can find this discounted carpet remnants for all types and for all brands of carpets. So what is the reason for the discount? It's very simple – contractors and other carpet layers always have extra carpet. The main carpet rolls obviously will not fit perfectly for every home and job, so the leftovers are left for people to use as remnants.

Second, by using different remnants in various rooms in your home you can add a level of style that does not come when you use the same carpet through your whole house. So, you get savings and style at the same time.

How To Get Your Foot In The Door At A Modeling Agency

Breaking into the modeling business starts by gaining entrance into the heart of the industry – your friendly neighborhood modeling agency. But what's the best way to get your foot in the door? Every aspiring model has a different method for success, but here's a quick look at the top ways you can get noticed by modeling agencies large and small, local and worldwide.

The Dry Call

The adage "there's safety in numbers" may apply to many walks of life, but modeling is not one of them. When you send your heads shots into an agency unsolicited, you are joining the thousands of other aspiring models who have chosen the same point of entry. The potential problem with the dry call is that no matter how great you look, your head shot is likely to get lost in the shuffle. And that shuffle is likely being overseen by the overworked, cynical intern – not the dream-maker who sits in the corner office of the agency. While there ARE dry call success stories, do not expect a call 3-5 business days after your head shots hit the mail.

Pros: Cost-effective, allows you blank many agencies at once, you're limited only by your postage budget.

Cons: The volume of dry calls a modeling agency receives in a given day makes it hard to stand out from the crowd.

The Walk In

Nothing says, "I'm ready to work" like showing up at a modeling agency is glorious 3-D. Walk In appointments give you a chance to show your portfolio to booking agents, be interviewed and just generally strut your stuff. Walk-ins must be scheduled in advance over the phone. When you arrive at the agency, always be professionally trained and maintain a positive mental attitude. This is your chance to shine beyond your photos – take full advantage of it.

Pros: A one-on-one opportunity to make an impression on modeling professionals. Unlike the open call, you probably will not have to wait in line with hundreds of other respondents.

Cons: Much like the dry call, you can never be sure that the results of the walk in will not end up in the world's largest backroom filing cabinet. Still, the fact that the agency has had a chance to see you in person and experience your personality gives you a leg up!

The Open Call

Firmly planting yourself into the good graces of a modeling agency means being there when they want you (and not just when you decided it was a good time to drop them a line). And that is where the open call comes into play. An open call reflects to that special time when an agency places an ad looking for talent. The process is simple: you show up – they love you – you become famous! OK, maybe it's not that simple, but the open call generally produces the most success because you as a model are filling a need at the agency. When you do a dry call or a walk in, you may be great, but there's no way to gauge the hiring climate at the agency. With an open call, you're there because they want you there!

Pros: The open call is a signal that the agency in question is looking for new talent. There's no better time to get your foot in the door.

Cons: You're not going to be the only one who reads the modeling agency's ad. Be prepared to spend a large portion of the day waiting to be seen by the right people.

(C) Copyright – Coach Models – Jochen Talmon

Islamic Art – How Did it Begin?

Islamic Art that evolved the time followed the death of the Prophet (PBUH) was mostly described in the architectural manner. This form emerged in countries where ever Islam prevailed and personified the Muslim precepts in its motifs and themes. As the wings of Islam spread from Africa to Egypt and from Spain to Persia, it gained strength and substance. The origins lay in its rich and artistic Arabian heritage as different kinds of art were utilized to express the unqueness of Islam without any form of pictorial depictions.

Islamic art was developed over time by a unique blend of various arts from the Byzantines, the Copts, the Romans, and the Persians. Therein lays the greatest asset of this art, its skill to fuse the native designs with imported ones to achieve a completely distinct end result. The one common factor in all kinds of Islamic art is the abstract embellishments and designs. Most utilized the curved and interlacing lines in bright and vibrant colors to enhance the various styles. The finest pieces of this art and architecture throughout the world are clearly distinguishable by the vivacious colors in floral designs.

The current form of such art is believed to have emerged during the rule of the Umayyad caliphate (661-750). Thereafter, many divergent periods of Islamic art and architecture transpired. Therefore, this art is most commonly classified according to the reigning empire when the art work was created. Most museums and art galleries have categorized their collections by the different Muslim dynasties including the Umayyad, Abbasid, Safavid, Ottoman and Mughal.

As Islam is a diverse religion that encompasses people of various ethnic backgrounds, the Islamic art is also much diversified to accommodate all ethnicities of its followers. It has the ability to unify various elements into a beautiful piece depicting the many facets of the artist. Islamic art avoids any form of human or animal representation in it. This is because of the Muslim belief that no one can replicate the work of Allah. Thus all art is invariable found in the form of floral, geometric and abstract shapes and lines. Many good books are also available for those who are interested in learning more about its history and descent through time to its current version. World travelers notice the specific regional features of Islamic art vary from terrain to terrain to encompass that particular place's history into it.