It’s not Thanksgiving Without the Beer

It’s not Thanksgiving Without the Beer

Oct 08

Beer and food go together like a bird and the sky. I’ve been trying my hand at cooking different foods lately, and I’ve got to say, I’m getting pretty good at this.

I’ve always enjoyed being the grill master when it comes to cooking for a group of people. I like the excuse to step outside, away from all the action, and just focus on good cuts of meat being cooked to perfection. I can use charcoal, but I have better control with propane.

Now that summer is over, I’m going to miss grilling salmon while drinking beer. I use a soy-based glaze and marinate the meat for a few hours before I stick it on the foil with the scales down. After about 15 minutes, the skin comes right off, and you’ve got the perfect serving of fish. I always watch to see when the meat starts to release the white fat in the fish, that’s when I know it’s getting close to being just right. The trick is remembering that the fish will cook a little more after you take it off the grill, so use a fork in the thickest part and make sure it’s close enough to take off the heat. By the time everyone sits down at the table, it’ll be flawless.

My girlfriend loves to drink wine with her meals, but I’m more of a beer drinker, especially when it comes to grilling. I’ve been drinking lighter lagers and refreshing pilsners in the summer heat, but now that I wear my jacket out, I’m moving towards darker beers.

I’m hosting Thanksgiving at my house this year, and I’m planning on having a beer tasting while my family is there. We’re the type of family that shows up at someone’s house and hangs around for a few days, so it’s best to have some activities planned. I’ve got a list going, but I’m really excited to try some seasonal Thanksgiving Ale. It all sounds delicious, and I know my family and friends can all enjoy it for the whole duration of their stay with a Growler Chill! I’ve got plenty to be thankful for this year, and beer is at the top of my list, behind family and friends of course. Once, I was carrying a twelve pack inside with one hand, and the handle broke, but none of the bottles shattered! It was a Thursday night miracle!

This year I’m going to try to fry a turkey for the first time. I’ve been exploring different cooking styles, and it’s time. I can’t stand dry turkey, and my oven is a piece of crap. Frying it also just sounds like fun. I’ve got a wooden deck and house insurance, so what could go wrong?

Yeah right. I’ve seen way too many fried turkey-fail videos to make that mistake. I’ll be set up in the driveway surrounded by five feet of concrete under the frier in every direction. Cold beer, hot oil, and fried turkey. I think it’s going to be a great Thanksgiving.

The Ethics of Football

The Ethics of Football

Aug 29

As the undeniable link between football and brain injury grows, many people are asking the same question: am I contributing to the problem by actively participating in the continuation of this sport through my support? According to one mother, interviewed in an article written for The Des Moines Register, her doctor likened playing football to doing cocaine as “the brain damage he saw in football players’ brains mirrored that of cocaine addicts.” She and many parents have chosen not to let their children play the sport when their doctors shared the same experiences. So, this begs the question, is it morally corrupt to not let your own family members participate in the sport while still actively watching those that already do play?

In the same article, a study was cited wherein over 100 ex-NFL players’ brains were studied, and nearly every one (110 out of 111, was the final count) suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). CTE is described as a degenerative brain disease that’s caused by repetitive brain trauma. Since this kind of injury is so indicative of football—you just can’t have the sport without the contact—and not other types of games, there’s a question about supporting a game where regardless of intent, players may be actively getting themselves killed. There are many programs in place that are meant to offset those with obvious brain degeneration in sports, but they have been sued in the past for failing to protect people with brain injuries who play football. Then, there is the final question of choice. If a player is actively putting themself on the field, why in the world would supporting the sport be unethical? Unfortunately, there is a lot that is contrary to that notion. For one, many of these studies noting the detriment of football on the player are relatively new. People who had gone into the sports years ago and are just now hearing about these issues, may not want to leave or cannot. If these programs in place to help injured players keep on getting sued with the help of Des Moines personal injury attorneys, then isn’t something wrong?

I’m of the opinion that watching these sports is directly contributing to the problem via the funds that come in through support. If something is this lucrative, then why would anyone stop doing it. The author of the article agrees, but something is nagging: what can one viewer do against the millions that consume the sport? It’s true. Widespread access to these studies often fails to draw any sort of support in favor of abandoning the sport to try to save people. So what is there to do?

When it comes to consuming football, is it really ethical to be doing so? I’ve discussed many different sides to this story, including the personal morals behind the decision, whether or not players’ choice plays a role and the presence of programs that (fail) to help these players. Unfortunately, it seems there is no clear answer to this problem.

Dischargeable Debts

Dischargeable Debts

May 23

It is important that you consult with a bankruptcy lawyer before you file for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy. The process may sound simple, but many complex issues may arise that require specific knowledge about bankruptcy law. Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyers in Dallas do more than simply file your petition to the state bankruptcy court. One of the most crucial is identifying dischargeable debts.

Chapter 7 is primarily a petition to the bankruptcy court to discharge your debts. As long as you meet the eligibility requirements, the court will allow you to do just that. This will help you get rid of your debt burden so that you can move on with your life. However, the court will require you to liquidate all your assets so that you can pay off as much as you can before you get a clean slate.

Dischargeable debts do not disappear. They are still on record, but the court issues an injunction against the creditors so that they can no longer collect from you. Dischargeable debts include:

  • Credit card debts
  • Department store credit cards
  • Foreclosures
  • Medical Bills
  • Payday loans
  • Personal loans
  • Repossessions
  • Signature loans
  • Some (not all) tax debt
  • Utility bills

As a rule of thumb, debts in which the lender has no security interest (unsecured debt) are dischargeable. This means that no property has been used as collateral to secure the debt, such as in a home mortgage. However, it is crucial to understand that even for unsecured debts there are exceptions, such as with tax debts.

Depending on your particular situation, Chapter 7 may be your best option, or it could get you into deeper trouble. Before doing anything, consult with a qualified bankruptcy lawyer in your area. Your lawyer will be able to discuss the nitty-gritty of your financial position and advise you accordingly.

What is a Special Flood Hazard Area?

What is a Special Flood Hazard Area?

Mar 18

One of the biggest concerns of homeowners in certain states is the risk of flooding. Floods can pose a serious threat to life and property. California in particular has experienced several instances of flooding, particularly in 1995 with 28 deaths and $1.8 billion in economic losses. In 1996-1997, a series of subtropical storms hit the state, causing floods in areas not typically associated with flood hazards. More recently, floods in Southern California killed one person, forced thousands of people from their homes, and caused irreparable damage to 18 homes.

In response to these developments, the US Federal Emergency Management Agency mapped out special flood hazard areas (SFHA), which are those that may experience flood or mudflow based on a number of factors, including erosion levels. The areas all have 1-percent-annual-chance (1% chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year) for a flood event or shallow flooding and marked on a Flood Insurance Rate Map and designated as:

  • Zone A – flood event, Base Flood Elevations (BFEs) shown
  • Zone AE and A1-30 – flood event, BFEs shown
  • Zone AH – shallow flooding (ponding), with average depths of one to three feet
  • Zone AO – shallow flooding (sheet flow), with average depths of one to three feet
  • Zone AR – decertified areas with flood protection systems in the process of being restored
  • Zone A99 – flood event, subject to completion of a Federal flood protection system
  • Zone V – flood event, with the added danger associated with storm-induced waves
  • Zone VE and V1-30 – flood event, with the added danger associated with storm-induced velocity wave action

These designations can change depending on events, so it is important to always be updated on any changes. Home sellers should have no problems with providing a Standardized Natural Hazards Disclosure Statement to potential buyers if they have a natural hazard disclosure report on hand. Order a report from a natural hazard disclosure company online and get it within minutes.

Social Security Disability Claims

Social Security Disability Claims

Nov 07

Most people often give up when they receive notice that their disability benefit claim has been denied after their application. A denial of benefits claim does not necessarily mean you are not qualified – although statistics vary from state to state, say from San Antonio Texas to Kansas Missouri – generally 7 out of 10 applications are denied due to a variety of reasons. Fortunately, you can always appeal your case once they have been denied.

After receiving are denied disability benefits claim, it would be advisable, even by many lawyers, to ask for an appeal immediately. It may be necessary to appear before an Administrative Law Judge in a disability hearing, although they don’t usually happen until a year or two after the first application. Appealing for your disability case can be done online or in person through a request for appeal form. Remember that you can only appeal your case within 60 days after you have received the “denied” notice.

Because reapplying can only result to being denied again (possibly because of the same reasons as the first application), appealing your case reaps better results and possibly be given benefits. In order to have your case approved upon an appeal, make sure to know the reason why your first application was denied. This will give you insight on how to properly file and proceed. Then, make sure to inform your lawyer or the Social Security Office about your appeal.

Initial letters from the Social Security may be positive, but most Social Security disability claims are often denied, therefore it is common to hear these cases being appealed. Appealing for one or more times may be inevitable. It may be time-consuming and needs more effort and patience that you seem to handle, but getting a disability benefit is all worth it.