Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

You may have noticed the popularity of MMA (mixed martial arts) events on television and pay-per-view specials in addition to seeing a few notable athletes in movies and television. The popularity of MMA is fairly new, yet a number of martial arts that fighters use to defeat their opponents, including Brazilian jiu jitsu, have existed for centuries. Below, you’ll be more interested in the sport after learning of the many benefits training affords.

History

In the early 1600s, Japan experienced a time of peace following feudal wars, yet military and civilians alike shared the mantra, “live in peace but remember war.” It was agreed that people should learn self-defense, and many styles of fighting were used, yet grappling, fighting without the use of weapons, grew in popularity. Grappling incorporated many techniques and styles used in hand-to-hand combat while its main focus taught disciples to fight from the ground. Jiu-Jitsu grew from Judo, and the Gracie family is often credited with bringing the style of fighting to Brazil and ultimately the USA.

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Digital Dating: Online Tips for Looking for Mr. or Mrs. Right

woman hugging man

The dating scene has changed a lot thanks to the Interwebs. It used to be that the best place to find a date or even just a random hookup was down at the local bar. But, that crowd is getting a little long in the tooth. In fact, some of those people don’t even have teeth anymore, right?

What you need is a fresh way to find interesting people fast, fast, fast without wasting your time or compromising your safety.

Take A Look In The Mirror

Before you do anything, take some time to introspect a bit. Where are you in life? What do you really want from a relationship? Do you want a relationship or just a hookup?

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Now’s the Time to Invest in Wearable Technology

Whether you use them for GPS fitness and nutritional intake information, physical activity and life sign monitors, or merely to combine all that you love in your smartphone in something compact, stylish, and wrapped around your wrist, wearable gadgets are only now beginning to captivate public attention in dramatic ways. With untold health-related and even virtual reality-based technologies on the horizon, it’s time for your company to get ahead of the curve and start investing in wearable technology in a major way.

stats

As can be gleaned from this graphic, the data sent and received by wearable devices around the world is anticipated to increase (and almost double) in each year from now until the end of the decade. The market for wearable tech is estimated to reach close to 13 billion dollars per year by 2018, and according to Forbes, over 70 percent of young adults aged 16 to 24 desire some form of wearable tech. Just as mobile applications emerged, then irrevocably changed the way customers interact with brands, wearable technology is set to make a profound and fascinating impact on popular culture, consumerism, and lifestyle branding in the near future.

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How to Build a Horse Racing Track

On a trip to Europe during the years 1872 to 1873, a 26-year-old colonel from Kentucky, M. Lewis Clark, visited multiple horse racing facilities in England and France. He also met with European horse racing leaders, including Vicompte Darn, French Jockey Club vice president, and Admiral Rous of England. Clark wanted to create a jockey club in Louisville, for horse racing. He returned home and created the Louisville Jockey Club and Driving Park Association in 1874.

After selling subscriptions for $100 each to 320 people, he leased 80 acres of land from his uncles, John and Henry Churchill. Clark opened the famous Churchill Downs horse track, along with a grandstand, a porter’s lodge, a clubhouse, and six stables, in 1875. Nearly 20 years later, the Louisville Jockey Club appointed a new president, William F. Schulte, who constructed a grandstand featuring the beautiful twin spires that are the symbols of the Kentucky Derby. In 1903, after 28 years in business, Churchill Downs finally turned a profit.

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Drink of the Week: The Fin de Siècle

the Fin de Siècle.“Fin de siècle” is French for “end of the century, which means that we’ve all missed our opportunity by 15 years to have a  Fin de Siècle at the most appropriate point possible, assuming we were old enough to drink in 2000. Or, if you want to look at it the other way, we’ve all got 85 years to work on preparing the perfect Fin de Siècle in time for 2100.

The truth is, however, that the real roots of this post go back not to Y2K but to last week. My copy of Ted Haigh’s Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails having been destroyed by a backed-up sink…yes, I leave cocktail books on the sink sometimes and, yes, I’m paying the price…I found myself seeing a number of somewhat similar cocktails in Robert Hess’s accurately named The Essential Cocktail Guide. Like last week’s drink, today’s drink contains sweet vermouth, orange bitters, and Torani Amer, substituting for Amer Picon — easily the most commonly called-for modern day cocktail ingredient that you can’t find anywhere in North America.

The main difference, aside from the proportions, is that our base spirit is changed out from whiskey to gin. The result is a bit lighter and drier, but no less tasty and sophisticated.

The Fin de Siècle

1 1/2 ounces gin
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
1/4 ounce Torani Amer (or Amer Picon, if live in Europe or own a time machine)
1 dash orange bitters

Combined all ingredients in a cocktail shaker or mixing glass with plenty of ice. Stir vigorously — or shake, gently, if you’re feeling rebellious — and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Toast anything that has come to conclusion or shortly will, including your tasty Fin de Siècle. Nothing lasts forever, after all, least of all a good cocktail.

*****

I saw a few recipes online for this that mentioned Plymouth Gin, but most people seem to use your more garden variety London Dry style gin. I used premium (but I guess not super premium) Bombay Dry Gin and good ol’ value-priced Gordon’s Gin, both with results that were more than satisfactory.

I actually found that,much more than with the gin, my choice of sweet vermouth made a far more dramatic difference in the flavor. I was very happy with my Fin de Siècle when I used Noilly Pratt — my personal default sweet vermouth in slight preference to Martini or Cinzano. Still, there was no topping the slightly bitter, almost chocolate-like undercurrents of Carpano Antica; sometimes you just can’t argue with the cocktail snobs. If you want a sweeter drink that’s nevertheless not too offensive, I had decent luck replacing Torani Amer with Amaro CioCiara, suggested by some as another Amer Picon substitute.

Finally, yes, you can shake this drink but that’s not my preference this time around. For starters, this is second cousin to a gin martini. (We’ll be getting to it’s first cousin very soon). I really do think there may be something to the idea that shaking can “bruise” gin, i.e., add a slightly unpleasant bitterness. Mainly, though, I don’t think the additional water/ice crystals that shaking generates really flatters the Fin de Siècle. I think this may be a drink that wants to be cool, but not ice cold.

Now, have a great Memorial Day weekend. Maybe it’s a good time to remember what life could be, if only we were all nice enough and smart enough.

  

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