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Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Talenti Tiramisu Gelato Review



I saw this brand of gelato on the shelves and thought nothing of it. I noticed it looked nice and assumed it be just another high end expensive ice cream but it is gelato. Then two of my female friends raved about it. And when I asked a third female friend she said yes she had tried it and said it was good but nothing too grand. So, it's summer and I am buying ice cream every week. There's so many flavors to choose from Talenti; I could barely decide on my decision for one.

In addition to my female friends positive enjoyment for Talenti I also looked up a couple reviews on the brand. The first flavor I read about was the Sea Salt Caramel. Every review or comment said it was good so I was going to grab Sea Salt Caramel until I saw Double Chocolate and Belgium Milk Chocolate. I was going to grab one of the mentioned but then I saw Tiramisu. That's my pick and will be the first flavor of Talenti I tasted.

Talenti is not a major brand but it has it's small fan base. I like it for it's design. A small, slightly hardened plastic one pint container with a twist close and open lid. Enough of design, I didn't buy the gelato for it's design but like it, yes.

Remove the clear wrap off the outer cap and twist open the lid stands the top layer of the gelato, like an ice rink. I can see a light swirl on top just like from the outside.

I highly enjoy Tiramisu and Chocolate and Coffee. The reason I chose this flavor was because it trumps Double Chocolate as something special because Double Chocolate is in everything. As a cake, I really like Tiramisu. I had it only a few times but each time it was great.

With a big table spoon I dig in and I get no wow factor. It's smooth but not very creamy or milky as the vanilla Breyers in my fridge or even less so than the Friendly's I have in the fridge. Does it have a Tiramisu taste? Not very much so, no. It has a strong taste of coffee with a very light milky/cheese taste that comes after the coffee flavor. They should have called this Talenti Coffee with hint of milk.cheese. That was my first impression and every other time after I tasted it. It's not too soft either. It's kind of dense. It is good gelato but nothing to rave about. I have had non-commercial gelato in Europe and in Manhattan and Talenti Tiramisu flavor is a bit of a let down in my experience. I should have chosen another flavor maybe unless the other flavors are like this. I wish I had read this review linked below before buying it.









Monday, July 11, 2016

Racism

On my Facebook page I wanted to post a simple remark "I wasn't racist before but now I am." Racism isn't a born trait, it's learned. You get that disease from your parents, those around you, the media, or just living. Stereotypes and statistics has to do with it also. What other factors impede unity? Is it just as simple as our brains not liking a color that doesn't go with another color?

Where do I begin with this topic. Let's start with a personal one before I move onto the one that is higher on the media advocated level. I am Chinese...American. Being Chinese due to my genes before you even hear me speak or do anything is exactly that, you see my Asian traits: eyes, skin tone, hair. Don't even go forth with hearing me speak or how I think. Someone racist would not like me, again based on one factor or another: parent influenced, lack of dealing with other nationalities, stereotypes from what they've heard of Chinese people, doing the same taunts as other people around them have done or as simple as not liking anything different than what that racist person's nationality is. I have been slandered at in a racist manner by in it's highest in this exact order: African-Americans less so those from Africa, Hispanics, Caribbeans, Europeans, Americans, Asians.

Not as much now but when I was younger in the 80s and 90s the most racist came from African-Americans and Hispanics in the city of New York where I grew up, less so Caucasians, well I wasn't in the Mid-West. Then I encountered more the same as I grew older from other nationalities. I mean almost everything has been thrown my way: imitating of the slanting of the eyes, small penis jokes, being called a dirty "chink", to being accused of eating dogs. My eyes are not that narrow, my parents nor I have ever eaten a dog or cat and my penis is of a decent size. Why do people put something done by a group of people and label all people of that nationality with the same racist stereotypes? So with that comment, not all African-Americans and not all Hispanics were like that to me. That's the thing about being racist, not everyone is or grew up with that trait. It's terribly learned. Every nationality has people who are racist.

There's no greater "shame on you" than to point a finger at someone else unless you're 100% immune from truly not being prejudice. If you defend your own race solely and say another race is at fault, you are part of the problem. So thus, I'll asking am I racist? Yes, slightly. I'll explain some factors. My view towards white people (I'll stop being politically correct for a bit, please don't be offended) is 99% non-prejudice unless you declare yourself KKK. Even if you are racist and call me a "chink" and slander whatever racist crap toward me I will have no bad view toward you because from my experience I have been fortified with thinking that one of the reasons mentioned earlier caused you to hate my race; maybe someone in your racist track of mind someone told you "foreigners have taken your job and invading your country." Maybe that is your trigger mechanism for being racist. Here's my slight prejudice toward black people besides my experience of racial taunts toward me as a youth: many are strongly opinionated to the point of being loud, I understand overcoming slavery was a great revolution with it more equal racial advances and one must advocate continuing that advance but must it be in my face? Blacks can be just as prejudice as any other group. I see so much hateful and prejudice post and remarks on my Facebook page toward white people as well as in person, especially around groups, and especially in urban settings. These reasons for my, apologetic reasons for being slightly prejudice toward black people. But not for a person's skin tone. I don't dislike blacks because of a skin tone but for the majority behavior. So, I am racist? No. But I do exhibit racial profiling and stereotype views because like you see me as having Asian traits before I act or speak, I will see your skin tone before you act. I'll judge first by your nationality first before I can tell how you think and behave based on your majorities actions in society.

Statistics: From my perspective I view more crime committed by African-Americans as a majority, then Hispanics, then Caucasians, then Asians, then Other Nationalities. Is that a perspective that if I were in the woods isolated from media? No. It's media streaming inward toward me. In my mind African-Americans cause a higher crime rate, bam!, third reason I stereotype some African-Americans. So, before I can judge your good nature, in the back of my mind that's where another reason a prejudice addition might come from. It is based on society for sure as I have read crime statistics are real but they come with a reason: possibly black communities are heavier policed and racial profiling is very real.

In the News Now: another African-American, Alton Sterling, killed by a Caucasian police officer. #BlackLivesMatter supporters and alike question if the deceased had a weapon and is it race motivated. The second African-American killed, Philando Castile, by a police officer also making headlines. In the latter incident, the girlfriend of the deceased broadcasted live part of the incident on Facebook. In part she stated a Chinese man had shot her boyfriend. Wrong. The officer, Jeronimo Yanez, who shot Philando Castile is from Hispanic ancestors. I'm not trying to blame Diamond Reynolds (she has suffered a lost) or any group, but can you see how from a Chinese standpoint her view of traits to mistakenly accuse a Hispanic police officer as a Chinese police officer. I am reading remarks from African-Americans on Facebook racially hateful remarks towards Chinese people. And then what's worst is Micah Xavier Johnson snipes to death 5 police officers in Dallas. "An eye for an eye will make the world blind"

What's the Problem:
---Police Over Powering Enforcement and Racial Profiling but they have to be aggressive and on their toes and make judgement also, it's the line of work. They can't say oh sir please put down your gun or or be too light when someone is being unruly. If someone exhibits signs of being a criminal, police just can't ignore the activity, they have to check.

What's the Solution:
---It's hard but better police management or training and less brotherly blue garbage but that's too concrete.


What's the Problem:
---It took decades of progress to have racial equality and acceptance of different nationalities through a unity type advocacy. That breaking out of slavery or bondage isn't 100% about freedom from slavery, it's about breaking out of being a race being lower class. It's a wound, an injury and over the years it became a scar that never fully really healed. Guess what, no one forgets history, they shouldn't. Police killing African-Americans are opening that scar and those who feel very passionate about the past are rising up, again, continuing the fight.

What's the Solution:
---It's not all police officers. It's not all African-Americans. It's not all Caucasians. It's not all Hispanics. It's not all Asians\Indians. It's not all Muslims\Christians\people that believe in God and labelled. I see all nationalities marching along side these #BlackLivesMatter protest along with #AllLivesMatter, yes and yes...Black Lives Do Matter and so Do All Lives. Stop learning from prejudice influences, listening to prejudice in the media/mobs/even people in the spot light. That oh I fight for my race and I blame yours and overly strong advocacy in the wrong way is rotting the lot of growing good apples. On my Facebook page I saw Russell Simmons page post a meme:

Yes, African-American profiling and the killings is the focus and #AllLivesMatter takes the spotlight away from the focus. I guess Russell Simmons is making the point that as an individual group, African-Americans advocating and protesting the killing of their own should be the sole focus and no other reasoning should take the spotlight away from #BlackLivesMatter. Which is fine but that perspective is also causing further division in that solely aspect. Segregation did not end with blacks alone, white folks marched and aided in ending segregation also, know your history. In a way, the meme is correct, #AllLivesMatter takes the point away from #BlackLivesMatter but I think #AllLivesMatter is also about #Unity

Yes, I can see an African-Americans standpoint. If police officers were killing my people I would have a fit also. Maybe all this outcry, protest and violence like it was back in history, decades ago in Martin Luther King's day, is needed in order to bring back some peace. But Martin Luther King didn't spew hate, he advocated equality for his people.

Chinese Thinking

I was walking past a Local Union a while back and read a poster that said "Buy American, Support American Jobs, Don't Sell Out To The Chinese". And the same was emphasized by a recent broadcast by ABC World News anchor David Jason Muir.

I am Chinese American, an American with Chinese ancestors. These days I'm not sure which comes first. Being born in the United States says I am American or so I am told. Actually, the term "Anchor Baby" comes to mind as I heard in a politician's speech also fits in the definition where I am more Chinese patriotic rather than being American patriotic. I speak and write in English clearly, somewhat, from being schooled in America, but nothing changed heritage or genes. What do you think goes through my mind as I read that statement, the concept above? It's true in a partial concept, economics leads to believe that the writer of that message is correct, purchasing American goods leads to the circulation of jobs within America. That itself only speaks for a small part of the chain. In order for that concept to work, meaning using that concept to bring up America's economy it has to be a solid unbroken chain. That's not possible unless there is some type of strict code of conduct behind Americans dealing with Americans. Let me broaden racial trade in a smaller concept. I use to work for a Jewish employer and in a Jewish community and I notice a bit for Asians also, more so Koreans. Keep it in the community or in the broader trade philosophy: deal with your own and it keeps the economics of the community flowing. Concept one has been established and the notion does hold true and would help America's economy but it's trade discrimination.

I'm not a big fan of hearing "The Chinese". Sometimes I hear that and it's a context of hearing "every and all Chinese are the same." It's a term that sounds like if, specifically, China or a group of Chinese people does something it means every other Chinese person in the world does it like a robotic uniform military salute. China was or is currently in an slight economic growth but it doesn't mean that every Chinese person falls under this economic growth, not true. In further elaboration, just because the economy has shifted to growth in China, every Chinese person doesn't gets a piece of the pie. In further, further, elaboration, just because the economy has shifted to grow in China, every Chinese person is not sipping Dom Perignon like water and eating Osetra Caviar for breakfast.

China has been known for some sketchy production practiced. It's one of the worst reputations to be a shadow of. If a manufacture were to produce goods in a clean effort, that manufacture would still fall under the stereotype. What if a manufacture produced a decent product out of China as it equaled the quality of an American made product. The cost factor is the most important decision in buying now because both are equal in design and quality. There you have it, that is your answer. The buying factor is an important factor, cost versus quality, not where it's made and which supports your economy. On the business level, the manufacture owes it to the investors to make it as cheap as possible for the buyer and if the quality is equal or close to it, that's the reason for buying from "The Chinese". Concept two has been established.

Let's look at a family man working in one of the old GM manufacturing plants in Detroit sweating to install the new chassis for a truck. The same thing is being done by a Japanese/Chinese family man half way across the world in their own country. That man is not thinking about the economy, he just wants his salary to take home to feed their family, both do. That man counts on the decision of management and management owes their focus to investors and investors need buyers to buy their product. So, back to the topic: why not buy a product made by "The Chinese"? The question is what makes the same sweat and skill pushed off by the American a more higher leveled standard than a person doing the same work? Nothing, except American Pride and wanting a higher American Standard.

Before I go off further topic on what I wanted to elaborate on. I was thinking if I were an American manufacturer and I started making say tires that went on cars. I would need to buy equipment, hire a few workers, pay my taxes and craft the tires very well and that means higher cost material, correct? Yes. And what would I charge the car maker that I sell my tires to? Top dollars? Trying to get the most profit I can to make for my quality of work? The American Standard. That's the American way of thinking, making your business top profit, enough to pay off the equipment, taxes, employees that work so hard to make that quality. Let's look at China's thinking...there's cheap labor because Chinese workers in China are willing to accept less for China's living Standards. That offset allows for cheaper production. How far is this American Standard coming close to greed, wanting that top dollar? The answer is not straight forward. Employees want a good salary for their families. Business owners want top profit margins and to cut cost. The buyer doesn't want to pay more. It's cheaper to be made in China. The average person who works hard for their "Lower Income" or "Middle Class" salary will have cost foremost on their mind, not "The American Standard". Americans can complain and try to be a David Jason Muir campaigner but it doesn't change the buying and making factors. America needs to fix it's operational standards.

-Just a thought

Originally Started: Late 2014 - Mid 2015
Published: July 2016

Friday, June 5, 2015

Paintball Barrel Threading

I been playing paintball since 2004. Barrels can be changed, upgraded, swapped if using the same threading or an adapter. I had to learn this the hard way sort to say because I bought a marker (paintball gun) a couple years ago without a barrel and in my hunt for a barrel I purchased the wrong threaded barrel. A barrel's threading is the end where it screws into the marker. The part of the barrel that screws into the marker comes in different sizes or different shaping depending on the marker, meaning not all markers have the same threading. This is what I know about Paintball Barrel Threading:

Autococker threading is one of the most popular used by the Planet Eclipse Ego(s), Planet Eclipse Geo(s), Empire Axe, Empire Invert Mini, Dangerous Power series and other markers.

---DLX Luxe markers have it's own threading and is not Autococker
---Tippman markers have it's own threading and is not Autococker
---Angel markers have it's own threading and is not Autococker
---Spyder markers have it's own threading and is not Autococker

---You can buy an adapter to use an Angel threaded barrel on an Autococker marker, per say maybe because you really like that Angel barrel.

---Inserts: inserts change the bore size of the barrel, smaller/larger due to the bases on temperature/humidity and basic size of balls being shot. You don't need Physics class to understand this concept. Just think about a projectile shooting out of a tighter or looser valve.
     -----The Stiffi barrels cant fit Inserts, you have to buy the Stiffi Switch, it has different twist on and off threading
     -----Carbon Fiber is the way to go, another popular one is the Deadly Wind
     -----Not all barrels will take inserts

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Alec Bradley Black Market Cigar Review


It appears I haven't written in my blog since January of this year. And it's now May. I've seen many authors abandon their blogs. It is possible that I will one day stop writing or maybe I'll just kick the bucket and it will end that way.

Summer 2015 doesn't official begin until June 21st, 2015. So far for Spring I have had my second trip to Germany and smoked three cigars. More to elaborate on Germany but this post brings those who have interest in cigars: a review for the Alec Bradley Black Market. Ooh, the "model" name sounds so underworld.

I have quite a few Alec Bradley cigars in my humidor, the Black Market was on top and I just decided to pick it up smoke it.

(With the Band Removed)


Vitola: Robusto (5.25" x 54RG)
Price: $6 stick

Wrapper: Nicaraguan
Binder: Sumatra
Filler: Four Countries

Aged in Humidor: The cigar has been in my humidor for two years and six months. And unknown time frame from those who sold it to me and manufacturer.


Appearance and Construction:

The wrapper is a dark with lighter tones and veins very apparent. It was firm with no flaws and only 10% softness. After two years and six months of aging it, it has probably changed construction due to humidity from it's solid shape when it was -new- but that's okay and gives the cigar character.

Tasting Notes:

The scent of the cigar has a deep aroma, strong yet not bold smell of aged tobacco with tea.

Lighting it with the butane lighter gives off a decent bold burning aroma.

1cm in brings notes of light leather and fresh ground bold coffee with a hint of light sweetness (sweetness not in the sugar sense but light caramelizing) on the back mix.

First is pretty much that with basic cigar notes. Ash falls at end of first.

Burn: Mild
Strength: Medium, hinting on Bold
Fumes: Medium
Ash: White Grey
Harshness: None unless the smoker does not enjoy leathery notes
Aromatic or Oder: Light to Medium

Begin second of third: Charred tobacco as if off the grill. A basic smoke like any cigar, still notes like the first. Mellow to on the rustic side. On the second think: char, less leathery, a bit of spice, peppery, a basic smoke.

Pretty much the same leading to the middle of the third with darker notes.

Average cigar, not worth $6. Worth a $4-$5 on a chill day with coffee, grilling chicken or with the morning coffee. Smoke time is a bit over an hour and I would rate it a 83.



Saturday, January 17, 2015

Community Television Show Characters

I'm a good judge of character. I'm actually very good at interpreting certain traits and a person's character. But everyone has a side where they hide or behave differently when not around them. For example, you wouldn't behave the same way around your mother or boss as you would your childhood best friend would you? Maybe you would/could but sometimes people behave with a better control or show a little respect, depending how the relationship is. Besides the latter point a show I've been watching for the past year are reruns of Community the television show. Community is centered around a study group in Greendale Community College. It is a comedy and one reason I like the show is not so much for it's humor because it has it's hits and misses. But for the characters. The characters and the sociology behind it

Not the protagonist because each their own but the focal point is in how they socialize with one another based on the script but the leader of the pack, the alpha male, the numeral uno, the captain of the ship, the header nigger in charge, El Jefe, not really but sort of is Jeff Winger. He is a tall, athletic white male. He used the gift of gab, word or persuasion to be a good lawyer but didn't have the actual degree. So being ousted as a lawyer, he went back to Community College to see if he could get his degree. What makes Jeff a good lawyer? Again, he is the alpha male type but it's because of his strong 'Id' (Sigmund Freud's psychic) but his Super-Ego is in check to save him. His rational keeps the group together when there are arguments. He has Father issues and his persona comes from lack of attention when he was younger.

What are the key points in the way we behave in general in society: reward, acceptance (with that popularity or class status from friends, family, people we associate with). What if the last criteria does not matter, if a person is selfish or hedonistic prioritized and lacks a proper Ego...madness.

The second characters are Troy and Abed..."in the morning" (inside joke/pun for those who watch and are a fan like myself). Troy was a football star in High School but he faked injury in order to avoid the stardom or responsibility or whatever the reason, basically he avoided change or growing up, he was afraid of something. What is it about this psychological effect that we procrastinate? We put off things and are scared to handle/act on things we want or need achieving. Abed is Troy's right hand man, they compliment each other very well. It would seem Abed's character is like Spock from Star Trek, or like a humanoid robot. His fundamental actions are based off movies and television shows. That is also what many of the show's plots and references are based off of. Abed's brain switches into fantasy land sometimes: cartoons/animation. Between the two, they are like kid's, adult portraying characters that have not grown up and adapting to Community College life and those around them while still playing scenarios in their own fantasy world.

The last male character in the group is an old Pierce Hawthorne (played by Chevy Chase). He has good amount of money from a family business. He's old school racist and that's where the jokes come in. They use his old age to play old people jokes like faking a heart attack to get out of situations he doesn't want to be in. The group will exclude him from activities because he does terrible things and not very politically correct. He is not really the antagonist because he doesn't play the center villain in the show but he does sometimes and other times the outcome is that he is the hero.

I don't believe either females in the group play a center role, they all have their own important social importance in the group but Annie Edison is the supposedly innocent member of the group played by the super sexy Alison Brie. Her character is of a young semi-naive Jewish Caucasian girl. A girl that has the characteristics of an achiever. In studying this concept, certain children are brought up in a Eugenic family, usually parents that emphasize or use guilt to make their offspring achieve high status as adults. Being Asian myself, I know many Asian parents that emphasize on this principal. But Eugenic parents fall under all races because all parents want their kids to grow up with a better class status, some just are stricter at emphasizing than others. It's really a personal goal to achieve but it can also be pressured to.

The second female character in the study group is Britta Perry, the actor who portrays Britta is also very attractive. Britta is a rebel, fight the power, green peace, animal saving, environment activist loving character. In one episode she is depicted in her younger self with purple hair. In another episode she helps support Abed in fighting his father who is pushing Abed to study some form of medicine, I believe dentistry instead of Abed's focus on videography. What makes a person a rebel against society? I am. I can answer a few of those questions. I don't like conformity. I just don't fit in some formal structures. I never had parents that were strict. I don't like limits. I believe limits set safety and rationality but hinders growth and development. Those are my reasons, what are yours for breaking the law or not following the rules?

The last character of the study group to describe is Shirley Bennett. She is a highly devoted Christian woman. She values the Christian religion highly with acting on principals that resist the sins that surround her. I know these characteristics first hand for I was a devoted Christian myself with friends and family just like Shirley Bennett. I am not going into details on theology or religious thoughts here. However, I will state that religion is mostly inherited or marketed. Depending on where you're from, the type of religion is not a choice. And how strong your belief is is like love, how strong you feel about it, it can be built from hate, sorrow or need. It is a way of life because it is part of ones life. God is not a being that just pops into an average person's day (that would be a miraculous moment, it takes a miraculous reason to devote) and then word spreads, a believer will pass the word on. You are either the first hand person to encounter the miraculous or the one inheriting, being marketed the word, how far you take it is your own. Atheist rely along the lines of the Big Bang theory (not the television show, the scientific theory) or Quantum Mechanics. Life defined by a deity or science, what controls the creation or movements of the universe, the things in it including people. I pray and I believe in science. Who's to say God didn't make science. Who's to say due to lack of understanding science we believe in God, prove it. God has never appeared before me nor has science of man fully been discovered. I know where I stand in faith. Everyone has the right to their opinion. Only in lack of mutual acceptance and understanding will these Holy Wars never end.

Nothing to summarize, just pointing out Characters in a Community.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Trinadad the Cigar Review

I have quite a bit of association with individuals from Trinadad, not sure why but I know that Chinese culture and food has incorporated into the country in the way of emigration to Trinadad. I don't know much about the West Indies except sugar caning, slavery, food, and that accent.

Wrong!

After a little more research, the cigar was named after a city in Cuba. I have had my taste of really good (the Behike 52) and a few lackluster (Cohiba Maduro) Cuban cigars including from ligitimate sources including Casa del Habana. The Trinadad (from 1998) did not fail in quality.

















Vitola:
Fundadores (7 1/2" x 40RG)
Price: Rare

Wrapper: Cuban Habano
Binder: Cuban Habano
Filler: Cuban Habano

Aged in Humidor: Unknown from it's source, but certainly over 2 years in my humidor


Appearance and Construction:

The entire cigar is thin and has a dark brown with a a bit of an oily wrapper showing it's almost crinkling tobacco leaf it came from reminiscing old school philosophers who smoked thin pipes. I would call it a old man cigar because of it's appearance and the image from those old schoolers that smoked it. It is still very intact and well off, not dried, not loose and no overly tight. The band is so simple.

Tasting Notes:

Pre-light: I like the way this cigar smells out of the humidor: light woody. I always say this but in this case it is exceptionally true: you can smell the fine refined rustic soil it comes from. The cold draw is of a floral spice.

I cut the pigtail and light with the butane lighter circling and it lights easily.

The initial lighting brings out a medium notes of dark roast of cocoa and coffee beans on wood.

1cm in comes an aged refined sweetness of tobacco.

The first inch gives an aroma of dark coffee that brings a scene from old guys sitting in a Cuban coffee or liquor spot smoking one of these discussing the economy or politics. Somewhere in the first third I get a cool like airy tea like softness but that's a short note. And the cocoa/coffee notes are still present. There's a cinnamon reminder and spice on on the intake. The ash holds for two inches.

The beginning of the second has the note of over roasted coffee.

The third does not change much but the notes from the second and third are still there: dark roast, spice, light floral, coffee aromas.

Overall status of each category:

Burn: Mild
Strength: Mild with Points of Boldness
Fumes: Light
Ash: Dark Grey
Harshness: Only one or two points midway giving a reminder of burnt coal
Aromatic or Oder: Not heavy, medium

2 and a Half Hour Smoke

Recommended: Yes, excellent: 98 rating just like it's year. The description alone does not represent it's quality. It was my privilege to smoke you Trinadad.