• How to make beef short ribs on a bullet smoker

    I have learned a lot watching T-ROY Cooks youtube channel on barbecue.

    A super friendly dude next door kind of guy, who feels the need to explain that he is drinking responsibly as he cooks, T-Roy keeps things simple and never sweats it when things aren't going exactly to plan. He is also friends, it seems, with half the You-Tube BBQ vloggers and if he doesn't know how to do something, or just thinks a pal does it interestingly different, he frequently features them.

    Here T-Roy explains beef short ribs, which I have made several times, and have occasionally turned out too chewy for my liking. T-Roy is using a Weber Smokey Mountain for this cook, which I also have, but his cooking tips are good for just about pit and he seems to have every model ever made of every bbq in his yard.

    T-Roy is certainly a trusted resource for me.

  • There are more tomatoes in planter boxes and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy

    It is tomato time. I think I underfed one of my self-watering containers but it is putting off the most tomatoes of any of my plants.

    This is about one-quarter the current tomato biomass in my planters. The thing diminut-ized in the middle is a blood orange tree. the difference in size between the plants seems to be that the shorter set in the background grew flatter and filled the area behind the box, while the ones with more/better tomato cages went straight the heck up.

    The Cherokee carbon and the beefsteak tomato vines are each easily over 7' tall now. The sheer tons of tomatoes, and more that are flowering, is staggering.

    Speaking of staggering, I also planted several vines a few months after the first set of 6, so there are 2 more coming up about 2 months behind. I have no reason to believe they will not also be super successful and are both forgotten heirloom types now over 4' tall.

    I have Fuji apples in Venice Beach. Probably 8-12 on the tree right now. We potted Franchesca the Apple Tree, as my daughter named her, on July 4th, so she hasn't even been here a full year.

    The satsuma mandarin tree was potted in January. It has a lot of lovely fruit on it already, but my neighborhood is like a citrus grove. My lemon tree is similarly putting off lots of fruit, and was planted just over a year ago.

    Blueberries are looking good, but still bitter and crunchy. The bushes are growing nicely tho, so there will be a lot more next year.

    Corn looks like it may be a thing, but the squirrels got at all my sunflowers — so I have THE FEAR. Possums got at my onions.

    We are entering into the baking direct sunlight time of year, so things will get interesting.

  • Plantation removes racist Juneteenth celebration advertisement, cancels event

    Outrage erupted when social media spotted advertisements for the Historic Latta Plantation's racist Juneteenth celebration. Removing the advertisements did not erase the terrible, racist language the plantation used to promote its white people worshipping event.

    Charlotte Observer:

    The event billing is sympathetic to those who owned slaves in the aftermath of emancipation, and inaccurately minimizes an unnamed slaveowner to an "overseer," referring to him as "massa." The post on Latta Plantation's site also refers to "freedmen" but inexplicably omits that Black people were enslaved in the United States for nearly 250 years. Instead, the museum's site refers to slaves as "former bondsmen."

    The description of the event said attendees would hear from a slaveowner who had been chased out of his house by "Yankees" and his former slaves, who were now "living high on the hog," a reference to better cuts of meat, which white slaveowners deprived Black people from having.

    "White refugees have been displaced and have a story to tell as well," it read. "Confederate soldiers who will be heading home express their feelings about the downfall of the Confederacy."

    The event has also been cancelled.

  • NBC's 'Ultimate Slip 'N Slide' hits a brown note

    NBC has evidently bowed to extreme pressure and stopped production of 'Ultimate Slip 'N Slide' due to an outbreak of giardia.

    Rather than try public patience with 'Ultimate Slip 'N Slide: Explosive Diarrhea Edition' a major network has shown a fear of labor laws and perhaps, during a pandemic, public health. Imagine the advertising tie-ins and co-branding revenues they have passed on.


    Production on NBC's upcoming game show Ultimate Slip 'N Slide has been halted indefinitely after a crew member on its set in Simi Valley, California, tested positive for giardia – a microscopic parasite that, when swallowed, causes diarrheal disease.

    PEOPLE can confirm the shutdown, which began on June 2 when producers were made aware of at least one crew member's positive test.

    At the time, only a week of scheduled production was left on the series, which is set to premiere after the Summer Olympics.

    I think NBC can thank the microbial parasite for introducing us to the show. I had never heard of Ultimate Slip 'N Slide but I am hoping we get some 'Slip 'N Slide of The Network Stars.'

  • The second book in Tim Powers' 'Vickery and Castine' series is even better than the first

    Tim Powers' Forced Perspectives is one of those rare instances where the second book in the series surpasses its excellent predecessor.

    This time, instead of facing off against a minotaur and closing an interdimensional gateway powered by souls moving through Los Angeles' freeway system like electrons through a coil, the team is reunited to stop cultists in Topanga Canyon. Delving deep into today's self and selflessness and the selfish search for selflessness in a city known for an obsession with that crap for decades, Powers has a lot of fun.

    The story is wonderful fun and if you love Powers' lessons in California history you will not be disappointed.

    Forced Perspectives (Vickery and Castine Series Book 2)

  • Live-action 'Space Battleship Yamato' is still a dream come true

    As a kid, I absolutely loved Star Blazers. When I discovered Space Battleship Yamato I was in heaven. Years after its release, as an adult, I learned about the 2010 live action SBY. This morning I'm watching clips from the film and thinking about digging out my DVD.


    I'll come clean from the get-go, my experience of Space Cruiser Yamato/Starblazers is a giant mess. Originally aired in Japan as Space Cruiser Yamato, heavily edited, translated and dubbed for the US market as Starblazers, I have seen both and mixed the two up in my head. I use Japanese character names but far prefer the Starblazers canon wherein the Yamato IS the WWII ship, raised, refurbished and sailed off to solve Earths environmental problems by kicking some Gamelon ass. That said, minus forgivable plot alterations to fit the story into a mere 2h 19m, they do a really good job. No one wants to see this film for the story, however.

    The special effects are thrilling. HOT DAMN FANTASTIC! I don't care if they could have been better! When Kodai fires the Wave Motion Gun I teared up. There are Youtube collections of just the battle scenes. If you are a fan of the tv show, I think you may be doing yourself a disservice but I've got to say, this is fun stuff! When the Cosmo fighter squadrons go into action, I really get that anime space battle feel but in live action. FUN! FUN! FUN!

    Takuya Kimura's Susumu Kodai is appropriately pained as the young leader with serious authority issues. He seems to have mastered bugging his eyes out and mugging for the camera true to the character and genre in ways that I found endearing. If you remember Analyzer 09, you'll likely go bonkers when he assumes his improved robot body! At first, I thought they'd turned him into a smartphone voiced by Ken'ichi Ogata, but Analyzer really gets a good show. Tsutomu Yamazaki's Captain Okita was also pretty much dead on. I laugh every time he gives an order, maybe not the best thing for Earth's last best hope.

    I love Kodai's jacket and if I didn't already have a white leather Steve McQueen's Gulf/Porsche it would be top of my list.

  • The stupid expensive massage gun that ends my muscle spasms

    My body is a disaster, this Theragun Pro really helps me out.

    Muscle spasms really, really scare me. Well managed and I can get through most nights without leaping from my bed to try and get weight on a leg and stop a cramp. If I get dehydrated, forget to take a supplement, eat wrong or stress my musculature wrong — all hell can break loose.

    I also try not to sit very often, and video gaming is really the only time I am in a chair. Occasionally particularly stressful engagements in Fortnite will set off spasms and I have to immediately stand up and walk around. When quickly changing position and adding some weight or rubbing the muscle with my hands doesn't work I used to stand there leaning against the wall, crying, waiting for a muscle relaxant to kick in.

    Now, I go for the Theragun.

    The Theragun is a massager with a long throw on the head and a lot of pummeling. The gun puts lots of waves of impact into the muscle and basically slaps it into shock and stopping the spasm, as far as I can tell from watching lots of videos. I was super skeptical. I have tried other massages and felt they were not helpful. When a good friend who suffers from a failing body told me how the Theragun was really helping her during the pandemic I figured she was nuts.

    We both were longing for the time when we could go and get a massage, which if done quasi-regularly will help keep both our bodies feeling and functioning better. The pandemic made that very hard, and she found the Theragun was the next best thing. I was skeptical and pretty certain I'd be spending $500 on a toy that would not enter daily use, I really did not want to accumulate more junk to sit around the small house and piss away that much cash. It took months of cajoling for me give the massage a try.

    My daughter, a competitive gymnast, also swears by the Theragun. Her trainers use it on sore muscles. She convinced me to go with the Pro model for maximum punch, and the adjustable massage head angle.

    After well over a year of just having my upper back and shoulders all tense, and my lower back and legs a nightmare, I couldn't believe how effective the massager was. It was not the same as going and having a really great massage, but it certainly measured up as a huge improvement.

    I also really like using the massager on my carpal tunnel suffering forearms. It works wonders there as well.

    Much like my cane, the Theragun has become a tool I keep track of around the house and make sure is charged up and waiting. When both my legs went into spasm last weekend I was in enough pain I thought I'd be headed to the hospital. The Theragun came to the rescue and I made it through the night. My legs were sore for days from the spasm, but things are better now.

    I am no longer skeptical.

    Theragun PRO – All-New 4th Generation Percussive Therapy Deep Tissue Muscle Treatment Massage Gun via Amazon

  • Passenger cruise results in 2 cases of COVID-19

    Testing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 led to the discovery that 2 passengers on a Celebrity Millennium cruise, the first major cruise to carry passengers from the United States since the pandemic shuttered the industry, have asymptomatically contracted the disease.

    95% of the ship is reported as vaccinated, and all unvaccinated passengers had to present clean tests before boarding. Perhaps being packed into tight indoor spaces is still a bad idea.

    The two passengers are in isolation as the cruise line attempts to back-trace their contacts.


    Two guests aboard the first major sea cruise hosting Americans since the pandemic halted the industry have tested positive for Covid-19 in required end-of-cruise testing, the cruise line said Thursday.
    The two guests, who shared a stateroom on the seven-day Celebrity Millennium cruise from St. Maarten, are asymptomatic, in isolation and being monitored by a medical team, Celebrity Cruise Lines said in a news release.
    "We are conducting contact tracing, expediting testing for all close contacts and closely monitoring the situation," the news release said.

    Thanks, Rob!

  • Now that's a real doozy!

    This 1935 Duesenberg is awfully fancy looking, but the word doozy pre-dates the short lived line of automobiles.

    Once the car to be seen in, now largely forgotten, the Duesenberg Motor Company existed from 1913 to 1937. Known for stylish, well-engineered cars, before everyone had to be seen in a Prius, or a Tesla, the car to been seen in was a Duesenberg.

    Bring A Trailer:

    Compared to the Model J, the JN featured wider, lower-slung bodywork fitted over the frame rails on a 142.5″ wheelbase. The coachwork was penned by Duesenberg's chief designer, Herbert J. Newport, and was produced by the Rollston Company of New York City. This JN is one of three to wear a convertible sedan body and was previously finished in red. It underwent a color change to yellow with red fenders under previous ownership before it was refinished in its current dark blue with red pinstripes in the late 1990s. Features include dual taillights, chrome bumpers, cowl-mounted Lorraine spotlights, dual mirrors, right-side external exhaust pipes, and driving lamps. The folding blue convertible top features a glass rear window and is stored under a matching cover. The folding B-pillars were repainted in preparation for the sale, and the bodywork was polished.

  • Pop-Up Magazine takes to the streets of LA, SF and NYC

    With the pandemic pressing pause on large indoor events Pop-Up Magazine had to re-approach their mission of sharing touching and informative stories in theater and auditorium settings, and instead took to the streets. Brooklyn, San Francisco and Los Angeles are temporarily home to their latest collection: The Sidewalk.

    I had the good luck to meet up with Pop-Up Magazine founder and publisher Chas Edwards for a tour of the Los Angeles installations. In a small 1 block area around the Ace Hotel in LA's lovely re-invented downtown theater district the Pop-Up Magazine team have curated a number of stories that evoke the gestalt that is city life during the pandemic.

    Hank Willis Thomas

    Love is a central theme that connects much of my work. I present the question, "Who taught you to love?" because it's vital to understand how and who we love and care for. Can we create anything without love? These are important questions to reflect on. Our ideas of who is worthy of love are often shaped by the cultural messages we receive. We are influenced in ways we may not even notice by the media, popular culture, and advertising. I hope by raising these questions, people will think critically about the messages they receive from the images all around them every day.

    Stories of love, loss, struggle and abandoned bicycles are creatively stashed about DTLA. Billboards, QR Codes, newsprint, and take-out menus all open intimate windows into someone's lovingly retold story, or just a some really mesmerizing jellyfish.

    Exhibitions are most available from noon to 9pm. Many are simply out on the street and all you need is your eyes, or a cellphone to scan a QR code. A few require you briefly enter a building to retrieve some paper!

  • The Amazing Randi debunked sweaty "magnetic" people

    Sadly James Randi passed away before he could directly address these vaccine frauds, but here is a video of him exposing and explaining why sweaty folks aren't magnets and friction isn't 'magnetism.'


    Many of the people who can adhere objects to their body can do so not only with metal but also other materials. That would suggest that the phenomenon cannot be explained by magnetism and uses a different kind of physical effect. Skeptic Benjamin Radford has used a compass to check the magnetic field of a person that claimed to be a human magnet. He concluded that person did not produce magnetic fields. He also noted that those people usually have smooth and hairless skin and lean back slightly while sticking objects, which would not be necessary if they possessed magnetic powers. Many scientists and proponents of science, including James Randi, claim that this ability can be explained by friction and is caused by unusually sticky skin; to prove that, Randi has demonstrated that human magnets lose their powers when they are covered in talc.[1][9][10]

    More on Boing Boing:

    "Magnetized" nurse's demonstration of metal key sticking to her because of vaccine backfires

  • Rainbow lights replace pride flag banned by HOA

    Memo Fachino and his husband, Lance Mier, understood their HOA's rule that all 'opinion flags' had to be taken down, but found a clever and beautiful loop hole that still let them fly the colors.


    Due to some neighbors flying BLM flags, Thin blue line flags, and other opinion flags, our HOA decided last month that we're only allowed to fly the USA flag, and nothing else. They day after the decision, we receive an email that someone reported our Pride flag (that we had in our house since 2016), and that we needed to take it down. We complied and removed the flag. Looking through our new rules, we noticed that removable lights are permitted without restriction so… we bought 6 colored flood lights, and we washed our house in pride colors. A little less subtle than our simple flag. A lot more fun for anyone complaining about the flag itself and what it represents. If you're interested, here's the house now: https://imgur.com/gallery/SHSv6rd

    *edit to point out that the flag was displayed on the front porch, not inside the house. It was a typo when I wrote "we had in our house…")


    There is nothing more inherently evil than an HOA.

  • Super reliable weed grinder

    For several years, this Santa Cruz Shredder has been a fantastic grinder.

    I never thought of a weed grinder as wear item, but then I used to have several more discs separating the vertebrae in my spine. Over the years I've had bargain price grinders and a few other brand name ones, and they all wear out.

    Threads get filled with kief and eventually cross thread, the teeth start to wear down, lose their edge or appear to flake, one section of the body or the other invariably gets dented from being dropped. The only shredder I've had to last multiple years, knock-on-wood, has been the Santa Cruz Shredder.

    Mine is purple.

    Santa Cruz Shredder Herb Grinder 4 Piece Large 2 3/4 – Purple Gloss via Amazon

  • Lockpicking lawyer meets a "Pickproof" lock

    Always a favorite on Boing Boing, the Lockpicking lawyer calmly and cleanly opens just about everything he touches.

    It says PICKPROOF right on the face of this door lock, its gotta be good — right??


    I have also been looking for a bike lock for securing a pretty nice-looking electric bike in my extremely high bicycle theft area. I wanted to go with the Wirecutter upgraded recommendation of a super-duper Kryptonite, but the lawyer also opens those in moments.

    I am really not sure what bike locks work. It seems even the best are pretty easy to open.

  • Karen Allen recounts filming 'Raiders of the Lost Ark'

    Karen Allen's Marion Ravenwood in Raiders of the Lost Ark was amazing. Hollywood Reporter interviewed her for the 40th anniversary of the epic film.


    Weeks after her first meeting with Spielberg, the actress was on her way to Los Angeles for screen tests opposite several actors she knew, including friend John Shea and her Animal House castmate, Tim Matheson. And then it happened.

    "I don't remember how long it was, but I got a call that they were offering me the film. They wanted me to read the script and give them an answer within two days. They had a courier bring the script, and he had to sit in my room the whole time while at the hotel. Then I had to give it back to him. That is how secretive they were, even back then! Obviously, I said yes. I had truly fallen in love with the character when I did the audition."

    The Raiders story was only believable if the adventurous archaeologist had a counterpart who could hold her own, so casting the right actress was crucial, says Marshall, the film's producer. "Marion was feisty, smart and funny. She was an action hero in her own way," he says. "She didn't depend on him, but he had to depend on her."

  • Police Officer sued for flipping the car of a pregnant woman

    Jacksonville, Arkansas police officer Rodney Dunn rammed the car of a pregnant woman who was visibly looking for a safe place to exit the freeway, complying with his flashing lights.

    He is being sued.


    As the highway shoulder reportedly was narrow where she was driving, she claims she began to move towards a exit ramp, however Dunn apparently wasn't satisfied with the pace at which she was responding and within two minutes of flashing his lights the officer conducted a Precision Immobilization Technique (PIT), which involved hitting his front bumper into the left rear edge of Harper's car.

    The move caused Harper to swerve across the road's three lanes before her car flipped upside down and came to a stop. In dashcam footage from the scene, Dunn can be heard reporting that Harper 'hit the inside wall' and 'rolled over', while smoke is seen rising from the car.

    As the officer encouraged her to get out of the car, Harper cried out that she was pregnant and responded to say that she 'had [her] flashers on' when Dunn told her that she had 'got to pull over'.

  • Houston Methodist Hospital suspends 178 employees for failing to get vaccinated

    A hospital in Houston, disappointed that 178 employees didn't take their patient's health first, has suspended them for two weeks. If the employees do not get vaccinated by June 21st, they will be terminated.

    Daily Beast:

    Houston Methodist CEO Marc Boom wrote in an internal message that 24,947 employees were fully vaccinated by Monday's deadline, but that the rest have been told to stay away. "A small number of individuals have decided not to put their patients first," wrote the CEO. "I know that today may be difficult for some who are sad about losing a colleague who's decided to not get vaccinated. We only wish them well and thank them for their past service to our community." Boom said 285 employees were given medical or religious exemption from taking the vaccine, 332 were granted deferrals for pregnancy or other reasons, and 27 of the suspended workers have taken their first shot. If they are not fully vaccinated by June 21, they face permanent termination.

  • LA County Sheriff vows to empty Venice Beach encampments by July 4th

    The first phase of the LA County Sheriff's surprise landing in Venice Beach is under way, and their homeless outreach team appears to be directly speaking with each individual living on the beach in an attempt to assess what services are necessary to clear the beachfront encampment by July 4th.

    The surrounding residential and commercial streets are home to nearly as many unhoused citizens, but not in one as concentrated area as the beachfront tourist destination.

    I live in Venice Beach, very close to these videos. If something actually happens I believe most Venice locals, housed and unhoused, will be shocked and for the most part happy. The recent escalation in violence has been just awful. Arson, guns, stabbings, and random attacks on street performers and passers-by now punctuate our days.

    LA Times:

    Deputies on Tuesday had some early successes, connecting several people with nonprofit groups that provide housing and other services. They were small but significant wins that were both celebrated by community members and dwarfed by the massive scale of the problem.

    "It's just outreach, but it's more than LAHSA has done," said Vicki Halliday, a member of the Venice Neighborhood Council, referring to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority.

    The effort raised questions about whether Villanueva is overstepping his authority. Laurie Levenson, a professor at Loyola Law School, said the Sheriff's Department has jurisdiction across L.A. County, but that city officials and the LAPD typically take the lead on handling issues within the city of L.A.

    "It is problematic if the sheriff is unilaterally taking the lead on issues just because the city is within the county," Levenson said. "If he's critical of their efforts, he should work with them … It should not be a turf fight."

    If anything in LA is consistent I would expect someone to sue the Sheriff before very much gets done.

    Venice Beach remains pinched between many litigious, well-intentioned special interest groups all insisting the homelessness crisis be solved in only their way. Folks are dying on the streets every day, encampment fires erupt nightly, while our leaders repeatedly point out that this is a complicated humanitarian crisis and try to build an undersized shelter that'll open in 2 years next to an elementary school.

    I regularly speak with a few of my unhoused neighbors. My dog is very friendly and we get to meet folks in the neighborhood. My conversations show that some people will find the Sheriff's department very helpful, it'll connect them with resources they couldn't find and may improve their situations, some will stay until they are marched out.

    We are all hoping the vast majority of folks can find something better and safer.