Happy National Croissant Day!!! (Jan.30th) Parisian Steak and Cheese Croissant Sandwiches by Giada De Laurentiis

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It’s National Croissant Day! Although it is most likely just a myth, the history of the croissant is a colorful tale full of adventure. In 1683, the Turkish Empire laid siege on Vienna, Austria. The Turks made several attempts to enter the city by force, but were unsuccessful, so decided to dig an underground tunnel. The bakers of Vienna, who worked in the basement storerooms, heard the sound of digging and alerted the army.

The bakers received high honors and thanks for their assistance in outwitting the Turks. In celebration, they baked their bread in the shape of a crescent moon—the symbol of the Ottoman Empire. After the Turks were defeated, it became custom to serve morning coffee with the crescent-shaped pastry!

The legend goes on to say that over a hundred years later, Marie Antoinette (an Austrian Princess who married Louis XVI) introduced the pastry to the French who dubbed it a “croissant.”

Parisian Steak and Cheese Croissant Sandwiches by Giada De Laurentiis

Parisian Steak and Cheese Croissant Sandwiches

Ingredients

4 (4-ounce) beef fillet steaks

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

4 croissants

6 ounces Brie cheese, cut into 1/2-inch slices, at room temperature

2 cups arugula

1 cup (about 4 ounces) jarred roasted red bell peppers, thinly sliced

Directions

Season the steaks with salt and pepper. In a medium skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Cook the steaks for about 5 minutes each side for medium-rare. Set aside for 5 minutes before slicing. Slice the steak, across the grain, into 1/4 to 1/2-inch thick slices.

Heat a large nonstick skillet or griddle over medium heat. Using a serrated knife, slice the croissants in half lengthwise. In 2 batches, place the croissant halves, cut side down in the skillet and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute until lightly toasted. Lay the Brie slices over the toasted croissant halves. Place about 1/4 cup of the arugula on the bottom halves of the croissants. Add the sliced steak. Arrange the red bell pepper on top of the steak. Top with the remaining arugula and add the top of the croissant. Serve immediately.

Credit: Punchbowl & Food Network

Cuisinart WMR-CA Round Classic Waffle Maker

Happy Flashback Friday – War Pigs (Black Sabbath)

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WRITTEN BY: RYAN FU @FU_BEATZ

I’ve said it before I’ll say it again, Music can save you life.”  It might not rescue you from a burning building or keep you warm when your freezing but it can lift your spirits up when your down. It can transport you to a place you can call home and be a refuge from pain. It motivates  you to do amazing things that you didn’t think was possible. Most importantly, it is the fast way to connect to our emotions and unlock what we are feeling at that exact moment. Whether it be when we’re fucking pissed off and want to destroy everything or we’re so sad that we want to eat a gallon of ice cream.   Music can put us in place of ZEN.

Our Moment of ZenWar Pigs by Black Sabbath

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Just in case if you been living under a rock, Black Sabbath are an English rock band, formed in Birmingham in 1968, by guitarist Tony Iommi, bassist Geezer Butler, singer Ozzy Osbourne, and drummer Bill Ward. The band has since experienced multiple line-up changes, with Tony Iommi the only constant presence in the band through the years. Originally formed in 1968 as a heavy blues rock band named Earth, the band began incorporating occult themes with horror-inspired lyrics and tuned-down guitars. Despite an association with occult and horror themes, Black Sabbath also composed songs dealing with social instability, political corruption, the dangers of drug abuse and apocalyptic prophecies of the horrors of war.

I just recently watched the 300: Rise of an Empire and this song came on and it is the perfect song for war. It is the perfect battle cry just before you jump into the fray. Music can calm and relax you but it can also pump you up and bring you energy at the same time. When this song came on, I wanted to be one of the Spartans and just pick up a sword and start fighting!

CHECK OUT REVIEW FOR 300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE 

I went on Youtube just to see the original version of this song by Black Sabbath and found this awesome performance by them in the 1970s. To see Ozzy rock out in his prime is amazing. The band kills the song and their performance gives us a reason why we should be a fan of Black Sabbath. Let me stop fucking talking.  Put on those running shoes or boxing gloves and check this great song and video from Black Sabbath playing War Pigs.

FASD and the criminalisation of mothers by Mama Duck Quacks (BLW Contributor)

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I was listening to the radio in the car yesterday when a news reporter started talking about criminalising mother’s who drink while they are pregnant. As present, the court of appeal is deciding whether a council in the North West of England can hold the mother of a 7 year old girl responsible for her Foetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder (FASD).

FASD is an umbrella term for all disorders resulting from a foetus being exposed to alcohol. It can lead to memory and attention span issues, affect speech, language and behaviour. It can affect a child’s immune system as well as damage their vital organs.

When I heard this, my only thought was “What mother would drink copious amounts of alcohol if she knew what it would do to her child?” And the only answer that came to mind was a) A mother who didn’t know better b) A mother who felt stuck in an isolated situation.

If that’s the case then criminalising mother’s who give birth to babies with FASD does nothing to support them. And if a mother really wants to drink then how are they going to catch her doing it in the privacy of her own home? Will stores not be allowed to sell alcohol to pregnant women? Are pregnant women going to be treated like under 18 kids trying to purchase alcohol?

Want my two cents? I think the government needs to spend the money they would putting women behind bars (which in itself would only make the situation worse once they got out) on better health care/education for those women in need. Pregnant women who feel the need to drink when carrying a child. Pregnant women who feel trapped with no where to go who resort to alcohol. Women who are depressed who resort to alcohol. Women who’s partners have deserted them and so they resort to alcohol. Young women who know no better. Reach out to them, educate them, show them the consequences of their actions. Many women in prison are there as a consequence of trauma. By criminalising drinking during pregnancy, that number would only increase.

A healthy diet also goes a long way towards a healthy foetus. Preventing FASD requires a better funded NHS in place to provide support for women with not only alcohol abuse but substance abuse. Midwives and GPs who are trained to understand addiction and whom women can confide in. Counsellors and support workers who can work with these women to get to the root of the problem and help solve it.

What really irks me are all the feminists coming out of the woodwork. The people who claim that just by telling a woman she can’t drink during pregnancy, we are controlling her and telling her what she can and cannot do with her body. Now come on! Really?! What is more important? Simply telling a woman she cannot/should not drink while pregnant or dealing with the aftermath of her drinking and ruining her child’s life?!

I also get the opposing argument, I’m not naïve. I’m sure there are many women who do understand the consequences of their actions but just don’t care enough. Any healthcare system in the world isn’t going to be able to reach all of the people all of the time but even if we can begin to tackle the situation for half the women out there, it’ll be one step in the right direction.

Check out other great articles from Mama Duck Quacks 

Leader of the Pack (Business Philosophy) – Building Rome

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BLW Interview w/ Public Enemy #1 – The Paparazzi, Rick Mendoza

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 WRITTEN BY: RYAN FU @FU_BEATZ

The mere mention of the word paparazzi induces such emotions of discontentment and anger, but why? It’s just another profession where there is supply and demand. People want more intimate stories about their favorite celebrities; so celebrity outlets provide a place where they can get it and photojournalists’ aka the paparazzi help provide that service.

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The word “paparazzi” is an eponym originating in the 1960 film La Dolce Vita directed by Federico Fellini. One of the characters in the film is a news photographer named Paparazzo (played by Walter Santesso). In his book Word and Phrase, Robert Hendrickson writes that Fellini took the name from an Italian dialect word that describes a particularly annoying noise, that of a buzzing mosquito. As Fellini said in his interview to Time magazine, “Paparazzo … suggests to me a buzzing insect, hovering, darting, stinging.” Those versions of the word’s origin are confirmed by Treccani, the most authoritative Italian encyclopaedia, but sometimes contested. For instance, in the Abruzzi dialect spoken by Ennio Flaiano, co-writer of La Dolce Vita, the term “paparazzo” refers to the local clam and is also used as a metaphor for the shutter of a camera lens.

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It is probably the only profession I know that is universally hated by everyone. It is lower than a vagrant and hated more than a parking meter maid. A drug dealer or a hooker has more clout than the paparazzi. Many of these snappers graduated from college and some even had professional training before they entered the other side of Hollywood. There is the other side of Hollywood away from the glitz and glamour, in which the public rarely sees. Sometimes we see super famous people doing things they shouldn’t and occasionally a paparazzi is there to document it all. They make headlines and everyone profits from it except maybe for the celebrity but as the adage goes, “there is no such thing as bad publicity.” The people who profit the most are the celebrity outlets, but you don’t fucking hate them with a passion. I still see a bunch of assholes pack aTMZ tour bus every single day.

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So, the question is why do you hate the regular Joe Schmo on a public street with a camera? Aren’t they just doing their job, in which you can probably see yourself doing if you didn’t have this ignorant view of the paparazzi. Let me be clear, not all of them are a bunch of angels but they are not all bad. Of course, you have a couple of crazy fucks willing to do, what they have to do to make a buck and there are others who are willing to comply with all the rules and regulations. Doesn’t this sound familiar? It sounds like every other job that is out there in America. What is the difference from being the paparazzi from any other occupation out there?

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But to be fair being a paparazzi is not your typically 9 to 5 job. This is why I decided to interview one of the men that you vehemently hate, Rick Mendoza. Rick has been in this industry for many years in which he was there when TMZ first started and has seen the company rise to fame. He has been there for all the stories, in which he himself has been a part of. Do you remember Britney Spears running over a photographer’s foot? Yup, that was Rick’s foot. He’s seen it and done it all. Rick has many alias like The Man with the Black hat, Top Hat Rick, Sellebrity Rick or Robertson Rick. This is where I meet Rick on Robertson Blvd in “Paparazzi Central.”

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Ryan Fu:  What are you famous?

Rick:   I’m not famous maybe popular for photographing celebrities for a long time. People start to recognize you for the things you do.

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Ryan Fu:   Is there is difference between fame and popularity?

Rick:   I think there is because popularity is just recognizing you for what you do and fame is getting paid for what you do. Fame is on a different level because now you are generating income. It’s all about the income.

Ryan Fu:   What did you do before you were a Paparazzi?

Rick:  I was collector in Japan.

Ryan Fu:   Why did you choose this profession?

Rick:   I chose it because I was trying to indirectly sneak into Hollywood. I was looking for a way just to be a part of it because I’m not an actor, writer or producer. But if I can create an illusion that I am from this world maybe it will open some doors for me and it has open doors for me.

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Ryan Fu:   Do you like being paparazzi?

Rick:   I have gotten used to it. I didn’t know the effects coming into it but I knew I had to change the bad stigma it had, so I guess I love it because I believe I’ve changed the bad stigma about what a paparazzi is.

Ryan Fu:   How did you change it?

Rick:   I changed it because I’ve given it a voice were it had no voice. It’s more recognized now. I will show you the real truth about this world.

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Ryan Fu:   What is the truth?

Rick:   The truth is it is a game. It’s a game about hype, money, and economics. It’s about products and marketing. It’s like any other job out there. It’s about keeping the economical machine rolling called“Hollywood” going.

Ryan Fu:   So it’s all about the money?

Rick:   Hollywood is based about just money. People have story lines and great acting abilities but the bottom line is the financial gains that it gets.

Ryan Fu:   What is the best shot you got?

Rick:   I’ve got a handle full of money shots. A few of those shots involved Michael Jackson, and the Royal Family when they came to Los Angeles.

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Ryan Fu:   What are the dos and don’ts as a paparazzi?

Rick:   Be confident and respectful. It’s such an easy game to make money. Just follow the rules and the laws. It’s just common sense and you’ll make money.

But don’t be cocky and believe every shot is the money shot. Don’t go out of away for a shot if it causes you harm and you must be always aware of your surroundings. Don’t think you know it all.

Ryan Fu:   What do you like and dislike about your job?

Rick:   I love the excitement, which I think I am a part of Hollywood indirectly. I’m my own industry in a different realm of Hollywood. I’m the villain of Hollywood and I like that. It’s like every movie, there has to be a villain and I guess I’ll play the bad guy.

What I don’t like is all the ignorant people who didn’t education themselves before they started judging us. They love to point fingers and blame us before they know the whole story. People should take the time to research so they can find out why they hate our occupation. I don’t like the ignorance.

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Ryan Fu:   You don’t mind the haters?

I don’t mind the haters but educate yourself to hate. Don’t just hate because you were taught to hate, learn why you hate.

Ryan Fu:   How do you feel about the media portraying the paparazzi?

Rick:   Personally, I don’t like it. It is usually one-sided and never from the perspective from the paparazzi and when it is, the media usually picks the story where the paparazzi are too aggressive and too reckless. We are not all like that and I hate it when they try to pigeonhole all of us.

Ryan Fu:   What are your thoughts of the new paparazzi laws i.e. the “No Kids Policy.”

Rick:   I can only speak for myself and say I follow all rules and laws. I never got out of my way to break any laws just to get a shot. But these celebrities have to realize that they chose this life. They made themselves into public figures and just because you are rich and have influence, you cannot just change the laws because it inconveniences you.

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Ryan Fu:   Are you the best at what you do?

Rick:   I’m the best for myself and that’s all that matters for me. What makes me successful is that I know myself and I already know that I’ve been successful at this game.

Ryan Fu:   What is your philosophy on business/relationships/ life?

Rick:   Be true to yourself then you can be true to others. You have to live with PASSION.

Ryan Fu:   Have you ever burned any bridges?

Rick:   I’ve burned many bridges. I’ve burned down the mountains that held the bridges.

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Ryan Fu:   What is your ultimate Goal?

Rick:   To live everyday to the fullest and make sure it’s memorable. That makes me excited to wake up everyday.

Does this sound like a guy you should hate? Or does it sound like every person you know that is just trying to make living. In this spiritual weekend I will leave you with this quote that I learned in Sunday school that maybe will change perspective on judging people before you know them, “ Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you. – Matthew 7:1

Credit: Wikipedia

Check out Rick’s latest interview with Los Angeles Magazine

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Wisdom Wednesdays – Fantasy vs Reality

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Deflategate – The science behind deflated balls (Science is Awesome)

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Happy National Blueberry Pancakes!!! (Jan.28th) – Todd’s Famous Blueberry Pancakes

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Todd’s Famous Blueberry Pancakes

Ingredients

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

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1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 
1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 
1 1/4 teaspoons white sugar
  • 
1 egg
  • 
1 cup milk
  • 
1/2 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 
1/2 cup frozen blueberries, thawed

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  • PREP
10 mins
  • COOK
15 mins
  • READY IN
1 hr 15 mins

Directions

  • In a large bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. In a small bowl, beat together egg and milk. Stir milk and egg into flour mixture. Mix in the butter and fold in the blueberries. Set aside for 1 hour.

Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

Credit All Receipes

Survival of the Fittest: Joe Rogan – Do What You Love, Because Society Is A Trap And Work Is Meaningless

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Question: Are you actually contributing to society or are you just paying the bills?

Here, comedian Joe Rogan talks about work and meaning in his own unique style, asking some important (and sometimes uncomfortable) questions about what our purpose is as a society, and as an individual. Aren’t we supposed to be contributing? He asks. Is contributing the same as working? Rogan concludes that these two things are entirely separate, at least in most cases, and has some thought-provoking advice for anyone who is stuck in a job they hate…follow your dreams instead.

Build Your Dreams: How To Make a Living Doing What You Love

Him, Her and Angels Sent…by One Happy Hapa (BLW Contributor)

Mom and Pops

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As I reflect upon my childhood, the greatest thing that stood out in my mind was the closeness of this family. It didn’t matter to me what the overall financial status was, the family stayed close through thick and thin. After my dad left the army of 25 years he had a very hard time keeping or finding work. From VW salesman to security guard he was out there trying to make a better life for his family.

We were never close as father and son, I was always off doing my own thing and he was trying to find work. I blame myself for this separation, even to this day. He served three campaigns during the wars – Italy, North Africa and North Korea. I haven’t a clue about any of this, he never talked about it and I never asked him. It’s shameful and I’ll always regret not getting closer to the man who took cared of me, who loved me.

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Words cannot express the feelings and love I have for my mother. She reminds me of a mother hen that has all her chicks around her and wherever she went we would follow. We could talk to each other like we were best friends, of course I never would admit that to anyone outside the family but she is where everything started and ended, at least in my life. Yes I was sort of a mama’s boy but hey, alone, with no one around we all are. You can admit it.

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They both led honorable and productive lives living as if the end of the world was on the morrow. However, they both ironically were subjected to the cruelties of life, as I learned at an early age just how rough life can be.
Dad crashed his car one night asleep at the wheel and broke his neck. He would be in beds and wheelchairs for 10 years trying to make the best of his somewhat limited life. Mom developed pancreatic cancer and would die a quick death. It wasn’t easy for this young man to see this and I remember distancing myself so it wouldn’t be in my face.

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I give tribute to my two sisters who took charge of the caring and whatever else they needed in their time of need. It is they my sisters who had that strength and compassion to make their lives a little easier, it is they who I will always remember and forever be grateful to for this love and kindness. They were angel sent…

1. Photos: top, Pops, Retired Major, US Army

2. Mom, Pa’u rider for Oahu in the Aloha day Parade (I think she’s 20yrs here)

3. A rare early photo of a mom and pops

4. The two angels… Love you

Check out other great articles from One Happy Hapa