Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Wheat Pasta or Regular?

So, I've switched from eating regular (white) spaghetti to whole wheat spaghetti about two years ago in effort to live a healthier lifestyle.  Previous to the switch, I was weary that the whole wheat pasta would taste cardboard.  Much to my surprise, I enjoyed it more than the regular pasta.  The whole wheat pasta has a richer, more hearty taste.  The only downfall when cooking the whole wheat pasta vs. the regular, is the fact that its substantially less forgiving.  What I mean by this, is if you happen to over cook by even a couple minutes, the whole wheat pasta virtually turns to mush.  Thats a drop in the bucket compared to the qualities of the whole wheat pasta.  More than twice the fiber is found in whole wheat pasta, which helps regulate our digestive systems.  Studies show that most people need to incorporate more fiber into their diets. Whole wheat pasta also lowers cholesterol, which directly leads to a healthier heart.  
There you have it, if you regularly eat regular pasta, try switching it up and go for the whole wheat pasta.  Also, a healthier alternative to those rich sauces is extra virgin olive oil.  Saute some minced garlic in olive oil and mix with the pasta.  You won't be disappointed.

P.S.  I eat Heartland Whole Wheat spaghetti.  I'm sure any whole wheat brand will do.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

What TV to choose?!?!

With television technology really taking off the last few years, most people find it very confusing when comparing the different types of television sets.

First, lets start out with the "ancient" technology of "bubble" screen TVs. Everyone has 'em. There those large, box-like, sets that weigh like 400lbs. The only conveniences of these models is the reliability, they seem to last forever. Also, they make a nice TV stand for other TVs to sit on. However, in terms of picture quality they can be described as looking through a screen door. They fall well short of today's newer TVs.

Next, comes the projection screen TVs that were really popular in the 90s. These things are gigantic. They resemble a parked car in your living room. If you're viewing the TV from an angle the screen turns black, these TVs need to be viewed, head-on. The newer "DLP" technology is related to the projection technology in that they use lamps to illuminate the screen. "DLP" TVs are much slimmer than their cousin. Manufacturers state that the lamps need to be replaced every 500 to 3000 hrs. of viewing time at a few hundred dollars a whack. That would be a huge problem for me, seeing as though I'd need to replace a few lamps a year. I will admit, with an HD signal their picture quality rivals the two heavyweights, LCD and Plasma.

So, now that we have the inferior technologies out of the way its time to compare the two flat screen heavyweights. I actually own both an LCD (40" Samsung) and Plasma (50" Pioneer) set, so I'll try to be as informative as possible. When I bought my Plasma set 2 years ago the picture quality, in my opinion, was much crisper than LCD sets. The colors were much deeper and eye popping. 2 years later, LCD TVs have certainly leveled the playing field. Both have their pros and cons. LCDs are better for viewing in a bright room, thanks to their anti-glare plastic screens. Plasma sets have glass screens, which in turn makes them much heavier. LCDs also use a lot less power consumption, something to think about for "green" minded folks. When LCDs first came out, they had what was called "lag." Meaning if someone was running across the screen, the viewer could see a shadow trailing the person. No longer the case with much faster refresh rates, lag isn't even noticeable anymore. Screen burn-in is not an issue with LCD either. However, that's thrown out of proportion with plasma, my set has been paused with no issue of burn-in. I also find Plasmas slightly less expensive per inch of screen, which I guess is something to keep in mind. So there you have it, no definitive answer! Both have unbelievable picture quality. It really depends what you're using the set for. For video games and such, LCD would be the way to go. For a room with limited natural light, Plasma would be superior. You can't go wrong with either technology. As for the older technologies, they leave a lot to be desired.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


This is officially my very first blog post. Heeeyooo! Basically, the point of my blog is to inform people the pros and cons of different subject matter and to review material that I find interesting. For example, LCD vs. Plasma TV technology, or why bone-in chicken is better then boneless, etc. You get the picture.

Now, you might be asking yourself, "Why am I going to trust this moron's opinion?" Well, let me tell you that I watch countless hours of T.V. and surf the Net an unhealthy amount of time. For everyone out there that states TV fries your brain, I beg to differ. These wonderful technologies assist me in comparing things to the point that it takes me weeks, sometimes months, to buy simple things like a pair of shoes (slight exaggeration) . With that said, I hope you enjoy my blog and the fact that I know so little about so much.