While marathon sweat sessions can certainly kick your metabolism into high gear, there's a faster, better way to rev up your fat-burning potential. Below are seven seriously simple moves that will slash through more calories than minutes.
"Your metabolism is the sum of everything your body does to convert food into energy," says Jim White, R.D., an American College of Sports Medicine-certified health-fitness instructor and the owner of Jim White Fitness & Nutrition Studios in Virginia. "So while you can't change how many calories it takes to keep your brain humming and your heart beating, you can help your body burn an extra 500 calories or more each day by implementing some easy lifestyle strategies."
More from Details:
Plenty of films have revolved around skateboarding culture, but none have tackled the up-and-coming sport of "airboarding."
Not until now.
Billed as an "official movie trailer" and released to Youtube by Bath Boys Comedy group, a nearly 4 minute video for "Airboarders" may be the most hilarious video you watch all day.
The video is pitch-perfect parody of a movie trailer, starting with a group of friends driving, when one in the backseat discovers a business card and shows off tricks he can pull with it outside the car window.
"I call it airboarding," he says, before the driver stops to say the move was incredible.
The video continues to build, showing the epic rise of the group of friends in the "sport" before their eventual falling out. It ends with one insulting another, asking, "are you a man or are you just a bunch of business cards looking like a man?"
It's worth watching the entire thing (some language):
It's Marc A. Hermann's job as a photographer for The New York Daily News to cover breaking stories in the world's biggest city.
"I grew up as a history buff, and since I started shooting for newspapers when I was 15, I always tried to envision what the city looked like to my predecessors in the 1930s and '40s," he told Business Insider in an email.
After Hermann started working as a photo assignment editor at The Daily News, he would browse the paper's immense photo archive in his downtime, searching for subjects like "police," "fire," and "murder."
What he uncovered were incredible 4x5 negatives, some of which hadn't been published since they were first shot for the newspaper in the early 20th century.
Inspired by the work of Sergey Larenkov and Joeri Teeuwisse, who blend historic pictures of war-torn Europe with modern-day views, Hermann began visiting different New York locations in the old photos to see if he could line up the perfect shot.
"I'd have to literally occupy the exact airspace as the original shooter, tilting a little to one side, or having to squat down, or having to press up against a wall," he told us. "This project allowed me to literally follow in their footsteps."
The combined scenes of modern shots with vintage crime scenes is a reminder to pause every once in awhile and imagine what our world was like decades ago.
Frankie Yale, aka the "Al Capone of Brooklyn" lost control of his Lincoln coupe and smashed into a stoop house on 44th Street On July 1, 1928. The house — and tree — still stand.
The Church of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary caught on fire on January 11, 1951. The 90-year-old landmark was practically destroyed, but was rebuilt and can be found today at Hicks and Summit Streets in Carroll Gardens.
A recently-released inmate of the Brooklyn House of Detention stole a car with two friends to "go pick up some forgotten clothing" in July of 1957. They ended up crashing the car on a light pole at Pacific Street and Classon Avenue in Brooklyn instead.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
The press days of the 65th Frankfurt Motor Show are over, and now the world's biggest auto show is open to the public until September 22.
If you're lucky enough to be in Germany at the moment, get yourself to Frankfurt.
If not, here's a brief look at what you're missing.
These 18 cars are the best of the best, from the latest special edition of the Bugatti Veyron, to the concept car that will define the future of Jaguar, to the electric car BMW hopes can rival Tesla's Model S.
Lexus says the LF-NX Crossover Concept 'explores the potential for a compact crossover' within its range. If it does hit the mass market, expect those sharp lines to be smoothed out.
Lamborghini's Gallardo LP 570-4 Squadra Corse is the fastest Gallardo ever.
BMW finally fully revealed the i8, its plug-in electric hybrid sports car. It will hit the US market next spring for $136,625.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Napoleon Hill, a Great Depression-era author and former advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, decided more than 76 years ago to figure out the key to wealth.
To do so, he interviewed more than 500 of the most successful men in the U.S. at the time, such as Henry Ford, Andrew Carnegie, and Charles M. Schwab.
We've scoured its pages to come up with some of Hill's best insights about wealth, power, and overcoming the mental barriers needed to achieve them.
"TRULY, thoughts are things, and powerful things at that, when they are mixed with definiteness of purpose, persistence, and a BURNING DESIRE for their translation into riches, or other material objects."
"Failure is a trickster with a keen sense of irony and cunning. It takes great delight in tripping one when success is almost within reach."
"The major weakness of all educational systems is that they neither teach nor encourage the habit of DEFINITE DECISION. It would be beneficial if no college would permit the enrollment of any student, unless and until the student declared his major purpose in matriculating."
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Apple's new iPhone 5S has a fingerprint security detector, called Touch ID, which unlocks the phone only if it detects your fingerprint.
Immediately, people wanted to know — if someone chopped off your finger and stole your iPhone 5S, could they use the severed digit to unlock your phone? (The answer is no, apparently, but the question is even more ghoulish once you consider that its premise is that safeguarding the phone is more important than the finger.)
Of course, there's an even more crucial question that ought to be asked before you get to the iPhone 5S:
If someone — kidnappers, for instance — is going to chop off one of your fingers, which finger should you sacrifice? This actually happened to a British man kidnapped in Syria this year, so it's not simply a fanciful dilemma.
Many people get this wrong. They assume that the little finger, the pinky, is the one to say goodbye to.
I asked my mom, a retired doctor who practised surgical anesthesia for years in the Liverpool, U.K., area, which finger you give to the kidnappers. In terms of patients with actual severed fingers, she's seen a "couple of dozen fingers maybe, and an ear" in her career.
She says you want to give up the first finger on the hand you don't use for writing.
A lot of people think the first, pointing finger is the most important one they have. Wrong! Once it's gone, the other three compensate for it quite well. The second finger, for instance, is already pretty similar to the first finger.
The pinky is actually incredibly important, and it's a keeper. Basically, the reason humans have "opposable" thumbs — the springboard of our evolution from being just another ape — is that the thing doing the most opposing is the little finger.
According to the assistant chief of hand surgery at the NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases, the little finger does a disproportionate amount of gripping, while all the other guys are its helpers:
The other three digits—the index, the thumb and the middle finger—they fine tune where the tool goes. So if you have your little finger amputated, you're going to lose a significant amount of grip strength when holding everyday small objects. When you talk about utensils—like knives and forks—most of that stuff is fine manipulation rather than strength, so you're typically using the other three digits. You use the thumb, the index and the middle fingers in order to hold a spoon, or to hold a fork, or even to hold a pen and write things.
Take this test: Try doing pull-ups without using your little fingers, and then do the same without your first fingers, and you'll get an idea of how disabling it is to lose the pinky. A New York Times writer described the experience in 2008. It's not fun.
That raises a question: What if the kidnappers offer you the choice of losing a toe?
There's a bit of a debate here. My mom says that the little toe is analogous to the little finger, and as it is situated on the outside of your foot it does a disproportionate amount of work in maintaining your balance. The big toe, however, is obviously the strongest, and you need it to propel yourself while walking. "I'd probably go for third or fourth toe. You need the others for balance and for thrust," my mom reckons.
Scientific American took an optimistic view of the situation, and concluded that losing even a big toe isn't that disabling:
A nine-toed gait is less efficient, slower and shorter, but no less effective. "You're going to look choppier," Dugan says. Although running on fewer toes takes some getting used to, people can modify their style, train their muscles and practice balance exercises to compensate for a lost toe.
The importance of individual toes has actually been studied in some depth at Northwick Park Hospital in the U.K., and was the subject of a research paper by one of my mom's former colleagues at the Royal Liverpool Hospital, "The Importance Of The Toes In Walking."
The study ranks the toes, in order of the work they're doing. As you can see from this table, the big toe does ~30% of the job and the little toe does only ~9%. The pressure beneath them falls off in the order the toes are arranged on your foot:
It's the same while you're just standing. The little toes are in use the least:
And when force while walking, rather than pressure from weight, is measured, the little toes are again the benchwarmers of the foot:
What the paper doesn't investigate, however, is whether the little toes are doing a disproportionately large amount of the work relative to their size and strength, or if there are other consequences for losing them.
Rather than recommend a solid answer to the kidnapper dilemma, the authors chickened out when they wrote their conclusion:
The implication for clinical practice is that the toes play an important part in increasing the weight-bearing area during walking; every effort should be made to preserve their function.
This makes me think that perhaps my mom has nailed this one: The little toe is an extremity that's there for a reason, as is the big toe. So compromise and let them have No. 4.
To summarize: the first finger on the hand you don't use for writing is the least important finger, and the fourth toe on the foot you don't use to kick a soccer ball is probably your least important toe.
New York Fashion Week coverage tends to focus on the ladies, but men's fashion is a big deal on the runways, too.
The majority of men's collections shown this year were athletic and preppy. There were also a lot of printed pants, jackets, and suits in the mix, hinting that men's style is going to get more flashy in 2014.
Check out the top seven trends for Spring/Summer 2014 below.
7. Double-Breasted Blazers
How To Wear Them: Sparingly. Double-breasted blazers are hard to pull off, and if the cut is too baggy, they can look like a bad '80s vintage find.
"It should be tailored short in the body and fitted well around the waist, so I would only recommend it for those well-versed about style and fit," The Buying Director at online menswear retailer MR PORTER Toby Bateman previously advised us.
6. Patterned Jackets
How To Wear Them: There were lots of different printed jackets this year, from plaid to floral. Even camo made a resurgence.
Pair a patterned jacket with solid-colored shorts or pants. If you're style savvy, throw a contrasting print in the mix with a button-down shirt.
5. Printed Pants
How To Wear Them: Printed pants have been really popular in women's fashion for the last few years, and now they're inching into the men's market.
Use the same rules as printed jackets and keep things minimal, and make sure your pants are well-tailored so they don't end up looking like you wore PJs to the office.
4. White Suits
How To Wear Them: All-white suit combos were at a wide mix of shows, including the edgy Diesel Black Gold, the eccentric Billy Reid, and the preppy Black Sheep by Brooks Brothers collections.
The trick with wearing all white is to make sure textures contrast to keep it from becoming tacky. A white cotton shirt looks good with a linen suit, a white t-shirt balances out a silk jacket, etc.
3. High-Rise or Rolled Pants
How To Wear Them: Choose a pair of pants that fit you well, put on some awesome shoes, and just go for it.
Of course, this style works better with casual pants like chinos and jeans than with suit attire, so keep that in mind.
2. Color-Blocked Shirts
How To Wear Them: Whether horizontal, vertical or diagonal, color-blocked patterns are a casual and preppy look for the spring.
Treat these like your new classic black t-shirt and wear them with all your favorite pants and shorts.
1. Bomber Jackets
How To Wear Them: By far the biggest trend from New York Fashion Week was men's bomber jackets. Whether they're leather, color-blocked, wool, or athletic, these jackets go with everything.
When you go shopping for one, make sure the sleeves don't hang past your upper wrist, and that the coat has a slim silhouette to keep it from looking too much like a bulky Letterman jacket.
Video games get a bad rap. They are often portrayed as violent, addictive, and a mindless waste of hours that encourage obesity.
But that's only part of the story.
Computer gaming is a $20 billion industry. In 2012, 58% of Americans played video games, according to the Entertainment Software Association.
Most virtual games can be designed to have educational and physical benefits for players. Games that use repetitive actions, such as the swinging of a bat or targeting a moving object, train the brain and muscles to perform better in real-life activities.
Video game brain training has the same effect as reading a book or riding a bike — when the brain is learning, thousands of new connections are being formed. The addition of a reward system motivates players to continuously improve their skills.
A driving game improved memory and focus in older adults.
In a study published in the journal Nature researchers "discovered that swerving around cars while simultaneously picking out road signs in a video game can improve the short-term memory and long-term focus of older adults," The New York Times reports.
A group of adults between the ages of 60 and 85 were were recruited to play a game called NeuroRacer for 12 hours over a month. Six months after playing the game, the older adults were better at multitasking, retained more information in a short period of time, and had stronger attention skills.
People who play action-based games make decisions 25% faster.
Fast-paced video games typically require quick thinking to avoid being killed. In real-life situations, active gamers have a better sense of what is going around them and are able to make decisions faster, according to scientists from the University of Rochester.
In the one study, participants aged 18 to 25 were split into two groups. One group played 50 hours of the action video games "Call of Duty 2" and "Unreal Tournament," and the other group played 50 hours of the strategy game "The Sims 2." The action game players made decisions 25% faster in a task unrelated to playing video games, without sacrificing accuracy.
"Action game players make more correct decisions per unit time. If you are a surgeon or you are in the middle of a battlefield, that can make all the difference," study researcher Daphne Bavelier said in a statement.
Video games improve vision.
Another study led by Daphne Bavelier of the University of Rochester, showed that video games improve vision by making players more sensitive to slightly different shades of color, known as contrast sensitivity.
People who played action-based video games — particularly first-person-shooter games — were 58% better at perceiving fine differences in contrast, the researchers said.
"When people play action games, they're changing the brain's pathway responsible for visual processing," Bavelier said in a statement. The training might be helping the visual system to make better use of the information it receives.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
In a 2002 op-ed in The New York Times, best-selling author Joseph Epstein noted that “81 percent of Americans feel they have a book in them — and that they should write it.”
Thanks to the rise of the self-publishing industry, that number's probably even higher a decade later.
So, wannabe authors, before you start writing the next great American novel, here's some helpful advice from the world's most famous and successful writers on how to perfect your craft.
Learn them. Memorize them. Internalize them.
Did we miss your favorite quote on writing? Add it in the comments.
On Getting Started:
“I always advise children who ask me for tips on being a writer to read as much as they possibly can. Jane Austen gave a young friend the same advice, so I’m in good company there.” - J.K. Rowling, “Harry Potter” series.
“I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.” - Harper Lee, “To Kill A Mockingbird.”
“You can't wait for inspiration, you have to go after it with a club.” - Jack London, “White Fang.”
On Word Choice And Punctuation:
“Never use a long word where a short one will do.” - George Orwell, “1984.”
“If you are using dialogue — say it aloud as you write it. Only then will it have the sound of speech.” - John Steinbeck, “The Grapes of Wrath.”
“Cut out all those exclamation marks. An exclamation mark is like laughing at your own joke.” - F. Scott Fitzgerald, “The Great Gatsby.”
On Story Development:
“The writer’s job is to get the main character up a tree, and then once they are up there, throw rocks at them.” - Vladimir Nabokov, “Lolita.”
“A short story must have a single mood and every sentence must build towards it.” - Edgar Allen Poe, “The Tell-Tale Heart.”
“Get it down. Take Chances. It may be bad, but it's the only way you can do anything really good.” - William Faulkner, “The Sound and the Fury.”
“Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.” - Ray Bradbury, “Fahrenheit 451.”
“Write drunk, edit sober.” - Ernest Hemingway, “For Whom the Bell Tolls.”
“When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.” - Stephen King, “The Green Mile.”
“My own experience is that once a story has been written, one has to cross out the beginning and the end. It is there that we authors do most of our lying.” - Anton Chekhov, “The Lady with the Dog and Other Stories.”
“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” - Mark Twain, “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.”
“Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.” - Mark Twain, “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.”
And Why Simplicity Is Always Key:
“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.” - Thomas Jefferson, “The Declaration of Independence" and other writings.
“Think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people.” - William Butler Yeats, “Fairy and Folk Tales of the Irish Peasantry.”
American professional sports is now in its third generation of sports venues.
There were the cozy neighborhood stadiums of the early 20th century, the utilitarian monstrosities of the '70s, and now the vintage revival/space age dichotomy of 2013.
The Library of Congress has a fantastic collection of awesome old photos from the stadiums that no longer exist. When viewed together, they give you an idea of what going to a game was like 100 years ago.
Huntington Avenue Grounds, Boston (Boston Braves, 1903)
Shibe Park, Philadelphia (Philadelphia A's, 1913)
Fans watching from the rooftops outside Shibe Park.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Bermuda conjures up images of pink sand, clear blue waters, and a laid-back Caribbean attitude. And while it has all of that, it's actually not in the Caribbean at all.
About 640 miles off the coast of North Carolina, Bermuda sits in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and is actually closer to New York than it is to Miami. (It's a quick two-hour flight from New York City and a three-hour flight from Miami.)
And sure, there's golf, tennis, diving, and shopping to keep you busy, but the single-best thing to do on the island is just relax.
Here are the best places to do just that.
Dig your feet into the pink sand at Horseshoe Bay, the most famous beach in Bermuda.
Eat breakfast while staring at the water. Ideally from a balcony. Most hotels in Bermuda have water views — and it's worth paying extra to wake up to them. This is the view from a hotel room balcony at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess.
Get a massage at Elbow Beach Bermuda, a Mandarin Oriental property. All of the individual treatment rooms are actually suites with balconies overlooking the ocean.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
We spotted this interactive map from MoneyChoice.org, which shows a ton of economic data in an easily understood and very cool way.
You can check out how your state ranks and the data behind the rankings on anything from GDP, household income, tax burden, etc. This would certainly come in handy if you might want to move to an area with a better outlook.
Take a look and click around:
But the magic of Burning Man lies in the experience and interaction, which cannot quite be captured in photos or videos.
A few perspectives via amateur pilot Eddie Codel:
The 360° says it all:
Check it out:
SEE ALSO: This Is The Burning Man
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Over the last decade, U.S. kids and teenagers have started getting slightly more exercise and reduced their television watching, a new study suggests.
Using surveys conducted in middle and high schools, researchers also found increases in the number of days youth reported having breakfast each week and in how often they ate fruits and vegetables. Those trends have corresponded to a leveling off in obesity rates, but not a decline, the study showed.
"I would like to believe that all the public health efforts focusing on increasing physical activity and increasing fruit and vegetable consumption are having an effect, because that seems to be a pattern," Ronald Iannotti, the lead author on the study from the University of Massachusetts Boston, said.
"The fact that (obesity) is leveling off, that's a surprise and a major change from the steady increase that we've seen over time," Iannotti, who worked on the study while at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development in Bethesda, Maryland, said. "This is great news."
He and co-author Jing Wang analyzed surveys given to a nationally-representative sample of students in sixth through tenth grades in 2001-2002, 2005-2006 and 2009-2010 as part of the Health Behavior in School-aged Children study. Each survey period included responses from between 9,000 and 15,000 adolescents.
The researchers found "encouraging" trends on measures of most diet and lifestyle habits.
For example, the number of days each week that kids reported being physically active for at least 60 minutes increased from 4.3 in 2001-2002 to 4.5 in 2009-2010, with similar trends among boys and girls. Likewise, youth reported eating breakfast on three school days each week on the first survey and 3.3 days on the last.
The average number of hours students spent watching TV each day fell from 3.1 to 2.4, with drops in both weekday and weekend viewing.
Frequency of fruit and vegetable consumption also rose slightly over time - although it remained at less than one daily serving of each, on average - and consumption of sweets and soft drinks fell.
However, the proportion of survey participants who were overweight or obese, based on their own height and weight reports, did not decrease, the researchers wrote Monday in Pediatrics.
Rates of obesity - defined as body mass index, a measure of weight in relation to height, in the 95th percentile or higher - rose from 10.3 percent in 2001-2002 to 12.7 percent in 2005-2006, then held steady through the final survey.
"This is encouraging, because at least it looks like things have kind of stabilized, and at least they're not going in the wrong direction," Marian Huhman, who studies health communication and health campaigns at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, said.
"Maybe it just takes a few years for the outcomes of obesity changes to follow from the behavioral changes," she added.
Huhman, who wasn't involved in the study, pointed to the "effort on many, many fronts" that may have led to the positive changes in physical activity, sedentary behavior and diet - such as walk-to-school programs and campaigns targeting food marketing.
However, adolescents "are still largely not meeting the recommendations for amount of screen time, amount of physical activity (and) amount of fruit and vegetable consumption," she said.
Iannotti echoed that concern.
"Although they're increasing, the recommendation is five servings of fruits and vegetables per day. And we're looking at one or two," he told Reuters Health.
"There's still vast room for improvement."
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/cxXOG Pediatrics, online September 16, 2013.
Energy magnate T. Boone Pickens once challenged rapper Drake to imagine how hard it is to make your fist $1 billion.
Now, according to Forbes, he also knows how it feels to lose it.
For the first time since 2005 Pickens has fallen off the 'Forbes 400: Definitive Ranking of the Richest Americans.' He's graces the list with 33 other individuals including, 5-Hour Energy drink creator Manoj Bhargava and Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder.
This isn't to say that Pickens is poor. Though he told MSNBC he "lost his ass" in the wind energy business, Forbes estimates that Pickens is still worth $950 million.
The 84 year-old Oklahoma native made his fortune acquiring energy companies throughout the 1980s, eventually forming his hedge fund, BP Capital Fund in 1997. Most recently he's been a vocal advocate for American energy Independence.
Steven Cheek "woke up one day" to find his brother had sent him a link to a website.
"It was a site called Reddit. I had never heard of it before."
On the site was a photo of Cheek smoking a cigarette, drinking the energy drink Rip It, sitting in front of a U.S. Marine Osprey helicopter that had landed awkwardly and tipped over.
The original poster, a Redditor called Keggerrs, pretended to be the Marine in the picture. He made up a story to go with the photo, telling readers how the helicopter leaked hydraulic fuel and made a hard landing, forcing the Marines to evacuate into hostile terrain and mitigate an ensuing firefight.
Keggerrs has since deleted the post from his Reddit history.
"Someone stole it off my Facebook, put it on the site, and wrote a made-up story to go with it," says Cheek.
"When my brother contacted me, he said it had gone viral, and sent me other examples of how people had even added words [to the photo]," says Cheek, explaining that his photo had become a meme, which he pronounced "me me."
Born in a small town in South Carolina, Cheek is a pastor's son who "bounced around" the South a lot before enlisting in 2005. He doesn't mess around with the Internet much and says he needs his wife's help even putting photos on Facebook — or taking them down.
"So I deleted the image from my account. I wasn't sure if I would get some government backlash," says Cheek.
The Marine Corps doesn't encourage Marines posting images to social media for obvious reasons.
Cheek alleges that the story posted on Reddit was entirely fabricated for the same reason we thought it was legit.
"There was no hydraulic fluid leaking from those helicopters," Cheek tells us. Hydraulic fluid leaks, though rare, do happen in military helicopters.
Cheek's story is much more interesting anyway.
"We were on a late night helicopter raid and visibility was low, there was also fog on the ground," says Cheek.
Cheek says the raid — which took place in May of last year — was part of a larger mission to clear insurgents out of a place called Zamindawar. There were several helicopters involved in the raid.
"The pilots were using NVGs [night vision goggles], and the depth perception on those is a bit strange," says Cheek.
Cheek's helicopter landed smoothly, and his squad ran off and into defensive positions. As his helicopter zipped off though, another one attempted to land about "100 meters" from his position.
"You could hear the hard landing, and see the helicopter tip," says Cheek.
Cheek was ordered to take some Marines and head over to provide support.
"You couldn't see very clearly as we approached, I kind of expected everyone to be dead," says Cheek.
Fortunately, there were no casualties.
Later, Cheek talked to the pilots. They told him they experienced "uneven rotor wash" as they approached their landing position because of the embankment (the same one they ended up landing on).
Cheek says the pilots told him the helicopter started to tilt, then turn, so they put it down right there.
"They saved everyone in that bird, it would have spun out of control," says Cheek.
The next day, Cheek and his men were given the task of protecting the helicopter until the command could figure out what they would do with it.
"It's an expensive piece of gear," says Cheek, "the pilots flew out on the first day, and we stood guard for another three."
They were deep in Taliban territory, and Cheeks says a watch could have been timed by the daily insurgent attacks.
"RPGs, mortars ... every day around 2 o'clock it'd start," says Cheek.
While the rest of the Marines swept through Zamindawar, Cheek and his squad kept the enemy at bay for three days.
"We had intel that they wanted to land a mortar (or rocket) on the helicopter and film it so that they could claim they shot it down, and use it for recruiting purposes," says Cheek. "They were dialed in, for sure, but I don't think the closest one got any closer that 50 meters."
On the third day, a "huge" convoy of trucks came out to do an assessment on the helicopter.
"I mean, this convoy had to have at least 60 vehicles in it," says Cheek.
The aviation specialists did an evaluation on the bird and found it to be perfectly flyable. So they winched it into a more level position.
"Then the actual squadron commander got in it and flew it out," says Cheek. "We were all cheering him on as he got off the ground, and we could see him do a fist pump right before he flew away."
And how'd the picture happen?
"When the convoy pulled up, I went over to one of the vehicles and asked if they had any Rip Its," says Cheek.
Rip Its are the energy drink the military supplies to its troops. They're pretty ubiquitous in forward deployed environments.
"I wanted to get some for my guys, you know," says Cheek. "They actually gave me a whole case."
Cheek said his Marines goaded him into taking a photo in front of the helicopter.
"They said it'd be epic," says Cheek.
Well, Cheek, the Internet thought it was epic all right: the Reddit post drew over 1 million views and 2000 comments.
"That's nuts, man," says Cheek.
As far as being Internet famous, "I don't know," says the small-town Marine, "I don't really think about it."
"Maybe Rip It could endorse me," he jokes, "they could just pay me in energy drinks."
Most lists of top restaurants are crowd-sourced from diner reviews or compiled by anonymous editors. Samir Arora, a former Apple employee and the founder of Glam Media, decided to go a different route with his new global restaurant guide: "Foodie Top 100 Restaurants Worldwide."
He asked a handful of notable food critics, including former New York Times food writer Patricia Wells, former New York Magazine food critic Gael Greene, former Gourmet editor-in-chief Ruth Reichl, and top critics from France, Japan, and India to share their picks for the world's best restaurants.
The guide focuses foremost on food, looking at factors like service and decor as complementary. As Arora writes in the introduction, "The food must be spectacular; everything else is secondary."
France and Japan are the big winners in the Foodie guide, each with 29 restaurants selected by the critics and Foodie's editors. We're taking a closer look at the 20 U.S. restaurants picked by critics (presented here in alphabetical order); the full list is available on Glam Media's website. Click here to buy the guide.
Chef Grant Achatz of Alinea is known for his creative modern cuisine and artistic presentations, with dishes like squab inspired by Miró.
Critic's tip: "If it's on the menu, try the Lamb 86, an 86-ingredient dish served with 64 composed garnishes — all colorful, all fantastically delicious, and served in little dots like old-fashioned ribbon candy."
Benu, San Francisco
Korean-born Chef Corey Lee serves inventive contemporary American cuisine in his restaurant in San Francisco's South of Market district.
Critic's tip: "Even if you don't order wine pairings, ask Yoon Ha for drink recommendations. You won't regret it."
Blanca is technically a 12-seat "tasting room" tucked behind Brooklyn's famed pizzeria Roberta's. Chef Carlo Mirachi serves a parade of innovative, Italian-inspired dishes throughout the meal.
Critic's tip: "With few seats, the restaurant books well in advance and reserves only one month out. For the best shot at securing a seat, call the first day of the month."
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Fueled by a burgeoning economy, shoppers have slowly but surely rekindled their love affair with plastic. A new MasterCard analysis shows that in 2012, U.S. credit card volume grew by $172 billion year-over-year, an increase of 8.4%.
We've pretty much done a complete 180 since the onset of the recession. Back in 2008, Americans shifted more than $140 billion from credit to debt card spending.
You could say consumers are simply feeling more secure about their ability to handle credit card bills these days. But looking closer at the study, we found two dangerous signs that we could be getting in over our heads again.
More than half of credit users say they continuously carry a balance on their accounts and 54% of consumers say they use credit for rewards, up a full 9 points from 2008.
Credit lenders are incentivizing overspending and consumers are clearly taking the bait.
Already, we can see the effect rewards are having on credit use. The average credit card transaction is only $93, signaling that consumers are leaning on credit even for everyday purchases in order to get rewards.
Credit perks are all well and good if you're planning on paying your card down each month. But what's the point in cashing in credit rewards if you're dragging your credit score down and running the risk of paying late payment fees in the process?
There's real danger in relying on credit cards just for a few extra cashback points. First of all, carrying balance on your credit card is one of the easiest ways to lower your credit score. You're basically telling lenders that you're willing to rack up charges without having the means to pay them off in quick fashion.
"The amount of debt a consumer carries tends to be highly predictive of future credit performance because the amount a person owes has a direct impact on her or his ability to pay all their credit obligations on time each month," says Barry Paperno, consumer operations manager for myFICO.com. "While having debt doesn't automatically put someone in a high-risk category, as balances increase, the probability of having difficulty making payments on time each month increases."
In an ideal world, everyone would pay down their credit card balance in full each month. Realistically speaking, most experts recommend keeping your total debt load at one-third of your available credit limit.
We'd recommend going even further. A recent FICO report found that people with the highest credit scores typically carried debt loads less than 7% of their total limits.
A good rule of thumb: If you're about to use a credit card, just ask yourself if you'd be making that purchase if you were using cash instead. If the answer is no, chances are you're better off keeping that card parked in your wallet.
It took a grueling 19-hour effort, but the Costa Concordia cruise ship is now standing upright.
The "parbuckling" process, wherein pulleys and steel cables were used to slowly pull the 60,000-ton ship into an upright position, has been a success. The boat will now have hollow steel boxes called sponsons attached to the side of it to ensure buoyancy, before being towed away for scrap.
It's a remarkable scene, and even more remarkable when you consider that the boat has been there on its side on the rocky coast, since it crashed in January 2012, killing 32 people.
These pictures show just how weathered and mangled the boat has become: