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The Bialetti Moka Pot and Cafe Bustelo

The Bialetti Moka Pot and Cafe Bustelo, an Italian and Cuban-American collaboration resulting in beautiful coffee. By Jeffrey the Barak There are many ways to buy a cup of coffee, and also many ways to make a cup of coffee at home. One device that you will probably find in any Italian kitchen is an old, … Continue reading The Bialetti Moka Pot and Cafe Bustelo

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Roland Octapad SPD-30 as a mini-kit. A real drummer’s review

By Jeffrey the Barak Wait a minute, it’s 2016. Why would someone write a review of an SPD-30 now, when it came out in 2010? Good question. Firstly it’s still the newest model, and secondly, I just bought one, for the following reason. I am now in a situation where having a big drum set … Continue reading Roland Octapad SPD-30 as a mini-kit. A real drummer’s review

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NAMM 2016 – A quest for a compact multipad drum kit

By Jeffrey the Barak Having the opportunity this year to attend NAMM, that is the National Association of Music Merchants Incorporated, show, in Anaheim, California, I decided to take a very selective approach and set off on a quest for a professional-quality, tiny, electronic drum set, that can be played with sticks. The Show Briefly, … Continue reading NAMM 2016 – A quest for a compact multipad drum kit

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The 164 best ways to get rich from licking glass panels

By Jeffrey the Barak Readership of the-vu is quite small these days. A few dozen reads per day are all we see, from everywhere in the world. Back in the early days, when the-vu was one of just a handful of Internet magazines, we had many thousands of reads every day. These days, most of … Continue reading The 164 best ways to get rich from licking glass panels

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Sweetened Condensed Milk, Goodbye Old Friend

By Jeffrey the Barak For the last thirty years or so, I have been slightly unwell. A constant pressure, bloating, inflammation. The ever present acid inside. I have taken pills and put up with it, and even become used to it except when it really flared up. I gave up wheat ten years ago and … Continue reading Sweetened Condensed Milk, Goodbye Old Friend

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Flykly Smart Ped Folding Kick-Assist Scooter

By Jeffrey the Barak Scooters. I am obsessed with them. I have so far owned at least sixteen human-powered scooters and three electrics. The Flykly scooter is something altogether quite new. It seems to have checked many boxes from the wish lists of the scooter fanatic community, and in doing so will have an appeal … Continue reading Flykly Smart Ped Folding Kick-Assist Scooter

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2015 L.A. Auto Show. Interior Design, Upsizing and Tricky Bumpers.

By Jeffrey the Barak Walking around the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show gives us the opportunity to see cars, almost every type of car. Even the marques who choose not to display here are usually to be found in the aftermarket hall. The big newcomer this year was Alfa Romeo, if you can call a … Continue reading 2015 L.A. Auto Show. Interior Design, Upsizing and Tricky Bumpers.

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Own a Diesel VW? What should you do?

By Jeffrey the Barak I am a happy owner of a gasoline engined, Volkswagen Rabbit, (USA Golf Mark V), that I bought new in 2008, and which is in near perfect condition with exceptionally low mileage. It has more value to me in this condition that I could ever resell it for, and it is … Continue reading Own a Diesel VW? What should you do?

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The Four Acceptable Man Bags

By Jeffrey the Barak In today’s world, men carry as much stuff around as women. This is primarily due to electronics that did not previously exist, but modern men need more personal items as well. The days of stuffing money, identification and keys into trouser pockets and going out the door for a full day, … Continue reading The Four Acceptable Man Bags

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Kickbike Cruise Max 20 Reviewed. Comfy all-day cruiser.

By Jeffrey the Barak The Kickbike Cruise Max 20 is a special Kickbike model designed for easy all day cruising at a comfortable speed. It is not a racing scooter, although it can keep up with one, and can even sail past one when the road gets a bit bumpy. The combination of the very … Continue reading Kickbike Cruise Max 20 Reviewed. Comfy all-day cruiser.

Real Cappuccino, Wikipedia

Why does my Cappuccino keep changing?

By Jeffrey the Barak The Cappuccino, the favorite morning pick me up for Italians that evolved into any any time of day drink for the rest of the world, was originally a single shot of espresso, with about the same volume of steamed milk, and about the same volume of milk foam on top. It … Continue reading Why does my Cappuccino keep changing?

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America, it is time to get off your sore butt and ride a Kickbike

By Jeffrey the Barak Some people love bicycles, but many cyclists have a love-hate relationship with them. The phrase Pain In The Butt is perfect for describing it. A soft saddle hurts your butt. A large saddle hurts your butt. A gel saddle is hard as a rock. A narrow leather racing saddle hurts a … Continue reading America, it is time to get off your sore butt and ride a Kickbike

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Personal Transportation Devices for the 21st Century

By Jeffrey the Barak A personal transportation device can be anything that gets a person around town, without a car. It could be the common, world-changing, bicycle, but we all know about those machines. This article introduces a passion of mine, personal transportation devices that are not bicycles. In many of my scooter reviews and … Continue reading Personal Transportation Devices for the 21st Century

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The new all-terrain commuter scooter

By Felix Dorling “Scooters are for kids aren’t they?” I’ve received mixed responses since bringing my new scooter into the office but it doesn’t bother me one bit. My commute to work used to be a minefield of car dodging, maneuvering between buses and avoiding those pesky white vans but since I swapped my bike … Continue reading The new all-terrain commuter scooter

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Skujou, Electric Scooter startup in Hamburg

By Jeffrey the Barak Recently in the-vu we reviewed the Zumaround Zum electric scooter and consequently we recently received a press release for a new German design, still in it’s capital crowdsourcing stage. The prototype Skujou Cruise looks great and the specs are excellent, so we introduce it here, although you cannot buy one just … Continue reading Skujou, Electric Scooter startup in Hamburg

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Zumaround Zum Electric Scooter Review

By Jeffrey the Barak Fifteen years ago in this same magazine, in July 2000 to be exact, I wrote an article about electric scooters, as I had just acquired my second and was enjoying it quite a bit. Now, in 2015, things have changed, especially batteries and motor systems, so it is time to revisit … Continue reading Zumaround Zum Electric Scooter Review

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The Hardwood Flooring Fake Warranty

By Jeffrey the Barak When you buy a hardwood flooring, or engineered hardwood flooring system for your home, the flooring retailer will tell you with the tone of a stern and dire warning that in order for the warranty to be valid and effective on your floor, you have to glue it to the concrete … Continue reading The Hardwood Flooring Fake Warranty

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Finding My Roots Through DNA

By Jeffrey the Barak How my knowledge of my ancestry suddenly jumped from the 19th Century to tens of thousands of years ago. A couple of months ago a friend told me she had used an online DNA testing service, 23andMe, to research her ancestry. The ancestral history of her DNA revealed some unknown ancient … Continue reading Finding My Roots Through DNA

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Pharrell, Thicke and Smith need to get their money back

By Jeffrey the Barak Music belongs to the world. In every country and every society there is music, good and bad. This music is categorized, and bundled into pigeonholes so that someone such as yourself can say, “Hey I like Free-Jazz, so I want to hear music that sounds like some of the Free-Jazz that … Continue reading Pharrell, Thicke and Smith need to get their money back

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Genes, Gender, Generation and Geography

GENES, GENDER, GENERATION, AND GEOGRAPHY… A coincidentalist’s perspective on Earthlinging. By Sigmund Shonholtz Every now and again, I have a conversation with someone that catches my attention and gets me wondering. As I see it, if a conversation is worth starting, it is worth investing in, because I never know where it will take me. About … Continue reading Genes, Gender, Generation and Geography

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Freestyle Pro-Scooters without the tricks?

By Jeffrey the Barak Just lately I have been finding that riding a scooter for a few miles is too tiring to be all the fun it should be, so I have taken to using a bicycle for these intermediate to long distances. Now with a bicycle being a machine, it will give you about … Continue reading Freestyle Pro-Scooters without the tricks?

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Half a century of scooting

By Jeffrey the Barak I may have a few decades of life left, but with my 58th birthday coming this week I thought it would be fun to direct via the keyboard some reflections of riding scooters. This a hardcore scooter fanatic ramble that will only appeal to our splendid scooterholic minority, but here goes … Continue reading Half a century of scooting

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From a one foot hop to E-Bikes

By Jeffrey the Barak How much do we want to exercise, and how much help do we want from machines and electricity? With electric bicycles, or  e-bikes, becoming more common, we can begin to wonder whether we are still pedaling bikes or if we are just gradually switching to quieter and slower motorcycles. Not that … Continue reading From a one foot hop to E-Bikes

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The Selfie, a decade before the Selfie

The world is obsessed with “The Selfie”. So many people have smartphones, and a desire to share themselves, that wherever you look you see a picture of someone taking their own picture, either alone or with a group. But here at the-vu, this started about ten years ago, thanks to a regular contributor, since deceased, … Continue reading The Selfie, a decade before the Selfie