Feeds:
Posts
Comments
I like to consider myself a pretty good driver. In my current car, I estimated that I’ve logged about 12,000 hours driving, so I think I can at least call myself an expert. I’ve never been involved in an accident while driving and I have only been pulled over once, and that was in Arizona doing 73 in a 65 and I was alongside a tractor trailer and didn’t see the speed change.

Based upon my driving experience and record, I think that giving you some of my tips and rules about driving that I have adopted, whether it is traveling long distance or just to the store and back, is beneficial in providing with a more enjoyable and safer driving experience. Some of these tips will help you from not being involved in an accident, not getting pulled over by the police, and how to deal with tough situations. To begin, let’s start off with tips for driving long distances:

1. You should always know where you are going before you get in the car to go. Using something like Google Maps or Mapquest will def. help you in at least understanding what route you’re taking. Google Maps often shows you a picture of where you are supposed to turn, so it’s always good to review these pictures in order for you to know where and when to turn.

2. Keep a map in your car. Even if you have a fancy shmancy GPS, you should always keep a map in your car and KNOW HOW TO USE IT! It doesn’t matter if your GPS can pinpoint your exact position and where your car is facing.  If it dies/there is severe weather/you have no signal, then you’re shit out of luck. You’ll save yourself a lot of heartache if you keep a map in your car.

3. Have some sort of emergency kit. I know this is something that it says to do in most manuals, but it’s good to at least keep some things in your trunk. I always have a first aid kit, but some things that are good to have are a flashlight, a disposable camera, extra water/gas/snacks, candles, and a change of clothes. Granted, some things are more necessary depending upon the time of year, but it’s good to have something available if you are involved in an emergency.

4. It’s always good to follow a car or stay with a group of cars. If you are behind someone who is driving the same pace as you, it’s good to stay with them. Traveling with a group is a much better way to not get pulled over. You should never speed if you are by yourself because it makes you more of a target for the cops. If you’re going 5 over while traveling with a group of cars or behind someone, you’re less likely to get hit with a radar gun/the cop isn’t going to care about a giant group of cars going a little over the speed limit. Cops are called “street-level bureaucrats” meaning they can decide when they feel like pulling someone over.

5. Always check your blind spots when changing lanes. ALWAYS! It’s also good to be alert while you’re driving and think of scenarios where you may need to bail out of your lane if there is an accident in front of you. I’ve avoided rear-ending people several times by having a bailout plan, especially while driving on I-81 and I-95.

6. If you see a group of people braking way in front of you, you should probably start braking too. 1 of 4 things are likely to be causing them to brake: (1) there’s some sort of accident/obstruction in the road, (2) there’s a cop up ahead that is making people slow down, (3) there’s a change in elevation in the road, and (4) there’s just some jackass braking because they don’t know how to drive. Whatever it is, it’s always better to be on the safe side than having to spend hours waiting for a tow truck or $100’s on a speeding ticket.

7. It’s better to be a defensive driver than an aggressive one. You don’t want to be that maniac changing lanes in a hurry.  There are times when you should be sort of aggressive, like merging, but it’s usually safer to be defensive. The best way to tell if someone is going to be changing lanes in front of you is to look at their front tires. Before the car moves in a direction, their front tires are going to move.

8. It’s not always necessary to pass someone on a two-lane highway. Granted, there are times being behind someone going 10 under or a big ol’ semi are a pain in the ass, so you should pass them. But if someone is driving at or around your pace, don’t pass them. People pass me now and again and 10 minutes later, I’m behind them at a traffic light. It’s not going to get you anywhere faster

9. Whenever you see a speed limit sign that says “strictly enforced” you GO THE SPEED LIMIT! These signs appear mostly in small towns/military bases/the South where cops have nothing better to do other than pull people over and write tickets to supplement their towns income. You’re really not safe going 5 or even 3 mph over the limit in these areas. Just set your cruise control for the speed limit and enjoy the ride!

10.  If a cop has someone pulled over, change lanes. Not only is a nice thing to do, but in most states, it’s against the law not to.

11. If it’s raining, you should ALWAYS HAVE YOUR LIGHTS ON! I don’t care if it’s not the law in a state, it’s the safe thing to do. It’s not so much for you benefit but for the people around you.

12.  You will typically get better mileage if you don’t use your A/C. Of course, this really depends on your comfort level, but I like to drive with the windows down unless it starts to top out above 93 degrees.

13.  Take some time and familiarize yourself with the headlight construction of cop cars. At night, it is often difficult to tell who is behind you, but knowing some of the different headlight configurations in your rearview mirror could save you from being pulled over. Police cars in the United States are usually made either by Ford or General Motors . So don’t fret about that Honda tailgating you; he’s just a douche. The most common kind of car is going to be the Ford Crown Victoria. They usually have one set of running lights running on the outside of square headlights. Often, you’ll let this car pass you and it’ll just be an old man in a Mercury, but it’s still a good habit to get into. Lots of unmarked cars today include Chevy Malibus, Dodge Stratuses, and Chevy Tahoes. You can sometimes see their police lights in the grills of their car. If you ever see one of these cars or a car that could be a cop on your ass, do not speed up! Sometimes, you’ll have a dick cop who will tailgate you so you speed up to get around w/e car is in the right lane and then they’ll pull you over. Hold your ground and don’t do anything stupid.

14. If you do end up getting pulled over, do not let the cop search your car. Under the 4th amendment, you have a right to not allow any unreasonable searches of your car unless the cop has probable cause. Probable cause is a very loose term which a cop can apply to search your car. Unless he has it though, he can’t perform a search and has to get a warrant. If he asks you permission to use a drug sniffing dog, say no. They usually don’t have to, but if he gives you an option than use it. You don’t know what sort of signal the dog gives that signifies there is something in your car, and it’s better to not find out! Probable cause means that if you have a gun, knife, or a pot plant sitting in your car and he can see it, he’s going to search it. But if you tell him that you don’t want him to search it, there’s a chance that the cop may give you a hard time and say something along the lines of “Why? You got something to hide?” Don’t give in. The purpose of this 4th amendment right is to protect you from yourself. You may think that nothing is in your car, but you don’t know if a passenger has dropped something in there or if the cop is dirty. Try and be respectful though, even if the cop does become a bit irate. In this case, you don’t want him to just try and find something to charge you with.

15. If you’re driving on the highway, you don’t always need to brake in order to slow down. If you do have to brake because someone in front of you is braking or it’s a tight turn, than you should brake. Otherwise though, there’s this great thing called gravity and inertia which will slow your car down over time. Nothing is more annoying than someone constantly braking in the left lane.

16. The left lane is not always the fastest lane. This is especially true in rush hour around Washington D.C. One thing that always boggles my mind is how people drive around the HOV merge near Dumfries. If you are in the left lane coming up to the merge, GET OUT OF IT! All you do by staying in the left lane is slow down traffic. After the merge on 95, I’ve noticed that the right lane is always moving, even if it is slow. The left lane and middle lane will often let you go faster for a little time, but then you have to slam on your brakes and it’s annoying.

17. Don’t camp in the left lane. Not only is it annoying to other drivers, but it’s boring for you and it is also illegal and can get you pulled over in some states. Use the left lane for passing and passing only.

18.  Always check your oil and tires before you go on a long trip. I know there have been times where I’m about to go on a trip and my oil is bone dry.

19. Do not text or talk on your phone while driving in heavy traffic. You’d think this would be a given thing to understand, but the general population is retarded when it comes to this. Just stop. There’s no such thing as there being an important text message

20. Have your music pre-planned and easily accessible for long trips. Not only is it a fun thing to do before you go, but it saves you from taking your eyes off the road.

With all that being said, I hope that some of you can become better and safer drivers. There’s nothing more enjoyable or more American than hitting the road and being comfortable.

Advertisements

The question that has been posed to me, by my esteemed colleague Ms. Amanda, is how is Nicholas Sparks destroying America and what we can do to prevent it.

For people who know me (or have decided to read my blog….a lot….and analyze it if you so choose), I believe that the downfall of humanity, specifically American society as we know it, is at hand. There are many factors that pose threats to our society, whether it be based technologically, musically, in our cinema, or in our literature. All these areas of our culture are causing the breakdown of our society and our inevitable doom.

Today, I am going to talk about Nicholas Sparks and how he is dooming future generations of American society. For those of you who have been living under a rock for the past decade, Nicholas Sparks is one of the foremost recognizable writers of romantic fiction. Interestingly enough, he is not one of the top selling authors of the past decade (I found that surprising, actually). All of his books take place somewhere in North Carolina, they all tend to play off of some sort of tragic romance, and they are adored by scores upon scores of lonely lonely women.

Of the plethora of novels Sparks has written, 15 in all, only 6 of them have been turned into films. Those films are: Message in a Bottle (1999), A Walk to Remember (2002), The Notebook (2004),  Nights in Rodanthe (2002), Dear John (2010), and The Last Song (2010). I’ve seen all but Message in a Bottle (which stars Kevin Costner, so you know it’s “good”) and I’ve only readDear John which is more than enough for me to read of Nicholas Sparks. If you want a brief synopsis of the films, two lonely people meet, they fall in love, there’s some sort of social problem that keeps them away from each other, and things either end tragically or happily ever after.

Before I start bashing, the one nice thing I do have to say about Sparks that his writing is easy to read and a page turner. That was one of the things I did appreciate, BUT what I do not appreciate is how these novels and films are creating this fantasized notion of love and intimacy in our society. I remember back when The Notebook first came out and girls were saying, “::sigh:: where’s my Noah?” Well ladies, I have the secret. I know where you can find your own Noah Calhoun: in a book. It’s called The Notebook. It is FICTION and fiction for a reason.

These films and movies create a romanticized version of the world where there are giant poplars, innocent girls and troubled young men. Apparently though, all these troubled young men are hopeless romantics which makes them flock for the “bad boy.” And apparently, these troubled young men are either super poor or super rich or they just have a bad moral upraising. Nevertheless, they’re cosmically flawed. Ideally, if you want to place blame on girls wanting and being introduced to the romantic idea of the “bad boy,” you have to point your finger at Lady and the Tramp (1955). But these films portray this mystical view of the South and romanticism that existed in literature as far back as the late 1800s. Hate to break it to you people, but the Old South was not romantic…unless having slaves is something you’re into, I don’t know.

Today’s image of the South is bumbling fools and chain restaurants. These images are one thing that you honestly not find in Nicholas Sparks media. You don’t see John Tyree or Savannah Curtis walking past a McDonald’s or dining in an Applebee’s. These characters live in a wonderful fantasy world where everything is mom & pop, anything’s possible, and bad acting is lauded.  Honestly, when is casting Mandy Moore, Channing Tatum, Kevin Costner, or Diane Lane ever really a good idea? (FYI don’t waste your time with Nights in Rodanthe. It’s terrible.)

The main focus though is that Nicholas Sparks is corrupting our society by making women believe that there is this perfect hopeless romantic “bad boy” out there. People are not realizing that this is a work of fiction and they think that because it’s set in sexy North Carolina locales, that is has to be real.

Now the big question: “Ryan, if young girls are believing this stuff is real and actually happening, how can we get them to understand that this is all fiction?” In order for there to be an answer, we have to look back at the very beginning of cinema. When films began to come to mainstream society in the late 1800s and early 1900s, there were two schools of thought to what cinema was going to be used: the Russian School and the American School (There are actual names to the theories, but I can’t remember what they are/my old notes are across the room and putting my leg brace on and cane-ing my way over there is a hassle). The Russian School of thought was to provide films that showed the real world and people living their lives and doing their jobs. Basically, it was the idea of showing the truth in cinema, which is essentially what documentaries try to do today. The American School of thought was to have stories of fantasy and fiction and to provide an experience where the viewer feels connected to the film and is entertained.

The rift between these two schools of thought is that The Russian school was afraid that viewers were going to become too connected to the film and believe that these things were actually happening and that the film was real. An example of this happening was during the early years of cinema where an actor on screen pointed a gun at the audience and the audience ran out of the theater screaming. Basically, film should be used in a method to educate the masses rather than entertain them because entertainment will lead to delusions by the viewer.

So here are the two solutions that I propose in order for us to save society from ruin from Nicholas Sparks and all other new forms of media, like the Twilight series and children jumping off their beds like Peter Pan: (1) We revert completely back to the Russian School of thought and allow only documentary films to be produced or (2) we educate young girls and boys at an early age and tell them that the shit they see in movies is not real….seriously.

Sadly, this does strike down some of the creative modes of our society, but if people want to keep on living without delusions of grandeur and romance, then they must come to face the facts. Not everyone is going to be rich, not everyone is going to be happy, and not everyone is going to have a sweeping hot romance that will surpass the ages as Nicholas Sparks would rather have us to believe.

People will complain and say, “Ryan, it’s just a book or a movie.” Yes, it is…but not everyone will believe that. It’s part of the downfall of humanity people. Be sure to stock up on your bottled water and SPAM because we’re in for one wild ride.

When I graduated from Virginia Tech in May of 2009, I left with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science with a focus on Legal Studies and double minors in Professional Writing and Pop Culture (it’s a mouthful, huh?). For anyone who wondered what in the Dickens I did in classes pertaining to Popular Culture, here’s a paper that I enjoyed writing for Theories in Popular Culture, taught by Karl Precoda.

Convergence Culture

Convergence culture deals with the meshing of the post-modern condition and mass culture. The idea behind convergence culture is when both old and new media collide to create something relatively new. Convergence culture is the result of new technologies during the 21st century that have helped to create a new sense of popular culture and normative values. This new form of culture has helped to create a new idea of community among the masses as well as a sense of individualism.

One of the chief functions of convergence culture is for the individual to have a private personal experience with a cultural artifact of mass culture, but at the same time, still feel as part of a group as a whole. For example, one of the ideas that Jenkins explores in his novel, Convergence Culture, is how going out the movies has changed entirely. Instead of people going out to just see a movie for the sake of seeing a movie, there is now a whole different way of viewing and being entertained. One example is how the sequels to The Matrix (1999) were pre-empted by video games and cartoon shorts. These cartoon shorts were able to provide information that linked the first film to the second film. If people were major fans of The Matrix, they had the ability to learn more about the upcoming films and get some of the inside clips and scenes. For example, in the final film, Matrix: Revolutions (2003), the character known as the Kid says, “Neo, I believe,” before he shoots down one of the gates to Zion. For people had not seen the Animatrix, that dialogue did not mean anything and seemed kind of cheesy. For people, who had watched the Animatrix though, they would have realized that there was an entire short-cartoon about the Kid and that specific dialogue came from the cartoon. This whole idea of people having the ability to experience a movie in a different way is the entire meaning behind convergence culture. No longer are people going out to watch a movie and then go home and go to bed. Instead, they are able to go out and see the movie and have an entire personal experience. Instead of going home to bed, they can stay up late and chat on the internet and write blogs about what they saw and the different underlying connections and hidden images within the film.

Another example that Jenkins provides that deals with convergence culture in the same way is how the new genre of reality television has taken over peoples lives. Jenkins uses the show Survivor to discuss how people have encompassed their lives entirely around a show and the after-market value of blogging and creating communities around such a show. Survivor was the first phenomenon that involved experiencing a television show and not just watching it. Since the inception of Survivor, there have been many other television shows that have been enveloped with having an experience while watching a television show. One of my personal favorites is the NBC hit Heroes which has expanded in many directions online. Along with the show, there is also an online comic book which has introduced many character and sub-plots that were spontaneously introduced to the show. NBC.com also had fans of the show create a new Heroes character by text messaging descriptions and characteristics while the show is on television. This new character now has their online series, Heroes: Evolutions, that encompasses an entirely different story and plot from what is on television. Media in today’s society now has to compete with creating an entire experience around a television series and not just the show itself if it wants to become a hit.

Convergence culture has also helped create a new form of marketing known as viral marketing. One of the more famous films that helped to progress the evolution of viral marketing was Snakes on a Plane (2006). This film was mostly advertised by using online media. One of the more notable things that Snakes on a Plane viral marketing did was that you could have Samuel Jackson make a phone call to one of your friends telling them to come and see Snakes on a Plane. Another film that helped progress the evolution of viral marketing, and was a film that was embedded deep within the ideals of convergence culture was Cloverfield (2007). When the first trailer for Cloverfield premiered, there was no title for the film. There was only a date for its theatrical release. As the release date crept closer, film clips and “newsreels” were leaked online that began to tell some information about the movie. The film itself was shot entirely by using guerilla camera techniques, which made it feel more like a personal film. It felt like the movie was being shot by an ordinary person who was in the midst of a catastrophic disaster. This relates to convergence culture in the idea of watching a persons own personal experience. During the movie, you can see several people recording the event on camera, but the film focuses on one person’s perspective. This is similar to convergence culture in how an individual in a communal environment is able to have their own personal experience.

Convergence culture inherently helps to fervor the advancement of democracy by people being able to have their own experience outside of the rules of mass culture. One example of how convergence culture deals with democracy and capitalism is how it promotes brand communities. Brand communities and brand fests help to create brand loyalty to a specific product. One example of a brand community is the Harley Davidson community. Harley Davidson communities help to promote democracy through brand loyalty in having anything and everything with the Harley Davidson logo. Regardless as to whether or not you own a Harley Davidson bike, there is a lifestyle that revolves around the Harley Davidson. Gail Lione, the Vice-President of Harley Davidson says that Harley Davidson is “continuously merging with cultures and lifestyles in every aspect of our lives. We are seeing more and more how similar our hopes and dreams are and how interconnected we all are.” By being a brand loyalist, people are more likely to purchase something that has the brand name on a product just because the name is on there. For instance, Harley Davidson produces a variety of brand products such as blankets, throw pillows, neon clocks, dog collars, and buck knives. This variety of products helps further democracy through convergence culture by combining the old logo of Harley Davidson with new products, to help create a new idea of what the company stands for.

Convergence culture is the new wave of the digital age of the 21st century. With the increasing development of cell phones and the internet, new methods of entertainment and experience that was derived from mass culture, is now changing to keep up with today’s society. New methods of marketing, advertising, entertainment, and consumerism are evolving as society and popular culture evolve. Convergence culture embodies the meshing of the old media and the new media to create new ideals, values and cultures for the future.

Blog Fail

At the beginning of my knee surgery, I had made a plan to write a daily blog. For people who have periodically looked at my blog (which probably isn’t oodles of you, but oh well) I have ultimatley failed at keeping to my word.

Yet, there is hope! In lieu of me coming up with new material for my blog because (1) I haven’t had anything very interesting to talk about and (2) i’m just plain lazy; i’m going to keep the masses entertained by periodically posting essays that I wrote in college. Since these were things I slaved hours over during a period of 4 years, I figure they’re worth having another person to read other than my professor…..and by professor I mean a graduate teaching assistant…..ENJOY!

I’ve been spending a lot of time lately thinking about my favorite words to say or spell. I know i’m probably a weirdo for doing so. How many people on an average day think of a favorite word they like to say? How many people think about how much they’ve been wanting to use a specific word in a sentence?

Well, folks, I do. Yes, this is how I spend some of my free time and I thought it would be necessary to share. My personal favorite word to say is PHARMACEUTICAL. I like the way it just kind of flows off your tongue. It has a lot of strong and changing sounds. Strong “ph’s” with “s” sounds ending with a “-cal.” It gives me goosebumps. I also like to say TECHNOLOGICAL for the same reasons. I especially like words that have a “-cal” suffix like PSYCHOLOGICAL, ECONOMICAL, HYSTERICAL, and SEUSSICAL. I even like the word SUFFIX. I feel that the letter “x” is highly underutilized (ooooo), as well as the letter “z.” The world needs more “z’s.”

Along with having favorite words to say, I also have favorite words that I like to type. Many nights during college, when I was up writing papers into the wee hours of the morning, I would always get a jolt of excitement whenever I got the opportunity to type TOGETHER. I think it has to do with how the letters have a nice flow when typing them on the keyboard. I also like typing SOPHISTICATED, but that word has even more significance because I was the only person in 3rd grade who could spell SOPHISTICATED correctly during a spelling test. TYPEWRITER is also a personal favorite to type because it is the largest word you can write using only the top row of letters on your keyboard. Go ahead and check that out!

Then there are the words that I yearn to be able to use at some point during the day. Every now and again, these words pop into my head and I really want to use them, but can never figure out a way or reason to do so! For the past couple of days, I have been wanting to use the word RETICENT in a sentence and you know what….i’m going to!!!

Billy-Bob was reticent to inform the pharmaceutical company that a combination of toxins combined together with his sophisticated use of his typewriter had left him  unable to attend Seussical last week.

(This entry is written in the voice of Andy Rooney. Hope you enjoy!)

I’ve always liked dolphins. I think they are amazing animals and mammals. Biologists believe that dolphins may in fact be more intelligent if not as intelligent as human beings. Many references in popular culture have been made concerning the intelligence of dolphins and whales alike and how they play a significant role in the future of our planet. These movies include, but are not limited to: the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Star Trek: the Voyage Home.

I remember when I was a young boy and when I used to watch old episodes of “Flipper.” It was my, and like many other people, first introduction to dolphins. I think a lot of people wanted a friend like Flipper. It wasn’t too much longer when my family and I made our way down to Orlando, Florida to visit Disney World and SeaWorld. I remember because it was my first time on a plane. My father had shown me how to put my seatbelt on right on the plane and got me excited when he told me we’d be going to see dolphins. I will always remember that trip to SeaWorld. It really furthered my love for dolphins.

After hearing about the Killer Whale attacking the trainer at SeaWorld, I do find it sad and tragic that she was killed. No one deserves to lose their life in a public manner. But I can’t seem to think that it wasn’t justified. Killer Whales and dolphins are beautiful and majestic mammals that are meant to live in the wild, yet we have exploited them and turned them into side show attractions.

I recently saw a documentary film called The Cove which is about how dolphins and whales are caught in Japan and then sent to amusement parks. One of the things that people don’t realize, that is shown in the film, is that the dolphins  that aren’t chosen are then slaughtered for no reason. Watching it made me sad and angry, and I really didn’t care for the Japanese after seeing it.

I personally wouldn’t be surprised if we see more dolphin and Killer Whale attacks at places where they are used as side show attractions. These animals are probably starting to get wise enough to know that we’re inhibiting their lives, especially if they are one of the more intelligent animals on our planet. I don’t get why we cage peaceful animals in order to create attractions and make a few bucks. I know my father wouldn’t want to be on display at SeaWorld. Sometimes, I think that the proof that there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe is because no one has tried to contact us yet.

Moscow and Brisket

Since my surgery was announced by my doctor, my parents have gone into overdrive of getting and doing things that will entertain me for the next month. For this first week, i’m basically confined to the couch, but I imagine that I will be spending a great deal of time in this position. My parents getting new toys also has to do with us getting a nice tax return and a hefty settlement from the Federal Government for some class action lawsuit my dad was involved in 10 years ago.

So, we’ve recently gotten a 46″ LCD TV, HDDVR receiver, iLive sound bar, and a Toshiba Netbook. I’ve also spent the last 2 weeks making money by chopping up trees and moving logs. I figured that since i’m not going to be doing any physical activity, I might as well get it all out! That and I realized how much I enjoy lumberacking

With the added money from removing logs, I was able to get Xbox Live and a wireless router for my Xbox 360. That and I was able to buy two new games including Left4Dead and Tropico 3 (trust me, all this back story is relevant to my day). Tropico 3 is a new game for the 360. It’s kind of like Sim City but geared towards people interested in Political Science. Basically, you’re a dictator in the Carribbean during the Cold War and have to set up regimes and governments geared towards specific political factions (e.g. Capitalists, Communists, Militarists). I’ve been glued to this game for the past 24 hours because it’s freakin awesome!

So, this morning I woke up at 8:15, was able to take my last unassisted shower for the next week, and then hopped in the car to Mary Washington Hospital. My scheduled time to be at the hospital was at 9:30, so I was able to get there on time. When they were prepping me for my surgery, I had a more than jovial nurse. She was kind of the most amazing nurse ever, joking around with me and stuff. After she shaved my leg hair around my knee, I realized that this was the first time I had seen my leg with no hair since i was probably 9 years old (hooray Scottish descent!).

After that, my anesthesiologist came him and gave me a Mickey, wheeled me over to the OR and then they started asking me questions about how I hurt my knee and then I woke up in the recovery room. I was given a hoot load of amazing and awesome drugs in the recovery room. At one point though, I was so disoriented that I didn’t really realize where I was. This was when I called over the nurse and, thinking that I was in the game Tropico 3, asked her if I was in the Soviet Union. At the time, it seemed to make sense to me, but I imagine that she was quite perplexed about the question. I can’t remember her answer. I kind of wish she said yes just to see how I would react.

After I was finally awake, I got moved into the 2nd stage of the recovery, had some Jello and Graham Crackers and was released Now i’m at home, watching TBS, eating BBQ Beef Brisket provided by the Jack Daniels company (amazing stuff if you like Memphis style BBQ). Now my biggest issue is trying to figure out how to go to the bathroom with only one leg and on crutches. It’s far more difficult than you can imagine.