Sunday, October 24News That Matters

Tag: Content Type: Service

Instant Pot Recipes and Wisdom

Instant Pot Recipes and Wisdom

LifeStyle
When I first wrote about Instant Pots back in 2017, it was with the ardor of new love. I’d fallen hard for my first electric pressure cooker, delighting in the myriad ways it could improve my kitchen life. All those weeknight meals of dried beans and silky braised meats, the speedy brown rice, the endless flow of soups and homemade stock changed how I cooked in a fundamental way.The question was, would the habit stick? Or would my Instant Pot end up like so many panini presses and sous vide wands — on a shelf in the basement, fuzzy with dust?I’m happy to report that, nearly five years in, it has remained an integrated and well-used kitchen tool. After hundreds of meals, I’ve learned a few very valuable lessons, whether getting the smell out of the sealing ring or troubleshooting the dreade...
How to Protect Yourself From Online Card Fraud

How to Protect Yourself From Online Card Fraud

Business
The service is used by more than 10,000 merchants and has “tens of millions” of cardholder participants, said Sukhmani Dev, senior vice president of digital products, North America, at Mastercard.Here are some questions and answers about safe practices when shopping online:How else can I protect myself?The Federal Trade Commission offers these tips: Shop with a credit card online, and never buy anything from online sellers that accept payment only by gift cards, money transfers or cryptocurrency. Such payments are nearly impossible to trace and reverse, and criminals often tell people to use those methods so they can get cash quickly, the commission says.Vet unfamiliar websites before shopping by searching online for the merchant’s name and the word “complaint” or “scam,” the agency advise...
The Albums That Transport You

The Albums That Transport You

LifeStyle
Welcome. If each day of the workweek corresponds to a gear on a five-speed car, then Monday might be “starting” and Thursday might be “cruising.” Wednesday, meanwhile, would be an in-between gear, a time when you’re driving around town running errands. When weeks drag, I think about getting to Wednesday, past the revving-up portion of the week and (ideally) into the getting-things-done phase. On Wednesdays, you’re actually getting somewhere.If you’re feeling stuck, perhaps a music-fueled trip is in order. A few weeks ago, I mentioned a Rufus Wainwright album whose opening bars have the power to transport me to a very particular moment in time. I asked which albums do that for you and got so many excellent emails in response. Here’s a sample, edited for clarity.“I listened to Everything but...

The True Cost of Upgrading Your Phone

Technology
Let’s talk about buying an iPhone for $1,000. Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, once compared this eye-popping price tag to buying a cup of coffee a day over a year. No big deal, right?But financial advisers see this differently. By some estimates, an investment of $1,000 in a retirement account today would balloon to about $17,000 in 30 years.In other words, $700 to $1,000 — the price range of modern smartphones — is a big purchase. Fewer than half of American adults have enough savings set aside to cover three months of emergency expenses, according to the Pew Research Center. Yet one in five people surveyed by the financial website WalletHub thought a new phone was worth going into debt for.Tech companies fairly argue that our smartphones are our most powerful tools for work and play a...
How to Watch the Orionids Meteor Shower

How to Watch the Orionids Meteor Shower

Technology
This latest episode of cosmic action in the night sky is the Orionids meteor shower. The monthlong event will peak overnight, on Thursday.But if you are thinking about staying up late for the show, keep in mind that a nearly full moon is likely to outshine some of the tantalizing streaks that observers can easily spot on darker nights.What are meteor showers?Earth passes through trails of debris spewed from comets and asteroids as it circles the sun. Stray remnants of these trails get swept into the planet’s atmosphere, and they become meteors when they burn up there. The result: meteor showers, also nicknamed “shooting stars,” which can last from dusk to dawn and dazzle the night sky with quick streaks of light.The Orionid meteor shower is the latest event, and its meteors are made from m...
Why Getting Tested for Covid-19 Can Include a Headache

Why Getting Tested for Covid-19 Can Include a Headache

Travel
Vault, a P.C.R. test, offers an at-home test kit for travel from Jamaica, Mexico and the Dominican Republic to the United States. The kits cost $119 and include a video session with a qualified professional; there are drop-off points for samples across these countries’ major cities, with results of the P.C.R. test returned 12 to 48 hours after being received by the lab.Antigen tests, rapid tests that can be processed within minutes, like an at-home pregnancy test, are cheaper but less reliable than P.C.R. tests, which are handled by a laboratory and include amplifying the virus’s genetic material many times, allowing it to detect even small traces of the virus. Both are accepted for travel to the United States, but some countries require a P.C.R. test for entry.Ms. Decter said that BinaxNO...
Take a Walk in the Garden, Before It’s Too Late

Take a Walk in the Garden, Before It’s Too Late

LifeStyle
For David L. Culp, the walk is a daily practice, not for its exercise value, but in pursuit of insight. The familiar route he has taken most days, over some 30 growing seasons, is around his two-acre garden in Downingtown, Pa., along the paths he created.He walks the sloping site in search of ideas for possible refinements, bringing to life the opposite of what he calls a “big-bang garden,” the kind with just one riotous spring or summer moment.Fall walks are especially precious, said Mr. Culp, a longtime garden designer, instructor and author. Try to catch the garden before its visual cues degrade, leaving us vulnerable to the tough combination of winter’s deprivation and that pile of tempting catalogs arriving at our low point.Right now: Go out, look around and listen.“Read your garden, ...

Help! How Do I Find a Coronavirus Test to Get Back Into the U.S.?

Travel
Ms. Lembersky has also had luck with Italian-language resources like Salute Lazio, which has a map of pharmacies that conduct virus tests in the region of Lazio, as well as MedInAction, where users can book testing “house calls” throughout Milan and Rome.Meanwhile, the travel medicine company AmbiMed maps out — and allows users to book — coronavirus tests throughout The Boot.Updated Oct. 20, 2021, 6:45 a.m. ETCertain U.S. Embassy websites can also be useful, but the information is by no means uniform, and travelers may need to click around. The website for Spain, for example, has a seven-page document in English with testing locations organized by region, while the website for Switzerland directs users to another site, with a list of testing sites by Swiss canton. The website also off...
In Sonoma County, ‘Regenerative Agriculture’ Is the Next Big Thing

In Sonoma County, ‘Regenerative Agriculture’ Is the Next Big Thing

Travel
To Lauren and Alex Benward, sixth-generation owners of the Beltane Ranch vineyard in Glen Ellen, Calif., the word “sustainability” does not adequately convey the agricultural measures that they and many of their fellow vineyard owners have adopted in recent years. Steering clear of pesticides and industrial tillage is a no-brainer. They also use roving chickens to forage for pests, maximize soil fertility by planting cover crops like ryegrass and employ a herd of sheep — referred to as “woolly weeders” — to help fertilize the fields. Even the vineyard’s wine shipments reflect land stewardship: Bottles — recycled, with natural corks — are transported with carbon-neutral shipping.This holistic approach to land management is called regenerative agriculture. It eschews conventional farming tec...
Can I Wear a Ponytail to Work Without Looking Like a Kid?

Can I Wear a Ponytail to Work Without Looking Like a Kid?

LifeStyle
I am a teacher, and when wearing a mask at the school where I work, I find it easier to keep my hair in a ponytail. What is the best way to make this look professional? I’d prefer not to turn into a character from “Grease” or be mistaken for a teenager. — Yael, Bronx, New YorkThe ponytail has been a default hairdo ever since Ancient Greece and 1600 B.C.E., where the look was immortalized at the Palace of Knossos on Crete in the fresco “Ladies in Blue.” A look possessed of multiple personalities and social signifiers, the ponytail can seem like the simplest of possible ’dos while also adapting to changes in culture and social mores — and it has done so throughout history and for both men and women.In pre-17th century China, for example, men under the Manchu dynasty wore their hair in a queu...