MANKIND UNPLUGGED http://mankindunplugged.com | Guy Stuff. Girl's View. Men's Lifestyle. Fri, 19 Dec 2014 16:33:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.3 NET10 Wireless Is Freed For Speed The NASCAR Wayhttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/19/net10-wireless-is-freed-for-speed-the-nascar-way/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/19/net10-wireless-is-freed-for-speed-the-nascar-way/#comments Fri, 19 Dec 2014 16:33:29 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22693 Net10 Wireless Nascar Race

We all want to be freed for speed, right? While we can’t drive our everyday cars at 100 mph+, we can get our speed fix with high-speed talk, text, and data plans. That’s where Net10 Wireless comes in. They were kind enough to get us freed for speed on our devices and in the driver’s seat of a NASCAR race car.

Imagine how we felt when we received an invite to Charlotte, North Carolina to learn more about NET10 Wireless and their winning partnership with Red Horse Racing. Best of all, we were able to get behind the wheel of a NASCAR race car. In the great words of Ricky Bobby from the hit movie Talladega Nights, we responded to the invitation with, “I want to go fast.” And just like that, NET10 whisked us away on a plane from Los Angles to get inside a 600HP NASCAR race car at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in the heart of NASCAR country. What sums it up best is: anticipation, adrenaline, and our way? Yes, our way. (You’ll see what we mean in a minute.)

Anticipation
As soon as we arrived in Charlotte, we knew we were in for one of the best NASCAR experiences we have ever had. What we didn’t expect was to have the hook-up with cool gadgets thanks to NET10 Wireless. NET10 Wireless made it effortless for us to text, surf the net, and share our once-in-a-lifetime NASCAR experience. They provided us with not only a Samsung Galaxy but a Samsung Note – so we were fully connected and tapping away on two screens At the time, our own Tam-Star was still using a Blackberry, so this was a pleasant surprise. Let’s just say NET10 upgraded her (Thanks Net10!). The steps to activate the phone were easy. Suppressing the adrenaline as we arrived at the Charlotte Motor Speedway for our Richard Petty Driving School safety briefing, well, proved to be a much bigger challenge.

NASCAR Driver German Quiroga

A familiar face greeted us when we got there. Our old friend, NASCAR driver German Quiroga, gave us a few driving tips on the best way to go fast (faster!) before we put on our fire suits and headed to the track. Who better to offer us tips on maximizing our speed than the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver of the No. 77 NET10 Toyota for Red Horse Racing. German Quiroga became the first three-time NASCAR Corona Series champion in Mexico.

Armed with tips from the champ who’s used to going 200 mph just ’cause, we started our Ride-Along Experience by riding shotgun in a NASCAR race car with the good folks at Richard Petty Driving School. If you don’t know anything about NASCAR, know this: Champion and Hall of Fame NASCAR driver Richard Petty is known as “The King.” So learning a thing or two about what it takes to drive a race car from his team was crucial before we actually stepped into the driver’s seat for some adrenaline pumping laps.

Richard Petty Driving Experience Charlotte Nascar

Adrenaline
Getting behind the wheel to drive an actually NASCAR race car is indescribable. Let’s just say that it’s intense. As huge NASCAR fans, we have done more than most fans will ever do. We’ve interviewed established drivers like Dale Jr. and Joey Logano along with up-and-coming drivers like Kyle Larson and Bubba Wallace. We’ve had lunch with NASCAR Hall of Famer and current TV broadcaster Darrell Waltrip at his shop, hung out in the winners circle with Kyle Busch; and rubbed elbows with legendary three-time Super Bowl champ and NASCAR team owner Joe Gibbs. He let us hold his Super Bowl Ring while he told us how he got started in NASCAR.

We’ve done a lot, but to actually, physically get behind the wheel on the track where drivers like Dale Earnhardt burned rubber and put the pedal to the metal. WOW! Intense is an understatement. After our checklist of NASCAR encounters and experiences, this one would be toward the very top of our list.

We didn’t go as fast as we thought we could, but we went fast! 125 mph isn’t bad for our first time steering one of those bad boys. Believe it or not, we out-drove some of the men on the track. Guess those tips from NET10 driver German and all our NASCAR knowledge paid off. Once we settled down and the adrenaline flowed in a positive way, we handled all those left turns like a pro.

Richard Petty Driving Experience Charlotte Nascar 1

After handling the wheel on the track, the good folks over at NET10 sent us to school. And we didn’t even want to pretend we were sick so we could ditch class! Even the best NASCAR drivers need an educated team and skillful communication to win the trophies. We learned this first hand at Pit School. Before we changed into our fire suits, we stopped at Red Horse Racing where we got a warm welcome from owner Tom DeLoach. He gave us a behind-the-scenes look at how they build German’s trucks and prepare him for his race each week. Equipped with even more intel, we headed over to PIT Crew U where we were both physically and mentally prepared for the challenge of doing a NASCAR Pit Stop. We aren’t too girly, but we admit we volunteered for the easiest job (see picture below).

Nascar Pit Training

For our PIT Road experience, we competed in teams of four and, of course, named our crew after our favorite NASCAR driver, Tony “Smoke” Stewart. A full-blown pit stop consists of changing four tires, adding a full tank, wiping the grille clean and making minor adjustments to the car – all in 12 seconds. While we came up a bit short, the experience was an eye-opener. There’s something to be said about collaborative partnership put into action. What a rush!

Nascar Pit School

Our Way
We got some lessons and took what we learned right to the race track. And that’s what we mean when we say “our way.” After a day of driving around the Charlotte Motor Speedway in a NASCAR race car, we had a much better idea of what it takes to be a racing superstar (hint: a lot!). And drivers don’t cross that finish line alone; they need a reliable network to help them go farther and faster.

Richard Petty Driving Experience Charlotte Nascar

Speaking of faster. We’re grateful that Net10 Wireless not only gave us a chance to show off being #FreedForSpeed, but introduced us to a lightning-fast network on one of America’s largest and most dependable networks. Since we have the need, the need for speed, we met our match with this mobile experience. Not to mention Net10 Wireless helps NASCAR fans like us keep up with the 5.1 million social media conversations happening daily about stock car racing. With no contracts or formal agreements, you’re free to experience #WirelessYourWay with Net10 Wireless.

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Sponsored Video: Audrina Patridge | Pick Up Line Coaching for Curve Fragranceshttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/19/sponsored-video-audrina-patridge-pick-up-line-coaching-for-curve-fragrances/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/19/sponsored-video-audrina-patridge-pick-up-line-coaching-for-curve-fragrances/#comments Fri, 19 Dec 2014 14:41:58 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22685 Get Curved Dating Pick Lines

Dating can be, well… challenging. It can also be downright confusing. While most guys find it easy, many find it challenging. Knowing what to say, when to say it, how to act, and how to spot the girl that may or may not be for you can prove to be difficult. Even a guy that is cute and confident can find it difficult to pick up girls.

Check out this cool video of two guys trying different approaches to picking up girls with some pick up line coaching from Audrina Patridge.

The guys seemed authoritative, confident, humorous, and had a flirty tone. They even smelled good with the help of Curve for Men, the provocative line of fragrances. We laughed out loud at many of the pick-up lines; however, we couldn’t help but wonder what happens when a guy actually baits a girl with one his best lines. Is it hook, line, and sinker from there?

Like fishing, occasionally you need to throw a fish (no pun intended) back for various reasons. Below, we complied a list of red flags you should look for when deciding if you want to date a girl after you hooked her with one of your best pick-up lines.

1. She Has Commitment Issues
Yes, girls have commitment issues. Commitment can be very scary for anyone, but if you come across a girl that seems to never want to make plans or settle down, she probably just isn’t in to you. When a girl continues to makes last-minute plans with you, there is a great possibility you are never her first option. This is not to say you aren’t a good guy, but when a girl finds the right guy she will change her ways no matter how quirky they are. You will become her first, only, and last choice. She will quickly commit to be in your presence without hesitation.

2. She’s Inflexible
Most women will easily give in to a guy that she wants a long-term relationship with. This isn’t to say she is weak, but women do compromise for the right guy. If you are dating a girl who believes things must always go her way and you are wrong while she is always right, run quick. We are who we are, but a sign of a great woman is one who is willing to change just a bit or mutually concede when she has found Mr. Right.

3. She’s Hung Up On Her Ex
We are all guilty of bringing up past relationships. It’s been said you should never talk about your Ex guy or girl on a date, but the reality is most men will always compare the new chick to the old chick. If you find that the girl you are dating is constantly talking about her ex, do yourself a favor and move on. She clearly wants that old thing back and no matter how great of a guy you are, she wants him not you.

4. She’s A Momma’s Girl
There is a lot of talk about men who are momma’s boys. Be aware! A momma’s girl is no different than a momma’s boy. A momma’s girl can’t do anything without their mother’s permission or approval. They also tell their momma’s EVERYTHING! Ask yourself, do you want the girl you are dating mother knowing every detail of your relationship? Probably not!

5. She’s Too Materialistic
If you are the average Joe, you probably like showing off your girlfriend. There is something to be said about a woman who is cute and is always appropriately dressed for the occasion. This is great, but when her existence is based on all ways looking good and having the finer things in life you may want to take a deeper look. While everyone should hope to have what their heart desires, if the girl you are dating seems to care more about luxury cars, designer labels, material possessions or things over people, you may want to rethink your situation.

To pick up some cool pick up lines, follow the hashtag #GetYourCurveOn or visit Curve For Men’s Facebook and Twitter page.

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24 Times When it was Better to Fake It [Infographic]http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/15/24-times-when-it-was-better-to-fake-it/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/15/24-times-when-it-was-better-to-fake-it/#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 21:01:57 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22677 MTV Faking It

Is it ever a reason to fake it? In today’s society where a mere nobody can become famous for having a fake booty, dancing like a fool on Vine or for simple posting images on Instagram of places they never been, some find it better to fake a life that they aren’t really living. Faking it is so much the norm now that MTV even has a romantic comedy series called, what else, “Faking It.” The show, which is in its second season, features two best friends who decide to come out as lesbians after numerous attempts trying to be popular. The two friends (Karma and Amy) are seduced by their newfound fame as they are immediately launched into instant celebrity status. Sounds like a reality show, right? Guess what, even reality shows are as fake as the Louis Vuitton bag your bro’s girlfriend may be carrying.

Long gone are the days where the only thing you may suspect on a girl to be fake is her boobs. In the age of autotuned Brintney Spears, people wearing fake fur, and people getting Catfished by fake dating profiles, we have to ask, should you fake it? How about you fake it to you make it? We don’t believe in anyone doing things just because, but the below infographic shows a pretty compelling argument as to how you may benefit by being a fake. What do you think?

24 Times When it was Better to Fake It
Graphic via Treetopia.

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The Most Iconic Movie Cars [Infographic]http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/15/the-most-iconic-movie-cars-infographic/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/12/15/the-most-iconic-movie-cars-infographic/#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 13:45:20 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22672 Cinematic Cars Infographic

Cars have been a quintessential part of movies for decades. From road trips to chase scenes to pile-ups, cars have often become characters themselves, as integral to the story as the hero. Americans tend to define an individual by the type of car that he or she drives, and nothing defines a movie quite like the car of the main character. Cars have been appearing in movies since the earliest days of cinema, and in all that time there are certain vehicles that have become nothing less than iconic.


“It’s got a cop motor, a 440-cubic-inch plant, it’s got cop tires, cop suspension, cop shocks. It’s a model made before catalytic converters so it’ll run good on regular gas What do you say, is it the new Bluesmobile or what?”

- Elwood Blues (Dan Aykroyd)

These vehicles are instantly recognizable and easily associated with a particular film, such as the time-traveling 1981 DeLorean DMC-12 from Back to the Future, The Italian Job’s Mini Coopers, James Bond’s Aston Martin D85 in Goldfinger, the 1959 Cadillac Miller-Meteor in Ghostbusters, or the Batmobile. Some of them are purely for transport, and some of them are symbols of the hero’s personality, but all of them are memorable.Check out the infographic below, which gives some specs, trivia, and quotes about some of the greatest cars ever to be driven in the movies.

cinematic cars infographic

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Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens Trailerhttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/28/star-wars-episode-vii-the-force-awakens-trailer/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/28/star-wars-episode-vii-the-force-awakens-trailer/#comments Fri, 28 Nov 2014 21:23:40 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22665 Star Wars The Force Awakens

The official trailer for the latest installment of Star Wars directed by J.J Abrams hit the world wide web on Black Friday and clearly there has been an awakening based on how the internet is buzzing. By the first look at the new 88-second teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, there’s a dark side, a light side, and with the awakening of the force we will see the debut of a new lightsaber which has been all the talk among diehard Star Wars fans. A continuation of the saga created by George Lucas set thirty years after 1983′s Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi, The Force Awakens will star some of the original cast members including Harrison Ford as Han Solo, Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker and Carrie Fisher will reprise her role as Princess.

The Force Awakens, opens in theaters December 18, 2015. Are you ready? We definitely are ready to check out the force when it hits theaters. Take the jump over to the official website StarWars.com for more information.

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Scion Audio Visual: Innovation Through Art [InfoGraphic]http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/28/scion-audio-visual-innovation-through-art-infographic/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/28/scion-audio-visual-innovation-through-art-infographic/#comments Fri, 28 Nov 2014 19:54:55 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22658 Scion Av Infographic Music 1

Did you know that Scion has worked with over two thousand musical artists. Scion has also filmed over 500 artists interviews and produced 100+ music videos. Scion has been a staunch supporter of musicians since it’s inception. Scion has worked with artists such as:

Steve Aoki
Over the past 20 years, Aoki has established himself as a pioneer of the EDM genre, working as a producer and DJ with worldwide recognition. He also happens to be one of our favorite DJs.

Slayer
A band whose name evokes the very essence of thrash metal, Slayer has been on the bleeding edge of the worldwide metal scene for 30 + years.

Ghostface Killah + The RZA
A legend in the hip-hop community, he is regarded as a great MC while RZA is regarded as one of the greatest record producers. Rza has also made his mark in screenwriting and acting. Both are members of the legendary group Wu Tang Clan.

READ: The Scion Experience: All New 2014 tC & Limited Edition 10 Series

Since its founding, Scion has cultivated innovation by supporting alternative music and underground culture like nobody’s business. Scion has supported underground music and arts of all type including hip-hop, graffiti, break-dancing, electro, metal, dub step, garage, and indie. They’re aware that the latest rock and roll way to call attention to this stuff would be with numbers and graphs as illustrated below.

Scion AV Infographic
Presented By Scion

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Dear Girlfriend: How Can I Escape The Friend Zone?http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/26/dear-girlfriend-how-can-i-escape-the-friend-zone/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/26/dear-girlfriend-how-can-i-escape-the-friend-zone/#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 14:12:25 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22652 Relationship Friend Zone Advice

Q: Help! She wants to be friends and I want more. How do I escape the Friend Zone?

A: Our Answer / Girl’s View: Do you REALLY want to escape the friend zone?

We believe that once you are in the Friend Zone there is a good change that there is no real way to escape the no-mans land. Whether you are desperately trying to drop hints or thinking of ways to move the relationship up a gear, when a women has her mind set on putting you in the friend zone that is not much you can do to change her mind.

If you find some courage to just go in for the kill anyway and hope for the best, we decided to help you out and solicit the advice of our good pals over at online dating site Lovestruck. They have been around the dating block a few times, plus they’ve just been awarded Best Dating Site 2014 by the UK Dating Awards…we thought this made them pretty qualified on the advice front.

According to Lovesruck.com:

The main reason men find themselves in this situation is for one of two reasons: Either she doesn’t fancy you and really does just want to be your friend (in which case you just have to suck it up and move on) or she’s feeling your shirt but just doesn’t see you as boyfriend material. Here are our top tips on escaping the Friend Zone:

Don’t be so available
Do you find yourself dropping everything at midnight to pick her up from a party? Or do you have a permanent soggy shoulder from where she has cried buckets over the latest boyfriend who let her down? It might sound tough and yes, it’s reverse psychology, but it works. If you are not always there for her, trust us, she will appreciate you more when you are. Don’t be her “go-to” person who panders to her every whim, else she will take you for granted.

Focus on you
When you have strong feelings for a female friend, the relationship is already out of balance and you are probably investing more than she is. Take a large step or three backwards. Focus on how great you are and what you bring to the table.

Treat her like a woman
Instead of treating her like one of your mates, treat her like a woman. Be gentlemanly and open doors, pull out her chair and generally lose the relaxed vibe – you might be surprised at what her reaction is.

Ramp up the competition
Have you ever found that jealousy will turn someone’s head? Ok ok, we don’t normally advocate game playing, but if you want her to look at you differently, date other women. Start by broadening your social circle and making more friends of the opposite sex. If she thinks someone else might whip you away; she is more likely to want your attention…that’s just how it goes.

Flirt
You may have thought you’ve done this already but try again. Subtly, hold her gaze for longer than you would normally (don’t be too creepy or sinister), mirror her body language or aim for some fun flirty banter and see if she reciprocates.

Be relaxed about it
Finally, the less you worry about it, the more confident and attractive you will appear. There are worse things in life than having a friend that you fancy, but that decision is all yours to make.

If you want more advice about dating, are single or are keen to find out what they can offer, head to Lovestruck.com.

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6 of The Worlds Most Bizarre Betshttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/26/6-of-the-worlds-most-bizarre-bets/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/26/6-of-the-worlds-most-bizarre-bets/#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 13:32:55 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22648 Roulette Wheel Gambling

Some people take gambling to the next level, risking huge stakes on outrageous bets. Making an impulsive bet can feel fantastic and terrifying at the same time. A quick decision like choosing to put all your money on red or black can have life-changing consequences. In celebration of these incredibly weird and impulsive bets, Ladbrokes Casino compiled a list of the some of the best stakes ever placed.

The Boob Job Bet
In 1996, Brian Zembic made a bet with his friend that he would get breast implants and keep them in for a year. He won the $100,000 bet by going under the knife and having 38C implants inserted. Not only did he keep them in for a year, but he still has them now! Apparently, he gets $10,000 every year that he keeps them in.

The End of the World
Martin Muller from London bet that the world would end on 21st December 2013 – the day prophesied by the ancient Mayan calender as the date the world as we know it would be destroyed. With odds of 5,000 to 1, Muller stood to win £50,000, which would be little comfort if there really had been an apocalypse!

All or Nothing
In 2004, 32-year-old Ashley Revell sold everything he owned, flew from the UK to Las Vegas and bet everything he had on one spin of the roulette wheel. He bet his £76,480 on the ball landing on red – and when it luckily landed on red, he won double his money.

Future of Pop Culture
In 1989, a man in Wales bet that by the year 2000, Cliff Richard would receive a knighthood, U2 would still be together and Neighbors, Home & Away and Eastenders would still be running on TV. His predication’s were spot on and he won £194,400.

Winning a Supercar
To celebrate the launch of their new site, Ladbrokes Casino gave one lucky gamer the chance to win the ultimate prize, a convertible F-Type Jaguar. To be entered in the draw, all customers had to do was deposit £50 into their account and they would have a ticket in the raffle. The eventual winner was “berndardberg”, winning a car worth 100 times more his original stake.

Scottish Referendum
A man bet that the outcome of the Scottish referendum would be ‘no’ and won £1,093,333.33. If that sounds impressive, he placed £900,000 on the bet – so really he only won £200,000. Still, that is a life-changing amount of money. Surprisingly, he said in an interview with the BBC that he wasn’t particularly nervous, because he was so confident he would win.

This list tells us that, although everyone knows that you should always bet responsibly, some people love the thrill of placing a crazy, impulsive bet. We can’t believe the craziness of some these gamblers – imagine how Ashley Revell would have felt if the roulette ball had landed on black!

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Kim Kardashian Balances A Champagne Glass On Her A** For Paper Magazinehttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/11/kim-kardashian-balances-a-champagne-glass-on-her-a-for-paper-magazine/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/11/11/kim-kardashian-balances-a-champagne-glass-on-her-a-for-paper-magazine/#comments Wed, 12 Nov 2014 05:31:27 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22635 Kim Kardashian Paper Magazine Cover

Oh Kim! They say if you got it, flaunt it. In this case, Kim Kardashian clearly said why not! Kim decided to put her best asset on full frontal view for the masses and lets just say, there are a lot of happy men.


If Kim is trying to break the internet she is off to a good start with this photo. Would you agree? Here’s another question for you: real or fake? What do you think.

Kim Kardashian Paper Magazine Cover 3

Pause! Let’s take a moment to to reflect on this Rihanna photo.

Rihanna Esquire Magazine

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Top 5 Cars Chicks Like Dudes To Drivehttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/28/top-5-cars-girls-like-dudes-to-drive/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/28/top-5-cars-girls-like-dudes-to-drive/#comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 22:38:10 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22620 Dodge Challenger

Let’s get one thing straight: a certain type of girl is impressed by the kind of car you drive. In the spirit of this dare to come up with a list that no two people will agree on, let’s evaluate the top five cars chicks like to see dudes drive. Ready?

Dodge Challenger RT Classic
2015 Dodge Challenger Srt 1
Secretly, most women (especially younger girls) love to drive fast and want to cruise with a man in a timeless powerful car. Nothing says powerful muscle man like a Dodge Challenger. What women doesn’t like a man with muscles and power, right?

A modern classic muscle car re-imagined for the 21st century, the Dodge Challenger is lean and sports a ready-for-action profile. Starting at $40,000, the Challenger lets you make a bold statement while still being affordable. The latest Dodge Challenger is available with a V6 or V8 engine and reminiscent of the original model while loaded with modern-day refinement.

The Mercedes Benz S Class
Mercedes Benz S Class White
A Mercedes S Class is for the chick who likes a classy, sophisticated, business guy who will take care of her in one of his luxury estates and fly her to Paris for breakfast. A top-of-the-line model, this car costs about $94,400 and at a price close to nearly 6 figures, it’s not exactly cheap, but at least you can be assured of finding aftermarket deals that include genuine Mercedes parts.

The S Class is available with either a rear wheel or a four wheel drive and has a 6-liter AMG V12 engine that can ramp up to 621 horsepower when the driver takes full advantage of the 7-speed automatic transmission system. This car not only offers one of the most relaxing drives, but as the brand’s flagship model, it is also one of the most iconic luxury vehicles in the world.

The Ford F-150 Raptor
Ford F150 Raptor
This car is for a chick looking for an Indiana Jones of Crocodile Dundee kind of rugged individual who eats danger for breakfast. It’s the kind of car that John Wayne would get off his horse to ride. The Ford F-150 Raptor costs about $45,000. At this price range, a dude can throw in some additional luxuries to woo his woman.

This is yet another top of the line model. Its 6.2-liter V8 engine is capable of pushing to 411 horsepower and it uses a six-speed transmission. A buyer has a choice between getting a 4WD or a rear wheel drive. And, yes, it can tow and carry a big payload, too.

The Land Rover Range Rover
Land Rover Range Rover
A Land Rover Range Rover is for a chick looking for a versatile man, one who can straddle between the savvy of a Mercedes Benz S Class and the rugged individualism of a Ford F-150 Raptor. Starting at $75,000, a dude can be assured of picking up a girl for a smooth ride in the city while handling the rigors of a countryside adventure.

The Range Rover’s engine is actually similar to the one used for a luxury Jaguar, but its body resembles that of an off-road vehicle. This car actually has two five-liter V8 engines. One is 375 horsepower. The other is 510 horsepower. The 6 speed transmission is capable of going from 0 to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds.

The Nissan Leaf
Nissan Leaf
If you are looking to attract the earthy type of girl, an electric car should be at the top of your list. A man driving a Nissan Leaf appeals to a chick looking for a kind, gentle, soulful dude who cares about the environment. The first car by a major automobile company to run entirely on electricity, the Nissan Leaf is about $33,000. At this price, a dude can afford to spend more quality time with his lady.

Driving a Nissan Leaf is as simple as just plugging it in. With a 80 kW AC synchronous electric motor, you have the ability to charge at home, at the office, or on the expanding national charging infrastructure.

There you have it, five different cars that work for five completely different types of dudes out to impress their partners.

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Interview: Kyle Larson Talks NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series, Sunoco Rookie of the Year, Hula-Hooping, And Morehttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/19/interview-kyle-larson-talks-nascars-sprint-cup-series-sunoco-rookie-hula-hooping/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/19/interview-kyle-larson-talks-nascars-sprint-cup-series-sunoco-rookie-hula-hooping/#comments Sun, 19 Oct 2014 20:44:56 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22596 Kyle Larson NASCAR

It’s very fitting for Kyle Larson to be driving the No. 42 Target car for Chip Ganassi Racing because he’s been taking aim and hitting his targets for several years now. Kyle has been racing since he was just 7, and has quickly risen through the ranks of NASCAR, making his debut in 2012 in the Camping World Truck Series, moving to the NASCAR Nationwide series in 2013 and now, just a year later, the Sprint Cup Series in 2014.

Larson, a Japanese-American, was the first Drive for Diversity participant to win a Rookie of the Year award (Nationwide Series 2013) in a NASCAR national touring series, although it’s not an added pressure in his mind…”I didn’t grow up any differently, so I don’t really think about it any differently.” He may consider himself just another driver out there, but with a stellar year, including five top-five finishes, he’s a likely contender to be the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year. That’s not easy to do, considering this year’s rookie class was one of the strongest in recent memory. Bullseye!

Although he fell short to qualify for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup this year, that’s not slowing him down. Tam-Star caught up with Kyle to discuss his life on and off the track, including his rookie campaign, the Ganassi Sound Garage project, why he takes in a little HGTV whenever possible, and his unexpected talent away from his car. We won’t spoil the fun just yet, but would you believe a hula-hoop is involved? Kyle Larson has a lot to share. He may still be a rookie in some sense this year, but he’s just getting started and on target for years of success.

Kyle Larson Racing

Tam-Star: What has been the most difficult thing about transitioning from Nationwide to Sprint Cup?

Kyle: The most difficult thing is probably the competition level is really good. Everybody in the cup series is the best at what they do. The teams are all really good, they build great race cars, so I’d just say the overall depth and quality of competition has been the toughest.

Tam-Star: Coming into the season, this rookie class is considered the deepest in many years. How do you feel about your chances of becoming the Sunoco Rookie of the Year?

Kyle: Yeah, I think our chances are really good. I haven’t really looked at the points battle, but I’m pretty sure we’re well ahead of Austin right now. We’ve had a lot of good runs, a couple of times we were even close to winning races, so I think my shot at winning the Sunoco Rookie of the Year is pretty good this year.

Tam-Star: Speaking of the Chase, let’s talk about making the Chase versus becoming Sunoco’s Rookie of the Year and winning a race. Since you did not make the Chase, at this point, which is a better consolation prize — would it be Rookie of the Year or winning a Sprint Cup race?

Kyle: What I’d like to do, I guess since I missed out on the Chase, I’d still like to get a win and win Rookie of the Year. We were close though on making the Chase, just came up a couple points shy of it. It’s a little bit disappointing, but I think if we still win Rookie of the Year and possibly win a race, it would be a successful season.

Tam-Star: I’ve interviewed my share of NASCAR drivers and I’m always worried about asking the right questions. What has been the dumbest, or shall we say the weirdest question, anyone has asked you so far?

Kyle: The weirdest question? I guess, a weird question but not really a dumb question is have you ever gone to the bathroom in your car?

Tam-Star: Yeah, I think that’s a common question.

Kyle: It’s a pretty good question for fans that maybe don’t know, but I’ve never gone to the bathroom in the car, but I know a lot of people do.

Kyle Larson Nascar Crowd

Tam-Star: Okay, what’s the craziest thing a fan has done to you?

Kyle: The craziest thing a fan has done to me? I think it was this year, I can’t remember what race it was, at Talladega maybe. A fan dressed up in like a full-on body, skin tight, white suit thing, not like a suit, but elastic around your whole body. And he had this tape around him with a big target and my name on it, which was pretty cool and different.

Tam-Star: My gosh, that’s great for the sponsor, for Target.

Let’s have a little prediction time, which four drivers do you think will be competing for the Sprint Cup when we get to Homestead in November?

Kyle: I think Brad Keselowski, Jeff Gordon, possibly Joey Logano and maybe Jimmie Johnson or Kevin Harvick.

Tam-Star: Can you talk a little about the Chip Ganassi Racing Sound Garage project that you’re working on?

Kyle: It was kind of a unique way to get millennials and kids my age and younger interested in our team and NASCAR. We had Cassadee Pope at the shop for a concert. We had a red carpet event and everything before. And me, Sage Karam and Dylan Kwasniewski, it was just we were there to have fun with the fans, take pictures, and we did like a fun Q&A on stage. I did some hula-hooping. Dylan did some lip-syncing, and Sage walked on his hands, which was pretty cool, but it was a pretty good turnout and the concert was really good.

Cassadee is a great singer. She won The Voice a few years ago. She was on Blake Shelton’s team and I definitely think it got those kids excited about what we were doing. I know a lot of the girls were interested in Dylan too, so I’m sure they’ll be around for a long time.

Tam-Star: What did you think about Mikey [Michael Waltrip] Dancing With the Stars debut?

Kyle: He’s got some good competition. He’ll have to step up his game a little bit, but he’s definitely got some guts to go on there and dance in front of a huge audience like that. I know I wouldn’t be able to do that.

Tam-Star: Yeah, Mikey is crazy. In fact, speaking of Mikey, earlier this year, when you took second place in Fontana, Mikey caught me off guard with this whole Donna Summer skit on Fox, that went viral. It was on TMZ and all these other places. I’m sure on Dancing With the Stars, if he doesn’t win, at least he’ll be funny to watch because he’s just a funny guy in general.

Kyle: I think he can make it a few rounds just by being funny. He’ll get some votes.

Tam-Star: I’m not sure if you watch TV, but if you had an opportunity to go on a reality show, which show would you go on?

Kyle: My favorite reality show is MTV The Challenge, even though I don’t think I would do very good on it. I just think it would be fun to go on there and compete.

READ: Interview: NASCAR Driver Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. Talks About His Life Off The Track, Diversity, And Winning

Tam-Star: I interviewed Bubba Wallace a couple of months ago and asked him a similar question, so I wanted to ask you…do you feel any extra pressure or obligation as a Japanese-American driver?

Kyle: No, not at all. I really don’t even think about it, to tell you the truth. I’m just another driver out there. I didn’t grow up any differently, so I don’t really think about it any differently.

Tam-Star: Gotcha. What’s a typical day like for you?

Kyle: A typical day? I don’t know, nothing too crazy. We only get to spend a few days home a week, so I like to just really hang around my apartment and do nothing. Right now, my house that I bought recently is being remodeled, so we’ll go up there once or twice a week to check on that and meet with the interior decorator, the contractor.

Then when we come home at night, some HGTV to help get some ideas and things like that, and other than that, not a whole lot, maybe going to the lake or something if it’s nice outside.

Tam-Star: Okay, sounds like you’re a pretty chill guy. I’m sure you’ve had this question already, but I’ll ask. I once read Jeff Gordon is your favorite driver growing up. What was it like racing him the way you did in Chicago?


Kyle: Yeah, Jeff is somebody a lot of people looked up to when they were young. To race Jeff Gordon like that for I guess it was a second place finish at the time, it was cool. It’s not anything you think about while you’re battling him, but once you get done and people point it out, you kind of think about it and realize how cool and special it is. And I’ve seen a lot of people say it reminded them of Dale Earnhardt battling Jeff Gordon when he was first coming onto the scene, so that part of it made it really cool.

Tam-Star: Speaking of legends, if you could do a ride-a-long with a legendary NASCAR driver, who would you pick?

Kyle: A legendary NASCAR driver, does it have to be in a NASCAR?

Tam-Star: No.

Kyle: I think it would be fun to go ride in a two-seater Sprint car with Tony Stewart. I think that would be a lot of fun.

Tam-Star: Well, let me tell you I like you Kyle because Tony Stewart is my favorite driver. I have to put that out there.

Kyle: Yeah, he’s cool.

Tam-Star: What would you like people to best remember you as when your career is over?

Kyle: Somebody that raced really hard and never gave up, and raced with a lot of heart. And somebody who was really good in a lot of different types of vehicles because I like to race a lot of stuff besides the NASCAR stuff. So just being known as somebody who never gave up and was pretty versatile in everything they got in.

Tam-Star: If you weren’t driving for a living, what do you think you would do?

Kyle: I honestly have no answer. I’ve been doing this my whole life and have never really been good at anything else or thought about being anything else, so I don’t know what I would be doing.

READ: Interview: Jamie McMurray Talks NASCAR, Winning Daytona 500, Danica Patrick’s Daytona Debut, And Washing His Hands 40 Times A Day

Tam-Star: Last question and I’ll tie it into your teammate, Jamie McMurray. When I interviewed him he told me that people would be surprised to know he washes his hands 40 times a day.

Kyle: Oh, yeah, he’s a super germ-a-phobe.

Tam-Star: What would people be surprised to know about you?

Kyle: Well, up until recently, I think people would be surprised to know that I like lettuce a lot, but I’m pretty sure it’s well known now. And being able to hula-hoop is another thing. Up until this year I thought it was a secret, but I do it every week now it seems like at sponsor appearances. So I don’t know, let me ask my girlfriend really quick?

I like to sing karaoke. Yeah, we can go with I like to sing karaoke when I don’t remember it the next day.

Tam-Star: That’s interesting. You should probably talk to Serena Williams. If you ever have a chance to meet her, she’s like a huge karaoke person. She’s known to go to karaoke in other countries, from what I hear.

Kyle: Oh, really? Well, if I ever meet her, I’ll bring that up.

Tam-Star: Invite her out, but make sure you bring your girlfriend. It could get interesting.

For more information on Kyle, please visit his official website kylelarsonracing.com and ChipGanassiRacing.com. You can also follow Kyle on Twitter @KyleLarsonRacin. For Kyle’s racing stats, make sure to take the jump over to NASCAR.com.

Disclaimer: This post has been submitted to a NASCAR sponsored program

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Tam-Star’s NFL Week 7 Pick Em’http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/19/tam-stars-nfl-week-7-pick-em-3/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/19/tam-stars-nfl-week-7-pick-em-3/#comments Sun, 19 Oct 2014 17:00:35 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22591 Tam Star NFL Football Picks 4

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for me and my J-E-T-S! Thanks to a good friend that plays for the San Diego Super Chargers, I had an opportunity to see my J-E-T-S get shut out up close and personal in week 5. I also had an opportunity to visit NYC in week 6. Going into week 7 with a loosing record (me and my J-E-T-S), I hope to snap back into it and WIN WIN WIN!

The mid season trade between the Jets and the Seahawks may prove to be the spark needed to get the Jets back on track. For me, I’m hoping to put the last two weeks behind me. Between my NFL and NASCAR Chase For The Sprint Cup “Chase Grid” picks, it’s been anything short of a toss up on any given Sunday.

San Diego Chargers Game

Below are my straight picks for week 1. Drink and pick responsibly!

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 15
New England 27
NY Jets 25

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 19
Atlanta
Baltimore

Tennessee
Washington

Seattle
St. Louis

Cleveland
Jacksonville

Cincinnati
Indianapolis

Minnesota
Buffalo

Miami
Chicago

New Orleans
Detroit

Carolina
Green Bay

Kansas City
San Diego

Arizona
Oakland

NY Giants
Dallas

San Francisco
Denver

MONDAY, OCTOBER 20
Houston
Pittsburgh

Pick Em’ Results (week 6): DNP
Pick Em’ Results (Season – DNP week 5 & 6): 28-33

About me: I am a producer, managing editor, amateur photographer, aspiring professional bowler, and all around Jane of all trades. I am creative, quirky, and clearly a little offbeat. I blame my obsession with sports gambling and picking parlays on an ex-boyfriend. Funny thing is that’s all he was good for.

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What Makes a Good Pair of Wireless Headphones?http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/04/what-makes-a-good-pair-of-wireless-headphones/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/10/04/what-makes-a-good-pair-of-wireless-headphones/#comments Sat, 04 Oct 2014 09:59:57 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22585 Outdoor Tech Wireless Headphones

Wireless technology is truly coming into its own. Soon, the majority of cords and cables will likely be replaceable by radio signals and other remote connections. For those looking to purchase a new pair of headphones, this means that wireless options should be strongly considered. To get the most convenience and versatility out of the wireless design, consider Outdoor Tech products. These wireless headphones are able to provide a high-quality user experience, largely thanks to the basics of their design and the advantages afforded by it.

How Do These Headphones Work?

Rather than receiving audio material through a physical connection to a source, a wireless set of headphones picks up audio signals remotely. This transmission can be achieved in different ways; Outdoor Tech headphones, for example, predominantly utilize Bluetooth. With this approach, the audio source – a phone, laptop, or whatever the case may be – will transmit low-power radio signals at a frequency of around 2.45 gigahertz. Because these signals are so weak, they only minimally tax the battery life of the headphones and the audio source. This means that these cordless headphones can retain charge for as many as six hours of constant use and 150 hours on standby.

Many older audio sources will not have Bluetooth capability; however, upgrading to cordless headphones does not have to mean discarding these devices. In order to ensure that the headphones can be compatible with as many different devices as possible, many of them come with a 3.5 millimeter auxiliary cable that can connect the headphones to the audio source via the audio jack.

Outdoor Tech Wireless Headphones 2

What Are the Advantages to The Wireless Design?

Of course, eliminating the need for wires creates a vastly improved user experience. The lack of wires connecting the headphones to the audio source is advantageous for several key reasons:

It affords maneuverability within the headphones’ range, freeing the user to move about without needing to keep the audio source in tow. Rather than having to be within three feet and physically connected to the audio source via wires, cordless headphones allow you to listen when you are up to 30 feet from the source.

The phone, laptop, or other audio transmitting device – many of which are expensive and fragile – can be better protected. No direct line of sight is necessary for the headphones to pick up the audio signal, which allows for the audio source to be tucked away somewhere safe while you go about your business, rain or shine.

No wires mean no mess of tangles to deal with every time the headphones are brought out to use. Headphone wires are so prone to tangling into knots whenever you put them away because of the ratio of their thickness to length. Making the cords thicker or shorter can reduce the incidence of tangles; taking the cords away entirely and going wireless eliminates the problem altogether.

The Wonders of Wireless

In the end, quality wireless headphones from Outdoor Tech provide maneuverability, safe conditions for audio sources, and overall convenience in ways corded headphones cannot. For this reason, the wireless model is becoming an increasingly popular choice.

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Tam-Star’s NFL Week 4 Pick Em’http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/28/tam-stars-nfl-week-4-pick-em-3/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/28/tam-stars-nfl-week-4-pick-em-3/#comments Sun, 28 Sep 2014 16:24:59 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22560 Tam Star NFL Football Picks 4

The season is going quickly. Can you believe it’s already the 4th week. How’s your team doing? Are they everything you thought they would be?

Below are my straight picks for week 1. Drink and pick responsibly!

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 25
NY Giants 45
Washington 14

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 28
Green Bay
Chicago

Buffalo
Houston

Tennessee
Indianapolis

Carolina
Baltimore

Detroit
NY Jets

Tampa Bay
Pittsburgh

Miami
Oakland

Jacksonville
San Diego

Atlanta
Minnesota

Philadelphia
San Francisco

New Orleans
Dallas

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 29
New England
Kansas City

Tam-Star’s NFL Pick Em’ week 3 picks.

Pick Em’ Results (week 3): 9-7
Pick Em’ Results (Season): 23-25

About me: I am a producer, managing editor, amateur photographer, aspiring professional bowler, and all around Jane of all trades. I am creative, quirky, and clearly a little offbeat. I blame my obsession with sports gambling and picking parlays on an ex-boyfriend. Funny thing is that’s all he was good for.

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Ready. Set. Drive A 2015 Volkswagen.http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/27/ready-set-drive-a-2015-volkswagen/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/27/ready-set-drive-a-2015-volkswagen/#comments Sat, 27 Sep 2014 20:31:48 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22566 Volkswagen Golf Front

READY

When you get an email from Volkswagen the world’s leading automobile manufacturers inviting you to preview their full 2015 line of cars, your fingers quickly leave their keyboard stance and instead, they’re curled around that steering wheel in your mind, fully ready to take on your imagination’s anticipation of such an opportunity. When Volkswagen presented their 2015 models at a memorable event in Virginia, we were on hand with other media members to be among the first to get a good look at these impressive automobiles. Lucky for us, the venue was also a wonderful choice, the beautiful Salamander Resort and Spa in Middleburg, Virginia, a must-see for any visit to the area.

2015 Volkswagen Full Line

The resort offers the refined sophistication of a luxurious country estate in Virginia’s exclusive horse and wine country, 40 miles from Washington, D.C. It was the perfect spot for the presentation of Volkswagen’s namesake lineup of cars and an exciting opportunity to spend an afternoon test driving the newest models on the rolling hills of the Virginia countryside as part of the Full-Line Drive event.

The Volkswagen group is comprised of 12 brands including Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini and Porsche (our personal favorite in ultimate sports cars), just to name a few. In good company with some of the worlds most beloved cars, we quickly learned why the Volkswagen has affordable “sophistication” with character and charm.

SET

In such an ideal setting, you forget your minutes from our nation’s capital. The Salamander Resort and Spa is beautiful and peaceful. Set in the shadows of the Bull Run Mountains, the manicured lawns, equestrian center and green meadows seem days from the commotion and whirlwind just 40 miles away in Washington, DC.

The resort proved to be an awesome place to learn more about Volkswagen and what to expect from the 2015 fleet of cars, including their first-ever electric vehicle, the 2015 e-Golf. On our first day, we explored the resort, overlooked the countryside from the Middleburg Terrace, then moved inside for a tasteful dinner reception, mingling and conversing with some of the executives, product managers and marketing folks behind Volkswagen’s cleaver ads.

Later, we were treated to some late night outdoor hospitality. Complete with a campfire, s’mores and roasting marshmallows, we felt like we had taken the Volkswagen e-Golf parked nearby to a weekend getaway camping trip. The crowd reflected Volkswagen’s diverse set of drivers, accommodating a variety of driving preferences and lifestyle needs of everyone from auto guys, to mommy bloggers, men’s lifestyle writers, and many others in between. We felt proud to be included and enjoyed the evening, but of course, we were anxious to get behind the wheels the next morning.

DRIVE

After spending the night in our charming room with picturesque views, it was finally time to take in the views of Middleburg and Loudoun, VA from behind the wheel of choice picks from the 2015 product line. Volkswagen gave us a very informative product presentation, then it was time to hit the road. We drove VW’s new 2015 Jetta to our first stop, the beautiful Great Country Farms, where we picked some peaches and learned all about how wine is made. That test-drive quickly proved to us why the Jetta is Volkswagen’s best-selling sedan.

We “jetted” a bit further in the Jetta to lunch in Purcellville at Magnolias at the Mill, aka “Maggies”, for a delicious lunch under the impressive timbers and interior of the much loved restaurant. After lunch, we received a brief overview of other VW models before we hopped into are next test drive, the VW e-Golf. We absolutely loved everything about this car. It was such a fun ride, we even lost track and got lost for a short time, but thanks to the handy navigation system, we got to our destination without further delay. We loved how the e-Golf handled on the scenic route beyond Purcellville.

2015 JETTA: VOLKSWAGEN’S BEST-SELLING SEDAN, REFINED
Volkswagen 2015 Jetta
The Jetta holds the crown as Volkswagen’s current best-selling car, a title that owes some thanks to the success of the sixth-generation model, released in 2011. Now for 2015, Volkswagen presents its refined, redesigned Jetta. The 2015 Jetta is offered in three trim levels—Base, S, SE, and SEL—with a total of 12 equipment levels starting and a starting Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of just $16,215. New styling, enhanced content, driver assistance systems, and improved fuel efficiency head the updates for the 2015 model year.

2015 E-GOLF: VERSATILE, FUN-TO-DRIVE, AND WITH ZERO TAILPIPE EMISSIONS
Volkswagen Golf
The 2015 e-Golf is Volkswagen’s first fully electric vehicle for the U.S. market and joins the burgeoning Golf family of multifaceted, sporty hatchbacks, starting at $35,445. The most versatile Electric Vehicle in its class, the e-Golf is the first zero tailpipe emissions, fully electric version of Volkswagen’s Golf. The e-Golf SEL Premium features will include, 115 hp, 199 lb-ft electric motor, 1-speed transmission, 24.2 kWh lithium-ion battery, 7.2kW onboard charger, keyless access, touchscreen radio/navigation system w/8 speakers, CD, MDI with iPod® integration, Bluetooth® connectivity, SiriusXM® Satellite Radio; VW Car-Net® connected services, front and rear Park Distance Control, a rearview camera, and more.

DRIVE A 2015 VOLKSWAGEN

They say Virginia is for lovers and we know now that it’s true. We fell in love with the Volkswagen e-Golf and truly enjoyed our time learning about the full line of 2015 Volkswagen automobiles while taking a few of them for a spin on the scenic roads between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Chesapeake Bay. Although we weren’t able to drive every car, those we did had great handling, provided a smooth ride, and maybe most importantly, looked great in any setting — at a lush resort, a great American hotspot for lunch, or providing an exciting ride through the Virginia countryside.

Volkswagen certainly continued their reputation for providing top-notch quality in everything they do and we appreciated the opportunity to be a part of all the excitement. To learn more about Volkswagen’s 2015 full line up, make sure you visit Volkswagen.com. Stay a part of all the action on Twitter and Instagram by following the hashtag #VWDrive. It’s a drive you won’t soon forget!

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4 Fantastic Fall Getaways + 4 Travel Essentials To Packhttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/24/4-fantastic-fall-getaways-and-travel-essentials/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/24/4-fantastic-fall-getaways-and-travel-essentials/#comments Wed, 24 Sep 2014 13:13:01 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22545 Fall Travel Essentials

Fall is a fantastic time to visit those popular summer destinations for one simple reason: the price is right. Summer is over, kids are back to school and most adults are also back at their desks, making it the perfect time for a getaway to that dream location you have always wanted to visit.

Fall weather is ideal in so many destinations around the world — it’s not too hot, it’s not too cold — so it’s perfect for relaxing, without the extremes of sizzling sun or freezing blizzards. Fall has long been considered off-peak for tourism, but when you really consider the benefits of the season, we’re not sure why that is. With less expensive flights and more affordable rooms (not to mention smaller crowds), there is no downside.

We’ve got our top four destinations for an unforgettable Fall getaway listed below, plus the essentials to make the most of your time in each location. As you put together your Autumn adventures, consider these locations and recommended items to enhance your time away:

1. Hawaii
Hawaii Travel

Whether it’s a romantic getaway or family vacation, Hawaii is always an attractive destination. Known as the 50th state, Hawaii is the only state that consists entirely of islands, so it’s a destination that rivals the best of them around the world. Whether you choose the Big Island, Maui, or a smaller spot like Lanai, traveling to Hawaii is like traveling to paradise. Fall provides the same tranquil waters, exciting water sports, hiking to get in touch with nature, and all the same adventure or relaxation you’ll find in June or July.

Travel Essential: A Camera

Exploring Hawaii without a camera is like sleeping through a baseball game. Don’t do it. Take any camera you’ve got, but consider a DSLR camera to capture all the beauty of the islands (it really will be more beautiful than you expect). If you’re a novice photographer, consider the Canon T3i Rebel. It’s affordable and easy to use, so you’ll capture those picturesque locations and possibly produce your best vacation masterpiece yet. And you don’t have to settle for still shots only, with an enhanced ease-of-use professional video-making tool, you’ll get full HD video to replay over and over when you’re stuck inside next winter and want to relive the sound of the ocean or the color of Hawaii’s tropical plants…you’ll forget the grey drab of winter, if only for a few marvelous minutes.

2. Mexico
Cabo Mexico Travel
Mexico is not just for spring break. With a rich history and varied landscapes, there’s much to see and do in Mexico. There are the beachfront resorts of Cancun, Cozumel, or Cabo San Lucas – beautiful hotels and luxury villas — but for the more adventurous types or those with a interest in centuries past, Oaxaca and Tulum offer ruins to explore and native customs for a sense of the country’s true culture.

There are coral reefs, colonial cities, sandy beaches, and, of course, the delicious cuisine of Mexico. The country caters to all types, so if you’re looking for a laid-back getaway in a quaint setting like Puerto Vallarta or want to experience some cliff diving in Acapulco (even if you’re only watching those who might be a bit braver than you), you’re sure to see there’s more to Mexico than your typical night out at the restaurant down the street. Margaritas with chips and salsa are great the rest of the year, but take a siesta south of the border this Fall in marvelous Mexico.

Travel Essential: Touch eReader

There’s much to see and do in Mexico, as we just mentioned, but you’ll no doubt have some downtime relaxing by the ocean or some elaborate resort pool. Even for die-hard paperback readers, an e-reader is a great investment. It takes up a lot less space in the suitcase and it is very portable from home, to the airplane, to your beach chair.

If you’re a big reader, consider the Kobo eReader Touch Edition for your Fall getaway. With a store of 2.2 million books (including over a million free books) you’ll be a bookworm beach side, bar side (tequila goes great with many titles), and bed side. And with adjustable font sizes, you’ll see things perfectly.

For you more technical types, know that the Kobo also reads various formats, including EPUB, PDF and MOBI for ebooks; JPEG, GIF, PNG, and TIFF for images; TXT, HTML, XHTML and RTF for text; and CBZ and CBR for comic books. Read your books, catch up on your favorite magazines, don’t miss visual aids with colorful, detailed images.

3. Hong Kong
Hong Kong Travel
Hong Kong is frequently at the top of travel magazines’ lists of world’s greatest cities. It’s a densely populated metropolis that’s colorful and vibrant, making it a must-see for those who enjoy a getaway full of hustle and bustle. It’s a sophisticated fusion of the east and the west, often called a “controlled frenzy.”

Hong Kong has cultural influences of Cantonese, Mandarin and British. In fact, the Chinese took rule over the city from the British less than 20 years ago. It’s now considered the main gateway to China, with glitzy shopping and skyscrapers, making it a grand getaway destination for a variety of experiences: there are luxury accommodations, family tours, sight seeing, ferry rides, and much more, including food tasting all of the vibrant flavors of Hong Kong, the culinary capital of Asia.

Travel Essential: MP3 Player

Traveling to Asia requires a very long flight and once you arrive, you will probably take public transportation. Hong Kong has one of the most sophisticated public transportation systems in the world and having a MP3 player can prove to be ideal as you are touring the concrete jungle. An excellent option is the small and sleek Apple iPod Mini. You can take hundreds of choices with you, so you can spend your time moving about enjoying your favorite music, podcasts or audiobook.

With a long battery life of up to 15 hours, it will cover a very long flight or multiple days of short trips around town. The iPod mini is portable and wearable, but also slips in your pocket or handbag for safekeeping when not in use.

4. Germany
Munich Germany Oktoberfest
Germany is also considered a first rate travel destination. It’s a country full of history, art and culture. A Fall getaway there provides absolutely gorgeous countryside, from the Alps to the Baltic Sea. The scenic views and colorful displays of nature are German culture.

Given it’s location in the middle of the continent, Germany is gateway to both Eastern and Western Europe. It’s a country with plenty of old world charm as well as modern urban cities, including Berlin and it’s many famous sites, such as wi-fi the Reichstag and Berlin Television Tower (the city’s tallest building).

Of course, with it’s twisting rivers, snow capped mountains, castles set among stone towers and colorful trees, almost anywhere in Germany is beautiful come Fall, but Oktoberfest in Munich is probably our first recommendation. Oktoberfest is the world’s largest fair with six million visitors from all over the world, it’s the place to drink beer, eat sausage, join together in song, and, of course, break out your Lederhosen. The 16-day festival is a celebration of Bavarian culture and tradition…and a beer drinker’s dream.

Travel Essential: iPad Mini

Access to Wi-Fi is pretty much essential for everyday life, but especially when you’re thousands of miles from home in a country that speaks a different language. You need access. Whether you want to brush up on your German, research tourist hot spots or get directions from one site to the next, connection is essential. Laptops are heavy and cumbersome for traveling, so consider the easily portable iPad Mini. You’ll have internet access, FaceTime to update loved ones back home, as well as the iPad Mini’s HD camera and for still shots and 1080p HD videos with its stunning 5-megapixel iSight capabilities. With an incredible battery life of 10 hours, you can tote the compact device all day, documenting your travels, without getting weighed down.

The iPad also doubles as an eBook reader, but who reads when there’s beer to drink, brats to eat, and brass band music for singing and dancing (say Oompah, not Polka, to be an informed visitor).

READ: Every Guy Should Have These Items On Their Travel Packing List

Don’t let Fall become Winter without that well-deserved getaway. Summer is for school vacation and entertaining the kids, but Fall provides an affordable, attractive and more sophisticated opportunity to relax and visit those destinations you’ve only dreamed of. Take our suggested travel essentials along for good measure and who knows, maybe September and October getaways will become your standard pre-holiday tradition for years to come.

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Tam-Star’s NFL Week 3 Pick Em’http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/21/tam-stars-nfl-week-3-pick-em-3/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/21/tam-stars-nfl-week-3-pick-em-3/#comments Sun, 21 Sep 2014 15:24:29 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22542 Tam Star NFL Football Picks 4

Do I really need to recap the past week in the NFL. Ray Rice, Greg Hardy, Jonathan Dwyer, Adrian Peterson, and Roger Goodell trying to save race; need I say more? It may be time to consider replacing Goodell. He never seems to handle these scandals correctly. It’s been a rough week and the league has taken a beating (pun intended) for the reckless actions of a few; however, they way Goodell has dropped the ball proves that it may be time for him to go. There is a cool article, Top 10 Replacements for NFL Commissioner that suggests some very interesting candidates for the Commish’s job including Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. Who would you replace him with?

Below are my straight picks for week 1. Drink and pick responsibly!

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 18
Atlanta 56
Tampa Bay 14

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 21
Houston
NY Giants

Tennessee
Cincinnati

Oakland
New England

San Diego
Buffalo

Dallas
St. Louis

Washington
Philadelphia

Minnesota
New Orleans

Baltimore
Cleveland

Green Bay
Detroit

Indianapolis
Jacksonville

San Francisco
Arizona

Denver
Seattle

Kansas City
Miami

Pittsburgh
Carolina

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 22
Chicago
NY Jets

Tam-Star’s NFL Pick Em’ week 2 picks.

Pick Em’ Results (week 2): 7-9
Pick Em’ Results (Season): 14-18

About me: I am a producer, managing editor, amateur photographer, aspiring professional bowler, and all around Jane of all trades. I am creative, quirky, and clearly a little offbeat. I blame my obsession with sports gambling and picking parlays on an ex-boyfriend. Funny thing is that’s all he was good for.

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Tam-Star’s NFL Week 2 Pick Em’http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/13/tam-stars-nfl-week-2-pick-em-2/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/13/tam-stars-nfl-week-2-pick-em-2/#comments Sun, 14 Sep 2014 06:48:50 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22523 Tam Star NFL Football Picks 4

“Sunglasses and advil last night was mad real.” Kayne had a point, but in the NFL, last week was real. From the Adrian Peterson being indicted and charged with child abuse to the never-ending drama with the Ray Rice situation, the NFL dominated TMZ. Do we dare mention the New England Patriots got beat by Miami. What it the NFL is going on? Yeah, it was the first week, so we will put all that behind us including going 7-9 last week. Yikes. By the way, am I the only one who hates Thursday NFL games?

Below are my straight picks for week 1. Drink and pick responsibly!
 

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 11
Pittsburgh Steelers
Ravens

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 14
Miami
Buffalo

Jacksonville
Washington

Dallas
Tennessee

Arizona
NY Giants

New England
Minnesota

New Orleans
Cleveland

Atlanta
Cincinnati

Detroit
Carolina

St. Louis
Tampa Bay

Seattle
San Diego

Houston
Oakland

NY Jets
Green Bay

Kansas City
Denver

Chicago
San Francisco

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 15
Philadelphia
Indianapolis

Tam-Star’s NFL Pick Em’ week 1 picks.

Pick Em’ Results (week 1): 7-9
Pick Em’ Results (Season): 7-9

About me: I am a producer, managing editor, amateur photographer, aspiring professional bowler, and all around Jane of all trades. I am creative, quirky, and clearly a little offbeat. I blame my obsession with sports gambling and picking parlays on an ex-boyfriend. Funny thing is that’s all he was good for.

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2014 NASCAR Chase For The Sprint Cup “Chase Grid” #MyChaseNationhttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/13/2014-nascar-chase-for-the-sprint-cup-championship-chase-grid-mychasenation/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/13/2014-nascar-chase-for-the-sprint-cup-championship-chase-grid-mychasenation/#comments Sat, 13 Sep 2014 22:51:45 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22527 NASCAR Chase Grid

NASCAR is kicking off their Chase For the Sprint Cup with a new format and a new “Chase Grid.” NASCAR’s Chase is like no other playoff in sports. The Chase Grid looks very much like a basketball bracket, but it’s much more than that. It’s not a bracket, it’s a grid!

NASCAR always does things a bit different. After all, it’s NASCAR. For those that don’t follow the sport, NASCAR announced a radically new championship format earlier this year that put greater emphasis on winning races. NASCAR’s Chase playoff format expanded on the Chase field from 12 drivers to 16 drivers competing for the coveted champion title.

In the first playoff round (The Challenger Round), each of the 16 drivers will compete in 3 races before 4 drivers are eliminated. If a driver wins one of the races, he will automatically advance to the next round of 12. Points will decide the rest of the spots. In the second round (The Contender Round), 12 drivers will compete in 3 races. 4 more drivers will be eliminated, but like in the previous round if a driver wins one of the races, he will automatically advance. 8 drivers will compete in the third round (Eliminator Round) with 4 drivers advancing to the championship race in Miami. The winner of the final race will be crowned the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion. Sounds easy, right?

If you are still unsure how the new NASCAR Chase format works, don’t worry. NASCAR has you covered with a very delightful video explaining all you need to know.

VIDEO: Spreading The Word – The all-new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup

As NASCAR fans, we couldn’t resist jumping in on the action. Check out our picks blow and make sure to check back each round to see how we are doing.

Tam Star 2014 Nascar Chase Grid

Make sure to visit NASCAR.com/chase to learn more about NASCAR’s Chase for The Sprint Cup and follow the hashtag #MyChaseGrid to catch up on all the action.

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Reddit Releases The Ask Me Anything Apphttp://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/07/reddit-releases-the-ask-me-anything-app/ http://mankindunplugged.com/2014/09/07/reddit-releases-the-ask-me-anything-app/#comments Sun, 07 Sep 2014 16:37:31 +0000 http://mankindunplugged.com/?p=22502 Reddit Ask Me Anything App Review

Keep up with your favorite celebrities and notable figures anytime, anywhere with Ask Me Anything – the official Reddit AMA app. Reddit’s Ask Me Anything question and answer forum, which features interviews with all of today’s trendiest pop culture stars is now available as an app to help users easily browse popular interviews. The modern-day interviews, where the Internet asks the questions while movie stars, comedians and popular public figures sit in the virtual hot seat gives everyone an opportunity to participate.

The Ask Me Anything app is available for the iPhone and the Android platform. The app helps to organize the thread as the Q+A conversations bounce around between topics ranging from the random to the hot-button big ones. With the AMA app, you’ll tune into unconventional chats and pocket some juicy tidbits you’d never get from Google.

Reddit Ask Me Anything App Review 2

If you want to become a king of small talk and stay up on the latest trends, join the conversation. Download the app, and take your easy-reading entertainment everywhere you go.

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