49ers mailbag: 20 questions answered in hurry-up mode

first_imgSANTA CLARA – Fresh off a rare win, the 49ers next get a chance to spoil the Seattle Seahawks’ playoff pursuit. But first let’s answer 20 questions in hurry-up mode for this week’s 49ers mailbag, as fielded via Twitter and Instagram:1. Why didn’t they pass Kittle the ball in the second half? (@ortiz_a49)Kyle Shanahan gave a 375-word answer to this Monday. Simply put: He tried calling George Kittle’s number, the Broncos adjusted their scheme, and (stuff) happens when winning is the top …last_img read more

‘La vita’ looks ‘bella’ for Debora Patta

first_imgFrom left to right, IWW award winnersFerdinando Pezzoli, Lara Mazzoni, DeboraPatta, Tiziana Grassi, Marco Folegani,and Elena Maria Teresa Calligaro.(Image: IWW) MEDIA CONTACTS • Michelle KirbyE.tv Head of Marketing+27 11 537 9300RELATED ARTICLES• Media awards for SA women• Rhodes hosts world journalism meet• The media and open justice• Jacob Zuma on press freedom• Turning up the media volumeFiona McRae“La vita”, it would appear, is pretty “bella” right now for South African television journalist and media personality Debora Patta.Not only did the Zimbabwe-born anchor and executive producer of e.tv’s hard-hitting investigative programme 3rd Degree add yet another award to her collection last month, but she seems to be revelling in a career decision of a year ago to free up some time so as to be able to concentrate more fully on her “two real passions”: journalism and her family. Happily married to her second husband, Patta is the mother of two young daughters.And it would seem that, like many women her age, the 40-something Patta is discovering the liberation and confidence that the years can bring.“The best thing about this age is no longer caring what other people think of you,” she is quoted as saying in a recent edition of a fashion chain’s club magazine. “I’ve learnt not to be so hung up on people who don’t like you.”The fact that the apparently always self-assured and assertive Patta has ever lacked confidence might well come as a surprise to 3rd Degree viewers who have seen her courageously and tenaciously hold those in positions of power and responsibility to account.Famous for her tough, no-nonsense approach she has had heads of state, politicians, business leaders and many others in the hot seat on the show in the decade that it has been in existence – but has also told the stories of the ordinary person in the street with compassion.Patta has featured high-profile figures such as African National Congress Youth League president Julius Malema, the late political leader Eugene Terre’Blanche who, she says, is the only person to have walked out of an interview, businessman Cyril Ramaphosa, President Jacob Zuma, axed Ekurhuleni police chief Robert McBride, and former president Thabo Mbeki.Winning formula Patta’s unrelenting pursuit of not only answers but also excellence in a journalism career spanning two decades has garnered her respect and recognition stretching beyond the country’s borders. Already the winner of multiple accolades, including a 2010 South Africa’s Most Influential Women in Business and Government category award and the 2009 Vodacom Women in the Media award, Patta was honoured by the Italian Women in the World (IWW) association last month when she received a Tricolor Globe Award at a ceremony held in Bologna, Italy.The IWW is a global networking association. Its awards recognise the achievements of men and women of Italian origins, or of Italians working abroad or in Italy for other countries, who have attained outstanding career success within “creative and innovative global industries” such as communication and events; art and design; performing arts; alternative energies and recyclable products; information and communication technologies; science, research, technology and engineering; and tourism.Six achievers from Asia, Africa, South America and Europe were recognised in this year’s awards. Patta was honoured for her “achievements, excellence and contribution to society in the communications field in Africa”.The main goal of the award, according to IWW founder and president Patrizia Angelini, “is to promote the important role of compatriots and other Italians who work abroad, through the spreading of personal success stories and highlighting the cultural and entrepreneurial effort.”Angelini, a television journalist for Italian broadcasting corporation RAI International, founded the association in 2007 after her work brought her into contact with the larger Italian community around the world and she conceived the idea of creating a network to facilitate their international communication.The awards project, which has the support of the Italian government, is active in promoting the “excellence, enterprise and beauty” of Italy and its culture and the Made in Italy brand internationally. This is done through on-line and television information and through events including seminars, international awards and intercultural exchanges.“It is a great honour to be recognised by my country of origin,” said Patta, who owes her Italian heritage to her Calabrian father. “I am extremely proud of my Italian roots, so this is very exciting.”Patta has previously said that while South Africa is where her heart is, Italy is indeed her second home. And like most good Italians, she loves cooking “fabulous Italian food” and relaxing with family, friends and a glass of fine wine.Team effortAlways mindful of the team effort required for the success of the current affairs show that draws close to 2-million viewers, she said: “It is also a great tribute to 3rd Degree and e.tv as they are regarded as making a significant contribution in Africa.”E.tv’s channel head Monde Twala paid tribute to Patta, saying that “Debora is a committed journalist and executive producer who continually aims to better and uplift society by exposing the truth and keeping the public informed. 3rd Degree has been successful for the past 10 years and e.tv congratulates Debora for her ongoing investigative success.”With a career of more than 20 years spanning radio, television and writing – she has co-authored two non-fiction books – Patta is one of the most prominent and respected journalists in South Africa, having reported fearlessly on virtually every major story in the country during that time. She became well known for her extensive coverage of Nelson Mandela from his release from prison to his election as South Africa’s first black head of state – the warm relationship they developed led to her being dubbed his favourite reporter.During her time with e.tv since its inception in 1998 Patta has trained, developed and mentored many budding young television journalists and news anchors. She also led the team that launched South Africa’s first 24-hour news service.Known for her no-holds-barred interviewing and for being unafraid to ask the tough questions, Patta maintains that she has never felt her achievements were limited because she is a woman. Indeed, in receiving the Vodacom Women in the Media award last year she had a strong message for young women: “Don’t just knock on the door, bash it down!”But she does acknowledge the sometimes harsh truth that “women are so often seen as aggressive while men doing the same thing are regarded as tough, assertive, uncompromising”.While Patta too has come under fire from those who feel her style of interviewing is too aggressive and not diplomatic enough, there is no doubt that she has brought many sinister cases to light, which might otherwise have continued to harm society.She admits that finding the balance between career and family can be a tough challenge – and one she handles better at some times than at others. She finds release from the pressures of her “adrenaline-all-the-way” job through “strong coping mechanisms, trying to stay healthy and a supportive family”. A year ago she resigned from the demanding position as editor-in-chief of eNews to be able to concentrate more fully on 3rd Degree and her two real loves, journalism and her family.“You can’t change the world, but you can make a difference to someone,” Patta has said. Over the years, the woman described as having “a unique front row in South Africa’s history” has done that many times over.last_img read more

A winning wors recipe

first_imgPiet Nkambule is the 2012 Shoprite boerewors champion, he was crowned by the supermarkets chain after tasting his traditional wors at their annual competition.Piet Nkambule, top of podium, is 2012’s best boerwors maker. (Image: Shoprite)Wilma den HartighPiet Nkambule from Newcastle in Kwazulu-Natal makes South Africa’s best boerewors. He was selected as the winner of the 2012 Shoprite Checkers Championship Boerewors Competition, an annual event hosted by the supermarket group to identify the country’s best traditional boerewors recipe.Before Nkambule made it into the top 10, his award-winning recipe was put to the test and tasted by a panel of high profile food experts. Over a period of four months, the judges tasted thousands of pieces of boerewors across the country to find a recipe that stands out.Nkambule’s recipe was selected from more than 1 000 entries that went through three rounds of elimination.Martin Kobald, one of the judges, who is a chef and honorary past president of the South African Chefs Association (SACA), says Nkambule’s boerewors recipe was exactly what the judges were looking for.“It had an authentic flavour and you could taste the coriander and cloves nicely,” Kobald explains. “When it was cooked the combination of flavours unfolded better than others.”Another judge of the competition and executive chef, Jeff Schueremans, says the winning boerewors had a prominent beef and pork flavour. “That was the best one of all of them,” Schueremans says.Determination pays offIn addition to receiving the coveted title, South Africa’s boerewors champion should also be commended for his perseverance. Even though he has participated 19 times in the competition, without ever reaching the finals, he never gave up.But this was his lucky year.“I can’t believe I actually won,”Nkambule says, and he can’t wait to receive his prize which includes a new Toyota Hilux 2.7 double cab raised body raider, R2 500 (US$286) holiday voucher from food company All Gold, R2 000 ($229) Coca Cola cash prize and R750 ($86) worth of vouchers from snack food manufacturer Simba.“In my life I never thought I would drive a new car,” he says.Developing the perfect recipeBoerewors is a type of sausage that is synonymous with South African food heritage. The name comes from the Afrikaans words boer (farmer) and wors (sausage).Boerewors is usually braaied, a method that cooks food on an open fire, but some South Africans would, somewhat reluctantly, concede that it can also be grilled under an electric grill, fried, or baked in an oven.Kobald says that the recipe for traditional boerewors is legislated and must strictly adhere to certain guidelines. Although it is up to individuals to adjust the ratios of the ingredients, boerewors must contain at least 90% meat, always containing beef as well as lamb or pork, or a mixture of lamb and pork. Not more than 30% of the meat content may be fat and it can’t contain any mechanically recovered meat.Apart from the meat content, no other ingredients may be added except vinegar, spices, herbs, salt or other harmless flavourants and water. Cereal products such as oats or bread crumbs may be used as binding agents, but it should be suitable for mass production and a specific shelf life.“Although the ingredients are legislated, there is always someone’s boerewors that stands out and this is what we wanted to find,” Kobald says.Nkambule isn’t a newcomer to the meat industry. He’s worked in butcheries since 1977, when he started out by making deliveries. After many years, he’s learnt the tricks of the trade and, of course, what makes a good boerewors.He says he has taken a lot of time to perfect his winning recipe, now a closely guarded secret.“Over the years people have given me many tips and tricks about how to make a good boerewors,” he says.Although he is reluctant to divulge the ingredients of his winning recipe, he does reveal a few pointers for aspiring wors makers.“My secret lies in the special ratio of pork to beef meat I include in my mixture,” he says. “The right quality spices are also very important.”Boerewors under scrutinyFinding the country’s best boerewors is no small feat and an independent judging panel of respected food experts had the tough job of making the final decision.It took 85 regional and 10 provincial elimination rounds, during which 400 judges from the SACA had to taste and assess more than 55 000 pieces of raw and cooked boerewors to eventually find the top ten that would battle it out at the final.The judges included Martin Kobald; Arnold Tanzer, Sunday Times chef of the year 2008; Carmen Niehaus, YOU and Huisgenoot food editor and author of more than 20 cookbooks; Peter Veldsman, author of several cookbooks; and Lungile Nhlanhla, junior food editor at Drum magazine and one of the five finalists of the 2012 Masterchef SA programme.Schueremans explains that the judges have to taste both the raw and cooked boerewors, and contestants also have to provide the spices for a separate tasting to ensure that the correct spices have been used.“When the wors is raw it reveals a different flavour,” Schueremans says.Kobald adds that by tasting the raw product, the judges can also determine if the ingredients are correct and correspond with the specific recipe provided by the contestant.Cooked to perfectionBecoming the country’s boerewors champion isn’t just about combining the right mix of ingredients – the contestants must also cook the boerewors to perfection. If it is undercooked or overdone the judges can’t get a good sense of its taste.Kobald points out that cooking the wors is as important as developing the best recipe, as contestants could achieve a high score for their raw product, but get marked down at the cooking stage.To ensure that each individual tasting is accurate, the judges clean their palettes between tastings by eating a dry biscuit and drinking water.In his 13 years of involvement with the competition, Kobald has noticed how contestants have changed and evolved their techniques, and are taking the annual event more seriously.The new Championship Boerewors is in-store and available at all Shoprite, Checkers and Checkers Hyper stores countrywide.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

Decision Support Tool to select appropriate hybrid maturities for June

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Allen Geyer and Peter Thomison, Ohio State University ExtensionThe Corn Growing Degree Day decision support tool allows users to choose any Corn Belt county, enter the planting date and hybrid maturity, and generate a graph that shows projected GDD accumulations through the season, including the date on which you can expect that hybrid, planted on that date in that county, to mature (achieve black layer). One important adjustment missing from this tool is the fact that planting corn late usually lowers the GDD needed to get a hybrid from planting to maturity.In an article on his website, Dr. Bob Nielsen at Purdue includes a calculator that adjusts the GDD requirement downward based on how late planting actually is. This is not a trivial adjustment: planting a hybrid on June 10 (vs. May 10) lowers the GDD requirement by more than 200 GDD. So a hybrid that needs 2,700 GDD to mature if planted on May 1 will require an estimated 2,428 GDD if planted on June 10 (Using Dr. Nielsen’s calculator). The revised GDD number can be manually entered into the GDD tool instead of days RM for the hybrid.To get started on the tool, click where your farm is located in the county of interest (GDDs are calculated based on longitude and latitude) then select the graph tab. As an example, a 108-day RM hybrid (which the tool estimates will need 2,600 GDD from planting to maturity) planted on June 10 in Wood County, Ohio is projected to mature sometime after Dec 1 (the frost date is estimated at Oct. 29). However, if you manually change the expected layer GDD requirement from 2600 to 2328 (estimated using the calculator above) the GDD tool estimates that hybrid would achieve maturity by about Oct. 8 (nearly three weeks before the first average freeze).If we change the planting location to Wayne County, Ohio using the same hybrid and planting date and make the appropriate input changes to the GDD tool regarding reduced GDD requirements for a delayed planting, the GDD tool estimates that the hybrid wouldn’t achieve maturity until November 7 (average frost date of Oct. 27). Changing to a 102-day hybrid there would move projected maturity to Oct. 9.last_img read more

Serenbe: a Green Town in the Making

first_imgBiophillic featuresNygren appreciates nature and wants to facilitate greater appreciation of our outdoor environments. He is creating at Serenbe an institute focused on biophilia to promote and teach about biophilic features of land use. (Biophilia, a termed coined by Harvard biologist E. O. Wilson, is the innate affinity — or love — that humans have for nature.) Much of the landscaping in the development reflects this priority. I spent a while Friday afternoon photographing swallowtail butterflies on some gorgeous plantings of butterfly bush by the Inn at Serenbe and the Farmhouse Restaurant.Many of the traffic-calming bump-outs (extensions of curbs into the streets to slow traffic and demark on-street parking) are planted with edible landscaping. Nygren told me that the blueberry bushes and fig trees are favorites for the students who attend the Montessori school next to the Bosch Experience Center. Fruit trees that have been planted there will become popular as they reach fruit-bearing age. Naturalized wetlands for sewage treatmentBefore my presentation Saturday morning I explored some of the wild areas at Serenbe — or at least I thought they were wild. When I later talked with Nygren, he explained that part of the area I had walk through is actually an extensive constructed wetland for wastewater treatment. RELATED ARTICLES Green Neighborhood in North CarolinaAn 11-Home Community Built for Energy EfficiencyA New Net-Zero CommunityA Cohousing Community Readies for ConstructionA Net-Zero Energy Apartment Complex Opens in San DiegoA Net-Zero-Energy Community Near BoulderNew, Affordable, and Green in a Historic Neighborhood Alex is founder of BuildingGreen, Inc. and executive editor of Environmental Building News. In 2012 he founded the Resilient Design Institute. To keep up with Alex’s latest articles and musings, you can sign up for his Twitter feed. Michael Ogden, of Biohabitats, headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, whose work I have long admired, designed this system, which will be able to treat the wastewater from all 220 homes and townhouses once build-out is complete, along with two schools and significant areas of commercial development. Rather than being cordoned off with chain link fences, as one might expect with wastewater treatment, this sewage treatment area hosts a network of trails and a boardwalk for all to enjoy. New Urbanist development patternsConventional development today is sprawling, with each home served by a driveway and usually a garage facing the street; most houses are on cul de sacs, which discourage walking. At Serenbe, the houses are located right along the streets, with on-street parking in front and, often, alley access behind. Townhouses provide greater density and more urban feel in the town centers of the community.Saturday afternoon, as I was leaving for the airport, a “tailgate party” of Georgia Tech football fans with a live band on one of the homes’ porches, had spilled out into the street as an impromptu block party — something the community is designed to encourage.Many of these buildings feature live-work arrangements with commercial or retail space on the street level and apartments above. I stayed in a very pleasant in-town apartment that is managed by the Inn at Serenbe. After working on my presentation in my room Friday night, I walked downstairs and down a few doors on the sidewalk to discover a musician performing at the Blue Eyed Daisy Bakery Café.I bought a beer and joined the 20 or so others enjoying the music. It isn’t quite East Village, but I can see how this will become a more and more vibrant area as the build-out continues.Serenbe is different from Seaside, probably America’s most famous New Urbanist town (on Florida’s panhandle). Serenbe is more spread out, with a lot more open space that separates the higher-density neighborhoods and three town centers (the construction of one of which has yet to begin). To get from one neighborhood to another some people drive (either by car — 15 mph speed limit, controlled by rather robust speed bumps — or electric golf carts, which are very popular). An extensive network of trails also connect these areas.As more of the development is completed at Serenbe, I think it will gain more of a “critical mass” feel. Nygren pointed out places where clusters of additional homes will be built, along with several hundred thousand square feet of commercial space, including retail shops, offices, a hotel, and (notably) a brew-pub. Farming at SerenbeIt was partly out of an interest is supporting local agriculture and farm-to-plate initiatives that Serenbe was first created. Currently eight acres of land are being actively farmed in a certified organic and Biodynamic operation, and 25 acres are set aside for farming. The farm is managed by Paige Witherington with several interns, and it supplies food to a 125-person CSA (community-supported agriculture operation), the Saturday farmers’ market in one of the town centers, two acclaimed restaurants at Serenbe, and the Blue-Eyed Daisy Bakery.There are also horse pastures and stables, with trails extending through the undeveloped portions of the property.Next week I’ll cover some of the energy features at Serenbe. I’m just back from Atlanta, where I spoke on Saturday at the new Bosch Experience Center located in the unique Serenbe Community thirty miles southwest of Atlanta.I gotta say, I was impressed!Serenbe is the creation of Steve Nygren, who was kind enough to show me around and point out some of the community’s green features after my presentation. It is a 1,000-acre new town development that is one of the best examples in the country today of what a green development can be.For starters, the larger area — about 62 square miles — was incorporated by Nygren and some other developers as its own municipality, the City of Chattahoochee Hills, allowing them to establish some highly unusual zoning regulations. For example, at least 70 percent of the land in any development must remain as open space, which can include agriculture, recreation, or natural area.last_img read more