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What's your single best BBQ party trick?

I'm looking for those "Wowza!" gourmet dishes and touches that impress guests, but in the summertime BBQ category. What are your tricks for easily making a BBQ fancy, different or impressive, instead of the same old burgers and dogs?
posted by agregoli to Food & Drink at 5:54 PM on Jun 10, 2015 - 61 answers [186 favorites]

The best non-fiction I ever read. Help me find more.

I recently finished The Making of The Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes and it is probably the best non-fiction book I ever read. I picked it up based on the overwhelmingly positive reviews not because I have any particular interest in WWII or wars in general. [more inside]
posted by laptolain to Media & Arts at 5:12 PM on Jun 9, 2015 - 86 answers [179 favorites]

Adults who love life and have no kids: what is your lifestyle?

I'm not too excited about the "get married and have kids" or the "devote yourself completely to your job" approaches, yet these seem (to me at least) to be the two most common lifestyles that happy people report. Currently I take the "play video games and watch TV" approach, which isn't really happy-inducing for me anymore. For the rest of you out there who would consider yourselves happy, what lifestyle sustains you? What do your days look like? What do you do to keep things interesting for yourself? Thanks for your thoughts. [more inside]
posted by HumanBean to Health at 6:53 PM on Jun 14, 2015 - 38 answers [119 favorites]

Did my boyfriend just get married?

This is such a silly question, but I would appreciate AskMe's perspective. My boyfriend and I are long distance, and yesterday I stumbled on "wedding" photos of him and his ex that were taken two weeks ago. He told me that it was from a video that his university is making for new students to show how glamorous graduate school life can be (he's a professor and an alum). Am I being irrational in doubting him? [more inside]
posted by sockpuppetry to Human Relations at 6:11 PM on Jun 19, 2015 - 237 answers [111 favorites]

Healthy, low-carb work lunches that I can refrigerate for the week

For weight, money, convenience, and taste reasons I want make pre-portioned lunches for the week on Sundays, bring them all to work on Mondays, and keep them in the work refrigerator all week. I need some ideas for low-carb, healthy meals that won’t get soggy or stale being in the refrigerator for 5 or so days. [more inside]
posted by gregoryg to Food & Drink at 9:19 AM on Jul 2, 2015 - 18 answers [104 favorites]

How can I be more photogenic?

I always look terrible in photographs. To the point that not many pictures are taken of me... How do I fix this? [more inside]
posted by Soap D. Spencer to Grab Bag at 4:13 PM on Jun 28, 2015 - 20 answers [83 favorites]

Give me your best podcasts!

I've recently gotten back into podcasts because my commute has changed and become more amendable to podcast-ing. Help me discover some new favorites. [more inside]
posted by rainbowbrite to Media & Arts at 7:05 AM on Jun 11, 2015 - 23 answers [80 favorites]

Simple, easy to learn skills & proficiencies to buff my character?

What are some simple, useful skills and proficiencies that a person can teach themselves or otherwise acquire in a relatively short space of time? [more inside]
posted by turbid dahlia to Grab Bag at 3:22 PM on Jun 25, 2015 - 26 answers [78 favorites]

LAZURASNAIL: What happened to the British Museum's revenant mollusc?

In the mid-1800s, a snail spent years glued to a specimen card in the British Museum before scientists realized it was still alive. What became of this snail? Help me solve a scientific History Mystery, AskMe! [more inside]
posted by nicebookrack to Science & Nature at 10:04 AM on Jul 1, 2015 - 14 answers [78 favorites]

Doodles that will make me laugh and cry

I'd like to dabble more in graphic novels and comics for "grown ups". I like Julia Wertz and Allie Brosh--so basically I'm looking for stuff that is kinda gritty yet also kinda funny, preferably with a female's point of view. Who else might I enjoy? [more inside]
posted by oceanview to Media & Arts at 2:34 PM on Jun 22, 2015 - 31 answers [75 favorites]

Where did you meet your 5-7 closest friends? How often do you see them?

I moved to a new city about 2.5 years ago and, aside from a few friendships that quickly faded by the 6-month mark, still have not made any friends. I don't want advice on where I should meet friends -- I want to know how you (i.e. people ~25-35 years old who are out of school and have been in the "real world" for a few years) have met the people you currently consider your closest friends. I want to have a better idea of how people ACTUALLY met the people they spend the most time with, how often they see them, and how many people they would consider friends. [more inside]
posted by Penguin48 to Human Relations at 7:31 PM on Jun 16, 2015 - 49 answers [70 favorites]

bookfilter

Books that have really worked for me in recent memory: Vladimir Nabokov's stuff, The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera, Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides, and The Secret History by Donna Tartt. All of these were totally obsessive experiences for me, and I'm not sure why. What should I read next to be similarly engrossed?
posted by there will be glitter to Media & Arts at 9:25 AM on Jun 18, 2015 - 47 answers [70 favorites]

Please give me drones to put in my ear holes

I used to be obsessed with ambient music. I realized recently that I've fallen away from it. Recommend me some good, newer stuff to nap out to! [more inside]
posted by escape from the potato planet to Media & Arts at 6:07 PM on Jun 12, 2015 - 22 answers [68 favorites]

Best home improvements for increased quality of life?

Mrs. _db_ and I just closed on a house - yay! Now the fun begins of working on some of the little things we don't love as well as indulging in all those improvements we've been looking forward to. While we already have some things in mind, I'm sure there are things we have overlooked. What improvements can be made to a home that result in the greatest increase in quality of life? [more inside]
posted by _DB_ to Home & Garden at 10:25 AM on Jul 6, 2015 - 46 answers [68 favorites]

Good recipe for a salad with pickled/marinated vegetables?

I have a craving for salads with marinated or quick-pickled vegetables. You know, where the vegetables end of kind of soft and vinegary and yummy. I'm having a hard time finding anything that sounds really good and properly explanatory online. Please give me your recipes, links, or just your pickled-salads-101 if you're in the know!
posted by kitcat to Food & Drink at 1:32 PM on Jun 30, 2015 - 25 answers [66 favorites]

What are great books to read to my 7 year old and 5 year old?

After reading the first two books in the Narnia series and realizing not everything from my childhood is going to hold up, I'd like to solicit recommendations. [more inside]
posted by imabanana to Media & Arts at 1:10 PM on Jun 9, 2015 - 51 answers [65 favorites]

Homesteading and self-sufficiency resources (without the bloodshed)

I have become interested in self-sufficiency lately, especially the ability to feed my family from what I grow or produce myself, if not permanently, at least for an extended period of time should the necessity arise. I suppose it is similar to homesteading but I have zero interest in livestock (especially the slaughtering), so maybe it is closer to Depression era survival skills..? [more inside]
posted by PuppetMcSockerson to Home & Garden at 8:35 AM on Jun 19, 2015 - 27 answers [63 favorites]

What are the most stunning music videos of the past five years?

I'm making a playlist for a friend and I'd like your suggestions. [more inside]
posted by pretentious illiterate to Society & Culture at 6:34 AM on Jun 23, 2015 - 50 answers [62 favorites]

So, how do I make noodles?

I've been stumped by noodles for a long time. I would really like to be able to look in my fridge, see I have extra veggies and some noodles and whip up a delicious, saucey, noodle dish... I love peanut butter, scallions, soy sauce, curries etc. But I have no idea how to put it all together, can you help? Extra points if you know how to work with Konjak noodles as we have 4 packs in the fridge!
posted by pairofshades to Food & Drink at 8:00 AM on Jun 24, 2015 - 14 answers [61 favorites]

What is some good science fiction like this?

I'm interested in good science fiction in any format (book, film, comics, etc.) that explores that idea that we are not alone in the universe, but wildly mismatched with everybody or nearly every else in terms of civilization stages, kinds of technology, perception, etc. [more inside]
posted by cmoj to Media & Arts at 8:03 AM on Jun 10, 2015 - 44 answers [57 favorites]

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