Vietnamese Spring Roll Recipe by Geoff Mackay

by Geoff Mackay on December 2, 2010

Vietnamese spring roll

Vietnamese spring roll

One of the best things in life for me is cooking and food. I love the Food Network and some of my favorite shows are Top Chef, Iron Chef and Diners Drive Ins and Dives.

I like to think of myself as a amateur cook and I  am always looking for recipes.

I love Asian food particularly Vietnamese food. One of my all time favorite foods is the Vietnamese spring roll.

Here is my recipe on how to make the perfect spring roll.

Hope you enjoy it.

   * 2 ounces rice vermicelli

   * 8 rice wrappers (8.5 inch diameter)

   * 8 large cooked shrimp – peeled, deveined and cut in half

   * 1 1/3 tablespoons chopped fresh Thai basil

   * 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves

   * 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

   * 2 leaves lettuce, chopped

   * 4 teaspoons fish sauce

   * 1/4 cup water

   * 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

   * 1 clove garlic, minced

   * 2 tablespoons white sugar

   * 1/2 teaspoon garlic chili sauce

   * 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce

   * 1 teaspoon finely chopped peanuts

1.   Bring a medium saucepan of water to boil. Boil rice vermicelli 3 to 5 minutes, or until al dente, and drain.

2. Fill a large bowl with warm water. Dip one wrapper into the hot water for 1 second to soften. Lay wrapper flat. In a row across the center, place 2 shrimp halves, a handful of vermicelli, basil, mint, cilantro and lettuce, leaving about 2 inches uncovered on each side. Fold uncovered sides inward, then tightly roll the wrapper, beginning at the end with the lettuce. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

3. In a small bowl, mix the fish sauce, water, lime juice, garlic, sugar and chili sauce.

4. In another small bowl, mix the hoisin sauce and peanuts.

5. Serve rolled spring rolls with the fish sauce and hoisin sauce mixtures.


Top Ten 2010 Christmas Gifts by Geoff Mackay

by Geoff Mackay on November 2, 2010

With Christmas coming around the corner there are many gifts for adults that top the list of things we all want on our Christmas gift list.

Here is my top ten list for Christmas

10 Video & MP3 Jukebox Recorder

If an Apple products is too expensive you might want to take a look at Archos’ kick at the can. While it doesn’t have the appealing looks of an iPod, it can record 40 hours of video, store photos, and play music.

9 Nomad Flash Drive & MP3 Player

Everyone needs portable information that is fast and easy to carry around. This USB flash drive is a great way to take important documents home and transfer files between your desktop and your laptop with a minimum amount of fuss and/or cables. As an added bonus, it comes with an MP3 player.

8 300-Piece Poker Chip Set

Poker is very popular these days. Start a pro poker career with a poker set so you can be the next big thing in poker.

7 One For All Remote Control

These days everyone has too many remote controls in their place. Why not consolidate them all with one easy to use remote.Control your DVD player, CD player, VCR, satellite, amplifier, and TV without constantly digging under the sofa cushions

6 Sony MiniDV Video Camera

With a DV video camera like this one from Sony, it’s easy to import your home movies to a computer for editing, titling and burning to DVD. The compact size of the DCR-HC40 means you’ll have it on hand to capture those perfect moments, and the extensive feature set will make it useful for years to come.

5 Cyclone II Foosball Table

The Tornado series of foosball tables is widely considered to be the Cadillac of table soccer, and they’re certainly built to last. The rods glide beautifully, and the unit as a whole is made to withstand even the toughest, most vigorous foosball play. It may be expensive, but you’ll never outgrow it.

4 BlackBerry 7750

Blackberry has taken a beating from Apple these days but in my opinion BlackBerry is a much better tool for business. If you run a business or need a smart phone for work than a BlackBerry is better than an Apple product.

3 Apple IPod

No other MP3 player is as easy to use and as fun and advanced as the IPod. The IPod had the best sound.

2 Apple IPhone

The iPhone 4 is a GSM cell phone with a high-resolution display, FaceTime video calling, HD video recording, a 5-megapixel camera, and more. An iPhone functions as a camera phone, including text messaging and visual voicemail, a portable media player, and an Internet client, with e-mail, web browsing, and Wi-Fi connectivity. The user interface is built around the device’s multi-touch screen, including a virtual keyboard rather than a physical one. Third-party applications are available from the App Store, which launched in mid-2008 and now has well over 300,000 “apps” approved by Apple

1 Apple IPad

The IPad is the most revolutionary gadget in history. Like iPhone and iPod Touch, the iPad is controlled by a multitouch display — a break from most previous tablet computers, which used a pressure-triggered stylus. The iPad uses a Wi-Fi data connection to browse the Internet, load and stream media, and install software. Some models also have a 3G wireless data connection.

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I love creepy crawly things and I thought A&E would put on a great show highlighting bug extermination.

Billy the Exterminator

Billy the Exterminator

A&E has been known to have great shows with great detail and storytelling. But for some reason A&E has gone low brow these days with some of the worst shows on TV. I think the company is trying to compete for the trailer park crowd.

The worst show on the network (beside Steven Segal Lawman) is Billy the Exterminator. The show is centered on a bunch of red necks with mullets trying to catch vermin.

The star of the show is Billy Bretherton. He seems to know nothing about extermination. IN every episode I have seen he puts out rat or mouse traps or using bug spray. Anyone can do this and he does not that no ordinary person would do to get rid of their pest problem.  

I have seen about 4 episodes and in every show he gets bitten or stung by something. Normally I love to see trailer trash get hurt but he is suppose to be a professional.

Bretherton seems to know nothing about bug extermination and is just trying to get him and his red neck family out of the trailer park. Until Billy can actually do his job, watch something else

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Cool Websites by Geoff Mackay – GameHuddle

by Geoff Mackay on October 18, 2010



GameHuddle is gaming social network that allows you to share your gamer ids, show off your game collection, review games, read game articles, and find other gamers. GameHuddle is an online community that revolves around a passion for all things gaming and giving gamers the ability to connect with other gamers like never before.

A great way to hook up with people to play Call of Duty IV Modern Warfare or talk about the good old days of playing Everquest.

Gaming News for Xbox 360, Wii, DS, PSP, Playstation 3, Playstation 2.

So if you are a gamer this is one of the best websites to check out


Top Ten Gangs in the World by Geoff Mackay

by Geoff Mackay on October 13, 2010

Today’s society is not a safe one. The world is corrupt with drugs, prostitution, gambling and other illegal activates. SO who reigns as the world’s most dangerous gangs or criminal organizations?

Today’s Geoff Mackay top ten list is the top ten world most dangerous gangs

10. Area Boys

Territory: Nigeria and parts of Africa

Criminal activities: Drug trafficking, extortion, murder, inciting riots

Number of members: 35,000

Over the past three decades, Nigeria’s Area Boys have gone from young kids committing crimes of opportunity to a massive if still largely unorganized street gang responsible for acts of extortion and murder.

9. Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC)

Territory: Brazilian prison system

Criminal activities: Drug and gun trafficking, murder, extortion, prison riots, prison breaks, kidnappingNumber of members: 6,000-plus

A Brazilian gang, this gang is one of the newest Brazilian prison gangs to be formed. Founded in 1993 Primeiro Comando da Capital the gang is known to have carried out about 300 attacks, all of them being against public establishments. In order to become part of the Primeiro Comando da Capital, you have to be introduced by a regular member of the gang. An oath must also be accepted.

8. Jamaican Posse

Territory: Jamaica, Eastern United States, UK (known as “Yardies”)

Criminal activities: Drug and gun trafficking, witness intimidation, murder

Number of members: 13,000 to 20,000

Authorities have identified dozens of individual posses within the wider gang. The two most often cited are the Spangler Posse, aligned with the PNP, and the Shower Posse, aligned with the JLP. The Shower Posse reportedly takes its name from the “shower of bullets” it dispenses on its enemies.

The Jamaican Posse have ties in Eastern Canada and Southern US mainly  in Florida and have established drugs routes in trafficking.

7. Aryan Brotherhood

Territory: U.S. federal and state prison systems

Criminal activities: Drug trafficking, conspiracy, murder, racketeering, contract killing

Number of members: 15,000-plus

The gang only makes up about 1% of prison populations, but size doesn’t matter to the Aryan Brotherhood. In fact, this gang is known for at least 26% of the murders that occur in prisons around the U.S. The Aryan Brotherhood is split into two groups, usually those in federal prisons and other members that are located in some of the smaller state prisons, especially those in California. In order to join the Aryan

Brotherhood, one has to kill or assault another prisoner.

6. Wah Ching

Territory: Hong Kong, San Francisco, Los Angeles

Criminal activities: Drug and gun trafficking, extortion, murder, software piracy, burglary, gambling, prostitution, loan sharking

Number of members: 100,000 Worldwide

The Wah Ching are also violent and sophisticated, as evidenced by two 1995 raids in Los Angeles that uncovered an underground factory run by the Wah Ching featuring $18 million in counterfeit Microsoft products. The raid also found weapons and explosives, namely TNT and C-4.

Wah Ching is a Chinese American street gang and Triad Society composed of different sets including Ken-Side, Sonny-Side, Paul-Side, T-Side, Alhambra-Side, and Monterey Park-Side, that operate mostly in Southern California but including areas throughout California and Vancouver, British Columbia. During their salad days, they controlled most of the criminal vices throughout San Francisco and Los Angeles’s Asian communities.

The gang has established drug trade routes in China white and the heroine trade.

Allies include Nuestra Familia, Bloods, Crips, Black Guerrilla Family, 14K Triad, Sun Yee On Triad, TAP Boyz, Big Circle Boys, Black Dragon Gang, DC Blacks

5. Bloods

Territory: Los Angeles

Criminal activities: Murder, drug trafficking, robbery, extortion

Number of members: 15,000 to 30,000

Thousands of members of the Blood street gang were establishing themselves as a formidable force among gangs and continued a steady drive for recruitment. At this time, the Bloods were more violent than other gangs but much less organized.

The Bloods are violent and run much of the inner city drugs in the US

4. 18th Street Gang

Territory: Los Angeles, Western and Southern U.S., Central America

Criminal activities: Drug and gun trafficking, robbery, extortion, murder, contract killing, prostitution

Number of members: 65,000

18th Street is considered to be the second largest gang in Los Angeles, California.

18th Street is a well established gang that is involved in all areas of street-crime (as opposed to corporate crime). Some members have even become involved in producing fraudulent Immigration and Customs Enforcement identification cards and food stamps. Several 18th Street gang members have evolved into a higher level of sophistication and organization than other gangs. They also have been linked to occurrences of murder, murder-for-hire, assaults, drug trafficking, extortion, vandalism, drug smuggling, prostitution, robbery, and weapons trafficking, as well as other crimes.

3. Crips

Territory: Los Angeles

Criminal activities: Drug trafficking, robbery, murder, extortion, ID theft

Number of members: 50,000

The alliance with the 18th Street Gang has strengthened has made the Crips even more powerful.

The Crips are one of the largest and most violent associations of street gangs in the United States, with an estimated 50,000 members. The gang is known to be involved in murders, robberies, and drug dealing, among many other criminal pursuits. The gang is known for its gang members’ use of the color blue in their clothing. However, this practice has waned due to police crackdowns on gang members.

2. Mexican Mafia

Territory: Prison but control most of the drugs and Mexican street gangs in the US

Criminal activities: Murder, money laundering, weapon trafficking, drug trafficking, Kidnapping, pandering, racketeering, extortion and illegal gambling

Number of members: 500-600 Inducted Members/ Leaders, over 50,000 Associates

The Mexican Mafia, also known as La Eme (Spanish for the letter M) is a Mexican-American criminal organization, and is one of the oldest and most powerful prison gangs in the United States.

The Mexican Mafia is the controlling organization for almost every Chicano gang in Southern California. All members of Chicano gangs in Southern California are obligated under the threat of death to carry out any and all orders from made Mexican Mafia members. The Mexican Mafia also holds a loose alliance with the Aryan Brotherhood, mainly due to their common rivals within the prison system.

The Mexican Mafia is an organization involved in extortion, drug trafficking, and murder, both inside and outside the prison system. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Mexican Mafia had arranged for contract killings to be carried out by the Aryan Brotherhood, a white prison gang. Both the Mexican Mafia and the Aryan Brotherhood are mutual enemies of the African-American gang Black Guerilla Family.

1 Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13)

Territory: Central America, the United States

Criminal activities: Drugs, guns and human trafficking, murder, contract killing, extortion, kidnapping

Number of members: 70,000

Right now, the street gang getting the most attention around the world is MS-13. The gang is a product of the Cold War, born of refugees from the 1980s Salvadoran Civil War who landed in Los Angeles. For a street gang, MS-13 operates with extreme organizational efficiency.

The majority of the gang is ethnically composed of Central Americans and active in urban and suburban areas.

They have been the most violent and fast rising gang in the North America today. Even the Mexican Drug cartels are paying them for protection of their drug routes.


Cool Websites by Geoff Mackay –

October 8, 2010

Cool Websites by Geoff Mackay – There are many cool website on the Internet these days. Conversely, there is much more crap on the Internet that good sites. The gap is widening every day, so I am going to start my cool website of the day blog My first blog is a cool site [...]

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Geoff Mackay’s Best TV Shows in the Last Decade

October 5, 2010

Geoff Mackay’s Best TV shows in the last Decade Hi my name is Geoff Mackay and I have been an avid TV buff for some time now. I have been searching the Internet and wonder why some shows are so popular. Though I do like the show Mad Men I fail to see why it [...]

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Geoff Mackay’s Top Tep Superheroes

October 4, 2010

As a long time comic book fan I am writing my top 10 Superheroes list. Find out who make me favorite superhero list and how they stack up against other superhero characters. 10 Punisher – The Punisher is one of the first “anti-heroes”, or a hero that doesn’t always act as nice as we would [...]

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Geoff Mackay’s Picture of the Day – The World’s Ugliest Dog

October 1, 2010

Who doesn’t love dogs? It is of course man’s best friend. I have a dog for you that I don’t think a mother can even love. Sam, unofficially the “Ugliest Dog Ever, from Santa Barbara, California brought increased fame and recognition to the Sonoma-Marin County Fair World’s Ugliest Dog Contest. With the 3 consecutive wins [...]

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Geoff Mackay’s Food of the Day – Durian

September 30, 2010

One of the most repulsive and worst smelling foods in the world is Durian. This spiky fruit is called the King of all fruits because if you can handle the smell and texture and can stomach it, it is the best thing on the world to eat. Durian is native to Brunei, Indonesia and Malaysia, [...]

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