Posts Written On August 15, 2016

Ray Lewis Tackles Tough Topics with Cigar Aficionado

In a candid, emotional and wide-ranging interview, two-time Super Bowl winner Ray Lewis, who is arguably one of the greatest defenders of all time, talks about his impoverished beginnings (he was born when his mom was 15 years old and didn’t really know his father until age 33), his record-setting Baltimore Ravens football career, his arrest and subsequent acquittal for double murder, his commitment to improving race relations, police brutality in America and much more. Video highlights of the lively, engaging interview are available at


The October cover story hits newsstands Aug. 30. A selection of his conversation—over cigars—is below:


On turning to football, a result of seeing his mother through rough relationships (video of Lewis speaking on this topic: It Wasn’t Football that Drove Me): “Ten years old, I made up my mind: that last altercation … was that. My mom would never be touched again.”


On the high of his life: “The high in my life has always been my mom. To see her endure. When I was 10 years old, I tugged on her dress and I said, ‘One of these days, you’re never going to have to work another day in your life.’ And I meant that. … The happiest moment of my life was when I called my mom and said, ‘I got a college scholarship.’ ”


On why NCAA rules force students to steal and cheat to live while playing college ball: “Money. They don’t want to share that … who makes all the money? The league. In college who makes all the money? The school. But there’s no game if you don’t have athletes, so why aren’t we paid?”


On the NFL’s business model: “The NFL is the only sport that tells you the higher you go, the less we respect you. I beg to differ. I am greater than I will ever be than when I was playing. Why? Because I do it for me.”


On regrets playing an entire career with the Baltimore Ravens: “Not one. I would never put on another jersey. Never.”


On being accused of a double murder (video of Lewis, in his own words: The Night in Atlanta): “Every moment in life is intentional. What I had to go through individually, as a person, not only prepared me for a journey that I couldn’t predict, but it prepared me to go through one of the most controversial seasons in my life.”


Lead Atlanta detective Ken Allen on whether Lewis should have been charged with homicide [in an interview with Cigar Aficionado]: “I don’t think Ray Lewis murdered anybody.”

On being charged with murder despite evidence to the contrary: “Cowards exist at every level. … People don’t understand how cruel the world really is.”

On treatment while in jail: “For like the first seven, eight days I never ate anything outside of orange halves. If you saw the moldy bologna and things that they were trying to … I was not an animal. And I was not going to succumb to that. So every day [my friend] would bring me a bunch of orange halves. He snuck them in for me. … What happened to me, those 15 days, I will live for the rest of my life. And I’m OK with that.”


On forgiving Paul Howard, the DA who tried to destroy his life: “I forgive him. Because my duty as a child of God is to forgive and keep moving. I pray for them. When I saw what was happening and when I saw what happened, I gave up trying to be liked. And with those guys, their names are in my Bibles, that hopefully God blesses them.”


On his commitment to combatting race relations and police brutality in cases like Freddie Gray’s: “I’m on the ground now. I won’t stop. …There’s a war that Jim Brown, Ali, that all those guys passed down to me. Why? Because I think everybody in the streets, everybody knows who I’m for, what I’m for and what I stand for. I hold these conversations at my house to enlighten people on life. Marv [speaking to Shanken], I do more for people in broken neighborhoods than probably anybody you’ll know. And you won’t find one camera.”


On why the government isn’t stepping in: “Because they don’t know what it feels like. They don’t walk the streets. You know what America has told us? Make it out and don’t go back.”


On advice to his sons: “I’m never concerned about you, I’m concerned about the people and the company you keep … because I wasn’t man enough to tell the wrong people, ‘You’re not bad people, you’re just not going where I’m going. So that means me and you really don’t agree.’ Am I man enough to say that now? Absolutely. Was I man enough at 24? Absolutely not.”


On his pledge to his kids: “I’ll never leave my kids. Ever. Ever. There’s not one dance recital, one football game—that was my commitment to my family.”


Brian Billick, head coach, Baltimore Ravens from 1999–2007, on Lewis: “Ray Lewis is the most dominant defender of his era. Ray was unique in that he had superior athleticism, intelligence and tenacity. But his willingness to learn, even as a perennial All-Pro who really had nothing left to prove, is what set him apart.”


Rex Ryan, head coach, Buffalo Bills, on Lewis: “I would rank Ray Lewis as possibly the best middle linebacker in the history of the NFL—him and Dick Butkus. … When you look at Ray among defensive players of his time, he is right there with Lawrence Taylor, Reggie White, Bruce Smith and Deion Sanders.”

The Lewis interview joins an elite club of seven extensive interviews conducted by Cigar Aficionado editor and publisher Marvin R. Shanken. The October issue showcases Shanken’s eighth cover interview in the 23-year history of the magazine.


Additional video highlights of the interview are available online at 

About Cigar Aficionado

Launched in 1992, Cigar Aficionado is the definitive lifestyle magazine for men. Dubbed “The Good Life Magazine for Men,” the print publication and its accompanying website ( focus on luxury lifestyle topics such as golf, travel, spirits and accessories. Cigar Aficionado also sponsors events such as The Big Smoke, the country’s premier event for cigar smokers. Parent company M. Shanken Communications also publishes Wine SpectatorWhisky Advocate, Market Watch, Shanken News Daily and Shanken’s Impact newsletter. Follow Cigar Aficionado on  Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


From Dusk to Dawn Fragrances

Start your day with the cool scent of wild spearmint in Original Penguin’s new Premium Blend, and step into the night with bursts of Sichuan pepper from Perry Ellis Red. Original Penguin Premium Blend also has hints of crisp bergamot and fresh lime peel fused together to create the perfect daytime cologne. Perry Ellis Red will heat up the night with its notes of red leather and cream oak moss. These fragrances have you covered from a sophisticated workday to a sizzling night out!

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Premium Blend Penguin, $65

  • Notes of crisp bergamot, fresh lime peel, and wild spearmint
  • Background evokes a rustic infusion of fresh musk, driftwood, and woody vetiver
  • Available at Nordstrom, Dillard’s, Lord & Taylor, The Buckle, Boscov’s, and all Original Penguin boutiques

Perry Ellis RED, $65

  • Top notes of an initial burst of juniper berries, Italian bergamot, and Sichuan pepper
  • Kick of citrus evolves into deeper notes of red apple, Sichuan pepper, red leather, and amber
  • Infuses textured hints of sage, cream oak moss, and sandalwood
  • Available at Macy’s and

Stain Removing Pen from Dryel

I recently discovered some new online shopping sites with amazing deals and awesome color selections. But when I am shopping, I always go for the grey or black. I really want something lilac, pink, white or even yellow for the upcoming season. Pastels are trendy right now and I want to take part!  I am really clumsy when it comes to eating, drinking sometimes and I always ruin light color clothes the 1st or 2nd time I wear it. So in order to fulfill my fashion fantasy, I had to find something quick, easy and really works.

One of the best things to have in your bag at all times is a Dryel Pen.  Dryel is a fraction of the cost of dry cleaners and this handy little pen makes me feel more secure when wearing my cute pastel outfits.

It is safe for use on virtually all fabrics. This includes most fabrics that are normally laundered, most fabrics that are typically dry-cleaned, and also a number of household fabrics, such as curtains, tablecloths, etc.
For fabrics that tend to water spot (silk and rayon), Dryel should be used only after testing in an inconspicuous area. In general, it’s always a good idea to test in an inconspicuous area before use on your fabrics.
Dryel should not be used on leather, velvet, suede, or fur. For knit sweaters with small stains, we recommend using the stain pen without scrubbing, as this may cause some of the threads in the sweater to loosen.
Can Dryel remove stains from food or make-up? How should you treat clothes with stains?
The Dryel Stain Remover pen works well on a variety of common stains such as coffee, tea, and cola. It even removes stains such as lipstick and make-up. For heavy soils, large spills and other difficult stains, professional dry cleaning may be required.
Love this stain remover pen from Dryel the best yet!To remove stains:
·        Prep it. Remove excess residue from stain and place napkin behind.
·        Tip: Always check for colorfastness prior to stain removal
Scrub it.
·        While squeezing pen, use scrubber like an eraser to eliminate stain.
·        Tip: After stain removal, blot with napkin to remove excess solution if needed.
To clean lightly soiled clothes:
Steam it.
·        Unfold Dryel cleaning cloth and add to dryer along with 1-4 garments to be cleaned.
·        Tumble dry on medium heat for 15 minutes.
·        For larger loads or extra freshening, use 2 cloths
Wear it
·        Wear immediately or hang up clean and fresh garments promptly to help wrinkles fall out.
Can you use Dryel to remove body odor?
Yes, Dryel is effective at removing a variety of odors, including body odor, smoke, and food odors. For best results, treat perspiration as a stain and use Dryel Stain Remover before the in-dryer cleaning step.
Is Dryel safe for vintage garments?
Yes, Dryel is safe for vintage garments, provided they can withstand tumbling in the dryer.
Will Dryel help to remove wrinkles?
It will, but to help minimize wrinkling:
  • Fill the Dryel bag or dryer only half full. The items inside the bag need to tumble freely.
  • Clothes should be slightly damp at the end of the cycle. If too dry, reduce the time by five (5) minutes, If too wet, increase the time by five (5) minutes.
  • Button and zip items placed in the Dryel bag or in the dryer.
  • Group similar fabric types together.
  • Hang or fold items between wearing and using Dryel.
  • When garments are removed from the Dryel bag or dryer, hang them promptly.
  • Touch up with an iron if needed, depending on the type of fabric the garment is made of.
Does Dryel kill moths or anything else could be in clothes?
No, Dryel will not kill or eliminate moths. It is designed to refresh your clothes, remove stains, and extend the time between professional dry cleanings.
Can you use Dryel on blankets?
Dryel can be used on oversized items, such as blankets, curtains, drapes, as long as they are not too large to tumble freely in the Dryel bag or dryer.
Can it be used or furs  – real or faux?
Dryel should not be used on leather, velvet, suede, or fur.
Is Dryel safe for beaded garments?
Yes, Dryel is safe for use on garments trimmed with beads and sequins
Find out more info on

Pet Ownership: New York vs. Las Vegas

We moved from NY (Ranked worst 100th!) to Vegas (Ranked 9th best)! Check out this interesting facts about pet ownership below.

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With National Homeless Animals Day approaching and nearly 80 million American households owning a pet today — an all-time high — WalletHub took an in-depth look at 2016’s Most Pet-Friendly Cities.

In order to identify the cities where our furry and slimy friends can enjoy the best quality of life without breaking our wallets, WalletHub’s number crunchers compared the creature-friendliness of the 100 largest cities based on 19 key metrics. Our data set ranges from the minimum pet-care provider rate per visit to the number of pet businesses per capita.

Pet-Friendliness of New York (1=Best; 50=Avg.):

  • 93rd – Veterinary Care Costs
  • 100th – Dog Insurance Premium
  • 91st – Number of Veterinarians per Capita
  • 88th – Number of Pet Businesses per Capita
  • 82nd – Number of Pet-Friendly Restaurants per Capita
  • 76th – % of Pet-Friendly Hotels
  • 24th – Number of Dog Parks per Capita
  • 86th – Number of Animal Shelters per Capita
  • 58th – Number of Pet Caretakers per Capita

For the full report, please visit: