SPORTS| If you're a football fan, you should be worried about the long-term effects the sport has on its players, and their brains. This could be a threat to the longevity of the sport itself. Many experts have speculated that football's protective equipment — namely helmets and shoulder pads — contribute to the problem and are essentially used as weapons by tacklers. There's already a de facto experiment underway to see if this theory holds water: the A7FL, a full-contact football league featuring seven-man teams with no pads or helmets. The league was founded in 2014 and has attracted interest. The season begins in April; before it starts, head to a7fl.com and check out highlights from this past season. I went in figuring it would look like a variation on rugby; it's anything but. This might be the future of football.
STYLE| The gift of awesome facial hair comes at a steep price in the form of the little hairs that will litter your bathroom upon trimming. This is a struggle for both beardsmen and their partners. The people at BEARD KING, however, have found a solution to this age-old problem with the Beard Bib. You drape it over yourself, then adhere the suction cups to the mirror; as you trim, your hair is collected by the bib. When you're done, you take it off the mirror and slide the whiskers into the wastebasket. Pure genius.
FOOD| Just because there's snow on the ground doesn't mean you can't fire up the grill. Before you do, check out MEATHEAD: THE SCIENCE OF GREAT BARBECUE AND GRILLING, a text that, in my opinion, is the definitive guide to outdoor cooking. Written by Meathead Goldwyn, the creator of barbecue advice site AmazingRibs.com, and Dr. Greg Blonder, a Boston University professor with a doctorate in physics, the book digs into the science of grilling, often dispelling myths about the craft. If you want to master the art of the smoked brisket, you'll want to start here. ♦