Do you drink soda or any other sugary drink

What if the cost of your favorite sugary treat went up by a few cents? Would this alter your buying habits?

I read last week that one strategy being considered to fund Obama's health care expansion is to tax soda and other sweetened drinks. As reported in the Wall Street Journal, a 3 cent hike/tax for any super sweet beverage could net $24 billion -- a literal drop in the estimated $1.2 trillion bucket needed for Obama's plan.

Arguing for the tax:
Proponents claim that higher prices will reduce consumption and therefore improve American's health.

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Change of seasons for active folk

We've had a hot spell here is SoCal and we capitalized on it. For our almost 3-year old, warmer weather means outdoor water fun. And that is what we delivered, courtesy of the Hyatt!

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Congrats to Ironman Lottery Winner & AMT-er Scott Sarran

Athletic-Minded Traveler subscriber, H. Scott Sarran, can no longer say he's never won anything. Be careful what you wish for Scott...Ironman just released its lottery winners and Scott is on the list. Congrats! Be sure to tell your wife and kids that they'll likely never see you this summer!

Congratulations to all the other lottery winners as well.

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A Cure for Cold, Aching, Hurting Knees and Joints

With the recent time change, my 630am bike rides have become somewhat colder. Keeping my upper body warm is easy--layers, arm warmers, etc.--but until recently I struggled to keep my legs warm, especially during the first 30 minutes of the ride. The crisp morning air would pierce into my knees and create stiffness and an annoying (not severe) amount of knee pain.

I tried wearing leg warmers, which are helpful for those bitter cold winter days, but I find them restrictive and too warm after 30 minutes in the saddle when the temps are above 45F.

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A Big Customer Service No No

Call it the bait and switch or possibly the how to lose a customer super fast strategy. Whatever.

I'm talking about automatic magazine renewals. I subscribed to Harper's Bazaar. I would typically read about 2 articles and basically enjoy the pretty pictures. I first subscribed because it was/is super cheap!

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NO Smoking at the Playground!

While we have griped about the irresponsibility of our neighborhood dog owners and their seemingly inability to pick up their beloved canine's crap, this is nearly as bad:

[caption id="attachment_896" align="alignnone" width="375" caption="This is just wrong."]This is just wrong.[/caption]

Okay, I lifted this p

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Jamba Juice Morning Oatmeal

Jamba Juice is now offering oatmeal at most of its U.S. locations from store open till 11am. And here's a COUPON to buy it for $1 + tax (only good thru Jan. 31st).

We tried the morning meal and liked the taste. The organic oatmeal itself had a good consistency -- not gluey, sticky or mushy. And the mixed fruit added on top which we stirred in (we had black/blue berries) combined to make the right amount of sweetness and flavor.

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Unrealistic Bike Ship Policy at Southwest

Ask a Southwest Airlines representative about the cost to check your bike on board and their first response will be, "It's free." But a closer look at the bike-check policy reveals box requirements that are unrealistic:

Non-motorized Bicycles, including Bike Friday and Co-Pilot, will be accepted in substitution of a free piece of checked baggage at no additional charge provided the bicycle is properly packaged and the box containing the bicycle fits within the 62-inch sizing limit and weighs 50 lbs or less .

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Does cheap food have to be fatty food? NO NO NO.

Eating healthy most often costs more. Try and use mostly organic, free-range, wholesome, and non-modified ingredients and the bill adds up. Dollar menus are just what they seem: CHEAP. Fast food can be a food budget savior. And while there are sensible alternatives at nearly every national chain, the majority of these fast food menus hardly qualify as "healthy" or overly nutritious from a calorie, fat and sodium perspective. So I was irked when I read my Union Tribune Food section last evening.

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Cmon Dog Owners

I like dogs (had a few as kid), but I have a BIG problem with some of their owners.

First and foremost, please pick up the poop left behind by your pup so my 2-year old doesn't step in it while playing at the park or, even worse, walking on the sidewalk--yes, the sidewalk! I don't ever buy the "I forgot a baggie" excuse with so many convenient options now available for dog walkers. And, by the way, those who jog with their dog do not receive an exemption from this common courtesy.

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