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Featured Articles from the Baltimore Sun

BUSINESS
By Dean Uhler | September 29, 2002
Why does the water heater in my new house have another small tank hanging off the side of the pipe above it? That is an expansion tank installed on the water supply pipe to the water heater. Its purpose is to deal with thermal expansion of water as it heats up in the water heater - to prevent water pressure from getting too high. If water pressure gets high enough it can damage valves in plumbing fixtures, joints in supply pipes and even the water heater. Thermal expansion always occurs in water heaters.
NEWS
By Walter F. Roche and Walter F. Roche,SUN STAFF | April 15, 2004
A Catonsville dentist and his hygienist wife pleaded guilty yesterday to cocaine possession but avoided convictions or jail terms, as District Judge Dorothy J. Wilson -- over the objections of the prosecutor -- granted them probation before judgment. The dentist, Charles P. Franz, 41, will be under supervised probation for 18 months and must undergo drug tests. His dental license was suspended earlier, but he is fighting to get the right to resume his practice. A hearing is scheduled Wednesday before the state dental board on charges issued Feb. 18 that Franz violated the state law regulating dentists by possessing or using drugs in an illegitimate manner.
NEWS
By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun | July 2, 2010
Forty-seven years had passed since the last star had been added to the American flag, before two new designs were flown for the first time over Fort McHenry within months in 1959. Arizona became the 48th star in 1912, and the new flags adding Alaska and Hawaii each made their debut in Baltimore — both on the Fourth of July. An executive order signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on Jan. 3, 1959, after the admittance of Alaska to the Union, reconfigured the stars on the old 48-star flag to seven rows of seven stars each, staggered horizontally and vertically.
FEATURES
By Karol V. Menzie and Randy Johnson | July 4, 1992
Installing ductwork for heating and air conditioning is a bit like putting together a huge three-dimensional jigsaw puzzle.The basic rules of the game, however, are the same, whether you're retrofitting an older house, working with new construction, or adding heating and air conditioning to a new room, attic or basement.Basic Rule No. 1: Hot air rises, cold air falls.Ducts should be installed to take maximum advantage of natural air movement. For instance, for air conditioning to work properly, air returns, the large ducts that carry air back to the central unit, need to be installed high up on the wall of each upper floor, to capture warmer air and return it for cooling.
NEWS
By Kathleen Purvis and Kathleen Purvis,McClatchy-Tribune | February 27, 2008
My oven has convection-roast and convection-bake settings. I understand convection is a heat-circulating fan, but the roast vs. baking part confuses me. What difference does it make to the oven if I leave the lid off a meat pan? In food language, roast and bake really aren't different. Both are done in an open pan, usually in an oven. We refer to cooking meats and vegetables in an open pan as roasting, while cakes, cookies and pies are baked. But convection, which uses fans to circulate air, is a different beast.
HEALTH
By Robin Rudner, Special to The Baltimore Sun | January 30, 2012
Each week a nutritionist from the University of Maryland Medical Center provides a guest post to The Baltimore Sun's health blog Picture of Health (baltimoresun.com/pictureofhealth), which is reprinted here. This week, Robin Rudner weighs in on goal-setting. Jan. 1 has come and gone. If you made a resolution to improve your health and fitness (and you're serious this time), have you evaluated your progress? Do you have a plan? Consider SMART goal setting, an approach often used in corporate training.
NEWS
By Chicago Tribune | May 25, 1995
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador -- The name is almost comically sinister, and Salvadorans are quick to share some gallows humor over "The Black Shadow."But when the laughing stops, people who have suffered through death-squad terror and civil war acknowledge that there's something unsettling about this vigilante group called La Sombra Negra.About three dozen murders, most committed against suspected criminals, have been attributed to The Black Shadow's "social cleansing" since the group became known in late February.
FEATURES
By Patrick A. McGuire | July 5, 1992
One day last summer at the Maryland House of Correction in Jessup, a prisoner named Dennis Wise took a seat at the back of the tiny cubicle where I hold forth each week as a volunteer writing instructor. It's a loosely structured class and it isn't unusual that prisoners wander in for a session or two and then drift away. While always a possibility that such drifting is a commentary on the quality of the instruction, it is also true that writing is a painful business. The core of regulars who turn out every week come not because they want to, or because someone else wants them to, but because, in the true writer's motivation, they simply have to. Buried inside is something terrible, something wonderful, something that absolutely must come out. All their lives they have tried either to unlock long-imprisoned feelings or to escape them; that they have failed is as evident as their bleak existence in this ancient, decaying prison, far removed from the commerce of the normal world.
NEWS
By Stephanie Shapiro and Stephanie Shapiro,SUN STAFF | April 17, 1998
Sharon Fenick first heard the figure of speech "rule of thumb" cited as a sexist pejorative during her freshman year at Harvard seven years ago.The phrase was invoked in a lecture as an example of domestic abuse permitted by British common law. The rule of thumb, according to the professor, was a law that allowed a man to beat his wife so long as the rod used was no thicker than his thumb. But over the centuries, the term had evolved into vernacular for an "approximate measure.""It sounded very believable to me," says the 24-year-old Fenick, now in her third year of law school at the University of Chicago.
NEWS
By Kelly Brewington | kelly.brewington@baltsun.com | January 25, 2010
When patients are in the throes of a heart attack, there's no question that stents save lives. But for heart patients with few symptoms and less than severe artery blockage, whether to use a stent is a question with no clear-cut answer, say cardiologists. In fact, these days some heart experts say the mesh metal tubes used to keep narrowed or weakened arteries propped open are overused for blockages that can be treated just as well with medicine, a healthy diet and exercise. A recent internal review of heart patients at St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson found 369 patients received the coronary implants unnecessarily.
FEATURES
By Holly Selby and Holly Selby,SUN ARTS WRITER | February 28, 2002
The question, as it always is, is this: What about the bear? At Baltimore's Center Stage, it gallumphs into view, roaring and huffing, a great, blue manifestation of what must be Shakespeare's most bizarre stage direction. Blue? Yes, blue. "Exit, pursued by a bear," instructed Shakespeare in Act III, Scene 3 of The Winter's Tale. What was the Bard thinking? Did he intend for a real bear - or perhaps a man in a costume - to appear on stage? Should it be scary or amusing? Was the playwright who would become the most revered writer in the English language toying with the directors of his day, or toying with us?
NEWS
By Janet Gilbert | November 27, 2010
Everyone loves the smell of piping-hot pizza. But no one loves the smell of a burning pizza box. Turns out, this is a difficult scent to eradicate from the home, and I've tried — even frying tilapia for dinner one evening. But the scent of flaming cardboard somehow persists. Almost all of my friends use the oven, set very low, to keep their pizzas warm in the box while they wait for their guests to arrive, for the evening news to be over or for the salad to be made. No one I know has encountered a problem with this.
FEATURES
By Dr. Modena Wilson and Dr. Alain Joffe and Dr. Modena Wilson and Dr. Alain Joffe,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | June 25, 1996
I have a 6-year-old son in good health who has an interesting problem.For the last year or so, one of his outer ears sometimes becomes very hot to the touch and bright red. This can happen when he is resting, bouncing around or even eating. It doesn't seem to have any pattern, except that it is only one ear at a time. He doesn't have a cold or an ear infection when this happens.Someone said it is blood pressure, so I am concerned. I have asked doctors in the past who brush it off. Please let me know what you think.
NEWS
By Jessica Anderson, The Baltimore Sun | January 17, 2014
A Baltimore County judge on Friday denied Nicholas Browning's motion to reduce the four life sentences he received for murdering his parents and two younger brothers at their Cockeysville home. Browning, now 21, was sentenced five years ago after pleading guilty to four counts of first-degree murder. His attorneys have recently argued that his multiple life sentences were preventing him from getting mental health treatment at the Patuxent Institution, which works with youth offenders.
NEWS
By Jacques Kelly | May 31, 2008
Comedian Lonnie Shorr, who would go on to appear on the Merv Griffin, Dean Martin and Tonight shows, was bitten by the acting bug while a 1950s City College student. He made his Baltimore debut when he landed a role in the student play Remains to be Seen, presented on his high school's 33rd Street stage. "I was always the class clown," he said. He was born in 1939 in Zebulon, N.C., and he likes to tell his audiences where he came from. "It's just a word and it's funnier than Baltimore.
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