Video: Josh Groban Shares Short Film Spotlighting His Find Your Light Arts Education Foundation

Tonight singer and actor Josh Groban shared a moving short film by his brother Chris Groban spotlighting the work and mission of Josh’s Find Your Light Foundation, an organization that supports and promotes quality arts education for children.
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Whatever Camp Is, You Won’t Find It in The Met’s ‘Camp’ Exhibit

Tim Teeman

Whatever else the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s much-hyped exhibit Camp: Notes on Fashion (May 9 to September 8) is, it is not camp. It does feature 250 outfits and objects, which are variously sparkly, spangly, striking, and outrageous. But the quantity of glitter you can throw over something doesn’t make it camp. It’s who or what is inhabiting the glitter that makes it camp—and this exhibit is way too clean and posh to examine the complexity of that.

And that’s only one of the problems with this show. It’s too polite to be camp, and it weirdly approaches camp as a concept of very expensive clothes designed for women. Camp-as-drag is about impersonating grandeur, parodying it; not buying it.

The clothes are all carefully curated. The show as fashion exhibit is rigorous. Yet these clothes are all on lifeless mannequins. They are bright, they are extravagant, they have big shoulders and outsized sculptural features. ‘Camp’ has been bestowed upon them, but on what qualitative basis?

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Race Is on to Find the Next Sustainable Superstar Seafood

“There is no more normal in California,” says Kenny Belov, the owner of Two X Sea, a seafood restaurant and wholesaler on San Francisco’s waterfront. He’s not talking about the state’s wildfires or housing prices–although he certainly could be. Instead he means California fish: “People will drop their gear in the water, but there is no guarantee that they will bring something up.”

When it comes to seafood harvested from the Pacific Ocean, what’s familiar may not be sustainable. And what’s sustainable may not have mass appeal. But thanks to a determined group of fishermen, purveyors, and foragers in California, that may be changing. It just may not be changing fast enough.

Thanks to human activity, the water off of California’s coast is warming. Last August, the surface of the sea surface off San Diego reached the highest temperature ever recorded. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, average sea surface temperatures on California’s Pacific coast rose a degree to a degree and a half Fahrenheit since the beginning of the 20th century.

Climate change has already pummeled an industry that reached $ 196 million in revenue in 2017, the most recent year for which data is available. In 2015, an outbreak of toxic algae that may thrive in warming waters triggered the closure of most of the year’s Dungeness crab season. Climate change is expected to cause moderate to severe declines in salmon populations across California and the Pacific Northwest. And the habitat of species like the spiny lobster has been pushed northward.

What's next-Finless Foods
General scene of commercial fishing boats in San Francisco Bay.The Washington Post/Getty Images

To be sure, not every indicator is negative. In March, Christopher Free, a postdoctral scholar at the University of California,Santa Barbara was the lead author on a paper in Science that estimated the effect of climate change on fisheries. Although the global maximum sustainable yield dropped 4.1% from 1930 to 2010, the decrease was not evenly distributed. In the California Current, a Pacific Ocean current moving southward along the western coast of North America, Free tells me, “fish populations haven’t been strongly impacted by warming. It’s probably the result of good management.” For each of the species that Free and his coauthors analyzed–which included sardine, lingcod, and rockfish–the estimated effect of warming in California was statistically indistinguishable from zero.

But past successes do not guarantee future ones. For Belov, the problem is easy to state and hard to solve: “The things we want are the things we shouldn’t be eating.”

What to Eat Next

“It’s depressing. What do Americans eat? The number one seafood consumed in North America is shrimp,” adds Kirk Lombard, a friend of Belov and the founder of Sea Forager, which gives coastal walking tours and sells sustainable seafood.

For Lombard, the most sustainable seafood to eat live at the bottom of the food chain: “The gospel of small fishes,” he says. It’s one thing to realize that wild salmon or bluefin tuna isn’t the most sustainable option. It’s quite another to convince consumer to substitute them with unfamiliar seafood like purple urchins, which tend not have the same amount of roe as their more commonly eaten cousins, or spiny lobsters, which lack the big claws that American eaters prize.

Sea Forager-California Sustainable Seafood
Kirk Lombard, founder of Sea ForagerCourtesy of Kirk Lombard

Lombard proselytizes fishes like herring, which are plentiful in the San Francisco Bay, but not consumed here as they are in cities like Amsterdam, where the Dutch snack on them like hot dogs. But unlike legally-tolerated marijuana, that innovation has failed to catch on in the United States. In 2017, the most recent year for which complete data is available, just $ 196 worth of herring was caught commercially in California–all of it in Los Angeles–while $ 14,884 worth of herring roe was harvested in San Francisco. Those are rounding errors compared to the state’s major fish industries. By contrast, market squid landings totaled $ 68 million in revenue, Dungeness crab $ 47 million, Chinook salmon $ 4.8 million, swordfish revenue totaled $ 3.9 million, and bigeye tuna $ 3.5 million.

California’s seafood, in other words, might as well swim in two different oceans, says Dave Colpo, senior program manager at the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission. On the one side, there are industrial-scale trawlers that catch things like whiting and pollack destined for the freezer aisle and fast food sandwiches. “You can’t imagine how much gets pumped off those boats.” On the other are the mid-scale boats that fish for Dungeness crab and salmon, as well as the smaller outfits that catch everything else. “Urchin is not the McDonald’s of fish,” he says with a laugh.

Is Seaweed the Next Big Thing?

And if urchin is boutique, what does that make seaweed? For Catherine O’Hara, it’s the next big thing. In 2017, she and two other women founded Salt Point Seaweed, harvesting wild seaweed from the Mendocino Coast and selling it to restaurants and directly to consumers. They gather kombu, wakame, and nori–seaweeds that O’Hara thinks pass a tough test: “They’ve been around for long enough in mainstream culture that preschoolers are hooked on them.”

The numbers bear her out. In 2015, the most recent year for which the California Department of Fish and Wildlife has data available, the commercial edible algae harvest reached 27 metric tons. In 1997, when the state began keeping that data, the amount was less than five metric tons.

In addition to wild harvesting, O’Hara is exploring farmed seaweed. This year, she completed a pilot project with Hog Island Oyster Co. in Tomales Bay, in which she grew red algae similar to that served in poke bowls, alongside the cultivated oysters.

Turns out that farming the two species together can bring significant benefits. One of the big threats to shellfish from climate change is ocean acidification, the decrease in pH caused by the uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into the water. When the water turns too acidic, it can eat away shells, killing oyster larvae before they develop.

Enter the seaweed. “Just like most plants on earth take out of the air, seaweed takes carbon and nitrogen out of the water,” says O’Hara. “In the water right now, there’s too much carbonic acid.” Over the last year, their experimental plot of seaweed pulled some of that carbon out of the water, lessening the damage to the oysters.

It’s an alternative model of how seafood might be harvested from the Pacific Ocean in the future. Now all that remains is to see whether consumers will catch up.

Fortune

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These Companies Will Help You Find the Best Life Insurance of 2019

Finding the best life insurance company for your needs isn’t as easy as choosing the next Netflix series to binge watch. There are a lot of factors people should take into consideration when searching for a plan.

First of all, what type of life insurance do you need? (And if you’re thinking, “Holy moly, there are different types?!” don’t worry, you’re not alone.)

Second, consider your specific conditions and lifestyle choices. Are you a smoker? Do you have a family history of a terminal illness? Different life insurance companies treat people with various habits, conditions and family history differently. You need to make sure you’re being treated fairly and finding the best deal.

Don’t be intimidated by the jargon, the options or the decisions related to your passing away. We’re here to tell you everything you need to know to find the best life insurance in 2019.

Types of Life Insurance

Keep in mind that numerous sub-categories of life insurance exist. However, there are two main types you should know about: term and permanent. Which is best for you?

Term Life Insurance

If you purchase term life insurance, you’ll only pay premiums for a set term, usually 10 to 30 years. Your primary objective is to ensure that a specific sum of money, the death benefit, will be given to your loved ones should you die during that term.

Pros of Term Life Insurance

It’s your most affordable option. We Penny Hoarders love to save a cent here and there! With a term life policy, you pay fewer fees and receive fewer benefits than with a permanent policy.

Also, rather than paying premiums for your entire life, you only pay for a set period of time. As a result, you end up paying a smaller total over the years.

If you want to, you can usually convert your term life insurance policy into a permanent life insurance policy. If money is tight at the moment but you want life insurance, a great option is to buy term insurance now and convert it into permanent later.

Most companies allow conversion within a certain amount of time after buying your insurance, but this time frame differs for each life insurance provider.

Cons of Term Life Insurance

A term policy doesn’t have any cash value. You’re only paying for the death benefit, or for the amount of money your loved ones will receive once you’re gone. If you opt for a permanent policy over a term policy, you’ll receive more benefits than just the death benefit. Granted, that’s a big reason that term life insurance is so affordable, but be aware of what you’re missing if you go with the cheaper option.

If you live past the set term, your family won’t get any payout when you do pass away. Granted, once your term expires, you can always sign up for a new term or switch to permanent.

Many people choose term life insurance so that, should they pass away unexpectedly, their family will have money to take care of expenses. Once your term is over, there’s a good chance you’ll have fewer expenses — you may have paid off your house and car by then, and your kids will have finished college. As you get older, your need for life insurance typically decreases; that’s why a lot of people prefer to opt for term life insurance.

However, that’s not always the case. If you have doubts, it’s time to look into permanent life insurance.

Permanent Life Insurance

Term life insurance is only valid for a set amount of time. Permanent, on the other hand, lasts for your entire life. This means that you’ll pay premiums for the duration of your life. There are two main categories of permanent life insurance: whole and universal.

Whole life insurance provides financial consistency, while universal life insurance provides financial flexibility.

Whole Life Insurance

A whole life policy provides death benefits to your loved ones once you pass away. Unlike term, however, whole life insurance also has cash value.

Pros of Whole Life Insurance

You’re set for life. Whether you die at age 30 or age 90, your family will receive death benefits. Whole life insurance doesn’t have the time restraints a term policy does.

Whole life insurance policies have cash value. You’ll pay your monthly, quarterly or annual premiums, just as you would with term but a portion of these premiums goes into an investment account that accrues interest. You have a lot of options for how to use this cash value.

At any time, you can trade in your plan and forfeit coverage to receive the cash. You can take out a loan, withdraw a partial amount and even use the cash value to pay your premiums. (That last one is pretty cool!) Oh, and your cash value is tax-deferred.

Cons of Whole Life Insurance

The main downfall is the price. Because you’re paying for a longer period of time in addition to paying for cash value, whole life insurance can cost significantly more than term for the same death benefits.

The big question is… Is the price worth it? Once again, if you think you’ll have paid off most of your assets by the time you pass, you might want to go with term life insurance. If your financial situation is a bit more up in the air, whole life insurance could be better for your family.

You have to pay fees if you trade in your coverage for the cash value. You knew it had to be too good to be true, didn’t you? You don’t get all the cash you’ve accumulatedyou have to pay fees. The amount you’ll pay in fees depends on the company.

Your loved ones won’t see the cash value. This is worth mentioning, because it’s natural to assume your family would receive the cash value that’s accrued when you pass. In reality, if you haven’t spent that money by the time you pass, the insurance company will take it back. Your family still only receives the death benefit.

Universal Life Insurance

Universal life insurance is very similar to whole, with three key differences: The amount of your premium payments can change over time, you can change how often you pay your premiums and your death benefits can change.

Pros of Universal Life Insurance

A universal life policy is a great choice if you think your financial situation could change significantly before you pass. For example, maybe you realize 20 years into your plan that your loved ones will need a little more assistance than you originally thought after you’re gone. You can increase the death benefits!

You can update your plan without having to get a new policy, which is a huge relief. If you have term life insurance, you have to either convert to a permanent policy or buy a new policy once your term expires if you want new terms.

If you have whole, you can forfeit your coverage for the cash value and sign up for a new policy if you want to. With universal, you can make a ton of changes to your policy without going through the hassle of getting a new plan.

A Con of Universal Life Insurance

Keep in mind, universal has most of the same cons as whole life insurance. There is one more main thing to consider, though.

Of the three main types of life insurance, universal has the most variables, making it the most confusing. If you aren’t exactly a life insurance pro, this could be intimidating. I definitely recommend seeking advice from a third-party professional before choosing a universal plan or making any changes to it.

The 7 Best Life Insurance Companies for 2019

Photo of a little girl helping her mom who is working on a computer from their home

There isn’t one magical life insurance company that’s best for everyone. (Although that would be amazing, wouldn’t it?)

Different people benefit from certain companies and policies. To make things easier for you, we’ve used a simple methodology to find the seven best life insurance companies out there.

Methodology

We took three main factors into account in our search for the best life insurance companies: financial strength, customer satisfaction and premiums.

Financial Strength

Life insurance is a long-term purchase, so you want to be confident that the company you’re buying life insurance from will last longer than you do. Also, it’s vital that they’re financially sound enough to keep their promises to you and your family.

I’ve taken AM Best’s financial strength ratings into account. AM Best is a third-party credit rating company that rates life insurance on a letter grade scale, the highest being A++ (superior).

All of the companies on this list are rated either A, A+ or A++. Ratings of A- and A are considered excellent, while A+ and A++ are superior.

Customer Satisfaction

Financial strength becomes a lot less impressive if other aspects of a company are subpar. That’s why customer satisfaction is such an important thing to take into account.

I’ve evaluated these companies’ customer satisfaction by looking at their J.D. Power ratings. J.D. Power is a marketing research company that surveys customers, then rates insurance companies on a 1,000-point scale based on those survey answers.

After scoring the companies, J.D. Power labels each company as “among the best,” “better than most,” “about average” and “the rest.”

Premiums

All you Penny Hoarders out there… you knew I’d have to take your personal finances into account, didn’t you?

When it comes down to it, a lot of the largest life insurance companies offer very similar plans. In these cases, some people simply choose the option that’s most affordable for them.

This factor was a bit more subjective than the others, because your premium payments can depend on a variety of factorsyour age when you buy insurance, your health and your habits, just to name a few.

The Best Life Insurance Companies Overall

Company AM Best Rating J.D. Power Ranking Premium Best for…
State Farm A++ 825 Average Term life insurance
Northwestern Mutual A++ 812 Low Whole life insurance
Protective A+ 791 Low Universal life insurance
Mutual of Omaha A+ 792 Average Burial insurance
Transamerica A+ 751 Low Smokers
Lincoln A+ 778 Low Millennials
Voya A 744 Low Those with a family history of cancer

The Best Term Life Insurance Company: State Farm

  • Financial strength: A++ (superior)
  • Customer satisfaction: 825 (among the best)

Do you already use State Farm to insure your home, car or health? Then you can save money by purchasing your life insurance through them, too. Yep, State Farm rewards you for buying multiple types of insurance with them.

However, even if you don’t use State Farm for other types of insurance, it’s still a fantastic choice for term life insurance. J.D. Power has ranked State Farm as the life insurance company with the highest customer satisfaction for five years in a row.

You can select a 10, 20 or 30 year term for $ 250,000. The policy is renewable up to age 95 and can be converted to a whole life program.

The Best Whole Life Insurance Company: Northwestern Mutual

  • Financial strength: A++ (superior)
  • Customer satisfaction: 812 (better than most)

My favorite thing about Northwestern Mutual’s whole life insurance? It’s highly customizable. No two people’s needs are the same, so why should everyone have the same whole life insurance plan?

The company has a lot of optional add-ons (called “riders” in the insurance world) for a life insurance policy. For example, a waiver of premium rider is available so that, should you become disabled while you have insurance, Northwestern Mutual no longer requires you to pay the premiums. This is just one of many riders, and Northwestern Mutual offers more riders than most of its competitors.

You also have a number of payment options. You can select a policy in which you pay your premiums until you reach an agreed-upon age. Or you may choose to pay your premiums for a certain number of years until your balance is paid off, ranging from 10 to 30 years.

The Best Universal Life Insurance Company: Protective Life Insurance

  • Financial strength: A+ (superior)
  • Customer satisfaction: 791 (better than most)

Good news: When it comes to price, Protective Life Insurance is probably your best universal life insurance option.

Protective stands out because it offers something called Custom Choice UL (Universal Life) Insurance. Universal life insurance is already known for being customizable, but this policy kicks things up a notch.

At first, the Custom Choice UL policy looks like term life insurance. You choose a set amount of time you want your premiums and death benefit to remain stagnant.

When the time frame ends after, say, 30 years, your premiums stay the same. However, your death benefit amount slowly decreases. Once your balance hits the minimum of $ 10,000, the death benefit stays at that amount and your premiums will start to increase.

The Best Burial Insurance Company: Mutual of Omaha

  • Financial strength: A+ (superior)
  • Customer satisfaction: 792 (better than most)

When you buy burial insurance, the death benefit is specifically intended to help your loved ones pay for funeral and burial costs. (You’d be surprised how much it costs to be put in the ground or cremated!)

There’s an age limit when you’re buying burial insurance. Mutual of Omaha’s minimum age requirement is 45, while many companies’ don’t start until age 50. If you want to get a jump on things, Mutual of Omaha is a great choice.

Because it’s primarily intended for funeral and burial costs, burial insurance death benefits amounts are much lower than death benefits for other kinds of life insurance policies. With Mutual of Omaha, you can get a policy ranging from $ 2,000-$ 40,000. Most of its competitors’ payouts have a much lower threshold. For example, Royal Neighbors of America and AIG cap at $ 25,000.

The Best Life Insurance Company for Smokers: Transamerica

  • Financial strength: A+ (superior)
  • Customer satisfaction: 751 (the rest)

If you’re looking for yet another reason to quit smoking, here’s one for you: Life insurance costs substantially more for smokers than for non-smokers. The older you are when you buy life insurance as a smoker, the more shockingly high that price will be.

(Pro tip: If you’re comfortable with waiting to purchase life insurance, quit today and start shopping for insurance next year. Most companies classify you as a non-smoker if you haven’t smoked for at least 12 months.)

Thinking you can just lie on your application and say you don’t smoke? Well, that’s called insurance fraud, and I don’t recommend it. Plus, many companies require you to take a medical exam, so you could easily be caught.

Thankfully, Transamerica can make things easier for you than a lot of life insurance companies can.

Smokers probably won’t be able to find lower prices anywhere else! Transamerica has strong financial stability. While its customer satisfaction ranking is just so-so, the score is still better than the scores of many competitive companies.

Note: Banner Life Insurance offers competitive prices for smokers along with Transamerica, but it hasn’t been ranked by J.D. Power, so it didn’t make it onto this list. Still, it’s worth getting a life insurance quote from both companies!

The Best Life Insurance for Millennials: Lincoln Financial Group

Young woman drinking first morning coffee and reading news in the kitchen of her apartment
  • Financial strength: A+ (superior)
  • Customer satisfaction: 778 (better than most)

You might think it’s unnecessary to get life insurance if you’re in your 20s or 30s. If you don’t have a mortgage, spouse or kids, why bother buying now?

Well, the younger and healthier you are, the lower your premiums will be! If you select 30-year life insurance coverage at age 25, you’ll be covered until you’re 55, and there’s a decent chance you’ll get married, pop out a couple kids or buy a home before age 55. If you purchase life insurance before you think it’s necessary, your payments will be much lower than if you wait!

Lincoln Financial Group is even more affordable than its competitors, with better financial strength and customer satisfaction to boot.

For example, using QuickQuote, I received an insurance quote for a 30-year, $ 250,000 term policy for a 25-year old woman in good health in California: $ 18.77 per month with Lincoln.

Foresters Financial cost $ 19.69 per month, and Mutual of Omaha cost $ 20.86.

A buck or two may not seem like a notable difference. However, if you pay an extra dollar per month for 30 years, you just spent an extra $ 360!

The Best Life Insurance Company for Those With a Family History of Cancer: Voya Financial

  • Financial strength: A (excellent)
  • Customer satisfaction: 744 (the rest)

It’s understandable that rates differ for people who have been diagnosed with cancer or who have beaten cancer. But guess what? Even if you just have a family history of cancer, this will affect your rates. If anyone in your family was diagnosed before age 60 and/or died from cancer, this will probably affect your life insurance premiums.

Not every type of cancer will affect your premiums. Certain types of cancer have been linked to genetics, and others haven’t. Your sex is another factor. For example, if you’re a woman whose father had prostate cancer, this likely won’t affect your rates… but it could affect your brother’s rates.

But all isn’t lost. Voya Financial is here to help! (You may be familiar with the company ING, but you should know they recently changed their name to Voya Financial.)

Voya Financial is known for placing less emphasis on a family’s history than most other companies do when determining rates.

If something as dire as cancer is part of your family history, then you should still talk to insurance agents and get life insurance quotes from multiple companies. However, there’s a good chance Voya Financial will offer you some of the bestif not the bestpremiums. Plus, its financial strength and customer satisfaction is higher than most of its competitors.

Who knew there was so much to consider when choosing the best policy?

Thankfully, if you choose one of these seven top life insurance companies, you’ll set yourself and your family up for success.

Laura Grace Tarpley is a freelance writer and an editor for FluentU. Follow her on Twitter @lgtarpley.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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Find Out All The Fashion Details On Our Favorite Lewks From Rihanna’s Harper’s Bazaar Shoot

Fashion gala 'Met Ball' in New York

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That Rihanna reign just won’t let up!!! Rihanna has landed yet another cover for 2019, this one for Harper’s Bazaar May 2019 issue. She’s repping for their annual beauty issue and was shot by her longtime photographer Dennis Leupold.

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Watching high-stress TV shows like Killing Eve calms me down. I decided to find out why

Watching high-stress TV shows like Killing Eve calms me down. I decided to find out why


Watching high-stress TV shows like <em>Killing Eve</em> calms me down. I decided to find out why

April is Stress Awareness Month. On HelloGiggles, we are talking about the routines, habits, and activities that unexpectedly keep us calm and grounded in a society where harmfulhigh levels of stress are dangerously normalized. (Trigger warning: This article discusses trauma from sexual assault.)

I was sitting next to my fiancée and we both had our eyes on the TV screen in front of us. Villanelle (Jodie Comer) had broken into Eve’s (Sandra Oh) home. Eve grabbed a knife; Villanelle, a trained and skilled assassin, obviously noticed and called her out on it. My fiancée and I eyed each other nervously throughout the scene, wondering if either woman would end up injured or dead. Eve ended the scene soaking wet and sweating—and I ended it feeling calmer and more in control than I had in days.

I started binging Killing Eve recently after reading about the show for several months on Autostraddle, my go-to resource on what queer women should be watching right now. It seemed like the perfect escape: We’d just recently finished You, the Lifetime psychological thriller that found new life on Netflix, and there was a high-stress media hole in my heart.

It may sound counterintuitive, but watching highly stressful media—horror movies like Jordan Peele’s Us, intense dramas like How to Get Away With Murder, and everyone’s favorite titular serial killer, Dexter—helps me relieve stress.

I’m not alone in feeling this way. According to research by Margee Kerr, a sociologist, fear researcher, and author of Scream: Chilling Adventures In the Science of Fear, a high-arousal negative stimuli, such as watching a horror movie or a show about murder, can improve mood significantly. Watching horror movies can also cause adrenaline levels to spike, resulting in viewers feeling less anxious or frustrated, according to a 2012 study.

“Viewing high-stress media can feel exhilarating and stress relieving,” says Dr. Allison Forti, an assistant professor at Wake Forest University’s Counseling and Human Services graduate program. “Two defense mechanisms, displacement and projection, can explain this. Rather than confront the co-worker who gossiped about you at work, your frustration and anger release through the serial killer’s violent acts in the movie.”

Consuming high-stress media can serve as a way to channel negative emotions like humiliation, rejection, shame, anger, regret, and spite.

This isn’t a universal experience. Kerr’s research only included people who wanted to voluntarily scare themselves, and Dr. Forti explains that some people experience serious psychological distress when they watch high-stress media: “The sympathetic nervous system activates and the body gears up to fight or flee.” So while someone like me, who loves fictional serial killers and haunted houses, might feel happier after a heart-racing experience, this probably won’t be true for people who hate those things.

It doesn’t entirely surprise me that the more I’ve been binge watching Killing Eve, the less stressed out I am.

My adoration for watching high-stress shows as a coping mechanism actually started after I was raped in college, when I found watching The Vampire Diaries and Dexter oddly cathartic. I felt like I’d lost my own sense of agency and control, and there was something comforting about actively choosing to make my heart pound instead of waiting for it to happen because I’d woken up from another nightmare about the attack.

“When our stress level is escalated, using coping strategies that have a similar intensity can often provide a sense of relief,” explains psychotherapist Beth Scarlett.

“Sometimes we feel anxious or stressed, and we have trouble pinpointing the source of it. An intense show gives our brains a ‘reason’ for being wound up, which actually gives a sense of relief.”


After I was assaulted, I found it hard to wake up in the morning and concentrate in my classes; I’d start thinking about what happened and feel overcome by a surge of panic or anger. I wanted a way to deal with my emotions that wasn’t overwhelming and wouldn’t completely consume me. In addition to going to a therapist weekly, I started binge watching high-stress TV series in my dorm room.

The characters always felt a sense of urgency: Maybe they were on the edge of being caught as a serial killer; maybe they were the one being hunted. It gave me the opportunity to safely process my trauma.

“High-stress media can be used to channel unconscious or conscious thoughts and feelings that are too psychologically risky to address in a healthier way,” explains Dr. Forti. I didn’t feel it was safe to confront my rapist, but I could channel my anger into Season 5 of Dexter, where the titular character helps a rape victim track down her assailants and kill them.

The impact of high-stress media can be even more powerful if it’s a rewatch, like Dexter was for me after I was assaulted. I’d already watched the show in its entirety in high school. “Many people find comfort in watching and re-watching movies where they know the sequence of the story,” explains psychotherapist Dr. Dana Dorfman. “This knowledge provides a sense of a mastery over scary material, and offers an escape and distraction from the unpredictability of real life.”

High-stress TV shows and movies can also serve as a safe way to expose yourself to something that scares you or makes you nervous, Dr. Dorfman explains.

“This gradual exposure desensitizes the person to the stimulus and reconditions the brain to respond differently,” she says, and the viewer retrains their brain to react more calmly to stressful content.

Watching scenes of Lumen surviving rape in Dexter’s fifth season helped me cope with the trauma of my own assault without leaving my twin XL bed. Seeing a main character onscreen dealing with the impacts of post-traumatic stress, like nightmares and panic attacks, helped me realize that I was capable of healing someday too—even without the help of a serial killer to literally murder my rapist.


It’s been seven years since the assault and my daily life is nowhere near as stressful. I’m planning a wedding with my partner and balancing my career and social life with my disability, but I also have a lot of support. I don’t feel the same sense of urgency every morning when I wake up as I did for months after I was assaulted. But I still reach for the remote to turn on shows like Killing Eve and You, which my partner and I finished almost immediately after starting it. Dr. Dorfman calls this perspective building, which is when viewers use high-stress media to help them keep the stress of everyday life in perspective.

My stress now is mainly over minor things like taking my cat to the vet because she has an infection or realizing when the day is almost over that I don’t have a key ingredient for dinner. But stress can still take a toll on me. A couple of weeks ago, my partner came home exhausted after several crises at work and I was drained after planning out an enormous project.

As soon as we sat down to eat dinner, I suggested Killing Eve, which we’d recently started watching. “You know killers always make us feel better,” I said, hovering over the Hulu play button next to Sandra Oh’s distressed expression and incredible hair.

She laughed. At the end of the episode, when we were met with an enthralling cliffhanger, she asked, “One more?”

The post Watching high-stress TV shows like <em>Killing Eve</em> calms me down. I decided to find out why appeared first on HelloGiggles.

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Where Do You Find Your Quiet?

stock photo of a person kayaking on a serene mountainside lake

I was at a small dinner with some women a few months ago, and we went around the table and introduced ourselves, including explanations of where we find our inspiration and where we find our quiet. The second question has stuck with me, and I thought it might be an interesting discussion here today: Where DO you find your quiet? Do you strive to make mental quiet time a part of every day, or do you add it in as needed? Do you do something specific like meditate, or something meditation-adjacent like using coloring books or baking or knitting silently (no TV or podcast on!), or going for a run without entertainment?

I’ve read a lot about how this mental quiet time is increasingly difficult to come across naturally. As someone who tends to joke that I have 80 tabs open in my head at all times, this is particularly true. I’ve read about business leaders who purposely keep some time unscheduled, and obviously we’ve heard a lot about the benefits of meditation, limiting screen time, social media breaks, and more. 

My own answer at the time no longer really applies — my older son was having trouble falling asleep back then, so I would help him by syncing my breathing with his. Lying there in the dark, silent except for our breaths, was a reverent, quiet time for both of us. But (happily) he grew out of it and didn’t need as much help anymore, and my younger son hasn’t had that particular problem in a while either, so I’ve had to find my own quiet time these days. It’s something I need to remind myself constantly to do — I’ll be good about it for six months or so and then I just kind of forget. But I do notice a huge difference when I’m not making the effort, like the tabs in my head aren’t only open but flickering and doing some crazy “time for a new computer” kind of thing, like opening and closing all at once. I have a fashion coloring book I may try to get into, or else I’ll try to get back to my attempts at meditation.

Readers, how about you — do you strive for quiet time in your life? Where do you find it? For those of you who have been seeking it for a while, what different tactics have you tried over the years?

Stock photo via Stencil.

Pin featuring stock photo of a person kayaking on a serene lake, with the text "How to Find Your Quiet"

The post Where Do You Find Your Quiet? appeared first on Corporette.com.

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How to find the perfect vintage tee — and spot the cheap fakes

Looking for a vintage tee — but not the pit-stained discard someone’s parents hauled to the local thrift shop after they left home? Beyond timeless thrifted Harley-Davidson or retro rock band T-shirts — which have long been considered cool — a nostalgia for the ’90s is fueling a new demand for vintage duds. Shirts emblazoned…
Fashion News, Photos, and Video | New York Post

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Mueller did not find the Trump campaign conspired with Russia, attorney general says

The special counsel’s report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, but it does not exonerate him either, according to a summary issued Sunday.
Politics

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Mueller did not find Trump or his campaign conspired with Russia, also did not exonerate him on obstruction

Attorney General William Barr is expected to provide Congress and the public Sunday with his summary of the main conclusions from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, according to a person familiar with the process.


CNN.com – RSS Channel – Politics

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Facebook says it can’t find enough local news after helping kill local news

Facebook, which has been blamed for killing local newspapers, is now confirming that there aren’t enough of them to supply its users with the local news they want to read. Last year, the giant social network headed by Mark Zuckerberg launched a service called “Today In” that’s now available in 400 cities across the US….
Media | New York Post

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Tiny Harris Criticizes Reginae Carter’s Outfit – Find Out Tiny’s Problem With What Toya Wright’s Daughter Is Wearing

Toya Wright’s daughter, Reginae Carter posted some new pics in which she’s flaunting her curvy figure in a pink outfit.

As expected, her diehard fans praised both the outfit and Nae’s curves, but Tiny Harris jumped in the comments to say something.

Now, whoever knows Tiny knows that she is referring to the fact that Nae is wearing a Gucci bag and everyone knows by now that the Harris family are boycotting the brand following the blackface scandal.

Tip was the first in the family to slam the brand and tell everyone that they should boycott it.

Some of Nae’s followers agreed with Tiny.

‘Treat me like an option, and I’ll show you how many I got 😏 Bodysuit from @letsvoguegirls’ Reginae captioned the photo.

Someone said ‘@majorgirl 🤣🤣🤣 Nae smiling like omg auntie I almost got away with it 😭😭😭 it’s sooo cute tho. @colormenae 👑 that bitch is fire tho 💥💥💥 sorry @majorgirl NO SERIOUSLY FU** GUCCI 💯 damn nae. 😂😂😂😂😂

Another follower told Nae to ‘Stop supporting Gucci,’ while someone else agreed: ‘Gucci still canceled sis @colormenae. 🙄🙄🙄

One fan told Nae ‘SHOW GUCCI YOU GOT MORE OPTIONS…HE TREATED US LIKE WE A OPTION!’

Nae recently made fans sad with one of the photos that she shared.

She posted a photo with Rudy Johnson, Toya Wright’s late brother on her social media account.

You may recall that both he and Toya’s other brother Josh Johnson got killed a few years ago and the family suffered a tremendous loss. All of them are missing the two young men.

Celebrity Insider

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Say What Now? Developer Creates MAGA App to Help Trump Supporters Find Safe Spaces Where Liberals Won’t Make Fun of Them

If you’re looking to harass a Trump supporter, look no further than a newly-created app 63rd Safe.

Technically, the app was designed to help the pro-MAGA find ‘safe’ spaces in public where they can go without the fear of being ridiculed by liberals — but you could most definitely use it for the opposite.

via Raw Story:

As the Daily Beast reported over the weekend, the new mobile app 63red Safe was designed to help Trump supporters find “MAGA-friendly restaurants” whose owners will not let antifa activists harass them for wearing pro-Trump clothing.

“63red Safe works like a conservative Yelp,” the publication reported. “Instead of reviewing the lighting and ambience, though, the site’s users rate restaurants and other businesses on a series of four questions, including whether the restaurant’s owners make political social-media posts and whether they allow customers to carry weapons.”

Appearing on Fox News, app creator Scott Wallace explained what could get a restaurant or other business branded as “unsafe” for fans of President Donald Trump.

“Users can review the restaurants and businesses, it’s just four quick questions, yes-or-no questions,” he said. “No. 1, does this location serve all customers regardless of political beliefs? Will they protect their customers if they’re under attack by others in the restaurant? There’s the open carry question, and does the location have a political presence in their social media?”

What a joke.

The post Say What Now? Developer Creates MAGA App to Help Trump Supporters Find Safe Spaces Where Liberals Won’t Make Fun of Them appeared first on lovebscott – celebrity news.

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US-backed forces find foxholes and weapons near ISIS’ last stronghold

ABC News

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Kandi Burruss Shares Fire Photos With Todd Tucker And Her Dancers From Last Night’s Show – Fans Suggest Her To Keep Todd Out Of ‘Risky Situations’ Because Loyalty Is Hard To Find

Kandi Burruss has been preparing for last night’s show for quite a while. Her beloved hubby, Todd Tucker has also been a part of the rehearsal sessions and Kandi shared a bunch of pics and videos to document everything for her fans.

Kandi’s fans and followers have been laughing their hearts out while watching a recent post. She was with her crew, rehearsing and Todd Tucker joined her.

Now, a few hours ago, Kandi finally shared some pics from the much-awaited show, and some fans were surprised to see Todd on stage as well. He did attend the rehearsal, so this was expected.

‘Charlotte was Lit! 🔥🔥🔥Thanks for the love! I’m stopping by The Tip Off Mega Party later. New venue alert for the party!!! Now it will be at Peculiar Rabbit! 1212 Pecan Ave. Charlotte N.C. —- styled by @therealnoigjeremy, mua- @taetv, hair- @sewjodie. 📸: @hauseofglam,’ Kandi captioned a photo in which she was showing off her fantastic look.

She shared a bunch of other pics from the show and she captioned her post with: ‘Tonight’s show was fun! I gotta send love to my whole team that rocked with me tonight! ❤

Someone told Kandi as a joke (more or less): ‘Putting ur man in a risky situation is not safe anymore….there’s no loyalty anymore….keep ur happiness caged away from preyed eyes 😊

The person was probably hinting at the latest massive drama between the triangle Tristan Thompson – Khloe Kardashian – Jordyn Woods.

Another follower posted ‘Lovin the gram keep it up I was busy is fun showin love to 1 half of the crew.’

Someone else praised Kandi and called her a role model for her fans: ‘You are such a beautiful, positive role model for us all. Continued blessings to you and your family. 💜

Kandi has been spending more time with her family these days which made her fans happy.

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The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air helped me find freedom in solitude and fashion

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air helped me find freedom in solitude and fashion


<em>The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air</em> helped me find freedom in solitude and fashion

February is Black History Month. Here, an HG contributor celebrates The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, one of the most prominent Black sitcoms of the ’90s, for how it made her a free spirit in her career, her style, and her way of life.

From the moment Will Smith stepped out of the yellow taxi cab and entered his new life in Bel-Air, it was obvious his transition would be anything but smooth sailing. With the exception of his younger cousin Ashley and his Aunt Vivian, no one seemed to embrace his colorful personality. The rest of his family didn’t understand him or the world he came from. In all honesty, they didn’t want to try to understand.

In the very first episode of the series, we already notice that Will speaks and dresses differently than everyone else. Soon, we also learn that he has a different perspective and different interests from almost everyone he meets in Bel-Air, too.

Will’s culture shock was essentially a reflection of my whole childhood.

While I was never uprooted from my urban, predominantly Black N.Y.C. neighborhood to live with my rich uncle in a predominantly white neighborhood, I always felt a deep connection to the struggles that Will encountered. He constantly tried to stay true to his identity while battling the expectations people had set for him based on his background. Within my own peer group,  I never really found my place. Then I enrolled in a predominantly white high school, and my struggle to find friends worsened.

I was always stuck somewhere between fitting in and standing out. And I hadn’t yet accepted that standing out always felt much more natural to me.


For the majority of my childhood I felt a dire need to do what everyone else was doing. Most children found pleasure in joining cliques and participating in “cool” extracurricular activities. I preferred being alone in a classroom during lunch and recess so I could listen to music. Time to myself was more important to me than time spent trying to fit in with others. Most girls danced and jumped Double Dutch after school, but I loved ceramics classes and poetry slams. I once joined the school dance team just to prove to myself that I could dance as well as my classmates and so that my parents would be happy—they always wanted me to do things they believed other girls my age should be doing.

But I had my own plans.

In the episode “Bang The Drum, Ashley,” Will’s penchant for self-expression quickly rubs off on his impressionable young cousin.

Ashley, the youngest member of the Banks clan, is the first person in the family with whom he truly bonds. Not long after meeting Will, she shares that she is unhappy with how her parents control her free time. Ashley has a packed schedule of extracurricular activities from violin lessons to tennis matches, and plenty of other activities that most 13-year-olds wouldn’t find remotely interesting. Will introduces her to the activities he enjoys, like rapping and playing the drums.

While Ashley doesn’t completely fall in love with the drums, she learns a vital lesson. For the first time in her life, she is able to tell her parents that she needs to do things that actually make her happy. The audience would never see a timid Ashley conform to her parents’ expectations again. Sure, her newfound freedom would get her in trouble sometimes (i.e. the Season 5 episode when she goes behind her parents’ backs and enrolls in public school). But it would also let her explore passions like singing.


If Will wasn’t inspiring other people to loosen up, his free spirit was evident in his style of dress.

When Will first enrolls in the all boys prep school, Bel-Air Academy, he is utterly disturbed by the stuffy uniforms that students have to wear. The thought of blending in drives him crazy. Will being Will, he flips the uniform’s navy blue blazer inside out, revealing a funky pattern and letting him feel more comfortable in a situation that forces him to be someone he isn’t. Soon, his willingness to stand out rubs off on others who copy his reversed jacket.

I always admired how Will used fashion to reflect his identity—even if it wasn’t the “appropriate” thing to do. From the moment Will showed up at the Banks’s residence in loud, brightly colored streetwear, he brightened the dull neighborhood of Bel-Air. When I was younger, what I really wanted to do was dress however my heart desired, just like Will did. But as an impressionable teen, it felt more important to keep up with the latest trends.

I remember sitting in my bedroom when I was 15 years old, feeling super unhappy because the clothes in my closet didn’t feel like mine. They were carbon copies of the people I thought I was supposed to look like. Desperate to break away from the crowd, I decided to revamp my clothes myself.

I distressed everything, and turned old jackets into cools vests by adding patches and cutting off sleeves. I even went so far as to teach myself DIY nail art and make my own clip-in hair extensions. Unfortunately for me, I didn’t have a rich uncle to bankroll my new fashion obsession—but it became a passion project instead. Eventually, like Will, I accepted that I was actually happiest when I could bring some flavor to my style—even if meant that my classmates raised their eyebrows at Mika 2.0.

But like Will in Fresh Prince, people soon embraced my uniqueness and wanted to emulate it.

Imitation is the greatest form of flattery, which I learned as a 15-year-old trying to break out of a box I felt trapped in. When people were interested in my new style, I felt free—I had presented something different from the norm and, for the first time in my life, I could be proud of my differences—not embarrassed by them. Today, I still celebrate how my appearance exudes my personality. Whether I’m trying out bold makeup or wearing millions of prints, I feel my best when I’m not following trends.

When I embraced this freedom, I started uncovering parts of my identity that would essentially shape my adulthood. I started exploring my love of makeup and writing, which is now my career. Had I been focused on what everybody else—including my parents—wanted for me, I wouldn’t be the successful person that I am today.

In Fresh Prince, when Will was unapologetically himself, it often got him further than any of the other characters. Now, I feel the same way about my own life.

The post <em>The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air</em> helped me find freedom in solitude and fashion appeared first on HelloGiggles.

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Is a weird ‘bot’ draining your phone’s battery? Here’s how to find out

'Drainer Bot' may be draining your phone battery: Here's how to stop it

If you’ve noticed that your smartphone’s battery seems like it’s draining faster than normal, it may not be your imagination.

A stealth program dubbed “DrainerBot” may be the culprit.

DrainerBot is a piece of software that has been embedded in hundreds of apps in the Google Play Store. The program, which downloads hidden or invisible video ads, is linked to a major fraud campaign.

It could also be costing you big money in the form of high data overages. In this article, we’ll explain what you need to know about DrainerBot and outline some steps to help you remove it.

DrainerBot: 3 things you need to know about the software that could be stealing your battery life

  • It appears to have been downloaded 10 million times
  • It can consume up to 10GBs of data per month
  • It appears to have only infected Android devices

The purpose of DrainerBot appears to be to artificially (and illegally) inflate video ad view numbers. It does that by downloading gigabytes of video ads into your smartphone.

Even though you can’t see the video ads, those views are counted. The scheme is literally costing advertisers and phone users a fortune, according to Oracle, which exposed the software in a news release.

“The DrainerBot code appears to have been distributed via an infected SDK [Software Development Kit] integrated into hundreds of popular consumer Android apps and games like ‘Perfect365,’ ‘VertexClub,’ ‘Draw Clash of Clans,’ ‘Touch ‘n’ Beat – Cinema,’ and ‘Solitaire: 4 Seasons (Full),” Oracle said in a statement.

Here are some signs that your Android device may be infected with DrainerBot

According to Oracle, here are some signs that your phone may have an app infected by DrainerBot:

  • Apps crash your phone more often and programs become sluggish
  • Your phone’s battery lasts only a short time and it’s hot to the touch
  • Your phone is using dramatically more data than it did before installing a particular app

Here are the 2 ways to stop DrainerBot on your phone

You may not know where to start when it comes to finding out which particular app may be infected with DrainerBot. So here’s what you should do:

Go to Settings > Data Usage > App Data Usage and see if any apps are using an incredibly high amount of data. If so, they may be infected with DrainerBot. Once you’ve identified the data-draining app you can:

1. Delete the app in question

or

2. Open your settings and restrict the app’s permissions

A. Go to Settings, then click on Apps.

'DrainerBot' may be killing your phone battery: Here's how to stop it

B. Scroll to the individual app you want to access.

'DrainerBot' may be killing your phone battery: Here's how to stop it

C. Click on the app and go to App Info. You should then see Permissions.

'DrainerBot' may be killing your phone battery: Here's how to stop it

D. From there, click on App Permissions and adjust it accordingly.

'DrainerBot' may be killing your phone battery: Here's how to stop it

If you find that your phone is still sluggish or your battery is still draining faster than normal, locate another app that may be taking up a large amount of your phone’s bandwidth and repeat step 1 or 2.

Use this opportunity to review your phone’s privacy and security settings. Make any adjustments so that you can have the security and privacy you need when using your phone.

Here are some more scam-related articles from Clark.com:

The post Is a weird ‘bot’ draining your phone’s battery? Here’s how to find out appeared first on Clark Howard.

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Back To School Sale – Get up to 40% OFF stylish footwear at Payless.com

Grammys find balance between awards and performances

The Grammys return this weekend, facing some of the same challenges as those confronting its movie-industry counterpart, the Oscars, but with at least one significant advantage: the music world’s top prize has already found a balance between handing out awards and delivering entertainment.


CNN.com – RSS Channel – Entertainment

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Jussie Smollett Hate Crime Investigation Update — Chicago Police Are Expanding Their Search, Unable to Find Video or Photos of Assailants

The Chicago Police Department has issued a statement with an update on their investigation into Jussie Smollett’s racist and homophobic attack. 

The FBI has taken over the investigation related to the threatening letter Jussie received last week, but as far as the actual attack itself police have been canvassing the area looking for surveillance footage.

TMZ reports that police visited a Target store near where the incident happened and they were able to retrieve some footage. A source says the footage shows just one person — presumably Jussie — walking down the street.

Anthony Guglielmi, Chief Communications Officer, tweeted that the department is expanding its search radius after being unable to find video or photos of the alleged attackers or any vehicles.

We’ll keep you updated as the investigation unfolds.

The post Jussie Smollett Hate Crime Investigation Update — Chicago Police Are Expanding Their Search, Unable to Find Video or Photos of Assailants appeared first on lovebscott – celebrity news.

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Scientists find genes with large effects on head and brain size

The size of children’s heads is not only related to the growth of their skull, but also their brain. A genome-wide analysis now reports the largest known genetic effects on head circumference and the related measure of intracranial volume.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Golf Digest struggles to find advertisers for its magazine

Golf Digest is struggling to come up with advertisers as parent company Condé Nast continues to seek a buyer. In the February issue that hit this week, 10 of the 26 ad pages come from other Condé Nast brands. And for some reason, the publisher must think golfing makes you hungry. Among the house ads…
Media | New York Post

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Russian scientists find defect in new heavy lift space rocket engine

Scientists have discovered a defect in the engines of Russia’s new flagship heavy lift space rocket that could destroy it in flight, an apparent setback to a project President Vladimir Putin has said is vital for national security.


Reuters: Science News

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Spire.io – Over 50 Million Minutes of Calm Discovered!

Where to find the best Christmas markets in the world

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Technology may have made the world feel like a small place, but when it comes time for the Christmas holiday, many tourists find themselves unsure where they should go. Christmas markets are a legendary and memorable part of holiday travel, but it can be hard to find the best ones.

Well, when it comes to Christmas markets, visiting Europe is simply a no-brainer. The list of good destinations is long, but here are some of the finest places to find the best Christmas markets.

Austria

Whenever Austria is mentioned, we tend to think about it’s capital city, Vienna. In the winter, it’s a magical wonderland, especially from late November to Christmas Eve. The “Vienna magic of advent” boasts of being one the biggest and most popular Christmas markets on the planet. Here, little kids get to explore the fairytale-like workshops, fitted with sparkling tree decorations. And don’t forget the tasty, warm drinks for children and adults!

Getting there doesn’t get any easier than just booking your flight straight to Vienna. The market is usually open from November 17th to December 24th. There are are quite a few fancy hotels around, so you don’t have to worry about safe and comfortable accommodation.

Poland

Poznan Bethlehem is the number one Christmas market in the world. When you visit, you will find yourself transported to a dreamy winter wonderland. Located in the Poznan Freedom Square, it is a sight to see, full of ice and glittering snowflakes. Of course, don’t forget to check out the ice sculpture festival – it just doesn’t happen anywhere else in Europe like it does here. People come from almost all corners of the world to carve massive ice blocks, turning them into sublime pieces of art that leave you in awe.

You also get to treat yourself to the traditional Polish cuisine, and you can even choose to embark on a private food tour.

The opening dates are from November 17th to December 21st. The two major airports nearby are Bydgoszcz and Wroclaw. The best and most affordable accommodations are located at the heart of Poznan, just about 200 meters from the Old Market Square.

Germany

Germany is definitely the first place you think of when discussing European Christmas markets. Aachen is the place to be during that special time of the year. The atmosphere is so glorious that it has made the Aachen Christmas Market world famous. The streets and squares are transformed into a wonderland full of bright colors, lights, and festive fragrances.

Everyone is always in a friendly mood, and people from all over the world come to mingle and interact with each other like no other time. The market normally opens from the November 23rd to the December 23rd. You can book your flight and land at the nearest airports in Cologne or Brussels.

It’s always a great feeling when you get to spend the holidays traveling and enjoying the sights with your loved ones. Visiting the beautiful and unique Christmas markets mentioned here can make for an experience that you will remember for a lifetime.

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The post Where to find the best Christmas markets in the world appeared first on Worldation.

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A Job Shouldn’t Rule Your Life. Here’s How to Find Fulfillment Outside Work

Throughout history, our sources of purpose have shifted. First, our purpose was simply to survive. Then we built families and embraced religion. But now, we increasingly look to our jobs as a source of meaning.

And who could blame us? Our society idolizes people like Jeff Bezos and Steve Jobs, who romanticize work and tell us to do what we love. But according to research from the Kaiser Family Foundation, that’s led us to a point where Americans are highly isolated and unhappy.

Looking to our jobs for purpose is risky business, says Jeremy Smith, an expert on purpose and an editor for the University of California, Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center magazine.

“The problem with finding a sense of purpose in a job is that you can get fired,” Smith says. “It’s really that simple. Most employment is conditional.”

Despite this, members of Generation Y (aka millennials) — now the largest generation in the workforce — look to their jobs for meaning at a higher rate than previous generations, according to Gallup research.

The lines between work and life are getting blurred, explains Nate Dvorak, a researcher for Gallup and an expert on well-being. Millennials increasingly want to work for a company that invests in them as employees and as people, in a holistic sense.

But in most cases, they’re not finding it.

In that context, it’s easy to see the disconnect, or as Smith likes to call it, the “crisis of purpose.”

Aaron Castillo, a content strategist for a marketing company in Florida, exemplifies most of Gallup’s findings to a T. Like most of Gen Y, he struggles to find a sense of purpose in his day job. Most days, he does the number-crunching side of marketing, but he much prefers creative work, especially videography and photography. Those opportunities are few and far between.

How to Find Your Purpose Outside Your Job

An important part of finding a sense of purpose is to diversify your sources. Then, your purpose isn’t attached too heavily on any one thing, especially not a job that is at the whims of the economy or a tyrannical boss.

Dvorak says that jobs are indeed important, but there are several other factors to overall well-being to consider. He warns against putting too much emphasis on one element.

“Well-being is more about life evaluation,” he says. “Not just happiness. Not just satisfaction.”

Gallup defines well-being using these five main factors:

  • Purpose (Enjoying what you do every day. Jobs can be a big part of this one.)
  • Social (Having supportive and loving relationships.)
  • Financial (Managing your money so you can live a less stressful life.)
  • Community (Feeling safe and having pride in where you live.)
  • Physical (Being healthy and energetic enough to do what you want.)

As you can see, the majority of well-being has little to do with your day job.

Smith notes that we can also tap into “human capacities” to live more meaningful lives — capacities such as social connection, awe, gratitude, compassion, forgiveness, mindfulness and empathy.  

With both Gallup and the Greater Good Science Center research on the aspects on well-being in mind, there are plenty of practical ways to find a sense of meaning outside the office. Here are a few.

Cultivate Meaningful Relationships

Young adults hang out at a bar

Social well-being is something Americans struggle with. While we have hundreds, if not thousands, of friends on social media, we lack genuine, deep connections with one another.

“By many, many measures,” Smith says, “Americans are more isolated than they have been in the past.”

And he isn’t referring to romantic relationships. This spans the gamut. Friendships, families and partnerships are all areas we need to actively cultivate a more meaningful connection.

Dvorak suggests that the lack of connection could be because millennials are focusing too much on their careers and not enough on friends and family.

“Social well-being is not about a number of friends you have. It’s about the quality of friends you have,” he says.

So the next time you’re socializing, think twice about immediately responding when your phone buzzes. I promise, the notification will be there later.

Volunteer for a Cause You Like

Volunteering is a great way to add fulfillment to your life, and it certainly develops human capacities like compassion and empathy. It also allows you to develop new skills and try new things that have nothing to do with your professional life.

In the Greater Good Science Center’s Greater Good magazine, Smith writes that altruism is one such way to have a greater sense of purpose.

When Castillo reached the point where his job didn’t feel fulfilling, he turned to a local volunteer organization that focused on keeping the Tampa Bay community clean, a cause more personal than professional. Cleaning up beaches helped him find a greater sense of community. And suddenly his world was a little bigger. The boring days at work didn’t mean so much.

But sometimes it’s hard to find time to volunteer.

To combat your scheduling woes, Dvorak  proposes “double dipping,” i.e. combining multiple aspects of well-being into one activity. So don’t just volunteer alone. Rally your friends and family to your local food pantry or run a 5K race that raises money for your favorite charity.

Join a Professional Group

Smith makes a clear distinction between your job and your work. Jobs are temporary, he says. Even if you’re lucky enough to have the same one for 40 years, it’s still temporary. But your work is a greater cause.

So if you aren’t happy with your current job, but you do enjoy the sense of work or the field that you’re in, professional groups can be fulfilling on multiple levels.

A nonprofit, professional advertising organization for Gen Y called Ad 2 Tampa Bay helps Castillo balance out those number-crunching days at his marketing job. It allows him to pursue the creative side of advertising, and it sharpened his videography and photography skills.

He was able to bring that fresh set of skills back to his day job and incorporate more creativity at work.

There’s also the hugely important social aspect of professional organizations.

“One of the primary reason for me joining Ad 2 in the first place was because I didn’t know anyone in the field,” Castillo says. “It seemed like a good way to get out of my comfort zone and meet new people and experience new things.”

Start a New Hobby or Nurture a Passion Project

Depending on which hobby or project you choose, you can support several aspects of well-being simultaneously. Hobbies like rock climbing or CrossFit support physical and social well-being for sure, but Smith highly recommends reading and writing.

He notes that social isolation can lead to a lack of meaning, but these solitary activities are big exceptions. They actually increase the human capacities mentioned above.

For example, reading can foster insight and empathy by introducing you to someone you would have never met otherwise. And writing, especially about your own experiences and life, can help you find a sense of meaning.

“Try turning [your life] into a story with a beginning, a middle and an end,” Smith says. “That can allow you to project your story out into the future.”

Reframe Your Mindset About Your Job

A sign in New York City reads:

If you’re like me, you may put a little too much emphasis on the work category of your overall well-being. Whether you love or hate your job, it’s easy to get caught up in it and have the issues of the day or month or year follow you home.

I’ve been on both ends of the spectrum. A bad work environment when I lived in South Korea would have tainted my whole perception of the country if I had let it. On the other hand, there have been instances where I get so amped about a project that I forget to eat dinner. By the time I put my laptop down, it’s bedtime.

Neither example is a good place to be consistently.

To redistribute some of the importance that you place on your job into other areas like physical or social well-being, you can reframe how you view it.

“I think the important thing is not what your external circumstances are, but how you feel about those circumstances,” Smith says, noting that it’s entirely possible to be in prison and have a strong sense of purpose. “As long as you have enough to eat and a roof over your head, there’s hope.”

Similar to writing about your life story, this mindset can help bring a bigger perspective to your life.

“Why do we have jobs? We have jobs so that we can make money and pay the rent and eat,” Smith says. “Unhitch… your self-esteem from your job.”

In other words, view your job as a paycheck that allows you to enjoy the other aspects of your life, not as a main source of fulfillment itself.

Practice Mindfulness

A woman meditates in her bedroom

Research shows that mindfulness has several benefits. Sometimes those benefits are exaggerated. But we do know that when done properly, mindfulness can help increase your attention, improve your mental health and positively affect your relationships, among several other things.

But Smith warns against “self-destructive” perceptions of mindfulness. For example, some people think that isolating yourself on top of a mountain is a good way to reach enlightenment. But that could actually have negative effects (beyond the dangers of, you know, slipping and falling to certain death).

“Even monks who take a vow of silence for decades have a connection to a monastery,” he says. “That path to enlightenment is oftentimes connected to a larger religious organization.”

As you incorporate some (or none) of these suggestions, it’s important to keep in mind that this list is in no way definitive. These are merely examples of activities to increase your chances of overall well-being.

So get creative and come up with activities of your own that fit your schedule.

“There’s not a certain amount of boxes to check on your road to purpose. People can take many different paths,” Smith says. “The important thing is you’re really listening to your life… listening and responding to it.”

Adam Hardy is an editorial assistant on the Make Money team at The Penny Hoarder. He lives off a diet of stale puns and iced coffee. Read his full bio here, or say hi on Twitter @hardyjournalism.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

The Penny Hoarder Promise: We provide accurate, reliable information. Here’s why you can trust us and how we make money.

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How terrifying is ‘Bird Box’? Two scaredy-cats decide to find out

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Netflix’s new horror movie Bird Box has taken the internet by storm, which is a little surprising considering horror is really not for everyone.

It’s especially not for us, two scaredy-cats who do not like to watch horror movies for the simple fact that we don’t like to be scared. 

But with so much fervor swirling around Bird Box (over 45 million users have watched so far), we decided to give in to the hype for the sake of all the other wimps out there and see if Bird Box is actually too spooky.

Here are our impressions of Bird Box, which we both watched on a bright Monday morning.

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How to Find the Elusive Sweater Dress

Dresses are generally hard to fit, and sweater dresses can be the hardest of all. Too short, tight, itchy, lightweight, shapeless, or just all-round unflattering. That said, when you find a sweater dress that works, it’s the best Winter dress because it’s warm, cosy and versatile. Dress it up or down, layer it with hosiery and toppers, and combine it with any style of boots. 

Sweater dresses come in many variations. Short, long, body-con, fluid, A-line, solid, patterned, casual, dressy, sporty, retro, chunky, fine gauge, and belted. Take your pick.

In 2008 I wrote a post on how to find a flattering sweater dress and the guidelines are just as relevant ten years later. I’ve changed my preference for my perfect length though. A decade ago, I liked my sweater dresses just above the knee, and now I like them just below the knee.

I’ve had many sweater dresses over the years and loved them all. They became instant workhorses because you can throw them on with fun hosiery, boots, a topper, scarf, bag, and not feel cold in the dead of Winter. They are a fabulous change to jeans and pants. If only it weren’t so hard to find a perfect fit. I currently have one midi sweater dress from last season and I am constantly on the lookout for more. My challenges are insufficient length, a fit that’s too body-con, a neckline that’s too wide, bad quality, or flimsy fabric. Or I find a fabulous fit and great quality but it’s in a colour I don’t like, or at a price I don’t want to pay.

These sweater dress guidelines aren’t flop proof, but they might help get you on your way.

1. Embrace a Fluid or Oversized Fit

Surrender the waist with a very straight cut, or avant-garde and arty silhouette that drapes over lumps, bumps and extra bits in an architectural way if body-con fits are not your thing. This type of gently fluid or very voluminous cut can work on any body type when there is just enough structure in the outfit. My olive sweater turtleneck sweater dress is fluid and straight through the body, hugs my hips and bottom a little, and tapers at the hem for structure.

2. Consider an Empire Cut

The baby doll style is an extra roomy option on the bottom, making it a forgiving A-line silhouette. Good for apple shapes, pear shapes, and even straighter figures who crave ample movement. A larger bust needs a lower neckline in this style, and the empire cut should not cut across the bust.

3. Find a Fit & Flare

If you’re curvy or very curvy and prefer to define the waist, silhouettes that are belted or fitted on the torso create that type of structure. The flared bottom creates movement and camouflages hip and thigh extra bits you don’t feel comfortable showcasing. You can also add a wide belt to a fluid fit dress to define the waist.

4. Choose Heavier Knits

This does not necessarily mean “chunky knit” because fine gauge knits can be substantial (like the knit of my olive sweater dress). Knits with weight smooth over the contour of the body instead of grabbing onto curves in an unflattering way. Chunky knit sweater dresses with a fluid fit can also be a lot more flattering than you think.

5. Get the Length Right

Sweater dresses can’t be hemmed, which means that the length has to be perfect upon purchase. I like them just below the knees these days, or a little longer. But many of my clients prefer them on the knee, or just above the knee if the fits are voluminous and the knit is chunky. Some will wear them a whole lot shorter with very tall boots and opaques.

6. Complete the Outfit

Make sure you try a potential sweater dress with the right support act before you say no thank you. The right shoes and hosiery can make the difference. And remember that shapewear is a lot more comfortable than it used to be.

7. Block the Dress Back to Size

Sweater dresses can lose their perfect shape and fit after laundering. This is usually an easy fix with the steam iron that presses out wrinkles, and blocks the areas back to the right shape.

And last, you can wear a knee-length sweater dress over cropped flares, cropped straights, culottes, bootcuts, leggings and skinnies if you like. I LOVE this outfit, although I’d wear flat white booties and a white bag. For this look, I would get a knee-length sweater dress instead of a knee-covering one.

DURO OLOWU Polka-dot Jacquard Wool Sweater Dress

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Amazon Might Owe You a Free Month of Prime. Here’s How to Find out

Ah, the perks of Amazon Prime.

We love free two-day shipping, free same-day shipping, free movies, free music and even free photo storage (for when your phone won’t stop letting you know your storage is full).

Yes, those are some solid benefits, but it will cost ya — about $ 119 a year.

Wanna know our secret, though?

You can get compensation, in some cases a free month of Amazon Prime, if one of your guaranteed shipments arrives late.

Find out If Amazon Owes You

You might’ve heard of Paribus.

The free tool tracks your online purchases from more than 25 merchants. When it detects a price drop, it’ll work with the retailer’s price-match policy to help get you the difference. When it detects an Amazon guaranteed shipment is late? It’ll work with Amazon to compensate you.

But what if you got free shipping as a Prime member? We’ve spoken with several shoppers who’ve gotten a free month of Prime as compensation.

Here’s how to make sure you get compensated for late shipments:

  • Sign up with Paribus. All you need is your email address.
  • Let Paribus do its thing, passively tracking your orders.
  • If it detects a late guaranteed shipment, it’ll work with Amazon to get you compensated.

Happy free shipping, Amazon Prime members!

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

Carson Kohler (carson@thepennyhoarder.com) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’s managed to ease back on her Prime orders… it was a little out of hand there for a while.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

The Penny Hoarder Promise: We provide accurate, reliable information. Here’s why you can trust us and how we make money.

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10 Ways to Find Your Personal Style

Websites including The Gentleman’s Gazette possess an encyclopedic amount of content on how to dress well, while thousands of images of iGents, dandies and influencers dance across Instagram feeds every day. Faced with all the content online, how do you know what suits you?

Those who are new to the game of classic men’s style can quickly become overwhelmed when trying to determine what they might like to wear. Even men who have been into classic style for years can fall into a rut. So, how do you go about discovering your personal style in the face of all the advice and information out there? Here are our top 10 tips.

Spezzato Suit Jacket and Matching Vest with Contrasting Yellow Pants and Brown Oxfords

Not everybody likes the idea of yellow pants, but they perfectly suit Sven Raphael Schneider’s style

1. Put Your Style into Words

If you’re reading this article, it’s established that you like to dress in a certain way, so you already have some sense of what you like and don’t like. Take out your favorite fountain pen and try writing it on paper (or just use your computer). Describe your style in a sentence or even a few words:

  • How would you describe your ideal look? It might be “vintage academic” or “Italian sprezzatura,” but it could also be “put together” or “preppy.”
  • What do you enjoy wearing? Do you do vests? Do you like bombers and safari jackets or prefer a regatta blazer?
  • What are your strongest likes and dislikes?
  • Who are your style icons? What do you like about their look?
Fountain pen paper and a Lamy Safari fountain pen

Engage in a writing exercise to define your style

2. Gather Inspiring Images

To help you describe your style, you can save images of styles, outfits, and pieces that you like. Pinterest is one of the largest social media sites in the world, behind only Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn and is the easiest way to do thisLinkedIn and is the easiest way to do this. Classic style boards on Pinterest

A set of Pinterest boards used to collect classic menswear images. Although it has a reputation for photos of craft projects and recipes, it is an easy way to capture and store images that you like related to classic men’s style.

If you have the Pinterest app on your phone, you can grab any image from any site and put it in your digital scrapbook or board. Looking at your pins will then not only help you remember clothes you want to buy but, viewed collectively, will give you a holistic sense of what your style is like. Of course, as you gather images, you may do so from other people’s Pinterest boards, which brings us to item 3.

3. Find Style Role Models (Plural) to Follow

As you go through social media, you’ll encounter numerous well-dressed gents whether on the number one source of online style inspiration–Instagram–on Tumblr microblogs or Pinterest boards. It’s important to realize though that even though you may like the personal style of someone with 15,000 Instagram followers, what he wears may not necessarily work on you.

The Style Icon - Cary Grant in Berlin in 1960

The Style Icon – Cary Grant in Berlin in 1960

The same goes for well-dressed men outside of social media whether Cary Grant to David Beckham or Idris Elba. You may be older or younger and have a different body type or skin tone, to name just a few things that can influence what looks best on a specific individual. However, with so many people posting to social media, odds are you will find somebody on Instagram with a body type or general appearance similar to yours.

Style icons Samuel Jackson, Andreas Weinås, and Alan See

Style icons Samuel Jackson, Andreas Weinås, and Alan See

Everyone’s style is really an amalgam of their influences, from family members to friends to celebrities and random strangers online. Along the same lines, the best approach with style icons is to take note of specific things you like from different people. It’s important not to imitate just one person because you risk coming across as a mere copy.

If you wear your watch over your sleeve cuffs, it’s obvious you are just copying Agnelli. You can admire the way Sven Raphael Schneider wears accessories like cufflinks, boutonnieres and pocket squares while also liking the contemporary urban edge of Dan Trepanier. You can love how Mark Cho effortlessly combines colors but realize the fuller cuts of his jackets is not for you. Pick and choose from the smorgasbord of influences with the understanding that you don’t need to be loyal to any one style guru.

Gianni Agnelli and his Patek Philippe 1415 HU, or Universal Time

Gianni Agnelli’s characteristic sprezzatura style is difficult to copy

4. Be True to Yourself

Even when you follow multiple influences, aim to be authentic. Do what’s true to you, not what’s popular. There are popular sprezzatura style choices seen everywhere online like keeping your button-down shirt collar unbuttoned or wearing the back blade of your necktie longer than the front and below your waistline. These are trendy, fashionable approaches that are more about uniformity than originality.

Color, texture and hats at Pitti Uomo 88 - photo by Pitti Uomo

Beware imitating what’s popular online, such as the Pitti Peacocks

It can be tempting to buy tight suits, wear a suit jacket with sweatpants, or have your pants hemmed above your ankles because “everyone” is doing it in Suitsupply ads or photos from Pitti Uomo (and getting 2000 “likes”).

Sven Raphael Schneider in Three Piece Suit with double breasted waistcoat

Sven Raphael Schneider only wears pleated pants, because they are his style, not because they are popular (which they aren’t!)

Unless this really makes you happy and is how you see your personal style, be cautious of following the crowd. The key is to be comfortable–both physically in the clothes you choose and the way you look. Dress for yourself, not for others.

5. Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment

To get to your personal style, there’s really no substitute for hands-on experimentation. If you see someone who wears an olive green linen jacket, you may want to try it yourself.

Green linen and gingham

Linus Norbom wearing a green linen jacket with a green and white gingham shirt and white pants

You can look at pictures all you want, but you won’t know whether you like pleated pants until you put them on. Though in theory, your rounded face shape would look better with a point collar shirt, you won’t know for sure until you wear one and compare it with a spread collar.

Collars formality scale

Try different collars in different formalities to see what suits you

I tried point collars, cutaways, spreads, long points and button downs for shirt collars before settling on which I liked best. The first few years of my interest in menswear, I bought almost the full range of colors in sport coats, but since then I’ve boiled my favorites down to blues, browns, and beiges.

Spezzato with vest and pants

Try experimenting, such as wearing wristbands or splitting up a suit

If possible, you can try things in boutiques and stores to see how you look at them. Alternatively, for pieces you aren’t too sure of, you can buy thrift or used. Yes, you will make mistakes and buy something experimental that you won’t like, but that’s what return policies are for.

If it takes you longer to figure out something is not for you, there’s always reseller markets like eBay or Grailed. Even if you sell at a loss, try not to look at it as wasted money. Instead, think of the journey as part of the reward. It’s like ordering a new kind of sushi or visiting a city you’ve never been to before. You’re in it for the experience, and there should be no regrets. It’s all part of the learning process.

6. Understand Your Physical Characteristics

One the reason we’re not into trends is that they rarely suit everyone. The skinny fit of suits today, for example, only works well for certain body types. If you want to capture your “own” style, it’s better to work with what you have rather than trying to conform to trends. Start by considering your body – your physique, your age, and your skin tone, for instance.

If you have pale skin, a dark navy shirt will wash you out. If you have brown skin, you can pull off more vibrant or hotter colors. If you’re over fifty, maybe slim fit trousers and a loafer without socks wouldn’t look best on you.

Grimod in Sky blue linen suit

Great style is possible at any age; here, Herbert Stricker in sky blue linen suit

A mistake is trying to impose a style on yourself that doesn’t work for you just because you saw someone else do it online. The desire to wear anything you want is strong but not always possible. It’s a sign of stylistic maturity to realize that just because you admire how someone wore an item, it doesn’t mean you can or should wear it yourself.

7. Understand Your Environment

As you form your style, realize that it will be influenced by where you are situated. The way men dress on the internet often has very little to do with real life. What someone wears at Pitti Uomo or to sell a product is designed first to get attention in a medium full of so many competing images. Something may be photographed such a way to make it desirable, but ask yourself whether your personal environment would suit the style.

David Evans in Denim and brown country sport coat with sweater

David Evans showing a country style

If you live in Manhattan, you may be able to wear suits most of the time if you want to, but if you’re in rural Kentucky, this stylistic choice will make you stick out like a sore thumb. If you’re in Italy, you can wear bright, fitted jackets that are at home there, but in London, they’ll look out of place. Realistically, part of your personal style–what you wear–is dictated by your environment.

Cri De La Soie Silk Knit ties by Fort Belvedere

Knit ties might be part of your signature look

This can be as basic as not wearing an elaborate pocket square because you are dressing for a conservative workplace or wearing sports coats and knit ties instead of suits and printed silk ties because you are never in a formal setting.

This may seem like it’s forcing you to compromise, but unless you want to march entirely to the beat of your own drum, you will have to fit your style to your milieu. Even within these limitations, you’ll still have a lot of possibilities.

8. Realize That You Can Have Multiple Styles

Kids may also ruin your hair but they will have a blast

Many people are surprised to find that Sven Raphael Schneider’s summer uniform is a polo with shorts and boat shoes

A further consolation is that you’re never really bound to a single authoritative “look”; the reality is that you’ll have multiple styles, and it would be rigid to assume that you need to wear the same sort of thing no matter where you go.

Neil Patrick Harris as Barney Stinson

You don’t need to wear a suit on every occasion like Barney Stinson

You can wear suits for work but sport coats without ties on the weekend. You don’t need to be Barney Stinson from How I Met Your Mother and suit up all the time.

Ralph Lauren's Country Lifestyle

Ralph Lauren’s Country Lifestyle

When you visit the countryside, you might wear sweaters and tattersall shirts with a Barbour jacket. When you’re taking a beach holiday, perhaps you’ll put on a linen shirt and espadrilles. You may still have certain common threads through all your looks–like always wearing a bit of blue–but odds are your style will really be multiple styles.

9. Assess Your Closet

Once you have accumulated a decent wardrobe, you can get to your core style by auditing and managing your wardrobe. If you have a social media presence or just for yourself, take a selfie when you wear something you think looks particularly good on you or that you get compliments on. When you have a bunch of photos, review them to see which pieces repeat the most often; these are the foundation of your personal style.

The Closet if Giancarlo Maresca

Take occasional stock of your closet contents

If we break it down, finding your style really comes in two major parts. The first is casting a wide net and trying a lot of things. The second is culling things you don’t ‘wear to get to a core wardrobe.

Culling

Besides looking at photos, look at your closet itself and get rid of things you haven’t worn for a long time, whether a certain number of months or a year max. If you don’t pick them, it’s a sign that they’re not your style. When you first start out, you’re enthusiastic and want to have more outfits, but eventually, you’ll reduce your choices and settle on a sort of uniform that represents you. For me, it’s sports coats and ties with interesting woven textures.

Spezzato with jeans

The author wearing two of his favorites: a sports coat and a textured tie

The more you try, the less you continue to experiment because you learn what does and doesn’t work for you and settle into “your style.” This can change depending on factors like age or weight, but for the most part, you engage in less trial and error.

This doesn’t mean that you have to stop adding to your wardrobe, though. If you find you like wearing navy wool trousers, you’ll soon want navy cotton pants, wool flannelpleated and flat front, high rise and medium rise.  The fact is if you’re serious about style, you’ll never want to stop working at it. The difference is that, after a time, you’ll buy from a more limited range of things because you know you look best in blue, that you prefer a spread collar shirt, and that you like an unlined tie.

Short Vintage Tie - excellent if you are a shorter man

You may prefer a spread collar shirt or a short tie

As your eye develops, you can know at a glance whether an item you see is suitable for you. You’ll be more discerning and purge things from your closet that you no longer wear because they don’t fit your core style.

Pharrell Williams Hat

Your signature items don’t need to be as showy as Pharrell Williams’ hat

What you’re left with will include signature pieces that define you. I don’t mean something like Karl Lagerfield’s sunglasses and stiff collars or Pharell Williams’ hat–these are more celebrity costume than classic style–but your signature look may be a penchant for pocket squares, odd vests (meaning not part of a matching suit) or colorful shoelaces. Think of it as your brand in terms of style–an aspect that is recognizably and consistently you.

Colorful shoelaces like these from Fort Belvedere can be a signature of your look

10. Know that it’s a Continuous Journey

Once you go down the rabbit-hole of traditional men’s style, you have a lifetime to enjoy the fruits of the hobby (obsession?), and even when you have a good sense of your style, things will not get stale.

If you relocate, change the sort of job you do, gain or lose weight or simply get older, your style will change in some way. When you reach a certain age, you may wear more comfortable or less showy clothes, probably of higher quality, but then again, you may always like a good Prince of Wales check.

Tight vs. Comfortable Suit Fits

Your taste in clothes may change over time from fitted to more comfortable.

Conclusion

A given is still that your style won’t (and shouldn’t) ever be static. I’ve shared some of the aspects of the journey you are likely to encounter but can tell you that there’s no substitute for experiencing it firsthand yourself. There will be errors and missteps, but this is part of the learning and the fun.

Have you already experienced some of the stages mentioned? What other advice do you have for finding your personal style? Share in the Comments section below.


Gentleman’s Gazette

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High-powered brain scanner may find the human ‘soul’

Chinese scientists are developing a $ 126 million state-of-the-art brain scanner to try and find the human soul. They will use powerful magnetic forces to observe the structure and activities of every neuron in a living brain. The aim is to build the world’s most powerful MRI device — which may one day be able to…
Technology News & Reviews | New York Post

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85 Million Americans Could Have Credit Report Errors. Here’s How to Find the Mistakes

Your credit score is important. The better your score, the better deal you’ll get on a mortgage, car loan or credit card. We’re talking big money here.

Even if you’re not buying a house anytime soon, a lousy credit score means you’ll get hit with a high security deposit whenever you rent a car or move into a new apartment.

But did you know your credit score could be inaccurate? One out of four credit reports have an error, according to a study by the Federal Trade Commission.

To keep a closer eye on your credit, get your credit score and a “credit report card” for free from Credit Sesame. It breaks down exactly what’s on your credit report in layman’s terms, how it affects your score and how to address it.

Because it simplifies everything, you should be able to spot any errors. For instance, if you find an “unpaid” credit card that you know you paid, or a bill in collections you know never existed, you can dispute the incorrect information and raise your credit score.

James Cooper, a motivational speaker, raised his credit score 277 points using Credit Sesame. Now he talks to high school students about the importance of having good credit and uses what he’s learned through Credit Sesame as a blueprint for his lessons.

“We want to touch the Z Generation,” Cooper says “We’re not in the business of fixing credit. We want to get to you before you have to fix your credit.”

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

The Penny Hoarder Promise: We provide accurate, reliable information. Here’s why you can trust us and how we make money.

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Fab Find: My Favourite Winter Sneakers

I can’t rave enough about these hi-top sneakers from Converse because they are EXTREMELY comfortable and very warm. They’re leather, so they look more polished than the canvas options. Their white soles and toe boxes are iconic, Modern Retro, and add a crisp and prettier touch to the sneaker. They create a tailored fit on the foot despite the size of your ankles, because you can manipulate the width with the laces.

They look streamlined and hip, and work well with cropped pants and jeans. I’ve also worn them with midi dresses and hosiery. They are sufficiently roomy for wider feet, and will accommodate an orthotic if you go up half a size. They run true to size, and work well with socks and knee-highs.

The best part about these hi-tops is their fleece linings, which are super soft and keep your feet toasty warm. The leather is weatherproof, and the soles are grippy and stable on frozen sidewalks.

I was walking around in below freezing temperatures with ice and snow in Salt Lake City for two weeks last month, and these hi-tops are the bomb. I take them along when I see my Dad in the Netherlands in colder weather, and they’re fabulous in the Seattle rain too. Simply wipe them down to keep them clean, or use Oxi Clean on the soles.

I have three pairs of these Winter hi-tops and I’m not opposed to getting more, because they have become a wardrobe essential. I got the black pair about a year and half ago, loved them and got the off-white pair a few months later. This year I bought the cream pair with a watermelon stripe, which work well with a watermelon Furla and new watermelon specs. All three pairs are workhorses, and the most comfortable shoes in my wardrobe. These are 20,000 step city shoes.

There are more variations in colour and style as seen in this collection. Remember that the hi-tops are leather and have fleece linings, and that’s what makes them special and a cut above regular Converse hi-tops. None of the styles have side zippers for easy access, so you have to tie and untie the laces every time. But the most recent pair I got has a hiking boot hook feature at the ankle, making pulling them on and off a little easier and faster.

My favourite sneakers of all time.

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‘There was no Plan B’: Trump scrambles to find chief of staff after top candidate turns him down

The position has proved to be a particularly thankless task in this White House, and the two people to hold the job have been left with their reputations diminished.
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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Freelancers, Remote Workers and Entrepreneurs: Here’s How to Find a Mentor

When people ask Kristi Porter for business advice, she first tells them to find a mentor.

Porter is the “chief do-gooder” at Signify, an Atlanta-based business specializing in marketing for nonprofit and for-profit organizations helping specific causes. Over the years leading up to and after the launch of her company in 2016, she sought the guidance of several mentors on how to set up her website and run her own business.

For freelancers, entrepreneurs and people who work independently, she says, it can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking they have to do everything by themselves. But that’s not the case. Mentors can be a support system offering guidance on overcoming the hurdles preventing your business from improving.

“It’s just great knowing that you’re not doing it alone,” she says. “Having outside perspectives and voices help[s] you get through the good and bad times.”

So having a mentor can be beneficial, but how do you find one if you’re a freelancer, an entrepreneur or someone who works from home? To find out, we ask some experts what to do when finding a mentor.

Full-Time Remote Worker? Make Yourself Visible

Not reporting to a central office can make finding a mentor seem impossible. That’s why Brie Reynolds, senior career specialists at FlexJobs, encourages remote workers to be as visible as possible. You can get on your co-workers’ and your boss’s radar by sending weekly job-related updates and setting times to chat about things other than work.

By making time to reach out and get to know your remote co-workers via instant messaging programs, phone or email, you’ll start to build a solid rapport. Those people may develop into potential mentors or point you toward someone who’s a better fit.

“Finding a mentor is ultimately about building a relationship with somebody, so you have to start at a small level,” Reynolds says.

Leverage Your Networks

Kristi Porter works from home in Atlanta, GA, on November 21, 2018.

According to Porter, one of the easiest ways for people to find a mentor is by letting their personal and professional networks know that they’re searching for one.

When the Atlanta-based nonprofit Plywood People introduced its new community manager, Porter seized the opportunity. She asked if the manager knew anyone with expertise in running an online business.

Within a day or two, the manager responded and set up an introduction with someone who she thought might be a great match. The recommended person ended up becoming a mentor to Porter. Over their yearlong mentor-mentee relationship, Porter learned the technical side of setting up an online business.

“Sometimes it’ about being bold and putting the ‘ask’ out there, and letting people know rather than continuing the hunt on your own,” she says.

Attend Professional Networking Events

During her days working as a restaurant sales manager, Beth Lawrence was regularly attending industry and non-industry-specific networking events around Philadelphia.

But after a layoff, she decided to become an entrepreneur and open her own event planning and marketing company, Beth Lawrence LLC. This time she wanted to seek out business groups featuring people going through similar situations.

Now she attends networking events aimed at helping female entrepreneurs and freelancers from different industries. “I just always find that I really learn a lot from people who aren’t necessarily in my same profession,” she says. At these events, she was able to develop new skills and get her business-related questions answered in a group setting.

It was at these networking events she found one of her mentors, an attorney. Despite not being in the same industry or having a similar career path, Lawrence always sought her advice when making major career decisions.

She says if you’re a freelancer or entrepreneur considering attending a networking event for the first time, go with a friend. By going with a friend, someone you know or a group member, it’s easier to make casual in-person introductions. “At the end of the day, a warm introduction is way better than a cold email or cold call,” she says.

Consider Creating an Accountability Group

When looking for potential mentors, Reynolds says, you don’t have to stick to the traditional mentor-mentee relationship. Try lateral relationships to start.

“I think sometimes people hear ‘mentor’ and think that it has to be this very formalized relationship, but it doesn’t have to be that way,” she says. “It can really be even just a couple of freelancers who are at the same level helping each other out.”

Porter says accountability partners — or mentor groups — are peers who are in the trenches with you. These are often fellow freelancers or entrepreneurs all working on their personal businesses who are willing to lend you a hand when needed. Her accountability partner’s background is in selling physical products online, but Porter’s is in service-based business.

While working together in person is one way to hold these accountability or mentor groups, Reynolds says there is no specific format when structuring these relationships. They can be done in person or with email chains and instant messaging threads. She says, “It really just depends on what you are all comfortable working on.”

How Do You Ask Someone to Be Your Mentor?

Kristi Porter poses for a portrait against a backdrop of fall leaves.

After all the networking, email exchanges and coffee dates, if you see someone as a potential mentor, all you need to do is ask.  

It doesn’t have to be something incredibly formal. When Porter asked her mentor if she wanted to take the role 10 years ago, it was done via email following a coffee meeting. Porter recalls they both hit it off so well that she decided to be bold and ask.

“I know a lot of people in high-level positions are willing to give back in some capacity and do want to share what they’ve learned,” she says. When Porter’s mentor opened the email, she was flattered. “She thought, ‘Yeah, this is something I can do. I like you and want to see you succeed,’” Porter remembers.

But if a potential mentor isn’t willing to take you under their wing, don’t worry. Porter tells freelancers and entrepreneurs to be patient when searching for the right person.

“It sometimes takes quite a while to find these people, so don’t give up, keep trying,” she says. “Once you find somebody that works with you, it’s a really great partnership and you’ll be so glad that you waited.”

Matt Reinstetle is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. He covers career advice and side gigs. You can follow him on Twitter @MattReinstetle.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

The Penny Hoarder Promise: We provide accurate, reliable information. Here’s why you can trust us and how we make money.

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Catelynn and Tyler Find Out They’re Expecting, Decide to Live Separate

Having a baby … and separating. Tyler Baltierra and Catelynn Lowell found out they were expecting a new baby on the Monday, November 26 episode of Teen Mom OG – news Us Weekly exclusively broke in September. But even though they were excited about the new addition of their family, that didn’t mean they didn’t still have a long way to go in repairing their relationship.

After spending a weekend at a couple’s retreat in Sedona, Arizona, the duo were hit with the surprising news that Catelynn was pregnant. Although they were busy preparing for their gender reveal, they still wanted to work on their marriage — and that meant that Tyler wanted to spend a month living separately.

“Basically all I want to share with the cameras is that me and you … we’ve been together so long that it’s like ‘who are you as a person by yourself?’” Catelynn said.

She later admitted that the separation was difficult for her, especially since she was pregnant, but that she was hoping it would give them both some room to grow.

The gender reveal party still had to go on, and they found out that they were having a girl. At the party, Tyler told his mom that the pair were living separately but still planned having date nights and dinners together.

“After the month, Cate can come home to a brand new house all nice and fresh,” Tyler said.

Bristol Deals With Her Divorce

Meanwhile, while Tripp was in Alaska with his dad, Bristol Palin took some time to regroup with her friends following her split from Dakota Meyer. She revealed that she felt relieved that their marriage was over and couldn’t see herself ever getting remarried again.

“Just being a single mom — I just felt, like, so judged because I wasn’t married with Tripp, and I wanted it to all be right,” she said.

Bristol
Bristol MTV

Bristol also got real about how her divorce was affecting her, since she still needed time to process what was going on. Even though she predicted that Dakota wouldn’t make the divorce easy on her, she was still having trouble coping — especially since she said that he convinced her that everyone in her life hated her.

“Things with Dakota have been super stressful, and I thought that everything was gonna be a lot less drama,” she said. “We had the opportunity to sit here and break up and do it the right way. But things have gotten so ugly it’s not good.”

Are Cheyenne and Cory Getting Back Together?

After her breakup with Zach, Cheyenne Floyd headed to Michigan to take Ryder to visit Cory Wharton’s family, even though she was still bummed that her relationship was over. While in Michigan, Cory’s ex Lauren stopped by to meet Ryder and while things could have been awkward, the visit went off without a hitch.

Later, Cory’s friends tried to talk him into getting back together with Cheyenne, even though he said he wasn’t into that idea.

Cheyenne
Cheyenne MTV

“Cheyenne was just living with somebody else that I had to get over,” Cory said. “It’s like, ‘Do you want to raise a kid with your best friend or your lover?’ Lover? That’s not us right now.”

When Cheyenne talked to Cory’s female friends, they seemed super into the idea of them getting back together, too. The former flings later had a heart-to-heart about whether or not her relationship with Zach was really over. Plus, she asked Cory if he’d choose her if a girlfriend gave him the same ultimatum that Zach gave her.

“I would pick you. I would easily choose you,” he said.

Teen Mom OG airs on MTV Mondays at 9 p.m. ET.

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Thoughtful Gesture Helps You Find Unique Gifts

Guest Post

Our lovely Inge started her own gift scouting business a year ago. Consider leveraging her considerable sleuthing skills to find special gifts for special people as we approach the gift-giving holiday season.

I’ve always had a knack for finding things, and it’s absolutely what I love doing most. It’s also been an unofficial yet key component throughout my professional career. As a translator and editor there wasn’t a day that went by without my having to research new topics and dig up information to get the job done. And here on YLF I thoroughly enjoy helping our forum members find clothing and accessories that they have a hard time tracking down on their own. 

Starting my own business that would put my sleuthing skills front and centre, had been a dream of mine for years. So that’s why I launched Thoughtful Gesture in November 2017.

What Thoughtful Gesture Does

Thoughtful Gesture

I help individuals and business owners find unique and truly thoughtful gifts. Because getting an amazing present can make us smile from ear to ear. In the same way that giving a fantastic gift feels especially rewarding.

It turns out though that finding the present that does both can be a bit of a struggle for many of us. Most of my clients fall in one of two categories:

  • They don’t have the time to  go searching for the “perfect present” in crowded brick-and-mortar stores or sifting through tons of options online.
  • They feel they aren’t creative enough to find a gift that will wow.

However, one thing they all have in common is that they want to choose thoughtful gifts because they want their family, friends, and business clients to feel loved and appreciated. Being able to give them something that shows “I get you”, does exactly that.

How My Service Works

  • You tell me your budget and fill out a questionnaire to provide more info about the people you are buying gifts for.
  • I go over your info carefully and hand-pick 3 gift options for each person on your list. All the suggestions will be fully personalized.
  • I never use algorithms, nor I am affiliated with any particular store or brand, so I’m entirely free to pick only those items that suit your recipient to a T.
  • Within 5 business days you receive the 3 gift suggestions for your people. The only thing you need to do is decide which of the suggestions you like best and order their spot-on gifts online. It’s that simple.

If you’re struggling to come up with fun, original gift ideas for the holidays, then I’m here to help with my Holiday Hero packages. No going to the mall, no comparing reviews on Amazon, no wasting money on things your family and friends won’t like.

Finally, I’m running a give-away on Instagram this week in which you can win one Holiday Hero package to find gifts for 3 different recipients. Good luck with all your holiday shopping!

Thoughtful Gesture


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This is where you can find absolutely the best Burgers in San Francisco

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Everyone loves a good burger. They’re so versatile; whether you’re vegan, vegetarian or a full on carnivore, there is a burger to suit your needs – and you can ram it with extra ingredients too, from lettuce and tomato to cheese and bacon, sauces and relishes to mustards and mayos. The list is almost endless. San Francisco is home to some great burger joints that will probably leave you a little stuck for choice. That’s where we step in because we’re here to help you out. Here are the 5 best burgers in San Francisco.

Americana Burger – Causwells restaurant

The Americana Burger may as well be renamed the King of Burgers. It is tremendous, practically unbeatable and utterly delicious. With two thick beef patties, the burger is loaded with cheese, lettuce, onions, relish and burger sauce, all crammed into a bun and served with thin cut curly fries, extra salty. While it might not have as many extras crammed in as some other burgers, in the case of the Americana, it’s quality, not quantity. The taste of this burger is incomparable to any other burger, and you’ll want to eat more and more and more of them. The whole thing is enough to send your cholesterol through the roof but is definitely worth it. Definitely.

House-Ground Marty Ranch Hamburger – Zuni Cafe

Zuni Cafe has one of the best burgers in San Francisco on offer; the House-Ground Marty Ranch Hamburger. Picture this; a fat, juicy hamburger, perfectly cooked, squashed into a brioche bun with onions, pickles, burger sauce and layers of cheese. This messy, salty and carb loaded burger is absolutely delicious, as well as versatile. While it’s good with all the extras, it’s just as good with just the meat – you can enjoy it just as much either way.

Hood Burger – Broken Record Bar

As the name might suggest, this burger is a little out of most people’s depths, not to mention hugely underrated because of this. The Hood Burger is for those who dare enjoy it. A juicy patty that isn’t a beef burger and isn’t a hamburger – instead, it’s a hybrid, a mixture of sausage meat and beef, molded into the perfect patty and then topped with rashers of bacon, a fried egg, and some onion before being loaded up inside of a lightly toasted bun. Doesn’t that sound like the most heavenly thing you’ll ever eat?

Mission Burger – Mission Bowling Club

The Mission Burger is aptly named because it really is a mission trying to work your way through it! Thick, chunky patties made up of a mixture of ribs, ground down and mixed in with beef to make the most satisfying burger you could think of, coated with layers of melted cheese slices. It sounds simple but it’s so filling, so bulky and so mouthwatering that you’ll struggle to eat this completely… you need to hold it with both hands. In fact, it might even be a knife and fork job!

The Tipsy Burger – The Tipsy Pig Restaurant

The Tipsy Burger is just as exciting as the name suggests, although we can’t guarantee that it will get you drunk. There are a couple of ways to customize the Tipsy Burger, but the best way to have it is covered in smoked cheddar, as opposed to normal cheddar, and served up with pretzel bites instead of chips, with a pilsner dip. Delicious. If you’re brave enough, put some of the pretzel bites and the dip inside of the burger. The fusion of flavors will cause an explosion in your mouth, and you’ll love every moment.

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The post This is where you can find absolutely the best Burgers in San Francisco appeared first on Worldation.

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Thanksgiving dinner: How to find common ground on divisive issues

It looks like it’s going to be a perfect Thanksgiving. The sides are plentiful, and the turkey is juicy.


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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Find Your Courage in First ‘Dumbo’ Trailer; Here’s Everything We Know

Find Your Courage in First 'Dumbo' Trailer; Here's Everything We Know

Disney's new, live-action Dumbo draws upon an animated film that was released during troubling times. Yet the original's simplicity and warmth attracted audiences in large numbers, and it subsequently has been recognized as a family classic. 

Now the first trailer for the new version has been released, presenting events initially from the perspective of two children at a circus before soaring outward. It, too, looks like a film with a positive spirit and an encouraging…

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Asia Bibi, Christian Woman Acquitted of Blasphemy in Pakistan, May Find Refuge in Anti-Mafia Safehouse in Italy

Asia Bibi was desperately thirsty when she took a cup of water from an open well while working as a laborer in a fruit tree grove in rural Pakistan in 2009. The illiterate mother of five was one of only a few Christians working in a predominately Muslim labor force who were frequently subjected to discrimination for their beliefs. When Bibi dipped her cup back into the well for another drink of water, the Muslim workers chastised her for contaminating the water meant for Muslims only, according to her memoir Blasphemy: Sentenced To Death Over A Cup of Water as told to French journalist Anne-Isabelle Tollet who co-authored the book. An argument ensued and someone cried “blasphemy,” accusing Bibi of “defiling the name of the Prophet Mohammed.”

She was beaten, arrested and sentenced to death by hanging. Nine years later, after global outrage and pleas for her release from presidents, prime ministers and popes, a Pakistani court acquitted her of the crime, citing lack of evidence that she actually said anything about the prophet. The court quoted Shakespeare’s King Lear in its belief that Bibi had “been more sinned against than sinning.”

But Bibi has not yet been set free out of fear for her safety and continued protests by Pakistan’s Tehreek-e Labbaik Islamist movement, which has called for Pakistan’s supreme court to review the acquittal. Days of rage and death threats ensued in Islamabad and Lahore, sending Bibi’s husband and children into hiding. Even her lawyer Saiful Mulook fled the country to escape death threats. He is now in the Netherlands pending an asylum request in that country.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

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Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Ricki Lake wants to find love again

OHMYGOSSIP — Ricki Lake is “hoping to find love again”.
The 50-year-old actress and television personality tragically lost her ex-husband Christian Evans – who she divorced from back in 2015 but they remained in a relationship – last year and she admits she is on the look out for “true, unconditional love” again but isn’t sure if it will happen.
She said: “I found true love with my husband who passed so I’m hoping to find love again. I don’t think I will. I’m open to it, but I think what I had – I was so lucky to have found that, it’s what everybody wants in life. I had true, unconditional love so I’d like to have something along those lines again. But I feel like lightning doesn’t strike twice. I had the real deal; I just didn’t have it as long as I wanted it.”
And Ricki feels she really “understood” Christian, who sadly took his own life after battling with mental health for a number of years.
She added to PeopleTV’s Chatter: “He had a lot of self-esteem issues and a lot of demons. But I understood him, and he was someone that I think a lot of people misunderstood.”
Meanwhile, Ricki previously spoke of her “heavy heart” following the news of his passing.
She wrote: “It is with a heavy heart that I share that my beloved soulmate, Christian Evans has passed. The world didn’t understand this man, but I did. He succumbed to his life long struggle with bipolar disorder. For anyone who has ever lost a family member or friend to mental illness, my heart goes out to you. I am a greater person for having known him and spent the past 6 and a half years of my life with him. He was a man of love and what mends my broken heart today is knowing that he is finally at peace and his spirit is free. Rest in peace, my love (sic)”

Find us also on Twitter @OHMYGOSSIP and @OHMYGOSSIP_USA

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How To Find The Right Colors For Your Skin Tone

Learn how you can choose the best colors for your skin tone no matter if you have a lighter, a medium, or a darker skin tone.

Alan Flusser at His Office

Alan Flusser at His Office

Wear Colors You Truly Like No Matter Your Skin Tone

I’m a firm believer in the concept of wearing colors you truly like because if there’s a favorite color you have and you wear it, you wear it with confidence and it shows. Now that being said, you probably noticed that some colors look more pleasing to others than when you wear them, however, most men don’t know why it’s that way and how they can change it.

Even if you have a favorite color that naturally is not suited to your skin tone, you can still wear it, you may just have to move it to a different location in your outfit. Alan Flusser, one of the best-selling menswear authors of all time reminds us that the goal of color is to make a person look to your face and not to distract from it.

Apparel arts magazine

Apparel arts magazine

By the way, a classic jacket, the shirt collar, as well as the tie create triangles that are supposed to emphasize your face but more about those things in a different article. During the heydays of classic men’s clothing in the 1930’s in the US, men’s magazines and trade magazines such as Esquire or Apparel Arts would actually have little tables with colors and patterns as well as skin tones for men so they could easily figure out what would work for them and what would flatter them. Of course, these stories also helped introduce new colors for the season and to simply expand the range of colors men would be comfortable wearing.

Finding your skin tone

Finding your skin tone

What Exactly Is Skin Tone?

To put it simply, skin tone is the natural color of your skin. Now that sounds very obvious, however, the color can change constantly depending whether it is the winter or the summer. Now the term skin tone also refers to the undertone of your skin, not just the skin color. Often, they’re used interchangeably but they’re slightly different.

Basically, there are two ways to think about skin tone and dressing. One is the lightness and darkness of your skin, the other one is the undertone. So whether your skin is light, medium, or dark color, it’s pretty easy to figure out. Personally, I’m more in the medium spectrum because my mom is from Germany, she’s from the lighter spectrum and my dad is from Brazil and he’s on a darker, medium spectrum.

Warm, neutral, and cool, undertone

Warm, neutral, and cool, undertone

Finding Your Undertone Is Equally Important

It’s a little more difficult to determine your undertone; basically, there are three skin undertones.

  • Warm Undertone. Warm means there is a greenish-yellowish or peachy undertone.
  • Cool Undertone. Cool means your skin has a bluish undertone.
  • Neutral Undertone. Neutral undertone means you can’t really discern if there’s a greenish, bluish, golden, or yellowish undertone and there’s simply nothing present that you can make out, that’s okay, it exists, it’s simply a neutral skin undertone.

Now, determining your skin undertone is not hard science but there are different ways to determine that. First of all, look at your wrist area. If you look closely, you can see that I have a greenish and yellowish undertone. Just look at the veins, there’s blue, there’s green, there’s yellow which means I’m a warm undertone.

Paper test to determine your skin undertone

Paper test to determine your skin undertone

Now if that test doesn’t help you, you can just take a white piece of paper, hold it next to your face, and take a look in the mirror. Just quickly look at it and observe what color you see at a glance. Is it yellow? Is it green? Is it blue? Is it none of the above? The important thing is you have to do it with a mirror outside in daylight or with lamps that are adjusted for daylight in a color temperature because traditionally, most interior lamps are warmer and fall in a yellow spectrum so even though you might be a cooler tone, in a mirror you will look like you’re a warm tone and that would be wrong and lead to the wrong outfit combinations.

Last but not the least, you could also look at your skin type and the history you have with sunburn. If you’re out in the sun without sunscreen, do you get burned very easily or very slowly? If your skin is prone to burning and it doesn’t tan, you’re a cool undertone. On the other hand, if you don’t need sunscreen and you tan very easily, you’re definitely a warm undertone. Naturally, it’s best to always wear sunscreen no matter if you’re a cool or a warm skin type simply because you want to avoid skin cancer. Again, the best way to do that is under natural daylight because the interior light from bulbs in the house can change the results and how they’re perceived.

How Do You Find The Best Colors That Work For You?

So by now, you should have determined your skin undertone. Now that you have that, how do we actually find the best color for it? Basically, it again comes down to two things. So first let’s talk about the colors for different skin undertones.

Charcoal brown is an acceptable color

Charcoal brown is an acceptable color for warm undertones

Warm Skin Undertone

If you’re a warm skin undertone just like I am, you can really wear earth colors very well and it will always look good on you. By that, I mean the colors of brown, green, warm red, mustard yellow, and anything that is quite warm and natural. Likewise, neutrals like beige and cream that are softer will really work for you.

In terms of the metal color, gold is the way to go. Gold is always flattering but I still wear silver and platinum jewelry simply because I like it and for different outfits, it works better in my opinion.

So don’t let those colors that work well for you dictate what you wear and not wear but much rather look at them in a way that they help you bring out the best in you and the way you look. Instead, try to incorporate those colors more into your outfit whether it’s in your accessories, or in your jackets, maybe in your shirt, or in your shoes, and that way, you’ll just achieve an overall better result.

Cool Skin Undertone

If you have a cool undertone, look at shades of blue, purple, and green, they will work really well for you especially if you choose pastels. So think about a pastel blue, pastel green, maybe pastel pink, or pastel lavender, those are really great colors. In terms of metals, silver or platinum would likely work better for you and so when in doubt, go with that metal color.

Neutral Skin Undertone

Now, if you’re neither a warm nor a cool skin tone, you get the best of both worlds meaning you can wear basically all the colors and it will still work for you, isn’t that great? Now does it mean you can wear anything? No, because you also have to consider the contrast levels.

Universally Flattering Colors

No matter what skin type you are, there are three colors that are considered to be universally flattering. They include eggplant which is kind of really dark purple, a true red which is not burgundy but lighter and brighter, as well as green. Now, in classic menswear showing up in a teal suit with red shoes and an eggplant tie will really not be your best choice and instead, it pays to use those colors and incorporate them into your accessories.

First up, think about socks. You can have red socks or you can have teal socks with a purple stripe that almost looks like eggplant or you can have red and blue tones or red and brown that comes out like an eggplant color and those are really good ways to incorporate those colors, make your outfit unique yet flattering.

The left image of Sven Raphael Schneider looks way better than the right which looks washed out

The left image of Sven Raphael Schneider looks way better than the right which looks washed out

Washed Out Colors

Now when it comes to colors, you may have heard of the concept of washed out colors. Just think about a washed pair of denim that used to be really dark blue but you’ve washed it so much that now it’s just a faint blue color and it just doesn’t look new anymore and you don’t want to wear it. The same concept can be transitioned to humans and your face.

The idea is that if you have the wrong colors next to your face, it makes your skin colors look washed out in a negative way. If I wear a light blue shirt with a light gray jacket, my skin tone looks very different than if I wear a cream or off-white shirt with a dark brown jacket.

Contrast Is Key

Do not wear a black jacket with a white shirt if you have a light skin tone

Do not wear a black jacket with a white shirt if you have a light skin tone

As I mentioned before, apart from color, it’s also important to look at the contrast. For most people, it pays not to go extreme with the contrast but it’s important to maintain some element of it. What I mean by that, for example, if you have a lighter skin tone, it pays to go with a lower contrast. Don’t wear a black jacket with a white shirt because that’s just too strong. Instead, maybe go with a light blue shirt and a medium gray suit that will flatter your skin tone much more.

For medium skin tone, you want to also avoid high contrasts

For medium skin tone, you want to also avoid high contrasts

Now if you’re a medium skin tone just like I am, you still want to avoid these really high contrast outfits of black and white or navy and white. A navy and a lighter shade of white can work for you. On the other hand, you also don’t want to go with pastel tones that are too close to your skin tone because not enough contrast is not flattering either.

Apart from that, you can play a lot with contrast. I can, for example, wear a white shirt with maybe a charcoal suit or a gray flannel suit that will still look good at the same time, I can wear a light blue shirt with it and it’s less of a contrast but it still works for me.

Washed out look - Not a flattering look for darker skin tones

Washed out look – Not a flattering look for darker skin tones

Overall, if you have darker skin tones, you can really wear high contrast outfits. Navy suits, white shirts, that’s something that really works for you but definitely avoid pairing a light blue shirt with a light gray suit because it makes you look washed out.

Tanner Guzy from Masculine Style and Sven Raphael Schneider from Gentleman's Gazette

Tanner Guzy from Masculine Style and Sven Raphael Schneider from Gentleman’s Gazette

Tips For Selecting Clothes Perfect For Your Skin Tone

  1. Identify Color Ranges That Work For You Again, you don’t have to just choose colors from that spectrum but it pays to look at those colors that work for you and then maybe choose variations of it. For example, if green is one of those colors, you can think of paler greens maybe for shirts, maybe for socks, maybe you can incorporate darker greens into your tie and to your pocket square.
  2. When putting together an outfit, color choices are most impactful with the colors that are closest to your face and your skin. So that means a shirt, tie, and jacket. Obviously, it can be tough if white and stark contrasts don’t work for you yet in a business wardrobe, white is really the number-one requirement. In those cases, you can still wear white shirts. Just make sure you wear them with a necktie that covers up part of the shirt and maybe go with a jacket that has a higher button stance or maybe a double-breasted jacket that covers more of the shirt front so you see less of it and therefore, it works in your favor.
  3. If you’re into hats, they’re also right next to your face so make sure you get the colors right. For example with my skin tone, a brown hat or a navy hat will look better than a      black hat or a gray hat. That being said, if the occasion calls for it, I still wear a black hat or a gray hat because it may work well with my suit and you can play with it and use it as a guideline, not as an absolute.
  4. If you want to wear colors that fall outside of your color spectrum, try to keep them away from your face and you can go with your pants, maybe your cufflinks, your socks, your pocket square. Personally, for example, I would not wear a khaki jacket because it would not be contrasting enough with my skin tone so I wear khaki slacks all the time but never as a jacket or suit.
  5. Finally to conclude, keep in mind that you can still wear the colors that you like. Don’t let skin tones and undertones dictate the only colors you wear and keep in mind that contrast is always key.

What colors do you think are perfect for your skin tone? Drop a comment below!


Gentleman’s Gazette

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Dodgers need to find that old magic and quick

LOS ANGELES — On the 30th anniversary of Kirk Gibson’s miraculous home run, the Dodgers could find no magic and not one single clutch hit. The hard reality is that if not for Justin Turner’s two-run, eighth-inning home run in Game 2 the Dodgers would be looking at the possibility being swept by the Brewers….
Sports | New York Post

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This New Tool Can Help Parents Find the Best Sport for Their Kids

Kids these days: they have so many options when it comes to sports. There are organized travel teams, it seems, for every game: soccer, lacrosse, hoops, the works. While a child’s decision about which sport to play might not be as formative as, say, picking a college, it can sure feel that way. And potentially cost as much: fees and travel expenses for some club teams skyrocket to $ 10,000 per year and beyond.

In trying to navigate today’s youth sports scene, any guidance helps. That’s why a new tool released Thursday by the Aspen Institute’s Sports & Society Program, called the Healthy Sport Index, couldn’t be more timely. The handy website allows families to weigh three factors in deciding what sport makes the most sense: safety, physical activity, and the sport’s psychosocial benefits. The index then provides a customized ranking of ten sports, based on where a child lands on a sliding scale of “low emphasis” to “high emphasis” for each of the three factors.

So say, for example, your son wants to put maximum emphasis on psychosocial benefits: he wants a sport that will help him develop social skills, cognitive skills, and otherwise enhance his mental health. He cares about a sport’s safety, but is willing to take some injury risk; so here, he falls in the middle of the scale. But he’s ambivalent about physical activity: your son doesn’t care how much energy he expends in practice. He gives it the lowest possible emphasis on the Heathy Sport Index scale. Based on this mix, the Healthy Sport Index puts swimming on top, while lacrosse comes in tenth.

Meanwhile, your daredevil daughter can care less about getting hurt, but places the highest possible emphasis on working out hard while playing her sport and developing useful life skills, like setting goals. Healthy Sport Index says: sign her up for tennis! (Cheerleading falls to the bottom here. The ten girls’ sports ranked by the Healthy Sport Index are basketball, cheerleading, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. For the boys it’s baseball, basketball, cross country, football, lacrosse, soccer, swimming, tennis, track and field, and wrestling.)

The Aspen Institute, in consultation with medical experts, compiled data for the index from a variety of sources. The National High School Sports-Related Injury Surveillance Study, produced by the Colorado School of Public Health, provided injury rates for various sports. For the psychosocial component, the Aspen Institute surveyed almost 1,300 high school athletes from across the country, and asked students whether their sport helped them improve in areas like sharing responsibility and patience. Researchers from North Carolina State University observed almost 700 hours of varsity practices to document the physical activity levels of each high school sport. The architects of the index were keen to account for the positive benefits of different sports, to counterbalance the downside risks.

“We talk a lot about injuries in youth sports, for good reason,” says Dr. Neeru Jayanthi, director of sports medicine research at Emory University. “But it’s important to look at all aspects of the athletic experience. If you just focus on one, you’re missing the boat.”

For example, football, which has witnessed participation declines due to well-founded worries about head injuries, ranks second among boys’ sports for psychosocial benefits. (Soccer comes in first.) High school football players reported more improvements in social skills and cognitive skills than athletes in any of the nine other sports. The Aspen Institute’s research was less encouraging for, say, boy’s lacrosse, which ranked ninth in safety, ahead of just football, and tenth in psychosocial benefits. Lacrosse players were most likely to cut class, binge drink, use marijuana and smoke cigarettes. In girls’ sports, basketball provided the most psychosocial upside, whereas cheerleading ranked tenth on both the psychosocial and physical activity scales.

Not that cheerleading or lacrosse or any other sport are at all detrimental, say the creators of the Healthy Sport Index. Every activity can have a positive impact on a kid’s life. “It’s better to be playing a sport,” says Jon Solomon, editorial director for the Aspen’s Sports & Society Program, “than to be sitting on the couch all day doing nothing.”

Sports – TIME

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How Do You Find New Beauty Products?

how do you find new beauty productsSo here’s a fun question for today: how do you find new beauty products and decide which to buy? If you’re looking for a new mascara, for example, do you wade through tons of online reviews? Ask your makeup-wearing friends about their favorites? Pick up a mascara while you’re at the drugstore because you’ve heard good things about it? While we’ve previously talked about overrated beauty products, beauty empties (the products you finish and then buy again), and the best beauty store tips and tricks, we haven’t specifically talked about this before.how do you find new beauty products to buy

Here are some online resources to help you when you’re trying to find new beauty products:

Reviews on Ulta or SephoraThe most popular products on these sites have hundreds or even thousands of reviews, while others have zero. Customers occasionally include images, but I usually don’t find them helpful because people are often wearing multiple products and I can’t see the particular effect of the one I’m interested in. They also seem to frequently use filters or otherwise edit their images, which doesn’t help either. The two companies’ reviews offer various “extras”; Sephora tells you the number of “Loves” for each item and gives the option to highlight reviews from your “Beauty Matches” (those who share your eye color, hair color, skin tone, and skin type), while Ulta shows the most commonly stated pros and cons (e.g., “blends easily” or “creases”), ranks the best uses (everyday, work, etc.), and categorizes the styles of the reviewers themselves (trendy, natural, or classic).

Amazon reviews: I hesitate to buy beauty items at Amazon now because of the reports of counterfeit products (although it definitely isn’t the only site facing this issue) as well as the number of fake reviews, which seems to be growing. To determine the authenticity of reviews for a certain product, try Fakespot, which we recently recommended. (One of my favorite podcasts, Reply All, recently did an episode to answer “Why does it seem like Amazon has suddenly gotten a lot sketchier?”) Still, it often has the highest number of reviews — on everything from high-end to drugstore — so I check it even when I’m planning to buy from another site.

MakeupAlley: In “internet time,” MakeupAlley, which offers product reviews and discussion boards has been around for quite a while — since 1999. It currently claims to have 2,742,851 reviews of 170,436 products. I have rarely used the site myself, but a few years ago, Racked (R.I.P.) did a piece on the site, which it called “the most secretive community of beauty obsessives.”

Reviews on a brand’s website: I don’t know if my instincts are correct here — let me know your thoughts — but I tend to give less weight to reviews I read on a beauty brand’s own site than the ones at general beauty retailers like Sephora. I do this because specific-brand reviewers are an even more self-selected group than those who use sites like Sephora (or especially Amazon). I may be overanalyzing here — but unfortunately there’s no Fakespot tool for, say, Clinique.com.

r/MakeupAddiction (Reddit): I haven’t spent a lot of time in this subreddit (definitely less than I’ve spent in, um, r/catpranks), but along the lines of r/ABraThatFits, which we mentioned in our recent post on how to buy a bra, I’ve heard that it can be very helpful. It seems like a good place to find honest, unbiased, unfiltered opinions on beauty products. You don’t have to sign up for a Reddit account to browse r/MakeupAddiction, but you do need one to post. Be sure to read the guidelines for successful posts and the Newbie Guide. Also check out r/Skincare Addiction — and just for fun, r/UnconventionalMakeup.

YouTube video reviews/tutorials: You probably know that there are many, many beauty videos on YouTube, including reviews, tutorials, and hauls. (If you are better about limiting your internet time than I am, you may not know that “Beauty YouTube” is a thriving subculture that even has its own scandals. Again, see Reply All.) Watching YouTube videos is a great way to see the products that you’re considering in action — depending on the lighting quality and the YouTuber’s camera skills, knowledge/technique, and ability to get to the point. I recommend checking out videos by British makeup artist Wayne Goss, for one. Readers, do tell: Which beauty YouTubers do you watch?

(Kat’s quick add: I find new beauty products by subscribing to different subscription services (here’s my review of Play! by Sephora vs Ipsy vs. Birchbox) and if I’ve been drawn to a new lipstick, eyeliner or lipstick for some various reason (read about it somewhere, liked the packaging or online copy, or saw a good sale) I love Googling “product name + swatches” and reviewing all the different swatches. There is something very zen about swatches!)

How do you decide which new beauty products to buy? Which of the above resources have you used? Which sites’ online reviews do you trust? (Or do you skip reviews entirely?) Do you prefer to try before you buy, either with free samples or in-store testers? Which beauty purchases have you later regretted, whether they were impulse buys or researched?

Corporette.com

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Help These Adorable Hurricane Florence Puppies Find Their New Homes

Could one of these pups be your new furever friend? Meet Janet, Jack and Chrissy, three adorable and playful puppies rescued from Hurricane Florence. All three of the four-legged friends are 13-week-old hound mixes rescued from the Carolinas by the North Shore Animal League America.

hurricane florence puppies
A dog stands in floodwaters from the Waccamaw River caused by Hurricane Florence Sean Rayford/Getty Images

These canines weathered the storm and have been given a second chance at love, so watch the video above and consider opening your heart — and home — to one of these little bundles of joy. (However, don’t fall too hard for Chrissy as she’s already found her dog mom thanks to Us Weekly editor Kelly Marages!)

hurricane florence puppies
Dog rescued after Hurricane Florence Joe Raedle/Getty Images

To find out how you can get involved, adopt a new best friend, or to support hurricane relief efforts, visit animalleague.org for more information.

Us Weekly

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Democrats Eager to Find Candidate to Challenge Susan Collins in Maine

Alex Wong/Getty

Moments after Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) announced her decision Friday to vote in favor of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s appointment to the Supreme Court, the race to challenge her in 2020 began.

No Democrat declaratively said that they would take on Collins, who has served since 1997, but a host of names were almost immediately on the lips of operatives in the state and nationally, now eager to find a serious challenger in a state where partisan alignments vary wildly from district to district.

Sara Gideon, the current speaker of Maine’s House of Representatives, intimated in a Facebook statement that she will consider taking on Collins.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Athletics find fan doused by beer, to send him care package

The 7-2 loss Oakland suffered in the AL wild-card game against the Yankees might sting for some time, but for one Athletics fan, the stink will soon go away. After loyal Oakland fan John Spencer was caught on video being doused with beer and pelted with a cup at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night, the A’s wanted to make it right by sending him a care package "that doesn’t smell like beer." Despite the intentions of the Yankees fan, Spencer kept his cool and took it in stride. But the A’s didn’t know who the fan was or how to find him, so they did what you do these days — they started a manhunt Thursday on Twitter. Less than an hour later, they had found their man — Spencer, an Oakland native and current New York resident who was wearing an Eric Chavez jersey at the game. Spencer, who had tweeted Thursday that he had "met plenty of awesome yankee fans too," will be getting new A’s gear from the team,…
ABC News: Sports

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More Men Are Wearing Stilettos—if They Can Find Their Size

Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast

Shaobo Han put on his first pair of heels at age 11. The pair wasn’t Han’s, exactly—he’d stolen them from his mother, to practice “prancing around the house when no one was around.” Han thought that boys weren’t supposed to wear heels, so he made sure to play with them in private.

“I have other male-presenting friends who have the same memory of trying on their mother’s clothes,” Han told The Daily Beast. “It’s fascinating that a collective memory exists. Even though nobody taught us how to wear heels, we all tried on our own.”

Years later, Han went to Forever21 to buy his first real pair of heels for $ 40. “I was lucky that my shoe size is a men’s eight, which is a women’s 10,” said Han. “Other people aren’t as fortunate. If they have larger feet than mine, it’s almost impossible to find something that fits.”

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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