‘It Has Become a Very Personal Endeavor.’ Paul Rudd on What the Big Slick Celebrity Weekend Means to Him

Paul Rudd may not consider himself a talented softball player, but when it’s time to take the field for the annual Big Slick celebrity softball game, that doesn’t matter. What matters is raising money for the Cancer Center at Children’s Mercy, a not-for-profit hospital that provides care for children from birth through the age of 21.

The game is just one of a series of events that takes place over the course of the annual Big Slick Celebrity Weekend in Kansas City, Mo. Each year, hometown hosts Rudd, Jason Sudeikis, Rob Riggle, David Koechner and Eric Stonestreet recruit a band of celebrity guests to visit the kids in the hospital and help bring in donations.

On Friday, the first day of the 10th annual Big Slick Celebrity Weekend, Rudd spoke to TIME about how much the charity event — which started out as a simple poker game — has come to mean to him over the past decade.

“Each year we’re figuring more things out, it’s becoming a bigger deal to the city, we’re raising more money, and we’ve also gotten to know the doctors at the hospital, the staff at the hospital and a lot of the kids and the families that have been at the hospital,” he explained. “It has become a very personal endeavor for us. And the fact that it’s here, in this town where the five of us grew up and our families still live, makes it very fulfilling for us.”

At this point, the event has been going on for so long that, when it first began, Rudd says many of the kids at Children’s Mercy didn’t even know who he was.

“It used to be, I would come here and none of the kids really knew who I was. This was pre-Marvel,” he explained before describing his thought process during those visits. “Is this going to be weird? I’m going to go into some room talking to some kid when chances are they haven’t seen The 40-Year-Old Virgin.”

Of course, now that Rudd has made his mark in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Ant-Man, things have changed.

This year, Rudd says the Big Slick crew hopes to crack the $ 10-million donation mark, every single dollar of which goes right to the hospital. And with the help of celebrity guests like Selena Gomez and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, it seems like that won’t be a problem.

“It’s an incredible thing to see Selena Gomez walk into the hospital room of a 13-year-old girl,” Rudd said of the group’s Friday morning visit to Children’s Mercy. “The temperature in the room changes.”

As far as Rudd is concerned, getting to see that type of reaction from the kids makes everything worth it.

“One of the things that we’ve realized is that the fighting spirit of a lot of the kids that are here is an example of how to live your life. They’re the most loving, positive, incredible group of kids — and the families too. I think all of us as hosts have gotten very close to kids that have been at the hospital,” Rudd said. “The relationship that we have with this place now is so intense that it’s become part of our lives.”


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Ola Ince: ‘Achieving what you want just means you get to dream bigger’

We speak to Ola Ince, British Theatre Director, about what ignited her passion for theatre and the power of storytelling

Ola Ince

Words by Niamh McCollum

Next in our #WomenWhoWin series is British Theatre Director, Ola Ince.

A graduate of the Rose Bruford Theatre College, Ola burst on to the drama scene in 2016, after winning The Genesis Future Director Award and staging a provocative production of Amiri Baraka’s Dutchman in the Young Vic Theatre.

The young director also made waves in 2018 with her production of Anna Deavere Smith’s Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992, at the Gate Theatre.

Ola’s most recent adaptation of Danai Gurira’s The Convert was shaken up by an all-star cast, including Gurira’s Black Panther co-star Letitia Wright as the lead, and she is currently directing Tina The Musical alongside Mamma Mia! director Phyllida Lloyd.

Far from shying away from controversy, Ola is credited for facing it head on by ensuring that her long line of work has stimulated further conversation about colonialism, cultural identity and gender roles within society.

We spoke to Ola about the moment she discovered her passion for directing, her diverse on-stage repertoire and why taking bold actions can really pay off…

‘I was interested in story telling from a young age’

I realised my enthusiasm for directing when my classmates and I were asked to devise a play in secondary school. I remember being amazed at what we made and wanting to do it all the time, so I joined a youth theatre group. From there I went to Brit School, before doing a directing course at Rose Bruford College. I met so many weird and wonderful people, which was a nice contrast from my ordinary school.

 ‘I needed to be brave, so I applied for the Genesis Future Director Award’

In 2016, I was working on big stages as a Theatre Associate, but I wasn’t putting my neck on the line. I pitched my idea for Dutchman,a provocative play set in 1960s New York. We wanted to create an African Alfred Hitchcock thriller, and I had some really nuts ideas for the set. Low and behold, I won! I grew lots of muscles during that process. Later on with The Convert, I was really bold about picking superstars to work with. Achieving what you want just means you get to dream even bigger.

‘It’s amazing to see the kind of conversations sparked by plays’

Twilight Los Angeles, 1992, [a one-woman play about the LA riots] stands out to me in how it presented the complexity of the prejudices between Korean Americans, African Americans, and white Americans. One of my upcoming shows, Is God Is?, is a spaghetti western about female strength and empowerment. Black women have long been known as the mules of society, and this play reverses that. Rather than being seen as victims, they are both villains and heroines, which is exciting and unusual.

 ‘I’m proud to have turned a form of expression into a job that I love’

You are often told as a young artist, ‘It’s really nice that you want to be a director, but you are going to be poor and unhappy forever. While your loved ones are getting mortgages and having kids, you will just be a pauper of an artist.’ This year I have learnt that you can have both. Something that I’ve worked on for a really long time is now paying my bills and allowing me to travel the world. It feels good that I no longer have to suffer for my art, that my art is actually helping me.

Tina – The Tina Turner Musical officially opened at the Aldwych Theatre on 17th April 2018. Book tickets at www.tinathemusical.com.

The post Ola Ince: ‘Achieving what you want just means you get to dream bigger’ appeared first on Marie Claire.

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For Billie Eilish, and Many Others, Power Dressing Means Wearing Baggy Clothes

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Billie Eilish’s new Calvin Klein campaign begins with a familiar scene: a teenager spending too much time getting ready in the bathroom.

But instead of hearing the sounds of a disgruntled younger sister banging at the door to get in, those who watch the 30-second spot are treated to a voiceover confessional from the 17-year-old pop dynamo.

“I never want the world to know everything about me,” Eilish drawls. “That’s why I wear big, baggy clothes. Nobody can have an opinion because they haven’t seen what’s underneath, you know? No one can say ‘She’s slim thick, she’s not slim thick. She’s got a flat ass, she’s got a fat ass.’ No one can say any of that because they don’t know.”

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Photo Flash: First Look at Heidi Schreck & More in WHAT THE CONSTITUTION MEANS TO ME

Written and performed by two-time Obie Award winner Heidi Schreck Grand Concourse, ‘I Love Dick’ and directed by Obie Award winner Oliver Butler The Amateurs, The Light Years, What the Constitution Means to Me opens on Sunday night, March 31, 2019, at the Helen Hayes Theater 240 W 44th Street, New York, NY. Check out a first look at the cast in action
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Amazon’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ show is set in the Second Age. Here’s what that means.

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Amazon is taking us back to Middle-Earth’s Second Age in its upcoming Lord of the Rings show, giving us a much firmer grasp on what we can expect to see (or rather, what we know we won’t see).

The Twitter account for Amazon’s untitled Lord of the Rings show tweeted out an image of a map of Middle-Earth and the message “Welcome to the Second Age,” seemingly confirming that the show will take place long before the events of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, which took place toward the tail end of the Third Age. That means we won’t be seeing young Aragorn, but there’s still a chance that we’ll see Elrond, Galadriel, and possibly some other elves.  Read more…

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Breaking Down My Walls: How I Learned That Unconditional Love Means A Lot Of Forgiveness

Who doesn’t love days like these?

Source: Dean Mitchell / Getty

Conditions exist in every facet of life. When we leave our overpriced city apartments, we dress for the appropriate weather conditions. There’s conditions when it comes to keeping your job. You gotta show up on time, do the work, all that good stuff.

There are conditions in relationships, too. But it’s not something we talk about enough in our relationships with our family, friends, or significant others.

I’ve had several instances where I’ve felt loved under conditions and when I, too, have loved people conditionally. Whenever I realized this, I knew it was because I wanted to control the outcome. I wanted things to be done my way, I wanted to be right, I wanted to ‘win.’ Over the years, I learned that this thought process was problematic, and I wanted to understand where this mindset stemmed from. I realized that forgiveness, transparency and self-awareness were needed to understand. Were these conditions reasonable and realistic? Or were the conditions set as a means of control?

My introduction to conditions began with my interactions with my parents, as an adult child. If you have strict African parents like mine, you know there will always be reminders that you aren’t doing enough. They keep account of all the times you messed up since the day you were conceived. Around my mid twenties, I had a serious conversation with my Pops about unconditional love.

We had gotten into an argument because he had wanted to put this tracker on my phone. Needless to say, I was adamantly against this and made this known. My dad’s go-to response was to give me the silent treatment for three weeks. It was then that I finally decided to have an honest conversation about his response.

My heart was racing, but I had him on the phone, and decided it was time to really be transparent with him about his communication. I said to him:“If there’s something I can do to make you stop loving me, especially something small, then your love comes with conditions. We can agree to disagree without you shutting me out; that’s not love, and that’s not how we express love. As a parent, you love me unconditionally, regardless of whether you agree with everything I decide to do.”

Needless to say, it was a game changing conversation, and allowed us to really dialogue about where the ‘conditions’ were coming from.

I started to examine my friendships. In my opinion, best friends have an unspoken  commitment to working through difficult situations, no matter what because the love is genuine. I’ve been blessed to be able to really fight through some real stuff in order to mend things with those closest to me. It has not been easy; both parties had to forgive and let go in order to move forward. It’s in those moments, that I knew they were in this thing for life.

On that same note, there are friendships and romantic relationships that faded or were downright ruined because of the tally system. It does us no good to keep score of who forgives who the most, or to focus on winning an argument versus coming to a resolution. There are times when I had to take the loss and come to terms with the part I played in the downfall. 

When it comes to romantic relationships, I don’t think you can truly love a partner with conditions. The idea is that unless you’re protecting yourself from being harmed physically/emotionally, what are these conditions in place for? I think when we think about long term commitments like marriage, we don’t assume our partners will make mistakes. But we will, because we’re human. In order for us to grow and become more self aware, thoughtful people, we have to trust and hope that our significant other gives us the benefit of the doubt and forgives. Because ultimately, with pre-existing conditions, it doesn’t leave much room for redemption.

The problem with conditional relationships is it sets stipulations on what unconditional love and regard for another person should look like. It posits that forgiveness and the potential to move forward does not exist and never was a possibility between friends, lovers and family members. 

There are exceptions to this, of course. It’s important to have boundaries and to advocate for them the moment they are broken. But overall, giving the benefit of the doubt and allowing a potential change to occur shows a sign of emotional maturity.

If you’re keeping receipts, your intentions are never to forgive. It’s to use the gathering of info at the right opportunity. That’s not okay.

You can’t control people, you can only control yourself. You always owe it to yourself to set the tone for how you want to be treated at the beginning. That way there is no confusion. In any relationships, you should know when to call it quits, and when to keep fighting. If this person means everything to you, there are few stipulations that will stop you from mending something that is broken. It’s all about intentions, and something to keep in mind when navigating emotional bonds and communicating with the people that we care for. 

Mora Adeyi works full-time as a social worker, assistant professor, as well as a freelance writer. In her spare time, she loves napping, hanging with her girls, and binge watching romantic comedies. Mora has been writing on love for the past 9 years.

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What Victor Oladipo’s injury means for the Pacers

With All-Star guard Victor Oladipo potentially out for the season, could the Indiana Pacers still compete in the Eastern Conference? Oladipo suffered an ugly noncontact injury to his right knee during the second quarter of Wednesday’s game against the Toronto Raptors and left the court on a stretcher. It was no surprise when ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Pacers fear Oladipo’s injury will require season-ending surgery, a diagnosis that could be confirmed by an MRI on Thursday. After going winless in the seven games Oladipo missed in 2017-18, Indiana went 7-4 earlier this season when he sat out 11 games because of a sore right knee. Is that success sustainable for the Pacers, or would an extended absence for Oladipo make it impossible for Indiana to maintain a top-four seed in the East? Let’s take a look at the data. How did the Pacers replace Oladipo? While Indiana’s 7-4 stretch…
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Spotlight: Heidi Schreck, What the Constitution Means to Me

The Spotlight podcast is hosted by Jena Tesse Fox.   Guest: Heidi Schreck Heidi is a writer and performer living in Brooklyn. Her other plays include Grand Concourse, which debuted at Playwrights Horizons, Steppenwolf and theaters all over the country in 2014-15 and was a finalist for the Susan Smith read more
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Holiday Attire for Men: What It Means & How to Wear It

The source of confusion in this dress code is that it can mean anything from cocktail attire with a festive twist to the recent vogue for ugly Christmas sweaters.

Our most general piece of advice for the holiday or festive dress code is to gravitate to the more formal end of the spectrum which we’re going to lay out today. After all, no one is ever going to fault you for looking put together. The exception to this advice, of course, is if the hosts have clearly stated that the party is going to be more extravagant and playful in nature and that ugly sweaters are expected. In that case, by all means, do loosen up and have some fun.

Ugly Christmas Sweater

Ugly Christmas Sweater

Your safest bet, of course, will always be to ask the hosts for advice directly as a gentleman always makes the effort to follow a dress code as closely as he can; to do otherwise would be an insult to your hosts. One more piece of general advice here before we dive in, keep it varied and have a few options handy, after all, it’s a busy time of year for parties and you may be invited to more than one that has a holiday or festive dress code to it so having a few options at your disposal will never be a bad thing.

Tartan adds a bit of playfulness to any outfit

Tartan adds a bit of playfulness to any outfit

How To Meet The Holiday Attire Dress Code Stylishly?

The simplest answer is this, think of it as being an offshoot of cocktail attire with an extra holiday touch in terms of color or some playfulness that’s incorporated into your outfit such as wearing tartan which has been an established alternative when it comes to holiday wear since at least the middle of the 20th century. Regarding color then, do feel free to incorporate some of the standard colors of the holiday season such as red and green. With that said, however, don’t go for bright and gaudy hues as these are just going to make you stand out a little bit too much. Instead, go for something subtle, understated, and elegant.

Now let’s cover today’s subject through the lens of multiple different types of holiday parties, each with differing levels of formality and cover the related dress accordingly.

Office Appropriate Festive Attire

Regarding how dressed up you should be for such an event, just take a cue from the regular day-to-day attire at your office. In other words, think of how you should dress as being a somewhat typical office outfit, maybe just a bit more relaxed and with a seasonal element to it.

White Collar Office Parties

Firstly, if you work in a traditional white collar office environment, go for something that’s appropriately conservative. For example, a suit perhaps three pieces or double-breasted in a dark color like charcoal, navy, or in midnight blue, if you’re feeling especially elegant. Along with this, you could go for a dress shirt, ideally French cuffed and probably in a pastel color as white might be just a bit too stuffy for a festive party.

Oxblood derby shoes is a great option for Festive Attire dress code

Oxblood derby shoes is a great option for Festive Attire dress code

In terms of shoes, you’ll want to keep things appropriately conservative as well so you could go for the classic black cap toe oxford or if you’re feeling just a little bit more playful, something in a very dark brown color perhaps an oxblood. You could go for something like a monk strap or something incorporating just a little bit of broguing in its design but you don’t want to get too crazy and you probably won’t want to opt for light colors like tan either. After all, if your regular office attire consists of those black oxfords, you’ll want to keep it in the neighborhood of that kind of shoe even for a party like this.

Refrain from wearing this loud Christmas tie at a white-collar office party

Refrain from wearing this loud Christmas tie at a white-collar office party

As for your accessories, the novelty tie emblazoned with huge Santa heads is probably going to be a little bit too informal for a party of this nature. Instead, you’ll want to go for something like a dark burgundy or a similarly muted hue perhaps with a slight pattern to it. Although solids are of course a safe bet. Your pocket square can be a little bit bolder in comparison to your tie and can possibly incorporate some small patterns as well. Just remember that all of the elements of your outfit should ultimately remain harmonious.

You’re likely going to have the most latitude here with your cufflinks, they can be solid metal in any shade of course and can incorporate stones or other engraved designs. This type of party is just playful enough, however, that you could also do something with miniatures, say, for example, a tiny reindeer just so long as it’s understated and subtle. Have fun with it and try to strike that ideal balance between formal and festive.

Eagle Claw Cufflinks with Malachite Balls by Fort Belvedere combined with green tie bar and malachite pinky ring

Eagle Claw Cufflinks with Malachite Balls by Fort Belvedere combined with a green tie bar and malachite pinky ring

Tie bars, collar clips, and rings can also be worn as long as they are similarly understated and of course, matching your metals is always a good idea. Finally here regarding boutonnieres, something light-colored and small so as also to be understated would be an ideal choice.

 

 

Do not attempt to wear super bright colors as it may make you look clownish

Do not attempt to wear super bright colors as it may make you look clownish

Less Formal Office Parties

For a slightly less formal type of office party, we recommend that you go with a combination of sport coat and odd trousers. A patterned or textured sportcoat would be a good choice here with or without a tie. Something for example in herringbone, houndstooth, or a mottled tweed will provide a rustic quality that’s still appropriate for the season. Wearing a blazer with a tartan or other plaid pattern would be an ideal way to be seasonally appropriate, a little bit bold, and a little bit rustic all at the same time.

Opt for tweed if you are going for the rustic look

Opt for tweed if you are going for the rustic look

Finally, this would also be a great opportunity to break out something like a burgundy velvet jacket if you’re feeling especially avant-garde. Your shirt could be plain in color, either in a pastel shade or alternatively in a rich dark hue if you’re going for something a little bit more fashion-forward. Also, the shirt could feature a pattern just so long as that pattern doesn’t clash if you’ve also got one in your jacket.

Aleks Cvetkovics with denim shirt on top of a turtleneck sweater

Aleks Cvetkovics with denim shirt on top of a turtleneck sweater

In terms of styling and materials, choices like the Oxford cloth button down or OCBD would be appropriately semi-formal. A chambray shirt would be another good choice or alternatively, you could substitute the collared shirt altogether for something like a dark turtleneck sweater under your jacket. You can round out this look with some flannel trousers or corduroys.  As far as shoes are concerned, you could opt for something like wingtips or loafers just so long as they’re well shined.

Casual Office Parties

Brown sport coat with fair isle vest and Fort Belvedere accessories

Brown sport coat with fair isle vest and Fort Belvedere accessories

Our advice is largely the same as for semi-formal office parties but with a few key distinctions.

Ralph Lauren Cable Knit Cardigan Sweater

Ralph Lauren Cable Knit Cardigan Sweater

First of all, you can feel free to swap out the sport coat with a cable knit pullover or a cardigan sweater in a warm color. Alternatively, a fair isle sweater or sweater vest will allow you to stand out a little bit more while still looking rustic and traditional.

Allen Edmonds Chukka boots paired with dark denim jeans

Allen Edmonds Chukka boots paired with dark denim jeans

In addition to flannel trousers and corduroys, a casual office party would also be an appropriate time to break out dark denim or perhaps even colored chinos if you’re feeling especially bold.

Crazy Christmas Socks

Crazy Christmas Socks

Finally, you can add an accent with some brightly colored dress socks or maybe incorporate your crazy socks featuring Santa and his reindeer here and you can round out the look with some informal shoes or perhaps a dress boot.

Residential /Private Holiday Parties

SRS in a brown turtleneck sweater

SRS in a brown turtleneck sweater

Now let’s briefly cover some advice on what to wear to a holiday or festive party given in a residential or otherwise similarly private setting. In the broad strokes, you’re going to want to keep things a little bit more relaxed for a home party than you would for an office party but the breakdown we’ve just given for three different formality levels of office parties can still hold mostly true here as well. In other words, all of the suggestions we gave for specific combinations of garments still hold true for home parties as they did for office parties but when we gave you more than one option in some of our breakdowns, you would here opt for some of the less formal of those options.

SRS wearing a denim shirt with a sport coat

SRS wearing a denim shirt with a sport coat

For example, at a semi-formal or mid-level holiday house party, you could perhaps go for the turtleneck sweater before going for the button-down. Remember, the bottom line for house parties is always the dress code that’s printed on the invitation and/or the personal advice of the hosts. If the party takes place during the holiday season but the invitation says black-tie, wear a tuxedo and leave that tweed sport coat at home.

Non-traditional Black Tie ensemble with velvet DB jacket and midnight blue trousers, following the clack black tie style rules

Non-traditional Black Tie ensemble for the holidays with burgundy velvet DB jacket and midnight blue trousers, following the black tie style rules

CONCLUSION

While the holiday or festive dress code covers a wide range of levels of formality, it doesn’t have to be a source of anxiety. For a party at work, take a cue from your regular office attire and add a twist or two and for a residential party, take your cue from the invitation and the advice of the hosts and feel free to be just a little bit more relaxed and playful and yes, if ugly sweaters are expected, do loosen up and feel free to have a little bit of fun.

What sorts of combinations have you worn to holiday parties in the past? Share with us in the comments section below.


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Trade grades: What the Bucks-Cavs deal means

The deal Bucks get: Guard George Hill and forward Sam Dekker Cavaliers get: Guard  Matthew Dellavedova, center John Henson, a 2021 first-round pick and a 2021 second-round pick Get more trade grades for every deadline deal here Milwaukee Bucks: A For the Bucks, this is probably two parts a long-term salary move and one part a basketball move for this season. Dellavedova and Henson were set to make a combined $ 20.1 million in 2019-20, the final season of their contracts, when Dekker will be a restricted free agent (if Milwaukee chooses to make him a qualifying offer) and Hill’s $ 18 million salary is just $ 1 million guaranteed through July 1. That gives the Bucks more flexibility going into what figures to be a fascinating offseason for one of this season’s pleasant surprises. Of Milwaukee’s five…
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Brides, beware. David’s Bridal, the nation’s biggest wedding-gown retailer, said this week it plans to file for bankruptcy “very soon” — and it’s doing advance damage control. The Conshohocken, Pa.-based retailer said Thursday it reached a restructuring agreement with the “vast majority” of its lenders to slash $ 400 million in debt. It also secured $ 40…
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CNBC breaks down Trump's tweet about the 'time value of money' in his dismissal of The New York Times investigation alleging tax fraud.
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