Jack Ma’s succession plan offers an important lesson in leadership

Chinese entrepreneur Jack Ma shared an important lesson in leadership when he decided to step down as chairman of Alibaba, the technology giant he created.
Wealth

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Tyler Perry Offers Former Cosby Show Actor Work on New Show After He Got Shamed for Trader Joe’s Job

Tyler Perry invited Geoffrey Owens to join his show after the former Cosby Show star was shamed for working at Trader Joe’s.

Images of Owens working at a local Trader Joe’s went viral online, prompting several comments shaming him for his job. Others, however, came to Owens’s defense and shared stories of the jobs they have had throughout their careers.

Among those who showed support for Owens is Perry, who invited the actor to join his show on the OWN network in a tweet.

“I have so much respect for people who hustle between gigs,” Perry said. “The measure of a true artist.”

Perry has three shows at OWN this year, including The Paynes, The Haves and the Have Nots and If Loving You Is Wrong, Deadline reports. The Haves and the Have Nots was the No. 1 original scripted series for African-American viewers in 2017.

Speaking on Good Morning America on Tuesday, Owens said the experience shed light on the “dignity” of work and that “every job is worthwhile and valuable.” The outpouring of empathy toward his situation revealed that many working actors and artists often take on different jobs to make ends meet.

“I was really devastated,” Owens said of the shaming he received. “But the period of devastation was so short.”


Entertainment – TIME

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‘The Polo Life’ Airs Labor Day Weekend, Offers Inside View of the Sport

USPA Global Licensing Inc. (USPAGL), which is the official licensing arm and broadcaster of the United States Polo Association (USPA), has teamed with the Palm Beach County Tourist Development Council (TDC) in sponsoring a new television and digital show titled, “The Polo Life.” The USPAGL described the show as a “30-minute experience that takes viewers inside the sport and lifestyle surrounding the world of polo.”
“The Polo Life” aims to reach more than 60 million households, and will air this coming Labor Day weekend on the TVG Network, which specializes in equestrian sports. The program broadcasts nationally, and will include airing on ThePalmBeaches.tv — making it available in Palm Beach County hotels and resorts — as well as on Roku.
Additionally, the USPAGL said it will place the show in “many of the 1,000 U.S. Polo Assn. retail stores that span 100 countries, as well as on multiple digital platforms, including the company’s Web site at uspolo.org, reaching millions of consumers and sports fans globally.”
The backdrop of the show is Palm Beach County, and the producers aim to take viewers “through a sneak peek into the world of polo” while also offering content “for both polo enthusiasts and novices alike.
“Viewers will meet professional polo player

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New York University offers free tuition to all medical students

New York University medical students received life-changing news on Thursday — the School of Medicine will cover full tuition going forward, regardless of need or merit.
ABC News: Health

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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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Cities’ offers for Amazon base are secrets even to many city leaders

Across the country, the search for Amazon's HQ2, as the project has been nicknamed, is shrouded in secrecy. Even civic leaders can't find out what sort of tax credits and other inducements have been promised to Amazon, The New York Times reports.
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Ketamine offers lifeline for people with severe depression, suicidal thoughts

A few months ago, Alan Ferguson decided he was ready to die — for the third time. In 2014, he attempted suicide twice, and the persistent thoughts of “I need to be dead” were echoing in his brain once again.


CNN.com – RSS Channel – Health

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US offers no details as Russia claims Trump and Putin reached military agreements

Russia announced it was ready to pursue agreements reached by Presidents Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump “in the sphere of international security,” though the White House and Pentagon would not confirm any agreements had been made or offer any details.


CNN.com – RSS Channel – World

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When Your Colleague Offers Your Firstborn to Sweeten the Deal

Reader N wrote in with an interesting problem: her colleague offered to throw in her firstborn to sweeten the deal. HiLARIOUS, right? Here’s her question:

Here’s an interesting dilemma, recently a senior male colleague and a new client were haggling over price when my colleague said jokingly, “to sweeten the deal we will throw in [my name]’s first born” (I am in my 20s and have no kids), they all laughed. It has since become a running joke, to refer to my first born in all pricing discussions with this client. I feel uncomfortable whenever it happens, but don’t want to seem high-maintenance. Should I raise it with my colleague?

 


YEOUCH. What in the… We’ve talked before about how to deal when you work with sexist pigs  and how to deal with sexist jokes from offensive clients, which may or may not be appropriate reads for you if circumstances warrant. I think it’s entirely possible here that he doesn’t mean anything by it (it can always be worse!), and that this is just a Case of the Clueless Dude, promoting the patriarchy unwittingly. I think your feelings are legitimate, though, and I do think you should shut it down. Gently, maybe, but firmly. You are not, after all, the maiden or victim in some fairytale story, and that is kind of the worst thing to me here — it calls up all those old ideas of gender roles. (In fact this is kind of unflattering to all parties here – if the client is an older woman is he saying, you remind me of a fairytale witch? If an older man, a troll under a bridge or firebreathing dragon?) Nope. The next time he brings it up I’d take him aside after the call, privately, and suggest it’s time to move on from that particular running joke. You could be even more direct and, ahead of the next client call, let him know that you’re no longer amused at the trope and everyone should move on. (Or: you could just get a mug like the one pictured! It’s available at Etsy for $ 15 (affiliate link).) I suppose you could take a jokey turn and address it yourself during the next time he (or the client) brings it up — alas, that’s no longer on the table! I committed my firstborn myself when I made a deal with that genie for complete and total power, sorry! But being direct with him is probably the best thing here.

(As a side note, I must say whenever I hear this kind of thing I think, GAH, who wants a baby to settle a debt, and go on a Seinfeld-ian rant in my head about how impractical the payment of a baby is. Like, have they seen babies? Do they know how fussy they are? And YOU try dealing with the hassle of hiring an appropriate caregiver…)

Readers, take it away — how would you deal with this senior colleague? If someone offered to sweeten the deal with YOUR firstborn, would you be uncomfortable? How would you deal?
Pictured at top (affiliate link).

The post When Your Colleague Offers Your Firstborn to Sweeten the Deal appeared first on Corporette.com.

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7-Eleven now offers a Cap’n Crunch Crunch Berries Slurpee

Fans of Cap’n Crunch Crunch Berries cereal will want to plot a course and sail down to their nearest 7-Eleven this summer. The convenience-store chain now has a Crunch Berries Slurpee flavor.

The new flavor was introduced at the beginning of July in preparation for 7-Eleven Day (July 11), and will…

Life Style – New York Daily News

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Our Audience Offers 21 Ways the WNBA Could Up Game Attendance

A’ja Wilson, a WNBA player for the Las Vegas Aces, recently took to social media to complain about the pay gap between NBA players and those in the WNBA.

Wilson’s comments stirred a vigorous conversation on social media and the sports world about the wage discrepancy between male and female basketball players. Wilson made the comments after LeBron James signed a four-year, $ 154 million contract with the Lakers.

Even the most skilled WNBA players make just a fraction of what an NBA player who is benched for a majority of the season can earn. Reigning WNBA MVP Sylvia Fowles, for instance, earned $ 109,000 last year. In comparison, NBA 2017 MVP Russell Westbrook made a whopping $ 28.5 million. Meanwhile, Leandro Barbosa earned $ 500,000 in the 2017-18 NBA season despite being waived by the Phoenix Suns in July, reports Forbes. As a result, Barbosa will earn nearly five times Fowles’ earnings even though he is no longer playing for the Suns.

Many make the claim that the WNBA players are paid less because they do not draw the same attention and attendance as the NBA. While attendance has been improving over the years since the league’s inception in 1996, getting fans into seats still remains an issue. The Washington Post reported:

WNBA games averaged 7,716 fans per game in 2017, the highest number in six years but far from a significant improvement. WNBA games haven’t averaged 8,000 fans per game since 2009, and the 2017 figure was down 28.9% from the league’s all-time high attendance in 1998, which was the WNBA’s second season.

We solicited our audience to offer ideas to increase attendance at WNBA games. Here are some suggestions (these are posted verbatim from Instagram with some light editing for clarity):

– Team with NBA on promotions, social media, shout-outs, community events, and other involvements.

– Live streaming, community activations, and global initiatives.

– Unique and more involved half-time shows.

– Figure out a way to involve hip hop or the black culture. For example, give Beyonce and Jay-Z side seats.

– Play before the men’s (NBA) games.

– Lower the rims to 8.5 feet, so more players could play above the rim.

– Play satellite games in other cities where multiple games occur, lots of prizes and guest interaction.

– Open to foreign countries.

– Look at smaller venues.

– Sell tickets via Instagram.

– Have partnerships with Girl Scouts or Girls Inc. to spread the word.

– [Have] a fan night for aspiring WNBA players in each city where they play.

– Buil[d] a pipeline of young female athletes and provide free tickets to WNBA games.

– [Develop] integrated summer leagues/all-star games so they can develop a stronger fan base that will support them independently.

– Give the ladies real extra financial incentives to ball.

– They need to be featured on networks other than just ESPN.

– Engage older players who have retire[d] to remain involved outside of coaching.

– Half-time entertainment with local celebrity entertainers.

– Go to markets with no sports teams and let them sell the arenas out.

– [Create a] reality show following five of the most interesting/outrageous/intelligent/socially active, etc., players.

– Every WNBA team should have their own touring bus. During some off days and during the off season, drive this bus into neighborhoods in your respective city, where the players will get out and meet the fans, offer giveaways, and shoot arounds.

 

-Selena Hill contributed to this report. 

 

 

 

 

The post Our Audience Offers 21 Ways the WNBA Could Up Game Attendance appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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Trump claims NATO allies will spend more but offers few details

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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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Trump claims NATO allies will spend more but offers few details

President Donald Trump is returning to NATO headquarters on Thursday after rattling allies with provocative and insulting comments during the summit’s first day.


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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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‘Are These People Funny?’ President Trump Offers Reviews of Late-Night TV Hosts at Rally

The back and forth between Jimmy Fallon and President Donald Trump is anything but over.

Following Fallon’s apology for his 2016 interview with the then-Republican candidate, Trump made time during Monday’s campaign rally in West Columbia, S.C. to take another shot at Fallon – and the other hosts of late-night television.

“Did you see Jimmy Fallon?” Trump asked the crowd, who booed at the The Tonight Show host’s name. “Jimmy Fallon… The guy screws up my hair, going back and forth… He was so disappointed to find out it was real. He couldn’t believe it.”

Fallon’s feelings on ruffling Trump’s hair were not lost on Trump himself, who tweeted on Sunday that Jimmy Fallon was “now whimpering to all” about the “famous ‘hair show’” and called on the comedian to “be a man.”

Later that Monday night, Jimmy Fallon responded to Trump’s Twitter barb with a monologue, where he wondered if the President had better things to do than take a swing at him on social media.

After attacking Fallon at the South Carolina rally, which was meant to support Republican Gov. Henry McMaster, Trump continued his tour of other late night hosts that annoy him, doubling down on his thoughts on Stephen Colbert.

“The guy on CBS, what a lowlife. I mean, honestly, are these people funny? I can laugh at myself,” he said after bemoaning the lack of Johnny Carson-level talent on TV.

Trump also worked in a jab at Jimmy Kimmel, saying he said has “no talent.” He ruled out any future appearances on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, where he has also appeared.

“Now I wouldn’t do his show. That guy’s terrible,” he said. But Fallon isn’t completely out of the President’s good graces, as Trump made a point of calling him “a nice guy,” though he did add that “he looks like a lost soul.”


Entertainment – TIME

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Princess Cruises offers toothy fun with Shark Week-themed celebrations all summer long

In “Jaws,” when Roy Scheider’s character Chief Brody uttered the famous line, “You’re going to need a bigger boat,” he probably didn’t have a cruise ship in mind.

That didn’t stop Princess Cruises from going all in on Shark Week though, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary.

To mark the toothy…

Life Style – New York Daily News

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Entrepreneur and Celebrity Hairstylist of Zendaya Offers Career Advice

Chances are if you’ve ever swooned over Zendaya’s edgy and wavy chopped cut, Laverne Cox’s chic wavy tresses, or Rihanna’s iconic bob, Ursula Stephen was the visionary celebrity hairstylist behind the look. Beyond her celebrated hair work on red carpets, fashion editorial shoots, and concert stages, she’s a Unilever global haircare brand ambassador, and the owner of “Ursula Stephen The Salon” in Brooklyn, New York. And believe it or not, Stephen had her cosmetology license before she had a high school diploma. We caught up with her to get some career advice on leveling up in the industry.

Very early on you knew what you wanted to do in your career. However, did you envision this level of success? And what decisions have enabled you to succeed as a business owner and go-to hair expert?

I never thought that far ahead. Career was a really big word for me. It wasn’t until I got into cosmetology school and started working in salons that I started to see the possibilities. My teachers were very instrumental in this. They opened my eyes to stylists like John Atchinson, who reached levels I didn’t know existed. Saying “yes” is one of the top three ingredients. I always said yes, even when I was unsure of what was to come.

Can you share any traditional career advice you heard as a young adult, but are glad you didn’t follow?

I’ve never really listened to the “you’re young, you have time” advice. I believe the younger, the better. Take opportunities when they are presented to you—it shouldn’t be based on age or statistics. Once seeds are planted, they take time to grow. Find your calling early on and go hard so you can enjoy life.

You work with a lot of celebrities and major brands. What if a client is adamant about a new look but you think it’s a bad idea. How do you say no to a client?

We never say no. The client is always right. There is always a way to marry what they want with what will work, and that’s what makes me #UrsieOnHair.

 

celebrity hairstylist

(Image: Ursula Stephen)

You have an amazing portfolio, which includes your work with diverse hair textures and styles. What are some of the things you’ve done in your career to help you understand the needs of different textured hair types?

I owe that to my teachers. While in school, I was fortunate enough to learn from a diverse group of teachers and that taught me that at the core, it was all about hair. I learned to cut fine hair textures and took those skills and techniques and practiced with friends with textured hair in my mom’s basement. The rest is history.

celebrity hairstylist

Zendaya Met Gala (Image: Ursula Stephen)

What are some of your favorite celebrity hairstyling moments that you’ve recently experienced? I’m still on a high from the Met Gala. I love working with clients that I can push the bar with and that is Zendaya! Her Met Gala look was inspired by the power of Joan of Arc and opulence of Versace, who dressed her that evening. The gown looked like armor and chainmail, so we knew we needed a strong beauty look as well.

When it comes to growing your career, what do you think is the most overlooked skill you need to succeed?

People skills. You should make your clients feel comfortable and want to be around you. You can be one of the best artists, but if you don’t give off positive energy, it’ll be hard to keep the momentum going.

 

The post Entrepreneur and Celebrity Hairstylist of Zendaya Offers Career Advice appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Lifestyle | Black Enterprise

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Leslie Jones offers Kelly Marie Tran some advice for dealing with internet trolls

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Actress Leslie Jones is basically a pro at dealing with internet trolls. 

Back in 2016, Jones was viciously attacked on the internet in connection with the release of the Ghostbusters rebootHer website was hacked, alleged nude photos of her were leaked, and outspoken alt-righters like Milo Yiannopoulos started a hate brigade directed at the comedian. 

Two years later, she’s had some time to reflect, and has offered up some advice to Star Wars: The Last Jedi star Kelly Marie Tran in a recent interview in The Hollywood Reporter. Read more…

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Audi’s New Q8 Model Offers Hints at What Lies Ahead for the Brand’s SUV Series

Audi’s signature Q series is on the verge of a creative overhaul, fusing sleek coupe-like sensibilities to its rough and tumble SUV lineup. In comparison to its Q7 predecessor, the new Q8 can be described as a wide-bodied five-seater that sits considerably lower than the former, boasting an octagonal single-frame grille and a conjoined light fixture/taillight combo that artistically rips a page from its Audi Quattro counterpart.

Although engine specs still have yet to be confirmed, the new vehicle will power up from the system’s mild-hybrid technology with Quattro all-wheel-drive capabilities also included. Jazzing up the interior cabin is a new haptic-response MMI display and a Bang & Olufsen 3D sound system. The all-new Audi Q8 will begin shipping out later this year.

Elsewhere in the automotive world, Subaru unveiled a limited-edition 2019 WRX & WRX STI Series.Gray.

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Genre-bending ‘Picnic’ mystery offers a feast of intrigue

Natalie Dormer is renowned for playing women who mix sympathy with ruthlessness, including Margaery Tyrell (“Game of Thrones”) and Anne Boleyn (“The Tudors”). And that’s how she nabbed her latest role as Hester Appleyard in Amazon’s “Picnic At Hanging Rock.” “[Showrunner/director Larysa Kondracki] won me by writing me the most incredible letter,” says Dormer. “They…
Entertainment | New York Post

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Jailed model offers Russia meddling info for US asylum

CNN

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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

BEST DEAL UPDATE BY AMERICAN CONSULTANTS RX:

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!

A Forte for Fashion: Matt Forte and Danielle Forte’s 828 Clothing Offers Comfy Styles for Moms and Kids

Danielle Forte had a mission: She wanted women to feel beautiful in all stages of motherhood. But the clothing she saw in stores didn’t allow for pregnant or nursing women or those in the throes of motherhood to feel both confident and comfortable, nor did the pieces fit her personal style. That’s when, with the encouragement of her husband, former NFL running back, Matt Forte, she decided to shake up the maternity wear scene by creating a collection aimed to redefine maternity fashion by showing that personal style doesn’t have to be compromised.

It started out in 2015 as Danielle Forte Collections but soon transitioned into 828 Clothing, inspired by the Romans 8:28 Bible verse, and carrying versatile styles, designed by Danielle with the modern mother in mind.

“The premise of the brand is to have moms feel confident. As a mom, most days you’re tired or don’t feel cute but this brand was made to make the whole thing easier,” she said. “I’ve lived through all these stages of motherhood, from maternity to nursing, and I wanted to take my experiences and set them into my clothes.”

For Matt, watching Danielle go through all the different stages of motherhood with their two children, Nahla and Matt, he said he wanted a brand that “encourages and enables mothers to retain their style identity during and following their pregnancy.” And he stressed that this is the foundation of 828 Clothing.

“What women wear post-baby can be a touchy subject; they don’t feel like themselves in clothes, but these clothes empower and build that confidence post-baby, and you can get back to yourself and how you felt before,” he said.

The DeDe Dress from the 828 Clothing collection. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte)

Some of the fabrics used include modal, French-terry cotton, and spandex, materials that Danielle says are not just comfortable, but easy to clean and move around in.

In addition to lightweight maternity dresses, the collection offers unique maternity wear with design details such as hidden zippers along the breast line on a range of tops, and dresses that are “feed friendly.” The collection also includes tank tops, T-shirts, pants, jackets, and cardigans as well as rompers that can transition from day to night.

The Dolo Jumper from the 828 Clothing collection. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte) 

In November, the brand expanded to 828 Baby, offering children’s clothing with artistic designs and witty sayings. As the duo created concepts and finalized designs for the women’s line, Matt had the idea to create clothing for babies and kids.

The introductory collection, titled “Galaxy Journeys,” was inspired by the Hidden Figures film. It showcases functional and stylish baby clothes in celestial prints, including cosmic clouds, galaxies, and constellations, and signature onesies featuring tongue-in-cheek quotes created by Matt.

The duo described the kids clothing launch as a natural progression for their brand. They are currently working on another collection, “Safari Jungle” due out in spring 2018.

Galaxy-print leggings for kids from the 828 Kids collection. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte)

Right now the line is in e-commerce with heavy social media branding, something Danielle said was the biggest key they had to figure out while launching the collection. In the near future she is considering shopping the collection to boutiques and to major retailers down the line.

The Nicole top from 828 Clothing. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte)

One lesson Danielle has learned throughout the process of conceptualizing and launching a business is that you get what you put into it.

“Do your due diligence,” she advises budding entrepreneurs. “Make sure you go through your business plan and make it very detailed. Know your customer because if you don’t know them, you won’t know the right decisions to make with your product.”

She also stressed having a good team. “Doing it by yourself is stressful enough. Have people around you that are invested.”

Matt advised that entrepreneurs should not be afraid to fail, a transferable skill he applied from the field to the drawing board.

“On the field, you fail daily but the thing is how you respond. There’s a lot of life lessons from football, mainly if it doesn’t work out the first time keep going back to it,” he said. “Through the failure process you learn what not to do and how to perfect your craft. Don’t let it discourage you.”

The former running back, who played for the Chicago Bears and New York Jets, announced his retirement from football on Feb. 28, 2018, after 10 years. He noted that 828 Clothing will be one of his main focuses moving forward. He plans to remain involved as a consultant and creative alongside his wife, while also focusing heavily on his charity, What’s Your Forte Foundation.

828 Clothing and 828 Baby are both available online at www.828Clothing.com.

The post A Forte for Fashion: Matt Forte and Danielle Forte’s 828 Clothing Offers Comfy Styles for Moms and Kids appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Lifestyle | Black Enterprise

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‘Airline’ offers full flying experience without ever taking off

You know what gets me through those long hours of uncomfortable sitting, aching legs, mediocre meals, screaming kids, rude passengers, long waits for the bathroom and mind-numbing boredom on a flight? The promise of what awaits me on the other side. It’s often said it’s not about the destination, but the journey. I say air…
Tech | New York Post

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Sonos deal offers two speakers for the price of a HomePod

Sonos has an offer for prospective HomePod buyers: Ditch Apple and buy two of our speakers instead. The speaker-maker announced Thursday that it would offer two of its critically lauded Sonos One smart speakers for $ 349 — the same price as a single Apple HomePod. The special price — a $ 50 savings versus what purchasing…
Tech | New York Post

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Tidal Offers 12 Days of Free Music and Exclusive Content

Tidal is gifting music lovers a taste of its exclusive streaming content for 12 consecutive days, which started on Dec. 25.

Tidal, a subscription-based streaming serviced owned by Jay-Z and a variety of other high-profile music artists, announced Friday that those interested in the promotion won’t even need a credit card to sign up. With just an email address, they’ll be granted full access to the global music platform. For free.

“Heading into 2018, we’re looking forward to giving Tidal members more access and a high-quality soundtrack to everyday life,” said Tony Gervino, Tidal’s vice president of culture and content, in a statement. “We value what music and music culture means to people and trust this preview will give music fans a taste of the elevated music experience that Tidal is offering its customers.”

The new promotion will allow the company to attract more subscribers with a 12-day preview period to its Hi-Fi and Premium services, ending on Jan. 5, 2018. During this trial, Tidal will release new music videos, give away tickets, and roll out new content each day, including a new Rap Radar podcast interview with West Coast hip-hop artist Nipsey Hussle. Potential members will also have access to Tidal’s full platform via mobile app, web player, and desktop app, according to the press release.

Since its re-launch in 2015, Tidal has provided subscribers with exclusive access to new albums, music videos, documentaries, artist-curated playlists, podcast interviews, intimate events, concerts, and listening parties. “In 2017 alone, Tidal has hosted nearly 40 livestreams, hosted more than 70 events, released 335 original videos and shared more than 40 exclusive tracks, albums and videos with members,” reads the statement.

On Wednesday, Tidal announced the launch of its first TV app for the Apple TV and Android TV devices, which will allow subscribers to watch Tidal content directly on their television.

The post Tidal Offers 12 Days of Free Music and Exclusive Content appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Lifestyle | Black Enterprise

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BROADWAY SESSIONS Offers All Star Holiday Show, 12/14

BROADWAY SESSIONS is described as an evening of musical performances, games and open mic featuring a new Broadway guest each week. The show is created and hosted by Ben Cameron Bway Wicked, Aida and Footloose and features musical director Joshua Stephen Kartes on piano. This Thursday night, December 14th, Broadway Sessions welcomesback past guests to perform their favorite holiday tunes.
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Meghan Markle’s Suits Co-Stars React to Her Royal Engagement–and One Offers His Special Stamp of Approval

Meghan Markle, Wendell Pierce, SuitsMeghan Markle is suiting up to become a member of the royal family and her TV cast could not be happier for her.
On the heels of the American actress’ publicized engagement to Prince…

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Morgan Stanley Offers Capital, Connections, and Content to Founders of Color

Welcome to Demo Day, the showcase for a group of tech innovators who participated in Morgan Stanley’s Multicultural Innovation Lab to reveal to business leaders, financiers, and other observers their plans to disrupt global industry.

 

(Image: Facebook/Morgan Stanley)

 

On this crisp, mid-November morning, one of the presenters, Brian Brackeen, paces back and forth as he gives a pivotal pitch for his tech venture, Kairos, in a jam-packed auditorium at the financial services giant’s Times Square headquarters in New York.

As facts and figures flash on the screen behind him, the Miami-based entrepreneur shares its transformative impact: “Kairos is an artificial intelligence company that uses facial recognition to help enterprise customers… . There will soon be 44 billion cameras in the world. We take all these cameras with all these feeds. We give insights to our customers about all the people in those feeds. We can tell our customers who somebody is. We can tell them their age, their gender, their ethnicity…initially their face, and the emotion that they’re feeling any quarter second.”

(Brian Brackeen. Image: File)

 

So how does Kairos apply this technology to meet customers’ needs? One example Brackeen offers is how they help Walmart in “re-creating, re-designing, re-imagining the future of retail. They can understand people in-store as well as Amazon does outside of the store.” Kairos uses A.I. to enable another client, Veritone, the cognitive computing company that serves television networks like ESPN, Fox, CNBC, to “use our A.I. to get deeper insights.” As he continues his discussion on how Kairos facilitates predictive analysis, product and service customization, and directing consumer decisions, a slide laden with logos of some 34 customers—including Carnival Corp., PepsiCo, Ikea, and IBM —consumes the series of screens.

 

Brackeen, named Innovator of the Year at the 2016 BLACK ENTERPRISE TechConneXt Summit, closes by telling his rapt audience: “In the last 12 months, we processed 250 million faces. We’ve grown revenue 200% year over year and we’ve declined marketing spend on that time. Also, last quarter was our best quarter ever. Last month, was our best month ever. We just continue to trend upward and up. Kairos is Greek for the most opportune moment. We really believe that this is it.”

Providing Entrepreneurs of Color Capital and Connections

 

Morgan Stanley believed the same thing when it chose Kairos among 100 applicants to be one of four participants in the first cohort of its accelerator for startups founded by minorities and women. The four other companies that were a part of the three-month Innovation Lab: AptDeco, an online marketplace for purchasing and selling new and secondhand furniture; GitLinks, a software development company that uses its technology to monitor security threats and legal compliance; Landit, a “personalized playbook” that provides advice and feedback to help women advance in the workplace; and Trigger Finance, an investing platform that enables do-it-yourselfers to receive alerts on financial and world events and incorporate them into their portfolio-building strategies.

The mastermind behind the accelerator’s development: Carla Harris, Morgan Stanley’s Vice Chair, Wealth Management and head of its Multicultural Client Strategy Group. “Only a fraction of all venture capital money is given to multicultural and women entrepreneurs,” Harris told BE. “Morgan Stanley is a leader at the intersection of what these companies need: capital, connections, and investment banking content.”

(Carla Harris addresses the crowd at Demo Day. Image: Morgan Stanley)

 

She adds: “Given our footprint, the network of our clients, there’s really nobody that we could not connect these entrepreneurs with. Not only do we have capital but we are right at the epicenter of all the different sources of capital, whether it’s institutional, strategic, high-net-worth individuals, endowments, and foundations. We certainly could raise a level of visibility such that diverse sources of capital could come to these companies. Then, with respect to the content, we have some of the best bankers around and could give them a lot of guidance based on our own experience. Not to mention, connect them with other entrepreneurs, both public and private, that might be useful to them.”

Harris designed the program with Alice Vilma, executive director of the company’s Multicultural Client Strategy Committee.

Beyond Funding

 

Operating from the ninth floor of its corporate offices, the founders gained $ 250,000 in capital from Morgan Stanley for a 3% to 7% stake depending of the stage of a given firm’s development and, Hall says, an intensive curriculum focused on “the fundamentals of operations,” including financial management, negotiation of term sheets, development of key performance indicators (KPIs), identification of market segments, creation of a sustainable infrastructure and ability to pivot, among other critical elements. Moreover, they gained strategic input through a weekly speaker series highlighting the experiences of founders as well as heads of established firms like Morgan Stanley alum Charles E. Phillips Jr., CEO of software giant Infor Global Solutions.

To help guide them through the process, the founders also had access to the program’s Entrepreneur-In-Residence William Crowder, former head of Comcast Ventures Catalyst Fund, a $ 20 million venture fund investing in diverse, early-stage tech companies and current managing partner of 42 Venture Partners. Says Crowder: “My job has been to work closely with the companies and to be the liaison between the companies and Morgan Stanley, to help identify what are the two or three things that are most critical to the success of the businesses and its future—whether that be access to more capital, connections to people who perhaps have some unique expertise for that particular business that’s relevant or if they can find a way for Morgan Stanley to be a client.”

“We’ve seen different accelerators try to attack this problem with diversity. I was involved in one of those accelerators. We haven’t seen a very coordinated effort between the resources of a large institution really focused on driving the businesses forward in what I believe is a unique way,” Crowder told BE during Demo Day. “This is an authentic commitment from the corporate partner and they’ve got people who are really behind it like Carla Harris to make it an absolute success. We have these great businesses and now we’re going to figure out how the resources of Morgan Stanley can actually make those companies even more successful.”

The entrepreneurs who participated in the program confirm Crowder’s assertion. Brackeen, for instance, maintains that “we would never have access to Morgan Stanley analysts to help us come up with a big idea. This identity economy. Working with them really cemented that for us. That also acts as a capital. Not just investing, but they know every single venture capitalist in the world. So it’s been super helpful.”

Moreover, Crowder demystified the VC world for Brackeen and helped him perfect his pitch to financiers while Phillips’ consultation “clearly changed our B2B strategy as far as channel partners. He taught us how to create great channel relationships.”

In terms of its ongoing relationship with Morgan Stanley, Kairos will be engaged in a pilot to use its software for the financial giant’s traders to log in via facial recognition.

As for Landit founder and CEO Lisa Skeete Tatum who seeks growth within the $ 15 billion HR tech market, the program “opened doors to customers and strategies. At this stage of the company, when you’re trying to put so many pieces in place [and they] were able to go and get the best experts in different areas, and bring those in for access. “How do you think about scaling?” They brought in the best person to do that. When you want to think about how to revolve your metrics for a SaaS [Software as a Service] company? They brought in the best person to do that. Like we tell our kids, our job is to stack the deck in their favor. Essentially what Morgan Stanley did is say, “We want to help stack the deck in your favor. It’s so phenomenal.”

(Lisa Skeete Tatum of Landit. Image: File)

 

During the program, another member of the cohort, Trigger Finance, was acquired by Circle, a Boston-based peer-to-peer payments technology company; founder and CEO Rachel Mayer told the audience at the end of her Demo Day presentation.

The Demo Day also generated quite a bit of interest from other prospective investors. For instance, Aaron Holiday, co-founder and general partner of New York-based 645 Ventures, a “growth seed” VC with $ 40 million in capital under management, was impressed with a slate of “world-class founders” he believes can expand their ventures into market leaders. Says Holiday: “It’s really exciting that Morgan Stanley was able to curate a group of such high caliber that’s going to build companies that will certainly be on track, in my perspective, to become very large M&A and potential IPO candidates.” In fact, 645 Ventures has already made a bet on one member of the cohort: AptDeco is a part of its portfolio of 27 holdings.

Morgan Stanley’s Vilma is excited about the accelerator’s future prospects, preparing for the next, expanded cohort of founders of color. In January 2018, Morgan Stanley will accept applications via its website for the spring session, “We’re set to prove out the notion that we could help to close the gap in early-stage funding between Silicon Valley and their counterparts and folks who are not necessarily as accessible to message in Silicon Valley.” she says. “I think what we found were extremely smart entrepreneurs and wonderful companies that just didn’t have the right access. I think that this Demo Day is a culmination of exactly that, and it’s going to help in heightening these companies’ profiles to make sure that investors are seeing them as they would the guys that they already know on the West Coast.”

(Alice Vilma of Morgan Stanley)

 

Harris believes these companies and future cohort members will produce a “huge multiplier effect” in terms of multicultural entrepreneurial growth, job creation, and wealth building. “Number one, many of these companies can be multi-hundred-billion- dollar corporations. That’s the growth potential of the markets that they’re playing in. Number two, economic wealth, not only for the founders and the initial team but for people who are working at these companies in the early days, and then beyond. I think it will also have a big effect with respect to inspiring and motivating other entrepreneurs that look like them. By raising the level of visibility around what we’re doing, I think we put a prototype out there.”

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Erykah Badu Offers ‘Soul Therapy’ Ahead Soul Train Awards

WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (AP) — There’s no question that Erykah Badu is the soul hostess. On Sunday, she’ll host the Soul Train Awards on BET. But earlier this week, she was the soulful host who invited a small group of reporters to a West Hollywood hotel suite for an introductory lesson on chakras.

Badu transformed a room at Le Parc Suite Hotel into an intimate spiritual classroom Monday night for what she described as a “soul therapy” session. Illuminated by candlelight, Badu told her dozen guests about the Eastern concept of chakras — whirling energy centers that stretch from the base of the spine to the crown of the head — and how they respond to music, color and personal development.

Promotional events for awards shows are not usually like this. The show itself was never even mentioned.

Instead, the singer-songwriter engaged the group in a discussion about creativity, opened up about her heroes and revealed that she uses chakra-stimulating sounds in her music. “Baduizm,” her groundbreaking and Grammy-winning 1997 debut, is built around the vibrations of tuning forks and singing bowls, she said. She layered theremin sounds under later recordings.

“I never share any of these kinds of things, that I use tuning forks and singing bowls,” Badu said. “I didn’t know how necessary that was to tell people. And it’s kind of weird to tell people something like that. But we’re entering this age of information where people are more open to this kind of thing… so it’s a good time to share something like this.”

With bells on her ankles, a pile of medallions and crystals around her neck and a stack of colored markers in her hand, Badu explained the seven chakras by diagramming them on a piece of poster board.

Each chakra corresponds with a color of the rainbow, she said, drawing a red circle for the “root chakra” and continuing with spirals in orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and purple (her favorite color, she noted). Each chakra is also associated with a musical note or vibration, a set of bodily organs and a basic human characteristic, such as creativity, desire or self-discipline, she said.

Badu said she travels with a set of tuning forks, which she pulled from a backpack shaped like an African mask. She clacked one of the forks against a crystal hanging from her neck and held it by each guest’s ear so they could experience its vibration — in the key of F, for the heart chakra.

When the chakra lesson was done, Badu told the group she always considered herself a writer first. She composed her first song at age 7 after her grandmother bought her a piano, and started writing raps and other poetry before becoming a singer.

Asked what song she wishes she had written, Badu said Joni Mitchell’s “Blue.”

“Joni Mitchell is one of my heroes,” she said, adding that they’ve yet to meet. “She’s very responsible for a lot of my honesty and bravery in music.”

Before saying goodnight, Badu offered a last bit of chakra knowledge, explaining how they can be used to interpret body language. Hands on hips, for example, could indicate sexual attraction, since the chakra that governs that energy is based in the lower abdomen.

Such insights help generate compassion for others, she said, and provide a great deal of amusement.

“Once you kind of know these little things and have these little tools, the world becomes a private joke between you and God,” she said. “Some of it just tickles you. But it’s beautiful just how everything connects.”

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Entertainment – Black America Web

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New Online Portal Offers Loans Up to $500,000 to African American Entrepreneurs in Chicago

 

Obtaining financing to open or expand a business is among the biggest challenges for entrepreneurs of color.

But Chicago City Treasurer Kurt Summers, working with lenders, is aiming to help small business owners in the Windy City overcome that barrier.

The Launching of SimpleGrowth

 

The national advocacy group Small Business Majority, national online lender Fundera, and micro-lender Accion have developed SimpleGrowth, a new online lending marketplace. Calling SimpleGrowth a first-of-its-kind local lending portal, officials say the platform will allow African American entrepreneurs in Chicago to connect with area lenders via a website.

The portal is designed to provide small business owners access to affordable financing and business assistance without having to fill out multiple applications.

 

(Margo Strotter, owner of Ain’t She Sweet Café, taking orders after the launch of SimpleGrowth at her business in Chicago. Image: Small Business Majority and Russell Ingram, Ingram Photography)

 

Organizers also want to provide Chicago entrepreneurs a one-stop-shop to get non-predatory business loans and resources they need to strengthen their businesses.

Individuals can seek loans ranging from $ 500 to $ 500,000 at various rates, depending on the business owner’s readiness and other factors.

The financing will come from Chicago lenders including Accion, Local Initiatives Support Corporation Small Business and the Women’s Business Development Center, all Community Development Financial Institutions that support small business entrepreneurship. Businesses can apply for the loans for free.

High Percentage of Black-Owned Business

 

This lending for black-owned business in Chicago would be crucial, observers say.

There are 230,000 small businesses in Chicago, but an unusually high percentage of those businesses are owned by African Americans. Cook County, Illinois—which includes Chicago—has the most African American-owned small businesses of any county in the country at 110,000, the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 analysis of small businesses reports.

Lindsay Mueller, midwest director for Small Business Majority, says since there are so many African American-owned small business in the Chicago area, and “we know minorities and women have the most trouble obtaining small business loans, Chicago seemed to have a need for a tool like SimpleGrowth.”

 

(Lindsay Mueller, Midwest Director for Small Business Majority, walks Chicago City Treasurer Kurt Summers through SimpleGrowth’s online application. Image: Small Business Majority and Russell Ingram, Ingram Photography.)

 

Another report, completed by the Woodstock Institute, a Chicago-based research and advocacy firm, examined disparities in small business lending. The report mainly targeted smaller value loans under $ 100,000. Those are loans most likely to support smaller, local businesses that offer employment and wealth-building opportunities for local residents.

In the Chicago region, businesses in low-income census tracts constituted an average of 6.6% of all businesses in the region between 2012 and 2014, but they only got 3.5% of CRA-reported bank loans under $ 100,000 and 3% of the total amount of those loans during that period. If those businesses had received the loans in proportion to their share of all businesses in the Chicago region, they would have taken in nearly 10,400 more loans totaling nearly $ 141.6 million more than they collected between 2012 and 2014.

CRA, or the Community Reinvestment Act, encourage financial institutions like banks to meet the credit needs of the communities where they operate, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods.

Chicago First City to Provide the Service

 

Summers says Chicago will be the nation’s first city to provide the lending technology.

“Healthy businesses support thriving communities and improve the overall picture of economic development for residents,” he says. “This SimpleGrowth tool is another leap forward in my office’s mission of boosting the economy and creating a climate for job creation, especially in traditionally underrepresented neighborhoods.”

John Arensmeyer, Small Business Majority founder and CEO, says lack of access to capital for small businesses is a major problem and is throttling our economy. “Small business owners represent 99% of employer firms, but many who seek financing under $ 250,000 are routinely denied with little recourse to find financing or business support elsewhere,” he says. “This level of financing is usually needed during critical growth phases for businesses.”

(Margo Strotter, the owner of Ain’t She Sweet Café and host of SimpleGrowth’s launch event, speaks about her experiences getting a loan through Accion Chicago and how SimpleGrowth will help local business owners like her. Image: Small Business Majority and Russell Ingram, Ingram Photography.)

 

Business owners who don’t qualify for a loan through SimpleGrowth’s Chicago-based lenders can apply through Fundera’s national platform. Other options include business credit cards, medium-term loans, and lines of credit.

Plus, the  SimpleGrowth platform will connect Chicago small businesses that don’t now qualify for loans to small business assistance centers across the city that can help with business advising, planning, and other support services.

To apply for loans and get more details visit: www.simplegrowth.biz.

 

 

 

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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‘Assassin’s Creed Origins’ Offers Frustration and Fun In Equal Parts

When we first set foot in Ubisoft’s digital depiction of Ancient Egypt, it was a breathtaking sight to behold. With sprawling seas of sand swirling in the wind and pyramids looming majestically over the horizon, visually, it couldn’t be clearer that this was a new start for the series.

Now, a few months later, we finally sat down with a longer build of Assassin’s Creed Origins. Yet, instead of giving us more pyramids to scale and tombs to discover, this extended demo offered up a series of surprisingly small-scale adventures.

Story-wise, this longer demo gave us the most insight into Origins’ protagonist yet. As the last surviving member of an ancient line of Egyptian warriors called the Medjay, Assassin’s Creed’s latest hero is just as mysterious as you’d expect. Named Bayek, this Egyptian enigma will eventually go on to found the Assassin’s Brotherhood. Yet, for our demo, we joined him midway through his ambitious journey.

Forging A New Empire


The game’s story revolves around husband and wife Bayek and Aya.

Starting a few hours into the game, the demo’s opening cutscene sees Bayek and his wife Aya, being summoned by Cleopatra herself. Walking through a typically decadent Egyptian party, the pair soon stand face to face with the aspiring monarch. With tales of the duo’s skills spreading across the land and a merciless organisation known as The Order Of The Ancients standing in the would-be queen’s way, Cleopatra asks the pair to track down and slaughter her elusive enemies.

As the game loads, we’re surprised to see the E3 demo’s desert locales swapped for the lush region of Kanopos Nome. With rumours spreading that this part of Egypt is ruled by a particularly nasty member of The Order Of The Ancients called The Scarab, Bayek and Aya part ways and begin their hunt.

Unlike previous Assassin’s Creeds, however, taking on this story mission isn’t just as simple as heading to a waypoint and triggering a cutscene. For the first time in the franchise, players have to actually level up, proving that they are worthy of tackling the game’s main campaign.

Have Side Quests and RPG Elements Improved Things?


There’s a new world to explore, but a forced side quest structure brings problems.

With the first major story mission in our quest log locked at level 14 and our Bayek sitting at a lowly level 12, we clearly had some work to be getting on with.  So how exactly do you level up in Origins? The answer lies in another series first — side quests. Ubisoft’s latest historical adventure sees players interacting with a wide range of different NPCs on their travels, taking on different tasks in order to make Bayek a more formidable warrior.

Unfortunately, though, these side quests can often feel like a bit of a slog. With taking down even high level enemies only rewarding players with stingy amounts of XP, simply exploring and taking on foes you encounter isn’t enough to level you up. This wouldn’t be an issue if Origins’ side quests were compelling, but from what we saw in our demo, these secondary missions often felt a bit lacklustre.

Whether it was dragging a series of bodies over to a distraught merchant, moving barrels of hay, or more often than not, rescuing a prisoner from a camp, the narrative motivation for each of these mini missions always seemed like an afterthought.

It’s worth noting, however, that not everyone feels the same about this. Others (namely Fandom’s own Alexa Ray) felt that her particular web of  side quests did a good job of facilitating exploration — but we can’t all be right.

Combat Is A Big Step Up


Battles require a lot more thought this time around.

Thankfully though, the game’s new combat system is something we can both agree on. In Origins, fighting your foes feels like a far more intricate affair in  than in previous Assassin’s Creeds. Instead of a single button press triggering fluid-looking but shallow-feeling combat, this time around, players can equip multiple weapons, have both a heavy and a light attack and can even charge said heavy attacks.

This means that there’s now a refreshing element of strategy to each skirmish, with players able to lure out individual enemies with a carefully aimed arrow and then use a stream of both light and charged attacks to unleash deadly combos on foes.

Yet, thanks to the new open world approach, an element of strategy actually comes into play long before Bayek’s unsheathed his sword. Armed with a bow and the aerial advantage that comes courtesy of his eagle companion, Senu, soaring above each area and carefully planning your assault can be a pretty satisfying experience.

Telling A New Tale


While the side quests’ narrative are a bit lacking, the main story began to pick up at the end of our demo.

Still, scouting out the area and getting a feel for the fight ahead is obviously only half the fun. With multiple entry points to each camp, caged animals waiting to be unleashed on foes and even the ability to complete objectives without clearing each outpost, there is a refreshing amount of ways to approach each combat situation.

While the addition of these extra missions could have been a great opportunity to flesh out the game world, the five or six side missions we participated in felt too self contained and bare-bones to truly contribute to the world’s lore.

Once we eventually racked up enough XP to take on the main story, however, the narrative started to pick up. While the first few quests saw us once again rescuing people from camps, the story eventually saw us riding out to an outpost, before returning to a huge palace to find it under siege.

The battle that followed was fun, cinematic and frantic, offering the kind of excitement that the side missions we sampled had been sorely lacking. After the battle, our quest for The Scarab led us down an interesting path, with a mid mission twist turning the tables on poor old Bayek and leaving him in a pretty precarious position.Unfortunately, embargoes mean that we can’t go into much more detail. Yet as we reached the demo’s conclusion, we definitely found our interest in Bayek’s story starting to grow.

First Impressions

Origins‘ setting is undoubtedly magnificent. Yet unfortunately, the incredibly slow levelling and disappointing side missions left us yearning to be rewarded with faster progression for our actions and given more XP for exploration. With the build we played still a month or more out from the final game, we’re hoping that Ubisoft will take the time to make these subtle but crucial tweaks in order to keep Origins feeling fresh for its duration.

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Steven Tyler Offers Health Update After Aerosmith Tour Cancellation

Steven Tyler has offered a health update days after Aerosmith canceled the four remaining shows on their

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: Steven Tyler Offers Health Update After Aerosmith Tour Cancellation

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The Best Fashion Payday Offers, Discounts And Coupon Codes For {month} {year}

Attention men, this is a PSA (public service style announcement): not only is it payday – meaning you can stop subsisting on questionable, unlabeled cans of food at the back of the cupboard – there is also plenty of quality…
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Millennial Accountant Offers Advice on Leaving Your Corporate Job and Starting a Business

His vision couldn’t be confined to a cubicle. So he submitted his resignation letter and created his own canvas. At the age of 23, Jeff Wilson II grabbed two mentors and followed their lead to create a small tax practice.

He started out just doing tax returns just like his mentors. Five years later, Wilson has his own accounting practice, The WII Group L.L.C. He shares his experience of launching a business as a young millennial accountant:

 

Photo Credit: Courtesy of AICPA Edge Conference

 

 

 

There have been many surveys and reports that reveal why over 50% of small businesses fail within 5 years. Your company has been standing strong since 2009. What has been key to your success?

Jeff Wilson: First, I would say a professional services firm is much easier to own or operate than a product or manufacturing firm because the overhead is low.

The keys to our success at The WII Group L.L.C. have been a balanced approach, a dedication to excellence, and a well-capitalized financial foundation to withstand a few bad days.

The businesses I see failing today are undercapitalized. Someone has an idea, maybe even a really good one, but they don’t understand how much money is needed to run the company and keep things going until a return on their initial investment is made.

Did you face any challenges, opposition, or doubts from others as a young black entrepreneur? How did you establish your credibility in the industry?

Wilson: As a minority in a predominantly white profession from a small HBCU, there is lot of headwinds. No question. I faced a lot of opposition.

I started a financial services organization when I was 23. Who takes advice from a 23-year- old with no born privilege? That’s a tough [sell] to anyone. However, you can’t focus on that, and I never did. I was told your reputation will make it there before you will. As a result, I made sure my name was a gold standard. I did my homework when meeting clients to assure them I was competent, I was on time, and I dressed like a professional is supposed to—black, blues, and grays only. That alone, at least, got me a conversation with decision makers.

Then, I had to explain why they should take my advice. It helped that I was a CPA at 23 who could explain finances simply and in a believable manner. It probably didn’t hurt that I mentioned my positive net worth, which I knew most people over 40 couldn’t say, so they listened and as a result I am still here.

What does it take to build a successful niche practice?

A niche provides a good size moat to protect [a] business—and most importantly, margins away from competitors. To do a niche business, you have to understand who your client is exactly.

Second, understand your competitors. How many people are selling the same product? If a lot of competitors have the same product to sell, it’s not going to hold a lot of value.

Lastly, develop and continue to enhance your skill set. Pick a skill or product that is unique and continue developing it so you’re out in the forefront when people think of this skill or product in need.

What advice do you have for other individuals who want to leave their corporate job and start their own firm?

My advice is this: Don’t quit your day job if you can’t go a year or more without a paycheck. Starting a business is hard and sometimes the reward comes much later than you think. It’s a journey to create lasting wealth for you and your family. It will take a while for the return to show but if you’re skilled and focused on your business 24/7, I am confident the rewards will come.

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Life Coach Offers Holistic Approach to Brand Loyalty

Most brands begin to lose loyalty because they’ve reached a level of success but stopped valuing. They start taking for granted the business relationships that got them there. Making matters worse, they stop listening, learning, innovating, and leaning into their customer or client base. Even well-known companies have been severely compromised (Sears, Wells Fargo, K-mart, etc.) because of their inability to reinvent.

 

(Image: iStock/fleaz)

 

People can make up their mind about you without ever engaging you, your product, or your service. Consumers can simply talk into their smart device, research your business within milliseconds, and either engage you or rule you out completely. That’s why today’s relationships with clients, customers, and employees are more critical than ever before in the volatile nature of business.

D. Ivan Young is a holistic life and relationship coach who offers brands advice on how to retain customer loyalty.

“Inasmuch as this applies to startups, it is especially true for well-established and long-standing brands that tend to take their place in their market for granted. A business relationship miscarriage, be it internal or external, cannot only significantly hinder growth but potentially implode the most successful of brands,” says Young.

(Image: D Ivan Young)

 

“Just because your business, or company, was on the top-performing list last year or even last month, doesn’t mean that people are going to stay loyal to you. Loyalty is primarily gauged by purses [and] wallets; personal desires and objectives; and emotional connection. This is true of clients, customers, or employees,” he adds.

Young shares several strategies for improving business and professional relationships and leverage brand loyalty:

Be Open to Change

 

Close-minded CEOs and owners are just bad for business. Those who buy your product or service, your front line people, are far more in touch with vulnerable areas in your operation than most owners and executives will ever be. Listening to their ideas, feedback, suggestions and/or complaints could potentially save or make you thousands of dollars.

Invest in Good People

 

There are too many options out there for both customers and employees. The cost of losing good people far exceeds the profit you make when keeping them. Not only do you lose time and money by bringing in new people and getting them up to speed for productivity, your customers may have had amazing relationships with the good people you lost. Having an “everybody is disposable” mindset is not only foolish but downright senseless. When it’s all said and done, most people do business or are in business with people—not the business entity itself.

Recognize and Reward

 

The best ways to cultivate career relationships are by creating an enriching and thriving workplace and rewarding positive performance. This can be done by doing simple things such as allowing an employee to come in late, leave early, or take a day off; it’s a small price to pay and goes a long way when it comes to loyalty. Easy systems to implement are employee recognition systems such as “Employee of the Month” or a certificate/award or commensurate productivity bonus.

Create Culture of Service

 

Some companies do this extremely well by doing one simple thing, they enculturate everyone on the team regardless of rank, title, or position. A prime example is the restaurant manager who takes pride in cleaning the bathroom, or the sales manager who goes above and beyond to help a salesperson close a deal and celebrates him in front of the client. When the entire team reflects the brand by building a culture of service, this subsequently signifies “people” values and builds loyalty.

Keep People First, Always

 

One of the greatest wins in business is to acquire and KEEP a customer or client for life. One sure way to achieve this is to resolve a dispute or conflict in their favor. Failing to do so could be costly, especially if it’s in your power to do so not barring some unreasonable anomaly. Your brand’s best commercial is someone who has had a great experience with you. Even if it costs you a few dollars to make it “worthwhile” for them, the long-term rewards of repeat business, company performance, and marketplace reputation will far exceed the small sacrifice.

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

FASHION DEALS UPDATE:

‘Free cruise’ lawsuit settlement offers up to $900 for claimants

A robocall advertising a cruise trip giveaway could mean hundreds of dollars for consumers under the terms of a recent court settlement.
Latest News – UPI.com

SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

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

CHARITY UPDATE:

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‘Broadchurch’ finale offers a bittersweet, if convoluted, end

“Broadchurch,” one of the best British imports in recent memory, ends its three-season run Wednesday night on BBC America — in both bittersweet and (slightly) disappointing fashion. Bittersweet in the sense that we’re saying goodbye to terrific series leads David Tennant and Olivia Colman who, as detective inspectors Alec Hardy and Ellie Miller, have morphed…
Entertainment | New York Post

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Case of maggots in throat offers rare look at neglect probes

AP Exclusive: Maggot infestation of severely disabled New York man offers rare glimpse into often-secretive probes of neglect in state-run institutions
ABC News: Health

SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

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

BEST DEAL UPDATE BY AMERICAN CONSULTANTS RX:

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

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

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This Week’s Best New Fashion Offers, Discounts & Coupon Codes

Adidas 15% off orders. Not valid outlet items, adidas NMD, adidas Z.N.E., Yeezy and UltraBoost. Code: FVDE-IQ6O-RPN7-H3LFR adidas.co.uk Banana Republic 25% off sale orders. Code: BRVIP bananarepublic.gap.co.uk BoohooMAN 40% off & £1 next day delivery on orders. Code: 40GUYS. Some…
Fashion Clothing Collections – FashionBeans.com

BEST DEAL UPDATE:

Steven Avery’s Lawyer Zellner Offers $10,000 in ‘Proof of Guilt’ Challenge

Steven Avery's attorney Kathleen Zellner is so confident that her client is innocent that she's willing to put her money where her mouth is.

The Illinois-based attorney featured in Netflix's Making a Murderer revealed to Joliet Patch earlier

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: Steven Avery’s Lawyer Zellner Offers $ 10,000 in ‘Proof of Guilt’ Challenge

Rolling Stone Latest Culture News

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Gold Medalist Simone Manuel Offers Advice on Swimming and Life

Simone Manuel

Two-time Olympic Gold Medalist Simone Manuel is only 20-years-old. However, her history-making win at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games—where she became the first African American swimmer to win an individual Olympic Gold medal—has allowed her to become a voice of expertise when it comes to matters of swimming and, to some extent, life.

 

Simone Manuel, the first African American swimmer to win an individual Olympic gold medal. (Photo courtesy of USA Swimming Foundation)

 

The Stanford University student is currently part of the USA Swimming Foundation’s “Make a Splash” initiative that, since 2007, has helped five million U.S. children learn to swim with free or low-cost swim lessons. The USA Swimming Foundation’s “Make a Splash” initiative partners with communities, learn-to-swim providers, and other national organizations to provide swimming lessons to children and families. Their goal is to reach one million children annually.

BLACK ENTERPRISE caught up with Manuel in a recent phone interview, where she discussed why she felt it necessary to participate in this initiative, as well as the importance of young people learning how to swim, aside from saving one’s life.

 

Insight From Simone Manuel

 

BLACK ENTERPRISE: Though an excellent skill to acquire, learning to swim can be a privilege for some, depending on where they live and what resources are available. However, you were able to learn how to swim by the time you turned age four. What can you say to parents and kids or teenagers about why swimming is a vital skill worth learning, especially at a young age?

Simone Manuel: I come from a very athletic family; my parents wanted their daughters to be engaged in sports.  It’s so vital to learn this sport; learning how to swim can save your life, and reduce the likelihood of you drowning by 88%. Swimming also allows kids to develop their social and communication skills and [teaches the value of] work hard and setting goals. I’ve learned a lot about myself and others [as a competitive swimmer]. Just being able to learn can make you a better swimmer, professional, or student.

 

BE: For even the most successful entrepreneur or professional, the potential for setbacks or failure will always be there. What advice do you have for readers on how to get back up to overcome challenges when things don’t go as planned?

SM: Remember the goal you had in the first place. You don’t always reach it the first time around, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up. I’m a firm believer in believing in the process; failure is part of success—if you don’t fail, you won’t [ever] know what success[truly] is.

 

Simone Manuel. (Photo courtesy of USA Swimming Foundation)

 

BE: What keeps you grounded and focused?

SM: I feel like I was born to do the sport of swimming. However, when I was growing up, my parents would stress how swimming wasn’t all that defined me; it wasn’t the only thing that made me, me. My friends and school have helped to keep me grounded. I have other responsibilities, too. There are other components of my life that allow me to do more than just sit back and think about what I’ve done—I also think about what’s next.

 

BE: What’s the best advice you’ve received that you’d like to share with those in your age group?

SM: Always believe in your dreams, and protect that. Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t do or be something, because you can if you are willing to work hard and fight for what you want.

 

 

For more information about Make a Splash or to find swimming lessons near you,click here.

Lifestyle – Black Enterprise

EMPLOYMENT SEARCH UPDATE:

Twitter Offers Glimpse into Soul of Sean Spicer

Sean Spicer became a household name yesterday when he attacked the media, and anyone retweeting memes, for their lack of “facts” regarding President Trump’s inauguration attendance. While mostly political, rare tweets from Twitter account @seanspicer offer a glimpse into his soul. Here’s what I learned about the current White House Press Secretary and Communications Director for President Donald Trump:

Sean likes NYC bagels and just wants followers.
He won’t forget his early followers. He is ready for Christmas in October, but loves a last minute holiday deal. He cracks jokes and loves bbq sauce. He fangirls over Missy Franklin and watches Matt Lauer on TODAY. He even mourned celebrities Michael Jackson and Steve Jobs.
He thinks Pauly Shore is “random” and staying home to cook can save money. He wonders if the purchase is even worth it when he sees how long the checkout line is. He’s felt like the oldest person at the z100 Jingle Ball. He loves to turn a simple “Happy Birthday” into a joke, time after time.

Sean eats cookies as meals and pretends not to be phased by pop culture..

..but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

He rarely wears a seatbelt in a cab and he doesn’t always make sense..

..but he has a life, you know.

He loves Fridays.

He can be an introvert sometimes.

Sometimes.

He said something nice once.

He could really use a lottery win.

He doesn’t always get his socks right.

Follow @SeanSpicer on Twitter for more.



— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Weight-Loss Surgery Offers Long-Term Benefit to Very Obese Teens

Studies show most maintained significant weight loss over 5 years, but complications emerged for some
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-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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Google’s Daydream View Offers Quality VR for Pixel Owners

The headset delivers an immersive VR experience in a stylish, comfy, and attractively priced package.

Lifestyle – Esquire

SHOPPING NEWS UPDATE:


Dermatologist Offers Tips for Dealing With Warts

Duct tape and over-the-counter products can work, but take time
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-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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Expert Offers Car Seat Safety Tips

Most devices aren’t used properly
healthfinder.gov Daily News
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I Heart Guts Toy Company Offers Intestines, Rectum And Testicle Stuffed Animals

It takes a lot of guts to make an intestine or lung into a cuddly doll, but that’s the aim of toy company called, appropriately named, I Heart Guts.

The gut-busting business is the brainchild of Wendy Bryan, who calls her fuzzy toys shaped like vital organs “a dissected Hello Kitty.”

She first came up with the idea n 2005, after a series of bad relationships inspired her to draw a broken heart.

“At the time, I was also doing a lot of drinking and smoking, so a sad liver and bummed-out lung followed,” she said on the website.

At her husband’s urging years later, she started churning out plush versions of livers, lungs, brains, prostates and mammary glands.

The website includes amusing or sophomoric backstories for the toys, depending on your perspective. Case in point is the rectum’s biography which says its favorite song is “Drop It Like It’s Hot” by Snoop Dogg and lists its occupation as “waste disposal,” the Mirror reports.

Each bodily doll costs around $ 20. Cards and T-shirts of organs are also available.

The latest additions to her intestinal menagerie are a cuddly colon and soft rectum, .

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Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Live Social Media TV Offers Behavioral Data

ABC premiered #RisingStar Sunday night and generated more than 1 million app downloads, and there is more to this innovation than television finally moving beyond the simple hashtag for live programs.

Users connected either a Facebook or Twitter account to activate the application during the two-hour music talent show hosted by Josh Groban. The gimmick is that by being a voting “judge” users might see a profile photo on a huge video wall that rises, if a performer gets 70 percent of the vote to move to the next round.

2014-06-23-RisingStar.PNG

The #RaiseTheWall hashtag generated some of the usual activity on Twitter, but it was the Rising Star app that is worth further attention. While the 2-ton wall was mostly difficult to see, the show was collecting massive amounts of user data.

Once connected, the app followed along as three voting “experts” — Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Kesha, and Brad Paisley — were introduced. Groban established the live nature of the show with World Cup talk and some edgy banter with the stars.

Each time a performer was introduced, app users were required to check in to be eligible to vote. Thus, ABC can show advertisers how many engaged viewers stayed with the show and how quickly they re-connected after each commercial break. These viewer behavior data are far ahead of traditional audience sample household data.

Rising Star also pushed messages during the commercial breaks, such as meeting a couple of “fellow judges” and humor about taking the app to the bathroom.

2014-06-23-RisingStar2.PNG

There are some issues with the technology. The app takes the entire screen of a smartphone or tablet, which means users might need two devices to continue to follow other social media during the show or bail out.

Online criticism of the show included questionable talent, slow program pace (with a second West Coast broadcast) and audience vote priming through expert panel antics. Yet, in the end, the live show broke some new social media ground. The final performer of the evening, selected from an earlier Instagram audition, nailed the live performance. The studio audience went wild, and Rising Star had the expected happy ending.

TV must use mobile app technology in this way for a variety of programming — from presidential debates to sports and awards show — for it to find a happy ending in the fragmented social media world that searches for audience attention.
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
Entertainment News-Visit Adults Playland today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Dear Market Researcher, I’m Gay — Stop Sending Playboy Subscription Offers!

This offer arrived in the mail the other day from Playboy‘s Market Research Department:

2014-06-20-playboy.JPG

Dear Domenick Scudera,

To attract readers with preferred demographics, you have been selected to receive this courtesy. As a special incentive, the price is reduced down as low as we are allowed, giving you a full year of Playboy for a token $ 12.

A sampling of my friends’ responses:

  • “I hear the articles are good.”
  • “Wasn’t this on your wedding registry?”
  • “I think the label has a misprint — it should read ‘…to a token,12.'”
  • “Oh, c’mon. Everyone knows gay men love women.”
  • “Did u forget to tell us something?”

Gay acceptance has reached new heights if 49-year-old, recently married gay men are one of Playboy‘s “preferred demographics.” I feel blessed that Playboy has extended me this courtesy, one that I never would have received back in the days when gays were being denied equality.

The offer says that I will get the “beyond-beautiful women, obviously.” In addition, they believe that I will “appreciate the award-winning journalism and no-holds-barred interviews” in every “smoking hot issue.” The fine print includes this guarantee: “Playboy always guarantees that if you are ever dissatisfied for any reason whatsoever you get a full refund on all unmailed issues.”

Dear Playboy,

I am somewhat dissatisfied with my subscription. Don’t get me wrong. There is a lot to admire in your magazine: The articles and interviews are terrific, and the women are, obviously, beyond beautiful. However, I would enjoy more male nudity in my magazines. Please refund me the amount of my unmailed issues, until you are prepared to give me some smoking-hot maleness.

Thanks,
Domenick

This is not the first time I have received an offer for heterosexual porn. When I was 7 years old, I innocently opened up a plain, white envelope addressed to me. There was a series of pictures of naked women with their legs spread wide, and before I knew what was happening, my mother leaped across the room, wrestled the envelope out of my hands and appeared to have some trouble breathing. The next thing I knew, she was on the phone, complaining to someone, trying to make sure I never received offers like this again. Who did she call? The Post Office? The Better Business Bureau? President Nixon? I have no idea, but whoever it was, she was ineffective. I received more offers for years. She carefully monitored my mail until I was well into my college years.

Were 7-year-old gay boys one of the “preferred demographics” for Screw?

Most likely, these marketing departments have misidentified me. This is a problem I encounter often. For instance, when I watch television, the advertisers assume that I am a heavyset, single female on her period. I gather this from the fact that most of the commercials are for weight-loss supplements, dating sites and tampons.

About an hour after I received the Playboy offer, a pleasant young woman knocked on our front door with an offer for educational books for our children. When I explained that we have dogs, not kids, she showed me the books anyway. Did I know that flamingos are pink because they eat shrimp, and that they would be white if they did not? No, I did not. This is educational, but my nonexistent children will not learn this, because I did not order any of the books.

Am I missing out? There might be other interesting factoids in those books, and Playboy‘s “no-holds-barred interviews” might offer some insights. But for now, I think I will hold on to my gay dollars for another day.
Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Dermatologist Offers Tips on Dry Winter Skin

Keep showers short, apply moisturizer, wear soft fabrics such as cotton
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-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-
HEALTH SPECIALS!!-

Save up to 50% at Walgreens