A Ski Resort Where You Must Beware of Missiles

Mount Hermon in the Golan Heights, which doubles as an Israeli military base, isn’t the obvious choice for a winter getaway—but intrepid skiers don’t care.
WSJ.com: Lifestyle


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Beware the 5G Hype: Wireless Rivals Fuel Confusion

U.S. telecom companies have started slapping the 5G label on a smorgasbord of technologies, sowing confusion as they lay the infrastructure for full-fledged mobile 5G wireless service.


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Apple Beware: Samsung’s Great Fall in China Was Swift

Apple’s stumble in China is an all-too-familiar story for rival Samsung Electronics. In five years, the iPhone’s biggest rival went from China’s No. 1 phone maker to an also-ran.
WSJ.com: US Business


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Apple Beware: Samsung’s Great Fall in China Was Swift

Apple’s stumble in China is an all-too-familiar story for rival Samsung Electronics. In five years, the iPhone’s biggest rival went from China’s No. 1 phone maker to an also-ran.


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Butler beware: Both teams could lose in trade

The last time Jimmy Butler was traded, it didn't seem to work out for either side. The next team that tries to deal for him may want to pay attention to history.

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Cord-Cutters Beware: Streaming TV Prices Are Marching Higher

Streaming services like DirecTV Now and Sling TV have added millions of customers by promising big savings over traditional cable and satellite-TV subscriptions. But prices are going up.
WSJ.com: US Business


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Buyer Beware: Looted Antiquities Flood Online Sites Like Amazon, Facebook

A flood of potentially stolen art objects from the Middle East is showing up on Amazon, eBay, Facebook and WhatsApp, often ensnaring unsuspecting buyers
WSJ.com: Lifestyle


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Beware of social media during terror events, NHS guidelines warn

Recounting events can make people “relive the worst parts”, and may open themselves up to trolling.
BBC News – Health

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Dads Everywhere, Beware of Jimmy Kimmel’s Father’s Day YouTube Challenge

Jimmy Kimmel‘s notorious Halloween candy pranks have become some of the best videos on the internet — and now, he’s come up with a new YouTube challenge that might be just as funny.

On Monday’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!, the host debuted this year’s Father’s Day-themed challenge, and it’s as simple as it is hilarious.

“Every year, we issue a Father’s Day YouTube challenge,” explained Kimmel, 49. “In years past, we’ve asked you to spray Dad with a hose on Father’s Day, to serve him breakfast in the shower, to dump breakfast on him in bed — we’ve had a lot of very bad ideas.”

This year, however, the task was much more straightforward: just sneak up on your father and yell: “I love you, Dad!”

“I was starting to think this might not work,” explained Kimmel with a laugh. “But I was very, very wrong.”

FROM PEN: How Princess Kate Is Changing the Royal Parenting Rules


In the compilation of clips, kids of all ages surprised their fathers while they were sleeping, getting dressed, cleaning the pool — and yes, going to the bathroom.

But the clear highlight? One dad’s reaction after being woken up from a nap with a megaphone.

“I am going to f—ing stick that thing so far up your a— that you’re going to taste it,” he said, staring right at the camera. “Do you understand me?”

Jimmy Kimmel Live! airs weeknights (11:35 p.m. ET) on ABC.


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Should You Beware the Air You Breathe on Planes?

Despite the occasional odd odor, the air quality in cabins may actually be better than you think, Scott McCartney writes.
WSJ.com: Lifestyle


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Rats Beware: These Broom-Toting College Students Don’t Mess Around

This plan is as elaborate as the Mousetrap board game.

A group of college roommates attending Duquesene University in Pittsburgh faced a daunting problem when a large rat moved in to their space. Instead of cowering in fear at the threat ― like many would ― they banded together to defeat the “Rat King.”

Their plan required patience, precision, and a ridiculously clutch sweep of a broom. The women blocked off the “Rat King’s” route and prepared for battle.

“We were all freaking out,” Jody Mackin told Buzzfeed News.  

After they set the trap, Mackin and her friends sprung into action. Video shows the rat flopping down the stairs like a rag doll before the boyfriend of one of the roommates sweets the animal outside.

Many Twitter users hailed the women as heroes for creating the ingenious trap.

 But some felt sorry for the rat.


But many were happy that the rodent escaped intact.

— 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
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Beware Intelligent Men Bearing Caustic Wits

While some people continue to think of Ronald Reagan as the man who could do no wrong, those who remember his administration’s participation in arms trading and union busting have a less favorable image of the 40th President of the United States. Few, however, will deny that under Reagan’s watch, Americans began to experience a steady and calculated dumbing down of the educational system which resulted in surging waves of anti-intellectualism. While it may not be fair to equate brains with beauty, the sorry results speak for themselves.

Those of us who read Jonathan Swift’s legendary 1726 satire entitled Gulliver’s Travels may recall a tribe of creatures named the Yahoos. According to Wikipedia:

Swift describes them as being filthy and with unpleasant habits, resembling human beings far too closely for the liking of protagonist Lemuel Gulliver… The Yahoos are primitive creatures obsessed with ‘pretty stones’ they find by digging in mud, thus representing the distasteful materialism and ignorant elitism Swift encountered in Britain. Hence the term ‘yahoo’ has come to mean ‘a crude, brutish or obscenely coarse person.’

Joanne B. Freeman recently published an Op-Ed piece in The New York Times entitled The Long History of Political Idiocy. In a post entitled Willfully Ignorant Howler Monkeys on Daily Kos, diarist Sninkypoo wrote:

There’s no political will on the right to act with intellectual honesty and take immediate, urgent, war effort-style action on climate change. All the vast majority of politicians (left and right) want to do is get along to go along, appeal to their base, take Big Daddy Oil’s money, and get reelected.

Today’s American politics are crippled by a combination of media-induced fear, appalling ignorance, self-hating anti-intellectualism and a strategy of aiming to please an audience that represents the lowest common denominator. As a result, our society thrives on idiotic campaign stunts like these pathetic attempts to create a viral video.

A curious by-product of these “shit-for-brains” shenanigans is that when genuinely smart people who possess fierce and formidable intellects (Barney Frank, Bill Nye, Elizabeth Warren, Barack Obama) speak rationally, some listeners can’t help but feel intimidated, insecure, irate, and impotent. Why? Because when a person with a large and precise vocabulary can explain complex issues in reasonably simple terms, the ease and grace with which they do so makes the knuckle draggers quake in their designer shoes. It also tends to let the hot air out of pompous buffoons like Chris “the national teachers union deserves a punch in the face” Christie, Rick “Oops” Perry, and Rick (“the frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the by-product of anal sex”) Santorum.

John Scalzi’s stunning article, Straight White Male: The Lowest Difficulty Setting There Is, offers a brilliant and beautifully written perspective on a problem currently plaguing American society. Just listen to what everyone’s favorite astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, had to say during a recent appearance in Sydney, Australia as he discussed racism and scientific illiteracy!

With Republican debates filling the stage with stooges who equate their preening narcissism with wisdom, it seems as if intelligent discourse has become an endangered phenomenon. Thankfully, two new documentaries do a smashing job of reminding viewers what it’s like when fearless, impassioned intellectuals not only have the courage of their convictions, but don’t hesitate to speak their minds.

* * * * * * * * * *

Larry Kramer has been called many things (abrasive, loudmouthed, fear-mongering, obnoxious, divisive, hysterical, and dangerous) over the course of his long and prolific career as a writer and activist, but no one has ever dared to call him dull or stupid. Born on June 25, 1935 in Bridgeport, Connecticut, 2015 has been a banner year for one of the LGBT community’s most lauded elders.

  • On April 7, Farrar, Strauss and Giroux published his 800-page book entitled The American People: Volume 1: Search for My Heart: A Novel.
  • In June (timed to LGBT Pride celebrations around the country), HBO aired Jean Carlomusto’s poignant documentary entitled Larry Kramer in Love & Anger.
  • And, on June 25, Kramer celebrated his 80th birthday.


Larry Kramer at his 80th birthday celebration

Considering his long history of health problems (an AIDS diagnosis, a liver transplant), turning 80 was a milestone Kramer couldn’t always be confident that he would reach. There has never been any doubt, however, about his achievements as a writer and public scold.

  • Kramer received an Academy Award nomination for his work on the screenplay for 1969’s Women in Love.
  • In 1978, his outrageously and deeply controversial novel, Faggots, was published by Random House. A satire on gay promiscuity in the 1970s, it featured a description of a notorious gay sex club named The Toilet Bowl which, among its themed rooms, included a bar known as The Lusitania Lounge (“all fitted out most smartly with the gleanings from a sunken Cunard liner” that had “a porthole-backed crush bar”); the Jackie O (a room that had “50 urinals standing up along with all those men in front of them” and its sister suite, the Radziwill Annex (“where there were 50 urinals lying down, along with all those men in front of them”).

  • Kramer’s political activism took a serious turn in January 1982, when he became a co-founder of New York’s Gay Men’s Health Crisis (which later expelled him from its leadership).
  • First published in New York Native in March 1983, Kramer’s 5,000-word call to action entitled 1,112 and Counting shocked and angered many in New York’s gay community.
  • In April 1985, The Public Theatre presented the world premiere of Kramer’s acclaimed play, The Normal Heart, which portrayed his experiences at GMHC.
  • In March 1987, Kramer became one of the founders of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP).
  • In October 1992, a sequel to The Normal Heart entitled The Destiny of Me opened off Broadway and received that season’s Obie Award and Lucille Lortel Award for Best Play.
  • On April 19, 2011 (a little more than 25 years after its world premiere), The Normal Heart finally made its Broadway debut with a powerhouse cast. Subsequent productions engaged audiences at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. and the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco.
  • With Ryan Murphy producing, a film adaptation of The Normal Heart premiered on HBO on May 25, 2014.

  • In 2001, Kramer’s brother (Arthur Kramer) gave Yale University a gift of $ 1 million to establish The Larry Kramer Initiative for Lesbian and Gay Studies.
  • In June 2013, Kramer received the Isabelle Stevenson Award from the American Theatre Wing for his “substantial contribution on behalf of humanitarian, social service [and] charitable organizations.”
  • On July 24, 2013, a noticeably frail Kramer married architectural designer David Webster (his partner of 22 years) in the intensive care unit at NYU Langone Medical Center.


David Webster and Larry Kramer

Larry Kramer: In Love & Anger opens with its protagonist’s famous “Plague” speech. From there on, its powerful sweep offers a crash course in how Kramer’s response to the AIDS crisis helped to change the way new medical treatments were made available to the public by the National Institutes of Health. It also shows how ACT-UP’s infamous “die-ins” (including a protest at St. Patrick’s Cathedral) succeeded in drawing media attention to a spurned segment of the population who, as they faced death, had nothing left to lose.

While the documentary shows Kramer in robust health and, later in life, as a frail senior citizen, it teaches viewers what can happen when one fiercely intelligent man (who is not willing to take “no” for an answer) speaks truth to power. Here’s the trailer:

* * * * * * * * * *

If one ventures into the political wars that now dominate cable television, it often seems as if the level of discourse has sunk to that of a professional wrestling match. People (especially when the screen is divided up among various pundits) are so busy talking over each other’s voices that they can’t be bothered to listen to what’s actually being said.

From the morally reprehensible Mike Huckabee to the perverse insanity of Ann Coulter; from the preening narcissism of Donald Trump to the clumsy cluelessness of Jeb! Bush, today’s political news scene has deteriorated into a toxic sideshow in which the most reliable truth tellers have been comedians like Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Bill Maher, Lewis Black, and John Fugelsang.

A fascinating new documentary by Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville looks back at how the personal and political rancor shared by two intellectuals snobs helped to develop the antagonistic formats that have become so familiar to today’s television viewers.


Poster art for Best of Enemies

Back in 1968, when there were only three major networks (no cable), ABC’s ratings were in the toilet. Faced with the challenges of covering that year’s Republican National Convention in Miami Beach and the Democratic National Convention in Chicago (which was ruled with an iron fist by Mayor Richard J. Daley), ABC’s corporate executives hit on a novel idea. Why not get two political commentators to debate each other on air during the conventions? Their final choice was bound to be an incendiary pairing.

William F. Buckley, Jr. initially grabbed the public’s attention in 1951 with the publication of his first book (God and Man at Yale) when he was only 25 years old. Having founded National Review magazine in 1955, Buckley would eventually write more than 50 books (including several espionage novels). A conservative Christian with a monstrous ego, his sneering condescension was impossible to ignore.

In 1948, Gore Vidal’s depiction of a homosexual relationship between characters in his third novel (The City and the Pillar) shocked many readers. His love of history and politics led to the creation of such plays as The Best Man (1960), Romulus (1962), and An Evening With Richard Nixon and…. (1972). His historical novels (including Julian, Burr, 1876, The Golden Age, and Lincoln) stand in sharp contrast to his wildly imaginative 1968 satire, Myra Breckenridge.

As filmmaker Robert Gordon notes:

I was a kid during their 1968 tête-à-tête offensives. Bill Buckley’s Firing Line was broadcast on Sunday mornings, what we watched when there were no cartoons and only preachers.

A master of the medium, he engaged children with his mannerisms and adults with his ideas. Vidal was a man of the left, his historical novels lining all modern home libraries; apart from the movement but also a part of it, he was the nation’s historian, and also its augur.

Decades later, in 2010, my friend Tom Graves obtained a bootlegged copy of their 1968 debates and he screened them at a museum. The audience stayed long after the last image, parsing the performances and the issues.


Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley, Jr. get made up for a
television appearance in a scene from The Best of Enemies

No one today speaks like these men, but their confrontations ring so contemporary. In the focused light of the 1968 national television camera, the seeds are planted for our present media landscape, when the spectacle trumps the content of argument.

Each side today, like these two men, sees the other as malignant, promulgating views catastrophic for America; strident partisanship is virile patriotism and compromise is castration. These Vidal-Buckley debates forecast the present state of civic discourse, when heated and abbreviated by camera lights and corporate sponsors.


William F. Buckley, Jr. and Gore Vidal
in a scene from The Best of Enemies

I was intimidated to enter the world of Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley. A great part of this film’s initial attraction was the depth and breadth of these two huge characters, and of their luxurious language.

Their sense of theater makes their knowledge entertaining, and their enmity sizzles like a fireworks fuse. Their East Coast WASP confidence, their easy command of the classics, the masterful rhetoric — it makes a southern boy feel so unschooled.

No matter what a viewer’s age may be, watching Best of Enemies offers a fascinating display of two tart-tongued elitists debating each other with fangs bared and no love lost between them. Think of it as a cage match in which each contestant must rely on his cultural literacy, searing wit, and huge vocabulary in order to win.

By an odd coincidence, this documentary about the Buckley-Gore debates was released at the same time as Jen Lancaster’s fourth novel (The Best of Enemies). Only one of them has a trailer:

To read more of George Heymont go to My Cultural Landscape

— 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.

Arts – The Huffington Post
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Men’s Beware of The Hound T-Shirt

Men’s Beware of The Hound T-Shirt

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You Me and Thing: The Great Expanding Guinea Pig & Beware of the Snowblobs!

You Me and Thing: The Great Expanding Guinea Pig & Beware of the Snowblobs!

Two great books in one featuring magic, mix-ups and muddles! Join Ruby, Jackson and Thing on not one but two great adventures in this brilliant bumper book. See what havoc Thing causes when Ruby and Jackson sneak it along on a trip to the petting zoo in The Great Expanding Guinea Pig . And in a seasonal spectacular, Thing helps Ruby and Jackson defeat some nasty bullies in Beware of the Snowblobs!
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Beware My Derriere: The Etiquette of Sitting Down at the Theater

Every time I go to the theater and I find myself having to enter a row where there are people already seated, I experience the same moment of indecision: “How do I navigate this? Which way do I go in — facing the stage or facing the people?” Most people I know go in with their backs to the others, but this always seems wrong to me. Especially if my row-mates remain seated as I am squeezing in, I am acutely aware of my butt having to travel by embarrassingly close to their faces. And if I should happen to step on someone’s toes or bump their knees in the process, it is difficult to apologize over my shoulder.

However, after researching various “official” opinions as well as conducting an informal canvass of all my theater-going friends, it is clear that although European custom requires the theater or movie-going patron to enter the row while facing the back of the theater, the accepted practice in the United States is to go in facing the stage. In fact, both Emily Post (in her Etiquette in Society, in Business, in Politics, and at Home, 1922) and Amy Vanderbilt (in Amy Vanderbilt’s New Complete Book of Etiquette, 1963) declared this back-to-face sliding-by operation to be absolutely the proper etiquette.

But even among Americans there are varying opinions, many of them adamant. One etiquette expert I came across professed the proper form to be that men go in facing the back of the theater, while women go in the opposite way — a piece of etiquette-ology I find fairly bizarre. I mean, since gentlemen’s feet are generally bigger than ladies’, and ladies’ rears are generally bigger than gentlemen’s, if you were going to make a gender differentiation I would think it would be the gentleman going in facing front, and the lady facing the back of the theater. But either way it would look like some kind of weird line dance.

The argument for facing the stage is that it is more efficacious, because you can bend forward a little and slide in while pressing as far as possible into the seats in front of you. This way you are less likely to step on anyone’s feet, and also you can preserve the illusion that you are not inches away from people, as you can’t see them. Moreover, most people feel the close proximity makes it too embarrassing to pass by front-to-front. It’s like facing someone in an elevator. “It’s too intimate,” etiquette maven Letitia Baldridge once wrote. “It looks like they are going to kiss.”

I don’t know about kissing but I almost always vote for conversational contact. (They don’t call me “Miss Mingle” for nothing.) The rationale for facing people while making your way to your seat is just that–that you are able to interact with the people whom you are incommoding. It is considered good manners to thank people (or apologize, if you are coming in on the late side) as you inch by them, and it is much harder to thank people if you go by backwards; you cannot make eye contact easily. And of course there is the avoidance of the aforementioned butt-in-the-face issue (which I admittedly may be overly sensitive about, as I happen to have a particularly protrusive posterior.) Sometimes your course of action will depend on whether or not the row stands up for you (which if they are well-bred they will do). In that case, you can even go in slightly sideways.

Every decision regarding proper etiquette is made up of one part not discomforting others, and one part not looking like an idiot. What the theater seating question really comes down to is a choice between two variations of feeling awkward. I think for me, the point at which I started gravitating towards the face-to-face method happened a few years ago when, going in backwards along with the others in my party who were doing the same, I stumbled over someone’s umbrella lying on the floor and ended up sitting in the lap of a rather portly man.

This was bad enough; but unfortunately, in my surprise and embarrassment, instead of saying, “I’m so sorry,” I said “Thank you” — which were the words that were on the tip of my tongue, since I had been murmuring them to everyone else in the row I was passing.

“Oh, no, thank you,” the man laughed in response.
Style – The Huffington Post
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