The ‘Lion King’ Effect: How a Broadway Smash Changed South African Lives

Over 20 years, hundreds of performers have joined the show in cities around the globe. These are some of their stories — laced with hope, tragedy, homesickness and triumph.
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Modern Love: ‘Happiness Is Incomplete’: A Refugee Couple’s Scattered Lives

A family flees Iraq and eventually resettles in Indiana — all except for one, who remained halfway around the world.
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Profile: Tattoos, Bieber, Black Lives Matter and Jesus

Carl Lentz, lead pastor of Hillsong NYC, sidles up to the idea of Christian self-help with his book, “Own the Moment,” then aims for something different.
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Garrett injures ankle, Browns curse lives on (Yahoo Sports)

Browns lose top draft pick to injury, curse lives on. (AP)

Myles Garrett looked impressive during the preseason but just days before Cleveland’s first regular-season game the team announces he suffered a high ankle sprain.



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People With the Happiest Sex Lives Are More Likely to Think Gender is Fluid

They’re more likely to see sexuality as a spectrum, too.

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New meningitis test ‘could save lives’

Existing tests are too slow in an emergency, say scientists, who are asking doctors to try out their alternative.
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NFL player lives on $60,000 a year thanks to what he learned from this book

NFL player lives on $  60,000 a year thanks to what he learned from this bookAn alarming fifteen percent of NFL players end up declaring bankruptcy. Wide receiver Ryan Broyles, who was drafted by the Detroit Lions in 2012 and is currently a free agent, is making sure he won’t fall into that category.



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Jennifer Lawrence Tells Vogue She Lives in Fear of Another Photo Hack: ‘I’m Always Waiting to Get Blindsided Again’

This year, Vogue has achieved a major milestone for any publication, celebrating it’s 125th-year in print. And to celebrate the occasion, the monthly magazine not only went with one of their favorite actresses for the main image, Jennifer Lawrence, who has now graced the cover three times, but to create something appropriately grand for this milestone achievement Vogue also commissioned four artists, photographers Bruce Weber, Annie Leibovitz, Inez and Vinoodh, and painter John Currin to each develop their unique aesthetic take on this Oscar-winning star, transforming her into their own personal muse.

For the cover above, Inez and Vinoodh dressed Lawrence in a slinky, gold, metal mesh gown by Versace with a dramatic thigh-high slit which they paired with a handful of David Yurman rings, slicking back her blonde hair and accentuating her features with very minimal bronzed makeup and shooting the whole thing on a simple grey backdrop to better let her natural beauty shine through. But while Inez and Vinoodh’s take on the actress was the kind of typical glamour we’ve become accustomed to seeing from her as she swans down the red carpet, the covers by John Currin and Bruce Weber highlight the true adaptability that helped make Lawrence a silver screen star.

RELATED: Jennifer Lawrence Opens Up About Relationship with Director Darren Aronofsky: ‘We Had Energy’

In the only black and white cover of the bunch, photographed by Bruce Weber, the Mother! actress looks off into the distance, fastening a button on her white Dior shirt, a brand she also happens to serve as the face of, wearing a number of rings also by the fashion house as well as an engraved ring by Eli Halili. Once again, her makeup is left subtle and natural, with the loose waves of her hair slightly tousled by the passing breeze.

For her cover shot by Annie Leibovitz, which will also serve as the primary cover image greeting readers on stands, the star went full-on Old Hollywood, in a crimson silk gown from the Ralph Lauren collection with a deep-V neckline and a long train, paired with Cathy Waterman earrings, leaning against the edge of a boat as it cruises past the Statue of Liberty in the background.

But although she’s used to being the center of attention on set, the actress confesses after having her privacy devastatingly violated when her nude photos were leaked on the internet, she’s always braced for the worse. “It’s scary when you feel the whole world judges you,” she says. “I think people saw for what it was, which was a sex crime, but that feeling, I haven’t been able to get rid of it. Having your privacy violated constantly isn’t a problem if you’re perfect. But if you’re human, it’s terrifying. When my publicist calls me, I’m like, ‘Oh, my God, what is it?’ Even when it’s nothing. I’m always waiting to get blindsided again.”

In an unprecedented move, the magazine also enlisted world famous fine artist John Currin, whom Vogue has featured extensively in the past, to paint an original portrait of Lawrence in his classical style. For the painting, the actress poses in a complete Miu Miu ensemble consisting of a puffy red-and-white striped fur hat, a clavicle-baring taupe gown with bishop sleeves, and a small turquoise leather clutch just barely in frame featuring the brand’s signature ornate ruching.

And it seems Vogue and these artists aren’t the only ones enamored with J.Law, her friend Emma Stone also gushed about their friendship to the publication. “‘I like how clear Jen is. She makes her opinions very, very clear to me, all the time—whether I ask for it or not.” Stone shares. “I appreciate that quality. She’s just fun, a shot of light.”

What do you think of Lawrence’s latest Vogue covers? Which is your favorite? Sound off below!


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Books of The Times: In ‘Home Fire,’ Lives Touched by Immigration, Jihad and Family Love

Three British siblings of Pakistani descent are at the center of Kamila Shamsie’s ingenious new novel, which builds to a stunning conclusion.
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Review: In ‘Detroit,’ Black Lives Caught in a Prehistory of the Alt-Right

Kathryn Bigelow’s new movie, set amid the Detroit riots of 1967, grapples with the legacy of American racism.
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Robert Miles’ Children – the hit written to save clubbers’ lives

The late dance DJ hoped his biggest track would help stop Italy’s “Saturday night slaughter”.
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Meet Three Exonerated Men Who’ve Devoted Their Lives To Freeing Innocent Convicts

In Dallas, three exonerated men have become detectives of sorts.

Rebuilding their lives following wrongful imprisonment, Christopher Scott, Steven Phillips and Johnnie Lindsey are devoted to freeing innocent inmates whom the justice system has failed. And now they’re the subjects of the documentary “True Conviction,” premiering at the ongoing Tribeca Film Festival. The Huffington Post has an exclusive clip showing the freed men taking on a new case involving someone who has sat in jail for 35 years. 

Directed by Jamie Meltzer, “True Conviction” will air on PBS. 

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Arts – The Huffington Post
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The Past Lives of Shirley MacLaine

At 82, the actress reflects on the golden age of Hollywood gossip, her quest for identity and the self-exploitation of social media.
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Manchester shoppers’ lung scans ‘saved lives’

Early cancer diagnosis increased fourfold after Manchester shoppers received CT scans, research shows
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Why ‘The Outsiders’ Lives On: A Teenage Novel Turns 50

S.E. Hinton’s classic endures as teenagers continue to relate to its rebellious characters.
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Asthma sufferers ‘struggling with their sex lives’

“No-one asks how it affects our relationship,” says one sufferer.
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Relationships That Have Roots are the Anchors in Our Lives

By Carolyn Massiah
UCF Forum columnist

The view in my backyard is a conservation area full of various types of trees. As the seasons pass, the trees lose their leaves and even some of their branches, but the trees remain in large part due to their sturdy roots.

To the side of my house is a concrete light pole. It doesn’t have any leaves and branches, obviously, but it is more susceptible to being blown down during a violent storm because it lacks the strong roots that mature trees have to anchor them through a storm.

When I compare and contrast the tree and the pole, I know I would much rather be a tree.

Both trees and light poles stand above the blanket of shrubs and bushes below. However, this is where the similarities end.

Many light poles are inorganic entities of concrete or metal, created through some form of human intervention. The shape and size in which these poles are created will forever be their shape and size as inorganic entities will not change during their existence unless there is additional intervention.

Trees, on the other hand, are organic. They are living organisms that continually change. They will lose and gain leaves and branches but they will also grow and mature throughout their existence. Continual growth and development is what I want for my own life. This is why I would rather be a tree than a light pole.

Unfortunately, positive growth sometimes must come from negative changes. Each year trees weather the change of seasons. With those changes in season, leaves come and they go and sometimes there may be seasons when the trees may not have any leaves at all on their branches.

The same can be said for our own lives. There are people that become attached to you as much as leaves are attached to branches. However, as the seasons change in our lives those people may disappear. Sometimes it seems several disappear at once and you are left bare much like trees in winter. For whatever reasons, those individuals were only meant to be in your life for a season. Yes, it hurts when those who you thought were going to stay forever leave your life before you are ready, but it is the nature of our organic lives.

Unfortunately, you never know how strong any branch will be until it is tested in the most violent of storms. Some branches appear thick and sturdy while they may actually be hollow or rotten to the core. If you step out on the branch for support because of its sturdy appearance, you might be disappointed and shocked when that branch does not support you but breaks and hurts you instead.

The same can be said for our own lives. There are people that we have relied upon and with whom we have built a long-term relationship. We have truly let them into our lives. However, as the weight of whatever burden you need bared by them increases, that friend gives under the load and breaks away from you in a permanent and irrevocable manner. Yes, it hurts but just as leaves come for a reason during a season, branches are there for those life-long lessons that we will take with us long after the branches have broken and been swept away. That is the nature of our organic lives.

So based on this, you might now be wondering why I would choose to be a tree instead of a pole. One word: roots!

Because trees are organic living creatures their roots continue to grow and strengthen as the tree grows and matures. When a storm comes, the roots anchor trees and allow trees to bend but not break in the storm.

Poles do not have that same anchor support. That is why we see more poles than trees down after severe hurricanes.

The same can be said for our own lives. Think about those individuals in your life that have been your anchor and support through the good and the bad. Often, much like a tree’s roots, those individuals do all of their work out of the view of others with no need of public acknowledgement. They are the blessings that we cannot overlook in our lives.

After comparing and contrasting the two, if I had to choose I would rather be a tree if it means that I will continue to have the blessings of roots just waiting to support me and feed me as I work to develop and mature throughout my existence.

Dr. Carolyn A. Massiah is an associate lecturer in the UCF College of Business. She can be reached at Carolyn.Massiah@ucf.edu.

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
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Defending their lives in ‘Ride the Cyclone’

2016-12-22-1482430556-6000822-EmilyRohmandthecastofRIDETHECYCLONEPhotobyJoanMarcus2copy.jpg

By Jil Picariello, ZEALnyc Theater Editor, December 26, 2016

If you took the movies Defending Your Life and Final Destination (the third one, to be specific) and mixed them in a blender with Glee and then put the result on a stage, you might get Ride the Cyclone.

It’s a weird little musical comedy about a horrific disaster: six members of the Saint Cassian High School Chamber Choir of Uranium City, Saskatchewan meet their tragic demise when a roller coaster goes off the rails. Yes, they’re dead. But now, thanks to a mechanical fortune teller (add Big to the mix), they discover that one of them can return to life, via a unanimous vote of the group.

Each defends his life in turn, the Tracy Flick-ish Ocean O’Connell Rosenberg (her parents were uber-hippes), chubby and schlubby Constance Blackwood (her catchphrase is “I’m sorry”), Ukranian-born would-be rapper Mischa Bachinski, Marlene Dietrich wannabe Noel Gruber, fantasy lover Ricky Potts, and a spooky sixth contestant identified only as Jane Doe, because she, literally, lost her head in the fatal accident and remains unidentified.

All of the performances are terrific, revealing both the teenage cliché of their characters, as well as the genuine human being underneath. And it’s charmingly pulled together by director and choreographer Rachel Rockwell, doing a fine service to the hilarious, inventive, and often surprising work of writers Brooke Maxwell and Jacob Richmond.

It’s creepy, it’s campy, it’s touching, and, for a musical about a bunch of dead teenagers, it’s very funny. Take a ride.

____________________

Ride the Cyclone at the Lucille Lortel Theater, 121 Christopher Street, through December 29, 2016. Running time is 1 hour and 30 minutes with no intermission. Book, music and lyrics by Jacob Richmond and Brooke Maxwell. Directed by Rachel Rockwell. Cast: Lillian Castillo, Karl Hamilton, Emily Rohm, Kholby Wardell, Tiffany Tatreau, Alex Wyse, Gus Halper, Johnny Newcomb, Emily Walton.

Cover: Emily Rohm and the cast of ‘Ride the Cyclone;’ photo by Joan Marcus

____________________

Jil Picariello ZEALnyc‘s Theater Editor writes frequently on theater and culture.

For more features from ZEALnyc read:

‘For Annie’–an Immersive and Cathartic Theater Experience

Scaled-Down ‘Finian’s Rainbow’ Charms at Irish Rep

Finding your inner Olaf at all the NYC area ice skating rinks

For all the news on New York City arts and culture, visit ZEALnyc Front Page.

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Arts – The Huffington Post
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See Saturday Night Live’s Stunning Behind-the-Scenes Transformation Between a Cold Open and Monologue

Casey Affleck, SNLSaturday Night Live is giving viewers a behind-the-scenes look at just how things go down on Saturday nights in Studio 8H. The new video below, from the Saturday, Dec. 17 show hosted by Casey…

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‘Kangaroo Mother Care’ May Improve Preemies’ Lives Into Adulthood

Skin-to-skin nurturing linked to increased survival, better social and behavioral outcomes, study finds
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How Royalty Lives Lavish: A Look at Some of the Most Regal Royal Real Estate

Craziest Royal Real Estate, Highgrove HouseWhen you’ve been crowned a member of the royal monarchy, there’s no doubt that title comes with some regal benefits.
Not only are you hoisted to fame and fortune, but you’re…

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Virtual Reality Porn Could Turn Our Sex Lives into an Episode of Black Mirror

And that might be a good thing.

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Windows into the A.D.D. Mind: Understanding and Treating Attention Deficit Disorders in the Everyday Lives of Children, Adolescents and Adul

Windows into the A.D.D. Mind: Understanding and Treating Attention Deficit Disorders in the Everyday Lives of Children, Adolescents and Adul


Until recently, A.D.D. was thought to be a disorder of diet, will power, or poor upbringing. Using powerful, new brain imaging studies, Dr. Amen explains A.D.D. and gives very clear prescriptions on what to do about it, form childhood through adulthood. This book discusses Dr. Amen’s experience in diagnosing and treating over 6,000 children, teenagers, and adults with ADD. The book will illustrate what ADD ‘looks like’ from the fetus in the womb to childhood, though adolescence into adult life. ‘Real Stories’ will illustrate the different stages of ADD, exploring the potential negative impact ADD has on relationships, families, schools, work, and self-esteem. The impact of a sophisticated brain imaging study called SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography) will be discussed in relationship to ADD. The treatment protocols for ADD that Dr. Amen’s uses day-to-day in his office will be given. This book is not meant to be an exhaustive review of ADD, rather to help understand the nature of ADD, how it can affect a person’s daily functioning, its causes, and the major components of effective treatment.
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GRAY IN L.A.: Wild Women — Advanced Lives

Huge hats played a big role, gray hair was casually displayed with panache, and there were tight waists, high heels, adventurous bags, outlandish fashion and quirky looks. When a large group of older women between 60 and 80-plus comes together, the party starts to get lively and interesting.

Sure, there exists a lot of perfectly nice seniors in muted Eileen Fisher sacks, Nancy Reagan suits and sensible helmet hair, oozing unnatural restraint and inoffensive invisibility. But there is a growing section of the aging population, mostly female, that has written “Down with Dowdy” on their flag that is happily snapping in the winds of change and freedom.

Ari S. Cohn, the young inventor and author of the second “Advanced Style” (“Older and Wiser”) book and a certified admirer of older, interesting looking and stylishly dressed women, had an L.A. book party to celebrate all that is wild and crazy, colorful and cutting-edge, elegant and beautiful. It was a bit of a club feeling, a dash of a gray pride parade, and a movement of moxie and renegade spirit. The mood was giddy; there was a lot of laughing, embracing, admiring, yes, ogling, too. It was a carefree event and “Go for it, old Girl!” was definitely the attitude of the moment.

Age is usually still an icky topic, tucked away like a dirty secret, but somehow at this event it didn’t seem to lurk like the old fear of being “too old.” Too old for what exactly? The “Advanced Style-Generation” puts a new spin on it. The ones who are old, or are getting there, know the old game by now: beauty (whatever that definition is) is a bitch and a burden, fickle and unreliable; one minute you’re fabulous, the next fading, and by the time you’re over 60 it’s all over. Why bother to live by those rules?

So lately, the very good news is beginning to emerge more and more. Ditching what you’re supposed to do, feel and look like can become a liberating endeavor. True beauty is everywhere, but to discover it takes the willingness to equal beauty with individuality, originality, humor and intelligence. The only interesting act at any age is to start defining your beauty and what to wear all by yourself.

I think we can all be grateful to Ari for giving the stylish and advanced women a huge juicy slice of inspiration, attention, space and therefore empowerment, something we definitely deserve! He reenforces something I often say, write, and truly mean: “I don’t owe anybody eternal beauty and youth! I’m not in debt to society.” So repeat after me: “I’m allowed to take up space! Dressed to the nines if I want to!” And what follows is joy of expression.

I have a theory about the history of our two halves: body & soul. You are born with them both intact, but then they are ripped apart because the cruel world wants to manipulate and corrupt every little part of you and fill your head with rubbish and unkindness toward others. You get lost, the soul wanders around, homeless and sad, in despair — searching for its old close friend and other half, the comforting body.

And then, one day when you are older, body & soul finally reunite again after such a long separation. They embrace passionately, practically melting into a unique form of being — and then you know that you are on your way to being ageless. And probably rather happy about it. And that might very well show in your clothes, too!

wild women

wild women

http://advancedstyle.blogspot.com/2016/02/the-aging-rebellion-gray-in-la.html

https://www.instagram.com/p/BCY1DqvHxA9/

Explaining the gray rebellion
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCNRRHIZFOE&feature=youtu.be&a

Earlier on Huff/Post50:

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Style – The Huffington Post
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Will.i.am’s Back With a New AI That Lives on Your Wrist—Or in Your Clothes

Will.i.am’s Back With a New AI That Lives on Your Wrist—Or in Your Clothes

Producer-turned-tech entrepreneur Will.i.am has a new product called Dial, which sits on the wrist and is controlled by the all-knowing assistant, AneedA. The post Will.i.am’s Back With a New AI That Lives on Your Wrist—Or in Your Clothes appeared first on WIRED.
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Home Theater Week at tigerdirect.com ...Your Source for High-definition Entertainment

These Goats On A Trampoline Are Having The Time of Their Lives

Goats can do no wrong.

Especially when they decide to throw themselves a trampoline party and engage in a little horn-to-horn sparring.

These six bearded baaahdasses are living their truths. Keep on jumping, you guys! Never let the fun die. 

Watch the video of them kidding around below:

Also on HuffPost:

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Comedy – The Huffington Post
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This Couple Lives On 6% Of Their Income So They Can Give $100,000 A Year To Charity

Julia Wise is a social worker and her husband, Jeff Kaufman, is a software engineer. In 2013, their combined income was just under $ 245,000, putting them in the top 10% of US households. And yet, excluding taxes and savings, they lived on just $ 15,280, or 6.25% of their income.

 

What happened to the rest of their income, just under $ 100,000? They gave it to charity.

— 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.




GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
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The Music Lives Forever Personal Checks Bundle

The Music Lives Forever Personal Checks Bundle


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Woman in a Sheikh’s World (Mills & Boon Modern) (The Private Lives of Public Playboys, Book 2)

Woman in a Sheikh’s World (Mills & Boon Modern) (The Private Lives of Public Playboys, Book 2)


With a client list hotter than the scorching desert, wedding planner Avery Scott shouldn’t be surprised that her latest client is Crown Prince Malik of Zubran the man who once lit her body on firebefore steamrollering over her heart. Determined to ignore Malik’s lethal charm, Avery makes a very personal not to-do list:
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Donald Trump, Black Lives Matter, And the Power of Disruption

It was a good week for disruptive innovation. Three protestors affiliated with Black Lives Matter shut down Bernie Sanders yet again, this time at a Seattle rally Saturday afternoon.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump escalated his disruptive impact on the Republican presidential field, with a post-debate remark implying that Fox reporter Megyn Kelly was menstruating when she asked him provocative questions, fittingly, about his coarse put-downs of women.

The two forms of disruption invite comparison.

BLM is disrupting the most progressive candidate in the Democratic field. Why? Because in the year since the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, the issue of systemic violence against blacks has still not broken through to become a first-tier issue, even among liberals.

Why Sanders? Because he is a soft target, with little if any security at his rallies and not inclined to call the cops on protestors. So he suffers disproportionately for the sins of the larger system. Is this fair? Not exactly. On the other hand it seems to be working.

Sanders has put out an excellent statement on criminal justice reform, which is far stronger than anything else out there from a mainstream candidate.

Even though these tactics are not pretty, we can expect the entire Democratic field to give more attention to issues of structural racism.

Black Lives Matter, rather like Occupy Wall Street and its spawn, is not a top-down movement. It is “horizontal,” in the jargon du jour, a kind of loose confederation of like minded activists, rather like (pardon the analogy) the Tea Parties.

On the other hand, it is probably the most important grass movement to come along in decades, certainly on the left. And it sure doesn’t have the Tea Parties wealthy donors helping to pull the string.

I think of the classic Malvina Reynolds protest song from the 1960s, “It Isn’t Nice”:

It isn’t nice to block the doorway,
It isn’t nice to go to jail,
There are nicer ways to do it,
But the nice ways always fail.
It isn’t nice, it isn’t nice,
You told us once, you told us twice,
But if that is Freedom’s price,
We don’t mind.

We have tried negotiations
And the three-man picket line,
Mr. Charlie didn’t see us
And he might as well be blind.
Now our new ways aren’t nice
When we deal with men of ice,
But if that is Freedom’s price,
We don’t mind.

Disruptive protest isn’t nice — that’s the whole point. But sometimes it’s necessary.

My guess is that Bernie Sanders and Black Lives Matter will get the choreography right before too long. There will be meetings. He will put out statements of support, maybe offer BLM time at rallies, maybe make some high profile speeches at grass roots civil rights gatherings.

Black Lives Matter will continue actions that occasionally disrupt campaign events of Sanders and others Democrats. But compared to the disruptive effect of Donald Trump on the Republican field, BLM is a picnic for Democrats.

This is a loutish billionaire with a titanic ego, and he reminds the broad public of what the Republicans really stand for. Unlike BLM, which is all about citizen energy, all the Donald has to do is write a check and he is in it for the long haul. That’s the Republican way.

Trump is the Republican Party’s worst nightmare. He speaks for the disaffected, rageful white males who think just the way he does; the people who listen to talk radio and don’t let facts get in the way… the faithful viewers of Fox. But whoops,Trump and Fox are now in a dogfight. Over a Fox questioner, Megyn Kelly (gotta love that gyn) turned feminist. Does it get any better?

Sen. Lindsey Graham was quoted in the Washington Post:

“I think we’ve crossed that Rubicon where his behavior becomes about us, not just him,” Graham said in an interview.

“Donald Trump is an out-of-control car driving through a crowd of Republicans, and somebody needs to get him out of the car,” Graham said. “I just don’t see a pathway forward for us in 2016 to win the White House if we don’t decisively deal with this.”

Yes, indeed. At first, political analysts thought Trump was a flash in the pan — that when he questioned Sen. John McCain’s military record, or preposterously claimed that was responsible for making immigration a national issue, or couldn’t decide whether he was a supporter of single-payer insurance or letting-’em-die in the free market, or insulted women as menstrual harridans, he would be toast.

But it’s now clear that no matter what Trump says, his support is likely to stay north of 20 percent in the polls because it isn’t the words that matter; it’s the anger. An NBC poll had Trump winning the Fox Republican debate with 23 percent support and the next highest contender (Ted Cruz!) second at 13, and Jeb Bush in sixth place with just 7 percent. Does it get any better?

These reverberations are almost too good to be true — Fox in a fight with its own hard core audience and its own facts-don’t-matter style; Fox suddenly becoming feminist; Trump reminding the country of what the larger Republican Party has come to represent; Trump sucking out all the oxygen so that rival candidates can’t gain traction against a surprisingly weak Jeb Bush. And, very likely, Trump eventually running as an independent.

Trump is a caricature of things that more mannered Republicans have been getting away with for years. He smokes out what the Republicans really stand for. No wonder they are worried. “An out of control car driving through a crowd of Republicans.”

Trump isn’t nice. Neither is Black Lives Matter. The Democrats should be grateful for the form of creative disruption being visited upon them.

— 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.




Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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8 Awkward Confessions From People Who Can’t Flirt To Save Their Lives

Sadly, we can’t all be as suave and debonair as dudes like Ryan Gosling. (If you’re like us, your flirting skills are better described as, “Michael Cera in pretty much every Michael Cera movie.”)

But hey, it helps to know you’re not alone. In the video above, BuzzFeed highlights some of the most awkward flirting confessions people have made on the secret-sharing app Whisper. 

 Our favorite: ”Met a really cute girl. She started to flirt with me and asked what my name was. My response? ‘I don’t know.'” 

 Yeah, that person definitely does not have Gosling-like game. 

 

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Comedy – The Huffington Post
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Empowering Series Gives Princesses Lives Beyond Happily Ever After

The usual fairy tale goes: Prince Charming sweeps a princess off her feet, they ride into the sunset and that’s where the story ends. But that’s not how it works in Amelia Case’s fairy tale universe. 

Case, mother to 12-year-old Isabella and 9-year-old Sophia, is the creator of “Princesses with a Twist,” a book series that gives readers a look at what life is like for princesses after their happy endings. She came up with this added layer of princess fiction to spread a message of female empowerment to her daughters and show that these classic characters can accomplish their goals — even after they find their prince.

“It’s a way to give the princesses some self-esteem, too,” Case told the Chicago Tribune. “They’ve been through some serious stuff. Why on earth would any story end there?”

So far, Case and her daughters have written 15 stories about beloved princess characters. In Cinderella’s post-pumpkin carriage life, the princess finds meaning in starting a business that creates — you guessed it — glass slippers. Snow White faces her fear of apples in Case’s fictional tale, and they end up becoming her favorite food. Other featured princesses include Sleeping Beauty and The Little Mermaid.

From offering their imaginations to choosing an illustrator (and even sketching illustration ideas of their own), Isabella and Sophia have been there every step of the way. “Except for choosing the font and paying the bills, they have just about done it all,” Case said in an email to The Huffington Post.

 Story continues below images

Case hopes to create the first three books with help from a Kickstarter campaign. According to a video featured on the page, the money raised will fund things like professional illustrations and legal fees. As of July 9, the campaign has raised more than $ 16,000 of the $ 30,000 goal.

With more than half of the money raised and two weeks left in the campaign, it seems like the “Princesses with a Twist” series is well on its way to proving that the life of a princess isn’t all ball gowns and cute animal sidekicks. Like the site suggests, “there is more to all of these lovely characters than just a pretty face and a handsome prince.”

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Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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And The Kinsella Family’s Weird Pose Lives On

The family that poses weirdly together, stays together, right? That seems to be the case with the Kinsella siblings, a family that Huffington Post first visited with three years ago. For almost three decades, the Kinsellas have posed for photos in the same somewhat strange stance with the brothers on the outside and sisters with legs crossed in the air in the middle. It’s something they started doing in 1988 and they’ve struck “the pose” at weddings, multiple Major League Baseball games, their mother’s funeral, home gatherings, a tattoo shop and the penultimate photo for this baseball-loving family: the Field of Dreams site. The four siblings — three of whom live in Houston and one in Nebraska — even traveled back to their childhood home in Brick Township, N.J., to pose for a photo there.

After we wrote about the Kinsellas’ pose, they were contacted by The Today Show, Ellen DeGeneres and Good Morning America — all seeking to have the four adult siblings on the air. The Today Show flew the four to New York where they struck “the pose” for the world to see and “had a blast for three days,” said family spokesman Mike Kinsella.

Brothers Mike and Tim Kinsella and sisters Sharyn Bauer Kemper and Eileen McFarland all have identical “pose” tattoos. While no two of the siblings agree how “the pose” originated, Mike Kinsella notes, “Remember, we started taking them long before date-stamped photos.”

kinsella2

How does Mike explain the connection the four have — and the world’s interest in their family photo tradition? Simple, he said. “We grew up loving each other and we remain very close,” said Mike. That comes across in “the pose.” “We just have fun. We get together and always laugh. You can see it in the pose.”

He said a family reunion is planned for later this summer and the Nebraska sister is thinking of moving to Texas once she retires. The times, of course, aren’t always good. Sister Eileen just completed a 30-day treatment course for skin cancer and brother Tim lost his job at a print shop. But “we will always be there for each other,” said Mike.

And yes, there will always be more photos of “the pose.”

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
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

And The Kinsella Family’s Weird Pose Lives On

The family that poses weirdly together, stays together, right? That seems to be the case with the Kinsella siblings, a family that Huffington Post first visited with three years ago. For almost three decades, the Kinsellas have posed for photos in the same somewhat strange stance with the brothers on the outside and sisters with legs crossed in the air in the middle. It’s something they started doing in 1988 and they’ve struck “the pose” at weddings, multiple Major League Baseball games, their mother’s funeral, home gatherings, a tattoo shop and the penultimate photo for this baseball-loving family: the Field of Dreams site. The four siblings — three of whom live in Houston and one in Nebraska — even traveled back to their childhood home in Brick Township, N.J., to pose for a photo there.

After we wrote about the Kinsellas’ pose, they were contacted by The Today Show, Ellen DeGeneres and Good Morning America — all seeking to have the four adult siblings on the air. The Today Show flew the four to New York where they struck “the pose” for the world to see and “had a blast for three days,” said family spokesman Mike Kinsella.

Brothers Mike and Tim Kinsella and sisters Sharyn Bauer Kemper and Eileen McFarland all have identical “pose” tattoos. While no two of the siblings agree how “the pose” originated, Mike Kinsella notes, “Remember, we started taking them long before date-stamped photos.”

kinsella2

How does Mike explain the connection the four have — and the world’s interest in their family photo tradition? Simple, he said. “We grew up loving each other and we remain very close,” said Mike. That comes across in “the pose.” “We just have fun. We get together and always laugh. You can see it in the pose.”

He said a family reunion is planned for later this summer and the Nebraska sister is thinking of moving to Texas once she retires. The times, of course, aren’t always good. Sister Eileen just completed a 30-day treatment course for skin cancer and brother Tim lost his job at a print shop. But “we will always be there for each other,” said Mike.

And yes, there will always be more photos of “the pose.”

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Arts – The Huffington Post
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Essence Festival Attracts Thousands To New Orleans To Celebrate, Empower Black Lives Everywhere

NEW ORLEANS — Thousands trekked to New Orleans this July Fourth weekend to celebrate the much-anticipated 21st annual Essence Festival.

This year’s celebration by Essence, one of the leading black women’s magazines, is expected to attract hundreds of thousands of visitors to a city still making progress to restore itself from the devastation Hurricane Katrina left behind 10 years ago. More than 500,000 people attended last year’s four-day festival, and this year’s event will recognize and discuss important issues that have plagued the black community both before and since Katrina hit.

“Essence Festival is an important gathering where we show who we are as a community, not defined by what others think of us but by how we see ourselves and how we live and love,” Essence’s Editor-In-Chief Vanessa K. De Luca said on Friday. “This weekend, we’ll be bringing the love.”

Nearly 120 thought leaders, politicians and celebrities — and their fans — flocked to the Ernest N. Morial Convention center on Friday to participate in a three-day experience that promises empowering discussions on issues affecting black men, black women and their families.

De Luca explained that Essence has always been a beacon for black women since it first launched 45 years ago, and the introduction of the festival in 1995 was a way to celebrate the richness of the black community as a whole. Over time, the Essence Festival has been recognized as one of the biggest and most elaborate curated festivals in the world — and this year is no different.

“Essence is more than a music festival, it’s an experience,” Marc Morial, the CEO of the National Urban League and the former mayor of New Orleans, told HuffPost. “And the serious conversations that take place are indispensable. They give people the opportunity to coalesce around important issues.”

This year, the festival is honoring a mission centered on “Peace, Purpose and Prayer,” with a series of events scheduled for Friday that aimed to bring peace through powerful dialogue, while Saturday’s events focused on purpose and Sunday on prayer. Because of this, the weekend’s lineup is filled with influential names and professional experts like Sybrina Fulton, the Rev. Al Sharpton, Deepak Chopra, Steve Harvey and many more who will undoubtedly deliver on this mission.

While the Essence exhibition kicked off on Friday, the festival officially welcomed attendees on Thursday by facilitating a day of service in commemoration of this year’s 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Volunteers participated in events throughout the city that involved refurbishing and beautifying grounds, and donating books to local schools.

essence volunteer

“After Katrina, this area was in disarray, as was the Superdome; it was probably a site of one of the great failures in American history when we as a country gasped at the possibility that we can leave so many fellow citizens behind,” New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said on Friday. “My brothers and sisters, all of us, on the streets and under water.”

While some progress has been made throughout the city, many areas remain demolished and unrecovered from the destruction Katrina left behind. Discussions on how to bring positive change through engaging the community and rebuilding heavily damaged schools and homes are encouraged throughout the weekend.

Meanwhile, special emphasis will also be given to the Black Lives Matter movement and discussing events that have occurred in recent months that highlight racial injustice in America — and what we should do to help address it.

“Anytime we can gather in love, and in celebration, is a radical act because so often when we’re gathering, it’s a funeral or it’s an uprising, or an injustice,” director Ava DuVernay, who was among this year’s celebrity guests, told HuffPost.

“Most of the public gatherings you see are around anguish and chaos so I think the Essence Festival is really important because we’re holding hands and smiling and holding each other up and that’s crucial to show.”

Like DuVernay, many other celebrities flocked to New Orleans to support this year’s festival.

Entertainers including Erykah Badu, Common, Missy Elliott, Kendrick Lamar, Charlie Wilson, Kevin Hart and more will perform live nightly shows to celebrate their work and its power to unify.

“I love music, I love hearing about artists, and watching them perform is amazing,” Gisselle English, a 25-year-old IT specialist from Florida, told HuffPost. “I love everything that the Essence Festival has to offer here, from fashion to tips on success; it’s all extremely empowering.”

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Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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Following Water Safety Rules Saves Lives, Red Cross Says

Children can drown within five minutes, experts warn
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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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Meet The People Ensuring Black Lives Matter Isn’t Just A Hashtag

WASHINGTON — Facilitating meaningful conversations about race isn’t an easy feat, but a local collaborative effort is up to the challenge.

Black Lives/White Light and TABLETRIBES, a D.C.-based tech startup, are coupling art and technology to create The Radius Project, which aims to take conversations surrounding Black Lives Matter beyond newsfeeds and comment sections.

The collaborative is setting up three panel discussions in the Washington, D.C., area in hopes of turning online interactions into more meaningful face-to-face conversations .

“A meaningful face-to-face conversation is a singular point of contact that has the power to activate a ripple effect in our communities,” Hosan Lee, the founder and CEO of TABLETRIBES, told The Huffington Post. “If we all work together, how far outwards can we extend the radius of progress?”

Pretty far, it seems. The Radius Project grew from a series of four discussion panels following Black Lives/White Light’s April exhibition showcasing the artwork of eight white artists. Sheldon Scott and Deirdre Darden, two D.C. artists who curated the exhibit, hoped the show would introduce an alternative perspective to the conversation surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement.

“For me, Black Lives Matter — way before it became this social media movement, before it became a hashtag — it’s always been a part of my work,” Scott said. “We’ve been saying these things for years about … mistreatment and injustices.”

Black Lives Matter has achieved global reach, he added. This influence inspired Scott to seek out white artists who may not have been aware of racialized police brutality before seeing the hashtag and see how they would respond to the movement artistically.

It worked. Powerful, conflicting reactions to the April exhibit encouraged Scott and Darden to set up the panels to continue delving into how America confronts race and justice and its relationship with violence.

“We need to be able to have this conversation about race on many different levels simultaneously. We have to be able to talk to people who have a lower understanding of race at the same time we should be able to communicate to people who have a heightened [understanding],” Scott said.

The success of Black Lives/White Light provoked Lee to reach out to Scott and ask if he was interested in letting the conversation continue using TABLETRIBES, a digital platform that brings online conversations into the real world. Their goal is to globally scale empathy development by developing opportunities for users to exchange ideas and information in person.

The Radius Project hopes its efforts will get a better reception than Starbucks’f did. The coffee chain launched Race Together Initiative earlier this year to encourage customers to discuss racial matters, a move that was quickly written off as a marketing ploy and called off by the company.

“Starbucks’ intentions with [Race Together] around trying to start civic conversations felt like they were in the right place, but the execution wasn’t designed to facilitate deeper engagement in a way that was productive or appropriate. For us, it reaffirmed our approach and the need for what we’re building at TABLETRIBES,” Lee said.

TABLETRIBES is a social networking app that allows users interested in similar topics to connect with each other offline. People who RSVP for this month’s events will be helping the startup test the app, which is currently in beta. Lee said the app will help users find others in the room to discuss specific topics relevant to each evening’s civic-minded theme during the event itself.

“We’re gathering people because they want to talk these issues, but what we want to do with the app is allow these conversations to happen beyond the room itself,” she said.

Panels are scheduled for June 9, 16 and 23. Interested parties can RSVP here.

— 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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Miley Cyrus – The Time Of Our Lives (Music CD)

Miley Cyrus – The Time Of Our Lives (Music CD)


Miley’s Party has already taken the USA by storm, catapulting straight into the #2 spot in the Billboard charts in it’s first week. The track tied her for the highest debut of 2009 alongside Black Eyed Peas monster hit I Gotta Feeling and the track has held number one on iTunes for the seventh week, selling over 1.1 million downloads. Kicking & Screaming Party In The U.S.A When I Look At You Time Of Our Lives Talk Is Cheap Obsessed Before The Storm (Duet with Jonas Brothers) The Climb Release Date: Monday, 9 November 2009

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Global Blood Pressure Program Could Save Millions of Lives, Experts Say

Improving access to care, treatment is key, especially in lower-income countries
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Confucius Lives Next Door

Confucius Lives Next Door


Those who’ve heard T.R. Reid’s weekly commentary on National Public Radio or read his far-flung reporting in National Geographic or The Washington Post know him to be trenchant, funny, and cutting-edge, but also erudite and deeply grounded in whatever subject he’s discussing. In Confucius Lives Next Door he brings all these attributes to the fore as he examines why Japan, China, Taiwan, and other East Asian countries enjoy the low crime rates, stable families, excellent education, and civil harmony that remain so elusive in the West. Reid, who has spent twenty-five years studying Asia and was for five years The Washington Post’s Tokyo bureau chief, uses his family’s experience overseas-including mishaps and misapprehensions-to look at Asia’s “social miracle” and its origin in the ethical values outlined by the Chinese sage Confucius 2,500 years ago. When Reid, his wife, and their three children moved from America to Japan, the family quickly became accustomed to the surface differences between the two countries. In Japan, streets don’t have names, pizza comes with seaweed sprinkled on top, and businesswomen in designer suits and Ferragamo shoes go home to small concrete houses whose washing machines are outdoors because there’s no room inside. But over time Reid came to appreciate the deep cultural differences, helped largely by his courtly white-haired neighbor Mr. Matsuda, who personified ancient Confucian values that are still dominant in Japan. Respect, responsibility, hard work-these and other principles are evident in Reid’s witty, perfectly captured portraits, from that of the school his young daughters attend, in which the students maintain order and scrub the floors, to his depiction of the corporate ceremony that welcomes new employees and reinforces group unity. And Reid also examines the drawbacks of living in such a society, such as the ostracism of those who don’t fit in and the acceptance of routine political bribery. Much Wester

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Falling Cancer Death Rate Means 1.5 Million Lives Saved Over 20 Years

American Cancer Society report finds a 22 percent drop in deaths
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Should We Bring Marriage Into Our Love Lives?

I once wrote an article about how love fits into marriage but after co-writing, The New I Do, Reshaping Marriage for Skeptics, Realists and Rebels, with Vicki Larson, I realize that a better question to ask is how our outdated paradigm applies to the way people in love couple these days.

For the first time in literally thousands of years, marriage in our Western culture has viable, socially acceptable, competition and the pressures (and necessitation) of marriage have diminished greatly.

In the past 50 years, the marriage rate in the U.S. has fallen dramatically. In 2008, a mere 26 percent (one quarter) of people in their 20s were married as compared to 68 percent (two thirds) in 1960.

We have not stopped coupling in our culture (although staying single is a perfectly acceptable lifestyle choice for younger adults). Rather, increasing numbers of up-and-comers have rejected tradition not legalizing their unions; even when they go on to have children.

Having lived with two serious boyfriends at different points in my life, I understand this choice and in many ways, I think it makes sense. There are things you learn about togetherness in general and your partner in particular that you might not learn any other way. There is also a stronger sense of commitment (albeit unspoken in most cases) in a relationship when you live together.

What’s the advantage to shacking up over marriage? You can have a lovely relationship, be very committed in the moment, and yet, if or when you break up, you can simply go your separate ways back out into your single worlds. It’s certainly easier and cleaner to split when you don’t have all the legalities to contend with: Maybe just a few dishes, airline points or pieces of furniture to split, but nothing small claims court can’t handle.

But here’s the rub: Big problems emerge when couples make other kinds of long term commitments that do bind them legally — like buying property together or worse, having children together — without having protections in place. As outdated as marriage can be, one thing it does do is provide important protections to both parties if a breakup occurs.

No one knows that better than the one who got the raw end of a real estate deal (with no recourse) or the one who got booted out on the street with a 2-year-old and a 5-month-old. While there are laws that protect children in those situations, there are not the same protections for partners as there are for spouses.

As we watch the pendulum swing toward a less structured paradigm, I think we’ll start seeing and hearing more about this kind of fallout. And it won’t be pretty.

Why can’t we have more options than risking so much by coupling but avoiding marriage or opting for security by marrying someone we may not want to be with forever? It’s not as if it’s never been done before.

The Romans had three different levels of marriage: Confarreatio, the most formal option had more religious overtones; Coemptio, was a less formal and more business-like union; and Usus, was an informal marriage that occurred by default when a couple lived together for more than a year. (Confarreatio and Coemptio required ceremonies but Usus did not have a marriage ceremony).

Throughout history, people have married for all kinds of reasons that had nothing to do with love–primarily for business and monetary gain, for political gain and to procreate. Love was even seen as an impractical emotion in these relationships. The Greeks, seeing the insanity caused by those in love, coined the phrase “lovesick.” Indeed, some cultures even described love as dangerous when it came to setting up stable family structures.

Having spent the past two years (and more) researching the subject of marriage for my book, I can tell you that informal changes are actually happening to the institution behind closed doors.

Unbeknownst to family, friends, and clergy, young couples tying the knot are agreeing to themselves the conditions they want to see in place. Ryan and Lisa is one such example: These twenty-somethings are marrying with a purpose and an end date (rather than out of love “because it’s what you do.”). They agreed to have children together but they also agreed that their marriage would end when the kids are out of the house (the option to stay married was there, but not the expectation).

At the other end of the age spectrum, unapologetic third-time marriers (many of whom are Baby Boomers) are stating unequivocally that they want only the best parts of marriage. How are they doing this? Many are vehement about maintaining their autonomy. Some are choosing to live in separate houses, others are asking for open marriages, and still others are quite frank about needing practical things like someone to grow old with, someone with insurance benefits or someone who has financial security.

Far from breaking from traditional marriage, these seeming rebels are reverting back to ways of old. Yet, because they fear being judged, many of these couples keep these arrangements secret. But why? Are they really doing anything wrong? Are these couples harming themselves? Are they harming anyone else? Are they taking anything away from anyone?

If you think about it, marriages based on love often have the most fallout because love is fragile. Love can easily turn to dashed expectations (especially since expectations are so much higher for lovers than they are for friends), jealousy, betrayal and even hatred. These are the things that crimes of passion are borne out of.

Now, I’m not saying that love has absolutely no place in marriage, but perhaps love shouldn’t be in the number one spot. Perhaps we should rethink purpose-driven marriages rather than emotion-driven ones. Perhaps we should give individual couples the right to pick and choose aspects of relationship that they want rather than assuming that monogamy and forever are right for everyone. As things stand now, those who don’t play by the current rules are told they are doing something wrong, or they are looked at as odd, damaged or unlucky.

Whether you agree with this article or not, I hope this topic will get you talking with others about the shame-based all-or-nothing paradigm we have set up now.

We received a terrific compliment recently from a TV talk-show producer. He said that before he read the book, he was against the concept. He fully expected to disagree with us. But, when he read the book, he realized that what we said made good sense and he thanked us for writing it.

If you’d like to open your mind and read more about these ideas, pick up a copy of The New I Do, Reshaping Marriage for Skeptics, Realists and Rebels. If you know someone who’s just about to get married or re-married, do them a favor and get them a copy of The New I Do. And, finally, if you or someone you know is considering ending their marriage, tell them to read this book first. There may be a creative solution to their problem in its pages.


A previous version of this article appeared in Susan’s Contemplating Divorce Column on PsychologyToday.com

Weddings – The Huffington Post
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New ‘Broad City’ Trailer Makes This The Best Day Of Our Lives

It’s been far too long since the first season of “Broad City” ended (we know, it’s been tough), but Ilana and Abbi are back with lots of panache.

The first full trailer for Season 2 of the Comedy Central series is loaded with twerking, “white power suits” and “titty chips.” What else can we expect from our favorite female comedy duo? Besides the usual wake and bake, Abbi will get to teach a fitness class, Ilana will do some dressing room grooming, and together they’ll attempt to sell (what appears to be) art on the streets of New York City. Oh, and Seth Rogen and Kimiko Glenn, from “Orange Is the New Black,” will appear for cameos.

Watch the trailer, which will make you feel like Ilana at her grandmother’s shiva, and rejoice at the impending return of Ilana and Abbi!

tv show gifs
Image via Comedy Central/Tumblr

Season 2 of “Broad City” premieres Jan. 14, 2015.
Comedy – The Huffington Post
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Jump Ropes, Jacks, and Endless Chores: Children’s Lives in the 1800s

Jump Ropes, Jacks, and Endless Chores: Children’s Lives in the 1800s


For most of the 1800s, children were considered “small, unruly adults” who needed to be strictly disciplined and put to useful work as soon as they were able. The very concept of childhood itself, as a carefree, innocent time, is a result of increasing economic stability and changing family roles in the 1800s. Before child welfare laws were enacted and compulsory education enforced, children made up an important part of the industrial and agricultural workforce in 1800s America. Toys and time for games and fun may have been a luxury, but kids will be kids, and the adults that loved them made sure their lives weren’t all work and no play. The establishment of public schools, more humane working conditions, and expanding economic opportunities helped improve the life of America’s children in the 1800s, but they worked hard and their pleasures were simple ones.

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Tiny Horse Lives Large With Labrador Pal

This pint-sized horse is a big celebrity.

Acer the miniature horse stands 22 inches tall and is said to be Britain’s smallest horse. That distinction comes with perks. According to a Barcroft TV segment, posted to YouTube on Oct. 2, Acer makes himself at home on Maureen O’Sullivan’s farm in Corringham, England, and at the local pub.

He corrals plenty of attention wherever he goes. But one place he’s forbidden is around the big horses on the farm, because he might get hurt, explains O’Sullivan, who believes both of Acer’s parents carried the dwarfism gene.

Demon, the black Labrador of the house, is around Acer’s size, and the two get along smashingly. In fact, O’Sullivan says, Acer “thinks he’s more of a dog than a horse.”

As cute as the little guy is, he apparently isn’t the world’s tiniest equine. According to Guinness World Records, that honor belongs to the 17.5-inch Thumbelina in St. Louis — at least as of July 2006.

H/T Laughing Squid
Comedy – The Huffington Post
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The Sex Lives Of Siamese Twins

The Sex Lives Of Siamese Twins


The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins taps into two great obsessions of our time, personal training regimes and real estate — – how we look and where we live — and tells a story so subversive and dark it blacks out the Florida sun.      Lesbian passion, clinical obesity, murder, conjoined twins, and huge servings of food, sex and filthy language: it’s the brand-new Irvine Welsh….     When Lucy Brennan, a Miami Beach personal-fitness trainer, disarms an apparently crazed gunman chasing two frightened homeless men along a deserted causeway at night, the police and the breaking-news cameras are not far behind. Within hours, Lucy becomes a hero. Her celebrity is short-lived, though: the ''crazed gunman'', Sean McCandless, turns out to be a victim of child sexual abuse and the two men are serial paedophiles.      The solitary eye-witness, the depressed and overweight Lena Sørensen, thrilled by Lucy''’s heroism and decisiveness, becomes obsessed with the trainer and enrols as a client at her Bodysculpt gym. It quickly becomes clear that Lena is more interested in Lucy''s body than her own. Then, when one of the paedophiles she allowed to escape carries out a heinous sex attack, Lucy''s transition from hero to villain is complete. When Lucy imprisons Lena in her mother''s deserted real-estate blocks downtown, and can''t stop thinking about the sex lives of Siamese twins, the real problems start.     In the aggressive, drill-sergeant trainer, Lucy Brennan, and the needy, manipulative Lena Sørensen, Irvine Welsh has created two of his most memorable female protagonists, and one of the most bizarre, sado-masochistic folie à deux in contemporary fiction. The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins taps into two great obsessions of our time, personal training regimes and real estate — how we look and where we live — and tells a story so subversive and dark it blacks out the Florida sun.
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The Sex Lives Of Siamese Twins

The Sex Lives Of Siamese Twins


The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins taps into two great obsessions of our time, personal training regimes and real estate — – how we look and where we live — and tells a story so subversive and dark it blacks out the Florida sun.      When Lucy Brennan, a Miami Beach personal-fitness trainer, disarms an apparently crazed gunman chasing two frightened homeless men along a deserted causeway at night, the police and the breaking-news cameras are not far behind. Within hours, Lucy becomes a hero. Her celebrity is short-lived, though: the ''crazed gunman'', Sean McCandless, turns out to be a victim of child sexual abuse and the two men are serial paedophiles.      The solitary eye-witness, the depressed and overweight Lena Sørensen, thrilled by Lucy’''s heroism and decisiveness, becomes obsessed with the trainer and enrols as a client at her Bodysculpt gym. It quickly becomes clear that Lena is more interested in Lucy''s body than her own. Then, when one of the paedophiles she allowed to escape carries out a heinous sex attack, Lucy''s transition from hero to villain is complete. When Lucy imprisons Lena in her mother''s deserted real-estate blocks downtown, and can''t stop thinking about the sex lives of Siamese twins, the real problems start.     In the aggressive, drill-sergeant trainer, Lucy Brennan, and the needy, manipulative Lena Sørensen, Irvine Welsh has created two of his most memorable female protagonists, and one of the most bizarre, sado-masochistic folie à deux in contemporary fiction. The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins taps into two great obsessions of our time, personal training regimes and real estate — how we look and where we live — and tells a story so subversive and dark it blacks out the Florida sun.
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Meet The Lady Who Lives In A Museum

There’s a fine line between collecting 5,000 pieces of art and hoarding them. For Betsy Alexander, it’s all about placement.

“When we buy a piece of art, our friends will say, ‘Where are you going to put it?’… But there’s always a place — it’s just shocking,” says Alexander, who’s been collecting since she was 9 years old.

Her Philadelphia home-cum-museum is the subject of videographer Cory Popp’s latest project (Popp brought us a colorful look at his hometown’s front doors last month), and is filled floor to ceiling with quirky pieces like ray guns and wind-up robots — items that Alexander says mean more to her than going on a vacation or purchasing a fancy fur coat.

Take a closer look at some of her most unique items in the photos below and tour her home in the video above.

cory popp collector

cory popp collector

cory popp collector

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Arts – The Huffington Post
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These Photos Offer A Glimpse Into The Lives Of The Belarus Women Who Served On The Front Lines Of WWII

the other hundred

“The Other Hundred” is a unique photo book project aimed as a counterpoint to the Forbes 100 and other media rich lists by telling the stories of people around the world who are not rich but whose lives, struggles and achievements deserve to be celebrated. Its 100 photo stories move beyond the stereotypes and clichés that fill so much of the world’s media to explore the lives of people whose aspirations and achievements are at least as noteworthy as any member of the world’s richest 1 percent.

During World War II, many women in Belarus served on the front lines. When Germany invaded the Soviet Union in 1941, most of these women were between 16 and 18 years old. For the next four years, they served as nurses, truck drivers, partisans and communications operators. At the end of the war, they were awarded medals and prizes and named “Heroes of the Nation.” As they approach the end of their lives, and despite the breakup of the former Soviet Union, their contributions are still remembered with invitations to attend parades and to visit schools to tell children about their experiences.

Belarus

Photographer: Agnieszka Rayss

4

Lida Pietrovna Bondar, nurse.

7

Zinaida Konstantinovna, now of Grodno, Belarus, worked for Soviet Army Communications during the war.

1

Elizaveta Ivanonvna Zienievich, partisan nurse.

2

Anastasia Konstantinova Wishnievska, truck driver.

9

Maria Antonovna Pospielova of Zaskovichi, Belarus. She served in the partisan resistance force against the Nazi occupation.

10

Maria Antonovna Pospielova’s dress uniform with her military honors.

God gave me the courage to fight for the truth, and I have never been afraid to speak the truth. I think that if someone is righteous, God sees it and protects him. That’s how it was with me. When I was already in the partisan force, I was walking alone through the woods and I got surrounded by a pack of wolves. I thought I wasn’t going to make it. I had a pistol with only two bullets. I climbed onto the trunk of a felled pine tree, crossed myself, and they finally left” — Maria Antonovna Pospielova.

8

Zinaida Nikolaieva Famienska, partisan.

6

Valentina Pietrovna Baranova, army communications worker, head of the veterans’ union in Grodno.

5

Galina Ivanova Pagarelava of Shchuchyn, Belarus, served as a nurse in the war..

“I was a nurse and I got into the front-bound ambulance train. I was at the front, I collected the wounded and drove them to the hospital. They were heavy — one had to carry them on one’s own arms and back. When we took the wounded away, we were often bombarded by the Germans. We had “death passports,” metal tags with our name and last name to identify us in case we were killed. This is how the four years of war went by. I was at the Leningrad front, the Baltic front and the Karelian front all the way beyond the Arctic Circle. It was daylight all the time at the Arctic front. We wrote letters on the train — at night. Belarus is my second homeland. I was born in the Ural, and I have lived in Shchuchyn since 1954. I have no regrets. My son turned out great. I had an interesting life” — Galina Ivanova Pagarelava.

More from The Other Hundred
Inside Gaza
Cairo’s Blind, Female Orchestra
The Reality Of Education In Liberia
Inside North Korea
One Of Europe’s Poorest Countries
Arts – The Huffington Post
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Watching Giants: The Secret Lives of Whales

Watching Giants: The Secret Lives of Whales


Personal, anecdotal, and highly engaging, Watching Giants opens a window on a world that seems quite like our own, yet is so different that understanding it pushes the very limits of our senses. Elin Kelsey’s colorful first-person account, drawing from her rich, often humorous, everyday experiences as a mother, a woman, and a scientist, takes us to the incredibly productive waters of the Gulf of California and beyond, to oceans around the world. Kelsey brings us along as she talks to leading cetacean researchers and marine ecologists about their intriguing discoveries. We encounter humpback whales that build nets from bubbles, gain a disturbing maternal perspective on the dolphin-tuna issue, uncover intimate details about whale sex, and contemplate the meaning of the complex social networks that exist in the seas. What emerges alongside these fascinating snapshots of whale culture is a dizzying sense of the tremendous speed with which we are changing the oceans’ ecosystems-through overfishing, noise pollution, even real estate development. Watching Giants introduces a world of immense interconnectivity and beauty-one that is now facing imminent peril.

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Beth Whaanga’s Powerful Breast Cancer Portraits Lost Her 100 Friends, But Could Save Many More Lives

Beth Whaanga posted images of herself after breast cancer surgery on Facebook, hoping to share her story and urge others to take preventative measures.

What she didn’t expect was the vitriolic responses from some of her Facebook “friends” — and the subsequent outpourings of support she received when the photographs went viral.

(Some images below are NSFW and may be considered graphic.)

Whaanga, a nurse and married mother-of-four from Brisbane, Australia, was diagnosed with breast cancer on her 32nd birthday. After finding out that she carried the BRCA2 gene, a genetic mutation that put her at increased risk for breast and ovarian cancer, Whaanga underwent a double mastectomy last November, as well as a hysterectomy, lymphadenectomy and melanoma lumpectomies. Instead of hiding her scars, she chose to speak out in order to help others affected by cancer.

“Your scars are a physical or emotional representation of a trial you’ve been through,” Whaanga told The Huffington Post in an email. “They show that you came through the trial and survived.”

She teamed up with friend and photographer Nadia Masot to photograph her post-surgery body in a series of portraits called “Under The Red Dress.”

“I really felt during the shoot I wanted to portray [Whaanga’s] strength and resilience, but also have her vulnerability and pain come across,” Masot told The Huffington Post in an email. “She was unafraid of me pointing the camera at her exposed body, scarred as it is. She was confident in sharing it with me, and I think that came across.”

beth whaanga

Introducing the photographs on her Facebook page, Whaanga wrote:

WARNING: these images are confronting and contain topless material. They are not in anyway meant to be sexual. The aim of this project is to raise awareness for breast cancer. If you find these images offensive please hide them from your feed. Each day we walk past people. These individuals appear normal but under their clothing sometimes their bodies tell a different story. Nadia Masot and I aim to find others who are willing to participate in our project so that we might show others that cancer effects everyone. The old and the young, age does not matter, self examination is vital. It can happen to you.

beth whaanga

Despite Whaanga’s explanation, some people took issue with the images. Hours after the photographs had been posted, over 100 people had de-friended Whaanga on Facebook, and several reported the album to Facebook for violation of the site’s photo policy. (Facebook has contacted Whaanga to inform her that they will not be removing the images.)

beth whaanga

“The feedback that I’ve received was that people felt that the medium was not appropriate for these images,” Whaanga told HuffPost. “They were also concerned about the graphic and confronting content of the images.”

These objections, however, seem almost petty in light of the project’s goal: raising awareness about cancer and encouraging people to make their health a priority.

“These photos remind the viewer to be vigilant about checking their bodies and to be more aware that this could and and possibly will happen to you,” Whaanga told HuffPost.

beth whaanga

“If the ‘Under The Red Dress’ project helps one man, woman or family deal with their battle with cancer, or helps one person in their preventative journey, than I’m very happy,” Whaanga told HuffPost.

Learn more about the Under The Red Dress Project here.
Arts – The Huffington Post
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