Nonfiction: The True-Crime Story That Harper Lee Tried and Failed to Write

In “Furious Hours,” Casey Cep investigates the Alabama murder case that was to have been the focus of Lee’s second book — as well as the famously reclusive writer herself, plumbing the mystery of her 50-year silence.
NYT > Books


‘Bird Box’ Is Full of Plot Holes. We Tried (and Sometimes Failed) to Plug Them.

For a certain type of fan, half the fun of watching a movie is pointing out the logical inconsistencies. “Bird Box” gave us plenty.
NYT > Arts

Orbitz Worldwide Inc

Irving: Don’t think Belinelli tried to hurt me

Celtics guard Kyrie Irving said he doesn’t think Marco Belinelli tried to injure him. – NBA

Source: Giants tried to trade Flowers in draft

The Giants wanted to trade offensive tackle Ereck Flowers during the draft, but their asking price was too high, a source tells ESPN. – NFL

Former Weinstein PA ‘tried to stop him 20 years ago’

A former assistant to disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein says she left his company 20 years ago after he “sexually assaulted and attempted to rape a colleague of mine”.
Entertainment News – Latest Celebrity & Showbiz News | Sky News


Amber Tamblyn Says She’s ‘Very Shaken’ After a Car Tried to ‘Hit’ Her and Her Baby in N.Y.C.

Amber Tamblyn is looking for the driver she claims almost hit her and her 1-year-old daughter Marlow Alice as they attempted to cross the street in New York City.

The 34-year-old actress shared a tweet on Sunday afternoon detailing the scary incident and looking for more information.

“If anyone in Brooklyn near the intersection of Washington Ave and Atlantic Ave just saw a Hasidic man in a grey van try to hit a woman and her baby in a stroller as she crossed a crosswalk, honking and touching the stroller with the car’s bumper, please DM me,” she wrote. “That woman was me.”

In response to a tweet asking if she and her baby were okay, Tamblyn said, “Very shaken but yes, we’re okay.”

The actress welcomed her first child with husband David Cross, who she married in 2012, in February 2017. She even received a letter written by former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to the newborn.

“Dear Marlow: Happy Birthday!” the note read. “Your birth has been a source of great joy for your parents, Amber and David, and your vast community of admirers and champions. I send my best wishes to you for a lifetime of amazing accomplishments and adventures, full of love, learning, and friendship. With warm regards, I am Sincerely yours, Hillary Rodham Clinton.”

Earlier this year, she met up with her Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants costars Blake Lively and Alexis Bledel to celebrate America Ferrera expecting her first child.

“Starting the New Year off with blessings from my Sisterhood. We’ve got work to do for the next generation. Let’s get to it. #TIMESUP,” Ferrera wrote in the caption, referring to the movement in solidarity with women who experienced discrimination, harassment and abuse, which Tamblyn has proudly been an advocate for.

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On the Runway: In India, Ivanka Trump Tried on Some Fashion Diplomacy. Was it a Good Look?

The assistant to the president became the first member of the Trump administration to try to use clothes as political capital.
NYT > Fashion & Style


Kenneth Cole Productions, Inc.

Even Tom Izzo tried to get Miles Bridges to go to the NBA; he wouldn’t

Even Tom Izzo tried to get Miles Bridges to go to the NBA; he wouldn’t – TOP

We Tried It: A Seriously Intense Workout with Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer Lopez

What Is It: TruFusion’s 60-minute “Tru Barefoot Bootcamp” tests your mobility, endurance and resilience through a combination of yoga, Pilates, kettle bells and other movement drills in a room that reaches a heat index of 120 degrees.

Who Tried It: Melody Chiu, PEOPLE Staff Editor

Level of Difficulty: 8/10

It’s tough to say what I hate more — heat or cardio. Luckily for me, TruFusion’s bootcamp combines both into one class. But when you’re offered the chance to work out with Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez, a.k.a the king and queen of fitness, you don’t say no.

When I walked into the TruFusion gym in Las Vegas last month, I was surprised at how tranquil of an environment it is. The space is clean, bright and very inviting and totally helped calm my nerves a bit before class. A-Rod told me he’s a hygiene freak (so am I), and that’s part of why he fell in love with the gym and decided to become a major investor in the chain.

The first thing you notice when you step into the workout studio is definitely the stifling heat. Aside from Rodriguez, Lopez and her dancers made up most of the class that day, and it was a little intimidating to be standing next to these longtime athletes with rock-hard abs and toned arms who take the class several times a week. But as crazy as it sounds, I almost forgot I was working out with these superstars once the class kicked off because I was having so much fun. Let’s be real, though. I couldn’t help but sneak a couple peeks at J.Lo, who never had a hair out of place and was glistening like a goddess. A-Rod, though, struggled a bit more through the class and it was a little reassuring to see one of the world’s greatest athletes huff and puff next to me!

Our instructor Martin had the best energy and encouraged everyone to take things at their own pace. One of the things I loved most was that there was no judgment or competition in the class. I can barely run a mile without feeling like I just ran a marathon and I’m one of the least coordinated people I know, but even I had a total blast swinging my hips to the music and throwing some sandbags around.

It was definitely challenging and I had to cheat a couple times and take a few breaks, but I powered through … and just when I was feeling faint and like I could no longer go on, it was over!

Verdict: I never thought I would make it through a heated class, much less enjoy it. But TruFusion’s boot camp really stands out from other workout classes I’ve taken, and the energy from the staff, instructors and its members is so infectious. They’re expanding soon to Los Angeles, Miami and New York, and I can’t wait to try out their other classes and get just a teeny bit closer to achieving J.Lo’s famous figure.

Fashion Deals Update:

We Tried the Off-the-Shoulder Denim Jacket Trend Celebs Love–and This Happened

ESC: Khloe Kardashian, DenimAs much as we love celebrity trends, we have to admit: Some of our favorite styles just aren’t wearable.
Considering that oversized denim jackets are as practical and comfortable as…

E! Online (US) – Fashion Police

Special Tip Update!

We Tried It: Finding a Facial That Didn’t Make My Sensitive Skin Go Insane

Who Tried It: Lauren Lieberman, Senior Photo Editor

Why She Tried It: I have been putting off getting a facial for months because I always leave red and splotchy and I usually look like I have chicken pox for a week after. But after a summer of sun and lots of sunscreen, my pores were in serious need of some de-clogging. So began my search for a reputable place that wouldn’t be too expensive, but a few steps above the corner nail salon. After about an hour of googling and reading spa reviews, I came across the medical spa section of Sadick Dermatology.

I was surprised at the array of options on their menu of services (the phrase “medical cleanse” sounded promising), and the prices weren’t too bad either. After further research, I discovered that their very own aesthetician, Luzinete Ripardo, works on models right before they hit the runway. This shocked me! Like I said, my face is usually a disaster for days after a facial let alone a few hours. Being a Photo Editor for the Style section of, I have been looking at up-close photos of models on the runway for the last few weeks now- could it be possible that they actually get facials right before runway shows? They have picture-perfect, blemish-free, porcelain skin! Plus the idea of going to the doctors office instead of a spa intrigued me, as I am wary of letting aestheticians who don’t have the proper training near my sensitive skin. So I decided to see if this miracle worker really exists, and called to book myself a facial.

After being thoroughly reassured by the receptionist that Luzinete does indeed work on models right before shows and photo shoots, I decided on the hour-long “Solution” facial, that promised to extract impurities from my acne-prone skin for $ 175. What I was especially excited about: the “hour-long” aspect. Cutting out all the frills of traditional facials that take up hours of your day was right up my alley – I’m always anxious to get the show on the road after just a few minutes.

Level Of Difficulty: 2/10. Upon meeting Luzinete I was immediately put at ease. She is an adorable Brazilian woman with a warm smile and amazing skin so I figured I had to be in good hands. She inspected my skin, agreed I had lots of clogged pores and milia (small skin-colored bumps that develop when skin flakes become trapped under the surface of the skin, that I cannot get rid of no matter what I do) and promised to take good care of me. When I told her my concerns and previous facial horror stories she was appalled and assured me that nobody has ever left her with scabs or bruises.

She first took my makeup off using a mild cleanser, then she turned on the steamer and let me relax for about 10 minutes to loosen up my pores. Next came the dreaded “medical extraction,” which was the part I was super nervous about, considering many aestheticians use lancets (small, sharp surgical needles) to open the pore, which can cause scarring if not done correctly. But Luzinete assured me she uses a very tiny, medical-grade surgical needle that can barely be felt. I woudln’t go that far, but it was much better than I was expecting. Then she used a gentle scrub to slough away dead skin cells. This was followed by a high-frequency light machine that is meant to close pores, minimize redness, and kill bacteria to control future breakouts. Last was a purifying and cooling mask to calm and hydrate the skin, and before I knew it the hour was up!

The verdict: Even though Luzinete kept assuring me that I was not red every time I asked her (which was about every 10 minutes throughout the whole hour), I still could not believe my eyes when I looked in the mirror. I didn’t see the usual red welts that pop up on my skin after poking at it myself, or the red scabby chicken pox-looking marks that I usually leave a facial with. I had an amazing glow and super smooth looking skin. Usually I have to hide my face and run right home after a facial, but not after this! I went to the grocery store and stopped to chat with my doorman for a bit without feeling self conscious at all.

Okay, I thought – this is all great now, but the true test is how badly I break out in the next couple days. I woke up the next few days increasingly amazed at how I still did not see any redness or bumps at all! My skin was still glowing and so smooth, I barely needed any makeup at all.

Overall, I could not have been happier with the whole experience. From the friendliness and professionalism of Luz, the quick yet thorough service (also the fact that she did not try to sell me a million products!) and of course the amazing results- I will definitely be returning. If you are like me and have sensitive skin but in serious need of a facial, I highly recommend letting Luzinete work her magic on you!

Fashion Deals Update:

Bachelor Twins Haley & Emily Say Nick Viall and Vanessa Grimaldi ‘Tried Very Hard to Make Their Relationship Work’

Bachelor twins Emily and Haley Ferguson are sticking up for Nick Viall.

After news broke Friday that the former Bachelor star and his final pick Vanessa Grimaldi recently ended their engagement, the reality stars — who vied for Ben Higgins‘ heart on his season of the hit ABC show and appeared on Bachelor in Paradise with Viall — opened up to PEOPLE exclusively about the sad news.

“I think it’s funny that a lot of the girls from Nick’s season claim to know Nick and his relationship with Vanessa. Emily and I were both fortunate enough to become very close to both Nick and Vanessa,” the Ferguson sisters say in a joint statement. “We hung out with them not only together but also separately.”

“They both loved each other very much and tried very hard to make their relationship work. Like any normal relationship outside of the spotlight, they had their ups and downs. We love them both very much and hope that everyone will respect their privacy during this hard time,” the statement continues.

Viall, 36, and Grimaldi have battled split rumors since their awkward appearance on After the Final Rose, where they insisted there were no wedding plans in the works.

“It’s with a great amount of heartbreak for the both us as we have decided to end our engagement,” the couple, last pictured together on Instagram Aug. 15, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE on Friday. “We gave this relationship our all and we are saddened that we did not get the fairytale ending we hoped for. We will continue to be there for each other no matter what. This hasn’t been an easy decision, however, as we part ways, we do so with lots of love and admiration for each other.”

Viall appeared on two previous seasons of The Bachelorette and season 3 of Bachelor in Paradise before taking his turn as the lead suitor earlier this year.

Fashion Deals Update:

Jillian Michaels Claims Italian Yacht Crew Tried to Extort Her

Jillian Michaels, ItalyLa vita was not so bella for Jillian Michaels over the weekend.
The famous fitness guru was vacationing in Italy and had chartered a boat for 12 days. However, it wasn’t exactly…

E! Online (US) – Top Stories

Special Entertainment News Bulletin:

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Have You Tried This Season’s ‘It’ Vegetables?

Is kohlrabi the next kale? As chefs, farmers and wholesalers plot emerging produce trends, here’s a glimpse into the making of an ‘It’ vegetable. Plus, recipes for the must-haves of the moment. Lifestyle


Salma Hayek Recalls the Supremely Sleazy Way Donald Trump Tried to Date Her

Spoiler: He failed.

Lifestyle – Esquire


We Tried It: A Baby Food Delivery Service

What It Is: Nurture Life, a food delivery service for babies and toddlers (and their parents)

Who Tried It: Kate Hogan, Digital Specials Director

Why We Tried It: I have an endlessly hungry 14-month-old son and sometimes need a break from the stove

Level of Difficulty: 1 — if you can turn on an oven, you can handle this

When I had my son Henry 14 months ago, I knew that I wanted to serve him homemade food as much as I could. An egg allergy diagnosis made that all the more important once we did start solids at 6 months, since a lot of store-bought and restaurant items are off the table (literally) for now.

That said, there are definitely days when I only have the energy to heat up some chicken nuggets and frozen peas or am serving him baked salmon for the 100th time because I’m severely lacking in creativity (a Pinterest-perfect mom, I am not). So when Nurture Life reached out about sending me a few items from their baby food delivery service, I was super excited for a little break from the kitchen.

The service is subscription-based — you can get eight, 14 or 21 meals per week — and they accommodate all sorts of dietary restrictions (egg allergies included, yay!) and work in a facility free of peanuts, tree nuts and shellfish. You have the option of a strictly vegetarian menu or the standard meat/veggie/fish, and can select your own dishes or leave it to the chef’s choice.

Since Henry is on the cusp of their baby and toddler offerings, they sent me a mix of their stage 3 baby foods and 1-year-old toddler foods, both well balanced. The baby foods were ready-to-eat jars of chopped up veggies and proteins like turkey or salmon, which were perfect for lunch or for popping open when we went out to eat and needed to keep him sated while we waited for our meals.

The toddler foods (packaged to just heat and serve) were legit: he gobbled up a hearty portion of cauliflower mac and cheese (above) in two sittings, and loved the falafel, something I would never think to make him. But more seasoned items — in particular, a chicken tikka masala that Mom and Dad would love —ended up all over the floor.

To me, the one downside was that I did feel I was wasting food — aside from the vetoed chicken tikka masala, Henry didn’t finish any of the jars, all of which were supposed to be consumed within 24 hours of opening. But to have every lunch and dinner taken care of for a week was a big weight off of my shoulders.

The verdict: It’s definitely a luxury — weekly plans start at $ 45 and go up to $ 119 — but if I knew I had a particularly busy week coming up (or a particularly bare fridge) I would try Nurture Life again. Everything was healthy and delicious (I sampled it all) and since you can freeze just about all of their items, you can stretch what they send you for a while

Bon appétit, babies!

Fashion Deals Update:

I Tried the Color-Blocked Eye Makeup Trend That’s All Over Instagram

One Allure editor experimented with color-blocked eye makeup for three days, and here’s what she thought of it.
Kim Kardashian shared a photo on Twitter of her lip kit collaboration with Kylie Jenner and the Internet went crazy. The photo is now going viral.
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I Tried the Make P:rem Soothing Layering Double Mask — And My Skin Is Forever Changed

Korean beauty’s latest trench? Double sheet masks. Find out what happens when an Allure editor gave the Make P:rem Soothing Layering Double Mask try.
We rounded up all the best holographic makeup, including multi- dimensional highlighters, lipsticks that change colors, and a mermaid tail-like shadow.
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7 ways Facebook tried to copy Snapchat

7 ways Facebook tried to copy SnapchatFor all its ingenuity, Facebook (FB) still has one serious achilles heel: Snap (SNAP). Ever since Snap reportedly spurned a $ 3 billion acquisition offer from Facebook back in 2013, the social network has unleashed a slew of features and services that appear to be inspired by Snapchat’s core mission of ephemeral messaging or based upon a particular Snapchat feature. Just last week, Facebook rolled out a Messenger Day, a new Snapchat Stories-like feature that lets Messenger users string together a series of photos and video, apply layers of texts and filters, and show them off atop the Messenger app.

Yahoo Tech


Best Buy Co, Inc.

5 International Beauty Routines, Tried By One Intrepid Writer

Five women from Kenya, Russia, France, South Korea, and India share their international beauty routines.
The Paris fashion editor and stylist Claire Dhelens dishes on the six beauty scores she can’t live without.
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Somehow Alexa Misinterpreted This Tiny Boy’s Request and Tried to Play Porn

“Did you say porn?” Noooooo, Alexa!

Lifestyle – Esquire


50 Cent Tried Yoga — but It Wasn’t What He Expected: ‘I Thought I Was Going to Stretch in a Sauna’

Yoga is harder than it looks!

Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson got that rude awakening when he took his first yoga class, and finally learned the truth behind the deceptively difficult practice.

“I didn’t know what I thought I was going to do.  You know, you go to yoga. I thought I was going to stretch in a sauna, just stretch and have a good time,” 50 Cent tells Harry Connick Jr. during Thursday’s episode of Harry.

“It started out good and then the ladies started going faster and faster. It was difficult moves for you to put your body in different spaces and I was like, ‘what?’ and I’m looking around to see if other people are having the same experience. I ended up in a class that was a little to advanced for me,” the rapper admits.

50 Cent says he overestimated his fitness ability going in.

“You can’t just step in thinking you can do what they do because you see these hot girls going in the room with the yoga mat,” he says. “You’re like, ‘I can do that, whatever they doing in there.’ No, you can’t.”

50 Cent is no stranger to exercise, though. In 2010, he spent three hours on the treadmill a day and followed a strict liquid diet to drop over 50 lbs. for his role as a football player who is diagnosed with cancer in All Things Fall Apart.

Harry airs daily — check your local listings.

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Loretta Lynn Tried Weed for the First Time at 84 (She Did Not Like It)

Glaucoma, naturally.

Lifestyle – Esquire


We Tried It: Apps to Make Us Love Things We Hate Shopping For

What It Is: Cocodune, Match Co. and Jeanuine: All apps and sites designed to ease the pain of shopping for swimsuits, foundation and jeans (respectively)

Who Tried It: Alex Apatoff, Deputy Style Director

Why I Tried It: Because I hate shopping for jeans, swimsuits and foundation, and I love better living through technology

Level of Difficulty: Overall, 2. And way less than doing any of these activities at the mall.

cocodune ReviewDavid Carr

Cocodune: The swimsuit shopping experience can be described as “grim at best” for those of us who aren’t Gigi Hadid. You either go examine your body from unpleasant angles in green-blue fluorescent lighting at the mall, or you order 25 swimsuits to your house, swallow the price and pray for a good return policy, and wind up hating them all. Cocodune allows you to order up to four mix-and-match styles for free, try them on over the course of five days, and send back what you don’t want (getting charged only for what you do).

I am a J. Crew one-piece loyalist, so I ordered one style I knew I’d love (the Times Tank) and two that were a little riskier (the Director Deep V and the Punch Hi-Waist) to try to push myself out of my comfort zone a bit. And I was totally shocked at how much I loved all three styles, especially the high-waist bikini, which I thought for sure I’d never wear. The secret is the fabric (Cocodune says it’s Italian, and the suits are all made in the U.S.), which feels super-sleek and luxe, and kind of sucks you in all over. And because it’s direct-to-consumer, prices weren’t any higher than they would be for my old faithful.

The drawbacks? The color selection is still limited (not that I’d buy anything but black, but you might want a print) and there aren’t many options for busty girls. Plus, for me to try anything on and return it in five days is like telling me to run a seven-minute mile: It might be possible, but it also might kill me. But I’m absolutely sold on the quality and the one-piece tank — I’ll buy the same style again next year.

RELATED PHOTOS: Hot Right Now: A Shopping List You Can’t Resist

Match Co reviewDavid Carr

Match Co.: I’ve never successfully had my foundation matched in a store. I find the idea of facing down all those bottles impossible. Do I have “yellow” or “pink” undertones? Is my skin sensitive or dry? I have no idea, and you guys, I talk about this stuff all day for a living. So when Match Co. promised to take all the guesswork out of it — and all I had to do was a couple slightly goofy phone maneuvers — I was excited to try it.

About those maneuvers: You calibrate your phone camera, then bump it against your cheek, wrists and forehead a few times until the app matches your skin tone. Then the custom-tinted bottle with your name on it arrives. That’s it. The brand doesn’t have multiple formulations yet, but I really liked the original, which also builds in a primer and moisturizer: It’s fairly sheer but very buildable, and it blends really nicely, even in spite of my very lazy hands-only application. I found myself going to it way more often than some of my big-name brands, especially because the pretty packaging looks great on my vanity.

At $ 49, it’s not the cheapest foundation you’ll ever buy, but it’s right in line with the big guys, and it definitely matches them for quality — and matches my skin tone very well. I’d definitely try it again this summer when my skin tone changes with more sun exposure.

What We Love: Spring Wardrobe Refresh

Jeanuine reviewAlex Apatoff

Jeanuine: And then there’s the perpetually-dreaded denim shopping. Finding the perfect pair of jeans has thwarted women since the beginning of time, and it seems like even beloved brands mix up their sizing (why are my favorite skinnies suddenly 3-in. too long?!) without warning. Jeanuine hopes to address that by letting you pick every element of your perfect pair of jeans, from button to stitching to stamping your name on the inside — no question of who they were made for!

Styles start at $ 185 and go up with further customization, which can be irresistible as using the site is a bit like using a fun fashion-design game. And they really do think of every detail, from the exact whisker pattern to how many rows of stitches you want on the seams. For someone who’s a denim fanatic, it’s a really fun way to spend 20 minutes.

But getting something so custom from a brand you don’t know immediately revealed its innate challenges when I tried my style on — all the way from France! — and it didn’t fit at all. Jeanuine allows you to take one Mulligan, shipping you another pair in a new size, but that second one didn’t quite fit right either, and it was too long — something I didn’t realize when I chose to have unhemmable zippers placed at the ankles.

The Verdict: All of the apps were infinitely easier than going to any store, so I would be open to trying anything like them again. But I will proceed with caution if it’s something that requires a perfect fit, like jeans or shoes.

What apps have made your life easier?

–Alex Apatoff

Style News – StyleWatch –

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The 40 Best Lip Treatments We’ve Ever Tried

There is absolutely nothing sexy (or comfortable) about chapped lips. That’s why we keep our pockets, purses, and nightstands stocked with an arsenal of conditioning lip treatments. And you can trust we’ve tried every product under the sun: medicated balms, do-it-all salves, all-natural scrubs—heck, we’ve even slapped on masks just for the mouth. These are the 40 that we found our lips can’t live without.
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It may be unseasonably warm across the country, but trust: Snow days aren’t too far behind. We culled ten pairs of cold-weather boots to help you sludge through the sleet—and look good doing it.
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The Men of Reddit Tried to Write Their Own Sex How-To Guide

Thanks, Internet.

Lifestyle – Esquire


We Tried This Awesomely Tiny New Mascara on 4 Editors

Here’s what this do-all Revlon Ultimate All-in-One Mascara looks like on four Allure staffers.
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Ryan Reynolds’ Friend Tried To Sell Photos Of Baby James, And It Was Crushing

Ryan Reynolds experienced a betrayal of a particularly hurtful kind after the birth of his daughter, James. 

“A guy that I’d known for my whole life, one of my closest friends growing up, he had been shopping pictures of my baby around,” Reynolds told GQ for the magazine’s latest issue. “I kind of got in front of it, which is good. But it was a slightly dark period. A bad couple of weeks.”

The “guy” was a close friend of Reynolds who he has known for 25 years. 

“It was like a death. It was like one of those devastating things to find out,” he said, adding that the person did it for the money and didn’t think he’d get caught. “It was, like, so kind of shocking. There isn’t really a conversation to have. It’s just, ‘Oh, well, now I’m never going to see you or talk to you again, unfortunately.’ That’s kind of how it worked out.”

Fatherhood has been a life-changer for the “Deadpool” star, who welcomed James with wife Blake Lively last December. 

“I’ve learned that an inordinate amount of clichés are completely true,” he added. “Like, there is this kid here that I would walk through fire for. Or, maybe not fire. Like, a very hot pavement, I’d walk through. A shag rug.”

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Gilmore Girls’ Kelly Bishop on The Time She Tried to Set Up Lauren Graham and Peter Krause

Emily Gilmore was known for her condescending lines and disapproving glares at her daughter, Lorelai, but in real life, she couldn’t be more proud of her TV family. When we sat down with Kelly Bishop…

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Tried and Tested

Tried and Tested

Tried and Tested is the last word on must-have beauty products. Over 200 cosmetic companies have supplied over 2000 products, including: • Skin • Make-up • Hair • Nails • Tanning • Men • Children Tried and Tested caters for all budgets, for all ages and all skin types. Each product has been independently tested and rated. Testers comments will help you choose the best product for your needs. Drawing on their vast experience of the international beauty world, Carolyn and Dhav help you work out the best buy for you. They also reveal insider tips on grooming and styling. If you want the inside ratings on the latest and greatest beauty products, this book has all the answers.
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Can You Really Know All Your Facebook Friends? This Photographer Tried to Find Out.

This post originally appeared on Slate.
By David Rosenberg


Willow & Foris Williams, Gorham, Maine, 2013. Relationship: friends, family friends, met through Toby and Lucky Hollander. Years known: 25-30.

Like many Facebook users, Tanja Hollander realized that when she was sharing information on the social network, some of the people reading her posts she was in constant communication with, while others she barely knew. Some, she didn’t really know at all. She wondered: “Am I really friends with all of these people?”

That question would evolve as she traveled through 43 states and five countries, averaging two weeks of travel per month, to photograph every one of her Facebook friends for her project Are You Really My Friend (she didn’t include people she added since beginning the project in 2011). She is currently trying to figure out how to translate this project into a March 2017 show at Mass MoCA that will include all the portraits plus accounts of her experiences both on the road and via social media since she began the ambitious undertaking.

“That’s what I’m obsessed with right now, trying to visualize all the data,” Hollander said about the intriguing connections that come up when meeting people for the project. “All of these experiences I’m having to me are almost more important than taking the picture of the people. So how do I visualize all of these experiences besides saying go to my Instagram feed or let me tell you this cool story?”

All of the portraits for the project have been shot on film, which in some ways might seem like a paradox for a project that delves deep into the modern, digital oriented virtual world. For Hollander it’s the only thing that made sense, although she does bring along an iPhone and digital point and shoot camera for backup.

“It’s not like I’m going back to film,” she said. “I never left film. I went from records to an iPod. I’ve always shot film and it’s funny because I’m doing a super tech project—I’m not a techie at all—I came kicking and screaming into even using Photoshop.”

Most photographers will tell you that shooting film also slows things down. To keep things casual and less intimidating for her subjects, Hollander travels by herself with no light kits and no assistants, armed only with her Hasselblad camera, a couple rolls of film and a tripod. Not only does it bring down the tension for her subjects, it has also affected Hollander.

“I’m a much nicer person now because you have to be,” she said about making the portraits. “You can’t be a jerk when you go into someone’s house to take a picture.”

Working on the project has also reshaped Hollander’s definition of what a friend is, although she isn’t convinced there is much difference between online relationships and those based in “reality.” She said friends have always represented different roles from those you might only run into at an art show to those with whom you share more intimate details of your life.

“The word friend is hard because Facebook took it and corporatized it,” she said. “I’m a person who loves meeting people and I’m always introducing people … I would say I definitely have a connected network of people and I think Facebook just mimicked what I already had and made it easier to connect with people.”

So far, the majority of people Hollander contacted about participating in the project have agreed to sit for her. Her sister and her wife liked theirs; her parents, not so much (“I don’t think they really understood what I was doing and it was the first time they’ve seen themselves portrayed in this way.”) Hollander said she tries reaching out to people few times about taking their portrait and if they don’t have the courtesy to respond to her request, she unfriends them.

She made a conscious decision to shoot her exes last, something she might end up changing. “I’m starting to think that’s not the best idea to save all the people I don’t want to see,” she laughed. “It’s going to suck the last six months!” She added that simply going into each home is emotional enough.

“The emotional part is hard because I never know what situation I’m going to walk into, even with close friends. You never know what’s happened in the last couple of days—and when I’m there, I’m in it!”

See more photos on Slate.
Arts – The Huffington Post
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That Time My Toaster Tried to Killed Me

Devil Toaster of Death

In my daily life, I take a lot of modern conveniences for granted.

If a webpage takes more than two seconds to load; I start to lose it. If my cell phone doesn’t get absolutely perfect reception everywhere I go; it’s a travesty.

Even though it might feel like it sometimes, my life doesn’t exactly hang in the balance if these products don’t work perfectly. There is, however, a whole host of technology, big and small, that I, like most of us, rely on to get through my daily routine both alive and unscathed.

Take the toaster for example.

This wonderfully simple machine turns regular bread into delicious, hot toast at the push of a button. Even more amazingly, it automatically turns off when it’s finished, making that ubiquitous “pop” or “ding” noise to let me know that it has completed it’s task. This fact allows me to do other things whilst making toast without the worry of potentially burning the house down.

That is, until that time my toaster tried to kill me.

Yesterday, my toaster didn’t pop. While I was in another room browsing the internet looking at pictures of cats working, it continued to cook, burn and nearly ignite my precious toast and — more importantly — my apartment.

Luckily for me, my smoke detectors have working batteries — you’d be surprised how many don’t — and I was able to rush in and unplug the smoldering toaster before it completely caught on fire. My toast, however, was, well, toast. It resembled a bread-shaped charcoal briquette in a BBQ, a completely red-hot ember.

As I opened windows, set up fans and tried to force the significant amount of smoke out of the apartment, I chuckled to myself.

“I can’t believe I almost set my apartment on fire making toast. What kind of idiot can’t operate an everyday, benign appliance like a toaster? Did I really just have a brush with death by toaster?”

Well, since I already had my browser open, I decided to check. What I found was pretty startling. It turns out, I’m not the only toast-challenged person out there.

It seems that toasters and toaster fires are responsible for more than 700 deaths per year worldwide. That’s right, toasters kill more people than sharks, snakes — in the United States, at least — and spiders combined.

A search for “toaster” in the recalls section of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission website reveals 32 notices of toaster recalls. A whole host of dangers are represented from spontaneous ignition to electrical shock hazard.

Does this mean I should fear my toaster in the way that many people fear the aforementioned insects and animals? Of course not.

It does mean that I should pay more attention to it when it’s in use and look for signs that it’s not safe. This particular toaster had been periodically jamming and burning toast — albeit to a much lesser degree — for a while now. Had I realized how dangerous this actually was, I would have been in the market for a new toaster a long time ago.

I wonder if this one is still available?
Comedy – The Huffington Post
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