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The 12 Most Offensive And Controversial Startups

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Whisper girls

Need a hookup buddy?

There's an app for that.

Want to thumb up or down pictures of women's cleavage?

There's an app for that too.

Yes, people have created every offensive and controversial thing you could fathom.

Lulu is a girls-only app that lets women anonymously rate and objectify men.

Who created it: Alexandra Chong

Where you can find it: OnLuLu.com

More about it: On Lulu, men aren't allowed in, and women can anonymously rate them without their consent.  The men, who are all guys the women know via Facebook, are rated on a scale of one to ten. Their profiles are automatically pulled in when the women they know access Lulu. Hashtags women are encouraged to use to describe men include #Big Feet and #One Woman Man for pros, and #Obsessed With His Mom and #Napoleon Complex for cons. It is a venture-backed startup that has raised multiple millions from investors.



Bang With Friends helps you turn friends into hook-up buddies.

Who created it: Colin Hodge and Omri Mor

Where you can find it: Bangwithfriends.com

More about it: Bang with Friends (BWF) is a Facebook app that does exactly what you're thinking it does. It helps people on Facebook find friends to hook up with rather than date. It pulls in profile pictures on a single page and you can click on the friends you'd like to "bang." If that friend wants to have sex with you too, your intentions are made clear and you can message each other. It's gained so much traction that a few investors have decided to give it some funding.



Tinder lets you scroll through Facebook profile pictures and judge people's looks.

Who created it: Sean Rad, Justin Mateen, Jonathan Badeen, Christopher Gulczynski

Where you can find it: Tinder.com

More about it: Here's how Tinder works: Tinder shows you someone nearby it thinks you should know, who's single and about your age. You can anonymously like this person or skip to the next suggestion. If someone you like happens to like you back, then Tinder makes an introduction& lets you chat within the app. It may be controversial to judge people's looks, but the app has already produced more than 50 engagements and 75 million matches.



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Former Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader Is The Go-To Designer For Breastaurants

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Terra SaundersTerra Saunders is the brains behind "breastaurant" uniforms.

The designer and former NFL cheerleader has built a career conceiving of uniforms with a side of sex appeal for workers in the hospitality industry.

"There's more to breastaurants than cleavage," Saunders tells Business Insider. "We want something that breathes. We don't want pantylines or bra straps to show. The girls need to feel good and confident and there's a lot of science behind that."

Saunders has the right background to dress breastaurant staff.

As a cheerleader for the Dallas Cowboys in the mid-1990s, she designed clothes for her teammates. It wasn't long before others began to notice her skills and in 1997, she launched Dallaswear Uniforms to sell apparel to professional cheerleaders and dancers.

Twin PeaksHer first experience designing for breastaurants came in 2009, when the owner of Twin Peaks Restaurants, a chain of sports bars based in Dallas, approached her about designing a "sexy lumberjack" uniform for his employees.

"That's when the lightbulb went off," she says. "I started a new division specifically for breastaurants." Soon after, she trademarked the term "breastaurant uniform" so no other company could claim that they design the sexy workers' outfits.

Today, she counts breastaurants including Hooters, Double D Ranch, Whisky River, and Bone Daddy’s House of Smoke as clients, and employs 10 people in her offices in Dallas and Los Angeles.

Bone Daddy’s House of SmokeTo make sure the clothes she designs are comfortable, her staff has to wear the uniforms for a day. The company uses its own fabric blend called Prostyle, which includes a touch of Lycra, and undergarments are typically sewn underneath the uniforms.

"The most important things I consider when designing uniforms is the location of the business, its goals, and its color scheme," she says. "I ask them about their dream outfit, their dream person to wear the outfits, and if they're going to be bartending or carrying beer or pizza."

"You want the workers to look great and feel happy because that's what makes more money for the restaurants," Saunders adds. " We want the restaurants to grow because it builds more exposure for us as well."

Hooters

Eventually, Saunders wants to design uniforms for mom and pop stores, car washes, and airlines.

"The secret is creating a uniform that others will recognize right away. When you see a Dallas Cowboy cheerleader, it invokes a feeling inside of you. We want to accomplish that at a restaurant. Branding and taking that extra step is what makes you great."

SEE ALSO: How 'Breastaurants' Took Over The Casual Dining Industry

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STUDY: People With A Lot Of Self-Control Are Happier Than The Rest Of Us

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eating an oreoPROBLEM: "Among humankind's most valuable assets" is self-control, according to Wilhelm Hofmann and his team of researchers at the University of Chicago.

They define it as "the ability to override or change one's inner responses" and to refrain from acting on impulses.

As an immediate consequence of leading lives of constant self-denial, it would seem that people with a lot of self-control aren't likely to derive a lot of pleasure from life, although in the long run they might benefit from the satisfaction of being better able to realize long-term goals.

They don't get to enjoy the cronuts, but they get to be thin, healthy, and otherwise better than the rest of us.

METHODOLOGY: To start, 414 adults completed an online survey, in which they rated their self-control by indicating how much they agreed with 14 statements (such as, "I do certain things that are bad for me, if they are fun"). The participants also reported their current emotional state as well as their overall life satisfaction. Holfmann's team then turned to data from a study in which 205 adults were given smartphones and prompted to report their emotions at random moments throughout the week. At the same time, they were also asked to report whether they were experiencing any desires, and if so, how hard they tried to resist them, and whether they ultimately ended up acting on them.

RESULTS: The more self-control people reported having, the more satisfied they reported being with their lives. And contrary to what the researchers were expecting, people with more self-control were also more likely to be happy in the short-term. In fact, when they further analyzed the data, they found that such people's increased happiness to a large extent accounted for the increased life satisfaction.

IMPLICATIONS: As they go about their daily lives, people with a lot of self-control appear to generally be in higher spirits; in the long run, they're happier with their lives. To explain why this would be so, the researchers conducted another online survey. What they figured out is that instead of constantly denying themselves, people high in self-control are simply less likely to find themselves in situations where that's even an issue. They don't waste time fighting inner battles over whether or not to eat a second piece of cake. They're above such petty temptations. And that, it would seem, makes them happier ... if still just a little bit sad.

The full study, "Yes, But Are They Happy? Effects of Trait Self-Control on Affective Well-Being and Life Satisfaction" is published in the Journal of Personality.

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More From The Atlantic:
A Truly Astonishing Graph Of The Growth Of Health Care Jobs In America
For Chinese Students Abroad, It's Personal, Not Political
Debunked: No Red Phone Ever Connected The White House To Moscow

Find Us On Facebook — Business Insider: Science

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HOUSE OF THE DAY: The Uzbek Dictator's Daughter Reportedly Just Bought An Insane Bel Air Mansion

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crescent palace bel air

The youngest daughter of Uzbekistan president Islam Karimov is supposedly the new owner of an extravagant Bel Air mansion that was listed for $58 million last June, celebrity real estate blogger The Real Estalker reports.

There's no word yet on the final price Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva paid for the over-the-top abode, which was designed by celebrity designer Mohamed Hadid and is registered to a corporate entity, according to the Real Estalker.

Hadid, known for developing Ritz Carlton Hotels and his appearances on Bravo's "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills," originally designed the home — called Crescent Palace — for himself, but later decided to sell it. The mansion has seven bedrooms, a 90-foot art gallery, and a subterranean mecca with a screening room, a ball room, and a Mediterranean-inspired indoor pool.

Welcome to the Crescent Palace, on Crescent Drive in Beverly Hills.



The home took designer Mohamed Hadid 15 months to create.



The home was built for entertaining.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
    


New York City Is Running Out Of Penthouses

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sherry netherland apartment

You wouldn't know it from looking at all of the glass towers going up across Manhattan, but the city is running out of penthouses and other ultra-luxury apartments.

Sales of multi-million-dollar properties in New York City fell dramatically in the second quarter, due in large part to lower inventory, according to real-estate firm Brown Harris Stevens. Sales of properties priced at $5 million or more fell 25 percent to $679.3 million in the second quarter compared to the same quarter in 2012.

Sales of homes priced at $10 million or more fell by nearly 50 percent to $241.9 million, according to Brown Harris Stevens.

Granted sales were up over the first quarter. But brokers say the year-on-year decline in sales volume is largely due to a lack of supply. The number of properties priced between $5 million and $10 million in New York fell 15 percent between the second quarter of 2012 and the second quarter of 2013.

(Read More: Sales Soar as Manhattan Condos Kick Co-Op Prices)

But brokers and real-estate executives said the decline in current inventory is actually much greater since much of the inventory added in the second quarter is made up of apartments in buildings still under construction.

"It's the lack of inventory more than anything else," said Hall. F. Willkie, president of Brown Harris Stevens Residential Sales. "It's just so tight."

The inventory problems are made even worse by pricing. Brokers say a large number of the apartments for sale at the very high end are overpriced based on comparable sales. While overpriced real-estate is common throughout the country, executives say it's an especially acute problem at the top of the New York market. They say supply is especially tight and wealthy sellers aren't under much pressure to sell.

(Read More: Turmoil Abroad May Hit US Luxe Housing)

"Many sellers are stretching their asking prices," Willkie said. "But if those prices aren't justified by comparable sales, the buyers won't buy. So many things at that end of the market are overpriced."

I. Dolly Lenz, the New York mega-broker, said the millionaires and billionaires buying at the top of the Manhattan market may be rich—but they are also highly discerning when it comes to price. And they're not willing to overpay.

"The overwhelming majority of buyers in this segment of the market are value buyers," Lenz said. "Value could mean $60 million. It's not about a low price. It's about what you're purchasing and what you're getting for your money. A lot the available inventory is overpriced and somewhat stale."

(Read More: As Supply of Cape Cod Mansions Shrinks, Prices Soar)

Many brokers pointed to the $125 million penthouse of the Pierre Hotel as one apartment with an optimistic price. The $95 million apartment on the 18th floor of the Sherry Netherland and a $44 million apartment downtown on Hudson Street also have aggressive price tags, brokers said.

The mismatch between a lack of supply and buyers who aren't willing to pay the much higher prices has led to a standoff that could continue for the rest of the year. And that could hurt sales—and the New York economy.

"The question is what will free up supply," he said.

Especially, supply at a fair price.

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New 'Manny' Service Helps New York City Parents Find Male Babysitters

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dad with baby

NEW YORK CITY — Forget Mary Poppins — for some families, the perfect nanny in New York City is a man.

At least, that's the claim of the founder of the agency "NYC Mannies" that matches clients with "big brothers" based on their children's needs.

The concept was devised by ex-opera singer John Brandon, 27, who works for a family on the Upper East Side.

"People were coming up to me all the time asking where they could get mannies," he said. He started his company earlier this year to meet that demand, and now serves families throughout the state.

"A lot of our mannies specialize in certain things, like if parents want someone who's really good at soccer or who speaks a certain language... Before a manny comes into a family, I've spent a lot of time getting to know his personality."

Brandon — whose business provides mannies at different skill levels and prices — said every full-time carer must have a college degree and every part-time manny must be at least 20 and in college.

Mannying can offer glamour, said Brandon, who said he works for a "high-profile" family who he said he's unable to identify because of a confidentiality agreement.

But it's also a profession his workers must take seriously.

"I get to travel the world and hang out with celebrities," he said.

"It’s a cool situation for me but I don’t let that distract me."

But he said the high-profile clients are not his only ones.

"We're here for every family," he said.

"If a family in Yonkers without much money wants a manny we’ll supply a manny with that skill level... We don't want money to get in the way of someone having a manny."

All of the men, who are mainly in their 20s, must be registered with CPR training. They tend to be "young professionals" who have studied a wide range of disciplines, said Brandon, noting the growing trend of men turning to mannying to support creative pursuits.

"We're basically providing a big brother service with guys who are athletic, high energy and can keep up with young kids and plan activities," said Brandon, noting that he's used his own background as a high school athlete and a professional musician in his manny work.

"The kid I work with now is so tired at the end of the day because I don't like to sit still and I'm always encouraging him to try new things."

NYC Mannies — which Brandon said has matched about 20 families since it started last winter — so far has only served clients with at least one son, but Brandon said families with only daughters have also also expressed interest.

"We’re not advocating guys over girls — we’re filling a specific need," he said of male versus female caretakers. "We just want to be that agency that supplies mannies."

Brandon — who put his opera career on hold to fully pursue his vision as a manny matchmaker — stumbled into the field at age 21 while studying at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, N.J.

"I worked at a restaurant when I was in college and there was a lawyer who came in every day and we became good friends...He'd never considered a male babysitter and I'd never heard of one," he said.

"But one weekend he said he and his wife were going to New York City and he said, 'We've got two boys, age 2 and 6, would you mind watching them?' It was nothing but laughing, playing video games and playing basketball outside. We had an amazing time."

The next week, the father asked Brandon to move in rent free and work as a manny while he finished college.

"It sounded like literally the best job I'd ever heard of," he said. "It ended up being a year of absolute fun."

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RICHARD BRANSON: Here's How You Write A Brilliant Airline Complaint Letter

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richard branson letterThere are different ways of "making it" in the world of airline travel.

You could gain lifetime elite status on your favorite airline. You could travel the world on miles you accumulated in all kinds of clever ways.

Or you could write a complaint note about a miserable experience that's so damn elegant that no less than Richard Branson declares it to be "brilliant."

So congratulations Arthur Hicks. We know nothing about you in terms of who you are or where you live, but you've made it.

Branson blogged Hicks's letter - which wasn't even sent to Virgin, but to LIAT - last Friday. We've blockquoted it below from what we think is the original online source so you can read it for yourself. It's among the more elegant, witty beat-downs we've read in a long time.

The experience itself sounds miserable but, very importantly, it happened to him, and not to us, and not to you. So no worries. The P.S. is what really makes it shine.

Just by way of background, LIAT is Leeward Islands Air Transport. It operates entirely inside the Caribbean and is based out of VC Bird International Airport (they have free wifi there). Wikipedia says that LIAT operates high-frequency inter-island scheduled services serving 21 destinations." Which as you're about to learn, probably means that they took a single plane on a tour of one-quarter of all the destinations they service.

Again, entertaining for us, less so for the passengers. Here's the letter that Branson found so inspirational:

Dear LIAT,

May I say how considerate it is of you to enable your passengers such an in-depth and thorough tour of the Caribbean. Most other airlines I have travelled on would simply wish to take me from point A to B in rather a hurry. I was intrigued that we were allowed to stop at not a lowly one or two but a magnificent six airports yesterday. And who wants to fly on the same airplane the entire time? We got to change and refuel every step of the way!

I particularly enjoyed sampling the security scanners at each and every airport. I find it preposterous that people imagine them all to be the same. And as for being patted down by a variety of islanders, well, I feel as if I’ve been hugged by most of the Caribbean already.

I also found it unique that this was all done on “island time,” because I do like to have time to absorb the atmosphere of the various departure lounges. As for our arrival, well, who wants to have to take a ferry at the end of all that flying anyway? I’m glad the boat was long gone by the time we arrived into Tortola last night — and that all those noisy bars and restaurants were closed.

So thank you, LIAT. I now truly understand why you are “The Caribbean Airline.”

P.S. Keep the bag. I never liked it anyway. 

[Photo: Virgin.com]

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Here Is A Life-Size Replica Of The Stanley Cup Made Entirely Of Meat

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In celebration of the Stanley Cup's visit to Chicago talk show "Windy City Live," the meat-crazy geniuses at Chicago-based grilling organization ManBQue built a true-to-size replica of the hockey trophy entirely of meat.

The base of the sculpture, dubbed the "Manley Cup," was made of ground beef, and the top was made of woven bacon, according to Zagat. The two pieces were held together by hot dogs.

ManBQue president Jesse Valenciana told us the trophy took about seven hours to build and weighed around 35 pounds. Though it was made entirely of food, he said by the time they were done parading it around, "it was inedible."

meat stanley cup

 

meat stanley cupWatch the "Windy City Live" clip below.

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The World's Biggest Building Just Opened In China

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New Century Global Centre in Chengdu China

Chengdu's colossal New Century Global Center is big enough to accommodate the Sydney Opera House 20 times over.

Seemingly locked in a battle for superlative supremacy, China and Dubai continue to construct a dizzying number of record-breaking attractions. Home to Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, Dubai has this year inaugurated the world’s biggest natural flower garden, the world’s tallest hotel and the world’s tallest twisted tower . China, meanwhile, is preparing to open a ‘groundscraper’ cave hotel that will burrow 19 storeys below the ground, and it has now opened the world’s largest freestanding building in Chengdu.

Named New Century Global Center, the colossal structure is 500 metres long, 400 metres wide and 100 metres high, and contains a total floor space of 1.7million square metres. Providing a sense of scale, the Sydney Morning Herald reports that the building is large enough to accommodate the Sydney Opera House 20 times over.

Visitors to the attraction may find it somewhat less highbrow than Australia’s famed cultural attraction, however. The building will house cinemas, shopping centres, office space, hotels, conference centres, a water theme park with artificial beach and various other attractions including a replica Mediterranean village.

In south-western China, Chengdu is the capital of Sichuan province and home to 14million people. One of the country’s largest and most populous cities, it is currently undergoing an intense phase of development with plans in place to extend its underground network by 183 kilometres by 2020. The ongoing development of a ‘Software Park’ within Chengdu forms part of the city’s efforts to create a local ‘Silicon Valley’. Some 29,000 companies are currently based in Chengdu’s 130-square-kilometre “hi-tech development zone”.

Given the speed and ambition of development locally, New Century Global Center may not be Chengdu’s most significant structure for long. Residents and visitors will have good reason to visit the building for years to come, however. Chengdu’s rapid development has meant the city is regularly blanketed by smog. New Century Global Center includes an artificial sun that will shine and emanate heat for 24 hours each day, and a giant 150-metre-long screen will project an artificial horizon and display sunrises and sunsets as the days pass.

See more pictures of New Century Global Center

SEE ALSO: Why China's Copycat Buildings Are Actually Good For Architecture

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The 50 Most American Americans Alive

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The most american americans final

When we think of the quintessential American, we think of people who are competitive, innovative, brave, resilient, and talented — and sometimes crude, selfish, and prone to scandal.

To celebrate Independence Day 2013, we ranked the 50 most American U.S. citizens alive today.

For better or worse, these people embody what it means to be American.

Julie Zeveloff, Gus Lubin, and Jennifer Polland contributed to this list.

#50 Edward Snowden



#49 Sheryl Sandberg



#48 Lance Armstrong



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
    


23 Photos That Will Make You Feel Insanely Patriotic For The 4th Of July

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For Americans, the 4th of July is a time to celebrate what it means to be American. To get into the spirit of things, we've gathered a set of pictures that make us want to stand up and sing the national anthem.

So sit back, relax, forget about Edward Snowden for a minute, and get in the mood for the holiday.

America is about big dreams

baseball, Yankee Stadium. Derek Jeter, baseball fan

Seizing the moment

Bald Eagle

Seizing the day.

Iwo Jima, U.S. troops, WW II, Pacific War

It's about resilience

Freedom Tower, NYC, Skyline

Beauty

Montana, mountains, west

Barbeque

Barbecue, grilling, meat

Fireworks

Fireworks, United States Capitol, Washington D.C., July 4th

Freedom

Satue of Liberty, sunset

The promise of a better life ...

Ellis Island, immigrants, immigration

... even at 95.

immigration, immigrant, citizenship, naturalization

It's about the wild west

wrangler, montana, cowboy

Breaking barriers

Jackie Robinson, baseball, civil rights

Overcoming obstacles

Paralympic games, amputee, track and field, race

Serving your country

Marine, Afghanistan, war

Reaching for the stars ...

Buzz Aldrin, Apollo 11, moon landing

whoever you are.

Gabbie Giffords, Olympics, gymnastics

It's about innovation

Steve Jobs, Steve Wosniak, John Sculley, Apple computer, old apple computer

Miracles

U.S. Olympic Hockey Team, 1980 Olympics, Hockey, Miracle on ice

Nurturing the land

farmer, american farmer

Protecting it

Firefighter, wild fire, California, forrest

Preserving it

Yellowstone National Park, buffalo, National Park

Most of all, it's about having that dream ...

MLK, dream, Martin Luther King Jr., civil rights

and seeing where it can lead.

CA coast, road, drive

SEE ALSO: 34 things every New Yorker should do this summer

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Gay Divorce Is Still A Huge Problem In America

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Melissa Etheridge

The Supreme Court's decision to strike down part of the Defense of Marriage Act means the U.S.  government will recognize state-sanctioned gay marriages, but it won't necessarily make it easier for American gays to divorce.

The high court struck down one part of DOMA — section 3, which effectively deprived gay married couples of the federal benefits straight marrieds get.

Section 2 of DOMA — which says states don't have to recognize other states' gay marriages — is still technically alive, and that makes divorce harder to come by for some married gays.

Say a gay couple in Georgia goes to Massachusetts for the weekend to get married. That gay couple can't go back to Massachusetts to end their marriage because the state has residency requirements for divorces. And Georgia might not let them get a divorce because the state doesn't recognize their gay marriage in the first place.

"As a result of Section 2 of DOMA, states which do not recognize same-sex marriages may refuse to grant divorces to same-sex spouses who were married in another state and subsequently moved to the non-recognizing state," divorce lawyer Jerome Wisselman recently wrote.

This scenario played out in Texas, where the state's attorney general intervened to stop two lesbians from getting divorced because of the Lone Star State's ban on gay marriage.

In Ohio last year, a judge blocked a divorce by two lesbians who didn't have a lawyer. A male couple who did have a lawyer managed to obtain a divorce in the Buckeye State that year, but they had to deal with the stress of the Ohio Campaign to Protect Marriage's (ironic) petition to keep them from dissolving their marriage.

“It gives wedlock a whole new meaning,” Susan Sommer, director of constitutional litigation for Lambda Legal, told New York Magazine earlier this year. “They’re trapped.”

While the Supreme Court's decision doesn't explicitly require states to recognize other states' marriages, it does provide some "new hope" for gay couples seeking divorce in states that don't acknowledge they're married, The New York Times reported.

The language of Justice Anthony Kennedy's opinion— which said DOMA violated gays' right to equal protection under the law — is broad enough to help gays challenge states' same-sex marriage bans, experts told The Times. If these bans are lifted, states might be more inclined to grant gay divorces.

“I think that there’s some reason to be optimistic that we might be able to see the end of these statewide marriage bans,"  family lawyer Elizabeth F. Schwartz told The Times, "which would have lots of positive effects, including being able to free people from relationships they no longer want to be in.”

SEE ALSO: Justice Kennedy's Former Clerk Explains Why He Thinks His Old Boss Killed The Defense Of Marriage Act

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Meet The Controversial Future King Of Belgium

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Prince Philippe Belgium

The 79-year-old King Albert of Belgium has told the country that he will be abdicating the throne, according to the Associated Press.

However, the next king of Belgium may be a somewhat controversial choice — Albert's 53-year-old, Oxford and Stanford-educated son, Crown Prince Philippe.

While Philippe has all the hallmarks of a European royal, including time in the military and education at some of the world's best institutions, rumors about his personal life have followed him for years.

While Philippe was already known as a somewhat shy and awkward man, a book published last year by journalist Frederic Deborsu entitled "Royal Questions" raised questions about his sexuality, putting forward rumors that his 1999 wedding to Mathilde d'Udekem d'Acoz was a "forced marriage" for Philippe, who had been expected to remain a bachelor, and that his children were born after visits to a clinic that specializes in "artificial procreation."

According to the Associated Press, the book prompted a rare public denial from the Belgian royal family. "The day that Mathilde said 'Yes' to my proposal was the happiest day of my life," Philippe said in a statement.

The role of the Royal family in Belgium is unusually complicated due to their perceived ability to unite the country's political, linguistic and geographic split — a split that led to the country having no government for more than 500 days just a couple of years ago.

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The TSA Is Instagramming Terrifying Objects People Wanted To Bring On Planes

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tsa instagram weapons

Not wanting to be left out of latest social media marketing trends, the TSA launched an Instagram account last week.

The subject of the filtered photos? Terrifying guns, knives, and inert grenades that people have tried to sneak onto planes.

While the TSA could be commended for preventing these weapons from getting on board your cross-country flight, there's something jarring about seeing a government agency encouraging the world to share sepia photos of stun guns designed to look like cigarette packs (with carefully selected borders) accompanied with literally 25 different hashtags.

Does snarky social media commentary — "#Fireworks don't fly (On planes)" — still work when it pertains to flight safety?

The TSA adds borders and multiple hashtags to every post.



Turning weapons into art.



It has also adopted internet-friendly snark that many marketers use on social media.



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Here's Where To Find The Best 4th Of July Deals

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4thofjuly

Along with fireworks displays and great barbecue, 4th of July 2013 also promises a number of savings opportunities to take advantage of on the holiday as well as over the long weekend.

Many retailers are offering July 4th freebies, deals and discounts no one should miss. So as you prepare to have visitors at your home, visit someone else’s home or participate in the activities occurring in your city, don’t miss out on the opportunity to save money at the same time.

July 4th Freebies, Discounts and Deals You Can’t Miss

There are so many fantastic freebies, deals and discounts to take advantage of this July 4th 2013 there it will be tough to list them all. But we’re going to try our best to share with you all of the ways that you give your bank account a savings treat this Independence Day.

4th of July Discounts from Banks

Financial establishments are getting in on the 4th of July deals with savings, checking and credit card offers.

  • Bank of America: Bank of America is offering up to $250 as a checking account promotion once customers sign up for the Keep the Change Program. The program rounds up all Bank of America debit card purchases to the nearest dollar amount then transfers the difference to a Bank of America savings account.
  • Chase Bank: Chase customers can receive a $200 coupon when opening a Chase Total Checking account and setting up a direct deposit. Offer only available to new Chase customers. Account requires $25 to open. Must use coupon. Expires August 15, 2013.
  • Citibank: Customers can earn $100 bonus cash back when they apply for a Citi Dividend Card and spend $500 in the first three months. This deal expires July 31, 2013.
  • PNC Bank: By opening a Virtual Wallet Account and completing a qualifying direct deposit (along with one payment via PNC Online Bill Pay) PNC Bank customers can receive a $150 bank bonus. Direct deposit and bill payment must occur within 60 days of account opening. Total amount of all qualifying direct deposits credited to checking account must be at least $2,000. Expires July 27, 2013.
  • Salem Five: Salem Five is offering a $100 Visa Reward Card to new customers who open a new Salem Five Star, Gold Star or eOne Checking account as a primary owner. The account holder must make two direct deposits over $250 each, six online bill pays over $25 each or 20 debit transactions over $5 each within 60 days of opening an account to receive the reward card.
  • Sovereign Bank: Customers of Sovereign Bank can take advantage of up to a $125 bonus with the Sovereign Goal Savings Account. In order to be eligible for an Interest Bonus, customers must have a Sovereign Checking account open at the time the Interest Bonus is credited. Also, customers must have at least one recurring transfer per month into the Sovereign Goal Savings account from a Sovereign Checking account.

Food Chain and Retailer Independence Day Deals

Retailers are making July 4th a blast with some amazing Independence Day deals, discounts and offers.

Apparel, Accessories and Beauty

  • Backcountry: Backcountry is running its Find Freedom at the 4th of July Sale with discounts of up to 40 percent off.
  • Bare Necessities: One July 4th and beyond, you can enjoy Bare Necessities’ 30-percent to 40-percent-off sale alone with an extra 20 percent off with coupon code (BNSAVINGS). Offer expires on July 31.
  • Bath and Body Works: Bath and Body Works is taking up to 75 percent off Semi-Annual Sale, both in-store and online. Customers can also take an additional 20 percent off online with the beach code BEACHES13. Offer ends on July 7.
  • Children’s Place: Children’s Place is offering an extra 20 percent off site wide with code V8KFAY13. Sale ends on July 8.
  • Foot Locker: Take $20 off $120 purchases with the code LKS1CP3N. Offer expires on July 31.
  • Justice: Justice customers can save an extra 40 percent off their entire purchase with the coupon code 721. No coupon is necessary when making purchases in-store. Deals end on July 11.
  • Kate Spade: Kate Spade is offering one of the best July 4th discounts with its 50-percent to 75-percent off deal on handbags. Online purchases can take advantage of free shipping.
  • Nautica: Nautica is offering 40 percent off the purchase of four or more items when using the coupon code “July 4″ at checkout.
  • Nine West: Nine West is offering buy one, get one 50 percent off site-wide for a limited time. Free shipping available on all orders, no minimum purchase required.
  • Nordstrom: Nordstrom is offering up to 60 percent off handbags and jewelry. Free shipping is available all the time.
  • PacSun: Customers can enjoy a buy one get one free sale and also use the coupon code FREE4YOU to enjoy free shipping on online purchases through July 4.
  • RUUM Children’s Wear: Take 20 percent off any order with the coupon code RUUM4SUMMER. Deal ends on July 11.
  • ShopLately: ShopLately is offering discounts on numerous July 4th fashion accessories, along with an extra 20 percent off with the discount code FASTION20 when purchasing online. Discount can be coupled with free shipping code.
  • Woman Within: Women Within is currently running a clearance of up to 80 percent off limited-quantity items. Customers can also receive free shipping on orders of $50 or more with the coupon code WW69057.

Food

  • 7-Eleven: While not among the July 4th deals, the popular convenience store is offering a free small Slurpee on July 11 (7/11). No coupon necessary. Visit 7-Eleven Day Dance Party Facebook page for more information.
  • Boston Market: Boston Market is offering a coupon online to take 50 percent off its Family Meal on July 4th only. Coupon applies to restaurant and online orders.
  • Jamba Juice: Jamba Juice is offering buy one, get one free smoothies through July 7.
  • Joe’s Crab Shack: Customers who print this coupon can enjoy 10 percent off their entire purchase. Coupon expires on July 8.
  • Kwik Trip: Join the Kwik Trip email club via Facebook and receive a coupon for a free 16-ounce coffee and doughnut. Offer does not have an expiration date.
  • Macaroni Grill: Customers who print this coupon can enjoy 10 percent off their entire purchase. Coupon expires on July 8.
  • Outback Steakhouse: Military members can take 10 percent off a meal with their IDs. Offer is available through July 4.
  • Tai Pei Frozen Asian Food: Like Tai Pei Frozen Asian Food on Facebook and receive a coupon for a discount or free meal (you must break virtual fortune cookie to reveal your deal). Offer does not have an expiration date.
  • Wing Stop: Wing Stop is offering free regular fresh-cut seasoned fries with any wing purchase. Customers must have coupon. Expires on July 4.

Furniture, Electronics and Appliances

  • Best Buy: Take 10 percent to 30 percent off major appliances at Best Buy. Countertop microwaves and floor care are discounted by 10 percent to 20 percent.
  • Dell: Dell is offer an extra $50 off select laptop purchases $599.99 and above when using the code 0H9Q3PQ6L3774C during checkout.
  • Macy’s: Customers can take advantage of Macy’s July 4th Furniture Sale, which takes 55 percent to 60 percent off outdoor furniture and offers free delivery with a $999 outdoor furniture purchase within normal delivery areas.
  • Sears: Sears is offering July 4th deals on appliances, along with an extra 10-percent off purchases of $499 or more with code: APPLIANCE10 (only on appliances sold by Sears).

Online Deals

  • Amazon: Amazon is offering discounts on TVs, clothes, shoes and more on July 4th. Visit the website for more details.
  • eBay: eBay is having a 4th of July Blowout Sale in every category.
  • MacMall: Celebrate Independence Day with a 4th of July Sale offering up to $649 off. Deal expires on July 4.
  • Newegg: Newegg is offering a massive July 4th sale that includes major discounts on computers and accessories, as well as free shipping on select items.

Travel on a Budget to Enjoy Your 4th of July Holiday

If you want to make the most of Independence Day then you may want to visit other parts of the country. Good thing there are some great 4th of July discounts to help you out!

  • Cheapoair: Cheapoair is offering up to 65 percent off flights plus an extra $15 off with the promo code SUMMER15. Expires July 31.
  • Hotels.com: Hotels.com is offering 30 percent off with its 4th of July Hotel Stay deal.
  • Orbitz: Travelers can save 15 percent off travel with the code SPF#15 . Travel must be booked by July 7 and not include Blackout Dates.
  • SeaWorld: Use the promo code SWCTACOBELL2013 to get a free 2nd visit to SeaWorld in San Diego. SeaWorld San Antonio is offering $12 off tickets with the code SAVE12.
  • Travel Zoo: Travel Zoo is asking travelers to celebrate their Independence Day 2013 by taking advantage of savings of to 65 percent on travel. The deal includes travel between June 29 and July 8.

Whether you’re looking for 4th of July freebies or enjoying some great Independence Day discounts, there are plenty of ways to honor your country and budget this holiday. Enjoy!

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Prince William And Kate Middleton's Baby Could Have One Of These Names

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Kate Middleton kids

Expectant royals Kate Middleton and Prince William will likely soon be choosing their baby's name and they will likely be more conservative than Kim Kardashian and Kanye West who named their baby girl North West.

While William and Kate do not yet know the sex of their unborn child — who isn't due until July 11— bookies are already betting on the heir to the throne's name.

"Bookies William Hill say their punters are expecting Kate’s first child to be female," reports The Week. "As for names, Alexandra and Elizabeth are the favourites for a girl while George and James are favourites for a boy."

CNN royal contributor Victoria Arbiter says royals choose "dynastic names; names with a sense of history" that will provide the "elements of continuity that the survival of the monarchy depends on."

Arbiter predicts "Alexandra Elizabeth Frances Mary for a girl and George Philip Arthur Charles for a boy."

Kate Middleton Queen JubileeArbiter explains that Alexandra is the Queen's middle name, while Elizabeth would honor the baby's great grandmother and great, great grandmother — but it is also Middleton's middle name.

Frances is "Diana's middle name and also Michael Middleton's middle name,” Arbiter notes.

But why not honor Prince William's late mother Diana by naming the baby after her?

"I really don't think they'll use Diana for a first child," Arbiter tells MSN, noting that Middleton already faces so many comparisons with Diana.

Additionally, she says, "William and Harry are very keen to honor their mother privately" and might avoid the name "out of respect to the Queen, Prince Charles and Camilla.”

Other possible names for a baby girl include Alice in tribute to Prince Philip's mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg, Eleanor for "Eleanor of Aquitaine," and Pippa Middleton's middle name, Charlotte.

As for a boy, MSN notes "George is a popular guess for a first name and also a popular name choice for monarchs: There have been six previous King Georges. Philip would be in honor of Price Philip."

Arbiter says Arthur is a "middle name shared by a number of royal men that recalls the legend of King Arthur."

Sounds solid.

Check out the baby name odds, according to Irish bookmaker paddypower.com:

Paddy Power Kate Middleton bbaby name odds

As for a last name, it's a bit tricky.

"When utilizing a surname like ordinary folks, William and his brother, Prince Harry, take a cue from father Charles, Prince of Wales' royal house and go by William Wales and Harry Wales," according to E! Online.

But, as the site notes, the baby isn't required to have a surname — but if the parents want their child to have one, they have three choices.

Kate Middle Prince William Harry Diamond JubileeAccording to BBC News, the royal baby's last name could be Wales, like dad; Cambridge, the title given to the couple when they married; or Mountbatten-Windsor, the surname of Prince Philip, who got Mountbatten from his maternal grandparents, and the queen, whose father, King George V, selected Windsor for his family in 1917.

While Middleton isn't due to give birth for another week, there's already protocol in place for how the royal couple will announce their first born to the eagerly-awaiting public.

The public will be informed that Kate Middleton is in labor "when she's in her [hospital] room and comfortable,” Arbiter told MSN.

After the baby is born, a birth announcement will be placed on an easel outside of Buckingham Palace.

"That will be the first we know of the sex of the baby and the time of birth,” Arbiter explained, but the announcement will likely not include the baby's name.

But don't hold your breath for a name announcement, because as Arbiter notes, it took William and Kate "three weeks to announce their dog's name.”

In case you're wondering, it's Lupo.

SEE ALSO: Kate Middleton Is Due To Give Birth Next Week And The Paparazzi Is Already Camped Out

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The Fabulous Life Of Mavs Owner Mark Cuban

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mark cuban mavericks title

Mark Cuban lives a life most people envy. 

After selling his dot com company in the late nineties for $5.9 billion, Cuban has been able to live large. And live large, he has.

One of his biggest purchases was a majority stake of the Dallas Mavericks, and ever since, he's become a huge voice in the sports world.

But how did he get to where he is today?

Just like everyone else, Cuban had humble beginnings. After graduating from the University of Indiana, he took a job as a bartender in Dallas

He also had a job as a salesperson at a PC retailer in Dallas, but he was fired in less than a year when instead of opening the store, he met with a client about new business



So this is when Cuban decided to take matters in his own hands

Cuban's first business was called MicroSolutions. But a few years later, in 1990, Cuban sold this company to CompuServ for $6 million.

But what really got Cuban his money was his next endeavor...



Broadcast.com was Cuban's big moneymaker

Cuban started Audionet.com with his college friend, which eventually turned into Broadcast.com. The idea for Broadcast.com was to put live sporting events online for anyone to listen to. 

By 1999, Cuban grew the company to $13.5 million revenue in the second quarter during the dot com boom. 

And then, Yahoo! picked it up for $5.9 BILLION in '99 just before the dot com crash.



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Coney Island Amusement Park Closed As 275-Foot Tower Sways Ominously

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Parts of Coney Island's amusement park are closed today after the 275-foot-tall AstroTower began swaying unusually, CBS New York reports.

The park was closed at 5pm Tuesday and remained closed even after structural assessments that said the unused observation tower was safe. It is not clear when attractions such as the Luna Park, the Cyclone and the Wonder Wheel will reopen, but tomorrow's annual hot dog eating contest at Nathan's will not be affected.

Here's what the ominously swaying tower looks like, from a Vine by WNBC-TV's Tracie Strahan:

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Summer Can Be Crazy Fun In The City

Here's Where To Find The Biggest And Best July 4th Fireworks Shows

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Boston Fireworks 2001

Fireworks are the biggest and brightest of all Independence Day traditions, and each year people gather across the country to see the amazing pyrotechnics that commemorate the birth of our nation.

Fireworks have reportedly been a part of July 4th celebrations since 1777, and today they're a key part of almost any July 4th celebration. 

While shows vary in size and length around the country, some places go above and beyond to light up their skies.

NEW YORK: Macy's "lights up the night" over the Hudson River with the nation's largest fireworks show every July 4th. This year's spectacle will involve over 40,000 shells and over 3 million people are expected to watch.

Learn more about the NYC fireworks show here.



WASHINGTON, DC: This show is among the largest in the country, costing $255,000 and lasting over 17 minutes. The fireworks are set off from the Reflecting Pool, so those who can score a seat on the National Mall the best view, but the lights can be seen from miles away.

Learn more about the D.C. fireworks show here.



BOSTON: The Boston display is one of the nation's most expensive, costing a record $2.5 million this year. The 20+ minute display is televised and is accompanied by the music of the famed Boston Pops.

Learn more about the Boston fireworks show here.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider
    
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