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Photographer Creates Stunning Images Of New York By Sitting In A Crane All Day Long



Stephen Wilkes, a photographer in the tri-state area, created a day to night series of iconic locations throughout the world, many of them in Manhattan.

Featured in Time, Wilkes discussed that he's not a collector of one single moment, but rather many moments that are blended together to tell the story of a single place.

Then he puts it all together into one stunning photo. 

Time reports:

For the shoots, Wilkes wakes before dawn and often uses a crane to get at least 50 ft. (15 m) above his subjects. He takes the first pictures by daybreak. He’ll have shot 1,200 to 1,500 more by the time he wraps up 12 to 15 hours later. About 50 make it into the final photograph, an editing process that can take months. While he’s shooting, there are no bathroom breaks. Meals, if he decides to eat at all, are brought up in a bucket. 

Bethesda Fountain in Central Park is a familiar spot for New Yorkers and tourists alike.

And here's Central Park in the winter.

This shot of Coney Island features a crowded amusement park at night, and a packed beach during the day.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Two Years Ago The Costa Concordia Capsized Off The Coast Of Italy — Here's What It Looks Like Now


Costa Concordia Italy Ship

On January 13th, 2012, the Costa Concordia cruise ship hit a rock by the Isola del Giglio off the coast of Tuscany. The ship began to take on water, eventually falling onto its side. There were 3,229 passengers and 1,023 crew members on board, and in the chaotic scenes that followed as the boat collapsed into the sea, 32 people never made it off.

To mark the two-year anniversary, the Associated Press reports, survivors and locals alike held mass in the local church that welcomed in survivors after the disaster.

The enormous, 60,000-ton ship has been a grim reminder of the tragedy for the past two years, and even a morbid tourism spot. The hope is that 2014 will be the year that the ship is gone — in September a grueling 16-hour "parbuckling" process moved the ship back into an upright system, and the current plan is to tow the boat away in summer for dismantling.

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

Costa Concordia Italy Ship

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3 Reasons Why Classic Car Aficionados Love Citroën



In the late 1960s and early 1970s, some of the coolest cars you could buy in the United States came from France's Citroën. Rides like the famous DS gained a fervent, if relatively small, following, for their unusual looks and advanced technology.

Not long before Citroën pulled out of the American market, Dave Burnham graduated college and got his first job at a New York dealership. After it folded, he picked up work doing repairs for owners left in the lurch, and never stopped.

Since 1985, he has been the owner of Dave Burnham Citroën. Business these days is less about mundane repairs and more centered on rebuilding cars that are now deemed classics — sometimes for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

We took a trip to visit Burnham's shop in Delanson, New York, where he showed us around his personal mecca of dazzling automobiles.

Produced by William Wei & Alex Davies

NOW WATCH: Tesla Model S Interior Is Gorgeous But Has A Few Drawbacks

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Dartmouth Student Recorded Himself Dancing Across China While Studying Abroad


A Dartmouth College student's video documenting his study abroad semester has gone viral as thousands of people have tuned in to watch him dance across China to the tune of Bruno Mars' "Treasure."

Jake Gara — a sophomore at Dartmouth — spent 100 days in China during his study abroad. As he writes on YouTube, "I knew I wanted to capture my experiences in a very special way, and I also knew that just taking photos of my travels wasn't enough. I had to dance."

Gara traveled and filmed all around China, including, he writes, "Beijing, Chengdu, Xi'An, Lhasa (Tibet), Yangshuo, Zhangjiajie, Shanghai, Feng Huang, and Hong Kong."

Check out the video below:

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These Stunning Buildings Just Won Top Honors From The American Institute Of Architects


the pierre seattle

The American Institute of Architects has chosen the 26 recipients of the 2014 Institute Honor Awards, which recognizes excellence in architecture, interior architecture, and urban design

More than 500 submissions were evaluated by a panel of experts in the architecture world. Winners will be honored at the AIA 2014 national Convention and Design Exposition in Chicago in June.

From a home built into the side of a rock to a welcome center with a living roof, these buildings are a sight to behold. 

The campus for the Centre for International Governance and Innovation in Waterloo, Ontario consists of two three-story connected buildings made up of locally-sourced limestone, brick, wood, and glass. (KPMB Architects)

As plants from the garden extend down and over the roof of the building, the design of the Visitor Center at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden helps patrons transition from the street to nature. (WEISS/MANFREDI)

With this project, an unremarkable gymnasium from the 1950s was converted into a meeting house and arts center for the Sidwell Friends School, a Quaker-affiliated school in Washington, D.C. (KieranTimberlake)

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

12 Common Mistakes Shoppers Make At The Grocery Store


whole foods shoppers mother and daughter

Shoppers often waste money at the grocery store without realizing it. 

We asked Melissa d’Arabian, Food Network host and author of the best-selling book Ten Dollar Dinners, about some of the most common mistakes they make.

Here are the expensive blunders—and easy ways to fix them. 

1. Paying full price for meat. "Meat is usually the most expensive item on your dinner plate," d'Arabian says. She suggests checking circulars for "loss leaders"—highly discounted items that get shoppers into stores. Often, cuts of pork, beef, and chicken will be 50 to 75% off. Buy this meat in bulk then freeze it for later. 

2. Being a slave to a recipe. Instead of buying every item on a long recipe list, think about ingredients you already have and could swap in. "Lemon juice is an acid, so try using another acid, such as vinegar or orange juice in its place," d'Arabian told us. "Soft leafy herbs such a cilantro, mint, basil and parsley, are often interchangeable." 

3. Not using the freezer. You can save a lot of money by freezing bread, bacon, herbs (d'Arabian freezes fresh herbs with oil in ice-cube trays), and tomatoes. Buy these items in bulk when they're on sale, and you'll save even more. 

4. Thinking that "inexpensive" ingredients don't warrant budget shopping. Yeah, a can of beans is pretty cheap. But d'Arabian points out that you can buy five cans' worth of dried beans for the price of one can. Check out her blog post for how to portion out and cook your own. 

5. Not doing math in the produce aisle. Most produce items are available pre-packaged or loose. "Take 10 seconds to do some quick math to determine the per-pound price of a package before deciding whether to buy loose or packaged," d'Arabian says. Usually, potatoes and carrots are cheaper packaged, while mushrooms, apples, and oranges are cheaper by themselves. 

6. Grabbing a big cart. "Studies have shown that grocery stores can do one simple thing that will result in you unwittingly spending more money: put out bigger grocery carts!" d'Arabian says. "Use this information to your advantage and always select the smallest cart available." If the store only has carts, fill up yours with less expensive products like produce before hitting the snack aisles. Ten Dollar Dinners Cookbook Cover

7. Splurging in the wrong department. Replacing rib-eye steak with filet mignon can cost you an extra $15 per pound, d'Arabian says. Instead, treat yourself in the produce aisle. Expensive wild mushrooms or heirloom tomatoes cost $1 or $2 more, but will make your meal a lot nicer. 

8. Overlooking the salad bar. "A handful of hazelnuts from that aisle will set you back only 20 or 30 cents—toast, chop, and sprinkle over green beans or in an inexpensive lettuce salad and you have a fancy restaurant-worthy dish," d'Arabian says. "The salad bar is also a great way to grab a small quantity of a high-impact ingredient (such as high-quality briny olives for a tapenade)." 

9. Not asking the grocery staff for help. "Ask the person behind the butcher counter for advice on how to cook an unfamiliar cut of meat that is on sale, or ask if he will break down a large inexpensive pork loin into a variety of cuts: chops, cubes, and a few smaller roasts," d'Arabian recommends. 

10. Getting bogged down by a list. "Be open to guidance from the sales prices," d'Arabian shares. "I usually just write 'vegetables for dinner' on my list, and let the prices be my guide when I’m in the produce aisle."

11. Not knowing the prices of the things you buy most. In order to shop smarter, you need to know how much essential items like chicken breasts, milk, or diapers cost normally. That will help you spot a bargain at the store. Make a list of the items you buy most so you can stock up when there's a sale. 

12. Thinking that saving only happens at the store. "Ask any restaurateur: Half the battle in saving money is in inventory management. Manage your pantry and ingredients wisely, and you will save money!" d'Arabian says. "Also important: managing your leftovers. Remember, the most expensive ingredient in your kitchen right now is the one you throw away."

SEE ALSO: A Professional Chef Reveals The Most Common Mistakes Made By Amateur Cooks

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How People Consume Meat Around The World [CHARTS]


German public policy group Heinrich Böell Foundation and Friends of the Earth have just released their annual publication Meat Atlas, which illustrates food trends around the world.

The booklet informs consumers about meat production in different countries based on data from world organizations such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), World Health Organization (WHO), and Gallup data, just to name a few.

"In the rich North we already have high meat consumption. Now the poor South is catching up," Barbara Unmuessig, the foundation's president, told BBC. "Catering for this growing demand means industrialized farming methods: Animals are pumped full of growth hormones. This has terrible consequences on how animals are treated and on the health of consumers."

The following charts (republished under a Creative Commons license) give a sense of how people consume meat around the world.

This chart shows meat production around the world. Though the USA and Europe still produce plenty of meat products, the prices of feed, energy, and land are all becoming more expensive and the cost of producing industrial livestock is rising. Pigs and poultry are still doing well in the market since both species don't necessarily need a lot of feed and can be kept in confined spaces.

Meat Atlas 1, Heinrich Böell FoundationMeat companies are growing thanks to mergers and acquisitions, and are expanding across countries and animal species. Today, there are ten major meat producers around the globe, four of which are based in the U.S.: Cargill ($33 billion in food sales a year), Tyson ($33 billion in food sales a year), Smithfield ($13 billion in food sales a year), and Hormel Foods ($8 billion in food sales a year).

Meat Atlas 2, Heinrich Böell FoundationThe global demand for meat is growing, particularly in China and India, which could see an 80% boom in the meat sector by 2022 due to a new (and growing) middle class. Africans are also starting to eat more meat, though the supply and demand are still not quite what they are in other parts of the world.

Meat Atlas 4, Heinrich Böell FoundationMeat production and consumption in the industrialized world have radically increased since 1950. Overall, however, meat consumption has stagnated. In the U.S. there has been a 9% drop in consumption from 2007 to 2012 thanks to trendy low-meat diets and growing concern from customers over where meat comes from. It could also be due to recent meat scandals, including horse meat marketed as beef.

Meat Atlas 3, Heinrich Böell FoundationPoultry is the fastest growing segment of globalized livestock. By 2020, China's poultry production will increase 37%, Brazil's will increase 28%, and U.S. production will increase 16% due to growing consumption around the globe. In India, poultry consumption is expected to rise nearly tenfold to just below 10 million tons a year in 2050.

Meat Atlas 5, Heinrich Böell FoundationOne reason poultry is so popular is the price. Producing poultry is cheaper than other types of meat because chickens are more efficient to feed than other livestock ,and there are few religious or cultural limitations to eating chicken. In 2011, an estimated 58 TRILLION chickens were slaughtered around the world — that's compared to roughly 1.4 trillion pigs and 300 million cattle.

Meat Atlas 6, Heinrich Böell FoundationOnly a small percentage of the population in the U.S. and Europe describe themselves as vegetarians or vegans. It's much more popular in India since Buddhism and Hinduism share beliefs about rebirth and the importance nonviolence that leads people to reject the consumption of meat due to the slaughter of animals.

Meat Atlas 7, Heinrich Böell FoundationAnd even though it's not as popular as meat consumption, people are becoming more interested in vegetarianism and veganism as lifestyle choices.

Meat Atlas 8, Heinrich Böell FoundationThere could also be a shift in the future from animal protein to protein from aquatic plants or insects, as a recent United Nations report suggests. Insects are particularly efficient and high in protein.

Meat Atlas 9, Heinrich Böell FoundationThe entire booklet is a fascinating read (and free to download). Head over to Heinrich Böell Foundation to take a look at the rest of the maps.

DON'T MISS: These Insect Dishes Are The Solution To World Hunger

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I Have Finally Seen Kia's Luxury Car In Person, And I'm Impressed


Kia K9 K900 los angeles auto show 2013

I didn't get to sit in the K900, Kia's new luxury sedan, when it premiered at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November.

Now in Detroit for the North American International Auto Show, I've had my chance, and I have to say I'm impressed. 

The K900 looks and feels like the luxury cars made by Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, and Cadillac. The leather is nice. With the doors closed, I was nicely insulated from the frenzied pace of the auto show. 

In the U.S., Kia is more closely associated with the dancing hamsters that advertise the $15,000 Soul than with luxury driving. 

But the Korean automaker's plan to move into the premium market is hardly stupid. It has set reasonable goals and controlled costs so that it doesn't need great sales numbers to make the K900 a success. 

At this point, I wouldn't buy the K900. Its price point will likely be a bit over $50,000, a lot of money for a young entrant with such established and terrific competitors. A bad review of the drive quality from Consumer Reports doesn't help, either. 

But looking around inside the K900, and it's not too hard to believe that years down the line, Kia will be a real luxury player. 

Kia K900 interior

I don't love the two-tone steering wheel, but points to Kia for trying something interesting.

Kia K900 interior steering wheel

Good quality leather in a front seat that isn't crowded by too many buttons. This car wasn't on, so I couldn't play around with the infotainment system.

Kia K900 interior

Maybe most impressive are the two rear seats, which can recline independently. 

Kia K900 interior

SEE ALSO: The Ford F-150 Is 700 Pounds Lighter Than It Used To Be

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This Is What H&M Considers To Be 'Plus-Size'


H&M is under fire after using thin models for the plus-sized section of a catalog. 

The fast-fashion retailer insists that all models featured in the plus-size section are at least a U.S. size 14, but their thin appearance outraged shoppers, reports Rebecca Adams at The Huffington Post. 

H&M, which is based in Sweden, received positive feedback after the CEO declared that he was working to promote a healthier body image last year. 

Here are some sample images from the catalog, tweeted by an outraged shoppers: 

The retailer famously used a plus-size model for a swimsuit campaign last year. 

That model, Jennie Runk, looks a little more filled out than the ones featured above: 

h&m plus size model beachwear

She claims to wear a U.S. size 12 or 14. 

SEE ALSO: 5 Things That Led To The Decline Of Lululemon

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Ellen DeGeneres Reportedly Spent $40 Million On An Estate Next Door To LA's Playboy Mansion


Ellen Degeneres House 33

Ellen DeGeneres, famous for her house-hopping as much as her status as America's nicest funny woman, reportedly laid down $40 million for a 9-bedroom mansion in the exclusive Holmby Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, according to TMZ.

Sitting on 2.25 acres next to the Playboy Mansion, the property was commissioned by philanthropists Sidney and Frances Lasker Brody in 1949. The home was impressive in its own right (TMZ calls it "the best house in L.A.), but its unnamed second owner had it renovated in 2010, ostensibly to flip it..

Designer Stephen Stone increased the size of the kitchen, turned the top floor into a second master suite with a study, updated the pool, and added a koi pond. But he did keep the landscaping intact along with some original parts of the house.

Unfortunately, we only have photos of what the home looked like pre-renovation, since it never officially hit the real estate market. But even so, they are pretty remarkable:

Most of the renovations to the house took place indoors. The entryway and landscaping were left intact, only spruced up.Ellen Degeneres House 2

The home still opens to a spacious living area and slatted stairs.Ellen Degeneres House 4

The sprawling ficus, deemed too invasive, in the atrium was replaced with some rare palms.Ellen Degeneres House 8

All the bathroom fixtures were updated from this pre-renovation photo.Ellen Degeneres House 22

Stone installed a new pool in the same space and style of the old one.Ellen Degeneres House 26

The home comes with tennis courts that received a new fence in the renovations.Ellen Degeneres House 28

SEE ALSO: HOUSE OF THE DAY: Khloe Kardashian and Lamar Odom List Their Famous Mansion For $5.5 Million

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VW's Latest Concept Car Is A Beetle That's Made For Skiing


VW Dune Beetle concept detroit auto show 2014

When it comes to concept cars, the key question is not so much "why?" as "why not?" That's definitely the case with Volkswagen's Beetle Dune Concept, unveiled today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Named for the desert, it's no city car: The Dune is made for off-roading. 

Yet it's no pipe dream: Everything VW says indicates that the Dune could actually make it into production. 

The concept, according to the automaker, "shows the potential for a new production version of the sportiest Beetle ever." 

If the Dune ever comes to market, it would be the second coming of the Baja Bug, the late 1960s Beetle modified to go off-road. 

Under the hood of the Dune is a 210-horsepower engine, and the car sits two inches higher off the ground than the Beetle R on which it's based. The color, dubbed "Arizona," is a yellow-orange metallic that continues with the desert theme.

Yet the most eye-catching bit of the concept is the ski rack — which can also hold a snowboard, and will let owners hit the mountains in the winter, or go sandboarding in warmer weather. We have to admit, the look is growing on us:

VW Dune Beetle concept detroit auto show 2014

Here's a closer look at the rack, which slides open to let you get skis or a snowboard in and out:

VW Dune Beetle concept detroit auto show 2014

SEE ALSO: I Have Finally Seen Kia's Luxury Car In Person, And I'm Impressed

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ASPIRING JOURNALISTS: Now Is The Time To Apply To Business Insider's Paid Spring Internship Program


business insider offices may 2011

Business Insider is looking for paid interns to join our editorial team this spring!

As an intern at Business Insider, there's no getting coffee, filing, or making copies.

Our interns are an integral part of our team. Many of our current writers and editors started as interns.

BI Interns spend their time doing meaningful work: researching, writing, pitching and producing features -- even breaking news if the timing's right.

Interns are encouraged to work full-time (40 hours a week) if their schedule allows.

Other perks? We have tons of free snacks and drinks, a great office environment, and a ping-pong table where we hold quarterly tournaments.

When it comes to qualifications, a journalism background and experience writing for a news site always helps, as do copy-editing skills and light HTML and Photoshop experience. Knowledge of social media and previous writing experience are both useful, too.

Please send your resume and three journalism clips to internships@businessinsider.com. Please briefly describe which BI section(s) interest you most and why. (Don't know what our sections are? Check out the nav bar on the home page and our masthead.)

And, please note: this internship requires that you work in our Manhattan office. The internship term runs from January - July, with some flexibility on start and end dates.

Interested in a journalism internship but have never heard of Business Insider? Here's some reading on our company and where we're headed

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Toyota's New Sports Car Concept Has The Coolest Mirrors We've Ever Seen


Toyota FT1 concept car detroit auto show 2014

Toyota started the Detroit Auto Show with a bang this morning, unveiling a concept sports car that's so far the craziest thing we've seen in 2014. 

Toyota says the new FT1 (for Future Toyota) represents a desire to make cars that "connect more deeply with customers" — in other words, make them more exciting, without losing the reliability and quality that has been the automaker's hallmark. 

It's certainly exciting. The FT1, which likely hints at a successor to Toyota's much-loved Supra sports car, is chock full of outrageous design details.

Let's start with our favorite: the side view mirrors. In a production version, they'd have to be bigger to meet federal regulations, but we really hope they stick with the general form shown here:

Toyota FT1 concept car detroit auto show 2014

Then there's the awesome glass part of the hood that reveals the FT1's engine. Toyota gave no details on performance specs. In this photo, you can also see the head's up display (HUD). In cars, HUDs usually project information onto the windshield. This one looks more like what you find in fighter jets: 

Toyota FT1 concept car detroit auto show 2014

Just look at the curves in the door. Over the top: 

Toyota FT1 concept car detroit auto show 2014

SEE ALSO: Audi's New Luxury Sedan Has A Clever Way To Avoid Pileup Crashes

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You'd Be Surprised To Learn What Your Cat Thinks About You



Cats get a bad rap. 

They pretty much do what they want and are generally thought of as less friendly than dogs. 

But a new book,"Cat Sense," provides fresh insight into the relationship between cats and humans, and gets to the heart of why cats have earned their reputation as being furry little jerks.

The book is based on 30 years of research by John Bradshaw, a biologist and director of the Anthrozoology Institute at the University of Bristol. 

Here are some of the most interesting findings we've seen in interviews and reviews of Bradshaw's book:

  • The cat's purr isn't just a sign of being content. Kittens purr to get their "mother to lie still while they're suckling," Bradshaw told NPR in an interview. The purr is carried into adulthood, where it's used as "a signal to the animals, [and] the people around them to pay attention and try to help them."
  • Cats are different than dogs because they weren't purposely bred to be our companions, Nicholas Wade explains in a review for the New York Times. They are still mostly wild animals that "rely almost entirely on their natural social behaviors," writes Wade.  
  • This is also why cats have earned a reputation for being unfriendly. The domestic cat population is largely controlled through spaying and neutering, leaving mostly wild or feral cats (known for their nasty behavior) for domestic cats to breed with. As a result, we are unintentionally "causing cats to evolve into animals society won't like as much," according to a review by Steven Poole in The Guardian
  • Cats view their owners as bigger, nonhostile cats — not kittens whom they want to feed by dropping rodents at the doorstep.
  • This act isn't the cat searching for a prize to bring back to the house. Bradshaw says that cats actually prefer canned cat food, so they ditch the prey by the door when they get home and remember this. 
  • Cats greet humans the same way they would greet fellow, friendly cats — with an upright tail that demonstrates affection for their owners, says The Independent's Heather Saul.
  • Cats are good at climbing up trees because they have claws that face forwards, writes Poole. This design is not good for helping them get down, which is why cats often get stuck in trees. 

SEE ALSO: How Cats See The World Compared To Humans [PICTURES]

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Incredible Side-By-Side Video Footage Shows London 86 Years Ago And Today


london in 1927 and 2013

During the 1920s, cinematographer and inventor Claude Friese-Greene traveled across the U.K., capturing stunning footage of life in London in 1927.

He used his own process to create colored film, which was patented as "Friese-Greene Natural Colour." The film was recently restored by the BFI.

Simon Smith, a video producer and director, saw the video and decided to take his own shots standing in Friese-Greene's footsteps and panning across the streets and river. He spliced the videos together to show the scenes side by side, and then uploaded the resulting video onto Vimeo (we first saw it on the blog Colossal).

The six-minute compilation shows just how much has changed in London over 86 years. Major tourist attractions, such as the Thames river and the Tower of London, serve as reference points.

Check it out below.

London in 1927 & 2013 from Simon Smith on Vimeo.

SEE ALSO: Stunning Compostite Photos Show New York Crime Scenes Then and Now

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9 Simple Hacks That Will Help You Survive The Common Cold



The average American battles two to four colds every year, according to the American Lung Association.

That's a lot of sneezing, runny noses, and coughs. And though most people struggle through and keep going about their day-to-day lives, it's still incredibly unpleasant.

The internet is awash with advice on how to improve symptoms, including drinking plenty of fluids, getting rest, and stocking up on over-the-counter medication.

But we found some other hacks that will help you survive the common cold.

Keep Empty Kleenex Boxes As Portable Trash Cans

Unless you carry a trashcan with you, a stuffy nose can lead to mounds of tissues scattered around your house as you shuffle from room to room.

Instead, use an empty tissue box as a portable waste basket (either an old box or a new one, with the tissues pulled out and placed in a Ziploc bag). You can also secure the empty box to a full box with rubber bands and/or tape to make it extra convenient.

Buy A Neti Pot, Or Nasal Irrigation System

neti pot nasal irrigationEssentially, a neti pot pours water through your nasal canal and flushes out excess mucus and debris from your nose and sinuses with a sterile water and saline solution.

It might sound gross and uncomfortable, but users claim it provides instant relief from facial pain, sinus pressure, and other nasty symptoms. True believers also say it promotes good sinus and nasal health in the future.

Gargle With Salt Water

Once your sinuses start to drain, they can cause a sore throat. To relieve the pain and reduce swelling, the Mayo Clinic says to gargle with roughly 1/2 teaspoon of salt and one cup of warm water.

The saline will also flush out irritants and bacteria.

Take A Bath With Dr. Bronner's

Most people feel achy or have the chills while suffering from a cold. Draw a warm bath, and add in some Dr. Bronner's Peppermint soap. The peppermint oil will help clear your sinuses, while the warm water loosens mucus and soothes muscles.

If you don't feel like taking a bath, you can also hover over a bowl or sink of steaming water with a towel over your head to get a similar effect.

Sleep With A Pillow Propping Up Your Head

Sleeping can be hard when you have a cold thanks to body aches, headache, fevers, and coughing.

To make breathing easier and ease sinus pressure, sleep with a few pillows propping your head and shoulders up. It will loosen congestion in the upper body and prevent coughing so you can sleep longer.

Use A Humidifier

Dry weather can make cold symptoms worse, causing mucous to become extra thick and not drain as easily. A home humidifier will add more water to the air, which will in turn break up congestion and improve drainage.

But be cautious. The Mayo Clinic warns that humidifiers can actually make you sick if they aren't maintained properly, so keep your humidifier clean.

Make A DIY Hot Pack

Brookstone aromatherapy kitTo sooth your achy body and provide some much needed warmth, make an easy DIY hot pack. All you need is uncooked rice and a long sock (directions here), or you can really go all out and make a fancy one with fabric, a sewing machine, uncooked rice, and essential oils (directions here).

When you're done, microwave your pack for a minute and 15-30 seconds. The rice retains the heat extremely well so that when you place it on your shoulders, you'll feel instantly better.

You can also buy a version of these at stores like Brookstone and Amazon, but it's cheaper (and faster) to make your own.

Stock Up On Lemon Juice For Tea

A soothing thing to drink when you're sick is hot water with honey and lemon. The honey and water are pretty easy to round up in a pinch, but no one wants to squeeze a lemon every time they refresh their drink.

Instead, buy a cheap bottle of lemon juice at the grocery store. That way it's always on hand when you're ready for a soothing beverage to ease a cough or sore throat.

Disinfect Everything When You Feel 90% Better

As soon as you start to feel like your old self, take five minutes and wipe down your keyboard, mouse, and desk at work, as well as any surfaces you might have touched at home like your toothbrush, door knobs, sink handles, refrigerator handle, and bedding.

This will help reduce the likelihood of passing your illness on to anyone else in your home, or (worse yet) getting sick all over again.

DON'T MISS: The 15 Healthiest Cities In America

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Chef Twitter-Shames Couple Who Brought Their Baby To His Michelin-Starred Restaurant


A Chicago chef has sparked a firestorm after calling out a couple on Twitter who brought an eight-month-old baby to his Michelin-starred restaurant, Alinea, on Saturday.

Chef Grant Achatz tweeted this about the couple on Saturday: 

The remark invited a mix of responses, most of which were in support of banning children at a restaurant where diners must pay $250 per-person upfront to reserve a table.

Here's an example from both sides of the argument:

The debate spurred the creation of an #alineababy hashtag and the handle @alineababy.

Further provoking his critics, Achatz tweeted this on Sunday:

"I could hear it crying in the kitchen," Achatz told Good Morning America Tuesday in defense of his tweets. "We want people to come and enjoy and experience Alinea for what it is. But we also have to be cognizant of the other 80 people that came in to experience Alinea that night."

Eater Chicago reported that the couple's babysitter had cancelled last minute, so they had no choice but to bring the baby or give up their table.

Here's the Good Morning America segment where Achatz defends himself: 

NOW READ: See Why People Go Crazy For The Best Restaurant In Chicago

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China's Biggest Online Retailer Has A 'Rent A Boyfriend' Section — Here's What You'll Find There


China has some interesting matchmaking and dating practices. There are love hunters who track down potential wives for China's richest bachelors and there are "leftover women," who are criticized for being older than 27 and unmarried.

In some cases, when a male dies too young, families have "ghost marriages," exhuming female corpses and marrying the pair.

So, it's natural for many young Chinese to want to allay their parents' anxiety over their single-dom. And now they can take to Alibaba-owned online retailer Taobao, tweets George Chen at South China Morning Post. That's the equivalent of shopping for a date on Amazon or eBay. 

People's Daily reported that use of these services picks up around Single's Day and Chinese New Year which is expected to fall around Jan. 30 this year. So we thought we'd have a look at just how Taobao's rent-a-boyfriend feature works.

If you look to rent a boyfriend, 301 listings pop up and rates vary from 300 yuan a day to 8.80 yuan, though that gentleman hasn't said if it's an hourly rate:

rent a boyfriend

The users understandably don't always provide a name, and some don't even put in a photo of themselves.

rent a boyfriend

Once you've picked a "boyfriend" you'd like to date, you can click on his profile and look at the services he offers and so on. The arrow on top shows that he "ships to" Guangzhou but is willing to travel nationally too. The arrow below shows the section in which he describes himself and the services he's willing to offer.

He describes himself as kind, as someone who likes dogs, and someone whom parents like. He also says it will cost more if the renter needs him to drink or dress a certain way.

rent a boyfriend

You can also look up reviews that potential "boyfriend" has received. This one seems to have chalked up two, though it's hard to tell if they're real or not.

rent a boyfriend

Finally you can also see how he's shaped up. This guy's profile suggests there were ten attempts at renting him, though only two appear to have been successful.

rent a boyfriend

Meanwhile, if you try to rent a girlfriend the site brings up a message that loosely translates to "according to related laws and regulations we can not show search results for rent a girlfriend." Sorry fellas, you're going to have go the more traditional route.

rent a girlfriend

SEE ALSO: 36 Crazy Things That Only Happen In China

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People From Across America Reveal Their Favorite Regional Sayings

Some Americans Are Threatening To Stop Drinking Jim Beam Now That It's Owned By A Japanese Company


whiskey jeff arnet jack daniels

Nothing ignites American patriotism quite like the foreign acquisition of a beloved brand.

So yesterday, when Japanese liquor giant Suntory announced it is purchasing Beam Inc.— which distills Jim Beam and Maker's Mark — Americans did the only thing that seemed right. They complained on social media.

And people hit Beam where it hurt, by threatening to switch to Jack Daniel's.

There's a lot more where that came from on Beam's Facebook page.

This style of nationalism might be a little misplaced. Shouldn't we be proud that foreign companies want to buy American brands? Presumably, Suntory bought Jim Beam because they liked it. It's the same reason that Budweiser still feels pretty American years after it merged with Belgian InBev.

Plus, people might be surprised to learn what's already foreign-owned.

"Consider 7-11 stores, Popsicle ice pops, and Frigidaire appliances," writes the New Yorker's Vauhini Vara. "All American icons that are owned, respectively, by Japanese, Anglo-Dutch, and Swedish companies." From the New Yorker:

Certain brands serve as especially potent symbols of American culture; Budweiser and Jim Beam, each more than a century old, are among them. When foreign companies move to acquire such brands, it naturally triggers a cultural anxiety about the decline of American influence. (In a December report, the Pew Research Center found that more than half of the people it surveyed believed that the U.S. “plays a less important and powerful role as a world leader than it did a decade ago.”)

And as Vara notes, if anything, Suntory wants to spread American whiskey to the rest of the world. Maybe that should be a source of pride.

SEE ALSO: Here's A Breakdown Of The World's Biggest Whiskey Drinkers

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