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This economics talk came with lunch at one of the most outrageously fancy restaurants in NYC


per se dessert

Per Se is one of the best restaurants in the world. 

Thomas Keller's New York flagship has three stars from the Michelin guide and four stars from the New York Times— highest honors from both. 

This week, the job search company Indeed put on a luncheon at the famed restaurant with its chief economists, Tara Sinclair and John Lonski, the chief economist for financial markets at Moody’s.

Business Insider documented the experience. 

Per Se is on the fourth floor Manhattan's Time Warner Center.

From the fourth floor, you can see Central Park.

The restaurant is located behind the famous blue double doors. The doors don't open. To get in, you go through the sliding glass door to the left.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Moms reveal what they really want for Mother's Day

These 30 whiskeys just took gold at an international spirits competition


Artisan Grain Original Moonshine

Every year, the International Whisky Competition brings together top whiskey experts to rate the best scotches, bourbons, blends, and other delicious spirits from around the world.

There are 30 categories, with gold, silver, and bronze awards for each. This year's competition took place on April 23 and 24 in Chicago.

Judges were given 5 minutes to blind taste, judge, and score each liquor based on the following four criteria:

  • Sight: Colors (0 points), Visual appeal (5 points)
  • Nose: Intensity and complexity (15 points), Distinctiveness of aromas (10 points), Balance of aromas (10 points)
  • Taste-Mouth Feel: Palate and balance (10 points), Alcohol, body and complexity (10 points), Distinctiveness of flavors (10 points), Balance between flavors (10 points)
  • Finish: Length and finish (10 points), Quality of finish (10 points)

Best Single Malt Whisky – Black Art 4.1

Price: £205 ($311)

Lagavulin 16 Years Old

The Glenlivet Nàdurra Oloroso

Best Cask Strength – The Glenlivet Nàdurra Oloroso

Price:£45.45 ($69)

Aberlour A'Bunadh

Octomore 06.3 Islay Barley

Best New Release – Glenmorangie Tùsail

Price:£79.95 ($121.35)

Craigellachie 23 Years Old

Glenmorangie The Taghta

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Why Lululemon is still the 'athleisure' brand everyone loves

Dim, brighten, and change the color of this lightbulb straight from your smartphone [32% off]


Screen Shot 2015 05 06 at 9.56.16 AMThis is the coolest lightbulb out there.

The SMFX smart bulb can be adjusted straight from your iOS or Android device.

That means you can dim, brighten, change the color, or turn the bulb on or off with just a touch.

And, if you're feeling particularly wild, you can turn on "disco mode" so that the light changes along with the music that's playing.

The lightbulb will work for 40,000 hours (that's 27 years), and uses 10% less energy than the standard bulb.

SMFX Smart Bulb: $59.00$39.99[32% off]


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The only way to see this incredible museum in Mexico is by scuba diving


The Museo Subacuático de Arte, located off the coast of Isla Mujeres in Mexico's Riviera Maya, is the world's largest underwater museum. 

Composed of over 500 life-sized sculptures, MUSA offers incredible sculptures hidden 28 feet below the ocean's surface. That means that the only way it can be explored is by diving or snorkeling.

underwater museum

The project began in 2009 as an effort to protect the endangered Mesoamerican Reef (the second-largest barrier reef in the world) by diverting divers and snorkelers to MUSA. 

Roberto Díaz Abraham, one of the founders of the museum, describes it as an "art of conservation." Each sculpture holds special nooks and crannies that help to support the breeding of marine life while providing a safe habitat.

Six artists helped to compose the works found in MUSA: Jason deCaires Taylor, Roberto Díaz Abraham, Salvador Quiroz EnnisRodrigo Quiñones ReyesKaren Salinas Martínez and Enrique Mireles, but a large portion of the works are by Taylor. 

Taylor models his sculptures after local residents from his nearby fishing town of Puerto Morelos and covers them with a marine-grade cement consisting of a PH neutral surface that promotes coral growth. He allows the plaster to dry before removing it and filling in the remainder of the sculptures. 

Since they're made with this marine-grade cement, the statues have become covered in algae and coral to make for a stunning sight. 

underwater museum Some of Taylor's works are a satirical commentary on humanity. He created "The Banker", a series of men in business suits submerging their heads in sand, after attending a climate change conference in Cancun.

"It represents the loud acknowledgment made about the issue, but when it comes to taking action nobody wants to stick their neck out and do something about it," Taylor said about the work. 

underwater museum Some of his works symbolize the growth of new life. "The Resurrection" was created using coral fans that had broken off during a thunderstorm in Cancun.  

underwater museum

You'll also find statues of people you might recognize. "The Anchors" is molded from the heads of Today Show anchors Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Al Roker, and Natalie Morales, and NBC News correspondent Kerry Sanders. 

underwater museum But what's most fascinating is that each of his works is built to aid in the protection and understanding of marine life. "The Ear" is a work installed with a hydrophone and hard drive. It allows researchers to study marine life via audio. 

underwater museum 1

"Anthropocene," or the Volkswagen, is made specifically for lobsters. Taylor created the piece after fisherman wiped out about 50 lobsters previously living in his "Silent Evolution" display. The car has holes to allow the shellfish to enter the sculpture, and inside it is stacked with shelving units where the creatures like to sleep. 

underwater museum MUSA offers an exploration into a world that's remained a mystery.

"Two-thirds of our world is water, but there's so much in that incredible world that's still unknown," said Taylor. 

There are two different exhibits within the museum: Salon Manchones, which holds 475 sculptures and is 8m (27 ft.) deep and Punta Nizuc, which offers a shallow snorkeling area about 4m (13 ft.) deep and a semi-submersible boat as an alternative to diving.  

underwater museum

MUSA is open year-round for public viewing, but because the diving site is protected as a conservation area, you'll need to sign up with one of the museum's selected tour guides to access the sight. Tickets cost about $60 for a two-hour tour.

If you can't make it there in person, here's some footage to mentally transport you to the stunning sight. 


SEE ALSO:  Here's where it's safe to travel in Mexico

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How NOT to behave in 15 countries around the world


After this year's horrible winter, the spring travel bug should be biting with a vengeance. But as you plan your getaways, try not to become the stereotypical "Ugly American."

We did our own research and took a look at a Quora thread that addresses the issue of travel etiquette. In the thread, people from around the world said what tourists should absolutely not do when visiting their country.  

Check out some of the top Quora responses below, as well as a few of the tips we found.


Norway royal family Princess Ingrid Alexandra

Don't stare at naked people: "People are pretty relaxed about nudity, and both men and women will for example change on public beaches without any attempt at covering themselves up. You are however expected to look away."

Don't unwrap flowers before you give them as a gift: "Germans do this."

Don't ask people about church: "Most attend none, and asking this is seen as intrusive, rude and downright weird."

Don't expect special treatment: "People are very informal here and being on a first-name-basis with anyone short of the King is the norm. Even the prime-minister of Norway is most often referred to by first name."

Answers by Eivind Kjørstad



Don't tip anyone: "Tipping is just not part of the culture. Don't even leave the small change. People will come running after you with it."

Don't wear your shoes in someone's house: "If you see other people taking their shoes off, do the same. (Note: there's a small area right inside the entrance called a 'genkan' which is usually one level below the rest of the house, where you take off your shoes. You don't take them off outside the house!)"

Don't hug people you just met: "Most people don't like it, especially older folk."

Don't stand on the wrong side of the escalator: "In Tokyo you stand on the left. In Osaka you stand on the right. Follow what other people are doing."

Answers by Makiko Itoh



Don't give an even number of flowers as a gift: "That's for dead folks. Proper bouquet will have 1/3/5/7 flowers."

Don't rely on a credit card: "There are lots of places which only accept cash."

Don't assume the people support everything the government does: "Quite often we don't. Don't criticize our government. We do it a lot by ourselves, we don't need your help in that."

Answers by Katherine Makhalova


Clark Quay Singapore

You can get fined for a lot of things in Singapore, including: feeding the birds, spitting, urinating in public, smoking in public, having your pet in public, eating or drinking on public transportation, and littering, among other things.

Answers by Xu Beixi



Don't raise your thumb, middle, and index finger all at once: This is known as the Serbian three-finger salute, so doing this in Croatia could cause you to be mistaken for a Serbian Nationalist (not a good thing in Croatia).



nuru international, kenya

Don't disrespect religion: "Almost everyone you meet is religious; religion here is always in fashion, so if someone asks you if you are religious, don't take offense because it is common for everyone to follow a religion, and around 80% of the population are Christians."

Don't be impatient: "Hardly anything runs on time, with an exception of a couple of business meetings and bank closing hours and most other businesses. Everything runs late, don't get pissed off or impatient, learn to go with the flow, things will happen, just not on time."

Don't talk about sex in mixed company: "It is wrong and is frowned upon and people might not want to be in your company after that."

Don't call someone by their first name: "Miss, Mrs, Mr., Dr. and Engineer so and so (mostly the surname) are totally accepted. If you want to call someone whose name you don't know, refer to them as madam or sir. You get quite a lot of bonus points for that. Only refer to someone by their first name if they introduce themselves as such."

Answers by Rose Thuo

New Zealand

New Zealand All Blacks Rugby Haka

Don't confuse New Zealanders with Aussies: "We don't like it!"

Don't expect to see Kiwi birds: "They are almost extinct. Irony!"

Don't make fun of rugby, Lord of the Rings, or the Queen of England: "All Blacks is a rugby team and probably a religion. Haka is a war-cry performed before a war or, nowadays, a rugby match. Do not make fun of it!"

"Kiwis are proud of Lord Of the Rings!"

"The Queen of England is still a big deal here! We still celebrate her birthday and swear allegiance to her."

Don't freak out about people not wearing shoes: "It's perfectly normal to go about in public places without footwear, and in some cases a shirt. You will still be served." 

Answers by Mayur Makheri



Don't make the okay sign with your thumb and forefinger: This is considered obscene in Turkey.

Lay off the alcohol: Turks don't drink much — maybe an occasional glass of wine every once in a while — and being drunk is considered a disgrace.

Don't blow your nose or pick your teeth in public: Turks consider both of these impolite when done at a restaurant, cafe, or bar.



Traditional Indian Wedding

Don't kiss in public: "In some jurisdictions this can get you into jail under 'public obscenity' (a lot of our laws are stuck in the Victorian era)."

Don't make physical contact with the opposite sex: "Hugging and handshakes are still frowned upon in most parts of the country among members of opposite sex. Unless the local offers to hug or handshake, don't."

Answers by Balaji Viswanathan


Paris Outdoor Cafe

Don't expect a huge amount of vegan options: "Notify people you visit and be careful in which restaurants you go. Very few people are vegan in France compared to some other countries, and although the situation is slowly improving, the awareness and acceptance of it are still quite poor. Some older people especially can consider it a 'weird' or even radical behavior."

Don't talk about money: "For example, you can tell you quit a job because you were underpaid, but you should not mention how much exactly. There are old taboos about speaking of money in the French culture, many people consider it a 'dirty' topic."

Don't expect people to speak English: "The French educational system is bad at teaching foreign languages, with an excessive focus on reading and writing compared to conversational skills. Many older people will only know a bit of bad and heavily accented English and/or possibly German or Spanish."

Answers by Alexandre Coninx


Santiago de Chile

Don't eat anything with your hands: Manners are more formal in Chile. So even if it's fries, use your knife and fork. 



Brandenburger Tor

Don't do the Nazi salute: "Not even in jest. It's a crime and every year there are tourists arrested for it. Also don't carry any Nazi symbols on you."

Don't stare: "You'd appear either uneducated or mentally ill."

Don't be overly friendly: "Germans like to gradually warm up to people and take time to really get to know them before acting like BFFs."

Don't wish someone a happy birthday before the actual day: "The origin is a superstition that something bad will happen to them (they might die) before their birthday if you do, however this rule is not limited to superstitious people. Even bright, rational Germans will feel uncomfortable because it's just not done."

Answers by Judith Meyer


mexico soccer fan

Don't patronize people: "We're a developing country and we're aware that some stuff is just backwards over here. Don't ever imply that you are 'better' than anyone, especially if that hinges on you being a foreigner."

Don't be easily offended: "We have a huge sense of humor as a culture. Nothing is out of bounds for us! We'll mock, ridicule, insult, pick on and put down just for the fun of it, on a regular basis!"

Don't be afraid to try everything: "We love it when you try to say that ridiculously difficult word in Spanish, and you'll be met with proud cheers if you brave a bite out of that horrifyingly spicy pepper, or down that shot of tequila."

Answers by Alejandro Suárez

United Kingdom

Britain phone booths UK united kingdom

Don't cut in line: "Queue jump — this is the only crime that the population would consider bringing back capital punishment for."

Don't ask how much money someone makes: "Instead play a curious guessing game by asking someone what they do, where they live, where they went on holiday, and figure it out by correlating this with their accent." 

Don't invite someone to your home: "Unless you know them very very well."

Answers by Thomas Goodwin



Don't say "Top of the morning to you": "I don't know how this phrase became associated with Irish people, perhaps it was used in the distant past. But it's not now, and it's just really irritating."

Don't attempt an Irish accent: "To us there is no Irish accent; there are Cork accents, Dublin accents, Kerry accents etc. For us an accent contains reams of unspoken information about a person (Urban/Rural, social status) aside from the locational information."

Don't be cheap: "The classic is in a rounds situation at a pub. If someone is offering to buy the first round, it is perfectly acceptable to say 'Oh I'm on a budget, I'll get my own.' It is not ok to join the round and then not pay for one."

Don't call the UK the mainland: "As far as we're concerned, France is the mainland."

Answers by Deirdre Beecher

An earlier version of this post was written by Paige Cooperstein.

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Guys are rocking this fresh men's fashion staple everywhere at the hedge fund conference of the year


ron geffner

At dinner, at lunch, between sessions, and grabbing coffee, delegates at SALT 2015, Wall Street's biggest hedge fund conference, are rocking cobalt blue blazers.

Ron Geffner, a lawyer with Sadis Goldberg, was wearing this perfect example at a penthouse cocktail party Wednesday night.

We may be seeing an uptick in the blazer's use (and trust us, we watch for this stuff) but our contacts in the world of men's fashion say this is a jacket every guy should pick up.

"A cobalt blue blazer is a timeless fashion staple to any man's wardrobe," said Judah Estreicher, founder of Baltimore-based tailor JBD Clothiers. "With many people trying to utilize and maximize their wardrobe, the cobalt blue blazer is a must have. It can be dressed up with dress slacks or down with fitted jeans to match any occasion."

So grab one. And try to grab one that looks this good.

We found a few others to get you started.

JKT New YorkF. Faconnable, SaksTopman, and Ted Baker.

Join the conversation about this story »

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Aston Martin is making a very risky bet on this electric car


Aston Martin DBX Concept_02

British luxury car specialist Aston Martin raised $305 million in funding— last week — to develop a new generation of luxury cars. 

One of the cars at the heart of this plan is the DBX.

First introduced earlier this year at the Geneva Motor Show, the Aston Martin DBX Concept is a striking and somewhat controversial all-electric GT crossover. 

Love it, like it, or hate it, no one really expected the crossover to be much more than a conceptual exploration into a niche market.

Obviously, Aston Martin believes that the DBX has the potential to be much much more than that.

"The DBX concept, has generated interest far beyond our expectations," Aston Martin Lagonda CEO Dr. Andy Palmer said in a statement. "The additional investment announced today will allow us to realise the DBX and other new luxury vehicles that will form the strongest and most diverse portfolio in our history."

Even more interesting, Aston Martin plans on keeping the all-electric powertrain from the show car, but a company spokesperson emphasized in an email to Business Insider that it's still early in the development process.

Aston Martin DBX Concept_08The DBX concept came equipped with drive-by-wire steering, auto-dimming smart glass, and a set of bespoke driver and passenger heads-up displays. 

There's no word how many of the futuristic gadgets from the show car will make it to the production car.

But will the DBX work as a production car in the same way as it did on the show stand? After all, we've seen our fair share car show starlets that don't pan out. 

One obstacle the DBX will likely have to face is its striking styling. Sure, the DBX has the sleek body lines we have come to expect from an Aston Martin GT car. But, the crossover throws off the traditional GT aesthetic by adding the the ground clearance of an SUV.

Aston Martin DBX Concept_01Yes, the crossover is everyone's favorite type of vehicle at the moment. However, most of the cars in this genre are more like traditional boxy SUVs than low-slung sports cars. 

Then again, the growing success of BMW's X6 Sport Utility Coupe is a signal that there could be demand for a swoopy crossover. 

For a major international car maker, such as BMW, spending hundreds of millions to develop an adventurous crossover is a risk that can be justified.

But Aston isn't a big multinational.

Since Ford sold off the boutique sports car maker in 2007, Aston has been under the control of a group of private equity investors from Italy and Kuwait. This makes Aston one of just a handful of major auto brands not under the direct control of a big global firm — other independents include McLaren and Tesla.

According to Aston Martin, the latest round of fund raising comes in the form of preference shares, half of which were issued on April 29, with the remaining — already subscribed for — to be issued in the next twelve months.

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Everyone's furious about this video of a guy throwing a girl across the room that was shown at a Cavaliers playoff game


Controversy sprung up Wednesday night at (and after) Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals in Cleveland.

The Cavaliers beat the Bulls but it seems as if the lasting story of the game is one of the promotional videos that the Cleveland Cavaliers showed in the stadium during the matchup.

We found out about this story from Buzzfeed who pointed first to a tweet from Bleacher Report's Ethan Skolnick:

While the video is clearly a parody, eventually it made it online and a firestorm ensued, with people screaming that the Cavs were promoting domestic violence. The team released a statement Thursday afternoon, reports TMZ.

If you haven't seen it, here's what you can expect ...

It starts out as a man and a woman, seemingly in a relationship, hear "Time Of My Life" (you know, from "Dirty Dancing") and begin wooing each other into dancing.

Cavs Gif1

The dancing intensifies ...

Cavs Gif2

Then we get to the moment where they're getting ready to mimic that iconic scene from "Dirty Dancing."

Cavs Gif3

That's the moment where the man sees that she's in fact wearing a Bulls shirt (and is therefore a Bulls fan) and throws her across the room instead of spinning her around (you can see it in the video below).

Afterwards, as she ices her head, they agree to just watch the game ... and "Go Cavs."

Cavs Gif4

This has started a storm on social media with people claiming that the video supports domestic violence.

As of this writing the Cavs have not yet issued any responses to the accusations, we'll update this post when they do.

Ultraviolet, a group that fights for women's rights, has issued this statement from one of its cofounders:


“The Cleveland Cavaliers should be ashamed of themselves. If the last year has taught us anything, it's that domestic violence is a very serious issue in America—three women die each and every day as a result of domestic abuse. With a national epidemic of violence against women, we simply cannot afford to have the NBA condone this kind of violence. The Cavaliers need to make this right. Whoever is responsible for this video should be fired immediately. "

UltraViolet has spent the last year holding the NFL accountable on domestic violence after a string of high-profile abuse issues, including Ray Rice. 


Here's the whole video:

Here's the statement from the Cavs, first reported by TMZ:

During a timeout at last night’s Cavaliers vs. Bulls playoff game at The Q in Cleveland, we ran a 1-minute in-arena video that was intended to be a humorous spoof on a popular commercial centered on a song and dance from the classic movie ‘Dirty Dancing.’ While the video was not intended to be offensive, it was a mistake to include content that made light of domestic violence."

Domestic violence is a very serious matter and has no place in a parody video that plays in an entertainment venue. We sincerely apologize to those who have been affected by domestic violence for the obvious negative feelings caused by being exposed to this insensitive video.

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21 helpful gifts for new grads under $50


invisible bookshelf

With graduation season rolling around, chances are high that someone you know is about to enter the real world. 

Sure, you can send a check, but why not pick out a gift that will be both practical and meaningful?

Here are 21 options that will honor this major milestone and help them get started in their new adult lives, without breaking your budget.

SEE ALSO: 5 Of The Most Lucrative College Majors For Any Undergrad

Help them stay informed no matter where they go.

Today's graduates prefer to get their news online, so a digital subscription to the New York Times or Wall Street Journal is the perfect way to help them stay current with world events. They'll have full access to everything online, and easy access to the day's headlines through apps on their smartphones.

Price: New York Times, 99¢ for the first four weeks, and $3.75 a week after that; Wall Street Journal. $12 for the first 12 weeks, $28.99 a month ($7.20 a week) after.

Make home-cooked dinners a snap.

After relying on dining halls and pizza delivery for four years, it's understandable that most recent graduates don't know how to prepare meals from scratch. A subscription meal service that delivers perfectly proportioned ingredients along with easy-to-follow instructions is a great way to ease them into cooking at home.

Business Insider's Megan Willett tested out several of the most popular services and found that Blue Apron was not only the most affordable, but also helped her to improve her culinary skills.

Price:$9.99 per person per meal.

Keep their batteries charged on the go.

Between finding a job and an apartment, new college grads are in for some long days. This tiny portable charger works as an external battery for iPhones, iPads, and Samsung Galaxy phones, so that they can keep on hunting.


See the rest of the story at Business Insider

DEAL OF THE DAY: This award-winning powerhouse charging station is 20% off right now


Screen Shot 2015 05 04 at 9.33.38 AM

This is the perfect docking station if you keep lots of gadgets on your desk.

The elegant Avantree Powerhouse multi-USB charging station lets you keep 4 devices propped up simultaneously. 

The built-in smart port enables this charging station to support every mobile device on the market — even older versions of Samsung tablets and mobile phones.

Best of all, the compact design will make your work desk, office station, or home look neater.

"This Avantree Powerhouse charging station really charges in a nice, minimalist, clean-up-your desk way," one reviewer wrote.

Avantree powerhouse charging station:$49.99$39.99[20% off]

Screen Shot 2015 05 04 at 9.33.43 AM


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A day in the life of a fashion blogger with an eye for China

Quit searching for the best rosé and just drink what Eric Ripert drinks


eric ripert wine

As a Frenchman, Michelin-starred chef, and practicing Buddhist, living the good life comes naturally to Eric Ripert. The man is a study in zen, elegance, and good manners. 

RoseCome summertime in the Hamptons (Sag Harbor to be exact), Ripert can often be found with a glass of rosé in hand, whether at home or on the sunsplashed patio at Pierre's restaurant (aka the unofficial French embassy to Bridgehampton). To boot, last September he opened a wine bar, Aldo Sohm Wine Bar, next to his much-lauded midtown Manhattan restaurant, Le Bernardin

Here, Ripert tells Business Insider about the rosés he likes to drink. 

What Ripert looks for in a bottle of rosé: 

As for his personal taste in rosé wine (she of youth, myriad hues, and diverse grape varietals), Ripert says, "I like rosés that are light in color — mineral, dry with little acidity." 

Advice for anyone who's new to rosé: 

"Over the years, Provence has become the world capital of rosé. Look for something not too strong in alcohol and not too inexpensive. There’s no such thing as a good bargain for a good bottle of wine," he tells us. 

The bottles he buys at home in the Hamptons: 

"For myself, my favorite rosé is the one and only Domaines Ott," says Ripert. Hailing from Provence, the label's current vintages can be difficult to find, even in New York City. We found the 2012 Chateau de Selle Rosé Coeur de Grain Côtes de Provence on InternationalWineShop.com for $95 (that's for a 1.5-liter bottle). It's a pale, bone dry rosé with notes of lemon, peach, vanilla, and cinnamon. 

Given the amount of time he spends in the Hamptons, Ripert has also familiarized himself with the many Long Island rosés. His favorites are from Wolffer Estate and Channing Daughters

"For myself, my favorite rosé is the one and only Domaine Ott."

The $18 Wolffer Estate rosé is easy enough to find locally (try the Whole Foods Wine Store), but you can order it straight from the winery, too. It's crisp, balanced, and extremely easy to drink (just add porch chair and sunset view).      

Channing Daughters has seven different rosés ($20-$25 per bottle) to choose from and they can also be ordered online. The 2014 Rosato di Cabernet Franc — with its floral, fruity aromas and long finish — is an excellent choice for seafood pairings; it'll certainly step up your next takeout sushi dinner.  

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My mom wrote me a letter every day to help me get through 6th grade — and her advice is timeless


skye gould letter

In 2003, Skye Gould was in 6th grade at North Middle School in Lima, OH. Her mom, Stephanie Skylar, was the Executive VP and Director of Marketing of Chief Super Market Inc., a local grocery chain.

Because Skylar worked full-time, she felt she might be letting 11-year-old daughter down during those formative years.

Thus began their special mother-daughter tradition: Lunchbox Letters.

On almost every school day that year, Skylar left a note in her daughter's lunchbox giving her guidance and encouragement. Many were emotional, explaining difficult concepts about a world that was not always kind or fair.

Gould, who is now 23 and a graphic designer at Business Insider, kept each of these letters in pristine condition in a Sketchers shoe box.

For her masters project at the School of Visual Communication in the Scripps College of Communication at Ohio University, she created a website showcasing the letters and Gould's reflections and commentary: "My mom wrote me these letters because she believed in the person that I was always meant to be," she writes. "I am eternally grateful for these reminders."

"I was overcome with pride and love for my daughter," Skylar says about seeing the project for the first time. "I broke down crying when I saw it."

Gould selected some of her favorite notes to share here (you can see more letters at her site and on the project's Facebook page.)

This is the box where Gould stashed all of the letters from her mom.

"Don't be quick to judge the girls at school — it's up to you to look for something good in each one."

"Compliment each girl in your class you want to get to know better. Think of something that would make you feel good and say something that important to each girl. Be the observer and see what happens. I don't think you'll see overnight results, but keep looking."

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Here's how to get a last-minute reservation at the hottest restaurants in town



Unless you're planning far in advance or have serious connections to the chef, it can be hard to get into the hottest restaurants in town. 

But thanks to new apps and websites that lock down same-day openings, getting a last minute reservation can be quick and easy. 

The only catch is that you'll have to pay fees for booking.

But if you're willing to shell out some cash to avoid those unavailabilities and impress your date, here's a list of the top last-minute reservation apps and websites.  


I Know The Chef 

I Know The Chef tracks down prime-time tables in New York, Miami, and Chicago.

The website is like a concierge service, offering you the option to create a profile based on your preferences. 

You can select your favorite drink options, your favorite dessert options, and your preferred seating arrangement.

Screen Shot 2015 05 06 at 12.17.25 PM

I Know The Chef has several membership options: a 20-day trial at $19.99, a quarterly membership at $70, an annual membership of $250, and an elite annual member at $500 (for full refunds on cancellations). Membership gives you access to unlimited reservation access. 

Killer Rezzy

Killer Rezzy lists restaurants in New York for $25. Top tables include BalthazarABC Kitchen, and Gotham Bar & Grill.

They also have a special Table for Two section for intimate gatherings, and a selection of the staff's favorite restaurants.


In New York and Los Angeles, Resy (created by Eater cofounder Ben Leventhal) delivers access to last-minute restaurants for anywhere from $10 to $50.  

Sometimes, if the demand is not too high, you can get access to reservations for free. 



Table8, available in San Francisco, Miami, Los Angeles, Washington DC, and Chicago, partners with top restaurants to offer tables at peak dining hours.

You can also get VIP access to restaurants that offer select seats to Table8 members. 

Fees typically range from $1 to $30 per reservation and depend on the demand during your selected day and time. 


Screen Shot 2015 05 06 at 12.16.10 PM

This Chicago-based app provides daily offerings of new openings at restaurants held exclusively for TableSavvy members and 30% off your meal when you book a table. The booking fee is $5. 


Screen Shot 2015 05 06 at 12.15.13 PM

Zurvu searches OpenTable to find daily openings. It also offers exclusive tables with its partner restaurants. They have automated wait-lists if you don't see a reservation you'd like, and the fee to book a table is only $5. 

If you don't want to pay a fee, try: 

Hot Tables 

Part of OpenTable, Hot Tables finds any cancellations in restaurants across New York, Houston, and Los Angeles and posts them in real-time to help you lock down a last-minute opening. 


OpenTable is the original restaurant reservation site. It has the largest number of participating restaurants around the world, and bookings are free.


TableSweep, a free service, scans fully-booked restaurants on OpenTable every five seconds to list reservations that open up right away. They search restaurants anywhere from the United States to Acapulco. The one drawback is you can only search for a specific restaurant, so it's best to come here if you already have a place in mind.  

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Here's what professional video gamers plan on doing when they retire — in their 20s


Team8 (1 of 1)

Professional video gaming is a young man’s game.

As players get into their mid-20s, their reaction time slows and the game’s mechanics become more difficult, says Diego “Quas” Ruiz, a player on professional League of Legends team Team Liquid.

Those who don’t retire because of diminished skills often tire of pro gaming’s long days and unusual living situation.

Retirement doesn’t mean sitting back on the beach, though. While players often earn upwards of $100,000 per year, they don't make nearly enough money to support themselves for the rest of their lives.

Many of Team Liquid’s players are fast approaching that mid-20s sell-by date. Of the team’s five players, Christian “IWDominate” Rivera is 24; Diego “Quas” Ruiz is 23; and Alex “Xpecial” Chu is 22.

We asked them what they plan to do when they retire.

Christian “IWDominate” Rivera

quas league of legends

Rivera has played League of Legends for five years — practically centuries in video game years. He's restless about his team’s inability to win the League Championship Series, the pro league in North America, and every loss brings up thoughts about retirement. While he wouldn’t put a concrete date on his retirement, he says he thinks about it "every day."

When Rivera retires, he'll likely stay in the video game industry in some capacity. Over the course of his career, he has amassed a sizeable following on social media sites and would likely parlay that into a career streaming on Twitch.

Many gamers have found they can make a lot of money through streaming, which involves playing video games on camera for an audience online. Although the streams cost nothing to watch, streamers can earn six figures by running ads, gaining sponsors, selling merchandise, and soliciting donations from the audience. 

In addition, Rivera says he'll look into coaching a pro League of Legends team or working for Riot Games, the publisher of League of Legends.

If none of those opportunities materializes, however, Rivera says he'll go back to college to finish his degree in psychology. He dropped out of the University of Miami with only one semester left.

Alex “Xpecial” Chu

LOL (65 of 138)While Chu has been playing since he was 18, he's uncertain about retirement, saying it's probably a few years off. He's equally wishy-washy about what he will do when it comes.

For a year before going pro, Chu attended University of California, Santa Barbara. According to Chu, if he were to retire tomorrow, he would finish his degree. However, as he gets older, he's less enthused about returning to school.

“I can't rule out going back to college, but I can't say that I want to,” Chu says. “If I go back to school, I need to have a really good guideline [for what I will use it for] or I'm just wasting another four years. I'd rather look for a job and not go back …”

Chu is unsure what that job would be. He talks about pursuing other opportunities in the gaming industry but is otherwise vague.

Diego "Quas" Ruiz

LOL (46 of 138)Before moving to the US to play League of Legends professionally, Ruiz studied mechanical engineering at a university in Maracaibo, Venezuela. While he doesn’t plan to continue those studies, he'd like to attend college in the US to learn programming — a skill he could use in a longterm career.

Ruiz says he would work while attending college. That work would likely involve coaching inexperienced players, which he did before going pro, or streaming instructional videos on Twitch or YouTube.

“It’s natural for me to give players solid advice,” Ruiz said.

Ruiz's retirement date depends on two factors: how well Team Liquid performs and his desire not to enter “the real world too late.” At most, Ruiz says he will play for another two years.

In many ways, League of Legends has served its purpose for Ruiz. He used the game to obtain an athletic visa to the US, a place he has dreamed about living in since childhood.

What about everyone else?

Because League of Legends and pro gaming are so young, it's too early to know how former pro-gamers are doing as a whole. However, Dan Dinh, the VP of Operations for Team SoloMid, one of the top League of Legends teams, offered up some helpful perspective.

"Some make the leap to a personality and make YouTube videos or stream on Twitch full time … Some go back to college. A lot of players go work for Riot. Others build a connection with other gaming companies while they are playing and work for them,” says Dinh, who's been involved with League of Legends since the beginning and watched many players retire.

“You see a lot of people in interesting places and a lot of people in not so interesting places," he added. "There's the good, the bad, and the ugly.”

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Report: Lamborghini could get $111 million from Italian government to build SUV in Italy


Lamborghini URUS

SUVs and crossovers are hot in the car business right now.

And based on the latest news from Italy, Lamborghini looks to be seriously considering one of their own.

The automaker has not yet officially confirmed a production SUV, but that could soon change.

This week, representatives from Lamborghini and the Italian government met in Rome to discuss tax and other incentive packages.

Sources close the situation told Bloomberg that the government is prepared to offer the automaker as much as $111 million in incentives to ensure that the SUV is Italian-made. 

According to Bloomberg, if Lamborghini does build an SUV, production is expected to generate as many as 300 jobs for Italy's needy economy.

Thus far, Lamborghini and its parent — VW Group's Audi— have not released any specific information concerning the an SUV. However, it could be derived from the Lamborghini Urus concept the company introduced at the 2012 Beijing Auto Show. 

Lamborghini UrusShould the Urus-based SUV enter production, it will be based on VW's MLB platform, which undergirds the Audi Q7, forthcoming Bentley Bentayga, and Porsche Cayenne, Motor Authority reported. 

At this point, the Lambo SUV is very much a matter of speculation, although it does appear that the Italians want to get out in front of any decisions about where the vehicle would be constructed. 

"We haven’t decided on the series production of the Lamborghini Urus yet," Audi said in an emailed statement to Bloomberg.  "Once this has been clarified, the question about the production location will be posed."

SEE ALSO: Aston Martin is making a very risky bet on this electric car

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8 creepy-sexy film noir flicks you can watch on Netflix right now



French film critic Nino Frank came up with the term "film noir" (translation: "black cinema") back in 1946 to describe Hollywood films with dark themes.  

Fast forward to today: you can peruse 100 of the most iconic film noir flicks from the past century in Taschen's weighty new tome, Film Noir. 100 All-Time Favorites

And currently, you can watch eight of these films on Netflix. Taken together, books and movies make for the perfect weekend binge. 

SEE ALSO: This awesome supercut shows the best driving scenes from Quentin Tarantino movies

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"The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari," 1920

Directed by Robert Wiene.

This silent horror film makes reference to social issues during World War I and juxtaposes reality with a dreamworld. If you enjoy plot twists, you will relish every second of this classic. 

"Sunset Boulevard," 1950

Directed by Billy Wilder.

This Oscar-winning film — for Best Score, Best Art Direction for a Black-and-White Film, and Best Original Screenplay  — makes unforgettable storytelling out of Hollywood's tendency to throw away talent with age. The plot is laced with love, murder, and plenty of tragedy.  

"The Conversation," 1974

Directed by Francis Ford Coppola.

Filmed during the Watergate scandal that prompted president Richard Nixon's resignation on August 9, 1974, this political thriller, an updated noir, questions the invasion of privacy through audio surveillance. The film reminds us that even the walls have ears. 

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The unbelievable backstory of the 18-year-old classified ad that refuses to die


In 1997, John Silveira was asked to come up with fillers for unsold ad space in the magazine he was writing for. The clock was ticking, and he decided to just place two ads of his own. He needed to get the page filled up fast and get on with his day.

The first ad that Silveira placed was a personal ad he'd written in hopes of finding a girlfriend. For the second, he chose a fake "wanted" classified. In it he included the opening lines of a sci-fi novel he'd been working on.

Here's the ad:

Time Travel Ad

It reads:

WANTED: Somebody to go back in time with me. This is not a joke. P.O. Box 322, Oakview, CA 93022. You'll get paid after we get back. Must bring your own weapons. Safety not guaranteed. I have only done this once before.

Posting the ad in the magazine was hilarious, an inside joke Silveira had with himself. He figured no one would really notice it.

He was wrong.

The ad led to an explosive volume of letter responses, a series of internet memes with millions of views. It was the inspiration for a critically acclaimed indie movie in 2011, "Safety Not Guaranteed," starring comedian Aubrey Plaza, 14 years after the ad ran.

And it still won't die.

Letters from prison

We heard about the story of the "Safety Not Guaranteed" meme, as it's known, on "Reply All," a podcast produced by Gimlet Media about the internet.

You can listen to it here:

It inspired us to dig deeper into the layers of its popularity. Lynn Levy of "Radiolab" interviewed Silveira and found out about the unintentional consequences the ad had on his life.

So first, that magazine Silveira was working for. It was called Backwoods Home Magazine, a small Oregon publication specializing in "practical ideas for self-reliant living." It's still active today and publishes six issues a year. Its website is a tribute to '90s internet; there's an animated American flag and Comic Sans MS headers. It's surprisingly kept up to date with select material that the editorial team puts online.

It has a small but seemingly loyal readership. Topics Backwoods Home covers include weaponry and home canning. It has, Levy says, a "survivalist vibe." It's not People or US Weekly or Vogue, and it definitely does not have the audience of a renowned print publication.

It was the night before the September 1997 issue was to go to print when Silveira and his boss ran into the space issue in the advertising section. There was room for two ads and barely any time to fill them, so Silveira threw in his own — the "Safety Not Guaranteed" ad being one of them.

It was brief and intriguing, and Silveira expected a handful of funny responses to the P.O. Box he listed.

He got tons of replies, from curious to desperate to potentially crazy. Silveira read some of his favorite responses to Levy during their interview.

"How are we going? Why is it dangerous? Why do we need weapons? What kind of weapons should I bring?" one reply read.

Another asked if there would be toilet paper — or "do I have to bring my own?" — while another was penned by a bunch of felons writing from prison. "We would like to go back and not get caught."

The joke ad, the space-filler, became a weird beacon of hope for readers who had major problems or devastating histories. Silveira said the letters from prison were especially tough.

He told Levy:

Dozens, in prison, asked me to go back in time and talk them out of committing the crime that put them away. Others (and not a few) were from people who begged me to go back and save a loved one from a tragic death. Those letters were so heartbreaking I almost couldn't read them and I felt a certain amount of shame for not anticipating the false hope I placed in so many hearts.

This emotional can of worms was an unanticipated consequence of Silveira's flash decision to post the ad.

The responses went on for a few months, but eventually letters were no longer overflowing Silveira's mailbox. It seemed as if the madness was coming to an end.

But not so fast.

'You're the man now, dog!'

It’s tough to trace incidences of the "Safety Not Guaranteed" ad appearing between 1997 and the early 2000s, but we know it was read on NPR's "Car Talk" radio program on March 31, 2001, though we don't know what sparked the show's producers to choose to include a four-year-old meme in that particular installment.

Silveira claims it was featured in a "Tonight Show" monologue, but the internet has turned up no proof of that.

So now it's 2004, and a new internet sensation was gaining popularity: YTMND.com. The acronym stands for "You're The Man Now, Dog" — a quote from the movie "Finding Forrester."

In this bizarre moment from the movie, Sean Connery’s ornery character barks the line at his black protégé.

You're the man now dog

A man named Max Goldberg heard the quote in the movie’s first trailer, and "immediately recognized the power of the catchphrase." He purchased the domain and went to work.

The original page features a tiled photo of Sean Connery and WordArt-era text, with a sound loop of the ludicrous quote, and to this day the site remains home for a perfect formula for internet humor: static image + text + sound = unlimited possibility.

The rules seemed simple. Choose a photo, pair it with audio that enhances the level of weird humor, and give it a catchy URL.

So how does this involve "Safety Not Guaranteed"? OK, stay with us.

People loved "You're The Man Now, Dog." Remember that trope from a few years ago, "Shit ______ say"? It was kind of like that. With YTMND, other people began creating inspired spin-offs, hosted on their own sites, but with the same formulaic approach to get the same punch line. Goldberg began archiving all of the spin-off sites in another section of the original YTMND URL, giving all of the inspired meme-makers ultimate visibility on his already major platform.

So on October 27, 2005, user "AxlBonBach" created an inspired YTMND site titled "Safety Not Guaranteed." Using the URL www.timetraveler.ytmnd.com, he Photoshopped a serious-looking man with a mullet next to the ad, and chose "Push it to the Limit" — the popular montage song from "Scarface" — as the audio.

People loved it. "LMAO," one user wrote. "This is bound to be an instant classic."

Chunes comments on Safety Not Guaranteed

While "Safety Not Guaranteed" as it appeared on YTMND was many folks' first time seeing the ad, some users criticized the post, claiming that it was plagiarized or simply old news (they had supposedly seen the ad on Jay Leno).

AxlBonBach paid no mind to the critics. He'd never claimed he created the ad itself, and the site continued to flood with fans of "Safety Not Guaranteed."

Don LaFontaine gets involved

The popular YTMND formula paid off for the classified ad. The added mullet-man and jazzed-up soundtrack had successfully spawned an army of replicas and iterations, bringing us to January 2006, when a user who went by "Scrow" claimed he had found a Civil War-era photo in his attic that looked eerily similar to the time-traveling mullet-man.

He made his own YTMND site to publicize his findings (pictured), which breathed new life into the nearly 10-year-old "Safety Not Guaranteed" classified ad.

Civil War Safety Not Guaranteed

From there, a user named "Blackadders2" emailed Don LaFontaine, the iconic voice actor who had recorded more than 5,000 film trailers, asking him to create a movie-trailer style reading of the ad.

LaFontaine came through, and once again another YTMND site was made featuring an iteration of "Safety Not Guaranteed," this time with a sloppily Photoshopped image of LaFontaine's face over the mullet photo and the newly recorded trailer as the audio sample.

YTMND users were stunned and impressed, many of them convinced the voice they were hearing was not LaFontaine's.

Blackadders2 replied to comments calmly, maintaining he had simply emailed the guy and hoped that he'd play along.

LaFontaine Safety comments

When LaFontaine died in September 2008, that particular YTMND page resurfaced and amassed tons of traffic. A new generation of internet users visiting the site after LaFontaine's death had never seen it, nor had they heard of the "Safety Not Guaranteed" meme.

Around that time a screenwriter named Derek Connolly saw the Don LaFontaine version of the "Safety Not Guaranteed" meme and was inspired to write a script for a movie. He, like most everyone who became a fan of the meme through YTMND, didn't know the ad's backstory. He told IndieWire he "immediately wondered if it was real."

Regardless, Connolly wrote the script for "Safety Not Guaranteed" in 2010, and a man named Colin Trevorrow was signed on to direct the film.

Neither had ever heard of John Silveira.

Silveira writes again

It's important to remember that throughout the 13 years the meme had taken on a life of its own, Silveira had stayed silent on his role as the creator. And he also didn't know anyone was writing a script based on the ad. So it seemed serendipitous when Silveira chose to write the story of the "Safety Not Guaranteed" ad as he knew it for Backwoods Home Magazine in 2010.

This was the first time he publicly declared he was the author of the ad.

Backwoods Home Magazine Screenshot

Silveira, amused by the whole thing, explains the story.

He goes through the issue of the unfilled space and the responses he got. The only mention that YTMND and the "meme-ification" receive is this statement: "Some guy with a bad mullet has run the ad with his picture as if it's his."

From there, Trevorrow — who has already committed to directing the "Safety Not Guaranteed" movie and who has already lined up producers, financiers, and the actors — comes across Silveira's tell-all on Backwoods Home Magazine. It's unclear as to how. Unless Trevorrow is an avid reader of Backwoods Home Magazine, the idea that he happened to stumble upon the article is unlikely, so maybe they had alerts out for the phrase "Safety Not Guaranteed" or similar.

Regardless, Trevorrow is blown away. He needed to call Silveira, who, remember, has no idea this movie is in the works.

Trevorrow recalled that moment in a 2012 Wall Street Journal essay:

We could have simply changed the words in the original ad, moved a few sentences around to create a cheap knock-off of the real thing. But I wouldn’t do it. Not just because it would be a cynical and inauthentic move — but because the source material was flawless.

Trevorrow calls up Backwoods Home and is put through to Silveira. It wasn't long before the two of them met for a meal and got to know each other better.

Trevorrow described Silveira as very different from the "Mullet Man: [Silveira isn't] acid-washed jeans tucked into action hero boots, whittling something lethal with a hunting knife while telling me in no uncertain terms to go to hell."

Instead, he met a gray-bearded poet from Oregon with a soft voice.

Safety Not Guaranteed

The two bonded over their ideas of who the fictional man behind the ad would be.

Silveira, after all, had written it as part of a sci-fi novel. They both agreed, "He’d be a real man, one who has experienced true loss and pain. He’d be erratic, possibly brilliant, and full of contradictions—an outcast who hates being misunderstood while simultaneously not giving a damn. He’d be a survivalist and a poet. And, yes, he’d bring his own weapons."

The movie was made, and in 2012 it made its debut at Sundance Film Festival. At the premiere, Silveira was introduced and received a standing ovation from the crowd.

Loyal YTMND users remembered the life of the "Safety Not Guaranteed" meme before it became "Safety Not Guaranteed" the movie, and discussion was rampant online about this next-level meme installation, truly, the finale it deserved after so many of its iterations appeared on the internet over the past 15 years.

Before "Safety Not Guaranteed" the movie became mainstream (it lived on Netflix for a while), the trailer was posted to Reddit, where a majority of the comments made references to the meme's pre-Hollywood life: mullets, "Push it to the Limit," and YTMND.

Reddit users comment on Safety Not Guaranteed

The movie did all right. Roger Egbert gave it three and a half stars out of four. Trevorrow is now directing "Jurassic World," the highly anticipated movie that's expected to be a blockbuster this summer.

And as for Silveira? He still writes for Backwoods Home Magazine, publishing articles about climate change, the Second Amendment, and the benefits of homeschooling.

Silveira summed up the life of his ad, the tiny one used to fill some space one night in September 1997: "What lies in the future? ... for all the writing I've done, they are probably the only words I've written that will outlive me."

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