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January 2012 (141 posts)
A lot of Gayle's work happens outside the office as well, at one of the dozen or so events—private movie screenings, Broadway premieres, glittering benefits—she's invited to each week. At the end of a long day, when the rest of us are feeling a bit bedraggled, it isn't unusual to run into Gayle in the ladies' room, shimmying into some knockout gown (a pile of rejects flopped over the top of the stall) and needing a hand with her zipper. Then there's the next day's download: Whether she ended up losing her BlackBerry at the Drake concert, enduring a hot flash on the red carpet at the Time 100 dinner, or wearing the same dress as Alfre Woodard at the Tony Awards, we find ourselves tearing up with laughter and marveling at the ground she covers. Says Gayle, "A friend of mine recently told me, 'You're the only person I know who in the space of one week could go to a state dinner at the White House, a clearance sale at Neiman Marcus, a Carrie Underwood concert, and Shake Shack with your kids and love it all.' And I really do!"
At least for the next few weeks. And so it goes in the world of New Year's Resolutions. Which is why I was so pleased to learn about the 50/50 challenge. The 50/50 challenge is the kind of year-long-commitment that actually sounds fun and enriching and—what!—like I might actually do.
The idea is to read 50 books and see 50 movies in 2012. (That's about one book and one movie a week, mathematicians.) You can sign up on the website, but don't be scared by words like "commit" and "rules." You don't have to know what you're going to read or watch. They don't even have to be "good." As the website says, "Go ahead, read Kardashian Konfidential, we won't tell."
Then came the gunshot that changed everything. In this must-read post, Kelly writes movingly about one of the unexpected gifts of Giffords' long road to recovery. Excruciatingly, this bright, articulate woman has had to relearn how to talk, and, as Kelly writes, "After she was injured, friends and family would often interrupt her, saying the words they thought she meant to say. They were trying to help, but I saw this only added to Gabby’s sense of powerlessness." He admits that he himself had trouble being patient, but was buoyed by remembering his wife's own immense patience. Read the post for the amazing story of their conversation with the renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking, a portrait of an incredibly strong marriage, and the sweetest anniversary present ever. Then, apologize to your husband for arguing over who's taking out the recycling next.
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A: The stylists I spoke to all agree: The best approach is to get regular "mini" trims every six weeks. (Were you, like me, skeptical about this suggestion, thinking it might be motivated by greed? Stylist Cristophe of Beverly Hills says you shouldn't be charged for these kinds of trims.) You should have a goal: Are you aiming for an all-one-length bob? A shaggy, piecey look? Once you've settled on the goal, your stylist can give you shaping trims with that in mind. In general, keeping the back short while you grow out the layers at the crown can ease you into a longer style; don't cut the top or the sides until they're as long as the back, says stylist Mario Russo, at Salon Mario Russo in Boston.
Keep in mind: It will take about nine months to grow your hair to the length that allows you to cut it into a completely new style.
"Pixar films don't get finished; they just get released." Notes on the creative process from the animation experts.
What dwarves, elves, and wizards have to do with helping you to finally keep those new year's resolutions.
"We can all have a better life if we make one." Compassionate advice for people with unemployed spouses.
The Life-Lifter: The Million Person project is about sharing stories, making change, and spreading love.
This year, there are few long-term projects that I have been working on that I've seriously been considering abandoning. Number one is cooking. I am not sure if I am better cook that I was a decade ago, despite my experiments with intimidating ingredients like shellfish and kale, not to mention new cuisines like Indian. Why not give it up for 2012 and eat nothing but fast, easy chicken breasts? The same goes for playing the guitar. It takes me months to learn one measly song. I am tired. I have kids. I have a job in the morning. Why not relax at night and watch TV instead?
Then I stumbled this short film by Denis Chapon on Laughing Squid. Every day for the last three years, Denis has drawn 12 drawings, each on piece of leftover paper he found in his company's copier room. At the end of the 795 days, he had 9,540 illustrations, which, when put in order made this four minute, two second long film:
Creativity even when you're afraid.
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So Haslip—who trained as a painter in her native Alabama—started inviting local kids to her basement for art workshops she called the Little Black Pearl (LBP). "People thought I was crazy," she admits. But she soon received a $466,000 grant that helped her recruit local artists as teachers. Her goal: to help kids imagine a future for themselves beyond their blighted blocks. "I wanted them to see people who look like them, making a living as artists," she says.
By 2005 LBP was so popular that Haslip, aided by the city, opened a 40,000-square-foot art and design center, complete with ceramic and painting studios and a darkroom. LBP now serves hundreds of kids each year (many of whom are wards of the state). Students learn to market and sell their work in the space's gallery; proceeds go to support LBP's programs.
In September Haslip, now 46, realized her latest dream: an on-site high school, which welcomed 175 kids, most of whom are academically challenged or at risk of dropping out. She says she hopes LBP's unique resources will help them "want to go to school again." As she notes, "Art touches kids in ways that other things can't."
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