Photo: Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

1. Best Find...
I don't make a habit of giving shoes to people I interview. But when the delightful La La Anthony—wife of basketball player Carmelo and a former MTV star—complimented my crystal-heeled Miu Miu pumps, I decided to surprise her with a pair when she made her off-Broadway debut in Love, Loss and What I Wore, by Nora and Delia Ephron. The problem was, Miu Miu doesn't make my shoes anymore. But they do make these—just as stunning, I think. La La thought so, too.
Maple Bacon cupcake

Photo: Molly Rundberg

2. Best Thing I Ate...
While judging the Vendy Awards—a cook-off among New York's incredible street food vendors—this fall: the Cupcake Crew's maple bacon cupcake. I knew I liked maple and that I also liked bacon, but who knew how much I'd like them together?

Get the recipe
Soul music

Photo: Courtesy of Amazon

3. I'm Suddenly Nuts About...
Southern soul music. When Bruce Springsteen told me about this genre at a recent dinner party—it's a big ole mix of blues, country, gospel, and rock 'n' roll—I went home and downloaded as many songs as I could. Let me tell you, they really bring out my seventh-grade dance moves! I now think of him as DJ Bruce.

Gayle's Southern Soul Playlist:

1. "Throw Back Days," by Mel Waiters
2. "Your Husband Is Cheatin' on Us," by Denise LaSalle
3. "Dance Party," by Quinn Golden
Alicia Keys

Photo: Getty Images

4. I Love a Great Broadway Show...
And I adore Alicia Keys, so when I heard she'd produced—and composed the score for—the new play Stick Fly, I called to find out the story. Though she's never done theater, Alicia said she was "wide-eyed, excited, open to anything." When I asked if she was nervous about opening night, she said, "Nope!" She's hoping the show will help turn a new generation on to Broadway.

Tererai Trent

Photo: Debbie Yazbek

5. My New Favorite Motto...
"Run away from toxic people. Instead, surround yourself with others who are positive, who support you and want you to succeed."

Tererai Trent, a rural Zimbabwean who escaped an abusive marriage and earned a PhD, shared this advice at Oprah's Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa. The school's first seniors—they graduate this month—gave her a standing ovation.
Pan Am

Photo: Courtesy of ABC

6. I Can't Stop Watching...
Pan Am. When I was growing up, my father worked as an engineer in Turkey, and we always flew Pan Am. The stewardesses were so glamorous! When they gave me a set of those golden wings, I felt very grown-up. Not only is the show's plot full of mystery and infidelity, they get the period details just right.

10 life-changing gifts you can give yourself


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