It’s the things that scare you the most that you have to do

Curated by CLAI

Income Ladder Depending on Where You Live: Climbing the income ladder occurs less often in the Southeast and industrial Midwest with the odds notably low in Atlanta, Charlotte, Memphis, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Columbus. Some of the highest rates occur in the Northeast, Great Plains and West, including in New York, Boston, Salt Lake City, Pittsburgh, Seattle and large swaths of California and Minnesota.

Chances of Ending Up in the Top Fifth, For a Child (NYTIMES)

Chances of Ending Up in the Top Fifth, For a Child (NYTIMES)

Remarkable People on their Careers: “It’s the things that scare you the most that you have to do.” – Ruth Reichl

Is it ME or I? When was “Earthquake” Invented?

Curated by CLAI

ME V. I: Is it “you and me” or “you and I”? Even the best of us get confused. Take the quiz!

  • Kim, her sister and (me/I) went shopping on Black Friday.
  • Here’s a picture of my son and (me/I) at the museum.
  • Between you and (me/I), I think he’s crazy.
  • Julie, Lisa, Michele and (me/I) are meeting up at the ballpark.
  • The lawyer told my husband and (me/I) that while we would win the case if we filed, the return wouldn’t be worth it.
English by the Book (Alexander Stegmaier, John Tomanio)

English by the Book (Alexander Stegmaier, John Tomanio)

HISTORY OF NEW ENGLISH WORDS: When did our favorite words crop up in English?

  • 14th c: university, earthquake
  • 15th c: dictionary, globe, lovesick
  • 16th c: mathematics, dictatorship, potato
  • 17th c: Americanize, hotel, womanizer, ice cream
  • 18th c: homesick, roommate, terrorism
  • 19th c: cello, bicycle, mascara, mom, photograph, rubber band, subway
  • 20th c: clone, database, inbox, neurobiology, recycle, supernova, techno, vegan

Save on 2015 Travel and French Kiss Up to 5 Times

Curated by CLAI

8 WAYS TO SAVE ON TRAVEL IN 2015: The Russian ruble is tanking (as of late December, a dollar will get you 94% more than it did a year ago). Here are some other countries where you would get at least 13% more cash for your cash if you arrived there right now: Argentina (31%), Chile (16%), Mongolia (15%), Israel (13%) and — yes — Sweden (16%) and Norway (21%).

It was also a bad year for the euro, which means right now is a good time to go to Europe: You would receive about 10% more for your dollar in countries from Portugal to Slovakia.

French Kisses: When You Greet a Friend, How Many Times Do You Kiss? (Bill Rankin, radicalcartography.net)

French Kisses: When You Greet a Friend, How Many Times Do You Kiss? (Bill Rankin, radicalcartography.net)

FRENCH KISS: Most French two or four kisses, with three kisses popular in the South. 18% of Corsica go for five kisses!

Wealfies & Fake Brand Names

Curated by CLAI

WEALFIES: Wealfies are selfies taken in a luxury context that confirm one has money, status and social currency. The paradigmatic wealfie is the image you take of yourself getting on or off a private jet, possibly on your way to New Year’s Eve in Morocco or Anguilla.

But to the extent that people so closely identify with the things that they buy and receive, the picture shot of the Hermès or Chanel or Prada gift “unboxed” and then posted on Instagram is another kind of wealfie. Of course, there are so many ways to broadcast status these days.

Read more: The Season of the Wealfie (NYTIMES)

Chrisdien Deny

Chrisdien Deny (Gilles Sabrie, NYTIMES)

FANCY BRANDS WITH FANCY GIBBERISH NAMES: Eager to glaze their products with the sheen of international sophistication, many homegrown retail brands have hit upon a similar formula: Choose a non-Chinese name that gives the impression of being foreign. Some Chinese appear loath to spend their disposable income on locally produced fashions.

  • Chrisdien Deny, a retail chain with more than 500 locations across China, sells belts, shoes and clothing with an “Italian style” — and a logo with the same font as Christian Dior’s.
  • Helen Keller, named for the deaf-blind American humanitarian, offers trendy sunglasses and classic spectacles at over 80 stores, with the motto “you see the world, the world sees you.”
  • Frognie Zila, a clothing brand sold in 120 stores in China, boasts that its “international” selection is “one of the first choices of successful politicians and businessmen” and features pictures on its website of the Leaning Tower of Pisa and Venetian canals.
  • Other apparel brands include Wanko, Hotwind, Scat, Orgee and Marisfrolg (the L is silent)and Biemlfdlkk.

Read more: Adidos and Hotwind? In China, Brands Adopt Names to Project Foreign Flair (NYTIMES)

Older Bond Girl. Divorce Rates Down

Curated by CLAI

BOND GIRLS – AND JAMES BOND: Over the course of the Bond films, only 3 times has a female co-star been older than the actor playing James Bond. That includes Monica Bellucci (50) and Daniel Craig (46).

As a woman ages, she finds attractive the photos of men in her age range, or perhaps a few years younger. But it’s much different for men, who prefer women in their early 20’s even if the man is 30, 40 or 50.

Read more: James Bond Finally Falls for a Woman His Own Age (Washington Post)

James Bond and Bond Girls: Italian actress Monica Bellucci (R), French actress Lea Seydoux (L) and British actor Daniel Graig (C) unveil the next James Bond Film, 'Spectre' at Pinewood Studios in Iver Heath, Britain.

James Bond and Bond Girls: Italian actress Monica Bellucci (R), French actress Lea Seydoux (L) and British actor Daniel Graig (C) unveil the next James Bond Film, ‘Spectre’ at Pinewood Studios in Iver Heath, Britain. The movie will be released in Britain theaters October 2015. (EPA/FACUNDO ARRIZABALAGA)

DIVORCES FALL: It is no longer true that the divorce rate is rising, or that half of all marriages end in divorce.

  • 70% of marriages that began in the 1990s reached their 15th anniversary (excluding those in which a spouse died), up from about 65 percent of those that began in the 1970s and 1980s.
  • Of college-educated people who married in the early 2000s, only about 11% divorced by their 7th anniversary. Those without college degrees, 17% were divorced,
  • If current trends continue, nearly ⅔ of marriages will never involve a divorce.
  • The median age for marriage in 1890 was 26 for men and 22 for women. By the 1950s, it had dropped to 23 for men and 20 for women. In 2004, it climbed to 27 for men and 26 for women.
  • There are many reasons for the drop in divorce, including later marriages, birth control and the rise of so-called love marriages.

 

Read more: The Divorce Surge is Over, But the Myth Lives On (New York Times).