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Seven days, three speeches: one week in the life of having a black president

After seven years, Barack Obama is in his last months in the White House. When he leaves, nothing will be the same. For black people, nothing will be resolved<p>Like so many people I have unwisely loved, Barack Hussein Obama intrigues and infuriates and enrages and inspires and uplifts and disappoints …

Almost everything you buy, from cereal to mascara, is killing the rain forest

I’m an environmentalist, and I try to make green choices. I take public transportation, recycle and program my thermostat. But the care and keeping of our forests always seemed far removed from my urban self. At least, it did until I visited a coffee farm in the Ecuadorian rain forest. There, I saw …

L'Oréal

Eating Right Can Save the World

“Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are.” That’s what the French lawyer Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, who happened to have a deep love of gastronomy, wrote in 1825. A century later, a diet-hawking American nutritionist named Victor Lindlahr rendered it as: “You are what you eat.” I …

My Five New Year’s Revolutions

When I realized that this column would be published the day before we celebrate New Year’s Eve, I decided to write about the resolutions we …

5 Ways To Be A Climate-Friendly Eater In 2016

If you're one of the 25 percent of Americans who's extremely worried about the threat of climate change but not sure how to lower your own carbon footprint, consider starting with your diet this new year.<p>The type of food you buy and eat doesn't just affect your health; it also shapes a global food …

9 Facts About Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park was officially dedicated on September 4, 1915, making it America's tenth and highest elevation national park. With a …

A workout at work: 12 office exercises

Raise the roof (20 reps)<p>While marching in place, push toward the ceiling with your palms up and thumbs almost touching your shoulders. Make it harder by holding water bottles.<p>Our ratings:<p>Not too<p>Very<p>Difficult?<p>Sweaty?<p>Humiliating?<p>Our thoughts:<p><b>Pro:</b> One person found it "comforting" to dust off a 1990s …

Fitness

16 Books About Race That Every White Person Should Read

Earlier this week, actor Matt McGorry gave a shout out to Michelle Alexander's powerful book on mass incarceration, <i>The New Jim Crow</i>. "I'm embarrassed that I didn't come across the information in this book sooner," McGorry wrote on Facebook. "But that's white privilege for ya... Burning crosses and …

Microaggressions Matter

They may not always be ill-intentioned, but the slights illuminate deeper problems in America.<p>When I was studying at Oberlin College, a fellow student once compared me to her dog.<p>Because my name is Simba, a name Americans associate with animals, she unhelpfully shared that her dog’s name was also …

Downplay

16 simple ways to reduce plastic waste

These easy things can dramatically decrease the amount of plastic trash you make.<p>Plastic is found in virtually everything these days. Your food and …

Curriculum for White Americans to Educate Themselves on Race and Racism–from Ferguson to Charleston

When teaching about race and racism, I invite participants to consider the following analogy: <i>Think of racism as a gigantic societal-sized boot.</i><p>“<i>Which</i> …

I, Racist

Why I don’t talk about race with White people<p>What follows is the text of a “sermon” that I gave as a “congregational reflection” to an all White …

Letter to My Son

“Here is what I would like for you to know: In America, it is traditional to destroy the black body—it is heritage.”<p><i>And have brought humanity to the edge of oblivion: because they think they are white.</i><p>—James Baldwin<p>Son,<p>Last Sunday the host of a popular news show asked me what it meant to lose my …

Jackie Robinson

18 things you can clean in the dishwasher (aside from the dishes)

One of the home's most underappreciated household multi-taskers, the dishwasher does an awesome job at cleaning hubcaps, oven knobs and shin …

Meet Walnut, the crane who fell in love with her zookeeper

Chris Crowe has a girlfriend. She stands a leggy 5 feet tall, weighs a trim 11 pounds, and sports a set of wings like you’ve never seen. Walnut the white-naped crane is the most genetically distinct endangered crane on the block — which means she needs to have been making babies, like, …

35 Books You Need To Read In Your Twenties

From Cheryl Strayed's Wild to Amy Poehler's Yes Please, these are the books you need to get through your own roaring twenties. Inspired by this post.

Why I’m Coming Out as a Christian

I’m not scared that non-believers will make me feel like an outcast. I’m scared that Christians will.<p>Who do I need to prove my faith to—and why …

10 of the best waterfalls across the United States | CNN Travel

4 Misconceptions About Self-Discipline

Self-Discipline is one of those things that we all know we need but that no one likes to talk about or learn about. Sometimes we even shudder at hearing or seeing the word. Perhaps though it's because most people have a skewed sense of what self-discipline really is and what it isn't.<p>Generally …

For rare species, the future is in the freezer as zoos manage a conservation effort

The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute is at the forefront of an ambitious attempt to save animals threatened with extinction by studying them relentlessly, putting information in a “stud book” that follows them from birth.<p>The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute is at the forefront …

13 Ways to Change Your Body Without Starving or Over-Exercising

1. <b>Stop when you feel full enough.</b> It's easy to sit down at a meal and overeat when you know you're not getting your next meal for sometimes 8+ hours later. These large meals can stretch out our stomachs and actually leave us hungrier than if we chose to eat a smaller meal and supplement with small …

The Weird Strategy Dr. Seuss Used to Create His Greatest Work (And Why You Should Use It, Too)

In 1960, two men made a bet.<p>There was only $50 on the line, but millions of people would feel the impact of this little wager.<p>The first man, Bennett Cerf, was the founder of the publishing firm Random House. The second man was named Theo Geisel, but you probably know him as Dr. Seuss. Cerf proposed …

52 Tips to Get Unstuck in 2014

Sometimes I dread the new year for this uneasy feeling of making resolutions that may not stick.<p>The problem with resolutions is the follow through.<p>I would get lazy, lost or overwhelmed by something "more important."<p>Each time I would gain some momentum in my life, my mind would create these negative …

This Is Why You Can Never Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

We start every new year with the feeling of a clean slate, a time that we can set our goals and intentions and actually make the changes we want to see in our lives, to get rid of those nagging bad habits and usher in some good ones. But by February, many of our resolutions are already abandoned or …

8 Ways To Practice More Positivity In 2014

It's impossible to go an entire year without navigating through some challenges -- but despite any setbacks, many are approaching 2014 with an optimistic outlook. Almost 50 percent of Americans believe their fortunes will improve in the new year. Is 2014 going to be the year of positivity?<p>According …

Mindfulness in Everyday Life: 5 Sure Steps to Achieve New Year's Resolutions

We do the same thing every year. New Year's Eve comes and goes, and our New Year's resolutions, promised so fiercely at the stroke of midnight, are dismissed shortly thereafter, fading away over time, like friends who've moved to another city. It is the dirty not-so-little secret of New Year's …

Why Some People Almost Always Reach Their New Year's Resolutions

<i>Photo Credit: istockphoto.com</i><p>"Life can be pulled by goals just as surely as it can be pushed by drives." -- Viktor E. Frankl<p>I was at a gathering a while back and overheard someone say, "Oh, I never set New Year's resolutions anymore. I usually don't hit them so what's the point?" Ouch! That's a …

14 You-Boosting Questions for a Soul-Filling 2014

<b>1. How do you want to feel on a typical day?</b><p><b>2. What do you believe about yourself and your life that makes you feel that way?</b> (Practice those thoughts.)<p><b>3.</b> Imagine you feeling that way (envelop yourself in that feeling, right now, from the top of your head to the tips of your toes). <b>Being wonderfully</b> …