elizabeth green

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A Guide to Pretending to Read Literary Classics

<i>A version of this article also appeared on the Page Views page at the New York Daily News:</i><p>Let's be honest: There are far too many classics for anyone to realistically read them all. Many of them are long and depressing, or about subject matter that isn't the most appealing (like miserable people …

Linguistic Mistakes Everyone Has to Stop Making in 2014

Perhaps more than others, writers can fall into bad habits. (By <i>writers,</i> in this case, I mean anyone who puts his or her thoughts down in words.)<p>Words are everywhere, and many are strung together recklessly. People tend to pick up errant usages as easily as black velvet picks up lint.<p>The latest …

In Defense of Being Mary Jane and Flawed Fictional Black Women

When I first heard BET had a new show about a 30-something professional black woman struggling to keep her personal life intact, I'll admit I was underwhelmed. Another emotionally suppressed black woman barely staying afloat as she juggles work, family, friends and love. Yay. But after watching the …

Women of Color

How Seeking Your Passion Boosts Self-Esteem

Have you ever had times in life when you simply weren't happy with yourself? You didn't feel good about your appearance. You weren't exercising or eating right. Your job was drudgery and your life was boring.<p>All of us experience periods when we're down on ourselves, when nothing we do seems good …

Self-esteem

11 Lessons That 'Jane Eyre' Can Teach Every 21st Century Woman About How To Live Well

Charlotte Brontë's "Jane Eyre" was published on this day in 1847.<p>While I'm a very big fan of most Victorian literature, "Jane Eyre" made an impression on me that other novels formerly hadn't. "Jane Eyre" is not just a gothic romance novel. It's a bildungsroman, a coming-of-age story. It is the …

Associated Press News

The 76 Best Online Shopping Sites to Buy From

Get your clicking finger at the ready.<p>Shopping online can mean wading through endless Google Shopping results, or scrolling through old-faithfuls like ASOS and Zara without knowing where else to turn. To help you fulfill all your shopping wants (needs?) this season, we've created the definitive …

24 Words That Used to Mean Something Negative

Sometimes words move up in the world. Their meanings change with time, becoming more positive—a process linguists call amelioration. Here are some …

Rocket Fizz Soda Taste Test: These Flavors Are Not Your Everyday Soda

If there's one thing you can say for sure about Rocket Fizz it's that their soda flavors are inventive. They don't stick to the traditional Cola or lemon-lime flavors. No, the folks at Rocket Fizz are pushing the limits when it comes to sodas. And it doesn't look like they're going to stop any time …

Rick Perry Voodoo Dolls Sold By Texas Abortion Rights Activist To Benefit Planned Parenthood

A Texas woman has a solution for any pro-choice activists who have ever fantasized about doing harm to the state's anti-abortion Gov. Rick Perry (R).<p>The Houston Press reports that Michelle Sinched is selling voodoo dolls of Perry's likeness, who she calls "Governor Goodhair," for a minimum of $25 a …

Your Next Pair Of Shoes Will Be Printed To Order

Soon, a pair of custom-made sneakers could cost hundreds, instead of thousands.<p>Custom-fitted shoes do more than increase comfort; they can improve performance and even reduce the risk of injury. But made-to-order shoes are also prohibitively expensive: A single foot mold, for example, can cost …

Scent Camera Called Madeleine Stores Memories As Tiny Perfume Capsules

For her masters degree at London's Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design, artist Amy Radcliffe invented a camera that records scents instead of images. The camera, called a Madeleine -- named for a pastry in a Marcel Proust novel that triggers 3,000 pages of childhood memories -- allows …

Same-sex marriage becomes law in England and Wales

<b>Same-sex couples will be able to get married in England and Wales after new measures became law.</b><p>The government's controversial legislation on the issue received Royal Assent on Wednesday.<p>The Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat leaderships all backed the proposals, which were finally approved …

Same-sex Marriage

Call of nature: mobile phone charged using urine

It brings new meaning to answering a call of nature – engineers have for the first time charged a mobile phone using urine.<p>They have created a fuel cell that uses bacteria to break down the liquid waste to generate electricity.<p>They were then able to plug in a mobile phone to charge up its …

Energy

An aspirin every other day cuts colon cancer risk for women, study says

For women, an aspirin every other day may keep colon cancer away, a new study suggests.<p>Women who took low dose aspirin on alternate days for 18 years saw a 20 percent drop in their risk of developing colon cancer, according to the study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.<p>The new report, …

Florida Man Who Woke Up Speaking Swedish Is ID'd By Sister

One of the odder stories of the day is that of 61-year-old Michael Boatwright, "a Florida man who awoke speaking only Swedish, with no memory of his past, after he was found unconscious four months ago at a Southern California motel," as The Associated Press writes.<p>Now, <i>The Desert Sun</i> in Palm …

Skechers sends out $40 million in refund checks

More than half a million checks are in the mail to people who bought toning shoes from Skechers USA. The $40 million payout is part of a settlement agreement reached with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) last year.<p>The FTC had charged the company with using allegedly deceptive advertising to …

Make Your Hair Look Thicker With These 4 Styling Tricks (VIDEO)

No matter which beauty trends we uncover backstage at Fashion Week, healthy, full hair is always in style. But if you're among the 30 million women in America who suffer from hereditary hair loss, you probably think clip-in extensions or wigs are the only ways to achieve this look. Well, you've got …

Easy DIY Wall Art Ideas That Showcase Unexpected Design

Your walls are a central focus of every room in your home, so why not use them to make a statement? When paint and wallpaper just aren’t enough to …

Five Easy Meals Every Woman Should Know How to Cook

5 meals every woman should know how to make<p><i>*Note: If fresh seasonal fruits are sparse, try dipping dried fruits such as apricots, figs, apples, and dates.</i>

5 Awesome Resources For Learning Today's Most Marketable Skills

<i>"I'm excited by the possibilities." - Bill Gates</i><p>One characteristic connecting many of history's greatest minds is a fanatical desire for continuous learning. Bill Gates is notorious for reading Time Magazine cover-to-cover so he can go on to his next activity having learned something new (even if …

A New Harry Potter Audiobook is Coming

Investigating the world’s weird books could easily take someone down an endless rabbit hole of unusual and unexpected publishing choices. We’ve …

Books

Last Week's Most Popular Stories

Now that we've passed the halfway point of 2013, let’s look back at the most popular stories on mentalfloss.com from the last six months.<p>1. 45 …

Stephen Hawking

How to Make Easy Banana Bread - The Easiest Way

Adrien Broner: Will His Trash-Talking Ways Turn off Boxing Fans?

It is said that the sport of boxing needs a villain.<p>For the past several years, that villain has been personified by boxing's pound-for-pound king, Floyd Mayweather, who despite his immense in-ring talents, has carefully crafted a persona designed to polarize fans, and create a thin line between …