WHAT THE HELL ARE WE DOING? – DATING IN THE MODERN AGE (10 STAGES IN RELATIONSHIPS)

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Dating these days is a joke. And not a very funny one at that. I don’t know if it’s because our generation started dating before we hit puberty or whether the Kardashians of the world have ruined what was once a beautiful thing, but the truth is that dating these days is horrible.

Half the damn time you won’t even know if you’re actually dating or not. What was once explainable using a single digit binary code now requires the decimal system.

It’s no longer “Are you dating?” or “Are you not dating?” There are now different stages, one hardly distinguishable from the other – at least while on the inside.

Looking from the outside in, on the other hand, gives shape to the confusing and convoluted dating culture that we have created for ourselves. Here are the more easily recognizable stages:

1. THE ONE-NIGHT STAND.

Regardless of whether you met on the street, in a coffee shop, at your yoga class or in the park, the first date tallies up to one thing: either a successful or failed one-night stand.

It doesn’t matter what the initial intentions are – not as if you know what the other person’s intentions are anyway – on the first date you’re either sleeping together or not. Depending on the results of this stage, you’ll move on to stage 2.

2. THE SECOND GLANCE.

Seeing as how you were probably highly intoxicated the first time around, you decide to see this person one more time. This decision is most likely the result of you not being certain whether or not the person was good in bed.

You managed to black out sometime in the middle of it all and can’t figure out whether the person was the best or worst sex of your life. Round 2 it is.

3. THE BOOTY CALL.

You have officially dubbed him/her, or have been dubbed, worthy of sexual pursuit. Congratulations! You can now move on to phase 3: the booty call. Now it is acceptable for you to text this person at odd hours, preferably when you’re intoxicated or about to be intoxicated, to come over.

In this stage, it isn’t recommended that you refrain from calling the person or see him/her without drinking heavily or taking drugs – it may be awkward. I mean, you’ve only been intimate a dozen times or so… slow down already.

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4. THE FRIEND WITH BENEFITS.

This is the first stage when you actually matter to the person more than any other slab of meat would. You put in the time and effort, your liver has certainly paid for it and it is now time to finally get to know the person you’ve been having sex with all this time.

Talking is recommended, but beware of throwing any romance into the mix. You’re friends. Not lovers. Keep all the lovey-dovey romance stuff to yourself and, whatever you do, do not look him/her in the eyes when in the midst of coitus. When you’re done, finish with a firm handshake or a high five.

5. THE DATE.

Not sure how you did it – most never make it this far – but you did it… you are now going on your first official date. You’re not yet “dating” in the traditional sense, but you are going on dates.

I understand this can be confusing, but what about this process isn’t? The first couple of dates are crucial as they will decide whether or not you will be moving forward to the following stages or if the two of you will be “too busy” to see each other in coming weeks.

This is one of the trickiest stages as often it can lead to being bumped up a few stages ahead of schedule. Or, as I have already mentioned, it could be the end of the road.

6. THE FLING.

After a couple of dates, it turns out that you aren’t really interested in each other. You enjoy sleeping with each other and even enjoy each other’s company, but you can’t see yourself together in the long run.

The feeling is mutual – you both know that whatever it is that the two of you have going on won’t last very long, but you decide that you want to have fun while it does. Flings are fun and usually harmless. However, this stage can look a lot like stage seven: the stepping-stone.

7. THE STEPPING-STONE.

This stage is like the fling stage with one critical difference: Only one of you knows that the relationship won’t last. While you might be beginning to consider the other a real partner, the other thinks of you as a means of getting into someone else’s pants.

Well, maybe not exactly a means of getting there, but a comfortable resting area while you look for a better watering hole. You like the sex and you even like the person you’re having sex with… you just don’t want to be with him/her for the long haul.

You consider this person a necessary stepping-stone before you can settle with the right person – or he/she considers you as such. One of you is going to get hurt after this process… but you may have skipped it entirely and moved on to stage 8.

8. THE BACKUP.

You have now been dubbed – or vice versa – good enough to be with. Unfortunately, you’re not good enough to be with right now. You’re good enough to keep around in case things don’t work out with anyone else, but to date you, really date you, at the moment would be silly.

These sorts of relationships get incredibly complicated, neither party really knowing what is going on as neither wants to completely let go.

The good news is, you have a safety net to fall on in case nothing else works out. Or at least you do at the moment. No one wants to be a backup indefinitely.

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9. THE BOYFRIEND/GIRLFRIEND.

Wow. I mean, seriously. You should be proud of yourself. Making it all the way to official status in our day and age is impressive – well done. You can now throw on the romance and allow yourself to finally have feelings for the individual.

You can start to be yourself and begin to actually care for the person you have been “intimate” with for oh-so very long. The only thing that you should keep in mind is that getting here doesn’t guarantee that you graduate from the dating scene to marital status.

In fact, most relationships of such caliber fail miserably. But cheer up! You can at least update your Facebook status and make all your friends jealous!

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10. LOST IN TRANSLATION.

This isn’t so much a stage as it is the platform holding all these stages. In this day and age just about everything gets lost in translation, but mostly because there is very little communication to actually translate.

Most people keep themselves closed off and sheltered, regardless of how intimate they’ve become with another person. Everybody is afraid to get hurt and afraid of possibly, inadvertently, giving up the opportunity to get into someone better’s pants.

Most of the time you won’t know what stage you’re in, were in or are headed to. You won’t be sure if the person cares about you or is only using you for amusement. The theory is that, with time, you’ll either find someone who won’t take you down this road.

Maybe it will come with maturity. Maybe you won’t be alone forever. Or maybe you’ll get to run through these stages for the rest of your life. No one knows! That’s half the fun!

Credit: Paul Hudson – Elite Daily

Happy National Prime Rib Day!!! – Slow-Roasted Prime Rib au Jus

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Instructions

For the prime rib:

 
Rinse the roast under cold water, pat dry with paper towels, and place on a cutting board. Following the line of the bones, cut the meat away from the bones in 1 piece.

  • Season the meat and the bones all over with the salt and pepper. Rub the meat and bones all over with the garlic.

Fit the meat back onto the bones, making sure to match the meat and bones up where they were cut apart, and tie together between each bone with butcher’s twine.

  • Remove the roast from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200°F and arrange a rack in the lower third.
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Place the roast fat-side up (the bones will be on the bottom) on a roasting rack set in a roasting pan.

For the jus:

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Set a fine-mesh strainer over a medium saucepan; set aside. Season the beef bones with salt and pepper.
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Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large, heavy-bottomed pot with a tightfitting lid over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add half of the bones and sear until golden brown on all sides, adjusting the heat as needed so the bottom of the pan does not burn, about 6 to 8 minutes total. Remove the bones to a large plate and repeat with the remaining bones.
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Add the wine and simmer, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon, until the wine is reduced by half, about 3 to 4 minutes.
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Return the bones and any accumulated juices to the pot. Add the beef broth, measured salt, and measured pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the jus is deeply flavored, about 15 minutes. Uncover, increase the heat to medium, and simmer until the liquid is reduced to about 2 1/2 cups, about 10 minutes.
  • Remove and discard the bones. Pour the jus through the strainer and discard the contents of the strainer. Let the jus sit until the fat rises to the surface, about 5 minutes. Using a spoon, skim off and discard the fat. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Cool to room temperature and refrigerate tightly covered until ready to serve. To reheat, bring to a simmer over medium heat.

To finish roasting the meat:

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Place the roasting pan on a wire rack, tent the roast loosely with foil, and set aside in a warm place for at least 30 minutes or up to 1 hour. Meanwhile, increase the oven temperature to 450°F and keep the rack in the lower third.
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When the roast is done resting, remove the foil and crumple it into a ball. Place the ball of foil under the bones of the roast to prop up the less exposed area of fat.

Credit: Chow

Leader of the Pack – No Segregation

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Physical Education for Schools in the 60’s – Do you think we should go back to the old system?

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Knowledge is Power – The Future is Now

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Happy National Pretzel Day!!! – What type of Pretzel do you like to munch on?

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It’s National Pretzel Day! Centuries ago, Catholic monks created the first pretzels from scraps of leftover dough. The unique knot shape represented the Holy Trinity, but the significance of this symbol has evolved over the course of history. During the 17th century, pretzels symbolized the bond of marriage. This is where the phrase “tying the knot” originated! Today, traditional soft pretzels are popular at sporting events, carnivals, and festivals.

Hard pretzels are a fairly new invention compared to the original soft pretzels. According to legend, in the late 1600s a Pennsylvania baker forgot a batch of pretzels in the oven. The over-baked treats were dark and hard, but the baker sampled one anyway. He was pleasantly surprised by the crunchy deliciousness. Hard pretzels are now one of the most popular snack foods.

What type of Pretzel do you to munch on?

The Dragon’s Philosophy – Trust the Process

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Weekend Inspiration – Failure leads to your Reinvention (Conan O’Brien’s 2011 Dartmouth College Commencement Address)

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Former Olympian, Bruce Jenner talked to Diane Sawyer about his transitioning to a Man to a Woman & many other topics – What are your thoughts on Bruce Jenner & the Kardashian Family?

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During Diane Sawyer’s 20/20 special last night with Bruce Jenner, the historic two-hour interview covered a variety of topics, including how his family reacted, when he began to cross-dress, what his three ex-wives knew, and more.

  1. The First Time He Tried on a Dress Was 8 or 9 Years Old
  “I marked the closet so when I put it back, I had put everything back in the exact same spot so I wouldn’t get caught. And at that time, I didn’t know why I was doing it, besides it just made me feel good,” the 65-year-old said of trying on his mother Esther’s dresses. He would also sneak out in her clothes. “I would put a scarf over my head because my hair was short.”
  2. The First Person He Told Was First His Wife Chrystie Scott
  The pair, who share son Burt and daughter Cassandra, were married from 1972 to 1981. “I didn’t go heavily into it back then. I said, these are my issues, this is what I deal with. I think [I said], ‘Oh I do a little cross-dressing, a little of this, a little of that,” he told Sawyer. “Like most women they think, ‘Oh I can fix that. I’s going to be okay.’ Nurturing. I never really hardcore said, ‘Look, I don’t know if I’m going to make it in this male gender here my entire life.'” (His second marriage with Linda Thompson failed partially because of his gender transition.)
  1. His Gender Identity is Separate from His Sexual Orientation
  “I was never attracted to the guys — the sexuality was totally different from what I’m dealing with. I’m not gay. As far as I know, I’m heterosexual. I’ve never been with a guy,” he said. “Sexuality is who you’re personally attracted to, who turns you on, male or female. But gender identity has to do with who you are as a person and your soul and who you identify with inside.”
  2. His Sister Pam Jenner Kept His Secret for 30 Years
   “He told me he had always felt that he should’ve been a girl. I said what? I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t understand it,” she told Sawyer. “I didn’t understand really what he was saying and then he told me, ‘I used to dress up in your clothes when no one was around.’ I gathered myself together. Okay, we can handle this. My big, gorgeous brother felt like he was always a girl.”
  3. He Began Transitioning in the ’80s
    Jenner would often cross-dress and converse with others following his motivational speeches. “I would walk off the stage and I would feel like a liar. I would say, ‘You just got no guts,'” he told Sawyer. “And then literally [I would] go up into the hotel room, change clothes, and go out and walk around.”
  1. Kris Jenner and Him Might Still Be Together If It Weren’t For His Transition
    The star believes that he and the Kardashian matriarch, who share daughters Kendall and Kyle, might still be married if if weren’t for his gender transition. (Kris filed for divorce in September 2014 after 22 years of marriage.) He also was on hormones when they first met and was a 36B bra size. “We never went to therapy. We tried to deal with it on our own,” he said, noting that Kris caught him wearing dresses. “It was tough on her. Kris is a good woman I got no complaints with her. Honestly, if she would’ve been really good with it and understanding, we’d probably still be together.”
  2. His Daughters Caught Him Wearing Women’s Clothes
    Jenner said Kim Kardashian walked away and drove for a bit after she found him cross-dressing one time. He texted her to see if she was okay, but the two didn’t speak much about it afterward. Kendall and Kylie’s laptop, which was on security mode, also caught him changing. “They came home and turned on their computer and — oh my god, it was me,” he recalled. “It was the only full-length mirror in the house.”
  1. He Was Terrified to Tell His Children the Truth
    Jenner struggled to tell his 10 children and stepchildren about his transition, and told son Brandon Jenner first. “[I said] that I’ll always be there and I’m not going anywhere,” he said. Brandon added to Sawyer: “I feel like I’m getting an upgraded version of my dad, of a parent.” Kim has also been the most supportive, and it’s been the toughest for Khloe Kardashian to deal with. He later commented on how he felt about hiding the truth while filming Keeping Up With the Kardashians. “I had the story. We’ve done 425 episodes I think, over almost 8 years now and the entire run I kept thinking to myself, ‘Oh my god. This whole thing, the one real, true story in the family was the one I was hiding and nobody knew about it.'”
  2. He Contemplated Suicide
    One of Jenner’s darkest moments was when it was leaked to paparazzi that he had plastic surgery to shave down his Adam’s Apple in 2014. “I thought, wouldn’t the easiest thing to do right now — and I could see where people get to that — is go in the room, get a gun, boom. Pain’s over, it’s done, go to a better place. And I thought, nah. I can’t do something like that. I mean, I want to know how this story ends.” 
  3. Sawyer’s Interview Will Be Jenner’s Last as Bruce     
In time, Jenner – who said he’s a Republican and Christian – will next reintroduce himself to society as a woman. “I’m saying goodbye to people’s perception of me and who I am,” he said. “I’m not saying goodbye to me because this has always been me.” Sawyer also noted that the star did express interest to do another interview next year.

Credit: ABC News

What are your thoughts on Bruce Jenner & the Kardashian Family?

(Money on my Mind) McDonald’s will close 700 stores this year – What do you think their mistakes were? Will they survive?

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McDonald’s closed 350 stores in the first three months of 2015 and is planning to close an additional 350 by the end of the year.

The struggling fast food giant recently announced it was closing 350 poorly performing stores this year, but on Wednesday McDonald’s admitted it had closed a previously unannounced 350 stores in the U.S., Japan and China.

“Earlier on Wednesday, McDonald’s reported an 11% decrease in revenue and a 30% drop in profit for the first three months of year, a continuation of its troubles in the last two years as it has struggled to compete with new U.S. competitors, a tough economy in Europe and a food safety scare in Asia,” Fortune reported.

McDonald’s started falling into a steep decline after customers began seeking healthier alternatives, a decline which may prove terminal for the world’s largest fast food chain.

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It was definitely a sign of the times when Hillary Clinton stopped to eat at Chipotle while campaigning in Iowa earlier this month, two decades after her husband famously stopped at a McDonald’s while jogging.

“The world is starting to ask what they’re truly eating in their food — and the new conglomerate of natural grocers and restaurants are trailblazing the way into an entirely new economic environment,” Anthony Gucciardi wrote. “In other words: people are simply tired of shoveling garbage into their bodies, and they’re not going to put up with it anymore.”

And price conscious consumers aren’t just limited to McDonald’s nowadays: natural food outlets such as Whole Foods are offering organic foods at the same price as a Big Mac with fries.