What do you do when you’re a bored, invincible teen and it’s 10-below outside? Strip down to your socks and shorts and run headlong into the polar vortex, natch. It’s what a growing avalanche of Midwestern kids are doing this week as part of the oddly compelling “Snow Challenge,” which entails rolling around in the snow for 30 seconds before uploading your video evidence to Instagram or Vine or Twitter. Call it the landlocked Polar Bear swim.
And now, just for kicks—and to remind you to be grateful for making it through your teens—some prime examples of the shriek-inducing fad, before it melts away:
Blog Posts by Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff
- Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff | Parenting – Wed, Jan 8, 2014 5:04 PM EST
What do you do when you’re a bored, invincible teen and it’s 10-below outside? Strip down to your socks and shorts and run headlong into the polar vortex, natch. It’s what a growing avalanche of Midwestern kids are doing this week as part of the oddly compelling “Snow Challenge,” which entails rolling around in the snow for 30 seconds before uploading your video evidence to Instagram or Vine or Twitter. Call it the landlocked Polar Bear swim.Read More »from What's the Teen 'Snow Challenge'? Trust Us, Don't Ask.
made a case for the latter in her essay, “It’s Time to Be Bored.”In an age when adults can barely stand a second alone without texting or tweeting or checking stocks on their smartphones, it’s no wonder that kids are often pushed into lives of constantly structured activities — anything to help them sidestep boredom. But this week a leading UK educator Read More »from Next Time Your Kid Says, 'I'm Bored,' Be Grateful
More on Shine: Kids of Tiger Moms Are Worse Off
“It’s all too easy for parents to be sucked into a competitive busy-ness, ensuring that children are constantly occupied and stimulated,” writes Julie Robinson, education and training director for the UK-based Independent Association of Prep Schools, in the association’s magazine, Attain. “We should not fear boredom however. Quiet, reflective time is just as important as purposeful activity…youngsters are not well served by being forced into an exhausting stream of clubs and extracurricular activities.”
More on Yahoo: Pediatricians: Recess 'Crucial' for Kids
Robinson, whose organization
- Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff | Healthy Living – Tue, Jan 7, 2014 5:32 PM ESTFrom the Bikini Bridge Tumblr.Been to Bikini Bridge yet? It's a hell of a place — one where a woman's hip bones protrude sharply enough to create an over-tummy span of stretchy fabric, perfect for skinny selfies that get Twitter worked into a collective, body-shaming frenzy.
What am I talking about? Good question. Before this morning, I was innocent too.
But then came the flood of #bikinibridge tweets, and the Daily Dot's story of an Internet hoax, and at least one shamefully clueless body-image story, and I put it all together. For those still in the dark, allow me to break it down: "Bikini bridge" (which truly is the name of the aforementioned fabric span between hip bones, apparently), like "thigh gap," is a thing, at least within certain slender-lady circles. There's even a Tumblr to prove it. But the concept hadn't had its moment in the sun, so to speak, until some pranksters at 4chan (a social media site where users can post random images) got involved.
That's where, according to the Daily Dot, some anonymousRead More »from 'Bikini Bridge': Here's What's Ticking Everybody Off
Which new ad is so creepy-awesome it'll either have you running to therapy or posting it to your Facebook wall with "LOL"? That'd be Old Spice's latest runaway hit, "Smellcome to Manhood," which debuted on Sunday during the NFL playoffs and has since reached more than 660,000 views on YouTube.
The campaign, for the brand's line of Re-Fresh Body Sprays, features bizarre, freaked-out moms stalking their romantically inclined teenage sons in a series of commercial spots. All the while they lament, through a catchy anthem, "Old Spice sprayed a man of my son, now he's kissing all the women and his chores aren't done. He was just my little sweetie, tiny fingers hands and feet, now he's touching, kissing, feeling all the women because Old Spice ..."
It's quickly going viral, with Twitter abuzz about the odd new sales pitch. Fans there have called it "wonderfully bizarre," "horrifying," "terrifyingly wonderful," "brilliant" and "hilarious."
Old Spice has historically had a knack for appealingRead More »from Moms Stalk Teen Sons in Buzzy New Old Spice Ad
- Amy Chua. Photo: NBC NewsWire via Getty ImagesRemember "Tiger Mom," the Yale professor who brought us the most buzzy and controversial child-rearing philosophy since helicoptering and attachment parenting? Well, now the ire-raising author of "The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother," Amy Chua, who argued that strict, Chinese-style moms are best, is back — and likely to raise even more hackles this time around. Her latest book, "The Triple Package: How Three Unlikely Traits Explain the Rise and Fall of Cultural Groups in America," deems eight cultural groups here superior to others. And, though the book is not due out until February, Twitter criticisms are already flying, with many calling Chua "racist" and a self-promoter.
But the reality, notes the book, co-written by Chua's husband and fellow Yale professor Jed Rubenfeld, is that "uncomfortable as it may be to talk about," some "religious, ethnic, and national-origin groups are starkly more successful than others." ThoseRead More »from Tiger Mom's New Book Stirs Up Culture Wars
- Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff | Love + Sex – Fri, Jan 3, 2014 1:59 PM EST
A feel-good European ad campaign for Coca-Cola has left many feeling bad in Ireland, where the spot's image of a joyous same-sex wedding has been swapped with a straight one.
"Reasons to Believe," a minute-long ad airing in the Netherlands, Norway, and the United Kingdom (above), shows a string of negative moments—a guy tripping in front of a crowd, a heated argument—being offset by uplifting ones, such as a mom icing a cake, a group of young folks dancing, a newborn getting a kiss on the cheek, and two men celebrating their nuptials. But Ireland's version (below) has cut the male newlyweds out, instead showing a man and woman walking down the aisle.
"Not cool Coca-Cola Ireland!" tweeted Dublin Pride 2013. Other Twitter users wrote, "Bad form," "Coca-Cola degrades love with excuse for cutting gay wedding segment from new Ireland ad," "Don't bow to bigotry, Coca-Cola!" and "It sickens me that Coca Read More »from Coke Under Fire for Dropping Gay Wedding Scene From Irish Ad
- Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff | Team Mom – Thu, Jan 2, 2014 2:21 PM ESTMelissa Shang, right, with YingYing. Photo: YingYing ShangWhen American Girl announced this week that its 2014 Girl of the Year doll was a blond ballet dancer named Isabelle, at least one avid fan was crestfallen: 10-year-old Melissa Shang of Pennsylvania. And so Melissa, who has muscular dystrophy, did something about it: She launched a Change.org petition asking Mattel (which owns American Girl) to create a doll with a disability. The online petition has picked up 15,000 signatures in less than a week.
"I want other girls to understand what it's like to be me," she tells Yahoo Shine, explaining the impetus behind her effort — a joint one between herself and her supportive sister, 17-year-old YingYing. While American Girl does sell wheelchairs, crutches, and hearing aids for its dolls, Melissa was hoping for a doll with a story.
"She was really disappointed," YingYing tells Yahoo Shine about when Melissa saw leaked photos of Isabelle on an Instagram American Girl doll fan community.Read More »from 10-Year-Old Girl Petitions for American Girl Doll With a Disability
- Image via FacebookBarbie is once again at the center of a lively conversation on body image, this one fueled by a simple Facebook post that imagines a plus-size version of the notoriously skinny doll. "Should toy companies start making plus sized Barbie dolls? 'Like'= Yes, absolutely! Comment=No, bad idea," asks Plus Size Modeling, an online guide. It's received more than 40,000 likes and over 2,600 shares since December 18.
The image of the plus-size version — apparently borrowed from the site Worth 1000, where it won a 2011 design contest to enlarge celebrity icons through photo magic — features a thicker waist and thighs, plus a triple chin, which has raised the ire of many commenters. "Get rid of the chins! Not all fat folk have multiple chins!" wrote one woman. She prompted a wave of chin critics, including one who added, "Ya the triple chin is too much. Most overweight people (me included) only have a double chin no matterRead More »from Plus-Size Barbie Image Sparks Heated Debate
- Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff | Work + Money – Mon, Dec 23, 2013 3:01 PM EST
Granddaughter Stacy Salazar at the renovation. Photo: Courtesy KBPIChristmas came early for Colorado octogenarian Vivian Gallegos, who was treated to a home makeover beyond her wildest dreams thanks to the efforts of her granddaughter and a local radio DJ.
It started, as many good deeds do, with a Facebook post, this one by KBPI morning host Willie B. "What's something you've always wanted to do but couldn't because $$$ kept you from doing it???" he asked his fans in November. Out of more than 800-plus answers, it was Stacy Salazar's that captivated him the most: "Replace the carpets for my 90-year-old Grammy and fixing all the little things around her house. Just a small thank you for not giving us kids up to foster care when our parents died," she wrote.
"It was a very unselfish answer to a question designed to be selfish," Willie B, whose real name is Steve Meade, tells Yahoo Shine. He adds that, when he messaged her for more details, he found out the rest of the poignant story.Read More »from 89-Year-Old Grandmother Treated to Surprise Holiday Home Renovation
- Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff | Parenting – Fri, Dec 20, 2013 2:39 PM ESTChrist has officially been removed from Christmas. At least that was the case at one middle school on Long Island, New York, where its holiday-concert chorus sang a version of "Silent Night" that had all references to "the savior" and "holy infant" removed by school administrators. But the effort to avoid alienating people seems to have backfired.
"It's offensive," one father of a student at the Ralph J. Osgood Intermediate School in Kings Park told CBS New York. "If you're going to remove words to not offend other religions, what about the religion that that song belongs to, which is Christianity?"
The fifth-grade students sang the edited classic — which mixed and matched verses in a way that left out the most religious references — at the concert, on Dec. 12. But that upset some parents, who felt the song was sacred and should have instead been left intact or instead been performed as an instrumentalRead More »from School Omits 'Christ' from 'Silent Night,' Upsetting Parents