Blog Posts by Piper Weiss, Shine Staff

  • CVS lawsuit makes us wonder: What's the oldest food in your kitchen?

    Ice cold Tab. anyone? Ice cold Tab. anyone?
    In my mother's cabinet is a can of sardines from the 60's. I'm sure of this because whether or not the food's gone bad, the font expired in 1972. It's always a bad sign when you don't recognize the packaging, or worse it gives you flashbacks. And do they even sell sardines anymore? Mom grew up in the era of suburban bomb shelters, which may explain why she eats canned fish and doesn't believe in expiration dates. Especially when it comes to pantry items.

    Mom's not so different from CVS. This week, the drug store giant agreed to compensate the state of Pennsylvania and its consumers after stocking it's shelves with expired food products. According to the website WalletPop:

    "The settlement announced today by state Attorney General Tom Corbett is the latest in a string of cases nationwide that includes New York, California and Connecticut. In Pennsylvania, consumers had complained about expired over-the-counter drugs, infant formula, baby food, dairy products and other food."

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  • 5 common complaints and how to make them successfully

    You don't have to shout to have your complaint heard. (ThinkStock Images)You don't have to shout to have your complaint heard. (ThinkStock Images)No one likes a whiner. That may be why we keep our mouths shut and eat the $25 entrée cold, pay the bill we don't owe, or put up with the plaid suit our partner pulls out of the closet for yet another wedding.

    It's not that complaining is wrong, it's just that there's a right way to do it. A few key phrases can turn your position of underdog into top dog, without so much as a raised eyebrow. The website Jezebel recently posted helpful advice from expert complainers on how to gripe effectively. But what about the people who field the complaints? The poor souls who serve as sounding boards know the difference between a tantrum and a genuine problem. Only one is solvable. However common or complicated the situation, speaking up can make all the difference. But first you need to know how to be heard.

    The complaint: "My cable company is overcharging but no one will listen to me."
    The recipient: Better Business Bureau (BBB) executive Alison Southwick
    No one fields more complaints than

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  • 7 celebrity dictators: When stars turn into tyrants

    Bieber commands his kingdom with fury (Getty Images)Bieber commands his kingdom with fury (Getty Images)Justin Bieber, a little Napoleon? Well he is 5'4. And he mobilized his militant army of 4.5 million fans to bombard some kid. Albeit, on the phone. It all started when a Detroit teen named Kevin Kristopik hacked into a Bieber pal's account in hopes of aquiring the pop star's contact information. The crooner fired back by posting "everyone call me 248-XXX-XXXX :) or text". Not only did he phone-bomb the kid, he tricked his fans, who thought they were calling Beebs, into doing it. That is some crazy Ivan the Terrible s---.

    And to think, just a few years ago, he was another kid with windswept hair and first-day-without-braces teeth. Now he may face a civil suit from Kristoik's family. There's just something about fame that turns people into tyrants. No matter how small.

    "Seize her!"
    Maybe Beebs got the idea from a fellow power-monger. Back in May, musician M.I.A released the personal contact information of New York Times journalist, Lynn Hirschberg. After Hirschberg published a

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  • Exclusive: 6 tips from the Millionaire Matchmaker...for the Millionaire Matchmaker

    Patti Stanger is poised to take some of her own advice to heart (Millionaire Matchmaker/Bravo Network)Patti Stanger is poised to take some of her own advice to heart (Millionaire Matchmaker/Bravo Network)What happens when you've built a company based on making relationships work, and your own relationship ends? You get back out there. Patti Stanger, Bravo's Millionaire Matchmaker, announced this weekend via tweet (how else?) that her engagement to long-time partner Andy Friedman was over.
    "I just ended my relationship with Andy. It hit me really hard that I want kids in my life. You have to agree on the non-negotiables," she wrote.

    When we spoke with her recently, she was already refashioning her ideas on love: "Love isn't forever. It's supposed to be given freely, not demanded. And the old if you love someone set them free saying is true."

    Now that she's free, Stanger has her own work cut out for her. A partner to Patti doesn't just need a million bucks and a hankering for spawn. He needs to be someone who's comfortable dating in the media spotlight, who doesn't flinch when producers need another take, and who doesn't mind his penis being called a pecker.

    Shine spoke with Stanger

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  • Mrs. Uptight: the middle-aged female stereotype

    Laura Linney clutches a fancy throw pillow in Laura Linney clutches a fancy throw pillow in Over the years, film and TV have fostered the birth of all kinds of female stereotypes: the Fast Talking Dame, The Fashionista, The Woman who has to hold Matthew McConhaughey upright and of course, the Manic Pixie. Coined in The Onion as the girl sent to "re-adjust the attitude of even the broodiest, most uptight male protagonist," she is every male's on-screen fantasy. Flaky, free-spirited, and possibly dying (see Sweet November and Garden State). If she's the girl you don't bring home to mom, then Mrs. Uptight is mom. The common thread? Both seem born from the mind of a disgruntled male teenager. (Though they're usually not, for the record.)



    Usually in her late 40's, perfectly coiffed and obsessed with 'French Country' home decor, she's the re-enforcer of stupid rules. The kind of rules that real women don't have time to care about: constant coffee-table coaster demands, 6 throw pillows to every bed, perfect Christmas dinners, no shoes in the house, no eating off of paper plates,

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  • Study: Guys have a new reason for cheating (this one's really awesome)

    Oh and apples, apples make guys cheat. (Oh and apples, apples make guys cheat. (We're supporting them. No really, we're making more than they are and it's making them want to put their penis in things.

    New research suggests men are more likely to cheat if they make significantly less than their girlfriends.

    Author Christin Munsch developed the study after hearing from a male friend explain his reason for cheating. Here's what he told her: "she made all the money, she had all the friends, and he'd moved up there to be with her. He felt completely powerless."

    His gripe may be one reason Munsch found that more men cheated compared to women, with a disparity of income a contributing factor. Musch's guess is that they experience a "gender identity threat." They're supposed to be bread winners and instead they're watching the fourth hour of the Today Show and cleaning out the kitty litter. So naturally they have to find something to pour their energy into. And it's not work.

    Wait a second. Now it's poor guys who cheat? Wasn't the rule of thumb to beware of Read More »from Study: Guys have a new reason for cheating (this one's really awesome)
  • Quick: Where was this photo recently published?



    Hint: Teenage girls will have the best shot at getting this right.





    Yup. The photo appeared in the August catalog for the clothing brand "Free People" known for mass marketing bohemian fashions for the braces set (and for this 31 year old on the mailing list.) This season, the look was Mongolian desert chic. I think. The camel trainer, not dressed in Free People, and the camel, possibly dressed in Free People headbands and scrunchies, must have been surprised to find themselves covering an entire page in the slim catalog. I hope the man and his trusty steed were compensated as well as the other models featured.
    Also Does this photo seem strange to anyone?

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  • What pet name makes you cringe? (inspired by a "Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami" marathon)


    What did you do this weekend? I watched 12 hours of "Khloe and Kourtney Take Miami". I hate myself. For most of it I was the intellectual equivalent of a headless chicken farmed strictly for fast food. I hovered softly above consciousness as the sisters lounged on L shaped sofas in 7 inch booties and entire plot-lines revolved around one or both having a hangover during an important diet supplement modeling shoot. It was like a body babysitter while my left and right brain sides took that romantic date the couples therapist advised.

    So I was particularly attune, when around the 9th hour, brain came home and spoke up with this opinion: I hate the pet name 'Doll'. (It's used profusely in the above episode)

    "I want to make it up to you, Doll", "I love you, Doll", 80's style villain Scott Disick cooed and texted to his child's mom, Kourtney, after punching a mirror. Then he kept saying it, Doll this, Doll that. At that point I yelled at the TV: "Leave him, Kourtney!" Then in the next

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  • What is your biggest food phobia?

    NOOOOOO! You are looking at my worst nightmare. (thinkstock images)NOOOOOO! You are looking at my worst nightmare. (thinkstock images)You are looking at my worst fear. For years I've been ridiculed for my disgust of raisins. It's gotten to the point where I just call it a food allergy. But it's more like a brain allergy. If a raisin sneaks into a bagel or a cake, I'm gagging for hours. And it's nothing I'm proud of. I'm not picky about most foods, and I'm always the first person to try the blowfish or the bull's testicles. (Maybe, second)

    But ever since I was a kid, I've had a thing about raisins. After some soul-searching it probably dates back to the time I was in grade school and a friend had a guinea pig. You know-- those blubbering, half-formed fur covered poop-machines. The whole cage, lined with wood-chips, looked like a regurgitated oatmeal raisin cookie. Maybe that put me over the edge, or maybe I was born with it. New research suggests picky eaters have a genetic makeup that predisposes them to food sensitivity.

    According to new evidence, heightened reactions to tastes and textures--especially when it

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  • Dear Hollywood: Can we trade in Charlie for Emilio?

    Hey obscurity, you take the guy in yellow, we'll keep the one in blue. (CBS)Hey obscurity, you take the guy in yellow, we'll keep the one in blue. (CBS)
    There must be some mistake. Out of the brothers Sheen, how did Charlie come out on top? He's just been named one of TV's highest earners, raking in over a $1 million per episode for his show "Two and Half Men". I don't need to go over the whole, jail, rehab, court stuff right?
    The point is, what about Emilio? The good kid, the one who graduated high school, settled down and tried to persuade his brother to do the same? Well according to wikipedia, he guest-starred on "Two and a Half Men" in 2008.
    Emilio was always the better actor, the cuter one (I thought), the more brooding, the self-starter, you see where I am going. I just don't get it. It doesn't mathematically add up. Just afix your monocle, and examine the stats.

    # Of Brat Pack Movies Charlie 1- Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Emilio 2-St. Elmo's Fire, Breakfast Club
    # Marriages Charlie- 3 Emilio- 2
    # Of Arrests Charlie- I don't know a lot? Emilio- Please. He was in The Mighty Ducks.
    # Of Writing/ Directing projects Charlie- 0

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