Blog Posts by Dory Devlin, Shine staff

  • Where's Hugh Jackman when you need him to call out bad cell-phone etiquette?

    AP via Yahoo! News/The Hartman Group/Joan MarcusAP via Yahoo! News/The Hartman Group/Joan MarcusSo, how would you feel if you're at one of the first nights of a new Broadway show, and your cell phone goes off so everyone, even the star on stage, can hear?

    "You want to get that?" Hugh Jackman said in character after a ringing phone interrupted a tense scene in a preview performance of "A Steady Rain." The show, starring Jackman and Daniel Craig, officially opens this week. He went on:

    "Grab your phone, it doesn't matter," Jackman said. "C'mon, just turn it off...we can wait. Just get the phone. Don't be embarrassed. Just grab it."'

    Wouldn't you have loved to see the color of that theater-goer's face as all turned, then clapped, as Jackman called out the all-too-common bad cell-phone etiquette? We've all forgotten to turn off a cell phone before the start of an event, but after reading about this, I couldn't help thinking, wouldn't it be great if Hugh Jackman were around every time someone was rude while wielding a cell phone?

    Imagine: You're talking to someone at work about

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  • Are back-to-school nights worth the effort?

    Getty ImagesGetty Images"I'm not going," my friend confided, no trace of apology in her voice, when I brought up the upcoming back-to-back back-to-school nights. We were debating who despised them more: been-there-so-many-times parents or the teachers, who contractually give up a night to blast through PowerPoint presentations carefully constructed to leave no time for questions. The bell rings, and you're off to dash to the next 9-minute "period."

    She's got four kids, two in high school, one in middle school, and a kindergartener. So, yes, she did go to her little boy's kindergarten class, to see where he sits and write him a note and hear his teacher run through the basics of the first year of elementary school. As for her older students' classes, she decided it wasn't worth the scheduling gyrations necessary to run to school, and be smushed in the halls with other parents, herded around like clueless cattle from class to class.

    Back-to-school nights in the younger grades are a different thing entirely.

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  • Friday "Office" poll: Has your manager undermined you lately?

    NBC/The OfficeNBC/The OfficeBoy, Michael barely flinched before he threw Jim under the bus on this week's episode of "The Office." In the mixed-up world that is Michael's head, he would choose to forever ruin Jim's professional chances to move up than to lose him to another branch or another company.

    Oh Michael, you nightmare every-manager. Only in TV land could what he did be undone so neatly, with Jim getting the branch manager promotion with some unenviable strings attached. Extreme example of self-motivated management, for sure, but extreme is what "The Office" does so well. And yet, isn't there a glimmer of a manager-moment past or present for all of us in that scene in which Michael tells David Wallace that Jim is not up to the task of running the place? (Even though Jim has recommended a promotion for Michael to make way for his own jump up the organizational chart.)

    Michael: "Jim is like Big Bird. He is tall and yellow and very nice. But would I put him in charge? No. I don't think so. Big Bird doesn't

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  • Know your bank fees! They're a-changin' again

    Getty ImagesGetty ImagesSome good news (maybe?) from some major banks, which say they are changing and cutting back on the overdraft fees they charge, thanks to pressure from the government and consumer groups.

    In recent months we've learned that overdraft fees are big business for banks, which are on target for earning nearly $39 billion from them this year. That's up from $29 billion in 2007, according to research firm Celent, which noted that astounding figure is more than consumers spent on major appliances in the same year and twice as much as they spent on books. Studies show that most of the fees are coming from people who are struggling to keep their balances in line with their bills: One study found that 90 percent of overdraft fees were charged to 10 percent of the 130 million customers with checking accounts, while the AP reports that only 5 percent of customers absorbed 68 percent of the overdraft fees.

    Something's gotta give, and this is what some of the major banks are are doing. (Mind you,

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  • How do you keep in touch with good, faraway friends?

    Getty ImagesGetty ImagesThere were plenty of reasons not to go. A September weekend, with school and sports back in full swing, and kids needing rides all over suburban creation, is not the best time to get away. Then again, there never is a good time. So, I jumped at the chance, no questions asked, to fly to St. Louis with my husband. He needed to go for a conference, and the chance to go on some dates in another city was a big draw, yes, but the chance to see a close friend who hasn't lived close by since college was the clincher.

    Every now and then I get that strong pull in my gut to connect with a good friend miles away. To pretend that we always walk down the street to get a cup of coffee, or go out to dinner with the guys on a Saturday night, or talk with her boys like I just saw them last week, or cook chicken chili on a Sunday afternoon while her hometown football team is finally winning on TV. Sometimes, some uninterrupted hangout time with a good friend is what the soul needs.

    Facebook and email

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  • Lab tech and workplace violence blamed in Yale grad student's murder

    AP via Yahoo! News/Douglas Healey).AP via Yahoo! News/Douglas Healey).As expected, there's been an arrest in the killing of Annie M. Le, a Yale graduate student whose body was found hidden in the wall of a university building on the day she was to be married. She was strangled to death, authorities say, by Raymond Clark III, 24, a technician in the lab in which Le also worked.

    DNA evidence led authorities to Clark, and, now, the real questions begin. Police and university officials are carefully framing the crime as workplace violence--not random urban violence, or university-campus violence, but workplace violence.

    "This incident could have happened in any city, in any university, or in any workplace," Yale University President Richard C. Levin said in a statement. "It says more about the dark side of the human soul than it does about the extent of security measures." More jarringly, Police Chief James Lewis in Cromwell, Connecticut repeated it was not a street crime or a domestic crime, and he seemed to put the onus on Le and all of us to know just

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  • Not a good sign: Warren Buffett isn't pleased

    Reuters via Yahoo! News/Chip East: Warren BuffettReuters via Yahoo! News/Chip East: Warren BuffettUh oh. Warren Buffett is not particularly pleased.

    With all the cautiously positive economic news--because upbeat is too strong a word when unemployment inches close to 10 percent--that the recession is over and that the worst is behind us, the Oracle of Omaha is not terribly happy with the little improvement he has seen. He agrees the economy has likely hit bottom and thinks it has plateaued there, he told CNBC this week.

    Buffett, the master, level-headed investor and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, was one of the first to say the economy was in a recession. That was in March 2008. Now, he is not so certain that the economy will rebound steadily, though he thinks it's past a critical point. Look for additional problems in the commercial real estate market to slow things down, and hope no major catastrophes occur to stall recovery outright, he said.

    "I've never been able to tell whether it's going to be a week or a month or - six months. But we are on the mend," he told CNBC.

    We want

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  • Have you ever lost it like Serena at work?

    AFP via Yahoo! News/Timothy A. ClaryAFP via Yahoo! News/Timothy A. ClaryThat was one costly tirade on the tennis court in Flushing Meadows.

    Serena Williams may lose more than the U.S. Open women's semi-final match to Kim Clijsters because she lost it following a line judge's double-fault call. Convinced she didn't step on the line, Serena had some choice, bleep-able words for the line judge, and, it seems, some more words that could be taken as a threat. The immediate result: a penalty, which cost her the point, which happened to be match point, delivering the win to the returning, unseeded Clijsters.

    Since that match-changing moment, Williams was fined $10,000 by the U.S. Open for unsportsmanlike conduct, and a $500 fine for racket abuse. Now, Yahoo! Sports reports that the Grand Slam Committee is investigating whether to ban Williams from future Grand Slam tournaments--she is the defending champion of the Australian Open and Wimbledon--and take away the $350,000 prize for this U.S. Open.

    Wow, that's an untimely, foul-mouthed outburst that makes Rep.

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  • Did President Obama's speech change the direction of the health care reform debate?

    AFP via Yahoo! NewsAFP via Yahoo! NewsFor a stunning moment, it seemed Rep. Joe Wilson (R-South Carolina) thought he was back at an August town hall meeting and not at a joint session of Congress, listening to the president of the United States eloquently call for replacing "acrimony with civility, and gridlock with progress" in the national debate over health care reform.

    Shouting out "You lie!" to the president during a speech is not, um, typical protocol, and it says a lot about how our Twitter culture of sending out short snippets of opinion whenever we feel the urge has erupted even in the places once reserved for (at least outward) respect and civility.



    AFP via Yahoo! News/South Caroline Rep. Joe Wilson: AFP via Yahoo! News/South Caroline Rep. Joe Wilson: Wilson apologized for his shout-out, which came when President Barack Obama said the proposed health care bill will not provide insurance coverage for illegal immigrants. But, truthfully, he only helped the president is his long-overdue drive to wrest the reins of the health care debate from the scared-straight rhetoric of fictional death panels and blowhard pundits

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  • Inspirational women at the U.S. Open

    AP via Yahoo! News: Melanie OudinAP via Yahoo! News: Melanie OudinThe big story out of the U.S. Open tennis tournament has been the winning 17-year-old from Marietta, Ga., who has worked her way to the quarter finals with heart, perseverance, and those standout purple and yellow sneakers with the inscribed word "Believe." And what an inspiration Melanie Oudin is for young girls, for all Americans, really, who are proud of how well she is doing by working every point so hard. The commentators are all nostalgic, talking about how she reminds them of Tracy Austin and Chris Evert, who also took the majors by storm as teenagers. I couldn't be more thrilled for my teen and near-teen girls to be watching her fleet-footed rise up the Open ranks.

    AP via Yahoo! News: Kim ClijstersAP via Yahoo! News: Kim ClijstersBut there's another woman I want them to watch just as closely: Kim Clijsters. The 26-year-old mother of an 18-month-old, Clijsters beat 18th-seeded Li Na in two sets in the quarter finals after beating the No. 3 seed, Venus Williams, and two other seeded players--after retiring two years ago to have her baby. She

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Pagination

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