Blog Posts by Beth Greenfield, Shine Staff

  • The Real-Life, Lady Christian Grey (She's 83)

    From the Vanity Fair story on Catherine Robbe-Grillet. Photo: Courtesy Vanity FairEighty-three-year-old widow Catherine Robbe-Grillet is France’s most famous dominatrix. Though she’s achieved renown over the years as a writer, photographer and actor, she’s perhaps best known in her country (and in certain circles) as being a modern Marquis de Sade—living in her 17th-century chateau and making many a BDSM dream come true. Vanity Fair’s Toni Bentley spent some time with her recently, and writes extensively about the legend’s intriguing life and loves in the February issue. Herewith, a crib sheet:

    She was married to a famous sadist: In 1951, she became the mistress of the Alain Robbe-Grillet—writer, theoretician, filmmaker, sadist, member of the Académie Française, and “pope” of the avant-garde literary movement known as the nouveau roman. Soon after they married, he presented his wife with unique contract, which read, in part, that he would have “special rights” to demand from Catherine “sessions of a particular nature,” to be compensated with cash, “during which the

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  • Doll That Won't Eat Causes Uproar

    The new Nenuco Won't Eat (photo:Famosa)Critics on both sides of the pond are slamming a new baby doll with a strange gimmick: refusing to eat. They say that the doll, called Nenuco Won’t Eat, encourages unhealthy behaviors — possibly even eating disorders — in its young target audience, despite the fact that it won a Best New Toy Award at the U.K. Toy Fair on Tuesday.

    More on Yahoo Shine: 10-Year-Old Girl Petitions for American Girl Doll With Disability

    “What are they thinking? It’s irresponsible,” Lynn Grefe, president of the National Eating Disorders Association, based in New York, tells Yahoo Shine. “It seems clear to me they have no clue what eating disorders are, and that they’re not tuned in or well-educated on how life-threatening they can be.” The doll, she adds, “belongs in the garbage.”

    More on Yahoo: Jason Wu Creates Collector's Edition Doll for Fashion Week

    The plastic blue-eyed infant with the pink ribbon on its bald head is just the latest in a series of Nenuco dolls — others dole out kisses, close their eyes for

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  • Parents, Beware: Shopping Carts Send 66 Kids to the ER Every Day

    Are you sure you want to put your little one in there? Photo: Getty Images/Katrina WittcampLest you think the worst supermarket threat to your kids lurks in the soda aisle, a new study has found that perhaps the scariest hazard of all is your shopping cart. The classic basket on wheels is responsible for an average of 24,000 childhood emergency-room injuries a year — that’s 66 a day — with the rate of cart-related concussions on the upswing, according to the findings published in the journal Clinical Pediatrics in December but announced with fanfare on Tuesday.

    More on Shine: Warning: Danger Could Actually Be Good For Your Child

    "Some people may think: My goodness, it's just a shopping cart,” head researcher Dr. Gary Smith, director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, tells Yahoo Shine. "So we need to let parents know these injuries can be life-threatening but that they are preventable."

    Smith's study is just the latest in a series over many years that has helped bring the issue of shopping-cart safety to the

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  • Roe V. Wade 41st Anniversary: Walter Cronkite Delivers the News

    Forty-one years ago today, Roe v. Wade expanded abortion rights in the U.S. with one sweeping, landmark Supreme Court decision. It was a monumental change — abortion was illegal in the majority of states in 1973 — and its announcement on the evening news was delivered with the tone of importance now lavished on everything from bridge scandals to snow updates.

    "In a landmark ruling, the Supreme Court today legalized abortions," Walter Cronkite reported at the start of the CBS Evening News, the sound of typewriters clacking in the background. "A majority, in cases from Texas to Georgia, said that the decision to end a pregnancy during the first three months belongs to a woman and her doctor, not the government. Thus, the anti-abortion laws of 46 states were rendered unconstitutional."

    And though the decision still stands today, a whole lot has changed since that historic day, with abortion opponents successfully chipping away at access, resulting in fewer abortion providers and clinics

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  • Music Video Reveals What it Really Takes to Look Like a Pop Star

    So it’s pretty much a given by now that any public image of a model, actor, or pop star has been digitally altered. But it doesn’t make peeking under the hood to see exactly what gets slimmed, smoothed, doctored, and deleted any less mind-blowing, especially when it’s the latest striking example, this one of Hungarian singer Boggie.

    More on Shine: Shocking Video Reveals Photoshop Trickery

    In her official music video for a song called “Nouveau Parfum,” we see her in close-up while she sings — and, for the entire three and a half minutes, has her face and hair fixed up, thanks to a software program. Blemishes get erased, skin tone gets lightened, bra straps are banished, hair gets recolored and styled, and eyes and lips are bedazzled. It’s all pretty cool and mesmerizing — unless, of course, you stop and think about the fact that a perfectly beautiful woman is being transformed into yet another unrealistically glossy gal who can help feed the plummeting self-esteem of ladies everywhere.

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  • Why One Woman Used YouTube to Confront Her Alleged Childhood Abuser

    Many survivors of childhood sexual abuse may envision confronting their abusers — but even if they do get the chance, it’s not likely to be before an audience of nearly 400,000 witnesses. That’s how many YouTube viewers have watched so far as a young California woman telephones and confronts her former middle-school teacher and basketball coach over alleged sexual abuse that began when she was just 12 years old.

    More on Shine: Signs of Child Abuse (and How to Stop It)

    The 28-year-old mother of three, who is going under the name Jamie X to protect her privacy, posted a video of her phone conversation with a high school assistant principal on Friday. “Do you realize that you brainwashed me and you manipulated me and that what you did was wrong?" Jamie asks on the video. A woman identified as the alleged abuser replies, “Yes, and I regret it.” A visibly upset Jamie continues, “You sicken me, and every day when I think about what you did, you sicken me. You should be so ashamed and so

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  • What Your Wardrobe Says About Your Psyche

    Such high heels, Lady Gaga. Feeling inept? Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for SiriusXMWatching makeover shows can be amusing — if occasionally cringe-inducing, particularly when people are forced to throw away that sweater they've had forever or favorite old pair of shoes. “That can be traumatizing,” Dawnn Karen, New York-based fashion psychologist, tells Yahoo Shine, “because people are attached to their clothes.” That’s where Karen and others in the relatively new but growing field of fashion-psychology step in — by helping folks who want to reboot their wardrobes figure out a little more about themselves first. a way to get to the heart of the matter for folks wanting to reboot their wardrobes.

    More on Shine: Golden Globes: Best and Worst Looks of the Night

    “I use counseling to assess where they’re at and why,” explains Karen, who uses her background in psychology, design, modeling, and performance to counsel clients ranging from CEOs to entertainers. “That way, the changes tend to stick.”

    This week, the Australian publication Daily Life wrote about the rise of Karen’s

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  • Teen Cancer Patient Back on the Court Thanks to Teammates' Twitter Campaign

    A star high school basketball player's battle with cancer became a fight with his school this week, albeit briefly, when Tim Monette, 17, says the principal barred him from playing the game he loves. That’s because his health issues have forced him to trade class time at New York's Northville High School for at-home tutoring, which, he says he was told, makes him ineligible to play sports because of school policy.

    More on Yahoo: Study Says Many Lung Cancer Tumors Prove Harmless

    The student sit-in. Photo: Twitter "I love basketball. It motivates me and keeps my mind off of everything and keeps me positive!" Monette tells Yahoo Shine through Twitter. His mom Shawna Monette, speaking to the Albany Times Union, adds, "When they said he couldn't play, my heart just dropped. His basketball and his sports are everything to him."

    But his ever-supportive teammates had his back—just as they did in late December, when Read More »from Teen Cancer Patient Back on the Court Thanks to Teammates' Twitter Campaign
  • Michelle Obama: The First Lady Is Fabulous at 50

    Michelle Obama turns 50 on Friday, and it’s a milestone she’ll celebrate in true “Let’s Move” fashion with a dance bash at the White House on Saturday. But the first lady has been in a festive mood for a while now. “I have never felt more confident in myself, more clear on who I am as a woman,” she told Parade recently. “But I am constantly thinking about my own health and making sure that I’m eating right and getting exercise and watching the aches and pains. I want to be this really fly 80-, 90-year-old.” Seems like a pretty likely scenario for the energetic, über-achieving “mom in chief.” But let’s not rush it. Instead, here’s a look back at the life and rise of Mrs. Obama, née Michelle LaVaughn Robinson, who once noted, “There’s nothing magical about my background.” Plenty that’s inspiring, though. See our special Happy Birthday slide show here.

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  • Pregnant Drew Barrymore Wants to Pig Out. So Why Shouldn't She?

    Drew Barrymore on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Photo: Michael Rozman/Warner BrosThere’s nothing better than stuffing your face with giddy, entitled abandon when you’re pregnant — something Drew Barrymore, who’s expecting her second child, seems to understand well. “Oh God. I mean, I just eat everything I want,” she announced on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" Monday. “I just want to enjoy the pasta right now! It’s not like it’s going to look that much different. What’s 10 pounds?” The night before, the star capped off her evening at the Golden Globes by tucking into a big cheesy slice at her “favorite pizza joint,” Instagramming a snapshot of the big moment with the hashtags #waitedallnight and #canteatfastenough.

    More From Shine: Is the Post-Baby Body Obsession Hurting Women?

    It was a refreshing, validating sentiment from body-obsessed Hollywood and surely had plenty of regular ol’ women breathing a sigh of relief.

    And yet, the 38-year-old Barrymore told DeGeneres, she knows that her gorging “isn’t healthy” and admitted that even her doctor suggested she “pull back a

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