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Monthly Archives: September 2019

(CNN)Post Malone is in a wealthy wonderland in his new “Saint-Tropez” video.

“Ooh, this s**t bliss, I’m so rich / Mille on my wrist / Versace boxers on my d**k / Bud Light runnin’ through my piss / On a yacht, 50 meters it’s a fish / 50 carats on my fist,” he raps.
Malone wears a custom Louis Vuitton utility vest on his luxury trip.
    “Hollywood’s Bleeding” dropped last week and also included “Goodbyes,” featuring Young Thug and “Sunflower” with Swae Lee.
    On Tuesday, it was reported that Malone is headed for his second No. 1 album on the Billboard 200.
    Music industry experts expect his latest release, “Hollywood’s Bleeding,” to launch with 475,000 to 500,000 album unit sales in the US this week, reports Billboard.
    The album could also have the largest streaming week of the year.
      If those sales do happen, it will score Malone the second-largest week for any album in 2019 in equivalent album units.
      The only album to beat that mark is Taylor Swift’s “Lover,” which sold 867,000 units in the week ending Sept. 5.

      Read more:

      When her mother started to forget, the Guardians health editor began to examine how we look after loved ones living with dementia

      She grips my hand and tows me behind her around the small courtyard garden, past the pretend bus stop and the red phone box with no dialling tone, down an alleyway of gravel that leads to a wooden gate. Here, she says. It may be locked.

      It is, of course, securely padlocked. Its hidden away but still Mum has found it. I take her by the arm. Its OK. We can get out the other way, I say, leading her inside, through the chintzy cafe where no money is exchanged, to the lift. I bleep my electronic visitors pass. The doors to the outside world open for us. Mum walks through them, asking no questions, and admires the flowerbeds.

      Even though she cannot remember what happened 10 minutes ago or when she last ate, even though this once immaculate lady, left to herself, would head for the street in a petticoat and one earring (But it doesnt matter, does it, she said when I mentioned it), in spite of the holes in her mind that dementia has torn, the desire to go out appears hardwired. She found that gate, and then she remembered where she had found it.

      Earlier I watched as Jean, Mums neighbour in the dementia home, walked up and down the corridor between her room and the communal area, tall and thin in her plaid skirt and jumper, the usual copy of the Times under her arm and anxiety on her face. Up and down. Back and forth. Has my mother come? she asks the carers. No, Im afraid your family arent visiting today, is the answer. Her mother died years ago. They sit her down, suggest television or a game, and she is instantly on her feet, asking the same question again.

      Mary Griffiths (above), a former nurse and housewife, wears a ring made from one of her fathers cufflinks

      Dementia is the scourge of our age. We have become so good at patching people up bodily that for many, it is the mind that goes; dementia now kills more people than any other disease in England and Wales, accounting for 12.8% of deaths last year. In 2017 it affected an estimated 50 million people globally, with nearly a million in the UK; the numbers are expected to double every 20 years. David Cameron launched a research push for a cure in 2012, but one drug trial after another has collapsed, casting doubt on fundamental assumptions about what happens in the deteriorating brain. The central approach targeting the buildup of amyloid plaques appears to be going nowhere much.

      Meanwhile, less attention is being paid to how we care for those whose minds are irretrievably unravelling, to where and how they should live. Most people in care homes 70% now have dementia. It may be best for many to stay at home as long as possible but that means 24-hour care. The distinction between day and night can disappear. One of the first warning signs my three sisters and I had came when Mum started annoying the neighbours in her block of flats, pressing doorbells to be let back in at 5am.

      Then there were the parcels. I drove her home one day, to find a large brown box outside the door. Oh no, she said, in genuine distress. Not another one. It contained what she and I would both have called quack remedies for ageing: potions and pills, and a Christmas cracker trinket of a bracelet. Inside was an invoice, paid on her credit card, for over 100. She had not ordered or paid for it, she insisted. And there were others. She had a cupboard full of expensive soaps and knick-knacks a sound amplifier for 30 (there is nothing wrong with her hearing), a cabbage detox for 20. It had all been sent by two companies at the same address in France. I was livid. How dare they take advantage of her? But I now think she started it, sending off magazine coupons for hand lotion, though I know they got her to order more junk thereafter.

      Norman Thomas, 68: My wife thinks Im losing the plot. She says I forget things… Shes right

      Norman, a former dairy farmer and avid heli-skier, holds one of his ski caps

      Its odd how the signals are there, but you dont see them. The flat smelling of burnt toast. I bought a new toaster. Her empty purse when she went out for coffee with friends. They paid. Her frequent trips in person to the bank. It didnt occur to me that she no longer knew her pin number. The huge bills she was running up for newspaper delivery. The shopkeeper kindly said nothing. The frightening times I called in the evening, when it was dark, and there was no reply. Finally she would answer, out of breath. She had taken the wrong bus. One time she said a nice man had driven her home.

      Eventually my sisters and I understood she was no longer safe alone. She resisted any suggestion that she had a problem. I havent got that dementia, she told me, sternly. But she agreed her memory was playing up. I used that to trick her into a GP appointment and referral to the memory clinic, where she was diagnosed, although no help was offered. We bullied her into twice-daily visits from a carer, who would sometimes arrive to find Mum missing. At Christmas at our house, she caught a virus and ended up in hospital, wandering the corridors at night. Staff refused to let her home without full-time care.

      Mum hated losing her independence, the same way she had fought us when we borrowed her car a couple of years earlier and did not return it. I asked the carers to let her go but follow her. At the home, where we moved her a year later because of her night wandering, and to be closer to my sisters, only the corridor and patio garden are open to her. She is not deceived, though she can no longer tell you whats wrong. She is a sundowner: after tea, she will walk and walk, up and down the corridor. The challenges of caring for people like her in the way she would want, if she were able to explain it, are great.

      There may be another answer. In a suburb of Amsterdam, Jannette Spiering sits at a cafe table in the sunshine, while women like Mum and Jean wander past. Spiering is the founder of the Hogeweyk, a dementia village whose fame has travelled the world. She used to help run a conventional care home on the site, which was torn down, and believed she could do better.

      We can try to come as close to normality as possible within the restrictions people with dementia have, she explains. These are mostly that they cant make their own daily structure, and they dont know when to eat, how to cook, how to dress, how to communicate. If they choose to go outside on a day like this, thats not for us to decide. Thats why the front door of every house is open. We have to take care, if its cold, that people put a jacket on and that their shoelaces are tied so they wont fall over them.

      Irene Wilding, 92: If somebody told me I had dementia, I dont know what Id do

      Irene, a former biology teacher, holds a photograph that hangs on her bedroom wall (she is bottom right)

      Of course when people move in, they want to leave. I think I would, too, if I were locked up. But what I think is so lovely is you can go outside without someone watching or walking with you.

      This is not a village in the traditional English sense. The houses, restaurant and a small theatre form the Hogeweyks perimeter wall. Look up and you see it is sandwiched between blocks of social housing flats. But there is space and sky. There are little gardens and a pond with statues of herons and a real one that takes off as I walk by. The 23 houses, each for six or seven people, are different and separate, but joined as they might be on a terraced street. Outside are shady courtyards with wooden tables and chairs, flower tubs and trees.

      The Boulevard looks like a town street, but behind the shop fronts are clubs. Theres the Mozart room, where classical music lovers meet. Theres a painting and baking club, which Mum would enjoy, along with any sort of singing. She croons with Frank Sinatra and bops gently to Rock Around The Clock, given the chance. At the Hogeweyk, families sign up their relatives for the clubs that will suit them, though too many activities can exhaust people, Spiering says.

      In the square, cafe tables are set beside a fountain. Off it is an arcade, with a waiter-service restaurant and a supermarket where the carers shop for each house. If residents wander out with a packet of cereal or a bottle of juice, it can be returned or paid for later. And there is a pub: there is no reason why people with dementia shouldnt enjoy a drink, although one daughter was scandalised that her non-drinking mother developed something of an advocaat habit. She blamed us, but her mother just liked going there, attracted by the music or whatever, Spiering says. People can change for better or worse; some start to use bad language; inhibitions disappear.

      The Hogeweyk has its wanderers. A woman with Jeans tense face walks the village paths stiffly and finally passes through sliding doors into the reception area, ignoring the notice that says Sorry, were closed. Behind their glass screen, the staff watch. She gets halfway to the double doors on to the street, which will not open unless the receptionists press their button, stops abruptly as if she has remembered something, turns around and walks back into the village. One of more than 100 unpaid volunteers intercepts and takes her for a coffee, to distract her. There is still some part of her mind that recognises this is not her home and she cant accept it. I think it is very sad, Spiering says. Some residents walk all day long, so there are distractions to encourage rest: a large TV screen with seats in the arcade, and cafe staff instructed to invite wanderers in for a drink.

      There is an element of the gilded cage of the 60s TV series The Prisoner, or The Truman Show, but while residents cant get out, the outside world is invited in. Young mothers and toddlers meet here weekly. Locals use the restaurant and go to the theatre.

      The Hogeweyk is not for the mildly ill. Everyone here has late-stage dementia. The average stay is 2.2 years, but some people die within a few weeks. Only three out of 169 residents are in bed all day, Spiering says, and these three are not segregated. We put them in the living room with their bed, because they can still smell and hear what is going on and be part of it. There is no sign of the agitation or aggression that often signals distress in people with dementia, no howls of anguish through an upstairs window.

      Instead of severity of disease, as in the UK, the Hogeweyk allots residents to houses according to lifestyle. Its not a class thing, Spiering says, nor anything to do with race: its about familiarity with your surroundings. The families choose which lifestyle is the best match. There are seven urban, artisan, Indonesian, homey, Goois [a wealthy area near Amsterdam which once had its own dialect], cultural and Christian. The urban houses are home to former city dwellers; the artisan houses to people who had a trade or craft. The homey houses are for people, like my mum, who were homemakers; those who loved theatre and cinema are in the cultural houses. The decor and food will be typical of those communities. Some will prefer meat and potatoes; others are mostly vegetarian. The music is folk in some houses but classical in others; the newspaper on the table will be a tabloid or broadsheet.

      Such segregation has its critics, but Spiering argues it is just what we all do for ourselves. We buy into certain lifestyles, or move to be part of a community we feel comfortable in. It doesnt mean people wont mix at the bingo group.

      Kathleen Bishop, 81: Its frustrating, her husband, Allan, 84, says. We cant have proper conversations

      Kathleen, who used to teach shorthand and typing, holds a photograph of her wedding to Allan

      There may be an element of fantasy, but it is no more than in more traditional dementia homes such as my mothers, where people like Jean walk an endless loop of corridors decorated to look like a high street, with Singer sewing machines in alcoves and pictures of the Coronation to recall an epoch that is more vivid in the brain than the recent past. Reality is a tricky concept when it comes to dementia care, as Spiering points out. Some people want to go home, or wait for a visit from their long-dead partner. We try to distract people, or we go along with them. We say, Is it OK if we go for lunch first? You can say its a lie or you can say its not telling the whole truth.

      Dementia used to be dismissed as normal memory loss, a side-effect of ageing. People tended to die of other causes, much younger, so it was less understood. When German psychiatrists Alois Alzheimer and Emil Kraepelin classified it as a disease in the early 20th century, they focused on younger patients. The deterioration of the brain in old age was still regarded as an inevitability.

      But by the mid-50s, US hospitals began to be overwhelmed by elderly dementia patients. Psychiatrists started to frame it as a psychosocial problem, finding that people from some backgrounds, with the same brain changes, did better than others. There were calls for programmes of activities to keep ageing minds stimulated. After Medicare, the US healthcare programme for the over-65s, was founded, people started to live even longer lives and dementia soared. By 1980, everybody had heard of Alzheimers disease. Funds have been poured into research, mostly to find a pill to reverse it, without success.

      Patients like my mum, who get a diagnosis, are prescribed a single drug, supposed to help slow the disease, and sent home. There is nothing more the NHS can do, or afford. Age UK and Alzheimers charities offer helpful advice, but you have to seek it out.

      A third of people with dementia are in care homes, which seek to calm and stimulate residents whose memory of the recent past goes first. The walls are lined with photographs of Charlie Chaplin, Ava Gardner, the Queen as a girl. There are wartime singalongs. Living in the past is fine, as are white lies. We take Mum out for ice-cream and cakes at a garden centre, where last time she was overcome by the beauty of the flowers. I cant believe it, she kept saying. We stay in the present moment and talk about the mackerel sky and the planes she thinks are birds. We never talk about dementia.

      The truth used to be served up cold. Reality orientation was developed in the late 50s, on the basis that exercising the memory would keep it functioning better for longer. Patients were trained to know the name of the place they were in, what month it was, who the prime minister was but it was confrontational and insensitive. If people knew that it was Thursday and that they were widowed, it didnt make them happier.

      Instead the focus moved to cognitive stimulation gentle activities to keep the brain going, such as word games, puzzles, music, and practical activities such as baking or indoor gardening. A Cochrane medical review in 2012 found that 45-minute sessions at least twice a week helped people with mild to moderate dementia. There was some evidence that people were better able to reason, communicate and interact with others, and had a better quality of life. Such activities are now standard in dementia homes and day centres, along with dancing and gentle exercise and singing, all of which Mum loves. And how else would she spend her time?

      Tom Ledson, 76: Everyone hopes for the future. You just have to hope that it carries on

      Tom, who used to run a motor parts shop, holds a photograph of his wedding day

      There are other theories. Penny Garner in Oxfordshire, whose mother had dementia, devised Specal (originally an acronym for specialised early care for Alzheimers) to help families and carers communicate with a relative who has dementia. At the heart of this is the photograph album the concept that people have memories stored like photographs, recording feelings as well as facts, and that when the facts disappear, the feelings remain.

      Garner considers dementia a disability and has three golden rules: dont ask questions that will only cause distress when the person cannot find the answer; listen to the person with dementia and offer them only information that will make them feel better; and do not contradict. Her son-in-law, the psychologist Oliver James, wrote a book about the method, called Contented Dementia, and many of its adherents are enthusiastic. But the Alzheimers Society is outright opposed, arguing that not asking questions deprives people of choice and control over their lives.

      The society is not enthusiastic about the idea of dementia villages, either. Dominic Carter, its senior policy officer, agrees that people have to be understood, offered activities and encouraged to eat and drink, but thinks it is a shame if we are willing to accept that the only way to do that is to segregate people and have them in environments that are so specifically focused.

      Instead the society wants to normalise dementia, with a flagship programme to accredit dementia-friendly communities ordinary towns where the baker and hairdresser have been taught how to talk to people with dementia, and where local residents and bus drivers will be better able to see them safely home. So far, it has registered 400 communities, from Minehead to Billericay and beyond. Local Alzheimers groups enlist shops, GP practices, libraries, churches, fire, police and social groups, whose members undertake training. There are also activities. Over one week in May, in Tamworth in the west Midlands, there was singing in the shopping centre and community knitting of forget-me-nots to aid the societys dementia campaign, which includes a call for a 2.4bn government fund to help people with care costs.

      People with mild dementia will be safer and happier in a town that has more understanding, although the chances of getting lost in a city like Leeds must still be high. But as the disease progresses, the need for full-time care grows. While we might dream of Grandma sitting in a corner of the family home, watching life going on, being looked after by her children, thats a fantasy, says Professor June Andrews, former director of Stirlings Dementia Services Development Centre in Scotland.

      Its never been families taking care of their own, she says. Its been women. The extent to which it happens is related to the economic value of women. In countries where women are uneducated and unemployed, they do the caring, she says. As soon as the daughter or daughter-in-law can get a job, they start importing a foreign domestic worker. And once those salaries rise out of reach, care homes spring up.

      In the UK, there will be a shortage of 30,000 residential dementia places by 2021; the costs remain high and the quality is sometimes questionable. The Care Quality Commission reports that more than a fifth of services either require improvement or are inadequate. Is the Hogeweyk model the answer? It has been controversial since its inception in 1993. Medical experts didnt like it, while other care home owners feared for their own business model. In the UK, the notion of a dementia village has been dismissed as gimmicky and too expensive often by experts who have not visited. Although it is run as a not-for-profit, the cost for each resident is 53,000-59,000 a year, paid for by the government. Local authorities in the UK pay about 30,000 to 40,000 for a residential care home place.

      Christine Judith (July) Hopkins, 77: Sometimes I dont know, sometimes I do know. You understand?

      July, who was a homemaker and teacher, holds a photograph of her younger self

      Andrews is sceptical of the Hogeweyks lifestyles approach but says her own parents a bus driver and a secretary would never have been comfortable in a posh care home. Having something that fits with what somebody is comfortable with is really important, she admits. But how would you categorise people in the UK, or find the volunteers the Hogeweyk relies on? The bottom line is, who is going to be able to afford your model if it can only work with an army of volunteers? In the UK, hundreds of care homes are having to shut down because their buildings are not the right quality and they cant get the right staff.

      But New Zealand and Australia have similar villages, and the first to be modelled directly on the Hogeweyk is likely to open in the UK later this year, in east Kent. Henry Quinn and Dr Phil Brighton, from East Kent Hospitals Foundation NHS Trust, tell me they were profoundly moved when they visited the Hogeweyk in 2015. What struck me most was when they said, The most important things are the front doors. If you have a front door and its raining, you can go out and get wet, Brighton says.

      Quinn went up on to the roof of Buckland hospital in Dover and spotted six semi-detached blocks of derelict houses. They got funding from Europe and are on track to open soon.

      Its a gated community, Brighton explains. There will be a boundary fence but not obtrusive or oppressive. There will be a hub where locals and residents with dementia can go for entertainment, as well as a cafe and a gym. The houses will have five bedrooms each and no locked doors. The team are exploring ideas with the local community, including keeping goats and forging links with a primary school, bringing children in for activities.

      If we let them, people with dementia take buses to the end of the line. One man, used to global travel, evaded his carer, travelled to the airport and hopped on a plane to the country where he grew up. People in residential homes used to be restrained, tied to chairs. That doesnt happen any more. In the dementia-friendly communities the Alzheimers Society promotes, technology might allow more wandering. There are already GPS devices, informing relatives of peoples whereabouts whether they want it or not.

      And that is the hardest part: knowing what someone wants. We make decisions for those with dementia in the hope of protecting them. Sometimes, when you hear of a woman, such as a friends mother, rocking in her seat, whispering, Help me, help me, you have to wonder if we have got it right.

      My mum hates locked doors. When she lived in her flat, there wasnt a day when she didnt potter to the local shop or get the bus to town. It saddens me to see her wanderings reduced to a corridor and now, even though she is in a safe place with wonderful carers, she is starting to fall; last time I visited, I found her with bruises in another residents room, as she frequently is. And for the first time, I did not get the sense that she knew who I was.

      For Spiering, caring for people with dementia is all about calculated risk accepting frailty and that, in nursing homes, people are going to have falls, and are going to die, and we cant prevent that. But we can add quality of life. And its not by locking them up and not seeing them as human any more.

      My mother is well looked after, by people who see her as human and lovable but I am disturbed by her constant desire to leave. I want her to be safe, but even more than that, I dont want her to be unhappy. Most of all, I want her to live the life she wants, in the little time she has left. And it hurts that she cant tell me even if she knows what that is.

      All the people photographed and interviewed either live or spend time at villages run by Belong, a charitable UK organisation that provides care, housing and support for people with dementia.

      If you would like a comment on this piece to be considered for inclusion on Weekend magazines letters page in print, please email, including your name and address (not for publication).

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      There’s no perfect job. Every single occupation, no matter how fascinating, glamorous or well-paying, has certain downsides. But sometimes, that downside is rather unexpected — humor!

      Whatever job you might have, you’re bound to have heard at least one incredibly bad dad joke related to your occupation. Maybe the first time you heard one of these jokes, you actually rolled on the floor laughing. The second time, you laughed out loud but no more than that. The third time, you chuckled. The fourth time, you smiled. But after hearing the same joke for the fifth time, all the joy and wonder was most likely gone from you by that point. And the same jokes just keep on coming.

      So here is a list of the best silly jokes that people in different professions are absolutely sick of hearing. Upvotes your faves, share with your friends, and keep on scrolling. Oh, and we’d be delighted to know if you’ve heard any corny, cheesy or dad-like jokes related to your job — so share your experience with everyone somewhere in the comments!


      I recently went through US Customs and the officer asked me the standard “do you have cash more than $10,000 on you?” question.

      I responded: “I wish! HURHURHUR”

      Her response: “If I had a penny for everyone who cracked that joke in front of me, I’d have the $10,000 by now”

      …I totally deserved that.


      Mail carrier here. “You can keep the bills !” hur hur hur


      Selling lottery tickets. Im like what numbers would you like? Everyone be like “the winning ones”.


      Bored Panda talked to HaiKarateAquaVelva, who asked Redditors worldwide for their annoying job joke stories. Their thread was so popular, it got over 69,200 upvotes and more than 26,600 comments in just over a day.

      “I made the post because at my job, I regularly get a lot of the same types of comments over and over from folks who surely think they’re being witty, funny, original, and oh-so-clever… not!”

      “This is all harmless of course, and I don’t mind it one bit. Even after hearing the same couple jokes/comments for the 823rd time. I’ve been guilty of doing the same thing more times than I can remember, I’m sure,” HaiKarateAquaVelva noted.

      “But I figured there are other job positions that get the same kinda deal. Since my job is a bit unconventional and probably wouldn’t resonate with a lot of people if I cited my own experiences, I chose to go with another, more relatable profession, thus the “It didn’t scan…” scenario.”

      HaikarateAquaVelva, who mentioned that they are a Bored Panda fan, said that they didn’t expect their thread would get so much attention: “But the post I made came from nothing more than a fleeting thought, and I never expected such attention from what was only a whimsical curiosity. It was cool to read through so many responses and having a laugh or two.”


      Cake decorator here- people would come pick up their orders and jokingly tell me I spelled the name on the cake incorrectly. They would watch me get upset with myself and offer to fix it, then tell me they were just kidding.


      I’m a veterinarian. Some clients do actually say “if you really loved animals, you’ll treat them for free right?”


      I’m obligated to ask those visiting my work place if they have any weapons to declare.

      “Just these guns!” flex

      Since starting my job as a writer at Bored Panda, I’ve heard variations of three dad jokes related to my occupation. People tend to ask me if I write about pandas all day. Furthermore, they ask me if I’m bored at my job. And lastly, they wonder if we have any pet pandas at the office. The answers to those, in order, are: No, but I write about cats and dogs a lot; I’m having too much fun to be bored; and we don’t have any pandas (yet), but we’ve got doggos! In fact, there’s a huge dog right next to me at the time of writing, and it’s awesome.

      Now, I actually enjoy hearing corny jokes like these. But I appreciate that people working different jobs eventually run out of patience. Like customs workers who keep on hearing ‘I wish’ when they ask people if they have more than 10,000 dollars cash on them. Or repairmen who hear ‘do I get a new one’ when they can’t fix a small problem on a client’s computer. And we can’t forget about nurses who take your blood and are absolutely exasperated after being called a ‘vampire’ for the thousandth time.


      the lady that draws my blood said that she was tired of people calling her a “Vampire”


      I work in a call center. I have to ask “was there anything else I could help you with” at the end of the call.

      -“Yes bring me a coffee with that”

      -“make the sun shine again”

      -“got the winning lottery numbers?”

      -“yeah. What’s your number you have a sexy voice”

      I just ignore them now and wish them a good day


      “Giving out any free samples today?”

      Sir, if I did that, it’s a bank robbery.

      Humor is one of the best things in the entire world because it helps us relax, increases our lifespan, helps us bond with other people, allows us to see the world in a different light, and helps us stop taking both ourselves and life far too seriously.


      “I just want a BLACK. COFFEE. None of this crap-u-she-no chocolate unicorn frap-aye glitter [crap]. Just a medium black COFFEE. I don’t care what size you call it but whatever’s MEDIUM I want THAT” Like ok u could also try “medium black coffee please”…


      As a church musician, I’ve heard things like:

      “How does it feel to have the largest organ in town?”


      I’m in the military. “Thank you for my freedom.” While I appreciate the sentiment, I guarantee I have done literally nothing to protect your freedom. You do that all by yourself by voting.

      If you want to thank me for your safety, I’ll accept that. Safety and freedom are not the same thing.

      However, humor in modern times is no longer free from intense scrutiny, as some individuals believe that the freedom of expression doesn’t extend to stand-up comedy, for fear of somebody being insulted. Louis CK, Dave Chappelle, and Bill Burr are examples of legendary comedians who have spent their entire lives poking fun at society, injustice, and hypocrisy, wherever these might be found. And yet, they have received a large amount of criticism for some of the jokes they made recently because they drew attention to some uncomfortable details about living in the 21st century. Whether you enjoy these comedians or think that their humor is crass, wouldn’t you say that the freedom to express your thoughts on stage is important to protect?


      “So, what’s the matter with you?”

      “You tell me, you’re the doctor!”


      I do commissions.

      “Can you draw a headshot of my dog in color”

      “Yeah sure it’ll be 6$ (I do really cheap commissions because it’s my hobby)”

      “Oh you want me to pay!? I thought you liked to draw?”

      “I do like to draw but it’s no different than buying a cake from a bakery, the shop owner likes to bake but the materials cost them money and we’d like to get some of that money back”

      “Ugh never mind I don’t want to pay to get a drawing of my dog” It’s happened at least 6 times in the two years I’ve been doing this


      As a cop, I’d say the most common one I get is: I didn’t do it man!

      Bro chill, I’m just trying to buy a red bull and some donuts..

      Stand-up comedy on stage is one thing, but offensive jokes at the office can be a big no-no, depending on company rules. If you’re ever in a situation where a colleague tells a completely inappropriate joke, then there are several things that you can do.


      I’m in ultrasound. We do a hell of a lot more than just scanning pregnant people, but we get a lot of people who ask, “Is it a boy or a girl? HAHAHA” during abdominal and vascular studies.


      I work in IT. Any time something breaks on the computer it’s

      “Hehe, oh no, guess I have to go home!”

      Every. Single. Time.


      Vet tech here. Whenever I take a patient’s temperature:

      “Aren’t you going to at least buy her dinner first?”

      According to Small Business, you can ask your co-worker to explain the joke to you, so that they understand why it might be inappropriate. Then, if your colleague doesn’t get it, straight-up tell them in a calm, collected manner that you think what they said was offensive. You can also refuse to laugh at similar jokes.


      Not a profession, but it kind of relates to this.When people who don’t need glasses ask to try out my glasses and ask how I can see with them.


      Well my child is only failing Because you are a bad teacher. Not Because he refuses to study and does not pay attention in school


      Pizza delivery. If you happen to pass by anyone else at all on your way to the customer, they will say “You can just leave that right here ha ha ha.”

      As a last resort, if your co-worker keeps on throwing out incredibly offensive jokes left and right, consider reporting them to human resources or to a manager. Just make sure you’re not reporting someone for an innocent dad joke that you’ve heard a hundred times before.


      I’m a psychologist, not a mind reader. You can relax when you talk to me when I’m off duty : I don’t want to figure you out. Quite frankly I don’t care. You do have a problem with your mother tough.


      Administrative worker here, not from customers, but from literally anyone that doesn’t work in an office, “so you get paid to do nothing? ‘


      Synthetic chemist. “can you make me drugs?” or other Breaking Bad related comments.

      And yes. Yes I can. But I wont.


      I work in an office, and the boss often leaves me in charge if he’s away. I have one co-worker who, every time I’m covering, will arrive in the morning and say “Hi boss! Since you’re in charge— can we all go home now? Hurr hurr”

      That, and “are you working hard? Or hardly working?”


      Travel Money Bureau.

      every time im checking if some notes are legit or not, its “they should be fine I printed them this morning”

      har de har har


      I work in the meteo (not a scientist, just an IT guy) and as soon as people know this, it’s all “Hey can you fix me some good weather for the bbq this weekend?”


      I work in IT. “Should I just… tUrN iT oFf AnD oN aGaIn?!”. Yes, yes you should.


      So you can give me the good stuff eh? Wink wink nudge nudge eh?

      Im a nurse not a cocaine dealer, also yes.


      Web developer. “Come on, [deceptively complicated change that looks simple] shouldn’t take you so long!” B**ch. You are not a web developer. You have no idea how long writing code takes. You don’t get to tell me how long it should take. Only I get to do that. Also, just because something looks simple doesn’t mean it won’t take hours to implement.


      I serve banquets. I’ve had many middle aged men say the same exact joke to me when serving their Cream of Chicken with Wild Rice “How do you tame wild rice?” I usually play along but the last time it happened I told him the answer and he was [frikkin] bewildered.


      Groomer. “I brush him everyday!” The dog is matted from chest through back legs, and behind ears and tail.


      “Just do this one thing [for a new/prospective client]. It will lead to more work.”

      How ’bout just pay me for this one thing and we’ll talk about future work too. This is not a hobby.


      In IT; No, you don’t get a new phone/laptop/iPad if you throw it out the window / run it over, etc. You get fired you psycho.


      I’m a researcher working for the Government of Canada. Them: “Hey, did you know my tax dollars pay your salary?” Me: eye roll.


      Policeman here. The old,”He/she is here, i’ve got him, he’s the one you’ve been looking for”, as they grip their relative/friend/nearest person to them and look at you manically….


      I work in the Deaf community and people always see the name of the charity I work for and say “Pardon?” then laugh like they’re the funniest person in the world. Little bit of my soul dies every frickin’ time


      When I worked at a ski shop setting up snowboard rentals I’d ask how they wanted their stance, regular or goofy, so I could set the bindings up. At least 3 times a week, for the 6 months a year we did rentals, for the 4 years I worked there, I heard from dads “well he rides regular, but he’s pretty goofy hahaha.” By the end of my time there I never even bothered with a fake chuckle anymore, I just didn’t have it in me.


      “So you can make my photo look great and not look like I was running in a poorly-lit hallway using a crummy camera?”

      Graphic Design (user of Photoshop). I can create some nice stuff, but what I can’t do is turn back time and make you take an good photo.


      I work with a lot of graphic designers. It’s not that I want the logo bigger, it’s the two idiots above me making me insist upon it.

      I am so sorry.


      I worked at a branch campus library for my alma mater: “What do you mean you haven’t read this book to tell me what it’s about? What do you even do it here all day?” Not read obscure textbooks about topics I’m not required to study, that’s for sure.

      When I worked at a winery: “This must be the best job in the world! (read: you get to sit and drink wine all day)” Yeah because I’m totally allowed to guzzle half the stock while I’m on duty. /s

      When I worked as housekeeping in a hospital: “Can you come do that at my house?” I don’t even do this at my house, so no.

      When I worked for the post office: “You can keep the bills!”/”Bring me anything good today?”/”Is there a check for a million dollars in there?” No thanks./I don’t know, I didn’t open it./How tf should I know that?

      And my husband the teacher gets a lot of “Summers off must be nice, huh?” or “Must be nice to only have to work nine months out of the year, right?”


      Receptionist here. I previously answered calls with, “Company Name, how may I help you?” and 50% of the time (or so it felt like) the response I’d get was, “Well, I don’t know how YOU can help me”. I switched it up to “how may I assist/direct you” but I still get the ol’ “Well, I don’t know…”

      It’s not cute. Just tell why the eff you’re calling so we can both move on with our days!


      I’m a singer! I went to college for music and have been doing it professionally for sometime now.

      I usually get, “Omg my granddaughter’s cousin’s niece is a singer! You guys should meet up!” Or, “sing something for us!!” And then if I don’t feel up to it they say “how can you be a singer if you don’t want to sing in front of people?” I love it 🙃


      Bike (bicycle) messenger. ‘You’re on a bike ? This should be delivered before next week, hurr hurr’.

      Also every year during the Tour De France : “You’re lost buddy ?” All f*cking day long.

      See Also on Bored Panda


      I used to be in the beer industry (selling to supermarkets) and I’d get “you can just load that pallet into my truck” every day.

      Now I’m in the elevator industry and about once a week I get “I bet that has its ups and downs.”


      Not a profession but: I’m a guy with long hair (to the middle of my back). I hear stuff like “Did your hairdresser die?” or “When are you gonna cut it off?” or any hAhA uR gRiL jokes all the time. It’s not funny guys and you’re not the first to come up with it.


      Stocked shelves at a grocery store for a few months in college and some guy was angry because he had been in line for a few minutes and no one was there to ring him up. He found me and asked what was going on and I kindly told him I’d go grab a cashier to check him out and he goes, “No it’s fine, I can just leave with my stuff. I mean, I don’t have to pay if no ones gonna wait on me,” or something like that. I laughed sarcastically with a deadpan face and told a cashier there were customers waiting.

      They didn’t pay me enough to stop him if he tried.


      “So can you come look at my car?” -Mechanical Engineer.

      I know nothing about cars.


      I work in the music scene making beats and tracks for rap artists

      Everyone always asks “Can I sample this track?” or “Use it for one of my songs?” and they say “imagine the exposure it will get you.”


      Ultrasound tech. Male patients: am I pregnant HAHAHA


      As a nurse, almost any time I give anything remotely close to a painkiller/sedative to patient, the family says something along the lines of “CAN I haVE One tOo HyUcK HYUCK HYucK”


      I work in a nursing home and sometimes we have a resident that is constantly trying to leave and go home, because they don’t remember that they live there. The on going joke is someone asking, “Can’t we just tie them to a chair?” (No, we cant. Just for those of you who actually think that’s an option.)


      I worked at a bank for 4 years. The amount of idiots that go “gimme all your money. Just kidding I’m not here to rob you.” Or “I guess all this cash makes it look like I sell drugs. I don’t though!” is staggering. And in the future, if anyone wants to make the second joke just know that they usually end up having to flag your account to check for money laundering activities so hopefully you aren’t actually selling drugs.

      Edit: I also just want to add how many people would come in on Halloween and be pissed and shocked that we would have the audacity to ask them not to wear masks. That being said it was a hunting town so people constantly came in with knives and for some reason we were ok with that.

      See Also on Bored Panda


      “Who is walking who?” – whenever I am taking a big dog to the back… hur hur


      I work at a car dealership. I’ll get customers come inside upon finding the keys accidentally left in a vehicle. They almost always say, “Found your keys out there, you know I could have just driven away.”

      It’s like they want a reward for not stealing our vehicle.


      I work in a pre-school. Multiple times a week parents say “I don’t know how you guys do it!” Referring to taking care of multiple toddlers all day. It’s always the parents who leave their toddlers with us for 9-11 hours who say this.


      Dairy farmer: brown cows give chocolate milk. I milk brown cows. They don’t give chocolate milk.


      I work for a major spirit company and at least once everyday the pubs I’m calling on will say “got any free bottles?” and then when I say “no, unfortunately not” in the nicest possible way, they will make the rest of the call really sh**ty.


      “Oh you’re a mechanical engineer? You must know a lot about cars.”


      My medium rare steak has blood in it. I’ll take that for free please


      And this is our accounting department. “Lol, put some extra money in my check, lololololololol.”


      At Starbucks, we have categories and buttons for all the drinks.

      When we get a new drink, there is a new button but no one tells us where the button is. It is either in with normal lattes or frappuccinos or it’s under the seasonal category on the opposite side of the screen.

      So when a customer orders a new or special drink, we go on a wild goose chase for the button that seems to not exist. The customers will say “Oh you can’t find it? How about you make it and just let me take it.” My boss just tells us to ring them up for a basic drink and make the special one until the button is added.

      The button is never added

      See Also on Bored Panda


      I don’t have one like that exactly…

      What I get a lot of is: “Wow, that’s like… professional!” Which is a massively backhanded compliment. I’m a fabricator. Professionally.


      video production

      can you make (photoshop) me look thinner?


      Paramedic: After we’ve dropped a patient off (think interfacility transfer) and heading back to the elevator with an empty stretcher, someone always asks, “hey, can I get a ride to my car?” I usually reply: “Sure, $300, cash up front, but if you want me to clean it first, $500, oh, and you probably want me to clean it.” When we’re washing the rig at the end of shift, people actually ask what we charge to do their vehicle. Har dee [frikkin] har. Also, my contract fee for automotive washing is $100/hr, minimum 1hr charge. A totally had one guy tell me to learn to take a joke for that! “Nice park job, assh*le!” Hmmm, big white truck, blinky lights, I wonder if you call the local constabulary to report me, what ever will they do? Hmmm, rough night shift, feeling salty and drinking, maybe number 3 doesn’t apply?


      Work in cardiac ultrasound imaging.

      “Can you tell my wife out there i actually have one?”

      “Is it a boy or a girl?”

      “So is it working?”

      Legit. Hur hur hur


      Worked in the casino guest rewards, you sign up you get perks of some sort ours was a small amount of pts. to use towards slots then changed to some stuffed animal…(I know, we’ve all hated that idea) but if we’re ran out or the system was acting weird it was, “well guess you gotta give me X amount of money” … the other one after asking, is there anything I can help you with…”yeah point me to the winning machine” followed by the fakest laugh of my life.


      Waiter here.

      “Can I get you guys anything else?”

      “Yeah, a boatload of cash!”, or alternatively, “A wheelbarrow”


      Stripper here. Our version is definitely:

      “How about I give YOU a lapdance!”


      As a Recruitment Consultant: “Haha so you just do your magic and find a job for me! Bye!”


      Paramedic here, I ALWAYS get the old ladies saying “oh! My taxi!” Or “You coming back for me later?”

      See Also on Bored Panda


      Also well known in the beer industry:

      “It’s the [insert color] truck out front. HURHURHHR.”

      “It’s free today right. HURHURHUR.”

      “It’s buy one get 29 free right? HURHURHUR.”

      “Man this job must be awesome…getting to sample all this beer. HURHURHUR.”

      “Oh he’s paying for mine too. HURHURHUR.” (This one is good because it usually gets the unknowing customer before this and sometimes after this guy to respond with one of the before mentioned jokes)


      Seriously—people thinking working with beer is awesome. It is. But it isn’t.


      I work in IT. “Have you tried turning it off and on again? ” never gets old.


      I work in IT, when something doesn’t load for people, they love asking “is it the server?”. Yes it’s the server….all 50 of them…


      IT. “Can you hack my


      Landscaping – “hur hur do you want to come do mine (beds/lawn/etc) next? Hur hur”



      Oh lord, the vampires here, let me call you back

      I have terrible veins! They roll; they’re deep, and you have to use a butterfly!

      Well damn, how many tubes you need?

      I ain’t gonna have one more drop of blood by the time I get outta here

      What they testing me for this time? A what? Like I know what that is.


      If I can’t fix a random-ass problem on someone’s PC, I get “so do i get a new one hurr hurr” so often it hurts.


      “there was a typo on the quiz, so that question doesn’t count” or “I was absent that day, so I don’t have to do that assignment”


      Photographer. Please make me look thin.
      [helps them pose instead]

      See Also on Bored Panda

      Read more:

      (CNN)The thrill is not gone at Google.

      Google commissioned Little Rock-based artist Steve Spencer and Brooklyn-based artist Nayeli Lavanderos to create and animate the Doodle. The B.B. King Museum in Mississippi worked with Google’s Doodle team on the project.
      The video was art directed by Oakland-based Angelica McKinley, a native of Memphis, Tennessee, where King first began recording. McKinley said she hopes the video will help people understand the magnitude of King’s life.
        “Without having a full formal education and the guidance of his parents, King took the talent that he was given in a time period that wasn’t kind to black people and devoted himself to sharing music that was the pulse of the Mississippi Delta with the rest of the world,” she said. “This music was created from pain that he knew all too well, but King decided to own it.”
        King’s version of “The Thrill Is Gone” was his biggest hit and won a Grammy in 1970. It highlights King’s distinctive voice and his unique guitar style that combined piercing single notes played with a vibrato instantly recognizable as his. The song was originally recorded by Roy Hawkins in 1951, but it was King’s version that helped turn the song into a blues standard.
        He was born Riley B. King on September 16, 1925, on a plantation in Itta Bena, Mississippi, near Indianola. King sang with church choirs as a child and learned basic guitar chords from his uncle, a preacher. In his youth, he played on street corners for dimes, saying he earned more in one night singing on the corner than he did in one week working in the cotton field.
        In 1947, he moved to Memphis, Tennessee, to pursue a life in music. He became a disc jockey for famed AM radio station WDIA under the moniker Beale Street Blues Boy, which King later shortened to “Blues Boy King” and eventually B.B. King.
        The Doodle features one of King’s guitars, which were always named Lucille. The name stemmed from a gig King performed in Arkansas in the 1950s. Two men fighting over a woman named Lucille knocked over a kerosene stove, starting a fire. King ran outside but rushed back in to retrieve his $30 Gibson acoustic guitar.
        When he found out about the fight, he decided to name his guitar Lucille, “to remind myself never to do anything that foolish.” King used various models of Gibson guitars over the years and named them each Lucille. In the 1980s, Gibson began production of a custom-made signature model of its ES-355 model named Lucille.
          Over his career, he was nicknamed “The King of the Blues.” He earned a long list of honors — a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, a Presidential Medal of Freedom — but never rested on his laurels. He kept up a relentless touring schedule well into his 80s.
          King suffered from Type II diabetes and began to slow down in 2014. He died on May 14, 2015 at age 89.

          Read more:

          Lil Nas X opened up about why he came out when he did on WorldPride day earlier this year, explaining on a recent episode of an HBO talk show that he grew up hating homosexuality and wanted to change that for others.

          On Tuesday, HBO aired an episode of “The Shop: Uninterrupted” featuring the artist alongside Maverick Carter, Kevin Hart, Rob Gronkowski, Kevin Love, CJ McCollum, Charlamagne tha God and Paul Rivera. In a clip that has since gone viral on Twitter, McCollum asked the “Old Town Road” singer why he came out when he did.

          Hart then interjected mid-question to say, “He said he was gay! So what!”

          The 20-year-old said, “It’s not like I was being forced. It’s just like knowing growing up, I’m growing up to hate this shit. I’m not supposed ―” Hart interrupted again to ask, “Hate what? Why? Why are you growing up to hate?”

          “Homosexuality, gay people,” said Lil Nas X, before pointedly saying to Hart, “Come on now, if you’re really from the hood you know.”

          The Georgia native went on to say that he saw it like this: “If for me, the ‘cool dude with the song on top of everything,’ to say this at any other time, I’m doing this for attention … But if you’re doing this while you’re at the top, you know it’s for real. It’s showing it doesn’t really matter, I guess.”

          Many on Twitter lambasted Hart for his outburst during the exchange, because of his own history of anti-gay jokes and tweets. Many specifically accused the comedian of gaslighting Lil Nas X:


          Read more:

          Rap queen Nicki Minaj has seemingly abdicated her throne, announcing in a tweet that she plans to retire from music. 

          “I’ve decided to retire & have my family. I know you guys are happy now,” she wrote on Thursday. “To my fans, keep reppin me, do it til da death of me, in the box- cuz ain’t nobody checkin me.”

          She ended the message with a shoutout to her famously loyal fanbase called the Barbz, adding, “Love you for LIFE.”

          Representatives for the rapper did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment. 

          The “Megatron” rapper, 36, has long been open about her desire to start a family, especially since making things official with fiancé Kenneth “Zoo” Petty in December.

          The two have been dating since 2018, and Petty has made frequent appearances on her social media accounts. The rapper even changed her name on Twitter to Mrs. Petty earlier this month.

          On her Queen Radio show in June, Minaj revealed that she and Petty had acquired a marriage license and intended to wed within “about 80 days.”

          But she’s also been teasing that a follow-up to her fourth studio album “Queen” was in the works, explaining that she was putting the music before wedding planning. 

          “I have to work on my album and I have a lot to focus on that I don’t want to do the big wedding now. We’ll do the big wedding later,” Minaj said on the show in August. 

          “I’ll be married before my album comes out, but will have my wedding after the album comes out,” she continued. 

          Earlier this week, Minaj appeared in the video for Megan Thee Stallion’s anthemic “Hot Girl Summer” alongside Ty Dolla $ign.

          Minaj’s fans on social media were understandably rocked by news of her retirement, pounding the stan alarm and hoping the rapper might reconsider.

          Of course, everyone from Jay-Z and Barbara Streisand to Cher and Garth Brooks have prematurely announced their retirements before releasing new music at a later date. Hopefully, Minaj will follow suit and pick up the mic again some day soon. 

          Read more:

          “It was SoundCloud’s opportunity to lose and now it’s ours,” says Audius CEO Roneil Rumburg. Plenty of musicians and fans are sick of SoundCloud’s expensive hosting costs, haphazard content takedowns and lagging user experience as the site’s status withers. Audius wants to be the opposite, and offer a new home for artists where they’ll eventually earn 90% of revenue earned and the startup itself can’t remove songs.

          Today Audius launches its music streaming and free hosting service backed by DJs like deadmau5 and Zed’s Dead, plus $5.5 million in A-list venture capital. Music makers can upload their songs at no cost, and users can browse, follow and get listening recommendations. The catalog is small to start, with just a few hundred artists, but Audius has big plans for how to lure artists choosing between other SoundCloud alternatives, from Mixcloud to YouTube.


          The secret sauce is that Audius isn’t just a web and mobile site, it’s an open-source protocol built on the blockchain, not that users need to be versed in cryptocurrency or do anything special to sign up. Audius doesn’t actually host the music, but decentralizes it across independently operated nodes, which it believes will protect it from lawsuits and record label pressure. It’s distributing its own crypto tokens to incentivize artists that join early, as well as the node operators, with the insinuation that these might rise in value if the service grows popular.

          Audius is completely free for listening at high-quality 320kbps. For now, artists can’t make money, though many still can’t on SoundCloud. But in early 2020, the startup plans to let artists opt into requiring users to occasionally listen to ads or pay a few dollars per month for an Audius subscription. Ninety percent of revenue will go to the artists and 10% to the node operators, and there are also plans to cut in playlist curators. Audius itself hopes the value of its tokens will rise so it can sell from its stockpile to generate revenue.


          “Audius’ dedication to empowering artists through supporting direct relationships with fans, censorship resistance, and fair pay is so important in a time when artists are being mistreated regularly,” writes dance music superstar deadmau5, aka Joel Zimmerman, who’s on the startup’s advisory board. Other artists like Zeds Dead, Mr. Carmack and Rezz have pledged to put some exclusive music on Audius, ranging from finished tracks to rough drafts. They were attracted by the promise of bigger and faster payouts, plus a transparent copyright takedowns process.

          The biggest challenge for Audius will be playing catch-up recruiting artists and listeners over a decade after SoundCloud launched and when Spotify already has 108 million paying subscribers from its 232 million users. For now there’s not much special about the user experience, where you can listen to a feed of what you follow or library of saved songs, or check out trending artists and playlists. At least sign up is easier than most blockchain apps, requiring merely an email address or Twitter sign-in, though crypto kids can use MetaMask. The lack of native mobile apps won’t help, though.


          All the artists-first philosophy won’t matter if it never gains traction. But if Audius does grow, it has a savvy approach to preventing unnecessary content takedowns. Rumburg claims an estimated 80% of takedowns on apps like SoundCloud and YouTube are not actually infringing copyright, leading to great content disappearing. “Audius doesn’t have the ability to deplatform you or censor you,” says Audius co-founder Forrest Browning.


          Audius co-founders (from left): Forrest Browning, Roneil Rumburg

          First, because it doesn’t host the songs itself, it will just pass copyright-holder complaints on to the uploaders themselves. Owners can be reassigned the revenue being earned by a song rather than have it taken down. And instead of pulling down a whole DJ set, the rights-holder of a five-minute song in an hour-long mix would get 1/12 of the proceeds. Browning tells me, “A lot of artists are completely fine with their content being remixed or mashed up.”

          If disputes aren’t resolved, rights-holders can approach the operators of nodes hosting the music and file a local equivalent of a DMCA takedown request, though the music might still live on other nodes beyond the law. In that case, rights-holders file a complaint to the Audius arbitration committee made up of users. That group can vote on whether a track legally should be removed or its revenue reattributed, and both plaintiffs and committee members must put up a small financial stake they’ll lose if their claim is frivolous or they make erroneous decisions.

          We’ll see if this hands-off approach to censorship actually flies with the law. If so, it could give artists confidence in joining Audius that they lack elsewhere. Many are frustrated after constantly having to rebuild their audience on different platforms, from Myspace to iTunes to Spotify to SoundCloud, especially if their tracks are disappearing. One benefit of being open-sourced and decentralized… “Let’s say our company closes up shop in 5 years? Audius and the content will live on forever, as long as folks continue to operate the nodes,” Rumburg explains.

          To make sure it stays in business as it stretches its venture funding from General Catalyst and Lightspeed, Audius has plans for additional tools that could make it and artists money. From being able to crowdfund future albums to selling merchandise or VIP experiences, Audius could become a gateway to spending on independent music. It could have to compete with itself, though, since Audius’ on-demand streaming site is just one client built on its open-source protocol. The founders say they hope other people will build Pandora-style radio clients, music discovery apps and more listening options through its APIs.


          Rumburg and Browning met the summer after high school at a camp of Stanford admits. Throughout college, the recent graduates got deeper into dance music subgenres by devouring everything on SoundCloud. But watching their favorite artists get music kicked off that app while their DJ friends struggled to break through the algorithms, Rumburg says they wondered “how can we remove the platform from this equation?”

          Music businesses aiming to free art from “the man” so often end up becoming him. But by decentralizing control and funneling money directly to creators, Audius may code its way into music culture.


          Read more:

          Backed by over $200 million in VC funding, Kobalt is changing the way the music industry does business and putting more money into musicians’ pockets in the process.

          In Part I of this series, I walked through the company’s founding story and its overall structure. There are two core theses that Kobalt bet on: 1) that the shift to digital music could transform the way royalties are tracked and paid, and 2) that music streaming will empower a growing middle class of DIY musicians who find success across countless niches.

          How a Swedish saxophonist built Kobalt, the world’s next music unicorn

          This article focuses on the complex way royalties flow through the industry and how Kobalt is restructuring that process (while Part III will focus on music’s middle class). The music industry runs on copyright administration and royalty collections. If the system breaks — if people lose track of where songs are being played and who is owed how much in royalties — everything halts.

          Kobalt is as much a compliance tech company as it is a music company: it has built a quasi “operating system” to more accurately and quickly handle this using software and a centralized approach to collections, upending a broken, inefficient system so everything can run more smoothly and predictably on top of it. The big question is whether it can maintain its initial lead in doing this, however.

          The business of a song


          Image via Getty Images / Mykyta Dolmatov

          Read more:

          Washington (CNN)A White House state dinner is almost always an opportunity for a president and a first lady to showcase the significance and grandeur of the White House, as well as the cultural components of the host and guest countries, their notable residents, and special flourishes — flags, flowers, curated menu, black-tie dress code and the like.

          “It is always the hope that a state visit will enhance the relationships between countries, and between leaders of the day,” said Stewart McLaurin, president of the White House Historical Association, which works in tandem with the White House to provide context and history, as well as maintain and preserve the People’s House.
            “Even the best of allies have times of challenge in relationships. This has been true since the beginning of diplomatic relations,” he said.
            Trump, in particular, has a unique way of dealing with his global counterparts, and it often includes a straight-talk bravado that most presidents reserve for adversarial relationships, making picking a state dinner guest a bit of a challenge. Kim Jong Un might write Trump “beautiful letters,” as he has said, but he can’t exactly invite the North Korean dictator to dine by candlelight in the State Dining Room.
            McLaurin said it isn’t solely warmth and camaraderie that make for a successful guest, it’s a whole host of components. “Some presidents find other means of interaction more effective and to their strengths. But many, many factors go into such an invitation. It is not as simple as who we like or who is compatible ideologically.”
            Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison is a Trump ally in many ways, sharing similar philosophies on immigration, supporting Israel and trade.
            “State dinners themselves are used as important diplomatic means and serve as a form of public diplomacy, strengthening relationships with an ally,” said Charity Wallace, founder and president of Wallace Global Impact, and deputy chief of protocol for the State Department during the George W. Bush administration.

            The planning

            What might seem from the outside like a fancy dinner party on steroids, is actually a more delicate dance between the White House, the East Wing, the social secretary’s office and the State Department.
            “While different administrations may change how they interface with protocol, classically the State Department’s Office of the Chief of Protocol is very engaged in a State Visit,” says Wallace. “The office has several divisions that would work closely with the social secretary’s office on the arrival ceremony, the dinner, the staff dinner — which takes place simultaneously for those staff members from the delegations that are not included in the state dinner), and more.”
            Trump’s social secretary, Rickie Niceta, was one of Melania Trump’s first staff hires, in February 2017. Trump has said she was impressed with Niceta’s handling of the Inauguration Day luncheon at the US Capitol; at the time, Niceta was a senior level executive at a Washington, catering and events company.
            For Niceta, a state dinner is the equivalent of the Super Bowl.
            When French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte Macron were guests of honor last year, attention to detail resulted in French-influenced Cajun jambalaya rice dish in the main course, and the Domaine Serene Chardonnay “Evenstad Reserve” 2015 wine, grown from French plants from Dijon, but planted in Oregon soil.
            It falls to Niceta, primarily, to carry out not only the aesthetic vision of the first lady for the dinner itself, but also make for smooth sailing the finer details like guest lists, invitations, seating charts, entertainment, arrivals, menu coordination, decor, and perhaps the most stressful, the timing of the entire evening.
            “The first lady is the orchestra leader of a state dinner,” McLaurin said. “Every element is determined and directed by the first lady.”
            As she did with the France state dinner, Melania Trump chose everything for Friday’s dinner for Australia, down to the color scheme, based on the national colors Down Under: yellow and green.

            The details

            Friday’s state dinner will take place al fresco, while not unprecedented, is a departure from how the Trumps hosted the Macrons.
            “It was the first lady’s idea to have the dinner in the Rose Garden,” a White House official told CNN.
            The iconic green space outside of the Oval Office will be filled with tables and diners will eat under the stars. The grass will be protected — as will the high heels of the guests — by a carpet covering of sisal, a natural fiber rug that for Friday will blanket the Rose Garden.
            The tables, between 10 and 15, are covered in gold, taffeta tablecloths and adorned with massive floral centerpieces of yellow roses (more than 2,500 were used) and sprigs of golden wattle, the national flower of Australia, which has fuzzy, sphere-shaped buds of bright yellow and green leaves.
            Trump, with the help of Niceta, designed the details, settling on the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush presidential china sets, both have gold filigree. On the tables, in addition to the flowers, are small dishes of candied ginger, also yellow. Additionally, “the tables will be illuminated with gold oil lamps. Golden champagne grapes will be placed on top of the tables, highlighting the richness of each of the countries’ wine industries,” according to the first lady’s office.
            But there are “Trump” touches, for certain.
            The President’s favorite dish, Dover sole, which aides tell CNN is the most-popular main course served at the White House for any event, is the featured entrée.
            But broadly, the food, “pays homage to Australia’s special blend of culinary adaptations from its various cultures, not unlike the diverse food traditions of the United States,” according to the first lady’s office.
            A first course of sunchoke ravioli will be followed by the sole, which will be roasted whole and served with a fennel mousseline — accompanied by green and yellow summer squash blossoms, keeping with the color scheme, of course. The additional “garlic rouille” contains herbs from the White House Kitchen Garden, Michelle Obama’s beloved project which is still utilized by the White House chefs.
              The piece de resistance for the dinner is without a doubt the setting. As guests arrive and throughout the dinner, the United States Army Strings corps will be stationed down the long colonnade in single file, facing the garden and the guests, playing familiar tunes as gentle background music, each song personally approved by the first lady. In fact, the entire entertainment for the evening will be provided by the military.
              It’s “the largest gathering of premier military musicians for a state dinner at the White House,” according to a release from the first lady’s office, including musical groups from the United States Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and Air Force. In past administrations, state dinners entertainment has featured marquee singers such as James Taylor, Kenny Chesney, Gwen Stefani, Demi Lovato and the cast of “Jersey Boys.”

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              I’ve been a loyal member of Bachelor Nation for longer than is psychologically recommended (according to my therapist). In fact, I’m so invested in them that I spend almost seven months out of every year chained to my TV for two hours on Monday nights, just to watch these people find love while simultaneously bringing dishonor to their family name. I then meticulously record this aesthetically-pleasing car crash in a weekly recap so that we can all remember that one time Chris Harrison had to explain to Colton which hole to put it in for posterity purposes. One could even argue that watching The Bachelor has been my longest relationship to date. 

              And, like any other toxic relationship in my life, I’ve put up with my fair share of bullsh*t. Getting rid of Jorge The Bartender on Bachelor in Paradise in favor of Wells, who is about as much a mixologist as I am a person with good credit? Fine. Letting Chris Harrison negotiate a new contract that allows him to speak seven words or less per episode, despite the fact that he is the glue that holds that insane asylum together? Also fine. Giving Nick Viall not one, not two, not three, but FOUR separate seasons to con the American public into thinking he could ever be a catch? Fine, fine, fine. But what I won’t stand for—what I absolutely refuse to allow—is Bachelor Nation infiltrating the lives of real celebs. 

              For those of you who haven’t been paying attention, recently there has been a number of former Bachelor contestants vying for the hearts of actual celebrities, like Tyler C and Gigi Hadid, Demi Lovato and Mike Johnson, and as of last week, potentially Nick Viall and Rachel Bilson. And these are just the most recent couplings! 

              When I first found out about Tyler C hooking up with Gigi Hadid, I was disappointed and a little upset. My friends, on the other hand, were ecstatic. “Good for Tyler!” They’d say. “He deserves only good things!” Look, I’m not going to pretend that watching 30 hours of TV footage of the man makes me an apt judge of his character, but I was inclined to agree. Good things? Sure. But going from dating a girl who names her zits and regularly butchers the English language to dating one of the highest-paid models in the world, who also happens to be an international superstar? Are you f*cking kidding me, Tyler?


              Bottom line? I felt lied to. I had just spent weeks this summer watching Tyler profess his love for Hannah B, a girl who is the definition of “hot mess” in Urban Dictionary, only to find out that what he was really searching for in a partner was 108 pounds of hairspray and coconut water. Part of those feelings of betrayal came from the fact that these guys are supposed to be somewhat attainable. These are supposed to be guys who would theoretically be into us, the viewer (assuming we are under a size 4, have at least 10K followers on Instagram, and look professionally airbrushed at all times). AND GIGI F*CKING HADID IS NOT LIKE US, THE VIEWER, IS SHE TYLER C?!

              Furthermore, I’ve always considered the stars of Bachelor Nation to be their own sad, demented sorority/fraternity, that real stars—people with certifiable talents and ambition that goes beyond which Instagram sponsorship will pay for their Revolve credit card—would look down upon. Bachelor contestants are willing to debase themselves on national television, wear chicken suits and cry about being seagulls instead of pigeons. Why would a person who has won Emmys for acting or hit the Billboard Hot 100 want to date a person whose bio can be summed up as “social media participant” or “former high school athlete”?

              Take Mike Johnson and Demi Lovato, for instance. Do I love them both? Yes. Do I want both of them to be happy? Also, yes. But Demi is a rockstar, a huge advocate for mental health, and has a world-wide fanbase, while Mike… has a really great smile? Calls women “queens”? Seriously, what does this guy do for a living and is he really good enough for MY queen Demi? Their budding relationship feels mismatched and off-kilter. That’s not to say some relationships can’t be mismatched, but this feels like something more than that.

              And for the most part, it’s the men of BachelorNation who are sliding into the DMs of A-list stars. You don’t see Bibiana hitting up Michael B. Jordan’s IG comments section with flirty emojis or Kristina Schulman going on dinner dates with Chace Crawford. Which brings me to the real reason I’m so offended by these recent couplings: why is this phenomenon so one-sided?

              We’ve talked at length about how The Bachelor men dating A-listers won’t be great for the franchise. It already felt like a real suspension of reality that these conventionally attractive, mildly successful men weren’t able to find love in real life and that’s why they came on the show. Over the years, it’s felt like less of the contestants are actually there to find love with the lead and more of them are there to find fame and careers on Instagram. And now the female leads must contend with the likes of Demi Lovato and Gigi Hadid potentially sliding into the guys’ DMs post-production, apparently. 


              Aside from Lauren Bushnell’s recent engagement to country music singer Chris Lane, the majority of the ladies in Bachelor Nation are single or are dating in the Bachelor pool of potential suitors, but the men aren’t playing that game anymore. While Nick Viall serenades Summer Roberts on his podcast, Caelynn felt so desperate for a happy ending that she settled for a man who lives in his van.

              More and more I watch this show and think, “man, she’s settling” and I’ve realized that’s not the kind of reality TV I want to watch anymore. This used to be a show about real people looking for love. Over time, that’s shifted into cosmetically enhanced, famous-adjacent people looking for love, and I was fine with that too. But I can’t stand for this new turn of events. I don’t watch The Bachelorette or Bachelor in Paradise to find out how a good looking dude from Florida somehow managed to bag a supermodel. I watch this show to root for the women, for them to find themselves and maybe find love too.

              Hannah B set a new precedent  for Bachelorettes: that we can be funny and messy and say the wrong things and STILL be desirable—still be wife material. But watching her men declare that’s what they want in a wife and then go out and date international superstars in the next breath is enraging and upsetting. If this is what the next generation of Bachelor looks like, then count me out. 

              Images: ABC; Giphy (2)

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