It’s about to be the freakin’ weekend, y’all—and we know you’d rather be dry drunk, but at least you’re alive, since this weekend, it’s about to rain glitter and Jell-O shots all over your parade. Yep, it's PRIDE WEEKEND in New York, and even if you’re not the type to party in the heat ‘till the break of dawn, we’ve got a very steezy, colorful group of product launches and wavy collabs that will make your upcoming summer activities even more festive.
Last week, we offered you some of the hyphiest items on the planet, including Balenciaga’s understated, unisex Pride ‘22 collection, a limited-edition David Bowie Monopoly set, and a pleasure-inducing vibrating ring from Zalo, which is the brand’s first toy designed for penis-owners (it’s fun for couple play, too). This week, we’re bringing you a whole host of new, must-have pieces to make you re-evaluate your June spending budget—looking at you, Urban Outfitters x True Religion. Get ready to covet the thick-pocketed jeans our teen selves were saving our entire allowance for, and don’t even get us started on Fiorucci’s new capsule collection that pays homage to the brand’s flagship NYC store on 59th street in Manhattan—the ultimate mecca for New York club kids, before Opening Ceremony was even an idea.
So make sure you’ve prepared your mind, body, and soul for a weekend of tunes, fashion, and all-out, boots-slay-the-house-down partying—because here come the hottest drops of the week.Wrangler x Will Leather Goods
Giddy up, cowboy. If you’re looking for a travel bag you wish you knew how to quit, the Wrangler x Will Leather 75th Anniversary Cargo Pocket Traveler Bag is your new soulmate, partner. The classically Western canvas and leather bag is designed to look better with age—the two large front pockets are great for stashing toiletries, and the interior is lined with a plaid blanket material for extra pizzazz. Plus, it comes with a removable laptop sleeve and a convenient trolley sleeve for easy suitcase-stacking on longer trips.Urban Outfitters x True Religion
In the words of the Messiah of the 00s, Fergie, there’s nothing better for accentuating those humps, yes, those lovely lady lumps, than the OG designer-denim brand, True Religion. But don’t worry, if you don’t remember the brand from its first moment in the spotlight, it’s never too late to hop on a re-burgeoning trend. Urban Outfitters has partnered with True Religion for an exclusive 10-piece collection that will ignite your nostalgia for the naughty aughts, including these contrast-stitched men’s cargo pants and dark wash, low-rise women’s bootcut jeans.Ruggable x Monica Ahanonu
What do you get when you combine talented artist and illustrator Monica Ahanonu with Ruggable, the GOAT of affordable, washable rugs? Answer: An incredibly cheery and bright collaboration that breathes new life into drab rooms and outdoor spaces. The collection includes eight styles (for both indoors and outdoors), with punchy patterns inspired by details in nature, such as the curves of fruits and vegetables. Ahanonu created this collection while “thinking about how color in a space can affect people's energy throughout the day, [and] believes that color and light can greatly affect one’s mood.”Warm & Wonderful x J. Stark
For all you self-identifying black sheep out there, this tote is for you. You don’t fit in, and they wouldn’t understand. It’s not just a phase, dad—it's a way of life! Whichever community you call “fam,” be it furries, your experimental theater club, or your straight edge crew, let us all be joined in the subtle head nod that is “being an outsider”. Display your alt pride with a new heavyweight cotton duck canvas tote from accessories brand J. Stark featuring Warm & Wonderful’s iconic “Black Sheep” pattern, which was popularized after Princess Di wore it in sweater form to express her discontent with the internal politics of the British royal family.Tombolo Launches Shorts
Get ready to show off those gams in a riveting game of “hot dogs or legs?”—short-shorts edition! One of our favorite vacation-wear brands, Tombolo, has just launched a line of tailored shorts, which is a new category for the brand (it has offered soft terry cloth cabana shorts in the past as part of its matching sets). Tombolo was inspired by “the ones Jimmy Buffet wore in the seventies aboard his sailboat,” which make them ideal for eating a “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” after you've fully wasted away in “Margaritaville.” The Stowaway shorts are made from 97% cotton and 3% elastane for just the right amount of structure and stretch, and have a perfect 5.5-inch inseam that hits that perfect spot on the thigh. They are also available in four summer colors—Salt, Pepper, Navy, and Khaki.Fiorucci Launches 59 Street Collection
Iconic Italian fashion house Fiorucci, famous for bringing European fashions to the U.S., has just released a limited-edition collection inspired by the brand’s flagship store on Manhattan’s 59th Street in the 70s. The glamorous purveyor of brightly colored disco duds was one referred to as the “daytime Studio 54” and attracted everyone from Andy Warhol to Madonna. The new collection pays homage to Fiorucci’s loud, all-over prints and baby angel logo tees, with the addition of modern loungewear and accessories, like this psychedelic bucket hat.Parade Launches Gender-Expansive Basics
Known for its versatile cotton and mesh basics, undies brand Parade just launched a new collection of 10 classic styles that have been in development for nearly a year. The expanded line of gender-inclusive styles was updated and co-designed by members of Parade’s community in an effort to make styles that “continue to break the one-dimensional body narrative,” according to the brand. The line is made from sustainable fabric that’s ethically sourced from trees and upcycled cotton.Nixon x Independent Truck Company
“Yo, that was the tightest backside 180 I’ve seen since Tony Hawk, man,” people will (probably) say when they see your new Nixon x Independent watch. Independent has been the #1 choice of professional skateboarders since 1978, providing skateboard trucks that allow skaters to shred, whether they’re just a little grom or they knew Jay Adams personally. The four limited-edition timepieces are some of Nixon’s most popular styles, re-imagined with subtle details and nods to the OG skate brand.
The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. Want more reviews, recommendations, and red-hot deals? Sign up for our newsletter.
You might have seen augmented reality (AR) mobile apps that allow you to place 3D models of furniture in a camera view of your home, but a new app from IKEA will take that idea to a new level with the help of machine learning (ML).
Called IKEA Kreativ, the app allows you to take an accurate 3D scan of your room, then remove existing furniture items or clutter by replacing them with IKEA products you want to see in the space.
The delete-a-piece-of-furniture capability is reminiscent of the Google Pixel 6's Magic Eraser and iOS 16's upcoming "lift subject from background" features for smartphone photos. Those features are driven by similar AI/ML technology.
Friends, foes, workplace proximity associates—lend me your ears. We have gathered here today for one thing, and one thing only: to get down and dirty with the deals, deals, deals once again. It’s the Wild West out there, which is why we’re donning our stripper/cowboy boots, popping on our Croc spurs, and riding into Dealtown, USA.
Last week, we brought you dope discounts on Hoka running shoes, fire pits, cookware, and a shaved ice machine—because we all deserve a snow cone, no matter our age. This week, we wrangled deals from two towns over on top-tier fans, nontoxic cookware, sex furniture, and more. So light your Dad Grass and pop a squat on your lawn chair, because these deals are so good, you might faint.The best Amazon deals right now
We love iPads for their portability—we can take them to the coffee shop, on a plane, to sleepovers, and so on. Last year’s model (which still slaps) is currently 10% off and features built-in stereo speakers, a 10-hour battery life, Apple’s Retina display, and 256GB of storage.
Toss out that old box of Barilla in your pantry, because we found something that will knock your (hopefully) Italian socks off. This 4.4-star rated pasta maker is 50% off right now and makes everything from fettuccine to thick lasagna noodles. “Easy to set-up and use and with adjustable pasta thickness, makes perfect pasta every time,” one Amazon reviewer writes.
Keeping cool, calm, and collected is essential at all times. But none of that is possible if you’re sweating like a maniac and reek of B.O. Thankfully, this TORRAS Coolify 2 rechargeable neck fan exists, and it happens to be 24% off right now. It has two cooling plates that wrap around your entire neck, an 18-hour battery life, and 360-degree airflow.Ella Paradis’ sitewide Pride sale
It’s Pride month, and many retailers are recognizing it by offering steep discounts. Ella Paradis is offering up to 70% off sitewide when you use promo code PRIDE at checkout. The best part? Three new sex furniture wedges from sex furniture gods Liberator just dropped for 20% off: the Wedge Positioning Support Aid, which adds lift during missionary, the Black Label Whirl, which provides support when trying new sex positions, and the Kiss Wedge, which adds some lift when you need some extra oomph to get into select spicy positions.Dyson’s icy fan deal
It’s officially summer, which means the prehistoric AC unit you found in the attic of your 100-year-old apartment is no longer going to cut it. That’s fine, though, because Dyson has its beloved Pure Cool Purifying Fan slashed by $120 right now. On top of keeping you from sweating out the sheets, it also removes 99.97% of allergens and pollutants from the air in your home.Caraway’s cookware steal
After a few years indoors, everyone is yearning for a summertime feast, so you better make sure you have a bangin’ set of pots and pans ready to whip up your fave dinner party staples (save us a slice of lasagna, thanks!). Caraway’s Cookware Set is $150 off and has a 4.8-star average rating from over 32,000 reviews. It comes with a fry pan, saucepan, sauté pan, and Dutch oven for all your culinary adventures.Frontgate’s plush discount
When you hop out of the shower, you should feel like you’re in a luxurious bathhouse, not a gym locker room. Once you're done basking in all the steam and Old Spice, the next step is to rub yourself down with a plush bath towel. Our pick is Frontgate’s Resort Collection Bath Towels, which are nearly 50% off right now, and have a 4.7-star average rating from over 9,000 reviews. “These bath towels are amazing!” one reviewer writes. “They are thick and thirsty, and so soft!” We’re completely sold. (The brand also has a truckload of other items on clearance.)Nolah’s summer sale
Summertime is meant for hard chilling and deep snoozing. Nolah knows what’s up—that’s why the brand wants us to toss our foam roll from junior year of college and check out its ultra-comfortable mattresses that are up to $700 off right now. Features include long-lasting durability, pressure relief, cooling technology, and a body-contouring design.
Adios—until next week.
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The moon meets wildcard Uranus in Taurus at 6:15 PM and a radical new start could begin! It’s an exciting time for experimentation. Surprising news might be shared. There’s an energy of unpredictability, so stay flexible, grounded, and true to yourself.
All times ET.
Stay in the cosmic loop with the VICE horoscopes newsletter. Get horoscopes straight to your inbox when you sign up here!Aries
The moon in Taurus can find you focused on your finances today. An unexpected gift may arrive as the moon meets Uranus in Taurus! You might be in the mood to take a risk; go slow and make informed decisions.Taurus
The moon is in your sign, Taurus, and it meets with the planet of the unexpected, Uranus. You can be feeling especially energized, so maybe lay off the extra cup of coffee. Embrace what makes you unique today!Gemini
Inspiration can strike when you least expect it today as the moon mingles with electric Uranus in Taurus. You may feel restless, and your imagination is probably on fire: Make some art!Cancer
Surprising social connections can form as the moon mingles with the planet of the unexpected, Uranus, in Taurus. A wild wish could be made today, too.Leo
Unexpected excitement may take place in your career as the moon meets Uranus in Taurus! You could be releasing a project that’ll surprise people, or exploring a novel approach to connecting with your fans.Virgo
The moon meets Uranus in fellow earth sign Taurus today, which can bring some unexpected opportunities and adventures your way. A surprising idea or news from abroad may pop up.Libra
Unexpected emotions may bubble to the surface today, but you can also be ready to liberate yourself from the past as the moon meets wildcard Uranus in Taurus.Scorpio
Unexpected meetings may take place as the moon meets Uranus in your opposite sign Taurus. A breakthrough in your relationships could take place. It’s an exciting time for experimentation.Sagittarius
An unexpected change in your routine may take place as the moon meets wildcard Uranus in Taurus, but shaking up your schedule might not be such a bad thing!Capricorn
The moon meets wildcard Uranus in fellow earth sign Taurus, which may bring some unexpected thrills! Something novel and surprising could bring you joy and creative inspiration today.Aquarius
The moon in Taurus meets your ruling planet Uranus today, which could bring some surprising shifts to your home and family life. You’re ready to upgrade things in your personal space.Pisces
Unexpected news and novel ideas are shared today as the moon in Taurus meets wildcard Uranus. A creative breakthrough could take place. A great idea may suddenly occur to you!
If the proposed addition of the 12GHz spectrum to 5G goes forward, Starlink broadband terminals across America could be crippled, or so SpaceX has complained. …
Hiii. Cancer here. We’ve covered the gifting bases for all the other signs of the zodiac at Rec Room, from feral fire signs to hard-chiller earth babies, but now it’s finally time for our season in the sun (June 21 to July 22). Raise your claws and blast your Enya, because the hour has come for you to hold silent grudges, start competitively crying (with yourself; ideally in the mirror), and cooking a four-course meal for a lukewarm Tinder date. In the words of one Twitter user, “ngl cancer szn feels like a weighted blanket over me in a bad uncomfortable way.”
As one of the zodiac’s three water signs, we Cancers are famously emotional beings who prioritize comfort and take pride in our home. We don’t need much—just your whole heart and several consecutive texts in a row every time we chat. (But we warned: When we need our space, we need it). Ruled by the moon, we crabs aren’t afraid to talk about our feels, and will rival even Leo when it comes to being a loyal friend or lover—unless we decide it’s time to stir up the gumbo pot, and throw a crabby little tantrum.
Famous Cancers include Julius Caesar (peak vindictive, goo-goo-gaga energy), Lana Del Rey, (“High By The Beach,” hello??) and the always passionate Frida Kahlo. Unofficial Cancers include your sleep paralysis demon, all mochi desserts, and the glass of water you forgot about that now has a weird layer of dust on it.
What to gift this sweet, impassioned crustacean? The best gifts for a Cancer should feel personal, and speak to their love of creature comforts, hosting their friends, and feeling like the center of your world. From fancy Icelandic candles to herbal pre-rolls and more, here are the best presents to coax them out of their shell.A sweater to use as a tissue
Don’t be surprised if your Cancer accidentally leaves this sweater at the house of their friend so that they’ll have to be invited back. The 100%-cotton knit pullover from Rowing Blazers is the perfect sweater for every season, and we can envision it everywhere from the holiday work function to the deck of a yacht.A moody candle (that’s hotter than their tears)
As a moody Cancer myself, I’m obsessed with this vibe-heavy Icelandic candle from Fischersund. The perfumery was co-founded by Jónsi of Sigur Rós, who—to no one’s surprise—is also an olfactory-obsessed dude. No. 23 is the house’s first and best-selling scent profile, a blend of aniseed, black pepper, tobacco seeds, and Icelandic sitka spruce that always gives me the feeling of what the Germans call Fernweh: a “longing for a place you've never been to,” and which the Fischersund team says captures the feeling of when “[a] feminine fountain pine tickles the top of your skull.” All of the candles are hand-poured and given wooden wicks, so you get the bonus ASMR experience of that fireplace-esque flicker.Hearty cookware that lasts forever
The promise of forever isn’t something you can make often, but you can do it with cast iron. Your beloved Cancer will appreciate the hearty nature of this pre-seasoned Lodge skillet, which has a 4.7-star average rating from over over 132,000 reviews on Amazon. “My favorite thing about cast iron [cookware] is the durability,” chef Isaac Toups told VICE. “You can bring it to the camp, and cook over an open fire. Use it to deep fry chicken in the back yard. Use it like a hammer, and other fun stuff.” Catch Cancer using this to serve up a Dutch baby for Sunday brunch, and as a (cathartic) pseudo-hammer for all their DIY projects.A new beach towel
Your little crab loves nothing more than a dip in the salty sea, and Brooklinen just dropped its summertime batch of artist-designed beach towels. This ode to Cancer is by NYC-based graphic artist Edward Ubiera, and is made out of a unique velour and terry cloth blend to give you more fluff and absorbency than your average beach towel.A fancy cigarette case and herbal pre-rolls
The Brooklyn-based apothecary Anima Mundi makes the perfect herbal pre-rolls. They’re made with a relaxing, pensive blend of chamomile, mugwort, hemp flower, blue lotus, and more witchy herbs, and come in a classy glass jar that’s perfect for gifting. I always keep a jar on-hand for house guests, and enjoy a few puffs as part of my wind-down routine after a stressful day.
Your precious shellfish also needs to protect their emotional support smokes (yes, they will call them that), chamomile or otherwise, so give them a swish new paisley case with their initials engraved on the front.A 90s stars and moons blanket
Taurus isn’t the only sign obsessed with feasting like a pro. If a Cancer has invited you to dinner, you can expect their Polish cabbage rolls to be served on cabbage ware plates (so meta) for an added touch of ambiance. This Bordallo Pinheiro set has a 4.7-star average rating on Amazon, and is *peak* cottagecore.This iconic self-help book
There are so many excellent self-help books for money management, relationship guidance, and more, but only The Four Agreements makes us feel like a true woo-woo lord in the best way. Author Don Miguel Ruiz’s approach to fostering a more balanced, joyous life is informed by his take on ancient Toltec wisdom, and the book has a 4.7-star average from over 81,100 ratings on Amazon. Maybe don’t give this to a Cancer you just met, but an age-old friend will appreciate this written companion for diving even deeper into their feels.Spurs for their Crocs
Those crabs have pincers for a reason, jabroni: They’re not afraid to get a little feisty. Don’t believe them? Just peep the spurs on their Crocs as they walk away (once again avoiding confrontation).All hail the martini lamp
It’s a lamp, it’s a drink, it’s a lifestyle. This vintage, chrome dive bar lamp (the pit lights up!) would be a next-level gift for anyone who enjoys a dirty slurp of cold poison, but it will especially speak to your thirsty Cancer.This album was made for Cancers
… The Prodigy has never said this explicitly, but the crab on the cover of the iconic The Fat of the Land knows what’s up.
See you when it’s time to rally (thank God) for Leo season!
The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. Want more reviews, recommendations, and red-hot deals? Sign up for our newsletter.
Former President Donald Trump called top Justice Department officials “virtually every day” in the waning days of his presidency to repeatedly pressure them to investigate his disproven claims about election fraud in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election, according to testimony given during the Jan. 6 select committee hearing Thursday.
Between Dec. 23, 2020, and Jan. 3, 2021, Trump either met with or called acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen every day except Christmas to push his false election fraud claims, Rosen testified to the committee.
Former Assistant Attorney General Richard Donoghue said he once spent 90 minutes debunking Trump’s false claims about the election being stolen from him one by one. But eventually, Trump gave up trying to convince them of legal merit.
“Just say it was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the Republican congressmen,” Trump said at one point, meaning himself and Republican allies in Congress, according to notes taken by Donoghue and made public during the hearing.
Donoghue reiterated: “That’s an exact quote.”
Donoghue began taking notes during a Dec. 27, 2020, call with Trump, after the former president made yet another false allegation about hundreds of thousands of votes in Pennsylvania being decertified.
Donoghue explained to Trump that the Justice Department didn’t have a “civil role” to sue states over their election results, and acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen told Trump the Justice Department couldn’t “snap its fingers and change the results of the election.” Trump “responded very quickly,” Donoghue recalled.
“He said, essentially, to the effect of, That’s not what I’m asking you to do,’” Donoghue said.
Thursday’s hearing has centered around Trump’s efforts to bully the Department of Justice, including Rosen, into pursuing his false claims that the election was stolen from him. Part of that included proposing elevating Jeffrey Clark, a little-known environmental attorney at the DOJ, to Attorney General, because apparently Clark was willing to back his bogus claims about the election.
Donoghue testified before the committee in October 2021 that Trump floated replacing Rosen with Clark, court filings from earlier this year showed. Donoghue said he told Trump, "Sir, I would resign immediately. There is no way I'm serving one minute under this guy." Donoghue also told Trump that the "entire [Justice] Department leadership would resign.”
During a Dec. 31 meeting, Donoghue testified Thursday, Trump threatened to fire both him and Rosen. “Mr. President, you should have the leadership you want,” Donoghue told Trump, “but the Justice Department functions on facts, evidence, and law. And no matter who is in charge, that is not going to change.”
During the hearing, the committee showed clips from a letter which was written by Clark, and meant to be sent to leaders in the Georgia Legislature, asking legislators to “convene a special session” to approve a fake set of electors for Trump, in a state he lost by more than 10,000 votes.
Donoghue and Rosen refused to sign off on the letter. On Wednesday, federal agents raided Clark’s home in Virginia while he was in his pajamas and “took his electronic devices,” former Trump budget director Russ Vought said Thursday.
‘Enjoy,’ a delivery startup that is run by a former Apple executive and which recently went public via a SPAC, may not be able to pay its workers money they are owed, according to a cache of internal Slack chats and emails obtained by Motherboard.
Workers started speaking out on Enjoy’s company Slack this week after receiving an email from the company indicating that Enjoy might not be able to pay them at the end of the month.
“As Ron shared, we hope to be in a position for employees to be paid the amounts they are due. Unfortunately, given our current cash outlook, we are unable to provide any specific assurance at this time,” a screenshot of an internal message obtained by Motherboard reads. Ron refers to Ron Johnson, CEO and Founder of Enjoy and a former senior vice president of retail operations at Apple, where he oversaw the company’s rollout of retail stores and its Genius Bar. The possible payment issues appear to impact Enjoy workers in the UK, according to the Slack messages Motherboard has obtained.
The reams of messages show a workforce that is generally concerned about not being paid for work they’ve already performed, and potentially losing their jobs as well. The internal message that said Enjoy might not be able to pay some workers added that “if redundancies do occur, you won’t be entitled to any redundancy or notice pay if you resign before you are given notice of redundancy.”
“I find myself worrying about paying my bills. Can we get some clarification about the financial situation, please?” one Slack message from a worker starts. “If Enjoy is in fact operating at a loss than [sic] we should turn off the tap before it gets worse and allow everyone that has been part of the UK branch to get paid what they are owed in due time. I hope Leadership will finally take a stand and put us all at ease once and for all. This is emotionally draining really. Thank you for your consideration.” The screenshots Motherboard obtained are of Slack channels that include messages posted by a wide range of people.
Do you work at Enjoy? We'd love to hear from you. Using a non-work phone or computer, you can contact Joseph Cox securely on Signal on +44 20 8133 5190, Wickr on josephcox, OTR chat on firstname.lastname@example.org, or email email@example.com.
Enjoy and Johnson have enjoyed flashy coverage in The Wall Street Journal and the company has raised hundreds of millions of dollars. It went public in October 2021 through an SPAC.
Enjoy is a mixture of a delivery service and a tech support team. It operates what it describes as “mobile retail stores” for telecommunications companies in the U.S., UK, and Canada. When a customer wants a product from one of these companies, rather than a cardboard box arriving on someone’s doorstep, Enjoy sends a worker to the customer’s home who comes with a selection of products. If the customer does purchase something or they already ordered an item online, Enjoy then helps the customer set the new device up. These workers are called “experts” and have been hired from already established retailers, such as Apple and Tesla, The Wall Street Journal noted in its coverage.
The aim is to bring “the full store experience through the door,” Johnson says in a video made by Enjoy that explains its offering. In the video, Johnson says he had the idea for Enjoy after observing Uber and Airbnb. “Maybe we could bring the entire retail store to the home.”
The company is currently focused on telecommunications and electronics, but the video shows other sectors that Enjoy could target next, including home fitness, vehicles, tailoring, and makeup. In the video Johnson described Enjoy as “the next disruption in commerce.”
Internally, Enjoy is facing its own waves of disruption.
“We are all guessing and trying to not let the rumor mill spin out of control,” one Enjoy employee told Motherboard. Motherboard granted multiple sources in this article anonymity to speak more candidly about internal Enjoy issues.
“I’m going gym tomorrow after clocking in. Shoulders and back. Then sauna. Unless some clarity on pay,” another expert wrote in an internal Slack message.
“Workers have went on strike for less,” another added. Another posed what they said was a very simple question: “Are we in the UK going to get paid for at least all of the work that we have done?”
Someone else posted the hashtag “#AreWeGettingPaid30thJune.”
Earlier this month, the company’s interim chief financial officer quit. In its quarterly report published in May, Enjoy said it was exploring a sale or other alternatives such as filing for bankruptcy or entering liquidation. Enjoy’s stock was down 50 percent in May. Although that is a dramatic dip, stocks are generally suffering at the moment and multiple tech companies are laying employees off.
To its experts, Enjoy has been largely silent, with many of the internal Slack messages requesting more information from the company.
Enjoy did not respond to Motherboard’s request for comment.
Ironically in his video, Johnson lists some of the ways to maintain high standards across Enjoy. The third item on the list, after hiring “great people,” is “you got to compensate them fairly.”
At The Linux Foundation's Open Source Summit in Austin, Texas on Tuesday, Linus Torvalds said he expects support for Rust code in the Linux kernel to be merged soon, possibly with the next release, 5.20.…
It goes without saying that starting your own business requires a hefty investment — yes, there’s the financial element, but also the investment of resources like time, knowledge, and creative energy to get things off the ground. And all of that may lead you to put your own wellbeing aside — which can be just as crucial to prioritize.
That said, “wellness” is a broad sweeping term. For some, it means practicing yoga or meditation to promote a sense of calm. For others, it’s about carving out family time in the interest of creating balance. And for small business owners in particular, it’s often about committing to building better financial wellness practices, both as individuals and as business owners.
Of course, independent founders often know all too well that “balance” can be difficult to achieve. Which is why we’ve partnered with PayPal to put together a serviceable guide to achieving a better sense of personal and financial balance while helming your business. Ahead, certified financial therapist, Steven M. Hughes, and Suze Yalof Schwartz, founder of community meditation platform Unplug Meditation shrare their expert intel in the name of side-stepping burnout or excessive stress.Know yourself (and your money habits)
“New business owners often feel stressed about day-to-day money decisions — just like most Americans,” says Hughes, “but in addition to personal concerns, they’re also focused on growing and funding their businesses while juggling any setbacks caused by the economy and the pandemic.” Founders are not immune to the sorts of financial anxieties we all suffer from — whether due to our upbringings, our spending habits, or other elements of our personal financial histories. That’s why Hughes recommends that small business owners acknowledge those issues, confront them, take their time to learn where they stem from, and consider the ways they may impact their business.Consider working with a financial therapist
If you operate from a place of fear or lack of knowledge (related to money and otherwise), neither you nor your business will have a foundation from which to thrive. For that reason, enlisting the help of a financial or business therapist can be one of the best investments you make as a small business owner.
“Financial therapy entails processing money beliefs, how they came to be, and how they impact your financial behaviors today,” Hughes explains. Naturally, your beliefs and behaviors around money won’t only impact your personal finances, but also the success and longevity of your business ventures. “Many of my clients know they want to change their current money habits, but need help on getting to the root of the problem and starting from there,” he continues. “I help them uncover that in our work and guide them to a healthier relationship with money.”
In short, a financial therapist can help you get to the bottom of your money-minded concerns, provide tips to fix those foundations from the ground up, and as a result help you navigate the financial and emotional challenges particular to running your business — and, well, your life.Don’t skimp on self-care
Being a business owner is s a 24/7 gig, so it’s incredibly important to note when it’s time to pause and take care of yourself. Alongside putting in the work to develop a healthier relationship with your finances, it’s just as essential that you invest time and energy in your health and wellness routines. After all, where’s the joy in being your own boss and racking up career wins when you’re too burnt out to enjoy the fruits of your labor?
Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to practice self-care daily, with meditation being an option endorsed by both Schwartz and Hughes. “For small business owners, meditation can be a lifesaver,” Schwartz says. “Being able to pause, anchor yourself in the present moment, and self-soothe with only your breath is the greatest gift — you couldn’t pay me to not meditate!”
For Hughes, self-care is all about taking a step back and putting your mind and body ahead of everything else. “Taking time to check in with yourself with a short meditation, or by journaling when your mind feels like it’s in overdrive can be really grounding. Or you can try using physical and energetic self-care practices like reiki to keep yourself and your business growing,” he says.
On the whole, self-care is far from a one-size-fits-all practice — so if reiki isn’t your style, your self-care may look more like, say, morning bike rides, nighttime ice cream sundaes, or long phone calls with friends. Whether it’s a small change implemented daily or a broader shift in mindset through more intentional practices, “wellness” need not look the same for everyone — so long as it manifests as a way for you to prioritize you.Use the right tools to streamline your business
Last but not least, finding and using the best tools to facilitate your business will help you save time and money (and in some cases, even your sanity). “Some new and small business owners feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done for themselves and their businesses,” Hughes notes. For that reason, he recommends implementing systems, software, and other digital resources to free up some time and promote efficiency. Think: Everything from project management software to integrated payment solutions like PayPal.
In terms of the latter, Schwartz herself relies on PayPal to cover several payment streams integral to running and building her business. “Using PayPal has streamlined payments to our independent contractors, saving us the hassle of having to set them up in our payroll system, or mailing physical checks and paying unnecessary wire fees,” she explains. “It also makes for a convenient payment option on our website when people pay tuition for the Unplug Meditation Teacher Training program.” Overall, she’s found it to be a secure and reliable payment platform that has helped Unplug operate smoothly—while helping her maintain peace of mind on the operational front, even in the midst of the challenges she’s faced as a business owner in the era of COVID-19.
An Airbus A320-232 with the tail number YU-APH made its first flight on December 13, 2005. Since then, the aircraft has clocked millions of miles, flying routes for Air Deccan, Kingfisher Airlines, Bingo Airways, and Syphax Airlines before being taken over by Air Serbia, the Eastern European country’s national flag carrier, in 2014.
For eight years, YU-APH flew without any issues—until it landed at 10:37 pm on May 25, 2022, at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport. It had flown in from Belgrade and was due to take off again on a late-night return within the hour. But there was a problem: The pilot had reported an issue with the plane’s engine casing that needed to be fixed. The supplier of the broken part, Charlotte, North Carolina-based Collins Aerospace, reportedly refused to fix the problem, citing sanctions against Russia resulting from its February 2022 invasion of Ukraine. The plane was stuck. (Collins Aerospace did not respond to a request for comment.)
How to get ahead in oral sex? (Sorry, had to.) Get yourself a male masturbator that feels like a warm, Easy Bake oven for your penis, and throw down for a luxury Swedish sex toy that’s basically a Rube Goldberg machine for combined clitoral and G-spot orgasms. The best oral sex toy tinkerers are out there, doing the work to improve your orgasms all the time. All we have to do is keep a horny eye on the horizon for the latest incarnations of beloved, cult-fave vibrators by brands like Lovehoney, Satisfyer, and Fleshlight. Luckily, we’re really good at it [fluffs Liberator Wedge] and have literally nothing else to do except electrocute ourselves. Anyways.
Next to the Hitachi Magic Wand, it’s the vibrators that feel like real oral sex that become iconic (looking at you, Satisfyer Pro 2). It's pretty magical how modern brands have figured out so many ways to emulate all the licking, sucking, and massaging that blows our minds, no matter which body we're operating in. So, consider the following breakdown of the best oral sex toys, including strokers, pumpers, and clitoral tap dancers, to be like the vibrator version of Avengers, because every player deserves its own blockbuster film; some are multitaskers, while others are modeled after actual porn stars’ mouths. All will make you go, Alexa, stick out your tongue and play Marvin Gaye.You like the classics
Nothing wrong with that. The Satisfyer Pro 2 is one of the most-beloved clitoral vibes out there, with over 34,000 reviews on Amazon saying it feels like really good oral sex. What makes it so different from its first incarnation? An even silkier silicone material, and a scooped tip with 11 levels of signature Pressure Wave suction. It’s on sale right now, too, so go see what all the fuss is about.For a thick penis
Guests will just think this is a Dustbuster, so leave it up on the cleaning shelf. (Also, why hasn’t Dyson ventured into sex toys? They’d kill it.) Satisfyer is here to save the day with their penal answer to that iconic clitoral vibe. “This was my boyfriend’s first [penis sleeve] in many ways,” writes one reviewer about, “He had a rather thick member and I was concerned it would be uncomfortable for him… All I have heard since I gifted him this toy is nothing but how good it feels.” It’s waterproof, rechargeable, and is touted as super easy to clean with the interchangeable sleeve.Your first foray outside of Satisfyer
If you’re looking to add another clitoral stimulator into the rotation, head to brands like Womanizer or Dame (we’ll get to the latter in a minute); the former makes easy-to-use clitoral toys out of a soft silicone that will last, but don’t cost over a hundo. IMO, it’s the tapered shape of this baby and the two button use feature that makes it a star; who wants to fumble around tons of settings when they’re just trying to get off in peace?The (literally) hot new Lovehoney penis sleeve
The new Blowmotion penis sleeve coddles your member in temperatures of up to 107 degrees Fahrenheit, so your spank sesh feels like a pseudo-spa trip. It’s totally waterproof, and powered by not one, but three motors and eight vibration speeds—more than any mere mortal’s mouth could ever do. “The temperature setting works like a charm and feel[s] amazing with lube,” writes one reviewer, “Definitely worth the price.”Stellaaaaa
So that’s why they called it, “A Streetcar Named Desire.” The Stella textured vibrator by Better Love has a 5-star rating on Ella Paradis, with one reviewer saying “it's literally the perfect amount of stimulation and gesture to make me scream. I pushed over all my toys in my top drawer to the side and gave Stella the best seat in the house.” If you’re into a little more texture and a flicking tongue, this three-speed demon is for perfect.The hottest selling Fleshlights
These are just flying off the shelves at Lovehoney and Amazon, and is designed to imitate three different aspects of oral sex: lips, throat, and tongue. Fleshlight toys are storied masters of imitating IRL oral, and these sleeves are also made of a transparent plastic for your viewing pleasure/aquarium solo role play.The one I travel with
They don’t call it “Aer'' for nothing, baby. This breezy, lightweight clitoral vibrator comes to you from the folks at Dame, a woman-owned and engineered sex toy company that puts quality design at the forefront of their highly aesthetic vibrators. Aer holds a charge for what feels like forever, is easy to clean, super quiet, and comes in a really cool tie-dye travelling pouch. It’s my most low-maintenance vibrator, by far, and also one of the easiest for maneuvering around your clitoris because it’s so lightweight. Plus, it’s great to take on vacation.The travel-sized Satisfyer
If you’re a tried and true Satisfyer stan, the brand has also released a palm-sized clitoral toy designed to be taken on the road, in the plane, or wherever you horny adventures may take you. The small but mighty vibe has 11 settings, is completely waterproof, and has a magnetic closure for easy packing.LELO’s latest luxury clitoral G-spot combo vibe
LELO truly blessed us when they launched this stunning Gonzo nose of a vibrator called the Enigma. As a dual G-spot/clitoral stimulator, the Enigma looks like it’s slated to give the Womanizer Duo a run for its money in design, its sonic air pressure use (so it stimulates the clitoris without actually touching it), and “monster jam orgasms,” as Rec Room’s Angel Kilmister wrote in her review of the vibe.The incognito penis sleeve
Is it an oral sex toy, or a swanky bluetooth speaker? No one, except for those in-the-horny-know, will be able to tell the difference between a piece of svelte high tech equiment and this five-star rated peen machine. “Does about the same thing [as a Fleshlight],” writes one reviewer, “I take it on trips too and does not raise flags at TSA. They think it's a speaker I guess. haha.”Pump it up
The prominent pump attachments set this baby by Fantasy For Her apart—they almost look like little astronaut helmets. If the pumping element of the clitoral vibe experience is a big turn-on for you, this toy is going to be your jam; the little pink tongue attached to it can also be swapped out for one with ribbed texture, and the entire toy doubles as a G-spot stimulator, too.This floating porn star mouth
Add it to the list of some of weirdest sex toys we’ve seen, although nothing beats those knock-off Vajankles. This masturbator is molded from a soft but firm plastic from the lips of porn star Vicky Vette, and sucks you off with three speeds and four patterns.The best G-spot and oral sex toy
The Womanizer Duo is another multi-tasking champ, because it will stimulate your clitoris with gentle air pressure technology and target your G-spot with its dildo. There’s a setting combo for everyone on this baby, what with 10 vibrational modes and 12 intensity levels, and we can tell you from experience it’s one of the quietest vibrators you’ll ever own. “If you get this, get ready to level up your O's” writes one Amazon reviwer of the toy, “If your previous O's were a Honda your new O's are going to be a private jet.”
Now that we’ve covered enough head, let’s talk toes over in the foot fetish section…
Qualcomm knows that if it wants developers to build and optimize AI applications across its portfolio of silicon, the Snapdragon giant needs to make the experience simpler and, ideally, better than what its rivals have been cooking up in the software stack department.…
Preorder Terraform: Watch Worlds Burn here.
When we launched Terraform, way back in the mid 2010s, it was another geologic era. Pre-pandemic, pre-Trump, pre-prelapsarian times 2.0. Neither Elon Musk nor Jeff Bezos were the richest man in the world. There was no TikTok, and Facebook was a few hundred million users away from its ‘oops we did a genocide’ phase. And yet, perhaps in small part because of the kind of speculative stories we spent our time publishing, none of those developments felt particularly novel to us. The bad futures came right on time.
Terraform was always a passion project, Motherboard’s compulsively lying Kuato—our chance to invite speculative fiction writers, journalists, scientists, art freaks, hackers, and activists to share their volleys about what the near future might bring.
Since 2014, we’ve had the pleasure of running some of the weirdest and most fearless stories about the future you could find just about anywhere, pulling from every slow-rolling apocalypse our writers happened to encounter.
And now, in case you haven’t heard, we’re doing a book. We’ve teamed up with MCDxFSG Originals, an imprint of Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, to publish TERRAFORM: Watch/Worlds/Burn, a thick anthology of some of the very best stories, dispatches, and experiments we’ve run online over the years.
Anthologies are the lifeblood of science fiction. As readers, we cut our teeth on the great paperback anthologies of the 60s and 70s, those pocket-sized neutron bombs so ubiquitous in used bookshops—tomes like Dangerous Visions, Women of Wonder, New Worlds, and, later, the cyberpunk brain-burners Mirrorshades and Semiotext(e) SF. Beaming down from pixel to print to join this legacy is just about the most exciting thing us SF dorks can imagine.
Our anthology will contain some of the best of Terraform’s six-year run, and it will be loaded with new stuff, too: an original essay by the great Cory Doctorow, fresh context from us editors (that’s Brian Merchant and Claire L. Evans, hi) and new stories from Omar El Akkad, Ellen Ullman, Tochi Onyebuchi, Jeff VanderMeer, Elvia Wilk, and Joanne McNeil, among many others.
It’s out August 16th (pre-order now!) and it’s good. Really good. Not to brag, but Kirkus gave the book a starred review, promising that it will “thoroughly satisfy readers looking for creative new dystopias.” The reigning king himself, Kim Stanley Robinson, told us “this is the kind of book we need now, a collection of stories bursting with visions, ideas, nightmares and utopian plans, all in the aid of creating cognitive maps for navigating the very difficult future that is coming.”
We’re going to celebrate all of this by reviving Terraform from its online dormancy. That means we’ll be publishing new stories here, in the old digital text form, and launching a limited run companion podcast to boot. Oh, and there will be parties. So if you happen to live in Los Angeles, New York, or San Francisco (or in the global village of Twitch), stay tuned.
Watch this space for new stories, fresh work from some of our longest-serving speculators, alongside original art and a newfangled set of futures. Starting now, we’ll be dropping a new story every week, starting with a timely, repulsive, and excellent new piece by Terraform mainstay Russell Nichols.
(If you missed it, we ran a special story by award-winning novelist Fernando A. Flores in April—about Selena Quintanilla in the post-apocalyptic streets of San Antonio.)
Please join us, and follow along as we wade once more into the vast, filthy sea of new futures, the way only Terraform can.
While one congressional committee seems to be grabbing all the headlines recently, other investigations of the Trump administration have continued in the background. One of them is trying to determine how the US's response to the coronavirus pandemic went so wrong that the country ended up with over a million deaths and one of the worst per-capita death rates in the world. In its own words, the committee's goal is "to ensure the American people receive a full accounting of what went wrong and to determine what corrective steps are necessary to ensure our nation is better prepared for any future public health crisis."
In its latest report, released on Tuesday, the committee details the White House career of Scott Atlas, a neuroradiologist with no infectious disease experience. Atlas' hiring by the White House was expected to be so controversial that he was initially instructed to hide his staff ID from the actual government public health experts. Yet he quickly became a driving force for the adoption of policies that would achieve herd immunity by allowing most of the US population to be infected—even as other officials denied that this was the policy.How’d this guy get here?
Atlas' lack of relevant expertise raises questions as to why he was hired in the first place. The new report details that he wasn't shy about voicing his opinions about the pandemic response, making multiple TV appearances to complain about the policies advocated by actual public health experts. He also directly reached out to a senior government official, calling the US's response “a massive overreaction” to a virus he estimated “would cause about 10,000 deaths.”
The UBPorts community is in the final stages of preparing its next release and it's calling for testers.…
Amazon is figuring out how to make its Alexa voice assistant deepfake the voice of anyone, dead or alive, with just a short recording. The company demoed the feature at its re:Mars conference in Las Vegas on Wednesday, using the emotional trauma of the ongoing pandemic and grief to sell interest.
Amazon's re:Mars focuses on artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, and other emerging technologies, with technical experts and industry leaders taking the stage. During the second-day keynote, Rohit Prasad, senior vice president and head scientist of Alexa AI at Amazon, showed off a feature being developed for Alexa.
In the demo, a child asks Alexa, "Can grandma finish reading me Wizard of Oz?" Alexa responds, "Okay," in her typical effeminate, robotic voice. But next, the voice of the child's grandma comes out of the speaker to read L. Frank Baum's tale.
Lenovo has unveiled a small desktop workstation in a new physical format that's smaller than previous compact designs, but which it claims still has the type of performance professional users require.…
The group responsible for developing and updating the PCI Express standard, the PCI-SIG, aims to update that standard roughly every three years. Version 6.0 was released earlier this year, and the group has announced that PCIe version 7.0 is currently on track to be finalized sometime in 2025. Like all new PCI Express versions, its goal is to double the available bandwidth of its predecessor, which in PCIe 7.0's case means that a single PCIe 7.0 lane will be able to transmit at speeds of up to 32GB per second.
That's a doubling of the 16GB per second promised by PCIe 6.0, but it's even more striking when compared to PCIe 4.0, the version of the standard used in high-end GPUs and SSDs today. A single PCIe 4.0 lane provides bandwidth of about 4GB per second, and you need eight of those lanes to offer the same speeds as a single PCIe 7.0 lane.
Increasing speeds opens the door to ever-faster GPUs and storage devices, but bandwidth gains this large would also make it possible to do the same amount of work with fewer PCIe lanes. Today's SSDs normally use four lanes of PCIe bandwidth, and GPUs normally use 16 lanes. You could use the same number of lanes to support more SSDs and GPUs while still providing big increases in bandwidth compared to today's accessories, something that could be especially useful in servers.
A totaled Tesla Model S burst into flames in a Sacramento junkyard earlier this month, causing a fire that took "a significant amount of time, water, and thinking outside the box to extinguish," firefighters said. …