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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Bad News for Those of You Who, Like Us, Drank Cheap Wine Each and Every Night of Your 20s

Update, 3/20/15: Wine industry groups have begun to contest the lawsuit’s contentions and motive. The California wine trade group, the Wine Institute, released a statement saying, “While there are no established limits in the U.S., several countries, including the European Union, have established limits of 100 parts per billion or higher for wine. California wine exports are tested by these governments and are below the established limits.” A representative of The Wine Group, one of the defendants, says that the plaintiffs “decided to file a complaint based on misleading and selective information in order to defame responsible California winemakers, create unnecessary fear, and distort and deceive the public for their own financial gain.”

Before you go out drinking tonight, a quick note on cheap wine: Yesterday, a class-action lawsuit was filed against 28 California wineries—including the creators of Trader Joes’ Charles Shaw (a.k.a. “Two-Buck Chuck”), Sutter Home’s, and Franzia, Beringer, and Cupcake—alleging that some varietals of their wines contain dangerously high levels of arsenic. According to the complaint, three independent laboratories tested the wines and found that some contained levels of arsenic “up to 500% or more than what is what is considered the maximum acceptable safe daily intake limit. Put differently, just a glass or two of these arsenic-contaminated wines a day over time could result in dangerous arsenic toxicity to the consumer.”

“The lower the price of wine on a per-liter basis, the higher the amount of arsenic.”

The origins of the lawsuit draw back to Kevin Hicks, a former wine distributor who started BeverageGrades, a Denver-based lab that analyzes wine. The lab tested 1,300 bottles of California wine, and found that about a quarter of them had higher levels of arsenic than the maximum limit that the Environmental Protection Agency allows in water. Hicks noticed a trend: As he told CBS, “The lower the price of wine on a per-liter basis, the higher the amount of arsenic.” Trader Joe’s Charles Shaw White Zinfandel came in at three times the EPA’s level, while Franzia’s White Grenache was five times higher. The lawsuit alleges that the contaminated wines are cheaper in part because their producers don’t “implement the proper methods and processes to reduce inorganic arsenic.”

A spokesperson for The Wine Group, one of the defendants, says that it’s not “accurate or responsible to use the water standard as the baseline,” as people drink more water than wine. But water is the only beverage with an arsenic baseline that is monitored by the US government, and the defendants stress that the chemical is toxic even in small doses, and is known to cause cancer and “contributes to a host of other debilitating/fatal diseases.”

Trader Joe’s told CBS that “the concerns raised in your inquiry are serious and are being treated as such. We are investigating the matter with several of our wine producing suppliers.” A spokesperson for Treasury Wine Estates, another defendant, said that its “brands are fully compliant with all relevant federal and state guidelines.”

Whether or not you should be worried about the allegations is up in the air, particularly as the lawsuit has yet to go before a judge or jury. But in the meantime, here’s a list of wines that are included in the lawsuit. (Note: Any wines without a specific year listed mean that the grapes don’t come from a single year.)

Acronym GR8RW Red Blend 2011
Almaden Heritage White Zinfandel
Almaden Heritage Moscato
Almaden Heritage White Zinfandel
Almaden Heritage Chardonnay
Almaden Mountain Burgundy
Almaden Mountain Rhine
Almaden Mountain Chablis
Arrow Creek Coastal Series Cabernet Sauvignon 2011
Bandit Pinot Grigio
Bandit Chardonnay
Bandit Cabernet Sauvignon
Bay Bridge Chardonnay
Beringer White Merlot 2011
Beringer White Zinfandel 2011
Beringer Red Moscato
Beringer Refreshingly Sweet Moscato
Charles Shaw White Zinfandel 2012
Colores del Sol Malbec 2010
Glen Ellen by Concannon’s Glen Ellen Reserve Pinot Grigio 2012
Concannon Selected Vineyards Pinot Noir 2011
Glen Ellen by Concannon’s Glen Ellen Reserve Merlot 2010
Cook Spumante
Corbett Canyon Pinot Grigio
Corbett Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon
Cupcake Malbec 2011
Fetzer Moscato 2010
Fetzer Pinot Grigio 2011
Fisheye Pinot Grigio 2012
Flipflop Pinot Grigio 2012
Flipflop Moscato
Flipflop Cabernet Sauvignon
Foxhorn White Zinfandel
Franzia Vintner Select White Grenache
Franzia Vintner Select White Zinfandel
Franzia Vintner Select White Merlot
Franzia Vintner Select Burgundy
Hawkstone Cabernet Sauvignon 2011
HRM Rex Goliath’s Moscato
Korbel Sweet Rose Sparkling Wine
Korbel Extra Dry Sparkling Wine
Menage a Trois Pinot Grigio 2011
Menage a Trois Moscato 2010
Menage a Trois White Blend 2011
Menage a Trois Chardonnay 2011
Menage a Trois Rose 2011
Menage a Trois Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
Menage a Trois California Red Wine 2011
Mogen David Concord
Mogen David Blackberry Wine
Oak Leaf White Zinfandel
Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc 2011
R Collection by Raymond’s Chardonnay 2012
Richards Wild Irish Rose Red Wine
Seaglass Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Simply Naked Moscato 2011
Smoking Loon Viognier 2011
Sutter Home Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Sutter Home Gewurztraminer 2011
Sutter Home Pink Moscato
Sutter Home Pinot Grigio 2011
Sutter Home Moscato
Sutter Home Chenin Blanc 2011
Sutter Home Sweet Red 2010
Sutter Home Riesling 2011
Sutter Home White Merlot 2011
Sutter Home Merlot 2011
Sutter Home White Zinfandel 2011
Sutter Home White Zinfandel 2012
Sutter Home Zinfandel 2010
Trapiche Malbec 2012
Tribuno Sweet Vermouth
Vendange Merlot
Vendange White Zinfandel
Wine Cube Moscato
Wine Cube Pink Moscato 2011
Wine Cube Pinot Grigio 2011
Wine Cube Pinot Grigio
Wine Cube Chardonnay 2011
Wine Cube Chardonnay
Wine Cube Red Sangria
Wine Cube Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Wine Cube Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz 2011

Help! My One- Night Stand Stole My Bike

Have you ever wished you could go back in time? To change the events of one night? Hopefully this article details will help you end up not regretting your next one- night stand.

Last weekend I met a 22-year-old boy from London while I was out getting that ‘after the club’ pizza. We started talking and aside from the joy I experienced when mimicking his accent, he really did nothing special for me. Still, we went to another bar together and before I knew it we were making out.

At this point I know his first name is Joe, and I even believe that he is a real Brit because he flashed his passport in front of my face.

Joe said he was in Philly for three days before he and his friends were going down to Miami. I remember I asked him multiple times where he was staying but I don’t ever remember him giving me a straight answer.

Maybe I have a weakness for tall blonde strangers who look like they were cast in the movie “Dead Poets Society”, or maybe it’s just that I haven’t had a good orgasm in a while, but for whatever reason, I ended up taking this person home with me at 4:00AM.

During the cab ride there, I noticed he kept asking me about how he would get back to his friends later, which isn’t a weird question, but he did ask it several times.

We got to my place and went up to my room and close the curtains, fade to black, yada yada yada, you get the idea.

At around 6:00AM Joe is getting dressed. He tells me that he has to go find his friends. To be honest I am relieved that as quickly as he came into my life he is leaving it. So relieved, in fact, that I let him kiss me goodbye and leave my apartment by himself. As Joe was headed out the front door, he figured out a better way to get himself home that morning rather than taking a cab or Uber: Joe took my bike.

And Joe’s consideration didn’t stop there.

As if stealing a city- girl’s mode of transport from her isn’t low enough, Joe also hacked my phone. At around 7:00AM I looked at my phone and noticed a few things were off. Apparently in the 20 minutes I was asleep, Joe had changed my instagram picture, posted a random picture on my twitter account, texted my manager “Poo on my head,” and snap chatted my ex a picture of me and Joe in bed with the caption, “Poo.”

……

Unfortunately for me, I cannot go back in time and stop myself from bringing Joe home, but I think it’s important to take a closer look back at the night and distinguish what I maybe could have done to protect myself and my belongings from being violated.

First of all, no matter how casual you want your one- night stand to be, try to get the person’s first and last name. I saw Joe’s British passport for an instant but didn’t take the time to look and see what his full name was. If you get their full name, at least you’ll have something to go off of if they decide to take advantage of you in any way.

Other information I wish I had gotten was the name or address of where he was staying and maybe even his phone number or at least one of his friend’s numbers. If you don’t want to come off looking super paranoid, you can always act cute or try to be sneaky about getting your one- night stand’s phone number.

Maybe it wasn’t wise to sleep with someone who was just passing through and had nothing to lose from stealing from me, but that’s also what made sleeping with him so appealing; that I would never in a million years see him again.

Perhaps Joe is a kleptomaniac, but more likely he is a very narcissistic, detached psychopath AKA a douche. Bottom line is that with a one- night stand you don’t know what you’re getting yourself into. At a glance, you won’t be able to decipher if this person has a mental illness that could put you in danger or even just a strange poo obsession that will leave you grasping at straws to explain to your boss.

The number one lesson I learned from this experience was: ALWAYS walk your one- night stand out of your house and lock the door behind you. However seemingly normal or kind or honest your one- night stand seems, treat them all with equal suspicion.

Thankfully, Joe took my bike but what if he had taken one of my roommate’s? Or anything belonging to my roommates? As a roommate you have a duty to not put anyone you live with at risk, and it is important to realize that having a one- night stand can be a risk.

As for my bike, I doubt I will ever see it again. I filed a police report, posted about it on the Facebook group Philadelphia Stolen Bikes, and alerted most of the local bike shops, but I’m not holding my breath.

The big question everyone has been asking me is “Was the sex great at least?” And the answer is no! I guess I thought I was in the mood but when it came down to it, I quickly realized that I wasn’t and that I didn’t really want anything to do with this boy.

I thought to myself, “I can’t ask him to leave because where would he go?” But that is an overly generous way to think. You never know what the other person is capable of so don’t be hesitant to show them what you are capable of, especially if it feels right to you. And remember: you don’t owe them anything.

50 Things Women Think About While Going Down On A Man

Written By: Kristin Manna

Let’s first look at the name: blowjob. Blowjob. No one wants to think of fellatio as a job you have to work at.

When men go down on women, it’s called eating out.

Who doesn’t love going out to eat, right? When you were a kid, going out to eat was such treat. No wonder men like going down on women so much — it’s just like another Pizza Hut to them.

Instead of calling blowjobs jobs, why don’t we call it something more exciting? Like Blow Happy Hour or Blow Brunch? Who doesn’t love going to brunch? Every woman loves going to brunch!

“I’M ABOUT TO GO TO BRUNCH ON THIS MAN.”

It already sounds so much more fun.

It’s not that I don’t like going down on a man; it can always be fun and sexy to turn someone on, and blowjobs are a big part of foreplay.

It’s just that sometimes, going down on a man can get very tedious and my ADD mind tends to wander.

Here are the 50 things that definitely go through my head while going down on a man:

1. Alright, I got this!

2. You’re about to rock his world.

3. Breathe through your nose, idiot.

4. I hope my throat won’t hurt tomorrow.

5. Should I try butt stuff? Maybe he’ll like it. No, Kristin! Don’t do it.

6. I will never understand this hand thing.

7. Is it supposed to be a lollipop or Popsicle stick?

8. If you touch my head one more time, I’m going to f*cking kill you.

9. Should I make eye contact?

10. Pretty sure it’s like a Popsicle.

11. Ugh, just cum already.

12. I have so much hair. I wish I had a hair tie.

13. Just maybe try butt stuff?

14. Make some noise, Kristin.

15. Well, that was weird.

16. Jesus, Kristin, be careful of teeth.

17. Do you think he felt that?

18. Just because you can deep throat doesn’t mean that —

19. *Gags*

20. Ew, our parents totally used to give blowjobs.

21. Maybe they still do?

22. Ew, get that out of your mind.

23 Ah, so much hair.

24. Okay, here it goes. I’m going to try some butt —

25. NOPE, NOPE. WHAT WERE YOU THINKING? GO BACK UP!

26. You can try to finger his butt, but you cant ask him to go on a date with you? What is wrong with you?

27. Oh God, why is this still happening to me ?

28. Aw, I can’t believe my cat Fluffy died. RIP.

29. Who was the first person to ever do this?

30. “Turn around, every now and then I get a little bit… Total eclipse of the heart…”

31. I think I have to pee.

32. Oh, right. My hand.

33. He’s making weird noises, so this can’t suck.

34. It probably sucks.

35. Haha, sucks.

36. Okay, I’m over this.

37. He better go down on me this long.

38. I wish I had a dick.

39. When can women stop giving blowjobs?

40. “Turn around, bright eyes. Every now and then I fall apart…”

41. I wonder if he is in love with me yet?

42. I better be getting breakfast in the morning.

43. Look who’s ready to cum!

44. YES! Bring it on!

45. Where is it?

46. Oh God. It’s happening.

47. Just smile.

48. Good job, sport.

46. Well, now that that’s over, my turn!

50. Oh, now he’s tired? Loser.

VIA elitedaily.com

21 thoughts every girl has when a guy goes down on her!

WE’RE BREAKING SOME HORRENDOUS OVER-SHARING BOUNDARIES BY WRITING THIS, BUT WHATCHA GONNA DO? US GIRLS GOT TO STICK TOGETHER.

Here’s what we’re thinking when he’s getting to work down there…

1. Oh right OK, no build up, you’re just going to lunge straight in.

2. WHEN DID I LAST HAVE A SHOWER?! What if I smell?

3. And I bet I’ve definitely got a stray bum pube I missed with the razor last night, FFS.

4. What if he thinks my ingrown hairs are genital warts?

5. Relax. Concentrate. Relax. Concentrate. Relax. Concentrate.

6. Hang on, is that a water mark on the ceiling? Is there a leak? OMG there must be a leak. We must definitely call a plumber.

7. No wait, remember what you’re doing, enjoy this, it only happens pretty much NEVER.

8. I wonder if this is what a dog’s water bowl feels like?

9. OK, why does he think a casual finger pumping pairs well with gentle tongue action?

10. And now he’s pressing me like a panic button. Dear lord make him stop.

11. Should I give his head a little reassuring stroke for encouragement?

12. OH HELLO. WHAT IN THE SWEET NAME WAS THAT MOVE?!

13. I’m so glad I’m not a squirter. Imagine if he had some odd bodily fluid come shooting towards his face.

14. Oh wait.

15. He’s poking his tongue suspiciously near by bum. Am I OK with that? I’m going to go with no.

16. Oh OK, we’re all good. He’s back to rubbing me as if he’s sand-papering a wall.

17. I’m definitely going to have to give him a blow job after this aren’t I?

18. I wish he’d stop stroking my thigh stretch marks, they’re not baby kittens.

19. I *think* I just felt an orgasm brewing, EXTRA CONCENTRATE MORE THAN YOU DO FOR THE X FACTOR LIVE SHOWS. YOU CAN DO THIS.

20. I hope he doesn’t expect a kiss after this.

21. Oh, he’s puckered up and lunging at me. Good.

VIA http://metro.co.uk

35 Ways to Help the Homeless

  1. Understand who the homeless are – Help dispel the stereotypes about the homeless. Learn about the different reasons for homelessness, and remember, every situation is unique.
  2. Educate yourself about the homeless – A homeless person may be someone who lost their job, a runaway child, or someone with a mental illness. One of the first steps in helping people is to see them as individuals and to find out what they need. Notice them; talk to them. Most are starved for attention.
  3. Respect the homeless as individuals – Give the homeless people the same courtesy and respect you would accord your friends, your family, your employer. Treat them as you would wish to be treated if you needed assistance.
  4. Respond with kindness – We can make quite a difference in the lives of the homeless when we respond to them, rather than ignore or dismiss them. Try a kind word and a smile.
  5. Develop lists of shelters – Carry a card that lists local shelters so you can hand them out to the homeless. You can find shelters in your phone book.
  6. Buy Street Sheet – This biweekly newspaper is sold in almost every major American city and is intended to help the homeless help themselves. For every paper sold, the homeless earn five cents deposited in a special savings account earmarked for rent.
  7. Bring food – It’s as simple as taking a few extra sandwiches when you go out. When you pass someone who asks for change, offer him or her something to eat. If you take a lunch, pack a little extra. When you eat at a restaurant, order something to take with you when you leave.
  8. Give money – One of the most direct ways to aid the homeless is to give money. Donations to nonprofit organizations that serve the homeless go a long way.
  9. Give recyclables – In localities where there is a “bottle law,” collecting recyclable cans and bottles is often the only “job” available to the homeless. But it is an honest job that requires initiative. You can help by saving your recyclable bottles, cans, and newspapers and giving them to the homeless instead of taking them to a recycling center or leaving them out for collection. If you live in a larger city, you may wish to leave your recyclables outside for the homeless to pick up — or give a bagful of cans to a homeless person in your neighborhood.
  10. Donate clothing – Next time you do your spring or fall cleaning, keep an eye out for those clothes that you no longer wear. If these items are in good shape, gather them together and donate them to organizations that provide housing for the homeless.
  11. Donate a bag of groceries – Load up a bag full of nonperishable groceries, and donate it to a food drive in your area. If your community doesn’t have a food drive, organize one. Contact your local soup kitchens, shelters, and homeless societies and ask what kind of food donations they would like.
  12. Donate toys – Children living in shelters have few possessions –if any– including toys. Homeless parents have more urgent demands on what little money they have, such as food and clothing. So often these children have nothing to play with and little to occupy their time. You can donate toys, books, and games to family shelters to distribute to homeless children. For Christmas or Chanukah, ask your friends and co-workers to buy and wrap gifts for homeless children.
  13. Volunteer at a shelter – Shelters thrive on the work of volunteers, from those who sign people in, to those who serve meals, to others who counsel the homeless on where to get social services. For the homeless, a shelter can be as little as a place to sleep out of the rain or as much as a step forward to self-sufficiency.
  14. Volunteer at a soup kitchen – Soup kitchens provide one of the basics of life, nourishing meals for the homeless and other disadvantaged members of the community. Volunteers generally do much of the work, including picking up donations of food, preparing meals, serving it, and cleaning up afterward. To volunteer your services, contact you local soup kitchen, mobile food program, shelter, or religious center.
  15. Volunteer your professional services – No matter what you do for a living, you can help the homeless with your on-the-job talents and skills. Those with clerical skills can train those with little skills. Doctors, psychiatrists, counselors, and dentists can treat the homeless in clinics. Lawyers can help with legal concerns. The homeless’ needs are bountiful — your time and talent won’t be wasted.
  16. Volunteer your hobbies – Every one of us has something we can give the homeless. Wherever our interests may lie — cooking, repairing, gardening, and photography — we can use them for the homeless. Through our hobbies, we can teach them useful skills, introduce them to new avocations and perhaps point them in a new direction.
  17. Volunteer for follow-up programs – Some homeless people, particularly those who have been on the street for a while, may need help with fundamental tasks such as paying bills, balancing a household budget, or cleaning. Follow-up programs to give the formerly homeless further advice, counseling, and other services need volunteers.
  18. Tutor homeless children – A tutor can make all the difference. Just having adult attention can spur children to do their best. Many programs exist in shelters, transitional housing programs, and schools that require interested volunteers. Or begin you own tutor volunteer corps at your local shelter. It takes nothing more than a little time.
  19. Take homeless children on trips – Frequently, the only environment a homeless child knows is that of the street, shelters, or other transitory housing. Outside of school — if they attend — these children have little exposure to many of the simple pleasures that most kids have. Volunteer at your local family shelter to take children skating or to an aquarium on the weekend.
  20. Volunteer at battered women’s shelter – Most battered women are involved in relationships with abusive husbands or other family members. Lacking resources and afraid of being found by their abusers, many may have no recourse other than a shelter or life on the streets once they leave home. Volunteers handle shelter hotlines, pick up abused women and their children when they call, keep house, and offer counseling. Call your local shelter for battered women to see how you can help.
  21. Teach about the homeless – If you do volunteer work with the homeless, you can become an enthusiast and extend your enthusiasm to others. You can infect others with your own sense of devotion by writing letters to the editor of your local paper and by pressing housing issues at election time.
  22. Publish shelter information – Despite all of our efforts to spread the word about shelters, it is surprising how many people are unaware of their own local shelters. Contact your local newspapers, church or synagogue bulletins, or civic group’s newsletters about the possibility of running a weekly or monthly listing of area services available to the homeless. This could include each organization’s particular needs for volunteers, food, and other donations.
  23. Educate your children about the homeless – Help your children to see the homeless as people. If you do volunteer work, take your sons and daughters along so they can meet with homeless people and see what can be done to help them. Volunteer as a family in a soup kitchen or shelter. Suggest that they sort through the toys, books, and clothes they no longer use and donate them to organizations that assist the poor.
  24. Sign up your company/school – Ask your company or school to host fund-raising events, such as raffles or craft sales and donate the proceeds to nonprofit organizations that aid the homeless. You can also ask your company or school to match whatever funds you and your co-workers or friends can raise to help the homeless.
  25. Recruit local business – One of the easiest ways to involve local businesses is to organize food and/or clothing drives. Contact local organizations to find out what is needed, approach local grocery or clothing shops about setting up containers on their premises in which people can drop off donations, ask local businesses to donate goods to the drive, and publicize the drive by placing announcements in local papers and on community bulletin boards and by posting signs and posters around your neighborhood.
  26. Create lists of needed donations – Call all the organizations in your community that aid the homeless and ask them what supplies they need on a regular basis. Make a list for each organization, along with its address, telephone number, and the name of a contact person. Then mail these lists to community organizations that may wish to help with donations — every place from religious centers to children’s organizations such as Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts.
  27. Play with children in a shelter – Many children in shelters are cut off from others their own age. Shuffled from place to place, sometimes these kids don’t attend school on a regular basis, and have no contact with other kids. Bring a little joy to their lives by taking your children to a local shelter to play. Plan activities such as coloring, playing with dolls, or building model cars (take along whatever toys you’ll need). Your own children will benefit too.
  28. Employ the homeless – Help Wanted – General Office Work. Welfare recipient, parolee, ex-addict OK. Good salary, benefits. Will train. That’s the way Wildcat Service Corporations Supported Work Program invites the “unemployable” to learn to work and the program works! More than half the people who sign on find permanent, well-paying jobs, often in maintenance, construction, clerical, or security work.
  29. Help the homeless apply for aid – Governmental aid is available for homeless people, but many may not know where to find it or how to apply. Since they don’t have a mailing address, governmental agencies may not be able to reach them. You can help by directing the homeless to intermediaries, such as homeless organizations, that let them know what aid is available and help them to apply for it. If you want to be an advocate or intermediary for the homeless yourself, you can contact these organizations as well.
  30. Stand up for the civil rights of the homeless – In recent elections, for example, volunteers at shelters and elsewhere helped homeless people register to vote . . . even though they had “no fixed address” at the moment. Some officials would not permit citizens without a permanent address to vote.
  31. Join Habitat for Humanity – This Christian housing ministry builds houses for families in danger of becoming homeless. Volunteers from the community and Habitat homeowners erect the houses. Funding is through donations from churches, corporations, foundations, and individuals.
  32. Form a transitional housing program – One of the most potent homeless-prevention services a community can offer residents who are in danger of eviction is a transitional housing program. These programs help people hang on to their current residences or assist them in finding more affordable ones. The methods include steering people to appropriate social service and community agencies, helping them move out of shelters, and providing funds for rent, mortgage payments, and utilities. For information, contact the Homelessness Information Exchange at (202) 462-7551.
  33. Write to corporations – Some of the largest corporations in America have joined the battle for low-income housing. Through the use of the tax credit or by outright grants, they are participating with federal and state government, not-for-profit and community-based groups to build desperately needed housing in Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and dozens of other cities. Contact various organizations and ask them what they are doing.
  34. Contact your government representatives – Our legislators rarely receive more than three visits or ten letters about any subject. When the numbers exceed that amount, they sit up and take note. Personal visits are the most potent. Letters are next; telephone calls are third best. Housing issues don’t come up that often, so your public officials will listen.
  35. Push for state homelessness prevention programs – While states routinely supply aid for the poor and homeless, many do not have programs provide funds and other services to those who will lose their homes in the immediate future unless something is done. Homelessness comes at great financial and human cost to the families who are evicted or foreclosed.

VIA www.justgive.org

Women are happiest at age 27 & 28

Two days before her 27th birthday & things seemed different this time around. Her life was now going in a different direction. Though a bit scared at first, she accepted these changes and looked forward to the future. Age 27 has often represented the point in which a woman has a better understanding for life in general. A lot of irregularities begin to take shape moving forward and the path to something better is now realized.

You’ve seen so much at a young age, you’ve experienced countless disappointment, you know heart break and now you’re faced with the truth in how you’ve been living a life not totally yours or doesn’t reflect the person you were born to be. You might find yourself single around this time or finally dating the guy of your dreams. You might see yourself suddenly employed and or on the cusp of working your dream job. You might find yourself questioning most of your decisions as things become clear. You know what you want, need and deserve as you’re now refusing to settle.

For most women, all of which is stated above is true. For most women, age 27 is the beginning of more peace and joy. It’s finally time to put good use of what has been learned. Sadly, 27 is a window that most overlook or miss as they continue on with a cycle that involves drama, a disruption of peace. Not to say that happiness cannot be achieved later on in life but the earlier the better. Science says that age 28 is the most blissful year for the female gender. Don’t pass up the opportunity to be happy for those who don’t even deserve the power to cause you pain. Grow older, wiser & stronger. VIA 720two.com

10 People Reveal the Biggest Parenting Secrets They’d Never Tell Their Kids

Theexplosivecandle posed a dangerous question to Reddit-land: “Moms of Reddit, what do you know about your child that you will never tell to him/her?” In just 14 hours, more than 14,000 people responded. Of those 14,000, here are 10 that stand out due to hilarity, sadness, or just serious emotion in general:

1. CodeNameVivaldiii wrote: “The only reason I taught my kids how to play poker was so that I could learn their tells and know when they’re lying to me.

2. “I caught my son once pretending to milk himself into a bucket while taking a bath. He was only around four years old, so I don’t think he remembers, but he was hovering over a bucket and squeezing his penis,” LightninBoltsaGlowin wrote. “I asked him what he was doing and he told me he was pretending his penis was an udder and he was trying to get milk. I said, ‘OK, honey,’ and slowly closed the door. The end.”

3. “She was conceived because I REALLY wanted an Iced Cappuccino from Tim Hortons,” deadtomsdead shared. “He didn’t feel like driving so I made him a deal. It actually ended pretty nicely in a field under a clear night sky with many, many stars out.”

4. Greycatjack wrote: “I will never, ever tell my daughter that when she was one week old I accidentally threw her across the room onto a wood floor. It was about 2 a.m., I was breastfeeding her in the living room, and a huge spider crawled on my arm. The whole new-baby/late-at-night thing made me stupid, so my reaction was to use the arm I was holding the baby in to get the spider off my other arm. My little girl went flying. It was horrible. She was fine though. Completely unharmed, just kind of pissed off.”

5. Another mom missed a poop-eating incident: “We had a very long-haired cat at the time (R.I.P. little buddy). Apparently some poop got stuck to his fur only to fall out upstairs where the baby was crawling around and found it. Five years later she is still a normal, happy and healthy child. Sorry, sweetheart!”

6. “I was turning my daughter’s mattress when I came across a notebook full of female nudes. She must have been putting it together for some time. Not wanting to embarrass her or violate her trust, I finished flipping the mattress and put the notebook back just as I’d found it. That was years ago and she still has no idea,” momsasylum said.

7. Quote-the-raven once “walked in on daughter masturbating in dark. Was putting away folded laundry and thought she was asleep. I acted cool like I saw nothing, put laundry away, apologized for waking her and walked out. Cool mom.”

8. More masturbation secrets, this time from a dad: “Dad here … I know what he’s doing with the butter and that’s why I buy the store brand for him to “make toast at night” and leave my good butter alone. And there’s a reason I bought her own rechargeable batteries, because it’s nice to have any remote actually work when you try to use it. There’s not a calculator in the world that goes through batteries like that.”

9. “I have a favorite,” confirmed nacho-bitch.

10. And finally, from ggnoplay: “I’ll never tell my dear son that I follow every fucking single comment he makes on Reddit and that I’m the one who gives him the golds. Poor kid will always think that he’s a such funny person.”

And I’m here thanking the stars that my mom has no idea what Reddit is.

VIA: Cosmopolitan

Can’t Sleep? Why You Probably Shouldn’t Bother Taking Sleeping Pills!

Tossing and turning at night is frustrating for sure, but is restless sleep a sign you need sleeping pills? Probably not, says Michael Grandner, Ph.D., member of the Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia. In fact, sleep medications don’t work as well as people think they do, only adding about 20 to 40 minutes of shut-eye to your night. And the side effects (delayed reaction time, dizziness and memory problems, to name a few) can be serious.

So how can you score sounder slumber? Your first step is to figure out how severe your sleep disturbances are with the 30/3/3 rule: If it takes 30 minutes or more to fall asleep (or you’re awake for 30 minutes during the night) at least three nights a week and this has been going on for three months or more, your insomnia is probably at the point when it won’t go away on its own.

But instead of reaching for pills, try cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBTI), during which a specialist focuses on your behaviors and environment to rework your sleep patterns. For example, you could be given a new bedtime routine or taught how to better manage stress. Research has found that this method works even better than prescription medications for most people (go to behavioralsleep.org to find a provider near you).

However, if CBTI doesn’t help your situation (or if you meet the 30/3/3 rule, but don’t have access to CBTI), then you should talk to your doctor about whether sleeping pills may be right for you.

VIA WomansDay.com

What kind of swinger are you? Full Swap vs. Soft Swap: What’s the difference?

At some point, usually early on, every swinger or swinger couple faces the question, “are you full swap or soft swap?”. This question is posed on every swinger networking site and is crucial information for couples seeking other partners for play. So what’s the big deal about full versus soft swapping anyway? Even more importantly, how does a couple decide what’s right for them?

First, we should go over some definitions. There is a common misconception among new swingers (as seen on many misinformed message boards and chat rooms) that soft swapping simply means same room sex, where each couple has sex only with their own partner while occupying the same room, or that soft swapping only means female-female play. This is not the case. Soft swapping can encompass a wide range of activities, from kissing, to fondling and for some couples, even oral sex with one or more people outside the couple. Simply put, soft swapping means that there is no actual penetration with outside people. Once penetration comes into play, with anyone other than your partner, it’s considered a “full swap”.

So, now that we’ve gotten the technical definitions out of the way, what is the real difference between the two, and how do you know what’s right for you and your partner? There are advantages and disadvantages to both and there is no one right answer for every couple.

The fact is that no matter how sexually open and sex positive you and your partner may be, there will always be lines one or both of you are not comfortable crossing. Whether it is fear of unwanted pregnancy or simply a desire to keep something special that is only for you and your partner to do together, there are many reasons why couples may choose not be full swap, especially in their early days in the lifestyle. For many couples, the idea of their partner kissing and playing with another man or woman is totally erotic, but the idea of their partner having actual intercourse with someone else raises some internal red flag. If this is the case, then soft swapping is an ideal solution.

Even once you have established that you only want to soft swap with other couples, it is still important to establish ground rules even within non-intercourse play. Some couples prefer not to kiss others on the mouth. Some draw the line at petting and are not interested in oral sex. Whatever your comfort level, the most important thing is that you and your partner be honest with each other. Nothing ruins a fun night of swinging like hurt feelings or jealousy.

Simply put, the advantages of soft swap are many, including a decreased chance of unwanted pregnancy, a slightly decreased chance of disease, and a possibly decreased chance of jealousy. There is really only one disadvantage, but it’s kind of a big one- no intercourse with anyone other than your partner.

The limits of soft swap can be more or less of a disadvantage depending on what you and your partner are looking for in the swinging world. Many couples have found that there are a good number of others who are simply not interested in soft swap, or at least want to know that full swap is a possibility, even if it doesn’t happen. On occasion, just saying that you as a couple are only interested in soft swap can dramatically decrease the number other couples who will be interested in playing with you.

The greatest advantage of full swap is…SEX! Again, it sounds like a simple difference, but it can be huge if having sex with other partners is something you want. While it can seem scary at first, and a little fear can be both healthy and fun, full swap opens up the swinging world to a larger number of possibilities and increases the likelihood of meeting other sexually open partners.

There are a few things that have to be considered before anyone endeavors to full swap. The first, and probably most important, is the way full swap will impact the relationship between you and your partner. The emotional impact of full swap will be different for every couple. Especially for new swingers, full swap can bring certain baggage with it. For those us who were raised to believe that anything other than monogamy is wrong, even “sinful”, full swap can seem like a giant taboo. If this is the case for you or your partner, the most important thing is to take it slow, communicate and examine exactly what it is that you and your partner really want.

My husband and I began our swinging adventure as soft swap, mostly because we were new to the lifestyle and weren’t really sure how it all worked. We wanted to take it slow. Gradually, as we lightly played with other people and indulged in both watching and being watched, we began talking about the idea of actually fucking other people. We were both a little surprised when it turned out that we both really liked the idea of having sex with other people and we both were really turned on by the thought of watching the other have sex with someone else. From that point on, full swap was not a necessity for a fun night, but was definitely on the table.

A second consideration in full swap is birth control. This consideration isn’t sexy or fun, but it’s necessary. Within a monogamous couple, it is fairly simple to greatly reduce the chances of unwanted pregnancy. When new partners are introduced, the risks of pregnancy may increase. Short of surgery (vasectomy for men/ tubal ligation or hysterectomy for women), there is no form of birth control that is 100% effective, so there will always be some risk of pregnancy unless one or both participants has been surgically sterilized. The best advice I’ve heard is to discuss this with any potential full swap partners long before any sex actually happens.

Similarly, everyone involved should be aware of the risks of sexually transmitted disease and infection. Just as you would use a condom with a new partner when dating, condoms are a must when full swapping with a new couple.

All that scariness aside, full swap can be extremely fun and satisfying for everyone involved if it’s done with forethought and respect for the feelings and boundaries of everyone involved. Never assume that just because a couple participates in full swap that you don’t need to ask before doing certain acts. Even full swap partners may have rules or boundaries that they choose to stick to and it is important to talk about these boundaries before playing- every time.

Like everything in the lifestyle, good communication should be priority number one. Swinging is about having fun and embracing our positive sexual desires. This can only happen when you and your partner are being completely open and honest with one another. There is no right or wrong way to swing, so don’t be intimidated or pressured into doing anything that makes you or your partner uncomfortable. Ultimately, whether you and your partner decide to be full swap, soft swap, or both, the most important thing is that both of you feel comfortable with everything that goes on. Beyond that, always be safe and above all, have fun!

VIA www.lifeontheswingset.com

What To Know About Rapid HIV Testing

Did You Know…

When you get a rapid test for HIV you aren’t actually getting tested for the HIV virus at all? Instead your doctor is looking for the presence of the antibodies that your body produces to fight against the HIV virus.

If you are infected with HIV, your body will produce antibodies that attempt to neutralize the virus. Even though these HIV antibodies do not eliminate the virus, their presence is an indicator of whether or not you are infected with HIV.

HIV antibody tests (immunoassay) are the most commonly used tests to determine if someone has HIV.

But why don’t we test for the virus itself when we are screening for HIV?

The main reason why the antibody screening test is the preferred method of testing, is that patients can obtain their results within minutes.

How do you get a rapid HIV test?

To detect the HIV antibodies, a doctor can either look at a blood or oral fluid sample.

It is important to know when choosing to prick your finger or to get a gum swab that blood-based rapid tests tend to find infection sooner than oral fluid. So if you believe that you may have been recently exposed to HIV you should probably opt for getting the blood test.

How accurate are the results?

The rapid test results are 100% accurate if you get tested at the right time. Rapid immunoassay testing will only detect infection 3 to 8 weeks after exposure to the virus.

In contrast, most blood-based lab tests that get sent out, and look for the actual virus, will find infection a little bit sooner – approximately 10 days after exposure.

Therefore there is a window period after infection but before the test becomes positive that you need to be aware of when getting tested for HIV.

Some people have a longer window period than others, so if you get a negative antibody test result in the first 3 months after possible exposure, you should still get a repeat test after 3 months to be absolutely sure you do not have the virus.

Now let’s go over the facts again

  • Rapid testing looks for HIV antibodies NOT for the HIV virus
  • You can either give a blood sample or oral fluid sample at a rapid testing
  • The blood sample will show HIV antibodies slightly sooner than in the oral fluid
  • Rapid testing will only detect infection 3 to 8 weeks after exposure to the virus
  • If you are sexually active it is recommended that you get tested for HIV every 3 months

For more information on HIV testing visit www.aids.gov