You may have heard there was a big famous wedding going on in Venice over the weekend. Lots of stars were there, yada yada. Yet the groundbreaking part of the ceremony had nothing to do with the fact that George Clooney, aka Tinseltown's most eligible bachelor, finally tied the knot. It was the first time in history—my living history, at least—that a 'civilian' bride stole the headlines.
This viral article spun it beautifully with the headline, "Internationally acclaimed barrister Amal Alamuddin marries an actor." Just an actor. Reader, I laughed out loud. What a refreshing scene to witness all the photos of besotted George hovering in the background, literally hanging in Alamuddin's shadow.
The 36-year-old Londoner is a barrister and high-profile litigation attorney in international refugee and human rights law who secured her own reputation without having to lean on any man. And now that she has taken up with Clooney, it is he who has to share the limelight with her.
Shell needs all the help it can get PR-wise. So who better to help the oil giant's image than a cool toy retailer. Yes, sad but true. Shell has wooed Lego into a partnership that has already seen 16 million Shell-branded Lego toys for sale in gas stations in the UK and elsewhere. After all, today's kids are tomorrow's customers, and an affiliation with Lego can only cast Shell in a more positive light.
Greenpeace is so pissed about the whole thing that it staged a campaign this summer to push Lego to reconsider its position—by any means possible. The environmental activists first added "mini-figure protesters" to displays at Legoland Windsor, and made their own spoof version of the "Everything is Awesome" Lego Movie theme song (in this case, depicting mini-figures drowning in crude oil.)
Because Greenpeace was met with locked doors when it tried to present a 115,000 signatures-strong petition to Lego's headquarters in England, it is going back to the drawing board to find ever-more creative means of taking down Lego.
Greenpeace isn't above using children as part of its ploy, as they are the very individuals that Shell is targeting by affiliating with Lego, and attempting to make its brand "appear synonymous with family values."
The idea being that if/when Shell begins drilling in the Arctic, that positive association will still be intact in the minds of consumers, particularly the next generation.
You tell me: is it insidious for Lego to partner with Shell? Would you consider boycotting their toys as a result?
What's the world coming to? (And you know you're officially over the hill when you start saying things like, 'What's the world coming to?') Such is society's disconnect, Cuddlr, a new smartphone app facilitates no strings attached snuggle sessions between strangers.
Since popular apps like Tinder and Grindr help users hook-up at the touch of a button, it was clearly time for a platonic version.
Introducing Cuddlr: the "location-based social-meeting app for cuddling." Simply log in, upload pictures of yourself and provide your location, then send a cuddle request to someone who takes your fancy.
From there on the process gets old fashioned, with the parties getting in contact within 15 minutes of the request to arrange a cuddle session. The app then helpfully guides you to the other person's location. Once the cuddle happens, users can rate it with a star for a truly stellar spooning session, or flag it for "inappropriate behaviour."
Cuddlr, depending on what side of the bed you're on, is either an innovative, cut-to-the-chase means to get your cuddle on, or a cold Houellebecq prophesy comes true. Or somewhere in between.
"We're not getting the right type of contact often enough; we don't give and get enough hugs," say Cuddlr's developers. "Hooking up is certainly not always a bad thing, but there's definitely an under-explored time and a place for a more gentle, no-pressure intimacy, and that's what Cuddlr aims to help with."
I can't decide whether Cuddlr is part of the problem or part of the solution. As a society we are more connected and yet more isolated than ever. The very fact that there exists a bit of software to help us fulfil a basic human need (affection) is tragic. The reality is, it's hard to meet people in a conventional sense. And such apps are met with the same trepidation as internet dating sites once were. But how many of us know or have met our significant other online? I know quite a few couples, now happily married, who met this way.
So who knows, maybe Cuddlr—stalker concerns notwithstanding—will ultimately become the next frontier in dating. Then again, it could open the floodgates of crazy. Personally, I'm not a hugger. The thought of cuddling a total stranger freaks me out, but maybe that's just me.
Cuddlr is available now for users 17+ on iTunes.
You tell me: Is Cuddlr offering a creepy or cool service?
This mom was sick and tired of her kid ignoring her, so she created this app.