+
upworthy
Community

10 things that made us smile this week

This week's roundup of joy and delight.

10 things that made us smile this week

Upworthy's weekly roundup of joy.

This week, the team here at Upworthy had the incredible honor of meeting one of humanity's best. Civil rights leader and nonviolence educator Reverend Dr. James M. Lawson, who worked alongside Martin Luther King Jr. and John Lewis to change the course of American history, came to our office and shared some of his wisdom with us.

At 93, Rev. Lawson has experienced the range of our nation's ups and downs. He has also witnessed the power of people coming together for good. When asked where people should start, he shared the importance of community as a catalyst for change. We can all build community no matter where live, starting with our own families and neighborhoods, our social circles, groups and organizations we belong to, and beyond.


Sometimes, building community looks like big, bold initiatives, but more often it looks like creating simple connections—engaging in small acts of service, reaching out with a kind word or sharing a warm smile. When we consistently look for ways to connect and build bonds between people, we'll find them.

One thing that brings people together, pretty much universally, is joy. “Laughter is the closest distance between two people," as musician and comedian Victor Borge wrote, but we don't even have to laugh out loud to connect. When we experience something joy-inducing as a collective, we create a shared experience that taps into our basic humanity and reminds us of what we have in common.

As you enjoy this week's list of 10 things that made us smile, picture all of the people who are experiencing the same smiles and laughter you are. Let's create a virtual community of joy, right here in this moment.

1. We have a new, incredible view of our universe—or at least a tiny-yet-ginormous piece of it.

This image from the Webb telescope, the largest telescope in human history, gives us a never-before-seen view of space—or at least a tiny sliver of it. According to Vox, what's captured in this image is the equivalent of a grain of sand being held out at arm's length if you were looking at the night sky, which is mind-blowing considering the fact that almost all of the blobs in the image are entire galaxies. Wowsers.

2. The vastness of the universe is amazing, but so is a tiny butterfly on a tiny human.

@amarana91

Miggin found BLUTTAFLY… you will not regret watching this ☺️🥹 #fyp #butterfly #cute

"Are you okay bluttafly?" STAHP IT.

3. The American Rescue Dog Show celebrates unique doggos with adorable prizes like Best in Belly Rubs, Best in Snoring and Best in Underbite.

Instead of the pedigree, grooming and training that the Westminster Dog Show highlights, the American Rescue Dog Show celebrates the average adopted doggo's sweet quirks. Check out the full story here.

4. Anthropologist Grover Krantz donated his body to science on one condition—that his dog be included.

“I’ve been a teacher all my life,” Krantz told the Smithsonian, “and I think I might as well be a teacher after I’m dead, so why don’t I just give you my body.” It's true.

5. This kid is having the best sleep of his life—or anyone's life, for that matter.

Pretty sure this is what heaven looks like. Gracious.

6. Little Luca cheering for US women's soccer star Alex Morgan— ("Aleh Morgaaaaan!") is the cutest thing everrrrr.

Toddler fans are the best fans. And the Ted Lasso shirt is just a cherry on top of this little sundae of delight. Read the full story here.

7. A guy asked for 104 birthday wishes for his dad who was turning 104. He got thousands.

Gerald got bombarded with birthday messages from all over the world, but there's something about this preemie newborn baby wishing a 104-year-old man a happy birthday that feels so beautiful. Gerald and Flora out here making us smile about the full circle of life. Love it.

8. A man surprised his parents after being away for three years and his mom's reaction is so precious.

There's nothing like a mother's love. (Somebody pass the tissue box, please.)

9. This guy's engagement ring shenanigans leading up to his proposal were hilariously adorable.

Click the right arrow to scroll through. The one with the ring in the palm of her hand while she's sleeping is just too much.

10. May your day be as blissful as this chihuahua being bathed with toothbrushes.

That tongue sticking out! Apparently being washed with a toothbrush reminds them of being bathed by their mom. I can't handle it. May we all be so pampered.

If this roundup made you smile or laugh or both, create more bonds of joy by passing it along. And definitely come back next Friday for another top 10 for the week!

Family

Dad takes 7-week paternity leave after his second child is born and is stunned by the results

"These past seven weeks really opened up my eyes on how the household has actually ran, and 110% of that is because of my wife."

@ustheremingtons/TikTok

There's a lot to be gleaned from this.

Participating in paternity leave offers fathers so much more than an opportunity to bond with their new kids. It also allows them to help around the house and take on domestic responsibilities that many new mothers have to face alone…while also tending to a newborn.

All in all, it enables couples to handle the daunting new chapter as a team, making it less stressful on both parties. Or at least equally stressful on both parties. Democracy!

TikTok creator and dad Caleb Remington, from the popular account @ustheremingtons, confesses that for baby number one, he wasn’t able to take a “single day of paternity leave.”

This time around, for baby number two, Remington had the privilege of taking seven weeks off (to be clear—his employer offered four weeks, and he used an additional three weeks of PTO).

The time off changed Remington’s entire outlook on parenting, and his insights are something all parents could probably use.

Keep ReadingShow less
Photo by Bambi Corro on Unsplash

Can flying to college twice a week really be cheaper than renting?

Some students choose to live at home while they go to college to save money on living expenses, but that's generally only an option for families who live in college towns or cities with large universities where a student can easily commute.

For University of British Columbia student Tim Chen, that "easy commute" is more than 400 miles each way.

Twice a week, Chen hops on a flight from his home city of Calgary, flies a little more than an hour to Vancouver to attend his classes, then flies back home the same night. And though it's hard to believe, this routine actually saves him approximately $1,000 a month.

Keep ReadingShow less
Image from Pixabay.

Under the sea...

True
The Wilderness Society


You're probably familiar with the literary classic "Moby-Dick."

But in case you're not, here's the gist: Moby Dick is the name of a huge albino sperm whale.

(Get your mind outta the gutter.)

Keep ReadingShow less
Internet

Man goes out of his way to leave tip for a server after realizing he grabbed the wrong receipt

Instead of just brushing it off and moving on, the man wrote out a note explaining what happened with a sincere apology along with a $20 cash tip and delivered it to the restaurant.

Man goes out of his way to leave forgotten tip for server

Being in the service industry can be hard. People have to spend long hours on their feet, deal with repetitive movements that can create pain and sometimes interact with not so nice customers. When you rely on tips for survival on top of everything else, it can feel like a bit of a gut punch when someone decides not to leave you one despite how good your service was.

One customer must've realized the disappointment that can occur after not receiving a tip when serving tables because he went out of his way to give one. In a post shared on Reddit, a customer revealed in a letter that he realized he took the wrong receipt after leaving. Instead of taking the blank one, he took the merchant's copy which holds the tip amount and his signature.

The error was discovered when he was checking his bank account and saw the amount taken off of his card was not the amount he expected. That's when he decided to check the receipt from that day and saw the error.

Keep ReadingShow less

Tony Trapani discovers a letter his wife hid from him since 1959.

Tony Trapani and his wife were married for 50 years despite the heartache of being unable to have children. "She wanted children,” Trapani told Fox 17. "She couldn't have any. She tried and tried." Even though they endured the pain of infertility, Tony's love for his wife never wavered and he cherished every moment they spent together.

After his wife passed away when Tony was 81 years old, he undertook the heartbreaking task of sorting out all of her belongings. That’s when he stumbled upon a carefully concealed letter in a filing cabinet hidden for over half a century.

The letter was addressed to Tony and dated March 1959, but this was the first time he had seen it. His wife must have opened it, read it and hid it from him. The letter came from Shirley Childress, a woman Tony had once been close with before his marriage. She reached out, reminiscing about their past and revealing a secret that would change Tony's world forever.

Keep ReadingShow less
Science

Scientists have finally figured out how whales are able to 'sing' underwater

The physical mechanism they use has been a mystery until now.

Baleen whales include blue, humpback, gray, fin, sei, minke whales and more.

We've long known that baleen whales sing underwater and that males sing in tropical waters to attract females for mating. What we haven't known is how they're able to do it.

When humans make sound underwater, we expel air over through our vocal chords and the air we release rises to the surface as bubbles. But baleen whales don't have vocal chords, and they don't create bubbles when they vocalize. Toothed whales, such as sperm whales, beaked whales, dolphins and porpoises, have an organ in their nasal passages that allows them to vocalize, but baleen whales such as humpback, gray and blue whales don't.

Whales are notoriously difficult to study because of their size and the environment they require, which is why the mechanism behind whale song has remained a mystery for so long. It's not like scientists can just pluck a whale out of the ocean and stick it in an x-ray machine while it's singing to see what's happening inside its body to create the sound. Scientists had theories, but no one really knew how baleen whales sing.

Now, thanks to researchers at the University of Denmark, that mystery has been solved.

Keep ReadingShow less