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How one woman and 'Supergirl' helped a teen feel comfortable in her own skin.

'I was her at that age. Scared of who I was, and thought I was alone.'

​Mary Swangin was working an otherwise ordinary Saturday at a Fort Wayne, Indiana, comic book store when a teenage girl came in looking "absolutely terrified."

Swangin tweeted the encounter later that day, explaining that when she went to help the girl, it quickly became clear that the girl needed more than just a good comic recommendation — she needed someone to listen and understand her. As luck would have it, Swangin happened to be the perfect person for the job.

Once Swangin started talking to her, she realized the girl must have recently come out of the closet, and Swangin, having also come out around that age, immediately empathized with her.


The girl explained that she's a huge fan of Supergirl's sister Alex Danvers, who recently came out in an episode of The CW show.

In season 2 of "Supergirl," Danvers (played by Chyler Leigh) realizes that she's a lesbian and becomes romantically involved with Maggie Sawyer (played by Floriana Lima), an openly gay cop on the show — a pairing affectionally known as "Sanvers" by fans.

GIF from "Supergirl."

"We're walking to the Super area when I ask if she watches the show. She smiles a bit and nods. Says Alex is her favorite. I mention that I'm a huge shipper and the poor thing just breaks down in tears. I'm trying to figure out what the hell I did to upset her. She's crying and I'm freaking out. After a minute or so, everything clicks. I'm staring down a crying baby gay. One who was having some big issues. I tell her that it was hard for me when I wanted to come out too. She finally stops crying and asks me if it gets easier," Swangin tweeted.

In the course of their conversation, the girl confessed to Swangin that she had been suicidal and that Danvers' coming out story arc was one of the only things keeping her hope alive in a difficult time.

"I was her at that age. Scared of who I was, and thought I was alone," explains Swangin over a direct message on Twitter. For Swangin, the character she was drawn to was Kate Kane as Batwoman. "She was a military cadet who was expelled under DADT [Don't Ask Don't Tell] and hit rock bottom," writes Swangin. "She had to claw her way up, and if she could do it, so could I."

Which is why she decided to share the whole story on Twitter:

Sometimes superheroes don't wear capes. Sometimes they wear regular clothes and work in comic book stores.

$60 comics aside, this girl will know forever that she's far from alone in her coming out story.

Even Chyler Leigh, the actress who plays Danvers, responded to the tweet thread to let the girl — and anyone else feeling alone — know that she, and Supergirl, have her back.

The more that marginalized groups are represented in the media, the more people will feel accepted and connected to a larger community. Like it or not, pop culture has that power, and with that power comes the obligation to be as inclusive as possible.

"The Carol Burnett Show" had one of the funniest outtakes in TV history.

"The Carol Burnett Show" ran from 1967 to 1978 and has been touted as one of the best television series of all time. The cast and guest stars of the show included comedic greats such as Tim Conway, Betty White, Steve Martin, Vicki Lawrence, Dick Van Dyke, Lyle Waggoner, Harvey Korman and others who went on to have long, successful comedy careers.

One firm rule Carol Burnett had on her show was that the actors stay in character. She felt it was especially important not to break character during the "Family" scenes, in which the characters Ed and Eunice Higgins (a married couple) and Mama (Eunice's mother) would play host to various colorful characters in their home.

"I never wanted to stop and do a retake, because I like our show to be ‘live,’" she wrote in her memoir, as reported by Showbiz Cheat Sheet. "So when the ‘Family’ sketches came along, I was adamant that we never break up in those scenes, because Eunice, Ed, and Mama were, in an odd way, sacred to me. They were real people in real situations, some of which were as sad and pitiful as they were funny, and I didn’t want any of us to break the fourth wall and be out of character.”

It was a noble goal, and one that went right out the window—with Burnett leading the way—in a "Family" sketch during the show's final season that ended with the entire cast rolling with laughter.

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The legality of abortion is one of the most polarized debates in America—but it doesn't have to be.

People have big feelings about abortion, which is understandable. On one hand, you have people who feel that abortion is a fundamental women's rights issue, that our bodily autonomy is not something you can legislate, and that those who oppose abortion rights are trying to control women through oppressive legislation. On the other, you have folks who believe that a fetus is a human individual first and foremost, that no one has the right to terminate a human life, and that those who support abortion rights are heartless murderers.

Then there are those of us in the messy middle. Those who believe that life begins at conception, that abortion isn't something we'd choose—and we'd hope others wouldn't choose—under most circumstances, yet who choose to vote to keep abortion legal.

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Gen Xer shares some timeless advice for Gen Z.

Meghan Smith is the owner of Melody Note Vintage store in the eternally hip town of Palm Springs, California, and her old-school Gen X advice has really connected with younger people on TikTok.

In a video posted in December 2022, she shares the advice she wishes that “somebody told me in my twenties” and it has received more than 13 million views. Smith says that she gave the same advice to her partner's two daughters when they reached their twenties.

The video is hashtagged #GenX advice for #GenZ and late #millennials. Sorry older millennials, you’re too old to receive these pearls of wisdom.

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One of these things is not like the other.

For fantasy fans, it truly is the best of times, and the worst of times. On the bright side—there’s more magic wielding, dragon riding, caped crusading content than ever before. Yay to that.

On the other hand, have you noticed that with all these shows, something feels … off?

No, that’s not just adulthood stripping you of childlike wonder. There is a subtle, yet undeniable decline in how these shows are being made, and your eyes are picking up on it. Nolan Yost, a freelance wigmaker living in New York City, explains the shift in his now viral Facebook post.

The post, which has been shared nearly 3,500 times, attributes shows being “mid,” (aka mediocre, or my favorite—meh) mostly to the new streaming-based studio system, which quite literally prioritizes quantity over quality, pumping out new content as fast as possible to snag a huge fan base.

The result? A “Shein era of mass media,” Yost says, adding that “the toll it takes on costuming and hair/makeup has made almost every new release from Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu have a B-movie visual quality.”

He even had some pictures to prove it.

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TikTokker praises a dad for his amazing parenting skills.

One of a parent's biggest fears is dealing with a toddler having a full-blown meltdown while shopping. The common sense parenting suggestion is to ignore the meltdown and the child will eventually stop. Easier said than done. There’s nothing more embarrassing than doing nothing while your kid is kicking, screaming and flailing in the cereal aisle.

It can also feel humiliating to have to reason with a 3-year-old in front of dozens of peering eyes, silently judging while they pretend to be grabbing a box of Frosted Flakes.

On the other hand, a toddler’s tantrum can be an opportunity to showcase your excellent parenting skills. That’s what one dad did in a Target store, and his ability to bring his son back to reality earned him praise from a stranger on TikTok.

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Family

Baby still in diapers is blowing people away with his musical ability at the piano

Young Gavrill seems to intuitively understand music, and the best part is that he does it with such joy.

Gavrill Scherbenko appears to be a musical prodigy.

Mozart blew people away with his composing abilities at age 5. Franz Liszt played piano professionally for the aristocracy when he was 9. Yo-Yo Ma played cello for President John F. Kennedy at age 7.

Musical prodigies have fascinated people for centuries with their mastery of music at unexpected ages. Most of us have the same questions: How and at what age were their abilities discovered? Is it nature or nurture or a combination of both? Can prodigies be created on purpose, or is it something no one can predict or control?

While each musical prodigy has their own unique story, one family is giving the world some early glimpses of what an innate sense for music looks like in a baby who's still in diapers.

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