Making new friends as an adult is challenging. While people crave meaningful IRL connections, it can be hard to know where to find them. But thanks to one Facebook Group, meeting your new best friends is easier than ever.
Founded in 2018, NYC Brunch Squad brings together hundreds of people who come as strangers and leave as friends through its in-person events.
“Witnessing the transformative impact our community has on the lives of our members is truly remarkable. We provide the essential support and connections needed to thrive amid the city's chaos,” shares Liza Rubin, the group’s founder.
Despite its name, the group doesn’t just do brunch. They also have book clubs, seasonal parties, and picnics, among other activities.
NYC Brunch Squad curates up to 10 monthly events tailored to the specific interests of its members. Liza handles all the details, taking into account different budgets and event sizes – all people have to do is show up.
“We have members who met at our events and became friends and went on to embark on international journeys to celebrate birthdays together. We have had members get married with bridesmaids by their sides who were women they first connected with at our events. We’ve had members decide to live together and become roommates,” Liza says.
Members also bond over their passion for giving back to their community. The group has hosted many impact-driven events, including a “Picnic with Purpose” to create self-care packages for homeless shelters and recently participated in the #SquadSpreadsJoy challenge. Each day, the 100 members participating receive random acts of kindness to complete. They can also share their stories on the group page to earn extra points. The member with the most points at the end wins a free seat at the group's Friendsgiving event.
If you want to meet the group in person, NYC Brunch Squad, along with many other locally-based New York groups, is participating in the upcoming Facebook IRL event on December 2. This pop-up experience in New York City’s West Village will provide a space to discover new hobbies, find new friends, and connect with others around the things they love.
Learn more about the event and sign up to attend here.
Not in the New York area but still want to get involved? As a result of NYC Brunch Squad’s popularity, the group is expanding across the country.
“With a robust community established in NYC, we're now excited to announce our expansion with pop-up events in the works in 15 additional cities. What's more, we're launching a travel club, extending our mission to foster connections beyond the city limits and to help people build life-changing friendships in new and exciting places,” Liza says.
If you’re ready to make new meaningful connections, join NYC Brunch Squad! You might just meet your new best friends.
Van Gogh saw something it took scientists another 100 years to see.
Van Gough never got to enjoy his own historic success as an artist (even though we've been able to imagine what that moment might have looked like). But it turns out that those of us who have appreciated his work have been missing out on some critical details for more than 100 years.
I'm not easily impressed, OK?I know Van Gogh was a genius. If the point of this were "Van Gogh was a mad genius," I would not be sharing this with you.
But I found this and I thought, "Oh, what a vaguely interesting thing." And then I got to the part about the Hubble Space Telescope, and, let me tell you: Mind. Blown.
We've got the set up here, but you have to watch the video for the full effect. It's all the way at the bottom.
Get this: Van Gogh was a pretty cool artist (duh), but as it turns out...
What’s the truth behind when you take off an ear?
...he was also A SCIENTIST!*
Here's the story.
While Van Gogh was in an asylum in France, after he mutilated his ear during a psychotic episode*...
(*Or, and I'd like to thank the entire Internet for pointing this out, there's a theory that his friend Paul Gauguin actually cut off his ear, in a drunken sword fight, in the dark. The more you know!)
Animated a thinking one-eared Van Gogh.
All Van Gogh GIFs via TED-Ed.
...he was able to capture one of science's most elusive concepts:
Animated "Starry Night."
Turbulence expressed through art.
Although it's hard to understand with math (like, REALLY HARD), it turns out that art makes it easy to depict how it LOOKS.
So what is turbulence?
Turbulence, or turbulent flow, is a concept of fluid dynamics where fluid movements are "self-similar" when there's an energy cascade — so basically, big eddies make smaller eddies, and those make even smaller ones ... and so on and so forth.
It looks like this:
Pictures explain science.
See? It's easier to look at pictures to understand it.
Thing is, scientists are pretty much *just* starting to figure this stuff out.
Animation of referencing art to science.
Then you've got Van Gogh, 100 years earlier, in his asylum, with a mutilated ear, who totally nailed it!
Science studying Van Gogh.
The folks who noticed Van Gogh's ability to capture turbulence checked to see whether other artists did the same. Most impressionists achieved " luminance" with their art (which is the sort-of *pulsing* you see when you look at their paintings that really shows what light looks like).
But did other artists depict turbulence the way Van Gogh did?
Animated “The Scream."
Not even "The Scream" could hold a candle to Van Gogh!
Capturing concepts of nature.
Even in his darkest time, Van Gogh was able to capture — eerily accurately — one of nature's most complex and confusing concepts ... 100 years before scientists had the technology to observe actual star turbulence and realize its similarity to fluid turbulence mathematics as well as Van Gogh's swirling sky. Cool, huh?
Watch the video below to learn even more:
This article originally appeared on November 14, 2014
For parents with young kids looking to have a little less travel stress this holiday season—this one's for you.
Traveling can be stressful for anyone, but it’s particularly challenging for parents with really young kids. The sitting still for long periods of time, the changes in schedule, the abundance of stimuli, the unexpected stomach bugs, the suddenly running out of diaper wipes…all the things that make trips triggering for toddlers and therefore chaotic for mom and dad.
And while there might not be a way to completely avoid every travel-induced aggravation (it’s all part of the journey!) there are definitely tips and tricks and tools to make it a bit smoother of a process.For one mom, a peaceful trip always begins with a roll of painter’s tape.
“I swear to you. It’s great on the plane but also on vacation,” Nichola Knox, a Canada-based mom wrote on Instagram last month.
“It’s great on the plane but also on vacation,” she continued. “Label the kid’s cups, a bandaid for when your toddler ‘really needs one,’ taping over locks and drawers you don’t want them getting into. The list goes on. It’s forever the ‘weird’ thing I bring on trips.”
In Knox’s video you can see the tape being used in myriad ways—both practical and creative. On the plane, it’s used as a snack holder and extra cup holder, a button block, plus as various ways to keep her kid entertained—window stickers, a “bridge” for his toy car, letters for a little arts and crafts time, etc.
Then at the hotel, she created little crawling roads mapped out on the floor. Nifty.
The video received a ton of positive feedback, with views calling the idea “expert-level parenting.”
Even the official Instagram account for airline WestJet left a comment saying “Inflight entertainment that we never thought of! Very creative. ✈️.”
Meanwhile, one person added, “If I was sitting with you I would totally be participating in all the fun tape-based shenanigans! This is brilliant.”
Knox isn’t the only one on the painter’s tape bandwagon. Another mom called it a “baby proofing workhorse” in a TikTok video saying it’s great for keeping anything dangling above out of reach, as well as covering up and outlets while at hotels.Meanwhile, another mom shared that when flying, she would board earlier than her husband and son and put a little tape over the latch to the dining tray table, since he was “going through a phase where he liked to open and close everything.”
Honestly, it does make sense that this item could be such a travel friendly tool for parents. The beauty of painter’s tape is that it usually doesn't cause any mess or damage to the surfaces we stick it on. It’s super easy to simply peel off and go, especially when it’s only going to be used for a few hours.
And of course, parents can find plenty of ways to use painters tape at home, too. Mom blogger Kelsey Pomeroy has a few suggestions—makeshift chip clips, light blockers, lint rollers, reminders notes…just to name a few.
Sometimes the biggest parenting win is finding an easy solution that allows for more time to simply enjoy the moment. Seems like this hack is one of those wins. Happy traveling, moms and dads!
She's a little afraid to leave her cabin.
A lot of folks would love to trade lives with Christine Kesteloo. Her husband is the Chief Engineer on a cruise ship, so she gets to live on the boat pretty much for free as the “wife on board.” For Christine, life is a lot like living on a permanent vacation.
“I live on a cruise ship for half the year with my husband, and it's often as glamorous as it sounds,” she told Insider. “After all, I don't cook, clean, make my bed, do laundry or pay for food.“
Living an all-inclusive lifestyle seems like paradise, but it has some drawbacks. Having access to all-you-can-eat food all day long can really have an effect on one’s waistline. Kesteloo admits that living on a cruise ship takes a lot of self-discipline because the temptation is always right under her nose.
“One of the hardest things about living on a cruise ship is that I know right now, if I just leave my cabin, I can go and have cookies, pizza, a shake, I could have anything I wanted, and I want it, I absolutely want it,” she said in a TikTok video that received over 400,000 views.
The hardest part about living on a cruise ship is that I am surrounded by free food all of the time anything I want I just had lunch but it’s 2 o’clock in my body tells me it’s either cookie time or time for a hamburger. The hardest part is telling myself not to eat. #hardestpart #cruiseship #livingatsea #koningsdam #weliveonacruiseship #cruisefoodie #foodtok #itsaproblem #halcruises #hollandamericaline
“I am laying here. It is 2 pm. I had a salad for lunch, I had some fresh fruit, but that didn’t fill me up,” she continued. “Right now, all I can think about is eating a burger with some French fries and some mayonnaise.”
“And that, folks, is the absolute hardest part about living on a cruise ship,” she said. “I am surrounded by food all the time.”
She added, "The hardest part is telling myself not to eat.”
Kesteloo’s trouble is a common problem among people on cruise ships. A study by Admiral Travel Insurance found that over 60% of people who go on a week-long cruise anticipate gaining weight. Seventeen percent of people say they gain 2 to 3 pounds on a cruise, while 14% say they gain 4 to 5 pounds.
Other estimates show that the average cruiser will put on 5 to 10 pounds on a weeklong cruise. Imagine living on a cruise ship for half the year, like Kesteloo. She could quickly put on 100 pounds a year if she's not careful.
"I’d be huge if I lived there. I would feel like I’m on a constant vacation, and who diets on vacation?" Theresa Gramelsapcker-Wilson wrote in the comments.
"This is my main reason why I couldn’t do this HHAHAHAHAHAA," Cara Mia added.
"I never thought about those who actually live on a cruise ship. I would be 500 pounds," Lucky Penny2468 said.
Kesteloo’s battle with temptation shows that in every life, a little rain must fall. Nobody ever truly has it perfect. Kesteloo seems to be living the perfect life on board a cruise ship, but she still has to fight temptation every moment of the day or make good use of the ship’s gym facilities. But, obviously, having access to too much food is far better than having too little.
This article originally appeared on 9.5.23
This nonsensical conversation has the puppy ready for tacos...now!
Dogs are constantly listening even if we don't know it. Their little ears perk up anytime they hear something suspicious or tilt their heads trying to understand what's being said. Some dog owners avoid saying words like "walk," "ride" or "treat" in front of their dogs because they know it will get the dogs overly excited.
One dog mom decided to test her luck by holding a fake phone conversation while her dog was nearby and it was shared to social media by HrtWarming. The conversation was about as nonsensical as it could get because no one else was on the other end of the phone.
"Yeah, did you get the treats? Well, he specifically wanted peanut butter. Yeah. Peanut butter treats. Yeah because we're going to go for a ride later," She says. "I think we're going to go for a ride and go to daycare. Camp. Yeah."
At this point the dog is pretty invested in the conversation as he keeps tilting his head from side to side but as the random conversation goes on, he gets more excited.
The dog mom starts saying some familiar names from either doggy daycare or playdates. He was fully invested at that point. By the sounds of the conversation, he's in for a pretty busy day of eating treats, going to doggy daycare, visiting several dog buddies and his grandma. The head tilts as he figures out if he needs to go get his own leash are hysterical. In the end it was the mention of tacos that sent him running to the door even though he doesn't know what a taco is according to his mom. Commenters thought his reactions were adorable.
"I love watching the dogs reaction.,and the way he move his head, so cute," someone says.
"This is just too funny but dogs actually do know what you're talking about especially your key words walk treats grandma and the dogs that she her does she knows and this is hilarious thank you for sharing brought my day up," another commenter writes.
"It’s time you make him a taco! I love watching his face with each word he understood. So cute," someone else writes.
If one thing is clear from this video it's that he really likes a dog names Sarah and wants to try some tacos ASAP. See his adorable expressions below:
Young Gavrill seems to intuitively understand music, and the best part is that he does it with such joy.
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.
Plenty of 1 1/2-year-old's like to pound piano keys to see what they sound like, but Gavrill Sherbenko's piano play goes far beyond experimenting with sound. He and his chubby little fingers make actual chords and coordinate notes between his two hands.
At first, it might look like he's randomly playing keys, but it quickly becomes clear that he is purposeful in his playing.
Watching more videos of Gavrill at the piano, we see that his musicality hasn't just appeared out of nowhere. Like most musical prodigies, he's living in a musical household. In some videos, he sits on his sister's lap watching her fingers intently as she plays and sings. In others, he sits on his mother's or father's lap as he experiments with the sounds of the piano, with or without them.
But sometimes he plays totally on his own, and it's clear that he's already got an astounding understanding of the relationships between notes and how to form chords, both from observing what his family is doing and from hands-on practice himself.
But again, even in very musical families, this kind of musicality at this young of an age is astounding.
The best part of the videos of Gavrill at the piano is how much joy and love there are in each one. This is not a Beethoven being boxed about the ears for making a mistake on the piano situation. Yes, his family members are teaching him to understand what he's doing on the piano, but he seems to be enjoying it and so do they. A sports-loving family would toss and kick a ball around with a toddler; this family makes music together.
A nurturing environment meeting an innate sensibility is what prodigious ability is made of. And when those elements are combined with genuine enjoyment, it's the best of all worlds—and a delight to witness.
Watch how Gavrill is able to play the solfege that his sister sings. It's absolutely incredible, not only that he knows the notes to play to go with her pitches, but that he has the manual dexterity and fine motor control to play like he does at his age.
Assuming he continues to enjoy playing it, it will be fun to see where all of this leads as he develops his gifts further. As one commenter said, "Get the tuxedo ready!"
You can follow Gavrill's progress on YouTube.
Was it right to lose a friendship over it?
A big parenting trend over the past few decades is people giving their children names that help them stand out instead of fit in. Social scientists say that a big reason for the change in America is the rise of individualism.
“As American culture has become more individualistic, parents have favored giving children names that help them stand out—and that means more unique names and fewer common names,” Jean Twenge, a San Diego State University psychology professor, told the BBC.
However, being an individualist comes with some risks. One can be an iconoclastic trendsetter or seen as desperate, inauthentic and cringeworthy.
The move towards unique names has caused controversy in families, especially among the parents-to-be and their in-laws. But, as you’ll see in this story, it can cause problems among friends, too.
A Reddit user who was once known as Shayleigh recently shared her conflict with a friend on the AITA forum to see whether she was in the right.
Friends fight over baby names.
“One of my friends found out she was pregnant a few months ago, and she's really excited to be a mother. I'm happy for her and think she'd make a good mom, but there's one problem; she wants her baby's name to be unique and special, but the way she's going about it is terrible,” she wrote.
“What I mean is, the name she plans on using is godawful. If it's a boy, she's going to name him ‘Daynger’ (yes, spelled like that to be unique), and if it's a girl, she's going to name her ‘Tinkerbelle,’” she continued.
This woman not only wanted to be unique by naming her child after a Disney character, but she combined the names of two characters, Tinkerbell from “Peter Pan” and Belle from “Beauty and the Beast.”
The woman formerly known as Shayleigh leveled with her friend, saying her child would get bullied if they were named Daynger or Tinkerbelle. The former Shayleigh wasn’t just a wet blanket, she knew what it was like first-hand to have a unique name. After all, she was bullied for being named Shayleigh by being called “Gayleigh.” She was also the victim of her parents using the “leigh” for “ly” naming convention, which many see as cringeworthy. Her name caused her so much stress that at 19, she had it changed.
According to Stop Bullying, being targeted by bullies can cause anxiety and depression and the effects can lead into adulthood.
The honest remark led to a falling out among the friends.
“She got really upset and told me I was being unsupportive and I was a shi**y friend,” the woman formerly known as Shayleigh wrote. “She's been ignoring my texts ever since, and it's been more than a week. I'm starting to feel kind of guilty over what I said.”
The commenters on the post overwhelmingly supported the poster for being honest with her friend.
"A baby’s name should work for them from birth to school to career to retirement. She’s only thinking of how cute a baby Daynger/Tinkerbelle would be and not thinking of how much her tween will hate her for that name," Regular-Switch454 wrote. "She needs a reality check. She’s naming adults here. Those names won’t set her kids up for their best shot at life and she needs to accept that," Thoughtinspace added.
The good news was that the friends eventually reconciled and had a long talk about the woman’s baby name ideas.
‘“I carefully brought up some of your points, and suggested using the name "Belle’ for a girl, with ‘Tinkerbelle’ as a nickname; she thinks it's cute and liked the idea,” the woman formerly known as Shayleigh wrote. “She did decide to use ‘Daynger’ (still spelled like that) as a middle name, which isn't nearly as bad as using it for a first name. On the bright side, the kid can tell people, ‘Danger is my middle name.’”