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In 2008, couples with a flair for the romantic started sojourning to the Pont des Arts bridge in Paris to leave symbols of their everlasting love.

Tourists flocked to the popular pedestrian bridge to sign their initials on a padlock, lock it to the railing, and throw the key in the Seine river.

A couple takes picture at the Pont des Arts. Photo by Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images.


From the outset, it seemed like an adorable tradition. Surely, a bridge in the world's most romantic city can handle a few mementos, right? Well, not quite. The Pont des Arts was not built to handle the additional 45 to 65 tons (yes, tons!) of padlocks added by visitors. In 2014, the bridge was evacuated after part of the railing collapsed.

Love is strong. Stone and iron can only take so much.

Authorities tried to discourage the love locks practice, even suggesting selfies instead, but tourists (and zealous padlock salespeople near the bridge) weren't swayed.

A woman looks at padlocks hanging on the Pont des Arts. Photo by Charly Triballeau/AFP/Getty Images.

So in 2015, the city completely remove the railings (locks and all) and replaced them with sheets of plexiglass.

Cranes were required to get the job done, as lifting more than 1 million padlocks is no easy feat.

A worker removes "love locks" attached on the railings of the Pont des Arts. Photo by Stephane De Sakutin/AFP/Getty Images.

The result? No more heavy locks. No more keys in the Seine (this was especially important to Paris's mayor, Anne Hidalgo who pledged to clean up the polluted waterway). And a stronger, safer bridge for all.

A couple watches seagulls flying over the new "lock-free" Pont des Arts. Photo by Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images.

Since the new look more than a year ago, most lovebirds assumed their locks were discarded. But Paris being Paris, they found a way for all that love to live on.

Beginning early next year, 10 tons of the locks, which were removed from the bridge in 2015, will be sold to raise money for groups and organizations supporting refugees in the Paris metro area.

“Members of the public can buy five or 10 locks, or even clusters of them, all at an affordable price," Bruno Julliard, first deputy mayor of Paris told reporters at a press event.

Julliard expects to raise just over $107,000 (100,000 euros) for local groups supporting refuges in the region, though details are scarce on which organizations will receive the money or how much individual locks will cost.

The remaining locks will be melted down and sold as scrap metal.

Love padlocks attached on the railings of the Pont des Arts. Photo by Stephane De Sakutin/AFP/Getty Images.

This has the potential to be a great solution to a popular problem.

The Pont des Arts isn't the only bridge with a love lock problem, and this could be a viable solution for public spaces around the world.

Couples have the opportunity to potentially buy their lock back or to own a little piece of history. A popular bridge stays clean and safe. And the project supports thousands of refugees living in and around the city. It's forward thinking, eco-friendly, and supports people in need.

What's not to love?

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

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