+
Family

Need to get the creative juices flowing? Try a dose of sarcasm.

See, mom? Being sarcastic is good for you!

Did you ever watch "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air"? I recently needed a nostalgia fix, so I re-watched the series. And I realized I had a new favorite character: the totally underrated Geoffrey Butler. Sure, he works for the Banks family, but he does not hesitate to talk back.


GIFs via "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air."

I think a big part of why he gets away with it is because, well, (a) he's hilarious, and (b) he uses sarcasm.

Sarcasm gets a bad rap. It isn't hard to find people who are all about disparaging my most beloved form of communication.

Oscar Wilde is known for saying that "sarcasm is the lowest form of wit." One of the most popular quotes about sarcasm on Goodreads is by author Cassandra Clare in her novel "City of Bones": "Sarcasm is the last refuge of the imaginatively bankrupt."

Image by Joe1512517/Someecards.

Not so fast, Oscar!

Fellow sarcasm enthusiasts rejoice because it turns out that sarcasm can be good for you ... AND the people around you.

GIF via "Real Housewives of New York City."

YUP. A recent study published in the journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes found that sarcasm helps boost creativity.

In three separate experiments, they had people in two groups: The people who said something either sarcastic or sincere and the people who listened to them.

In every case, the people who said, heard, or thought of sarcasm performed better in creativity tests.

I bet Bob Ross was super sarcastic. GIF via "The Joy of Painting."

Apparently, the benefits of sarcasm come from the structure of the sass: The process of creating and interpreting sarcasm makes your brain do awesome things.

In the study, they found that sarcasm encourages abstract thinking, which in turn gets the creative juices flowing. In an interview with The Huffington Post, co-author of the study Li Huang, Ph.D., explained:

"Both constructing and decoding sarcasm requires overcoming the psychological distance between two opposite meanings -- what's said and what's intended. Traversing psychological distance often triggers abstract thinking, a cognitive process responsible for creative thinking. As a result, sarcasm can fuel creativity for both the expresser and recipient."

See? Sarcasm can be a really great brain exercise!

So the next time someone someone tells you to stop with the sarcasm, you can let them know it's not just for your benefit — it's also for theirs. Who can argue with that?

Sorry, mom. Looks like my sarcastic tendencies are here to stay.

And we wouldn't want that, would we? Image via Abbey1544269/Someecards.

via Tod Perry

An artist's recreation of Jackie's napkin note.

A woman named Jackie pulled a move straight out of a romantic comedy recently, and it has the internet rallying around her potential love interest. Jackie met a guy at a bar and liked him so much that she gave him her phone number. Well, 80% of her number, that is.

The world heard about it on January 17 when Twitter user Henpecked Hal and shared a picture of the napkin with her partial phone number written on it. "My 22-year-old cousin met his dream girl at a bar and it's going pretty well,” Hal wrote in the tweet.

Keep ReadingShow less
Science

Sustainably good news: Recycling is getting better and this family is showing us how

What if instead of focusing on what isn’t working, we looked at these stories as an invitation to do better?

Via Ridwell

Ryan Metzger and son Owen

There is no shortage of dire news about the state of modern recycling. Most recently, this NPR article shared the jaw-dropping statistic that about 5% of all plastics produced get recycled, meaning the rest of it ends up in landfills. While the underlying concerns here are sound, I worry that the public narrative around recycling has gotten so pessimistic that it will make people give up on it entirely instead of seeing the opportunities to improve it. What if instead of focusing on what isn’t working, we looked at these news stories as an invitation to do better?

Keep ReadingShow less
Family

A letter to the woman who told me to stay in my daughter's life after seeing my skin.

'I'm not a shiny unicorn. There are plenty of black men like me who love fatherhood.'

Doyin Richards

Dad and daughters take a walk through Disneyland.

True
Fathers Everywhere

This article originally appeared on 06.15.16


To a stranger I met at a coffee shop a few years ago who introduced me to what my life as a parent would be like:

My "welcome to black fatherhood moment" happened five years ago, and I remember it like it happened yesterday.

I doubt you'll remember it, though — so let me refresh your memory.

Keep ReadingShow less

Indie pop band Sub-Radio created a perfect introvert parody of Whitney Houston's hit song.

There are two kinds of people in this world—those who Google "nightlife" when they're exploring travel destinations and those with no desire to venture anywhere after 10:00 p.m.

Nothing against those folks who enjoy spending after-bedtime hours in crowded nightclubs, but "nightlife" just sounds like torture to me. Even during my somewhat wild college days, whenever I'd go out dancing late at night with my friends, the little voice in my head would say, "You know you'd rather be curled up on your couch in your jammies right now." And it was right. I would have.

While some introverts may genuinely look forward to a night on the town, I'd venture to guess most of us don't. By the end of the day, our social batteries are usually pretty tapped out, so a quiet evening with a movie or a book is almost always preferable to one that involves trying to make conversation over blaring music and strobe lights.

Keep ReadingShow less
Pop Culture

Magician changes his act so a visually impaired man can experience it for the first time

“I really want you to experience the magic right now. So let’s try something.”

@magickevinli/TikTok

“There’s always a way to experience magic.”

Pro magician Kevin Li has dazzled audiences, celebrities and even heavy hitters in the industry like Penn and Teller with his impressive sleight of hand displays.

However, Li would tell you that one of his “most memorable” performances wasn’t for a sold out crowd, but for a single person who might normally miss out on his gifts.

A video posted to Li's TikTok shows Li offering up a magic trick to a man who is vision impaired. At first, the man politely declined, saying, “I’m blind, so the magic won’t work for me."

Without missing a beat, Li replied, “I really want you to experience the magic right now. So let’s try something.”

Keep ReadingShow less
Identity

Alabama community loves deaf Waffle House cook who taught his co-workers to use sign language

Manager Michael Clements has "never seen" an employee like Pookie White.

via Google

The Waffle House in Hope Hull, Alabama.

Even though companies with workplaces that make accommodations for disabled workers are happier and more profitable, there is still a huge discrepancy in workforce participation between deaf people and those who can hear. According to Deaf People and Employment in the United States, 53% of deaf people are in the workforce as compared to 75.8% of those who can hear.

One of the biggest hurdles to deaf people entering the workforce is discriminatory hiring practices, intentional or not.

“There are often layers of discriminatory hiring practices that make [workplace participation] statistics still hold true today,” the study says. “Such practices can range from the discriminatory language on the job ad itself, to the application & hiring process, and can even impact the promotion of deaf employees.”

Keep ReadingShow less