The Gardiner Brothers and Queen Bey proving that music can unite us all.
In early February 2024, Beyoncé rocked the music world by releasing a surprise new album of country tunes. The album, Renaissance: Act II, includes a song called "Texas Hold 'Em," which shot up the country charts—with a few bumps along the way—and landed Queen Bey at the No.1 spot.
As the first Black female artist to have a song hit No. 1 on Billboard's country music charts, Beyoncé once again proved her popularity, versatility and ability to break barriers without missing a beat. In one fell swoop, she got people who had zero interest in country music to give it a second look, forced country music fans to broaden their own ideas about what country music looks like and prompted conversations about bending and blending musical genres and styles.
And she inspired the Gardiner Brothers to add yet another element to the mix—Irish stepdance.
In a TikTok that's been viewed over 17 million times, the Gardiner Brothers don cowboy hats while they step in time to "Texas Hold 'Em," much to the delight of viewers everywhere.
Beyoncé 🤝 Irish dancing #beyonce #countrymusic
Michael and Matthew Gardiner are professional Irish-American stepdancers and choreographers who have gained international fame with their award-winning performances. They've also built a following of millions on social media with videos like this one, where they dance to popular songs, usually in an outdoor environment.
The melding of Irish dance with country music sung by a Black American female artist may seem unlikely, but it could be viewed merely as country music coming back to its roots. After all, country music has its roots in the ballad tradition of the Irish, English and Scottish settlers in the Appalachian region of the U.S. And despite modern country music's struggle to break free from "music for white people" stereotypes, it has roots in African-American traditions as well. For instance, the banjo, which has long been used in bluegrass and country music, was created by enslaved Africans and their descendents during the colonial era, according to The Smithsonian.
People are loving the blending of genres and culture that the TikTok exemplifies.
"Never thought I’d see Irish step dancing while Beyoncé sings country," wrote on commenter. "My life is complete. ♥️"
"So happy Beyoncé dropped this song and exposed my timeline to diversified talent 👏🏽👏🏽," wrote another.
"Beyoncé brought the world together with this song 😭," offered another person.
"Ayeeee Irish Dancing has entered the BeyHive chatroom… WELCOME!! 🔥🔥🔥" exclaimed another.
"I don’t think I can explain how many of my interests are intersecting here," wrote one commenter, reflecting what several others shared as well.
The Beyoncé/Gardiner Brothers combo and the reactions to it are a good reminder that none of us fit into one box of interest or identity. We're all an eclectic mix of tastes and styles, so we can almost always find a way to connect with others over something we enjoy. What better way to be reminded of that fact than through an unexpected mashup that blends the magic of music with the delight of dance? Truly, the arts are a powerful uniting force we should utilize more often.
And for an extra bit of fun, the Gardiner Brothers also shared their bloopers from filming the video. Turns out stepping in the rain isn't as easy as they make it look.
Beyoncé Bloopers #texasholdem #gardinerbrothers
Beyoncé Bloopers #texasholdem #gardinerbrothers
"Hello, and welcome to Moviefone!"
There have been a few momentous changes since the dawn of the new millennium, creating an invisible line between those born before and after. The big events that forever changed culture are the creation of the smartphone, dawn of social media and terror attacks on 9/11.
People who were born in 1999 or later have, for the most part, lived in a world where they were either too young to know what life was like before these events or weren’t born yet.
That’s not to say that one era is better or worse. But, when an entire generation has no idea what it is like to go through a day without being connected to the internet, we’re bound to eventually lose any understanding of living IRL 24/7.
Those of us who haven’t lived in a world without intense security while traveling will be less inclined to return to a time when it was easier to move through the world without fear. People who live in a time where everything is available on demand have no idea how much they should appreciate the convenience. Back in the day, if you missed a show, you may not ever have a chance to see it again in your entire life.
A Reddit user named Haunting_Ad_1224 posed a question to the AskReddit forum that got a lot of Gen Xers and older generations, nostalgic for the days before Y2K. They asked the forum, “What's something that people under 25 will never understand?” and received nearly 2,000 responses. The commenters talked a lot about the benefits of being able to disconnect while also sharing their nostalgia for the days of landlines and cassette tapes.
Here are 15 things that people under 25 will never understand.
1. Taping songs off the radio
"Waiting for a song to come on the radio so you can tape it but completely forgetting until it comes on then making a mad dash to the radio." — Collieman 1123
"Or having the dj talk over the intro." — HorselRockit
2. The Time Lady
"Calling from a landline to get the current time." — Surround726
3. Calling for movie times
"Calling your local theater for show times." — Andushan
"Moviefone and a notepad and pencil." — PerpetualGazebo
"Or checking the newspaper for show times." — ieatboys999
4. Talking to parents
"Calling your friend’s house on the landline and making small talk with their parents when they were the ones who answered until your friend got to the phone." — McVinney512
"Calling a girl you have a crush on but her mom answers and you have a 20-minute conversation because she sounds just like said girl until you say something embarrassing and she realizes she is not talking to her brother." — GlyohedArchitect
5. Life before the internet
"I'm as addicted to my phone as the typical teenager, but I'm old enough to remember when I'd get off work at the end of the day and there was no expectation that I was reachable until I came back to work the following day. Good times, didn't appreciate it enough back then." — Moshethemean
"The idea that being asleep, having dinner, or watching a show was a perfectly good reason why no one answered the phone." — Reavenas
"Privacy is rapidly going away. But the root cause is people not valuing it. If you told people in the '70s that people 50 years later would be happy to have open mics to multiple corporate headquarters in their living rooms they would freak out. There's no way you could convince someone from the '70s that people would actually want that and not value their privacy in any substantive manner. I can barely understand it myself." — Dcnblues
"Went to use the bathroom the other day while my phone was charging, resorted back to the old days, and read the stuff on shampoo bottles." — Hairyemmie
8. Dial-up internet tone
"Trying to sneak online with dial-up when you're supposed to be asleep. There was no muting those dial-up tones." — XxVerdantFlamesX
9. Film cameras
"Taking pictures, then waiting for them to be developed to see if they turned out okay. YEAH, I am really old lol." — Ranjoko
"… resulting in a few dozen cherished memories you will keep as treasures in a box or on a wall. Not thousands of no-effort shots in the cloud no-one will ever look at except perhaps AI image scanners." — Moose2342
10. Life before 9/11
"You ever see movies where family or a friend is at the gate waiting for someone to get off the plane to hug them? Yeah that. ... People could often even accompany you on the airplane to see you off, and then they'd leave the plane before departure." — -DementedAvenger-
11. Being a free kid
"Being kicked out of the house for the day during the summer and riding your bicycles around town and buying candy with the 50 cents you have to your name. No phones, no tablets, just finding your friends at the or whatever. Having that become the best day ever." — CapricornMonk
12. Commercial breaks
"The mad dash to go to the bathroom or heat up food before the commercials ended and your show came back on." — Leokina114
"Alternatively, painstakingly programming the clock on your vcr, and setting it up to record the show on a blank tape." — Griffin Flash
13. The power of channel 3
"Using channel 3 as the source to play video games or use the VCR." — Substantial-Cream-93
"Also, when the reception went out, we had to go up to the attic to fiddle with the antenna. TV static is also different - went from fuzzy white noise to digital blips. We watched so many shows through static but when the pixels blip it's gone. Also now it seems we lose service way more often than when TV wasn't all digital." — Shewholaughslasts
"How quickly they will become 50." — Icy_Newspaper3739
"This is no joke. There’s a saying that the days are long but the years are short. Perhaps the most accurate phrases ever uttered." — Junior-Gorg
"Being able to just 'disappear' for a while. Before cell phones, there was a time when people couldn’t get ahold of you at all times for any reason." — Yikester
"This is something I love about flying, there's no way to contact me since I've never paid for WiFi. No calls, emails, Whatsapp, can't mindlessly scroll Reddit or watch YouTube, just completely disconnected." — Dr-Kipper
“My hope is that he comes across this video and it keeps him up at night."
We’re all probably familiar with the term “mansplaining,” when a man explains something to a woman in a condescending or patronizing way. Often, this comes in the form of a man explaining a subject to a woman that she already knows on an expert level. The female neuroscientist who was told by a man that she should read a research paper she actually wrote comes to mind.
Recently the next-level mansplaining was caught in the wild. Well, at a golf driving range anyway.
Georgia Ball, a professional golfer and coach who’s racked up over 3 million likes on TikTok for all her tips and tricks of the sport, was minding her own business while practicing a swing change.
It takes all of two seconds on Google to see that when it comes to incorporating a swing change, golfers need to swing slower, at 50-75% their normal speed…which is what Ball was doing.
And this is what prompted some man to insert his “advice.”
In the clip, we hear the man say “What you are doing there … you shouldn’t be doing that.”
Exhibiting the patience of a nun, Ball simply tells him that she’s going through a swing change.
But her attempts at reason are unfortunately interrupted, multiple times, when the man repeatedly assures her that since he’s been playing golf for 20 years, he knows what he’s talking about.
He then insists that she’s going too slow on her swing and should be following through.
Cue Ball’s incredulous look to the camera.
@georgiagolfcoach Can you believe he said this? 😳⛳️👀 #golf #golfswing #golflife #golftok #golftiktok #golfer #golfing #golfgirl #golfpro #golftips #golfclub #drivingrange ♬ original sound - Georgia Ball Golf
Hoping to appease him, Ball finally gives a hearty swing, writing “I knew I had to make this a good one” on the onscreen text.
As the ball sails through the air, the man says “see how much better that was?”
Yes. Really. He really said that.
Poor Ball then tries to tell him that even the “best players in the world” slow down their swing when going through a swing change.
“No, I understand what you’re saying, but I’ve been playing golf for 20 years,” the man repeats. At this point Ball is just “trying to keep it together.”
Sure, this guy might have not known who Ball was, but it’s pretty evident that the last thing she needed was this guy’s “advice.” And thus, the “mansplaining” jokes commend in the comments section.
Here’s a small sampling:
“As a guy, this is the first time I’ve ever seen ‘mansplaining’ happen.”
“The way he took credit for your next swing.”
“But did you consider that he’s been playing golf for 20 years?”
“*implement nothing he says* ‘See how much better that was’ HAHAHAHAH.”
“My hope is that he comes across this video and it keeps him up at night."
Others couldn’t help but praise Ball for keeping her cool.
“He doesn’t even give you a chance to explain, just forces his opinion and advice onto you. Goon on you for staying calm and polite,” one person wrote.
Of course, others felt Ball was being “too nice” to the man. One even exclaimed, “there’s no reason to be so polite!”
And perhaps worst of all, this kind of behavior is pretty common, especially for female athletes. A fellow female golfer even commented “So glad you posted this because it is my BIGGEST frustration when I’m at the driving range. Unfortunately, men always feel the need to comment on my swing or want to coach me. Guys take note: Please don’t.”
On the bright side: as annoying as it is that Ball had to endure that (not to mention what it says about the very real b.s. that women in general have to put up with on the regular) she laughed it off and just went on about her life being awesome at what she does. Just like the other smart, capable women of the world.It’s almost like…maybe women don’t need advice, so much as they need respect? Now there’s a concept.
The etymology of "dog" remains a strange mystery.
The evolution of language is fascinating, and the etymology of specific words can be a fun little trip through human history as well as human creativity.
Many English words are derived from Greek and Latin, but other European languages make up a good chunk of our language as well. The roots of some words can surprise us, and so can the way certain words came to be. And in some cases, what we don't know can be just as surprising as what we do.
Enjoy diving into the history of 15 words we use every day.
Dog is often one of the first words babies learn to say, and it's one of the first kids learn to spell. But don't let its simplicity fool you. This word is truly a mystery.
The word "dog" comes from dogca, a very rarely used Old English word, but how we started using it as our everyday name for canines, no one knows. "Its origin remains one of the great mysteries of English etymology," according to the Online Etymology Dictionary.
Even more interestingly, no one knows the origins of the Spanish word for "dog" ("perro"), nor do they know the origins of the Polish ("pies") or Serbo-Croatian ("pas") words for our canine friends, either. Who knew dogs were so enigmatic?
It's obvious where "night" comes from in "nightmare," but what about "mare"? Surely, were not referring to a female horse here.
Horse, no. But female, yes. Female goblin, to be precise. In Old English, mare means "incubus, nightmare, monster; witch, sorcerer." And "nightmare" started being used around 1300 to refer to "an evil female spirit afflicting men (or horses) in their sleep with a feeling of suffocation." Yikes. Thankfully, now it's just any old bad dream.
We've all seen animals named for words with certain meanings, but here we have the opposite. The word "jumbo" came from a large elephant who lived at the London Zoo. Zookeeper Anoshan Anathjeysari named him "Jumbe," the Swahili word for "chief." But his status as one of the largest African bush elephants in Europe in the 19th century caused his nickname, Jumbo, to become synonymous with enormousness.
Run, little mouse, run.
The Latin word musculus means "little mouse." As hilarious as it sounds, they thought the movement of muscles looked like little mice scurrying under the skin, hence the origin. Kinda ick to think about, but also logical, so here we are.
Ah, a word with which we are all familiar, thanks to COVID-19. But do we know what it really means?
If you understand roots, you may guess that "quar" might have something to do with the number four, and you'd be right. In Latin, quadraginta means a period of 40 days. Our usage of "quarantine" to mean isolation from others comes from the Venetian policy of ships coming into port from plague-stricken countries in the late 1300s to remain in port for 40 days before letting people off. The usage to mean any period of time in isolation began being used in the 1600s.
Most of us grow up not really understanding what a mortgage is until we buy our first house, but even then, most of us don't know what the word literally means. It comes from Old French, mort gaige, literally meaning "death pledge."
HAHAHAHAHA. Death pledge. Mortgage. That's funny.
However, it doesn't mean you're tied to the debt til you die, even if it feels like it. The death part means the deal dies either when you pay it off or when you become unable to pay. Doesn't really change the fact that it feels a bit like you're signing your life away when you buy a house, though.
What does a ball of yarn have to do with "clue"?
Oddly enough, "clue" comes from a misspelling (or alternate spelling from before standardized spelling was a thing) of the word "clew," meaning a ball of yarn.
The word itself comes from German, but its usage points to the Greek myth in which Ariadne gives Theseus a ball (or clew) of yarn to help him escape the labyrinth. Now we use it to refer to anything that helps us solve a mystery.
The word "nice" is nice and simple, right? It's the most basic word we use for "pleasant," a definitively positive word. But this seemingly simple word has been through quite the trek in its etymology.
From the Latin nescius, meaning "ignorant, unaware," it was used to mean "timid" or"faint-hearted" before the year 1300. A couple hundred years later, it had morphed to "fussy, fastidious" or "dainty, delicate." In another 100 years, it changed to "precise, careful." Tack on another few hundred years and we're at "agreeable, delightful," and from there it was only short jaunt to "kind, thoughtful."
What a nice journey from insult to compliment.
I would have bet money that the word "shampoo" was French in origin, but nope. It's Hindi, coming from the term champo, and the original meaning was "to massage, rub and percuss the surface of (the body) to restore tone and vigor." It's only been used to refer specifically to lathering and washing out strands of hair or carpet since the mid 1800s.
Literally Latin for a stingray. As in the marine animal. That comes from the root word torpere, which means "be numb," since a ray's sting can numb you. It doesn't become the word for a propelled underwater explosive until the last couple hundred years.
We know that left-handedness was seen negatively throughout much of human history, but even the word that means "able to use both hands equally" has a right-handed bias baked into it. The medieval Latin ambidexter literally meansliterally means "right-handed on both sides."
Isn't English fun?
“I just don't want a bunch of people sitting around at my house all day...”
Parents want to do right by their kids. Make them feel special, let them have fun and give them opportunities to enjoy magic before adulthood sets in. And yet, that desire can easily be suppressed by the need to keep up with the lavish events constantly seen on social media.
For many families, over-the-top activities are simply not feasible—especially ones that come year after year like birthdays. So many are going against societal expectations and instead choosing traditions that work for their unique situation. Opting for experiences over expensive gifts, for example, or having one-on-one family time instead of parties with friends.For Marissa Light, it looks a little more like not even doing a birthday party every year.
“Under no circumstances will I be throwing my daughter a birthday party every single year,” Light said in a now-viral TikTok video. “Here's the deal: She is getting a first birthday party, she is getting a Sweet Sixteen and she is getting a graduation party. Other than that, she is not getting any more birthday parties."
And perhaps Light isn’t totally off-base in her reasoning. According to PBS, kids don’t even remember birthday parties until after they are three-years-old. That’s essentially $400 (the average amount parents spend on their kid’s party) going towards a core memory that won’t even exist.
Light went on to say that she had been to other kids' parties which were “not enjoyable” and she didn’t want to force that experience on others unnecessarily. That being said, she added, “Now look, if you are someone who genuinely enjoys throwing your child a birthday party, pop off, Queen. Do what you want to do. I'm not telling anyone else how to live their lives. I just personally don't find it necessary and I'm not going to be doing it.”
@marissalight It’s been a minute since I’ve given you a #hotmomtake … you’re welcome. #babybirthdayparty #momsoftiktok #momtok #firsttimemom #sahm #momcontent #millenialmom #birthdayparty ♬ original sound - Marissa | Lifestyle | SAHM
But that doesn’t mean that no celebrations will be had. The family will still have “dinner and cake with them every single year,” plus their daughter would get an 'All About You' day” where she would enjoy a “special breakfast” and activities of her choosing, like princess dress up, a trip to the trampoline park, etc. And when siblings come, Light’s daughter will be able to choose whether or not she wants them included in whatever birthday shenanigans are happening. So all in all, a pretty sweet deal.
This option just feels more exciting and less taxing, Light explains. While she understands that party planning is some people’s jam, she admits “it's a lot of stress on my part to organize and plan and put on the party… I just don't want a bunch of people sitting around at my house all day."
Light’s video, as most parenting videos are wont to do, drew both heavy praise and criticism.
Many thought that her choices were depriving her daughter, and not really prioritizing her happiness. This was especially true for adults who didn’t have parties growing up.
“As someone who didn’t get birthday parties, please do that for your kid,” one person wrote.
Another added, “I never had bday parties growing up, and I was always jealous of kids in my class who got them.”
Still, others found promise in the idea.
““An introverted kid will love this. Just make sure that you're celebrating that kid the way they'd like. Not the way you want to celebrate them,” one person commented.
“I LOVE the idea of experiences, so if they want to go to a show or an amusement park for their birthday.”
Some even offered up their own unconventional non-party ideas. One parent wrote, “I just bring my kids to the park with a bunch of cupcakes and any kid at the park is included.”
Whether you can or cannot get behind Light’s take on birthday parties, we can probably all agree that our energy is often best spent doing things we truly want to do. Maybe some parents will still want to arrange a get together for their friends every year. But hopefully this conversation can at least offer some permission to do so in a way that doesn’t take a huge toll. There are so many ways to make a birthday special, after all.
You can only access the cave from the basement of the home and it’s open for business.
Have you ever seen something in a movie or online and thought, "That's totally fake," only to find out it's absolutely a real thing? That's sort of how this house in Pennsylvania comes across. It just seems too fantastical to be real, and yet somehow it actually exists.
The home sits between Greencastle and Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, and houses a pretty unique public secret. There's a cave in the basement. Not a man cave or a basement that makes you feel like you're in a cave, but an actual cave that you can't get to unless you go through the house.
Turns out the cave was discovered in the 1830s on the land of John Coffey, according to Uncovering PA, but the story of how it was found is unclear. People would climb down into the cave to explore occasionally until the land was leased about 100 years later and a small structure was built over the cave opening.
The idea was to make it accessible to visitors and use the cave as a tourist attraction, and the small structure was eventually built into a two-story house. But it was closed to the public in 1954 after the land was purchased for limestone mining and it remained closed for nearly 70 years. (In the words of Stephanie Tanner, "How rude.") Sometime during that 70-year closure, the home that contains the cave was purchased by Dara Black, and in 2021, it reopened to the public.
Currently, the home is occupied by Black, but to gain access to the cave you can simply book a tour. The best part about booking a tour is that you only have to make a donation to enter. It's a pay-what-you-can sort of setup, but since someone actually lives in the home, you can't just pop in and ask for a tour. You have to go during the "open house" times available.
According to the Black-Coffey Caverns Facebook page, they treat the tours truly as an open house, complete with snacks and drinks. There's a waiting room area where people can chat and eat their snacks while they wait for the tour to start. They also offer cave yoga once a month. According to Uncovering PA, the tour takes about 45 minutes to complete and there are about 3,000 feet worth of passageways.
Imagine living on top of a cave and just taking strangers on a waltz under your floorboards essentially. It makes me wonder if the house is quiet at night or if you can hear echoes of the cave sounds while you're trying to sleep. From the Facebook page, it appears that the cave doesn't have any lights, but there were pictures with some Christmas lights mounted to the cave walls. Otherwise, you have to use flashlights.
Hopefully, no mischievous children decide to play hide and seek or you just might have to call in a rescue crew. Literally. But what an unbelievable "pics or it didn't happen" kind of story to tell. It's not every day you run into someone that has a door that leads you to an underground cave.
If you want to see what a cave tour looks like starting from the outside of the house, check out the video below:
This article originally appeared on 1.30.23