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Who doesn't love emojis?

They're so useful and versatile! You can use them to react perfectly to almost any situation, cryptically label a Venmo payment, and even rap the entirety of a Kanye West song.

They're fun, adorable, and still relevant, despite parents everywhere overusing the :poop-emoji: out of them.



Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images.

Emojis are used to symbolize ideas, objects, places, and, of course, people. But it's people that emojis aren't always the best at representing.

As long as there have been emojis, there have been campaigns to expand and diversify them so that more groups of people are included.

For the most part, those campaigns have been successful; different skin tones were added to help represent people of different races, same-sex couples and families were added to help represent people of different sexual orientations, and last summer, a taco emoji was added because tacos.

Yup. Emoji cookies. Photo via Rosanna Pansino/YouTube.

Despite several inclusive expansions to the basic emoji library, one gap has stubbornly remained: emojis for women.

More specifically, emojis for women who want to be depicted as more than a bride, a princess, a flamenco dancer, or twin Playboy bunnies.

There's also an emoji of a woman with her hand raised next to her face like she's carrying an invisible cocktail tray. I was never quite sure what was up with her, but a quick search in the Emojipedia (because that's a thing) shows that her official name is Information Desk Person. So ... she's a secretary.

While those emojis are very useful for brides, princesses, flamenco dancers, Playboy bunnies, and information desk people, there's a lot of women out there who aren't those things and therefore aren't represented on the emoji keyboard.

Men on the other hand get to be police officers, (napping?) construction workers, royal guardsmen, detectives, Santa Clauses, and Tom Selleck. Not to mention, and I promise I am not making this up: There's even an emoji for the niche audience of levitating businessmen. Regardless, when it comes to emoji, men have options.

The lack of female representation in emojis is not a new observation, either.

Just two months ago, Always created a campaign highlighting the need for more girl-powered emojis, and people have been pointing out the specific lack of professional women in emojis for a while.

Photo via Always/YouTube.

Now though, something is actually being done about it.

Google has handed in an official bid to add more professional women to the list of official emojis.

The 10 page proposal would add 13 emojis for different careers, including a doctor, a scientist, a mechanic, and a college graduate.

"No matter where you look, women are gaining visibility and recognition as never before," says Google. "Isn’t it time that emoji also reflect the reality that women play a key role in every walk of life and in every profession?"

Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images.

Google also noted that, when you consider that women are the most frequent users of emojis, it's ludicrous to think that they're still so underrepresented.

Yes, emoji are just little cartoon faces. But this matters because people are exposed to emojis at younger and younger ages.

Texting is the primary method of communication amongst young people. That means more and more young women and men are scrolling through emojis and only seeing women depicted as princesses and secretaries.

Whether you believe it or not, that sends a message.

Photo by Lluis Gene/AFP/Getty Images.

Consider the gender gap in STEM jobs, for example. Or the lack of female CEOs. Wouldn't it be great if girls saw images of themselves as scientists, engineers, and businesswomen within their primary method of communication? Wouldn't it be great if boys grew up seeing women depicted as their equals and not just their secretaries and wives?

Sure it's a small step in a huge problem, but it could be a really important one. Representation matters, and we use those little cartoon faces to represent ourselves all the time. It's only right that they represent all of us.

via FIRST

FIRST students compete in a robotics challenge.

True

Societies all over the world face an ever-growing list of complex issues that require informed solutions. Whether it’s addressing infectious diseases, the effects of climate change, supply chain issues or resource scarcity, the world has an immediate need for problem-solvers with science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills.

Here in the United States, we’re experiencing a shortage of much-needed STEM workers, and forward-thinking organizations are stepping up to tap into America’s youth to fill the void. As the leading youth-serving nonprofit advancing STEM education, FIRST is an important player in this arena, and its mission is to inspire young people aged 4 to 18 to become technology leaders and innovators capable of addressing the world’s pressing needs.

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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.

Marlon Brando on "The Dick Cavett Show" in 1973.

Marlon Brando made one of the biggest Hollywood comebacks in 1972 after playing the iconic role of Vito Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather.” The venerable actor's career had been on a decline for years after a series of flops and increasingly unruly behavior on set.

Brando was a shoo-in for Best Actor at the 1973 Academy Awards, so the actor decided to use the opportunity to make an important point about Native American representation in Hollywood.

Instead of attending the ceremony, he sent Sacheen Littlefeather, a Yaqui and Apache actress and activist, dressed in traditional clothing, to talk about the injustices faced by Native Americans.

She explained that Brando "very regretfully cannot accept this generous award, the reasons for this being … the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry and on television in movie reruns, and also with recent happenings at Wounded Knee."

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Co-sleeping isn't for everyone.

The marital bed is a symbol of the intimacy shared between people who’ve decided to be together 'til death they do part. When couples sleep together it’s an expression of their closeness and how they care for one another when they are most vulnerable.

However, for some couples, the marital bed can be a warzone. Throughout the night couples can endure snoring, sleep apnea, the ongoing battle for sheets or circadian rhythms that never seem to sync. If one person likes to fall asleep with the TV on while the other reads a book, it can be impossible to come to an agreement on a good-night routine.

Last week on TODAY, host Carson Daly reminded viewers that he and his wife Siri, a TODAY Food contributor, had a sleep divorce while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

“I was served my sleep-divorce papers a few years ago,” he explained on TODAY. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to us. We both, admittedly, slept better apart.”

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