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When was the last time you paid art forward?

It's not just fun. It's the right thing to do.

When was the last time you paid for art?

Anything — a dance concert. A movie. A painting to hang in your bathroom.

And was that at the direct-to-artist level? A print from a limited run? A play with real-life actors in the same space, breathing the same air as you? A street performer?


And when was the last time you paid art forward?

What if the next time you paid for a theater ticket, someone who worked at that theater didn't go out and spend that money on beer (not that beer isn't an art form) but instead took it and bought a handcrafted necklace? And then the person who made the necklace paid the cover to hear a local musician and picked up their CD?


See how happy this street performer is making people? Image via Thinkstock.

Art and culture generate a lot more money than you might think.

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and National Endowment for the Arts did a study to figure out how much arts and culture really matter in the U.S. economy. The result? Arts and culture make up about 3.2% of GDP. That's half a trillion dollars.

That's more than travel and tourism.


These white-hot grease fires of entertainment are fueling the national economy. Image via Thinkstock.

And this is even with most of us not spending that much, individually, on art. Sure, maybe you went to the multiplex to catch "The Fast and the Furious: 18"or whatever number they're on now. Maybe you downloaded some music from iTunes and paid actual money for it.

But in our day-to-day, most of us don't spend that much money on art.

And very, very few of us are dropping Benjamins on small-scale or locally-produced art. Money that you spend at a local level has a much bigger effect than money that goes to a massive corporation.

She is not paying for art. Not cool, lady. Image via Thinkstock.

About $48 out of every $100 that you spend at a local gallery stays in your community.

For comparison, only $14 out of $100 you drop picking up a mass-produced decorative piece at a big-box store sticks around. Money staying in your community is a good thing. It generates jobs and prosperity as well as that unique local flavor.

Photos by Audrey Busta-Peck. Used with permission.

My friends Christopher and Audrey are amazing supporters of local art. They take their kids to gallery openings and actually buy paintings instead of just mooching on the free wine and cheese. They even commissioned some house numbers from local neon sculptor Jeff Chiplis. They integrate art into their daily lives.

The good folks at The Seeing Place Theater challenge you (and me) to be like Christopher and Audrey: Spend $20 on art and encourage everyone else who handles that bill after you to do the same.

All you have to do is write, "Use this for art," on a $20 and then go ... do that. Support a local orchestra. Buy a CD the next time you see a musician in a downtown dive. Heck, go commission something. That Jackson will circulate and maybe the next person who touches it will think, "Hm. Actually, I will spend this on art."

And make your community, and your economy, better.

Pedro Pascal and Bowen Yang can't keep a straight face as Ego Nwodim tries to cut her steak.

Most episodes of “Saturday Night Live” are scheduled so the funnier bits go first and the riskier, oddball sketches appear towards the end, in case they have to be cut for time. But on the February 4 episode featuring host Pedro Pascal (“The Mandalorian,” “The Last of Us”), the final sketch, “Lisa from Temecula,” was probably the most memorable of the night.

That’s high praise because it was a strong episode, with a funny “Last of Us” parody featuring the Super Mario Brothers and a sketch where Pascal played a protective mother.

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AMC Theaters/Youtube, Variety/Twitter

AMC announced that it would be implementing a new three-tier ticketing system.

AMC Theaters, America’s largest movie theater chain, announced on Feb 6 that it will be adopting different ticket prices based on seat location.

Moviegoers will have three tiers to choose from based on sightline of the movie screen—Preferred Sightline, set in the middle at the highest price point, Value Sightline, set in the front of the auditorium at the lowest price, and Standard Sightline, which is basically everything else (including the back seats, which are perhaps the most commonly picked) set at the traditional cost of a ticket.

In other words…heartbreak will feel more expensive in a place like this…or less, depending on where you sit



The company’s announcement was met with both criticism and approval. While some feel the move follows a well-established business model, others have found it to be taking away a valued aspect of the moviegoing experience.

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Pop Culture

Keanu Reeves shocks a small-town pub by stopping in for a pint and taking photos with the staff

“So today we had a surprise visitor for lunch. What a lovely man he was, too."

Keanu Reeves in São Paulo, Brazil, 2019.

Keanu Reeves has a reputation as one of Hollywood’s nicest celebrities. Recently, he cheered up an 80-year-old fan who had a crush on him by calling her on the phone. He’s also bought an ice cream cone for a fan to give an autograph on the receipt and crashed a wedding to take photos with the bride and groom.

He’s also an incredible humanitarian who gave up a big chunk of his money from "The Matrix" to a cancer charity.

The “John Wick” star was his usual gracious self over the weekend when on Saturday, February 4, he and a friend walked into The Robin Hood pub in Tring, Hertfordshire, about 30 miles outside of London.

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via Pexels

A mother puts a fresh diaper on her baby.

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When the humidity level rises in the diaper, the graphite and the urine are absorbed by the paper and it turns on a sensor powered by a small lithium battery. The sensor then sets the alarm on an app that parents download onto their phones.

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Pop Culture

Kelly Clarkson and Pink's gorgeous unplugged 'What About Us?' duet came with a timely​ message

"We're not listening to each other right now. And it's so loud, and so gross, and so angry…"

Pink and Kelly Clarkson teamed up for a sweet acoustic version of "What About Us?"

Pink and Kelly Clarkson are both known for having powerhouse voices that can belt at incredible ranges but also soften for a sweet ballad. Put the two of them together, and…well, dang.

On Feb 6, Clarkson featured Pink on her daytime talk show, in which she often sings with musical guests. The two superstars sang several acoustic duets with pitch-perfect harmonies, prompting fans of both artists to clamor for a collaborative album.

One song they sang together was Pink's "What About Us?" Pink previously described the song to The Sun in 2017: "The world in general is a really scary place full of beautiful people. Humans are resilient and there's a lot of wonderful—like I said in the song—'billions of beautiful hearts' and there are bad eggs in every group. And they make it really hard for the rest of us."

In the intro to their duet, Clarkson asked Pink about the impetus behind her writing the song.

"We're not listening to each other right now. And it's so loud, and so gross, and so angry and people are being forgotten," Pink shared. "People are being counted out and their rights are being trampled on just because a group of people doesn't believe in them."

"Like, I don't understand how so many people in this world are discounted because one group of people decided they don't like that," she continued. "And I won't—I won't have it. One of the most beautiful things that my dad taught me was that my voice matters and I can make a difference, and I will."

The lyrics of the song seem to address the political leaders and decision-makers who hold people's lives in their hands as they pull the levers of power. It's a beautiful song with an important message wrapped up in gorgeous two-part harmony.

Enjoy:

Saturday Night Live/Youtube

"It's a me."

Pedro Pascal and HBO seem to be a match made in pop culture heaven. His role in the fourth season of “Game of Thrones” shot him to notoriety. He’s currently starring in “Last of Us,” which also boasts a massive viewership.

And now, thanks to one epic “Saturday Night Live” skit, fans are clamoring to see Pascal take on a new role—a brooding, hardened, princess smuggling Mario.

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