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An interview with Khaby Lame, TikToks most-followed creator

2023-03-19 06:18:47

An interview with Khaby Lame, TikToks most-followed creator

Khaby Lame is on top of the world. He's the most followed TikTok creator on the planet, travels the globe to film videos with celebs like Idris Elba and Ed Sheeran, and collaborates with brands like McDonald's. That's how we get to talking on a Thursday morning (for me, in New York City) and evening (for him, in Milan) — he's one of four global idols tapped for McDonald’s FIFA World Cup 2022 campaign.

An interview with Khaby Lame, TikToks most-followed creator(图1)

It makes sense. Lame is not just one of the top creators in the world, he's also a huge soccer fan and plans to attend World Cup games in support of his native Senegal (he is both a Senegalese and Italian citizen, but Italy didn't make the cut for the Cup). Sitting jovially in a white Nike hoodie, Lame looks like he might be off to shoot a few goals any minute. 

SEE ALSO: Khaby Lame unseats Charli D'Amelio as the most-followed account on TikTok

Behind him are framed black-and-white photos of Audrey Hepburn, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, and Cary Grant and Grace Kelly — all icons who communicated as much in words as in physical expression. Lame is looking to make a jump to acting in movies by doing something similar. He is a man of few words. In fact he's built a TikTok audience of more than 140 million people without saying a single one. So if he doesn't plan to speak, how does he plan to act? 

Lame's got it all figured out: "Mr. Bean doesn't speak," he says, "or Charlie Chaplin." 

Read what else he has to say about his idols, McDonald's, and being a role model below.

Hi Khaby! How's your day been?

I'm working but mostly chilling. It's an easy day, but only today. Every other day is so busy. I've been dubbing a character in Black Panther in Italian and making content around the film. I'll show you one now. [Holds phone up, plays a TikTok video of him transforming into Black Panther(Opens in a new tab)]. There's a creative agency we work with that helps me develop these types of videos and effects.

You're doing this campaign with McDonald's. I have a strong childhood memory of going through their drive thru in Los Angeles, smelling the pancakes and hashbrowns, and eating them out of a little plastic container in the back seat. Do you have a childhood memory of McDonald's like that?

I just remember when I was a little boy on our way from Turin to Chivasso, before taking the highway, my brothers and I knew there was a Mac there, and I remember us praying and hoping we would turn left and stop at Macs. Most of the time, we didn't stop. 

[Begins to laugh] Another time, there was a long line of cars at a McDonald's drive-thru and we took a shopping cart through it, trying to bypass all the people who were waiting. People were angry, but we were served. I worked as a waiter [before blowing up on TikTok] and actually sent an application for a job at McDonald's when I was younger. I thought it'd be nice to work for them.

What is your daily life like now and how does your family feel about your success.? 

[Imitates a flying plane]. I'm always traveling, and I love it. My family is very happy for me. Every now and then I take my brother traveling.

How old is your brother?

[Thinks, counting on his fingers] Twenty-four! It's hard for me to remember because I have a lot of brothers. Three little brothers, and one big brother. Don't ask me their ages, please!

I won't! You're dubbing Black Panther and have recently collaborated with Snoop Dogg, Future, and more. Is there anyone that you've been nervous to collaborate with?

I generally feel at ease. I'll say that I was a bit excited, a bit nervous, when first meeting Usain Bolt and Snoop Dogg. Most of all Bolt, probably because as a little boy my dream was to become an athlete and be better than him. I ran the 100 meters and the marathon, and then I had to stop training because I had to work and help my family.

When you became the no. 1 most-followed creator on TikTok, it was a big deal for a lot of reasons. It's almost always white creators on top, so it's so nice to see a creator of color. Do you feel like you're a role model for young Black men?

I think so. I think that my hope is to influence not only people of color but everybody.

In terms of how you want to influence people, I saw that you had posted a video of actors that you admired. Is that your goal, to become an actor?

Becoming an actor has always been my dream. Ever since I was a little boy, my hero was Will Smith in Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Right now I'm studying acting with a coach and learning English. My dream is to become an actor and make people laugh.

When it comes to your role models, you recently posted a TikTok(Opens in a new tab) of Will Smith and Johnny Depp captioned "My dream in my mind 🙏🏾 to become like them!" Recently those two men have been in the public eye. Do you look up to them as actors or people?

I only look at them as actors. As talents. It happens, making mistakes in life. I just consider them to be my idols, great actors, incredible people. And this is what I would like to become. Everybody can make mistakes in life. Everybody should be forgiven for making mistakes.

Can you tell me a little bit about the kind of content that you consume? Do you listen to K-pop at all? A really fantastic K-pop girl group, Itzy(Opens in a new tab), is part of this campaign with you.

To create my content, I watch movies, listen to music, watch Japanese anime. Everything can be a source of inspiration to me. And no, I don't listen to K-pop. But I'm convinced, I'll listen to Itzy's whole album.

You want to act, and you're also working with Hugo Boss. Is your dream project  an acting role or more fashion based? And can you give me a hint about what you're working on now? 

No! I have some projects, but I can't give any hints. And as for my dream project, I'm interested in both! Just keep following me.

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    Yoga Wake Up(Opens in a new tab) (free 2-week trial, then $9.99/month or $53.99/year or $34.99/half-year)

    View this post on Instagram
    (opens in a new tab) (Opens in a new tab)

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    Watch it twice and try both words 🙌 ##mindblown(Opens in a new tab) ##greenneedle(Opens in a new tab) ##brainstorm(Opens in a new tab) ##greenneedleorbrainstorm(Opens in a new tab)

    ♬ Shoutout to the dead creators using this for likes - redlobsterz(Opens in a new tab)

    Different coworkers have had different reactions to this viral TikTok. For me, the sound definitely changes depending on which word I'm reading or thinking about. It even works if I close my eyes.

    The wild thing is this isn't new. My colleague Morgan Sung even wrote about it when the sound first went viral in 2018. It's the janky audio of a children's toy.

    Reached via Instagram DMs, Emily Sophie — the person who made the sound re-viral on TikTok — said she wasn't sure why it had caught on again.

    "I found the sound on TikTok, the video has actually been made thousands of times but for some reason mine went viral," Sophie wrote. "When I heard it I [just] had to make the video and show everyone as it's sooo strange!"

    Sophie said she has heard a whole variety of different phrases, including brainstorm, green needle, green storm, and brain needle, adding it's "strange how our brains work."

    The video went massively viral on TikTok. It has been watched some 6 million times. As one could predict, it soon spread to Twitter and elsewhere. Chrissy Teigen posted(Opens in a new tab) about it. Viral video accounts, too(Opens in a new tab). Ice T, even(Opens in a new tab).

    "It's really awesome that celebrities are sharing it, especially Ricky Gervais(Opens in a new tab) as I'm a massive fan of his!" Sophie wrote via DMs.

    By the way, in case you were wondering, the toy was supposed(Opens in a new tab) to be saying brainstorm.

    Related Video: Is TikTok secretly a dating app?

  • Watch the trainwreck Trump interview moment being compared to Spinal Tap and Veep

    Watch the trainwreck Trump interview moment being compared to Spinal Tap and Veep

    If you thought bragging about "acing" a dementia test was as bad as it got, Donald Trump has another wild interview highlights reel for you.


    News site Axios' weekly HBO show aired an interview with the president on Monday night that made the Chris Wallace shitshow look like a successfully muffled fart.

    During the 40-minute sit-down, Trump repeated his well-wishes(Opens in a new tab) for accused child sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell, saying he offered them simply because "her boyfriend" Jeffrey Epstein "was either killed or committed suicide in jail"; refused to say whether he found the late congressman and civil rights campaigner John Lewis "impressive", only complaining that Lewis skipped Trump's inauguration; and waved away questions about U.S. intelligence suggesting Russia offered a bounty on American troops(Opens in a new tab).

    All that, and yet it got worse.

    The moment that really stuck out involved Trump flapping a fistful of printed-out charts at interviewer Jonathan Swan, literally arguing that Swan should only refer to the version of the U.S. coronavirus death rates that make Trump look the best.

    Yes, he really said "You can't do that," like a seven-year-old whose sister just invented a new rule in the middle of a game of Monopoly.

    (While Swan is a professional and experienced journalist who clearly knows how to interpret statistics correctly — and spot when they're being manipulated — it's also worth noting that his father Dr. Norman Swan is a physician and medical communicator who's become one of Australia's most trusted figures for information during the pandemic. They probably talk about this stuff on occasion.(Opens in a new tab))

    SEE ALSO: Trevor Noah gleefully breaks down the most brutal moments from Trump's Fox interview

    The clip above had over 4.6 million views on Twitter alone at the time of writing. And on a platform at least partially devoted at any given hour to parsing whatever wild shit Trump's just said or tweeted, the reactions reached a new level of gobsmacked.

    Some users claimed to wonder if this was a comedy skit with an especially talented Trump impersonator, or a deepfake.

    Others compared it to the iconic, "But this one goes to 11" scene from This Is Spinal Tap. (The phrase "Spinal Tap" began trending at one point.)

    Folks also compared it to Veep, including GOP-turned-Libertarian Rep. Justin Amash, and literal person who was on Veep Sam Richardson.

    Even Nathan For You, the peak of surreal cringe brilliance, came to mind for one user.

    But at the end of the day, this is real, and it's terrifying.

    Here's the full interview with President Donald Trump from Axios on HBO:

Random articles


  • What is post-SSRI Sexual Dysfunction (PSSD) and what do I need to know about it?

    What is post-SSRI Sexual Dysfunction (PSSD) and what do I need to know about it?

    As I try for the hundredth time to knock one out and inevitably fail miserably, I’m forced to remember that when taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), coming can feel like an Olympic sport. Feeling sticky and ashamed (and somewhat frustrated), I’m left with no other option than to pack away my toys and lubes, roll over and try to get some kip.

    According to NHS(Opens in a new tab) data, there are now nearly half a million more adults taking antidepressants than in 2021. So, know you're not alone. For many people prescribed antidepressants, they are a necessary and vital lifeline. They can be life-altering in the best way, but they can also produce side effects that are disheartening. 

    Sexual dysfunction and SSRIs can go hand in hand for folks like me. In fact, it's reported that nearly 100(Opens in a new tab) percent of people who take them experience some form of sexual side effects. When I stopped taking them, my enthusiasm and wanking vigour returned quickly, but for others, it can be a vastly different story. One shrouded in unshakeable shame.


    SEE ALSO: How do antidepressants affect your orgasms?

    What is post-SSRI sexual dysfunction, or PSSD?

    Post-SSRI sexual dysfunction, or PSSD, is something felt by people when they come off of antidepressants, (the exact number of those impacted is not known because so little research is done about it, partially due to "inconsistencies" from the medical community about how to diagnose it(Opens in a new tab), but the research that does exist tells us it's prevalent).

    While some people experience sexual side effects during taking SSRIs, PSSD is a condition which refers to a long-term condition impacting people who have stopped taking the medication.

    Experts like professor of psychology David Healy of Bangor University, and author of the journal Antidepressants and Sexual Dysfunction: A History,(Opens in a new tab) discuss the prevalence of the condition(Opens in a new tab), stating that: "10 percent of people of sexually active years in developed countries are on antidepressants chronically. Nearly 20 percent of the population, therefore, may not be able to make love the way they want." He goes on to explain that in some deprived areas, the figure may be much higher. He also identifies that those who seek to comfort themselves with the thought of post-treatment normality, those prescribed SSRIs might be sorely disappointed, saying that; "...they may be even less able to function."

    Per(Opens in a new tab) Healy's paper: "The core features of the condition are genital numbing, loss or muting of orgasm and loss of libido. But many are just as concerned by additional features like emotional numbing or derealisation." PSSD was first reported in medical literature in 2006, despite people with the syndrome reporting(Opens in a new tab) symptoms to regulators since 1999.

    In almost all cases, people who suffer from PSSD have experienced some form of sexual dysfunction while taking antidepressant medication in addition to after they stop. "It's very important that people understand what it is, recognise it as soon as possible and understand the complexity of it," Alessio Rizzo, certified psychotherapist, tells Mashable. "SSRI sexual dysfunction is one of the leading reasons people stop taking antidepressant medication which can lead to worsening symptoms alongside withdrawal."

    Who is most affected by PSSD?

    The truth is, anyone can be affected by PSSD because anyone can be affected by sexual dysfunction.

    "We know that it seems to affect every sex, and every age, every ethnicity, so it doesn't seem to be linked to any of the usual parameters that we consider," Rizzo says.

    Rizzo explains that people who are more at risk of depression and anxiety, like those in the LGBTQ community, are not destined for mental illness, but may find themselves more likely to develop illnesses like depression and anxiety(Opens in a new tab). "We must be careful not to pathologise dysfunction as an LGBTQ and sexual abuse survivor only problem," he adds, "because it can stop people who do not identify with these two experiences from seeking help."

    SEE ALSO: Being bisexual can impact your mental health. Here's what you can do about it.

    Around 30-50 percent of people experience mild forms of sexual dysfunction(Opens in a new tab) before taking antidepressants, which means that they could find pre-existing symptoms exacerbated by medication. It could also mean that something else is causing the dysregulation of the sexual response cycle (the connection between desire and arousal, excitement, orgasm and resolution), like pain, sensitivity and past trauma. Collectively, these are known as predispositions. 

    Sexual dysfunction of any kind can be a tremendously isolating experience.

    This is why approaching a healing process in a holistic nature is important. While medications can help with mood stabilisation, talk therapies like CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) can help to support healing by modifying thought pathways(Opens in a new tab) (this is called neuroplasticity, and it describes altering chemically embedded behaviours in our brain). Therefore, people with pre-existing symptoms, or who are predisposed to sexual dysfunction, can get to the bottom of what’s disrupting their pleasure response cycle and confront it in a safe environment.

    For many people, talking about sex is closely followed by feelings of shame. We also need to remember that there is a cultural stigma surrounding mental health and sex, making it even harder for some to talk about or admit to having a problem. A study conducted by the National Library of Medicine found that young people are especially likely to experience shame(Opens in a new tab) when discussing any form of sexual experience — let alone one that involves problems. 

    As such, sexual dysfunction of any kind can be a tremendously isolating experience, leaving people grasping at straws and feeling a lot of internal turmoil. All this is made worse by the cycle of depression and anxiety slowly eating away at any form of self-esteem. 

    SEE ALSO: Men need to talk about sex differently. Here's how.

    SSRIs increase serotonin levels in the brain, which has a knock-on effect on the anatomical structures of our reproductive system(Opens in a new tab). Effects of this include being unable to maintain or produce an erection to vaginal dryness, ejaculation, and anorgasmia (absence of orgasm). This is, impart, because SSRIs inhibit nitric oxide production(Opens in a new tab), which greatly affects the way the body relaxes, and actively prevents blood from reaching the genitals.

    PSSD is a serious condition and it causes distress. There is currently no treatment for PSSD. The syndrome is not widely understood or agreed upon by researchers as to how it comes about. It is suggested that only future research(Opens in a new tab) holds the answer and that it could lie in those who do not develop PSSD, but only time will tell if this is the case.

    UPDATE: Dec. 2, 2022, 9:48 a.m. CET This post has been updated.

  • Why are people flying their American flags upside down?

    Why are people flying their American flags upside down?

    We did it. We're finally fighting back. We're really showing it to the Supreme Court. We're…flying the American flag, but upside down.


    Some folks are protesting the nation's recent Supreme Court decisions by flying their American flags upside down. This comes after the Dobbs v. Jackson Supreme Court ruling on Friday that overturned Roe v. Wade, eliminating the constitutional right to an abortion, and Thursday's ruling that limits state and local government(Opens in a new tab) in restricting guns outside the home.

    SEE ALSO: What does Roe v. Wade being overturned mean for you?

    According to the U.S. Flag Code(Opens in a new tab), flying the American flag shouldn't be flown upside down — with the stars at the bottom — "except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property." U.S. Flag Code is officially a law, but there aren't any federal punishments or enforcement for people who don't follow the code, according to Cornell Law School. So, it's not a particularly useful law. It sets the rules for when the American flag can be flown at half-staff (mourning) and how the flag shouldn't be used (for clothes, bedding, or drapery). 

    So protesters are flying their flags upside down in response to what they see as a nation in distress. It's one of the many forms of peaceful protest that aren't particularly radical, but can be useful in making people feel like they're doing something when they feel helpless, or showing your neighbors where you align politically and that you're a safe space for certain folks.

    SEE ALSO: Feeling lost? Follow these reproductive justice accounts.

    Forms of peaceful protests can help people find community when they feel frustrated and alone, can help to share resources, and can result in real change — like the 1963 March on Washington(Opens in a new tab), which successfully pressured the government to pass a civil rights bill.(Opens in a new tab) Or take 2020's Black Lives Matter protests, which led to fewer legislative progress than the March on Washington but still important societal moves, like the removal of confederate symbols and marking Juneteenth as a federal holiday.

    Putting up signs in your yard and attending peaceful marches can be an important way to show your support for movements, but activists and organizers encourage supporters to not feel that they've done enough work by simply flying a flag upside down. One of the problems with participating in demonstrations that don't put real pressure on those who hold actual power is that it can feel like you've done something to push the movement forward when, in reality, you have not.

    If you've decided to fly a flag upside down, you can also show your support in ways that actually enact change — which, to be clear, putting a sign in your yard or changing the direction of your American flag will likely not do. You can(Opens in a new tab) volunteer(Opens in a new tab), educate(Opens in a new tab) yourself and(Opens in a new tab) those close to you(Opens in a new tab), donate(Opens in a new tab) money(Opens in a new tab), and think locally(Opens in a new tab) about how you can help people(Opens in a new tab) who are the(Opens in a new tab) most vulnerable(Opens in a new tab).

  • Doctors: Vaccine side effects show your immune system is working well

    Doctors: Vaccine side effects show your immune system is working well

    Doctors are getting questions about the possibility of short-lived, though sometimes uncomfortable, side effects after the second Covid shot.


    Mashable spoke with some of these doctors. They emphasize that the vaccines have continually proven safe, and any common side effects(Opens in a new tab) — like tiredness, a sore shoulder, fever, or aches — from the second doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines are normal and relatively brief. The single-dose shot, from Johnson and Johnson, can have similar effects(Opens in a new tab), too, though there's evidence(Opens in a new tab) the side effects are less common. Overall, these temporary symptoms are your immune system in action as it responds to the vaccine. (None of the FDA-authorized vaccines contain the actual coronavirus, just harmless genetic information about the virus(Opens in a new tab) that codes for only a small piece of the virus.)

    "These symptoms are expected," emphasized Dr. Thomas Russo, the chief of infectious disease at the University of Buffalo's Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. "It's a signal your immune system is working and you are responding to the vaccine."

    Crucially, some people don't have symptoms after getting the second shot of the two-dose Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines. But this certainly doesn't mean the vaccine is less effective in your body. "There's no evidence of that," explained Dr. Peter Gulick, a D.O. and professor of medicine at Michigan State University. Rather, different bodies respond to the vaccine differently, just as many of us respond to flu viruses, cold viruses, or bee stings in diverse ways. Some of us have these short-lived symptoms. Some don't. That's OK.

    "We all react to everything differently," said Dr. Gulick. "That's just the way our immune systems are."

    The side effects

    In addition to the possibility of soreness, swelling, or redness where you get the shot, the following potential side effects are common for some after receiving a Covid vaccine, according to the CDC(Opens in a new tab):

    • Tiredness

    • Headache

    • Muscle pain

    • Chills

    • Fever

    • Nausea

    Importantly, these side effects are temporary and go away within a day or 48 hours or so, said Dr. Russo. These are not the severe reactions that might require immediate medical treatment, like a serious allergic reaction (anaphylaxis). This sort of extreme reaction is quite rare, happening on the order of just one to five per a million people, said Dr. Gulick. That's expected. An extreme minority of people have a severe reaction to certain things, be it peanuts or penicillin or a vaccine.

    The rare serious allergic reactions to a Covid vaccine are not unusual compared to other vaccines. "These Covid-19 vaccines have no red flags, so to speak," said Gulick. (To be safe, the health care professionals administering the vaccines ask you to wait 15 minutes post-vaccination to ensure you don't have this type of severe reaction, which they're prepared to treat(Opens in a new tab).)

    "These Covid-19 vaccines have no red flags"

    Yet, expect the possibility of milder side effects after the second Covid dose. Over half of people may experience some mild symptoms, explained Dr. Vin Gupta, a pulmonary and critical care physician. "We think it’s more likely than not after the second dose," explained Dr. Gupta, who is also an affiliate assistant professor of health metrics sciences at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington. 

    Why are side effects common after the second dose?

    The two-shot vaccines introduce a piece of harmless genetic code (called mRNA) into our bodies, which instructs our cells to make just the part of the coronavirus (the infamous spike protein) that binds with our cells and infects us. This allows our immune system to prepare defenses (called antibodies) against the virus so it can't attach, among building other cellular defenses(Opens in a new tab). "You're getting parts of the virus to protect you from an infection," explained Dr. Russo.

    By the second dose, our bodies have already seen this critical piece of the virus, and are now extra-ready to respond to the intruder. "The first dose gets that immune system primed," said Dr. Gulick. So when the second vaccine dose (which acts to turbo-charge our immune system against the coronavirus) comes, the immune system reacts strongly to the perceived threat, and produces many more antibodies. As a consequence, we can experience some common effects of the human body's typical immune response to an intruder, like a fever or aches. "It's part of the body's response to an infection," said Dr. Russo, though you're not actually getting an infection, he added.

    So if you do have side effects, it's normal and temporary. "If you have those symptoms, it's reassuring your immune system has gone to work," explained Dr. Russo. But if you don't have symptoms, that doesn't mean your immune system isn't working. "Our immune response [to the Covid vaccines] is good whether you have these symptoms or not," Dr. Russo added.

    Vaccine day

    Some of us may be uncomfortable following the second dose with the likes of a headache or aches. That's why it's prudent to prepare for that possibility, and take the day off work if you need.

    "If you can take the day off after the second dose, do so," recommended Dr. Gupta.

    Think of it similar to a "snow day," said Dr. Russo. "You get a blanket and some Tylenol if you need, you do some binge-watching. But only a minority of people will actually need a vaccine day," he added.

    [Ask your doctor(Opens in a new tab) about what over-the-counter medications you might consider taking if you have unpleasant post-vaccination symptoms.]

    The possibility of relatively mild, temporary symptoms are a small price to pay for the protection the vaccines provide. All three FDA-authorized Covid vaccines, including the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, are excellent vaccine options. They protect well against symptoms overall, and most importantly, have all proven in clinical trials (involving tens of thousands of people) to protect against severe Covid disease that results in hospitalization and death. "They keep you out of the hospital," said Dr. Gupta.

    So don't be hesitant to get a Covid vaccine or the second dose, emphasized Dr. Russo. The vaccines are safe and build proven immunity.

    "The vaccines are protecting us," said Dr. Gulick.

    Related Video: How to use your COVID vaccine guilt to fight for health equity

  • 10 best apps for pet owners

    10 best apps for pet owners

    If you're a pet owner, you know there's a lot that goes into taking care of them. There's training, healthcare, toys and gear, not to mention just wanting to give them the world because they deserve it.


    Thankfully there are a number of apps to help us with that mission. From useful training tips, to vital emergency care, to making sure our pets are entertained and happy, we've rounded up our favorites to ensure your pets are living their best life.

    Training apps for pets

    1. GoodPup

    When you sign up, GoodPup designs a personalized training plan, which includes weekly private 30-minute sessions with a trainer, guided daily training tips, and offers a 24/7 chat feature with trainers. This is for dog owners who are looking to commit to a full-service training plan, because it comes at a cost — $29 a month. GoodPup does offer a weeklong free trial so you can try it out first.

    Price: $29/month, free seven-day trial

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android (Opens in a new tab)

    Personalized, live training sessions for you and your pup. Credit: Screenshot: PetCareNow LLC

    2. Puppr

    For dog owners in search of less formal training resources, Puppr is a good option. The app features training videos, over 100 lessons, live chatting with trainers, and progress-tracking. Plus the lessons are taught by famed dog instructor Sara Carson and her dogs the "Super Collies."

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    Free training videos featuring the "Super Collies." Credit: Screenshot: Chin and Cheeks LLC

    3. Cat Training

    This app is packed with information to help you understand your cat's behavior and how to train them. Covering common cat care issues related to litterbox training and scratching, the Cat Training app is pretty barebones, but provides good practical tips and tricks that every cat owner should know.

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    This app is simple but effective. Credit: Screenshots: Gato Apps
    SEE ALSO: The best gifts for pets (and their parents)

    Health and care apps for pets

    4. Pet First Aid

    Created by the American Red Cross, this in an app that every pet owner should have. The app provides step-by-step instructions for what to do in an emergency situation such as if your pet is attacked or eats something toxic. The app even has instructions on how to give your pet CPR and information about early warning signs of an emergency and a search function for finding the closest veterinary hospital.

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    First aid information that every pet owner should know. Credit: Screenshot: American Red Cross

    ​​5. 11pets

    The 11pets app seems to cover everything when it comes to your pet's needs. With 11pets, you can store medical history, maintain a schedule for upcoming vaccines and vet visits, and even track your pet's weight and nutrition. Plus, the account can be accessed on multiple devices so your family members can also keep tabs on the latest.

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    A useful all-in-one platform for your pet's needs. Credit: Screenshot: 11pets

    6. Pawprint

    The best apps provide a simple solution to a real everyday problem, and this is one of them. With Pawprint, you'll never have to worry about tracking down your pet's medical records again. Simply, enter your pet's information, and Pawprint tracks them down for you and saves a digital copy.

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    Never have to track down medical records again. Credit: Screenshot: Pawprint Acquisition LLC

    7. Airvet

    There are several veterinary telemedicine platforms out there, but we like this Airvet because of the different options it offers. You can either pay a flat fee of $30 for a virtual call with the first available veterinarian or pay a monthly fee as an Airvet member, which basically works as a 24/7 concierge service for your pet's medical needs.

    Price: $30/month or $30 for an on-demand call

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    On-demand veterinary care at your fingertips. Credit: Screenshot: airVet Inc.

    8. Pet Monitor VIGI

    There are other pet monitoring systems out there, like treat dispensers with cameras, but with this app you don't have to buy new hardware. With a one-time purchase, you can download Pet Monitor VIGI on all of your devices, so all you have to do is set it up on your existing computer/tablet when you leave. Plus, it has two-way audio and video so you can interact with your pet while you're away.

    Price: $4.99

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    Monitor your pet with your existing devices Credit: Screenshot: VIGI Limited

    Fun apps for pets

    9. Cat Fishing 2

    No, not catfishing, but a fishing game for cats! Download this game on your phone or tablet and watch as your cat swipes to catch the fish on the screen. This game is great for mental stimulation and activating your cat's natural prey drive. Just be prepared to clean the screen after.

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    This app will keep your cat entertained for hours. Credit: Screenshot: Nestle Purina Petcare

    10. BarkHappy

    It's social media for dog people. With BarkHappy, you can search dog-friendly restaurants, stores, hotels, etc. and connect with other dog owners nearby. You can also send out alerts to other users in the event of a lost or found dog.

    Price: Free

    Available on iOS(Opens in a new tab) and Android(Opens in a new tab)

    Dates for your dog. Credit: Screenshot: BarkHappy Inc.

  • Studio Ghibli theme park is all vibes, no rides. Just as Hayao Miyazaki intended.

    Studio Ghibli theme park is all vibes, no rides. Just as Hayao Miyazaki intended.

    If you've ever watched a Studio Ghibli film (and yes, I am questioning your taste if you haven't), then you're familiar with the empty feeling of knowing that you don't live in a fantastical world full of forest spirits, teenage witches, and giant Totoros. Ghibli Park is here to change that.


    Inspired by the beloved films of the Japanese animation studio, Ghibli Park is finally opening its gates on Nov. 1, 2022. Fans of Studio Ghibli will be able to immerse themselves in the Ghibli aesthetic and visit attractions based on the locations and characters of Spirited Away, Howl's Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro, and more.

    The real-life theme park is located in Japan's Aichi Earth Expo Memorial Park in the city of Nagakute. There are no rides or big attractions at Ghibli Park. Instead, it's a completely immersive experience, and guests are encouraged to "take a stroll, feel the wind, and discover the wonders" around them, which is honestly refreshing. Welcome to the Ghibli metaverse.

    SEE ALSO: All the best Studio Ghibli films you need to watch right now

    Ghibli Park recently launched its website(Opens in a new tab) and with it came a host of new concept art and fresh details.

    The park will open with three main constructions, including Ghibli's Grand Warehouse, Hill of Youth, and Dondoko Forest. Ghibli's Grand Warehouse, which EW reports(Opens in a new tab) is partially inspired by Spirited Away, is an indoor attraction that "stores all of the studio's secrets, from large to small artifacts and exhibits from past Studio Ghibli movies."

    Will parents turn into pigs immediately upon entry? We'll have to wait and see.

    Ghibli's Grand Warehouse is an indoor wonderland for Ghibli fans. Credit: Ghibli Park

    Inside, you'll be able to experience several exhibitions, like the Robot Soldier and the Cat Bus. (We can only hope this means we get to take a purrfect ride on the Cat Bus IRL.) It sounds like Ghibli's Grand Warehouse is also where superfans can learn about the making of Ghibli classics before venturing outside to the Dondoko Forest.

    Here, you'll find Satsuki and Mei's house — and maybe a few acorns and soot sprites. You should also be on the lookout for a giant Totoro. No, really. The forest will house a 17-foot high wooden structure(Opens in a new tab) in the shape of Totoro that children (and those young at heart) can enter.

    Where, oh where might Totoro be? Credit: Ghibli Park

    You can get a better look at the magic that awaits in Dondoko Forest in a newly released Aichi tourism video(Opens in a new tab), in which a young girl wanders through a lush, green forest and ends up at the home from My Neighbor Totoro. It's been recreated in stunningly accurate detail, and you can even seen Satsuki and Mei's wicker hats laying on their father's desk.

    Finally, there's the Hill of Youth, which will house the World Emporium, the antique shop from Whisper of the Heart.

    Hill of Youth is partially inspired by 'Howl's Moving Castle' and 'Whisper of the Heart.' Credit: Ghibli Park

    The second phase of construction will introduce two new attractions in the latter half of 2023: Valley of Witches, inspired by Kiki's Delivery Service and Howl's Moving Castle, and Mononoke Village, which will feature the characters, creatures, and locations of Princess Mononoke. (Bring me all of the kodama, please.)

    Notably, the Valley of Witches will feature a replica(Opens in a new tab) of Howl's actual Moving Castle. But the real question is: Will there be a life-size version of Howl Pendragon to go with it? The fans (read: me) must know.

    Anyway, this all looks cool and magical, and if I don't get to see Ghibli Park in person I might actually combust. Is it November yet?

  • Olivia Rodrigos good 4 u music video inspires a burst of fiery memes

    Olivia Rodrigos good 4 u music video inspires a burst of fiery memes

    Ex-boyfriends everywhere are shaking.


    Why? Well on Friday, teen singer and actor Olivia Rodrigo dropped "good 4 u," the third single off her upcoming debut album, SOUR. The video is fierce and filled with literal flames, the music and lyrics are slightly reminiscent of Paramore, and the song's overall angsty energy strays from the 18-year-old's other popular releases, "drivers license"(Opens in a new tab) and "deja vu"(Opens in a new tab).

    If "drivers license" made fans want to sob behind the wheel while cruising the suburbs, and "deja vu" made us want to drive with the top down while licking strawberry ice cream, then "good 4 u" makes us want to...I don't know...slide on tall black gloves and commit arson? (Please don't do this. You ARE free to rage-eat some Smartfood popcorn, though.)

    The point is, this girl's got range. She went from Sad Girl to Mad Girl in the blink of an eye and both styles suit her remarkably. Fans are really feeling Rodrigo's dark side, her pointed f-bomb dropping, and her general Taylor Swift meets Lorde meets Avril Lavigne vibes.

    In addition to playing the music video on a loop, "good 4 u" stans are celebrating its success with glorious memes. Please enjoy these hilarious odes to our newest fury bop.

    Olivia, you've done it again. Good 4 u, girl.

  • Quordle today: Here are the answers and hints for November 18

    Quordle today: Here are the answers and hints for November 18

    Qurodle is a reliable, daily activity in an otherwise unpredictable world. So what happens when Quordle is harder than you predicted? It can throw your life into disarray!


    If Quordle is a little too challenging today, you've come to the right place for hints. There aren't just hints here, but the whole Quordle solution. Scroll to the bottom of this page, and there it is. But are you sure you need all four answers? Maybe you just need a strategy guide. Either way, scroll down, and you'll get what you need.

    What is Quordle?

    Quordle is a five-letter word guessing game similar to Wordle, except each guess applies letters to four words at the same time. You get nine guesses instead of six to correctly guess all four words. It looks like playing four Wordle games at the same time, and that is essentially what it is. But it's not nearly as intimidating as it sounds.

    Is Quordle harder than Wordle?

    Yes, though not diabolically so.

    Where did Quordle come from?

    Amid the Wordle boom of late 2021 and early 2022, when everyone was learning to love free, in-browser, once-a-day word guessing games, creator Freddie Meyer says he took inspiration from one of the first big Wordle variations, Dordle — the one where you essentially play two Wordles at once. He took things up a notch, and released Quordle on January 30(Opens in a new tab). Meyer's creation was covered in The Guardian(Opens in a new tab) six days later, and now, according to Meyer, it attracts millions of daily users. Today, Meyer earns modest revenue(Opens in a new tab) from Patreon, where dedicated Quordle fans can donate to keep their favorite puzzle game running. 

    How is Quordle pronounced?

    “Kwordle.” It should rhyme with “Wordle,” and definitely should not be pronounced exactly like "curdle.”

    Is Quordle strategy different from Wordle?

    Yes and no.

    Your starting strategy should be the same as with Wordle. In fact, if you have a favorite Wordle opening word, there’s no reason to change that here. We suggest something rich in vowels, featuring common letters like C, R, and N. But you do you.

    After your first guess, however, you’ll notice things getting out of control if you play Quordle exactly like Wordle.

    What should I do in Quordle that I don’t do in Wordle?

    Solving a Wordle puzzle can famously come down to a series of single letter-change variations. If you’ve narrowed it down to “-IGHT,” you could guess “MIGHT” “NIGHT” “LIGHT” and “SIGHT” and one of those will probably be the solution — though this is also a famous way to end up losing in Wordle, particularly if you play on “hard mode.” In Quordle, however, this sort of single-letter winnowing is a deadly trap, and it hints at the important strategic difference between Wordle and Quordle: In Quordle, you can't afford to waste guesses unless you're eliminating as many letters as possible at all times. 

    Guessing a completely random word that you already know isn't the solution, just to eliminate three or four possible letters you haven’t tried yet, is thought of as a desperate, latch-ditch move in Wordle. In Quordle, however, it's a normal part of the player's strategic toolset.

    Is there a way to get the answer faster?

    In my experience Quordle can be a slow game, sometimes dragging out longer than it would take to play Wordle four times. But a sort of blunt-force guessing approach can speed things up. The following strategy also works with Wordle if you only want the solution, and don’t care about having the fewest possible guesses:

    Try starting with a series of words that puts all the vowels (including Y) on the board, along with some other common letters. We've had good luck with the three words: “NOTES,” “ACRID,” and “LUMPY.” YouTuber DougMansLand(Opens in a new tab) suggests four words: “CANOE,” “SKIRT,” “PLUMB,” and “FUDGY.”

    Most of the alphabet is now eliminated, and you’ll only have the ability to make one or two wrong guesses if you use this strategy. But in most cases you’ll have all the information you need to guess the remaining words without any wrong guesses.

    If strategy isn't helping, and you're still stumped, here are some hints:

    Are there any double or triple letters in today’s Quordle words?

    One words has a letter occurring twice.

    Are any rare letters being used in today’s Quordle like Q or Z?


    What do today’s Quordle words start with?

    S, A, S, and R.

    What are the answers for today’s Quordle?

    Are you sure you want to know?

    There’s still time to turn back.

    OK, you asked for it. The answers are:

    1. STOKE

    2. APART

    3. STEAD

    4. ROUGH

  • The COVID XBB.1.5 subvariant is spreading. Heres what we know.

    The COVID XBB.1.5 subvariant is spreading. Heres what we know.

    That old familiar dread is back: New COVID variant, new worries.

    This time, the World Health Organization is raising concern(Opens in a new tab) over COVID subvariant XBB.1.5, which has seen an increase in the United States of late. ABC News reports (Opens in a new tab)hospitalizations are rising in the Northeast U.S., with the subvariant making up most of those.

    Should you be anxious over the latest subvariant? And why are some people calling it Kraken? Here’s what to know right now:

    What’s the difference with subvariant XBB.1.5?

    According to CNBC(Opens in a new tab), the COVID technical lead for the WHO, Maria Van Kerkhove, said officials are worried about how quickly XBB.1.5 is spreading, especially in the Northeast. "It is the most transmissible subvariant that has been detected yet," she said in a press conference.

    Fortune adds(Opens in a new tab) that the subvariant raised alarm bells at the end of 2022 when the number of XBB.1.5 cases rose from 1% of all cases at the beginning of December to 41% after three weeks.

    SEE ALSO: Troubleshooting the mystery of post-COVID insomnia with a sleep tracker

    What are the symptoms?

    Symptoms appear to be close to those of previous versions of the Omicron variant that were prevalent last winter – which means more cold-like symptoms, like runny nose, sore throat and congestion. Fortune reports the reason is that it’s basically descended from last year’s Omicron, which also explains why symptoms seen early on in the pandemic, like loss of taste or smell, aren't occurring as often here.

    USA TODAY adds(Opens in a new tab) the symptoms can range into shortness of breath and low oxygen, and medical attention is warranted for those.

    How do keep from catching this subvariant?

    It’s starting to sound like an old saw, but keeping up to date with your vaccine and boosters is the best prevention, according to the Mayo Clinic(Opens in a new tab) among others.

    In addition, wearing a well-fitted mask and avoiding close indoor spaces can reduce the risk of infection.

    Can I catch COVID again after having it once?

    Though you’ll have some protection from COVID after catching it, that doesn’t mean you’ll be immune to it forever. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,(Opens in a new tab) reinfections of COVID do happen. 

    What do I do if I test positive?

    If you test positive for COVID, medical officials, including the CDC, say you should isolate for at least 5 days if you are experiencing symptoms, and not end your isolation until 24 hours after your symptoms abate. If you are not experiencing symptoms, you should isolate for 5 days, and wear a mask for 10 days, in order to keep those who are at high risk of getting sick from catching the virus.


    Reaching out to a medical professional (by phone, text, etc.) is also recommended if you have symptoms, in case medicines like Paxlovid need to be considered.

    Why "Kraken" though?

    Some, especially in the Twitterverse(Opens in a new tab), have taken to calling XBB.1.5 the "Kraken" subvariant. The name comes from biology professor T. Ryan Gregory of the University of Guelph in Canada, according to Fortune.(Opens in a new tab)

    Gregory wanted to give this subvariant a name with more oomph than XBB.1.5 or even Omicron to better communicate info to the public, and chose the name of a sea monster from norse mythology. And apparently, he has other mythological creatures, like Chiron and Basilisk(Opens in a new tab).

    Whatever the reason, it has taken off on social media with the #Kraken hashtag.

  • Greta Thunberg flips script, tells Trump to work on his anger management problem

    Greta Thunberg flips script, tells Trump to work on his anger management problem

    Donald Trump is not having a great day — and that's putting it mildly.


    With Biden still ahead in electoral votes in the late afternoon, Trump's Thursday wasn't going well to begin with, and now Greta Thunberg has officially logged on to partake in Twitter election discourse.

    Trump spent his Thursday recklessly tweeting messages like "STOP THE COUNT!" in response to close ongoing tallies in key states including Pennsylvania, Georgia, Nevada, and Arizona. He got trolled with Count memes on Twitter and was heavily criticized for his dangerous decision to argue that "late" ballots (aka legitimate ballots received by mail that are still being counted) should not be counted.

    But one of Trump's harshest criticisms came from Greta Thunberg, the 17-year-old climate activist who's gone head-to-head with him several times before. Thunberg saw Trump's "STOP THE COUNT!" tweet as the perfect opportunity to use the president's own words against him, so she cleverly quote-tweeted his unhinged message.

    "So ridiculous. Donald must work on his Anger Management problem, then go to a good old fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Donald, Chill!" the teen tweeted at the 74-year-old man.

    If Thunberg's words sound familiar, that's because Trump tweeted the same thing at her back in December 2019 after she was announced Time's Person of the Year.

    The grown man's jab at a literal teenage girl was deeply embarrassing, but at the time Thunberg brushed Trump's pettiness right off and briefly updated her Twitter bio accordingly to read, "A teenager working on her anger management problem. Currently chilling and watching a good old fashioned movie with a friend."

    Screenshot of Thunberg's 2019 Twitter bio. Credit: screenshot / twitter

    The running callback to Trump's anger management tweet certainly isn't the only time Thunberg has shown her disgust with the U.S. president, though.

    Remember when she updated her Twitter bio in response to him mocking her powerful UN Climate Summit speech? Or that time she shot him a withering glare?

    Though we're still awaiting the election results, in the race between Thunberg and Trump, the teen has clearly emerged victorious yet again.

    Trump does seem extra angry on Twitter today, so perhaps he should take his own advice and watch a good old fashioned movie with a friend.

    Chill Donald, Chill!

  • Peloton finally connects with your Apple Watch

    Peloton finally connects with your Apple Watch

    Peloton obsessives, fire up your Apple Watches — or maybe go out and get one. The fitness company announced Thursday you can now connect your Peloton workouts with an Apple Watch. That means you can track your workouts, and how hard you worked out, with just one tap on your watch.


    It's a full integration between the popular device and the popular fitness company — something lots of folks were likely eagerly awaiting.

    SEE ALSO: Peloton will reportedly halt making... basically everything

    "With just one tap on your Apple Watch, you can now track your performance during any Peloton workout on the Bike, Bike+, Tread or App," Peloton wrote on its blog(Opens in a new tab). "All it takes is a tap to connect the Peloton App for Apple Watch to any workout on the Bike, Bike+, Tread or App. That way, you can easily keep track of your Strive Score, monitor your heart rate and close your rings—all in real time."

    According to Peloton, the app on your watch should now notify you when you're about to start a workout. All you do is tap the notification and start tracking your workout. You can also start tracking manually by opening the Peloton app on your Apple Watch.

    Via the Apple Watch, Peloton will use your heart rate to track your workout, which will then give you a Strive Score, which is basically a personalized metric that tells you how hard you worked compared to past workouts.

    How to connect Peloton to Apple Watch

    Setting up the integration isn't difficult, but there are a few steps.

    1. First, download the Peloton app to your Apple Watch.

    2. Click "More," then "Apple Watch," then "Set Up," then "Connect to Health App."

    3. Once you're in the Health app, select "Turn On All," so Peloton can access your data.

    4. From there, open the Peloton app on your Apple Watch and, when prompted, give it permission to send notifications.

    If you need further details, such as images of the process, Peloton has that on its blog here(Opens in a new tab).