Monday, August 8, 2011

Women Miserable Breakup Stories

by Lindsey Unterberger

You thought your breakup was bad? The ways these ladies were dumped might leave you feeling like that whole Berger calling it quits with Carrie on a Post-it thing was a good idea.

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Dumped at the office
“After dating this guy for a while, he sent me an e-mail saying, ‘I need to talk to you about something,’ and he asked if I could meet him right away. I told him I was at work, and he said, ‘Okay, I’ll be right there.’ I had a good idea what he was about to do, so when he texted me from outside my building and asked if he could come up, I was shocked! Dump me at my cubicle in front of my coworkers?! Instead, I met him outside. Five minutes later, I was back to work at my desk and haven’t spoken to him since.” —Kate, 25

Her boyfriend’s girlfriend did the dumping (yes, he had a girlfriend)
“My first love called me while I was watching Love Actually (ironic) in the movie theater and said, ‘she knows.’ Before the opening credits, I realized she was his other girlfriend, and he was trying to make it sound like I knew all about her and that I was the sidepiece in cahoots with him. I realized my two-year relationship was a farce as she yelled from the background, ‘Tell her you love me! Tell her who you want to be with.’ He wasn’t even man enough to dump me—his girlfriend did! Loser.” — Jennifer, 32

Ditched at the airport
“My boyfriend and I were on the rocks, but months before, his parents had bought us tickets to fly out to Montana for a family wedding the next day. He didn’t think I should go, but the ticket was nonrefundable. He drove us to the airport the next day and didn’t mention he’d had my ticket canceled…until the check-in clerk told me. The guy said, ‘Well, I’ll miss my flight if I don’t go now, and I’d offer you my car, but I know you can’t drive a stick, so…maybe you can call a cab? Bye!’ So there I was, stranded 75 miles from home. He never even called to see if I made it home. You can be sure I’ve learned to drive a stick shift since then.” —Elle, 26

He had her friend do the dirty work
“My first serious boyfriend didn’t even break up with me himself. He called, and when I answered, he put one of my girlfriends on the phone to say, ‘Brian doesn’t want to go out with you anymore.’ I was so upset I headed straight to my best friend’s house and tearfully told her the news. Before I could calm down enough to stop the tears from flowing, her doorbell rang. It was Brian, there to pick up his little sister (my friend’s little sister’s best friend). It was mortifying!” —Lauren, 25

Dumped by one boyfriend via another
“Right out of college and after a series of fruitless long-term, committed relationships, I made the mistake of trying to date more than one person at a time. I was a great juggler for a while (keeping them in different cities helped a lot), until one hand decided to find out what the other was doing. In what I can only assume was some backhanded attempt to secure me for himself, boyfriend 1 looked up boyfriend 2 on Facebook (damn technology!) and spilled the beans. From what I gathered, the message from 1 to 2 read something like this: ‘Hey, 2, you don’t know me, but I’m her Kansas City boyfriend, and you must be her St. Louis boyfriend. Nice to meet you.’ This of course all transpired before I was even aware 1 knew about 2, so I was given no opportunity to come clean on my own. Instead, I was dumped by 2 because of 1. I subsequently then dumped 1. What a mess!” —Maggie, 25

The birthday dump
“When my high school boyfriend and I went to college, he decided to attend a different school. As our first semester progressed, my November birthday came. I had not heard from him in a few days, so I called, thinking he would want to wish me happy birthday. Instead, my best friend from high school answered (they went to the same college) and said ‘I guess you should know we’ve been hooking up for months. Oh and happy birthday.’” —Julie, 31

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Friday, August 5, 2011

Superman and Science

By Lois Gresh and Robert Weinberg

When we examine the Man of Steel, we need to remember that, in a sense, we’re examining all the superheroes who follow. Superheroes have always been created with broad brushstrokes. Not a lot of time was spent on deducing the limits or nonlimits of our super characters. Even less attention was paid to their interaction with ordinary people and objects. ‘When Superman lifts a car over his head to shake criminals to the ground, no one ever questions why the car doesn’t fall to pieces. Nobody questions how Superman stays perfectly balanced on Earth while waving over his head an item that has a mass twenty times greater than his own.

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How often have we seen Superman fly down and pull a car up by the roof into the sky? In the real world, there are few vehicles that would even hold together if Superman yanked them up by the roof. The car would probably continue forward, with the roof ripped off and held by Superman. Every time Superman lifts a building into the air, why don’t all the bricks, held together by cement and pressure, suddenly start falling apart? Those are the types of ordinary problems that seem never to occur in any superhero adventures. Basically, superheroes perform super acts and the logic squad cleans up afterwards.

In Superman’s first appearance in the 1938 Action Comics, we’re informed “that he could leap one-eighth of a mile; hurdle a twenty-Story building . . . raise tremendous weights . . . run faster than an express train . . . and that nothing less than a bursting shell could penetrate his skin!”

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Siegel and Shuster’s explanation of Superman’s powers, as given in Action Comics #1, left much to the imagination. Their main premise was that Superman came from a civilization much more advanced than ours and thus the inhabitants were physically more advanced than humans. By extrapolation, this argument implies that modem man is physically much stronger than Cro-Magnon man or Neanderthal man. Of course, our ancestors lived only a few hundred centuries before us, while Superman’s race was described as being millions of years ahead of ours. A full-page illustration in Superman #1 (Summer 1939) gave a “scientific explanation of Superman’s amazing strength.”

“Superman came to Earth from the planet Krypton, whose inhabitants had evolved, after millions of years, to physical perfection. The smaller size of our planet, with its slighter gravity pull, assists Super-man s tremendous muscles in the performances of miraculous feats of strength.”

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Thus, Siegel and Shuster gave two explanations for Superman’s extraordinary powers. He was an alien from a planet not in our Solar System, and the weak gravity of Earth compared to the gravity of his home world of Krypton gave him amazing strength. Both concepts came right from the pages of science fiction magazines of the time, and few readers questioned the logic of either assumption.

Let’s assume Superman could indeed come to Earth. What powers would he possess that would make him a superman when compared to humans? Going back to the original Superman of Action Comics #1, it’s clear he has tremendous strength and can jump great distances, but he never flies. In Superman #4, for example, he runs from Metropolis to Oklahoma. Siegel and Shuster created a character they thought was believable based on the science of the time.

Could this have been the way Superman escaped from the Planet Krypton?

There was no explanation for flight, so the best Superman could do was jump.
As the years passed and competition increased, Superman’s powers grew as his creators continued to change the character to meet the demands of an ever-increasing audience. By 1943, Superman could fly at speeds faster than light (another impossibility). Needless to say, as his powers grew more incredible, so did his strength. In early issues of Action Stories, Superman lifts an automobile over his head. Within a few years, he’s carrying buses packed with astonished riders. After a few more years, he’s carrying ocean liners. By the 1960s, he’s moving planets.

Siegel and Shuster’s original comic book concept was that Super-man’s tremendous strength was the result of being born on a high-gravity planet. Earth’s gravity was much weaker than that of Krypton, so Superman was able to lift heavy objects due to the difference in gravitational fields.

In Superman #58, Supermans powers are explained as follows:

"Everyone knows that Superman is a being from another Planet, unburdened by the vastly weaker gravity of Earth. But not everyone understands how gravity affects strength! If you were on a world smaller than ours, you could jump over high buildings, lift enormous weights . . . and thus duplicate some of the feats of the Man of Steel!"

Which leads to our second basic question about Superman: How strong must Krypton’s gravity have been to endow Superman with such incredible strength? Answering this question requires we first answer another: How massive was the planet Krypton that it had such high gravity?

Superman appears to weigh approximately 100 kg (220 lbs). An athlete in top physical condition can lift his own body weight. Running and throwing a heavy object might not be so easy. For our study, we’re going to assume that Superman is 1,000 times stronger than an ordinary Earthman. That would mean he could lift 100,000 kg or approximately 220,000 pounds. This is approximately the weight of three filled semi-trailer trucks or a DC-9 airplane without fuel or passengers. Cranes used to construct bridges can handle about that weight, so we’d have a Superman still well within the bounds of human imagination. Such strength would even enable him to leap a mile with one jump, thus approximating flying in the eyes of most people.

The force necessary to lift an object on a planet is equal to the mass of the object multiplied by the gravitational force present on that planet. Thus, a human who could lift 100 kg on Earth could lift 600 kg on the Moon, which has one-sixth the gravity of Earth. Which would imply that for Superman to be 1,000 times stronger on Earth than he is on Krypton, Krypton would have to be 1,000 times as massive as the Earth.

Earth’s gravity is 9.8 meters/sec squared, or for simplicity’s sake, 10 meters/sec squared;. Multiplying that number by 1,000 gives us the gravity of Krypton, 10,000 meters/sec squared.

Could a planet exist with such a gravitational field? According to Brother Guy Consolmagno of the University of Arizona, a planet with even fifty times the gravity of Earth “is essentially impossible to construct, given the physics of solid matter as we understand it.”

Put in even simpler terms, “a body with . . . a surface gravity of 10,000 in/sec squared would have a mass of 6 x 1033kg ..., which would be 3,000 times the mass of the sun.”
According to the basic laws of physics, Krypton is impossible. Moreover, for people resembling us to live on Krypton, they’d need muscle and bones 1,000 times stronger than human muscle and bone. No such material exists to create bone or muscle, or the complex internal organs necessary for life as we know it.

On a planet with gravity 1,000 times that of Earth, would it be possible to send a rocket ship, especially a small one as seen in numerous issues of Superman and Action Comics, to Earth? The escape velocity (the speed necessary to break the gravitational pull of a planet) of Krypton would be enormous, approximately 11,000 km/second. That’s about 1/30 the speed of light. No chemical reaction in the universe could produce enough energy necessary to achieve such velocity.

In the 1960s, the explanation for Superman’s powers was revised: his super strength, ability to fly, and more came not only from the high gravity of Krypton but also from growing up under a yellow sun instead of a red one. Unfortunately for Superman, light is light. The light from a red sun would merely have a smaller occurrence of high frequencies than the light from a yellow sun. Infrared light would be more common, but that’s about it. Red star or yellow star, Super-man’s powers would be the same.

Superman is one of the most fascinating characters in comic books, and he’s one of the most recognizable characters on Earth. He’s one of those people we wish could exist, but doesn’t. Visitors from other planets are possible. Superman’s not.

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Break that Unwanted Love Pattern

By Korin Miller

Even though you swear your exes are totally different, experts say most women have a relationship pattern they keep going back to. See how to break yours for a love that won't leave you hurting.

We were shocked when we heard that the first guy Rihanna seriously dated after Chris Brown had been accused of domestic abuse by an ex-girlfriend. After everything she went through, it would seem as if she'd be repulsed by men with that kind of reputation.

Turns out, the opposite is more likely to be true. "Most of us have a relationship pattern — that same type of guy we keep falling for — and it can work for or against us," says couples therapist Deborah Dunn, author of Stupid About Men. "It's not uncommon for women to keep going back to the type that wronged them in the past." How do you change whom you're drawn to dating? It's not easy, but it starts with figuring out where your attraction to these guys came from in the first place.

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Family Ties

Experts say we develop our taste in men at a young age — anywhere from childhood to adolescence. "Whether it's positive or negative, everyone has a relationship pattern based on what they learned about love when they were growing up," says Alon Gratch, PhD, author of If Love Could Think.

Repeatedly choosing the wrong guys signals that you may be driven to re-create the drama you had with your father or first boyfriend. Many women who had an absentee dad or let the arrogant JV football captain string them along for years will go for men who are unavailable or talk down to them because they're subconsciously trying to resolve things with the guy who let them down earlier in life, says Dunn — even though, clearly, that's not solving anything.

Women in these toxic patterns get hooked on the ups and downs of their relationships and can form what experts call betrayal bonds, which cause them to feel even more attached to men who show them these extreme — and sometimes ultimately dangerous — forms of attention. "You eventually feel like a guy doesn't love you unless he's either yelling in your face or trying to win you back," Dunn says.

Break the Cycle

All guys have less-than-admirable moments, but there are major tip-offs that your type is bad for you. Consistently feeling worse about yourself as you become more involved with a boyfriend is a giveaway that something isn't right, says Diana Kirschner, PhD, author of Love in 90 Days. Other red flags: feeling like you have to walk on eggshells around a guy and dropping everything to spend time with him even though he's proven he wouldn't do the same for you. And while only you know what your relationships are really like, pay attention if your friends and family disapprove of every man you date, says Gratch.

To alter whom you're attracted to, you need to believe that what you've experienced isn't how love has to or should be, says Dunn. Ask friends who are happy in their relationships to describe how their guy behaves toward them so you can hear what you're missing out on. Or if you're coming off yet another bad breakup, consider seeing a therapist to make peace with the guy who originally wronged you, recommends Kirschner. For extra motivation, picture what your life could be like in 10 years if you're still choosing men who treat you badly versus men who will care for you in a positive way. Which future do you want?

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Things You Thought Healthy but Actually Belly Plus!

By Zoe Ruderman

Turns out, certain behaviors that have been hyped as healthy actually add fat to your middle. Ugh. No worries — we have the fixes. Muffin top, consider yourself warned.

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1. You Skip Meals

This tactic always backfires. You end up so hungry later on that you can't help but overeat. And when you do, more fat will inevitably find its way to your midsection. Eating small- to medium-size meals every three to four hours, however, fills you up without resulting in a layer of flab.

2. You Go Vegetarian

Women will often avoid foods from the meat, fish, and dairy groups because they think they are packed with calories and fat. But remember, these foods are protein superstars that help boost your metabolism so you can fend off tummy pudge. Opt for low-calorie, low-fat choices, like cottage cheese or tuna (one 6-ounce can fulfills three-quarters of your daily protein requirement).

3. You Think Bread Is Bad

White bread, yes, but whole-grain breads and cereals? No way. These allow insulin levels to rise more gradually, reducing the chance that you'll add fat to your belly. Wild rice, oatmeal, or whole-wheat tortillas once a day can make a difference.

4. You're Crunch-Crazed

Sit-ups tone muscle, true, but they don't have any effect on the layer of fat covering them. So doing 50, 100, or even 500 crunches won't make your jeans feel any looser. What does work? Cardio. Instead of wasting all your time on crunches, spend an extra 10 minutes on the treadmill.

5. You Booze a Lot, but Infrequently

Alcohol has lots of calories yet doesn't fill you up at all. So when you binge-drink, nutritionists say, you're basically inviting flab to settle on your midsection. If you crave a drink, make it red wine; research suggests it may actually help fight pooch.

6. You Eat "Lite" Products

You may think you are doing your body a favor by opting for sugar-free yogurt, diet soda, or any other snack labeled low-fat or low-cal. But those versions are often loaded with artificial sweeteners, which some nutritionists believe may trigger your metabolism to increase fat storage.

7. You Think Fatty Foods Are the Enemy

As counterintuitive as it may sound, foods high in monounsaturated fats help burn off belly fat and lead you to consume less. Nutritionists recommend slicing one-quarter of an avocado onto a sandwich or drizzling olive oil and vinegar on your salad.

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Avoid Doing these Things to your Man

By Carolyn Kylstra
(from MSN Lifestyle)

A study from Purdue University found that when men feel they're being treated unfairly, they gain more weight over time than women do. Here are five things you might be doing that give him major anxiety, and how you can keep him sane (and slim) without sacrificing your own peace of mind.

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1. You Hold a Grudge
People whose partners recover well from fights report higher relationship satisfaction, according to research published in the journal Psychological Science. Unfortunately, the reverse is also true: When you hold on to and keep bringing up past beef, even after the fight is supposedly resolved, your dude is going to be unhappy in the relationship.

Do This Instead: When you're having an argument, address only the specific problem at hand, and resist bringing up issues in the past or perceived patterns of behavior based on one or two unrelated incidents. To that end, avoid the words never or always, as in, "You never want to hang out with my friends," or "You always forget to take out the trash."

2. You Issue an Ultimatum
Fighting is never fun, but fighting dirty drives him totally coo-coo. Researchers from Baylor University found that the way a person perceives his partner's emotions during an argument impacts how he feels. Specifically, when he senses that you're trying to assert power (by being hostile, critical, blaming, or controlling), he takes it as a threat — which triggers major stress on his part. Delivering an ultimatum is the prime example of you trying to dominate the relationship: Do this, or I'll leave you. It leaves him feeling powerless...and furious.

Do This Instead:
Explain how his actions affect you, rather than issuing an order. Say something along the lines of, "It makes me feel like you don't care about me when ______." Besides, wouldn't you rather he fix his mistakes because he wants to, rather than because he has to?

3. You Give Him the Silent Treatment
That same Baylor University study discovered that people get upset when their partners act distant and cold. Freezing him out makes him feel neglected, another source of stress.

Do This Instead: If you're the type of person who needs to clear her head before you have a serious talk, tell him straight up that you need a breather, give him a specific length of time (fifteen minutes, one day), and then promise that you'll discuss the situation at the end of that time.

4. You Bite His Head Off After a Long Day
Surprisingly, guys are a lot more vulnerable to relationship ups and downs than women are, according to a Wake Forest University study. Researchers believe it's because women have an outlet to express their concerns — we turn to our friends — whereas for guys, their significant other tends to be their primary source of intimate conversation. So when you're acting a little bit nutty, he has no one to turn to talk about it.

Do This Instead: Check yourself before you snap at him for something silly. Are you actually stressed out or annoyed for an unrelated reason, like work or friend drama, and just taking it out on him? It might seem like not a big deal, but when you let your feelings run wild, you may end up hurting him more than he lets on.

5. You Play It Too Cool
You already know that acting needy is a turn-off ... but pulling away too much can also backfire. Recent research published in Psychological Science reveals that couples get rocky when one person's commitment level is different from the other's. While it's true that not returning his text for a day or two will pique his interest if you're still in the early dating stages, once you're in a committed relationship, it's just going to make his cortisol levels skyrocket.

Do This Instead:
Ditch the games, especially after you're official. While it's definitely good to have your own life apart from him (weekly girls' night, spinning class, etc.), the only time it makes sense to purposely distance yourself is if he's pulling away a bit. In that case, creating some space ups a guy's interest; any other time, it just makes him feel anxious and confused.

U.S. Busted Child Porn Network

AFP NewsBy Mark Wilson | AFP News

US officials Wednesday unveiled charges against 72 people in their largest global probe into Internet child pornography which smashed a "nightmare" online bulletin board catering to pedophiles.

The investigation launched in 2009 has led to arrests in the US and 13 other countries of participants in Dreamboard, which had a "VIP" ranking system for members trading in graphic images and videos of adults molesting children age 12 and under, often violently, the Justice Department said.

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"Dreamboard's creators and members lived all over the world -- but they allegedly were united by a disturbing belief that the sexual abuse of children is proper conduct that should not be criminalized," Attorney General Eric Holder said.

"The members of this criminal network shared a demented dream to create the preeminent online community for the promotion of child sexual exploitation, but for the children they victimized, this was nothing short of a nightmare."

The ongoing probe has led to the arrest of 52 people in the US and 13 other countries -- Canada, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, Hungary, Kenya, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Qatar, Serbia, Sweden and Switzerland.

Thirteen of the 52 individuals arrested have pleaded guilty, and 20 of the 72 individuals charged "remain at large and are known only by their online identities," a Justice Department statement said.

Operation Delego "represents the largest prosecution to date in the United States of individuals who participated in an online bulletin board conceived and operated for the sole purpose of promoting child sexual abuse, disseminating child pornography and evading law enforcement," it said.

"Dreamboard was a self-described global 'community' of pedophiles dedicated to the relentless victimization and exploitation of children 12 and under," said Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer.

According to the Justice Department, membership was tightly controlled by the site's administrators, who required prospective members to upload child pornography when applying for membership.

Members were then required continually to upload images of child sexual abuse in order to keep up their membership in the board, which included rules of conduct printed in English, Russian, Japanese and Spanish.

Some of the children featured in the images and videos were just babies, said Holder.

"And, in many cases, the children being victimized were in obvious, and intentional, pain -- even 'in distress and crying,' just as the rules for one area of the bulletin board mandated," he added.

All 72 of the defendants are charged with conspiring to advertise and distribute child pornography, and 50 are also charged with engaging in a child pornography enterprise.

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"Dreamboard members allegedly used the power and anonymity of the Internet to motivate each other to commit their horrific acts of sexual abuse of minors and trading in child pornography," Breuer said.

According to court documents, members employed a variety of methods to conceal their activities, using "screen names" and proxy servers, which can be used to reroute web traffic and disguise a user's actual location.

Dreamboard members also encouraged the use of encryption programs on their computers, which password-protect computer files to prevent law enforcement from accessing them in the event of a court-authorized search.

Officials said the charges and arrests were conducted in three separate phases over the course of the operation.

Four of the 13 individuals who have pleaded guilty for their roles in the conspiracy have been sentenced to prison.

On May 10, Timothy Lee Gentry, 33, of Burlington, Kentucky, was sentenced to 25 years in prison; on May 31, Michael Biggs, 32, of Orlando, Florida, was sentenced to 20 years; on June 22, Michael Childs, 49, of Huntsville, Alabama, was sentenced to 30 years; and on July 14, Charles Christian, 49, of Tilton, Illinois, was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison.

Operation Delego was conducted by the Justice Department with Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement, along with other global law enforcement agencies including Eurojust, the European Union's Judicial Cooperation Unit and "dozens of law enforcement agencies throughout the world," the statement said.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Construction Worker's Amazing Voice!

Lunch time in New York has never been the same since Gary Russo, a construction worker sings Frank Sinatra Classics to passerby. The result is an experience most people called 'A Wonderful Moment'. Listen to this man's wonderful talent.

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Interview Mistakes

By Michael Neece, Monster Contributing Writer

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It's tough to avoid typical interview traps if you're unsure what they are. Here are six to watch out for.

1. Confusing an Interview with an Interrogation
Most candidates expect to be interrogated. An interrogation occurs when one person asks all the questions and the other gives the answers. An interview is a business conversation in which both people ask and respond to questions. Candidates who expect to be interrogated avoid asking questions, leaving the interviewer in the role of reluctant interrogator.

2. Making a So-Called Weakness Seem Positive
Interviewers frequently ask candidates, "What are your weaknesses?" Conventional interview wisdom dictates that you highlight a weakness like "I'm a perfectionist," and turn it into a positive. Interviewers are not impressed, because they've probably heard the same answer a hundred times. If you are asked this question, highlight a skill that you wish to improve upon and describe what you are doing to enhance your skill in this area. Interviewers don't care what your weaknesses are. They want to see how you handle the question and what your answer indicates about you.

3. Failing to Ask Questions
Every interview concludes with the interviewer asking if you have any questions. The worst thing to say is that you have no questions. Having no questions prepared indicates you are not interested and not prepared. Interviewers are more impressed by the questions you ask than the selling points you try to make. Before each interview, make a list of five questions you will ask. "I think a good question is, ‘Can you tell me about your career?'" says Kent Kirch, director of global recruiting at Deloitte. "Everybody likes to talk about themselves, so you're probably pretty safe asking that question."

4. Researching the Company But Not Yourself

Candidates intellectually prepare by researching the company. Most job seekers do not research themselves by taking inventory of their experience, knowledge and skills. Formulating a list of accomplishments prepares you to immediately respond to any question about your experience. You must be prepared to discuss any part of your background. Creating your talent inventory refreshes your memory and helps you immediately remember experiences you would otherwise have forgotten during the interview.

5. Leaving Your Cellphone On
We may live in a wired, always-available society, but a ringing cellphone is not appropriate for an interview. Turn it off before you enter the company.

6. Waiting for a Call
Time is your enemy after the interview. After you send a thank-you letter to every interviewer, follow up a couple of days later with either a question or additional information. Try to contact the person who can hire you, and assume that everyone you met with has some say in the process. Additional information can be details about your talents, a recent competitor's press release or industry trends. Your intention is to keep everyone's memory of you fresh.

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Things You Should Not Say to Your Husband.

One of the best parts about marriage is being so comfortable with your hubby that you can say just about anything to him. But if you don’t watch your mouth, sometimes the ugly truth comes out in hurtful—not helpful––ways. Though you may have legitimate concerns to express or issues to bring up, doing so in a harsh manner can be damaging in the long term, to both your husband’s feelings and your relationship. According to Judy Ford, psychotherapist and author of Every Day Love, “Speaking kindly is a skill that couples have to learn. Everyone feels battered by life and the outside world. You shouldn’t feel that way at home.” Here, nine statements that you should never utter to your significant other––and the words that you should try instead.

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1. “You’re just like your father.

“This is just a no-no,” says Julie Orlov, psychotherapist, speaker and author of The Pathway to Love. “It’s nasty and belittling, and it gets at his fear that he may be exhibiting the worst traits of his family.” If you’re about to spout a criticism like this, stop and think about what’s behind it: Maybe your father-in-law is the kind of guy who never cleans up after himself, and your husband’s habit of leaving dirty dishes around the house is getting to you. According to Ford, you should skip the insult and get right to a reasonable request, such as: “Hon, when you’re done with your sandwich, can you bring your dish over to the sink?” That way, you can achieve your goals without hurting him in the process.

2. “When are you going to find a new job?”

First, figure out why you want him to find a new job so badly. Do you dislike how much time he spends away from home? Do you think he can or should be further ahead career-wise? Is he not bringing home a healthy-enough salary? “Before you say anything that could be hurtful to him, think about what your own issues are,” says Ford. Be particularly careful that you're not attacking his ability to support you and the kids: “Part of how a man evaluates himself is by how well he can take care of his family,” says Ford, so insulting him in this sensitive area can be a serious blow. To avoid this, have regular talks about both of your jobs, career ambitions and budget concerns. If you have an issue with how much money he’s making, “it’s an opportunity to talk about your lifestyle and how you want to live,” she adds. The aim is to avoid putting him on the defensive, and instead work together to create the life you both want.

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3. “My mother warned me you’d do this!”

Something must have seriously infuriated you, because what you’re doing here is letting him know that there are others in your “camp.” “You are trying to validate your ‘side’ of an argument, as though you’re marshalling an army to your side,” says Orlov. But that’s never a good idea because it’s telling him that you’re not on his side, or on the side of your relationship. Though you should never let the opinions of others’ dictate your relationship, if there is some kernel of truth to a concern that your mother raised, think about how to address that. “Maybe your mother said ‘he’s too cheap,’” says Orlov. “Say to him, ‘why do you sometimes seem reluctant to spend money on things we need?’” Without ganging up on him, that could open up a discussion about money worries that stem from his childhood, for example. “Room is now cleared for creative problem-solving,” says Orlov. And if you’re just lashing out? Hold your tongue and focus on the root of what’s making you mad. In the end, coming to a solution together will make you feel better than unleashing hurtful words.

4. “Just leave it––I’ll do it myself!

This is hurtful in two ways. First, it gets at your husband’s elemental need to be a provider, supporter and capable person in the house. Second, it’s just plain demeaning for any adult to hear that his efforts are sub-par. Do this too often and your husband might think, “I can never do anything right or anything that’ll please her,” says Ford. A better choice is to pick your battles. If he’s in the middle of a task and you think that he’s doing it wrong, evaluate whether it really matters, keeping in mind that, just because he’s doing something differently than you would doesn’t mean that he’s doing it wrong—he is, after all, an adult too. Sure, if he’s about to hurt himself or someone else or break something, kindly step in. But if he’s just loading the dishwasher in a way that drives you nuts? Let it be.

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5. “You always... [fill in the blank]” or “You never... [fill in the blank]”

“These are two phrases I advise couples never to use,” says Ford, “because they set up an instant, negative tone; they halt communication and they put the other person on the defensive.” These blanket statements can make your husband feel unfairly attacked, and chances are he’ll just fire back with all the times he did help. If there are legitimate problems you’d like to address (he really does tend to leave his tools all over the garage floor or often forgets to put gas in the car after driving it), avoid generalizing and try to focus on the issue at hand while also communicating how his actions make you feel: “When you come home with an empty tank of gas, I feel like you don't care about the next person who has to drive the car—which is usually me.” Then add the phrase “would you be willing...,” suggests Ford. Try: “Would you be willing to fill up the car when it gets below a quarter tank?” Most men are willing to do most anything that’ll make you happy––it’s all in how you ask.

6. “Do you really think those pants are flattering?”

Are you trying to hint that he’s putting on weight? Because saying the above, says Ford, is not getting anything concrete across. You may think that you’re subtly conveying the message, but instead you’re insulting his looks without showing any genuine concern for his health. Instead, start with something you like about how he looks: “When you wear that blue shirt, it really makes me appreciate your gorgeous blue eyes.” Then broach the topic of his weight gain by framing the comment so it’s about his health, not looks: “Honey, what do you think about us both starting after-dinner walks?” When you’ve softened up your approach, you have more room to make other, helpful suggestions.

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7. “Ugh, we’re hanging out with him again?

There’s nothing wrong with your guy having a friend whose company you don’t love—no one says spouses are required to adore each other’s friends, especially that one college pal who likes to pretend he and your hubby never left the frat house. What is wrong is insulting your man’s choice of friends. Your disdain may also suggest that you’d prefer to pick his friends for him—and no one wants to be told who they should be pals with. A better choice: “Oh, honey, you know I don’t always enjoy doing the same things as you and George, so why don’t you plan a guys’ night instead?’” suggests Ford. Remember, there’s no marriage rule that says you two have to do everything together; he might actually be relieved to have a little guy time with his pal that doesn't involve him having to worry if you’re having fun or are offended by his friend’s jokes. (And keep this in mind: If a friend is really awful, your husband is much more likely to see that on his own, over time, whereas if you nag him to drop the dolt it may never happen.)

8. “Please watch the kids. But don’t do this, take them here or forget that...”

This is a classic nervous-new-mom move: When you’re in anxiety mode, it can be hard to let go of childcare tasks (even though you would love to have more help). It’s also an attitude that can become a habit no matter how long you’ve been a mom, leading to some very unhealthy feelings: You may become resentful because he doesn’t pitch in, but you don’t always give him room to, either. At the end of the day, no husband is going to be inspired to be a better, more hands-on and involved dad if his every effort is shot down, says Orlov. “If he always feels like he’s wrong, he’ll only start to disconnect emotionally.” So let Dad be Dad. Trust that he knows as well as you do how to keep a child clean, safe and fed—even if his definitions of those tasks are slightly different than your own. That said, if there are things he needs to know, like how to use the stroller or what the pediatrician’s phone number is, definitely give him the rundown.

by Denise Schipani
Article originally appeared on