TIME Internet

How Joe Biden Helped a Man With a Childhood Stutter Overcome His Fears

The Vice President sent this young man a letter that eventually led him to be sworn in as a prosecutor—by Beau Biden

An attorney named Branden Brooks—known as Skip—shared a story on Twitter Wednesday about how Vice President Joe Biden and his late son, Beau Biden, helped him overcome his fears and achieve his dreams.

According to Brooks, Joe Biden spoke to his class during a trip to Washington, D.C. when Brooks was in grade school. Biden, who had a stutter as a child, noticed that Brooks also stuttered during the question and answer session. He sent the boy an encouraging letter afterwards

Biden told Brooks to keep working to overcome his stutter and to treat everyone with respect as he did. Brooks offered more background on the story:

Biden replied to Brooks’ tweets:

After hearing from the Vice President, Brooks went on to share with him that he had been sworn in as a prosecutor in Delaware by Biden’s late son, Beau Biden, in 2008.

The Vice President’s office confirmed Brooks’ account to TIME.

TIME viral

President Obama Will Absolutely Not Put Peas in His Guacamole

US-POLITICS-OBAMA-HEALTHCARE
SAUL LOEB—AFP/Getty Images US President Barack Obama speaks about the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, at Taylor Stratton Elementary School in Nashville, Tennessee, July 1, 2015.

Because who would?

President Barack Obama has officially weighed in on guacamole-gate, and he is definitely not a fan of mixing peas into guac.

The controversy began when the New York Times encouraged its readers to try adding peas to their guacamole. Guac fans the world over didn’t just question the Times’ taste. They exploded.

The leader of the free world added his own opinion during a Twitter Q&A, and guess what? He’s on the side of the truly patriotic, God-fearing Americans.

In turns out peas in guac is one of the only issues both side of the aisle can agree on. Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush and the Texas GOP both agreed with Obama:

Here are some other great reactions to the great guac controversy of 2015:

TIME movies

Here’s What Real Male Strippers Think of Magic Mike XXL

"Been there, done that... Done that six times"

If you haven’t yet seen Magic Mike XXL — in theaters now, finally — we suggest hearing the opinions of a few real-life strippers. Because they live and breathe the true Magic Mike experience.

The Daily Share rounded up a group of strippers who regularly perform at major New York City strip clubs. In the above video, they share their opinions about how realistic the movie is and judge Channing Tatum’s moves (and his physique.)

“The moves are excellent,” one admits, while another says, “My moves are better.”

Perhaps the least-impressed of the bunch (who appears to call Chan “Channum Tatum), says, “Been there, done that, done that, done that, done that six times. Magic Mike’s got nothing on Awesome Antonio.”

You’ll also notice a guy in a suit. That’s Armand Peri, who basically runs the entire NYC male strip club scene. His take on Chan? “I would definitely hire him, but I would say, listen, you gotta hit the gym.”

TIME celebrities

Watch Stephen Colbert Host a Public Access TV Show in Michigan

He even interviews Eminem

Comedian and late-night star Stephen Colbert hosted a show called “Only in Monroe” on the Michigan city’s public access TV channel, in which he interviewed Eminem, the rapper from Detroit, at the 21:55 mark. Watch as he tries to get him to sing along to songs by Detroit-area singer-songwriter Bob Seger and ask the kind of questions that only an elderly person who has never heard of the Grammy-winning recording artist would ask, such as:

“What kind of rap do you do? … Are you more political or are you more booty rhymes? Where do you hope this goes? Is this a career or more of a hobby? Is this just sort of like a thing to do with your buddies on the weekends? It’s a pretty tough business though, do you have a fall back position?”

(h/t Digg)

TIME celebrity

George Takei Takes Down Donald Trump’s Definition of ‘Traditional Marriage’

George Takei at the 69th Annual Tony Awards in New York City on June 7, 2015.
Mark Sagliocco—Getty Images George Takei at the 69th Annual Tony Awards in New York City on June 7, 2015.

Takei and Trump took their marriage equality debate to a lunch table

Donald Trump likes to say he’s “for traditional marriage”—but George Takei thinks there are some holes in Trump’s argument.

The Star Trek actor and Trump worked together back in 2011 when Takei appeared on season 5 of The Celebrity Apprentice, and during a press conference for the show, Takei—an LGBT activist—challenged Trump to discuss marriage equality over lunch. And to Takei’s surprise, Trump took him up on the offer.

Takei went on MSNBC’s The Last Word to tell host Lawrence O’Donnell how that lunch went, and apparently, it involved Trump holding onto his opinion—but also recounting recently going to his friends’ gay wedding.

“He said, ‘You know what, George, I just came from a gay marriage,’” Takei said. “And he told me, ‘They are good friends of mine, it was a beautiful marriage. They’re wonderful friends.’ And I said, ‘Then why can’t you support marriage equality? You go to weddings of same-sex couples.’ And he said, ‘Well, I’m for traditional marriage.’”

Takei said they ultimately “agreed to disagree,” but he thinks Trump’s stance could change: “I think he’s a businessman,” Takei said. “I think he’s capable of saying anything that will be good for business or in whatever situation he should find himself in.” Plus, Takei is suspicious of Trump’s idea of what “traditional marriage” is—especially seeing as Trump has been married three times.

“That is not traditional,” Takei said. “And I approve of his three-time marriage, because you want to find the person that you love … I think Donald Trump’s interpretation of marriage is something that he really himself doesn’t really believe in.”

Watch the whole interview here.

This article originally appeared on EW.com

TIME U.S.

This Obituary Is Only 2 Words But It’s Perfect

Well done, Douglas Legler

A short and sweet obituary for North Dakota resident Douglas Legler ran on Wednesday.

Per Legler’s request, the obit simply read: “Doug died.”

Legler’s daughter Janet Stoll told reporters that her father had always insisted on the two words. “I’m sure he’s laughing up there now,” she said.

h/t Fusion

TIME celebrity

Watch Beyoncé Prove It’s Never Too Late to Celebrate Pride

"Never Too Late #LoveWins"

Last week, America erupted when the U.S. Supreme court ruled in favor of legalizing same sex marriage in all 50 states, and celebrities rejoiced on Instagram and Twitter, sharing the hashtag #LoveWins.

Beyoncé stayed quiet, a move we now realize was probably in preparation for the magic below. On Wednesday, she posted a video, in which she dances in various rainbow outfits, and totally confirms: It’s never too late to celebrate Pride.

Never Too Late #LoveWins ❤️

A video posted by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on

This article originally appeared on EW.com

TIME U.S.

Here’s How All Those “National Days” Get Made

Zoovio co-owner and creator of National Day Calendar Marlo Anderson, eats some homemade fudge as he poses for photos on National Fudge Day at his Mandan, N.D. business on June 16, 2015.
Will Kincaid—AP Zoovio co-owner and creator of National Day Calendar Marlo Anderson, eats some homemade fudge as he poses for photos on National Fudge Day at his Mandan, N.D. business on June 16, 2015.

The "National Day Calendar" is an online compendium of pseudo-holidays that charges $1,500 to $4,000 for "national day" proclamations.

(NEW YORK) — To most Americans, July 4 is Independence Day. But on Marlo Anderson’s calendar, it’s also Caesar Salad Day and Barbecued Spareribs Day.

Anderson is the mastermind of the National Day Calendar, an online compendium of pseudo-holidays that has become a resource for TV and radio stations looking to add a little levity to their broadcasts.

The 52-year-old co-owner of a VHS digitizing company in North Dakota started the calendar in 2013 and soon realized the site could also be a way for people to declare their own special days. So last year, he started charging $1,500 to $4,000 for “national day” proclamations.

“People certainly don’t need to use us. It’s just we really give it a jumpstart,” he said.

Marketing experts give Anderson credit for seizing on the desire by companies and groups for another way to promote themselves, though they question the effectiveness some of the resulting campaigns. It’s not the only reason for celebration, but food seems to be a common subject for special days.

Already, the National Day Calendar has given its blessing to more than 30 made-up holidays. A crouton maker paid for National Crouton Day (May 13), a seafood restaurant submitted National Fried Clam Day (July 3) and a craft beer maker came up with National Refreshment Day (fourth Thursday in July).

Anderson’s venture, which he says brings in roughly $50,000 a year, underscores the free-for-all nature of such days.

In 1870, Congress established the first four federal holidays with New Year’s Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Since then, only six more annual federal holidays have been added, with the most recent being Martin Luther King Jr. day in 1983. But even the authority of those holidays is limited; although they’re broadly observed, they’re technically only legally applicable to federal employees.

A few dozen other dates are also recognized in the U.S. code, including Mother’s Day, National School Lunch Week and American Heart Month. Mayors, presidents and other lawmakers can declare days honoring individuals and causes too, although those usually aren’t widely observed.

Beyond that, there’s no single authority for declaring the legitimacy of special days, which can become part of culture in myriad ways, including marketing campaigns, advocacy efforts and folklore.

The often murky origins present an opportunity for the National Day Calendar, which has emerged to bestow an air of authority on special days. For a price, the site mails official-looking proclamations that Anderson prints out and frames at Zoovio, his VHS digitizing business.

Boston Market’s chief brand officer, Sara Bittorf, said the idea for National Rotisserie Chicken Day (June 2) came from the chain’s ad agency, but noted the day was one of few approved by the National Day Calendar’s selection committee.

Since the National Day Calendar doesn’t have its own staff, that selection committee is made up of four Zoovio employees.

Amy LaVallie, a committee member, said the general rule is to pick days with broad appeal. It’s why “National Sean Connery Day” was rejected, she said, but Boston Market’s submission passed muster.

“National Rotisserie Chicken Day, okay? People like chicken. Simple as that,” LaVallie said.

Still, some question the validity of Anderson’s calendar declarations.

“It seems like hokum to me, but more power to him,” said Robert Passikoff, president of Key Brands, a consulting firm. “Ask him if they have a P.T. Barnum day, and see if they’re celebrating a sucker born every minute.”

While special days give companies another way to promote a product, Passikoff said their effectiveness would depend largely on whether there’s a natural interest in the category. He said National Donut Day (June 5) gets a lot of attention because the pastries are popular and the day has interesting origins; the Salvation Army says it began during World War I when its workers gave soldiers coffee and doughnuts in the trenches.

As for a day celebrating rotisserie chicken, Passikoff questioned whether anyone would really care.

While the National Day Calendar is a quick way for companies to get recognition for a special date, it isn’t the only keeper of notable days.

In 1957, brothers William and Harrison Chase started Chase’s Calendar of Events as a reference for the media. The first edition was 32 pages, but the book has since mushroomed to 752 pages and includes federal holidays and events like musical festivals, as well as days celebrating things like squirrels, pooper scoopers and s’mores.

It costs $80 and is used by places like libraries and media outlets.

Holly McGuire, editor-in-chief of Chase’s, said she and her team try to gauge whether people actually “observe” particular dates when deciding what should be included in the book.

“Really, in the last 10 or 20 years, people have just been throwing them out there. They may take or not. We try to bring a little order to the chaos,” McGuire said.

For instance, McGuire said Chase’s doesn’t list a day for chocolate since there are about three floating about and she can’t figure out how they came to be. Yet the book lists a “Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night,” which is intended to relieve people of squash from “overzealous planting.”

McGuire didn’t provide details on Chase’s methods for investigating the legitimacy of special days, but said a couple retweets on Twitter wouldn’t qualify.

“We’ve got a team and we’re constantly looking at things, kind of like dictionary editors do with new words,” she said.

People can submit special days for inclusion in Chase’s, but acceptance doesn’t hinge on payments.

At the National Day Calendar, by contrast, one-time proclamations for birthdays, anniversaries and other occasions are on sale for $19.99 or $39.99. The price for ongoing inclusion in the calendar is higher.

For $1,500, Anderson provides a framed proclamation. For $2,500, he helps arrange interviews with the media. And for $4,000 and travel expenses, he’ll show up to present proclamations at events. So far, Anderson says three groups have taken him on that offer.

This fall, he’s traveling to New York for National Dumpling Day (Sept. 26); the day was submitted by TMI Corp., a distributor of Asian foods.

TIME Food & Drink

This Pizza Is Filled With 6 Pockets of Cheese and Meat

But you can put salad in the middle so it's healthy

A restaurant called Nya Gul & Blå in Piteå, Sweden, recently unveiled an enormous pie called the “Vulcan Pizza.”

Two pockets contain ham and cheese, two have beef tenderloin and cheese, and two boast bacon and salami, while customers can put salad and fries in the middle — all for 120 kronor or about $14, The Daily Mail recently reported.

It took two months for chef Halmat Givra and employee Kifa Algaf to come up with the dish, the owner’s daughter Vean Algaf told The Daily Mail in an interview.

While the meal is only available in Sweden, buzz has been spreading worldwide, as the photo of it on Nya Gul & Blå’s Facebook page has racked up more than 13,000 “likes” and has been shared more than 3,300 times.

TIME celebrity

Watch Channing Tatum Show Off 7 Classic Dance Moves in 30 Seconds

The Magic Mike XXL star busts out some particularly excellent voguing

The highly-anticipated Magic Mike sequel is finally in theaters nationwide, which means you should probably stop reading the Internet and get yourself to the nearest cinema. In the meantime, though, we invite you to watch this video from Vanity Fair that features the movie’s star, Channing Tatum, showing off seven classic dance moves in just 30 seconds.

It’s set to Ginuwine’s “Pony,” a song fans will remember from the first movie and that they’ll enjoy again in Magic Mike XXL. The ever-talented and devastatingly handsome Chan starts off with the Running Man, and then shows off a decent Twist, Funky Chicken, Hula, Pony and Robot. He ends with some incredible voguing, which really takes the delicious, handsome cake.

Vanity Fair was kind enough to make a GIF of Chan voguing, so feel free to bookmark that now.

Read next: This Honest Trailer for Magic Mike Reminds You That There Was Actually a Plot

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