TIME celebrity

These Ads Show Rob Lowe Like You’ve Truly Never Seen Him Before

As in, really ugly and creepy

Well, this is literally the most hideous we’ve ever seen the notoriously gorgeous (and possibly ageless?) Rob Lowe look.

A new ad campaign from DirecTV features the West Wing and Parks and Recreation actor as a few distinct versions of himself. First, there’s him as a DirecTV customer, which is a regular, handsome, gregarious Rob Lowe. But there’s also him as a cable user, which is a disgusting and creepy Rob Lowe (see above) along with a completely hideous Rob Lowe (see below.)

We have to admit that this is some pretty effective advertising. If you’re saying that using DirecTV will make me as hot and youthful as Rob Lowe (even though he’s 26 years older than me), sign me up.



JFK Sign on the Side of a Dallas Tour Bus Sparks Controversy

The sight of the former president's face next to the slogan "Big Things Happen Here," plus the placement of the metal door handle in the middle of his forehead, has been deemed offensive

A Dallas tour company drew criticism after an image of one of its buses featuring a controversial design floated around on social media.

Dallas City Tours’ design consisted of a photo of former president John F. Kennedy with the line “Big Things Happen Here,” which critics said was an inappropriate reference to Kennedy’s 1963 assassination in Dallas, according to WFAA News 8, a Dallas news agency. Critics also found the placement of the metal door handle—in the middle of JFK’s forehead—offensive.

The tour bus conducts four tours each day, and makes several stops along city landmarks, many related to JFK’s assassination. Some viewers found this to be an acceptable explanation of why the former president’s image would appear on the bus.

The owner of Dallas City Tours told WFAA News 8 that the slogan was intended to be on the other side of the bus, as it was in the original design he sent to graphic artists, and that he regrets how the design turned out. The owner said he will cover up the current design while a new one is prepared.

TIME celebrity

Watch Chris Pratt Turn on the Charm in This New SNL Promo Video

The Guardians of the Galaxy star will host the season premiere this Saturday, Sep. 27

Saturday Night Live returns for its 40th season this weekend with Chris Pratt as host.

The gig will bring to a close what was indisputably the Summer of Pratt, thanks to his starring role in Guardians of the Galaxy and, more importantly, his series of impossibly charming and gracious little moments all summer long.

If this new promo video — which stars Pratt and SNL cast member Kate McKinnon — is any indication, it looks like Pratt will do just fine as he kicks off the season premiere, which also features Ariana Grande as musical guest. He totally holds his own alongside the hilarious McKinnon, who mostly just objectifies Pratt, makes him feel “dirty” and then makes him open a bunch of pickle jars.

And hey, if he does as well as we think he will, maybe it won’t feel like the end of the Summer of Pratt as much as the beginning of the Autumn of Pratt. We’d be totally fine with that.

TIME celebrity

Watch Kerry Washington Call Jimmy Fallon’s Bluffs on the Tonight Show

The Scandal star is an expert human lie detector in a game called "Box of Lies"

Last night, Kerry Washington dropped by the Tonight Show and joined Jimmy Fallon for a recurring segment called “Box of Lies.” It’s a game that requires contestants to guess whether or not the other player is lying about the contents of various boxes chosen at random. (Previous contestants include Jennifer Lawrence and Tina Fey.)

The Scandal star turned out to be pretty good at this game and totally ended up besting Fallon — though neither of them are any good at keeping a straight face or stifling their giggles.

TIME States

Kansas Will Be Prepared for the Zombie Apocalypse

Frederick Florin—AFP/Getty People dressed as zombies take part in the Zombie Walk event on Sept. 13, 2014, in the eastern French city of Strasbourg

Or any other disaster, for that matter

If the zombie apocalypse arrives, one U.S. state will be ahead of the game.

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback has signed a “proclamation” naming October the state’s “Zombie Preparedness Month.”

The announcement, to be signed Sept. 26 in the governor’s ceremonial office in the Kansas statehouse, urges state residents to prepare an emergency plan and survival supplies that can last at least three days.

Of course, gathering up water, nonperishables and batteries to wait out a zombie siege sounds an awful lot like how a Kansas resident might prepare for a range of natural disasters — which, officials say, is exactly the point.

“We came up with the idea of Zombie Preparedness Month because it is an engaging way to get people on board with emergency preparedness,” the governor’s office says. “If you’re equipped to handle the zombie apocalypse then you’re prepared for tornadoes, severe storms, fire and any other natural disaster Kansas usually faces.”

It added: “If you’re prepared for zombies, you’re prepared for anything.”


Tiny Football Players Thwarted by Their Greatest Nemesis: A Vinyl Banner

Watch here in slow motion

Fresh off an impressive 24-0 victory, the Mighty Mites — a youth football team in Wallkill, New York — attempted to celebrate their success by running through a large white banner. Alas, things did not go as planned for these young athletes, ages 6 and 7.

They try and try to break through the vinyl banner and the whole thing just ends up as one big disaster. Major props to whoever made the decision to put this video in slow motion. Also, props to the young cheerleaders who thought this moment was an appropriate time to bust out their best moves.

(h/t Deadspin)

TIME NextDraft

An App for Finding Your Voice and Other Fascinating News on the Web

September 23, 2014


1. You Never Call

Generations of parents have complained that their kids never call. But this generation is the first one that’s right (and it’s not just because their kids moved back home and are living in the basement). The rise of texting and a slew of remarkably popular messaging apps have turned voice calls into a a mere afterthought on your smartphone. But tech guru Ray Ozzie hopes to give you your voice back with a new app that Steven Levy describes as “a weird, almost magical, combination of phone calling, text messaging, virtual conferencing and Instagram-ish photo sharing. Depending on how you view it, Talko is three or 39 years in the making.” Can the phone call be reinvented? (Please limit your answer to three emoji.)

2. Guess Who’s Back?

The U.S., with the support of several other countries, began airstrikes against ISIS in Syria last night. Here’s The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg with a few observations: “These strikes will not bring about the end of ISIS. Like other terror groups, it can ‘win’ this current round of fighting by surviving, and maximizing civilian casualties on its own side.”

+ Five Arab nations supported the initial U.S. airstrikes.

+ Vox: Obama told ISIS in advance that he was going to launch airstrikes in Syria. Was that a mistake?

+ Does if feel like we’ve been down this road (or at lease this air) before? Here are the seven countries the United States has bombed since 9/11.

3. Reaction Time

According to the CDC’s computer modeling, the best-cast scenario suggest the Ebola outbreak in Liberia and Sierra Leone could be “almost ended” by next January. The worse-case scenario is that there will be 1.4 million cases by that time. It all depends on how the world and the region react to the crisis.

+ Slate: Even experienced international disaster responders are shocked at how bad it’s gotten.

4. Partyism

“In 1960, 5 percent of Republicans and 4 percent of Democrats said that they would feel ‘displeased’ if their son or daughter married outside their political party.” As you may have sensed, those numbers have increased dramatically. Bloomberg’s Cass R. Sunstein: Partyism Now Trumps Racism. (I’m not sure I’d even let my kid marry someone who uses the word Trump.)

5. Oh Captain My Captain

Each year the American Library Association puts together its list of banned books. And for the second straight year, Captain Underpants has topped the list. Toni Morrison’s amazing first novel, The Bluest Eye came in second. Sad this is still an issue.

+ The book banning crowd should at least attempt to get a little more creative. From Buzzfeed, here are 19 unintentionally disturbing moments from kids’ books.

6. The Place to Be

Rising seas. Never-ending droughts. Powerful storms. These are just some of the issues you need to consider when deciding where to settle down. The NYT provides a handy guide to where you should live in the age of climate change: Portland will still be cool, but Anchorage may be the place to be. Here in San Francisco, we’re just waiting for the bay to rise up to our necks. (Whatever it takes to make rents more affordable.)

7. Punt, Pass, and Kick Yourself

ESPN’s Gregg Easterbrook is an excellent football writer with an interesting take of the NFL’s troubles: “As the most important sport in the most important nation, the NFL holds up a mirror to American society. What we see in the reflection is not an athletic organization but ourselves.”

+ You don’t think spectator sports are a reflection of modern society? Consider this: “A record 41 million people now play fantasy sports in the United States and Canada.”

+ Pacific Standard: NFL players are more law abiding than average men.

+ Seriously, nothing is going right in football these days. Just take a look at this (remarkably enjoyable) video of the Wallkill Mighty Mites trying to run through a team banner.

8. Cachet of Sole

The soles are red. That is the one design element that changed everything and turned a shoe designer into an international success story. (And it just so happens that the idea for the red sole came from a NextDraft reader living in Paris.) From The New Yorker: Christian Louboutin and the psychology of shoes.

9. Orange Is the New Red

“Same old shit, different day.” So says Morgan Freeman as Red in The Shawshank Redemption. It turns out a different day (or in this case, nearly two decades of different days) can make all the difference. Shawshank wasn’t that big a movie when it first came out. But in the years since, it has become a perennial favorite. And why not? They somehow turned life in a maximum security prison into a feel-good classic. From Vanity Fair: The little-known story of how The Shawshank Redemption became one of the most beloved films of all time.

+ The story behind Bill Murray And Harold Ramis’ 21 year rift.

10. The Bottom of the News

The good news: Some emergency rooms are now taking appointments so you can spend part of your long wait time in the comfort of your own home. The bad news: It’s a friggin’ emergency.

+ GoPro is dominating the market it created. The company is currently worth more than $9 billion. Can Polaroid mount a challenge?

+ From Iggy and JLo to Kim and Nicki, the backside is frontpage news. The Atlantic’s Noah Berlasky goes deep on the subject: “Minaj’s celebration of her butt is also a celebration of, and lust for, other women’s butts.”

+ And just in time for Rosh Hashanah: 18 apple varieties with badass names.


TIME animals

When a Corgi and a Lamb Race, Everyone Wins

Take a cute break

Before they were populating the internet with their adorable antics — and costing businesses millions of dollars in lost revenue as their employees waste working hour watching corgis surfing, riding merry-go-rounds, or twerking — Welsh Corgis were bred to herd sheep. But that doesn’t mean that they can’t be friends with them too.

While Fashion the Corgi could be getting in touch with her deep-bred instincts to herd Tansy the Lamb into a corner, after watching this clip, there’s no doubt that the two are good buds as they race around the yard at a hot clip.

Watch now, but don’t tell your boss we said you should spend your time watching instead of filling out a spreadsheet.

(h/t Daily Picks and Flicks)



TIME Food & Drink

The 8 Craziest Coffee Drinks You Can Buy Now

Coffee drink latte
Getty Images

The sweetest, booziest and weirdest ways to get your caffeine fix

Long gone are the days when grabbing some coffee involved, well, simply grabbing some coffee. Today’s java landscape is dotted with half-this and iced-that and frappés and mocha lattes (you gotta do pilates) — and it seems the assortment of caffeinated confections is only getting crazier.

Here, a look at some of the most decadent confections being sold today.

1. Guinness-flavored latte

Forget about the beloved pumpkin spice latte, because Starbucks is taking things to a whole new level with its Dark Barrel Latte, which mimics the taste of Guinness (without the alcohol.) The chain recently began testing this new beverage at select locations, so we’ll have to wait and see if it makes it to the official Starbucks menu.

Where to get it: Select Starbucks locations in Florida and Ohio (possibly nationwide in the future)

2. Elephant poop coffee

Yes, really. Deemed the world’s most expensive brew, Black Ivory Coffee is made from Arabica beans from Thailand that first pass through an elephant’s digestive system and are then harvested from the resulting dung. The process brings out the natural sugar in the bean while removing the bitterness, supposedly resulting in a uniquely delicious cup of joe.

Where to get it: Select five-star hotels across Asia, and just one U.S. location in Texas; Beans available online for $779 (with a grinder) or $664 (without a grinder)

3. Coffee in edible waffle cups

Everyone knows the best way to consume soup is in a bread bowl — because when you finish the soup, you get to eat its container! — and one California coffeehouse has applied this concept to its beverages. Customers can order their espressos and macchiatos in edible waffle cups tripled-dipped in chocolate, so when they’re finished with their caffeine boost, they can enjoy a sweet coffee-soaked snack. Perfection.

Dreams do come true. 🌀#alfredcone #alfredcoffee #regram @everyday_adventurer #melroseplace #butfirstcoffee

A photo posted by Alfred {Coffee + Kitchen} (@alfredcoffee) on

Where to get it: Alfred Coffee & Kitchen in Los Angeles

4. Affogato

Ice cream or gelato. Topped with a shot of hot espresso. That’s it. Simple, pure bliss.

Where to get it: Many Italian restaurants and cafes will make this drink for you, or you can make one at home

5. Koffie Van Brunt

This decadent, boozy concoction is served at Brooklyn’s Fort Defiance and contains aged rum, Cherry Heering, coffee, and cream. As TimeOut New York once noted, the “swirling layer of ivory white cream, burnished brown java and bright orange zest makes this drink as pretty to look at as it is tasty to sip.”

Where to get it: Fort Defiance in Brooklyn, NY, or make it at home with this recipe

6. The Vincent Vega

This confection — essentially a coffee-spiked Coca-Cola — is named after Jon Travolta’s character in Pulp Fiction, who memorably ordered a vanilla Coke with his steak. The drink, available at The Mission in San Francisco, includes Coca-Cola, a shot of espresso, vanilla syrup, served over ice.

Where to get it: Any of The Mission’s three locations in San Francisco

7. Coffee Beer Repeat

Can’t decide if you’re in the mood to take the edge off with a beer or add a little edge with coffee? At Houndstooth, a coffee shop in downtown Austin, you don’t have to make that difficult decision. You can simply order the Coffee Beer Repeat. It’s considered one drink, but really, it’s just two pints of beer and two shots of espresso all served separately. You can get them in whichever order you want and space them out as you choose.

Where to get it: Houndstooth in Austin, or you can make it pretty easily at home

8. Toasted Marshmallow Latte

Like a warm, toasty campfire in a cup, this concoction includes espresso, steamed milk and a roasted marshmallow on a stick. Yes, an ACTUAL ROASTED MARSHMALLOW. On a stick.

Why not? Toasted marshmallow latte.

A photo posted by bobbi b @freshandfoodie (@bobbi12781) on

Where to get it: Big Shoulders Coffee in Chicago


WATCH: This High School Football Player’s Motivational Speech Will Inspire You

Friday Night Lights fans will want to watch this one.

Fans of Friday Night Lights will want to check out this interview with an enthusiastic Texas high school football player who was fueled by his love of the game to make an exuberant and loquacious speech.

While the television show taught the world to love high school football, thanks in no small part to the tough, but caring Coach Taylor and his words of wisdom, when it comes to making inspirational speeches, Coach Taylor has nothing on Apollos Hester.

The East View High School player was thrilled that his team was able to recently triumph over Vandegrift High by just one point, and he had some thoughts about never giving up, even when you’re down.

“It’s an awesome feeling when you know you are going to win, when you know you are going to be successful, regardless of the scoreboard, because of the effort that you put in,” he told TWC News Austin reporter Lauren Mickler in Georgetown, Texas. And even if your team doesn’t win, “Just keep smiling!”

This student doesn’t need a guidance counselor to tell him that he should consider a career as a motivational speaker, because he already is one.

Take a knee, and let this player’s enthusiasm wash over you.


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