TIME celebrity

Watch Kelly Clarkson Cover Sam Smith’s Hit ‘Stay With Me’

Clarkson recently sang at Symphony Park in Charlotte, North Carolina

A clip of Kelly Clarkson singing Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” is rightfully going viral.

Clarkson performed the hit song at a recent show in Charlotte, North Carolina, telling the audience, “I love this song.”

Other artists who have covered “Stay With Me” recently include Jessie J, Ed Sheeren and Meghan Trainor.

The pop star, who got her big break on American Idol, is expected to release a new album in early 2015. Given that this rendition of “Stay With Me” has been trending on Facebook, perhaps it would make a popular track on the upcoming record. As E! points out, she has already hinted at a possible “special guest.”

MORE: Kelly Clarkson’s Baby: It’s a Girl!

PHOTO: Kelly Clarkson Shares a Very Awkward Family Christmas Photo

 

TIME viral

New York Subway Performers Rally for Arrested Musician

The video has almost been viewed 500,000 times

Buskers in New York City planned a demonstration Tuesday on behalf of a fellow subway performer whose arrest for serenading commuters was recorded by protesting bystanders and turned into a viral video, the AP reports.

Adam Kalleen was arrested in an underground station in Brooklyn Friday after he refused a police offer’s request to put down the guitar and go. While the officer said that the 30-year-old needed permission to play, Kalleen and on-lookers said that the MTA does not issue permits.

The video, which has been viewed almost half a million times on YouTube, shows people protesting Kalleen’s arrest for loitering. “You don’t have something better to do? There are people breaking real laws,” someone shouts.

The fedora-wearing busker can be seen singing Neil Young’s “Ohio,” a song written in 1970 by Neil Young about the Kent State shootings, to the chants “F*** the police” from the crowd.

The MTA guidelines state that “artistic performances, including the acceptance of donations” are permitted, although that does appear to conflict with state law that prohibits subway station loitering “for the purpose of soliciting or engaging in business.” Busker advocacy organizations exist to fight for street performers’ rights.

An NYPD spokesperson told the AP that the department is looking into the arrest.

[AP]

TIME Family & Relationships

Watch a Soldier Coming Back From Afghanistan Surprise His Daughter at a Pumpkin Patch

An emotional homecoming captured on video

North Carolina mom Meg Kaplan filmed the moment when her husband surprised his daughter at a pumpkin patch. He was deployed to Afghanistan for 10 months, and the family is stationed at Fort Bragg, The TODAY Show reports. In the video, he sneaks up behind her as she’s posing for the camera and exclaims “Pumpkin Day!” Then she turns around and starts to sob. We dare you to watch this clip and not get at least a little choked up as well.

MORE: #TIMEVets: Exploring the Profound Effects of War on Those Who Serve and Their Families

PHOTOS: 12 Portraits That Illustrate the Pain and Joy of Returning to Civilian Life

TIME Music

Watch Gwen Stefani’s Kaleidoscopic ‘Baby Don’t Lie’ Video

The singer has some green-screen fun

Gwen Stefani just released her solo comeback single “Baby Don’t Lie” yesterday, but she’s already delivered the kaleidoscopic video, directed by longtime collaborator Sophie Muller. The clip is appropriately colorful for the stylish pop star, but it must have been a bore to shoot for Stefani, who probably had to spend a couple hours rolling around on the floor and strutting back and forth in front of a green screen. No wonder the singer checks her iPhone halfway through. (Kidding! It’s probably product placement.)

Wisely, Stefani chose not to reunite the Harajuku Girls for the video’s big alleyway dance-off.

TIME Videos

Watch Aziz Ansari Get Ridiculous With Grover on Sesame Street

Silliness is very educational.

Over the years, stars like Benedict Cumberbatch, Katy Perry and Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor have all stopped by Sesame Street to help educate the children who tune in to the PBS mainstay, but none of the celebrities have been as flat out ridiculous as Aziz Ansari.

The “cute and fuzzy” Parks and Recreation star stopped by Sesame Street to help Grover announce the Word of the Day. While Ansari tries to figure out the word, Grover wants him to do all sorts of incredibly silly things, like wear a chicken suit and a stovepipe hat so bright even The Cat in the Hat would think twice. Grover even proposes that they announce the word while dangling upside down, but don’t let’s be silly. What’s the word of the day? Watch the video to find out.

 

 

 

 

MONEY Love + Money

Ladies, This Is Why You Should Let the Guy Pay on the First Date

He wants to impress you. So let him, says Love + Money columnist Farnoosh Torabi.

A confession to the men I’ve dated: If I ever insisted on paying my half at the end of a first date when you offered to treat, it may have been because I never wanted to see you again.

My persistence to pay was—at best—code for, “Let’s just be friends.” At worst, “Beat it.”

We all carry assumptions surrounding that first date bill and how it ought to be settled. When those expectations aren’t met, the evening could end awkwardly. She might be offended if he doesn’t let her pay; he might be annoyed if she doesn’t at least offer to chip in.

It’s an early stage financial crossroads that could make or break chances for a second date.

So, when in doubt, how should men and women best handle that first date tab? And was I right to offer to split the bill if I didn’t like the guy?

I tapped relationship experts Marni Battista, founder of DatingWithDignity.com and Bernardo Mendez of Your Great Life TV for some guidelines.

Men: Offer to take the lead.

Battista and Mendez both agree that it’s generally best for men to pay on a first date. Yes, even still in 2014—a time in which, as I myself have written, women often outearn men.

But the fact of the matter is that men typically want to pay: In a poll last year conducted by LearnVest and T.D. Ameritrade, 55% of men said they thought the guy should take the check. As Mendez explains, many men feel fulfilled and accomplished when they see an opportunity to provide, even if it’s in simple ways like paying for a drink.

Perhaps more importantly, paying is a way for him to preen. “Even a guy who doesn’t make much money if he really likes you will try to impress you to the utmost that he can,” says Battista

As for women? “In my experience, 90% will be offended if a guy doesn’t offer to pay,” says Battista.

The data seems to support her claim, at least to some extent. That LearnVest poll found that 63% of women expect the guy to pay. And when researchers at Chapman University recently surveyed more than 17,000 people on the topic of first-date finances, they found that 39% of women who offered to pay said they secretly hoped the men would not let them. Meanwhile, 44% of women said they were annoyed when expected to help pay the bill.

So guys, pick up the check. It’s just a first date dance move that—more often than not—leaves each person happy and satisfied.

The exception: If she asks him out and picks the place, the experts say, she ought be prepared to settle the bill.

Women: “Practice Being Courted”

In the olden days, men routinely paid because women, generally speaking, didn’t have the means to do so. But if he offers to pay nowadays, it’s not because he thinks she can’t handle it; and he’s not trying to offend. He’s most likely just doing what feels instinctively appropriate in the moment.

So when he offers to pick up the tab, says Battista, “Let him. Practice being courted.”

Mendez agrees, and says letting him pay initially can be a small way of letting a relationship blossom. “It does let him know, in a subtle yet important way, that you are the kind of woman who is confident enough to accept his generosity,” he says.

This is not meant to set some sort of precedent where he pays all the time.

Remember that you can—and should—reciprocate (assuming there’s a next time). Let him pay for the first date and then offer to treat him the very next time you go out.

Or, if you’re planning to stay out after dinner, offer to grab a round of drinks or dessert at the next stop. This way you both get to practice your generosity, and it feels a bit more romantic than going halfsies all the time.

But what if she’s just not that into him?

Okay, but say she decides midway through the date—or even five minutes in—that this relationship has no future. Should she accept his offer to pay, or would that be leading him to think she’s interested in seeing him again?

The experts don’t see eye to eye on this. According to Mendez, “If during the course of the first date you decide that you absolutely don’t want to see this guy again, insisting on paying for your half can help you signal more clearly that you’re not open to it.”

Battista, on the other hand, says women shouldn’t worry too much about sending mixed signals by accepting his offer to pay.

“A lot of women think, ‘if he takes me out, then I owe him something,'” she says. “You don’t owe him anything. If he wants to pay, either be direct [and turn him down] or just allow him to pay because that’s part of the game of dating.”

Farnoosh Torabi is a contributing editor at MONEY. She is the author of When She Makes More: 10 Rules for Breadwinning Women.

TIME animals

Scientists Trace Back the First Sexual Act Ever, to Weird Ancient Fish

Ancient fish were the first to copulate. And according to a world renowned paleontologist, it looked a lot like square dancing

Scientists have discovered the origins of sex, and like anyone’s first time it sounds pretty awkward.

Now light some candles and let’s set the scene: The first act of copulation occurred in the nippy Scottish sea some 385 million years ago. The fornicators in question were a set of primitive jawed, bony fish aptly called Microbrachius dicki. The dirty details? Well, according to Australian paleontologist John Long, “With their arms interlocked, these fish looked more like they are square dancing the do-se-do rather than mating.”

Not only had scientists previously thought that the first sex act occurred on land at a later date, but Long says, “We didn’t expect these little suckers to have reproductive organs.”

But the M. Dicki were endowed, as is explained by Long and his colleagues in a paper that was published in Nature Monday. Although their genitalia are not described in romantic terms.

Long, a professor at Flinders University, explained to the BBC that the fish’s arms linked them together, “so the male can get this large L-shaped sexual organ into position to dock with the female’s genital plates, which are very rough like cheese graters. They act like Velcro, locking the male organ into position to transfer sperm.”

This is also the first species that displayed a different appearance between the male and female.

TIME Television

Watch Alan Cumming Share His Side of the Shia LaBeouf Cabaret Incident

LaBeouf was arrested in June and later pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct

Alan Cumming finally dished about Shia LaBeouf’s wild night at Cabaret during a sit-down with Conan O’Brien on Monday.

Cumming, who starred in the Broadway performance this summer, was onstage when LaBeouf was removed from the theater for erratic behavior and arrested. (He later pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct.)

“He was just wasted, and he was wasted from the second he walked into the thing, so there was an atmosphere when I went to go down onstage and start the show everyone’s freaking out because there was, you know, somebody seemed to be a crazy person shouting,” Cumming recalled.

LaBeouf is currently promoting Fury, and Cumming is starring as Eli Gold in CBS’ The Good Wife.

TIME viral

Marcel the Shell (With Shoes On) Is Back

Comedy on the half shell.

Marcel the Shell has put his shoes back on and marched on over to YouTube to take the Internet by storm — again.

The adorable mollusk is the brainchild of comedian Jenny Slate, who tweeted about the surprise third installment of his YouTube series this morning.

In the video, Slate’s earnest little shell with shoes is joined by her husband, Dean Fleischer-Camp, who plays Marcel’s exceedingly patient off-camera interviewer. Fleischer-Camp keeps the camera rolling as Marcel talks about how shrimp “are the idiots of the sea,” explains that his “shell gets tight” when he gets worked up, sings a sweetly sad song and announces his favorite saying, which is, of course, “life’s a party, rock your body.”

It’s Marcel’s first video since 2011 and it seems that the happy little univalve was brought out of retirement to help promote his latest children’s book, Marcel the Shell: The Most Surprised I’ve Ever Been.

 

TIME Television

Sharknado 3 Will Sink Teeth Into Washington, D.C.

"The entire Eastern seaboard will be devoured by flying sharks"

First Los Angeles, then New York, now the nation’s capital — the third installment of the over-the-top original movie franchise Sharknado will partly take place Washington, D.C., SyFy announced.

But the third film in the so-bad-it’s-good series can’t just be confined to one location when it touches down in 2015. Oh no. This new Sharknado will only begin in Washington before it chews the scenery all the way down to Orlando, Fla.

“The entire Eastern seaboard will be devoured by flying sharks,” Syfy’s website reads. “No seaboard city below our nation’s capital is safe!”

Perhaps some politicians will contribute another round of memorable celebrity cameos.

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