This is hands down one of the funniest robberies gone wrong. I don't even know what they were trying to do! You have to wait until one of the folks falls through the roof, yes, someone falls through a roof.
UPDATED: The White House Correspondents’ Association just released a statement denouncing her roast:
“Last night’s program was meant to offer a unifying message about our common commitment to a vigorous and free press while honoring civility, great reporting and scholarship winners, not to divide people,” said WHCA president Margaret Talev. “Unfortunately, the entertainer’s monologue was not in the spirit of that mission.”
Michelle Wolf's roast at the White House correspondent's dinner is raising quite the stir. Michelle Wolf is most known as a comedian and former Daily Show with Trevor Noah correspondent.
President Trump declined to attend for the second year in a row, and Michelle's roast left no one off limits including Kellyanne Conway, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and former press secretary Sean Spicer.
Catch her full remarks below.
Here speech has had a lot of reaction on social media including Sean Spicer who tweeted:
You can check out some more of Michelle's work on Amazon here:
Swagbucks is something I was only recently introduced to, although it seems a lot of other people have discovered it before me!
There are several ways to make money on Swagbucks and the reason I like it the most is because you do not have to really do much besides have stuff going on in the background! The other reason I really love it, is because you can redeem the money on Amazon gift cards, PayPal, or a bunch of other ways.
Here are my top favorite ways to make money on Swagbucks:
1) Watch Videos - Basically all you have to do is click on one of the videos and put it on in the background and continue about your normal work. It starts to rack up over the day and by the end of the day, you will have a few bucks in your pocket.
One pro tip, under the video section there are videos that are "ncrave." These ones are usually shorter and can get through faster with more money. But they do require you to pay attention because you have to press a button after each video, but it makes for an easy activity if you are just sitting around watching tv.
2) Take Surveys - I usually only do one or two of these a day, because they do take some effort. But if you are sitting around watching television and willing to do a survey, you can end up making a few bucks in a matter or minutes.
3) Complete you daily "to do" list - This is a "must" to make money on Swagbucks. If you complete these few items everyday, you get a few extra Swagbucks and it really doesnt take that much effort. I usually complete this list in the first few minutes after waking up before I get out of bed!
4) This is the MOST profitable for me on the site. Download some of the mobile apps on your phone or spare ipad. Then I just let them play videos all day and I make several bucks on each device!
So if you want to give it a shot, go to Swagbucks with this link and you will get a referal bonus and you can start making money like I do!.
While I was visiting Phuket, Thailand I wanted to visit an elephant sanctuary. I knew that the practice of riding elephants was cruel, so I wanted to make sure I picked a responsible place where I could respectfully interact with elephants. After a lot of research online, I found The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary.
15 years ago there were over 100,000 elephants in Thailand alone, and likely millions worldwide. The number of elephants in Thailand has dropped to between 2,500-4,000. The main reason for this rapid decline are poaching, habitat loss and elephants dying faster due to mistreatment in the tourism industry.
The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary, will explain that, "Asian Elephants’ spines are not like horses. Their spines are designed to carry weight below, not from above. Instead of smooth, round spinal disks, elephants have sharp bony protrusions that extend upwards from their spine. These bony protrusions and the tissue protecting them are vulnerable to weight and pressure coming from above. In order for an elephant to be ridden, it needs to be put through a ritual called Phajaan." Below is a video of the procedure, warning, it is graphic.
The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary was started in late 2014, based in Chiang Mai, which is in northern Thailand. The Mission is to provide as many elephants as possible with the good health, freedom and happiness they truly deserve. They use progressive and ethically responsible approaches to elephant eco-tourism as a platform to raise awareness and educate people from Thailand and around the world. In fact, within the first few minutes of getting to the sanctuary, the immediately begin to tell you all the horrors of how some elephants are treated in Thailand. They even told you within the first few minutes that you should be prepared to hear about some of the horrors.
In the last 2 years The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary has grown from 3 to 38 elephants. Their is to lead by example, and contribute to a positive change in the perception of elephants; to witness a future where elephants are not ridden, poached, overworked, or abused, and are instead treated with care, love, and respect.
Below are some photos and descriptions of where some of their elephants are rescued from:
The whole day was a wonderful experience. You start the day feeding the elephants and then you get the opportunity to bathe with them in mud and swim around with them. You can really tell that the animals are deeply loved and cared for.
I highly recommend taking this trip if you are in the Phuket region of Thailand. Another great benefit to this location is that they have a professional photographer that takes tons of photos and provides them to you for NO CHARGE right after the trip! Not many companies will do that. You can find out more information at their website here: The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary.
Below are also some books that may interest you on the current elephant crisis.
My friends always comment how I find random, but amazing music videos. So I have finally decided to post videos that I have found weekly.
To be fair, some of the videos are older, but I only just found them. SO, here is what I found today! Enjoy!
You probably have seen it by now, but a lot of people are doing the DNA testing by 23andMe. Even though I had wanted to do it for a long time, I never got around to actually doing it. So when I was given the 23andMe kit for Christmas, I was really excited!
If you are unfamiliar with the process, after signing up on their website www.23andme.com you are sent a small kit that looks like this:
Inside the box is this plastic tube that you spit (yes, spit) into and then seal back in the box and mail back to 23andMe. Then after a few weeks, mine took less than a month during the busy holiday season, they send a few reports.
These reports include where geographically your ancestry is from and also some health information about what your genetics may presuppose you to. Below is my report for where my ancestry is from and what the report looks like!
I was actually shocked at the above report, I knew that a lot of my ancestry had come from Europe, I was just shocked that 99.6% had come from Europe!
The other funny thing in the above report was that I was more Neanderthal than 62% of other customers. In middle school I was always laughed at for looking like a neanderthal (I thought I looked adorable), but I guess it was true!
Beyond just the ancestry report, they give you some genetic health risk assessments. My report, as you can see below, came back very positive. The only "risk" that came back was a slight increased risk of "late-onset alzheimer's disease."
The last report I got was a "wellness report." This report told me exactly what I was expecting... That I am addicted to caffeine and that I am a very light sleeper! So now I can officially blame my Mountain Dew addiction on my genetics!
As I was traveling across eastern Europe, I stayed in many Airbnbs that required us to take elevators. Not many things scare me, I have bungee jumped, skydived and other crazy adventures. But nothing has scared me more than the elevator rides I had to take in Eastern Europe. I put two videos below, one from Serbia and one from Greece which can show how scared I was!
This first elevator ride was in Belgrad, Serbia. When my friend Charles and I got into the elevator, we thought it would be just two of us and then all of the sudden a woman and her dog also get on!
Below is a video we took while we were preparing for our Trekr Adventures trip in Athens, Greece! We lived at this place for about two weeks prior to our trip. This one was not as scary as the one in Serbia.
After we ran with the bulls, which you can see here, we decided to see an actual bull fight. The running of the bulls started for transporting cattle from one place to the other to sell them at the market. So the whole point of run is to move them to the actual arena for the fight.
Before the fight begins, the bring out all the participants. It was quite the sight to see and the whole arena goes crazy.
I didn't know much about bull fighting before Pamplona, so I was in a little shock when it started. If you are unaware, the fight is actually torture towards the animal. The animal is actually stabbed in the neck before they enter the arena. This is meant to weaken the bull.
As the fight progresses, the animal is stabbed several more times, until the bull is to weak to fight anymore and then the bull is stabbed a final time. After the bull is dead, the bull is dragged by the neck by several horses. Its really quite a sad thing to see. I was uncomfortable after seeing it. If you are interested in learning more about helping stop bullfighting you can read this article by the Los Angeles times.
One warning! If you see the bull fight, plan to get covered in red sangria. Every few minutes the sangria will come flying at you and there's no way to avoid it. Here's a picture of my friend covered in sangria.
After the bull fights are over, the party continues into the streets where people chant, dance and drink. I have to say, with the amount of partying going on, I NEVER ONCE saw anyone get out of control, puke or seem completely out of it. I was actually shocked, because the party really does go all hours of the day.
Check out some more photos from Pamplona below!
You may have seen a lot of news over the years about Bitcoin. Bitcoin is the most well-known cryptocurrency, or digital currency out there.
Cryptocurrency is a decentralized currency, which means its not controlled by any centralized banking system. Instead, it is verified using what is called a block chain.
I've been in digital currency for a while now and its been having some incredible gains over the past year. A lot of people have asked how to get started in the digital currency world and I always point them to Coinbase.
Coinbase is the most well known digital currency wallet and is incredibly easy to use. You can use this link and create a profile. From there, you can deposit money, accept money from others, or send money to others.
Coinbase links up to Paypal as well, so you can easily move the money back to paper currency.
You can also see the market rates of all the 3 major currencies: Bitcoin, Litecoin and Ether. As you can see below, Bitcoin has made tremendous gains month to month. Just in the past 30 days it has jumped over 35%!
While past performance is no indication that it will keep going up. I'm choosing to continue to bet on cryptocurrency. If you want to start and get into the game, use this link to Coinbase, and you will get $10 free of Bitcoin if you invest $100.
One of the top items on my bucket list since I was a child was to see the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona, Spain. Even though several cities throughout Spain host their version of the Running of the Bulls, the most famous is held during a nine-day festival in Pamplona in honor of Saint Fermin, called Sanfermines.
My two friends, Charles and Alex, joined me on this adventure. We rented an amazing Airbnb right downtown in Pamplona. If you decide to ever travel for the festival, I HIGHLY recommend staying downtown. The festival goes during all hours of the night and staying downtown allows for easy walking to all the events.
The Running of the Bulls actually takes place early in the morning, around 8am. I assumed it would be later in the day. The early morning rising can take some effort to make (especially when the festival goes all hours of the night), we actually missed the first two morning because we slept in!
The early hours are because the tradition of the running of the bulls started for transporting cattle from one place to the other to sell them at the market. After a while, adults started to turn it into a competition to see who could race in front of the bulls and make it safely. The tradition today is used to move the bulls from their holding area to the arena for the bull fights later that day.
Once you get into the street to run with the bulls your nerves start to hit you immediately. Suddenly a giant TV screen lights up and begins to show "rules" with running. The first thing that came to mind was that I was in the "Hunger Games." They have all these rules, such as 1) you must have shoes on.... 2) you MUST run.... 3) I stopped paying attention because I was scared that the bulls would be let out any minute.
One of the pieces of advice I was given, was to NOT run with the bulls near the arena. This is because the route "bottlenecks" and can create some dangerous situations. Alex and Charles, using peer pressure, got me right in front of the arena. Our goal was to run into the arena with the bulls, which we succeeded.
As we ran into the stadium, we started to take photos of the experience.... until we realized they started letting bulls out with runners inside the stadium! I'll save that for part 2... See the video below for a preview:
On June 28th I was given the honor to ring in the start of NYC Pride by closing the NYSE. Ringing the NYSE bell was one items on my bucket list I have wanted to do since I was a child.
I was given the honor to ring the bell next to other actively serving military members. Check out the video and photos below.
This piece originally appeared in the Daily Beast:
One month ago, under a pseudonym, the author wrote about his experiences serving in the United States Air Force as a gay military member under the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. Today, on the day the policy officially ends, he reveals his identity.
My name is Josh Seefried. I am a gay first lieutenant in the United States Air Force, and for the past two years I have been known as “JD Smith.”
Under that pseudonym, I cofounded the organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) troops known as OutServe. Using hidden Facebook groups and emails I helped connect more than 4,000 LGBT troops currently serving around the globe, including in Afghanistan and Iraq. At the risk of being fired, using my assumed name I interfaced with media, the Pentagon, and the White House in regard to the policy known as “don’t ask, don’t tell."
For nearly two decades, "don't ask, don't tell" forced gay and lesbian troops to lie about who they were in order to serve in the military. Gay troops like me had to worry every single day about losing the careers we loved. That misbegotten era of our military's history is now over. President Obama signed the legislation to repeal DADT last December, and two months ago he and the Pentagon certified that the military was ready for the repeal to take effect. Today, DADT officially died.
Now I and thousands of other gay and lesbian troops can walk into our units free from fear of losing our jobs, our integrity restored. For most of us, the repeal of DADT has been Y2K all over: something hyped, but nothing more. Most soldiers probably knew the date of Sept. 20 more for the season premiere of Glee than for the date DADT finally died. The hype built around the repeal of DADT has created a situation in which there will be many gay troops who are scared to come out of the closet, a fear built upon decades of slandering gay soldiers. We were painted as soldiers who would put fellow soldiers and this nation at risk. Instead of honoring the courageous actions of troops who were gay and lesbian, we were being fired, investigated, and told we did not deserve to be part of this team. Any contribution offered by a gay soldier was overshadowed by his or her sexuality.
Opponents of repeal have long insisted that allowing gays to serve openly would be a disaster to our military, but those days are now over, and leadership from the top has firmly proclaimed that every soldier is to be treated with respect. Now that this policy has ended, leadership is also directly needed from gay troops. Over the past two years of building OutServe I have received thousands of emails from gay and lesbian troops and their families and friends. I will never forget one of the very first messages I received. It was from the friend of a gay soldier who had killed himself just a few months prior. He told me, “JD, thank you for all you are doing to connect gay servicemembers. Maybe if OutServe had existed a few months ago, my friend may not have killed himself.” This message emphasizes the challenges that lie ahead for the military. The challenge now becomes fostering a culture of respect and dignity among the ranks.
This is why I chose to come out on Day 1 after the policy changed. I chose to come out publicly for the thousands of gay military members who have been told they are a risk if they serve in the military openly and honestly. People may say what I'm doing is attention-seeking or not befitting a military officer, but that very mentality shows the prejudice we still harbor when it comes to sexual orientation. Sexual orientation within the military is no longer a political issue; it should be regarded no differently from race, religion, or even something as simple as hair color. The more we show that we are human like everyone else, the more this stigma goes away. This is why for the past few months I have collected the stories of currently serving gay military members. Using their real identities, they relate their experiences under DADT and their hopes for the future. In a few weeks I will be releasing this project, which will share the stories of gay military members using their real names and stories for the first time. I remember reading a book during my time at the Air Force Academy about a gay Air Force officer that inspired me to serve under DADT. I hope this book will do the same for others.
If gay soldiers choose not to come out, we remain invisible, we remain a myth—invisible soldiers with no family, friends, or fellow soldiers who care for them, no chance of holding a high position in military leadership. That invisible picture destroys the hopes of the thousands of gay and lesbian youth who desire to serve their country someday, and erodes the hopes of the currently serving gay service member who believes he would not be respected if he came out. That is the new challenge that lies ahead.
Gay soldiers should find the courage to come out. Even if some members in the unit react negatively, it starts a discussion. Once you start a dialogue, you break down the walls of prejudice. It is up to us currently serving gay soldiers to show leadership, come out, and break down those walls. If we are unwilling to be honest about ourselves to our units, future generations will never experience a future truly free from prejudice.
There also will be future challenges for the military. For the first time since the integration of African-American troops into the U.S. military, there will be inequality among the ranks. Under DADT, it was assumed everyone in the military was straight, and inequality was thus invisible. However, now military members who are gay or lesbian will be treated differently from their heterosexual counterparts. Gay relationships and marriages will not be recognized, and straight service members will witness their gay friends being treated differently. Commanders will be placed in a position where they can't allow gay service members to receive assignments that allow them to remain with the person they love, and people in straight marriages will be paid higher military salaries than those in gay marriages. This will be challenging, and we must react professionally and trust that our leadership will take care of us.
I feel privileged and honored to serve during this time in our nation’s history. This change in policy has not only made our military stronger, it's made America stronger. I’m proud to serve in the United States Air Force and proud of the fact that gay service members can now do their job with their integrity intact.
Below is an interview I did with John Ferrugia. Most famously known for breaking the Air Force Academy sexual assault scandal in 2003. John and I had been in touch since my college days and when I came out publicly on the day Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) was repealed, I was honored he could be one of the reporters to interview me.
Below is a piece he did for Diane Sawyer on ABC:
A longer version of the interview can be found below. This interview aired in Colorado locally.
I'm one of those people that are hesitant about using an "app" to make money, but I have to give major props to Ibotta, because I have made some good money on it. It does not require giving up any personal information (like a credit card, etc). But I am seriously making some good cash on this app, I am up over $450 dollars and I have just started using it.
So here's how it works. You download the app and you make money two ways:
1) You launch another application from Ibotta, such as Uber, Hotels.com, Amazon.com. Uber and Hotels.com is primarily how I have made a lot of my money from the app. I simply launch Uber from Ibotta and I get $1.00 back for every ride I take. Other applications such as hotels.com, you can get as much as 5% back, I have seen it as high as 10% at some times.
2) Check out the application and there will be "coupons" on the site. Something like, "if you buy green bell peppers, you get $1 back." There are TONS of "coupons" on the site. One of my favorite is to check out the application when I am at a bar and see if there are any drink specials (which there normally are). Then once you purchase, you just simply scan your receipts from popular stores!
It's an app I highly recommend and you can see some of the deals below.
If you use this link it will also give you $10 for giving it a shot. And usually there is a $20 bonus you can get if you start using the app immediately.
“I don’t know what we’re going to do when I get reassigned. My partner has to find a new job if he wants to come with me. He’s not covered by TRICARE [military health insurance]. Right now he works for a company where he can’t be fired for being gay — but there’s no guarantee hecan find that at my next duty station.”
— Air Force officer
“Don’t get me wrong: I’m thrilled that ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ is gone. And I don’t feel like I have a right to complain; it’s just that the practical logistics of taking care of a family, which the military insists I don’t have, makes it really hard.”
— Navy petty officer
Earlier this month OutServe members gathered in Washington, D.C. for the first “Capital Summit: Our Families Matter.” The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for a summit focused on gay and lesbian military spouses and partners. In the wake of President Obama’s historic statement in favor of marriage equality — specifically mentioning the service of gay and lesbian soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines — we are optimistic about the future, but there is still a lot of work to do.
Non-government organizations, such as the National Military Family Association, Red Cross, Give an Hour, and Blue Star Families, attended the summit to make their support and resources available to partners and families of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) service members.
But the government offers almost nothing.
Also, last week, an organization committed to banning workplace and career discrimination, Freedom to Work, was on Capitol Hill, fighting for employment nondiscrimination. Specifically, the organization was urging Congress to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, or
ENDA, and was advocating for President Obama to sign an executive order banning federal contractors from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
Although ENDA would not affect military personnel, it still is a critical issue to LGBT service members. Even though a majority of LGBT military personnel serve on active duty, many serve in reservist or national guard status, which means their main employment is outside the military,
leaving them vulnerable to being fired simply for being gay. No servicemember who chooses to serve their nation should have to feel like they are at risk for losing their job because of who they are.
Even more vulnerable than the servicemember themselves is the family. The military reassigns its active duty personnel every few years, so a partner who has a job in a company or state with protections can only hope that, upon moving, they can find a new job where they don’t have to hide their same-sex spouse. Federal contractors employ many people on or close to military bases, so our partners — who have to get jobs because our benefits don’t cover them — are eager to land these jobs. Our veterans also want to work for contractors, but because of a lack of LGBT
workplace protections, federal employers can still fire people just because they’re gay or transgender, regardless of how well they do their jobs.
A new study from the Williams Institute shows that an executive order prohibiting workplace discrimination could protect up to , many of whom are servicemembers outside active duty and their spouses, in dire need of providing for their families.
Integrity and respect for all are core military values. Fairness in employment is an American value. The president’s personal statement on marriage, and the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” are great steps toward those values, toward treating people equally and fairly. But we are not honoring our families if we don’t continue to fight for them, recognize their sacrifices, and provide them with the support — and the jobs — that they need. Let’s make no mistake, this is am LGBT
military issue, too.
This piece originally appeared in the Huffington Post.