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Becca McCharen rarely shops at conventional clothing stores. Instead, she sifts through the racks of Goodwill hanger by hanger, searching for garments that inspire. Undaunted by stains and wrinkles, McCharen has an eye for forsaken beauty.

“When you find a piece in Goodwill, it’s like pulling up someone’s history,” she says. “It’s so rich and it’s so textured already.”

McCharen, 23, an urban planner for Lynchburg, gives a second life to thrift store clothing. Sometimes, all that’s required is a simple alteration. A silk bathrobe can be fashioned into a mod wrap dress. Long sleeved shirts can be remade into tank tops. A vintage skirt can be transformed into a bold handbag.

The reasons for shopping second hand are as varied as the bleach stains on acid washed jeans.

For some, it’s a reaction to mass production and consumer culture, a way to recycle instead of adding to the waste. For some, it’s about the hunt for quirky vintage pieces amid hideous muumuus and bad polyester. For others, it’s simply cheaper. And given the state of gas and food prices these days, the number of people in this camp is likely growing.

Lynchburg is not lacking in thrift stores. There are three warehouse sized Goodwills within a 20 mile radius of downtown (Wards Road, Lakeside Drive and Amelon Square in Madison Heights) and a handful of cozy, family owned shops.

Cheap is the bottom line. Prices range from $3.50 for shirts, $2.50 for shoes, $3.50 for pants. Almost everything is less than five bucks.

The sheer amount of clothing can be daunting. The Goodwill on Wards Road displays 2,400 garments at a time. They are crammed on long metal racks row upon row of stripes, polka dots, prints and solids in every hue. Some are wrinkled or lightly stained;
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others still sport a price tag.

But for those willing to sort through the junk, the results can be worth it.

Form and function

For McCharen, reworking thrift store clothes is an extension of the other art she creates. With a degree in architecture, she has an eye for structure and design. She also paints and creates collages, incorporating found materials into her work.

McCharen learned to sew during a stint making costumes for the drama department in college and applied what she learned to her own wardrobe.

One of McCharen’s favorite creations is a pink and white cotton dress she fashioned from a pair of oversized pajamas. The dress has a bustle in the back and quirky details, like a miniature pocket that covers a stain on the fabric. Today, McCharen wears a homemade red skirt that looks like an upside down rose blossom. On top, she wears a striped collared shirt and a navy blue hoodie with the sleeves cut out.

McCharen’s second hand style is also about recycling. She went through a phase in college where she vowed never to buy anything new again, relying on second hand stores and discarded items from Dumpsters.

“I was one of those punk kids,” she says. “So against ‘The Man.'”

Now, she says she has the same ideals but is less extreme about implementing them.

Down to earth

Jen Rahn, 23, a Floridian who now lives in Lynchburg, is a minimalist. She owns a modest number of clothes, and gives what she doesn’t wear to friends or to homeless shelters. But it wasn’t always that way.

In high school, Rahn was a self described “fashion diva” always trying to keep up with the latest trend.

But it wasn’t sustainable on a monetary or personal level. Too much of her identity was tied up in her fashion choices.

Now, Rahn mostly wears neutrals and describes her style as an “earthy, antique look.” Today, Rahn is casual in faded skinny jeans and a green tank top. Her hair is wavy brown and a silver ring pierces the middle of her lower lip.

“I’m not really into paying $30 for a shirt that’s going to end up here anyway,” she says.

She alters thrift store clothing to make it fit better or to tweak the look. For example, she will turn a long sleeved shirt into a vest or tank top. She also shops for material to use for patches, belts and headbands.
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ralph lauren polo sport woman Family displaced by fire seeks fresh start

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Members of a family of four are living in a Kingston hotel with their three cats, two ferrets and a dog after smoke and water damage from a fire in a neighbouring duplex in the early morning hours Saturday made their home unlivable.

Meagan Maxam, 28, her daughter, Harmony, 9, her mother, Jackie, 56, and brother Josh, 25, all lived in the duplex at 4241 Bath Rd. A 35 year old Kingston man was arrested Monday on charges of deliberately setting fire to the duplex at 4243 Bath Rd.

When emergency responders arrived at the fire, a male was seen fleeing the scene as Kingston Police assisted in evacuating the Maxams and their pets in the other unit of the duplex.

No one was injured in the fire.

In an interview Tuesday, Meagan Maxam said all of the pets except one cat were removed safely.

mom and brother went immediately for the cats. I went for the ferrets. of the two dogs is staying with friends while Autumn, an English great dane, is living in the hotel room with the family and the other pets.

They went back to the scene Monday and found the cat in the unit uninjured but a little stressed.

was pretty happy when we picked him up yesterday, Maxam said.

Harmony wasn home at the time of the fire as she was staying at her father house.

Maxam said that in the early morning hours Saturday she was woken up by a migrane and noise coming from the next unit from a couple apparently involved in a domestic dispute.

Maxam sleeps in the basement of the home she rents with her mother and brother.

went upstairs to see what all the commotion was and to see if I could find some Tylenol. mother and brother were awake and heard the fighting as well.

Maxam said the neighbours moved into the next unit more than a week ago.

She said the dispute went on for about 15 minutes until they heard loud knocks on their front door.

came pounding on the door. It was the gentleman of the house and he was asking my mom to call the cops. were called and spoke to the neighbours. Maxam could hear them talking quietly outside.

Maxam said that immediately after police left, they could hear more smashing and banging, which went on for another 10 minutes.

someone is pounding on the door again saying the house is on fire, Maxam said.

The police who originally responded to the dispute were only a few kilometres away when they heard the fire call and turned around. Those officers helped the family escape the fire, she said.

But since the fire, the Maxams have run into some problems.

They don have renters insurance to cover the contents of the home and can get their landlord to commit to paying the cost of them living in the hotel through his insurance.

landlord doesn seem to be in a rush to get his insurance going to help cover our accommodations at the hotel, Meagan Maxam said. just paying out of pocket and here we are.

a lot of smoke damage and water damage, she said of their home. majority of the water damage was in the basement because it flooded.

lost some clothes, the clothes I was able to save are kind of smoky. family has lived in the duplex for the past 18 months. They pay $1,400 per month plus utilities for the three bedroom unit.

Since being displaced, the family has looked for some financial assistance from various organizations but hasn had much luck.
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nike golf dri fit polo Facts About Greek Clothing

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Greek clothing is not a force to reckon with. Greek clothing is becoming one of the most popular clothing apparel trends throughout the United States. Most all college campuses feature some sort of Greek campus, or their own made up Greek lettering for their school. Obviously, the Greek houses on campus know the importance of their Greek clothing, but not many others do. They just wear it because it is a popular fashion trend and others are doing it too. Greek clothing is becoming especially popular with sorority houses.

Here are some interesting facts about Greek clothing and sorority clothing that you may not have been aware of.

Greek clothing was originally created as a functional garment. It was designed to help distinguish those in the fraternities and sororities from other social societies as well other Greek houses. Since that time, it has become a fashion trend, but still holds its importance as a distinguishing factor as well as showing pride and loyalty to the house.

Sorority clothing is designed to show off each of the sorority house member’s personal style. While it also shows loyalty to the sisterhood and the Greek house, the sorority clothing is also a fashion statement that is accessorized by including glitter lettering, rhinestones and a variety of colors.

Many sorority houses insist on their members wearing their sorority clothing a certain amount of times a week. The reason for doing so is to remind the girls in the sisterhood of their core values. It becomes an issue of pride to for a sorority girl to wear her sorority clothing.

Sorority clothing is designed to give the girls a sense of pride when they are attending social events outside of their sorority. With so many different types of Greek clothing available such as sweatshirts, t shirts, pajamas, jackets, hats, caps, bags and purses, there is something that can be worn no matter what the event or occasion. Before it became a popular fashion trend, only members of the fraternity or sorority were allowed to wear official merchandise. It was not available for purchase in campus stores unless you could show proof of being a part of the Greek house.

There are all sorts of fashionable Greek clothing and merchandise available for the fashion forward members of any Greek house. This Greek clothing is made for guys and girls and comes in other forms besides clothing such as blankets, bags, shower curtains, pillows, bedding and even technology covers such as iPod cases and wallets.

When shopping online, you can get any type of sorority clothing and other Greek clothing as well. Many alumni of Greek houses like to show their support by wearing the clothing of their sorority or fraternity house as well as purchasing items for friends and family members as well. This not only allows them to show their support for the Greek house but shows their pride that they were a part of a family that supported them through their college years.

People interested in the above article are also interested in the related articles listed below:

Latest Blouse Design Trend 2016

Most of the girls hardly wear sarees as they find it difficult to wear because it hinders the comfortable movement from one place to another. If you too fall in this category, you will shake off your notion and would love wearing sarees if you check out the latest blouse designs.

Movies That Show Off Greek Clothing

There are several movies that feature Greek apparel through the type of movies that they are. While not all these movies are not ones that everyone knows, they are movies that are popular amongst the comedy genre. These movies are very popular amongst younger people and have created a huge popularity in Greek clothing. Here are some of the most popular Sorority/ Fraternity movies that feature Greek clothing.

Bring Out The Red Carpet For The Introduction Of Top Quality Shoes

Shoes are one of the things in which women never got enough of. With the shoes in your shopping list, nothing is more exciting. In fact, there are ladies who would a couple of shoes that would fit every outfit that they have. Nonetheless if you are considering of shopping for a couple of shoes then you must know how to get it at the lowest price possible. The first most relevant thing to do is to evaluate the shoe price produced by various brands. There are actually some tips that one has to know, so they could be a happy buyer of shoes.

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rugby polos Family NYPD mark one year anniversary of Moore murder

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One year after Detective Brian Moore’s tragic death, the NYPD held a memorial at the intersection of 212th Street and 104th Avenue in Queens Village, the site where he was shot in the line of duty

Moore was on patrol in plain clothes with his partner Officer Eric Jansen on May 2 when he was shot in the head after approaching suspect Demetrius Blackwell, who they believed was carrying a gun. Two days later, Moore died at Jamaica Hospital.

Following Moore’s death, there was been an outpouring of support from the police force and the community, including a street co naming in December along 222nd Street and 92nd Road outside the 105th Precinct. Schiff placed a wreath in his memory. to see Moore’s name enshrined on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.

Bratton also said that Moore’s career and story will be among those featured within the New York City Police Museum when it is scheduled to reopen in a few years.

“All of America could see him, know him and be aware of him,” Bratton said. “It’s an honor to speak of him, speak of his bravery, speak of his sacrifice.

“He is truly somebody to emulate because he was truly one of New York’s Finest,” he added. “[Moore] had the gift,
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as policemen we all wish we possessed, that ability and instinct to spot the trouble and to move towards it.”

While Bratton encouraged the public to remember his career, his parents reflected on his character.

His father, retired Sergeant Raymond Moore, spoke briefly, but his words lingered as rain poured down. He reflected on his son’s determination to give all that he could without asking for anything in return.

“Let’s all try to aspire to be like Brian, and be like the courageous hero that he was,” he said.

Moore’s mother Irene wanted those at the memorial to remember his beaming personality. She asked the crowd, many fellow officers from the 105th Precinct, to remember at least one time when Moore made them smile.

“He lit up the room from the time he walked in,” she said. “Everybody wanted to be near him, everybody couldn’t wait for him to show up. Take a moment and remember one of those good memories that we have of him,
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and that way we will keep him alive in our thoughts.”

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NEW YORK (AP) The sex harassment scandal roiling Hollywood jumped across the Atlantic Ocean, dove decades into the past and abruptly tanked an upcoming film release and comedy special Friday. has already been edited out of the upcoming HBO benefit “Night of Too Many Stars” and his work is being scrubbed from the cable network’s vaults.More fallout came Friday when Netflix said it will not produce a second planned standup special starring the comedian, citing his “unprofessional and inappropriate behavior.” He had been tapped for two specials, with the first airing in April. At least five of the comedian’s stand up special remain on Netflix.Westwick also saw his work buried when the BBC pulled the Agatha Christie mystery thriller adaptation “Ordeal by Innocence” in which he appeared. The broadcaster also paused filming on the 1980s set sitcom “White Gold,” which stars Westwick. The former “Gossip Girl” star has been accused of raping two women, charges he denies. On Instagram, he called the allegations “unverified and provably untrue.”Actor Jeremy Piven also took to social media to once again declare his innocence of sexual misconduct, saying on Twitter he hopes the string of sexual harassment allegations will lead to “a constructive dialogue on these issues” but warned about “false accusations.””We seem to be entering dark times allegations are being printed as facts and lives are being put in jeopardy without a hearing, due process or evidence. I hope we can give people the benefit of the doubt before we rush to judgment,” he wrote.Piven, who has been accused by two women of sexual misconduct, faces a fresh accusation made against him from an advertising executive. Tiffany Bacon Scourby told People magazine that Piven held her down while he performed a sex act at a hotel 14 years ago.McCarthy also reiterated an allegation she made against Seagal, saying she fled from a 1995 audition with Seagal after he repeatedly asked her to take off her clothes for a part that didn’t require nudity.The former Playboy model recounted her encounter with Seagal during a tryout for “Under Siege 2” on her Sirius XM radio show Thursday, a day after actress Portia de Rossi accused Seagal of unzipping his pants during an audition.McCarthy said Seagal was the only person in the room when she showed up to read for her part, she said. After declining his invitation to sit next to him on a couch, McCarthy, who said she purposefully wore a loose fitting garment to the audition so the focus would be on her acting instead of her body,
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said Seagal asked her to remove her clothes. When McCarthy countered that she was told the part didn’t require her to be naked, she said Seagal told her that it involved “off camera nudity.””I know you must have a beautiful body underneath there. Can you lower it so I can see your breasts,” she recalled Seagal saying.A representative for Seagal didn’t immediately return a request for comment Friday, but a Seagal spokesman has denied McCarthy’s accusations to The Daily Beast. McCarthy told the same story to Movieline in 1998.The flood of accusations began after an October report in the New York Times alleging that Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein had sexually harassed or assaulted several women. He has since been accused by dozens of women, and is being investigated for rape by police departments in New York, Los Angeles and London. Others who face sexual harassment or assault accusations include “House of Cards” star Kevin Spacey and filmmaker Brett Ratner. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.Florida school shooting suspect remains silent in courtFlorida school shooting suspect remains silent in courtUpdated: Wednesday, March 14 2018 11:24 PM EDT2018 03 15 03:24:06 GMT(Mike Stocker/South Florida Sun Sentinel via AP, Pool)While students across the nation walked out of school to protest gun violence, the 19 year old accused of killing 17 people and wounding more in the Florida school shooting sat in court silently, his head bowed.While students across the nation walked out of school to protest gun violence, the 19 year old accused of killing 17 people and wounding more in the Florida school shooting sat in court silently, his head bowed.Navy jet crashes off Key West, two killedNavy jet crashes off Key West, two killedUpdated: Wednesday, March 14 2018 10:40 PM EDT2018 03 15 02:40:27 GMTToys R Us will close all US storesToys R Us will close all US storesUpdated: Wednesday,
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March 14 2018 10:30 PM EDT2018 03 15 02:30:07 GMT

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Slideshow: Wildfires blaze in CaliforniaSlideshow: Wildfires blaze in CaliforniaWildfires are raging in California, burning homes and prompting evacuations. At least 17 have died, and more than 3,000 structures have burned.

Wildfires are raging in California,
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burning homes and prompting evacuations. At least 17 have died, and more than 3,000 structures have burned.

Slideshow: Mexico earthquake kills more than 200Slideshow: Mexico earthquake kills more than 200The search for survivors continues after a powerful earthquake in Mexico on Tuesday.

The search for survivors continues after a powerful earthquake in Mexico on Tuesday. in more than a decade. in more than a decade.

Slideshow: Western wildfires burn thousands of acresSlideshow: Western wildfires burn thousands of acresWildfires fueled by hot weather has burned thousands thousands of acres in the West and spurred a state of emergency in California.

Wildfires fueled by hot weather has burned thousands thousands of acres in the West and spurred a state of emergency in California.

PHOTOS: Storm damage throughout Southwest GAPHOTOS: Storm damage throughout Southwest GAUpdated: Tuesday, January 3 2017 1:46 AM EST2017 01 03 06:46:35 GMTThere have been several reports of storm damage throughout Southwest Georgia.

There have been several reports of storm damage throughout Southwest Georgia.

WeatherSLIDESHOW: Storm pictures from April 5SLIDESHOW: Storm pictures from April 5.
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Interestingly, the narrative doesn’t come from the shoppers or consumers. Rather, it comes from the maid who is burdened with the task of washing and sorting the family’s collection of clothes, which only gets bigger.The brand’s earlier campaign was hinged on the savings proposition. The campaign drew on the typically Indian quirkiness of trying to save money in every possible way. The current campaign works hard to position the brand as a fashion destination. This campaign is focused around establishing Snapdeal as a destination for family shopping for fashion products. We have the largest assortment of products across apparel, footwear, jewellery and fashion accessories, and hence the focus was to bring out the variety through this communication.”And this was precisely what the creative brief given to the agency was all about. The objective was to create a distinct online shopping space for the entire family vis other shopping sites, with clear focus on youngsters, the brand’s core TG.Talking about the idea of giving the narration through a maid, Sachin Das Burma, group creative director, Draftfcb Ulka, says, “We had a close look at all the other ads for online fashion and realised that all showcase their products only through youngsters. Nobody actually spoke about fashion for the entire family, though data suggested that families also shopped online. And most importantly, all advertising showed the TG as the protagonist.”His team was therefore keen to execute the brief without taking the “safe route” of showing the family actually shopping. “And that’s when Shahid Hussain, a member of my team, came up with the ‘maid’ idea.”Burma goes on, “I thought this could be a quirky way to deliver our message. Here, I must say, the client was brave enough to buy this creative route, and we plan to create a lot of fun stuff around this character in the future.”Komaravelly tells afaqs! that the ad is currently running on channels across genres on television, a move to fetch good reach and visibility. Regarding other marketing initiatives,
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he adds, “We will also promote it on the outdoor medium in key cities with focus on metros.Perfect fit?Raj Nair, chief creative officer, BMB Madison, says, “I happen to have caught this one on air and recall being a trifle irritated by the maid and her performance and therefore promptly changing the channel. Just one of those inexplicable subjective things, I guess.” But now that he has seen the entire ad, the message he gets from it is, “bachatey raho”.Was this the most inventive, clutter breaking way to convey the brand’s message? “That is a rhetorical question. You already know the answer,” he replies, adding, “Is it better than anything I have seen before for the brand? I can’t really tell as I couldn’t remember any other spot I have seen. So, in a nutshell, maybe the team needs to push the boundaries further.”To Suraja Kishore, executive planning director, planning head, Mumbai, McCann Erickson, the positioning of Snapdeal is very much in the name itself. “So for me the brief seems to be about how deals on Snapdeal can get you fashionable clothes for the entire family for less,” he reasons.While Kishore finds the idea of the maid taking a dig at her employers interesting, he says the way it is executed is “a bit irritating and overdone.” In fact, he didn’t realise she was a maid for the first few seconds. “I guess someone has sold the idea of the modern maid,” he says on a lighter note.
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dallas water polo Faculty Q Social Scientist Desmond Patton Studies Inner City Violence

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Although Desmond Patton went to school for social work, being a social worker was never on his agenda. “I didn’t have a lot of interest in direct practice work,” he said. “I wanted to do research. That is a time when many students tend to have trouble, but Patton noticed something else.

“What I saw in the two years I followed them was violence,” Patton said. “Every single one of them had some experience with violence, and not just one experience. They would be in class one day, best friend beside them, the next day the best friend was dead.”

Several years later, when it came time for him to pick a dissertation topic, he decided to look at what influences education beyond grades and test scores. He followed 20 high achieving young men at a Chicago charter school to see how they navigated neighborhood violence and succeeded in school. “One of the chief things that I learned was that they were able to cognitively geocode their neighborhood and school,” he said.

Geocode? “They knew who to talk to, how to talk to them, what clothes to wear, which streets were violent. It was as if they were walking around with a GPS in their head, and they were able to use those same strategies in school to identify mentors and helpful individuals to hang out with,” he said.

Later, a few of the young men he followed tipped him off to a Twitter war between two Chicago rappers that ended in death.

“That was the jumping off point for me,” he said.

Q. What can social media posts tell you about inner city violence?

A. We all know, from research and anecdotal evidence, how many hours and hours most youths spend on the internet, sharing personal information on social media platforms about who they talk to, where they live, what they’re doing. In neighborhoods like the West Side of Chicago that I’ve studied, young people are living in violent contexts, where trauma and stress are everyday parts of their lives, so that’s what they talk about. They’re not talking online about violence only, but what they do discuss is real world and it has profound consequences for their offline interactions

Q. So what do you look for in these communications?

A. I am interested in understanding the context around language and online postings that trigger offline violence. Not just the 140 characters indicating aggression or grief, but sifting through many posts, images and videos to understand why are they making these postings in the first place? Does kill mean the same thing if you put it in a different context?

Q. What is most important in these posts?

A. It is hard to determine online threats, because there are so many factors to be considered. Context and who is sending these social media messages are important. Is a certain tweet from a gang member, or someone known to be violent? There’s a big difference between someone who’s a big talker and someone who is actually willing to kill, but that’s sometimes hard to distinguish. I also look for emoji use, such as a gun or frowns compounded with threats, which lead to different interpretations. Speed of response, and how someone responded to a social media post are all something to be considered.

Related: Learn More About SAFE Lab at Columbia’s School of Social Work.

Q. And what can you do with that information?

A. Our ultimate goal is to be able to provide these data points to violence prevention organizations across cities that struggle with gun violence. We could give them social media data in real time so they assess and potentially intervene.

A. For example, someone may put up a post and say, “Oh, I miss Johnny. He was my best friend. RIP.” Then someone from an opposing group, or what young people call the opposition or the ops, may come and say, “Oh, well f k Johnny, he’s nobody.” That simple kind of jive or poke then becomes the initial trigger for a host of communications from the opposing group that leads to a potentially violent situation offline. This is very different from the old days, when people would have arguments and battles in person; now the beef has already occurred and it can go straight to violence. Can we predict, correlating a cluster of aggressive communication online and cross referencing Chicago crime records, what might happen? If we had millions of posts, which we are planning to do in a relationship with existing violence prevention groups, perhaps we could, and there could be an intervention.

Q. What are you working on now?

A. This is my second year here, and as soon as I arrived I started collaborating with data scientists. I’m currently working with Kathy McKeown, director of the Data Science Institute and Owen Rambow, a computational scientist there. We are applying for a grant from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which would allow us to do research on a far larger scale, and use a qualitative approach to fill in what’s been missing in a lot of the research. In that way, we could leverage the skills of young people from the community to interpret what’s happening on social media. For example, there was a situation that, according to social media, had occurred on Lamron Street in Chicago. There is no such street, but when I asked a young person he said, “Oh, that’s Normal Street,” a block where a certain gang faction hangs out.

A. It involved something called “internet banging,” which is when urban youth use social media to brag, insult and threaten their rivals, disseminating violence online that results in serious injuries and homicides. I also received a grant for work I’m doing with Jeffrey Lane, an urban ethnographer at Rutgers University, on social media policing. We’re looking at what kind of comments online might get someone arrested. What might be a song or rap lyric to a kid might be considered a threat to a cop. These have all sorts of implications for law, social media and other factors.

Q. How did you get started in this research?

A. It seems so long ago now, but for my undergraduate honors thesis I studied a support group at UNC Greensboro for high achieving black males. As freshmen, they were recruited to join this group to help them kind of navigate their four years, and I was the anthropologist for that group. So I went to their meetings and interviewed them to understand what mechanisms helped them navigate and be successful.

Q. What did you find that worked?

A. I think what always works is support from people who have had similar experiences, people who paved the way who can come back and give you some pointers and tips. And being able to have kind of a dual sense of self, being able to talk the talk and walk the walk in multiple settings and contexts. I think young people who don’t have that ability to kind of turn it on and off in these spaces probably have more challenges than those who would easily find themselves in different contexts.

Q. How did you happen to concentrate on this group?

A. I was particularly interested in high achieving young men because there is so much focus on young men who don’t do well. I knew there was a group of young folks who were doing well but living in the same violent contexts.
dallas water polo Faculty Q Social Scientist Desmond Patton Studies Inner City Violence

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The lines snaked through the aisles of the outdoor living department at theWalmart on Military Road early Tuesday morning.

But no one was complaining about the wait.

More than 200 local families were there, waiting for the opportunity to buy warm, winter clothing for their children with vouchers from the Falls Firefighters Christmas Toy Fund. For the first time ever, a reporter and photographer were invited to join and observe the Aid to Needy Children Shopping Day experience.

“I feel lucky to be a part of this,” said Dawn Jelen, the Aid to Needy Children Committee chair. “I feel like I’m so lucky to be here.”

The wife of Falls Firefighter Tom Jelen, Dawn has been helping with the low key program for a decade, and has chaired the organizing committee for the last four years. She said this year’s shopping day may be the best yet.

“It’s been an amazing year as far as fundraising,” she said. “If all goes well, we may even be able to add some more families in the next few days.”

If Jelen felt lucky to be handing out the clothing vouchers, the recipients couldn’t have been happier to have the chance to be able to protect their children from the cold of winter.

“I think it’s really great that they’re helping us out,” said Jewelry Drake, a mom who signed up for the Toy Fund’s help for the first time this year. “I think it’s wonderful they can provide toys and clothing.”

Drake said her kids will be thrilled to find new clothes under their Christmas tree.

“I told them I was getting them clothes and they said, ‘Yay!’,” Drake said. “They’re 4 and 6 years old and they love clothes.”

As the crowds of shoppers in the children’s clothing departments of the store began to swell, Drake said, as a parent,
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while holiday toys are nice, warm clothing is even more important to her.

“I was so happy to find out about this program,” Drake said.

Janelle Gregg, a single, unemployed mom of two boys, was also reaping Toy Fund benefits for the first time this year. She said she learned about the fund through the Falls School District.

“It’s very helpful to get the stuff they need,” Gregg said. “I can’t really afford (new, warm clothes).”

She said her 3 year old was hopeful his mom would come home with something branded with Thomas the Tank Engine or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Watching the families head out to shop, Jelen said, could almost move her to tears of joy.

“I know that just that extra pair of socks or a hat and gloves or a warm jacket, that these families can’t afford makes such a difference,” she said. “And I feel like I’m the lucky one (to have helped).”

Falls Fire Capt. John Castellani, the Toy Fund chair, also watched as the families moved out to shop and marveled again at the difference a year has made for the fund.

“To this community, we just say, ‘thanks,'” Castellani said. “The desperation and demand (for help) is so high, and because of the bounce back (in fundraising this year),
polo custom shirts Falls firefighters help needy during shopping day
we’ve gone from taking fewer applications (for assistance) to taking more applications.

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agoura water polo F shouts its arrival

ralph polo shirts F shouts its arrival

But with the NX and RX crossovers both incredibly aggressive in styling, maybe we shouldn’t be all that surprised. Clearly, the folks at Lexus are tired of letting the German brands have all the fun.

The GS sedan is Lexus’ mid level machine, and is about the same size as a Mercedes Benz E Class or a BMW 5 Series. Ordinarily, the Bimmer might offer more verve and the Merc’ more luxury, while the Lexus could offer impeccable craftsmanship and a fair tomiddling chance that it’d be on the road a lot longer than the more complicated Teutonic sedans.

But in this case, the F Sport arrives to make its case not on the subtleties of reliability and resale, but in a blaring yawp of aggression. It’s about as subtle as that fire shooting electric guitar solo from Mad Max.

The bodywork is hacked, hunched and flared by the power contained under the hood and the size of the wheels. The headlights are underscored by V shaped slashes of LED war paint. The brake calipers are orange. The quad exhaust pipes are semi stacked on top of each other. It’s a riot.

There’s a lot going on here, but there’s a lot to like about the GS F’s audacity too. Here, finally, is something serious to back up the Lexus design language with some real firepower.

Inside, the GS F continues the maniacal bent with multilayered seats that are wild to look at. Happily, they’re also really quite comfortable, a good mix between support and lateral bolstering.

The rest of the cabin is a mix of new school performance look, and genuinely easy to use control components. Instead of multiple touchscreens, the Mark Levinson stereo is controlled by a weighty feeling volume knob. The air conditioning controls are buttons instead of fiddly haptic feedback sliders. It looks cool in here, but everything also works.

Everything, that is, except the square control device for scrolling through menus on the large central display. This is a bit fiddly to use, although it’s an improvement over previous Lexus systems. I’d wager that it wouldn’t be too hard to master after a few tries, but it’s fussy on first use.

While everyone else has gone turbocharged and you get a turbo on the entrylevel NX crossover Lexus keeps its top tier F models naturally aspirated, and things are the better for it. peak power with jewellike charm. It feels crafted with care, and revs far more smoothly than any surging twin turbo motor.

Having said that, it’s considerably down on power and torque compared to the big dogs of AMG and M. behemoths from Germany, the GS F might look a little out gunned on paper.

However, unlike the Teutonic cruise missiles, the GS F’s character has some subtlety and balance to it. Part of that’s down to the smoother delivery that a free breathing engine has, rather than one being force fed by a supercharger or a turbo.

The other factor is the GS F’s curb weight, which is relatively light for such a big car. In fact, it’s only 35 kilograms more than the RC F coupe, Lexus’ other F machine. As a result, it feels nicely balanced and friendly. The eight speed automatic is well suited to both urban cruising duties, but shifts just as fast as the best in the market when called upon.

Another ace up the GS F’s sleeve is the torque vectoring rear differential, a trick rear axle capable of sending more power to the outside wheel when cornering. This really makes the big car dance through transitions; it’s quick and competent, fast enough to be fun without the berserker rage of an AMG.

It might actually be unfair to compare this car against the super sport machines from Germany as it’s a little more like that country’s midlevel cars. This isn’t an Audi RS7 competitor, it’s more like an S6 in terms of speed. And, when you measure it against that level of performance, the GS F’s balance shines even more brightly.

So sure, if you want to brag about raw horsepower, there are bigger, blunter instruments out there. However, if you want a little finesse, start with an F.

At $95,000 the GS F is reasonably expensive, though not in comparison to its competition. However, there are essentially no options to pick besides colour choice. The 17 speaker Mark Levinson audio is simply excellent, and it’s standard. Navigation is standard. The 19 inch alloys are standard. Just pick your colour and you’re all set.

Fuel economy seems hilarious to mention in this kind of machine, but it’s not too bad actually. Official figures hit 9.7 (litres/100 kilometres) on the highway and 14.9 in the city. Premium fuel is required, but it’s possible to keep the revs down and consumption relatively acceptable.

Great power delivery; friendly, approachable performance; unique styling; excellent seats.

Not as powerful as others; fussy infotainment.

A surprisingly balanced sport sedan that’s got all the performance you need.

BMW M5 ($103,500): The original sport sedan (if you don’t count a couple of Alfa Romeos), the M5 is still the benchmark fast four door. It’s a missile, capable of breakneck speed, and not at all out of place on any track you care to mention.

It is, however, a lot more expensive than the GS F, especially when optioned similarly. And, it has to be said, the current M5 has little of the balance that made the old versions so special. It’s fast, above all else, maybe a bit too fast for the road.
agoura water polo F shouts its arrival