Millennials read more than those over 30! (not really…)

Un- or under-employed, and employed millennials alike have been called superficial, self-obsessed (Read GenTwenty column here), but according to a new Pew Research Center study, they have one redeeming virtue. The millennials are reading more than their over-30 counterparts.

I did a little dance when I read this. Despite our proclivity for social sharing (oh selfies), we are after all literary. The sophisticate of our young minds, we…

My euphoria immediately dissipated the moment I read the next line, as reported by Quartz:

Some 88% of Americans younger than 30 said they read a book in the past year compared with 79% of those older than 30.

ONE book. We beat the older generation because an additional 9% of us read one book last year?

Millennials read more than the older generation (image credit:

Are millennials reading?

If yes, from where and what and how are they reading?

According to a study by McKinsey, a global management consulting firm based in the UK, the average person consume 72 minutes of news a day, and the increase was driven predominantly by people under the age of 35.

Nevertheless, millennials are reading differently. The Associated Press (AP) found that millennials are more versatile as information gatherers, and do not rely solely on newspaper for news. 

They [younger consumers] consume news across a multitude of platforms and sources, all day, constantly. Among the key touch points in the new environment are online video, blogs, online social networks, mobile devices RSS, word of mouth, Web portals and search engines.

Furthermore, according to the same AP study, millennials not want to be informed, but they want information that are relevant and shareable.

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‘Technically, it’s pruning,’ herb mistakes to avoid

It is my conviction that herbs grow better if I keep eating the leaves. You see, if my newly transplanted herbs (lavender, Moroccan mint, lemon verbena, basil… +3 more) are under the impression that they are besieged, they will respond by producing more leaves. Win win, capsize (cah-peesh)?

I call this “standing vigilant” — because I care about preparing my plants for the real world.

My sister, on the other hand, said that if she were my herbs, she would revolt by refusing to sprout new leaves. Not quite to the degree of the French Revolution where my herbs will demand “Off with Her head,” but it got me thinking… is there scientific proof behind my theory?

How to dry your herbs (image credit:

Yes! In fact, my method is (technically) called pruning.

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One day, I’ll be an old lady with ‘plants’

While others opted for companionships of animal-pets, I’ve opted for plants, specifically herbs. Not only are herbs easy to take care (no walking or picking up excrement needed) and fuss-free (water every other day), they also provide instant rewards — you can cook, brew tea and even make flavored syrup with them.

In terms of investment and return, they are worth the bucks. Kids on the other hand, call for 20+years of nurturing, and even after college (hefty tuition), they may still loiter around the house (see New York Times “Boomerang Kids Won’t Leave“).

But herbs, oh my goodness, I can’t sing enough of their praises. Consider your options: thyme, sage, basil, lavender… and within each category there are more than one variety. Take mint for example, within the group there are more than 20 species.

Starting an indoor herb garden (image credit:

Peppermint, spearmint, orange mint, lemon mint (lemon verbena, lemon balm), etc. They are an wonderful addition to tea, simply soak a few leaves in hot water. In fact, I’ve taken to keeping a pot of peppermint next to my work desk. Whenever I feel tired,  I’d pick a few leaves, chew and wait for the refreshing menthol taste to break.

And here are a few facts you may not have known about  herbs: Continue reading

Sunglasses and hotness? There’s science behind it

Post my trip to Brazil in early January this year, I eagerly showed my friend a picture of myself smoking a cigar at a local cigar bar. Looking at the eyes-hidden-behind-RayBan person, the following conversation ensued:

Friend (F): Wow, who’s that girl — she’s hot!
Me (M): Wait, you serious? That’s me.
F: No way, she does not look like you. She’s… she’s hot.
M: Hum, translation: you are saying that I will be hot if I cover my entire face with sunglasses.

Thanks, seriously, for that compliment. 

But could it be, could it possibly be true that people are infinitely hotter with shades on? New York Magazine reports ‘YES.’


(image credit: Ford)

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Q&A with Five Star co-star John Diaz

Five Star: John DiazJohn Diaz (21) walks into the café with his usual swagger. The 6-foot-2, 150 pounds actor looks like Ichabod Crane – a lanky beanstalk but way better-looking. In Five Star, Diaz plays a young man who struggles with his identity – should he, like his deceased father, go down the path of gang life? The movie, which will be shown at the Tribeca Film Festival, blends fiction and reality. It is a coming-of-age story where Diaz discovers the meaning of manhood.

Born and raised in New York, Diaz lives with his mother and older sister in Lower East Side. He had not always wanted to be an actor. In middle school, his dream was to play for the Yankees. But after listening to Diana Ross’ daughter speaking about how fun it was to act, Diaz decided that he would become an actor. Because an actor gets to live a different life every time he walks on set. He took theater classes in high school and studied performance art at Nazareth College. He dropped out after eight credits. Six months after his return home, he was casted for Five Star.

Part Puerto Rican, part white and black, Diaz raps and models on the side. The young star shares what it was like working with Keith Miller for the past two years. Continue reading