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Life after the kids leave: Navigating changes and embracing empty nest syndrome

<p>As your children grow up and go to college, you dread the day they will leave your nest. When they finally leave, it is natural to feel empty and miss the familiar echoes of laughter around the dinner table. While feeling a sense of loss is natural for every parent, it shouldn’t linger. When the feeling lingers, it becomes the empty nest syndrome.</p> <h2>What Is Empty Nest Syndrome?</h2> <p>Empty nest syndrome is an emotional phase and a sense of loss that parents experience when children leave home. Your children becoming adults and leaving your nest symbolises the end of active parenting responsibilities. Since you are uncertain about what to do with the free time on your hands, you may experience a loss of identity and purpose. You have fewer chores and miss your children.</p> <p>When you have empty nest syndrome, you experience a mix of emotions. You may feel lonely and sad in an empty house. The feeling lasts a few days or weeks, but for others, it is intense and may stir up anxiety. If you have empty nest syndrome, you may feel a sense of redundancy and persistent sadness. With no more school runs and daily involvement in your kids’ lives, it’s easy to feel redundant in their lives, leaving you with a lingering sadness and restlessness.</p> <h2>How to Deal with Empty Nest Syndrome</h2> <p>If you are experiencing empty nest syndrome, you can take the following steps to live a fulfilling life:</p> <p><strong>Set New Goals</strong></p> <p>The sudden quietness that comes with children leaving the house can be jarring. However, in the silence awaits a new chapter of your life that starts with you setting new goals. Think about what you want to learn or try out, and write down the steps you need to get there. Whether it is travelling the world or picking up a new hobby, you can achieve self-fulfilment.</p> <p><strong>Identify New Ways to Strengthen Family Bonds</strong></p> <p>You need to redefine your relationships with your children and partner. Your parenting role takes centre stage in your life. As the nest empties, you have a chance to nurture the bond with your partner. Discover each other's aspirations and dreams. You can travel the world together or find new hobbies as a couple. You also need to redefine your bond with your children. Understand that the relationship with your adult children is evolving. Stay connected to your kids, but ensure they have their independence.</p> <p><strong>Adapt Your Cooking Style for Two</strong></p> <p>When you have children at home, you cook for a large family, and you are always excited to prepare the next meal. As your children move out, you have to transition to cooking in a smaller household. Downsizing meals can be challenging when you are used to preparing a large pot of food. Portioning meals to avoid cooking excess food will be challenging at first. However, you can find meal kits from meal delivery services, such as <a href="https://www.hellofresh.com.au/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener">HelloFresh</a>, that offer meal kits for two. Most meal delivery services send pre-portioned ingredients to prevent food waste.</p> <h2>Discovering New Hobbies to Bring Joy and Fulfilment</h2> <p>Reduce your empty nest symptoms by finding new, exciting activities. Having new hobbies gives you a sense of fulfilment and takes up your time. Consider learning new hobbies like gardening, writing or volunteering. Join a club in the community or volunteer programs. It’s a great way to meet new people and fill up your free time with rewarding experiences.</p> <p>Empty nest syndrome is a period of transformation, and it’s important to maintain a positive attitude during this period. You can rediscover yourself and redefine your priorities. If there is a dream you had put on hold, you can pick it up.</p> <p><em>Image: Becca Tapert / Unsplash</em></p> <p><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with HelloFresh.</em></p>

Family & Pets

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Neighbours fan favourite leaving Ramsay Street after 30 years

<p>After 30 years on Ramsay Street, a fan favourite actor is saying goodbye to <em>Neighbours</em>. </p> <p>Ryan Moloney, known for his longstanding role as Jarrod ‘Toadfish’ Rebecchi, announced that he would be leaving the show in an announcement video posted to the <em>Neighbours</em> Instagram page. </p> <p>The 44-year-old actor introduced himself as “formerly Jarrod ‘Toadfish’ Rebecchi" before clarifying, "That’s right, I did say formerly, because after 30 years playing Toadie, I will be leaving Ramsay Street.”</p> <p>“I can’t tell you what is happening to the character – maybe I could be the next Jim Robinson. Or maybe I’ll be the next Harold Bishop and just keep popping back over the years.”</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C8tUG1GScZq/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C8tUG1GScZq/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Neighbours (@neighbours)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Moloney hinted at his career change saying he wanted to spend more time behind the camera and start working as a director. </p> <p>As part of his new career move, he shared that he’d just finished on his first <em>Neighbours</em> episode as a director.</p> <p>“Thank you all so much for all the love that you have shown me and Toadie over the years. For three decades, in fact. I’m going to miss you, I’m going to miss him, and I’m going to miss Erinsborough. But whatever you do, make sure you do not miss what is going to happen on Ramsay Street,” he said. </p> <p>The sudden news sent fans into a tizzy, with many sharing emotional reactions to the news as they prepared to farewell a character who has been with them since the 90s. </p> <p>“Omg What?! Toadie is iconic. Won’t be the same. Hopefully he comes back to Erinsborough for a visit,” wrote one viewer.</p> <p>“This is so sad! I hope he keeps ‘popping back’ to the street rather than die. I am going to miss toadie,” said another.</p> <p>Moloney made his <em>Neighbours</em> debut in 1995 as a teenager and stayed with the show until it was axed in 2022.</p> <p>He was then one of the returning cast members when the show was rebooted a year later.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Andy Barnes / FameFlynet.uk.com/Shutterstock Editorial </em></p> <p> </p>

TV

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Sleep wrinkles are real. Here’s how they leave their mark

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/yousuf-mohammed-858232">Yousuf Mohammed</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/khanh-phan-1489820">Khanh Phan</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/vania-rodrigues-leite-e-silva-1497208">Vania Rodrigues Leite E. Silva</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a></em></p> <p>You wake up, stagger to the bathroom and gaze into the mirror. No, you’re not imagining it. You’ve developed face wrinkles overnight. They’re sleep wrinkles.</p> <p>Sleep wrinkles are temporary. But as your skin loses its elasticity as you age, they can set in.</p> <p>Here’s what you can do to minimise the chance of them forming in the first place.</p> <h2>How side-sleeping affects your face</h2> <p>Your skin wrinkles for a number of reasons, including ageing, sun damage, smoking, poor hydration, habitual facial expressions (such as grinning, pouting, frowning, squinting) and sleeping positions.</p> <p>When you sleep on your side or stomach, your face skin is <a href="https://academic.oup.com/asj/article/36/8/931/2613967">squeezed and crushed</a> a lot more than if you sleep on your back. When you sleep on your side or stomach, gravity presses your face against the pillow. Your face skin is distorted as your skin is stretched, compressed and pulled in all directions as you move about in your sleep.</p> <p>You can reduce these external forces acting on the face by sleeping on your back or changing positions frequently.</p> <h2>Doctors can tell which side you sleep on by looking at your face</h2> <p>In a young face, sleep wrinkles are transient and disappear after waking.</p> <p>Temporary sleep wrinkles can become persistent with time and repetition. As we <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19624425/">age</a>, our skin <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22233477/">loses elasticity</a> (recoil) and extensibility (stretch), creating <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27329660/">ideal conditions</a> for sleep wrinkles or lines to set in and last longer.</p> <p>The time spent in each sleeping position, the magnitude of external forces applied to each area of the face, as well as the surface area of contact with the pillow surface, also <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27329660/">affects</a> the pattern and rate of sleep wrinkle formation.</p> <p>Skin specialists can often recognise this. People who favour sleeping on one side of their body tend to have a flatter face on their sleeping side and more visible sleep lines.</p> <h2>Can a night skincare routine avoid sleep wrinkles?</h2> <p>Collagen and elastin are two primary components of the dermis (inner layer) of skin. They form the skin structure and maintain the elasticity of skin.</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=395&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=395&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=395&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=496&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=496&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/593034/original/file-20240509-16-hz2ha3.jpg?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=496&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="Skin structure" /><figcaption><span class="caption">The dermis is the inner layer of skin.</span> <span class="attribution"><a class="source" href="https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/skin-structure-old-young-1707589036">mermaid3/Shutterstock</a></span></figcaption></figure> <p>Supplementing collagen through skincare routines to enhance skin elasticity can <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32799362/">help reduce</a> wrinkle formation.</p> <p><a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30287361/">Hyaluronic</a> acid is a naturally occurring molecule in human bodies. It holds our skin’s collagen and elastin in a proper configuration, stimulates the production of <a href="https://www.mdpi.com/1420-3049/26/15/4429">collagen</a> and adds hydration, which can help slow down wrinkle formation. Hyaluronic acid is one of the most common <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30287361/">active ingredients</a> in skincare creams, gels and lotions.</p> <p>Moisturisers can hydrate the skin in <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1473-2165.2009.00421.x">different ways</a>. “Occlusive” substances produce a thin layer of oil on the skin that prevents water loss due to evaporation. “Humectants” attract and hold water in the skin, and they can differ in their capacity to bind with water, which influences the degree of skin hydration.</p> <h2>Do silk pillowcases actually make a difference?</h2> <p>Silk pillowcases can make a difference in wrinkle formation, if they let your skin glide and move, rather than adding friction and pressure on a single spot. If you can, use silk sheets and silk pillows.</p> <p>Studies have also <a href="https://academic.oup.com/asj/article/36/8/931/2613967">shown</a> pillows designed to reduce mechanical stress during sleep can prevent skin deformations. Such a pillow <a href="https://www.scirp.org/journal/paperinformation?paperid=67035#:%7E:text=Introduction-,The%20duration%20of%20sleep%20and%20the%20position%20of%20the%20face,permanent%20sleep%20lines%20with%20time.">could be useful</a> in slowing down and preventing the formation of certain facial wrinkles.</p> <p>Sleeping on your back can reduce the risk of sleep lines, as can a nighttime routine of moisturising before sleep.</p> <p>Otherwise, lifestyle choices and habits, such quitting smoking, drinking plenty of water, a healthy diet (eating enough vegetables, <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07315724.2001.10719017?casa_token=uD1flbkLyKUAAAAA%3AsMTWPmxzO3fGHAI41o80B_bWrGrOrvQFeJwF2FtIEnkd73Qmjvyhxr1-GO2kU8_Yc2LYgZp56DqHVg">fruits</a>, nuts, seeds, healthy fats, <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5452251/pdf/nutrients-09-00521.pdf">yogurt and other fermented foods</a>) and regular use of sunscreens can help improve the appearance of the skin on our face.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/217380/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/yousuf-mohammed-858232">Yousuf Mohammed</a>, Dermatology researcher, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/khanh-phan-1489820">Khanh Phan</a>, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Frazer Institute, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/vania-rodrigues-leite-e-silva-1497208">Vania Rodrigues Leite E. Silva</a>, Honorary Associate Professor, Frazer Institute, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/sleep-wrinkles-are-real-heres-how-they-leave-their-mark-217380">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Body

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“Selfish” husband leaves wife behind for first class upgrade on their honeymoon

<p dir="ltr">A woman has shared her frustration over a journey she took with her new husband to their honeymoon destination. </p> <p dir="ltr">The wife’s “selfish” husband was quick to ditch her on their way to Mexico for their honeymoon after he was offered an upgrade to business class. </p> <p dir="ltr">The woman took to Reddit to share the story of what began at the airport shortly after their wedding, while also explaining that as a frequent flyer, she had racked up a hefty amount of points. </p> <p dir="ltr">In comparison, her new husband is an anxious flyer, who often relies on her to keep him calm during take off and landing. </p> <p dir="ltr">“When I booked our flights I requested to use my points if an upgrade to business class became available, but made it clear I only wanted this upgrade if two seats became available... and then I basically forgot about it,” the wife explained in a Reddit thread.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Then comes the day of our flight. I was so excited for this trip, I checked us in online, all is going well, and then when we go to board, the employee scanning our boarding passes stops us.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“She says it seems that my husband was upgraded to business class, but only him and asks if that is okay.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The wife immediately replied, “No, we are on our honeymoon and would like to stay together”, however, her husband interjected, saying, “No it’s fine, I’ll go to business class.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Approximately 500 of her hard earned points went to his upgrade, while she was left alone in economy for the trip. </p> <p dir="ltr">Stunned by his response, she said: “I look at him in complete shock and he tells me that I fly all the time and have been in business class before, but he hasn’t. So he deserves a chance to experience it.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I see we are holding up the line, so I feel like I just need to agree and get on the plane.</p> <p dir="ltr">“To say I am p***ed off is an understatement.”</p> <p dir="ltr">After boarding the flight, the woman became overcome with emotion over her new husband’s actions. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Within maybe five to 10 minutes of sitting there, trying to hold back tears because my husband left me alone on our flight during our honeymoon — and use my points for his upgrade no less, he starts to text me saying he feels anxiety over flying.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Instead of expressing sympathy, she decided to ignore his texts.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I stopped looking at my phone,” the wife said.</p> <p dir="ltr">Just one hour into the flight, her husband began looking for her in economy class.</p> <p dir="ltr">“He comes to the back of the plane to find me, offers me half of his business class breakfast and asks me why I was ignoring him... because he was scared and needed me to tell him it’d be okay since I am such an experienced flyer,” she explained.</p> <p dir="ltr">“I told him maybe he should have thought about that before leaving me alone before our honeymoon even really began.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“He gets angry, tells me that this may be the only time he gets to fly business class and he was giving me half his breakfast to make up for it so I could at least be supportive of his genuine fear.”</p> <p dir="ltr">When they landed in Mexico, she tried to just “move on and forget” about what her husband did so they could enjoy their honeymoon.</p> <p dir="ltr">“But he guilt tripped me about not comforting him via text before take off and now I am wondering if I am being unreasonable and should have just let him enjoy his time in business class and assure him it’d be okay?” she wondered.</p> <p dir="ltr">She asked the internet whether she was being the a**hole for not being supportive of her husband.</p> <p dir="ltr">Many jumped to the wife’s defence, with one suggesting, “Definitely not the a**hole. Tell your husband actions have consequences and since he wanted to be in business class without you, he gets to fly without you. The fact he did this on your honeymoon trip just makes it worse.”</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p> <p> </p>

Travel Trouble

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Why Ita Buttrose chose to leave the ABC

<p>In her last week as the head of the ABC, Ita Buttrose has broken her silence on why she chose to step down from the role. </p> <p>Speaking with <em>Stellar</em> magazine ahead of International Women's Day, the 82-year-old journalist has clarified that her decision to leave the public broadcaster had “nothing to do with current events.”</p> <p>After serving her five-year term, reports have swirled that her departure is related to the December sacking of presenter Antoinette Lattouf, who was let go after she shared a social media post about the Israel Gaza war, in which she condemned the treatment of Palestinian civilians.</p> <p>Following the controversial sacking, more than 100 of ABC's union staff slammed managing director David Anderson triggering a vote of no confidence. </p> <p>Ms Buttrose supported Mr Anderson through the ordeal, declaring it’s “abhorrent and incorrect” that he showed a lack of support for independent journalists amid Ms Lattouf’s axing.</p> <p>Due to the chaos at the ABC, many speculated that Buttrose's departure was to escape the turmoil, but she has since refuted the claims. </p> <p>“I did notify the government and the minister Michelle Rowland in August last year that I was not going to seek another term,” Ms Buttrose told <em>Stellar</em>.</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/C366msrI_qc/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/C366msrI_qc/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Stellar (@stellarmag)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>“Five years is quite a long time to serve the ABC. I know some chairs have gone on and done a second term, but I’m conscious that I’m a woman of a certain age. And despite [US president] Joe Biden thinking he should run another term – I don’t think he should – sometimes you need to examine yourself and say, ‘Well, I am a person of a certain age and everything’s fine, and cognitively I’m good’ but still, weigh it up. Another five years. What would it be like?" </p> <p>“You have to know in yourself when you need to step aside. I felt that. It had nothing to do with any current events.”</p> <p>Ms Buttrose went on to defend questions surrounding outside influence on the national broadcaster.</p> <p>“The role of independence of the national broadcaster is paramount to what we do. It’s enshrined in legislation,” she said.</p> <p>“The ABC and I have never been influenced by outside lobbyists, people passionate about their particular cause as politicians, commercial interests, you name it." </p> <p>“The ABC has never caved in. I’ve never caved in. Neither has the managing director nor the board.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p>

Retirement Life

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"Cruel" shopper slammed for leaving dog in hot car

<p>A woman has been slammed on social media for allegedly leaving her dog in an unattended car for 40 minutes on a hot day. </p> <p>The incident occurred at Warringah Mall in Sydney's north on Monday, when temperatures reached up to 28 degrees.</p> <p>Claire, claimed the dog-owner pulled up next to her in an undercover car park, and then watched the woman leave her pet locked in an unattended car while she shopped. </p> <p>"Myself and my mother waited till she got back," she told <em>Yahoo News Australia</em>. </p> <p>"It was around 3.15pm and she didn’t come back till just before 4pm".</p> <p>During that time, Claire said she called security, who attempted to contact the owner via a mobile number on the dog's harness. She also tried calling the RSPCA and police but claimed that not much could be done.</p> <p>When the owner finally returned, Claire questioned her about leaving the "panting and drooling" animal unattended, but the woman reportedly  just "laughed and scoffed" before "driving away as quick as possible".</p> <p>Claire shared photos of the pup on Facebook  and criticised the owner, for her "absolute irresponsibility and disgusting behaviour", calling her an "absolute d**khead". </p> <p> "People like you should not own animals," she wrote. </p> <p>While many agreed that the woman's actions were "absolutely awful," a few others argued the act was fine as the car was undercover and "the dog doesn't look hot and distressed at all."</p> <p>Another person who claimed to know the owner, said that the woman's car "has an aircon function which allows the air-conditioning to run when the engine is not running" and the pet is generally "very spoiled and happy". </p> <p>A few others disagreed, and said that the act was "cruel" and "simply disgusting" regardless. </p> <p>"Undercover or not you don't lock a baby in a car, you don't lock an animal in a car ... no excuse," one wrote.</p> <p>An RSPCA spokesperson has also spoken out and said that leaving a dog inside a car unattended is "always dangerous" no matter the location or the temperature outside. </p> <p>They said that even on mild days, temperatures in a car can "rapidly heat up" and can reach "double" the outside temperature.</p> <p>"When it’s 22 degrees Celsius outside, the inside of a car can reach a stifling 47 degrees and this is no environment for a dog," the spokesperson said.</p> <p><em>Image: Facebook</em></p>

Family & Pets

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As Scott Morrison leaves parliament, where does he rank among Australian prime ministers?

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/paul-strangio-1232">Paul Strangio</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a></em></p> <p>This week Scott Morrison, Australia’s 30th prime minister, will deliver his valedictory speech to the House of Representatives. As Morrison leaves parliament, it’s timely to ask where he is placed in the pantheon of Australia’s national leaders.</p> <p>Already there have been unflattering verdicts on Morrison’s prime-ministerial standing. For example, in her withering account of his leadership, veteran columnist and author <a href="https://scribepublications.com.au/books-authors/books/bulldozed-9781922585981">Niki Savva writes</a> that among detractors, “Morrison was regarded as the worst prime minister since Billy McMahon”. Moreover, according to Savva, following the August 2022 revelation of his commandeering of five ministries during the COVID pandemic, his reputation sunk still lower: “he was worse than McMahon. Worse even than Tony Abbott, who lasted a scant two years in the job”.</p> <h2>How can we rank prime ministerial performance?</h2> <p>How might we know how Morrison’s record stacks up against his prime-ministerial peers? One device for evaluating comparative leadership performance is expert rankings. Australia has had a slow take-up in this field, unlike the United States, where presidential rankings have a lineage stretching back three-quarters of a century and are a veritable scholarly cottage industry.</p> <p>In recent years, there have been forays into this territory in Australia, with three prime-ministerial rankings conducted by newspapers and two initiated by Monash University in 2010 and 2020. (I was the organiser of both of these Monash rankings.)</p> <p>These rankings have been largely consistent in their results. The experts, mostly political historians and political scientists, have judged the nation’s greatest prime minister to be its second world war leader, John Curtin. The other leaders in the top echelon are, in rough order, Bob Hawke, Ben Chifley, Alfred Deakin, Robert Menzies, Andrew Fisher, John Howard, Paul Keating and Gough Whitlam.</p> <p>At the other end of the scale, Billy McMahon, who is chiefly remembered for being defeated by Labor’s Whitlam at the December 1972 election, thereby bringing to a close the Liberal Party’s postwar ascendancy, has been consistently rated Australia’s prime-ministerial dunce. Even his biographer, Patrick Mullins, acknowledges that McMahon has become “a by-word for failure, silliness, ridicule”.</p> <p>However, in the most recent of the rankings, the Monash 2020 survey, McMahon had a close competitor for bottom place: Tony Abbott. Forty-four out of 66 respondents to that survey assessed Abbott’s prime ministership a failure. Other prime ministers to the rear of the field included Abbott’s contemporaries, Kevin Rudd and Malcolm Turnbull.</p> <p>Morrison was not included in the 2020 rankings because as the incumbent his prime ministership was incomplete, and so it was premature to evaluate his performance. Let us now, though, measure his record against the nine benchmarks that the experts were asked to consider in rating the nation’s leaders.</p> <h2>So how does Morrison shape up?</h2> <p>The first is “effectively managing cabinet”. To date, little has been disclosed about the integrity of cabinet processes under Morrison’s stewardship. Yet, whatever the merits of that management, his scandalous breach of the norms of cabinet government by <a href="https://theconversation.com/view-from-the-hill-the-bell-report-on-morrisons-multi-ministries-provides-a-bad-character-reference-195368">secretly assuming several ministries</a> will irretrievably stain his reputation in this regard.</p> <p>Next is “maintaining support of Coalition/party”. That Morrison avoided being deposed by his party, which was the fate of his immediate predecessors (Rudd, Julia Gillard, Abbott and Turnbull), counts in his favour. As the ABC docuseries Nemesis shows, however, his prime ministership was marked by serious frictions both within the Liberal Party and between the Liberal and National coalition partners.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/gLXdXUwGrJs?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>“Demonstrating personal integrity”. This was not one of Morrison’s strong suits. As Savva makes searingly evident, and Nemesis also highlights, Morrison earned a reputation for being economical with the truth (including hiding his acquisition of colleagues’ ministries), for evading accountability and shifting blame (“I don’t hold a hose, mate”), and for corrupted processes under his watch (an example being the <a href="https://theconversation.com/more-sports-rort-questions-for-morrison-after-bridget-mckenzie-speaks-out-133160">shameless pork-barrelling</a> of the community sport infrastructure program in the lead-up to the 2019 election).</p> <p>“Leaving a significant policy legacy”. Here Morrison is partly damned by his own words. In office, he insisted he was not concerned about his legacy, equating the idea with a vanity project. Indeed, an obsession with the theatre of politics and a corresponding lack of substance caused his prime ministership to come to be seen as bereft of purpose.</p> <p>On the other hand, management of the COVID pandemic, however mixed, accords a significance to his time in office. AUKUS stands as the other major legacy of Morrison’s prime ministership, entrenched as it has been by his successor, Anthony Albanese. The agreement promises to influence Australia’s defence capability until the middle of this century and beyond, although only time will tell whether it enhances the nation’s security or is a dangerous white elephant.</p> <p>“Relationship with the electorate”. Morrison’s record here is mixed. In his favour, he won an election (something McMahon couldn’t claim). Yet, by the time of the 2022 election, according to the Australian Election Study, he was the least popular major party leader in the history of that survey, which dates back to the 1980s.</p> <p>His public toxicity was a primary factor in the Coalition’s defeat, one of his Liberal colleagues comparing the depth of public sentiment against the prime minister in 2022 to “having a 10,000-tonne boulder attached to your leg”.</p> <p>“Communication effectiveness”. Styling himself as a Cronulla Sharks-supporting “daggy dad” from the suburbs, at least initially Morrison’s communication mode seemed to be well received in the community. He was relentlessly on message during the 2019 election campaign.</p> <p>But the shine rapidly wore off his persona following that victory, with growing doubts about his authenticity. Rather than persuade, his habit was to hector, and rather than empathise, he exuded smugness. A series of notorious tin-eared statements, which especially alienated women voters, came to define his image. By the end he was known as the “bulldozer-in-chief”.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/yamdw5VeNtA?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>“Nurturing national unity”. An innovation of Morrison’s at the beginning of the pandemic was the national cabinet. Bringing together the prime minister and premiers, it worked effectively for a time, only for partisan interests over lockdowns to strain relations between Canberra and the states.</p> <p>Under pressure, Morrison also flirted with divisive culture-war politics, instances being his divisive Religious Discrimination Bill and his egregious handpicking of the anti-transgender Liberal candidate Katherine Deves to contest the 2022 election.</p> <p>“Defending and promoting Australia’s interests abroad”. The AUKUS pact has vehement critics, led by Morrison’s prime-ministerial peers Keating and Turnbull, who argue it jeopardises national sovereignty.</p> <p>There is no denying, however, that AUKUS was Morrison’s signature foreign policy enterprise. On the other hand, Australia’s reputation as a laggard on climate change under the Coalition hurt our international standing, not least among Pacific neighbours. The Morrison government’s belated commitment to a net zero carbon emissions by 2050 target was too little, too late. Bellicose rhetoric towards Beijing also led to a deterioration in relations with the nation’s major trading partner (as well as estranging Chinese-Australian voters).</p> <p>“Being able to manage turbulent times”. Here, again, Morrison’s record is at best mixed. In his favour is decisive early actions to ameliorate the COVID pandemic, headed by the JobKeeper program. As the pandemic progressed, however, his government was too often flat-footed, demonstrated by its dilatory approach to procuring vaccines. His response to natural disasters, most notably the 2019-20 Black Summer bushfires, was another shortcoming, exemplified by his secret holiday to Hawaii in the midst of the crisis. Arguably, his prime ministership was doomed from that moment.</p> <h2>And the verdict?</h2> <p>Prime-ministerial reputations can take time to settle. The passing of years fleshes out historical knowledge as well as providing greater perspective on performance in office. For example, the fate of AUKUS will quite possibly affect Morrison’s standing well into the future.</p> <p>Even allowing for this, it seems safe to forecast that Morrison will be rated among the least distinguished of Australian prime ministers. His government’s relatively successful early management of the COVID pandemic and the legacy of AUKUS might spare him from falling below McMahon and Abbott at the bottom of the prime-ministerial heap. But avoiding that ignominy will probably be a close-run thing.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/223003/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/paul-strangio-1232">Paul Strangio</a>, Emeritus professor of politics, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/as-scott-morrison-leaves-parliament-where-does-he-rank-among-australian-prime-ministers-223003">original article</a>.</em></p>

Retirement Life

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"I think I'm done": The question that made Woolies CEO leave interview

<p>Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci has cracked under the pressure during a tense interview with ABC's <em>Four Corners</em>. </p> <p>The supermarket boss sat down with reporter Angus Grigg as part of a deep dive into the supermarket industry in Australia amid the ACCC's investigation into allegations of unfair price gouging.</p> <p>The program questioned how supermarkets have been profiting from rising prices amidst the cost of living crisis and spoke with a number of key players, including Banducci and Coles boss Leah Weckert. </p> <p>The supermarkets have long denied the allegations have since become the focus of investigations by both the Senate and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).</p> <p>“Rod Sims, the former head of the ACCC, says that we have one of the most concentrated supermarket [sectors] in the world, is he lying?” Griggs asked Banducci.</p> <p>“It’s not true. [He’s] retired, by the way,” Banducci said.</p> <p>The comment caught Griggs off guard, to which he responded, “I don’t think you would impugn his integrity and his understanding of competition law. He retired 18 months ago.”</p> <p>Banducci then began to appear agitated and asked if his comments could be removed.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">This is what happened when Four Corners asked Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci about the lack of competition in the Australian grocery market. </p> <p>Watch the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/4Corners?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#4Corners</a> documentary tonight: <a href="https://t.co/dDRYGLaw2i">https://t.co/dDRYGLaw2i</a> <a href="https://t.co/bsrJD9IETB">pic.twitter.com/bsrJD9IETB</a></p> <p>— ABC News (@abcnews) <a href="https://twitter.com/abcnews/status/1759391473567490367?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">February 19, 2024</a></p></blockquote> <p>“Can we take that out? Is that ok? Angus, are we going to leave it in?” he said.</p> <p>“I shouldn’t have said that about Rod, about him being retired. I mean, he is retired, but I shouldn’t have said that. Are we going to leave that in there?”</p> <p>Upon being told that his comments were “on the record” and would not be taken out, Banducci said, “I think I’m done guys.”</p> <p>“I do this with good intent, and I don’t do this with bad intent,” he said as he walked away.</p> <p>“Really, you’re walking out?” Grigg asked.</p> <p>Banducci then disappeared from view, reportedly to talk with his PR team, before returning a few moments later to complete the interview.</p> <p>Speaking to <em>ABC’s News Breakfast </em>on Monday after the episode aired, Griggs called the move “pretty startling”.</p> <p>“I think it shows you that, there you have the boss of the largest supermarket chain in the country really unwilling to face too many questions,” he said. </p> <p>“It shows how little scrutiny they’ve had over the years and I think that’s a really big problem.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: ABC</em></p>

Money & Banking

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Boss slammed for demanding an employee complete work during annual leave

<p dir="ltr">A boss has been dubbed an “abysmal manager” for demanding his employee join a video call for work, despite being on annual leave. </p> <p dir="ltr">Businessman Ben Askins, who has dedicated his TikTok account to calling out unacceptable workplace behaviour, read out the text exchange between the man and his boss, who quickly became unreasonable in his demands. </p> <p dir="ltr">The first message came from the man’s boss, who asked “Where are you? Haven’t seen you at your desk today? I need to run something by you.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The employee responded, reminding his boss that he was off on pre-approved annual leave, and was enjoying a holiday abroad in Spain. </p> <p dir="ltr">Despite his holiday, the employee still offered to help, saying he could “probably jump on a quick call when I am on the bus from the airport if it is really urgent.”</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C2QFCsgtSoS/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/reel/C2QFCsgtSoS/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by Ben Askins (@benaskins.official)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p dir="ltr">Unhappy with the compromise, the demanding boss then asked if the employee would “jump on a Zoom call when you get to the hotel” as he would “prefer to do this in person”. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Sorry, not really possible, we have a really packed schedule,” the worker replied to his boss, to which the manager hit back with, “Damn, wish you had told me that you were on annual leave.”</p> <p dir="ltr">The man reminded his boss he had signed off his leave two months prior and it was “in the system” but he came back saying, “Lol as if I would remember that. It is poor form for you to not remind me.”</p> <p dir="ltr">As Ben continued to read the text exchange, he added his own commentary on the situation, saying, “It's your job to remember that, it's not his fault you're just being unbelievably shocking at yours.”</p> <p dir="ltr">“This is so bad, this poor employee has done everything right; he's got it signed off two months in advance, he's done all the handover, he's done everything he could have done,' Ben ranted. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Because the manager is shocking, it's now impacting the employee's holiday. I just hate it when that happens.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Ben, a self-described “champion of younger gens in the workplace” said the heated chat showed the boss's “really poor” form and “abysmal management”. </p> <p dir="ltr">“What are you doing being so unorganised? Because the problem when an unorganised manager happens it hits down to the team below him - what the hell he's playing at? I have no idea,” he said. </p> <p dir="ltr">Ben's clip was viewed more than 2.3million and had users fired up, with thousands of comments flooding in in support of the burnt out employee trying to enjoy his holiday. </p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Instagram </em></p> <p> </p>

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Senior changes will to leave fortune to pets instead of family

<p>An elderly woman in China has decided to leave her $A4.3 million fortune to her pets instead of her three children, after she claims they never visited or took care of her when she was sick. </p> <p>The Shanghai woman, known by her last name Liu, drafted the will a few years ago according to the <a href="https://www.scmp.com/news/people-culture/trending-china/article/3248592/elderly-china-woman-leaves-us28-million-assets-beloved-pets-instead-children-who-never-visited-even" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>South China Morning Post</em></a>. </p> <p>However, as her three children rarely contacted her, and left her on her own while she was sick, Liu decided her cats and dogs were more deserving of her multi-million dollar fortune, and changed her will. </p> <p>Chen Kai, an official from the China’s Will Registration Centre headquarters, told her that leaving her entire inheritance to animals is illegal in China, but there is a way for her to ensure her pets get taken care of. </p> <p>“Liu’s current will is one way, and we would have advised her to appoint a person she trusts to supervise the vet clinic to ensure the pets are properly cared for,” he told the <em>South China Morning Post</em>. </p> <p>Another official added that Liu could always change her mind, if her children changed their attitude. </p> <p>“We told Auntie Liu that if her children change their attitude towards her, she could always alter her will again,” the official said. </p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p> <p> </p>

Family & Pets

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Christmas drinks anyone? Why alcohol before bedtime leaves you awake at 3am, desperate for sleep

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/madeline-sprajcer-1315489">Madeline Sprajcer</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/charlotte-gupta-347235">Charlotte Gupta</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/chris-irwin-249481">Chris Irwin</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/grace-vincent-1484516">Grace Vincent</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/saman-khalesi-366871">Saman Khalesi</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a></em></p> <p>You’ve come home after a long day at work, you have dinner, put the kids to bed, and then you have your usual nightcap before drifting off to sleep. Or, perhaps you’re at the pub for the work Christmas party, and you think you’ll just have one more drink before heading home.</p> <p>That last drink might help you fall asleep easily. But your nightcap can also wreck a good night’s sleep. How could it do both?</p> <p>Here’s what’s going on in your body when you drink alcohol just before bedtime. And if you want to drink at the Christmas party, we have some tips on how to protect your sleep.</p> <h2>What happens to my body when I drink?</h2> <p>Soon after you drink, alcohol enters your bloodstream and travels to your brain.</p> <p><a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/j.1530-0277.1998.tb03695.x">There</a>, it affects chemical messengers known as neurotransmitters and <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2700603/">slows down communication</a> between nerve cells.</p> <p>Certain <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4040959/">regions of the brain</a> are particularly vulnerable to the effects of alcohol. When alcohol interacts with cells in these regions, the <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6826822/">overall effect</a> leads to those characteristic feelings of relaxation, lowered inhibitions, slurred speech, and may induce feelings of drowsiness and lethargy.</p> <p>Alcohol can also have immediate effects on the heart and circulatory system. Blood vessels widen, resulting in a <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11906-021-01160-7">drop in blood pressure</a>, which can make you feel dizzy or lightheaded.</p> <h2>What happens soon after a nightcap?</h2> <p>Drinking alcohol before sleeping is like flipping a switch. At first, alcohol has a <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6826822/">sedative effect</a> and you will probably feel <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23347102/">more relaxed</a> and <a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-62227-0#:%7E:text=In%20this%20large%2C%20population%20based,sleep%20(cross%20sectional%20analyses).">drift off easily</a>.</p> <p>At this point, you still have a high level of alcohol in your blood. But don’t be fooled. As your body <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5821259/">processes the alcohol</a>, and the night goes on, alcohol actually <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/acer.12621">disrupts your sleep</a>.</p> <h2>And later that night?</h2> <p>As your body processes the alcohol and your blood alcohol level drops, your brain rebounds from the drowsiness you would have felt earlier in the night.</p> <p>This disturbs your sleep, and can wake you up <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1300/J465v26n01_01">multiple times</a>, particularly in the second half of the night. You may also have vivid and stressful <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5821259/">dreams</a>.</p> <p>This sleep disruption is mainly to the deep, “rapid eye movement” or REM sleep.</p> <p>This type of sleep plays an important role in regulating your emotions and for your cognitive function. So not getting enough explains why you wake up feeling pretty lousy and groggy.</p> <p>Drinking alcohol before bedtime also tends to mean you <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2775419/?source=post_page---------------------------">sleep less overall</a>, meaning important rest and recharge time is cut short.</p> <p>There are also <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31234199/">long-term impacts</a> of alcohol on sleep. Moderate and heavy drinkers consistently have <a href="https://academic.oup.com/sleepadvances/article/3/1/zpac023/6632721">poor sleep quality</a> and more <a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-62227-0#:%7E:text=In%20this%20large%2C%20population%20based,sleep%20(cross%20sectional%20analyses).">sleep disturbances</a> over time.</p> <h2>How about the Christmas party then?</h2> <p>If you plan to drink this holiday season, here are some tips to minimise the effect of alcohol on your sleep:</p> <ul> <li> <p><strong>swap every other drink</strong>. Try swapping every second drink for a non-alcoholic drink. The more alcohol you drink, <a href="https://academic.oup.com/sleep/article/44/1/zsaa135/5871424?casa_token=okbJAuf8TXUAAAAA:ye_q-DACToxvj8H3IVaiKrjNkDhHZnl-LKJdds3iteaKyzJFuHUzitlRv45DqxNO-FraDRAlQMV53z8">the more</a> sleep disruption you can expect. Reducing how much you drink in any one sitting can minimise the effect on your sleep</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>avoid drinking alcohol close to bedtime</strong>. If you give your body a chance to process the alcohol before you go to sleep, your sleep will be less disrupted</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>eat while you drink</strong>. Drinking on an empty stomach is going to worsen the effects of alcohol as the alcohol will be absorbed <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/j.1467-3010.2006.00588.x?casa_token=TQiCqcbasYAAAAAA:GbEvnTT82aB3_sPfmJLOQXIV3ivjnbZdIoP2_XZBa8IDZ0YLaPxNfE6DMHLgH7obnpA22VDsM4vyGZV4dQ">faster</a>. So try to eat something while you’re drinking</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>ditch the espresso martinis and other caffeinated drinks</strong>. <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1087079207000937?casa_token=NJsobF-C-vwAAAAA:opzPjrglPdZTwXEo7rHil5vm0a1K3KmXw9vp0Het-eRHZEWbfRAA40vgicU3Z5kC8x7uEJF39C8">Caffeine</a> can make it hard to get to sleep, and hard to stay asleep</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>be careful if you have sleep apnoea</strong>. People who have sleep apnoea (when their upper airway is repeatedly blocked during sleep) can be even more impacted by drinking alcohol. That’s because alcohol can act as a muscle relaxant, <a href="https://academic.oup.com/sleep/article/5/4/318/2753287">leading to</a> more snoring, and lower oxygen levels in the blood. If you have sleep apnoea, limiting how much alcohol you drink is the best way to avoid these effects</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>drink plenty of water</strong>. Staying hydrated will help you <a href="https://academic.oup.com/sleep/article/42/2/zsy210/5155420">sleep better</a> and will hopefully stave off the worst of tomorrow’s hangover.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/216834/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> </li> </ul> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/madeline-sprajcer-1315489">Madeline Sprajcer</a>, Lecturer in Psychology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/charlotte-gupta-347235">Charlotte Gupta</a>, Postdoctoral research fellow, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/chris-irwin-249481">Chris Irwin</a>, Senior Lecturer in Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Health Sciences &amp; Social Work, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/griffith-university-828">Griffith University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/grace-vincent-1484516">Grace Vincent</a>, Senior Lecturer, Appleton Institute, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/saman-khalesi-366871">Saman Khalesi</a>, Senior Lecturer and Discipline Lead in Nutrition, School of Health, Medical and Applied Sciences, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/cquniversity-australia-2140">CQUniversity Australia</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/christmas-drinks-anyone-why-alcohol-before-bedtime-leaves-you-awake-at-3am-desperate-for-sleep-216834">original article</a>.</em></p>

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Ultimate holiday hack to turn just 17 days of leave into 45 days of leisure

<p>As we bid a fond farewell to 2023, it's time to embark on a journey to the land of strategic annual leave planning!</p> <p>If you've ever dreamed of turning 17 days into a mind-blowing 45 days of leisure, all while maintaining the illusion that you're a dedicated worker, you're in for a treat. Let's delve into the art of time manipulation, the Australian way!</p> <p><strong>1. The Great Christmas/New Year Escape: 10 Days of Holiday Magic</strong></p> <p>Picture this: You, sipping a cocktail on a beach, far, far away from workplace shenanigans. To achieve this utopia, sacrifice a mere three workdays from December 27–29, and voila! You've magically transformed a three-day leave into a decadent ten-day escapade. Christmas and New Year's resolutions? More like "Avoiding Office Drama and Perfecting My Tan".</p> <p><strong>2. Australia Day 2024: Because One Long Weekend Isn't Enough</strong></p> <p>To those who believe in the power of the long weekend, rejoice! By judiciously taking a single day off on January 29, you can extend the Australia Day break into a glorious four-day affair. This means more time for BBQs, cricket, and pretending to understand the rules of cricket.</p> <p><strong>3. The Great Easter Egg Hunt (for Extra Leave Days): 10 Days of Bunny Bliss</strong></p> <p>Hop into Easter with a bang by utilising four days of leave (April 2–5). This cunning plan transforms a regular four-day weekend into a lavish ten-day extravaganza. You'll have so much time; you might even consider crafting an intricate Easter egg treasure map for your colleagues. After all, sharing is caring.</p> <p><strong>4. ANZAC Day 2024: A Gallant Nine-Day Journey</strong></p> <p>For those who appreciate a good remembrance day, why not remember to take four days off? By strategically choosing your leave days around ANZAC Day, you can turn a regular nine-to-five existence into a leisurely nine-day bliss. It's the perfect opportunity to reflect on the sacrifices of the past while contemplating your sacrifice of precious annual leave for maximum leisure.</p> <p><strong>5. The Grand Finale: Christmas and New Year 2024/25</strong></p> <p>Looking to dominate the festive season and secure a 12-day break? Fear not! By cunningly using five days of leave (December 23–31), you can transform a modest two-day weekend into a 12-day holiday bonanza. It's like taking a break in 2025 while still clinging desperately to the end of 2024. Time travel, anyone?</p> <p>In conclusion, dear Aussie worker bees, remember that strategic annual leave planning is an art, a dance between days off and public holidays. While others are stuck in the mundane, you'll be sipping piña coladas in your time-warped holiday paradise.</p> <p>So go forth, plan wisely, and may your leave days be as abundant as your laughter during this comedic time-travel adventure!</p> <p><em>Image: Getty </em></p>

Travel Tips

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Kyle Sandilands leaves brutal voicemail for Steve Price

<p>In the latest episode of "Australia's Got Voicemails", shock jock extraordinaire Kyle Sandilands unleashed a verbal tempest upon fellow broadcaster Steve Price. What sparked this war of words? Apparently, Price had the audacity to <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/entertainment/tv/steve-price-slams-buffoon-kyle-sandilands-over-move-to-melbourne-airwaves" target="_blank" rel="noopener">label Sandilands a "grubby buffoon"</a> on national television. And you thought your family gatherings were awkward.</p> <p>Let's rewind to the moment when Price, with all the subtlety of a kangaroo in a china shop, decided to throw some shade on <em>The Project</em>. With the finesse of a wordsmith, Price declared, "I don't think grubby buffoons work in Melbourne." Ouch. Melbourne, known for its coffee, culture, and now apparently, a grubby buffoon ban.</p> <p>In response, Sandilands, not one to be outdone in the art of verbal gymnastics, left Price a voicemail that would make a sailor blush. "Hey, you piece of sh*t," Sandilands began, setting the tone for a heartfelt exchange of pleasantries, "we’ve spoken before, last time you forgot that you’re not allowed to mouth off about me.</p> <p>“Steve, it’s Kyle obviously, there is probably a long list of people who ring you.</p> <p>“Again just surprised at your feigned reaction on The Project, can’t you just be yourself? Can’t you just say your true thoughts? I can’t wait to see you face-to-face buddy, it’s been too long.</p> <p>“It’s disappointing that as you’ve gotten older you have turned into a real piece of sh*t. Feel free to play this on tonight’s Project because that’s the last gig you will ever have.</p> <p>"See you mate, by the way love the alcoholic nose, bye bro.”</p> <p>Despite the verbal thrashing, Price seemed unconcerned. "I described him as a grubby buffoon, and that's it," <a href="https://www.heraldsun.com.au/entertainment/page-13/pieceofsh-radio-war-of-words-between-steve-price-heats-up-with-veiled-threats/news-story/ed616773a1064b8e8afd8e448977b40b" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Price retorted</a>, probably sipping tea and counting the days until the next headline-grabbing voicemail. It's all in a day's work for a grizzled commentator who's clearly impervious to verbal beatdowns.</p> <p>In the grand tradition of radio feuds, this clash of titans unfolded after Sandilands and his partner-in-crime, Jackie 'O' Henderson, inked a jaw-dropping $200 million deal live on air.</p> <p>As the radio waves settle from this tempestuous encounter, we can't help but marvel at the drama that unfolds in the seemingly mundane world of talk radio. Who needs reality TV when you have Australian broadcasters providing this level of entertainment?</p> <p>In the end, whether it's a buffoon's brawl or a radio roast, one thing's for sure – the Australian airwaves are never short of surprises. Tune in next time for another episode of <em>He Said, He Said</em>, where words are sharper than claws, and feuds are settled with voicemails, not handshakes.</p> <p><em>Images: Network Ten / KIIS FM</em></p>

TV

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No more brown leaves: sage advice from a gardening expert

<p>We’ve all been there before. We’re watering our seemingly healthy houseplant when suddenly there it is: a tinge of brown on the plant’s leaf. Yikes. But what do brown tips on leaves mean for your plant, and what can you do to make them go away? Read on to find out.</p> <p><strong>Lack of water or humidity</strong></p> <p>If your plant is sporting crispy, dark, or brown tips on its leaves, it may mean you need to water more often. Check the soil moisture and slowly reduce the number of days in between watering. Watch your plants for signs of improvement.</p> <p>Lack of humidity could also be the cause. Tropical plants prefer higher humidity levels than we have in our homes. When we turn on the heat in winter, there’s even less moisture in the air. Group plants together so that as one loses moisture through its leaves, the neighbours benefit. Or place plants on saucers or trays filled with pebbles and water. Set a pot on the pebbles above the water. As the water evaporates, it will increase the humidity around the plant, where it is needed.</p> <p><strong>Lack of nutrients</strong></p> <p>A lack of key nutrients may be behind the brown tips on leaves of your plant. Burned-looking leaf tips, or old leaves with dark green or reddish-purplish colouring, may indicate a phosphorus deficiency. With a potassium deficiency, you may see yellow or brown along older leaf tips and edges, yellowing between veins, curling leaves, or spotting.</p> <p>For potted plants, add a slow-release type of fertiliser to the soil mix before planting. Every time you water, a little fertiliser is released, providing a steady flow of nutrients. But depending on the growing conditions and number of plants in the container, a midseason boost may be needed. Stay on top of your fertiliser applications by making notes on a calendar.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p> <p><em>This article originally appeared on <a href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/food-home-garden/gardening-tips/why-does-my-plant-have-brown-tips-on-the-leaves" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Reader's Digest</a>. </em></p>

Home & Garden

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"He leaves a broken state behind him": Aussies react to Dan Andrews' resignation

<p>Victorian premier Dan Andrews has announced he will be resigning from his role after nine years in the job, prompting a very mixed response from Aussies. </p> <p>Andrews made the announcement on Tuesday, describing his time as premier as the “honour and privilege of my life”.</p> <p>For many Aussies, the news of his resignation came as a shock, with the announcement prompting a wave of mixed responses. </p> <p>Victorian Opposition Leader John Pesutto had one of the strongest reactions to the news, saying Mr Andrews had “trashed Victoria’s reputation”.</p> <p>“I wish Daniel Andrews well. But we have to face the facts. He’s leaving because Victoria, under his leadership, is falling apart,” he said. </p> <p>Shadow Immigration Minister Dan Tehan also had little nice to say about the outgoing premier, claiming he made the state of Victoria “poorer” while in the top job.</p> <p>“I think he’ll be remembered as a very good politician, very good at politics, but I think, sadly, over time, his legacy is going to be one in which he made the state of Victoria poorer, and he made Victorians poorer,” Mr Tehan said via <em>Sky News Australia</em>.</p> <p>“While we wish him and his family well, the sad reality is it’s Victorians who are going to have to pick up the pieces of his nine years in charge of this state.”</p> <p>Throughout his time as premier, Andrews attracted his fair amount of controversy, particularly around his harsh stance on Covid lockdowns, which saw Melbourne go through one of the longest continuous lockdowns on the planet.</p> <p>One of Mr Andrews’ biggest critics, <em>3AW</em> host Neil Mitchell, was also thrilled to bid the premier farewell, telling him, “Let’s hope we don’t see you in public life again”. </p> <p>He told <em>3AW</em> Mr Andrews had done “enormous damage to Victoria” and claimed to have been predicting his resignation for months. </p> <p>“I reckon he’s been thinking for some time. He’s been out of sorts for months. He’s been making unusual political errors. He’s seemed disinterested, he’s snappy at press conferences. I’ve said on air for some months, ‘he’s thinking about getting out’,” Mitchell said, adding “It’s time for him to go”.</p> <p>Liberal Party powerbroker Michael Kroger argued that Mr Andrews had over the years “got away with murder”, politically speaking.</p> <p>“Record debt. Small businesses are still broken and have not recovered from these extreme measures during the lockdown,’’ Mr Kroger told <em>Sky News</em>.</p> <p>“He leaves a broken, bankrupt state behind him. That’s his legacy. The financial recklessness of Daniel Andrews is unprecedented. And will take a generation to recover from."</p> <p>“Victoria will be better for Daniel Andrews having left today.”</p> <p>Despite many harsh words from his critics, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese was quick to praise Andrews' time as premier. </p> <p>He wrote in a lengthy post on Facebook that it had been a pleasure working “alongside an old friend”. </p> <p>“Daniel Andrews is a person of deep conviction, great compassion and fierce determination and he brought all those qualities to his time as Premier of Victoria,” Mr Albanese said. </p> <p>“As Prime Minister, it was a pleasure for me to work alongside an old friend – and a leader of such vision and ambition. It made a huge difference to sit at the National Cabinet table with someone who believed so deeply in the power of government to change lives for the better."</p> <p>“Nearly nine years as Premier is a remarkable achievement. Dan Andrews can be proud that he didn’t waste a minute. I wish Dan, Cath and their children all the very best for their future together.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p>

Legal

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Emotional interview leaves Ally Langdon in tears

<p><em>A Current Affair </em>host Ally Langdon was left in tears following an interview with renowned melanoma expert Dr Richard Scolyer. </p> <p>The cancer expert revealed that he has decided to undergo a bold new therapy following his own incurable brain cancer diagnosis. </p> <p>Dr Scolyer decided that instead of undergoing chemotherapy where he had "six to nine months to live at best", he chose to help progress research and treatment. </p> <p>Current treatment options for the life-threatening disease are limited to surgery, and after conducting research, Dr Scoyler alongside close friend and scientific colleague Professor Georgina Long, concluded that immunotherapy was the only alternative option.</p> <p>"It was a bleak outlook - standard treatment has remained unchanged for nearly two decades, and for my cancer, survival rates are zero," Dr Scoyler told the National Press Club on Wednesday. </p> <p>"There were no clinical trials that I was eligible for. Accepting that status quo was never going to be an option"</p> <p>Following his own diagnosis four months ago, the doctor decided to take part in an experimental treatment following a surgery, which involves a combination of immunotherapy and a vaccine designed to boost immune reaction against cancer cells.</p> <p>This is all part of a clinical trial to test out the effectiveness of the vaccine, with the doctor sharing that he had  "absolutely" no regrets in starting the experimental treatment.</p> <p>"Faced with certain death, there was no other decision to make. I have spent my life diagnosing and researching cancer, so why would I stop now," he said. </p> <p>"We've transformed melanoma, I want to give it a crack and see if we can make a different in brain cancer," he added. </p> <p>Langdon teared up as the doctor shared his experience.</p> <p>"I know we have to tread cautiously, it's very early stages, but it just makes me want to cry," the TV host said. </p> <p>"It's so inspiring because you set out to blow up everything we know about treating brain cancer and you are doing it."</p> <p>Langdon's voice broke as she praised the doctor, saying that he had "changed the world" even if his treatment was not successful.</p> <p>She was also visibly teary-eyed in the outro of the segment as she described the doctor as "someone special."</p> <p>Dr Scolyer's vaccine was developed using analysis of his specific tumour's genome, which allowed scientists to identify what treatment would be most effective for him. </p> <p>Currently, his vaccine won't be used or sold to others, but following his experimental treatment he has gone back to work and is enjoying cycling and running.</p> <p><em>Images: Nine/ Facebook</em></p>

Caring

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"Leave the icebergs alone!": Absurd response to innocent Martha Stewart post

<p>It just goes to show that you literally cannot post anything these days without someone, somewhere, finding a reason to be outraged.</p> <p>Martha Stewart, the domestic diva who's known for her knack at turning the mundane into the majestic, took her talents to the high seas recently on a luxury cruise to Greenland. And boy, did she leave a wake of icy commotion.</p> <p>At the ripe age of 82, Martha decided to shake things up (literally) by embarking on a nautical adventure that had some of her fans doing double takes into their morning coffee.</p> <p>Martha's Instagram carousel began innocently enough, with Martha gleefully showcasing her maritime escapade. There she was, drink held high, posing with the glacial wonders of the frozen north. But the pièce de résistance was the snapshot of her 'boozy iceberg' – the crucial ingredient in her icy concoctions, plucked straight from the chilly embrace of Greenland's waters.</p> <p>Sure enough, the comment section of her post became hotter than a sauna at a polar bear convention. Martha's loyal 1.9 million followers swiftly chimed in, and boy, was the temperature rising. Concerns over climate change flooded the scene, with plenty of followers quick to label Martha "tone deaf", wondering if the cocktails were chilled with obliviousness rather than glacier fragments.</p> <p>Martha's post read, "End of the first zodiac cruise from @swanhelleniccruises into a very beautiful fjord on the east coast of Greenland. We actually captured a small iceberg for our cocktails tonight."</p> <p>Oblivious to the fact that this is a completely standard part of such tours – and that the tiny "iceberg" fragments in question are plucked innocently from the ocean, the negative responses came crashing in.</p> <p><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">"Martha, leave the icebergs alone!" wrote one follower.</span></p> <p>"Martha the ice caps are melting don't put them in your drink," another "fan" chimed in.</p> <p>"I generally love Martha and the excesses of her life because [she's] about beautiful gardens, homes, food, but wealthy white people drinking their iceberg cocktails while the planet is in flames in a bit tone deaf," added another.</p> <p>"Global warming and melting ice caps but we need glacier ice for cocktails? Talk about tone def (sic). Been a fan for years but I've seen enough caviar lately as I struggle to buy groceries I'm out," another wrote.</p> <p>Talk about a tempest in a teacup – or perhaps, in this case, a tumbler. Martha's icy escapade melted some hearts and raised some temperatures, proving that even the most seasoned party thrower can stir up quite the social media storm. </p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Ex-Finnish Prime Minister’s rebrand after divorce and leaving office

<p dir="ltr">The former Finnish Prime Minister is living her best life after filing for divorce and leaving her position in office. </p> <p dir="ltr">Sanna Marin, the youngest ever female world leader, has kicked off her single girl summer by attending a three-day music festival in Helsinki, leaning into her love of partying. </p> <p dir="ltr">The 37-year-old shared photos from her summer adventures on Instagram, flaunting her relaxed politics-free new life. </p> <p dir="ltr">“This summer I’ve had a proper summer vacation for the first time in a while,” Marin wrote on Instagram while sharing snaps of her fun-filled days.</p> <p dir="ltr">“It has included, among other things, being busy with [5-year-old daughter] Emma, sports, friends, good food, and unforgettable trips.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Most of her followers applauded the change in her lifestyle, and were happy she was taking some quality time for herself. </p> <p dir="ltr">“You look AMAZING. Thank you for showing the world that you can fill the chair as a president and dress as you like at the same time,” influencer Dr. Caecilie Johansen commented.</p> <p dir="ltr">“Pretty sure we would’ve achieved world peace already if most world leaders were as chill as Sanna,” wrote one.</p> <p dir="ltr">Another agreed, “A politician having fun and looking really cool. This gives a really good example to young people and you give Finland great PR.”</p> <p dir="ltr">Marin’s drastic lifestyle change comes after she officially left her post as Finland’s prime minister three weeks earlier, when the National Coalition Party’s Petteri Orpo took office.</p> <p dir="ltr">As well as being out of a job in politics, Marin is also going through divorce proceedings with her ex-husband of three years and partner for 19 years Markus Raikkonen. </p> <p dir="ltr">The pair announced their separation in May, and said they would still remain best friends and happy co-parents to their daughter Emma despite jointly filing for the separation.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Instagram / Getty Images</em></p>

Beauty & Style

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Is Scott Cam leaving The Block?

<p>Channel Nine has responded to rumours that Scott Cam is quitting his hosting gig with the long-running renovation series <em>The Block</em>. </p> <p>Rumours emerged of Scott's retirement after an insider said producers were “scrambling” to find a way to honour the veteran television presenter, ahead of his apparent shock departure from the show.</p> <p>The insider told <em><a href="https://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/the-block-2023-channel-nine-hit-back-at-scott-cam-hosting-rumours-051247651.html?guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZGFpbHltYWlsLmNvLnVrLw&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAEEcIDfvSNLFVcG2S_fr7RFSWk9sPsyIyYw0V1saAY0iOGLDr_ZXRpRi0hWX3pMLWTHdUQ3GnD40d3VeY-PxiHsf7-XZX2VppZvXASmpnh1jH45oejdbfy13rQ8LcvNSShES_9pCnU2G4rqlHCyFUtpzPQY6YgOSQ3LrHQuL0jsd" target="_self">Yahoo! Lifestyle</a></em> it is believed Cam isn’t signing any more contracts after his current one terminates, which was said to end prior to the 20th season, at the end of this year.</p> <p>“We want to celebrate while we have Scotty on contract and that may very well mean getting our skates on now,” the insider told the platform.</p> <p>Another claim made by the publication was that a big reunion special would air before the 20th season of the show, “featuring the most iconic teams from the past”. </p> <p>Yahoo! Lifestyle alleged that phone calls to memorable stars were already underway, saying, “We are looking at the contestants that made the most amount of noise and those who are still remembered all these years later.”</p> <p>However, when these claims were posed to <em>The Block</em>’s publicist, a spokesperson denied them, stating, “The report is not true”.</p> <p>Cam, who has hosted <em>The Block</em> since 2010, has said in the past working on the show is “never a drag” and was thrilled to be kicking off another season this year.</p> <p>“This series is guaranteed to be a deadset blockbuster,” he said late last week.</p> <p>“Our five new teams from across the country are all fired up to make their home states proud.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p>

TV

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Actors leave their own movie premiere

<p dir="ltr">The A-list cast of <em>Oppenheimer</em> have abruptly left the London premiere of the highly-anticipated movie. </p> <p dir="ltr">Stars of the film such as Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, and Florence Pugh disappeared from the premiere, shortly after appearing on the red carpet. </p> <p dir="ltr">The film, about Robert Oppenheimer who was key in the creation of the nuclear bomb, is set to be one of the biggest films of the year, with thousands of fans turning up to London’s Leicester Square to celebrate its premiere. </p> <p dir="ltr">However, before the movie could even begin inside the theatre, the stars walked out, leaving director Christopher Nolan to wonder where they were. </p> <p dir="ltr">Nolan later told <em><a href="https://variety.com/">Variety</a></em> that the actors walked out of the event in solidarity with a just-called Hollywood actors strike. </p> <p dir="ltr">“You’ve seen them here earlier on the red carpet,” he said. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Unfortunately, they’re off to write their picket signs for what we believe to be an imminent strike by SAG, joining one of my guilds, the Writers Guild, in the struggle for fair wages for working members of the unions, and we support them.”</p> <p dir="ltr">SAG-AFTRA is the Screen Actors Guild which represents 160,000 performers including A-list stars. </p> <p dir="ltr">SAG members will now go on strike, joining writers in the first industry-wide shutdown in 63 years after last-ditch talks over dwindling pay and the threat posed by artificial intelligence failed, with nearly all film and television production set to grind to a halt.</p> <p dir="ltr">“SAG-AFTRA’s national board unanimously voted to issue a strike order against the studios and streamers,” said the union’s chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland.</p> <p dir="ltr">At the <em>Oppenheimer</em> premiere, Matt Damon warned on the red carpet that he and his fellow stars were about to bail. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Once the strike is officially called, we’re going to walk obviously in solidarity”.</p> <p dir="ltr">“That’s why we moved this [event] up because we know the second it’s called, we’re going home,” he said.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Getty Images</em></p>

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