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Natasha Lyonne Writes a Love Letter to Rosie O’Donnell

In a world short on joy, humor can be a unifier and a survival tool. In that spirit, we bring you our Comedy Issue, a monthlong celebration of funny (and fearless) women and the enduring power of a good laugh. Here Orange Is the New Black star Natasha Lyonne salutes the woman who made her see the value in being wholly authentic.

I first met Rosie when we worked together on a Nora and Delia Ephron play called Love, Loss, and What I Wore in 2008. Rosie had this one monologue called, “The Purse,” which Nora had written about giving up Hermès bags, and the absurdity of them. This was an eight-page monologue, and Rosie was literally able to take the audience in the palm of her hand and take them on a ride during it. The way she was able to lift and drop the volume of the audience’s laughter, it just became a piece of music. Working with Rosie, Nora, Delia, and Samantha Bee on that production taught me that there’s space for all of us. Between working on the play and doing Orange Is the New Black, I totally changed my tomboy perspective, and gained an appreciation for sharing the stage with other women.

During the play I was coming out of a drug addicted time in my life, but Nora and Rosie adopted me into the fold, and it really healed me as a human being. Now Rosie and I are this odd couple, and we go to Broadway plays. She loves them; I loathe them. My god! Some of the productions I’ve had to sit through. It’s like nails on a chalkboard to me, but I look over and Rosie’s like, “C’mon, Tashy, that was amazing!” Then we go to Sardi’s and grab dinner.

What’s so wild about Rosie is that she’s such a subversive figure who was able to become mainstream. Recently, I rewatched an Ellen DeGeneres appearance on Rosie’s show, and they’re doing what they called the “Lebanese sketch.” It’s psychedelic! It was 1996, and they’re just dancing around being gay. Or watching her stuff in comedy clubs. It’s fucking epic, because she’s in a pantsuit with a curly shag, looking like a cross between David Lee Roth and Pat Benatar. And this was during an era when guys like Andrew Dice Clay were big, and she’s doing a Goodfellas shtick. What other woman was speaking that language?

Rosie’s such an important figure for women. I’ll never forget introducing Aubrey Plaza to her. I was having dinner with Rosie and texting with Aubrey and I was like, “Why don’t you come over?” She came right over, and I’ve never seen Aubrey so starstruck. She’s such a weirdo and a cool cucumber, but it was almost like seeing Santa Claus—that someone who’s so iconic could be real. But that’s the beauty of someone like Rosie. She’s able to communicate, from a distance, to other young girls that it’s OK to be themselves. That’s a strength she’s personally given me.

Natasha Lyonne costars in Orange Is the New Black, which returns to Netflix this month. Rosie O’Donnell costars on Showtime’s SMILF.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Majorly Kissed at His Polo Match Today

We all know by now it’s a Very Big Deal whenever the royals show any amount of PDA. Just look at all the hoopla that happens when they hold hands or, like, smile at each other. So when a royal couple goes out on a limb and does something like kiss, the world stops. The Internet breaks. The weather changes. It’s a Very, Very Big Deal.

Want proof? Look at how much people are losing it over the fact Meghan Markle and Prince Harry kissed today at the latter’s charity polo match on Thursday (July 26). The newlyweds sealed Prince Harry’s team victory with a smooch, which, thankfully for us, was captured on film.

Check it out for yourself, below:

Prince Harry And Meghan Markle Share A Polo Kiss 1

PHOTO: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

And, below, the reactions:

Markle attended the match at the Royal County of Berkshire Polo Club wearing a denim Carolina Herrera dress, and she cheered Prince Harry on from the stands as he played. The event, officially called the Sentebale ISPS Handa Polo Cup, was held to raise funds and support for Sentebale, the charity Prince Harry cofounded in 2006 to benefit children living with and affected by HIV/AIDS in Lesotho and Botswana, People reports.

Despite their constant snuggling and hand-holding during their engagement, Markle and Prince Harry have been surprisingly lighter on the PDA since the royal wedding. This is certainly the first time the public has seen them kiss since their big day at St. George’s Chapel on May 19.

“They are not afraid to hold hands. They don’t mind showing their emotions,” Mark Stewart, a longtime royal photographer, recently said.

Surprisingly, Markle and and Prince Harry aren’t the only royal couple to exchange in a smooch on the polo podium. In 2011, a few months after their own wedding, Kate Middleton gave Prince William a kiss on the cheek to celebrate a win in Santa Barbara. It seems there’s just something about those polo fields.

Michelle Williams Just Got Secretly Married

Surprise: Michelle Williams is now married. The All the Money in the World actress revealed in a new profile with Vanity Fair that she secretly tied the knot with indie musician Phil Elverum in a “very sacred and very special” ceremony.

“Obviously I’ve never once in my life talked about a relationship,” Williams told the magazine. “But Phil isn’t anyone else. And that’s worth something. Ultimately the way he loves me is the way I want to live my life on the whole. I work to be free inside of the moment. I parent to let Matilda feel free to be herself, and I am finally loved by someone who makes me feel free.”

According to Vanity Fair, the ceremony took place in the Adirondacks and only a handful of friends—plus their children—were present. Williams was previously in a relationship with Heath Ledger, who passed away in 2008; they have one daughter, Matilda. Elverum has a daughter from his first marriage.

“I never gave up on love. I always say to Matilda, ‘Your dad loved me before anybody thought I was talented, or pretty, or had nice clothes,’” Williams told Vanity Fair.

Elverum’s first wife, Geneviève Castrée, passed away from cancer just 18 months after welcoming their daughter. Ledger passed on in January 2008 from an accidental overdose, according to CNN.

On discussing her private life, Williams tells Vanity Fair, “I don’t really want to talk about any of it. But there’s that tease, that lure, that’s like, ‘What if this helps somebody? What if somebody who has always journeyed in this way, who has struggled as much as I struggled, and looked as much as I looked, finds something that helps them? Don’t settle. Don’t settle for something that feels like a prison, or is hard, or hurts you. If it doesn’t feel like love, it’s not love.”

Congrats to the couple!

Related Stories:

Michelle Williams Casually Changed Her Flight to Hang With Busy Philipps on Her Birthday

Busy Philipps Traveled to Be With Michelle Williams on the Anniversary of Heath Ledger’s Death

Michelle Williams Was Reportedly Paid Less Than $1,000 for Movie Reshoot—While Mark Wahlberg Made $1.5 Million

Jenna Dewan Admits Publicly Going Through Her Divorce Is ‘Challenging’

Earlier this year Jenna Dewan and Channing Tatum “lovingly decided” to separate as a couple after nearly nine years of marriage, saying in a joint statement they’ll continue to love and respect each other as “best friends.” And indeed, their conscious uncoupling status has been anything but messy with the duo, who share a young daughter, Everly. They consistently appear on each other’s social media pages in cute family photos or videos. Despite the lack of animosity between the couple, though, Dewan admits that, at times, it can still be difficult to go through divorce in the critical lens of the public eye.

“It’s been a journey, and it’s been a transformation of myself—my needs and wants as a woman. I think everyone wants to hold on to what’s in front of them, but when you open your mind, saying, ‘I want what’s best for myself and my daughter,’ you have to be OK with however that looks,” Dewan explained about her divorce in her new cover story for Women’s Health. “I feel I’ve been on a wave of growth. It does look different; it’s a new normal, and I really think we’ll get used to that. It’s always challenging to go through a big change and have the whole world have an opinion about it.”

From Jenna Dewan’s perspective, viewing her separation as less of an “ending” and more as an “evolution” is what keeps her from taking on a more pessimistic head space. “It’s OK for a relationship to change into a new form that is actually better for both people involved, and I think that’s maybe what shocked everyone so much—that it can be a positive thing,” she explained. “That was ultimately what happened with us.”

And really, she said, her healing just came from within herself: “It was always, ‘I’m a dancer,’ or ‘I’m married,’ or ‘I’m an actress.’ Over the last couple of years, it became about learning about myself,” she said.

Prince Harry Reportedly Wanted Kate Middleton’s ‘Seal of Approval’ Before Proposing to Meghan Markle

Before Prince Harry proposed to Meghan Markle last year, he first asked for permission from his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, who was required to give her formal consent. But, according to royal expert Katie Nicholl, there’s another very important royal in Prince Harry’s life whom he asked for advice before popping the question: his sister-in-law, Kate Middleton. “Harry and Kate are very close, she’s been like a mentor to him and he wanted her seal of approval,” a source told Nicholl in Grazia U.K. this week.

Beyond merely giving her approval to Prince Harry’s marriage, the Duchess of Cambridge has reportedly also made an effort to take Markle under her wing since her and Harry’s relationship turned serious. “Kate is different to Meghan in many ways, but she has made great strides to help Meghan settle in,” the source told Nicholl. “It’s a friendship that is still slowly blossoming. Kate has gone out of her way to be friendly to Meghan, and Meghan has been very grateful for that.”

Nicholl reports that Middleton has shown Markle “the royal ropes,” introduced her to several of her favorite designers, and told the newly titled Duchess of Sussex that she’s “always welcome” in Apartment 1A of Kensington Palace, where Middleton and Prince William live with their children. “Kate has her hands full with the children and baby, but ensures she makes time to touch base with Meghan,” the source said.

Prince Harry and Middleton have long shared a special bond. Last year, in a profile of Prince Harry, Newsweek‘s Angela Levin noted that his sister-in-law had helped to “fill some of that gap” left by his mother Princess Diana’s death. “When she and William got engaged, Harry called her the big sister he never had. He often pops into their apartment at Kensington Palace, where she cooks him a meal — roast chicken is reportedly a particular favorite,” Levin wrote.

You’re Not Too Old for a Tattoo

WE ARE LIVING in a Golden Age of Tattoos. And while tattoos have heretofore mostly been brandished as signs of swagger by youthful sailors, bikers and larger-than-life celebrities like David Beckham, now older men with traditional white-collar jobs are getting inked too. In the corporate world, tattooed role models abound: Aetna’s 62-year-old CEO Mark Bertolini has one, as does Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang, 55. On the world stage, Justin Trudeau is living proof that getting a Haida raven tattoo on your shoulder will not harm your chances of becoming a head of state.

Tattooing later in life is a clear trend, but it still bucks convention; the majority of tattooed Americans get theirs before age 30, according to a 2017 Statista survey. More mature initiates have the benefit of experience to guide them through an informed choice. (As a teenager, I considered getting a Louis Vuitton logo tattooed onto my hip bone, a bullet I narrowly avoided.) Photographer Douglas Friedman got his first tattoo, of an anchor on his arm, at age 35. “It just felt like the time to start committing to something, anything,” he said.

Artists like JonBoy, a notable tattooer at the sleekly appointed Bang Bang Tattoo in downtown New York, have mastered the kind of understated, considered body art older men often like. The delicate, dime-size designs (geometric shapes, initials) that he specializes in could easily be concealed under a shirt, or even a watch strap.

While the under-30 set might be susceptible to tattoos commemorating a night on the town or a fleeting relationship, one hopes that maturity results in more thoughtful concepts. JonBoy, who said that he has lately seen an uptick in older clients, recently graced a businessman with his first tattoo—three small icons, one for each of his kids: “He never thought he would get tattooed. He didn’t realize they could look sophisticated.” Family sentiment is often present in the mature man’s tattoos; one 50-something man we spoke to shares an Om symbol with his two adult daughters.

“[Tattoos are] becoming another way to try to figure out who you are,” said Scott Campbell, an artist known for working on celebrities like Justin Theroux. Not that your tattoo need announce your identity explicitly: CEO of Twitter and Square Jack Dorsey, 41, told the New Yorker magazine that his large S-shape forearm tattoo symbolizes the form of the collarbone, the integral symbol in calculus and the violin’s f-hole.

Of course, priorities shift: Lawyer David White’s first tattoo at age 18 was the fraction “⅔,” an earnest economic commentary which referenced, he said, “some World Bank study about the number of folks who live below the poverty line. I was a class warrior at the time.” More than a decade later, he had another artist freestyle a crescent-within-a-circle, similar to that used to mark chapters in David Foster Wallace’s “Infinite Jest.” Mr. White, now 31, prefers this more recent addition.

As for how to dress around a visible tattoo when you spend more time at a tech bar than an actual bar, balance is key. Nick Wooster, the abundantly inked men’s fashion director of Dallas store Forty Five Ten, believes that tattoos go well with simple outfits consisting of just a T-shirt and a pair of chinos or jeans. “The tattoo is the perfect third piece,” he said. Mr. Wooster has often been seen in more daring outfits too, such as a neat jacket paired with shorts that display his calf tattoo. Still, he understands that sometimes it’s necessary to conceal tattoos. When he got his first in 1992—a classic “Mom” on his arm—he knew that it could be easily covered with a sportcoat. “By choosing the places that I did, if I’m properly dressed, nobody’s the wiser,” said Mr. Wooster. Mr. Friedman also subscribes to the wise-placement camp: “I just make sure that I can put on a suit and not see any ink.”

Mr. Wooster offered a final piece of advice for the tattoo-curious: “What might be true for you today may not be true for you tomorrow.” Hey, come to think of it, that might make for a good tattoo.

ILL-ADVISED INKAGE / Three Types of Tattoos That You Will Inevitably Regret
Anything in a Language You Don’t Speak

It might mean “Namaste,” but then again, it might not.

Anything With a Logo

Unless the company is paying you enough that a butler is reading this to you.

Anything Featuring a Celeb

Your love for Jim Morrison may be enduring, but this tattoo isn’t.

More in Style & Fashion

Brendon Urie And Hayley Kiyoko Had The Queerest Time Ever Singing “Girls / Girls / Boys”

Panic! At The Disco’s song “Girls / Girls / Boys” just got a lot more queer with Hayley Kiyoko joining frontman Brendon Urie for the song during the band’s latest Pray for the Wicked tour stop in Toronto.

After delays meant that Hayley wouldn’t have a chance to perform her set as the band’s opening act, Brendon still found time for Hayley to be on stage. He surprised the crowd by bringing her out and draping her in a rainbow pride flag. Brendon himself donned a pansexual pride flag, just weeks after he officially came out as pansexual in PAPER earlier this month.

One Panic! At The Disco stan, Gianna, asked the universe to make this happen just over a month before it came to fruition.

Now that Brendon and Hayley have actually performed “Girls / Girls / Boys” together, Gianna and other fans couldn’t be happier with 2018 20gayteen.

Both artists are nominated for VMAs this year, truly making this the year of 20gayteen.

The One Direction Fandom Reflects On The Group’s Eighth Anniversary

It might not be an official holiday, but One Direction’s eighth anniversary is upon us and their fandom has taken to Twitter to celebrate.

Instead of just taking the day to profess their favorite One Direction songs, the most passionate members of the group’s fanbase are using this anniversary as an opportunity to reflect on their years of fandom. To outsiders, fandoms are abstract and obsessive. To those within them, however, fandoms are communities in which fans bond over a shared interest.

Many One Direction fans shared how being a part of the fandom has allowed them to make friends with folks they otherwise never would have met.

They’ve got a whole lot of (midnight) memories that have racked up over the past eight years.

Though One Direction became a foursome and isn’t actively working together, there’s still a lot of support for all the members.

And despite those solo careers, the #8YearsOfOneDirection hashtag proves the fandom is still alive and nearing a full decade of stanning.

A lot has changed over the last eight years, for both the guys of One Direction and their passionate fans.

No matter what, though, One Direction will always be home.

Harry Styles’s First Solo Tour Had A Much Bigger Impact Than You Think

“TREAT PEOPLE WITH KINDNESS.”

That’s the slogan emblazoned on shirts, pins, crewnecks, tote bags, and more merch sold at all 89 shows on Harry Styles‘s first solo tour. The worldwide trek came to a triumphant close last weekend in Los Angeles, but the kindness-touting tour has made an astonishing impact that’s lasting long after the curtain closed.

On Thursday (July 19), Variety reported that Styles’s tour raked in $1.2 million in charity donations through various ticket contributions, Live Nation contributions and local matches, and the GLSEN PRIDE campaign. As for the charities benefitting from those donations, the list is quite impressive — according to Styles’s website, a local charity was picked for each of his tour stops around the world. In Munich, Germany, for example, contributions went toward the Munich Refugee Council, while in Washington, DC, donations were made to March For Our Lives. Other charities include The Manchester Fund, Action Against Hunger, The Children’s Cancer Society, Stoneman Douglas Victims Fund, and Time’s Up.

But that’s not where Styles’s generosity stopped. Variety reports that the 24-year-old’s tour registered hundreds of new voters via the organization Headcount, and boasted some serious water conservation efforts. The singer, his crew, and fans reportedly saved the equivalent of 13,200 water bottles throughout the 89 shows and recycled a whopping 6,500 gallons of water.

As for Styles’s next move, he revealed in an Instagram post this week that he’s “off to write some more music.” That’s great news, because more music means more touring, and more touring clearly does a lot of good all over the world.

This Piano Is Signed By Shawn Mendes And Everyone Else That’s Important To Me

There’s a lot that goes on in the music world that I, a normal person, will never know. But from obsessively watching Shawn Mendes interviews, I’ve just discovered an insider fact.

A-list musicians often record their albums in luxury studios, essentially booking a residency at the recording studio for an extended period of time. One of those beautiful studios is Woodshed Recording in Malibu, California, where Shawn Mendes recorded his latest self-titled album. Shawn recently sat down for an interview with The Project, an Australian news and talk show, in which he showed off what makes the studio’s piano legendary.

Solid State Logic / YouTube

As it turns out, the artists and producers who are lucky enough to work at Woodshed Recording are invited to sign the inside of the piano. In a mini-documentary uploaded to YouTube, owner and long-time music producer Richard Gibbs explains how the phenomenon started with Jonathan Davis of Korn.

“I was working, producing Korn on MTV Unplugged. Somewhere along the line, I say, ‘[Jonathan Davis], why don’t you sign my piano?’ He was the first signature, Jonathan Davis. And from there, any time somebody came in, I said ‘hey, sign the piano,’ and everyone has.” – Richard Gibbs

There’s one rule behind whose autographs wind up on the piano, to keep it all sentimental: “the only requirement we have is that you work here to sign the piano.”

In piecing together footage from Shawn’s interview on The Project, the Woodshed Recording documentary and a photo on the studio’s website, these are some of the most amazing autographs on the piano.

Ariana Grande

Ariana kept it first-name only on the piano, but it’s definitely her signature considering she’s listed as a client on Woodshed Recording’s website. Plus, there’s nothing more on brand for Ariana than a “<3 always” autograph.

Lenny Kravitz

It doesn’t get more iconic than all-around superstar Lenny Kravitz’s signature on a piano. While not the neatest, this matches well with pictures of Lenny’s autograph online.

Kygo

Music producer and performer Kygo’s got a double signature, writing down both his autograph and his logo on the piano.

Bono

The U2 frontman has one of the most fun autographs on the piano, complete with multiple layers. In fact, it almost looks like Bono didn’t like the marker he used on the first try, so he went over it a second time.

John Mayer

It’s blurry, but it’s there: John’s got one of the smallest signatures on the piano, sitting right next to Ariana’s autograph.

Fran Drescher

Naturally, The Nanny star took up the most real estate on the piano. Fran’s definitely not a recording artist, but her client part of the studio’s site links to her cancer awareness organization that sells a “Trash Cancer” DVD.

Macklemore

I haven’t found a Ryan Lewis autograph, meaning Macklemore likely worked at the studio since their partnership went on hiatus in 2017.

Barbra Streisand

Just like Ariana, Barbra went first-name only with her signature. But considering she’s listed on the studio’s site and few others spell their name “Barbra,” I’m certain it’s her.

Shawn Mendes

Of course, Shawn signed the piano, too, after working in Woodshed Recording’s studio while working on his self-titled album. A new legend amongst world-class legends.

Wanna find more names for yourself? Check out a high-quality photo of the piano on Woodshed Recording’s site and hunt for your faves.