Relationships are an integral part of our real lives, so it's only fitting that they take center stage onscreen as well. Love-themed story lines were woven throughout this year's Oscar-nominated films, making for gripping, tragic, thrilling and wonderful entertainment. For better of for worse, some of the strongest cinematic moments focused on relationship dynamics, and we gleaned a few helpful lessons from the characters' struggles and triumphs. Take a look at the best onscreen pairings of the year, and then tune into the Academy Award telecast on February 27 to see which of them will score precious Oscar gold.
Sure, these days when I get dressed I have to think carefully about which outfit will make me feel least like a tightly squeezed sausage about to be fried in my overheated office. And sure, at this exact moment, the majority of my butt is covered in swollen red pus balls from a terrible case of poison oak I got while hiking in Big Sur. (Ok, I admit it, it was actually while popping a squat in Big Sur.) But mainly, I find myself looking around and thinking, Everything is awesome.
60 couples who had been dating two years or more were split into two groups and paired up to have conversations. Half the couples were instructed to just make small talk, the other half were given specific, emotionally-laden topics to discuss. Three months later, none of the small talk couples had kept in touch, but 1/3 of the deep discussion couples had actually become friends. (Let this be a lesson to us all—small talk does not a friendship make.) The 33% of couples who made new friends in the name of science reported feeling more "excited, enthusiastic, happy and closer to their partner" when compared with all the other couples involved in the study.
Smell and taste expert Dr. Alan Hirsch—whose last study showed that the smells that turn women on vary by where you live (coffee in NYC, grass in Minnesota)—explained that some of the soft drink's ingredients actually can affect how you feel inside. Vanilla and caramel, he says, make us feel secure and comfortable, while orange and lemon oils, as well as cinnamon, make you feel awake.
If you have romance in mind—and who doesn't in February—you might want to avoid the garlic clams or onion rings. According to an online survey sponsored by Listerine, bad breath was the no. 1 turn-off when it came to dating. Even rude behavior and cheapness were considered more forgivable.
So what does a male orgasm feel like? Do orgasms differ drastically between the sexes? We take stock of what we know and ask four men for the inside scoop on their experience of the Big O.
According to bridal trend watchers, ruffles, bows, lace, accent beading and tulle are all posed to make a comeback in 2011, as are fairy-tale princess ballgown skirts. One trend, however, may surprise you: a return to long-sleeved gowns. Why are they coming back now, and more importantly, could you rock one?
A new survey shows men like this feature even more than a woman's breasts or backside!
Divorce just got a little bit weirder: Time reports that a court in China has dismissed a woman's claim to virtual assets she and her estranged husband acquired during marriage. The two married in 2008 after meeting online, but their happiness, unfortunately, did not translate to the real world. According to China Daily, the couple are divorcing because neither person was willing to do any housework (presumably, they were too busy gaming to straighten up). During their marriage, the couple merged their online gaming accounts under the husband's name and collected a good number of virtual properties--think Farmville cows or pets you can buy on Facebook. Although the woman demanded her share of the property, her husband objected, and the judge ruled that the law had no place in the ownership of internet possessions.
I feel guilty that I have this ring that was a symbol of his promise to marry me, which I accepted as a symbol of my promise to marry him, and I see now that we shouldn't have been making those promises to each other.