A puzzle salesman: “I have never seen anything like it. We are the new toilet paper” | Good Life

That Bill Gates has claimed that he always has, on vacation, a couple of puzzles on the table, it’s just one more inspiration. Studies have endorsed the benefits of solving puzzles for years, ranging from reinforcement of spatial skills to the development of values ​​of collaboration and cooperation (when they are done in a group). The puzzles are used in therapies to combat dementia and they bring some calm in stressful situations. In Spain, since Pedro Sánchez announced the state of alarm for Covid-19, almost three weeks ago, they have been sold as donuts. Javier Buzón, manager of one of the main e-commerce In the sector, Casa del Puzzle, with a physical warehouse in Seville, attends us by phone between packages. “This is incredible”. Around him, thousands of boxes ready to be sent to the homes of the inmates, since the trade on-line continues operating after the latest restrictions. “There are 40,000 puzzles here. Now we are at 50%. We have limited daily orders to continue providing quality service,” says Buzón, whose computer flashes every 31 minutes (on average) with a new order from any corner of the country. And the tablets, in the drawer and without battery.

Have you ever sold that much?

Never. In 12 years in the store, I have never seen anything like it. We are receiving 400 to 450 orders a day, many of up to five puzzles. We had reached peaks of 350 some specific day of Christmas, when the deadline to buy gifts was running out. But this…?! And it is not a single day, nor two: it has been going on for more than two weeks and in a sustained way. We are the new toilet paper.

How do you supply?

Working from sun to shade. We are only three people. I was in management, but now I also receive orders and prepare shipments. At other times of the year we are more. But historically, March and April are very bad months for the puzzle, because the good weather begins and people prefer to go outside. Well … preferred.

In other words, you become gold while the rest sinks. How does that work?

On the shelves of the Casa del Puzzle warehouse in Seville, there have never been so many holes.

On the shelves of the Casa del Puzzle warehouse in Seville, there have never been so many holes.

It already happened to us with the 2008 crisis, which also sold a lot. We also know that we have quite a few clients with anxiety issues. Now the feelings are mixed. We are obtaining a remarkable economic benefit. But I am not able to feel joy in the situation. On the other hand, it would not change anything that we did not sell. I hope I’m taking some distraction where it’s needed most. The puzzles keep very exciting stories.

Tell me some.

Once a father called me to make an order for his son, who would be five or six years old. They were from Navarra. And the boy had cancer: he was undergoing chemotherapy and wanted a puzzle for hospital evenings. Upon receiving it, the boy himself called me to thank him. I cried. That’s what I mean: perhaps we are reaching places where we really need us. But, well, there is everything: recently a customer wrote within half an hour of placing an order, to cancel it, because he had regretted being a non-essential product. And there are those who insult us for continuing to operate. I understand the reluctance. If they tell me to close, it would seem perfect to me.

How do you make the deals?

With all security measures. We contract an external messaging service. But we know that they leave the packages at the door, they don’t take money and they are protected. We usually sold cash on delivery. Now it is not possible: you have to pay on-line.

What are the best selling sizes?

For adults, who are the ones we sell the most, of about 1,000 pieces. But there is one of 42,000, which is called Around the World, and it is sold out.

42,000 ?!

Yes, recreate all the iconic buildings in the world. It is 7 meters wide by 2 meters high. Is a top sales.

And any preferred theme for times of pandemic?

No, the usual ones. Even people who ask for one and if it is exhausted, tell you to send the one you want. Of works of art, cities, animals …

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Who gets the most credit: Brady or Belichick? – NBC Boston

From 2001 to 2019, the New England Patriots have won the AFC East 17 times. The other two years ended in a tie in first place.

In that time frame, they went to 12 AFC championship games and nine Super bowls. Six have won.

Bill Belichick and Tom Brady have been together for the entire race and – thanks to the past two decades – are now recognized as the best coach and quarterback in NFL history respectively.

Trying to share credit for a race never seen before the NFL domination and perhaps the most incredible trait in the history of professional sport – to some extent – is missing the point.

Did the ancient Egyptians stand in front of the pyramids and discuss whether the architect or builders deserved more credit? Did Mrs Wright analyze which of her children – Wilbur or Orville – was primarily responsible for the invention, construction and flight of the first plane?

There is something to be said just to close and appreciate the realization, isn’t there? Yup.

And we will get there.

But right now, with the engines going down Route 1 to pack Tom Brady’s remaining stuff and take him out of Foxboro forever, the question hangs on everything. Which man was most responsible for creating the story we’ve seen written in the past two decades: Belichick or Brady?

Results may vary. In fact, I know they will. But here’s how I see it.

If it hadn’t been for Belichick, there would never have been the mini-dynasty that they became in the decade 2000-2009.

If it weren’t for Brady, the Patriots would never have become the Super Dynasty that they became from 2010 to 2019 when they blew up the 60s Packers, 70s Steelers, 80s Niners and 90s Cowboys to become the only franchise that has dominated two decades.

Bill gets the first decade

The moment Mo Lewis cut an artery in Drew Bledsoe’s chest in September 2001, he is touched as the history of the NFL has changed. It wasn’t. It will only speed up a trial that began when Robert Kraft decided to hire Belichick to succeed Pete Carroll in January 2000.

Belichick took a look at the team’s register and management and started fumigating and renewing. In the end – despite the heavy contract that the Patriots gave Bledsoe in January 2001 to help strengthen public confidence and private investment in building CMGI Field (possibly Gillette Stadium) – Belichick was wary of being tied to a quarterback that the coach was able to routinely undress whenever he trained against him.

Especially a quarterback who had to be paid as the top of the market, as Bledsoe and his agent David Dunn made clear.

Brady was not enlisted in the sixth round of the 2000 draft as Bledsoe’s successor, but in September it became clear to Belichick that he had something. And it became obvious during the 2001 offseason and the training camp that – although not better than Bledsoe in all – the child who made $ 298,000 was more mobile, more precise, more ready in his pocket and destined to be more suited to handling a Bledsoe game.

Mo Lewis accelerated the process and – with a painful stroke – made the transition relatively painless. But the credit goes to Belichick for seeing what he had, promoting it and having the decision to pull the trigger.

The fact that the Patriots went 14-5 under Brady after starting 5-13 under Bledsoe is persuasive evidence that Brady was the missing piece. But Belichick created the register, built the culture and hired the right people – from managers to coaches – to put the team in a position to succeed. It deserves more credit.

Brady may have helped them get where they did, but the Patriots were undoubtedly headed in the right direction and the fruits of Belichick’s designs were collected in 2003 and 2004.

Those Super Bowl wins – the first at the end of a season that started with the shooting down of lawyer Milloy in favor of Rodney Harrison; the second thanks largely to a dice throw on Corey Dillon – they were the victories for “culture”.

Disinterest imposed. All done for the greatest good of the team. Everything ego in your pocket. The most impressive aspect of the patriots was therefore their stamina and mental endurance. Brady was an important part. But so were Tedy Bruschi and Harrison, Matt Light, Richard Seymour, Mike Vrabel and so on.

Fifty-three very intelligent and capable players row together in the hold of the big ship while Belichick was over the bridge to trace a route. It was from 2001 to 2004.

The dips in 2005 and 2006 began the process that would have led Brady to become, largely on Belichick’s design, the engine.

The 2005 Patriots were hit by injuries – not a hindsight surprise when you consider the nine extra games played in the previous four seasons and the difficulty of staying on top. They started to see some friction to grow old – Troy Brown was 34 then – and the ongoing game was marked as well as their defense on the run. They went 10-6 and lost in the division round.

The following season, a protracted squabble over the contract led to the Deion Branch being swapped with Seattle shortly before the season began. Reche Caldwell led the team in receptions followed by Ben Watson, Troy Brown and Kevin Faulk. However, they were unable to advance to the Super Bowl, but lost on the road to the Colts.

That season, Brady got a toy he had never had in Randy Moss and a Troy Brown replica model named Wes Welker. The entire set of record sets went 16-0 and lost in the Super Bowl.

Which brings us to 2008. This is the season that many are aiming for when they say that it is Belichick’s genius that is most responsible for twenty-year success. The Patriots went 11-5 with Matt Cassel starting in quarterback. Hadn’t he been a beginner from high school, yet the patriots still went 11-5?

Cassel was exceptional, better than anyone could hope for. But it’s still a sharp drop from 16-0 to 11-5.

In 2009, the central defense core was expelled or withdrawn: Vrabel, Bruschi, Seymour and Harrison. Belichick complained to Brady on the sidelines during a defeat for the Saints that season that “I just can’t get these kids to play the way I want them. So frustrating.”

The season ended with an ignominious home defeat against the crows in the AFC division playoff round.

Brady gets the second decade

The patriots renewed in the off-season and, in my opinion, Brady was at the forefront of finding their places where they had no business at that stage of their reconstruction. In 2010, the Patriots went 14-2, they were seed no. 1 and Brady was the unanimous MVP.

The offense, moving away from the narrow final position, enlisted two – Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez – and their production would become historic in 2011 when the Patriots arrived at the Super Bowl and lost again to the Giants. Brady launched for 5,235 career yards with 39 touchdowns and 12 picks.

In the 2012 season, he launched 637 times, a career high and one of three times in four seasons that attempted more than 600 passes. With a defense that too often seemed to resist better teams, it was Brady and the offense to score and score and score a little more. They were the first, third, first and third in points marked from 2010 to 2013. Defensively in that period they were eighth, 15th, ninth and tenth.

Even in 2013, when Hernandez was jailed for murder, Gronkowski was grounded due to back surgery and then with an ACL, Brady still ran by hitting the ball with Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola and – to a lesser extent – Kenbrell Thompkins, Aaron Dobson and Shane Vereen.

They won the Super Bowl in 2014, winning a shootout against the Ravens in the Divisional Round, 35-31, and then overcoming a 24-14 deficit against the Seahawks in the fourth quarter when Brady moved to a completely different level in the fourth quarter.

The previous April, Belichick had enlisted Brady’s aspiring successor, Jimmy Garoppolo, in the second round. Brady, perhaps remembering the shrug that Drew Bledsoe had encountered Brady’s arrival 14 years earlier, would not have fallen asleep on the move with the team that ran Garoppolo.

Brady went on to launch 69 touchdowns and 16 predictions in 2014 and 15. He lost four suspension games in 2016 – Garoppolo overcame six quarters of Brady’s relief before hurting himself and giving way to Jacoby Brissett – but he still threw 28 touchdowns and two interceptions before ending that season with a 43- record. by-62, 466 yards in the Super Bowl when the Patriots canceled out a deficit of 28-3. Brady did it at 39.

At 40 in the AFCCG, without Edelman, without an injured Gronkowski, Brady and Amendola joined together to push the Patriots beyond the Jaguars and in the Super Bowl against Philly where he would have launched for 505 yards.

So let’s tell here. From 2010 to 2017, the Patriots have reached seven consecutive AFC Championship Games and the year they didn’t, Brady was the unanimous MVP. He wrote the filming of the playoffs against Ravens and Seahawks in 2014, the Falcons in 2016, the Jaguars in 2017 and led the team to two Super Bowl wins.

In 2018, Edelman was exiting an ACL and was therefore suspended for the first four games. Gronk was injured for a large chunk of the year. Phillip Dorsett and Chris Hogan were the main gimmicks for a while until the team faced Josh Gordon. It’s still? The team went 11-5, Brady put them on his back in the fourth quarter and overtime in Kansas City in the AFCCG and then the Patriots defense checked against the Rams and delivered a Super Bowl to Brady – apart from the shot at Gronk which led to the game’s winning touchdown – he just had to play OK to win the team.

The final verdict

So, see what my answer to this debate is now. Bill gets a bigger share of the first three Lombards. Tom gets a higher share than the second three.

So many people over the years have speculated that Belichick wants to prove that he can win a championship without Brady. I don’t know if it’s true.

I think if Brady was gone, Belichick would appreciate the opportunity, but I never thought he would have wanted to get rid of what he thinks is a quarterback capable of giving him a title that the others couldn’t.

Maybe that’s why we’re here. Belichick doesn’t see Brady as special as he once was. Great? Sure. Are there other guys who can do things they can’t do now? Belichick seems to think so. Brady has apparently survived its usefulness here.

Bill will do what he has done to so many other players. Go ahead. But this is the life cycle of the NFL.

From what I’ve been told and what I’ve collected, Brady agrees. He hoped to be special and to be able to write a different ending here, but to realize he couldn’t shock him. For a legend, it is rather well established.

Playing for Bill Belichick will help keep a player that way. And maybe even for that, Belichick deserves a lot of credit. He allowed Tom Brady to become Tom Brady because he was eternally and exasperatedly Bill Belichick.

Every. Single. Year.


Ashley Graham launches an inclusive collection with Pronovias | Style

Pronovias has joined the inclusive fashion with the plus size model Ashley Graham. The Spanish bridal firm has announced the Ashley Graham x Pronovias wedding collection, created with a cut that guarantees the perfect fit for all types of bodies and available in sizes from 32 to 66. The 16 pieces designed by the model in this Exclusive collection will go on sale from March 2020 in Pronovias stores and in warehouses around the world, with prices ranging from 1,000 euros to 3,500 euros.

“Women must feel safe and empowered throughout this entire process, from the purchase of their perfect wedding dress to the arrival of their special day,” Graham said in a statement, confessing the problems that she herself experienced when she prepared her wedding. “When I bought my wedding dress ten years ago, I had a hard time finding a style of my size that would fit me and make me feel special. It is necessary that the bridal sector defends inclusivity and bodily diversity, and that is why it is an honor to collaborate with Pronovias to offer beautiful luxury options in different sizes and styles ”, admitted the model.

In its Instagram account, where he accumulates almost 10 million followers, Graham has also revealed the image of some of the designs Created together with the Spanish firm: “There are as many different dresses as there are brides, from the classic to the ultra-glamorous and the options with sleeves, which I love. What I like the most is that each dress has built-in bras and bras. ”

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Some of the designs from the new Ashley Graham x Pronovias collection.

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Some of the designs from the new Ashley Graham x Pronovias collection.

With this initiative, Pronovias adds to the diversity and inclusivity that many brands have opted for in recent years, allowing any bride to wear their designs regardless of size. “We are excited to announce this extraordinary collaboration with Ashley Graham. Its defense of body positivity marries perfectly with the promise of Pronovias to find the perfect style for each woman, ”said Amandine Ohayon, executive director of the group, in the same statement. “Ashley Graham perfectly embodies the modern woman: the woman who exudes self-confidence and is proud of her beauty. Thanks to their orientation, we have further improved the fit and construction of our models to dress with style the dreams of all women ”, added the artistic director of Pronovias, Alessandra Rinaudo.

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Ashley Graham, along with sketches of her new collection with Pronovias.

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Ashley Graham, along with sketches of her new collection with Pronovias.

Since the beginning of her career, top has added outstanding achievements in the fashion industry, among which the covers of large headlines such as Vogue or Sport Illustrated, parades and campaigns for important firms. Graham has managed to consolidate his own revolution regarding the acceptance of different canons of beauties and measures on the catwalk. In 2017, the supermodel directed four women in a photo shoot in which they agreed to show off their bodies covered only by lingerie for a video from the magazine. Glamor in which he defended putting an end to the complexes. A year earlier, in 2016, he was on the Forbes list of the 30 most influential under-30s, in addition to working on television and writing a book about the true face of trust, beauty and power. Now, at 32, and after announcing a few months ago that she is pregnant with her first child with film director Justin Ervin, whom she married in 2010, the model also uses Instagram to show the changes her body is undergoing.


Sandy Schreier, the woman who collected haute couture and collected 15,000 dresses | Style

Sandy Schreier says that she became interested in fashion at just two and a half years old, when she accompanied her father to work at the Russeks department store in downtown Detroit (Michigan, USA) so that her mother could recover from the delivery of her baby. sister. He was captivated by the jewelry and, of course, the wedding dresses. There he also discovered, in the fitting rooms, a new world through magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar. “I looked at the photographs without really knowing what they were,” he says, “they became a kind of fairy tale.”

The American patron, in her 80s, has amassed throughout her life what is currently considered the largest private collection in the world of dresses, accessories and illustrations. She estimates that she treasures up to 15,000 pieces, although she prefers to refer to them as her “adoption children”. He explains that thanks to this passion for haute couture, he has been able to access the lives and closets of some of the most innovative and creative people in the 20th and 21st centuries.

“I had a fantasy career,” he admits, although he says it was not easy: “People were laughing at me.” “Even today they keep leaving me bags of old clothes on the porch of my house”, points. The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (colloquially called Met) is now celebrating its vision with an exhibition in the gallery of The Costume Institute, its wing dedicated to fashion and chaired by Anna Wintour, which exhibits a selection of 80 pieces among the 165 that he has given to the institution and that can be seen from this November 27 to May 17, 2020. Schreier says that this is how his great dream has come true.

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Sandy Schreier, at her Southfield, Michigan home last September.

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Sandy Schreier, at her Southfield, Michigan home last September. The Washington Post via Getty Images

Max Hollein, director of the Met, rates the collection as exceptional for its quality and diversity. “She is a true pioneer,” she explains, “she collected dresses long before any museum in the world saw them as works of art.” He understood them and treasured them as objects that should be preserved and shared. Her personal collection includes iconic dresses worn by Jacqueline Kennedy or actresses like Claudia Cardinale.

Sandy Schreier’s history as a collector is the story of the rise of the fashion business and its commercial value, but also its growing relevance as art. The exhibition includes works by Christian Dior, Coco Chanel, Gilbert Adrian, Cristóbal Balenciaga, Pierre Balmain, Mariano Fortuny, the maison Gripoix, Franco Moschino, Alexander McQueen, Roberto Rojas, Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino, Jessie Franklin and Madeleine Vionnet. “It showed a remarkable vision at a time when few collectors appreciated dresses as an art form,” insists curator Jessica Regan.

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From left to right, designs by Karl Lagerfeld for Chloé (spring-summer 1984), Cristóbal Balenciaga (summer 1961), Madeleine & Madeleine (1923) and Gilbert Adrian (autumn 1945).

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From left to right, designs by Karl Lagerfeld for Chloé (spring / summer 1984), Cristóbal Balenciaga (summer 1961), Madeleine & Madeleine (1923), and Gilbert Adrian (autumn 1945). Metropolitan Museum of New York

The tour includes pieces that date back to 1908, such as the illustrated album Les Robes, from French designer Paul Poiret, and they go until 2009, wearing a hat by Isaac Mizrahi. Andrew Bolton, Chief Curator of The Costume Institute, highlights the “historical significance” of the pieces on display. Schreier preferred to keep the dresses and accessories rather than put them on. “I saw myself as a savior of fashion,” adds the collector. “Now the Met can share these pieces with the public, designers, and scholars for eternity.”

Among his first acquisitions is a Madeleine & Madeleine couture ensemble dating from 1923, which is part of the Met exhibition. Although most of the collection is made up of gifts from people who followed her talks about fashion or who listen to her on programs. This was done, for example, in Twiggy’s iconic metallic mesh dress. Cinema is another of his passions and he has published two books about fashion in Hollywood, one about the first years of the mecca of cinema and another about wedding dresses.

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From left to right, Patrick Kelly's suit (fall-winter 1988-1989), dress and coat set by Yves Saint Laurent for Dior (spring-summer 1958) and dress with jacket by Mariano Fortuny (1920s-1930s).

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From left to right, Patrick Kelly outfit (fall / winter 1988-1989), Yves Saint Laurent dress and coat set for Dior (spring / summer 1958) and jacket dress by Mariano Fortuny (twenties-thirties). Metropolitan Museum of New York

It has taken 13 years for Schreier to make this gift to the Met, although the benefactor’s collaboration with the museum dates back to 1993. During these more than 25 years, some of the dresses in her collection have been part of eleven different samples. The latter, under the title In pursuit of Fashion: The Sandy Schreier Collection It is part of the events of the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the New York cultural institution. As the director of the Met explains, his contribution will help to show a more extensive, rich and detailed vision of art through fashion.