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World War II veteran Cyrus Porter and Taylor Swift (Twitter).


The Week in Women: A viral birthday party, Taylor Swift’s surprise, and the Rockette’s dissent

December 30, 2016

Happy (almost) New Year! As people around the world prepare to ring in 2017 with friends, fireworks, and regrettable decision-making, we’ve curated a selection of recent headlines about all things celebratory. Let’s take a look back, shall we?

Thousands of people attended the birthday party of a 15-year-old Mexican girl after an invitation to the event went viral. Earlier this month, Rubi Ibarra Garcia appeared in a video with her mother and father, who proclaimed that “everyone” was welcome to attend his daughter’s quinceanera, a traditional coming-of-age party that marks a child’s 15th year. Thanks to the mysterious workings of the internet, the video spread across social media and became something of a national joke. Memes about the party abounded, and on the day of the event, people showed up in droves. Kudos to Rubi, who stayed composed as thousands of strangers poked gentle fun at her adolescent rite of passage. Just thinking about it makes us break out in a cold sweat.

The Rockettes have been hired to give a celebratory performance at Donald Trump’s upcoming inauguration, and some of them are pretty unhappy about it. A member of the iconic dance troupe, identified only as “Mary,” told Marie Claire that one dancer cried throughout a performance after hearing she was “being forced to perform for this monster,” while another wrote an email to her colleagues saying she would not “feel comfortable standing near a man like that in our costumes.” There have been many conflicting reports as to whether the Rockettes would be contractually obliged to perform on January 20; Mary explained that after a backlash on social media, producers decided to make participation voluntary. If the Rockettes object en masse, perhaps Trump can solicit some other performer to appear at the event. Oh, wait. No he can’t.

As the approach of New Year’s Eve elicits the inevitable cautionary tales of alcohol consumption, consider this: A new study has found that women’s binge drinking receives more media coverage than binge drinking by men – despite the fact that men drink more in reality. The study, published in BMJ Open, also asserted that media outlets were likely to link women’s drinking with negative changes to their physical appearance. “Media coverage of women’s binge drinking isn’t just about health or public disorder,” explained researcher Chris Patterson, “it also performs a moralizing, paternalistic role, reflecting broader social expectations about women’s public behavior.”

A 96-year-old WWII veteran got a pretty special gift during his family’s Christmas party: a surprise visit from one Taylor Swift. The pop star stopped by the event to serenade Cyrus Porter, a great-grandfather and bonafide Swiftie; Porter has attended two Taylor Swift concerts and told a local TV station that she “puts on a show no one else puts on.” Swift sang her hit “Shake It Off” for the family, and Porter got his groove on. It seems the festive season has left us a bit sentimental, because we’re having all the feels.