The Upshot
  • Maria del Rosario Cayetana Alfonsa Victoria Eugenia Francisca Fitz-James Stuart y de Silva (yes, that's one name) is one of the wealthiest women in all of Spain. She is worth somewhere between $850 million and $5 billion--but not for long. The Duchess of Alba, 85, is giving it all away so she can marry the man she loves.

    This sounds like a plot to the latest Nicholas Sparks novel, but we assure you, this is nonfiction to the core. So, why is she giving her vast fortune away? The duchess's six children were dubious about their mother's plans to marry Alfonso Diez, a civil servant who is 24 years younger.

    To help assuage their fears that the love may not be genuine, the duchess is going to give her fortune to her children. According to an article from the BBC, the duchess's six children had been against the wedding. Earlier this year, the duchess remarked, "Alfonso doesn't want anything. All he wants is me."

    Duchess of Alba, Cayetana Fitz-James Stuart and Alfonso Diez attend ELLE Awards 25th Anniversary at the Matadero cultural center on June 30, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)Duchess of Alba, Cayetana Fitz-James Stuart and Alfonso Diez attend ELLE Awards 25th Anniversary at the Matadero cultural center on June 30, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)

    Read More »from Wealthy duchess gives fortune away to marry

  • He's OK. But for nearly 30 harrowing minutes, 17-year-old Matt Mina thought he would die under five feet of sand.

    The teen had been on Newport Beach in Orange County, digging underground tunnels with friends. They were trying to make the tunnels meet when the ground collapsed above him.

    A family member saw the sand cave in, and alerted a lifeguard, who called the fire department.

    The survivor told the "Today" show, "I didn't know if anyone could hear me when I was screaming for help." Nobody could hear him, but the rescue was already under way. You can watch another video interview with Mina in the clip above.

    Paramedics arrived within minutes, and along with dozens of lifeguards and beach goers, furiously began to dig.

    Video cameras were also on hand to capture the scene, and the online video footage has quickly gone viral--you can watch it here.

    When he was trapped, underground, Mina's hands were pinned behind him. He used his head to create a small pocket of air. He counted each

    Read More »from Dramatic rescue of teen buried in sand moves the Web
  • Come on in, the water's . . . green. In Qingdoo, Shandong Province of China, the coastal waters are covered with algae called enteromopha prolifera. The algae is not poisonous and doesn't affect water quality, but there are concerns about how it may affect local sealife and whether it might spur a drop in tourism. Not everyone, it seems, wants to look like the Incredible Hulk while swimming.

    So, what exactly is going on here? According to CNN, researchers aren't entirely sure what's behind the green invasion. One expert told the network that it's possible that the lush green algae plume  may have something to do with "the change in the environment," but is mum when it comes to specifics.

    Regardless, the bright green goop has inspired a slew of amazing photographs. In some photos, the algae, which now covers 200 square miles of the Yellow Sea, looks so thick that it resembles a fairway on a golf course. You can check out a collection of photos below.

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  • Recently released photographs from Eva Braun's personal picture albums reveal new dimensions of the woman who was Adolf Hitler's longtime girlfriend and, in their last, frantic hours together, his wife. Braun became the central woman in Hitler's life after the 1931 suicide of Geli Raubal, the future Führer's 23-year-old niece (and rumored lover). By all accounts, Eva was an unpretentious companion for the Nazi leader, but also a woman at once frivolous and vain -- unsurprising characteristics, perhaps, in a former teenage model, but striking in a figure long associated with the darkest chapters of the 20th century. This collection of rare and previously unseen photos comes from a cache of images confiscated by the U.S. Army in 1945 and brought to light by collector and curator Reinhard Schulz. Pictured: Eva Braun in a rowboat on Lake Worthsee near Munich in 1937. Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty ImagesRecently released photographs from Eva Braun's personal picture albums reveal new dimensions of the woman who was Adolf Hitler's longtime girlfriend and, in their last, frantic hours together, his wife. Braun became the central woman in Hitler's life after the 1931 suicide of Geli Raubal, the future Führer's 23-year-old niece (and rumored lover). By all accounts, Eva was an unpretentious companion for the Nazi leader, but also a woman at once frivolous and vain -- unsurprising characteristics, perhaps, in a former teenage model, but striking in a figure long associated with the darkest chapters of the 20th century. This collection of rare and previously unseen photos comes from a cache of images confiscated by the U.S. Army in 1945 and brought to light by collector and curator Reinhard Schulz. Pictured: Eva Braun in a rowboat on Lake Worthsee near Munich in 1937. Galerie Bilderwelt/Getty ImagesAdolf Hitler is one of the darkest figures of the 20th century. But less is known about his girlfriend, Eva Braun, who he kept secret from Nazi Germany for years.

    Pictures of the girlfriend and then wife have recently surfaced through Life Magazine, brought to light through collector and curator Reinhard Schulz.

    The cache of photos from the young model's personal album was confiscated in 1945 by the American army. The newly released pictures have caused searches on the Web for "eva braun" to rise over 300% in one day.

    So who was the woman by Hitler's side? Young Eva first met Hitler in 1929 when he was a rising star in the Nazi party. He was introduced to the 17-year-old as Herr Wolff, while she modeled for the official Nazi photographer Heinrich Hoffmann in Munich.

    The Bavarian became Hitler's companion, despite being kept hidden from the public and often left alone. A depressive, she attempted suicide twice, but still remained loyal to

    Read More »from Photos of Hitler’s Wife Stir the Web
  • He's too young to be a chick magnet, but a 7-year-old Serbian boy named Bogdan does have an undeniable ability to attract things. Bogdan and his family claim that his body is magnetic, and that small objects throughout the house stick to him. Spoons, remote controls, even plates--none can resist Bogdan's bod.

    There are those who have strong doubts as to whether Bogdan is actually magnetic. A buzzy article from LiveScience postulates that Bogdan is probably just "sticky." Either that, or he may be leaning back slightly.

    In the LiveScience piece, Benjamin Radford, editor of the magazine Skeptical Inquirer, notes that if he was magnetic, plates and glass wouldn't stick to him. It's more likely that the objects have a "smooth surface" to stick to.

    Future member of the X-Men or just an incredibly sticky kid? You can judge for yourself in the clip below.


    Read More »from Meet Bogdan: magnetic or just sticky?
  • Miss ColoradoSome say the economy is on the mend. This week, consumer confidence hit a three-year high and new jobless claims dropped unexpectedly. But not everyone has a reason to be so optimistic. Just months after receiving her crown, Miss Colorado USA Blair Griffith lost her home.

    The 23-year-old, who will compete in the Miss USA pageant in June, was evicted, along with her mother, from their home last November. They have been living with a family friend ever since. Griffith is also scheduled to lose her job at Saks Fifth Avenue when the branch she works at closes its doors for good next month. Despite her good looks, she's never had it easy. Her father died of cancer when she was a young girl; several years ago her mother had a heart attack. Major surgery followed that "took a toll on the family's finances," she explained in recent interviews.

    Her misfortune has made for a unique message: "You do sit there and go, 'Oh gosh, not again.' But at the same time I think it's almost like a test .. to

    Read More »from Homeless Miss Colorado’s trying times
  • Lake Windermere monsterLake Windermere monsterNothing puts a damper on a serene afternoon's kayaking like the sight of a primeval sea monster.

    That was the rude lesson for Tom Pickles and Sarah Harrington, who'd taken their watercraft out on the foggy waters of Lake Windermere, only to encounter what appeared to be "an enormous snake" swimming by.

    "It was petrifying and we paddled back to the shore straight away. At first I thought it was a dog and then saw it was much bigger and moving really quickly at about 10 mph," the 24-year-old Pickles told The Telegraph. "Each hump was moving in a rippling motion and it was swimming fast. Its skin was like a seal's but its shape was completely abnormal—it's not like any animal I've ever seen before."

    But what did Pickles and Harrington expect? Didn't they know that Lake Windermere is reputedly the home of the British version of the Loch Ness monster

    Read More »from Kayakers snap photo of England’s version of the ‘Loch Ness Monster’
  • Watch: 2011 State of the Union Address

    If you're seeing this on RSS, ignore it.

    Watch live as President Obama delivers the State of the Union to Congress and the country (video courtesy of ABC News) and read my live commentary and analysis in the box below.

    Read More »from Watch: 2011 State of the Union Address
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