Linda Sharps


I live in Eugene, Oregon with my husband and our sons Riley (8) and Dylan (6). Prior to 2010 I spent many years as a software marketer, these days I work from home as a freelance writer. I enjoy high-quality ballpoint pens, exercise-induced endorphins, dark TV dramas, and things that smell like coconut.

Sipping on:

Sugar-Free Red Bull (mmm, chemical-y)

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    As if we all needed yet another reason to be resentful that, instead of attending Comic-Con in San Diego last week, we stayed home and did a crap-ton of laundry (just me? I swear summer laundry is devouring my SOUL), it turns out that HBO released an amazing blooper reel during the Game of Thrones panel on Friday. I would have loved to have seen this in a room full of devoted fans, because I can only assume the reactions were nearly as entertaining as the clip itself, but at least it's been made available via the Internet for our belated viewing pleasure.

    If you're thinking that a blooper reel of one of the most intense, dramatic shows on television would be immeasurably satisfying, you are correct. Tywin Lannister biffing his lines! Daenerys cursing! Cersei comically mugging at the camera! A White Walker falling right the hell off his horse! Oh, this video is a thing of beauty.

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    When I think of musicians known for their raucous live shows that inevitably result in concertgoers getting super wasted, I have to say, Keith Urban does not come to mind. It's true that my standout personal experience with having overindulged waaaaayyyyy too much at a show happened at a Tool concert about 25 years ago, so it's possible I have a misperception that most of the people who consume an irresponsible amount of intoxicants before attending a live event are young and into songs with titles like "Hooker With a Penis," but anyway, my point is, how weird is it that 22 drunk-ass people were hospitalized and more than 50 were taken into police custody at a Keith Urban show on Saturday night?

    The crowd's trashed behavior is also kind of weird -- or maybe ironic? -- given the fact that Urban's a recovering alcoholic. I mean, what is it about a famously sober country singer that compelled these people to be like, LET'S GET SH-TFACED AND GROUP-SING "BUT FOR THE GRACE OF GOD"?

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    Years ago I was standing at our library's parking payment kiosk and rooting frantically through my purse to find some change for the parking meter when a passing woman stopped and handed me a few quarters. "Here you go," she said cheerfully. Such a small gesture, but I've never forgotten it.

    A tiny act of unexpected kindness has the ability to change the trajectory of your entire day, don't you think? In the spirit of spreading more of those good feelings around, here are 8 under-$10 ways you can easily bring some happiness to a stranger's life (and your own, of course, because making other people happy feels awesome).

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    For those of us who didn't make it to Comic-Con last week, here's what we missed: a lot of superhero movie updates, the first peek at the Mockingjay trailer, some righteous Game of Thrones bloopers, a whole mess of people in cosplay, and -- drumroll, please -- the long-awaited trailer for season 5 of The Walking Dead.

    One of these years I'm going to make the nerd pilgrimage to see all this awesome stuff firsthand, but for now I can take solace in the fact that the Walking Dead trailer's readily available online -- and you guys, it is FANTASTIC. It's over 3 glorious minutes of the bloody action to come, and the premiere -- which, by the way, has an official date now -- canNOT come soon enough.

    (Season 4 spoilers ahead!)

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    Who's ready for the final season of Sons of Anarchy? We don't have much of a wait, since the premiere of season 7 begins September 9, and if there's one person who's got their eye on that date even more than the hardcore fans, it's creator Kurt Sutter, who claims he hasn't quite figured out how the series will end yet.

    Sutter says the last season will begin 10 days after the season 6 finale (when you-know-who died), and Jax will be on a mission of revenge. This is definitely the vibe we get in the latest teaser video, titled "Fear the Reaper." In it, it's clear that Jax is a deadly force to be reckoned with ... but he appears to be only a few steps beyond the reach of the law.

    (Sons of Anarchy season 6 spoilers ahead!)

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