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The timing of coffee naps is key -- 20 minutes is ideal. <br>Getty Images/iStockphoto

A coffee nap? Here's how it went for one non-coffee-drinking skeptic.

Life hacks are wildly popular. Who doesn't need five tips to be more productive while relaxing? Also, here's how to become a minimalist! Marie Kondo your life! Bulletproof your coffee! Wake up at 5 a.m.! And coffee naps. You know, that thing where you gulp a cup of coffee then have the best nap ever and then go about your day refreshed. The ultimate power nap. I see it everywhere on the Internet -- and my husband, who is generally a reliable person, swears by them.



College admissions scandal may put a damper on 'college reveal' season

Nicole Bacon was so thrilled to get accepted to Oakland's Mills College that she joined Instagram to spread the news. Like many of her peers, she brought social-media savvy to her "college reveal," posting a "Lord of the Rings"-themed selfie featuring a Mills T-shirt, a registration packet, a "one ring" pendant and a wish for "epic quests" with the #admittedtomills hashtag.


A new report shows reading for fun declines between ages 8 and 9. How can we stem the tide?

Studies have shown that proficient readers are more likely to be successful in school and life, partly because better reading skills make it easier for students to access curriculum in all subjects. So the Kids and Family Reading Report issued this week by Scholastic, which showed a significant decrease between ages 8 and 9 in the number of children who think of themselves as frequent readers, is somewhat discouraging.

Book World: In Afghanistan, delusions of a soldier -- and an army

In the years since Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl walked off his platoon’s base in eastern Afghanistan in the early hours of June 30, 2009, he has become many things to many people, from a conscience-driven whistleblower to a traitorous Taliban collaborator. What would compel a 23-year-old soldier to leave his weapon behind and wander off into hostile territory with nothing more than some water, food, a compass and $300 in cash? The compelling new book "American Cipher: Bowe Bergdahl and the U.S. Tragedy in Afghanistan" by Matt Farwell and Michael Ames attempts to answer these questions or at least to place a framework around them.


How parents of adults can (gently) close the doors to the Bank of Mom and Dad

Being a grown-up is hard. Being a financially independent grown-up is harder. Our children must take on a lot when they reach adulthood: rent, food, transportation, insurance, not to mention staying connected (cellphone, cable and/or WiFi) and perhaps student loans.


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games

Confidently bland: Good gunplay gives small boost to Rage 2’s overly familiar story

The one time I got mad about Rage 2, it was my fault. My first night with the post-apocalyptic shooter, I spent at least 30 minutes fuming over the game’s “insane balancing issues” after I tried to flush out a bandit enclave and kept getting plucked off with explosives. “Why,” I fumed to myself, “do the enemies have so many grenades this early in the game?!”



europe after hours

Mr. B’s north of Wiesbaden has burgers that are worth the drive

Drop what you are doing, look at your calendar and plan a trip to a small town called Wetzlar, about an hour north of Wiesbaden. Your destination: Mr. B’s American burger joint. It is as simple as that, and you will not be disappointed.


pacific after hours

Greek island-inspired Okinawa eatery serves dishes fit for an art gallery

Don’t let the name fool you when visiting Cafe & Dining Santorini on Okinawa. Qwner and chef Yoshitomo Nagamine said the name of his eatery, which specializes in staples like grilled chicken and sauteed fish, was inspired by a past trip to Santorini. This spurred a dream to one day open a restaurant on the island, which attracts millions of tourists each year.



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the meat and potatoes of life

The power of quiet moments

The stump outside my house was the perfect place for chopping up earthworms. At least two feet in diameter, there was enough room across its ringed surface for me to sit and slice at the same time. Despite what one might think, I was and am a non-violent person. But as a child, I believed that worm pieces regenerated. By cutting worms in half, I thought I was multiplying their population, thereby taking part in important zoological conservation work. I had no idea I was actually committing mass murder.