Style Icon Kendall Jenner Tells Elle.com, 'The Man Should Pick the Engagement Ring'

Style icon, cover girl, runway model and reality star Kendall Jenner dished to Elle.com on Tuesday that when it comes to picking an engagement ring, she'd rather be surprised by her boyfriend than make the selection herself. She did add, however, that she'd likely drop him a bunch of hints along the way so he gets it right.

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When Elle.com asked, "Are you someone who wants to pick out your engagement ring or do you want to be totally surprised?" the statuesque 23-year-old said, "I mean, I kind of love the idea of letting the man pick it and having it be that pretty thing that he kind of thought of himself."

There's something "kind of romantic" behind the idea that her boyfriend was involved in the design concept of the ring, she said. "But at the same time, I'm the type of person that would give hints and be like, 'I kind of want this.'"

When the Elle.com interviewer suggested that Jenner could DM (direct message) pics of potential rings to her boyfriend, NBA pro Ben Simmons, the star of Keeping Up With the Kardashians chuckled and said, "Totally."

With a huge social media following, including 108 million on Instagram alone, Kendall is a high-profile lifestyle influencer of young women from coast to coast and around the world.

When asked if there is one piece of jewelry she can't leave the house without, Jenner explained she'll usually throw on a pair of earrings if she's feeling "a bit spare."

"I think that's the easiest thing to get away with if you don't want to wear too much," she said.

Jenner also revealed that she and her siblings have their eyes on the extensive jewelry and watch collection of their mother, Chris Jenner.

Said Kendall Jenner, "We're all kind of waiting for one day for her to feel generous and be like, 'You guys want this stuff?'”

Credit: Image by https://vimeo.com/jonathanemma [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

Music Friday: Neil Young Is a Miner for a 'Heart of Gold' in the 1971 Classic

Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you classic songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, the incomparable Neil Young searches for a soulmate in his 1971 chart-topping classic, "Heart of Gold."

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Penned by Young, this song is about a man who has been unlucky in love. The protagonist of the story wonders if he's ever going to find someone who will cherish him unconditionally.

He sings, "I want to live, I want to give / I've been a miner for a heart of gold / It's these expressions I never give / That keep me searching for a heart of gold and I'm getting old."

Ranked #297 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 greatest songs, “Heart of Gold” remains Canadian Neil Young’s only #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The song also reached #1 on the Canadian RPM Top Singles list.

Interestingly, this ubiquitous song was a result of a couple of serendipitous events:

Young had suffered a back injury and, unable to stand for long periods to play his electric guitar, returned to his acoustic guitar and harmonica. “Heart of Gold” was one song that came out of those sessions. Second, Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor happened to be in Nashville for a television appearance while Young was recording Harvest, the album on which “Heart of Gold” appears. The album's producer arranged for the high-profile artists to sing backup on Young's track.

"Heart of Gold" has been covered by more than 30 artists, including Dave Matthews, Jimmy Buffett, Johnny Cash, Tori Amos and Willie Nelson. Canada’s CBC radio named it the third best Canadian song of all time and it was included in the Eat, Pray, Love movie soundtrack.

Born in Toronto in 1945 to a sportswriter dad and quiz show panelist mom, Young contracted polio as a five year old. The disease damaged the left side of his body and led to seizures he would experience throughout his life.

Young idolized Elvis Presley and listened to rock 'n roll, rockabilly, doo-wop, R&B and country and western music on the radio. Young taught himself to play a plastic ukulele, and he would soon step up to a banjo ukulele and baritone ukulele. Young formed his first band, the Jades, while attending middle school and eventually played with several rock bands in high school. Music dominated his world, so he decided to drop out of school to pursue a musical career.

He formed the influential band Buffalo Springfield with Stephen Stills in 1966 and toured with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, starting in 1968.

Young is one of the few artists who had been inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. He was first honored as a solo artist in 1995 and then as a member of Buffalo Springfield in 1997. In 2000, Rolling Stone named Young the 34th greatest rock 'n roll artist.

Please check out the video of Young's live performance of "Heart of Gold." The clip is taken from his 1971 appearance on the British TV show BBC In Concert.

"Heart of Gold"
Written and performed by Neil Young.

I want to live, I want to give
I've been a miner for a heart of gold
It's these expressions I never give
That keep me searching for a heart of gold and I'm getting old
Keep me searching for a heart of gold and I'm getting old

I've been to Hollywood, I've been to Redwood
I crossed the ocean for a heart of gold
I've been in my mind, it's such a fine line
That keeps me searching for a heart of gold and I'm getting old
Keeps me searching for a heart of gold and I'm getting old

Keep me searching for a heart of gold
You keep me searching and I'm growing old
Keep me searching for a heart of gold
I've been a miner for a heart of gold



Credit: Screen capture via YouTube.com.

Boston Red Sox World Series Ring Is a Fitting Tribute to 2018's 'Team for the Ages'

The Boston Red Sox received their bling-tastic 2018 World Series championship rings prior to the team's home opener on Tuesday afternoon at Fenway Park. Glistening with 185 gemstones weighing a total of 15 carats, the ring is a fitting tribute to what has been called a "team for the ages."

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The dominant Red Sox of 2018 notched a franchise-record 108 wins during the regular season and then pummeled three postseason opponents — the Yankees, Astros and Dodgers — at an 11-3 clip to secure their fourth title since 2004.

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The Jostens-designed rings commemorating the historic season are flush with gem-themed symbolism. For instance, the 185 gems represent the 162 regular season games, 14 post-season games and nine World Series titles now held by the Red Sox.

The iconic Boston "B" logo on the face of the 14-karat white gold ring is formed by 21 custom-cut genuine rubies, which represent the four World Series titles won by the Red Sox during the 17 seasons of Fenway Sports Group ownership. The logo is framed by 22 intricately set custom-cut blue sapphires, which represent the Red Sox’ 14 post-season games and eight home runs hit during the World Series against the Dodgers.

The 14 channel-set diamonds accenting the top of the ring — seven on each side — symbolize the total number of American League pennants won by the Red Sox since the franchise was established in 1901.

A cascade of 128 diamonds in two rows add to the brilliance of the ring, but also represent the 119 franchise-record wins in 2018 and the nine World Series titles.

Overall, the ring features 4.5 carats of diamonds, 6.5 carats of blue sapphires and 4.0 carats of rubies for a total gem weight of 15 carats.

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The left side of the ring displays eight pennants featuring the years of previous Red Sox World Series titles. The ninth and largest pennant pays tribute to 2018's franchise-record wins and is punctuated by the famous double Sox logo. In another nod to the team's championship history, the depiction of 100 individual weathered bricks of Fenway Park form the background of each side panel to celebrate the centennial of the famed 1918 World Series Championship.

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The name of each recipient appears on the ring's right side, rendered in the Red Sox jersey font. The ring belonging to Steve Pearce, the 2018 World Series MVP, showcases his jersey number 25 rendered in pavé-set diamonds. Pearce's name and jersey number frame an intricately detailed façade of Fenway Park, the oldest ballpark in Major League Baseball.

Highlighted on the Fenway façade are two historically important years — 1912 and 2018. The smaller of the two dates displays the year Fenway Park opened. That year, the team won 105 regular-season games — a record that stood for 105 seasons until it was broken in 2018 by a team that captured 108 regular season wins.

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Inscribed on the interior of the ring is "10-28-18," the date of the World Series victory and the date the team's post-season slogan of "Do Damage" was changed to "Damage Done." In recognition of the exceptional contributions of the players and the coaching staff, the declaration of DAMAGE DONE appears on the interior alongside each of their signatures and nicknames.

The finishing touch on this championship ring is an expression on the palm crest that captures the talent of the 2018 Red Sox and their place in baseball lore: TEAM FOR THE AGES.

Credits: Images by Jostens via Twitter/Boston Red Sox.

Researchers Find World-Class Blue Spinel on Baffin Island in the Canadian Arctic

On Baffin Island in the Canadian Arctic, University of British Columbia researchers discovered deposits of cobalt-blue spinel in qualities that rival the finest in the world.

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Researchers Philippe Belley and Lee Groat attributed the surprising find to the high levels of a "magic" ingredient present in the area — cobalt.

Pure spinel is colorless, but impurities in its chemical structure give rise to a range of colors, from pink and red to purple and blue. Baffin Island spinel, the researchers found, contains up to 500 parts-per-million of cobalt, which gives it a vivid blue color — a color comparable to the highly coveted material found in Vietnam and the Himalayas.

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“Baffin Island is geologically similar to the Himalayas, where some of the world’s finest gems have been found,” said Belley, a recent PhD graduate of the department of earth, ocean and atmospheric science. “Canada hasn’t been widely recognized as a source for fine, colored gemstones, but our research suggests that we have all the right ingredients.”

Belley added, "There’s considerable interest in cobalt-blue spinel for gems and jewelry. There are few stones that match its intense blue color.”

Spinel formed on Baffin Island from sedimentary deposits of dolomite-bearing limestones. These sedimentary rocks metamorphosed at temperatures of about 800º C (1,472º F) under immense pressure.

“We found that cobalt was added at some point during sediment deposition or up to early metamorphism,” said Groat, a UBC mineralogist.

The researchers noted that even small spinel crystals with good transparency and fine cobalt-blue color can sell for about 10 times the price of comparable sapphires. But supply is an issue, and even production from the most significant source, Vietnam, is limited and sporadic.

The researchers explained that, despite the prevalence of hungry polar bears on Baffin Island, finding blue spinel there might be easier than exploring for the gem in the thick jungles of Vietnam or the challenging terrain of the Himalayas.

"[In those areas] most new deposits are found by accident,” said Belley. “But there’s excellent rock exposure on Baffin Island, which facilitates exploration and the use of more advanced techniques like imaging using drones or satellites.”

Spinel, which in 2016 joined the official list of birthstones for the month of August, is famous for being the jewelry-industry's "great imposter." Before modern testing became available, deep red spinel was often mistaken for ruby.

Credit: Image courtesy of Philippe Belley, UBC. Map via Google.

Canadian Man Inherits 61-Pound 'Giga Pearl' — One of the Largest in the World

Resembling a dinosaur's tooth and weighing an astonishing 61 pounds, the Philippine-sourced "Giga Pearl" is one of the largest in the world and could be worth upwards of $90 million.

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Currently owned by Ontario native Abraham Reyes, The Giga Pearl had been a family heirloom for 60 years. The natural pearl was hidden within a giant clam his grandfather had purchased from a Filipino fisherman as a gift for Reyes' aunt. It was 1959.

Even when the cream-colored mass was discovered inside, family members didn't think it had much value. In fact, some weren't convinced it was a pearl. Reyes and his aunt, however, always had an affection for the odd collectible, which she displayed along with her artwork and antiquities.

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In 2016, when Reyes' aunt began divvying up her estate, the mollusk-born treasure and 15,000 Oriental and Philippine antiques were passed on to him.

Reyes, who is a mineral broker, kept the pearl in a safety deposit box until he could have it evaluated by gemologists. The 34-year-old from Mississauga soon learned that his aunt's collectible was certified by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) as the largest natural blister pearl in the world. Blister pearls are different than conventional pearls because they grow attached to the inside surface of a shell.

The waters of the Philippines are home to one of the most fascinating mollusks on earth — the Tridactna Gigas. They are the largest mollusks in the fossil record, measuring more than a meter wide and weighing more than 200 kilograms.

Insurance appraisers have placed the value of The Giga Pearl at somewhere between $60 million and $90 million, according to Reyes.

"It's priceless to me," Reyes told CBC Toronto. “I believe the world should know that it does exist. To me, I feel very honored to have it. I feel a great responsibility.”

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Ideally, Reyes would love to display The Giga Pearl in museums and galleries around the world. The pearl is currently paired with a 22-karat gold leaf octopus conceived by New York-based sculptor Bethany Krull.

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"Seeing this incredible natural pearl and learning of its origins in the Philippine Seas... inspired me to create a sculpture that not only displays the pearl's magnificence but also reiterates the idea that the biodiversity and uniqueness of the waters to which it was born need to be respected and preserved," Krull said.

Back in 2016, we reported on the 75-pound Puerto Princesa pearl, which was found by a Filipino fisherman when his anchor got snagged on a giant clam. He had kept the pearl under his bed as a good luck charm for 10 years, and every time he would head out to sea, he would touch the pearl to ensure his safety and good fortune.

The fisherman entrusted the amazing pearl to Aileen Cynthia Maggay-Amurao, a relative who was affiliated with the Puerto Princesa tourism office. He asked her to take custody of the good luck charm because he was about to move outside the province and couldn’t take it with him.

Recognizing the pearl’s star power, she asked the fisherman if he would approve of the pearl going on display as the city’s newest tourist attraction. He agreed, and the “Pearl of Puerto” was moved into the Atrium of the New Green City Hall.

Credits: Images courtesy of The Giga Pearl.