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"¢ It's intern season. If you'd like to nominate yourself, read the original 'Calling All Interns' post. And if you think your daughter or nephew or the funny hallmate who writes those intrusive but amusing all-dorm emails should apply, please pass along the details.

Monday is the last day to order floss-y gifts that are guaranteed to arrive before Christmas. Our Free Shipping (U.S. only) offer is also good through Monday "“ just enter the code 'SHIP' during checkout. Visit the mental_floss store for t-shirts, calendars, board games and books. Or consider a gift subscription.

"¢ A few great posts from the past week that you may have missed:
7 of History's Most Terrifying Sports Riots
A Brief History of Celebrity Political Endorsements
6 College Pranks (We Wish We Had Thought Of)
13 Nostalgia-Heavy Commercials to Make You Pine for 1987

"¢ We've picked five winners in our 'Design a mental_floss t-shirt' contest. We'll be contacting the victors this week, and rolling out the new shirts in early 2008. Stay tuned.

"¢ It's time to announce the winners of our 'Declare Yourself a Saint (and Win a Book About Your Peers)' contest. The submissions were fantastic. First let me thank our panel of judges: Allison, John, Kevin, Elizabeth-Anne and Dan.

We've expanded the winner's circle to include three readers, who will all receive a copy of This Saint's For You!, plus a few runners-up.

quirk-saint1.jpegWinner #1: I am St. Susan, Patron Saint of Customer Service. Every time you phone your phone company, bank, or car loan company, I am with you. When you have been on hold 30 minutes and have been told that you are the next caller 45 times, I am with you. When the automated voice appreciates your patience 65 times, I am still with you. And when you finally think you are getting a live operator after an hour, but you are disconnected, and when you call back the message states they are on Yakutsk (YAKT) time and are closed, I am still with you.

Pray to me and I bring to you patience and understanding so that you will know that YOU WILL finally get through to someone only to find he/she has limited knowledge of English. Peace be with you. Amen.

Winner #2: I am St. Matt, the patron saint of nervous energy. Pray to me whenever you feel anxious and concerned that you should be doing more with your time. Pray to me while you make restless cell phone calls or text any friend that will listen. I will make you aware that your pacing has got your neighbor feeling seasick, or whisper a reminder in your ear to stop shaking your knee because you are annoying everyone else at the table. You should pray to me during commercial breaks at movie theaters, while waiting in line at Starbucks, or whenever you need to restart your computer for a random Windows update.

I'll do what I can to put your mind at ease, however I may only have a limited time to help since there are so many other things that I should be doing right now.

Amen to that!

Winner #3: I am St Tricia, and there's a 30 percent chance that I'm the Patron Saint of the TV weather people. If you say it's going to be partly cloudy, just ask me and I'll let you call it a more pleasing mostly sunny. Whenever you need to cut into someone's favorite afternoon program to let them know there may or may not be a slight chance of severe thunderstorms and floods, call on me and I'll be there. Just to make sure everyone understands what's going on, I'll help you repeat the same warning 3 times, bringing the "Severe Weather, Death and Destruction Update" to 15 minutes instead of 2. I will also beef up your title to Chief Meteorologist of the World so that you're really respected, even though your forecasts are wrong 5 out of 7 days of the week and you probably don't have a degree in Meteorology. Also call on me for my specialties, arm sweeping ability and all things green-screen. Pray to me that you don't get fired when your boss comes back from golfing soaking wet after you told him it would be sunny. Amen.

And three runners-up who earned free t-shirts...

Runner-up #1: I am St. Korin, Patron Saint of the weird people who look like a giraffe when they run. I will ensure that they provide entertainment for the rest of world without injuring themselves.

Runner-up #2: I am St. Christopher, Patron Saint of urine sample collectors. Pray to me to be able to spot "whizzinators." To be able to detect the presence of excessive Vitmain B consumption. The ability to avoid the Poppy seed false positive. And, most importantly, to not spill any of it on you accidentally.

Runner-up #3:
I am St. Madeleine, patroness of that annoying thing that happens when you encounter someone walking in the opposite direction and you both try to sidestep each other only to wind up face to face again. You know what I'm talking about. Just whisper a quick prayer to me and your path shall be impeded no longer.

(I'll be in touch about getting you your prizes.)

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Netflix
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entertainment
5 Things We Know About Stranger Things Season 2
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Netflix

Stranger Things seemed to come out of nowhere to become one of television's standout new series in 2016. Netflix's sometimes scary, sometimes funny, and always exciting homage to '80s pop culture was a binge-worthy phenomenon when it debuted in July 2016. Of course, the streaming giant wasn't going to wait long to bring more Stranger Things to audiences, and a second season was announced a little over a month after its debut—and Netflix just announced that we'll be getting it a few days earlier than expected. Here are five key things we know about the show's sophomore season, which kicks off on October 27.

1. WE'LL BE GETTING EVEN MORE EPISODES.

The first season of Stranger Things consisted of eight hour-long episodes, which proved to be a solid length for the story Matt and Ross Duffer wanted to tell. While season two won't increase in length dramatically, we will be getting at least one extra hour when the show returns in 2017 with nine episodes. Not much is known about any of these episodes, but we do know the titles:

"Madmax"
"The Boy Who Came Back To Life"
"The Pumpkin Patch"
"The Palace"
"The Storm"
"The Pollywog"
"The Secret Cabin"
"The Brain"
"The Lost Brother"

There's a lot of speculation about what each title means and, as usual with Stranger Things, there's probably a reason for each one.

2. THE KIDS ARE RETURNING (INCLUDING ELEVEN).

Stranger Things fans should gear up for plenty of new developments in season two, but that doesn't mean your favorite characters aren't returning. A November 4 photo sent out by the show's Twitter account revealed most of the kids from the first season will be back in 2017, including the enigmatic Eleven, played by Millie Bobby Brown (the #elevenisback hashtag used by series regular Finn Wolfhard should really drive the point home):

3. THE SHOW'S 1984 SETTING WILL LEAD TO A DARKER TONE.

A year will have passed between the first and second seasons of the show, allowing the Duffer brothers to catch up with a familiar cast of characters that has matured since we last saw them. With the story taking place in 1984, the brothers are looking at the pop culture zeitgeist at the time for inspiration—most notably the darker tone of blockbusters like Gremlins and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

"I actually really love Temple of Doom, I love that it gets a little darker and weirder from Raiders, I like that it feels very different than Raiders did," Matt Duffer told IGN. "Even though it was probably slammed at the time—obviously now people look back on it fondly, but it messed up a lot of kids, and I love that about that film—that it really traumatized some children. Not saying that we want to traumatize children, just that we want to get a little darker and weirder."

4. IT'S NOT SO MUCH A CONTINUATION AS IT IS A SEQUEL.

When you watch something like The Americans season two, it's almost impossible to catch on unless you've seen the previous episodes. Stranger Things season two will differ from the modern TV approach by being more of a sequel than a continuation of the first year. That means a more self-contained plot that doesn't leave viewers hanging at the end of nine episodes.

"There are lingering questions, but the idea with Season 2 is there's a new tension and the goal is can the characters resolve that tension by the end," Ross Duffer told IGN. "So it's going to be its own sort of complete little movie, very much in the way that Season 1 is."

Don't worry about the two seasons of Stranger Things being too similar or too different from the original, though, because when speaking with Entertainment Weekly about the influences on the show, Matt Duffer said, "I guess a lot of this is James Cameron. But he’s brilliant. And I think one of the reasons his sequels are as successful as they are is he makes them feel very different without losing what we loved about the original. So I think we kinda looked to him and what he does and tried to capture a little bit of the magic of his work.”

5. THE PREMIERE WILL TRAVEL OUTSIDE OF HAWKINS.

Everything about the new Stranger Things episodes will be kept secret until they finally debut later this year, but we do know one thing about the premiere: It won't take place entirely in the familiar town of Hawkins, Indiana. “We will venture a little bit outside of Hawkins,” Matt Duffer told Entertainment Weekly. “I will say the opening scene [of the premiere] does not take place in Hawkins.”

So, should we take "a little bit outside" as literally as it sounds? You certainly can, but in that same interview, the brothers also said they're both eager to explore the Upside Down, the alternate dimension from the first season. Whether the season kicks off just a few miles away, or a few worlds away, you'll get your answer when Stranger Things's second season debuts next month.

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Food
The Gooey History of the Fluffernutter Sandwich

Open any pantry in New England and chances are you’ll find at least one jar of Marshmallow Fluff. Not just any old marshmallow crème, but Fluff; the one manufactured by Durkee-Mower of Lynn, Massachusetts since 1920, and the preferred brand of the northeast. With its familiar red lid and classic blue label, it's long been a favorite guilty pleasure and a kitchen staple beloved throughout the region.

This gooey, spreadable, marshmallow-infused confection is used in countless recipes and found in a variety of baked goods—from whoopie pies and Rice Krispies Treats to chocolate fudge and beyond. And in the beyond lies perhaps the most treasured concoction of all: the Fluffernutter sandwich—a classic New England treat made with white bread, peanut butter, and, you guessed it, Fluff. No jelly required. Or wanted.

There are several claims to the origin of the sandwich. The first begins with Revolutionary War hero Paul Revere—or, not Paul exactly, but his great-great-great-grandchildren Emma and Amory Curtis of Melrose, Massachusetts. Both siblings were highly intelligent and forward-thinkers, and Amory was even accepted into MIT. But when the family couldn’t afford to send him, he founded a Boston-based company in the 1890s that specialized in soda fountain equipment.

He sold the business in 1901 and used the proceeds to buy the entire east side of Crystal Street in Melrose. Soon after he built a house and, in his basement, he created a marshmallow spread known as Snowflake Marshmallow Crème (later called SMAC), which actually predated Fluff. By the early 1910s, the Curtis Marshmallow Factory was established and Snowflake became the first commercially successful shelf-stable marshmallow crème.

Although other companies were manufacturing similar products, it was Emma who set the Curtis brand apart from the rest. She had a knack for marketing and thought up many different ways to popularize their marshmallow crème, including the creation of one-of-a-kind recipes, like sandwiches that featured nuts and marshmallow crème. She shared her culinary gems in a weekly newspaper column and radio show. By 1915, Snowflake was selling nationwide.

During World War I, when Americans were urged to sacrifice meat one day a week, Emma published a recipe for a peanut butter and marshmallow crème sandwich. She named her creation the "Liberty Sandwich," as a person could still obtain his or her daily nutrients while simultaneously supporting the wartime cause. Some have pointed to Emma’s 1918 published recipe as the earliest known example of a Fluffernutter, but the earliest recipe mental_floss can find comes from three years prior. In 1915, the confectioners trade journal Candy and Ice Cream published a list of lunch offerings that candy shops could advertise beyond hot soup. One of them was the "Mallonut Sandwich," which involved peanut butter and "marshmallow whip or mallo topping," spread on lightly toasted whole wheat bread.

Another origin story comes from Somerville, Massachusetts, home to entrepreneur Archibald Query. Query began making his own version of marshmallow crème and selling it door-to-door in 1917. Due to sugar shortages during World War I, his business began to fail. Query quickly sold the rights to his recipe to candy makers H. Allen Durkee and Fred Mower in 1920. The cost? A modest $500 for what would go on to become the Marshmallow Fluff empire.

Although the business partners promoted the sandwich treat early in the company’s history, the delicious snack wasn’t officially called the Fluffernutter until the 1960s, when Durkee-Mower hired a PR firm to help them market the sandwich, which resulted in a particularly catchy jingle explaining the recipe.

So who owns the bragging rights? While some anonymous candy shop owner was likely the first to actually put the two together, Emma Curtis created the early precursors and brought the concept to a national audience, and Durkee-Mower added the now-ubiquitous crème and catchy name. And the Fluffernutter has never lost its popularity.

In 2006, the Massachusetts state legislature spent a full week deliberating over whether or not the Fluffernutter should be named the official state sandwich. On one side, some argued that marshmallow crème and peanut butter added to the epidemic of childhood obesity. The history-bound fanatics that stood against them contended that the Fluffernutter was a proud culinary legacy. One state representative even proclaimed, "I’m going to fight to the death for Fluff." True dedication, but the bill has been stalled for more than a decade despite several revivals and subsequent petitions from loyal fans.

But Fluff lovers needn’t despair. There’s a National Fluffernutter Day (October 8) for hardcore fans, and the town of Somerville, Massachusetts still celebrates its Fluff pride with an annual What the Fluff? festival.

"Everyone feels like Fluff is part of their childhood," said self-proclaimed Fluff expert and the festival's executive director, Mimi Graney, in an interview with Boston Magazine. "Whether born in the 1940s or '50s, or '60s, or later—everyone feels nostalgic for Fluff. I think New Englanders in general have a particular fondness for it."

Today, the Fluffernutter sandwich is as much of a part of New England cuisine as baked beans or blueberry pie. While some people live and die by the traditional combination, the sandwich now comes in all shapes and sizes, with the addition of salty and savory toppings as a favorite twist. Wheat bread is as popular as white, and many like to grill their sandwiches for a touch of bistro flair. But don't ask a New Englander to swap out their favorite brand of marshmallow crème. That’s just asking too Fluffing much.

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