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Nearly everyone who knew Douglas McAuthur McCain say they have no idea how a Christian kid from the Midwest turned into an Islamist fighter in Syria. Jim Sciutto is in for Erin Burnett.
Sochi Winter Olympics: Members of the 2014 U.S. Figure Skating Olympic team speak out on terror warnings
January 20th, 2014
03:55 PM ET

Sochi Winter Olympics: Members of the 2014 U.S. Figure Skating Olympic team speak out on terror warnings

The Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia are less than three weeks away and over the weekend members of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees expressed concern about security at the event.

U.S. lawmakers: Winter Olympics aren’t safe

Senator Angus King, I-Maine, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said he wouldn’t go to the games himself – “and I don't think I would send my family,” he told CNN’s State of the Union.

At the 2014 U.S. Figure Skating National Championships in Boston, OutFront asked some top U.S. skaters about the terror threat and the warning issued to Americans traveling to the Olympics.

Sochi Winter Olympics: Video threat emerges amid security concerns

U.S. Ladies Champion Gracie Gold: "I feel that perhaps you might not travel to Sochi for a vacation but I trust that the USOC and all other appropriate federations will take care of not just the athletes but the spectators to make sure that the event is secure..."

U.S. Ice Dancing Champion and Olympic Gold Medal Favorite Charlie White: "Yeah I mean obviously it’s tough to completely block that out… I think that’s going to be the case with any type of high profile event. Luckily we have a lot of training and mental training and what we need to focus on as athletes so we don’t get distracted too much….You know we have full faith that all security concerns will be taken care of so we can go out and do our job."

Two-time National Ladies Champion Ashley Wagner: “You know I have the utmost faith in the Russian Olympic Committee as well as the U.S. Olympic Committee in that they will do everything they possibly can to make sure that their athletes are safe and comfortable…it’s putting the situation in their hands and I know that they want us to be comfortable enough so we can just focus on competing.”

Police warn Sochi hotels of terror suspect as Olympics near

U.S. Pairs Champion Simon Shnapir: "...The security is going to be great…We’re really not concerned about that. I’m sure everything’s going to be fine."

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Filed under: News • Olympics
Inside the Road to 2014 Sochi Olympics for the US Women's Figure Skating Team
January 17th, 2014
12:42 PM ET

Inside the Road to 2014 Sochi Olympics for the US Women's Figure Skating Team

BOSTON — With less than a month until the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, the U.S. women’s figure skating team has the daunting task of preparing not only for solo performances but for the first team competition in Olympic history.

Now that the U.S. National Championships are over, before Gracie Gold, Ashley Wagner and Polina Edmunds take center ice in Russia for the biggest competition of their lives, they will have to get back to training, planning their Olympic experiences and dealing with the inevitable wrath of the international media.

Historically, the ladies of the U.S. Olympic figure skating team are the media darlings of the games. If a U.S. skater wins the gold medal, she will most likely become a household name. (Think Tara Lipinski, Sarah Hughes and Kristi Yamaguchi.) Even if they don't medal, this is probably the most international attention that Gold, Wagner and Edmunds will ever face.

Wagner, an army brat, is more the girl next door. She’s not afraid to throw away her talking points or mouth “I’m sorry” to the camera in the kiss and cry. Earlier this season, she spoke out against the anti-gay legislation in Russia when her teammates zipped their lips.

At 15, Edmunds is new to the game and soft-spoken but has caught up quickly. At nationals, she was already stressing her Russian heritage. Her mom and part-time coach, Nina Edmunds, was born there, and Polina can fully understand her mom and grandmother when they speak Russian.


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Filed under: News • Olympics • Sports
Romance writer Megan Mulry takes a risk on self-publishing
November 27th, 2013
08:53 PM ET

Romance writer Megan Mulry takes a risk on self-publishing

This Friday when romance writer Megan Mulry officially releases her latest book entitled "In Love Again," she will be taking a risk. Mulry’s previous two books in her fictional “Unruly Royals” series were published by Sourcebooks , and landed her on the USA TODAY Bestseller list. But for book number three, Mulry decided to self-publish.

“I had a wonderful three-book deal with Sourcebooks, with a one-book option clause," Mulry tells OutFront. But Mulry says her new protagonist didn't fit into the Sourcebooks vision for the series of high-flying British royals and the Americans who love them. The star of her new novel is pushing forty, a departure from her traditionally twenty-something characters that catered to a younger audience. “After my editor, Deb Werksman, and I talked about the option clause," she says, "we both agreed it might be an opportunity for me to self-publish.”

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Filed under: OutFront Extra • OutFront Staff
OutFront on the Town: Bon Appétit's Hot Ten Party
September 10th, 2013
11:00 AM ET

OutFront on the Town: Bon Appétit's Hot Ten Party

Thursday night Bon Appétit and Warby Parker hosted a major fete to honor the top dishes from the “Hot 10” chefs featured in Bon Appétit's September restaurant issue and to kick off New York Fashion Week. The event space in downtown Manhattan was a five-story-exposed-brick-loft-townhouse with an indoor pool and for the evening it was transformed into a fun house of food. Each level had culinary delights more and more exotic from the newly anointed top chefs who were flown in for the occasion.

Among the most soulful dishes was a dry-aged porterhouse steak from Austin’s Jeffrey’s and Josephine House served by a strapping young lad in a white jacket in the venue’s cozy library area. Across from the steak and in front of the pool was a dangerous Mad Men-esque martini cart.

One floor up was a dark and noisy jam-packed room with bright images of food (think ironic giant prawns) projected on the back wall. A chef’s kitchen with Chicago joint Fat Rice’s signature arroz gordo or “Fat Rice” stole the show.

Full disclosure: Never-have-I-ever eaten Macanese food (Chinese and Portuguese fusion). I especially haven’t served myself steaming “paella” (that I still can’t get out of my head) from a clay pot. The “fragrant Chinese sausage and sofrito scented rice with Portuguese chicken, roast pork, linguiça, salted duck, prawns, tea eggs and littleneck clams” spilled out of my takeout box and I immediately started crying upon first bite. I guess I spooned on too much Ghost Pepper Piri Piri sauce. Fat Rice Chef/Co-owner Abraham Conlon (he’s Portuguese) and Co-owner/General Manager Adrienne Lo (she’s Chinese) were both in attendance and tell OutFront, “As of now there is no plan to bring Fat Rice to New York or elsewhere, but [that’s] not out of the question.”

Follow Jessica Reinis on Twitter: @JessicaReinis.

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Filed under: Business • Food
From Line Cook to CEO: Top Chefs in the USA
August 31st, 2013
02:26 PM ET

The Not So Glamorous Reality of the Restaurant Industry

It used to be that Zagat was for snobs and Julia Child’s The French Chef was your grandma’s cooking show. Over time, beloved reality shows like Bravo's Top Chef and Food Network’s Iron Chef America brought high-end cooks like Tom Colicchio and Mario Batali to living rooms across America and not only turned chefs into celebrities but made haute cuisine accessible to the masses. These days, food is not merely meant for sustenance. It's deconstructed and documented. It's a challenge to sit down for dinner at a restaurant and not see someone whip out a smart phone to chronicle their meal on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. People are even logging on to share their coffee shop visits. Starbucks, for instance, leads a new MomentFeed Restaurant report that found patrons took and tagged 109,054 photos over the course of just four months.

What we're having for dinner suddenly matters, whether we're dining in or out - and it shows. Restaurant industry job growth outpaced the overall economy every year from 2000 to 2012. Sales are projected to hit $661 billion in 2013 - equal to four percent of U.S. GDP. That's up from $379 billion 13 years ago. Restaurants are raking it in, so you would think the people carefully layering your truffle burger behind the scenes would be too. But they make next to nothing and spend almost all of their time at work. Just ask Chris Reynolds. This line cook at a top New York City restaurant has a reality check for those romanticizing the life of a culinary artiste.

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Filed under: Business • Food • Living
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