Living Life The Jay Way

Living Life The 'Jay Way'

Success isn't built overnight, and Jay Leno is a prime example of that sentiment.


Success isn't built overnight, and Jay Leno is a prime example of that sentiment. Through the entirety of his career, Leno has had numerous amazing opportunities that allowed him to flourish and spread his wings in the entertainment industry; however, this wasn't something that happened instantly.

Born in New Rochelle, New York in 1950 to a mother who immigrated to the United States from Scotland and a father who was the son of Italian immigrants, Leno spent the majority of his childhood and adolescence in Andover, Massachusetts.

At one point while he was in school, Leno's fifth-grade teacher left a comment in his report card that read, "If Jay spent as much time studying as he does trying to be a comedian, he'd be a big star."

From a young age, Leno struggled with dyslexia, though his ailment didn't stop him from thriving. Leno would wind up graduating from Andover High School only to move on to Emerson College in Boston, where he would graduate with a bachelor's degree in speech therapy in 1972.

Leno has admitted that his career had benefited his career on multiple occasions. During one interview with CNBC, he shared, "My mother always said to me, since I was dyslexic, 'You're going to have to work twice as hard as the other kids to get the same thing. I said, 'OK. That seems fair.' And I did work twice as hard to get the same thing."

Leno added, "I remember going to the comedy clubs and people would line up at 6 p.m. for auditions to get a spot at midnight. By 9 p.m. guys would go, 'I'm not waiting in line.' They would leave and then I would move on up."

He started out his career in nightclubs, where he worked most nights out of the year until 1992 when he scored his own late-night talk show. Though this wasn't Leno's first televised gig. In 1977, he made his very first appearance on the Tonight Show, which was hosted by Johnny Carson from 1962 until 1992, when Leno finally took over. There, Leno performed a comedy routine, and would afterward serve as a substitute host for Carson until 1992.

Following his 1977 talk-show appearance, Leno took on a plethora of film and minor TV roles. Some television appearances included the "JJ in Trouble" episode of Good Times and an uncredited appearance on Fun with Dick and Jane in 1977. More major film roles came in the form of American Hot Wax, Silver Bears, and the straight-to-TV movie, Collision Course.

Additionally, Leno had appeared multiple times on the Late Night Show With David Letterman. During this time, Leno had met his wife Mavis while performing a comedy routine in Los Angeles in 1976, at the start of his comedic career; they married in 1980. In 1992, Leno replaced Carson as the host of the Late Night Show, where he would remain as the host until 2009 when Conan O'Brien emerged as Leno's successor.

During his run as the Late Night Show host, Leno had earned a net worth of $350 million. With such a fortune, it's not so much of a surprise to witness philanthropy from the comedian either. In fact, Jay Leno has contributed to quite a few campaigns for social change. In 1988, Jay Leno founded the JDM Foundation, which is where he moves his philanthropy. Issues that he and his wife focus on include education, women's rights, and animal rights.

In 2001, Leno and his wife Mavis donated $100,000 to the Feminist Majority Foundation's campaign to stop gender apartheid in Afghanistan.

In 2009, he donated $100,000 to Salem State University. The funds went to a scholarship that was named in honor of Lennie Sogoloff, who gave Leno his start at his jazz club, Lennie-on-the-Turnpike. Leno's contributions towards higher education don't stop at his alma mater either. He has consistently supported other institutions like Middlesex Community College, Mount Holyoke College, Boston University, McPherson College, and Northeastern University.

Leno is a known automobile enthusiast and has supported Kansas' McPherson College's Automotive Restoration Technology program for years.

In August 2012, Leno auctioned his Fiat 500, and all the proceeds were donated to a charity that helps injured war veterans and provides them with housing while they recover. The car was sold for a staggering $385,000.

Though Jay Leno was well-known as a successful comedian and late-night talk show host, he was also famous for his impressive collection of motorcycles and classic cars. Leno's interest in cars can be dated back to his younger years; the very first car he owned was a 1934 V-8 truck that he restored when he was just 14. (It should also come as no surprise that Leno's choice token for Monopoly is a racecar.) Leno owns over 170 classic cars and 150 motorcycles, one of which was featured in the 1997 Batman and Robin.

One of Jay Leno's most impressive cars to date is his McLaren F1 Supercar; there are only 106 units of this model in the world today.

Although Leno has dozens of classic cars at his disposal, including one of the fastest cars in the world, the vehicle he currently cruises around in is his 2015 Dodge Challenger. It's not a vehicle most people would expect the typical talk-show host to be riding in, but Jay Leno isn't typical.

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18 Times Kate Middleton Was Actually All Of Us In College, Beside The Princess Thing

Every girl has to go through her clueless college stage before she reaches Duchess status.

Kate Middleton is basically a household name by now, and how could this not be the case when she has the gorgeous hair, kind smile, and incredible fashion sense. With her constantly in the spotlight looking so put together, we sometimes forget that the Duchess was actually all of us in college!

Here are 18 times that Kate proved she was just like all of us.

1. Going all out in the name of school spirit

There is nothing like breaking out the war paint and screaming for your home team. Like Kate, we all love to get a little messy and make some memories with our friends.

2. Hanging out with the roomies

Some people may not get lucky in this area but for those who are best friends with their roommates, they understand the love. It's a dream come true for everyone who has always wanted to live with their best friends. It's like a sleepover that never ends.

3. Dressing up cute on the first day of school...

You got to make a good first impression on your way to school. Whether it's during your 7 A.M or 4 P.M., it's always best to dress to impress.

4. ...and wearing yoga pants for the rest of the year

And this goes all the way until the last week of school when you don't bother getting out of bed to wear pants at all.

5. Going grocery shopping and throwing in cookies, ice-cream, and every type of Pringles because your mom isn't there to say no

You'll probably regret that in a few months when the Freshman Fifteen kicks in.

6. Walking for miles from your car to your dorm carrying groceries

We can't park by the apartment for a solid five minutes to carry our groceries up to the kitchen or we will risk a ticket, but we can walk a few miles carrying food that gets heavier, and heavier, and heavier with every step.

7. Going out for a night on the town on a Friday night

Dancing, laughter, and fun? Everyone in college has been to a party or two. It's a classic part of the college experience. Sometimes you just need a distraction from all the essays and tests.

8. Being so late to class you threw on whatever your hands grabbed next

We've all been there. Our alarm doesn't go off, we press snooze a few too many times, or forget to even set an alarm and next thing you know we are running around the dorm room like Taz from Looney Toons. You throw on whatever, then run to class.

Unfortunately 9/10 times our outfits don't turn out. Although, Kate can certainly pull off this look, no matter how mismatched.

9. Pretending your walking to the same building as the cute boy you met so you have the excuse to keep talking to him

I am very guilty of doing this. Although I missed my class, at least I got to talk to the really cute boy who has class at 9:45 in the STEM building. It was worth it.

10. Sitting on the floor or standing because you're a poor college student who can't afford chairs or tables

Eating on the floor? Always. Being a college kid is tough and sometimes you have to sacrifice some things to obtain the others. Such as choosing chocolate milk and Halo Top over vegetables and hair conditioner.

Judging by Kate's beautiful locks, she chose the conditioner.

Probably the vegetables too.

We should just all follow her example.

11. Going on cute date with the boy you followed to class-turned-boyfriend

Now my short-lived romance may not have extended farther than us talking and walking to his class, but Kate and William obviously had a better ending. Nevertheless, college is the place to grow and date and possibly find the one.

12. Keeping your hair long and growing because you can't afford to get it cut

Don't trust your roommate. No matter how many times she begs you to let her cut it. Don't.

13. Turning 21 and getting dressed up and going out with your best friends

While this one probably doesn't apply to Kate, since you can drink at age 18 in most countries, all my people in the United States know the sweet freedom of turning 21. It's an iconic time in a students life and marks a huge milestone as well.

14. Passing out flyers for some type of movement or protest

Everyone wants to be a part of something bigger - which is why college is the time to stand up for what you believe in. May that be RedforEd, Planned Parenthood, anti-Abortion, Trump, the Wall, pizza bagels, it's all an exercise of the first amendment.

15. Ranting to your friends about the professor that just "doesn't understand you"

You know your thinking about that professor right now as you read this. And you know that that's your reaction whenever they give you a bad grade or say something you disagree with at the tiniest degree.

16. Getting glammed-up for those senior photos

Pick out your best outfit and make sure it's a good hair day because everyone will be viewing these photos forever... and in Kate's place that is more than true. Luckily she looks as gorgeous as ever. Does she ever have a bad hair day?

17. Walking out of your last class knowing you'll never have to write a single paper again

And purposefully not thinking about how you will be going into the real world in less than a few days.

18. When you've graduated and realized you have no idea what you're going to do with your life

Maybe a prince will be right around the corner to sweep you off your feet so you won't have to figure your life out.
Cover Image Credit: Laura Warshauer

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The Kate Spade Foundation Follows Through On Their Million Dollar Promise

One year and a million dollars later, the fight against mental health issues continues.


Going through a mental illness can be one of the most isolating and lonely feelings known to man. When you're in that state of mind it's hard to imagine that anyone could feel as bad as you do right then and there let alone have gone through something similar. Not only that, but many people will suffer in silence, avoiding speaking up or asking for help. Which, if anyone who's battled a mental illness would know, is not an uncommon feeling.

It's hard to speak up and ask for help, especially with something that feels so deeply personal and at times hard to describe. Many people find ways to cope and regain a balance in their lives. Many others never find that balance.

Roughly one year ago, on June 5, 2018, Kate Spade took her own life after battling depression and anxiety for nearly her entire life. It seemed completely out of the blue and nearly everyone was taken aback. But that's the nature of mental illness in some ways. We don't understand the severity or how deeply someone may have been struggling with their mental illness until it's too late.

The reality of mental health is often harrowing, especially when it comes to access to help. An increasing number of Americans are seeking help for a mental health condition but millions still remain with unmet needs or an undiagnosed condition. Many states with a mental health work provider workforce have only one worker for every four individuals requesting therapy.

But there are organizations across the nation who are working to make mental health care not only more accessible but affordable as well. The Kate Spade New York Foundation has just completed their $1 million donation pledge to mental health services such as The Jed Foundation and the Crisis Text Line.

Kate Spade's death, alongside those such as Anthony Bourdain and Robin Williams, proved to many of us that mental health issues affect us all regardless of our wealth, fame or status. In the time following their deaths, I felt that we've become more honest with ourselves and worked hard to destigmatize mental health as a whole. Her death raised the conversation surrounding mental health to new levels that I don't think had previously been touched. Regardless, there's always more work to be done and we should all aspire to live in a world where those affected with these illnesses no longer feel alone.

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