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Fanatics executive and 76ers co-owner Michael Rubin played a birthday prank on his friend Will Makris by paying for a billboard that asked people to call him because he’s now a lonely 40-year-old.

If you walk by 26th and 11th street in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York, you’ll see a billboard with the words, “Today’s my 40th and I am lonely. CALL ME,” with a New York phone number. The phone number belongs to Rubin’s close friend and hospitality entrepreneur Will Makris. Rubin came clean about putting together the gag on Instagram.

He wrote, “Wanted to give my brother [Makris] a 40th bday present he’d never forget!!! This is an actual billboard on 26th and 11th in NYC…. thought he was feeling lonely today and needed a lot of love. Ps make sure everyone calls him so he doesn’t feel 40 and unloved!” Makris, an executive of Zero Bond and Lola Taverna, said the billboard led him to receive multiple calls “from [numbers] all over the world.” He told Page Six, the entire ordeal was “crazy.”

“I woke up this morning, and I guess they were putting it up. People started sending pictures to me, being like, ‘Happy birthday, hope you’re not alone.’ Complete strangers,” he said. Makris added that most of the messages were “nice” aside from a few that were from “a couple people with business opportunities.” Others tried to get in touch with Rubin through Makris. “Happy birthday, can you send this to Michael Rubin? Hope you’re not lonely now,” he explained.

While some might be upset over their phone number being made public to millions of people, Makris took the joke in good spirit. “You’re only 40 once… I’ll take the smile with the beating.” He added of his over-worked cell phone when we asked if he had a backup, “I’ve had this number for a long time, so I hope this will die down.” The only clue that would signal that Rubin was behind the joke were the words, “This ad is brought to you by Pancake Productions.” Page Six reports that Makris calls Rubin “pancake” because it’s one of Rubin’s favorite meals to eat.

All in all, Makris said funny jokes like this one is what it means to have great friendships. “With friends like these, who needs enemies?”

What’s the best prank you’ve ever pulled on your bestie?




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Authorities Say Shaquille O’Neal’s Atlanta Krispy Kreme Fire Was Arson

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The fire that destroyed Shaquille O’Neal’s Atlanta landmark Krispy Kreme Doughnuts location earlier this month has been ruled an act of arson.

On Friday, the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department announced its findings through social media and requested the public’s help to identify their suspect. Two photos were released of the suspect involved, and a $10,000 reward has been offered, Yahoo reports.

Officials did not say how the February 10 fire started. Two employees were working in the store’s drive-thru at the time of the tragedy but luckily escaped safely after seeing wires smoking.

Firefighters were able to salvage most of the building, the outlet reported.

The location was opened in 1965 as part of the franchise’s initial expansion away from North Carolina. Shaq acquired it in 2016, who later became a global spokesman for the company.

It’s unknown when the store will reopen, but the NBA Hall of Famer says that they “will be back stronger the

an ever.”




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FBI Zeroes In On Suspect In Capitol Officer Brian Sicknick’s Death

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According to officials, the FBI has zeroed in on an unidentified suspect in the death of Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick. Sicknick lost his life due to injuries sustained during the January 6 siege at the U.S. Capitol Building.

CNN reports that initial reports of Sicknick being attacked with a fire extinguisher, which turned out to be untrue. Instead, the theory is he became ill from the bear spray used by the angry mob during the attacks. It was previously reported that Sicknick made it back to his office, where he collapsed. He later died at an area hospital.

“We are awaiting toxicology results and continue to work with other government agencies regarding the death investigation,” U.S. Capitol Police said in a statement.

Newly surfaced video footage is credited with helping investigators narrow down the suspect pool. Despite having video footage and photographs of the attack, investigators have struggled to build a strong murder case in Sicknick’s death. It’s not clear what charges the unknown suspect will face.

“Officer Sicknick’s family has asked for privacy during this difficult time and that the spreading of misinformation stop regarding the cause of his death,” said the statement from Capitol Police. “The Department and the Sicknick family appreciate the outpouring of support for our fallen officer.”

Sicknick, a New Jersey native, laid in state at the Capitol Building earlier this month, an honor typically reserved for the United States government leaders. President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, and congressional leaders came to the ceremony to pay their respects to the fallen officer. 




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AMC Gives It’s CEO $3.75 Million For COVID-19 Response

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The nation’s largest theater chain, AMC Entertainment, awarded its CEO with a $3.75 million bonus for handling the COVID-19 outbreak.

In addition to CEO Adam Aron receiving $3.75 million, several other execs will also be financially rewarded. Chief financial officer Sean Goodman will receive $507,500, EVP US/Canada operations; John McDonald will receive $194,550; VP Worldwide Programming and Chief Content Officer Elizabeth Frank will walk away with $180,650 and EVP, CMO Stephen Colanero will get a $173,875 bonus.

These “supplemental special incentive cash bonuses” are granted to recognize those within the organization that kept the company from going under during the pandemic. Corporate employees and theatre management will also receive bonuses that will come from the same $8.3 million designated fund for the bonuses.

AMC says that the bonuses are “to recognize the extraordinary efforts of employees to maintain the Company’s business and preserve stockholder value during the COVID-19 pandemic, encourage continued engagement and retention, and incentivize our management and employees during the continuing and unprecedented difficult business conditions.”

During the early days of the pandemic, movie theaters were forced to close their doors. AMC leaders took it upon themselves to have their salary cut by 15% and decrease other compensation over a three-year period. Aron lost $1.6 million as a result of the pay cut. About 30,000 theater employees were furloughed during the lockdowns. However, they have slowly begun returning to work as theaters continue to open across the country.




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