Skip to main content

Articles in January 2017

January 3rd, 2017
Football fans learned on Sunday that there's no love lost between Western Conference rivals Aqib Talib and Michael Crabtree, and there is no penalty for ripping a gold chain from an opponent's neck.


The surreal scene played out in the first quarter of the NFL game between the Oakland Raiders and the Denver Broncos. On a Raiders third-and-7, quarterback Matt McGloin targeted wide receiver Crabtree for a long pass along the right sideline. The pass was incomplete, and defending on the play was cornerback Talib.

While it's common for football players to posture and trash talk after a pivotal play, Talib took the animosity one step further when he faced up to Crabtree, seemed to bump helmets with him and then yanked the gold chain on his neck.


In a video that's been replayed countless times on YouTube, Twitter and other social media, CBS's cameras catch Talib's lightening-fast strike from two angles.



Crabtree looks surprised as the chain snaps, recoils and then hangs vertically down his left shoulder pad without falling off.


After the play, Talib is shown on the sideline smiling and gesturing to teammates how he plucked the chain on Crabtree's neck. The sideline shot of Crabtree showed the player visibly upset.


After Denver's 24-6 victory, Talib — wearing no fewer than four chains and a pair of stud earrings of his own — told reporters that he's had his eyes on Crabtree's gold necklace since the beginning of the season.

“He’s just been wearing that chain all year. It’s just been growing on me,” Talib said. “I said if he wears that chain in front of me, I’m going to snatch it off. He wore it in front of me, so I had to snatch it off. He started crying to the ref. He didn’t say nothing to me, though.”

Crabtree called Talib's actions "childish."


Addressing Talib indirectly during his post-game interview with the press, Crabtree told his adversary, “You’re acting. You’re snatching chains up on the field. What do you accomplish? Are you hard? Are you tough? Does that make you tough? You’re snatching chains in front of the police and take off running. That was childish man.”

Crabtree said that he did talk to the officials after the play, but they refused to throw a flag. Apparently, ripping a chain off an opponent's neck is not in the official rule book.

“Disrespectful" is how Crabtree described the referees. “They were acting like I was the problem. That’s what I didn’t like.”

He also said he made a "business decision" not to retaliate against Talib during the game, saying that his team needed him and that he didn't want to risk getting ejected.

The NFL has very strict rules when it comes to what a player wears on the field. They can be fined for wearing non-sanctioned socks or shoes. But when it comes to jewelry, the rules are fairly lax.

Necklaces and earrings may be worn as long as they are within reason. Bracelets must be covered at all times. In fact, any hard item on the hand, wrist or elbow must be covered by 3/8ths of an inch of foam rubber or similar material.

Wearing a wedding ring is frowned upon because it might need to be cut off if the player sustained a finger injury. More and more married NFL players have chosen to wear silicon wedding bands during their games and workouts. They come in a multitude of colors and provide a much safer option.

Credits: Screen captures via
January 4th, 2017
We're excited to add Twilight actress Ashley Greene to the list of starlets who received gorgeous engagement rings during the holiday season.


In a heartfelt message posted Friday to her 761,000 Instagram followers, Greene called her new engagement ring from Aussie TV personality Paul Khoury "the most beautiful thing I've ever seen." The ring features an oval-cut diamond set with four prongs on a delicate diamond band.

Khoury, 41, who has been dating Greene since 2013, popped the question during their romantic trip to Bridal Veil Falls in Waikato, New Zealand. Although the actual engagement took place on December 19, the couple didn't announce the exciting news until this past Thursday.


A video of the Bridal Veil Falls proposal appeared on the Instagram pages of Greene and Khoury. In the video, we see Green from Khoury's perspective as she takes in the beauty of the falls and tells him how magical it is. Then he enters the frame and asks her to marry him. She says "Yes" and he hops up and down like an excited child. Then he scoops up his fiancée and spins her around — just like in the movies.


In describing the proposal, the 29-year-old Greene wrote, "This is the most beautiful moment I could have ever hoped for. You've successfully made me the happiest, luckiest woman alive. I can't wait to show you my unfaltering immeasurable love for the rest of our lives."

Equally romantic was Khoury's caption for the video: "I promise to put a smile on your face for the rest of our lives. You complete me in ways I didn't even know was possible. I love you more than anything and excited to take this next step in life with you!"


One day later, on Friday, Greene posted a photo her ring, along with an animated appraisal of her new jewelry.

"I'm SO lucky and SO excited that I get to spend the rest of my life with my best friend," she wrote. "But the ring doesn't hurt either. It's the most beautiful thing I've ever seen."

On Khoury's Instagram page, the classic ring is shown from a different angle. He captioned the photo, "This is the woman I'm going to spend the rest of my life with."

Credits: Photos via;
January 5th, 2017
A handful of YouTube channels are dedicated to crushing objects with a hydraulic press. Among the items that have been spectacularly squished against their will in the name of viral entertainment have been a tenderizing mallet, a can of Silly String, a Rubik's Cube, a hockey puck, a couple of bullets and — you guessed it — a diamond.


Although diamonds are the hardest substance known to man, they can be fractured with a blunt force. So when pitted against the 10,000 psi power of a hydraulic press, one would expect the lovely faceted diamond to be turned into a pile of diamond dust.


Last May, the Hydraulic Press Channel put a round 1.2-carat lab-grown diamond to the test. In the video that has been viewed more than 10 million times, we see the press descending slowly on the stone.


The press moves steadily and then seems to meet with just a bit of resistance. In the next instant, the diamond shatters like a piece of glass being bashed by a hammer.


The hardest substance on earth, in this case, was no match for the press.


But then in June, rival YouTube channel Hydraulic Press VS promoted a similar showdown, and the results were startling different.


For its face-off, Hydraulic Press VS used a .25-carat, F-color, SI1-clarity, natural diamond and placed it under the crusher with the pavilion (pointy side) facing down. Unbelievably, the diamond defeats the press as it gets embedded into the steel below — without a scratch. The testers seem to be amazed by the outcome.


When Hydraulic Press VS repeated the challenge with a larger stone placed with the pavilion pointing up, the stone seems to explode under the massive pressure. This video has been viewed more than 11 million times.

It's important to clarify that there is a big difference between hardness and strength. Hardness is a surface property. A diamond earns the top-of-the-line 10 rating on the Mohs hardness scale because no material except for a diamond can scratch it. Sapphires and rubies, by comparison, are rated 9, topaz is rated 8 and quartz is rated 7. Each of these relatively hard materials can be easily fractured with a hammer blow.

Because of a diamond's hardness rating, the material is often used to enhance cutting devices, such as drills and saw blades.

Carbon fiber, on the other hand, is extremely strong but can be easily cut with a standard steel drill bit or even a pocketknife.

Check out the videos below. The first is from the Hydraulic Press Channel and the second is from Hydraulic Press VS.

Credits: Screen shots via
January 6th, 2017
Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you great songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, Easton Corbin delivers a singing marriage proposal — while revealing what's under this old hat — in his 2009 chart topper "A Little More Country Than That."


In the song about trust and small town sensibilities, Corbin makes the case for why he would make a great husband. He paints a picture of the rural life he loves, his appreciation for the simpler things and the importance of being a true gentleman. He promises to never mislead her or play games behind her back because he's "a little more country than that."

In the line that includes the jewelry reference, he sings, "Yeah, I'm sure that you've heard those three words from others / But they fell flat / But this ring ain't something that I mean to give you / And then take back / I'm a little more country than that."

Although "A Little More Country Than That" was penned by Wynn Varble, Rory Lee and Donald Poythress, the 34-year-old Corbin said the song mirrors his own life experiences.

"Even though I didn't write it, this song identifies who I am," he said. "It shows character and that's important where I'm from. You learn to say, 'Yes, ma'am' and 'No, sir,' and to open doors for the ladies."

"A Little More Country Than That" was the lead single from Corbin's self-titled debut album. The song went to #1 on the Billboard U.S. Hot Country Songs list while the album topped out at #4 on the U.S. Billboard Top Country Albums chart. The single was certified Gold, which means it sold more than 500,000 copies.

Interestingly, the writing team originally intended the song for Blaine Larsen, but his record label passed on it.

A native of Trenton, Fla., Corbin lived on his grandparents' farm following his parents' divorce. At the age of 14, he starting taking guitar lessons from long-time session musician Pee Wee Melton. Soon after, he joined a band and performed at music festivals.

Corbin got his first big break in 2005 when he visited 1st Street Music in Lake City, Fla., to enter a contest for the Annual Suwannee River Jam. The manager of the store was impressed by Corbin's in-store demo and connected the him with songwriter Reese Wilson in Nashville.

Corbin moved to Nashville in 2006, and four years later he took home three American Country Awards for "New/Breakthrough Artist of the Year," "Music Video by New/Breakthrough Artist" and "Single by New/Breakthrough Artist."

Please check out the official video of "A Little More Country Than That." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"A Little More Country Than That"
Written by Wynn Varble, Rory Lee and Donald Poythress. Performed by Easton Corbin.

Imagine a dirt road full of pot holes
With a creek bank and some cane poles
Catching channel cat
I'm a little more country than that

Picture a small town with an old hound
Laying out front of the court house
While the old men chew the fat
I'm a little more country than that

I just want to make sure you know just who you're getting under, this old hat
Cause girl I'm not the kind of two time or play games behind your back
I'm a little more country than that

Think of a hank song from days gone
With a steel ride that's so strong
It sends chills up your back
I'm a little more country than that

If you want a brick home in a school zone
With the doors locked and alarms on
Girl, you're way off track
I'm a little more country than that

I just want to make sure you know just who you're getting under this old hat
Cause girl I'm not the kind of two time or play games behind your back
I'm a little more country than that

Yeah, I'm sure that you've heard those three words from others
But they fell flat
But this ring ain't something that I mean to give you
And then take back
I'm a little more country than that
I'm a little more country than that
I'm a little more country than that

Credit: Screen capture via
January 9th, 2017
Tennis star Serena Williams announced her engagement to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian on December 29, and for the past 10 days her fans have been clamoring for a closeup look at the ring.


On January 2, Williams joked with her five million Instagram followers by posting a photo of an engagement ring, with the diamond replaced by a taco. Her caption: "Sneak peek. It was a corn tortilla of course in case you were wondering."


Four days later, she took her antics one step farther by posting a romantic photo of her and her fiancé on a cobblestone street in Rome — the city where the 33-year-old Ohanian proposed. Williams, who is obsessed with tacos, is shown wearing a pair of Nike sneakers and a taco on her left ring finger where her diamond ring should be. She captioned the photo, "Can't resist a strong shoe game."


The original, unedited version of the same shot appears on Reddit under the title "Engagement Shoe Game." That photo, although taken from a distance, reveals a massive sparkler. Details of the shape of the stone, its carat weight and the setting style have yet to be released.

On December 29, the 35-year-old Williams posted to the "I Said Yes" subreddit a poem that described the details leading up to Ohanian's fairy tale marriage proposal.

She wrote, "I came home / A little late / Someone had a bag packed for me / And a carriage awaited / Destination: Rome / To escort me to my very own "charming" / Back to where our stars first collided / And now it was full circle / At the same table we first met by chance / This time he made it not by chance / But by choice / Down on one knee / He said 4 words / And / I said yes."


Along with the post was an adorable illustration of Williams and Ohanian, each rendered as an orange-eyed Snoo, the cartoon mascot of Reddit. The Ohanian Snoo is kneeling with a larger-than-life pink diamond in his hand. The Williams Snoo, dressed in a pink-and-white tennis outfit, seems to be levitating off the ground. The headline of the illustration reads: "Future Mrs. KnOthing," a nod to Ohanian's handle on Reddit.

Ohanian responded to the Reddit post by writing, “And you made me the happiest man on the planet.”

Williams added, "Edit: You're also a really cute Snoo. As I was drawing this for you, I thought, "Our Snoos should go out on a date sometime."

The power couple has been dating since October 2015, and E! News is reporting that the wedding is expected to take place in about a year.

Credits: Photos via;
January 10th, 2017
Guys, we know you're under a lot of pressure to "make a splash" when popping the question. You have to select the perfect ring, pen the perfect proposal and deliver it all at the perfect venue. But, despite all the meticulous planning, even the best-laid plans can end up under water, literally.


Many a young suitor has learned a hard lesson about why engagement rings and fast-moving bodies of water don't mix. From the stories we've covered over the years, we can say for certain that it's never a great idea to get engaged near a waterfall, on a footbridge, in a paddleboat or when trying to outmaneuver crashing waves at an ocean beach.

Just recently, Isaiah Adams decided to pop the question to the love of his life, Grace, at the site of Maryland's majestic and picturesque Cunningham Falls.

A video, which has since been posted to and viewed 280,000 times, shows the starry-eyed gentleman on bended knee gazing up at his beloved with the roaring falls in the background.

He pulls out a ring box and asks Grace to marry him. She says, "Yes," they embrace and all seems to be perfect in their world.


That is until he attempts to place the ring on her finger.


Isaiah and Grace fumble the ring and it is swept away by the icy torrent.


Onlookers can be heard screaming, "Oh my God."

Syndicated TV show Inside Edition caught up with couple a few days later. In the clip, both Isaiah and Grace are smiling despite the sad reality that the ring is likely gone forever.


Perhaps the joy came from the fact that they still had each other and that their viral video made them instant celebrities.

“I was crying with happiness, but then I was crying with fear at the same time," Grace told Inside Edition. "I looked up and his face was just shock.”

Losing an engagement ring to a mighty waterfall was hardly a reason for the couple to change their wedding plans, however. They will be getting married on schedule.

Please check out Inside Edition's coverage of the cringeworthy proposal and surprisingly cheerful interview...

Credits: Screen captures via
January 11th, 2017
Sure, they're the ultimate symbol of love, but diamonds also have become the darling of the scientific community. We're starting to wonder: Is there anything a diamond can't do?

Back in November, we reported how imperfect diamonds could hold the key to the future of long-term, high-density data storage. Then, in December, we reviewed how a diamond battery made from nuclear waste could generate power for more than 5,000 years.


Now, we've learned how lab-grown red diamonds could replace GPS systems and help make driverless cars a reality. Wow.

A team at Element Six, a tech company based in Oxfordshire, England, report that red diamonds have a remarkable sensitivity to magnetic waves due to a "nitrogen vacancy defect" in their atomic lattice. Amazingly, these diamonds can currently detect a passing car at 300 meters away.


The scientists are suggesting that the diamonds could be programmed to pinpoint their own location on the earth by reading the magnetic waves from the sun. The new method of determining geolocation could render GPS satellites obsolete and make way for the future of driverless vehicles.

“If you have a device that is capable of sensing the surrounding magnetic fields, it also knows where it is,” noted principal research scientist Richard Bodkin. “So once you can harness all of those technologies into a single device, there is no reason why driverless cars can’t be realized.”

While the possibilities are fascinating, Element Six scientists said that diamond-guided geotracking could be decades away.

Incidentally, Element Six's primary business is developing diamond-infused cutting tools for heavy industry. The firm is principally owned by diamond mining giant De Beers.

Credit: DeYoung Red Diamond photo by Chip Clark/Smithsonian. Satellite rendering via
January 12th, 2017
January's official birthstone, the wonderfully versatile garnet, comes in a wide array of natural colors, including red, pink, purple, yellow, violet, green, black, brown and orange. Orange spessartine garnets are particularly stunning, as illustrated in this butterfly brooch that seems to be taking flight.


Masterfully created by Buzz Gray and Bernadine Johnston, the brooch is part of a much larger collection that has appeared at both the San Diego Natural History Museum and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles.

Gray, a master lapidarist, and Johnston, a jewelry designer, used bright orange spessartine garnets sourced from the Hercules Dike at the Little Three Mine in Ramona, Calif. Specimens from this mine are regarded as some of the finest in the world, although spessartine garnets are also found in Australia, Myanmar, India, Afghanistan, Israel, Madagascar and Tanzania.

The Spessartine Butterfly is beautiful to behold. The vivid orange gemstone body contrasts elegantly with the gold-outlined geometric patterns of the black and white enamel wings. Adding extra dimension to the wing design are dozens of spessartine garnets and a handful of colorless diamonds. Vivid green tsavorite garnets from Kenya are used for the eyes.

The Natural History Museum in Los Angeles explained that garnet refers to a group of silicate minerals with the same internal arrangements of atoms, but different chemical compositions. Spessartine is a manganese-aluminum-garnet popular in jewelry due to its bright shades of yellow, orange or red. Tsavorite is a green variety of grossular, a calcium-aluminum garnet, with impurities of vanadium and chromium, which give the green color.

Garnets get their name from the Latin word “granatum,” meaning pomegranate seed.

In addition to today's featured spessartine garnets, other varieties often seen in jewelry include almandine, andradite, demantoid, grossularite, hessonite, rhodolite, tsavorite and uvarovite.

Credit: Image courtesy of
January 13th, 2017
Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you awesome songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, singer-songwriter Dan Fogelberg compares his love to the hardest material known to man in the introspective "Diamonds to Dust."


In the song, Fogelberg decodes how even the strongest relationships can break down over time — and uses a precious gemstone to make his point. He sings, "Once there was love here / And once there was trust / Once it was honest / And open and just / Our love was a diamond / That grew between us / But time can turn even / Diamonds to Dust."

"Diamonds to Dust" appeared as seventh track from Fogelberg's album Love in Time. The album was released in September of 2009, nearly two years after the artist's untimely death at the age of 56. Fogelberg, who battled with cancer since 2004, had completed the songs for the album and put them in a safe deposit box. He asked his wife, Jean, to release the album after his death. Fogelberg passed away at his home in Deer Isle, Maine, on December 16, 2007. His ashes were scattered into the Atlantic Ocean.

When the album was released, Jean wrote, "His music continues — a living legacy to one of the most versatile and talented musicians, singers and songwriters of his generation."

Jean used the phrase "living legacy" as a nod to her husband's favorite, and most famous song, "Leader of the Band" (1981), which he wrote to honor his father, Lawrence, a high school band director. For that song, he penned the famous line, "I'm just a living legacy to the leader of the band."

Born in Peoria, Illinois, in 1951, Daniel Grayling "Dan" Fogelberg was the youngest of three sons. As an adolescent he taught himself to play a Hawaiian slide guitar — a gift from his grandfather. At age 14, he joined a Beatles cover band, The Clan, and by 1967 he was writing songs for another cover band, The Coachmen. By the late 1970s and into the early 1980s, Fogelberg was topping the charts with a string of platinum-selling albums and singles. His 1982 Greatest Hits album went triple platinum.

In a tribute to its hometown hero, the city of Peoria renamed Abington Street in the city's East Bluff neighborhood "Fogelberg Parkway."

Please check out the audio track of Fogelberg performing "Diamonds to Dust." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"Diamonds To Dust"
Written and performed by Dan Fogelberg.

Diamonds to Dust
Oh, Diamonds to Dust
Time can turn even
Diamonds to Dust

Love is a question
That few understand
It runs like a river
Between a woman and man
But its course can get twisted
And its bed can run dry
And our hearts become deserts
In the wink of an eye

Once there was love here
And once there was trust
Once it was honest
And open and just
Our love was a diamond
That grew between us
But time can turn even
Diamonds to Dust

Diamonds to Dust
Oh, Diamonds to Dust
Time can turn even
Diamonds to Dust
Time is a teacher
It’s kind and it’s cruel
It gives you the wisdom
To see you’re a fool
And it gives love and takes love
It hurts and it heals
And it never parts easy
With the truth it reveals


Credit: Screen capture via
January 16th, 2017
On the tiny island of Guam, a cold-hearted soccer referee booked a player for celebrating his sensational bicycle kick goal with an on-field marriage proposal.



On January 7, NAPA Rovers' striker Ashton Surber was having his best day ever. In the 35th minute of the Premier Division match against the first place Shipyard team, the player buried a bicycle kick — also called an overhead kick or scissors kick — into the top corner of the goal to put his team up 3-0.


The ecstatic player sprinted toward the visitor's sideline, looking for his girlfriend in the stands while stripping off his shirt. Under his team shirt was an undershirt with the question “MARRY ME?” emblazoned in bold black letters on the front.


Apparently, the striker had been planning to propose, but needed the perfect moment to pop the question. Successfully executing a bicycle kick — during which a player faces away from the goal, jumps backwards into the air and then kicks the ball when it is above his head — was just the ticket.


As he made eye contact with his now-fiancée, La’Kiesha Pereda, Surber's elation contrasts with the scowl of the referee, who has followed the player to the sideline.


The referee reaches into his pocket and issues Surber a yellow card for the infraction of removing his shirt during a game. From the referee's viewpoint, he can't see the proposal message on Surber's shirt and seems oblivious to the fact that he's throwing shade on an epic romantic moment.


Unfazed, Surber continues the proposal and the celebration. He gets down on one knee, blows a kiss to his girlfriend and points to the cheering fans.

The defending champion NAPA Rovers won the match 5-1, putting the team on top in the Premier Division.

More importantly, Pereda said "Yes" to her boyfriend's proposal.

On Twitter, the Guam Football Association posted a clip of the fun sequence with the following caption: "When your life goals come together w/your soccer goals - a bicycle kick goal and by a proposal to now fiancée."

The Guam Football Association also published a longer clip on Enjoy.

Credits: Screen captures via
January 17th, 2017
A lower-Manhattan restaurant called Industry Kitchen has created a $2,000 gilded pizza that would feel right at home in one of our fine jewelry showcases.


Completely covered in strips of 24-karat gold leaf and sprinkled with 24-karat gold flakes, "The fancy'za" is marketed to the tony Wall Street crowd who can afford to purchase what may be the most expensive pizza to ever emerge from a wood-fired oven.

Certainly, you need more than gold leaf to make a luxurious pizza, and Industry Kitchen's executive chef Braulio Bunay took the challenge seriously.


The pizza starts with a squid ink dough, which needs to rest for 48 hours. The chef stretches the greyish-black dough and tops it with a generous portion of Stilton cheese from England. Next, it's baked in a wood-fired oven at 585 degrees.

Once cooked, the pizza is sliced into eight pieces and is ready for a number of ultra-special toppings, including shaved truffles and slices of foie gras from France, 24-karat gold leaf and gold flakes, large dollops of Osetra caviar from the Caspian Sea and edible flowers. The gold leaf is delicately applied in rows of one-inch-wide strips, while the gold flakes are added using a shaker.


"It is the epitome of decadence," Bunay told Town and Country. “The pizza is extremely rich. If you’re in the mood for a lavish meal, this is the pizza for you.”

Those interested in trying Bunay's glittery and pungent pie at the restaurant's South Street location in the Financial District will need to order it 48 hours in advance (the squid ink dough needs that time to do its thing).

Interestingly, of all the extraordinary ingredients layered onto "The fancy'za" pizza, the 24-karat gold elements are the least tasty. In fact, gold leaf and gold flakes have no taste at all. They're used for their aesthetic value.

Bunay is not the only chef to add gold to his pizzas. Last year, over at Pizza Hut's test kitchen in Plano, Texas, the fast food chain came up with a special version of its Stuffed Garlic Knots Pizza that was topped with $100 worth of edible 24-karat gold.

Fifty fans who ordered that type of pizza on the day of the 2016 Super Bowl were surprised when a Pizza Hut delivery person drove up with the gilded version. The pizza was presented in a specially designed golden box along with a $100 Pizza Hut Gold Card.

Check out Insider's video, which shows how Bunay assembles his gilded pizza...

Credits: Screen captures via; Pizza image via Facebook/IndustryKitchenNYC.
January 18th, 2017
For the second time in two months, workers at the Town of Babylon Recycling Center on Long Island have defied all odds by turning up treasured diamond rings among tons of stinky garbage.


West Babylon resident Vicky Salzone had accidentally tossed three diamond bands into a trash bag while sorting through old Christmas decorations. By the next morning, she and her husband of 34 years, Joe, realized the irreplaceable rings were gone and that they were probably on the way to the sanitation burn plant.


“When I heard the garbage trucks outside I had this feeling that I should stop them because something is wrong," Joe told Newsday. "I called the town and said, ‘I think my wife’s rings are in the garbage.’”


His Friday the 13th request was referred to the Town of Babylon Recycling Center, where managers Ed Wiggins and John Bonavita were ready to duplicate the success they had only two months earlier when a similar request came in.


The garbage truck was diverted to the center, where the load was set to be dumped. Joe also headed out to join in the search.

“I said, ‘You know, what’s the odds of us really doing this two times in a row?’” Wiggins told CBS2.


According to Wiggins, there's a science to determining exactly where in a truck load a particular garbage bag is likely to be. The bags collected at the beginning of the route end up toward the front of the truck, while the bags picked up last will be in the back.

Using that logic, Wiggins and his team knew the bag had to be about three-quarters into the truck. Vicky was also certain that they were looking for a white stretch bag, with a diamond-patterned surface and black tie.


By 8 a.m., the search was on, and within a half hour, the recycling team had found the bag and secured the rings.

In a scene captured with a cell phone, Bonita tells Vicky the good news...

“You found the rings?” Vicky screams.

“I found the rings," answers Bonita. "Yes, I got all three of them.”

“Friday the 13th is my lucky day now,” says Vicky.

Wiggins and Bonavita are getting so good at finding valuables amid tons of rotting trash that their co-workers have dubbed each of them "Lord of the Rings.

Wiggins complimented Joe for his willingness to wade into piles of garbage in search of his wife's wedding bands.

“He wanted the rings that were blessed at his wedding,” Wiggins told Newsday. “I gotta give the guy credit, he jumped right in there.”

In mid-November, the team found the wedding rings of North Babylon resident Colleen Dyckman. That search took four hours.

Wiggins told Newsday that during his 40 years in the sanitation business, he's been called on to find precious jewelry a dozen or so times. Before this November, he's met with success only twice. Now's he's found the treasure two times in a row, only two months apart.

To show their gratitude, the Salzones provided the sanitation crew with a catered lunch, and offered a heartfelt review.

“They’re good people at the town,” Joe told Newsday. “They do dirty work, but they are just absolutely wonderful.”

Credits: Screen captures via
January 19th, 2017
An extraordinary 887-carat rough emerald dubbed "La Gloria" will headline Guernsey's auction of the Marcial de Gomar Collection on April 12 in New York City.


"La Gloria," which is said to be the largest Muzo rough emerald in North America, carries a preliminary estimate of $4 to $5 million and is part of a 2,000-carat collection that is expected to yield a total of $15 million to $20 million.

Included in the group are more than 20 loose emeralds — both faceted and rough — as well as 13 pieces of emerald jewelry. The museum-quality emeralds were collected by gem expert Manuel Marcial de Gomar during his 62-year career spent in the U.S. and in the jungles of Columbia, specifically at the Muzo mines, which are famous for yielding the world's finest emeralds.

Emeralds from this mine are known for their legendary saturation and hue. In fact, "Muzo Green" is often the yardstick by which all other emeralds are judged.


Along with "La Gloria," the auction house is spotlighting the "Tears of Fura," a matched pair of teardrop-shaped Muzo emeralds, and the "Marcial de Gomar Star," a rare double-sided star emerald.

The "Tears of Fura" have a combined total weight of 95.51 carats and a preliminary estimate of $3 million to $4 million. The name of the stones honors the two Colombian mountain peaks of Fura and Tena, which were considered sacred by the Muzo people. They believed Fura and Tena were the parents of humanity and legend states that the tears of Fura became emeralds and butterflies.

The "Marcial de Gomar Star" weighs 25.86 carats and is the largest of only 11 star emeralds known to exist. It displays a six-rayed star that is visible from both sides. (The auction house noted that this may be the first known double-sided star emerald). The gem's preliminary estimate is $2 million to $3 million.


Marcial de Gomar's firsthand knowledge and experience with rare emeralds, including shipwreck-origin emeralds, has placed him in demand as an author, lecturer and consultant. He is also the founder of Emeralds International, LLC.

Decades ago, Marcial de Gomar befriended Mel Fisher, the treasure hunter best known for his work with the sunken Spanish galleon Nuestra Señora de Atocha. Several Muzo emeralds and rare gold coins from the Atocha passed into the Marcial de Gomar Collection and will be included at the Guernsey event.

The auction will be conducted live at the Americas Society at 680 Park Avenue with online bidding at

Credit: Images courtesy of Guernsey's.
January 20th, 2017
Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you chart-topping songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, a chance after-hours encounter between a bar owner and a patron results in a marriage proposal in Brad Paisley's country hit "We Danced."


In the song written by Paisley and Charles Dubois, the narrator is a bar owner who is cleaning up after closing time. A woman, who had been in the bar earlier that evening, has returned to retrieve a misplaced purse. The two get lost in conversation, and the bar owner insists that the only way he'll return the purse he had found earlier is if she agrees to dance with him.

With the chairs up and the lights turned down, the coupled danced — and instantly fell in love.

Paisley sings, "And from that moment, there was never any doubt / I had found the one that I had always dreamed about / And then one evenin', when she stopped by after work / I pulled a diamond ring out of the pocket of my shirt."

In a fun twist, the woman says she'll marry him under one condition — that he agrees to dance with her.

"We Danced" was the fourth and final single from the 44-year-old singer-songwriter's wildly successful 1999 debut album Who Needs Pictures. The song went to #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart and was nominated for Song of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards.

That album helped launch a stellar career that claimed 32 top-10 singles on the US Billboard Country Airplay chart, 19 of which have reached #1. Paisley has sold more than 12 million albums, won three Grammy Awards, 14 Academy of Country Music Awards, 14 Country Music Association Awards and two American Music Awards. At the age of 28, he became the youngest artist ever to be inducted into the Grand Ole Opry.

A West Virginia native, Bradley Douglas "Brad" Paisley was introduced to country music by his grandfather, Warren Jarvis, who gave the eight-year-old his first guitar, a Sears Danelectro Silvertone. Jarvis taught his grandson to play, and by the age of 10 Paisley was already performing at his church.

While in junior high, Paisley was doing a show at a local Rotary Club, when he was discovered by a program director for a Wheeling, West Virginia, radio station. He was invited to be a guest on the popular radio show "Wheeling Jamboree" and the rest is history.

Please check out the audio track of Paisley's "We Danced." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"We Danced"
Written by Brad Paisley and Charles Dubois. Performed by Brad Paisley.

The bar was empty, I was sweeping up the floor
That's when she walked in, I said, "I'm sorry but we're closed"
And she said "I know but I'm afraid I left my purse"
I said, "I put one back behind the bar, I bet it's probably yours"

And the next thing that I knew
There we were, lost in conversation
And before I handed her her purse
I said, "You'll only get this back on one condition"

And we danced
Out there on that empty hardwood floor
The chairs up and the lights turned way down low
The music played, we held each other close
And we danced

And from that moment, there was never any doubt
I had found the one that I had always dreamed about
And then one evenin', when she stopped by after work
I pulled a diamond ring out of the pocket of my shirt

And as her eyes filled up with tears
She said, "This is the last thing I expected"
And then she took me by the hand
And said, "I'll only marry you on one condition"

And we danced
Out there on that empty hardwood floor
The chairs up and the lights turned way down low
The music played, we held each other close

And we danced
Like no one else had ever danced before
I can't explain what happened on that floor
But the music played, we held each other close
And we danced, yeah, we danced

Credit: Photo by minds-eye (Brad Paisley) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.
January 23rd, 2017
A backstage worker at the 50th Annual CMA Awards in Nashville in November found a pretty pear-shaped stone sitting on top of a band cart and dropped it in his pocket, reasoning that it was merely a worthless prop.


The "prop" turned out to be a 13.73-carat colored diamond that had come loose from a ring worn by Beyoncé after her show-stopping performance with the Dixie Chicks. The gem had been borrowed from designer Lorraine Schwartz and was said to be worth "hundreds of thousands of dollars."


Even though the show's organizers alerted many members of the stage crew about the missing diamond and spearheaded a frantic search, Jesus Lopez was not aware of the loss and went about his normal routine of unloading band carts at the Bridgestone Arena — with the gem safely tucked in his pants pocket. After the show, he gifted the stone to his wife.


"I've been doing CMA for the last 12 years, and I have seen a lot of different jewelry, fake jewelry, rhinestones," Lopez told Nashville's News Channel 5. "I gave it to my wife thinking, of course, it was a rhinestone."

On the day after the show, Lopez's son, who also was a member of the stage crew and had heard rumblings about the lost gemstone, told his dad, "Do you know what you found? You found Beyoncé's diamond."

Lopez knew that the right thing to do was to return the gem to its rightful owner, but he hoped that his granddaughter might benefit from his honesty.

"When I heard it was Beyoncé, I said, 'Well, maybe my granddaughter can meet Beyoncé and give it to her herself,'" Lopez told Nashville's News Channel 5.

Lopez soon learned that the diamond had been on loan from Schwartz and that the diamond had to be returned to the designer. A meeting with the singer was not in the cards. Schwartz's representative picked up the diamond from Lopez and presented him with an undisclosed reward.

Lopez told a reporter that he still held out hope that his granddaughter could meet Beyoncé one day, but even if she doesn't he's pleased that the valuable diamond was able to find it's way back to its rightful owner instead of being lost or thrown away.

Credits: Screen captures via;
January 24th, 2017
The love story of former Marine Daniel Frye and girlfriend Lauren Williams has all the trappings of a Hollywood blockbuster.


Frye, who had served two tours in Afghanistan, credited Williams with saving his life as he struggled to recover from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

“When I got out of the Marine Corps, I went through some dark years,” Frye told NBC affiliate WCNC. “I went through so many jobs. I’ve slept in cars.”


After meeting Williams, his life turned around. With a new job as a welder and new inspiration from the love of his life, he saved up for months to buy the perfect engagement ring. Then he planned a trip on January 7 to a place Williams always dreamed of visiting, the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, N.C., where he would pop the question. He even invited Williams' parents to Asheville to surprise their daughter, and he hired a photographer to document all the romantic festivities.

What Frye didn't anticipate, however, was that the ring box that he had hidden in his pocket would somehow fall out on the Biltmore Estate shuttle bus and end up in the baggage of a widow heading back to Athens, Ga.

Imagine Frye's horror when he went down on one knee, reached into his pocket and realized the $5,000 ring was gone.

“I looked over and saw complete panic on his face,” Williams, 25, told People. “I saw him reaching in every pocket and it just clicked. I knew right then he’d been planning on asking me and that the ring was gone. I just knew.”

Said Frye, "I felt terrible. I just felt terrible.”

The couple filed a police report and retraced every step, but the ring could not be found.


After a week and a half, the couple from Rock Hill, S.C., told their heart-wrenching story to WCNC. In recounting their plight, the couple was brought to tears. On January 18, the story ran on the Charlotte affiliate's nightly news show and appeared as a feature on its website and Facebook page.

One day later, a widow from Athens, Ga., saw the story on Facebook and came forward with the ring.

“I had been getting on the bus and my arms were full of bags, and a man thought I’d dropped something and threw it in my bag,” the anonymous woman told People. “At the time I didn’t look to see what it was. Then I was going through my bags and saw the ring box.”

The woman tracked down Williams on Facebook and Fry immediately got in his car and trekked six hours to retrieve the ring.

“He must have hugged me 10 times,” the widow said. “I was just happy to make sure the rightful owner got it.”

When the 29-year-old Frye returned home, he was ready to complete the marriage proposal he had started 12 days earlier.


"This isn't how we dreamed, obviously," Frye says in a video posted to Williams' Facebook page, "but this whole thing showed me so much more about you and that I want to marry you even more. And I want to ask you if you would be my wife for the rest of my life."

Williams exclaims, "Yes," and the couple embraces.

"Now let me put it on you," Frye says, as he slips the ring onto her finger.

Williams can barely contain her excitement as she stares at the ring. "Thank you, God," she says.

“So much blood, sweat and tears went into that ring,” Williams told People. “It’s a full-blown miracle that we got it back. What are the chances? What are the odds?”

Credits: Images via Facebook/Lauren Williams; Screen capture via; Ring photo provided by Daniel Frye and Lauren Williams.
January 25th, 2017
A custom Fender Stratocaster guitar inlaid with 1,000 diamonds was one of the biggest draws at last weekend's National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) trade show in Anaheim, Calif.


Conceived by senior master builder Yuriy Shishkov, the Art Deco-inspired design celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Fender Custom Shop.


The guitar includes 423 diamonds on the front, 462 on the back and 115 at the top. It has a glistening sterling silver body that complements the red enamel guilloche inlay of the dramatic fretboard.


As a special touch, Shishkov added rubies to the side dots. Shishkov did not, however, cite the total weight of the gemstones used in the design nor the guitar's estimated value.


Shishkov explained that the 30th anniversary guitar was inspired by the Art Deco lines of the 1936 Kodak Bantam Special camera, which was the vision of famous industrial designer Walter Dorwin Teague. Kodak distributed the Bantam Special from 1936 to 1948, and the camera has since earned a reputation for being one of the most beautifully designed cameras ever made.


Fender's senior master builder is calling his one-of-a-kind, diamond-embellished guitar the Fender Studioliner Stratocaster.

"I wanted to connect the two objects together — the guitar and photo camera," said Shishkov. "For that reason it's actually called Studioliner [to represent the] photo studio and recording studio."


The guitar, which is gorgeous from every angle, is a reflection of the craftsmanship, artistry and attention to detail that has earned Fender's Custom Shop worldwide acclaim.

A native of the former Soviet Union, Shishkov is considered one of the last of the renaissance guitar builders. He handcrafts many of his own woodworking tools and is known for custom inlay work. Shishkov arrived in the U.S. in 1990 and settled in the Chicago area, where he collaborated with the likes of guitarists Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin, Robin Zander of Cheap Trick and Paul Stanley of Kiss. Shishkov joined the Fender Custom Shop’s Master Builder team in 2000.

The 2017 Winter NAMM show, which its organizers describe as "the world’s largest trade-only event for the music products industry," is a magnet for famous musicians, who often attend the show to promote their own signature models and equipment.

Credits: Screen captures via
January 26th, 2017
A viral Kiss Cam video allegedly showing a fan proposing to his girlfriend during Saturday's Atlanta Hawks basketball game — but then dropping the ring — has been exposed as a hoax by the team's beat writer.


In the 95-second video posted by the team, a bunch of handsome couples are gladly taking part in the Kiss Cam ritual — a fun diversion often seen on the Jumbotron during breaks in the action. After the last couple obliges the camera with a kiss, the young man takes advantage of the moment by getting down on one knee to propose to his girlfriend.


He presents her with with a diamond ring, but just as she's about to say "Yes," another fan congratulates the suitor with a jarring slap on the back. The ring goes flying and disappears under the seats.


The video ends with the future bride-to-be threatening to slug the guy who caused the fumble and a bunch of fans in the section scrambling to find the ring.


On Saturday night, the Atlanta Hawks published the video on with the following caption: "A fan tried to propose to his girlfriend at our game on Saturday, but it all went wrong when he dropped the ring." The next afternoon, the Hawks posted the same video to its Twitter account.

The video quickly went viral, with media outlets around the world jumping on the story. The video on garnered more than 300,000 views.

Some YouTube and Twitter users were quick to point out that the video seemed staged, that the Kiss Cam participants seemed to be acting, especially in the last scene with the lost ring.

Those suspicions were confirmed on Monday when Atlanta Hawks beat writer Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution took to Twitter to shed some light on the story.

"To the many — including several outlets — this is FAKE," he wrote. "It's a bit that runs often during games. Any contrary thoughts or info is false."

Those in the know pointed to the fact that pre-recorded Kiss Cam skits have been used by the team frequently over the past 10 years. They also noted that leveled camera angle, pre-2016 Hawks gear and bad acting should have all been giveaways.

Even though the Hawks' Kiss Cam proposal was likely staged, the in-game proposal we covered in late September was very real. You may remember the surreal engagement ring fumble caught live on the Jumbotron at Yankees Stadium. It was also broadcast in real time on ESPN and the YES Network. After about five heart-thumping minutes, the bride-to-be finally spotted the ring in the cuff of her blue jeans.

Check out the Atlanta Hawks' video below, and see if you agree that the vignettes seem staged...

Credits: Screen captures via
January 27th, 2017
Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you hit songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, Canadian songstress Amanda Marshall throws caution to the wind while wearing a very special locket in her 1995 chart-topper, "Dark Horse."


In the song she co-wrote with Dean McTaggart and David Tyson, Marshall tells the story of a 19-year-old girl who enters into a whirlwind romance with the new guy in town. She's criticized for being a crazy, romantic fool, but Marshall's heart tells her that this could be "the lucky one." Despite the long odds, she's willing to put her money on this "dark horse."

She sings, "I wear your locket, our picture's inside / Inscription says 'the joy's in the ride' / And I believe / That something so sacred / Is something worth this kind of fight / Cause love knows no patience / You can't please everyone all the time."

"Dark Horse" appeared as the fourth track from Marshall's wildly successful self-titled debut album, which sold more than one million copies in Canada alone. The single peaked at #5 on Canada's RPM Top Singles chart and #1 on RPM's Adult Contemporary chart.

Interestingly, while appearing on The Rosie O'Donnell Show in 1995, Elton John commented that he was listening to Marshall's just-released album and that "Dark Horse" would be a "guaranteed hit."

Born in Toronto in 1972, Amanda Meta Marshall studied music extensively during her childhood and her talents yielded her a spot at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. While performing on the Queen Street West bar scene in her teens, she met Canadian jazz and blues-rock guitarist Jeff Healey, who was impressed by her powerful voice. She eventually toured with Healey and then released her debut album a few years later. It was a monumental work that spawned six Top 40 hits.

A year later, in 1996, her song "This Could Take All Night" was included in the original soundtrack of the motion picture Tin Cup, and, in 1997, Marshall's "I'll Be Okay" was featured on the original soundtrack of My Best Friend's Wedding.

Although Marshall has an active Facebook fan page, the artist has not performed since 2010. Her followers regularly encourage Marshall to return to the music scene.

Please check out the official video for Marshall's "Dark Horse." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along.

"Dark Horse"
Written by Dean McTaggart, David Tyson and Amanda Marshall. Performed by Amanda Marshall.

Indian summer
You were new in town, I was nineteen
And sparks flew
They called us crazy behind our backs
"Romantic fools" we just let them laugh
Because we knew
It may be a long shot
We may get lonely down the line
But love knows no reason
And I won't let 'em make up my mind

My money's riding on this dark horse, baby
My heart is saying it's the lucky one
And it's true color's gonna shine through someday
If we let this, let this dark horse run

The stars are brighter in the desert sky
No need to wonder or justify
Where this will lead
I wear your locket, our picture's inside
Inscription says 'the joy's in the ride'
And I believe
That something so sacred
Is something worth this kind of fight
Cause love knows no patience
You can't please everyone all the time

My money's riding on this dark horse, baby
My heart is saying it's the lucky one
And it's true color's gonna shine through someday
If we let this, let this dark horse run

So rare
So sweet
Together baby, I know
We can
Be free

My money's riding on this dark horse, baby
My heart is saying it's the lucky one
And it's true color's gonna shine through someday
If we let this, let this dark horse run

My money's riding on this dark horse, baby
My heart is saying it's the lucky one
And it's true color's gonna shine through someday
If we let this, let this dark horse run

Indian summer
You were new in town, I was nineteen

Credit: Screen capture via
January 30th, 2017
A New York City man, who helplessly watched as his beloved gold wedding band fell off his finger and rolled in "slow-motion" through a sidewalk grate, got it back one week later with the help of a NYC utility company.


There are 39,000 sidewalk grates citywide and each one can strike fear into the heart of an average pedestrian. Unlike Marilyn Monroe, who famously stood on a sidewalk grate in the 1955 film The Seven Year Itch and relished the rush of air as a subway passed below, many people avoid the metal grates for fear of snapping off a heel or accidentally dropping something valuable into the abyss below. Some grates cover recesses 10 or 15 feet deep, while others conceal voids that can go down some eight stories.

Wallace Collins wasn't worrying about the grates when he headed out on errands and then to a lunch meeting near his apartment on East 39th Street and 2nd Avenue recently. The businessman was distracted and juggling papers when his wedding band slipped off his finger, bounced on the sidewalk and rolled toward a sidewalk grate.

"I was thinking three blocks ahead to where I had to be and I guess I was fiddling around with the papers I had in my hand, thinking 'Does the mail come first, or the bank on the corner? I gotta put that slip on top,'" Collins told NBC 4 New York.

Collins described how the tragic scene played out...

"It rolled along the sidewalk and it was kind of like a slow-motion," he told NBC 4 New York.

He also recalled recognizing the precious jewelry heading toward the grate and saying to himself, "Wait, that's my ring!"

Collins made a headlong dive to save the ring, but it found a gap in the grate and landed about 15 feet below.

"For a split-second I thought, 'Oh I can get it,' and then it fell through," he said.

Collins told his story to a doorman of the nearby building and then to a police officer. They suggested he call 311, which is a phone number many cities support for non-emergency issues. That didn't work, so the next step was to call Con Edison, the utility provider.

A Con Ed customer service rep told Collins that she couldn't send out a crew right away because his situation wasn't an emergency. She did, however, promise to "get to it when we can."

Day after day, Collins would pass over the grate and peer down to make sure the ring was still there.

"I knew it was safe where it was until someone came to get it," he said.


Finally, last Wednesday, a week after his call to Con Ed, a team from the utility was sent to rescue the ring. On hand to witness the operation was Collins, who can be seen pointing to the spot where he knew the ring to be.


A few minutes after flipping open the grate and heading down with a ladder, a Con Ed worker emerged with the ring and handed it to Collins.


"Whoa, there we go!" exclaimed Collins. "Back where it belongs."

Collins slipped the ring back on his finger and modeled it for the NBC 4 New York camera.

He thanked the Con Edison workers and promised to be more careful in the future — especially while walking over New York City's sidewalk grates.

"I'll always be paranoid about it now," he told NBC 4 New York.

Source: Screen captures via
January 31st, 2017
If the New England Patriots defeat the Atlanta Falcons to win their fifth Super Bowl this Sunday at NRG Stadium in Houston, the resulting championship rings are likely to be the biggest and blingiest ever.


The National Football League seems to maintain an unwritten rule that allows teams with multiple Super Bowl victories to design the most extravagant rings. The sky will be the limit if the coveted Lombardi Trophy returns to Foxborough, Mass., in 2017. The rings are usually distributed to the winning team some time in June.

In 2015, QB Tom Brady and the Patriots celebrated their fourth Super Bowl victory with stunning rings that weighed more than a quarter-pound and gleamed with 205 diamonds. At the time, the Super Bowl XLIX Championship rings were billed as the biggest ever. Each ring boasted a minimum diamond total weight of 4.85 carats and was valued at $36,500.


“I have been blessed to host four Super Bowl ring ceremonies, and just like the rings we present, we have tried to make each ceremony a little bigger and a little better than the one before,” Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft said at the time.

Ring manufacturer Jostens didn't officially announce the gram weight of the 2015 Super Bowl rings, but they were far larger than the Patriots' 2004 rings, which reportedly weighed 110 grams (just under one-quarter pound).

By comparison, when the Seattle Seahawks earned their very first Lombardi Trophy in 2014, the rings weighed in at a modest 56 grams, one of the smallest in recent Super Bowl history.


Jostens provided a photo reflecting the Patriots' ever-growing Super Bowl rings. In 2001, the team’s first Super Bowl ring weighed in at 74 grams. Two years later, the Patriots' second Super Bowl ring weighed 100 grams.

In 2013, the Baltimore Ravens' official website stated that the team's Super Bowl XLVII championship rings weighed 380 grams (13.4 ounces), which we're pretty sure is an error because that would have made them about three times as heavy as the massive rings awarded to the Patriots in 2015.

The NFL typically awards 150 rings to the Super Bowl victor and allocates approximately $7,000 per ring — although teams with multiple Super Bowl victories are allotted a higher budget for diamonds. Teams often create “B” and “C” level rings — designs with faux diamonds or fewer diamonds — for distribution to the front office staff.

Although the Patriots will be shooting for their fifth Super Bowl title, the record for the most Super Bowl wins is held by the Pittsburgh Steelers, who have six. The Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers each have won five.

Credits: Photos courtesy of Jostens, Twitter/New England Patriots.