The daily gossip: Meghan Markle pens a must-read op-ed, Taylor Swift confirms a major fan theory, and more

Jeva Lange
Meghan Markle.
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Meghan Markle discloses miscarriage in a candid op-ed urging compassion

Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, revealed that she had a miscarriage over the summer in a remarkable New York Times op-ed published Wednesday. "Losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few," she wrote, adding that "despite the staggering commonality of this pain, the conversation remains taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning." Markle's op-ed follows Chrissy Teigen's essay about her miscarriage in September, but while Teigen and her husband, John Legend, frequently share stories about their personal and family lives, Britain's royal family keeps a famously tight lid on private issues. Read Markle's full op-ed here. [The New York Times, The Week]


Taylor Swift confirms boyfriend Joe Alwyn helped co-write songs on Folklore

Taylor Swift confirmed a popular fan theory that the mysterious songwriter "William Bowery," credited on her songs "Exile" and "Betty," is in fact her boyfriend, actor Joe Alwyn. "I just heard Joe singing the entire, fully-formed chorus of 'Betty' from another room. And I just was like, 'Hello,'" Swift explained in the Disney+ documentary Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions. Later, she heard him "just singing" Bon Iver's eventual part of the duet that would become "Exile," explaining "I was entranced and asked if we could keep writing that one." Swift added that the lockdown was to thank for the couple's unlikely collaboration: "It was a step that we would never have taken because why would we have ever written a song together?" she said. [Just Jared, Vulture]


Clifford is apparently a slightly smaller Red Dog than promised

Do you ever wake up at night haunted by the question of just how big is Clifford the Big Red Dog? Well, now you have a scientific answer. On Wednesday, Paramount released the "first look" at its live action adaptation of Clifford the Big Red Dog, which involves comparing Clifford to other regular-sized dogs. Though the official synopsis for the movie claims Clifford is a "giant ten-foot hound," Paste got to work and found that he's "more like the size of 2 2/3 boxers." Multiplied by the American Kennel Club's average height for adult boxers (24"), that makes Clifford about 5'3", Paste writes — "not that impressive." But add in the heads of the boxers — since the AKC measures from the withers — and Cliff's more like 7'3". Still, that's definitely not 10 feet. False advertising! [Paste]


The Situation is having a baby

Jersey Shore's Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino spilled a bunch of flour on his kitchen counter in order to announce that he is having a baby with his wife, Lauren Sorrentino. The couple's first child is expected May 2021, according to the message they wrote in the flour, with Mike captioning the picture "we have a Baby Situation." Get it? The Sorrentinos previously spoke about Lauren suffering a miscarriage: "The night [Mike] came home [from prison] we actually conceived," Lauren told ABC's Strahan, Sara and Keke last year. "And then at about six and half, seven weeks I miscarried." The Jersey Shore family celebrated the Sorrentinos' news Monday: "Sooo happy for you my mawma!" Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi commented. Added Pauly D, "Now that's a situation my dude!!!!" [Page Six]


Lorde went to Antarctica

Hey, remember Lorde? It turns out the reason you haven't heard from her recently is that she was in Antarctica. "The continent has fascinated me since I was old enough to read," Lorde told fans. "I was accompanied down there [in early 2019] by my beautiful friend Harriet Were, who photographed our days, lugging all these cameras and lenses and film — yup, she shot completely on film in Antarctica — around in the snow." Lorde thought "the pictures turned out so beautiful … it was only right to make them into a little catalogue-style book, alongside a piece of writing I did about my experience on the frozen continent." Beats a podcast, anyway! The book arrives next February, and can be preordered now. [Vulture]