Meet Mexico City’s New Official Emojis

Itzel Oropeza Castillo
Itzel Oropeza Castillo

Residents of Mexico City will soon have a whole new set of emojis to use when talking about their city. As CityLab reports, the winners of the Emoji CDMX competition were announced on August 1, crowning new icons to describe the 21st-century metropolis.

Launched in June 2017 by the municipal government’s experimental Laboratory for the City, the competition asked designers to represent Mexico City in 20 small symbols. Almost 100 designers took part, submitting 2000 emoji designs for consideration. (Technically, the symbols are stickers, not emojis, since you’ll have to download an app to use them, but emoji is a much more recognizable term, so we’ll go with it.)

Mexico City’s Palace of Fine Arts, a witch, and a mariachi singer rendered as emoji.
A selection of some of the first-place-winning emoji.
Itzel Oropeza Castillo

The winners—Itzel Oropeza Castillo (first place); Eduardo Camacho and Pedro Rodrigo Grajeda (second place); and Ivonne Andrea Torres and Martin Robert Cook (third place)—received cash prizes from The Lift Mexico, one of the competition’s sponsors. Five honorable mentions and several mayor’s favorites selections were also recognized at the August 1 awards ceremony and will be included in the app.

A Mayan figure in a headdress, Frida Kahlo, and a Mexican walking fish drawn as emoji.
Emoji from the second-place entry
Eduardo Camacho Mayén and Pedro Rodrigo Grajeda Ortega

The emoji designs submitted often included some of the same themes and topics, including Frida Kahlo; the Mexican walking fish, ajolote; tamales; the Aztec god Tlaloc; and the landmark Latin American Tower.

A sign reading “CDMX” with people standing near it, a woman on the Metro, a boat that reads Xochimilco, and two people eating at a food stand.
Some of the third-place winners.
Ivonne Andrea Torres and Martin Robert Cook

While Finland has launched its own official national emoji, Mexico City is the first city to do so, and the first to hold an open competition for the designs. The Emoji CDMX app will be available for iOS and Android in September, with a total of 240 available designs.

[h/t CityLab]

Can You Spot the Easter Egg Hiding in the Flowers in This Springtime Brain Teaser?

Don't worry—the puzzle below won't trigger your seasonal allergies.
Don't worry—the puzzle below won't trigger your seasonal allergies.
FlairImages/iStock via Getty Images

Scores of residents likely won’t be dashing through vibrant flower gardens at your neighborhood’s traditional Easter egg hunt this year, but you can still put your eagle eye to good use in this brain teaser, courtesy of online blinds retailer 247 Blinds.

In the following image, a single egg is hidden somewhere among the bright pattern of yellow flowers and green leaves. Once you’ve spotted it (or decided to throw in the towel), scroll down to reveal the answer.

spot the egg in the flowers brain teaser
Can you spot the Easter egg?
247 Blinds

The design in the image is the very same one as the online retailer's “Hard to Crack” roller blinds—cleverly concealed egg included—which you can customize to fit most standard windows. Not only will it give your room a sunny, springtime ambience, it’ll also give your house guests something to do while they sip their morning coffee.

Ready to wrap up your virtual Easter egg hunt? The egg is circled in red below.

spot the egg in the flowers brain teaser answer
You've earned a chocolate bunny or two.
247 Blinds

And while you’re waiting for the Easter Bunny to deliver a basket brimming with candy-filled eggs this weekend, find out where the Easter Bunny came from here.

6 Fun Backgrounds to Use on Your Next Video Call

You might be stuck in the living room, but it doesn't have to look like it.
You might be stuck in the living room, but it doesn't have to look like it.
Ridofranz/iStock via Getty Images

If you’re struggling to find a perfectly decorated wall in your house to serve as the backdrop for your video calls with friends, family, and coworkers, we have good news: Video conferencing platform Zoom lets you customize your very own virtual background.

To do it, log into your Zoom account, go to “Settings” on the left side of your screen, and choose the "Meeting" tab. Scroll down to the “In Meeting (Advanced)” section, and then scroll down farther to make sure the “Virtual background” option is enabled. After that, open the Zoom application on your desktop, click on the “Settings” wheel in the upper right corner, and go to “Virtual Background.” There are a few automatic options, but you can choose your own image from your computer files by clicking on the plus-sign icon.

Now, the only thing left to do is decide which image will best set the tone for your next video call. From the New York Public Library’s Rose Reading Room to Schitt’s Creek’s Rosebud Motel, here are six of our favorites.

1. The Rosebud Motel lobby from Schitt’s Creek

schitt's creek rose motel lobby
It's not the Ritz-Carlton.

You can imagine that David is just out of frame, doing his best to carry on a silent—albeit with lots of expressive gesturing—conversation with Stevie at the front desk. (More Schitt's Creek backgrounds here.)

2. Carl and Ellie’s house from Up

carl and ellie's house from up
Balloons not included.
Walt Disney Pictures

If you’re hoping to create a calming atmosphere, look no further than the cozy little sitting room where Carl and Ellie grew old together in 2009's Up. (More Pixar backgrounds here.)

3. The attic study from Knives Out

knives out attic study
Nothing bad has ever happened here.

If your own study isn’t quite teeming with intriguing souvenirs and leather-bound volumes, feel free to borrow this one from the mansion in 2019’s Knives Out. (More Knives Out backgrounds here.)

4. The USS Enterprise from Star Trek

star trek's uss enterprise bridge
A great way to get your coworkers to fess up to being huge Trekkies., Twitter

Blame your spotty internet connection on the fact that you’re traveling through the galaxy at the speed of light with this background from the bridge of Star Trek’s USS Enterprise. (More Star Trek backgrounds here.)

5. The New York Public Library’s Rose Reading Room

new york public library reading room
You reserve the right to shush any coworkers who forgot to mute themselves.
New York Public Library

Bibliophiles who can’t make it to the library can still pay a virtual visit to the sumptuous Rose Main Reading Room at the New York Public Library’s iconic Fifth Avenue location. (More New York Public Library backgrounds here.)

6. The Werk Room from RuPaul’s Drag Race

rupaul's drag race werk room
Sashay away from the screen if you're taking a bathroom break during the call.

Dazzle your coworkers by calling in from the vibrant room where all the magic—and most of the drama—happens on RuPaul’s Drag Race. If you happen to be decked out in an ensemble made entirely of things you found at the Dollar Store, even better. (More RuPaul's Drag Race backgrounds here.)