Ellen DeGeneres Is Generous; Don Mattingly Gets Honest About the Dodgers

It's not always enough to know what's "trending." It kind of helps to know why. Welcome to The Social Climber, where we provide a quick primer on the people, places and things that are being feverishly searched and shared online -- and try to make sense of it all.

1
Ellen DeGeneres May Be the Kindest Host in Hollywood
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PHOTO: Ellen DeGeneres attends the star unveiling ceremony for actor and radio host Steve Harvey in Hollywood, Calif., May 13, 2013.
Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Ellen DeGeneres has taken paying it forward to a whole new level.

The television star presented a 22-year-old single mom and waitress from Henniker, N. H., with a 50-inch television and a $10,000 check Friday for picking up a $27.75 tab at Ruby Tuesday for two National Guard members furloughed by the government shutdown, according to ABC News' Manchester, N.H., affiliate WMUR-TV.

Not to be stingy, DeGeneres also gave Sarah Hoidahl $27.75 in cash for the tab, The Associated Press reported.

2
Will Don Mattingly Ditch the Dodgers?
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PHOTO: Manager Don Mattingly of the Los Angeles Dodgers answers questions before Game Six of the National League Championship Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium, Oct. 18, 2013, in St Louis.
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Don Mattingly may be shedding his Dodger blue come next season.

The Dodgers manager got shockingly honest about his future with the Los Angeles organization at a post-season news conference Monday night, venting that while his contract kicked in after the team beat the Braves during the first round of the playoffs, "that doesn't mean I'll be back," the Los Angeles Times reported.

"It's been a frustrating, tough year honestly," Mattingly said. "Because I think when you come in basically as a lame duck and with the [$230 million] payroll and the guys that you have, it puts you in a tough spot in the clubhouse."

Tell us how you really feel, Don.

3
Netflix to HBO: Watch Your Back
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PHOTO: Orange Is the New Black
Netflix

HBO may have been Netflix co-founder Reed Hastings' pay-TV model to match, but now the premium cable network might need to watch out for the little streaming service that could.

Netflix passed HBO in paid U.S. subscribers in the third quarter, according to Businessweek. In a letter to investors, Hastings credited Netflix's original series and Emmy nods for the growth.

"'Orange Is the New Black' has been a tremendous success for us," Hastings said in a note to investors. "It will end the year as our most-watched original series ever and, as with our other previously launched originals, enjoys an audience comparable with successful shows on cable and broadcast TV."

As long as Hastings promises more seasons of the inmates at Litchfield, the Social Climber is happy.

4
Getting Crazy, Sexy, Cool With TLC
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PHOTO: Lil Mama, Keke Palmer and Drew Sidora in the “CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story” biopic.
Blake Tyers/VH1

TLC's VH1 biopic premiered Monday night, and members Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas and Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins told Yahoo Music they wish their financial woes were taken a bit more seriously in the made-for-TV movie.

The band filed for bankruptcy and when they confronted their label, Arista, in court, they were told they needed to give their plaques back. Turns out the band had given them away to people in the projects.

"We said, 'Well, go to the 'hood. Get it. Good luck with that," Thomas said.

"I personally would have liked it if it would have showed a little bit more of that because that was a serious thing that we went through," Thomas said. "We talked about that."

5
Zimbabwe Elephant Poisoning Might be the Saddest News of the Day (So Far)
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PHOTO: An African elephant is pictured in Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe, Nov. 19, 2012.
Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty Images

Save the Zimbabwe elephants!

More than 300 elephants have died from cyanide poisoning in Zimbabwe's largest game park, Johnny Rodrigues, chairman of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, told the AFP news agency.

"The authorities only stepped in in September and by then the numbers had escalated. As at last week, about 325 had died altogether," Rodrigues said.

Four people are behind bars for the alleged poisoning, Rodrigues said.

The deaths have been tied to the illegal ivory-trading business.

6
Dolly Parton's "All Good" After "Fender Bender"
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PHOTO: Dolly parton on Aug. 10, 2012 in Nashville.
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Dolly Parton fans can rest easy. The country superstar got in "a fender bender" in Nashville, but she's "all good," according to The Associated Press.

"Just a little tired and sore," Parton said.

Police said the 67-year-old was driving in an SUV that was hit by another car, the AP reported. None of the injuries appeared serious, a news release said.

Let's send flowers to Dollywood.

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