The good news is that 48 hours of above-freezing temperatures—with almost 18 hours at or above 8°C—melted just about all the snow and ice in Chicago.
The bad news? A cold front moved in overnight and it's now -9°C with 57 km/h winds giving us a wind chill of -19°C.
Chicago weather builds character.
We atheists need holidays, too; why not an astronomical event? Eight minutes past midnight in Chicago tonight, light a candle to mark the bottom of the analemma.
I don't usually comment on stupid celebrity tricks—that's my friend Katie's job—but this made me laugh out loud. Despite her obvious successes as a mother, apparently Lynne Spears (Britney and Jamie Lynn Spears's mom) will not publish her upcoming Christian parenting book after all:
Lynne Spears' book about parenting has been delayed indefinitely, her publisher said Wednesday. Lindsey Nobles, a spokeswoman for Christian book publisher Thomas Nelson Inc., said Wednesday that the memoir by the mother of Britney Spears was put on hold last week.
She declined to comment on whether the delay was connected to the revelation that Spears' 16-year-old daughter, Jamie Lynn, is pregnant.
Update, via Cele|bitchy: Bonnie Fuller has a good take on this at Huffington Post.
The city of Half Moon Bay, Calif., is in danger of dissolving after losing a major lawsuit:
Half Moon Bay is wrestling with unpleasant options for responding to a court ruling that officials say threatens the "very existence of our city government"—a $36.8 million judgment against the city for turning a proposed housing development site into wetlands.
Under the worst-case scenario, officials say, Half Moon Bay would become the first Bay Area city forced to dissolve, and the coastal town's land would become an unincorporated part of San Mateo County.
As of this moment (12:00 EST), less than 400 days remain in the worst presidency in U.S. history.
Another piling-on overnight, leaving 13 cm on the ground. Parker enjoys it:
And it's kind of pretty:
But there are practical disadvantages:
The New Jersey legislature yesterday voted to abolish the death penalty, becoming the first state to do so formally since executions were re-instated in the U.S. in 1976:
The Assembly voted 44-36 on Thursday to approve the legislation, which passed the Senate on Monday by a 21-16 vote. Gov. Jon S. Corzine said he will sign it within a week.
New Jersey reinstated the death penalty in 1982, six years after the U.S. Supreme Court allowed states to resume executions, but nobody has been executed in the Garden State since 1963.
New Jersey has been barred from executing anyone under a 2004 court ruling that declared invalid the state's lethal injection procedures.
A special state commission found in January that the death penalty was a more expensive sentence than life in prison, hasn't deterred murder, and could kill innocent people.
Note from the dog-walking service: "He owes me one. I pulled a 6-inch string out of his ass."
Last night the Evanston city council approved what will be the tallest building in Illinois outside Chicago:
The Evanston Plan Commission tonight voted 4-3 to recommend approval of the proposed 49-story tower at 708 Church St. to the City Council.
The commissioners were sharply divided on whether development downtown over the last several decades has made the Fountain Square block an appropriate site for high-rise development.
Commissioners who looked to the east and west saw Sherman Plaza, the Chase Bank tower and other high rise developments and said yes.