Hurricane Ian is walloping Florida at the moment: The Category 4 storm hit the Sunshine State with a vengeance, emptying several feet of water from Tampa Bay and flooding Fort Myers so badly that sharks are now swimming along the city's watery streets. The New York Times characterized the hurricane as "one of the most powerful storms to strike the United States in decades." Over 1.5 million Floridians are left without power as other states like North Carolina have issued a storm surge warning along their coasts.
"Why don't hurricanes happen on the West Coast?" is a valid question you may be asking yourself seeing as we live on a very volatile coastline. The tl;dr is that the Pacific Ocean is waaaaaay too cold to brew up hurricanes. We just have to wait for the Big One to trigger massive tsunamis instead!
And here in Seattle: We had our first fall raindrops today! There were some light and scattered showers that, blessedly, pushed all that awful smoke out of the area for just a bit.
Tragic: Crews recovered the body of American mountaineer and skier Hilaree Nelson today after she fell down a 5,000-foot slope in the Himalayas, reports The Guardian. Nelson grew up in the Seattle area, skiing on Stevens Pass, but stationed herself in Colorado. On their website, her sponsor the North Face called her "the most prolific ski mountaineer of her generation."
Seattle Public Library workers can now voluntarily administer Narcan (naloxone): SPL's initial guidance advised employees against administering the drug, which counteracts opioid overdoses, as PubliCola reported. But after an internal review of their policies and consulting with the City Attorney's Office, they've decided to allow it, reports KUOW. In a blog post, SPL says that because training and administration will only be done on a volunteer basis, "there is no guarantee that a patron who overdoses on Library grounds will receive naloxone." Regardless, hopefully this saves lives.
Grunge, gorp, graffiti: According to Andrew Matson's article in Esquire, those three words are what best define Seattle's status as a fashion capital. I'd have to agree, though I do think "corpcore" also fits into the general aesthetics of fashion here.
In not-so-bad news: During her Washington, DC concert last night, Lizzo played a crystal flute made for former US president James Madison. (Isn't that a wild sentence?) The good folks over at the Library of Congress invited her into their archives to play some historic instruments from their massive flute collection, which is actually pretty cute! We love a pop girly with a classical side:
Hearing @lizzo play some of the Library's priceless antique instruments on Monday was such a gift, and we were honored and happy to help her share that gift with her concert audience Tuesday night. Here is some more behind-the-scenes footage of her Library tour. #LizzoAtLOC pic.twitter.com/OQc4K3YXBg— Library of Congress (@librarycongress) September 28, 2022
Today in the comings-and-goings of the wealthiest people on Earth: Billionaire MacKenzie Scott has filed for divorce from her second husband, Dan Jewett, a former science teacher at her kids' school, reports the New York Times. Thrilling.
Speaking of Amazon: GeekWire reports that the e-commerce behemoth has now started the process of raising starting wages to $19 an hour for frontline workers. Over the next year, they will spend $1 billion on this pay increase, meaning that non-tech workers at the company will make anywhere from $16 to $26 per hour depending on their position. It goes without saying that this comes as Amazon workers across the country are organizing and calling for better conditions. Fight on!
In Oakland, a school shooting: The news is still breaking as I write this, but The Guardian reports that at least six people were injured in a shooting at an Oakland high school, with two victims being taken to a hospital. A local news channel said the incident "happened on a street where there are multiple schools and houses many school-age children." Alameda County sheriff Lt. Ray Kelly said the scene is "no longer active."
The monkeypox vaccine appears to work! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data today that showed those who received a single dose of the vax "appeared to be significantly less likely to get sick," reports AP. They advised that a second dose is necessary for full protection against the disease. Around 800,000 first and second doses have been given to high-risk individuals. More from AP:
There is no scientifically conclusive data available to prove effectiveness of the Jynneos vaccine against monkeypox.
But the CDC’s new real-world figures show that unvaccinated men, between the ages 18 and 49 who were considered eligible for the vaccine, were 14 times as likely to become infected with monkeypox as those who had one dose at least two weeks earlier. The data came from 32 states for cases between July 31 through Sept. 3.
Shakira is going to Spanish court for tax fraud: Spanish authorities said the Colombian singer evaded paying the equivalent of $13.9 million on earned income taxes between 2012 and 2014 and she's facing up to eight years in prison, reports NPR. Shakira, however, claims that she has already paid it all. Set the She Wolf free, I say!
While members of the public and the budget chair continue to pick through the 744-page document, they seem to agree that at least one line-item needs to change: a measure to effectively cut pay for shelter workers, case managers, and other human service providers.
I missed this yesterday: But the New York Times has more images of NASA's spacecraft slamming into the moonlet Dimorphos from a couple of different angles. H/t to news roundup genius Today in Tabs/Rusty Foster for alerting me to this!
I will mention it once then never mention it again: Twitter melted down yesterday over the Try Guys drama, which you might care about only if you have any recollection of Buzzfeed in the early 2010s.
For your listening pleasure: Paramore's "This Is Why."