QFC and Fred Meyer waive masks for the fully vaccinated in WA state: As of today, the two grocery chains are allowing fully vaxxed customers to do their milk and tampon shopping mask free "unless a local mandate is in place," reports KING 5. (Last week, King County Health Officer Dr. Jeff Duchin issued a directive "strongly" recommending people to continue to wear masks when visiting public indoor spaces.) The policy encompasses shoppers at their stores and their workers in distribution centers, plants, and offices in the state. If you're not fully vaxxed, you've still got to cover up.
Volcano erupts in the Democratic Republic of Congo over the weekend, leaving 31 dead: Mount Nyiragongo erupted over the weekend in the African country, displacing thousands in surrounding villages, reports CNN. In what is literally one of my worst nightmares, at least a dozen people have died trying to flee while hundred of children have gone missing and have been separated from their families. Meanwhile, 8,000 refugees have crossed into neighboring Rwanda to seek shelter while they await the all-clear to return home.
As Rich mentioned in Slog AM: A year ago today, Minneapolis police officers murdered George Floyd, setting off a summer of protests and incremental reform. Today, members of George Floyd's family privately met with President Biden and VP Harris, urging Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act:
After private meeting with Pres. Biden, George Floyd's brother Philonise calls on Congress to pass George Floyd Justice In Policing Act: "If you can make federal laws to protect the [national] bird, which is the bald eagle, you can make federal laws to protect people of color." pic.twitter.com/yTYRaHyAug
— CBS News (@CBSNews) May 25, 2021
I should also note: Darnella Frazier—the teenager who recorded Floyd's murder under the knee of a white police officer—released a statement on how those moments changed her life forever. "George Floyd, I can't express enough how I wish things could have went different, but I want you to know you will always be in my heart." Please take a moment to read Frazier's first public comments. Click to expand the images:
It’s been a year since then 17-year-old Darnella Frazier recorded the murder of George Floyd. She has not done media interviews or made public statements outside of her trial testimony. Today she released her first full public comments. Worth a read: pic.twitter.com/P9xKdo1IoL
— Wesley (@WesleyLowery) May 25, 2021
Half of all U.S. adults are now fully vaccinated: According to the latest data from the CDC, at least half of those 18+in this country have been inoculated against coronavirus, reports CNBC. This news comes as the infections and deaths from the virus have hit lows not seen since the pandemic began. Previously, President Biden set a target of 70% of adults fully vaxxed by July 4, and at least nine states have hit that benchmark. Nice.
Still haven't been uploaded to the 5G network and love ferries? Boy do I have some good news for you. From May 25 (today)-27 and June 1-3, you can get a vaccine shot on the Seattle-Bremerton ferry. Just hop on board any vessel departing from mid-morning until late afternoon to get your prick.
Marjorie Taylor Greene is a dumbass: The latest political storm the walking Karen-meme-on-bath-salts has set off involves, you guessed it, comparing COVID health regulations to the treatment of Jews during the Holocaust. Oh America :) House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has done the bare minimum of condemning Greene's statements, before blasting Rep. Nancy Pelosi for allegedly allowing antisemitism to rise in the Democratic Party, reports NPR. GOP Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois wants her ass booted from the House Republican conference.
Beach fires are back this weekend at Alki and Golden Gardens: And just in time for Memorial Day. Starting this Saturday at 4 pm, the fire rings will be available for public use in both parks on a first-come, first-served basis. Seattle Parks wants to remind you only to burn clean wood and to douse your fire completely before leaving. Get more details here.
That said: You probably want to get your beach fires in early as wildfire season this summer is about to get real. Remember to prepare if you live in a particularly high-risk area:
Keep your eyes peeled on Thursday: The Washington Attorney General's Office will announce a charging decision in the March 2020 death of Manuel Ellis while in Tacoma Police Department custody.
R.I.P Tom Suanpirintra: The Thai Tom of the iconic U District Thai restaurant Thai Tom is dead. The former chef suddenly passed away on May 11 of causes unrelated to COVID. Retiring from cooking in 2004, he's survived by his wife, four sisters, and seven nieces and nephews. Read Erin Wong's write-up of Suanpirintra in the Seattle Met here.
Seattle housing prices keep going on up: Prices for single-family homes in the Seattle area jumped 18.3% in March, coming in behind only Phoenix and San Diego, reports the Seattle Times. The jump comes as more white collar workers seizing on lower interest rates to convert their homes into comfortable working spaces. Heidi Groover has more on the skyrocketing Seattle-area home prices (as well as some charts!) here.
We did it, Joe: After winning 57.3% of the vote, the Seattle Department of Transportation's protected bike lane sweeper will be christened "OK Broomer." According to an SDOT press release, more than 1,500 people participated in their Twitter poll to #NameThatSweeper. Hat tip to 11-year-old Pascal of Lichton Springs for introducing the Gen Z-inspired name to the contest. SDOT's blog has more tips on making OK Broomer's job a bit easier.
Is this literally my mom? "Georgia county asks residents to stop calling 911 about cicadas," reads a headline from The Hill.
Surprising no one: The pilot of the live-action The Powerpuff Girls TV remake sucked. It sucked so much that The CW is rehauling the unreleased show entirely because it was "'too campy' and not as rooted in reality as network execs would have liked," reports Variety. Ummm, have any those stiffs seen the original series??? There's literally a queer-coded villain named Him and an evil monkey called Mojo Jojo. The girls were borne of sugar, spice, everything nice, and CHEMICAL X. The campiness isn't the problem, it's the boring-ass costumes. Someone, get me over to The CW so I can tell those squares what's what!!!!
It's Mike Myers's birthday today: Long live Goldmember.