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Record low water levels in Venice

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As Venice works on the €5.4 billion 'Mose' floodgate to counteract the eventual effects of rising sea levels, they face an interim problem of record low water levels.
The exceptionally water levels have been caused by abnormal tides this year, combined with drastically reduced winter precipitation rates across northeastern Italy... The drop in water levels has prevented some of the city's gondolas and vaporetti, or water buses, from navigating in some of the smaller canals. On Christmas Eve, the low tide even grounded the mayor's speedboat.
The low water is exposing the city's less attractive underside: garbage and crumbling infrastructure.  And I'll bet it's fragrant:
Historically, all waste produced by humans have been dumped into the canals although larger buildings are required to carry some kind of sewage treatment before dumping the filthy stuff into the canals. Some palazzos have their own septic tanks but there is always a certain amount of leakage, lending Venice its characteristic and at times overpowering stench.
The scavenger in me, however, imagines the excellent opportunity for mudlarking.


Think of the generations of artifacts that have been lost into the canals, the wedding rings tossed away, the rings and brooches.  But it looks like mostly forks.

Related: Mudlarking and Love tokens retrieved from the mud of the Thames.
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ryanbrazell
2 days ago
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"Mostly forks"
Richmond, VA
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Correlation is not causation

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More examples here.  Please share the link, because way WAY too many people do not understand this fundamental principle of science.
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ryanbrazell
6 days ago
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Today I learned that longer spelling bee words make venomous spiders angry, and they take it out on humans.
Richmond, VA
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Quote of the Day

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"I don't see this president-elect as a legitimate president. ...I don't plan to attend the inauguration. It will be the first one that I miss since I've been in the Congress. You cannot be at home with something that you feel that is wrong."Rep. John Lewis, a genuine American hero.
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ryanbrazell
8 days ago
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John Lewis and Barbara Lee. Who's next?
Richmond, VA
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What Is This

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This is really, really freaking me out:
The head of the D.C. National Guard, Maj. Gen. Errol R. Schwartz, said Friday that he has been ordered removed from his command effective Jan. 20, 12:01 p.m., just as Donald Trump is sworn in as president.

Schwartz's forced departure will come in the midst of the presidential inauguration that he has spent months helping plan alongside D.C. police, the U.S. Secret Service and other top District officials. He will turn over command to an interim as power transfers from one president to the next, and just before the inaugural parade marches down Pennsylvania Avenue.

"The timing is extremely unusual," Schwartz said in an interview Friday morning, confirming a memo announcing his ouster that was obtained by The Washington Post. During the inauguration, Schwartz would command not only the members of the D.C. guard but also an additional 5,000 unarmed troops sent in from across the country to help. He also would oversee military air support protecting the nation’s capital during the inauguration.
This is not normal. None of this is normal.
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ryanbrazell
8 days ago
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This is frightening.
Richmond, VA
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1 public comment
skittone
7 days ago
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This makes no rational sense.

Toyota Adds 544K Vehicles To Takata Airbag Recall

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With Takata’s supposed $1 billion criminal settlement looming, another automaker announced plans to expand the number of its vehicles affected by the massive shrapnel-shooting airbag defect: Toyota will add 543,000 cars to the recall list.

Toyota announced Friday that it would recall the vehicles to replace the passenger air bag inflators that have been found to be affected by the defect.

The recall covers the following vehicles:
• model year 2008 to 2009 and 2012 Model Year Scion xB
• model year 2009 and 2012 Toyota Corolla
• model year 2009 and 2012 Toyota Corolla Matrix
• model year 2007 to 2009 and 2012 Toyota Yaris
• model year 2012 Toyota 4Runner
• model year 2012 Toyota Sienna
• model year 2006 to 2009 and 2012 Lexus IS250/350
• model year 2012 Lexus IS250C/350C
• model year 2008 to 2009 and 2012 Lexus IS-F
• model year 2007 to 2009 and 2012 Lexus ES350
• model year 2012 Lexus GX460
• model year 2012 Lexus LFA

Toyota says that all owners of the affected vehicles will be notified by first class mail starting in February. Depending on the vehicle model, dealers will replace either the front passenger air bag inflator or air bag assembly at no cost.

Vehicle owners concerned if their vehicle is affected by the recall are urged to enter their individual VIN on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Safercar.gov/vin database.

Toyota’s expanded recalls comes just a day after Ford added 816,000 vehicles and two days after Honda added 772,000 vehicles to the recall list. In all, the massive recall affects more than 42 million vehicles from 19 automakers.





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ryanbrazell
8 days ago
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Richmond, VA
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Chicken McGriddle Coming To McDonald’s All-Day Breakfast Menu — In Florida

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Nearly a year after McDonald’s began slapping a McChicken on its syrup-flavored McGriddle bun in Ohio, the Chicken McGriddle will become the latest all-day breakfast item to grace menus in Florida. 

FoodBeast reports that following the successful trials at a dozen restaurants in Ohio, select locations in Florida will serve the portable chicken and waffle/pancake sandwich — as well as a chicken biscuit — until April 26.

The Chicken McGriddle didn’t begin as a corporate initiative. Rather, it was the brainchild of the owner of eight Ohio McDonald’s and a small group of other operators and self-proclaimed taste-testers.

“It’s a chicken-and-waffles taste,” operator Brian Mortellaro told the Ohio Business Journal last year. “I just think that’s something that isn’t out there right now. Filet-o-fish, Big Mac – both of those started with owner-operators. We took this idea up the chain and they’re letting us try it out.”

We’ve reached out to McDonald’s to find out if the Florida expansion was corporate-driven or just a few rogue operators.

It remains to be seen if this is a limited time test, or if the new menu item will stick around. While some folks vehemently oppose the notion of chicken for breakfast (Do you? Take our Divisive Dishes survey and let us know), fans of the concept have been sharing evidence of the Chicken McGriddle on social media:





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ryanbrazell
17 days ago
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I ... would absolutely try this.
Richmond, VA
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