Happy afternoon, Saskatoon! Cold enough for you? As of 1:02 it’s -25 and after a forecast high of -24 it’s gonna get nastier, with a low tonight of -29. The sun came up today at 9:13 but that was a long time ago, so let’s talk about how it’s going to set at 5:15 p.m. That’s just over four hours from when I’m typing this. Bleeeeugh!!!
1. THE TRUDEAU SHUFFLE Cabinet shuffle today. Chrystia Freedland is going to be minister of foreign affairs. Freedland is only the second to hold this post — Progressive Conservative Barbara McDougall was the Secretary of State for External Affairs (as it used to be called) from 1991-1993.
2. ANIMAL CRUELTY CHARGES AT NIAGARA FALLS MARINELAND The park’s accused of mistreating elk and deer.
3. GAS LEAK DOES NOT CAUSE EXPLOSION Good news, everybody!
4. REMEMBER THAT TIME? When there was a blizzard?
5. WHEN A TREE FALLS The iconic, 150-foot-tall tunnel tree nicknamed the Pioneer Cabin has fallen. It might have been 1,000 years old.
6. SO MUCH TO DO, SO LITTLE TIME The Obama administration is working on police reform in Chicago and Baltimore, two cities with forces that have been especially racist and violent.
7. CANADIAN APPAREL Looks like Montreal-based Gilden is buying the bankrupt American Apparel brand. What they’re not presumably buying is the company’s commitment to North American manufacturing, fair wages, and LGBT and immigration activism. AA had its problems (expunged founder Dov Charney masturbated in front of journalists and has been accused of sexual harrasment) but in the cesspool of the clothing industry they did more than a few things right. Better than Gildan, anyway.
8. THE JOURNALIST WHO BROKE THE BIGGEST STORY OF THE 20TH CENTURY HAS DIED British reporter Clare Hollingworth has passed away at 105. In 1939 she was the first to report Germany’s invasion of Poland, which started the Second World War.
9. MIKE PENCE HAS AN UNEXPECTED REDEEMING QUALITY Awful U.S. vice president-elect Mike Pence has been a born-again moralizing manure mound for years as a fiscal conservative with a shit record on women’s and LGBTQ rights. He’s an awful person and the world would be a better place without him on it. That said, it’s possibly a bad idea to totally reject the humanity of enemies so I’m gonna celebrate Pence’s one redeeming quality: his family likes pets. They have two cats, a rabbit named “Marlon Bundo” and a, yes, yes, snake. It’s named Sapphira but I haven’t been able to find out what kind of snake it is because reporters don’t ask tough questions anymore. Unfortunately Sapphira is staying at the family’s Mississippi home, so no slithering Second Pets at Number One Observatory Circle, at least for now.