It’s no ice storm, but a blizzard is causing some winter woe in the Northeast.
The northeastern United States and Canada are bracing themselves for a blizzard, which is expected to unload as much as a foot of snow accompanied by some sub-zero wind chills. More than 900 flights for Thursday have already been canceled and meteorologists are warning that the weather “will lead to whiteout conditions making travel extremely dangerous.” Aka do not travel. Heavy winter weather is also hitting the midwest, dropping a blanket of snow and cancelling flights at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Basically, winter is here, so deal with it. BBC News
Proving that Dubai has too much time and money on its hands, the city used over 500,000 fireworks to ring in the New Year. The New Year’s Eve show lasted about six minutes and cost around $6 million – or $1 million per minute for those who are retarded at math. The $6 million show did win them the new Guinness world record for the world’s biggest pyrotechnics display. Alistair Richards, global president of Guinness World Records, said the magnitude of the New Year’s project was “truly impressive and will ensure all eyes are on Dubai.” The previous record was held by Kuwait, which had an hour-long show with a meager 77,282 fireworks. International Business Times
The 52 scientists and tourists aboard the MV Akademik Shokalski said goodbye to their little penguin friends after they were airlifted out of their ship by helicopter. The passengers were taken to an ice floe next to the Aurora Australis and then ferried on to the ice-breaker, which will bring them to Tasmania by mid-January. The passengers had been trapped on the research ship for more than a week after it became struck in the Antarctic ice. Previous rescue attempts were thwarted by wind, fog, sea ice, horrific snowstorms, and possibly penguin attacks. BBC News
New year, new New York City Mayor. In front of his Brooklyn rowhouse, Bill de Blasio was officially sworn in as New York City’s 109th mayor just after midnight on New Year’s Eve. De Blasio is the first Democrat to occupy City Hall in nearly two decades and promises a much more liberal agenda. “We are called to put an end to economic and social inequalities that threaten to put an end to the city that we love,” de Blasio told the crowd on the steps of City Hall during his second swearing in on Wednesday. First on the agenda? Getting rid of Central Park’s horrible horse-drawn carriages! Calling the practice inhumane, Bill de Blasio has vowed to ban horse-drawn carriages this week, saying: “It’s over. We are going to quickly and aggressively move to make horse carriages no longer a part of the landscape in New York City.” Independent
Why can’t people just let Utah be gay? Last week a federal judge rejected Ohio’s voter approved ban on same-sex marriages, calling the law unconstitutional when it comes to death certificates. After that hundred of marriage licenses were issued to same-sex couples hoping for their dream winter wedding / any kind of wedding they can get. But now Utah is taking its fight against gay marriage to the U.S. Supreme Court, asking the high court to suspend the same-sex unions that recently became legal. The heavily Mormon state wants the marriages to stop while it appeals a judge’s decision, calling each gay marriage “an affront not only to the interests of the state and its citizens in being able to define marriage through ordinary democratic channels, but also to this court’s unique role as final arbiter.” LA Times