February 8th – The Day’s Most Fascinating News

Drinking Bud at Miller Time

This season’s NFL Superman Cam Newton finally met his kryptonite, and it was MVP Von Miller and a Denver defense that put on one of the great performances in Super Bowl history. Denver’s win over the Panthers can be explained by a combination of that overpowering defensive performance and a series of uncharacteristic pass drops and miscues by the Panthers, whose Greg Olsen summed things up: “We picked a really bad day to kinda have a meltdown.” And with that, Peyton Manning (assuming he retires) just limped off into the sunset. (Albeit with a defective championship hat.)

+ Did Cam Newton over-do all of those touchdown celebrations this season? Maybe. Did he under-do his post-Super Bowl press conference? Definitely.

+ Whether you’re into football or not, Super Bowl Sunday is one of the better days on social media. What makes it fun is not the content. It’s the fact that we’re all watching the same thing at the same time. And a lot of us were watching.

+ During the early part of the game, Denver’s Aqib Talib made a few silly errors. Things got worse after the game.

+ In other football news, Seattle’s Marshawn Lynch retired in the most modern way possible. With an emoticon and a GIF.


Formation Sensation

You’ve got to give credit to Coldplay for going full-Coldplay during their halftime performance. But having Beyonce make a cameo during a Coldplay show is like having Jimi Hendrix sit in with an air guitar band. Predictably, her appearance injected a much needed dose of Bey-agra into what was a pretty great all around show. Watch it here.

+ WaPo: The Night Beyonce Won the Super Bowl.

+ Lady Gaga nailed the National Anthem. The only question was whether she hit the over or the under.


Intestinal Fortitude

Puppy Monkey Baby (which I’m pretty sure is caused by drinking Mountain Dew during pregnancy) seemed to dominate the commercial conversations in what proved to be a pretty tame overall effort. Given the nature and target audience of most of the ads, this should have been called Super Bowl 50 and Over. Here’s a look at the best and worst ads of the day from The New Yorker. And here’s Buzzfeed with all the Super Bowl commercials people will be talking about.

+ That quarterback can pitch! A camera caught a shot of him drinking Gatorade in the locker room. He announced plans to down a few Buds after the game. So it makes sense that the first person Peyton Manning kissed after the game was Papa John.

+ And thanks to the Xifaxan’s commercial, that’s twice this week that my intestines have been anthropomorphized.


Bug Out

Obama has asked Congress for $1.8 billion to help fight the spread of the Zika virus.

+ MIT Tech Review: Fear of the Zika virus could generate support for gene drives, a radical technology able to make species go extinct.


Caught in History’s Current

As Europe looks for politically viable ways to manage the massive influx of refugees, another boat sunk off the coast of Turkey. Twenty-seven migrants died, including eleven children.

+ The NYT spent two days with ten men who set out to cross Mexico: Step by Step on a Desperate Trek.


Stop or I’ll Suit

The NYT on the unusual case of a Chicago police officer who is suing the estate of the man he shot dead: “Mr. Brodsky acknowledged that it was rare for a police officer to sue the estate of a person he killed, but said Officer Rialmo was entitled to do so.”

+ Surprise: Suspects shocked by Taser are “more likely” to waive Miranda Rights.



“Somali authorities now believe that they know who carried the bomb onto the plane and detonated it: A man who was then sucked out of the hole in the fuselage and became the attack’s only fatality.” From Slate: Worst terrorist ever blows self sideways out of plane without killing anyone else.

+ And once again, this terror plot seems to have gone through airport workers.


White, Hot

“There’s white, and then there’s the how-white-my-shirts-can-be white that’s used to brighten myriad products, from the pages of new Bibles to the hulls of superyachts to the snowy filling inside Oreo cookies.” In other words, some white is worth a lot more than other white. From Bloomberg, how a corporate spy swiped plans for DuPont’s billion-dollar color formula: Stealing White.


Ice In Their Veins

“If you meet somebody from Iceland, they’re almost delusional about their ability. When [the national team] lines up against Holland, we’re not thinking, we’ll try not to lose so bad. We’re thinking, we’re going to beat them.” There’s no logical reason for Iceland to be climbing up the FIFA rankings. But they are. From The Guardian: The incredible rise of Iceland’s national football team.


Bottom of the News

One of the business world’s irritating adages suggests that you should always pick the low-hanging fruit. But is that metaphor based on a sound fruit-picking strategy?

+ Warning: You’re not allowed to stump for Bernie on Tinder.

+ The importance of a sigh.

+ You’re not the only one. Even the President has spotty WiFi. (Of course, he can threaten military action when he calls Comcast to complain.)

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