Ven: The Sh*t Hits the Fan

"Speaking to reporters near the airstrip, Mr. Guaidó said that a wide swath of the military now backed him, including top commanders, but he declined to release their names. 'There are generals, there are lieutenant colonels, there are majors, there are colonels — it's a reflection of the country.'" After years of strife and a bottomless pit of economic calamity, Juan Guaidó is leading what he described as the Venezuelan opposition's "final phase of Operation Freedom," its most significant effort to wrest control of country from President Nicolás Maduro. The big question: How much of the military will join the revolt? The most shocking video thus far shows a group of opposition protestors being run over by Venezuelan national guard military vehicle. The situation is very much in flux and, even by the standards of recent Venezuelan history, unstable. Here's the latest from the NYT, CNN, and The Guardian.

+ AP: Photos: Opposition leader attempts military uprising in Venezuela.


Infrared (and Blue)

We've been waiting for Infrastructure Week to come along for about two years. Well, it's getting closer! From AP: "President Donald Trump and Democratic congressional leaders agreed Tuesday to work together on a $2 trillion infrastructure package — but put off for later the difficult question of how to pay for it." (Hey, it's worth $2 trillion just to get everyone working together, even for a few minutes.)


Caliphate Accompli

"The world's most wanted and reclusive terrorist, the isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, reëmerged on Monday, for the first time since 2014, in an eighteen-minute video designed to rally the thousands of followers who still heed his call on at least four continents. The tape was clearly designed to prove that neither he nor his Islamic State has been obliterated." After several reports of serious injuries and even death, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi Is Back—and Vows That ISIS Will Be, Too.


Degrade School

"Richard Thompson, a British marine biologist who devoted his career to studying plastic waste, has long wondered how well biodegradable shopping bags actually degrade. So in 2015, he and his graduate students at Plymouth University buried a collection of bags labeled as biodegradable in the school's garden. Three years later, when the bags were dug up, they not only had remained intact, they still could carry almost five pounds of groceries." NatGeo: Biodegradable shopping bags buried for three years still work. (Sadly, your hope that this could be a solution to the plastic problem is also not biodegradable -- although it can and will be recycled.)

+ CityLab: What If Air Conditioning Could Help Stop Climate Change Instead of Causing It? "The concept, called crowd oil, is still theoretical and faces many challenges. But in these desperate times, crowd oil might have a place in the fight to curb climate change."


Deutsche Bagmen

Congress wants to follow the money into President Trump's personal finances. Trump and his lawyers want to prevent that. From WaPo: Trump Organization and family sue Deutsche Bank and Capital One to block congressional subpoenas. "Legal experts predicted that the courts would be unwilling to stand in the way of congressional oversight." But winning the case may not be the point. It's about turning a high speed chase into a slow speed one...


Slipper-y Slope

"When the ruby slippers were stolen in August 2005 from the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minn., it made international news. Someone had broken in, smashed a plexiglass case and escaped with the shoes. David Letterman joked in a monologue that week that 'a pair of ruby red slippers worn by Judy Garland in The Wizard of Oz have been stolen. The thief is described as being armed and fabulous.' The crime, though, was no joke to this northern timber and mining community of about 10,000 people with a yellow brick sidewalk winding through its historic downtown." WaPo Magazine: The Case of the Stolen Ruby Slippers. (Luckily, the case was solved with a lot of brainpower, courage, and heart.)

+ Related: Fanny-pack Crocs are ridiculous, but also part of why the brand is thriving.


Stunt Doubletake

"Needing sleep, Heidi's parents, Dennis and Casey, put her up on the top bunk, handed her some toys and books, and removed the ladder. Surely the railing would keep their child safely tucked away -- undoubtedly, the toddler would stay put and go to sleep. That lasted all of 30 minutes. Heidi saw the wooden desk chair in front of the bed and leaped for it. She missed, smashing the bridge of her nose on the back of the chair, falling to the ground in tears." And just like that, two great careers began. ESPN: Stunt doubles Heidi and Renae Moneymaker are out to save the superheroes. The Marvelous Moneymakers.


Singleton Sensation

In some ways, the (often heated, and always essential) conversation we're still having about race today started with BOYZ N THE HOOD. From Ice Cube (who played Doughboy in the film): "I didn't know how we grew up was even interesting enough to be a movie. But the way John captured it, it was like cinematic beauty." The movie earned John Singleton an Oscar nomination. The director died on Monday. But not before he changed how Hollywood sees Black America.


Ring Barer

"When news organizations think about competition from tech companies, it's usually in terms of the audience's attention and advertisers' dollars. But if Amazon has its way, a new sort of competition may be coming from a mixture of surveillance, fear, and doorbells." Neiman Lab's Josh Benton on an idea that is sure to keep you safe from feeling secure. A doorbell company owned by Amazon wants to start producing 'crime news' and it'll definitely end well.


Bottom of the News

"In 1975, Stokes got a Betamax magnetic videotape recorder and began recording bits of sitcoms, science documentaries, and political news coverage. From the outset of the Iran Hostage Crisis on November 4, 1979, 'she hit record and she never stopped.'" The Remarkable Story of a Woman Who Preserved Over 30 Years of TV History.

+ WaPo: Parmesan from Wisconsin? How dairy you?! Italy wants to reclaim its cheese. (I'm mostly including this headline to make the point that quality headline puns aren't as easy as they seem...)

+ The Ringer: What Is the Best Movie or Television Battle? (With all due respect to Game of Thrones, the best fight scene you'll see this week is on Barry on HBO. Like, by far. It's also, a generally amazing episode of television, and Bill Hader's direction should win an Emmy.)