Dropping Briefs: “The secret meeting comes as US officials are closely monitoring a potential Russian offensive in the coming months – and in the midst of a fraught debate between the US and its European allies over whether to send increasingly sophisticated and long-range weaponry to Ukraine.” CIA director briefed Zelensky on US expectations for Russia’s battlefield planning. I’ll keep this brief: We need less briefing and more tanks.

+ Imperfect Harmony: It’s ironic that a person known for his perfect harmony had so much trouble finding it in his personal life. David Crosby, a voice of an era and a founding member of two remarkably influential bands, has died at 81. He was often controversial, but always interesting. Upon his passing, even his old bandmates, from whom he was often estranged, focused on the music. Stephen Stills: “He was without question a giant of a musician, and his harmonic sensibilities were nothing short of genius. The glue that held us together as our vocals soared, like Icarus, towards the sun. I am deeply saddened at his passing and shall miss him beyond measure.” David Crosby, Byrds and Crosby, Stills & Nash Co-Founder, Dies at 81. You can still hear that voice echoing through Laurel Canyon.

+ I’m Nought For Teacher: “The virtual session is not a concession to pandemic learning or a stopgap for a teacher who is sick. It is how sophomores are expected to learn geometry this year after the district could not find a teacher. In the Mississippi Delta, where schools have historically been shortchanged, teaching candidates — especially those who know math — are hard to come by.” WaPo: A teacher shortage so acute that students are expected to learn without one. (It often seems like these educational shortfalls in places like rural Mississippi are by design.)

+ Alphabetized: Another day, another mass tech layoff. Google to cut 12,000 jobs in 6% reduction of global workforce.

+ Reading the Thiel Leaves: “Peter Thiel’s fund closed almost all of its crypto positions shortly before prices crashed last year.” (You’ve been sold the egalitarian, libertarian version of the cryptocurrency story. The real story seems far more familiar. A phony scheme that makes the uber-rich richer and leaves mom and pop investors holding the bag.)

+ Cocky Mountain High: “It’s a lot. Nims is a lot. But his hustle and bravado are precisely the things that have allowed him to break into the mainstream from Nepal’s deep bench of climbing talent. I’ve covered mountaineering and Sherpa culture on and off for more than a decade, and while there have always been insanely strong climbers with roots in Nepal, nobody has ever amassed the mind share, as the marketers say, that Nims has. In the process he’s gathered a legion of devotees and plenty of critics, all of them hoping to cement his reputation as either a generational talent among high-altitude mountaineers or else an egotistical self-promoter flying perilously close to the sun.” GQ: The Controversial King of Hardcore Climbing.

+ Ja’s Rule: “Today, the job of being a politician feels like a fallback option for someone who can’t make it as an internet troll.”Yesterday’s lead item on Jacinda Ardern got a lot of responses and sharing. Ja’s Rule.