Good morning, CivMixers. It’s Monday…not sure what else there is to say about that.
On this day in 1965, “A Charlie Brown Christmas” aired for the first time ever on CBS. It’s now a holiday tradition for many.
Today is also “Green Monday” – also known as “Cyber Monday 2” – the second biggest online shopping day of the year, which occurs when we all realize there’s just 10 or so shipping days remaining until Christmas.
And it’s National Pastry Day, which gives us all an excuse to eat something carby and delicious.
It’s going to be wet, but not cold today, with rain and areas of dense fog, according to The Weather Channel. Temperatures will soar into the mid-40s – a veritable heat wave.
McKayla Maroney, the Olympic gymnast best known for becoming a worldwide meme, is turning the big 2-3 today. Actor Kirk Douglas is 102. (He’s one of the world’s oldest living actors and one of the last surviving stars of the film industry’s Golden Age).
Also celebrating today: Actor Donny Osmond (61), football player Dick Butkus (76), Dame Judi Dench (81), actress Felicity Huffman (56) and the Capital Region’s own Madison VanDenberg (17).
In the news…
At a Judiciary Committee Hearing today, Democratic lawyers plan to present the case for impeaching President Donald Trump while the White House sits out the process. That will set in motion a rapid-fire set of actions likely to produce official charges by week’s end and a nearly party-line impeachment vote in the full House before Christmas.
Trump had a quiet schedule yesterday, with just one afternoon event in the Blue Room. But by midnight, he had fired off 105 tweets and retweets, going for the usual suspects — Democratic rivals, the impeachment inquiry and allegations of fake news by the mainstream media.
The Saudi gunman who killed three people at the Pensacola naval base had apparently gone on Twitter shortly before the shooting to blast U.S. support of Israel and accuse America of being anti-Muslim, a U.S. official said as the FBI confirmed it is operating on the assumption the attack was an act of terrorism.
Ivanka Trump has organized a summit next week at the White House to discuss legislation on federal paid family leave, an idea Democratic U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has been pushing to make a reality for years. But Gillibrand has not been invited to the event, she said.
Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani made himself indispensable to the Trump campaign by doing dirty work that no one else wanted and trudging ahead even after the candidate lashed him with humiliations. He never got a job he wanted in the administration, but has led the president to the brink of impeachment.
Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren disclosed a detailed list of compensation she received during 30 years of moonlighting as a legal consultant — about $1.9 million in all — as she and Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg continued a back-and-forth demanding transparency in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.
The actress Rosario Dawson went shopping for vegan snacks — and votes — in Iowa with her boyfriend, presidential candidate and New Jersey senator, Cory Booker.
Five people are dead, dozens more are injured or still missing after a volcano erupted near a group of tourists off the coast of New Zealand – as authorities say it’s too dangerous to search for survivors.
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan and Police Chief Eric Hawkins went door to door on Second Street yesterday, trying to reassure residents after another homicide near the intersection of Second and Judson streets.
A new federal defense bill will require increased testing for toxic per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), but does not force the EPA to clean-up more contaminated sites — a major disappointment to Democrats representing the Capital Region and Hudson Valley where PFAS contamination has been found.
Troy police are investigating after a 3-year-old boy’s death Saturday was ruled a homicide.
County Executive Dan McCoy has appointed the county’s attorney, Daniel C. Lynch, to be the new deputy county executive. Lynch is replacing Phil Calderone, who was recently appointed CEO of the Albany International Airport.
Residents of the Waterford-Halfmoon school district go to the polls tomorrow, to decide on a $15.18 million project to improve district facilities and address safety concerns.
Ahead of a legislative hearing tomorrow on the sealing of some criminal records, activists are launching a new campaign proposing to automatically wipe a person’s record clean of certain crimes.
The new leader of the Working Families Party in New York, activist Sochie Nnaemeka, hopes to remake the progressive group to attract the energized left.
Thousands of people participated in the World’s Big Sleep Out, staying outside overnight in at least 50 cities, including New York, London and New Delhi, to raise awareness of the problem of homelessness and the need for money to fight it. (In Times Square, actor Will Smith read a “bedtime story” to the crowd).
The United States Military Academy has stripped a motto from its football team spirit flag because of its connection to hate groups, the academy said.
East Greenbush police need your help finding a missing 15-year-old girl – Maria Mulligan hasn’t been seen since 8:30 Friday evening.
The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office is asking for your help in locating a missing Elizaville man. They say 29-year-old William Amato hasn’t been seen by his family since December 4th.
Officials say a man was seen on the Siena College campus carrying a weapon Friday night. Colonie Police arrested 21-year-old Anthony Aunchman, who is not a student at Siena, for allegedly carrying a shotgun with him.
An AP investigation has found accidental shootings occur at law enforcement agencies large and small across the U.S. every year. The examination of public records and media reports documented 1,422 unintentional shootings by officers at 258 agencies since 2012. Twenty-two occurred at schools or college campuses.
Mont Pleasant Middle School Principal Jeff Bennett is set to leave the district at the end of the calendar year, taking a job as superintendent of Roxbury Central School near Oneonta.
Ambition Coffee & Eatery, a bohemian cafe located in the middle of Schenectady’s bustling Jay Street area, has been closed due to code violations.
Legalizing app-based sports betting comes with a heavy price: an avalanche of gambling addicts, New Jersey treatment experts are warning New York officials.
New York State officials announced that $45 million will be made available to local governments to improve emergency communications throughout the state.
Snow sprayed through the air in the hills of Rotterdam yesterday as skiers and snowboarders took advantage of opening day at Maple Ski Ridge.
The Saratoga area Code Blue overnight shelter program is set to move into its new Saratoga Springs location today, after spending the last month housing homeless people temporarily at the Saratoga County Fire Training Center in Milton.
A controversial bill that removes statewide restrictions on e-bikes and e-scooters has gotten caught in Albany gridlock due to a political spat between the bill’s sponsor, queens Sen. Jessica Ramos, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, sources told The NY Post.
Cuomo praised the recommendations of a commission, set to become law in two weeks, that would halve the size of the contributions gubernatorial candidates can raise, and then held a birthday fundraiser where attendees paid up to $25,000 a table.
A new study finds adding a nickel deposit on wine and liquor in New York would help keep them out of the trash but increase costs for retailers.
At the state faces another multibillion-dollar budget deficit, there’s talk of new taxes in the air in Albany.
There’s a Cold War brewing at City Hall in Lower Manhattan between NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and Council Speaker Corey Johnson.
The average daily cost of incarceration in New York City has reached a record level as officials work to overhaul the city’s jail system, according to an official study of the city’s Department of Correction published Friday.
Amazon and Facebook are loading up on new office space in New York City, helping fuel an expansion of tech companies that is remaking a swath of Manhattan less than a year after Amazon dropped plans to build its second headquarters in the city.
U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer appeared at a farm on Long Island Saturday and called for people to purchase New York-grown potatoes.
Pacific Gas and Electric announced Friday it has reached a tentative $13.5 billion settlement resolving all major claims related to the deadly, devastating Northern California wildfires of 2017-2018 that were blamed on its outdated equipment and negligence.
Chicago-area rapper Juice WRLD, 21, whose real name is Jarad A. Higgins, was pronounced dead yesterday after a “medical emergency” at Midway International Airport, according to authorities.
In front of an appreciative and sold-out audience at the Times Union Center this past Saturday, Celine Dion was energetic and enthusiastic as she ran through her hits and a couple of tracks off her new LP, “Courage.”
RIP Caroll Spinney, the comfortably anonymous whole-body puppeteer who, since the 1969 inception of the public TV show that has nurtured untold millions of children, had portrayed Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch in the trash can outside 123 Sesame Street. He died yesterday at the age of 85.
RIP René Auberjonois, a sought-after character actor whose hundreds of roles included a governor’s officious assistant in “Benson,” an alien security officer on “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” a managing partner in “Boston Legal” and a con man who gets Huck Finn into hot water in the Broadway musical “Big River.” He died on yesterday at the age of 79.
The 37th annual Troy Victorian Stroll took place this past weekend.
For the seventh year in a row, Genesee Brewery’s iconic Keg Tree will light up the night in Rochester.
SantaCon 2019 is coming to NYC next weekend.
Would you pay $6,500 for a Christmas tree?
Photo credit: George Fazio.