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Need To Know.
Over 1.2 million people were evacuated as a powerful storm made landfall along the eastern coast of India overnight. Cyclone Fani arrived as the equivalent of a Category 4 hurricane, bringing torrential rains and winds close to 130 miles per hour. Fani is the country's strongest cyclone in over two decades, when a 1999 storm killed nearly 15,000 people, mostly from inland flooding - though the death toll from an almost equally powerful storm in 2013 was about 50, due to improvements in the country's weather forecasting and relief response times. The storm is expected to veer northeast, with 100 million people in its path, including the city of Kolkata and its population of roughly 4.5 million people. Fani is also the first cyclone of the year in the Northern Indian ocean, where cyclone season peaks in May and November, bookending the rainy monsoon season. The storm is projected to move into neighboring Bangladesh by Saturday.
The 145th annual Kentucky Derby will be held this weekend at Churchill Downs in Louisville, KY (6:46pm ET, NBC). The Derby is the most popular event in horse racing - 157,000 people attended last year’s race, with the day’s slate of races pulling in a record-breaking $225M in gambling revenue, an 8% increase over 2017. To be eligible for the one-and-one-quarter mile race, horses must be three-year-old Thoroughbreds - which refers to a specific breed of horse (read about the interesting history here). The competition opened up a bit this week as the odds-on favorite Omaha Beach was scratched from the race due to a respiratory issue that will require surgery. New favorites include Game Winner (9/2 odds), Roadster (5/1), and Improbable (5/1), all three of which have been groomed by legendary trainer Bob Baffert, who is seeking a record-tying 6th Derby win. See all 20 horses here.
If you attend, pick up one of Woodford Reserve's $2,500 mint juleps, served in a very fancy cup.
Baltimore Mayor Resigns.
Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh (D) resigned yesterday amid an investigation into whether she used her various influential positions in the city to push inappropriate business deals. The decision to step down follows more than a month on leave, one which was blamed on pneumonia but came on the heels of accusations that health organizations for which she sat on the Board of Directors purchased large quantities of the mayor's self-published children's book series, Healthy Holly. At the center of the scandal are $500,000 in non-competitive orders made by the University of Maryland Medical System, one of the state's largest private employers, a $114,000 order by health provider Kaiser Permanente, and a $90,000 order by the city's Associated Black Charities. Critics said because Pugh either held leadership positions with these groups or was in a position to provide influence as mayor, money flowing to her self-published business represents a major conflict of interest. City Council President Bernard "Jack" Young will serve out the remainder of Pugh's term, which concludes at the end of 2020.
Pugh's attorney read her letter of resignation at a news conference - Pugh did not attend and has been in seclusion during her leave of absence.
> Cheslie Kryst, Miss North Carolina and a full-time attorney, is crowned Miss USA; New Mexico's Alejandra Gonzalez and Oklahoma's Triana Browne were named first and second runner-up (More) >Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner and musician Joe Jonas get married in surprise ceremony in Las Vegas (More)
> Peter Mayhew, actor famous for portraying Chewbacca in Star Wars films, dies at 74 (More)
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Science & Technology.
> NASA report says aluminum supplier falsified data, sold agency subgrade aluminum for years; led to the destruction of two satellites worth $700M (More)
> Researchers reverse engineer a mobile app used by the Chinese government to track the Uyghur Muslim community in the western Xinjiang region (More) | Estimated one million people are being held in internment camps (More)
> Scientists transform mouse skin cells into three types of embryonic stem cells, allowing for the study of embryonic diseases; technique could potentially create embryos without the need for sperm and eggs (More)
Business & Markets.
> Plant-based meat maker Beyond Meat soars in first day of trading as public company - shares up 163% at close, highest first-day pop since 2000 (More) | Electric carmaker Tesla to raise $2B in convertible debt & equity, shares up 4% (More)
> Insys Therapeutics executives found guilty of scheme to bribe doctors to prescribe addictive painkillers (More)
> Economic commentator Stephen Moore withdraws himself for Federal Reserve Board seat (More)
Politics & World Affairs.
> Colorado Senator Michael Bennet becomes 21st candidate to jump into the race to be the Democratic presidential nominee in 2020 (More)
> Attorney General William Barr skips House Judiciary Hearing, citing lack of clarity on whether committee attorneys would publicly ask questions; Chairman Jerry Nadler threatens contempt if Barr does not release unredacted Mueller Report to committee (More) | House Speaker Pelosi (D, CA-12) accuses Barr of lying in March testimony (More)
> Reported military sexual assaults spiked 13% from last year, with anonymous survey saying only one-third of assaults are reported (More)
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Why It Matters Where College Students Binge-Drink.
The Atlantic | Ashley Fetters. In a 2018 study, a strong correlation was found between where college students drink and the rate of sexual assaults at universities. In a conclusion both obvious and counter-intuitive, location was often a better predictor of sexually aggressive behavior than the amount of alcohol consumed. (Read)
Meet the Mama's Boys of Italy.
Topic Magazine | Angelica Frey. In Italy's stagnant economy, where upward mobility is challenging, it's regular for adult males to live with their mothers. In fact, nearly 75% of Italy's young men aged 18-34 still rely on their mothers for even basic chores - and are proud of it. (Read)
These Are My Secrets to Parenting Successful Children.
Time | Esther Wojcicki. Esther Wojcicki has three kids - two are the CEOs of YouTube and genetic testing company 23andMe, and the other is a professor at UCSF. Here she discusses how she helped raise her children to grow into successful adults. (Read)
Historybook: Niccolo Machiavelli born (1469); Boxer Sugar Ray Robinson born (1921); Musician James Brown born (1933); Margaret Mitchell wins Pulitzer for Gone with the Wind (1937); First bulk spam email is sent (1978).
"Life's under no obligation to give us what we expect." - Margaret Mitchell
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