Russia School Shooting, Jimmie Johnson, and Best Cities for Vegans Everything you need to know for today in five minutes.

Good morning. It's Tuesday, Sept. 27, and we're covering a mass school shooting in Russia, the retirement of a NASCAR legend, and much more. Have feedback? Let us know at [email protected].


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Shinzo Abe Funeral

Thousands of people, including former and current world leaders, are expected to gather today in Japan as the country holds a rare state funeral for former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who was assassinated in July while campaigning for a candidate. Public opinion about the state funeral for the longest-serving prime minister has been split, with criticism against the estimated $12M cost for the ceremony as households grapple with rising food and fuel prices. 


Before World War II, state funerals in Japan traditionally had been reserved for members of the imperial family and those who made exceptional contributions to the country (see history). Since then, only one other prime minister, Shigeru Yoshida, was honored by a state funeral in 1967. Yoshida is widely credited for setting Japan's postwar trajectory, including ending the US occupation of Japan. His funeral cost about $400K, adjusting for inflation. 


See an overview of Abe's career here and a guide to the state funeral here

Russia School Shooting

A gunman killed at least 15 people, including 11 children, and wounded dozens in a school in Izhevsk, Russia, 600 miles east of Moscow. While wearing a shirt with a red swastika, 34-year-old Artyom Kazantsev opened fire at his alma mater, which teaches children ages six to 17. 


The gunman, who died by suicide, was registered with a psycho-neurological clinic. No official motive has been disclosed; however, two guns near his body contained the words Columbine, Dylan, and Eric, a suggested reference to the 1999 Columbine school shooting in the US. President Vladimir Putin, who has continued to frame the war in Ukraine as a fight against neo-Nazism, blamed the gunman’s neo-fascist views and Nazi ideology.


The shooting is not believed to be connected to recent violence spurred by Putin’s partial military mobilization order, including at least 17 attacks on military recruitment offices since the announcement. Russia has seen at least 13 mass shootings since 2020.

Jimmie Johnson Retires

Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series winner Jimmie Johnson announced yesterday he is retiring from full-time participation in motor sports, just two years after pivoting from NASCAR to IndyCar racing. The 47-year-old athlete plans to spend more time with his wife and two daughters as he looks to focus on special, one-time races. 


Johnson is regarded as one of the greatest NASCAR drivers in the sport's 74-year history, having become the only driver to win five consecutive championships from 2006-10, and is one of only three to win seven total. With 83 total victories, Johnson ranks in the top seven in all-time wins. He retired from NASCAR's stock car racing after nearly two decades, transitioning to the lighter, open-wheel vehicles of IndyCar racing (see car racing overview). After two seasons in IndyCar, Johnson had two top-ten finishes over 29 races, with a fifth-place best in Iowa. 


Watch video highlights of his career here

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Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

In partnership with The Ascent

> NFL ends Pro Bowl after 70 years; the full-contact All-Star game will be replaced with skills competitions and a flag football game (More) | Brett Favre's SiriusXM radio show on hold amid alleged welfare fraud (More)


> "Avatar" remastered rerelease tops weekend global box office 13 years after its theatrical debut (More)


> President Joe Biden hosts 2021 World Series champs Atlanta Braves at White House (More) | 2022 MLB regular season wraps next week; see latest playoff projections (More)

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Science & Technology

> British police arrest 17-year-old suspect believed to be behind recent hacks of Uber and Rockstar Games; officials believe suspect may be linked to the hacker group Lapsus$ (More)


> NASA successfully collides a space probe with the small asteroid Dimorphos in the first-ever test of a planetary defense system; scientists will measure the change in the asteroid's trajectory over the coming years (More) | See photos from the craft prior to impact here (More


> Groundbreaking study claiming to achieve room-temperature superconductivity in a carbon-sulfur-hydrogen material retracted after numerous research groups raised questions about data integrity and reproducibility (More)

Business & Markets

> US stock markets close lower (S&P 500 -1.0%, Dow -1.1%, Nasdaq -0.6%); Dow closes in bear market territory down 20% from its all-time high in January, S&P 500 closes at new 2022 low (More)


> British pound drops to record low of $1.038 Monday against US dollar (More)


> Apple is assembling iPhone 14 models in India, as company looks to diversify Chinese production (More) | Amazon to hold second Prime Day Oct. 11 and 12, with deals available in 15 countries (More

Politics & World Affairs

> US whistleblower Edward Snowden granted Russian citizenship; the former National Security Agency contractor fled the US in 2013 after leaking classified documents about the government's mass surveillance program (More)


> Hurricane Ian nears southwestern coast of Cuba, bringing precipitation and high winds, on its path to Florida as Category 4 Hurricane (More) | At least eight people killed in the northern Philippines in the aftermath of Typhoon Noru (More


> Congressional Budget Office estimates federal government's student loan cancellation could cost $400B (More) | French President Emmanuel Macron to visit White House in December as Biden administration's first state visit (More



The Ancient History of the Crown Jewels

BBC | Zaria Gorvett. An analysis of the largest diamonds in the British Crown Jewels, super-deep gems formed over 400 miles beneath the Earth’s surface, and the science behind their formation. (Read)

Return to Night School

The Atlantic | Kelly Conaboy. Many adults share a recurring nightmare—they are back in school about to take a test, running late to class, or more. Is anxiety in waking life triggering these dreams from the past? (Read, paywall)



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The best US cities for vegans and vegetarians


Visualizing how Americans spend their money—by generation.


Scenic drives across the US for your fall foliage fix


Changing climate may mean more stinky bugs.


Architect designs water-floating apartments


Bargain hunter stumbles upon 700-year-old manuscript.


Creepy, smiling fans at baseball games promote horror film.


The world's grumpiest cat (w/video). 


Clickbait: The butt-punt that almost cost a game (w/video). 


Historybook: Samuel Adams born (1722); Rosetta Stone is first deciphered (1822); First Black US senator Hiram Revels born (1827); Production of Ford Model T begins (1908); Legendary athlete "Babe" Didrikson Zaharias dies (1956). 


"The formula for success is simple: practice and concentration, then more practice and more concentration."

- Babe Didrikson Zaharias

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