2.4.2023

Facts, without motives.
 

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Good morning. It's Saturday, Feb. 4, and in this weekend edition, we're covering a better-than-expected jobs report, the creation of space ice, and much more. First time reading? Sign up here.

 

You share. We listen. As always, send us feedback at [email protected].

One Big Headline
 

Jobs Growth

The US economy added 517,000 nonfarm jobs in January, exceeding economist estimates of 187,000 and surpassing 260,000 jobs in December, according to government data released yesterday. The unemployment rate fell to 3.4%—the lowest jobless level since May 1969. 

 

The jobs report comes after the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark rate by 0.25% this week to a range between 4.5% and 4.75% as part of its efforts to cool the economy and tame high inflation (see previous write-up here). Analysts say the report suggests the economy continues to be resilient, despite recent layoffs in the tech and media industries, signaling the Federal Reserve is likely to continue to raise interest rates at its meeting next month. 

 

Most of the jobs in January were added in leisure and hospitality (128,000), professional and business services (82,000), government (74,000), and healthcare (58,000). Average hourly earnings grew 4.4% in January from a year earlier, down from a revised 4.8% in December. See all data here.

Quick Hits
 

US secretary of state postpones trip to China following spy balloon.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken was scheduled to depart from Washington, DC, to Beijing for a diplomatic trip before a Chinese spy balloon was spotted floating over the US this week. China claims the balloon is a weather research airship, while the US has described it as a surveillance vehicle. 

 

New Jersey councilwoman shot and killed in attack outside of home.

Eunice Dwumfour, 30, was found shot to death in an SUV outside of her home with multiple gunshot wounds. Dwumfour, a Republican, was elected to her first three-year term in 2021 when she unseated a Democratic incumbent. Authorities have not yet discovered a motive or suspect.

 

Suspect in disappearance of Dallas Zoo tamarin monkeys arrested.

Police arrested Davion Irvin, 24, at the Dallas aquarium and charged him with animal cruelty in connection with the theft of the rare monkeys, which were a part of a series of incursions at the zoo. Last month, a clouded leopard escaped through a hole in its enclosure, which was found to be deliberately cut. The leopard was later captured.

 

Wanted Italian mafia fugitive found living as a pizza chef in France.

Convicted murderer Edgardo Greco, 63, was arrested after being on the run for more than 16 years. Greco was sentenced to life in prison in absentia for the 1991 murders of two brothers, who were beaten to death at a fish shop in Calabria, Italy. 

 

Researchers discover new type of ice likely found only in space.

The new type of ice, known as medium density amorphous ice, most closely resembles liquid water than any other known ice. Its molecules are in a disorganized form, unlike ordinary crystalline ice. To create the ice, researchers used a process called ball milling by shaking ordinary ice together with steel balls in a jar at negative 328 degrees. 

 

The 65th Grammy Awards to be held Sunday at Crypto.com Arena.

The show airs live (8 pm ET, CBS), with Trevor Noah set to host for the third year in a row. Artists scheduled to perform include Bad Bunny, Mary J. Blige, and Sam Smith. See a list of award predictions here.

 

Celebrated perfume and fashion designer Paco Rabanne dies.

Rabanne, a self-taught designer known for his plastic and metallic space-age outfits, died at 88. Born Francisco Rabaneda y Cuervo in Spain in 1934, the designer fled the country during the Spanish Civil War and took on the name Paco Rabanne. 

In partnership with The Ascent

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Humankind
 

Yale University's most popular happiness course is now free for teenagers. (More)

 

Animal shelter reunites dog with owner who is experiencing homelessness. (More)

 

Maine barber offers free haircuts to people who can't afford to pay. (More

 

Tennessee high school students create robotic hand for new classmate. (More)

 

Good Samaritan rescues hedgehog stuck in the mud and gives it a shower. (More

 

McDonald's customer returns $5K he was given by accident in drive-thru. (More)

 

Team in Hawaii frees humpback whale entangled in rope, gear, and buoys. (More)

From our partners: Life should be a balance of adventure and relaxation—not finances. Enter: Working with a financial advisor. But choosing the wrong one could potentially wreak havoc on your retirement. Avoid these 7 common mistakes when hiring one so you can get back to the balance that matters most.

Humankind(ness)
 

Today, we're sharing a story from reader Linda N. in Saratoga Springs, New York.

 

"My daughter lives three hours from home. After her boyfriend of three years and she broke up, I decided to arrange for a care package to be delivered from her local grocery store and began the online ordering. Michelle, my Instacart shopper, texted me the automated notification that she began shopping. I replied and mentioned the order was for my heartbroken daughter to lift her spirits and that she was welcomed to make shopping recommendations. Michelle was so sweet as we engaged in a text dialogue about the difficulty of a broken heart and she shared ideas like aromatherapy bath balls and ice cream! She even made a touching homemade card. Michelle then delivered the order with love and care. Her genuine desire to spread extra kindness made a positive difference to my daughter."

 

What act(s) of kindness did you experience this week? Tell us here.

Etcetera
 

Bookkeeping

> US credit card debt jumps 18.5% to record $930.6B in the fourth quarter of 2022.
> Food blogger fined $18,500 for cooking and eating a great white shark

 

Browse 

> America's 100 most romantic restaurants (in 2023). 

> Cars designed through the style of famous architects

> Artist creates "moss people" sculptures in Finnish countryside

Couple abandons ticketless baby at an airport check-in desk.

> A Florida toddler and her best friend: a pet frog

 

Listen

> Six ways to improve work-life balance.


Watch 

> How vinyl records are made.

The complex science of snow removal

> The secret $4B tunnel network underneath Chicago.

> Explaining the mystery of the Bermuda Triangle

 

Long Read 

A glimpse into the people who live inside airplanes

The other Cleopatra: The daughter of the queen of Egypt who ruled a mysterious North African kingdom 

> An illustrative deep dive on the asteroids menacing Earth

 

Best of the Week: Baby names on the brink of extinction

 

Historybook: George Washington elected first president of the US (1789); Aviation innovator Charles Lindbergh born (1902); Rosa Parks born (1913); Pianist and entertainer Liberace dies (1987); Facebook is founded (2004).

"Each person must live their life as a model for others."

- Rosa Parks

Why 1440? The printing press was invented around the year 1440, spreading knowledge to the masses and changing the course of history. More facts: In every day, there are 1,440 minutes. We’re here to make each one count.

 

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