Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: Richmond readies, Oktoberfest, and Cassini

Good morning, RVA! It's 69 °F, and you can expect highs around 80 °F with plenty of sun. Similar weather stretches out as far as the 10-day forecast does!

Water cooler

Ned Oliver was at the community meeting about Saturday's white supremacy rally and has the update from the police chief. The rally—despite not obtaining a permit—will be allowed to continue, and police are now shutting down the streets adjacent to the monument in addition to creating no-parking zones. The weapons ban will only apply to things like sticks, swords, and whips, but not guns (blame your state reps for this one). The KKK-era no-masks law will be strictly enforced—which you have to think is designed to impact antifa protestors, a huge irony about which I'm sure we'll read a thousand and one thinkpieces eventually. But it does sound like police are not screwing around and will arrest you should you break the law, regardless of which flag you fly (JK, no flagpoles allowed due to the "weapons" ban). Finally, I'm still processing this quote from Chief Durham: "The only thing I can say is don't show up and you don't have to worry about being shot." I get what he's saying, but, honestly, that quote makes me feel abandoned. Closing streets, creating a safe space for protestors despite them not having a permit, strictly enforcing the mask law to quickly remove counter protestors—these are all things the police are doing for a small, out-of-town group of white supremacists. But residents are told staying home is the only way to stay safe? Words are so super important, and these words don't make me feel safe or even like a priority.

"Celebrate - Americans have never been richer" is a wild editorial to run in the paper the week after four murders in Gilpin Court have everyone desperately thinking about Richmond's long legacy of concentrated poverty. About 25% of Richmonders, and 40% of children, live in poverty (PDF).

St. Benedict's Oktoberfest begins today at 4:00 PM. Check out the menu and extensive beer list.pdf) (PDF)—although why you would order anything other than the Spaten Oktoberfest I do not know.

You know I love these From the Archives piece in the Richmond Times-Dispatch! Here's a 1980s restaurant review of one of the first Subways in Richmond.

NASA will crash Cassini, the robot that's been studying Saturn for the last couple of years, into the planet at 7:55 AM today. I remember when Cassini launched way back in 1997, and I feel legit sad emotions to see it go. The New York Times has 100 images from its incredible mission. We need more robots (and people!) exploring more parts of space!


  • Kickers head to Charleston for a Saturday match at 7:00 PM.
  • Spiders host Howard and former head coach Mike London on Saturday at 2:00 PM.
  • #16 Hokies head to East Carolina at 3:30 PM on Saturday.
  • Wahoos welcome UConn at 12:00 PM, also on Saturday.
  • Nats avoided the sweep and beat Atlanta, 5-2. A series against LA begins tonight at 7:05 PM.
  • Washington take on the Rams Sunday at 4:25 PM.

This morning's longread

I used every pumpkin spice product I could find for a week. Now my armpits smell like nutmeg.

Good stuff.

Corporations would like us to experience these feelings when we think of their products, and that’s how we got to the place we are today: Where the debut of the Starbucks pumpkin spice latte is more eagerly anticipated than any blockbuster film. And where a person can go to the grocery store and pick up dozens of pumpkin spice products, from kefir to dog treats. Which is exactly what I did, for one nutmeg-laden week: Any time I encountered a pumpkin-themed product, I bought it. My cart overflowed with orange packaging for cereal, candy, cookies, tea, coffee, gluten-free frozen waffles, pasta sauce, cheese, paper towels and scented candles. I looked completely deranged.

Good morning, RVA: Trauma, reach, and cake mixes

Good morning, RVA: Health insurance, school accreditation, and the Afrikana Film Festival