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

Good morning, RVA: Vision Zero, update on the 94th, and a weed explainer

Good morning, RVA! It's 14 °F, and with the wind chill it could feel like zero. Yep, zero degrees. Things will sarcastically "warm up" this afternoon, but if you must go outside, wear a ton of layers and hurry back in side quick as you can!

As of this moment: Chesterfield County, Henrico, and Richmond public schools are closed. VCU and VUU open at 10:00 AM, and it's business as usual at University of Richmond.

Water cooler

WTVR is reporting that a driver struck and killed a man riding his bike on the 3300 block of Mechanicsville Turnpike in Henrico on Wednesday. They're also reporting that a driver hit and killed a nine-year-old girl who was sledding yesterday in Chesterfield County. People should not die while using our region's streets, and we should act quickly and decisively—as a region—to make those streets safer for people.

One day we'll run out of updates on the 94th House of Delegates election, but not quite yet! Yesterday, the State Board of Elections performed their drama-filled game of chance, and the film canisters declared Republican David Yancey the victor. At this point, it looks like Democrat Shelly Simonds has the legal right to request another recount, but she's not decided her path forward at the moment. What a wild ride, and it's hard not to feel bummed. But! Just remember a couple of months ago when the best-case scenario was not Democratic control of the House of Delegates but maybe wining the governorship and picking up a couple of seats. Call me a naive optimist, but legislating with a one-vote majority is a lot different than a 15-vote majority—just ask the U.S. Senate. The 2018 General Assembly session begins this coming Wednesday.

Yesterday, I linked to the news that a bunch of people living in Creighton Court had no heat heading into this ultracold weekend. Shortly thereafter, local hotel magnate Neil Amin offered some (heated) rooms in one of his hotels for folks to stay in. Then, RRHA finally got the message, and they offered to relocate families into vacant units while working to fix the heaters. You can read the full RRHA statement over on Councilmember Cynthia Newbille's Facebook—I'm not a big fan of the catty bit about "although RRHA staff has inspected the impacted units and confirmed that electric space heaters were sufficient to maintain temperatures between 66 and 72 degrees..." Listen, it's a polar vortex out there, and I certainly wouldn't want to have to huddle around a space heater to make it through the weekend. Michael Paul Williams also talked to Councilmember Newbille, and she told him that lack of heat is not a Creighton-specific problem. He goes on to say about RRHA leadership, "If there isn't a culture change, the disregard that permeated this debacle will manifest itself in another form or fashion." Seriously, what is going on over at the RRHA?

Marc Cheatham weighs in on Charlottesville's new mayor and Richmond's lack of movement on our monuments. Read to the end for a damning but probably true final sentence.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said a bad thing about marijuana! What does it mean? What will happen to California's newly-created legal weed industry?? This piece on Popehat explains it all!


  • Rams travel to La Salle for a 2:00 PM tip off on Saturday.
  • Spiders head west to take on Saint Louis at 8:00 PM on Saturday.
  • Hokies welcome Pitt to Blacksburg at 12:00 PM on Saturday.
  • Wahoos host UNC at 1:00 PM on Saturday.
  • Dukes face North Dakota State in the National Championship on Saturday, 12:00 PM, over on ESPN2.

This morning's longread

How I Learned to Look Believable

As a dude, this is something I rarely, if ever, need to think about.

Some of what I learned to wear I learned on my own, by thinking to myself about what I needed to exhibit. Some of it — you must always put your hair up and never show any skin — came from a politically savvy friend. She is the reason I’m wearing a black turtleneck on four news shows. I refused to be photographed at home, or sitting down. I wanted to project strength, and also a kind of neutrality. But at the time, I just wanted to be credible. Strong. I didn’t want to look like what I imagined a victim looks like. I didn’t want to look so downtrodden that I would look obsessed with being a victim, as it was suggested. I didn’t want to look so feminine and girlish that I wouldn’t be taken seriously; I’d seen the way young-looking women are treated. And yet, I didn’t want to look too aggressive, too much like a “rabble-rouser” with an “agenda.” Of course I had been cautioned about that.

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Good morning, RVA: Violence, the General Assembly awaits, and Oprah

Good morning, RVA: The Game of Chance, Creighton Court, and a Coliseum survey