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

Good morning, RVA: Chickens, pipelines, and fermented milk

Good morning, RVA! It's 41 °F, and I am finally back in Richmond! It’s chilly today as highs will stay in the mid 50s. Bundle up and spend some time walking around in the fall air, because tomorrow the rain arrives.

Water cooler

I’m old enough to remember when Richmond’s urban chicken ordinance was all anyone could talk about. The Governmental Operations committee of City Council will meet today at 12:00 PM, and on their agenda is ORD. 2018-272 (PDF). This ordinance will increase the number of chickens you can keep in your urban backyard from four to six. The rationale for the increase: Apparently when you buy chickens they come in a package of six (a “clutch”)? I had no idea! More seriously and more importantly, ORD. 2018-241 (PDF) (patroned by Councilmembers Robertson, Agelasto, and Addison) will require the CAO to present a “homeless strategic plan” to Council every two years. A lot of this plan would focus on zoning(!) and land use.

Robert Zullo at the Virginia Mercury has a thorough (commentary) piece listing out a bunch of reasons why the Atlantic Coast Pipeline is a bad idea. This type of thing is one of the reasons I’m glad the Virginia Mercury exists.

Today is the final Breakaway RVA ride of the 2018 season! I’m a day late in reminding you about this and registrations are technically closed, but theoretically one could just show up at any of the starting locations throughout the city and join in on the fun.

Tonight at 7:00 PM at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church (520 N. Boulevard), the YWCA will host Remember My Name. This event is their annual, nondenominational vigil to remember the names of those who have lost their lives to domestic and intimate partner violence. In their press release, the YWCA reminds me that, “Nearly one-third of all homicides in Virginia are attributed to domestic or intimate partner violence.”

This thread on /r/rva about where to get super-hot hot peppers in Richmond pointed me to Josh’s Jungle, a local hot-pepper farmer. I would probably have already known about Josh’s Jungle if I weren’t shamefully and continually absent from local farmers’ markets.

Fermented milk? I...don’t know, but Piet Jones at Richmond Magazine says it’s good and won’t make you instabarf?

Only the RTD Editorial Board could take all of the fun and life out of ghost stories by making them about jobs and economic development.

This morning's longread

A Twitter thread about autonomous vehicles

This Twitter thread pretty much perfectly sums up my feelings on AVs.

There's been a lot of news lately about people in the Autonomous Vehicle industry realizing the problem they're trying to solve is much trickier than they initially hoped. I think there’s a good analogy in a similar technology: self-checkouts...Turns out that making an automated system that’s 95% as good as a human is relatively easy and one that’s 100% as good as a human is very hard. I think it’s becoming clear that autonomous vehicles are going to turn out like this.

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Good morning, RVA: Brookland District, 17th Street Market, and editorial disgust

Good morning, RVA: Education confusion, Medicaid work requirement, and dense zoning