Bait and switch

Today is Thursday, September 17, Constitution Day.

In Minneapolis, where local politicians were calling for eliminating police earlier in the year, those same politicians are now asking, “Where are the police?”

Northern Ireland was always the sticking point for a functional Brexit and at this late date it still is. With a January deadline for the UK to leave the EU, Boris Johnson is reneging on the previous agreement for border controls along the Irish Sea. Businesses are not happy with the lack of a clear plan. The alternative to the previous agreement is, potentially, a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, something few want. What a mess.

The president has a secret health plan. (That’s all you need to know. It’s secret.)

Daniel Sheehan profiles Ashmont Cycles amidst a biking boom and a neighborhood relocation.

And Olga Massov wants to rehabilitate the reputation of tiramisu. She has her work cut out for her. A good tiramisu can be wonderful but most are really very bad.

Chained to a tree

A hazy Wednesday. Happy birthday to Peter Falk and Lauren Bacall.

Scott Kearnan is prepared to bundle up and eat outside all winter to keep the local restaurant scene afloat. The Boston Licensing Board is onboard as well, at least through December.

Melnea Cass is a cut-through for cars, and for that it works well. Maybe too well. People drive way too fast through the neighborhood going from the Southeast Expressway to the medical area, Northeastern, and points west. For pedestrians and cyclists in the neighborhood, it’s no bargain. Besides the speedy traffic, the walking/biking paths are rutted and cracked because of tree roots and snow removal is difficult for the same reason. A complete redesign is needed. Alternatively, the city could just leave things the way they are. That would be bad for the neighborhood but good for commuters. I can’t imagine how the narrative on this got flipped. Now city councillors are calling for a hearing on environmental racism and lawyers in the AG’s office are lecturing the city on the benefit of trees. I guess no good deed goes unpunished.

It’s iPhone software update day. iOS 14 should be ready for download at about 1 this afternoon on the east coast.

Health care spending is down and profits are up. But that hasn’t stopped health insurance providers from pushing for higher premiums in the next year. Get ready for an 8% increase. Ouch.

And with more new options for going into space opening up, NASA needs a method to choose which astronauts get to go. Did I hear someone say ‘reality show!’?

The measurement problem

On this Tuesday morning, the word of the day is Sisyphean.

Hey, big news: Michelle Wu is running for mayor. Who woulda thought?

Rachael Rollins, Byron Rushing and Juana Matias argue for better data from courts and prosecutors. You can’t fix what you can’t measure, they say. This was a problem 20 years ago. A lot of people have worked at remedying the situation over the years but were stymied by funding constraints and bureaucratic inertia. So, good for them for highlighting, and hopefully tackling, the issue.

Mike Caputo obviously needs help. Unfortunately, he’s the guy in charge of providing it.

There was an MIT angle, so I guess it was OK for the Globe to run the ‘signs of life on Venus‘ story as a Metro item. But Venus is definitely outside the increasingly expanding Boston metro area, which, as of late, includes Rhode Island.

A sharp 911 tele-communicator, and an Apple Watch teamed up to save the life of an Arizona officer.

And speaking of Apple watches, there’s an event to announce new models today. I’ll be tuned in.

An unforeseen benefit

Today is Monday. Windows ME is almost old enough to vote.

Last week was a bad week in Baltimore.

Seasonal illnesses seem to be down this year. There’s an assumption that it’s because people are avoiding going to the doctor or to the ER because of coronavirus fears. People may be sick but they’re just not seeking treatment. But maybe masks and distancing are actually reducing the transmission of non-covid diseases too. That would be a nice side effect.

The New York Times resorted to side scrolling in a story about waiting in line. Very annoying.

In the wake of Tom Brady‘s losing debut as a Buccaneer, Jerry Brewer writes about how teams should best use aging superstar quarterbacks. “To maximize what they have left, the solution is to create a philosophy and system that allows them to be a part of the offense, not the entire show. Instead of depending on transcendent play from the quarterbacks, it’s most prudent to put them in positions in which they can reflect the talent you’ve put around them, distribute the ball with good efficiency and save their remaining gas for the game’s most important moments.” Makes sense to me but doesn’t account for egos.

And, no Peeps this year. That’s how bad things are.

Chicken or the egg

It’s Sunday. The Pats kick off the season today with the Dolphins, at 1.

Dave Epstein advises us not to pull the air conditioner out, just yet. September, he says, is now more like a fourth month of summer than the first month of fall.

Small and large business groups in New York City are worried that the city is backsliding into what it was in the 1990’s and they want the mayor to do something about it. “Until the people come back, the streets aren’t safe. If the streets aren’t safe, the people don’t come back,” one executive said.

Craig Walker went on assignment for a photo essay on the conditions at Mass and Cass. It’s not a pretty picture.

Chrometophobia is a fear of cash. Dirty, filthy, germ covered cash. SoftBank is betting big on coronavirus-based chrometophobia in a cash happy Japan.

And an 81 year old congressman became an expert at Zoom. Minus mute/unmute.