When Raffi sang to us about baby belugas, you know what he neglected to mention? That most of the time (at least when they're born in captivity) the tiny white elephant men emerge from their mothers wombs, are too weak to swim to the surface for air, and they fucking die. That would have made a terrible children's song. But at least it would have prepared us for the imminent death of the Georgia Aquarium's newest arrival ...
A newborn beluga calf is in critical condition at the Georgia Aquarium after its birth on Friday morning.
According to aquarium officials, the calf showed signs that it wasn't "strong enough" to swim to its mother after she birthed it.
Dr. Gregory Bossart, senior vice president & chief veterinary officer says, "We became concerned when the calf didn't demonstrate that it could swim alongside its mother. She appeared to be weak, and her tail flukes hadn't hardened. Based on our knowledge regarding healthy calves, we knew we needed to intervene. Without our response, this calf would not have survived."
The aquarium says that oftentimes in beluga whales, first-time pregnancies are unsuccessful.
I like that "strong enough" is in quotes. Like we're mocking an infant whale. Or accusing aquarium officials of lying.
One-woman candlelight vigil in progress.
On this date in 1917, lots of Atlanta burned to the ground. Thousands of people were displaced and one lady died of a heart attack after her home was destroyed (that story is made up, I'm sure of it).
But the REAL tragedy is that in 1917 the Internet wasn't a thing, so no one could live blog the disaster. ENTER ATLANTA HISTORY CENTER STAGE RIGHT ...
They're "live blogging" the fire on tumblr. It's almost like being there. But with better sanitation and more advanced technology.
Actually, bats are very cute, furry, bug-eating creatures that are still being wiped out by White Nose Syndrome, and we should all be doing something to stop it. Consider this Blingee my attempt at raising awareness.
A Tuesday night blaze at Tyler Perry's film studio in southwest Atlanta caused an estimated $1 million in damages, inspectors with the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said on Wednesday.
Richard Coes, a special agent and public information officer with the federal agency's Atlanta field office, told CL that ATF agents assisting Atlanta fire inspectors say fire "directly damaged" two film sets and caused exposure damage to at least three others. Investigators had not yet determined what sparked the fire that engulfed a backlot facade located on the 30-acre studio complex. According to news reports, nearly 100 firefighters responded to the scene to douse flames that shot nearly six stories in height. Nearby residents told the AJC the building was "popping" and reported seeing "sparks."
You're probably wondering, like we did, why the ATF responded to the scene of the fire. Coes said it's fairly common for bureau agents to help local agencies and fire investigators probe the cause of large blazes.
"We investigate large scale arson also," he said. "We get calls from local police departments or state fire marshals for our expertise. We can make a determination with one of our certified fire investigators to make the determination if blaze is accidental, incendiary, or arson... Happens all the time. Our fire investigators get called out on probably 75 percent of the large scale commercial fires that take place in and about metro atlanta and georgia. Actually throughout the nation."
Hi, there. You should watch this video of Georgian and GOP frontrunner Herman Cain wearing a choir robe and singing a song about pizza to the tune of John Lennon's "Imagine." The man has the voice of an angel. And he really loves pizza.
How sad that this will probably improve his chances of becoming president.
H/T to The Daily Beast.
Anyone else feel tremors possibly related to an 5.8-magnitude earthquake that shook the Washington, D.C. area shortly before 2 p.m.?
According to an email from Fourth Ward Alliance President Kit Sutherland, some rattles at 1:55 p.m. caused "enough movement to cause artwork to shake on the walls, pendant lights to sway, plants to sway, doors to rattle, etc." Facebook posts are now popping up, phones are ringing, etc. (Beware of attention seekers who didn't feel anything and merely want to say they survived the Great Atlanta Quake™, a phrase we've already trademarked.)
Our office is located right next to train tracks, so we're used to rumbling.
Hey, students of Ridgeview Charter School, welcome ba ... oh, shit.
Sixth, seventh and eighth graders at the Sandy Springs spent the morning on the school's soccer field while police investigated a bomb-like suspicious package (in that it contained wires and batteries) that was found in a hallway.
A Fulton County Schools spokesperson told the AJC it ultimately appeared to be a game casing, and kids have since resumed their regularly scheduled activities. 11 Alive News says cops are referring to it as a prank.
I remember when my friend Karen called in a (fake) bomb threat to school. It was a fun day, but I never saw Karen again.
Heavy rain is expected to continue washing away all the salt and dirt city and state crews spread to combat ice during snowpocalypse — and which left Atlanta looking like the Wild West after the annoying storm. Via das AJC:
AT 10 a.m., National Weather Service radar showed light rain covering much of the state with a narrow band of heavier rain running roughly along I-85 from Montgomery, Ala., through Atlanta into South Carolina, and moving to the northeast.
Those heavier showers were expected to continue "training" northward through metro Atlanta throughout the afternoon and into the evening hours.
Oh, and for the headline to make sense, it'd be wise to note that we're under a flood watch.
Snowpocalypse was a pain for everyone in Atlanta. But it was particularly difficult for MARTA riders, a good number of whom depend on the transit agency as their only mode of transportation. And for several days following the storm, riders had no or limited access to the transit agency's bus service. Concerns over how the 40-foot beasts could safely maneuver on icy roads forced transit officials to make the historic decision to halt all routes.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which has been harshly critical of MARTA in the last year, published a story detailing the impact the lack of bus service had on some of the system's straphangers. It also critiqued the transit agency's emergency response.
MARTA CEO Beverly Scott took umbrage at the piece. Scott says the article, which she considered
"I'm not trying to go to war with the AJC," Scott tells CL, adding that MARTA and other public agencies have much to learn from how they handled the snowstorm. "But this one hit a little bit too close."
So the general manager submitted an op-ed to defend the agency — and take the paper to task. (Mayor Kasim Reed's office responded similarly to a story that implied the City of Atlanta failed to clear icy roads. AJC editors bundled the two pieces together under the headline "MARTA, Atlanta grade their response.")
What the paper ultimately published, however, was missing a few key sentences from Scott's original op-ed — the ones that contained her own pointed criticisms of, you guessed it, the AJC. (Her complete, unedited column is after the jump and can also be viewed here.)
Well, it was fun for a while, but snowpocalypse has officially become a pain.
Although most major routes have been cleared, melting snow has turned to ice in some areas, causing bottlenecks as more motorists with cabin fever — or bothered by that harsh reality called "employment" — return to the roads.
Mayor Kasim Reed says city crews have been working on 24-hour schedules to clear main routes and, starting last night, side streets. At a press conference yesterday Reed said the "city is open for business" and will be prepared for such weekend events as the Atlanta Hawks and Falcons games.
Budget extra time if you need to drive. (A trip from Georgia Tech to Decatur last night took two hours.)
Above all else, be careful. Consider this an open thread.
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