January was a long year, but we finally made it. Bizarre weather, a glacier-threatening hole and dangerous plastic surgeries are all in the last Short List until February. Let’s get to it.
But first, a giant seal invasion: More than 85 elephant seals have taken over a national park beach after it flooded. Each weighs up to 9,000 pounds. That’s not a typo.
Plastic surgery at discount prices? Eight women are dead.
A doctor’s empire helped turn Miami into a plastic surgery destination, but eight women died along the way. It’s a factory assembly line, where individual doctors – many with little specialized training – operate on as many as eight patients a day. About 1 of every 5 plastic surgery deaths in the state stems from a clinic and facility overseen by that same doctor. As deaths and injuries mounted, the names of the clinics were changed three times since 2016, but one doctor has remained at the center: Dr. Ismael Labrador.
Dive into the new investigation from USA TODAY and The Naples Daily News.
Hearing weird booms? It’s the cold talking.
Extreme cold causes bizarre things to happen: A series of loud booms were reported Wednesday in Chicago. Residents were likely hearing “frost quakes,” also known by the duller geological term “cryoseisms.” When a rapid temperature drop leads to a quick freeze, rock and soil may burst instead of slowly expanding. It sounds like a noisy quake, with possible shaking.
- At least 11 deaths have been blamed on this week’s brutal cold – including a 38-year-old woman found dead in her Milwaukee apartment after the thermostat malfunctioned.
The Super Bowl: It’s soon
This Sunday’s Super Bowl will feature the Los Angeles Rams against, I don’t know, we’re guessing probably Tom Brady? *Checks notes* Yep, Tom Brady again. Brady will get his record sixth Super Bowl ring if his Patriots win out after faltering in last year’s big game. Here’s how to stream it online. Don’t like the game, just the commercials? Get ready with the most controversial Super Bowl ads ever and the funniest ones ever, too.
We’ve got the worst Super Bowl party foods you can eat, too, and how to recover on Monday.
- Do you like Cheetos? KFC? KFC is testing a new Cheetos Sandwich.
- The assault on ‘Empire’ actor Jussie Smollett is a stark reminder: Nooses are still used to intimidate black Americans.
- A massive 254 pounds of fentanyl was seized at an Arizona border crossing — the largest seizure ever recorded at any U.S. port of entry.
- Not good: A hole two-thirds the size of Manhattan is growing under one of the world’s largest glaciers in Antarctica.
- The Senate rebuked President Donald Trump’s foreign policy Thursday, opposing his plans to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.
‘Wasting your time’: Trump’s ready for that wall
President Donald Trump thinks Republican lawmakers are “wasting their time”: The president expressed skepticism Thursday that lawmakers will agree to his demands for a border wall. If so, another government shutdown or an “emergency declaration” (sure to be challenged in court) could follow. Trump also insisted he now wants a “wall,” not a “barrier” or “fence.” The new preference popped up a day after a bipartisan team of 17 lawmakers first met on a new border plan, the key piece of last week’s agreement to reopen the government — until Feb. 15, at least.
A surge in sexual assault at US military schools
Sexual assault at U.S. military academies spiked nearly 50 percent last school year, a Pentagon survey found, with instances ranging from groping to rape. Students reporting unwanted sexual contact totaled 747 during the 2017-18 academic year compared with 507 in 2015-16, according to cadets and midshipmen surveyed. About 16 percent of women and 2 percent of men reported being sexually assaulted. That’s despite years of focus on the issue and declarations of zero-tolerance.
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