On or around the Ides of February (Feb. 15), ancient Romans celebrated Lupercalia, a pagan fertility festival in which the city's bachelors would choose a name from a giant urn, pairing the men with single, fertile women. Around 270 A.D., the Christian church shoved that holiday aside, instead honoring the passing of a Roman priest who defied Emperor Claudius after the ruler issued an edict that all single men were to be soldiers rather than husbands. Ultimately, Claudius outlawed marriage for young men, but the priest continued to perform secret marriages for young lovers. For his actions, the priest was put to death. His name? Valentine.
There's no love lost between Treasure Valley fire chiefs and certain members of the Idaho Legislature, after the Idaho House State Affairs Committee nixed a proposal to close the loophole that allows the sale of illegal fireworks in Idaho. After Boise Fire Chief Dennis Doan said he was "outraged" by the committee's failure to even grant the proposal a public hearing, Meridian Fire Chief Mark Niemeyer chimed in, saying his job "grows more difficult each year" with multiple blazes being sparked by illegal fireworks. The sponsor of the measure, Rep. Mat Erpelding (D-Boise) said he's not giving up, and that he'll "consider all options going forwarding including potential legislation that would toughen the penalties for people who cause fires using aerial fireworks."
Most Washington, D.C. insiders said it wasn't a matter of "if" President Donald Trump's National Security Adviser Michael Flynn would be ousted from his position, it was "when." Sure enough, Flynn resigned overnight after he was caught lying about unauthorized conversations with a Russia ambassador before Trump had taken office. The Washington Post's Jennifer Rubin wrote this morning "Flynn is Out: Can It Get Any Worse?" Rubin answers her own question, writing, "It is far from clear Trump is capable of accepting responsibility and changing his mode of operation. He's relied on lies and chaos to get him where he is."
The Boise City Council will be briefed later today on a new East End bike and pedestrian project. The plan, proposed by the Ada County Highway District, would ask for the public's input on formalizing a network of pedestrian and bike improvements to allow greater mobility in the city's East End, including the Warm Springs and Mountain Cove neighborhoods. The first public meeting is slated for April. This would be ACHD's sixth walking/biking neighborhood plan in Boise. The completed plans include the Central Bench, North Boise, Northwest Boise, Southeast Boise and the West Bench.
Consumer advocates say a big move from Verizon on Monday has signaled a new price war among its rivals. Verizon has begun offering unlimited data plans to customers, allowing them to keep their current plan or opt for an $80 monthly plan for a single line with unlimited data, talking and texting. But customers must agree to auto-pay and paper-free billing. Families can also pay $45 per line for four lines (a total of $180).
There's great, really great and then there's the University of Connecticut women's basketball team. The Lady Huskies notched their 100th straight win Monday night, in what The New York Times reports, "redefines dominance." UConn defeated the University of South Carolina, 66-66. The Huskies haven['t lost a game since November 2014.