Photographer David Blackwell and his wife prepared for the apocalypse. Cats and cat food? Check. Toilet paper? Check. Exploding volcanoes and hurtling asteroids? Not so much.
Credit David Blackwell / Flickr
Good morning! If you can read this, then we offer our congratulations on surviving the Mayan Apocalypse!
You've evidently made it through the initial cataclysm caused by the collision of Earth with an unknown comet, a massive solar storm, a burst of radiation from the center of the galaxy, the mysterious Planet X (aka Nibiru), or some other catastrophe that scientists assured us wouldn't happen.
It is raining in Newtown, Connecticut, where people observed a moment of silence seven days to the minute after a gunman opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School. NPR's Kirk Siegler is in Newtown; he's on the line. And Kirk, what do you see this morning?
Shoppers at a K-B Toy store in northern Virginia last month.
Credit Paul J. Richards / AFP/Getty Images
There are two positive economic signals to pass along this morning:
-- The Census Bureau says orders for durable goods rose 0.7 percent in November from October. That follows a 1.1 percent rise in October from September and is the sixth increase in the past seven months.
On the Friday before Christmas, commentator Gary Borders joins us to reflect on his memories of Christmas’ past and present. He also introduces us to the offbeat Santa-themed photos of Kilgore College photography instructor O. Rufus Lovett.
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, on Thursday in the Capitol.
Credit Alex Wong / Getty Images
House Speaker John Boehner's "major defeat" Thursday night — when he had to pull his "Plan B" to extend Bush-era tax cuts for nearly all American taxpayers because he couldn't get enough support from his fellow Republicans — means negotiations about avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff remain at an impasse.
Stuffed animals and flowers at a makeshift memorial near the entrance to the grounds of Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Credit Brendan Smialowski / AFP/Getty Images
Update at 9:36 a.m. ET: In Newtown and across the nation, bells rang starting at 9:30 a.m. ET, to honor the 20 children and six adults killed one week ago at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. And on the Web, it appears many did take part in #MomentForSandyHook — judging from the sharp slowdown in our Twitter feed.