You're Almost Definitely Not Going to Die: An Ebola Primer

Photo Credit: hukuzatuna via Compfight cc
Ebola virus, just kinda sitting there, not coming to get you.
The Ebola virus outbreak in west Africa is definitely nothing to trifle with. It's killed more than 800 people already, in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea and Nigeria, and Margaret Chan, the director general of the World Health Organization said Friday that the "outbreak is moving faster than our efforts to control it." That's not the kind of thing you want to hear.

And with news that two people have been treated at New York hospitals with possible symptoms of the disease, there's some understandable anxiety. But take a deep breath.

Here are a few things to know:

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Stephen Colbert Cordially Invites Joe Lhota To Finally Kill Those Subway Kittens

We told you yesterday about the happy ending for August and Arthur, the adorable stupid subway kittens who tied up train traffic for two hours, and are now living in a stylish cardboard cat-condo in Bushwick. They're easily the most interviewed cute, idiotic creatures around right now, with seemingly every news outlet in town flocking to foster daddy Steven Liu's apartment. (The ingrate kitties have responded by scratching the hell out of him. Or possibly they're just not fans of the Daily News.)

Last night, though, Stephen Colbert took a different tack, paying homage on his show to Joe Lhota, the "one politician out there with the courage to grease our tracks with cat babies."

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Subway Kittens Living The Dream In Awesome Bushwick Pad

Arthur and August, the kittens spotted scurrying around under the third rail at the B/Q stop near Church Avenue last Thursday, have parlayed their mega-stardom into a luxe cardboard cat-tower six-stories high.

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Man Caught For Illegally Entering Times Square Station In Possession of Loaded Gun

Entering the subway through an exit gate: illegal. Entering the subway through an exit gate in possession of a controlled substance and a loaded gun: very illegal. That's is how cops arrested Travis Marks of Virginia Friday evening at the Times Square subway station, NY1 reported. Police told Runnin' Scared that police were about to stop him for illegally entering the system. When they approached him, he threw a bag containing white powdery substance, trying to rid himself of it. Only after the man was already arrested did cops search him and find the gun.

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Someone Made an Ode to the F Train

Is the F train your train? Do you hate it, or love it, or love to hate it? This "love/hate ode to the F train" from Matthew Wollin, 24, attempts to capture the mix of emotions, from appreciation to confusion to horror, that we associate with our twice-plus daily ride on the train of our choice (or not our choice, as the case may be).

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Gingrich Wins South Carolina; Paterno Condition 'Serious'; Multiple Deaths in NYC Subways (UPDATED)

Newt Gingrich won the Republican primary South Carolina yesterday. The former House speaker won 40.4 percent of the vote with Mitt Romney trailing at 27.8 percent. Rick Santorum came in third with 17.0 percent. In his victory speech Gingrich targeted "elites." He said: "The biggest thing that I take from the campaign in South Carolina is that it is very humbling and very sobering to have so many people who so deeply want their country to get back on the right track -- so many people who are so concerned about jobs, about medical costs, about the everyday parts of life, and who feel that the elites in Washington and New York have no understanding, no care, no concern, no reliability, and in fact do not represent them at all." The next primary is in Florida on January 31. [NYT, CNN]

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Man Killed By L Train This Morning

via @evgrieve
A 22-year-old man was hit and killed by an L train heading to Brooklyn at around 8:25 a.m. this morning, the New York Post reported.

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Watch the Last 100 Years of New York City Subway Maps

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One of the maps.
Today in subway porn we have a beautiful depiction of the ebb and flow and changing formats of the New York City subway map over the years. The only thing better than watching the map come of age to the inspirationally epic music in the video created by Gizmodo's Matt Toder back in December (Bowery Boogie reminded us of it today) would be actually holding one of those early 1900s parchments in our hands. Though, probably, we'd accidentally tear it or spill coffee on it and then get sued, so this is really better, anyway.

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Second Avenue Subway Construction Is Not Bad for You, Says the MTA

Ah, Second Avenue subway. We've had some ups and downs with you in the seemingly interminable time we've been waiting for your completion. You're noisy, some of us had to move because of you, there was that gross thing with the flies, and, of course, a big question has been, how sick are you making those who live in the environs of all the construction you are requiring? There's a study for that! According to the MTA's recent assessment of how all the subway blasting has impacted air quality along Second Avenue on the Upper East Side, you're not that bad.

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Yes, You Can Pray on the Subway. Sort of.

Alex Aizenberg
As recently sighted by Alex Aizenberg on the R train between the Atlantic and Union Street stops in Brooklyn, the above, added in magic marker to a posted sign, is an exhortation to pray on the subway. (But don't smoke, litter, or blast your annoying boombox, please.) Also, don't put your feet on the chairs, or you might get arrested. Don't run, or eat, or hold the doors open, or subway surf or skylark. And, please, don't do yoga, because that's obnoxious. Praying, though...praying is O.K... Right?

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