Wednesday's 5 things: Methane, mosquitoes and Michigan

Darnell Earley

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(CNN)Methane, mosquitoes and Michigan. And a couple of other things you need to know this Wednesday to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door:


Performance evaluation: Being at the center of one storm is bad enough. But Darnell Earley found a way to be at the heart of two. Earley was emergency manager in Flint, the current contaminated water capital of the U.S. He was also Detroit Public Schools' emergency manager - until he quit yesterday, as controversy builds over dismal conditions at some schools. The fun isn't over. A congressional committee has subpoenaed him to testify, but he may be a no-show. And you thought you were having a bad week.


    Peep this: Only got time for one big read today? Then make it Clarissa Ward's piece on a secret U.S. airstrip being built in northern Syria to help fight ISIS. Ward visited this small strip of concrete in Kurdish-controlled territory that's just 100 miles from ISIS front lines. Not a bad spot from which to launch strikes against the baddies.
    Is the U.S. building an airfield in Syria?
    syria secret american airfield pkg ward_00000618


      Is the U.S. building an airfield in Syria?


    Is the U.S. building an airfield in Syria? 03:08


    Double trouble: SoCal Gas -- under fire for a gas leak that's forced hundreds from their homes -- took two legal shots yesterday. One was criminal: SoCal faces charges for allegedly taking its sweet time to tell the state, 'Hey, there's a MASSIVE METHANE LEAK!' The second was civil: The California attorney general's suing, saying the company violated safety laws. SoCal's response? It wasn't much, other than saying it would defend itself. Hey, when the news is that bad, it's best to stay mum.
    Brockovich: California gas leak is assault to community
    california gas leak vercammen pkg_00020430


      Brockovich: California gas leak is assault to community


    Brockovich: California gas leak is assault to community 03:37


    Frenemy: This is a little convoluted, so bear with us. Bruce Castor was the Pennsylvania DA who, 11 years ago, decided not to file charges against Bill Cosby after investigating sex assault allegations against him. Well, Cosby's charged now. And his lawyers want them dropped, saying no charges then means no charges now. Castor told Team Cosby, "I'm not on your team. I want them to win." But he conceded during a pretrial hearing yesterday, the defense might have a point. To be continued ...


    Too close for comfort: Another day, another Zika headline. And this one hits closer to home. The virus, usually spread via mosquitoes, has been transmitted in the U.S. through sexual contact. CDC and Texas officials say it involves a patient who had sex with someone just back from South America, the current epicenter of the epidemic. The virus is spreading so fast that the WHO declared a public health emergency over it earlier this week.
    Officials: U.S. Zika case sexually transmitted
    Zika virus sexually transmitted dnt gupta lead_00013808


      Officials: U.S. Zika case sexually transmitted


    Officials: U.S. Zika case sexually transmitted 02:40


    People are talking about these. Read up. Join in.
    Quote of the day:
    "If you drive drunk, you, simply put, are a short-sighted, utterly useless, oxygen-wasting, human form of pollution. A Darwin-award deserving, selfish coward. If your brain was donated to science, science would return it. So stop it."
    - Helen Mirren in a Super Bowl PSA campaign for ... Budweiser!
    Get up stand up
    Sitting: If death doesn't get you first, type 2 diabetes will, says this new study.
    It's a date
    North Korea will launch a satellite sometime between February 8 and 25. South Korea and Japan thinks it's a front for a missile test and goes ballistic.
    A stable marriage
    When Gabe found out his pony Butterball was knocked up by her stud, Mr. Big Stuff, the 5-year-old stepped in to make an honest mare out of her.
    Wedding ceremony for 5-year-old's ponies
    pony horse wedding louisiana VO_00005713


      Wedding ceremony for 5-year-old's ponies


    Wedding ceremony for 5-year-old's ponies 00:58
    Daddy's home
    A new "monster" species of daddy longlegs found in Oregon sports a cool, yet creepy, name: Cryptomaster behemoth.


    Here's what's happening today.
    Yes I did it
    Millionaire Robert Durst pleads guilty to a gun charge in NoLa, which puts him one step closer to facing a murder charge in LA.
    I did it too
    "Whitey" Bulger's bae, Catherine Grieg, pleads guilty to not providing info on who helped Bulger during his 16 years on the lam.
    I didn't do it
    Convicted murderer Adnan Syed, he of the "Serial" fame, returns to court in his latest attempt to get a new trial.


    Read my lips ... and laugh and laugh and laugh
    This is what happens when you put words in football players' mouths. This will be all over your friends' Facebook feeds today.