COVID spring booster? / 11:59 p.m. / R.I.P., BuzzFeed News

COVID spring booster? Confused by new FDA guidance on who should get a fresh shot against the pandemic? Your Local Epidemiologist Katelyn Jetelina wraps it up this way: “I strongly recommended spring boosters to … older adults in my life with a comorbidity, especially if they haven’t had an infection in the past six months.”
A judge is ordering Chicago to reinstate and pay up on lost wages and benefits for workers fired after failing to comply with COVID vaccination rules.

‘It’s like a chess game.’ Riverside’s public safety director comments on uncertainty over the possibility of a large gathering Saturday at a North Riverside shopping center—a social media declaration of which has now disappeared.
North Riverside Mall says that, for Saturday, everyone 17 and under must be accompanied by an adult.
WBEZ previews what to expect in downtown Chicago this weekend as security tightens.
But also: A Navy Pier fan convention devoted to The Office …
 … whose guests include New Trier graduate and now author Rainn “Dwight Schrute” Wilson.

‘He knows city government like the back of his hand.’ The Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman says Mayor-elect Johnson’s choice for chief of staff may reassure the City Council and business leaders.
Chicago’s acting top cop is retiring—before a new commission can choose his successor.
A Chicago cop who faced dismissal over his role in a violent arrest is getting off with just a six-month suspension.

11:59 p.m. That’s the Supreme Court’s self-imposed deadline (10:59 p.m. Chicago time) for deciding whether women should still have access to a widely used abortion pill during a legal challenge to its approval.
Stephen Colbert: “That is exactly the time you release decisions you know are going to be super-popular. I’m going to stay up late and watch it on Ryan Secrest’s Handmaid’s Rockin’ Eve.
USA Today columnist Rex Huppke on Florida’s expansion of the state’s “Don’t Say Gay” law to forbid discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity in all public classrooms through students’ senior year: Gov. Ron DeSantis “is charting a fiendishly clever path to not becoming president.”

‘A new American age of paranoia.’ Reflecting on “the sudden rash of high-profile stranger shootings,” columnist Will Bunch observes that “In an America where neighbor can no longer talk to neighbor, and where the real ‘stranger danger’ isn’t from strangers but to them, everywhere suddenly feels like the wrong place.”
A North Carolina man accused of shooting a 6-year-old and her parents after a basketball rolled into his yard has been arrested … in Florida.
Daily Show guest host Jordan Klepper: “Are you confused about why a stranger is at your house? Before you open fire, open your mouth and just ask them, ‘Can I help you?’”
U.S. mass killings this year are on a record pace.

‘These carmakers have chosen … to pass this risk onto consumers.’ Attorneys general from 17 states—including Illinois—are demanding the recall of millions of Kia and Hyundai cars because they’re so easy to steal.
Consumer Reports rounds up the best green cars you can buy right now.

‘A successful failure.’ That’s how a professor affiliated with the U.S. Air Force assesses the explosion of SpaceX’s Starship rocket, the most powerful in history …
 … a thing that gave the world a new punchline: “Rapid unscheduled disassembly” …
 … which might be aptly applied to this next item:

R.I.P., BuzzFeed News. A Pulitzer-winning news organization is history.
Discourse blogger Jack Mirkinson paraphrases CEO Jonah Peretti’s announcement: “I’m so sorry you’re all losing your jobs, but in my defense, I probably never should have hired you to begin with.”
CNN’s Oliver Darcy: “You can trace the rise and fall of BuzzFeed News with the rise and fall of Facebook.”
BuzzFeed alumnus Charlie Warzel recalls “the Facebook Live experiment in which two bored staffers got 800,000 people to concurrently watch them put rubber bands on a watermelon until it exploded—a piece of content that will live in ‘pivot to video’ infamy.”
The Sun-Times is among those bidding farewell to Twitter’s blue checks but says it’ll keep posting there.

Netflix alternatives. Tech Hive offers other options for those who still cherish DVDs by mail.
Cord Cutter Weekly updates its running list of video deals—including Paramount+ and Showtime for free and price-cuts on streaming devices.

‘It’s free, it’s free, it’s free.’ That’s Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle hailing the Earth Day opening of Cook County’s groundbreaking new Center for Hard to Recycle Materials (CHARM).
Lots of other ways to mark Earth Day across the Chicago area here and here.

‘Doc leaks, Fox speaks, violent coups and hip-hop crews.’
That’s some of what awaits you in this week’s news quiz, whipped up by past Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions winner Fritz Holznagel.
Can you beat your Chicago Public Square columnist’s score of 75%?
Did you know that readers who support Square at the Advocate level or better get an early advisory for new quizzes?

Subscribe to Square.