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It's ironic a city in the Great Lakes State would supply its residents with unsafe drinking water, huh?

It's more than ironic, actually — it's inexcusable.

You've probably heard the news by now: Residents of Flint, Michigan, were poisoned with lead. Yes, a city of nearly 100,000 people was consuming dangerous H20 for roughy 21 months before anyone with authority stepped in to help.


Here's how the massive public health failure unfolded:

1. Aiming to cut costs, the emergency manager of Flint approved a big change in the city's water supply in 2013.

Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images.

What's this emergency manager role, you might ask? Because of budgetary woes, Flint, at the time, was being run by a representative from the state of Michigan, Jerry Ambrose. (Yes, the idea of someone overseeing a city who was not elected to the position was already controversial long before the water crisis.)

2. Instead of buying water from Detroit, the city would begin getting its water from the notoriously unclean Flint River.

Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images.

The (what we now know to be disastrous) change went into effect in April 2014.

3. The problem? The Flint River is so corrosive, it began stripping the pipes. And lead began seeping into the water.

Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

Lead, even in very small amounts, can cause detrimental health problems in children.

4. It didn't take long before residents noticed a difference. The water smelled odd, tasted off, and didn't look clean.

Folks also complained that they were getting rashes on their skin.

5. In late summer and early fall 2014, the city issued boil-water advisories after unsafe bacteria was detected.

Talk about a red flag.

A Flint resident uses bottled water to make coffee instead of water from the faucet. Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

But in October 2014, the state assured its residents "operational steps" had been taken and that the water should be in tip-top shape moving forward. Basically, "drink away!"

6. But get this — even a GM plant in Flint refused to use the new water because it began corroding auto parts.

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

The city made arrangements for the plant to get its water elsewhere. As for the residents of Flint? Nope. They were stuck with what they had.

7. A year ago, in January 2015, Detroit even offered to reconnect its water system to Flint and waive the fees!

Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images.

Flint's emergency manager's response? No thanks — we're good. (The move would ultimately be too pricey apparently).

8. Famed activist Erin Brockovich spoke out on the matter.

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

Flint, she said in a Facebook post, should be added to "the list of hundreds of cities, towns, and community water systems that are failing."

9. Things really took a turn in February 2015. An EPA manager warned Michigan officials of lead in Flint's water.

The EPA notified Michigan leaders that the Flint River water was stripping pipes and could be allowing dangerous contaminants — including lead — to get into the water supply.

10. Gov. Rick Snyder's chief of staff even admitted in an email that Flint's "getting blown off by us."

Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images.

"These folks are scared and worried about the health impacts and they are basically getting blown off by us (as a state we're just not sympathizing with their plight)," Dennis Muchmorehad written to Michigan's health department in July 2015. The public only recently learned about the email.

11. Soon after that email, an epidemiologist found lead levels skyrocketed after Flint switched its water supply.

We're still talkin' July 2015 — months before any substantial action was taken.

A water sample taken from a Flint home in January 2016. Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

Cristin Larder from the state health department discovered big increases in lead levels in July, August, and September of the previous year — the summer following Flint's water switch — and warned in an email her findings "warrant further investigation."

The state's chief medical executive, Eden Wells — who later pinpointed this revelation as a "missed opportunity" — had excused the increased lead as a mere seasonal flux.

Yes, a seasonal flux.

12. What's more, research from Virginia Tech found 42% of the samples taken from the Flint River had elevated lead levels.

A sign, seen here in January, warns residents to filter their water. Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images.

Virginia Tech professor Marc Edwards reported last September that the river's "very corrosive" water was wreaking havoc on the city. The state's Department of Environmental Quality not only dismissed those claims, they disputed them.

13. The same month, a doctor in Flint said children's blood samples pointed to a jump in lead poisoning.

Just like the research from Virginia Tech, however, Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha's findings were not taken seriously by the state ... at first.

14. After initially dismissing Hanna-Attisha's claims, officials, pointing to a new analysis, admitted she was right.

Finally.


A Black Lives Matter protester stands outside the meeting quarters between Flint Mayor Karen Weaver and President Obama, where they discussed the crisis in Washington, D.C. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

Seeing as Flint is predominantly black and has a very high poverty rate, many have argued the water crisis never would have happened in a white, affluent community.

15. In October 2015, the state announced it would give out water filters to residents.

Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

Other local groups, including Planned Parenthood, pitched in to help as well.

Flint switched back to Detroit's water supply in October 2015.

16. Earlier this month, both Gov. Rick Snyder and President Obama declared a state of emergency in Flint.

Photo by Joshua Lott/Getty Images.

Flint residents are not happy with the governor, to put it lightly. Protesters in Michigan's capital, Lansing, have called for Snyder's resignation.

17. The National Guard and American Red Cross are helping to provide bottled water to residents in need.

Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

18. Donations from across the state have poured in to help, too — even from some big names and a beloved football team.

Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

Cher decided to lend a helping hand — donating 180,000 bottles of water — and Muslim group Who Is Hussain Michigan and the Detroit Lions have pitched in, too.

19. Because of Obama's declaration, FEMA can give Flint up to $5 million in aid, too.

Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images.

20. But Flint will need so much more.

Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images.

Mayor Karen Weaver understands her city needs more resources — in both the short and long terms — for Flint to fully heal from the devastation and stop it from happening again.

21. What happened in Flint has made waves nationally, even prompting presidential candidates to speak out.

The situation in Flint is, by no stretch of the imagination, a disaster. But you don't have to feel helpless.

What happened in Michigan is a (state-inflicted) tragedy. Thousands of children have been affected. A recent spike in Legionnaires' disease (possibly resulting in 10 deaths) may also be attributed to the water supply switch. And we won't know for some time the true extent — both economically and in terms of human health — of the damage.

Flint needs all of our support. Here's how you can lend a helping hand.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Co-sleeping isn't for everyone.

The marital bed is a symbol of the intimacy shared between people who’ve decided to be together 'til death they do part. When couples sleep together it’s an expression of their closeness and how they care for one another when they are most vulnerable.

However, for some couples, the marital bed can be a warzone. Throughout the night couples can endure snoring, sleep apnea, the ongoing battle for sheets or circadian rhythms that never seem to sync. If one person likes to fall asleep with the TV on while the other reads a book, it can be impossible to come to an agreement on a good-night routine.

Last week on TODAY, host Carson Daly reminded viewers that he and his wife Siri, a TODAY Food contributor, had a sleep divorce while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

“I was served my sleep-divorce papers a few years ago,” he explained on TODAY. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to us. We both, admittedly, slept better apart.”

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