1. It should be mostly sunny again today, with a high temperature of just 37 degrees, according to weather.com. Tonight will be cold and clear, with a low temperature of 27 degrees.
2. Yankee Magazine has named Niantic's Book Barn as one of the top five used book stores in New England.
"This southeastern Connecticut shop has grown over the past 23 years and now spreads across three locations, which is understandable, given that the barn alone couldn't handle the 500,000 volumes on hand," writes book aficionado Richard Wright. "Bring a book to sell and find your next treasure among the fiction, nonfiction, children's, and rare volumes on offer. 41 West Main St., Niantic, CT. 860-739-5715; bookbarnniantic.com"
This honor will come as no surprise to anyone here but still, it's always nice to be recognized.
3. About half a dozen sea walls in Niantic Bay were damaged by Superstorm Sandy, some badly enough to be considered "catastrophic failures" according to East Lyme Zoning Official William Mulholland.
To help speed the process of reconstruction, Connecticut's Department of Energy and Environmental Protection agreed to waive the normally onerous permitting process and allow for some backfilling to shore up battered sea walls but, Mulholland warned, time is running out for people to take advantage of that grace period.
FEMA has also made some money available to help with these very costly repairs, which is something that Black Point Beach Association hoped to take advantage of as it needs rebuild its severely damaged sea wall. At the same time that FEMA is offering a helping hand, the federal agency is also redrawing flood zones, however, and that may mean that repairs made now may not be in compliance with new, stricter requirements that will likely take effect on August 5. Go figure.
4. East Lyme First Selectman Paul Formica may have failed in his bid to attain the office of Congressman but he did get elected to a higher office regionally. He was recently chosen to serve as Chairman of the Southeastern Council of Regional Governments through 2013.
5. If there's one thing that's consistent about health advice, it's that it's constantly changing. Are eggs good for us or bad? Should we cut out alcohol or drink red wine daily? Should we be eating whole grains or be entirely gluten free? It's immensely confusing but this latest report really takes the cake.
According to a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, although obese people have a higher mortality rate than most, people who are slightly overweight actually live longer than people who are a healthy weight. The study's researcher theorizes that people who are slightly overweight probably go to the doctor more often and may therefore catch health problems before they become chronic, or perhaps those extra pounds help them survive illnesses.
So how are we to take this latest news? Well, if you're one of the millions of people whose New Year's resolution is to lose weight, I suppose you can feel better if you don't end up being the one in five who actually stick to it. In the meantime, I say go ahead and enjoy that chocolate you got over the holidays and remember, dark chocolate is good for you—or at least it is at the moment!