March 17, 2014

Taking the "I didn't do it" excuse to a new level, the former House stenographer who shouted bizarre, Biblical gibberish during a vote last October is blaming God for her outburst.

In a 38-minute video, the stenographer, Dianne Reidy, and her husband Dan explain that Reidy did not have a "breakdown," as the incident was widely portrayed in the media. Rather, Reidy claims it was an "assignment" from the heavens, and that this was the fourth time in her life she's been "carried along by the Holy Spirit" in this way.

"We believe with all our hearts that what took place that night was God speaking through Diane, bringing forth the word of correction to our government, and hopefully before He brings his judgment on our country," Dan says in the video.

While the House voted in October to end the government shutdown, Reidy rushed to the dais and launched into a tirade that included phrases like "God will not be mocked," and "You cannot serve two masters." Jon Terbush

7:31 p.m. ET

Two Vice News journalists were charged Monday in a Turkish court with "aiding a terrorist organization."

Correspondent Jake Hanrahan and cameraman Philip Pendlebury, both Brits, and their Turkish assistant were detained Thursday while in Diyarbakir, The Associated Press reports. Al Jazeera says the men have been accused of being members of the Islamic State. Diyarbakir is in an area that has seen an uptick in fighting between Kurdish rebels and security forces, and several people have been killed.

Vice calls the charges "baseless and alarmingly false" and an "attempt to intimidate and censor their coverage." It's not uncommon for journalists working in Turkey's mostly Kurdish regions to be taken into custody while reporting on situations, accused of having links to Kurdish rebels, AP reports. Catherine Garcia

Higher Ed
6:33 p.m. ET
Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

President Obama is reportedly going back to college after he leaves the White House.

On Monday, Lee Bollinger, president of Obama's alma mater Columbia University, announced during an event on campus that the school is looking forward to hosting Obama in 2017, the Columbia Spectator reports. Bollinger didn't say what role the president will have, but before becoming commander in chief, Obama was a professor at the University of Chicago Law School. Catherine Garcia

By the numbers
5:57 p.m. ET
(Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)

Despite turning out a buzzy show filled with Miley Cyrus' skimpy costume changes and even a feud between Cyrus and Nicki Minaj, MTV's Video Music Awards experienced a 5 percent drop in viewership from last year. The awards show brought in 9.8 million viewers Sunday night — down from 2015's 10.3 million — despite its airing on an additional six networks. The VMAs still churned out a healthy amount of Twitter chatter, however. According to Nielsen, this year's show was the most tweeted non-Superbowl program since it began tracking social media. Samantha Rollins

Wall Street
4:47 p.m. ET
Andrew Burton/Getty Images

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 115 points Monday, closing out the biggest monthly percentage drop since May 2010, CNN Money reports. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq also posted big monthly slides amid concern over China's market.

A week earlier, U.S. stocks had tumbled 1,000 points, but largely recovered over the next few days. After the turmoil, the Federal Reserve is reportedly on track to raise interest rates as early as September.

Meanwhile, U.S. oil prices continued a three-day surge back to nearly $50 per barrel Monday after plummeting earlier in August. Julie Kliegman

This doesn't look good
4:17 p.m. ET

Israeli visitors who stopped by the Auschwitz concentration camp museum in Poland on Sunday were surprised to find mist showers that resembled Holocaust gas chambers, Ynet News reports.

Museum management told Time the sprinklers were intended to cool down visitors on a particularly brutal day of Poland's latest heat wave, a solution they maintain was not intended to cause offense. But that didn't stop museumgoers from raising concerns about the link between the showers they saw Sunday and the showers built to execute their friends and family en masse during World War II. Staff reportedly apologized, to which Meyer Bolka responded, "there is no way to apologize to the victims of the Holocaust," according to the Jersualem Post.

"I think that in a place like this they should have thought about the type of connotation this would raise," Bolka told Ynet. "If you want to cool the people down, you need to find another solution. It was not a pleasant sight to see those sprinklers." Julie Kliegman

Taking the screaming out of ice cream eating
4:06 p.m. ET

A team of scientists in the U.K. may have finally put an end to the particular frenzy that is trying to eat your ice cream before it melts on a hot day. Researchers from universities in Edinburgh and Dundee have discovered a naturally occurring protein that could slow ice cream's melting process, ensuring a longer lasting freeze and preventing ice crystals from wrecking ice cream's texture.

"The protein binds together the air, fat, and water in ice cream, creating a super-smooth consistency," the scientists said in a statement from the University of Edinburgh. While the slow-melting product will eventually melt, scientists say that the addition of the protein will keep it stable for longer, giving us all more time to actually savor that cone before it's reduced to a soupy mound.

It gets better: The new development could also enable the production of ice cream that has less saturated fat and fewer calories. Because the new protein would simply be replacing the ice cream's fat molecules, scientists predict that it "shouldn't taste any different," the BBC reports.

But don't start screaming for ice cream just yet. The new and improved ice cream product won't hit shelves for at least another three to five years. Becca Stanek

you're fired
3:45 p.m. ET

Brands will do just about anything to get the attention of college students, and the new social networking app Shattr is no different. But instead of giving away T-shirts or other freebies, they're banking on piquing students' interest in a slightly different way: by trashing GOP 2016 presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Shattr passed out these cards on Boston University's campus:


"It's not meant to be political," Shattr co-founder Ben Fichter said of the seemingly random, expletive-laden "F--k Donald Trump" tagline. "We thought it was funny. We saw it as a lighthearted way to break through to these kids who are being bombarded by all these companies."

Shattr allows users to take a selfie, add a description, and tag friends in the photo. The post then enters a pool for nearby users to reach out to groups of interest and "Shattr" the ice. Of course, branching out of your social group can always be a little awkward, but everyone on Shattr can rest assured of this: If the business cards serve their intended purpose, Shattr users will likely have at least one opinion in common from the start. Jeva Lange

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