Birthday!: Your mighty “In Other News…” column turned four last week! Or the week before. Way back on April 26, 2013 we started taking a look at what Louisville or Kentucky news managed to get national attention, curated said news, added a joke here or a touch of snark there, and four years later, here we are.

As always, thanks goes to the good people at Insider Louisville for their patience and expertise and to you, dear reader, for stopping by. You’re the reason we’ve made it all this while and your support never goes unappreciated.

Also, technically the anniversary fell under the last column’s window so I should have mentioned last week. I’m going to be a terrific father.

Photo by Reed Palmer/Churchill Downs

And…They’re Off!: Tomorrow’s the first Saturday in May, and that means your 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby is close at hand.

Forbes has an updated betting guide for you. ESPN has one too, if you happen to be a subscriber. The Guardian says the “wide-open field offers big value for longshots.”

Which is why The Washington Post is going with Gunnevera will win it all. It’s a big year to take chances.

“You’re Playing the Ponies Wrong at the Kentucky Derby,” says Bloomberg. They say:

“When the masses are pouring money into long-shot bets, there’s value in betting favorites. When they’re throwing down their cash on the favorites, there’s value in wagering on horses with longer odds. The contrarian approach doesn’t increase the probability that your pick will win the race. But if it does, it ensures you’ll get good bang for your buck.”

“The current trend in gambling flows is clear: Long shots are out, favorites are in.”

So that’s the opposite of what The Guardian told you to do. So pretty much do whatever you want. Anything can happen. It’s been raining so much over the last 24 hours that I’m looking into a low-cost ark, which is going to affect the track in some way or other. I knew a lady who bet every horse with a pretty blue as the main color on their silks and while she didn’t win every race, came home with a couple thousand dollars.

And I’m going with the one-eyed horse. I’ll be lucky if he finishes, but that’s what I’m going with. I’m just wired to pull for the underdog.

The New York Times wants to test your Derby knowledge with a quiz: “How Well Do You Know Your Kentucky Derby History?” Kyle Ware’s answer: Not very well! I scored a 3 of 8. Which is 3 more than I thought I’d get.

And if you’re headed to the track and still don’t have your hat for the day, BuzzFeed has a quiz to tell you what is your kind of hat. I got “cute, fun and classic.” Well, shucks, BuzzFeed.

And for those out-of-towners looking for something to do in Louisville outside the track, CNN offers: “Things to do in Louisville: The can’t-miss spots.” CNN describes Louisville as “a dynamic culinary scene and rapidly growing lineup of urban bourbon attractions round out the rich arts and cultural offerings, with none-too-shabby shopping options to boot.” And unlike a lot of these lists, it looks like someone might have actually come here rather than just plucking the top few listings on Yelp.

But if you can’t get here, there’s likely a party near you. The Washington Post tells you where you can Derby in the nation’s capitol. As do outlets in Milwaukee, Cleveland, San Francisco, Orlando and on and on.

And of course, you can always make your own. Elite Daily tells you how. And if you must take part in the most grotesque of Derby traditions, GQ offers “The Best Bourbons for Your Mint Julep.”

High Crimes and Misdemeanors: Your mission, should you choose to accept it: get into the office of a University of Kentucky statistics professor, find a copy of the upcoming final exam, and make it out undetected.

The New York Times, U.S. News & World Report and Inside Higher Ed (and Insider) report the getting in and finding the exam went well enough, but the undetected didn’t work out so well.

According to reports, around 2 a.m. on Wednesday, Henry Lynch II crawled through an air duct to the nearby office of statistics professor John Cain. He dropped from the ceiling into the office where his accomplice, Troy Kiphuth, waited outside for Mr. Lynch to open the locked office door.

That part of the plan went beautifully. It’s when the professor returned to his office that things took a turn. Mr. Cain had been working late and went for a snack and when he couldn’t get the door to his office open, threatened to call the police. The students fled, but fearing Mr. Cain would be able to identify them from class, returned and confessed.

It was Mr. Lynch’s second attempt of the night. He told police he’d made the first go at 6 p.m. but couldn’t find it. That one’s even more brazen than the first.

The two men were each charged with felony burglary. And the mothers of both boys will say, “If you’re smart enough to put together this big plan, you’re smart enough to pass the test the right way. Like I’ve been telling you your whole life, you just need to apply yourself.”

Mitchell Adkins

Campus Attack: Meanwhile, just up the road a few days earlier, TIME and NBC News report a former Transylvania student entered a campus coffee shop and attacked two women with a machete based on their political affiliation.

Tristan Reynolds, a Transylvania student, told the Lexington Herald-Leader:

“A guy came in, banged something, a hatchet or an ax, on the table and said, ‘The day of reckoning has come. He asked somebody what their political affiliation was, they said ‘Republican,’ and the guy said, ‘You are safe.’ And then I realized what was going on and started getting people out.”

“We started to scatter and then very, very quickly, campus security was getting everybody sheltered and secure. They were very on it.”

Mr. Reynolds estimated 30-40 people were in the shop at the time of the attack. One victim was treated and released at the scene; the other is reported to be in stable condition at University of Kentucky Healthcare Hospital.

The alleged attacker, Mitchell Adkins, was charged with first degree assault, first degree wanton endangerment and fourth degree assault. He withdrew from Transylvania in 2015.

Photo by Julie Cauthen

Urban Bourbon: I mentioned CNN’s list of places to go in Louisville up there; CNN also have a list of bourbon bars in town, cultivated by the sensei of bourbon, Marianne Barnes. Ms. Barnes is the master distiller at Castle & Key, a new distillery set to open this summer. She’s formerly of Brown-Forman.

Here’s her list of bars:

The Silver Dollar
Haymarket Whiskey Bar & Bottle Shop
Proof on Main
Doc Crow’s
Meta

As you’d expect from someone with her level of bourbon genius, that’s just a good list, is what that is. An expensive list, but a good one.

Twitter

To be Blunt: When we started this whole affair four years ago, I thought Derby would naturally be the most celebrated and plentiful topic going, but that wasn’t true. The big story — by a lot — centered on a haircut for Jennifer Lawrence. Not a big one, mind you — from below the shoulders to not so far below the shoulders, but that was the big story.

Fitting then, that we can celebrate our fourth year together with more of the same. Vogue is all about Jennifer Lawrence’s new bangs this week, as new shots emerge from the set of her latest project, “Red Sparrow.”

Says Vogue:

“Lawrence’s transformative trompe l’oeil fringe was blown straight and snipped to a precise lash-level for a look that was polished and rigorously chic, making for the kind of beauty moment that transcends trend and season, while demanding a double take.”

Wow. That passage. I mean, I feel like a barbarian — I don’t think I’d have even noticed she changed her hair without the headline. It’s going to be a big disappointment if the haircut that transcends trend and season, time and space, the very fabric of our reality should turn out to be a wig or other hair apparatus just for the film, I can tell you that for nothing.

Yesterday was May the 4th, otherwise knows as Star Wars day. And so one and all, a belated “May the 4th be with you.” And happy Derby to you.

See you next week.

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Kyle Ware
Kyle Ware is a Louisville-based actor, artist, educator and writer. His column, In Other News, appears at Insider Louisville every Friday.