Georgia prepares for another icy winter mess. Michael Sam is open, out and proud. And a Danish giraffe becomes lion chow.
It's Monday, and here are the “5 Things to Know for Your New Day."
1. WINTER WEATHER
Better safe than ... well, you know: Proactive is the word of the day in Georgia, where Gov. Nathan Deal has already mobilized state emergency response agencies ahead of a potentially ugly mix of snow, sleet and ice expected to start tonight. School districts across north Georgia have started calling off classes and after-school activities.
"This is a whole different ballgame. What we had two weeks ago was a minor event. This is likely to be a major event."
– Meteorologist Glenn Burns
Two weeks ago, 2.6 inches of snow paralyzed metropolitan Atlanta and state emergency officials caught plenty of grief for how they handled the situation. This time, no one will complain if all these preparations turn out to be precautionary overkill.
MORE: Winter storm part deux: This time, we're ready, says Georgia
Throughout the morning, Nick Valencia will brief us on winter storm preparations.
2. MICHAEL SAM
"Openly proud gay man": Missouri Tiger Michael Sam isn't the first guy to make such a proclamation, but he probably will be the first openly gay player drafted by the NFL. Not only is Sam an All-American, but he was named the top defensive player in the Southeastern Conference. That's no small feat, coming from the college football conference that sends more players to pro football than any other.
Does his revelation mean that one of the last barriers of bigotry in all of professional sports will soon fall?
MORE: NFL prospect Michael Sam comes out as gay
At 7, John Berman looks into what changes Sam could bring to the NFL.
3. GIRAFFE DEATH
Fed to the lions: His keepers at the Copenhagen Zoo called him Marius. Now he's just called dinner. The zoo euthanized the 2-year-old male giraffe yesterday despite an online petition to save him. Zoo official said his genes are already well-represented in the gene pool at the zoo and Marius was taking up space they could use for more “genetically valuable giraffes.”
"When giraffes breed as well as they do now, then you will inevitably run into so-called surplus problems now and then."
– Bengt Holst of the Copenhagen Zoo
Marius now becomes dinner for the zoo's carnivores - lions, tigers and leopards. The zoo figured: No reason to let 450 pounds of meat go to waste.
MORE: Danish zoo kills healthy giraffe, feeds body to lions
In the 6 o' clock hour, we'll hear from Berlin correspondent Fred Pleitgen about the death and the resulting uproar
Movie script-ready: The folks in Hollywood have to be drooling over this one. The story of Jose Salvador Alvarenga drifting across the Pacific for more than a year before washing up in the Marshall Islands may just be true after all. The details are incredible, that's for sure. His first meal? Pancakes, which he scarfed down one after another while his rescuers tried to learn more about him. And how did they communicate with him? Using charades and Spanish skills learned entirely from the animated children's series "Dora the Explorer."
At 7, Miguel Marquez fills us in on the next chapter in this saga: Heading home.
5. WINTER OLYMPICS
Tools of the trade: Rifles, stones, skis and blades. It reads like a crazy shopping list at the hardware store, but it's actually the things Olympic athletes will use in their quest for winter sports glory. Medals will be awarded today in the biathlon, alpine and freestyle skiing, short track skating and - our favorite Winter Olympic sport - curling!
MORE: What to watch at the Winter Games on Monday
We hope you didn't miss any of the fun and zaniness over the weekend ...
– Like U.S. skater Ashley Wagner's pouty face after her figure skating score was displayed. Yes, we have our first meme of these Winter Games.
– Or the Russian police choir performing "Get Lucky" at the opening ceremony. Yes, Daft Punk's catchy "Get Lucky." Yes, the Russian police have a choir. You can see the video here, or another viral version from last year:
– Or American bobsledder Johnny Quinn, who punched his way out after he was trapped in a bathroom.
At 6 and 8, Rachel Nichols will wrap up the first three days of the Games. She'll also have an interview with Sage Kotsenburg, America's first gold medalist.
Those are your five biggies for the day. Here are a few others that are brewing and have the Internet buzzing.
– Enough of this winter already: Preach it, brother! This 4-year-old makes a plea to a higher power.
– Letting off steam: This coffee shop popped up over the weekend, baffling Los Angeles customers. It's either a clever marketing campaign or a lawsuit waiting to happen. Or maybe both.
– Catawampus: This cat springs into action when his owner decides to bust a move.
– Bye-bye, birdie: "Flappy Bird" has flown the coop. Its creator said its sudden success had become an albatross. Let it go flap, flap, flappin' on heaven's door.
– Don't look down: We're not sure if this is inspiring or just plain crazy. Expert climber Alex Honnold free solos El Sendero Luminoso, a 1,500-foot big wall in Monterrey, Mexico.
There you go. All you need to know to get an early start to your morning.
Be sure to tune in to "New Day" from 6 to 9 a.m. ET. Join us at NewDayCNN.com, and go and have a GREAT NEW DAY!