Clinton Yates (Breton Littlehales/The Washington Post)

For the first time in a while, I feel bad for tourists. With the imminent government shutdown, there will probably be thousands of people roaming the streets with literally nothing to do if the National Zoo and Smithsonian Institution museums are closed. For area residents, the budget standoff is more than a vacation. The Federal Eye’s Ed O’Keefe details how the situation will affect most federal employees, many of whom aren’t sure if they’ll be expected to work if things grind to a halt.

It hasn’t been a good year for Kwame Brown. Ever since he was elected D.C. Council chairman in November, it’s been one controversy after another. Now, The Post’s Tim Craig reports that the former at-large council member’s campaign finances are under fire after an audit. Apparently, Brown has “failed to account for more than a quarter-million dollars and used a now-defunct political consulting firm to pass $239,000 to a firm operated by his brother.” Come on, son.

I always cringe when people drag their kids out to protests and demonstrations. But the upheavals in the Arab world have been nothing short of world-changing, and many kids have gotten a first-person view of what political unrest looks like in its rawest form. Foreign Policy’s newest gallery documents a generation of children that are the youngest members on the frontlines of revolution.

The orchestra world is a very tight-knit community. And as interest in orchestral music and funding for its performance are dwindling across the country, for those who play it, things are even more closely bound — so much so that within the 48-member Virginia Symphony Orchestra, 18 of the musicians are married to each other. The Post’s Monica Hesse tries to determine “whether the VSO is a happy place because everyone is married to each other, or everyone is married to each other because it is a happy place.”

Public broadcasting is under more scrutiny than ever. With House Republicans voting to defund NPR and PBS, the two companies and their programming have been put under a microscope by liberals and conservatives alike. While NPR has become one of the country’s most dynamic news sources, PBS has focused on children’s programming for the most part. Slate’s Mark Oppenheimer contends that we need to save NPR, “but please, put PBS out of its misery.”

Extra Bites

• Do you remember Nick Cho? The guy who opened Murky Coffee shops on Capitol Hill and in Clarendon, then left town under dubious circumstances with a trail of tax bills? Well, he’s turned up in San Francisco. All We Can Eat’s Tim Carman has the details on the “bad-boy barista.”

• Say what you want about gun rights, but sometimes the fastest way to stop a guy threatening a stripper with a shotgun is to pull out your own heater.

• Jay-Z has a new lifestyle Web site. Just clicking this link will automatically make you cooler, apparently.

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