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Fast Forward: Rex Tillerson heads to Russia, and ‘re-accommodating’ flyers





What’s it like outside? Should hit the 80s in most of Massachusetts except the Cape and other coastal areas, where an ocean breeze will keep temps in the 60s. Pollen from maples, poplars, and junipers will fly right up your nose, so hang out with some oaks and pines today.

While you were sleeping: AP reports that the man suspected of ramming a stolen truck into a crowd in Stockholm Friday, killing four people and wounding 15, has admitted his guilt, according to his lawyer … Russian intelligence announced that eight people have been arrested in total for the deadly subway bombing in St. Petersburg last week … The Iraqi military claims that ISIS now controls only 6.8 percent of the country, down from 40 percent in 2014 … But Iraq could face the same situation that is playing out in Kabul, Afghanistan: An unexploded mortar bomb — one of thousands of leftover munitions from decades of war — blew up and killed four of the kids who were playing with it … A 1-year-old female panther was found dead in southwest Florida, apparently from being hit by a vehicle — the 10th found dead so far this year. Shamefully, there are only 180 Florida panthers left in the wild.

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Hey, sport: The Celtics are off. They did, indeed, beat the Nets last night, 114-105, to go one game up on the Cavaliers. Last game of the regular season is Wednesday. The Bruins start the playoffs Wednesday night.

The Sox are back home after dropping three out of four to the Tigers. Tonight they host the AL East-leading Orioles (7:10 p.m., NESN and WEEI).

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United Airlines sure has a whopper of a public relations mess to try to clean up today. After a passenger was wrestled out of his seat, his face slammed into an armrest, his mouth bloodied, and his limp body dragged down the aisle — by the way, he wasn’t a criminal; the airline was simply helping him volunteer to give up his seat for a United employee — the CEO apologized for having to “re-accommodate” him. Just like the FBI “re-accommodated” the Branch Davidians.

Naturally, the Interwebs are having a field day, with the terrific Merriam-Webster Twitter account posting the definition of “volunteer” and Limericking tweeting this:

We’re sorry, United said sadly,

That all this concluded so badly,

But business requires

Assaulting our flyers

Unless they cooperate gladly.

GOP commentator Ana Navarro tweeted: “Landed safely in DC. Grateful to @AmericanAir flight crew for not giving me a bloody lip, knocking me unconscious & dragging down the aisle.”

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is heading to Russia, and the big item on the agenda is how to make Putin think that re-accommodating Bashar al-Assad out of Syria is his idea.

Congress is on its annual spring two-week break, and some of the GOP members will face the wrath of voters at town halls again — if they decide to hold them. Rep. Tom McClintock of California did, and probably wishes he hadn’t.

President Trump meets with his Strategy and Policy Forum to discuss infrastructure and tax reform. That’s the group of CEOs he formed to advise him on top issues headed by Stephen Schwarzman of the Blackstone Group, a leveraged buyout firm that gains control of companies, borrows heavily against the company’s assets (not their own), slashes costs by laying off hundreds or thousands of people, and ends up making millions. Just the thing to help Rust Belt factory workers!

The White House Correspondents Association announced that stand-up comedian Hasan Minhaj, a senior correspondent for “The Daily Show,” will be the main entertainer for the WHCA annual dinner in DC April 29. A Muslim comedian … good thing Trump decided not to go after all.

Kansans go to the polls today to pick a replacement for CIA Director Mike Pompeo, who gave up his House seat to disappear in the Trump administration. The GOP is nervous about this election, sending in reinforcements such as Texas Senator Ted Cruz (Really? He helps?) to support Republican Ron Estes, an engineer, against Democrat James Thompson, a civil rights attorney.

The Boston chapter of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community holds its fourth annual blood drive from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at City Hall, held to commemorate the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings.

Speaking of the Marathon: Local, state, and federal emergency officials, along with the Boston Athletic Association, are holding a “large-scale functional exercise” in Framingham to practice responses to various emergency situations. The race is next Monday, the 17th.

Finally, it’s National Re-Accommodation Day (just kidding). It’s actually National Pet Day, and as my little Yorkie sits beside me, doing his Mr. Spock mind meld so I will get him a cookie, it’s easy to understand why close to 80 million US households include a dog or cat. Of course, cats are masters, not pets, but whatever. Even dogs have us wrapped around their little paw.

 Teresa, this is Dog speaking. Give that little Yorkie a cookie.

Teresa, this is Dog speaking. Give that little Yorkie a cookie.

Thanks for reading. I’m wearing padded underwear the next time I fly. E-mail questions, comments, or news tips to teresa.hanafin@globe.com, or follow me on Twitter @BostonTeresa. See you tomorrow.

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