Space, the final frontier. Or, you know, that place where Ashton Kutcher will soon be hanging out. The Two and a Half Men thespian is Virgin Galactic’s 500th customer for a roundtrip ticket to outer space. Worth about $140 million, Kutcher can easily afford the $200,000 price tag for the SpaceShipTwo rocket plane trip to 62 miles out, where passengers can see the arc of Earth and the black sky above. Other celebs rumored to be on the “list” of people planning a Virgin space voyage: Katy Perry, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, and Beyonce and Jay-Z—it’s not clear whether Blue Ivy Carter will join in. Commercial service isn’t expected to begin until at least 2013.
TOP 10 RIGHT NOW
Audio Cheat Sheet
Press Play, Get Smarter
IN THE LOOP
Sondland Kept Pompeo Updated on Ukraine Dealings: NYT
The U.S. ambassador to the European Union reportedly kept secretary of state updated on what was happening in Ukraine.1 hr ago
A NEW FRONT?
FBI Requests Interview With Ukraine Whistleblower: Report
However, no interview has been scheduled, and it’s unclear whether the whistleblower’s lawyers will agree to it.19 mins ago
Gift Pick: A Multi-Purpose Backpack from Dagne Dover
There’s something so sleek and stylish about this monochromatic, neoprene bag that feels much more grown-up than the backpacks of your youth.3 hrs ago
PANTS ON FIRE
Twitter Condemns U.K. Conservatives for ‘Fact-Check’ Trick
The party briefly rebranded its verified press office account to look like an independent fact-checking outfit during its nationally televised debate.3 hrs ago
WHAT’S THE HOLDUP?
Ukraine Is Still Waiting on $35M of U.S. Military Aid: LAT
The Pentagon has declined to explain why the aid, part of the $400 million held back by Trump earlier this year, had been delayed.47 mins ago
Navy May Strip Officer Backed by Trump of SEAL Status
Conflict arises between Navy and White House over Trident pin removal for Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher.3 hrs ago
Writer: Exec Wanted Julia Roberts to Play Harriet Tubman
“When someone pointed out that Roberts couldn’t be Harriet, the executive responded, ‘It was so long ago. No one is going to know the difference.’”8 hrs ago
WHERE YOU GOING?
Man Tied to Dead Reporter’s Investigation Arrested on Yacht
Daphne Caruana Galizia was probing the murky dealings of 17 Black owner Yorgen Fenech when she was assassinated in Malta.27 mins ago
‘SHACKLED AND BLINDFOLDED’
Britain Says Consulate Worker Was Tortured by Chinese Police
Simon Cheng was detained for 15 days earlier this year, and says he was hung up on a wall with handcuffs.3 hrs ago
Two U.S. Service Members Die in Afghanistan Helicopter Crash
The Taliban said the helicopter was shot down, but the U.S. Army said the incident is still under investigation.4 hrs ago