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(CNN)It’s been an interesting year for just about everything — art and fashion included. The biggest cultural moments of 2021 span iconic award show moments, eye-popping digital art sales and more.

Here’s what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)1. CoronavirusThe CDC has shortened the recommended times people should isolate when they’ve tested positive or have been exposed to Covid-19. Now, the agency says people only have to isolate for five days instead of 10 if they test positive but don’t have symptoms — and continue to wear a mask around others for five more days. People who were sick but whose symptoms are improving and don’t have a fever can also leave the house after five days, as can those who were exposed to Covid-19 but are fully vaccinated. The CDC says the change is based on scientific evidence that most transmission occurs early in the disease, right before and after the onset of symptoms.Read More 2. CrimeThe Justice Department has been doling out a surge of grants to help cities confront recent increases in violent crime. The department’s Office of Justice Programs says hundreds of communities and organizations are being awarded or are eligible to receive a slice of $1.6 billion to support a wide range of public safety programs. For instance, the Justice Assistance Grant program will share more than $271.9 million — with $187 million going to state law enforcement agencies and over $84.9 million to more than 900 cities and counties. Initiatives covered by the funding may include things like drug and gang task forces, domestic violence programs, treatment and correction programs, and other crime reduction efforts. Chicago sees deadliest summer in 2021 with gun violence on the riseChicago sees deadliest summer in 2021 with gun violence on the riseChicago sees deadliest summer in 2021 with gun violence on the riseJUST WATCHEDChicago sees deadliest summer in 2021 with gun violence on the riseReplayMore Videos …MUST WATCH

Chicago sees deadliest summer in 2021 with gun violence on the rise 03:313. Japan and ChinaThe defense ministers of Japan and China have agreed to set up a joint defense hotline by the end of 2022, even as the two East Asian powers continue to be at odds over territorial disputes and military posturing. Tokyo is showing increasing concern over the situation surrounding Taiwan, the self-governed island that China claims as its own. Japan and China also have a long-standing dispute over an uninhabited Japanese-controlled island chain in the East China Sea — known as the Senkakus in Japan and Diaoyus in China. Over the last few years, Japan has bolstered its air and sea defenses in response to China’s displays of military aggression in the South China Sea and beyond.Japan's defense minister on threat that keeps him up at nightJapan's defense minister on threat that keeps him up at nightJapanese Defense Minister Nobuo KishiJUST WATCHEDJapan’s defense minister on threat that keeps him up at nightReplayMore Videos …MUST WATCH

Japan’s defense minister on threat that keeps him up at night 04:104. Denver shootingsAt least four people are dead following a string of shootings in the Denver metro area last night. The suspect is also dead, authorities said. The shooter killed and injured people at multiple locations — including a business, a shopping area and a hotel. Police were involved in a vehicular chase and exchanged gunfire with the suspect. At one point, the suspect disabled a police car during the chase, and wounded an officer before being shot and killed. Law enforcement officials say there is no ongoing threat to the community, and they have no known motive for the shootings. Witness describes deadly Denver shootingsWitness describes deadly Denver shootingsWitness describes deadly Denver shootingsJUST WATCHEDWitness describes deadly Denver shootingsReplayMore Videos …MUST WATCH

Witness describes deadly Denver shootings 01:135. SomaliaSomali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmajo has suspended the powers of the prime minister, triggering fears of political violence in the country. Farmajo has accused Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble of looting public land and tampering with the ensuing investigation. The tussle over power between the two leaders stems from a spat over long-delayed parliamentary elections in Somalia. Both men have accused each other of holding up the elections. The US and UK have both urged calm, lest the situation in the politically unstable nation takes a violent turn. BREAKFAST BROWSEDwayne Johnson surprises his mom with a car for ChristmasAn adorable mom? Excited children? A DOG? This surprise is all too perfect.Teacher sinks full-court basketball shot in front of her studentsWell, that’s one way to instantly become the coolest teacher in school.Times Square New Year’s Eve ball gets new look with updated crystals”Did you get work done? It looks so natural!”2021 was a revolutionary year in pickup trucksSee, you can teach an old truck new tricks. Why the balaclava is back in fashionPerfect for a bad weather day. Or a bad hair day. Or a bad face day. TODAY’S NUMBER1,450That’s about how many children have been evacuated from Afghanistan without their parents since August. Hundreds of these children haven’t been reunited with their families yet, and some may never be, one expert says.TODAY’S QUOTE”I condemn this grievous incident and all attacks against civilians throughout the country, which are prohibited under international humanitarian law.”UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Martin Griffiths, who said he was “horrified” by the reported killing of at least 35 civilians in Myanmar.TODAY’S WEATHERWintry weather to impact the Midwest and Great LakesWintry weather to impact the Midwest and Great LakesWintry weather to impact the Midwest and Great LakesJUST WATCHEDWintry weather to impact the Midwest and Great LakesReplayMore Videos …MUST WATCH

Wintry weather to impact the Midwest and Great Lakes 01:57Check your local forecast here>>>AND FINALLYHow to cut Michelin star-worthy onionsHave you been cooking a lot lately? You’re not alone. And listen, there’s nothing wrong with the way you chop onions, but if you wanted to do it the super fancy way, here’s how. (Click here to view)

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