Swank steakhouses, stock up. Big-time lobbyists, polish up those Gucci loafers. Lawmakers, prepare to deploy belt-tightening metaphors and stories about fictional countryfied constituents.
The North Carolina legislature gavels back into session today.
This is the sometimes incorrectly titled short session, in which lawmakers are supposed to focus primarily on revising the state budget. But because that task will be the lawmaking equivalent of a root canal, there is plenty of room for other issues, too. Here's a look, by the numbers, at some things to watch:
The size of the current state revenue shortfall.
The number of protests and rallies already announced at the Legislative Building.
The number of bills from last year's long session that are eligible for consideration this year.
Number of days a week when you can count on getting fried squash in the legislative cafeteria. It's Wednesday, by the way.
The lame ducks who won't be returning to the legislature because they lost their primaries.