The Blog. Look Mom, No Hands. Saudi Drivers. Portugal’s Leap of Faith. He Is Really Good.
I have had inquiries from people I don’t know about how and why I started this weekly blog. It is not very complicated as I like to challenge myself with things that are out of my comfort zone. So I got a bit of advice from Doug Roberson and Jeff Schultz, both excellent journalists with the Atlanta Journal & Constitution, and looked to journalists who have inspired me over the years: Peter King, Sports Illustrated; Frank Deford, Sports Illustrated; Dave Barry, Miami Herald; and Hunter Thompson, Rolling Stone. I have no ulterior motives with the blog other than to write content and stay away from religion and politics. It is not easy for me but I enjoy the challenge.
Robot taxis. I want to know the first people who, in a major city, decide it is OK to get into an autonomous automobile and sit comfortably while the car, with no steering wheel, takes you to your destination. It seems that General Motors has decided to enter this market of autonomous automobiles in a big way and they are all good with the no driver and no steering wheel concept. I know that it is inevitable that driver-less cars will dominate our highways and roads sooner than I think, but my vision of these types of cars in downtown LA, Charlotte, Atlanta, or Orlando only leads me to believe that big time issues will occur. But then again, no one even knew what an automobile was 120 years ago.
Saudi Arabia. Progressive in many ways including petrochemicals and oil, and at the same time so 17th century with it’s behavior toward women. I won’t bore you with all the archaic rules that govern a Saudi woman’s behavior in public but no one could ever understand why Saudi Arabia prohibited women from obtaining a driver’s license. Maybe a devout Muslim would understand why not, but most people are clueless about Sharia Law. I won’t go down the path of religion but Saudi Arabia ranks 141 out 144 countries in gender parity and much of that ranking is tied to Sharia Law. I am not sure if things are changing in Saudi Arabia, but it was announced last week that Saudi Arabian women, for the first time, will be able to apply for a driver’s license. To keep it all in perspective, it was not until 2011 when women in Saudi Arabia were finally allowed to vote. Meh.
It’s climate mimics California with it’s beautiful coastal cities and towns, and it’s hilly and mountainous countryside. Portugal now has become a mecca for marijuana production focused on producing medical marijuana similar to many areas of the United States. One major difference: Unlike the United States, drug overdose is almost unheard of in Portugal. The main reason: 16 years ago, Portugal took a risk and decriminalized the possession of all drugs — everything from marijuana to heroin. By most measures, the move has paid off. Today, Portuguese authorities don’t arrest anyone found holding what’s considered less than a 10-day supply of an illicit drug. I will never condone the use of drugs but what Portugal has done makes you think that there are other answers to the massive U.S. drug problem.
With the signing of Ezequiel Barco, Atlanta United’s starting eleven for this upcoming season is crazy good. Barco is just 18 years-old and is considered one of the world’s top young midfielders. Just as important, United’s bench is much stronger than last year allowing them to rest players at opportune times (note: unlike last year’s ridiculous September schedule due the Mercedes Benz stadium delay, this year’s schedule is in relative balance). Darren Eales, Carlos Bocanegra, and Tata Martino continue to set a standard that most clubs can only dream about.
Eight weeks to daylight savings time.
Adios and Have a Funday Sunday.