I Get This.

Random Gets For Mid- June.

I get that this is the World Cup. I get that goal differential in group play is important. I get that there are players participating in a World Cup for the first time. I get that all the players have put in thousands of hours of training. I get that the USA put up 13 and won the match 13-0. I don’t get celebrating goals 9-13. #USWNT #WorldCup

I get that the Middle East is problematic. I get that 30% of all oil is shipped through the Straits of Hormuz. I get that command and control of shipping lanes are critical to many countries and their economies. I don’t get Iran mining shipping lanes. I don’t get Iran looking for a fight.

I get Artemis. I get returning to and landing our astronauts on the moon. I get that NASA has given a directive that a woman be part of the mission to the moon. I get that NASA needs a new landing system that will allow a lunar landing module to land on the surface and return the astronauts to a space station. I don’t get how or why it will take $30 billion to make this happen. #Artemis #NASA

I get that Universal Studios, a wonderful theme park, spent $300 million to design and build their new Harry Potter ride. I sort of get Harry Potter. I get adventure rides as they are experiential, especially a roller coaster ride that takes you on a one mile journey. I get the long lines to wait to climb aboard the new Harry Potter adventure ride as I am sure Universal did some magic with the experience. I don’t get how people can wait in line up to ten hours to enjoy the Harry Potter ride. Yes, ten hours.

H/O: Hagrid Motor Bike Ride

I get art auctions. I get that people or institutions pay a great deal of money for what they feel, in their mind’s eye, is great artwork. I get and can appreciate the work of Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Da Vinci, and Monet. I get that paintings can be very expensive and a prized collection. I don’t get how a painting from Caravaggio, found five years ago in Toulouse, can fetch an asking price of $175 million. Yes, the painting is estimated to have been completed in the early 1600’s in Rome, but no, I don’t get the $175 million. #Caravaggio

I get the Toronto Raptors. I don’t get Drake. Enough said.

I get Father’s Day. Today is the day to celebrate fatherhood. I hope all of you can spend time with you father, give them a call, and keep them in your thoughts. My daughter is with me this weekend – a great weekend for Father’s Day.

Adios, Happy Father’s Day, and Have a Funday Sunday!

D-Day – 75 Years Ago.

Code Name: Operation Overlord.

Seventy-five years ago seems like a long time ago. Then we realize how old we are, when we were born, and the 75 years is nominal. This past Thursday marked the 75th anniversary of the liberation of France. It started with a year of planning and a massive build up of Allied forces made up of troops from the United States, the UK, Canada and France. The year-long planning originally picked the date of June 5, 1944 for the Allied invasion to commence, but due to weather issues the massive armada of ships crossing the English Channel had to push back their target time by 24 hours. Early in the morning of June 6, 1944, close to 7,000 ships carried 132,000 troops to the beaches of Normandy. These beaches were code named Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword with most of the United States soldiers hitting Omaha and Utah beach.

US troops landing on Omaha beach during the Normandy landings

Allied troops landing on Omaha Beach

The night before the invasion of Normandy, in order to try and protect the troops landing on the beaches, Allied forces engaged in an extensive bombing campaign to damage German defenses. Close to 24,000 Allied troops were also dropped behind enemy lines shortly after midnight on the day of the invasion. Deception tactics employed in the months leading up to the attack led the Germans to believe that the initial attacks were merely a diversion and that the true invasion would take place further along the coast. Reference: there is a scene in the movie #TheLongestDay that depicts this deception and how the German headquarters had no clue of the Normandy invasion. With that said, and even with the bombings attempting to destroy the German troops protecting the coast, some of the approaches to the beachhead failed miserably. The Germans had hunkered down on the cliffs overlooking the beaches and their gunfire, mortars and hand grenades took their toll on the Allied forces. There were more than 4,400 soldiers confirmed killed, with 9,000 injured or missing. Reference the first 20 minutes of the movie #SavingPrivateRyan.

Allied forces were eventually able to control the Normandy coastline and move inland towards Paris. Months later, with Allied forces fighting with the German troops and their Tiger Tanks, were able to liberate Paris in August of 1944.

There is the old adage: “a picture is worth a thousand words”, but no photo tells more of a horrific story than the one below:

Slide 20 of 100: CAPTION: (Eingeschränkte Rechte für bestimmte redaktionelle Kunden in Deutschland. Limited rights for specific editorial clients in Germany.) Germany. Third Reich. NS era. Persecution of Jews. Holocaust. Probably Concentration Camp of Treblinka or Belzec. Piled up shoes of murdered prisoners (location not verified, presumably Treblinka, (Photo by ullstein bild/ullstein bild via Getty Images)
A pile of shoes from prisoners of Dachau, one of many Nazi concentration camps.

The largest amphibious invasion ever, forever known as #D-Day, laid the foundations for the Allied defeat of Germany in World War II. The gratitude the world owes all of those soldiers is immense. The defeat of the Germans was a pivotal point in world history and was the beginning of the end of WWII. When you see someone who is now serving or once served in the armed forces, please take the time to thank them for their service. I will on Monday, in Jupiter, Florida, when I shake the hand of a proud veteran, who in my mind is the epitome of what describes a patriot.

I could add on some other takes, including the opportunity to talk about seeing a long time friend yesterday…… but not this week, as the 75th Anniversary of D-Day should not be overshadowed.

Adios, Pay it Forward, and Have a Funday Sunday!

Not A Non-Profit. Shut It Down. Naysayers. Guidance.

Uber This. Money Grab = Death. Stay Positive. It Is All Good.

They are all about ride-hailing and food delivery. Analysts seemed to be impressed with Uber’s first quarter financial results. Something to the tune of $3B in revenue. Outstanding until you learn that their 1st quarter loss was over $1B. Let me state it again: Wall Street was pleased with Uber’s Q1 performance as they had earlier predicted greater losses than the $1B. Someone enlighten me please. #Uber

You can climb Mt. Everest from the Nepal or Chinese face. On the Nepal side, this land-locked country in South Asia has the Himalayas as a tourist grab so it is not surprising that they have monetized the Mt. Everest experience. Unfortunately, the money grab from permit revenue for the Mt. Everest climb led to a greater increase of inexperienced climbers paying $11,000 for a one-week permit. With 381 permits issued this year, the Nepal government has taken in over $4m, which has allowed for too many people climbing at one time, resulting in people waiting up to twelve hours to continue their ascent. This has led to 11 deaths so far in 2019. Time for the government of Nepal to get smart and limit the permits issued. What must be a bucket list experience has turned into a sad state of affairs. https://www.foxnews.com/world/mount-everest-climbers-crushed-together-nepal-permit

AT THIS ALTITUDE, WAITING UP TO 12 HOURS IS VERY DANGEROUS

I have tried to limit my take on soccer for many reasons. With that said, and as Atlanta United heads into a long international break, I wanted to sum up their year-to-date season. They have played fifteen games so far this season with 19 left in the regular season. All of us were deeply concerned with how they started the season. Fans and the national media were all over Darren Eales and Carlos Bocanegra for their decision to replace the beloved Tata Martino with Frank de Boer. The same held true for their relentless critique of de Boer’s player selection and tactics. We witnessed slow and relatively boring games that left many questions with everyone who enjoyed last year’s championship team. I was no different though I did recognize that a coaching change, combined with absence of Miguel Almiron and key injuries might be problematic. Naysayers are now eating crow as Atlanta United has climbed into second place in the eastern conference, one point behind D.C. United, and has two games in hand. While their attack has sometimes been frustrating to watch, the team has allowed two less goals than anyone in the league. The balance of the season should be fun and entertaining both at the Mercedes-Benz stadium and on the road. #atlutd

I am a go-forward person. I have made mistakes, both personal and business-related, resulting in some very tough situations. The question for me becomes one of reflection, to think deeply or carefully about the ramifications of my decisions or actions. I use a 100% unbiased sound board to voice my concerns, my thoughts, and my wants and wishes. Maybe due to the way I was raised, or simply pride, I never considered using another person as a sound board for guidance and feedback. I did so starting back in late February, and Wednesday night was my 12th weekly ‘session’. My motivation to make this happen were actions and decisions made that were totally opposite of my personal ethos. The outcome was quite a bit of reflection, self-actualization, and a tremendous spike in my awareness of the trigger points that result in emotion. I am not Zen. I am not Karma. What I am and what I did was simply get some guidance and feedback to get me back to a good place. Sound bizarre? It should not as I started a tough new job, in a new city, and most importantly put physical and emotional distance between me and the person most important to me. Anyone who knows me well probably cannot believe I posted this…..but everyone also knows that I am a stand up man who is no longer too proud to socialize his good and not so good. If I can do it, so you can you. #real

Adios and Have A Funday Sunday!!