Short Takes for the 1st Sunday of April.

Today’s Dozen To Ponder.

  • Your divorce settlement results in you losing $35 Billion of your net worth….but you are still the wealthiest person in the world.
  • I used to wonder about the sanity of the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT). No longer, as the Florida Department of Transportation, with their I-4 lack of planning and foresight, makes the GDOT look like Einstein.
  • Tactically, I get that his impact is incredible at the 75th minute when the opponent’s defense is worn down. With that said, there has to be a way to get Orlando City’s Chris Mueller some more minutes on the field. This young kid, with guidance and a bit more quality, should certainly be considered for the U.S. Men’s National Team pool. #Chris Mueller
  • Joe Biden – I could care less about your politics, but your attempt at humor on Friday was demeaning and shameful. You are a leader?
  • Goalkeepers in the world of professional soccer, according to some pundits and backed up by analytics, reach their peak in their early 30’s and some play into the 40’s. On Friday, an Israeli professional team started a goalkeeper, who set a Guinness World Record, at the ripe age of 73. Yes, 73.
73-Year Old Goalkeeper Breaks Guinness World Record For Oldest Active Player To Play An Official Match
  • The Brexit drama. It is important but the process to make a decision is in a word: ridiculous.
  • For many years, even with a high level and presence of many game wardens, so-called hunters have been illegally entering South Africa’s Kruger National Park. They do so on foot to seek out and kill rhinoceros as their horns are for some reason treasured in many Asian countries. Yesterday, some of this barbaric poaching will undoubtedly come to an end. It seems like the Park’s rhinos have friends in their fellow elephants and lions. As a poacher was pursing a rhino for a clear shot, an elephant decided to take the law into its own hands. Yes, a very bad outcome for the poacher – I will not go into the gory details but it started with the elephant and was finished off by a family of lions. Hey morons…lesson learned?
A male lion in the wild
  • NATO has been around for seventy years – $10 to anyone, off the top of their head, who can give me three benefits of membership? Most people have no clue what the four letters stand for.
  • If the Atlanta Hawks tough season results in the silver lining of dealing for a top draft pick….will they select someone that could be the missing piece to a playoff run….and someone who will fill State Farm Arena? Can you say Zion Williamson? One of my supporting readers can certainly answer this question.
  • We have all been vaccinated against those long-forgotten childhood diseases…..or most of us anyway. Now, in 2019, the Centers for Disease Control (#CDC) reports that some of those are back. Bubonic plague, mumps, measles, tuberculosis, and scarlet fever – all with recently reported cases in the United States as well as worldwide. I am sure there is no correlation with me not feeling well after returning from a business trip to Mexico. 🙂
  • The best week of the Spring. This weekend’s men’s and women’s Final Four, Major League Soccer in full swing, the European leagues in their title races, this week’s Champions League and next weekend’s Masters.
  • The Atlanta Braves. They are cool again.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!

BBC. Three Strikes And Out. Fourth Time And Out. Don’t Foul. A 60-Day Snooze. 21 Million Strong. IPO Ride. No Win Situation.

Manage This. Brexit Exit? Is Four Days Too Long To Be Married? We Are Up By Three! Bedridden and Compensated. CDMX Very Nice. Lyft Going Public. A Very Tough Start.

BBC. Not the network in Great Britain, but the bad-behaving customer. You know who you are. You are self-absorbed, not a partner, and don’t care about your agency or service-provider’s welfare. You are disorganized, don’t plan, and try to pawn off business issues. You have limited business skills and have no idea of what and how to budget. All of us who provide top class goods and services have encountered you. A good start for those BBC’s is to start treating your partners they way you like to be treated. I always believe ‘what goes around, comes around’.

As mentioned last week, the neighbors across the Atlantic Ocean are still working how how, why and when to leave the European Union (EU). I guess to people outside of Great Britain it becomes a ‘who cares’ scenario, but eyebrows need to be raised regarding the $50 billion Britain will pay to leave the European Union, and the impact on trade and travel. Never mind how Britain and the EU will treat each other’s citizens, especially the impact on the people and economy of British controlled Northern Ireland. On Friday, for the third time, Britain’s Parliament again rejected Theresa May’s Brexit deal. Can you say massive mess? #Brexit

Speaking of a mess, Hollywood movie star Nicolas Cage is on the move again. His fourth marriage started eight days ago and lasted until Wednesday. Why waste time Nicolas?

March Madness made me mad. I am not sure of the exact scenario but I think I am spot on: UCF played the powerful Duke basketball team last Sunday in the NCAA playoffs. With time running down and UCF up by three, Duke’s superstar Zion Williamson drove the lane for what should have been an uncontested layup. That would have left UCF with a one point lead and by taking the ball out and calling time out, UCF would have been allowed to take the ball in at half court. Sounds like this makes sense, right? But no, UCF’s 7’6″ center challenges Zion at the basket and unbelievably fouls – and the layup is good. Zion sinks the free throw and the rest is history. Bad coaching or a dumb play by UCF? Someone enlighten me.

Do you like to sleep? Do you like the bed? Contact #NASA, who is paying women to stay in bed for 60 days to help them study how weightlessness affects the human body. The stipend: $18,500 for the two months of “work”. Anyone interested?

This massive city sits at an elevation of 7,300 feet. Mexico City, with its population exceeding 21 million, has once again become a travel destination for many around the world. I am in the Polanco district of the City, attempting to take in as many interesting parks, museums (OK, one) and monuments as possible. The Polanco district is absolutely beautiful, with its tree-lined streets and retail similar to what you would find on 5th Avenue or Beverly Hills. I only hope I have time to take it all in before I climb back on the plane to Orlando.

I know there a few ways to value a ride sharing service. With the initial public offering (IPO) of Lyft, another unicorn has amassed billions in valuation. Is there a discernible difference between Lyft and ride sharing leader Uber? Is the play to invest in Lyft and wait for Uber to convince the Federal Trade Commission to allow them to acquire/absorb their competitor? Friday’s IPO event – in a word, amazing.

Without a win after winning the Major League Soccer championship back in December. As mentioned in previous posts, the combination of a coaching change, the departure of Miguel Almiron to Newcastle, some injuries, and the ridiculous schedule of playing seven games in 24 days has taken its toll. After last night’s loss United as a bye week to try and work through a few issues. A tough situation to say the least. Too bad the summer transfer window does not open up until July 9.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!

Cancel This. March Madness. Brexit. Cord-Cutting. OCSC. Exposure. Shameful.

Read the Fine Print. We Got A Basketball Jones. Leave Or Stay…Just Make A Damn Decision. Bye Bye Cable. Winning On The Road. All Nine Children. Fill It Up.

  • The no-brainer of the week: many airlines are cancelling their orders for Boeing’s 737 Max aircraft. Something about the lack of consumer confidence.
  • The NCAA basketball tournament is fun – especially in these early games. UCF takes on Duke later today. UCF has their 7’6″ center playing very well but I am not sure he can deal with ‘The Zion’ from Duke. #ZionWilliamson
  • With all due respect to Great Britain….we have had enough of the drama of Brexit. Forget the politics and religion and get on with a decision that is fair and equitable. Just get on with it. #Brexit
  • The #2 no-brainer of the week: as I have mentioned more than once the days of staying wired to a cable company’s offering and ridiculous monthly pricing is steadily coming to an end. ‘Cutting the cord’ is now top of mind for many people, especially with digital offerings including the Amazon Fire Stick. Here are the latest metrics: People are fleeing expensive cable TV bills for digital media. They are cutting the cord in record numbers. According to research, net cable subscribers fell 4.1% during the last three months of 2018, a decline of 985,000 customers. This was reported in the February 22nd edition of Fortune. It is a no-brainer.
  • Orlando City Soccer Club (OCSC) – a force to be reckoned with? Yes, the New York Red Bulls roster was depleted due to injuries and international call ups, but going to Red Bulls stadium and winning on the road is huge. Nani, who has a massive international C.V., is now regaining his fitness and form. Dovetail his impact with a solid defense and a bit of luck and three points on the road is a great thing. Well done OCSC. Time to fill up Orlando’s awesome soccer stadium next weekend. #OCSC
  • The perfect parent story of the week: The esteemed Governor of Kentucky, Matt Bevin, took his nine children to a neighbor’s home. Not so much for play time but to expose his children to chicken pox, as one of his neighbor’s children had contracted the virus. Oh, I get that you want to contract chicken pox as a child and not as an adult, but really Governor, that was your collective strategy? Can anyone say DFACS?
  • I attended the U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) match against Ecuador on Thursday night. A beautiful night at an outstanding venue with temperatures hovering around seventy degrees. The U.S. ended up winning 1-0 against what I thought was an uninspired Ecuador side. That was part of the story of Thursday night but the other story is the U.S. Soccer Federation, who for some reason feels it is necessary to charge very high ticket prices for U.S. National Team games. Yes the men’s national team, who fell out of favor with many American fans after their disastrous run up to last summer’s World Cup with the end result of not qualifying for the competition. No one can convince me that this model of not filling up stadiums, including the Orlando City stadium with a capacity of 26,000, is a best practice to build back the fans (and TV networks) confidence in the national team. U.S. Soccer: if the pre-sale is under 12,000 on the day of the game, how about reaching out to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida, or the other organizations that can fill the stands with appreciative children? Charging ridiculous prices for USMNT games and leaving thousands of seats empty is asinine. Yes, the other side of the stadium had the planned “fill the seats” strategy for ESPN’s cameras’ line of sight, but the other side of the stadium was no more than half full. Below is the photo I took one minute before kickoff. In one word: stupid. #USSF

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!!

Inspiration. Fix It Now. New Zealand. Self-Absorbed. Heyday to Mayday? Spring Fever.

She Is Amazing. Don’t Wait For Another Tragedy. Terror Dealt With Directly. Money for Nothing. Making Changes. It’s Getting To Be A Lot Like Spring.

  • Inspiration comes in many flavors. I gave a glimpse of inspiration many posts ago showing off a youngster with one arm who plays tournament-winning golf. I like to remind myself to ‘cork the whine’ once in awhile, especially after viewing this video of a young golfer who deals with Down syndrome. The setting is at the Phoenix Open, with professional golfer Gary Woodland, in front of a large group of spectators. Take the two minutes and find some inspiration:
  • Many countries, in light of the tragedies involving crashes of two Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft, immediately put a ground hold on these jets. Two of these relatively new aircraft have crashed shortly after takeoff within the last six months. Pilots who have had issues with handling the new jet have filed complaints with the #FAA, complaints that included poorly written fight manuals as well as issues with the nose dropping down when the autopilot is engaged. The FAA, for some ridiculous reason, had not immediately put a ground hold on these aircraft to allow time for engineers to work through both indicators and software that might have been sending false information to the cockpit. Finally, last Wednesday, the President gave the order to ground these jets. This scenario and the delay to take action feels really wrong, especially with documented complaints from pilots of the Max 8. Was the U.S. government delay in grounding these jets related to Boeing being a U.S.-based airline? Please tell me no.
  • I have no comment or words with what happened in New Zealand on Friday. My thoughts and prayers are with all who were involved with this tragedy – but sometimes it is best not to give time to violence and hate. I am happy that the main suspect was captured. Maybe he will be turned over to #NZSAS – New Zealand’s bad ass special forces based in Auckland. I hear they have their own unique way of dealing with terrorists.
  • You are wealthy and I am assuming for self-glorification you pay massive money to a scumbag who bribes college administrators and coaches. The money paid motivates the administrators or coaches to circumvent the admissions process to get your kid admitted into your college of choice. I am not going to pretend that this pretentiousness has not been systemic for many years, but in light of last week’s developments that included two Hollywood ‘stars’, something is really wrong with our world when people go to this degree to ensure they can tell their other self-absorbed friends that their kid has been accepted to USC, Yale, Georgetown, Stanford, or UCLA. Outrageous and disgusting behavior.
  • In last week’s post, I was not shy in giving my opinion about Atlanta United and their unfortunate start to the season. I was focused on the ethos of the team and their new manager, and I could have come across as being critical of Frank de Boer. My opinion really was meant to focus on “knowing your audience” with de Boer being Dutch and a large portion of Atlanta United’s player pool being South American. With that said, after Wednesday’s win against Monterrey, it looks like Atlanta United and de Boer have turned the corner with their system and style of play. Adapting to a new manager always takes time with any team, but when you combine the change in leadership with Miguel Almiron’s absence and the compression of the schedule, it is probably wise to be a bit more patient. Now that Atlanta United is out of the Champions League, and only two games into the regular season, de Boer will now have time to sort out the right system for his players.
  • Spring is coming fast (yes, Orlando is borderline summer)…amazing that we are in the middle of March already. I enjoy this time of year with March Madness gearing up, the Premier League top four race in motion, Major League Baseball getting ready for opening day, and Major League Soccer finishing up its third week. Easter Sunday is coming soon as well so enjoy the Spring before we get hit with the dog days of the hot summer.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!

Random Thoughts for Mid-March.

Tata and Frank. ORL City and Minnesota United. Open Positions. Don’t Forget About Venezuela. Jaguar Wins In a Split Decision. You Can’t Handle The Truth. $330M To Play Baseball. Let There Be Light.

Atlanta United manager Frank de Boer, in his first year after replacing wildly popular Tata Martino, is from the Netherlands. He brings strong credentials as a successful manager winning championships with Dutch club Ajax. Former manager Tata Martino came to #AtlantaUnited with a great resume as well, and brought to the team both an open and aggressive style of play and what I will call the ‘Papa’ syndrome. Tata was tough and aggressive with his players as well as showing tremendous enthusiasm and leadership. The difference between these two managers, along with Atlanta United’s ridiculous schedule, and the departure of Miguel Almiron, has led to some poor results early on. Atlanta United’s player pool, and specifically their usual starting eleven, is made up of young and talented South Americans. Frank de Boer, coming from the Netherlands, has brought an ethos of discipline and directness to Atlanta United that may be yielding, in the short term, diminishing returns. From my standpoint and my experience playing in Miami, the South and Central American coaches I played for, due to the nationality of most of my teammates, never really spoke about pure discipline and ‘keeping your shape (formation)’ on the field. What they expressed, with the passion and enthusiasm ingrained in most South American coaches, was free and open play, pressuring all over the field, and the attitude of no risk, no reward. Are Atlanta United’s players, especially the South Americans, having an ‘allergic’ reaction to de Boer’s European style, discipline, and attitude? Only time will tell, but as my father always told me, no matter what you do and what you say: “know your audience”. Hoping today’s home opener sees Atlanta United back to their old self.

Speaking of Major League Soccer, kudos to the management and coaching staff of Orlando City. Two tough games, and two points after two draws. Yes, yesterday could have been a “W” and three points…but on the road on a nasty day in Chicago, taking home a point is not a bad thing. Also, watch out for Minnesota United and former Orlando City coach Adrian Heath. Heath’s club, in their first two matches has come away with two road wins. Big and positive changes for both OCSC and Minnesota United.

With most of his #Cabinet leaving their posts, President Donald Trump is now working with Randstad and Kelly Services, two of America’s largest temporary staffing agencies, to quickly back fill the open positions. (Was that political?)

I have been closely following the crisis and sadness in Venezuela. It is remarkable to me that most news agencies have begged off of their daily coverage of this humanitarian debacle. Out of sight, out of mind? Not for me – this situation is in two words: Dire Straits.

An unfortunate incident at a zoo near Phoenix, Arizona. A woman was attacked by a jaguar as she was photographing this beautiful animal. That is her story. The real story is that she crossed over a barrier with signage that read: “Don’t Cross Over This Barrier”. Call me crazy but if their is a barrier between me and a #jaguar, would it be a good idea to cross over the barrier? The photographer thankfully will recover from her injuries – she will be joined by R. Kelly at their next appointment with a mental health specialist.

My sources tell me that Michael Cohen is being paid a tremendous stipend to appear on Truth or Consequences. For those too young to remember that game show….don’t talk to me. #TruthorConsequences

I originally reported that a hostile takeover for Tesla is in the works led by Stephan Curry, John Wall, and Neymar.  Curry’s $40m per-year deal was trumped by Wall’s $42.5m per-year deal, only to be superseded by French club Paris St. Germain, who paid Barcelona a $256m transfer fee for Neymar – whose salary will be $35m annually AFTER taxes. But no, that was #falsenews, as the suitor is now Bryce Harper, who signed a 13-year, $330M contract with the Philadelphia Phillies. Telsa and Major League Baseball…..meh.

The clocks for most of the United States went one hour forward last night. Daylight Savings Time is here which in my mind is a very good thing!

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!!!

Hair War II. Scheduling. Queen Shines. Online Auto. FDA Shame.

He Definitely Needs A Comb. Too Many Games, Too Little Time. Freddie Well Done. Click To Buy. Massive Oversight.

As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, the leaders of North Korea and the United States staged their second battle of bad hair last week. The political battle will not be mentioned but I would say the Kim Jong Un got the best of Donald Trump by a split decision.

Sometimes a good deed goes unpunished. Not so much for Atlanta United. Along with their regular season kicking off later today at D.C. United, their award for winning the Major League Soccer championship included a slot in the #CONCACAF Champions League. The Champions League is in short the tournament of all clubs who are located in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean. (FYI: the Champions League in Europe, which also is held during the regular season of all participating clubs, is recognized as the best club championship worldwide). While it is an honor to qualify and play in the Champions League, the compression of Atlanta United’s schedule is now a bit problematic. After Thursday’s win against the Costa Rican club Herediano, #AtlantaUnited, between Champions League and regular season games, will play seven times in the next 16 days. Even for the world’s big clubs, for example Manchester City, Tottenham, Liverpool, Barcelona, and PSG, who have the money to basically carry two teams on their roster, this schedule will push Atlanta United’s players to the maximum. Their next Champions League opponent, #Monterrey, is in second place in the Mexican first division (a.k.a. Liga MX). A very tough beginning to the 2019 season for Atlanta United.

The only benefit of too much travel is the ability to catch up on movies. With a bit of hesitation, I watched Bohemian Rhapsody last week. Hesitation only because I was never a fan of Queen’s ‘opera rock’. My assessment: great story, well written, and Rami Malek, who played #FreddieMercury, was excellent. I would suggest you watch it even if you were not a fan of Queen.

I can have an open mind to most issues and topics. I use Amazon Prime to purchase online so why am I surprised that Tesla’s distribution model, for their new $35,000 model 3 automobile, will be online only. To cut costs and keep the model 3 at $35,000, Tesla is closing their stores in North America and moving to 100% online sales. The premise: No dealer network is needed to buy clothes or groceries from Amazon. Why should buying a car be any different? Like I said, I have an open mind to most things so why not online purchasing of cars… it is just a simple click on the ‘buy’ button.

I try to keep away from the political or religious slant with this blog. I guess when the Food & Drug Administration (#FDA) is mentioned, it could lead you to think politics. This comment has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with the opioid epidemic….and don’t be confused, it is an epidemic. I make decisions based on facts, but if what I learned in this 60 Minutes segment is half-true, the United States has a massive oversight issue with drug distribution.

Daylight Savings Time: one week and counting.

Have a Funday Sunday!!

OCSC. Update Venezuela. Massage This. Seven Reasons Why.

Nani To the Rescue? Maduro The Dictator. The 77-Year Old Billionaire. The Second Time Around.

The end of Orlando City’s 2018 season was a downer. A losing streak, the media pummeling the management and ownership, and the fandom in deep decline. With many of the supporters still in the nay-saying mood, kudos to the OCSC ownership and management for instigating ‘the pivot’. By that I mean hiring a seasoned technical director, discarding and re-purposing the player pool, bringing in a veteran goalkeeper who will anchor ‘the spine’ of their system, and securing an impact player in Nani. Will Orlando City make the MLS playoffs? Will they be a team to be reckoned with… at least at home? Next Saturday starts the test but at a minimum the team and their ownership/management have stirred the pot for what I think are many positive moves to start the 2019 season.

I will stay out of the political slant to this issue, but the drama and sadness in Venezuela continues. While tons of supplies, food, and medication has been sent help the people of this devastated country, Venezuela’s president has now closed the Colombian and Brazilian borders, keeping this much needed aid sitting idle. It is amazing to me, that in 2019, #NicolasMaduro, Venezuela’s dictator, can control the destiny of millions of people in a South American country. I don’t have the answer to this and really do not know what the tipping point will be to instigate armed conflict…but if politics and relative detente’ can’t fix this…then other countries, not just the U.S., should. So very sad.

Owning an NFL franchise. A net worth of $7 billion. Winning six Super Bowls with one of the most successful football teams of all time. And at 77-years old, Robert Kraft, to most of us, must be on top of the world. Then on Friday, reality strikes as Mr. Kraft and many others are charged with soliciting prostitution at one of those random massage parlors. Not in the rural areas of north Florida, but in the exclusive area of Jupiter, FL, a beautiful area with luxury ocean-side homes and golf courses. No matter the intent or reason, can anyone explain why a 77-year old billionaire has any motivation to enter a massage parlor in Jupiter, Florida? I guess the answer is obvious, but if you tell me it was to correct his L-5 or L-6, you need to get smart, soon.

They sucked bad. There is no other way to describe Atlanta United’s performance on Thursday night in Costa Rica. Twitter and soccer blogs blew up on Friday calling for manager Frank de Boer’s head. The rhetoric related to the ass-kicking received by Atlanta United at the hands of Herediano, a Costa Rican club, who similar to Atlanta United, qualified for this year’s #CONCACAF Champions League. For all of you naysayers, lets keep things in perspective: 1) The coach, Frank de Boer, is new 2) The player pool has changed a bit 3) Playing in San Jose, Costa Rica has not yielded a positive result for many U.S. clubs 4) Herediano, like most clubs around the world, is in the middle of their season. Major League Soccer plays March to November, so this was Atlanta United’s first competitive match of the season. 5) Pity Martinez, the reigning South American player of the year, is very good but is not an exact like-for-like for Miguel Almiron. Almiron was sold in the winter transfer market and Thursday night may have reinforced how valuable he was to Atlanta United. 6) de Boer started two very young players on defense in George Bello and Miles Robinson. The defense, maybe due to de Boer’s tactical decision to play three in the back, was shredded by Herediano’s very fast counter-attacks and stupid giveaways by Atlanta 7) Remember that Atlanta United won the 2018 MLS championship after starting off the season with a blow-out loss to Houston. None of these seven points are an excuse for not matching the physicality of Herediano on Thursday night. The second match of this two-leg aggregate is this Thursday night at Kennesaw State’s stadium. de Boer must do many things different with the starting eleven as well as the shape (formation) he uses in this rematch. The away goal Atlanta United scored Thursday night was important, as a 2-0 win at home will advance United to the next round. Let’s see what de Boer comes up with on Thursday night, and here is hoping that he uses the wisdom of his years at the Dutch club, #Ajax, to make Atlanta United play like last year’s MLS champions.

Two weeks and counting to daylight savings time!

Adios and have a Funday Sunday!!

Mid-February Craziness.

Bam! A Dollar For Your Thoughts. C’mon Matt. Not News. Great Business Model. Weed. Update Venezuela.

#Armageddon – I thought this was a movie from long ago. Not. NASA and other space agencies are now reporting that on April 3, less than two months from now, there is a very remote chance of an asteroid striking earth. It has happened many times but not anywhere close to what scientists have now calculated. It seems that Asteroid #MV67 is as tall as the Eiffel Tower and weighs 222,000,000 tons. Its speed, once it passes through Earth’s atmosphere, will increase to 39,000 mph. It’s impact could mimic an explosion equal to 7,900 million tons of TNT. Can someone please reply with what that means in terms of the impact on earth?

People in dire straits. Not just in Sub-Sahara Africa, but in areas of the United States, South America and Japan, where the nuclear plant meltdown due to a tsunami has left a city looking like a vast wasteland. Money is not the fix to all human strife, but millions of dollars allocated the right way can go a long way in helping people in need. Speaking of millions of dollars, Japan is hosting the 2020 Olympic Games. Good for their pride and maybe their economy, though we all know that in too many instances once the Games are completed, some host cities are left with a lot of unusable infrastructure. The Olympic Games were once the epitome of sports competition but like other large events, the commercialization of the Games is in my opinion out of control. Here is one example: The Japanese Olympic Committee has reported that $117 million will be spent on the Olympics…..not the competition but just on the opening and closing ceremonies. Wrong in so many ways. #JapanOlympics

Matt Kuchar – you may be right and you may be wrong. Unfortunately, your caddie thinks you are wrong. The backstory: Kuchar won a golf tournament in December with winnings north of $1M. The average cut to a caddie is somewhere between 5 and 10% but Kuchar ‘cut a deal’ with the caddie to take $5,000 for the week. Obviously, the caddie thought that the deal he accepted was unacceptable so he took to social media to publicize his displeasure with Kuchar’s tip. Matt Kuchar is now enrolled in Public Relations 101 at his nearby community college.

With all the news of recent, some good and not so good, many media outlets have made Brad Pitt’s apology to Jennifer Anniston news. No, this is not news and why would anyone care that Pitt supposedly apologized to Anniston for the way he handled their divorce? If this is news of interest to you please see your counselor of choice.

Ahead of their expected initial public offering, Uber reported $3B in 4th quarter 2018 revenue – with a net loss of $865M for the same quarter. Yes, an $865M loss on $3B in revenue. Nice business model.

The marijuana business is booming. Not specifically the cannabis, but the vast service suppliers such as real estate investment trust Innovative Industrial Properties. As a benchmark the S&P 500 returned 8% in January, with Innovative Industrial Properties hitting a month-end return above 36%. Who would have thought that weed could be our next booming industry?

As I mentioned last week, Venezuela is in deep sorrow. This week, the United States has sent an additional 200 tons of humanitarian aid to the Venezuelan border in Colombia. With their esteemed dictator not allowing the aid to reach the people of his country, civilian-led assistance is leading the way to get this food and medical supplies to the needy. So the leader of the country prohibits the aid to reach his people – are there not ramifications to that type of disgusting behavior? #NicolasMaduro

Daylight Savings Time: Three weeks and counting.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!

Hair Bowl II. Paradise Lost. A League Of Its Own. RIP.

Hairy. Riches to Rags…Literally. Professional Football?  Heartfelt Condolences.

The men of hair face off again at the end of this month in Vietnam. Yes, promoters have put together Hair Bowl II, pitting North Korea’s Kim Jung-un and Donald Trump from the United States. At this posting I am not sure what it will cost to watch this pay-per-view event. Enough said.

Venezuela is a country on the northern coast of South America with diverse natural attractions. Along its Caribbean coast are tropical resort islands including Isla de Margarita and the Los Roques archipelago. To the northwest are the Andes Mountains and the colonial town of Mérida, a base for visiting Sierra Nevada National Park. It’s Canaima National Park has #AngelFalls, the world’s highest waterfall at 3,212 ft. At one time, #Venezuela was a major producer of oil and was the world’s 4th wealthiest nation per capita. It sounds like paradise but in sad reality, it is just the opposite. There are many factors that have led to the decline of Venezuela with the lack of leadership leading the way. The greediness and corruption instigated by Venezuela’s so-called dictators, along with a steep drop in oil prices, has put this country of 32 million in a dangerous economic crisis. The hard cold facts of desperation are fueled by hyper-inflation, the lack of food, and a healthcare system that may be less effective than most third-world countries. Thousands of Venezuelans are desperate, trying to feed their families and basically holding on by a thin thread. There are serious political dynamics happening in real time, and there might be a slight light at the end of the tunnel. I will leave you with this thought: people of Venezuela refer to the food shortage as the Maduro diet, named after their current dictator, as millions are starving due to his so-called leadership of the once prosperous country. In recent weeks, Maduro has gone so far as to block humanitarian aid from entering his country. Many feel that Maduro’s regime is doomed, but that was also said of Syria’s Assad. A terrible situation to say the least.

The Super Bowl – last Sunday night; bad football game; mostly lame commercials costing $5M for a 30-second spot; Tom Brady and Bill Belichick win it again. Then, six days later, a new football league kicked off it’s inaugural season. Yep, a new football league – like the single A of professional baseball. No and no thanks.

The Major League Soccer season kicks off in less than a month and all MLS teams are wheeling and dealing to get the rosters set for the 2019 season. It seems that Orlando City, after some tough times, have put the time and money in to improve their product on the field. Many of the players from last year are gone and OCSC looks to be creating a very sold player pool. As I have mentioned many times, OCSC’s fan experience is great, with downtown Orlando as a gathering point followed by a short walk to a great soccer-specific stadium. Their home opener is March 2 – wishing Orlando City a competitive and successful season !

To Alisa, Brandi, and Jason – your husband and father, even in the tough times battling cancer, always had a smile on his face with such a positive attitude. He loved you guys and was always willing to help others. RIP Jeff Unger.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!

Agencies On Notice. They Will Never Learn. Buy Low, Sell High. 4 Tons Of Fun.

S$5 Million For 30 Seconds. It Is A Mammal.  The Model Does Work.  Watch the Video.

A bit over $5 million for a 30-second spot. That is the going rate for what many feel are their favorite part of watching the Super Bowl – the commercials. Lets hope that the creative content of these $5M ad spots makes us laugh, delivers a solid message, and keeps us engaged.

Many years ago as a youngster growing up in Miami, I remember a criminal case that at first I did not understand. The Coast Guard, on routine patrol in Biscayne Bay, spotted a fisherman shooting into the water. The Coast Guard closed in and the fishing boat attempted to escape, obviously to no avail. Upon boarding the vessel, the Coast Guard arrested the captain and charged him with killing two dolphins, illegal then and illegal to this day. I was told by friends that killing dolphins was a trophy kill for many fishermen, able to sell them on the “black” market. Unfortunately for this fisherman, or maybe fortunately, he was arraigned on killing a endangered specie – and then faced a Miami circuit court judge who many criminals in Miami feared. I don’t recall his name, but I do remember the judge looked old, acted old, but was known for being the ‘iron fist’ of sentencing. The judge sentenced the fisherman to fifteen years, with no opportunity for parole. The courtroom was shocked until the judge explained his sentence: all fishermen were warned for many years, previous fines and prison sentences had been handed down to others for killing dolphins, and then his statement that hammered home his anger: Dolphins are mammals…they breathe air using lungs, not gills, and they bear live young. He continued that baby dolphins drink milk and have hair, and as a protected specie, and a mammal, he told the fisherman that he was lucky not to be sentenced under the guidelines of pre-meditated murder. Obviously the media had a field day with this ruling and some of the public was outraged. I don’t remember if the sentencing was reduced on appeal, but I do remember that the harassing and killing of dolphins in Biscayne Bay came to a full stop. Unfortunately, some people never learn. Recently, a Texas court sentenced two brothers charged with the killing of a bottle nose dolphin, found dead from a hunting arrow wound near the Louisiana border in the Gulf of Mexico. The perpetrators, who were found guilty to the killing incident in February of last year, were sentenced to two years in federal prison and a $50,000 fine. Similar to the elephant seal moron, you can’t fix stupid.

Not many people outside of South America had ever heard of Miguel Almiron. Pundits were a bit surprised when Atlanta United bought Almiron from Lanus in Argentina for a reportedly $8M. Almiron, under the guidance of manager Gerardo Martino (Tata), went on to be one of the top players in Major League Soccer during his two-year stint in Atlanta. Almiron’s pace, technical ability, and incredible work rate gained notice from many European clubs. Earlier this week, Newcastle United bought Almiron for $27M, yielding a return on investment of 2.5x (not 3x as some of the allocations go to the MLS, etc.) Once again, the magical and hard working staff of Atlanta United, under the tutelage of owner Arthur Blank, have set a massive precedent for Major League Soccer. Kudos to Darren Eales and Carlos Bocanegra, who not only positioned the sale of Almiron, but convinced the South American Player of the Year, Pity Martinez, to sign with the Club to help fill the void of Almiron’s departure. Atlanta United has a massive task at hand after being crowned MLS champions in their second year, but you can only think that their opponents will again frown upon having to deal with Josef Martinez, Tito Villalba, Ezequiel Barco, and the new acquisition, Pity Martinez.

La La land. California beach goers , especially one individual, have voiced there concerns and displeasure with having to give up one of “their” beaches. While seals can be found on many California beaches, the temporary government shutdown opened the door for hundreds of seals, including elephant seals, to take over a beach usually reserved for humans. With government workers on temporary sabbatical, there was no one to maintain this one beach usually inhabited by humans. So the seals, led by the massive elephant seals, decided to take over the beach to to displeasure of stupid humans. The stupid humans quickly forget that the coastline and the beaches are the habitat of many sea species, including thousands of seals. One individual protested by trying to make the seals leave the beach and go back into the water. Yes, park rangers quickly removed the man from the beach – for his own protection. Elephant seals can weigh four tons and reach a length of 20′. The man removed from the beach should be very thankful. See below.

Daylight savings time countdown: six weeks from today.

Adios and Have a Fun Superbowl Sunday!!!