Listen. The Magpie. Weird. Fly Like An Eagle. Lunatic Fringe.

Don’t Be A Topper. Questioning Human Intelligence. Thoughts For The Last Sunday In August. Breakfast, Lunch, And Dinner. “We All Know You Are Out There.”

  • Years ago, I tried to top everybody, but I don’t anymore. I realized it was killing conversation. When you’re always trying for a topper you aren’t really listening.” – Groucho Marx

We all know ‘toppers’ – they just can’t help themselves by 1) not listening to what you are saying; and 2) interjecting and ‘one-upping’ what you are saying. Groucho Marx is correct – ‘toppers’ are conversation killers and often are either really insecure or child-like, or both. Actively listening to someone prevents you from being a ‘topper’ and a ‘one-upper’ as you take the time to listen and absorb what someone else is saying. Here are five benefits of actually listening by not interjecting or being a ‘topper’:

  • Listening builds trust with your family, friends, and associates.
  • Listening helps to resolve conflict.
  • Listening prevents you from missing important information.
  • Listening enables you to identify or anticipate problems.
  • Most importantly, listening stops you from being so self-absorbed.

Let’s all start listening a bit better so we can all know What’s Going On. 🙂

This is very easy to listen to.

  • Human intelligence has many limitations, including the inability to process large amounts of information simultaneously, limited memory and self-control, and the tendency to make mistakes when processing complex tasks. Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, in this short video, provides an example of intelligence above and beyond most human intellect. I am definitely not a Magpie.

Top of Mind World of the Weird:

  • A former President of the United States and a former mayor of New York City booked into the Fulton County, Georgia prison last week.
  • A few United States Women’s National Team players, with their early exit from the World Cup, now coming out that the team was not prepared properly. Say what? How can a national team from the United States not be fully prepared for the once every four-year World Cup? Mind-boggling.
  • Electric vehicles (EV) are getting a good bit of pushback from consumers around the world. Meanwhile, gasoline in South Florida has climbed to almost $7 a gallon.
  • A plane crashes with Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the infamous Wagner mercenary group aboard. Prigozhin led a failed mutiny against the Russian armed forces in June. Does anyone want to pony up a conspiracy theory?
  • Inflation headed off by the Fed has led United States mortgage rates to reach 8% with home buying activity slumping to its lowest level since 1995. Okay, economist friends….please chime in with your take on the strategic initiatives enacted by the Fed. Thank you.
  • I have not been to a McDonald’s lately. With that said, has anyone enjoyed Burger King in the last few years? Talking about a brand that has fallen off the deep end. I barely remember what I did last week, but I do remember this Burger King jingle from yesteryear:
The bigger the burger, the better the burger, the burgers are bigger at Burger King.

  • I will get to the gist of this take, but just for a little background: When you hear or read the term ‘the speed of sound’ it is also referred to as Mach 1. Mach 1 converts to 761 mph, Mach 2 is 1,522 mph, and each additional Mach number is another 761 mph. As a baseline, the average cruising speed of a commercial airliner is 760 mph. As another reference point, for aircraft speeds which are much greater than the speed of sound, the aircraft is deemed hypersonic. By definition, hypersonic speed is greater than 3,000 mph and a Mach number greater than 5, or Mach 5. Have I lost you yet?

Now that we are all specialists with the speed of sound and what Mach numbers equate to, here is the scenario that soon will be possible for air travelers. Note: the word ‘soon‘ may be ten to fifteen years.

Hermeus is an Atlanta-based startup developing aircraft for both defense and commercial use, with their Halcyon passenger aircraft capable of traveling at Mach 5. Based on the first paragraph above, Mach 5 equates to somewhere around 3,800 mph. That is five times faster than today’s commercial passenger plane and will set up some very interesting itineraries in the near future. For example, a New York city resident will be able to have an early morning breakfast in their favorite NYC deli, board the Halcyon, and be in Paris ninety- minutes later for a late lunch (Paris is six hours ahead of NYC). They could then board the Halcyon at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport, and with the time change, be back in their NYC office by 1:30pm of the same day.

Halcyon Flight Itinerary NY-Paris-NY

  • Leave NY -JFK airport at 7am, arrive Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport 8:30am, which is 2:30pm Paris time. Spend three hours or so in Paris.
  • Leave Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport at 6pm, arrive JFK airport at 7:30pm, which is 1:30pm NYC time.

No eye-rolling, as you know this advancement in passenger aircraft is inevitable. Are there many barriers for the Halcyon to carry passengers at five times the speed of sound (Mach 5)? Yes, there many factors that Atlanta-based Hermeus will need to overcome, but I am quite sure they will get there or their competition will.

A Passenger Plane That Travels Faster Than Mach 5.

  • For whatever the reasons, the number of shark sightings and incidents on the east coast of the United States have risen sharply over the last year. Scientists and oceanographers have no solid answers but this one diver has come up with the solution when involved with a shark incursion. This is amazing and looks so simple and easy to accomplish.
Such a simple way to redirect a shark.

  • I really like these reaction videos. This one has a young man named Polo listening to Red Rider’s Lunatic Fringe for the first time. Tom Cochrane & Red Rider were highly successful in Canada, but the band never had a song in the Top 40 in the United States….including this awesome Lunatic Fringe track. A forty-something year-old song with lyrics that are still relevant today.
Lunatic Fringe One of my favorite songs of all time from the Canadian band, Red Rider.

Adios, pay it forward, be safe, and have a Sunday Funday!!

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