Doppler Radar. Beautiful People. MBS. $100.00…Not.

Accuracy & Accountability.  Collins Avenue @ 18th.  Can You Say Big and Bold?  Why Pay When You Can Watch Live?

A forecast can be a prediction based on credible information.  For example, if you forecast monthly, quarterly and annual sales you hopefully use the data given to you by the people generating the revenue.   You take their information, validate it and roll it up into a rolling forecast.  The same holds true for weather forecasting.  You take the empirical data that you retrieve from the National Weather Service, Doppler radar, and other sources that predict weather fronts.  So with all due respect (nominal) to the television talent that reports on the weather, how in the name of weather satellites do they get it wrong more often than not? For example, at 4pm on Friday, I heard a weather forecaster talking about hurricane Harvey: “No way this storm becomes a category 4…..once it reaches land the winds will dissipate”.  Later on Friday, I put on the TV only to see that Hurricane Harvey is a category 4 hurricane, with 130 mph winds and unfortunately delivering as  much as 40″ of rain over the next couple of days. Sure, it really did not matter if Harvey was a category 3 or 4 storm, but has it gotten to the point where we no longer listen/watch the weather as the forecasts spit out by so-called meteorologists are often wrong?  Maybe it is time to bring back Willard Scott…..at least he was funny and entertaining when he presented the weather on The Today Show.  Godspeed to all affected by this storm.

There are few areas in the world that match the energy, pace, aura, and money spent on cosmetic surgery than South Beach.  The area is always ‘on’ and is still, after many years, a place to see and be seen.  Walk into the Delano Hotel or take in the Clevelander’s outdoor bar scene.  It basically is a combination of Paris, Barcelona, and Hollywood on fire, with maybe the best people watching in the world.  This is off-season, so the hotels are at ‘normal’ rack rates, but the streets are busy day and night.  After December 1st, starting with the Art Basel exposition, the visiting population expands as tourists and returning homeowners bunker down to spend warm days and awesome evenings while the other parts of the country are freezing.  Miami Beach’s gentrification, similar to many cities around the world, has been a positive thing.  I still favor other areas of Florida, including Delray Beach and downtown St. Petersburg, but for two days you really can’t beat the South Beach experience.

I have ranted in last few months about the affect the new Mercedes Benz Stadium has had on Atlanta United’s schedule.  The ongoing delays have put a level of congestion into United’s September schedule that in a simple word is daunting.  No retraction in my opinion but now that I have toured the stadium the wait was worth it (maybe not in Tata Martino’s mind).  The stadium and it’s many amenities are fantastic – the ‘halo’ video board circling the top of the stadium is amazing, along with the look and feel of the stadium in general. I had a chance to visit the new Dallas Cowboys stadium soon after it opened – as amazing as that building is it does not compare to Mr. Arthur Blank’s new palace. If you have a chance, go to any event at this stadium….a great venue and for sure to be a great experience.

As many as 50 million people viewed last night’s Mayweather-McGregor fight.  Some went to bars and paid a good bit of money and some bought the fight on pay-per-view for $100.00 or so. I made the decision not to watch the fight….until midnight last night when a friend of mine reminded me that he was videoing the fight from his TV using the Instagram app.  Yes, I watched the fight live on my mobile phone which makes you wonder about the future of the pay-per-view model.

Adios and have a Funday Sunday!

 

There Must Be An Island. Short Takes.

The Difference Between Terrorists and White Nationalists.  Short Takes.

The world continues to undergo a socio/economic change due to terrorist groups and other factions dovetailing off of horrific events.  This past week the Charlottesville and Barcelona events showed the world that hate is not only prevalent but now has become a factor affecting everyday life including travel, tourism, and worldwide stock markets.  There is no end in sight and these type of events feed the television and social media network’s content – that they know will drive ratings and advertising dollars. It is interesting that after 9/11, people all over the world seemed to take a step back, offered up kindness, and in general just got along… understanding the shock and horror from a few deranged terrorists.  Can you stop someone from renting or stealing a car and driving it into a crowd of people?  Can you convince racists that their efforts would be better spent organizing charity events instead of hating people that just happen to have a different skin color?  There is an island somewhere in the far reaches of this planet for all these people….that in my mind is the only solution.

On a lighter note:

  • Tomorrow’s total eclipse is a no miss event.
  • Yesterday’s open house at Atlanta’s new Mercedes Benz Stadium will now calm the storm of all of the delays and the effect the delays have had on Atlanta United’s schedule – the building is in one word:  Fantastic.
  • The English Premier League has started and college and pro football are right around the corner…The Fall will be here soon.
  • I missed posting the blog last week….and shockingly I had many people contact me asking ‘why no post?’.  I consider the inquiries a compliment – let’s all remember that I write the blog as a challenge until one or more of you pony up your social media/marketing skills and help me.  No, I am not pointing to anyone particular….other than someone who is now retired but has a massive marketing background before he became the CEO of an unnamed insurance company…a daughter of mine with a massive PR background….and maybe someone who is in charge of one of the hottest brands in the restaurant industry!!  🙂

Adios, where your protective glasses tomorrow, and have Funday Sunday!!

Underestimated. August Dog Days.

We Just Missed.  Some Takes for the 1st Sunday in August.

You task architects with designing a state-of-the-art stadium that allows for both functional and optical scalability.  The goal:  to allow the configuration and the look and feel of the Mercedes Benz Stadium to change based on the type of event, specifically football and soccer.  The architects and designers come through with meeting the criteria, which includes the lower level seats on modular rails to be slid forward for football and slightly back for soccer (to allow wider field width).  From a audience experience standpoint, the upper deck sections can be covered with branded tension fabric to make the stadium interior feel more intimate, especially for events that will not fill the stadium.  From a planning standpoint, Atlanta United made the assumption that the approximate 39,000 seats in the lower bowl of the stadium would be more than enough to satisfy the demand.  39,000 fans at most games would be an incredible start for a new franchise and the fabric covering the upper deck areas would give these fans a more intimate environment to watch the game (instead of seeing thousands of empty seats in the upper bowl).  Sounds like a great plan, right?  Wrong, as the incredible season ticket response and demand for the tickets has led to capacity crowds of 45,000 plus.  Now Darren Eales, United’s excellent leader, has the dilemma of opening the upper bowl for some or most of the games left on the schedule.  Not an easy decision to make as opening up the upper bowl may minimize the goal of the intimate environment and would allow up to 75,000 to see a United game….more concessions, security, ushers, gate personnel and police would be required.  Eales has stated that they may open the entire stadium for the Orlando City game on September 16th and the last home game against Toronto. Social media is blowing up with fans complaining/demanding that the entire stadium be open so everyone can buy tickets…what a great problem for Eales and his team to have!

Short Takes for the 1st Sunday of August:

  • Is Chris Christie ok?  Is there something diametrically wrong with him?
  • When is it ever ok to talk someone into suicide?  Michelle Carter, at the time just 17-years old, decided to encourage her 18-year old boyfriend to commit suicide instead of calling authorities to get the kid help.  Where does this type of mind-set come from?
  • From a very small town in India, with no knowledge or previous lineage to aeronautics, 30 year-old Anna Divya is now the youngest commander of a Boeing 777.  She dreamed, she wanted, and she obtained.  Incredible story.
  • Last week the Dow Jones Industrial Average, a.k.a. the ‘Dow’ reached an all-time high of 22,026.10.  The Dow, started in 1896 with 12 original stocks.  By the way, General Electric (GE) is the only original stock left in the Dow which is now made up of 30 blue chip stocks.  Has the Dow hit it’s peak?

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!!

 

A Celestial Event. Bombs Away. Time for MBS.

Don’t StareThe B-1 Sorties.  Goodbye Bobby Dodd.

It has been thirty-eight years since it last happened.  As children, some of our smarter teachers took us outside and helped us experience this in a safe way as we wondered how we were seeing the Moon in broad daylight. On August 21 millions of people across the United States will see nature’s most wondrous spectacle — a total eclipse of the Sun. The event where the Moon completely blocks the Sun, daytime becomes a deep twilight, and the Sun shimmers in the darkened sky.  The eclipse swipes a path from the Pacific Northwest and sweeps southeast all the way to South Carolina.  For the northern Atlanta area, there may be a very short window somewhere around 2:35pm (I am sure our spot-on weather forecasters will update us as we get closer to August 21).  It will be a very quick peek as the shadow of the moon passes quickly at 1,800 miles per hour, twice the speed of sound.  Richie, as discussed, try not to observe this using your binoculars.

The moron North Korean ‘leader’, a.k.a. Kim Jong Un, is at it again with his launching of two ICBM’s last week.  I may be overthinking this but you would think that Defense Secretary James “Mad Dog” Mattis has had about enough.  Yes, he has been told to stand down and let détente run it’s course, but something tells me that our SeCDef is ready to move forward with eliminating North Korea’s ability to even launch a bottle rocket.  He directed two U.S. Air Force B-1 bombers to fly over the North Korean peninsula….maybe as a warning or probably as a pre-emptive training run for what B-1’s will do to the North Korean landscape.  The B-1 carries the largest payload of guided munitions of any bomber, handles like a fighter jet, and has the ability to fly at Mach 2, twice the speed of sound.  The B-1’s advanced radar systems can track moving vehicles (think missile transport vehicles) and carries an incredible payload of 82 conventional bombs or 24 joint direct attack munitions, allowing the bombs to attack a specific target like a nuclear power plant.  Is it time to make this happen?

From one of America’s oldest sports stadiums to one of newest.  Yes, it is time for Atlanta United to move on the new Mercedes Benz stadium after going 6-2-1 at Bobby Dodd stadium.  Kudos to the Atlanta United staff, who had to pivot quickly when the Mercedes Benz stadium delays were announced.  Their efforts led to sellouts at all games and a loud and vociferous atmosphere that all us hope can be replicated at their new digs.  Let’s not forget Mr. Arthur Blank, who had the foresight to invest in a Major League Soccer franchise and just as importantly hire Darren Eales, who has used his experience and skill set to manage through the dynamics of starting a new franchise.  Unite and Conquer Atlanta United!

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday…..only four days until the first NFL preseason game!!

 

 

 

 

The Sunday Cynic.

A Change of Pace For JustMyTake.

It is reported that Sean Spicer’s sudden resignation has forced Saturday Night Live executive producer Lorne Michaels to pay Donald Trump $5m to have Spicer return to the podium for the daily White House press briefing.  Michaels figures it will take that much money to hire new writers to find new content for Saturday Night Live.

The city of St. Petersburg, Florida, upon learning that O.J. Simpson is moving back to Florida to be near two of his kids living in the area, has announced that martial law will take effect October 1st, 2017. This is the day O.J. is to be released on parole from his 33-year sentence for armed robbery, kidnapping and eight other counts. Never mind his other crime of passion.

The announcement that Toyota and Volvo are going for the most part electric car by 2019 has forced all 7-11 gas stations to immediately replace all fuel pumps with electric plug-in kiosks.  They are not concerned that there are barely any suppliers of these types of kiosks and haven’t figured out how they are going to manage the queue and line of traffic backed up into the streets for the charging process.

It looks like 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 yesterday by Paris St. Germain, who is paying Barcelona a $256m transfer fee for Neymar – whose salary will be $35m annually AFTER taxes.

It is reported that North Korean dictator Kim Jung un has decided to relocate to Palm Beach, Florida.  This is after being told that the new USS Gerald R. Ford nuclear aircraft carrier, with capabilities to support ninety aircraft, would be parked off the coast of North Korea, only 100 miles from Pyongyang.  False news reports had him joining O.J. in St. Pete.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!!!

 

The Juice. Collision Update. Jet Blast. Sport.

Was The Glove Too Tight? The Navy is Quiet.  It Is a Concrete Wall.  Sports Not.

It was twenty-two years ago and I remember exactly where.  A non-descript hotel lobby in San Francisco after a long flight from Atlanta and a quick meeting at Moscone Center.  I glanced up at a TV and there was a live ‘breaking’ news broadcast with a helicopter’s film crew peering down on a white Bronco.  With no sound, many other guests and I could only make out the text scrolling at the bottom of the screen.  The rest of the story and the subsequent 1995 trial is embedded in my mind, along with visions of O.J. Simpson running through and by defenders when he played at USC and with the Buffalo Bills. The subsequent acquittal is a story for another time.  What I really don’t recall is why O.J. is in prison now?  In September of 2007, O.J. learned that a good amount of his memorabilia was in a hotel room at the Palace Station in Las Vegas.  He decides to gather a posse, burst into the hotel room and at gunpoint, steal the memorabilia.  On October 3, 2008, exactly 13 years to the day after O.J. was acquitted of the murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown, and Ronald Goldman – O.J. was found guilty on ten separate charges.  He was sentenced to 33 years with eligibility for parole starting this October.  Many think he will be granted parole which I find ridiculous based on the ten charges and a 33-year sentence.  If his name was John Simpson instead of O.J. Simpson would there even be a chance of parole after nine years?  No way.

Does anyone have an update on why the U.S. Navy ship and the Philippines tanker collided weeks ago resulting in seven U.S. sailors deaths?  The U.S. Navy has been very quiet on this one.

I am very fortunate that the father of a longtime friend had a home on St. Maarten.  I visited there a few times – a beautiful island that is split between the Dutch and the French.  We always found lots to do and see, usually stayed away from Orient Beach, and enjoyed the year-round sunshine and beaches. Bret’s father was nice enough to take us to restaurants, mostly on the French side, all of them way out of our budget – just a fantastic experience.  What I never understood, with the beauty and the beaches of the island, why many people hung out at the beach right next to the airport?  The fact that one of the runways was less than 200 feet from the beach always made me wonder why people picked the ‘runway’ beach to sunbathe.  His father once showed us why – people, unbelievably, would gather at the end of the runway and hang on to a pole to experience the jet blast from the aircraft take off.  Maybe my sense of adventure was limited but in no way did that look fun, never mind safe to me.  Over the years, there have been some reported injuries when the jet blast blew people off the pole backwards but never one resulting in death, until last week.  Any death, especially by accident, is never to be taken lightly, but what was a 57-year old woman (and her family) thinking when they decided to experience the jet blast?  Neglecting the posted warnings, the woman was blown off the pole backwards and slammed her head against the concrete barrier a short distance away.  Very sad and unfortunate for so many reasons and more importantly it is time for government officials to shut down that jet blast experience.

The Hawks and the Falcons are still dormant.  The Atlanta Braves are the Atlanta Braves, and Atlanta United is on a break until this Friday…..so much to the applause of many – no sports comments this week.  Well…maybe one:  kudos to Roger Federer for becoming an eight-time Wimbledon champion, his 19th major.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!!

 

 

 

 

 

A North Korea ICBM. Real Warriors. Hitting the KPI’s. The Other Football.

A Response to Kim Jong-un.   Cork the Whine.  In a Word:  Overachievement.  Have the Falcons Become Secondary to United?

Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s so-called supreme leader, sent the United States an alarming ‘gift’ for the 4th of July.  North Korea’s ballistic missile, fired off last Tuesday, flew seven times higher than the international space station.  Why is this significant?  Their intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) traveled a vertical distance of 1700 miles before falling back into the Sea of Japan (yes, it landed in the part of the Sea that is designated North Korean territory).  Analysts now say that on a flatter trajectory their ICBM would be capable of reaching as far as Alaska.  As the world responded with alarm, the U.S. Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, continued to convey that the U.S. would maintain diplomatic and economic strategies with the North Koreans.  It is obvious that any military strike against North Korea would severely affect South Korea and possibly China.  With all of that said, Mattis, in a press conference at the Pentagon, did admonish the North Koreans for their provocative actions and warned Kim Jong-un “that any effort by North Korea to start a war would lead to severe consequences”.  There are a few geo-political issues to deal with should the U.S. elect to strike and wipe out North Korea’s nuclear infrastructure, but let’s be clear that the deployment of U.S. B-2 bombers and up to 24 F-22 Raptors, followed by up to 300 Tomahawk missiles from our Ohio-class nuclear submarines would for the most part set North Korean nuclear proliferation back twenty years.   Godspeed.

I enjoyed my working assignment at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games.  As part of the Olympic broadcast production team, I worked the football (soccer) competition at the University of Georgia’s Sanford Stadium.  As the Games were about to close I was offered to stay on and work the Paralympic Games, which turned out to be way more enjoyable than working the ‘regular’ games.  From that day forward I have had the upmost respect for the athlete who performs at levels we can only dream about, with disabilities that we cannot comprehend.  I have the same respect for all of the participants of the Warrior Games, held last week in Chicago and honoring close to 265 wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans from the Army, Marine Corp, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and U.S. Special Operations Command.  This year, the Warrior Games also invited the United Kingdom Armed Forces as well as the Australian Defense Force to participate.  Call me ignorant (my friends Samir and Richie do all the time), but I had no idea the Warrior Games started back in 2010 as a way to enhance the recovery and rehabilitation of wounded warriors and to expose them to adaptive sports. Teams include active-duty service members and veterans with upper-body, lower-body, and spinal cord injuries; traumatic brain injuries; visual impairment; serious illnesses; and post-traumatic stress.  As I watched some of the competition last week, I quickly remembered how much I enjoyed the camaraderie and competitive spirit of the athletes participating in the Paralympic Games.  To say the least, way more rewarding than working the regular Olympic Games competition.  Next time you are ‘hurting’ participating in your sporting activities think about the athletes of the Warrior Games and just ‘cork the whine’.

To Darren Eales and his Atlanta United staff:  a job well done at the mid-season break.  A 9-7-3 record, 4th place in the eastern division, a league-leading 39 goals scored, sellout crowds at Bobby Dodd, and a game-in-hand against fifth place Orlando City and sixth place Columbus.  I assume that the tension fabric covers for the upper deck sections of Mercedes Benz stadium are no longer applicable?  I will go with 60,000 fans for the September 10 match against league-leaders FC Dallas.  I can’t wait to see how the video operator handles the massive LED screen way before the 3:30pm start time……the Falcons play at Chicago starting at 1pm!!  Maybe Major League Soccer can push the Atlanta United start time to 4:30pm?  No matter, that September Sunday will be great fun for the city of Atlanta.

Speaking of the Falcons and the National Football League, we are only a  27 days away from the first exhibition game and less than eight weeks away from the NFL regular season.  The Fall should be great fun.

Adios and have a Funday Sunday!!

 

Let’s Not Ever Forget. NFL. Sandy Springs. AtlUtd. Boxing Robbery.

Independence Day.   Short Takes.

A very happy 4th of July to you and yours.  I hope that no one takes our Independence with a grain of salt, especially in light of some of the chaos and terrorism related to non-sovereign countries.  I was surprised that Independence Day was only declared a federal holiday in 1941, considering the United States is celebrating our 241st birthday.  On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress voted in favor of independence and two days later, on July 4, delegates from the thirteen colonies adopted the Declaration of Independence, drafted by the one and only Thomas Jefferson.  If you have a flag, fly it.  If you don’t have one, The Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Ace Hardware have flag kits for under $15.00.  Buy a flag and fly it proudly.  To the north:  hoping all  Canadians enjoy and celebrate your 150th birthday!

Short takes:

Only thirty-two days to the 1st NFL preseason game!  Come on you Falcons!

Have you had the “opportunity” to drive north on Roswell Road north of I-285?  Amazing development, a mass amount of concrete and it looks like no end in site.  I have limited knowledge of zoning but something seems a bit sideways with the amount of density in that short distance between I-285 and Mt. Vernon Road.

Last night’s road win puts Atlanta United in fifth place.  After Tuesday night’s home game United has a seventeen-day break as Major League Soccer takes some time off for the Gold Cup tournament.  This will bode well for the Five Stripes as they get ready for a tough late August and September schedule.  Tuesday night’s game is another sellout.  Anyone want to give me a guess for the expected attendance at United’s first game at Mercedes Benz Stadium on September 10th?   I will go with 60,000+.

Manny Pacquiao got robbed.  Unanimous decision?  No way.

Adios.  Have a Funday Sunday and a great 4th of July.

 

 

 

 

 

Atlanta United. Alternative Revenue Streams. USS Fitzgerald.

Mid-Year Review.   Hawks Making a StatementAnswers Please.

Atlanta United.  An expansion team.   Our manager has a great pedigree and CV and has coached at the highest levels. We are 7-7-3 and 5-2 at home. Those are facts – and here are some suggestions/assumptions:

– At any level, in any league, if you have won only seven times in 16 games it is time to take some risk and change it up.  Our manager, Gerardo (Tata) Martinez, will do so with Josef Martinez now at 100% and the pending congestion with the match schedule (U.S. Open Cup & September).  The U.S. Open Cup American player requirements will also dictate that Tata dial up more rotation.
– Last night was a bit different, especially since Colorado decided to sit back the entire game, but some of the teams we have played get stronger as the match goes on and sometimes we lose our legs. Is this a result of Tata’s demand for high pressure or a bit of over-training?
– Is the manager forcing the tactics even if he does not have the type or quality of players to successfully pull off the high pressure system?  When the high pressure works it is great to watch and it would be interesting to see what percentage of United’s goals to date have resulted from turnovers due to their high pressure tactics?
– Michael Parkhurst is the captain, and the mainstay of the team……or is he?  I think he is and yes, he sometimes is physically over-matched but his experience and tactical awareness outweigh any of his shortcomings. Remember, he has fellow center back Leandro Gonzalez Pirez to manage and keep in check.
– Tyrone Mears’ decision-making, lack of man-marking, and poor service is systemic. Last night’s change to Anton Walkes was necessary but it was not a good test for Walkes as Colorado’s attack was measured.
– The July transfer window – it may be necessary to change out one or two and bring in two new players to get us through the match schedule and keep us in the playoff hunt.
– We are obviously much better at home than away so the second half schedule should bode well for us.

With all that said, the second half of the season, including the pending move to Mercedes Benz Stadium, should be fun to watch.  Go United!

When you walk through The Battery at the new SunTrust Park, you wonder if the baseball game is a secondary objective?  Shops, restaurants and bars, and living and working spaces basically dominate the perimeter of the ballpark.  This was the reason the Atlanta Braves bolted from downtown Atlanta to the perimeter of Atlanta.  It is a real estate play with Braves baseball being a piece of the revenue stream instead of the only source of income.  It now looks like the Atlanta Hawks, led by CEO Steve Koonin, will make a play to develop downtown’s Philips Arena area into a spectacular live, work and play hotspot.  If you are from Atlanta, think The Avalon in downtown Atlanta, with it’s never-ending bars, restaurants and shops of all kinds.  A massive uptick for downtown Atlanta – if anyone can pull it off it is Steve Koonin.

As a follow up to last week’s questions regarding the USS Fitzgerald’s collision, can anyone help explain how and why this happened?  Maybe I missed it but has the Navy swept the cause under the rug?  I hope not, especially for the family and friends of the seven sailors who lost their lives due to the collision.

Adios and Have a Funday Sunday!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eggs and Bread Please. Can You Say Sonar? Good Looking Brown Cows. Home Again.

Amazon’s Grocery Play.  How Does This Happen?  Ag Illiterate.  Random Thoughts.

If you take the metropolitan area of Atlanta, it is very difficult to drive a mile in any direction and not see a Kroger or a Publix grocery store, not to mention Trader Joes, Fresh Market, Sprouts, Aldi, and Whole Foods.  Speaking of Whole Foods, they now have a parent company who a long time ago was only known for selling books online.  Amazon has now purchased Whole Foods for $14 billion and will leverage the stores to broaden their web business and boost online ordering.  Amazon’s thinking is that they just did not buy a grocery chain – they bought 431 upper-income, prime location distribution hubs for all of Amazon’s offerings.  Publix and Kroger have recently implemented “click and pick up” services at most of their stores but Amazon’s unprecedented forethought and technology should turn the grocery world upside down.

I have been on the bridge of both a Navy ship and cruise ship and had crew members explain the advanced technological tools at the disposal of the captain and crew.  Though I understood about 20% of what they were talking about, it was quite clear that the bridge of these vessels uses technology to run every aspect of navigation.  So….how, with all of this technology and collision avoidance electronics does a U.S. warship collide with another vessel?  Friday night, off the coast of Japan, the USS Fitzgerald, a U.S. Navy Destroyer, collided with a merchant container ship.  I realize that navigating a huge vessel is difficult in crowded seas, and that human error with no “air traffic control” sometimes happens, but I just can’t imagine, with all the available technology, how ships collide in the open sea.  It is bad enough that the ships collided in the first place with a tremendous amount of damage to the Navy ship, but last night divers found the bodies of seven USS Fitzgerald crew members in the flooded compartments of the ship.  Very sad.

Agriculture and food processing and distribution.  Not exactly top of mind for most people as they walk the aisles of a grocery store picking and choosing their food and drink of choice.  Agriculture and farming don’t always make it into the core curriculum of colleges around the world so is anyone surprised that 7% of ALL American adults, over 16 million people, do not know that chocolate milk is made from milk, cocoa, and sugar?  Many answered that chocolate milk comes from brown cows.  Maybe it is time for agriculture to be included in all school grades just to give us an understanding of harvest, distribution, packaging, and merchandising so at a minimum most of us know how food is grown and what it takes to get food to grocery stores. Just sayin’.

Random Thoughts – North Korea finally releases a U.S. citizen who was charged with taking down a political banner.  So nice of the North Koreans to send him back after he has been in a coma for over a year.  North Korea, your time is coming and it is going to be ugly.  We have not heard from Secretary of Defense, General Mattis, lately and for good reason. No one should be surprised when he orders airstrikes on this maniacal country.  Last night, after a poorly played first half, Atlanta United beat the Columbus Crew in front of another sold out Bobby Dodd Stadium.  The win and three points pushes United into sixth place with another match at D.C. United this Wednesday night.   The jury at the Bill Cosby trial, after a marathon of deliberation, could not come to agreement on a verdict.  Does the prosecution retry the case?  Father’s Day, in some aspect, can be dated back to the Middle Ages and the celebration of fatherhood was brought to America by the Spanish and Portuguese.  President Richard Nixon signed a proclamation in 1972 making Father’s day a permanent national holiday in the United States.  I wish a trip to Seattle was on my agenda.  Not to see the Seattle Sounders of Major League Soccer or the Seahawks of the NFL, but to take a look at the brand new Jimi Hendrix Park.  Hendrix, widely acclaimed to be the greatest rock guitarist of all time, died in 1970 at the age of 27.

Have a Funday Sunday and happy Father’s Day!!