Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Movie Idea

Movie idea - a re-boot re-boot re-boot of Charlie's Angels. Hear me out.

The latest re-boot is a "woke" bomb at the box office. But they missed a golden opportunity.

If you really wanted to empower women the right way to do it would be to cast the voice of Charlie and the Bosley character as strong women. They can be smoking hot and smart as hell and they're in charge! Say Jessica Walters as the voice of Charlie and Jennifer Aniston as Bosley with the same attitude she brought to her role in Horrible Bosses.

The Angels could be three men - a cop, a special forces operator and professional male model who also happens to be a world class computer hacker. The three would have who have a hard time making it in today's world because they're too good looking and too macho and too heterosexual.

Also make the villain a hot looking woman and go full Airplane! and Naked Gun on the woke culture and you'd have the comedy hit of the year.

I'd pay to see that (but no way am I paying to see the latest Charlie's Angels bomb).

2020 Baseball Hall of Fame Ballot

Here's who I'd vote for (in order of my level of support):

- Derek Jeter - no brainer

- Curt Schilling - I've made the case for Curt Schilling and the Hall of Fame in the past. Suffice it to say that Schilling is 15th all-time in strikeouts and every player ahead of him (except Roger Clemens) on that list is in the Hall. Schilling is being punished for his politics.

- Omar Vizquel - 11-time Gold Glove winner. He was basically the equal of Ozzie Smith (but without the back-flips).

- Larry Walker - Former MVP and 7-time Gold Glove winner. He suffers from people biased against Coors Field but he was as good a hitter as Edgar Martinez and as good a fielder as Dwight Evans. He's a Hall of Famer.

- Todd Helton - his career batting numbers are comparable to George Brett. He's easily one of the Top 10 First Basemen of all-time and perhaps the Rockies greatest player ever.

- Jeff Kent - Former MVP and all-time leader among second basemen in HR. Wasn't exactly likable which I think has hurt his Hall chances.

My feeling is that the steroids guys traded their eligibility for the Hall of Fame for the bigger paychecks they received for their cheating ways. They cashed those checks and did those steroids - so tough luck that's the bargain they made.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- Over 140 "new" Nazca Lines discovered in Peru

- Interesting look at how the American Bison shapes its environment

- Paint me like one of your French girls Jack

- Slate's list of the 50 best nonfiction books of the past 25-years. Love book lists but puzzled by this one. I've only read one book on this list (and I wouldn't recommend that book to another person)

- How NBA executive Jeff David stole $13 million from the Sacramento Kings. "David was earning a low-to-mid-six-figure salary. But he had a desire for more." Greed is an awful thing. 

Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous thoughts and observations.

Out of curiosity - will the Democrats be asking families to talk about healthcare at the Thanksgiving dinner table this year?... And speaking of Thanksgiving - an oral history of the infamous WKRP turkey drop episode... Even with all my success - I'm still just Chris from the Hood... has one of Tom Brady's nicknames as "The Pharaoh". Nobody calls him that. I think someone on the site's staff just randomly adds a ridiculous nickname to see if anyone notices... You have to think that the reason President Obama did not give Joe Biden his endorsement was because he knew his buddy Deval Patrick was going to run. Now it seems like Obama's endorsement will be going to waste... The Monarch butterfly egg more beautiful than a Faberge Egg...  Instead of saying "You're welcome" I'm going to try saying "Epstein didn't kill himself" instead. Will be interesting to see if I get any reactions...

The Gettysburg Address

156-years ago today.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

New Vehicle Sales

Saw this chart (left) with this "explanation" for slowing vehicle sales:

"Vehicle sales falling in almost every major market while GDP grows. New territory.

At some point we're going to have to acknowledge that either:

1. New mobility models and generational shifts are having a real impact.
2. There's a global recession coming
3. Both 1 and 2"

I see global vehicle sales falling and I assume it is mainly for three reasons (and none of them are related to a global recession):

1. Vehicles are built to last these days. Growing up if a car hit 200,000 miles it was cause for a newspaper story and maybe even a commercial by the car manufacturer. Today it is pretty common for cars to hit 200,000 miles. People are holding on to their vehicles longer than in the past.
2. It used to be that new college graduates were a big segment of the new car market but with the explosion of college related debt many new graduates are loath to add to their monthly nut.
3. People have come to realize that a new car loses a significant amount of value the minute to leaves the dealer lot. Many have decided to forego the new car market for a used car instead.

That's what I see when I see the above graph.

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- Nice interview of Shane Parrish by The Economist

- Cool - the mass of a super-massive black hole measured in suns

Six steps to getting into shape. Common sense things but also easier said than done.

- It seems that China is definitely engaging in "nonvoluntary" organ donation. Scary!

- Personally I thought this was a fantastic dig.

- Cambridge scientists reverse aging in rat brain stem cells. Could have major implications in treatment of MS.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Sports Illustrated

When layoffs were announced at Sports Illustrated less than a month ago and Twitter was abuzz with people bemoaning the fate of the magazine they loved growing up - I kept quiet. Forty people were about to lose their jobs. It did not seem right to comment under those circumstances.

Now with the announcement that Sports Illustrated will become a monthly magazine with five special issues (one being the Swimsuit issue) in 2020 - I felt it was time to say what was on my mind.

When the 40 layoffs were announced people on Twitter denounced the move while at the same time reminiscing about the "old" Sports Illustrated they grew up with. And especially the writers they loved back then. It bugged me that the realization didn't seem to dawn on these folks that the writers being mentioned no longer wrote for Sports Illustrated and many were even no longer alive.

People seemed to be ignoring reality. And it bugged me. Sports Illustrated is a shell of what it once was. Name a magazine popular 35-years ago that isn't.

It was no surprise that the new management moved to cut overhead by cutting staff by 40 and now move to further cut overhead by reducing the print (and delivery) costs to just 17 issues a year. I would also expect the new management to try to upgrade their online presence and the hiring of Pat Forde seems like just such an attempt. I would also look for the new management to leverage the vast vaults of past SI issues. Bring back some of the best works of their best writers of the past.

Make the most of the nostalgia so many were praising just  weeks ago. Good business.


Thursday, November 14, 2019

Linky Links

Stuff I found interesting or amusing and thought I'd share.

- A brief history of Disney

- And speaking of Disney - Disney+ gets over 10 million subs just two days after launching. Goal is 60-90 million subs.

- I've always been skeptical of UFO's but now I'm starting to believe.

- Verizon and Motorola are bringing back the Razor Flip Phone. I do miss my old Razor but I'm not paying $1,500 for a new one.

- Entitlement liabilities are a graver threat to the next generation of Americans than climate change. And if they live in a Blue State wait till they learn that many of those generous pensions given out to public unions are also under or unfunded (and they are expected to pay the bill)

China and Coal

China tells the outside world that they are going "green" and are committed to renewable energy sources. But the truth is what they are committed to is burning coal. China now burns more coal than almost all the industrialized nations combined.

Part of me understands. Coal is a source of energy available domestically. "China's dependence of energy imports rose from 9% in 2014 to more than 20% in 2016." There seems to be no end to the demand for more energy in China. So why not try to maximize what resources you have at hand?

But China is also a signatory to the Paris Climate Accords. And it bugs me that I'm supposed to give up plastic straws while much of the world seems content to let China slide on saying they are committed to "green" energy and "clean coal".

Top 5 Songs with the Word "Under" in The Title

1. Under My Skin - Frank Sinatra

2. Under My Thumb - Rolling Stones

3. Under My Wheels - Alice Cooper

4. Under Pressure - David Bowie and Queen

5. (tie) Under the Milky Way - The Church (tie) Under the Bridge - Red Hot Chili Peppers