by John Walters
1. NoKo, Oh, No!
“They Will Be Hit With Fire And Fury Like The World Has Never Seen”* **
*Unless you saw Game of Thrones last Sunday
**The judges will accept “Nuclear Winter is Coming”
Yesterday, while on vacation in Bedminster, N.J., and surrounded by his cabinet, President Donald Trump warned North Korea that it “best not” continue making idle threats about nuclear weaponry or else…the quote above.
So that’s a red line. And to make that threat between the anniversary dates of Hiroshima (Aug. 6, 1945) and Nagasaki (Aug. 9, 1945) is verrrrrrry interesting.
And then North Korea‘s state-run TV threatened a missile strike on the U.S. territory of Guam in the Pacific. It’s starting to sound real, although MH’s editorial board can’t exactly understand why either country is hostile toward one another except for the fact that both are led by maniacal, mentally unbalanced tyrants.
Allow us to be Jon Snow here and note that while the Lannisters (Trump) and the North (Korea) are rattling sabers, the REAL enemy (Climate Change) is coming for us all. A recently released draft report from 13 federal agencies concludes that temperatures have risen “rapidly and drastically since 1980” and that the past three-plus decades have been the warmest in 1,500 years.
2. Like a Rhinestone Cowboy
One of 12 children of an Arkansas sharecropper, Glen Campbell learned to play the guitar well before puberty (though he never learned to read music) and never looked back. With his good looks, folksy charm and genuine sense of humor, Campbell became a session musician for the likes of Frank Sinatra, toured with the Beach Boys as Brian Wilson’s replacement in 1964-65, appeared in the 1969 film True Grit (alongside John Wayne) and went on to a string of country-and-pop hits, such as “Wichita Lineman” and “Rhinestone Cowboy.”
Campbell, who had been suffering from Alzheimer’s since 2011 and was quite public about his fight with the disease, died yesterday at the age of 81.
3. I’m Sorry, Sir, Your Name Does Not Appear To Be On The List
So ESPN’s BLM website (Clay Travis would likely refer to it as “their more overt BLM website”), The Undefeated, published a list of “The 50 Greatest Black Athletes,” the results of a survey of more than 10,000 people.
Note: It’s a very, very strong list. I mean your top six, counting down, are Serena Williams, Jesse Owens, Willie Mays, Muhammad Ali (“I am the Third Greatest!”), Jackie Robinson and Michael Jordan. Wilt Chamberlain, arguably the most dominant athlete in a team sport in the past 50 years (i.e, in the history of big-time team sports), is 26th.
The three biggest names not on the list (and there’s no excuse for this): Tiger Woods, Kobe Bryant and Jack Johnson, the boxer who was the original black athlete that scared the hell out of White America.
Names I’d have taken off or lowered: Do Gabby Douglas and Simone Biles really both need to be Top 10, or even on the list? I love Larry Fitzgerald, too, but are you really trying to tell me he’s greater than Tiger? Child, please. Isaiah Thomas? Over Kobe??? C’mon.
It’s still a better list than Rolling Stone‘s “100 Greatest Movies of the Nineties,” which excluded Saving Private Ryan and Good Will Hunting. Blech!
4. Netflix’s Newsworthy Day
Early yesterday Netflix announced that it was bringing back David Letterman to host six one-hour shows next year. In each show Dave will interview one guest (but will Paul be there???). “Here’s what I have learned,” Dave said in a statement. “If you retire to spend more time with your family, check with your family first. Thanks for watching, drive safely.”
Who will be Dave’s guests? I’d guess a wish list would include Barack Obama, Sean Spicer, Tom Hanks, Elon Musk, Paul McCartney and Mick Jagger. Your suggestions?
Later yesterday, after Disney announced earnings (and failed to beat estimates), the Mickey Mouse Club announced that after next year its properties will no longer be seen on Netflix. Disney will begin its own streaming services, which will just create more of a headache for consumers.
The streaming service’s stock (NFLX, that is) dropped more than 3% after hours. Is this smart strategy by Disney, an act of desperation to stave off a rising leviathan, or a little bit of both? And will other content-producing companies follow Disney’s lead in an attempt to starve Netflix, which now has $20 billion set aside to create original content?
5. Star, 80
We missed it, but Dustin Hoffman turned 80 years old yesterday (also, Jerry Garcia, who died 22 years ago when he looked 75, would have turned 75 today). He’s one of America’s essential actors, on a one-handed list, for the past 50 years. Here are the five Hoffman films you absolutely must see, from the MH editorial board.
- The Graduate
- Marathon Man
- Rain Man
- All The President’s Men
Also receiving votes: Midnight Cowboy and Wag The Dog (and he’s fantastic in Dick Tracy in a limited role).
Ah, the vicissitudes of the food service industry. Occasionally you walk into work to bartend a party for 1,400 and learn that your new co-worker is a 6’10 Aussie who plays lead guitar in a heavy metal band. So please enjoy the musical stylings of Hellbringer performing at the Maryland Deathfest.
alternation between contrasting things; a change of fortunes