by John Walters

Starting Five

The Agony And


Alabama and Georgia in Atlanta for the national championship, i.e. Win Dixie. Baker Mayfield was hella fun to watch, even in pregame warmups


but he was never the same after taking this third quarter hit:

The Heisman Trophy winner failed to lead the Sooners past midfield when they got the ball back with the score tied at 45 and less than one minute to play and then he failed to lead them beyond the 15-yard line in a pair of overtime drives. The magic ran out.

Most of Anderson’s magic took place in the first half

Overlooked in all the fuss about Mayfield and Georgia’s resplendent pair of tailback, Sony Michel and Nick Chubb? Sooner teammate Rodney Anderson rushed for a game-high 201 yards with two touchdowns without anyone appearing to notice.

2. Oh, Boykin!

Trailing 17-14 with less than two minutes to play, Notre Dame backup quarterback Ian Book tossed a go route to backup 6’4″ wideout Miles Boykin, who channeled erstwhile Notre Dame verbal commit Randy Moss and hauled it in one-handed, then juked a pair of LSU defensive backs.

No one in South Bend has made 81 look that good since Tim Brown

Irish win the Citrus Bowl 21-17. It was the school’s first New Year’s Day win since 1994 and its first win in the state of Florida, where it had lost six in a row, since 2002. Are happy days here again in South Bend? Oh wait, what’s that? Bonzie Colson has a foot fracture and will be out until early March? Why can’t we ever have nice things?

Coulson leads the 12-3 Irish in scoring and rebounding and is averaging a double-double this season

If you had Michael Young and Miles Boykin catching a pair of fourth-quarter TD passes from Ian Book in the pool, I need you to go down and purchase me a lottery ticket, by the way. Kthanks. Meanwhile, I think Kevin Stephenson and C.J. Holmes are not going to be all that much missed (and welcome to South Bend, Braden Lenzy).

3. MollyBall

Jessica Chastain and a whole lot of décolletage as Molly Bloom

Saw three movies in the past week: Phantom Thread, Molly’s Game and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. Quick reviews:

Phantom Thread: We get it: Daniel Day-Lewis is the male Meryl Streep. And Paul Thomas Anderson is a genius. But two hours on an unhappy dressmaker? It’s no Ghost.

Molly’s Game: Like Moneyball and The Social Network before it, this Aaron Sorkin project is a tribute to a renegade who trod his/her unorthodox path to success. And there’s lots of snappy dialogue and didacticism (did you know that Jackie Robinson’s brother finished second to Jesse Owens in the Berlin Olympics 200 while setting a world record himself? Neither did we. What does that have to do with illicit poker games? Don’t ask). We loved it, but we are longtime Sorkin fan boys. If you don’t like him, stay away.

Idris Elba spends more time in court in this film than he did as Stringer Bell in The Wire

Also, Kevin Costner is excellent in a small role (doing that Kevin Costner-y thing) and Idris Elba has a soliloquy so tasty that he may just nab a Best Supporting Oscar nomination out of this.

Three Billboards: Oscar winner Frances McDormand. Two-time Oscar nominee Woody Harrelson. Sam Rockwell. Peter Dinklage. Clarke Peters (Lester from The Wire). Lucas Hedges (Lady Bird, Manchester By The Sea). We can’t remember if we’ve ever seen a more talented cast in a more wretched film (Cannonball Run?).

Where to begin? An early aerial shot allowed us a glimpse of The Blue Ridge Inn, just one hint that this film was probably filmed in Virginia or North Carolina and not Missouri. A cop gets away with attempted murder in broad daylight in front of plenty of witnesses (later that cop is put in the same hospital room with his victim). A local firebombs the police station and isn’t even charged even though it’s painfully obvious she did it. The police chief’s wife has an Australian accent that no one bothers to explain. A sadistic dentist.

There’s a host of  Social Justice Warrior crap (this film would make Clay Travis’ head explode), including a completely unnecessary scene about Catholic priests that the film’s writer must have been so proud of himself for thinking up that he just had to wedge it in here. There are two African-American characters who behave as if they live in SoHo or Brooklyn, not some middle America backwater town.

This film is one of five Golden Globe Best Picture nominations in the Drama category. It’s the worst movie we saw this/last year, and we love Woody Harrelson and Frances McDormand.

4.  Bomb Cyclone

Move over, thunder snow. The hot new meteorological term in 2018 is bomb cyclone, and if you live along the Eastern seaboard, it’s headed your way later this week. Fifty-seventy mile per hour winds plus blizzard conditions. If you’re planning to fly in the next 48 hours, you may wanna rethink that because we don’t want to read all of your airport delay tweets.

If you haven’t brought your tuna boat in by now, head to the Flemish Cap!

5. Big Little Lies

We’ve reached the point where our fabulously insecure president is now comparing the size of his nukes to those of North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un. The Wacko from NoKo is nobody’s hero, but it’s just too bizarre to see a 70 year-old man who was afraid to fight in Asia 50 years ago now talk so tough about fighting Asians from behind a desk 6,000 miles away. Meanwhile, has anyone in The Worst Wing seen Dr. Strangelove? Can we schedule a screening?


Just the latest example of how your president is immune to irony…


There hasn’t been a commercial aviation death domestically since 2009, so does that mean Obama was eight times better than Trump in terms of dealing with commercial aviation?





Vaya Con Dios, Rich Rod

Within 90 minutes of us, via USA Today report, learning about his alleged sexual harassment transgressions, the U of A canned football coach Rich Rodriguez. It happens that fast.

Music 101

Riders In The Sky

This cowboy classic by Vaughn Monroe was the No. 1 song in 1949.

Remote Patrol

Thunder at Lakers (oops, Thunder x Lakers)

10:30 p.m. ESPN

Lonzo’s FG % has improved to .349

We were going to go with Fighting Sweet Peas at Celtics, but Isaiah Thomas is sitting this one out and we’d rather watch Russell Westbrook take fellow Westwood One-and-Done’r Lonzo Ball to school.


6 thoughts on “IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

  1. I hate to go “Scoreboard” on you here, Susie B., but my 2018 stock pick is already up 22% on the year and it’s the morning of January 3rd. Any hedge funder would be proud of a 22% return on the year.

    Will my stock pick implode or will it continue to ascend? Who knows? But I have the option to get out now with a 22% return in a day and a half. There’s nothing wrong with that.

    • There’s nothing “wrong” with a quick return on a buck (as long as you don’t commit a felony…)but to call it investing is like calling Madonna a virgin just because she sang ‘LIKE A VIRGIN’!

      “…If you’re gonna play the game, boy,
      You gotta learn to play it right.

      You got to know when to hold ’em,
      Know when to fold ’em,
      Know when to walk away,
      And know when to run.
      You never count your money
      When you’re sittin’ at the table.
      There’ll be time enough for countin’
      When the dealing’s done.

      Every gambler knows
      That the secret to survivin’
      Is knowin’ what to throw away
      And knowin’ what to keep.
      ‘Cause every hand’s a winner,
      And every hand’s a loser,
      And the best that you can hope for
      Is to die in your sleep.”

      jdubs is… The Gambler. Sounds like a movie ad! 🙂

      BTW, one of my stocks TRIPLED last year. However, since I’m STILL in the red in it by more than 50%, I’m not exactly doing The Dance of Joy just yet. 🙂

      How did you do overall last year? I just plugged all my 2017 divs into my 2017 YTD spreadsheet & the total return for my individual stock portfolio (as separate from my mutual/index funds which actually did BETTER than my indiv stocks this year) was 27%. I was weighed down by my energy holdings. (How ironic!) Without the energy stocks (& UAA, oof, NOT a good pick!), I think my overall return would have been more than 50%. Oh sure, not a 10-bagger in one year like GBTC (?), but I’m DIVERSIFIED.

        • You doubled YOUR ENTIRE ACCOUNT?! Woof-whistle, mazel tov. I think the only year I did that was 2009.

          Also, to clarify – NOT all my energy holdings sucked like a Hoover. Nope, my 3 refiners all did well & in the green : 20.9%, 40.3%, & 62.9%. And my solar stock (SPWR) came back from a calamitous (some might say “scorched”… 😉 ) 2016 when it was down (74.8)% to finish in the green this year by 28%. The good news is I bought SPWR so cheap that even after last year’s cliff-fall, I was still in the green.

          And Jacob, I’m a buy & holder. I like to put my money into companies I think will make me money over the loooong term AND will benefit people &/or the world in general. I like growth stocks AND dividend stocks. And unless it’s to ‘hedge’ against a stock’s loss, I’m not into options – too much like straight-up gambling. I’m surprised you’re not into options, jdubs. 🙂 One thing that surprised me after investing in mutual funds for 30 years, is the THRILL I get owning a “piece” of a company via its stock. Oh sure, it’s teeny-tiny “ownership”, but it’s a thrill just the same.

          Basically, when I think of my investing “philosophy”, I think it reflects our “human roots” – hunting & gathering. 🙂 🙂

  2. Re Rich Rodriguez, I don’t think your 90-minute timeline is correct. Arizona had known about the harassment allegations for some time; the article you link to mentioned that it had already conducted an investigation.

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