IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

Once Upon A Time In Comerica

Opening Day.

Ninety minutes later in Detroit, it would be sunny. But in the bottom of the first, when Miguel Cabrera lofted this home run to right field, it was a winter wonderland. Miggy slid into second base, not sure if his ball had left the park.

Cabrera’s snow-mer came off reigning AL Cy Young winner Shane Bieber, who struck out 12 but took the loss.

Gaetz Of Hell

Matt Gaetz Play List: “Sexy And Seventeen,” (Stray Cats) “Girls, Girls, Girls,” (Motley Crue), “Young Girl,” (Gary Puckett) “Edge Of Seventeen” (Stevie Nicks), “Go Away, Little Girl” (Bobby Vinton), and of course, “I Love Little Girls” (Oingo Boingo) or “Private Life” (also by Oingo Boingo, the band name of which sounds well, kinda dirty).

We predicted Gaetz will resign by Easter Sunday and there’s nothing quite like a holiday weekend Friday afternoon for a news dump. It is curious, though, how so many God-fearing Christians in the GOP will head to worship services secure in the knowledge that God/Jesus espouses Republican values while casually ignoring the manifold misdeeds of men such as Gaetz and, of course, his hero, Donald Trump. Some of us are old enough to remember when Gaetz, 38, a Florida congressman, flew all the way to Wyoming simply to appear at a rally condemning Republican senator Liz Cheney for condemning the January 6 insurrection. Weird.

Fox News and Fox Business News has not mentioned “Matt Gaetz” since that disastrous Tucker Carlson interview. He’s already been disappeared.

The Interactive Exhibits Are Lit. Literally.

Enter The Ring, Exit The Ring Finger

How intense are MMA fights? At the Cage Fighting Fury Championship in Philadelphia, fighter Khetag Pliev lost his ring finger. Not a ring on his finger. His finger.

The referee stopped the bout so that those closest to the action could search for the missing digit. The finger was eventually found, dislodged from Pliev’s hand, inside his glove after several minutes of searching. The finger was later reattached at a hospital.

Pliev lost the fight. The real calamity here.

That Tree Has More Than One Trunk

We don’t know who the photo editor for the Bing home page is, but he or she does a fantastic job. Each day they post a photo that perfectly illustrates what a big, wide, wonderful planet we live on. It’s totally my favorite planet (of the ones I’ve visited). Anyway, this was their pic yesterday.

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

The Edge Of Seventeen

Advice for both Matt Gaetz and the NFL that any inveterate Blackjack player would tell them: do not hit on 17. Why can’t To Catch A Predator stick to sports? Why does it have to get politics involved?

Are we done here? I think so.

Gaetz will resign within a week.

Trifecta

It’s Opening Day, April Fool’s Day AND Holy Thursday. I really don’t know how you mash all three of those together seamlessly, but maybe invite 12 of your closest friends to dinner and have everyone sit on one side of the table while watching the Mets-Senators game and do NOT believe anyone who says Rocky Mountain oysters are seafood.

In The Rough

Los Angeles County sheriff’s detectives have reportedly determined what caused Tiger Woods’ car crash last month but will not reveal it, citing privacy issues. In short, they won’t reveal it unless Tiger does. Which sounds rather passive aggressive, no?

This leaves it up to all of our imaginations as to what might have caused the morning crash in which no other vehicles were apparently involved. The suggestions range from the sublime (he swerved to avoid a Caddy) to the ridiculous (sexting Kobe’s widow… too soon?).

We’ll have to wait and see.

Feeling Minnesota

Slide over there, hockey. Maybe Minnesota is really a basketball state?

For our money, the two most valuable players in the respective NCAA tournaments are true freshmen from the Land of 10,000 Lakes. That would be Paige Bueckers of UConn and Jalen Suggs of Gonzaga

Suggs is last year’s Minnesota Basketball AND Football prep player of the year just a year. Teammate Corey Kispert was his conference’s player of the year. Fellow teammate Drew Timme is the tournament’s leading scorer (and non-verbal smack talker). But Suggs just has “IT.”

Once his outside shooting range catches up to his maturity and control of the flow, watch out. He’s our No. 1 draft pick because you can build a franchise around hist talent, his leadership and his marketability.

Bueckers, meanwhile, has been UConn’s top targeted recruit since she was a freshman in high school. She was just named AP Player of the Year as a frosh, is Geno’s first freshman to ever average 20 ppg (20.1) and is scoring at a 22.5 ppg clip during the tourney. If female players turned pro after one season, she’d be gone.

Even Suggs has said of his fellow native Minnesotan: She’s the GOAT.

Woop! There Goes Gravity

*The judges understand if you’d prefer to go old school and use Steve Miller’s “Space Cowboy” title as opposed to this Eminem lyric.

We were excited when we saw this on the Twitters this morning, but then did a little research and discovered that McCandless actually did this back in 1984. So what do we know? Still, quite a photo there.

Song Crafting

This is fabulous, as Paul Simon reveals that his 1970 classic came together from quite disparate bits ranging from a Bach chorale to a gospel group. It’s also wonderful interviewing by Dick Cavett, as he does something not enough of his successors (looking directly at you, Conan and Fallon) have learned to do: sit back and listen; don’t interrupt.

Quite a gem. There’s another interview between these two men in which Simon informs Cavett that Garfunkel did not like the song when he first heard it.

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

Dr. Doom*

*The judges will hesitantly accept “Rochelle, Rochelle”

CDC director Rochelle Walensky, certainly not taking a page (or a tweet) from the previous administration, warns of “impending doom” with the number of Covid cases rising 12% in the past week. It seems as if Dr. Walensky is worrying that Americans are easing up as we approach the finish line…

unless she’s referring to Riverside, Calif.,-based Christian dither metal band Impending Doom, whose hits include “Ravenous Disease” and “Hell Breaks Loose.”

Dr. Death

Does anyone understand what Dr. Deborah Birx is doing in her interview with CNN? Is she blithely stating that, oh yeah, we probably should not have deceived the American people for those final seven months of Donald Trump’s presidency, needlessly abetting the deaths of 400,000 Americans? If only she had been in a position, you know, to do something about that.

Here’s her Profile In Cowardice, after her boss touts himself as “certainly I’m someone with a good you-know-what” (no…what?):

It’s like an Auschwitz guard who could’ve liberated prisoners but says later that if he’d have done so, that might’ve alarmed the other concentration campers that something was amiss where that smoke stack was continuously spewing white ash.

No, it’s certainly not all her fault. But is she atoning here? Is she attempting to say, You don’t understand; if I had contradicted Donald….what? Was Putin going to poison her? She had her chance to resign and speak up last summer. She rolled the dice, hoped Trump would win, and that she’d never have to come to terms with her dereliction of duty.

In moments such as these, I go to old friend Rust Cohle to provide some wisdom and advice for dear ol’ Dr. Birx.

Baylor Out

Few if any schools can survive a 19-0 second half run by Connecticut and still be in a position to win the game at the end. But that was the case with defending national championship Baylor last night. Also, the Huskies were not called for a foul against DiJonai Carrington in the closing moments with a one-point lead.

UConn frosh Paige Bueckers had 28 in the win and we’re here for a Stanford-UConn championship match, should it happen.

Afterward Kim Mulkey, Baylor coach, suggested that there be no more COVID testing during either the men’s or women’s tournaments because it would be a shame to have a game canceled at this point and she was immediately sent a gift hoodie by the folks at the MGM sports book in Vegas. I mean, I kind of see her point and she does live in Texas, after all.

Buffalo Woes

The Buffalo Sabres had been winless in their previous 17 games before hosting the Philadelphia Flyers. Then Buffalo took a 3-0 lead into the third period. You know what happens next? Philly scores three goals in the third, forces OT, and then wins in OT.

That’s 18 in a row for Buffalo. Don’t worry, gang, it”ll be shorts weather in only two months.

Hustle and Flow

Iceland. Tell me you wouldn’t do this if the opportunity availed itself…

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

Ted Cruise*

*The judges will accept almost anything on this one, from “Dick Dynasty” to “Ship Of Fools” to “Croc-of-Shit Infested Waters”

How do we get the right’s minds off the fact that President Biden has a 72% approval rating on how he’s handling the pandemic, still the most important crisis facing America? Let’s get a photo op on the Rio Grande to scare our racist and/or not-so-bright acolytes into thinking that suddenly illegal border crossings are a problem.*

*They were a problem last year and the year before that and the year before that. And if you really do believe they’re a problem, stop patronizing restaurants. Or start asking your landscaper to provide proof of residency. Or ask your local pol how come there aren’t any laws on the books promising jail time for employers who hire illegals.

In the same weekend Lindsey goes “Grahambo”, justifying his ownership of an AR-15 with the whole apocalypse in South Carolina followed by “the gang” overrunning the po po but somehow he’ll be able to take them on… as soon as he takes off his pink nightie and ushers his house boy out the back door.

Oh, and Dr. Deborah Birx concedes, Yeah, as a matter of fact, we probably did needlessly lose 400,000 American lives because I didn’t stand up to Donald Trump. So, hey, my bad.

Lowering The Boom On Boomers

As tortured and sophomoric as most of SNL‘s live sketches have been this season—when the show bothers to air, which is not much since the holidays—the pre-taped bits have been inspired and hilarious. Maybe they should go the SCTV route and do most of the show this way.

Anyway, here’s SNL tossing out truth grenades about baby boomers in the pandemic world. Every line hits, though we don’t think they needed the “Edith Puthie” part and do wonder what Melissa Villasenor’s cut part sounded like.

The more I listen to/watch this, the more I think it’s the best thing they’ve done all season.

Western Stars*

*The judges will also accept “Pacific Toast”

Gonzaga. Oregon State. UCLA. USC. Half of the Elite Eight are schools from a Pacific Coast state and only one of the schools (Michigan) is located east of the Mississippi River. There’s gotta be a way for ESPN to loan the rights to Bill Walton to CBS/Turner for tonight and tomorrow.

And yes, we prefer the Saturday-to-Tuesday setup for the Sweet Sixteen and Elite Eight games to Thursday to Sunday. The pandemic has brought many improvements.

Gonzaga’s 6’10” sophomore center Drew Timme (above) has been a monster thus far, on a team with more celebrated players. He’s gone for 30 and 22 in the 29-0 Zags’ last two wins. Gonzaga is looking to become the first team in 45 years (Indiana, 1976) to win the national championship undefeated.

The Power Of Love

This is Zach Skow, whose personal story of salvation and redemption (alcohol, drugs, liver transplant to founding a dog rescue foundation) you can learn more about here. And this is Henry.

Pretty amazing. Look at the difference love can make in a lost and lonely creature’s life. Good for Henry. And good for Zach. There is no weakness in empathy and kindness. Nothing, in fact, is more empowering.

Drop The Pilot

His name is Antonio Sena. Flying 3,000 feet above the Amazon back in January, ferrying fuel for wildcat miners mining illegally on protected land, the lone engine on his propeller plane failed.

Sena survived the crash landing without serious injury and then somehow, even more remarkably, survived 36 days in the Amazon rainforest among the jaguars and anacondas and poisonous insects, etc. He did lose 55 pounds, so if you’re looking for a diet to take off that pandemic weight, try his “Lost in the Amazon” diet. Looking at you, Ted Cruz.

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

Torrents Of Arabia*

*The judges will also accept “Dredge Of Glory”

Remember that old Snickers ad campaign: “Not going anywhere for awhile?” Wondering if one of the Ever Given’s containers holds a shipment of the candy bars.

Oddly, enough, all four hours of Lawrence of Arabia aired on TCM yesterday.

Suggestion to solve this problem: Paint the boat black and then ask the LAPD to remove it.

Georgia

Yesterday in Georgia, a victory for rigging the game in your favor. Governor Brian Kemp signed into law a bill that is designed, ostensibly, the curb the voting fraud that even he, a Republican, publicly admitted never took place in his state during the 2020 presidential election.

Twitter is all agog about the law making it a crime to hand out water or food to voters waiting in line (I’m mildly surprised that Georgia did not announce election day would now take place some day in early August). However, the really serious part of the law is the one that makes it okay for state election officials to overturn the results of local elections. So, your vote really won’t matter as long as there are a few corrupt people at the top.

It was yet another sad day for America in 2021, where scenes have played out that are every bit as ugly, if not uglier, than any grainy black-and-white footage from Alabama in the Sixties. Think about it. Rep. Park Cannon simply knocks on the door of Gov. Brian Kemp because she wants to be the one non-white male to witness him singing this historic and deplorable piece of legislation and she is strong-armed by state troopers, led away in handcuffs and jailed.

Two months earlier white insurrectionist busted windows at the U.S. Capitol and spread feces inside and cops simply asked them to leave as if they were Albertson’s shoppers who’d entered without a mask.

Do you not think white and black people are treated differently by law enforcement? Still? I just hope I’m alive when white people get their (overdue) comeuppance. I may be on the victims pile, but that’s simply justice being served.

Sam Cooke famously sang, “A change is gonna come.” People rightly ask, When? I don’t know. But freedom will always ultimately outlive fascism. It’s simply a far superior ideal.

There’s a way to fight this that won’t happen but it should. First, Hollywood production companies should announce that they will no longer film in Georgia (that’ll knock out nearly $3 billion in revenue immediately).

Next, NBA and MLB and NFL players should refuse to play in the state. A gesture like that would need its respective established sports leaders, men such as LeBron James, to lead the movement. But there’s no reason this should not happen. Finally, as a consumer, you can choose not to purchase Coke products or fly Delta.

This segment on Tucker Carlson last not was revelatory. Basically, it’s white people preaching civil disobedience if they feel that the enforcement of laws are treating them disproportionately unfairly. Welcome to being black, Tucker. Never mind that your argument is rubbish, but now you’re just saying that 1) it’s okay to disobey the law if it doesn’t work for you (something minorities have been saying forever) and 2) that you’re okay with fascism over democracy (something we already knew).

Knock One Back For Lucille Bluth

Actress Jessica Walter passed away yesterday at the age of 80. Walter (no relation because, among other things, our last names are different) rose to fame for her role as the stalker in Play Misty For Me in the early Seventies but this generation will remember her as the cold-hearted vodka guzzling matriarch from Arrested Development.

Linda Bluth: “I’ll be in the hospital bar.”

Son Michael Bluth: “There isn’t a hospital bar, mother.”

Linda: “This is why people hate hospitals.”

Then there were her interactions with Martin Mull as Gene Parmesan, the Bluth family private eye. Walter’s reactions are wonderful, no? Someone opined on Twitter that it would be great if this JW arrived at the Pearly Gates only to learn that St. Peter is Gene Parmesan. A lovely thought.

A Cowboy Heads Home

Author Larry McMurtry has passed away at the age of 84.

Lonesome Dove is an American epic, right up there with the very best works of John Steinbeck. He also wrote the books that you’d come to know better as films: The Last Picture Show, Terms of Endearment and Brokeback Mountain.

If you’ve never seen The Last Picture Show, catch it the next time it’s on TCM.

Should This Be Her Biggest Concern?

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

It’s Not Complicated

In the wake of the Atlanta and Boulder mass shootings—18 murdered if you’re keeping score—I’ve seen earnest Democrats asking versions of this question:

That’s easy. In the 21st century, democracy will kill the Republican party with far more alacrity than guns ever would. Moreover, if Republicans are able to keep citizens (heavily) armed, they’ll continue to be able to inject fear into the system: fear of the occasionally crazed mass murderer, fear of tyranny (never mind that the GOP is the party in quest of tyranny), fear of immigrants, illegal and otherwise.

Gun sales are the product of fear. Voting is the product of hope.

In a changing demographic, voting will mean the end of the Republican party. Guns, on the other hand, allow for the types of militias that could have successfully overrun the Capitol on January 6th if only they had planned it more thoroughly.

Why is the GOP afraid of democracy, as Sen. Chuck Schumer asked on Wednesday? Because democracy and white supremacy no longer go hand in hand.

When The Ship Hits The Sand

Behold the Ever Given (we’ll explain in a moment), which after a fierce sand storm found itself wedged sideways in Egypt’s Suez Canal, arguably the planet’s most vital shipping lane. The The Ever Given, operated by Taiwan-based Evergreen Group and owned by Japan’s Shoei Kisen, had been sailing to Rotterdam from China.

The ship was still stuck as of Wednesday night and we’ve suggested lube, maybe?

McCain Unable

Oh, Meg. No. Not like this.

A person who owes her entire career to her identity as the daughter of a late centrist Republican senator is cryin’ ’bout “identity politics.” Wow.

Coming To The Ocho

I mean, sure, I’d watch. I’m not sure if you need to be a short-skirted Nordic goddess in order to judge such a competition, but hey, I’m a walnut-smashing neophyte. What do I know? Already printing 500 “All Nuts For Walnuts” T-shirts that will go on sale on the MH merchandise site. Coming soon.

Uluru Springs

Australia has rightly been called “a sunburned country,” but not at the moment. This is the world famous Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, located in the heart of the continent (Australia, much like the USA, is sparsely populated in its geographic center).

Ulure ordinarily looks like this (below), but recent storms have created a very rare occurrence of water falls rushing down its myriad faces.

What will God think of next?

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

Stop The Bleeding

Is this photo for real? Is that the Boulder shooter and is the official on the right actually applying something to his right thigh/hip to stem the flow of blood? Why isn’t he punching him in that spot?

Madness.

Oh, and by the way: Young (21) male? Check. AR-15? Check. Under-sexed? Most likely, check. Angry at the world for what a failure he is? Will go out on a short limb… check.

By the way, the U.S. hadn’t seen a highly publicized mass shooting ( > 4 people killed) since the start of the pandemic a full year ago. Now we’ve had two in less than a week. Ten people killed at the King Soopers in Boulder. Thanks a lot, Pfizer/Moderna.

Yes, there were more deaths by gun last year ( >40,000) in the USA than ever, but more than 23,000 of those were suicides.

Elgin Baylor

Elgin was just a little before our time, but the Hall of Famer who passed away yesterday at the age of 86 has long been hailed as the forebear to Dr. J and MJ and even Kobe. The 6’5″ D.C. resident averaged 27.4 ppg and 13.5 rpg over a 14-year career. Those figures are, respectively, 3rd-best and 11th-best all-time.

Baylor played all 14 seasons with the Lakers (Minneapolis/Los Angeles), eleven of them in the Hall of Fame. He played alongside two of the game’s all-time greats: Wilt Chamberlain (the GOAT, I’ll hear no arguments) and Jerry West (the logo).

What’s Up With Watson?

Remember when Deshaun Watson, then a rookie with the Houston Texans, was known for doing kindnesses for the team’s clerical staff? The former Heisman Trophy runner-up who’d led Clemson to a national championship had a sterling reputation.

Now, in the span of a month—and it should be mentioned, in the midst of a fractious relationship with Texans management—14 different women have filed lawsuits of sexual predation against him.

Where are we here? There’s a lot that’s foggy, including the fact that Watson has yet to be charged with any crime. Stay tuned. All’s we know is that Watson’s chances of appearing in a State Farm commercial with Jake are next to zero.

A Season On The Brink (Of Glory)

This young lady is 6’4″ Stanford freshman Cameron Brink, whose top-seeded Cardinal play later tonight on ESPN2. Besides looking as if she just stepped out of Frozen or a Vogue shoot, Brink is (this is from SLAM online) “…also the goddaughter of Dell and Sonya Curry, who were close college friends of her own parents at Virginia Tech. Her dad, Greg, was a teammate of Dell’s, while mom Michelle was a star hooper who roomed with Sonya, a Hokie volleyball standout.

Brink considers Steph Curry, who plays up the 101 in the Chase Center for the Warriors, to be like a “big brother” to her. A consensus Top 5 prep player out of Beaverton, Ore., last year, Brink is Stanford’s leading rebounder and averages 10.1 points per contest. I don’t make the rules here, and no one is claiming she’s the next Diana Taurasi, but this is the type of player ESPN will fall madly in love with: she’s got America’s Next Top Model looks and an intriguing back story.

She seems thrilled here (Why can’t I be on Instagram right now?). She’s grown up.

Who Is Nestor?

MAGA congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FLA) recently referenced his “son” Nestor, 19, who is not his biological son nor is he even legally adopted. Nestor, a Cuban refugee, just happens to live with Gaetz. Riiiiiiiiiiight.

This one just doesn’t wash. Sorry. I’m not finding people who are in Gaetz’s demographic to be overly empathetic to the plight of non-whites, particularly to the extent of sharing a home with them…. unless… unless…

I lived in New York City a long time. A long, long time. I recognize this trait in people I’ve known. Am I stereotyping? You betcha. Am I wrong? I don’t think so.

WHAT WOOD YOU DO?

by John Walters

This morning Cathie Wood, the founder and CEO of ARK Investment Management, put out a note that she foresees shares of Tesla (TSLA) quadrupling in value to $3,000 by 2025. It’s worth noting that Wood, 65, was named “the best stock picker of 2020” by Bloomberg News.

We’d note the similarities between TSLA now and AMZN five years ago. By 2016 AMZN shares had already had a fabulous run-up, just as TSLA has made a 700% gain in the past year or so. And people were wondering how much higher AMZN, then selling at under $700 per share, might go.

TSLA is selling at just under $700 per share right now. AMZN is selling at about $3,100 per share today.

Who will remember this blog post in four years, besides Jacob Anstey and Susie B.? Who knows? Who knows if Susie B. is even still out there or if she’s burning incense and olive leaves in hopes that Sweet Pea’s ankle will recover in time for the postseason?

Anyway, I dunno. But I’d be very, very surprised if TSLA stock is not selling for at least $2,100 in 2025 and even that would be a 200% gain. In a post-Robinhood world, that’ll look very good in your portfolio.

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

by John Walters

A Song Of Ice And Fire

A volcanic eruption in Iceland, as if that nation doesn’t already have a surfeit of natural wonders. Meanwhile, above, a divine marriage of technology and nature. Shot by drone. Not an opening for a new season of Game Of Thrones.

These gawkers do realize that slipping into a flow of lava is instant death, don’t they? Have they never watched a James Bond film?

The Jean Genie

The unofficial mascot of 2021 March Madness: 101 year-old Sister Jean of Loyola, whose Ramblers advanced to the Sweet Sixteen. She’s older—by nearly 20 years—than the NCAA tourney itself. Loyola is one of ELEVEN schools that were seeded five or spots below the team they beat this weekend and we’re not even fully to the Sweet 16 (the previous record through two rounds was ten).

Fast forward two years when Betty White, now 100, wins an Oscar for her portrayal of Sister Jean in Rambler Resurrection. It’s the role that White was born (in 1923) to play.

As of this morning, the tourney still has UCLA, whose 11 national championships are the most in the tourney’s history, but the next four biggest winners—Kentucky, North Carolina, Duke and Indiana—did not even make the tourney.

The tourney has never been set up better for a Gonzaga triumph. The Zags are undefeated and could become the first school since the Hoosiers in 1976 to cut down the nets with an undefeated record.

The Chase

I only caught the last 20 minutes of it, so I’m unable to endorse my channel guide rating of two stars for The Chase, a 1966 film that aired on TCM on Friday. However, if that rating is accurate—when’s the last time you saw a Guide synopsis that read “a disappointment”?—we may have a winner in the “Best Cast, Worst Movie” sweepstakes.

Look at this cast: Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, Robert Redford, Jane Fonda, Angie Dickinson and the immortal Miriam Hopkins (one of Hollywood’s most luminous starlets back in the ’30s). And yet the movie was a pfffft, both critically and commercially. And not even bad enough to be a cult classic.

Although, it is odd (and SPOILER ALERT here) that a film based in Texas a few years after the Kennedy assassination has as its dramatic climax a captured man being gunned down by a stranger who steps out of the crowd as he’s being escorted by a lawman to jail. A little too on the nose and a little too soon, no?

Foooooore!

This kid better make his high school’s golf team this spring.

Just Stay Tuned

Hey, JW, do you just post Rex Chapman tweets in order to avoid having to write more or to avoid posting political stuff about how 21st century Republicans are flat-out garbage?

That’s a very good question. But this is a quality video, no?

IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

Good morning….I said, “GOOD MORNING!” That’s a lady who’s been to church on Sunday all her life.

by John Walters

Stop Your Sobbing?

On the one hand, women’s college basketball stars such as UConn frosh Paige Bueckers sound hopelessly naive when they tweet or IG about the paltry workout facility they are given, particularly relative to the men, during the tournament. After all, the men’s tournament will net the NCAA, in TV revenue alone, approximately $700 million in the next two-plus weeks. The women’s tournament? About $30 million.

Separate AND unequal.

On the other hoop hand, Paige Bueckers is herself at least 20x the attraction that most of her playing brethren are. And yet she gets the same deal—a full scholarship, room and board—that an eight-minutes-a-game reserve on a 16-seed does.

The NFL Cashes In

Yesterday the NFL signed new media rights agreements with CBS, NBC, Fox, ESPN and Amazon collectively worth about $110 billion over 11 years. The deals will begin in 2023 and run through 2033.

The deals are also about a 100% markup from the current NFL deal, which was already exorbitant. What’s happening here? The NFL realizes that traditional networks are making one last stand to stave off obsolescence, so it soaked them for all they’re worth. It’s like knowing, as the head of state, that we’re all moving to electric vehicles, but extracting one last political contribution from Big Oil or Detroit before we make the transition final. Smart.

Uh Oh

It feels like this is every Fox just-off-air moment. Right before they put back on their masks of “patriotism” and “Christian values.” And while there is nothing ethically wrong with vaping—other than it makes you look like a douche—it’s wonderful to see Hannity caught being who he actually is.

Coaching

Michigan State is up 44-31 just before halftime versus UCLA when a blown assignment on a switch leads to a Bruin bucket at the buzzer. Do you have a problem with how Tom Izzo handled this? With how Spartan player Gabe Brown reacted to Izzo?

I really don’t myself. Save it for the comments. I’d love to hear what you think.

UCLA rallied from five down in the game’s final 90 seconds to force overtime and then win.

Vanderwaal’s Forces

I did not know about teen sensation Grace Vanderwaal one week ago. Now I do. She is an incredible talent who, still only 17, writes and performs her own songs. This, below, was the Suffern, N.Y., native’s introduction to the world at age 12 in 2016.

Miracles have come true for Grace. But I truly worry about where she’ll be, emotionally and mentally, in a year or two. She’s already dyed her hair pink AND then shaved her head. You’ve seen the VH-1 Legends docs. So have I. We know where this is headed.

“You Don’t Give Awards To Comedians”

There are two Jerry Seinfeld award speeches on YouTube well worth your time. This one and the one where he accepts a Clio. In both Seinfeld simply truth-abuses the very people who are lauding him. It’s hilarious and honest and yet… there he is, accepting the awards.