by John Walters

Starting Five

Whose town? His town!

Baker Backers

Cleveland wins for the first time in 20 games and the entire city gets free Bud Light (what was second prize, by the way?). I see a commercial in which rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield overindulges, is chased down by the king’s guard, then tossed into the Pit of Misery. But then he leads them all to escape by scrambling away from the guardsmen and spiraling the keys to a fellow prisoner?

2. CannaCurious?*

*The judges will also accept “Weed All About It”

Why the sudden buzz about pot stocks?

On Wednesday the CEO of Canada-based Tilray (TRLY)appeared on CNBC, boasted that his company had gotten  approval from the DEA to import cannabis from Canada to the USA for medical research, and shares surged 38%. Yesterday Tilray came down from its high, searched in vain for a bag of Doritos, and saw its share price plunge 20%. They’re down another 16% in pre-market trading this morning.

Ahhh, but also yesterday, shares of England-based Isodiol International (ISOLF; a Walker Capital holding) surged 28%.

If you’re a cannabis company looking to step out from the pack, why not hire this pair as your spokesmen?

Why the sudden surge of interest in cannabis stocks? Because Canada is legalizing recreational marijuana use next month (this explains Richard Deitsch’s recent exodus to Toronto). Here are all the details if you just decided that you’ve always been meaning to visit Winnipeg or Moose Jaw and what better time than now.

We should note that this cannabis craze is taking place while the DOW is experiencing record highs. Coincidence?

It’s funny, though: All last autumn our friend Jason McIntyre was referring to Baker Mayfield as “Bitcoin.” Turns out Mayfield is not Bitcoin at all, but cannabis stocks sure appear to be.

3. The President of Something Called “The Ethics and Public Policy Center” Just Did A Very Unethical Thing

Yesterday conservative blogger/lawyer/former Antonio Scalia law clerk/Montgomery Burns doppelgänger Edward Whelan posited, ON TWITTER, that perhaps Christine Blasey Ford just fingered the wrong full-maned white guy for the attempted rape when she was in high school. Then Whalen went ahead and named whom it might have been.

Yes, now you have middle-aged white guys playing the “all white guys look alike” card in order to exonerate Brett Kavanaugh. What is useful here, besides the fact that we hope that other white guy, whom we won’t name, sues the suspenders off this clown, is that Whalen did not deny that the incident occurred. And he’s close buddies with Kavanaugh.

I’m not a smart man, Jenny, but maybe Edward Whelan should not be the man in charge of anything that has Ethics in its name?

4. Sawx Clinch

You better, you better, you Betts

Yes, Luke Voit hit a home run again, giving him 10 with the New York Yankees and making them the first team in Major League history to have 12 players with at least 10 home runs in one season. But the Red Sox won 11-6 to clinch the A.L. East in Yankee Stadium and stave off a three-game sweep.

And the A’s beat the Angels, 21-3, putting them just 2 1/2 back of the Yanks in terms of hosting the wild card game. Note: If both teams finish with identical records, the Bombers own the tiebreaker.

This was a typical Yankee loss in the second half of the season: A few big home runs, including a Giancarlo Stanton grand slam, but a costly (and sort of unforgivable) fielding error by Miguel Andujar in the 7th inning allowed a run and then Aroldis Chapman allowed a three-run bomb to Mookie Betts in the 8th…because he’s a totally unreliable pitcher now. 

Last night A’s leadoff hitter Nick Martini, who we’d thought was a bartender back in Bedford Falls who refused to serve George Bailey, went 3 for 6 with a home run.

Anyway, the A’s are SMOKING RED HOT and right now, at best, the Yanks are the third-most likely team to represent the A.L. in a World Series. But that Red Sox-Astros ALCS should be en fuego.

5. Victim Victoria

At least 80 people are dead and probably more as a passenger ferry capsized in Africa’s largest lake, Lake Victoria. The ship, with a capacity of 600, may have been carrying as many as 1,000 when it sunk. 

Music 101

Whole Lotta Love

The song that released the tethers from Led Zeppelin and let their monster career take flight. The song, the first track off Led Zeppelin II, was also the band’s first single, hitting No. 4 in the USA in spring of 1970 and No. 1 in Germany. Led Zep did not release songs as singles in their native U.K.

Parts of this song were cribbed directly from Chicago blues musician Willie Dixon’s “You Need Love,” which Muddy Waters had recorded in 1962. The band eventually settled with Dixon in 1985 and now he gets credit on the song. Elvis, the Stones, Led Zep: the originals in appropriating black culture.


Can’t wait to read this. In SI, and Tom Verducci is a master.

I was an 11 year-old Yankee fan who sat in the upper deck of Yankee Stadium the day it was announced, in late July, that Billy Martin would come back the following season. We all were relieved and at the time were assuaged (even if I didn’t know what that word meant at the time) because even though 1978 was lost (or so we thought), there was reason to be giddy about the future.


Now this. THIS. This is writing. By Alexandra Petri. Outstanding.

Remote Patrol

Florida Atlantic at UCF

7 p.m. ESPN

This would have been a fantastic game last year, as the Owls won their final 10 games in Lane Kiffin’s inaugural season while Scott Frost’s Knights went 13-0. It’s still a good game, as McKenzie Milton, the Knights’ QB, gets a national prime-time platform. He’s from Hawaii, too, you know.

6 thoughts on “IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

  1. Shout out to the It’s a Wonderful Life! My favorite movie until it was surpassed by Shawshank Redemption. This ND season is begging for a Blown Coverage podcast…

  2. Re the A’s blowout of the Angels yesterday, as noted by Joe Sheehan on Twitter, despite the Coliseum being the home of the Raiders for 46 seasons, the A’s win was the first 21-3 game in the stadium’s history.

  3. I would think that any author would want the following & only the following as the back-cover testimonial blurb & on ALL marketing materials for his/her book :

    “If u don’t enjoy this book, u are probably illiterate.”

    Madison Avenue weeps when they think of who/what they missed out on.

    🙂 🙂 🙂

  4. So, I viewed a “sporting event” on TV this week that was new & unknown to me, although apparently a version has existed since “the Middle Ages” : Equestrian VAULTING. I ended up watching 4 different competitions & each one gobsmacked me more than the last. Ever seen it? It’s a combination of what we used to call “trick riding” in the circus/rodeo/Medieval Knights-type show &, er, yoga poses & dance moves…on top a cantering , circle-moving horse. To music. I KID YOU NOT! And except for the “compulsory” phase where they wear onesie-type get-ups, they wear costumes that out-cheeses any Figure Skating outfit I’ve ever seen. There are competitions for both men & women individually, pairs & “squads” of 6 (mixture of men & women) where 3 are on the horse at any one time. I’m not quite sure why but the pairs & squads “prance” out to the arena to begin. “Prance” is the only word that correctly describes how they get out there & its not meant to be judgmental, except it did leave me with my mouth hanging open, every single time. The VERY best competitors made it look fascinating, the rest, er, not so much. The horses were HUGE & oh, so freakin’ AMAZING as while these people are “vogueing”, jumping on & off & even doing flips (!) on their backs, they just kept cantering, cantering, cantering around (led by a “lunger”). Just when you think you’ve seen it all…

    And speaking of “lunging”, did you see the video clip of the guy doing leg lunges in his house across the floor? His pet Great Dane is at 1st mystified & then mimics what his master does, back across the floor. Hysterical!

    • I did see that Great Dane video, Susie B. Brought a huge smile to my face. Dogs are so intelligent and also, most of them, very sensitive. I love them.

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