by John Walters

Before, or instead of, reading today’s post, we encourage you to read the column filed here yesterday by Wendell Barnhouse (“Remember The A La Mode”). You can find it by clicking on it just to your right.

Zoom-bie Apocalypse

Before March of 2020, had you ever taken part in a Zoom meeting (no)? In the past two and a half months, have you (yes)? Which is not to say that this is the first we’ve heard of Zoom. If you are of a certain age (middle), you may recall Zoom as a kids’ show that aired on PBS in the Seventies.

Trying to catch hold of the magic that other PBS shows such as Mr. Rogers and Sesame Street had managed to make, Boston’s PBS affiliate put together the most Woke cast you can imagine but it never quite took hold. Perhaps the best that might be said about it is that we still remember the theme song nearly 50 years later and that it was like a poor man’s Electric Company. It felt like a show conceived and entirely written by over-earnest Cancel Culture libs without sense of humor. As opposed to Sesame Street, which had a sense of humor…to wit:

Anyone caught watching Zoom in my New Jersey neighborhood at the time would be given at least three purple nurples and one wedgie the next time he dared step out his front door.

Vampire Diaries

The New York TimesMaureen Dowd drew a pretty neat metaphor between vampires, Covid-19 and the current administration in a weekend column, using the fact that a bat likely started the coronavirus as her jumping-off point. V is for more than just Victory and Virus.

Good news. On Sunday, for the first time since March, the U.S. recorded fewer than 1,000 coronavirus deaths. So instead of each day being like seven to 10 commercial airline disasters, in terms of fatalities, there were only about the equivalent of three to four (750 deaths).

Let’s look at the rest of the past week in the USA, in terms of coronavirus fatalities:

May 9: 1,422 deaths

May 8: 1,687 deaths

May 7: 2,129 deaths

May 6: 2,528 deaths

May 5: 2,350 deaths

Have we hit the peak of the curve? And if so, what will reopening the country do to alter whatever downward trajectory the parabola was on? Should be interesting.

This weekend in our store a customer asked me if any of our employees had tested positive. Not that I know of, I replied, not thinking to add, “I doubt any of us have been tested.”

He then went on a jag about how he visits other big stores in the Valley of the Sun and hasn’t heard anyone else coming down with it. Uh-oh, I think I know where this is going. Makes me wonder if the whole thing isn’t a hoax.

I asked him how that explains the 80,000 dead in the USA and the 160,000 more dead all over the planet. “It’s just a matter of where you get your facts,” he said.

And then I just turned and walked away. While I missed the chance to ask why the president is being tested every day for a hoax illness while most of us can’t get tested if we wanted to be.

Man Who Sings ’40’ (and ‘One’) Turns 60

U2 lead singer Bono turned 60 years old this weekend. To celebrate, he’s doing something very much in character: releasing a play list of 60 songs “that saved my life” and writing a thank-you note to each artist (or offspring of artist if they have passed) and posting them at I wonder if he was inspired by Jimmy Fallon’s “Thank You” bit?

Anyway, the first six thank you notes have been posted, for songs such as “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk and “Life on Mars?” by David Bowie.

Wiig-ing Out

SNL‘s season finale aired Saturday, with alumna Kristen Wiig as host. Here’s her opening monologue. Stay until the end.

Sports Year 1889

The inaugural Football League (presently Premier League season) ends with an unbeaten squad, Preston North End. A mere 115 years will pass before the feat is duplicated, by Arsenal, in 2004.


In the last, and we do mean LAST, major bareknuckle boxing match, John L. Sullivan defeats Jake Kilrain in 75 rounds in “the vanished hamlet of Richburg, Mississippi.” The bout took place on July 8th, which if you’ve ever been in Mississippi in July (we have), well, never mind the opposing fighter, you’ve already got problems. Here’s a tremendous account from Paul Beston, titled “Boxing’s Longest Day.”


William Renshaw wins the last of his seven Wimbledon’s men’s singles titles (only Roger Federer has won more), defeating twin brother and defending champion Ernest. It was Ernest’s third defeat in the final against his womb-mate, with no victories against him.


In the first all-New York World Series, the Giants defeat the Brooklyn Bridegrooms 6 games to 4 in a best-of-11 series. The Giants had played the first half of their home schedule at a cricket grounds on Staten Island until the Polo Grounds opened on July 8th (same day as the above fight). That same season the Bridegrooms set a Major League attendance record with 350,000 fans even though most of the seating at their home venue, Washington Park (on the corner of 3rd Street and 4th Ave) is destroyed by fire and it takes a month to rebuild it.

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