by John Walters
Nothing to do, nowhere to go-o-o
Meanwhile, on the penultimate day of the year, the U.S. broke its less than one day-old record for most coronavirus deaths in a day. We had more than 3,800 yesterday. Experts are predicting approximately 80,000 deaths next month.
If we know 2020 like we think we do, we’ll send the year out with our first 4,000-death day on New Year’s Eve.
In San Antonio, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich is ejected and assistant coach Becky Hammon takes over the squad for the final three quarters (What took Pop so long?) agains the world champion-Lakers.
Hammond becomes the first female to coach any of the four major professional sports teams, albeit in an interim role. Between this and Sarah Fuller and Kamala Harris, it’s been a good past two months for equality. Former NBA coach George Karl tweets out that Hammon will be a full-time NBA coach in the near future. When you consider that most NBA players are African-American or foreign-born men, and not wealthy, middle-aged white American males in suits, I’d say she has a real shot to be heard and succeed.
Ginger or Mary Ann?
It’s a question every boy or young man has answered the past half-century.
My answer? Lovey. Wealthy and older and Thurston can’t hold on forever.
Anyway, Dawn Wells, who played Maryann (the beta male’s choice) passed away yesterday at the age of 82. You have to hand it to the creators of Gilligan’s Island. They put seven people on a tropical island, did not make it a reality show, and there was never a hint of sexual indiscretion (although Ginger often seemed, um, in search of satisfaction).
Things you might not have known about Wells: She was born in Reno, attended Reno High School, and was originally a chemistry major. She also was crowned Miss Nevada and represented the Silver State in the 1960 Miss America Pageant back when that was a really, really big deal.
The Shoe Bomber Fallacy
Remember Richard Reid? The “Shoe Bomber?” If you don’t, here’s the Wikipedia skinny…
On 22 December 2001, a passenger on Flight 63 from Paris to Miami complained of a smoke smell in the cabin shortly after a meal service. One flight attendant, Hermis Moutardier, thinking she smelled a burnt match, walked along the aisles of the plane, trying to assess the source. A passenger pointed to Reid, who was sitting alone near a window and attempting to light a match. Moutardier warned him that smoking was not allowed on the airplane. Reid promised to stop.
A few minutes later, Moutardier found Reid leaned over in his seat. After she asked him what he was doing, Reid grabbed at her, revealing one shoe in his lap, a fuse leading into the shoe, and a lit match. Several passengers worked together to subdue the 6 foot 4 inch (193 cm) tall Reid who weighed 215 pounds (97 kg). They restrained him using plastic handcuffs, seatbelt extensions, leather waist belts and headphone cords. A doctor on board administered a tranquilizer to him which he found in the emergency medical kit of the airliner. The flight was immediately diverted to Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts, the closest US airport.
The explosive apparently did not detonate due to the delay in the take-off of Reid’s flight. The rainy weather, along with Reid’s foot perspiration, caused the fuse to be too damp to ignite.
So here’s the thing: While a more competent terrorist might have caused a major disaster, Reid never actually killed anyone. He’s serving a life sentence with no possibility of parole. But ever since that day, you cannot board a commercial airline in the U.S. without having to take off your shoes first so that they can go through metal detection separately.
Meanwhile, 350,000 Americans have died this year alone due to the virus. And yet there are people (many in red baseball caps) who will take off their shoes without complaint and then board the plane and get all uppity about having to wear a mask.
Why is that? Might it be because it’s easier for them to fathom the existential threat of a Muslim terrorist (who was unsuccessful) than it is for them to understand or acknowledge science, which has already killed more than 1 of every 1,000 Americans? Hmmm.
And now you know why Space Force exists, and why the GOP spends so much on defense while not caring a whit about distributing a vaccine.
White Bread Cannot Hold The Mayo
During the raucous celebration following the Duke’s Mayo Bowl (an annual tradition), Wisconsin freshman quarterback Graham Mertz drops the glass trophy and shatters it. Someone also might say that Mayo does not belong on a Graham cracker.
Best Bad Beats of 2020
This is always, always entertaining. Our favorite new ESPN segment since “The Blitz.” Enjoy.
Final Tesla Post of 2020
Again, we failed to truly take advantage of this (that is, failed to take our own damn advice), but here’s where Tesla (TSLA) stock was on the first day of 2020:
And here’s where it is on the last day of 2020:
Is that good? Yes.