Heroes Of The Week!

Laurie Jupiter

The quick shots episode #21 was so popular (with me) that I’ve decided to adopt this fortuitous fling going forward. I’ve got a full on 100 percent Heroes post coming up at some future point, and I’ll probably have a battle of the sexes Heroes post as well. Since sexes don’t battle any more, they just scream and holler.

Pols, jocks and celebs only posts might happen, but I’m not sold on it yet. A throwback Heroes post is very much in the mix, though . . as soon as I find my time traveler kicks. An all kids Heroes post? Never. An all fifty or older Heroes post? Definitely.

Let’s get to stepping.

Clown Sign

Something is afoot in Oakland- So last week, Antonio Brown made this space for his frozen feet. This week, he threatened to retire if he couldn’t use his original helmet design rather than an updated version. It was a transparent attempt to buy some time for his blistered dogs. Next week, AB will make this space when he sues Cleveland for using his last name.

Trump at the Catskills back for 144th week- 45 got into it with CNN’s Chris Cuomo after a video of the news anchor losing his cool went viral. Cuomo went off on a man who called him “Fredo”, and the Trump campaign was there to pick up the pieces. And turn them into a merch moment by selling “Fredo Unhinged” t-shirts for $34 on its website. Cuomo apologized for the meltdown but this didn’t stop Trump from tossing in a “red flag” joke about the incident. How can a President have more free time for social media than a middle school teenager?

I don’t know who Andrew Yang is, but I do know he gives the Democrats a candidate from every state now, right?

Tiger Shark Mama- Miranda Perez is reason #5,613 why not everyone should have kids. She threatened to shoot up Barton Elementary School in Lake Worth, Florida when her kids were transferred there as the result of a school board resolution looking to address overcrowding. I guess it could have been worse. She might have decided to home school them.

Vera

Soulful harvest- Larry Yockey is a fourth generation farmer from Ritzville, Washington. In February of this past year, he was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. The chances that he would be able to harvest a wheat field which was his only source of income while undergoing treatment weren’t good. When word of his plight spread, neighbors, farmers and volunteers showed up to harvest his fields for him. They finished a three week job in eight hours. Yockey’s daughters intend on making this a fifth generation enterprise; thanks to the lessons of their father, and a little help from their friends.

Kandi’s Gentleman’s Club in Omaha, Nebraska is looking for stay at home moms who want to earn some extra cash. No word as to whether daycare is provided.

No tea party- The mother/son team of Carol and Scott Dawson are The South Yorkshire, England branch of the Manson family. They shot Gary Dean, a marathon runner, with an air rifle over a dispute over the use of their footpath. Then they beat Dean to death with tree branches and stones. Proving that America ain’t cornered the market on fucked up peeps.

Twenty five years ago this week, Major League Baseball went on strike. It led to the cancellation of the World Series for the first time in 90 years. Bud Selig and his pals would make up for it a few years later with an artificially enhanced home run chase that ushered in the steroids era. Sacred records would fall, player salaries would skyrocket and new ballparks would be built on a lie. With the fans who’d been screwed out of a World Series footing the bill. And to think, they keep Shoeless Joe out of the Hall . . .

Random act of beauty- Lamiyah Jabbar is an Uber driver by day, but an angel the rest of the time. Christmas came early for one financially strapped passenger who shared her checklist wishes with Jabbar. “Can you imagine waiting till Christmas just to get a robe, house shoes and a outfit for church?” Said Jabbar. “We tend to take things for granted, but why not help someone else if you can?” So she gifted the woman a new dress and a $50 Visa gift card for the robe and shoes. That’s just how she rolls.

Now that Jay-Z has teamed up with the NFL, Colin Kaepernick has his last best chance at making an NFL roster. I think the Eagles would work just fine.

Good medicine- 17 year old Micah Wooten had just completed three months of boot camp at Parris Island and was on the cusp of fulfilling his dream of becoming a U.S. Marine, when he was rushed to Beaufort Memorial Hospital for surgery. His condition wasn’t life threatening, but it did cost him the chance to stand with his fellow cadets at the graduation ceremony.

Laurie Harvey, who is an R.N. and the assistant director of the OR at Beaufort Memorial wasn’t going to take the unfortunate turn of events for the kid sitting down. “My heart just broke for him,” said Laurie. “We can’t let this day end this way.”

And so Laurie and her co-workers arranged a graduation ceremony for Wooten. She lined up all the physicians and nurses in attendance along the walls outside of the operating room. And when Micah was wheeled out in his hospital bed, the Marine Corps hymn began to play.

Micah will be back at it before too long, after which he will begin living out his dream. He’ll take along a poem gifted him by the Beaufort staff titled “Don’t Quit”, and a stone cross by which to remember his impromptu graduation. Heartfelt reminders that what he’ll do in service to his country will never be forgotten by the people of a United States. We are always supportive, always thankful . . .

Always faithful.

Heroes Of The Week!

The Flash

Last week’s Villains post was such a hit, I’ve decided to go with another idea for this weeks Heroes. Imma dish up stories in quicksilver fashion, as if I was a USA Today table setter. Okay, yeah . . the Villains post was well received, but that’s not why I’m dealing up quick shots this week. Truth is, the week flew by and I had nothing stapled to a draft with which to build a story as zero hour approached. Don’t worry, you won’t regret it in the morning. Probably not . . .

Clueless, classless and cold- Mitch McConnell has used his powers as majority leader to block bills that would call for background checks for all gun purchasers (including internet and gun shows) and extend waiting limits for would be gun buyers who get flagged. It’s been twenty years since any meaningful gun legislation was passed and in that time there have been more than fifty mass shootings.The lack of progress in this national epidemic isn’t just shameful, it’s criminal.

Cold Feet? Try FROZEN!- Antonio Brown of the Oakland/Las Vegas/ Hawkins Indiana Raiders has frostbitten feet on account of not wearing the proper footwear during cryo-therapy (Gruesome pic here). Something tells me the train wreck that is Gruden’s gang is just gonna get stupider from here.

Texas . . Twitter . . Trump . . what could go wrong?- Rep. Joaquin Castro, brother and campaign chairman to 2020 presidential candidate Julian, posted a screenshot of Trump donors on Twitter. Now, the list is public record, but the stunt is still dangerous, given the current climate. There’s a way to do things, and this ain’t it.

Fighting hate with love- Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is pleading for anyone who has fallen “in the grips of hatred and white supremacy” to right their ways. And she says there will always be room at the table for those willing to try. She’ll probably be trashed for this, but I happen to think it’s a positive chord to strike at a moment in time when we need something positive. Good for her. Good for all of us.

J.J. is Dyno-might!- J.J. Watt of the Houston Texans digs the Green Bay Packers tradition where the players ride kids bikes to the practice field during training camp so much, he decided to take part in it himself. When Houston visited Green Bay recently, Watt borrowed a young fan’s bike . . and proceeded to bust the seat. He carried it the rest of the way, after which he gifted the kid a new bike. Not to mention a hell of a story.

If you build it, ratings will come- The MLB finally got a gimmick right when they announced the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox will play a game in Dyersville, Iowa next season: On the same site used in the movie Field of Dreams. It will seat 8,000 fans and . . get this, the right field wall will feature windows so you can see the cornfield. Maybe Boss Manfred could use the moment to fast pass Shoeless Joe into the Hall . . .

Ralph Kramden is rolling in his grave- A driver for Peter Pan Bus Lines was arrested after she locked a passenger inside the luggage compartment. Police were notified by the imprisoned passenger, who dialed up 911. They eventually caught up with the bus during one of its stops. What. The. Fuck?

Badass baby rescuer- Danny Trejo of Machete fame played the good guy in real life this week. The 75 year old jumped into action when he witnessed a two car collision. With the help of a female bystander, he was able to pull a baby from the vehicle which had overturned. Now that is badass.

Sickening display- A 39 year old Army veteran has been charged with felony assault after he slammed a thirteen year old boy to the ground for not taking off his hat during the national anthem. The boy suffered a concussion and a fractured skull as a result of the attack. Which is why you don’t need to be tweeting out the Trump voters. They make themselves known plenty well enough.

The Beer Diet is a thing, and I am there- When Pistons center Andre Drummond gave up red meat, he had to substitute the calories with something else and he chose . . . beer. I love this guy very much.

Wonder Girl- 7 year old Abigail Arias got to live out a dream job on Tuesday night, thanks to the peeps at the Blue Lives Matter Foundation. They organized a trip to New York City for Arias and her family so she could don the uniform of an MTA police officer. Abigail and her family also met with the NYPD Police Commissioner James O’Neill, and they visited other units across the city.

Arias has an incurable form of kidney cancer and so time is no longer something she or her family take for granted. Instead, they are grateful to borrow as much of the stuff as they can get their hands on. This little girl was sworn in as an honorary police officer in her hometown of Freeport, Texas back in February. And now this. And tomorrow, they’ll get to stepping on something else. Because in Abigail’s world, there is no time for hate or divisiveness and all the ugliness that comes with it.

There’s only time enough to dream.

 

 

Villains Of The Week!

Homelander

Our weekly Heroes post has gone missing in a diabolical plan by the League of Zeroes to take over the free world!

Too much? Okay, here’s the deal. Y’all make these weekly posts worth the price of admission. I’m just the scribe whose crib gets the props. Seriously, Dale is always shaking loose a great story for these posts, and Frank is grabbing good stuff on the regular as well. And now Susannah has joined in on the fun, with a calamitously criminal crush of an idea: An All Villains of the Week post.

Sold!

This week, it’s zeroes across the board. Some are sub-zero degenerates, some are just annoying, and then you have those who are simply misunderstood. Okay . . I’m talking about that lady bandit, but I’m sorry . . I think she’s awesome. So let’s begin with her, coo?

America’s Most (Definitely) Wanted- First there was Smokey and the Bandit. Then you had the Wet Bandits. And now the newest member of the club, the Pink Lady Bandit, who was taken into custody, along with an accomplice on Sunday. They robbed at least four banks, and I gotta say . . I am super impressed. Who robs banks anymore? I mean, without an executive order? And doesn’t the FBI have anything better to do than go after independent contractors who are simply looking to bring some nostalgia back to the world of crime?

Knotted Knickers- James Dolan is proof that money doesn’t buy brains. The New York Knicks owner has turned the once proud franchise into a dumpster fire. The only thing this chump is good at is kicking people out of his yard. He had franchise icon Charles Oakley forcibly removed from the Garden. He’s also had a Knicks fan removed for telling him the truth; that he should sell the team. And last weekend, Dolan had a reporter from Businessweek removed from The Paramount Theater when he got wind she was there as part of a story she was doing on Dolan. Even though he doesn’t own the venue, he was able to have her removed since he was performing with his band, JD & The Straight Shot. Come to think of it, maybe he did her a favor.

Only three things in life are certain- Death, taxes, and a Facebook mom-rant. In the latest Mama-geddon, a mom is blaming childless peeps who go to Disney for ruining her toddler’s magical visit. Yep, she got pissed at the fact that her three year old son had a tantrum when he couldn’t get a pretzel because the line was too long. Never mind that the line is always too long because . . it’s Disney. And never mind the fact that he’s three years old and is not going to remember a single thing about their trip. This unhinged individual went on to call childless Disney goers “cunts”, “tramps” and “bitches”. So she rails on childless peeps while showing herself to be a poor example of how a parent should behave. Makes perfect sense.

Author Ponzirelli- Bernie Madoff is asking for clemency from President Trump, and it’ll be interesting (frightening) to see if he gets it. Madoff shook loose almost sixty five billion dollars from the pockets of 4,800 clients in the largest financial fraud case in American history. That number exceeds the annual budgets of all but five states, if you’re keeping score at home. He’s currently serving a 150 year sentence in a federal prison, which is too lenient if you ask me. He is a fucking vampire after all.

A Titanic Rumble- A couple was arrested last Friday for their part in a chaise clearing brawl on a British owned cruise ship. The shenanigans ensued after an afternoon of partying on deck, with one of the revelers taking offense to a passenger who was dressed like a clown. Where’s an iceberg when you really need one?

The NFL’s Domestic Abuse Problem- The league and its commissioner just can’t seem to get domestic abuse right.

Take Tyreek Hill, for instance. In 2014, Hill was dismissed from Oklahoma State after choking and punching his pregnant girlfriend in the face and stomach. And in March of this year, Hill was under investigation for alleged battery after his three year old son suffered a broken arm. In a subsequent audiotape in which Hill and his fiancee are discussing the investigation, she tells him their son is terrified of him to which Hill responds “. . you should be terrified of me too, bitch,”. Nonetheless, Hill received no punishment.

There are three zeroes here. Hill being the most obvious of course. But we can’t forget the Kansas City Chiefs, who are really good at taking on bad guys. To show how contrite they were about the Hill investigation, the Chiefs traded for Frank Clark this off-season. Clark was arrested and prosecuted on domestic violence charges in 2014. In 2017, he went after a female reporter on Twitter after she had the audacity to write about his past. Oh yeah . . and this is the same team that drafted Kareem Hunt, who likely would still be playing in KC if not for the videotape that surfaced of of him assaulting a woman in a Cleveland nightclub.

The NFL is complicit as well, what with all the chances they give these creeps. Roger Goodell and Company insist they care about women, but really . . who could tell? (And here’s an excellent piece about the league’s not so benevolent side,)

Welp, that’ll do it for the first ever Villains post. At some future point in time, Imma put on my rose colored glasses and write up an All Heroes post. But umm . . . don’t hold your breath.

Heroes Of The Week!

Hulk

I would like to say a great big WTF? to all those climate skeptics out there who insist that Davey killed Heat Miser with a slingshot from Bass Pro Shops. But if the hottest June in the history of the world didn’t get their attention, I’m sure the intra-Venus July bake sale ain’t gonna change their opinion either. All I know is that if we’re subjected to another oven roasted episode like the last, Imma be rooting for the return of the T-Rex. And Noah’s Ark. Both.

As my spirit animal, Keanu Reeves, would say. The simple act of paying attention can take you a long way.

Senate Intelligence Committee warns of vulnerabilities in U.S. elections systems- I’m sorry, but anything Snooki Pollizi could tell you . . isn’t a revelation. 

Rico and not so suave- Embattled Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosello is the kind of big league fat cat the Caribbean island has come to know all too well. He’s a privileged crook who can’t get much of anything right unless it benefits him. He mismanaged aid to the island after Hurricane Maria, leading to scores of relief containers being left to rot. There have also been allegations of embezzlement of federal funding over a two year period. And now Rickyleaks- a chat involving the Gov and his boy band, in which they engaged in homophobic slurs and trashed women for having the audacity to think they could ever hold power. Rosello leaves next week, and let’s hope the island finds someone with their best interests in mind because they sure as hell need it.

Joe Biden entertains more aggressive approach ahead of next debate- Unfortunately, unless it involves letting Obama fill in for him, I’m dubious.

A Dog Days Beisbol Double-Feature? Sure . . why not. 

Cameras ain’t context- By now you’ve probably seen video of the asshole Cubs fan who snatched a ball from the clutches of a little kid. And if you ain’t seen it, here’s the video of that asshole doing government business on a child. But wait . . there’s more! That Cubs fan really isn’t an asshole after all. He actually had already given a foul ball to the kid earlier in the game. Oh, and after grabbing that ball and letting his wife take a pic of it, he gave it to a kid seated next to him. The moral of the story is that the camera can lie and social media will war before knowing the whole story.

Don’t ever change, kid- Yanno, not every Phillies game is a complete waste of time. They played a keeper recently, thanks to this young chap’s random act of baseball kindness that has me feeling sappier than a Maple tree. This video was too good to tuck into a link, so do yourself a solid and watch the moment unfold. It’s how the brotherly are supposed to love.

The Cheez-It/House Wine Box is now a thing- The mashup is half crackers and half wine box and it’s here for a limited time. Finally . . .proof that heaven exists!  

There is no why in team- Nampa High School football coach Dan Holtry is coaching up one hell of a football team out in Idaho. Don’t ask me what their record was last year, because I don’t care. Holtry’s boys are champions for what they did to make a nine year old boy’s birthday one he will never forget.

Christian Larsen wanted to invite all his friends to his party, but when mom Lindsay only received a single RSVP, she took to Facebook to wonder why that was. She had her suspicions, and they had everything to do with the fact that Christian has autism. Lindsay’s posting got the attention of Blythe David, who called up her friend Coach Holtry, who then shot off texts to his team asking who wanted to attend Christian’s party. You know how teenagers are when it comes to getting back to you? Well, not these guys. They all responded within minutes, in unanimity. That is what winning looks like.

I’ve come to love the Friday Heroes posts, because it’s a chance to cull the good and the bad from all of the crazy, ugly mess of an everyday world where heroes and zeros don’t tote around name tags. This week’s story is just a little different, for yours truly.

On March 2nd, 1982 I found myself in a Cadillac going to watch an unknown welterweight by the name of Buddy McGirt. It was his first match as a professional and he wasn’t feeling the least bit nervous, as evidenced by the fact that he fell asleep on his girlfriend’s shoulder. I was riding shotgun in the front seat as his manager drove us to an arena in North Bergen, New Jersey.

I was a huge boxing fan at the time so when my old man asked me if I wanted to hitch a ride with a friend of his who managed a boxer, I was interested. When he told me I’d be riding in the same car with said boxer, I was in. And while we only met that one time, I’ll never forget it. McGirt fought this tree trunk of a fighter named Lamont Haithcoach to a draw. I thought Buddy got screwed, because he was winning all the biggest scrums over the three rounds. But it was his first fight and it was Jersey and boxing is never going to be confused with the All England Club.

Buddy McGirt would go on to be Welterweight Champion of the world. He would retire with a record of 73 wins, 6 losses and that one draw.

Last Friday night, McGirt- now a trainer- was in the corner of junior welterweight Maxim Dadashev when he told him he was going to throw in the towel once the bell rang to end the 11th round. The kid was getting pummeled and was clearly behind on all the cards, but he was having none of it. He dismissed McGirt’s pleas, knowing he still had a puncher’s chance and three minutes to turn it all around. Dadashev had his eyes on a title shot, while McGirt wanted him to make it home alive.

Once it became clear Dadashev was going to get up for the bell once again, McGirt threw in the towel. “I’d rather have them be mad at me for a day or two then to be mad at me for the rest of their life,” McGirt explained after the fight.

Maxim Dadashev died from his injuries on Tuesday morning, leaving behind a wife and child and the rest of his life. And now Buddy McGirt is going to have to carry around this reminder for the rest of his days, and all the questions that come with it. If you don’t know the sport, you don’t get how impossible a situation this man found himself in. You do not call a fight without repercussions, but you can’t let it go on when you know your guy is in that kind of trouble either. Sometimes there is no good guy or bad guy.

Only pain.

 

 

 

 

When actions speak louder than words

There used to be a charm to how we messed with words. If you’re of a certain age that didn’t involve Google, then you can relate to that musical rite of passage in which you reworded the lyrics to a favorite song. To think, there was a time when people used to believe the Beatles were singing I wanna hold your ham. And Jimi Hendrix was saying Excuse me while I kiss this guy. And Elton John was singing to his man-crush with Hold me closer Tony Danza. 

Nowadays, we have the dictionary police repossessing words that weren’t really in need of a reboot in the first place. These efforts in bougey bombast are meant to bring harmony and fair play to words that might be considered impish or downright ignorant.

Case in point, the Berkeley City Council. These peeps decided to go on an ordinance orgy, with words acting as the scapegoat in the latest episode of Ray Bradbury Theater. If their measure on gender-specific pronouns gets the green light, “Manhole” will become “Maintenance Hole” and “Police Man” will become “Police Officer”. Changing the latter is redundancy at its finest, since most adults already refer to the Po Po as officers. But was there really a burning need for maintenance holes? As a man, I took no offense to being named after a cast iron plate that gets driven over and spit on daily.

Council members also want to make sure nobody uses he or she when they should be using they or them. And I think that’s neither here nor there. Human interaction is the broker of ignorance or understanding, and if we start using a government handbook as if we’re American tourists lost in Paris? Well, there is a dystopian punchline to such a conclusion and it ain’t the least bit funny.

Maybe it’s just that the city council people of Berkeley have spit and polished every last genuine concern into memory and now all that’s left to vote on is stuff that ain’t worth the ginger ale in a Mary Poppins Martini. As such, they explained their decision thusly.

“Amending the municipal code to include gender-neutral pronouns by eliminating any gender preference language within the municipal code will promote equality,”

N’kay. But really, how’s about legislating that every homeowner have an emergency chopper in their driveway in the event an earthquake provides the Pacific Ocean with the world’s largest Big Gulp? Or hey, why not make it illegal for citizens of Berkeley not to own a Panda? Or maybe just this. What if they tried to come up with some long term solutions for the homeless, seeing as how Berkeley is currently sitting at twice the national average. I mean, unless the city council is hell bent on handing out demerits to all those five year old kids who will continue using the term “Police Man”.

I know you’re probably saying, But Marc . . .governmental bodies have a pristine track record of never fucking shit up. If they perceive an inherent flaw in our language, then it’s a good bet they’ll fix the problem quickly and efficiently.

Of course, what was I thinking?

 

Heroes Of The Week!

Bat Woman

The march of the bubble heads- The internet is a quagmire of crumb scavengers looking for toast to burn. And every minute of every day gives us the latest example. The old saying “Nothing good happens after 2 am,” finds a refurbished home in 2019, where nothing good happens on Twitter. Case File #toomanytocount involves the twits who bashed Ayesha Curry for having the audacity to dance during the opening of her restaurant. Ayesha happens to be married to three time NBA champion and all around great dude Steph Curry, who gets lots of hate on the internet; probably because he’s got a great life going. Social media is where envy is transformed into hate and being hurtful to others for no good reason says everything about a person’s soul. Or lack thereof. So here’s hoping Ayesha opens her doors every day with a dance.

Saving grace- The Seattle Sounders football club played more than just a game the other night when they started Bheem Goyal in goal. The eight year old is battling Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia, and so the Sounders- in conjunction with the Make-A-Wish Foundation- made Goyal’s dream of being a goalkeeper come true. They signed him to a contract, after which he opened things up by standing in goal for Seattle and gobbling up a shot on goal. He then exited the game between the Sounders and Dortmund to a standing ovation, receiving high fives from both sides. They don’t call it the beautiful game for nothing.

The truth is out there, and it’s ridiculous- Area 51 is the most highly classified area this side of the New England Patriots locker room. So when close to half a million people start chattering about breaking in, the government is gonna be paying attention. And thanks to a Facebook army of clueless warriors, September 20 will either be featured on an episode of “Dumbest Criminals” or it will be the latest example of the frightening precision of cruise missiles.

“Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us.” is comprised of a bunch of overly hyped X-Files junkies who are out to prove that ” . . if we run, we can move faster than their bullets,”. I mean, physics is a deal breaker as far as that original thought is concerned, but you gotta admire their spunk. And sure, two months is a lifetime inside of which that army will dwindle into a precious few on account of the fact that ninety percent of them won’t be able to get a ride to the site. And half of those who do make it to the gala will probably get tied up at the brothel on the premises. But there’s no doubt the couple dozen people who do follow through could make things . . interesting.

Jackson Barnes is the mastermind of this brilliant idea, which he says was all just a practical joke to get ‘liked’. He attempted to explain himself, since he probably can’t afford a lawyer and his desert RV.

“Hello US government, this is a joke, and I do not actually intend to go ahead with this plan”  . . . “I just thought it would be funny and get me some thumbsy uppies on the internet. I’m not responsible if people decide to actually storm area 51.”

I don’t think my man understands the way it works. But on the bright side, in the event these imbeciles who signed up do actually end up storming the gates? He’ll have plenty of time to write that book on alien life while in prison.

Stupidity is the mother of this invention- Bad ideas are timeless. From the Edsel, New Coke and Ishtar to the Ford Pinto, Euro Disney and Jackson Barnes’ Facebook page.

Add Jennifer Yeager of Dixon, Illinois to the list for her ideas on inflatable pool transport. It began by her strapping the pool to the roof of the family SUV. Okay cool. Next, Yeager piled her two daughters into the car. Okay fine. And then, she hit the road. Okay well, everything seems peach . . oh shit, wait. Mom left the girls on the roof to keep it from flying away! After which she was arrested and charged with two counts of endangering the life of a child and two counts of reckless conduct. Welp, at least she didn’t fill the pool with water first. That would have been carazy.

The Angels among us- On July 1st, Tyler Skaggs was found unresponsive in his South Lake, Texas hotel room. The California Angels pitcher was pronounced dead once authorities arrived on the scene, which would lead to the Angels and Rangers cancelling their game that evening.

Last Friday night marked the Angels first home game since the death of the twenty eight year old Skaggs. The team honored his memory with a moment of silence, as all Angels players wore his number 45. And then his mother Debbie threw out the ceremonial first pitch, a perfect strike.

When the game began, it was as if the heavens were writing the script. The Angels scored seven runs in the first inning while Taylor Cole and Felix Pena combined to throw a no hitter and the Angels won the game 13-0. Cole and Pena pitched their hearts out, but the vibe that was flowing through that stadium had everyone believing their performance on the mound was a holy trinity. After the game, Skaggs’ teammates laid their number forty five jerseys on the mound.

In a press conference later on, Mike Trout remarked on the significance of the box-score: Seven runs in the first inning, thirteen runs total. 7/13. Tyler Skaggs’ birthday. “You can’t make this stuff up,” Mike Trout said.

The greatest baseball player in the world was onto something.

 

 

Heroes Of The Week!

Shazam

Magic King-dumb- In the immortal words of Whitney Houston, I believe that children are our future. Because with the way the adults are behaving, they have to be! In the latest episode of Grown Ups Behaving Badly, I give you this video (right here) of a family get together at Disney Land that got out of hand. As in open hand. And slapping. And hair pulling. And umm . . . kids? Can you please hurry up and save us from ourselves?

The Mets win!- Well, kinda. The Mets Peter Alonso won the HR Derby on Monday night, and hey . . it’s somethingSure the Mets season is a twenty four car pileup on the Grand Central Parkway. But they’ve got a couple bright lights in Jeff McNeil and Alonso. The brawny slugger beat out Vladimir Guerrero Jr for the crown, and will donate ten percent of his million dollar prize to two charities: Five percent to The Wounded Warrior Project and five percent to Tunnel To Towers. Chicks dig the long ball, and everybody digs a righteous dude like Alonso.

One if by land, two if by sea and freedom if by air!- To think, we might really be sipping tea right now if not for Continental Airlines- which I can only assume was the airline of choice for our revolutionary heroes. Because after we laid waste to the British airports, French and American troops safely landed at Yorktown International. On time, may I add, since there was no TSA yet. Thanks to the latest history lesson doled up by Trump, we learned that the Wright brothers were lying bastards. And now I’m dubious as to all those hardship stories about how the Pilgrims spent months at sea to get here.

History Theater- And speaking of . . . William Latson is the latest revisionist to history, as evidenced by his refusal to admit that the Holocaust actually happened. The now former Principal at Spanish River High School in West Palm Beach, Florida paved over the history books in a narrow minded missive he sent to a concerned parent last year. In the email exchange, Latson wrote ‘I can’t say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee,’. You know the old saying about how those who refuse to learn history are doomed to repeat it? We’re living proof.

They put the beauty in the beautiful game- With their 2-0 win over the Netherlands on Sunday, the US women’s national team clinched back to back World Cup titles. And with it, all that talk about putting up or shutting up can go to sleep for good. As Megan Rapinoe put it, “I held up my end of the bargain (with Trump).” And now she’ll go to work fighting for gender equity. U.S. Soccer and FIFA need someone to light a fire under their asses, and she’s just the gal to do it.

Royals under glass- Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are a pretty big deal in the UK, but that doesn’t mean they owe the British press every living, breathing moment of their lives. When the royal couple opted for a private christening for baby Archie, the press cried bollocks. And when a member of Markle’s security team requested that no pictures of the duchess be taken during a match at Wimbledon last week, Piers Morgan went bonkers. Never mind the fact that Markle was not seated in the royal boxes but rather, had been personally invited to attend by Serena Williams. And never mind the fact that the Brits might be paying the rent on Buckingham Palace, but that doesn’t entitle them to treat these people like wax figures in a museum. Morgan railed on, saying that Markle should move to America if she wants privacy. Welp, she is welcome anytime. As far as Morgan goes, not so much.

Just so you know, she can dance!- Phoebe Kochis is a 19-year-old dancer with Down Syndrome. She also happens to possess the kind of fire and spirit that makes a cold world feel so much warmer. She proved as much when she accomplished her life long dream by appearing on the ABC hit show So You Think You Can Dance.

Kochis didn’t walk until she was two years old. But it wasn’t long before she got to shaking and shimmying to such a degree that her parents enrolled her in dance lessons. And what dreams may come, well . . they did just that when Phoebe won the title of Colorado Miss Amazing, which is a pageant for girls with disabilities.

The dream evolved and it talked her into believing that she had to audition for one of her favorite shows when she got older. And so she began laying out that blueprint, from the age of six. When it was simply a thought, that became a belief and then a raging fire.

It took thirteen years, but once she arrived on the dance floor she’d always dreamed of owning, Phoebe showed the world what happens when providence smiles on you. She didn’t advance. But if you watched the girl do her thing, you understand that what she did advanced you. And it made you think. Long and hard and brightly on a world that too often comes back with change on our cosmic dollar bill. Phoebe flipped the script on the time worn expression that we should ‘ . . dance as if no one is watching . .’  because she danced as if the world was watching.

That works too.