Best 5 Sports Betting Sites Online 2020 | Top Sportsbooks
- Best 5 Sports Betting Sites Online 2020 | Top Sportsbooks
- New York Ought to Embrace Online Betting in Revenue Hunt
- New York Sports Betting Sites And Legal Online Gambling
- Current State of New York State Sports Betting
- NY Online Sports Betting - Legal New York Sportsbooks 2020
State of New York Approves In Person Sports Betting - New Yorkers should be able to start placing their bets in time for football season
[Op-Ed] - Make a smart play for sports betting in New York State
Inside Gaming: New York State Gaming Commission to Talk Sports Betting - PokerNews.com
@axios: The view from New York, Boston and Las Vegas as state legislatures around the country begin to work out the specifics following the legalization of sports betting https://t.co/CugQnINCEq
@WSJ: Two casinos in New York state have reached agreements with sports-betting platforms--DraftKings and Belfair--to open physical sites to place sports wagers https://t.co/Vek27ljKQ2
submitted by -en- to newsbotbot [link] [comments]
@WSJ: Two casinos in New York state have reached agreements with sports-betting platforms--DraftKings and Belfair--to open physical sites to place sports wagers https://t.co/Vek27ljKQ2
submitted by -en- to newsbotMARKET [link] [comments]
Gores Metropoulos – GMHI submitted by genuisgeek to SPACs [link] [comments]
IPO Date: 2/6/2019 | Deadline: 2/5/2021
Target Industry: Food & Consumer https://www.gores.com/portfolio/gores-metropoulos-inc/ SEC Link The Breakdown:
- Good deal making leadership Gores/Metropoulus (see track record)
- The leaders are dealmakers and operational, they aren’t unique in their backgrounds except for Gore and Met. The directors seem okay, mostly all having some experience in food industry.
- Located in Beverly Hills – they like money
- 100% in trust
- Forward purchasing by sponsor (they’re sponsoring themselves, standard):
- Underwriters: Deustche, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs
- Units: 1 share + 1/3 W
- Warrants: 1:1 @ 11.50
- Base is $10, but I don’t see any crescent terms in the S1
- IPO Proceeds (and trust value): 400mill
- No defined enterprise value stated but likely ~1bil+ given the size of the trust
Gores Track Record
Leadership team Dean Metropoulos
- TWNK: Hostess brand, they got this from Apollo actually (go $SPAQ fam)
- Sector: Consumer, Food & Beverage
- Completed 11/2016
- Current trading: $11.26
- Traded at ~13 upon completion, peaked $17
- VRRM: Verra Mobility, technology devices typically for city infrastructure. Good earnings helped move the stock up after merger
- Sector: technology, government
- Completed 10/2018
- Current trading: $9.73
- Traded at ~10.5 completion of merger, no announcement bump, moved up to 17 in Feb 2020
- PAE: Pacific Architects & Engineers, gov’t services contractor
- Sector: Services, government
- Completed 2/2020
- Currently trading $9.63
- Traded up to 11.7 (ATH) at completion of merger, then covid took a shit on it down to $6, is it now back up. No hype price movement at the time of announcements
has been our Chairman
since August 2018. Mr. Metropoulos has served as Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors of Hostess since November 2016. Since 2013, Mr. Metropoulos has served as the Executive Chairman of certain subsidiaries of Hostess and a member of the Board of Directors of Hostess
. Mr. Metropoulos also served on the Board of Directors of Pabst Brewing Company
until 2014. Mr. Metropoulos has over 30 years of experience in acquiring and restructuring businesses in the U.S., Mexico and Europe, focusing on the food and consumer sectors. Mr. Metropoulos has been involved in approximately 80 transactions, including investments in Pabst Brewing Company, Utz Quality Foods LLC, Pinnacle Foods Group, Inc.(Swanson/Hungry-Man,Vlasic Pickles, Open Pit Barbeque Sauce, Duncan Hines, Log Cabin Syrup, Mrs. Butterworth’s Syrup, Aunt Jemima Frozen Breakfast, Mrs. Paul’s Seafood, Van De Kamp’s Seafood, Celeste Pizza and Lender’s Bagels), Aurora Foods, Stella Foods, The Morningstar Group, International Home Foods (Chef Boyardee, Pam Cooking Spray, Gulden’s Mustard and Bumble Bee Tuna), Ghirardelli Chocolate, Mumm and Perrier Jouet Champagnes and Hillsdown Holdings, PLC (Premier International Foods, Burtons Biscuits and Christie Tyler Furniture
), among others. Mr. Metropoulos holds a B.S. and an M.B.A. from Babson College. Mr. Metropoulos’ business expertise, financial acumen and business industry contacts make him well qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors. Alec Gores
has been our Chief Executive Officer
and a member of our Board of Directors since August 2018. Mr. Gores is the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Gores Group, a global investment firm focused on acquiring businesses that can benefit from the firm’s operating expertise. Mr. Gores implemented an operational approach to private equity investing when he founded The Gores Group in 1987 by operating businesses alongside management, or in some cases in lieu of management, to build value in those entities. Since then, the firm has acquired more than 100 businesses including a current portfolio of more than 20 active companies worldwide. Mr. Gores began his career as a self-madeentrepreneur and operating executive. In 1978, he self-funded and founded Executive Business Systems (EBS), a developer and distributor of vertical business software systems
. Within seven years, EBS had become a leading value-added reseller in Michigan and employed over 200 people. In 1986, CONTEL
purchased EBS, and Mr. Gores subsequently began acquiring and operating non-core businesses from major corporations and building value in those entities, a decision that ultimately led to the founding of what has evolved into The Gores Group today. Under his leadership, The Gores Group has continued to acquire businesses in need of operational and financial resources, while creating value and working with management teams to establish an entrepreneurial environment as a foundation for sustainable growth. This philosophy has served the firm well. Mr. Gores served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Gores Holdings I from its inception in June 2015 until completion of the Hostess acquisition in November 2016. Additionally, Mr. Gores has served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Gores Holdings II (Nasdaq: GSHT
) and Gores Holdings III (Nasdaq: GRSH
) since their inception in August 2016 and October 2017, respectively. Mr. Gores holds a degree in Computer Science from Western Michigan University. Mr. Gores’ significant investment and financial expertise make him well qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors. Andrew McBride
has been our Chief Financial Officer and Secretary
since August 2018. Mr. McBride has served as Director, Finance and Tax at The Gores Group since February 2010, where he is responsible for tax due diligence and structuring of acquisitions, compliance, planning, financial management and portfolio company reporting. Mr. McBride served as the Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of Gores Holdings I from January 2016 until completion of the Hostess acquisition in November 2016. Additionally, Mr. McBride served as the Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of Gores Holdings II (Nasdaq: GSHT
) from its inception in August 2016 until October 2018 and he has served as the Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of Gores Holdings III (Nasdaq: GRSH
) since its inception in October 2017. Previously, from January 2008 to January 2010, Mr. McBride worked in the High Net Worth group at Ehrhardt, Keefe, Steiner, and Hottman, P.C.. From January 2004 to January 2008, Mr. McBride was with KPMG, LLP, assisting international corporations with tax planning, structuring and compliance issues. Mr. McBride holds a B.S. in Accounting and Finance from the University of Notre Dame and is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Colorado. Randall Bort
will serve as a member of our board of directors
upon completion of this offering. Mr. Bort is a Co-Founder of SandTree Holdings, LLC, a private commercial real estate
investment firm since November 2012. Previously, Mr. Bort was an investment banker at Drexel Burnham Lambert, BT Securities, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, Credit Suisse First Boston, The Mercanti Group and Imperial Capital. Mr. Bort has significant financial, transactional and capital markets experience across multiple industries and has worked both domestically and in Asia. Mr. Bort earned a B.A. in Economics and Mathematics from Claremont McKenna College and an M.B.A. in Finance and Entrepreneurial Management from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Bort served as a member of the Board of Directors of Gores Holdings I from August 2015 until completion of the Hostess acquisition in November 2016. Additionally, Mr. Bort has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Verra Mobility Corp. (Nasdaq: VRRM
) (formerly Gores Holdings II (Nasdaq: GSHT
)) and Gores Holdings III (Nasdaq: GRSH
) since their inception in August 2016 and October 2017, respectively. Mr. Bort also is a member of the Board of Trustees of Children’s Bureau, a non-profit organization based in Los Angeles focused on foster care and the prevention of child abuse. Mr. Bort’s significant investment and financial expertise make him well qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors. Michael Cramer
will serve as a member of our board of directors
upon completion of this offering. Mr. Cramer has been the Chief Administrative Officer & Executive VP at Hostess Brands, Inc. since 2013 and the Founding Director-Texas Program in Sports and Media at The University of Texas at Austin since 2010. Mr. Cramer was employed as a Director, SVP-Business Planning & Development by The Pabst Brewing Co. from 2010 to 2014, and was previously employed as an Associate Professor by New York University, a Chief Administrative Officer & Executive VP by Pinnacle Foods Corp
., a President & Chief Operating Officer by Hicks Sports Group LLC and President of the Texas Rangers Baseball Club and Dallas Stars Hockey team, an Executive Vice President & General Counsel by Morningstar Group, Inc., an Executive VP-Administration & General Counsel by Stella Foods, Inc
., a Vice President by CDM Hostess Class C LLC, a Vice President by Fairmont Aviation
LLC, a Principal by Ghirardelli Chocolate Co., and a Director & Executive Vice President by International Home Foods
, Inc. He also practiced law for approximately 10 years in Wisconsin. He received his undergraduate degree from State University of New York at Albany and a J.D. from Marquette University Law School. Joseph Gatto
will serve as a member of our board of directors upon the completion of this offering. Mr. Gatto has been a partner at Perella Weinberg Partners, L.P., a leading independent global financial services firm providing corporate advisory and asset management services (“PWP”) since 2012. Prior to his employment at PWP, Mr. Gatto was an investment banker holding senior roles in mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance at Goldman, Sachs & Co., Lehman Brothers Inc. and Barclays plc. Mr. Gatto has significant financial, transactional and capital markets experience, particularly in the consumer products and retail industries
, and has worked with clients in the Americas, Europe and Asia. Mr. Gatto has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and a Fellow at Harvard University’s Advanced Leadership Initiative. Mr. Gatto holds an A.B. in economics and international affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. He also holds an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Mr. Gatto’s significant investment banking, financial and strategic expertise make him well qualified to serve as a member of our board of directors.
: None right now, there's some time before we may see action. Currently commons are trading at $11 and warrants are at $2.2, the warrants are pricey right now. I'm in HCAC and SPAQ at the moment but this seems to be the next short term play after, long term for me would be IPOC or PSTH. I'm betting on the leadership. The bad:
no real forward purchase or PIPE investors or any external funding, which is okay. could indicate that the team is confident in their strategy without the need for additional funding ($400 mil in their own investment) My thought process
: if TWNK came out in this current SPAC market, would we see a hype? 1000% I think they can choose slightly above average known consumer targets and we'll see strong price action.
Wrestling Observer Rewind ★ May 13, 2002
Going through old issues of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter and posting highlights in my own words. For anyone interested, I highly recommend signing up for the actual site at f4wonline and checking out the full archives. PREVIOUSLY: submitted by daprice82 to SquaredCircle [link] [comments]
WATCH: Misawa vs. Chono highlights
- Okay, look, here's the deal. The obituaries, as sad as they are, contain some of Dave's best work. But good lord, they are looooooooooong. And they never contain anything newsworthy that is relevant to 2002 or anything. But they're always super interesting from a historical perspective. But last week, Dave wrote a brief obit for Lou Thesz (only 5,000 words, ahem) and promised to go into more detail this week. So this week, we open with a 16,000+ word obituary for Lou Thesz and I just can't. Sorry. It's really good though, you should all go read it. But I've got, like, a family and a job and responsibilities and stuff. I can't recap this. It's an incredible piece of work though.
- The World Wrestling Federation is no more. On May 5th, the company unveiled its new name, World Wrestling Entertainment. Dave recaps the history of the company briefly (was originally called "World Wide Wrestling Federation, or WWWF, until 1979 when it was shortened to WWF, which is has remained for the past 23 years). But as of this week, the company has been rebranded to WWE. The website domain was changed to WWE.com and all references to "WWF" were changed to "WWE." The scratch logo was also changed, with the F being removed, so now it simply looks like "WW" (which, honestly, never really did make much sense to me. Even though the logo has changed, it's still "WW" to this day). Anyway, this all stems from the World Wildlife Fund lawsuit over in the UK, in which the WWE lost every court case and appeal. They were planning to appeal the ruling in the UK's highest court, their final last-ditch effort to save their name, but the reality is, they weren't going to win that case. Vince McMahon and the company blatantly and repeatedly violated the agreement they signed in 1994. It was 1000% obvious they were in the wrong here and they had gotten spanked by every single court before, often losing their appeals by unanimous decisions. So they weren't going to win this final appeal either and they knew it. So they dropped the appeal and threw in the towel and finally agreed to just change the name. The WWE has until May 15th to remove all references to "WWF" from their shows and merchandise. Any merch with "WWF" on it can no longer be sold after that date. All video packages and posters will have to be changed and any "WWF" mention or logos after that time on television or in past footage will have to be censored. Last year, during the court case, the WWE claimed it would cost them more than $50 million to change their name and to deal with all the legal and rebranding headaches that come with it. But this week, they backtacked on that and said it wouldn't be that expensive after all. Who knows if that's true, but the idea of this costing $50 million was enough to make the shareholders shit themselves, so Dave says they claimed it won't cost that much in order to keep the stock from plummeting. Anyway, none of this had to happen. In 1994, Vince McMahon and the Wildlife Fund signed an agreement that the wrestling company would not use the "WWF" name for promoting itself outside of the U.S. (since the Wildlife group is based overseas) and that worked well for a year or two. But then Vince McMahon apparently decided, "Meh, who cares about agreements?" and began repeatedly and blatantly violating it, constantly, for years, at which point the Wildlife group finally got upset enough to file a lawsuit. Anyway, on the first Raw since the name change, Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler repeatedly stumbled over the new initials, accidentally saying "WWF" multiple times. Gonna take time for everyone to get used to calling it the new name.
- The buyrates for Wrestlemania 18 are in and it appears the event will have to settle for being the #2 biggest money show in wrestling history after it came up short and failed to surpass Wrestlemania 17. Final numbers aren't in yet, but latest estimates put it somewhere around the 800,000 buys range (ended up being about 880,000) which is quite a bit down from WM17. It was also #2 in total revenue from live gate and merch. Internally, it's actually being seen as something of a disappointment because with the power of the Hogan/Rock dream match, they were hopeful this show would top 1 million buys but unless something drastic changes with these buyrate numbers, it looks like the final total will be a good bit short of that.
- NJPW's latest Tokyo Dome show is in the books. The show drew a sellout crowd of 57,000 fans, there to see the Masahiro Chono vs. Mitsuharu Misawa dream main event (which ended up going to a 30-minute draw). It was the biggest non-Jan. 4 crowd NJPW has drawn to the Dome in 2 years. So that's the good news. The bad news is that the show flopped in the ratings on TV. A big part of that is because the Chono/Misawa match didn't air as part of the show (due to the Asahi-TV/Nippon TV network issues discussed in past issues) so the televised show was built around the Shinya Hashimoto/Naoya Ogawa vs. Scott Norton/Hiroyoshi Tenzan match and man, the fans sure didn't seem to give a fuck about that. In fact, the rating was so bad that there's concern that this will be the end of pro wrestling on prime time TV in Japan for the foreseeable future. But there are justifiable reasons for the rating. The show went head-to-head with the Kirin Cup soccer tournament, which was a huge deal and did more than double the rating the NJPW show did. Unlike the U.S., wrestling and "real" sports in Japan have a major crossover audience, so having real sports competition severely hurt NJPW's show. Also, while Ogawa is a draw as a singles star, putting him in a tag match against Norton and Tenzan isn't exactly setting the world on fire. The show lasted 6 hours, which was way too long and the crowd was burned out before Misawa vs. Chono even started.
- Other notes from the NJPW show: it opened with an hour long 30th anniversary ceremony. They had a 10-bell salute for Lou Thesz and brought out a bunch of legendary NJPW names from the 70s and 80s. Then they did an angle where Antonio Inoki came out to give a speech, but he was attacked by Tiger Jeet Singh. But then Chyna made the save, attacking Singh, running him out of the ring, and challenging him to a match. Inoki's ex-wife, famous Japanese actress Mitsuko Baisho then made an appearance, getting a huge pop, and she and Inoki did his famous catch phrase to kick off the show. Minoru Suzuki of Pancrase (who started with NJPW as a pro wrestler) was also there. Jushin Ligher and Minoru Tanaka won the IWGP Jr. tag titles and then Liger challenged several NOAH wrestlers who were at ringside (most notably KENTA) and they all jumped in the ring and it ended with a staredown. The Steiner Brothers reunited to face Hiroshi Tanahashi and Kensuke Sasaki, with Chyna as the special referee. Tanahashi was working hurt, but he still worked. They did a spot where Tanahashi ran into Chyna and he went down off the bump instead of her and Dave seems annoyed by this since Tanahashi is a guy they really need to be pushing who can be a huge star for this company. Dave doesn't like him selling bumps for Chyna. Anyway, decent match but the Steiners basically steamrolled them and Tanahashi was pinned by Scott Steiner. Chyna then challenged several All Japan Women at ringside as well as Scott Steiner, Tanahashi, Sasaki, and even IWGP champion Yuji Nagata, saying she wanted a title match. Dave thinks this company has lost its damn mind. Speaking of Nagata, he retained his title in the next match. And then, of course, the main event. Usually during interpromotional matches, the crowd is always super pro-NJPW but this time, they went insane for Misawa and it was clear there were a ton of NOAH fans in the building. Chono did some Inoki moves and Misawa did some Great Baba moves, to kinda have a spiritual "Baba vs. Inoki" tribute in the match I guess. Ended in a draw and by the time it was over, no matter how big the dream match was, the crowd was burned out and weren't as hype for the match as you might expect once the entrances were done.
WATCH: Chyna on Sabrina The Teenage Witch
- Goldberg has received a full buy-out of his WCW contract from Time Warner and as of this week, he is now an unsigned free agent. Goldberg did not request the buy-out, the decision was made by the Time Warner side after the most unprofitable quarter in their history. The company was looking to cut expenses, even at a loss, just so the books can look better in future quarters. Goldberg reportedly received almost all of his remaining salary (more than 90% of the nearly $3 million he was still owed) in order to get him off their books. When Goldberg realized he's going to be a free agent a year earlier than expected, talks with WWE started up. But as usual, they went nowhere. WWE (I feel like I'm having to get used to typing that all over again. Really does feel like 2002 again) has interest in him, especially given the way ratings continue to plummet lately. But Goldberg has always wanted more than WWE is willing to pay. Plus, they're feeling burned right now after signing Hall and Nash to big money, long-term contracts for part-time work, only to have Nash get injured and Hall likely to get himself fired at any moment (that moment is coming sooner than you think), and neither of them really getting over in any meaningful way. Even Hogan, who is also making big money for a reduced schedule, was hot for a minute and boosted ratings and buyrates. But after only a few months, that train already seems to be out of steam and TV ratings are back to floundering with Hogan as champion leading the shows. So WWE is kinda gun-shy on opening the checkbook and paying out the ass for these big stars, futilely hoping that one of them is the quick-fix that can stop the bleeding.
- There's also the question of how Goldberg would fit within the WWE locker room. He hasn't been shy about his dislike for Triple H, dating back to WCW when Triple H trashed Goldberg in a radio interview and saying that even if Goldberg was available, they wouldn't want him (which, at the time, when WCW was still alive and Goldberg was the biggest star in the company, is just about the dumbest thing he could have said. In 1998, WWF would have gladly traded 10 Triple H's for Goldberg). Anyway, Goldberg took the comment personally and even confronted Triple H face-to-face at the Toy Fair convention in New York a couple of years ago, in a bit of an ugly scene where Goldberg was yelling at him and Triple H and Stephanie kept their heads down and said nothing. Goldberg also has a lot of dislike for Scott Hall, which is another of Triple H's good friends, so ya know. The latest on Goldberg is that he's considering working some in Japan but he's just fielding offers right now. Word is he's interested in working with PRIDE as well as NJPW. Of course, if he's looking to maximize his money potential, WWE is still the place to go if you want to make big bucks. If promoted right, matches against Rock, Austin, Triple H, and others could do huge buyrates. And if they keep Goldberg and Austin apart for a year and build to a match with them at Wrestlemania, well, needless to say, that show would set records. Dave talks about how Goldberg got nuclear hot in 1998 and even in 1999, he was the biggest drawing wrestler in the business. But by 2000, the company was dying, Goldberg was injured, and "Jesus Chris with an Etch-a-Sketch" couldn't have drawn in WCW. Dave again does the math and talks about how WWE should have brought Goldberg in for the Invasion angle. Yes, it would have cost them a lot of money and upset the salary structure, but he would have more than made up for it with the kind of buyrates he could have drawn with those dream matches and the Invasion angle might have had a chance. But alas.
- And of course, who's to say how WWE would use Goldberg? They already have Brock Lesnar and they're currently giving him the unstoppable monster push. Lesnar is bigger, younger, and a more legitimate athlete (for whatever that's worth). And WWE probably isn't going to give Goldberg an endless string of jobbers to beat. In WWE, he's going to be expected to work longer matches, sell for people, etc. They won't book him the way WCW did so who knows how he'd get over in WWE? If they wanted to build to an Austin/Goldberg match, it would make sense that Goldberg first has to plow through guys like Triple H, Undertaker, etc. And politically, that just ain't gonna happen. Dave doubts NJPW can afford him for anything more than one or two big shows. As for PRIDE, he could probably make a lot of money there, but the problem is.....PRIDE is a shoot. They haven't had "worked" matches in a couple of years and doing so now would kill their credibility. Which means Goldberg would have to go into a legit shoot and one embarrassing loss there would severely hurt his future earning potential. In the end, Dave thinks it's inevitable that Goldberg will end up in WWE, but probably not any time soon. But he's certain it will eventually happen. There's too much money on the line for both sides and WWE's ratings woes are making them desperate, so it'll happen some day (yup, less than a year from this).
- And the moment is here! For those of you who had "under 3 months" in the "How long will Scott Hall last?" pool, come collect your prize. Scott Hall was released by the WWE this week due to misbehavior on the European tour. Firstly, he went on a drunken binge during the entire tour and was even worse on the plane ride home (much more on that in a bit). Dave says this was inevitable. WCW fired him. Even ECW stopped using him when he got arrested at one point. And even though he was seemingly behaving during his Japan tours, even NJPW cut ties with him shortly before he went back to WWE because they were fed up with some of his antics. And now WWE has fired him. Dave talks about how Hall made a drunken spectacle of himself in the locker room on his very first day back in WWE, before the NWO even debuted on TV, then he showed up in Toronto for Wrestlemania in no condition to perform (later came out that he was hungover from the night before), which caused Austin to insist on ending their feud at WM (which was the plan, but Dave says Austin has continued working with Hall afterwards simply because they don't really seem to have any other credible opponents for him). Hall's match with Bradshaw at Backlash was an embarrassment and the night before that show, agents had to help him back to his hotel. Just endless incidents like this. In Europe, Hall was such a blatant drunken mess that even the other wrestlers were calling for him to be fired. Hall was 45 minutes late for the bus they all took to London and then passed out in the locker room during the show. On the plane ride back, he was starting fights with people and eventually passed out and it got to the point that people were worried about his health. When they got back to the U.S. for Raw, they literally had to wake him up from a drunken stupor backstage to send him to the ring to do his segment (and yes, he wrestled). After the show, they fired him. No one came to his defense, and even Hall's closest friends are now admitting that he simply can't handle the pressures of being on the road and being released is the best thing for him right now. Dave talks about how a lot of wrestlers have been fired in the last couple of years for drug and alcohol issues and that's all well and good, but the big problem is why hire them in the first place? Scott Hall's issues were not a secret. It wasn't like he cleaned himself up before he came to WWE. He was getting in trouble and collecting arrests like Pokemon all the way up until the day they brought him back. Anyway, Hall had a 2-year deal, believed to be worth $600,000-per-year downside for only 10 dates per month. So a really sweet deal, but it's gone now.
- Hey, speaking of that European tour, turns out there was a bit of trouble on the flight back to the U.S. Perhaps you've heard of it. Most of the trouble wasn't even due to Scott Hall. Turns out Vince McMahon didn't make the trip and lots of people decided that was a good reason to cut loose and have fun. Plus, since everyone has seen Hall get away with being drunk 24/7 for the last few months, they figured nobody would get in trouble. So....folks got DRUNK. Among the various incidents on this flight: Goldust got on the speaker system and began drunkenly serenading his ex-wife Terri with love songs. Terri was extremely uncomfortable and begged him to stop and then Jim Ross had to go sit him down. Ric Flair also "started to get wild" but Jim Ross calmed him down as well (Dave doesn't seem to know just yet exactly what Flair "getting wild" entailed, but if you don't know, it involved getting totally naked except for his robe and started helicoptering his dick at flight attendants. And it gets worse if you feel like researching it. The flight attendants later filed a lawsuit against Flair and accused him of sexual assault). Curt Hennig was spraying people with shaving cream and he kept trying to get Brock Lesnar to fight him. Lesnar, being a newcomer, didn't know how to handle it and didn't want to get in trouble, but he ain't gonna let Hennig talk shit to him either. So anyway, Lesnar got up and basically annihilated Hennig, repeatedly taking him to the ground and embarrassing him because, well, of course he did. It's Brock Lesnar. At one point, Lesnar slammed Hennig up against the side of the plane, right into the emergency exit door, which freaked everybody out for obvious reasons. Michael Hayes got into a scuffle with Bradshaw and then tried to pick a fight with Hall (although everyone on the plane said Hall had it coming). Anyway, Hayes was apparently obnoxious as hell and annoyed everyone. But then he made the mistake of falling asleep and someone (believed to be X-Pac) cut his hair off. When Hayes woke up, he was furious and tried to fight several people. The next day at the Raw tapings, his entire mullet was in a plastic bag, pinned to the wall of the locker room for everyone to see. Gerald Brisco, Arn Anderson, and Hayes all caught a ton of heat from Vince afterward since they were the people who were supposed to be in charge. Anderson and Hayes especially, since their jobs are to keep the boys under control, but they were apparently having just as much fun as everyone else. Everyone's waiting to see how Vince is going to handle this situation. As noted, Hall was already fired and Hayes got an earful from Vince, Stephanie, and JR at Raw the next day, but there will likely be more fallout. Undertaker was also said to be furious over how out of hand everything got (I'm sure we haven't heard the last of this).
- Anyway, while they were in Europe, WWE presented its latest UK PPV, Insurexxtion. As usual with the UK PPVs, this was little more than a glorified house show. They announced the show as sold out, but there were empty seats everywhere. RVD vs. Eddie Guerrero for the IC title was the show-stealer according to every report Dave heard, and was said to be far better than their Backlash match. Brock Lesnar teamed with Shawn Stasiak (lol wut) and lost to the Hardyz. Brock beat up everybody after the match. Triple H beat Undertaker in the main event and Dave doesn't know why since Undertaker is the one challenging Hogan for the title at the next PPV. The top rope broke during the match when they did an Irish whip into the corner and when the rope snapped, a metal piece broke off from the corner and flew into the crowd and barely missed hitting a small child in the face.
- Smackdown on 5/2 drew the all-time lowest rating in the history of the show. Dave says that's the scariest thing to happen to WWF in the past 5 years. It was also the 3rd lowest rating for any Smackdown or Raw dating back to 1998. The rating was a full 18% drop from the week before, which was already scary. The rating was even lower than previous holiday episodes. So what was the problem? Well, it was headlined by Hogan defending the WWF title against Chris Jericho (as it turns out, the final time the "WWF" title was ever defended). Dave says the title has been meaningless for years now and Hogan's steam is running out. And Jericho hasn't recovered from spending the first part of the year being emasculated and playing second fiddle to Stephanie McMahon in the Wrestlemania feud. Add all that together and you've got a recipe for a shit ratings night. Among other things. Dave isn't blaming this all on Hogan and Jericho by any means, there's a lot of problems with the company as of late, from bad storylines to failing to make new stars, and it's all starting to come home to roost.
- Keiji Muto wrestled a match in AJPW under his alternate gimmick of Kokushi Muso. Turns out "Great Muta" isn't his only other persona. The Kokushi Muso gimmick is basically like Hakushi in WWF, where he's covered his entire body in Japanese writing. He originally debuted the gimmick in Michinoku Pro last year, when teaming with....Hakushi (Jinsei Shinzaki, who occasionally brought back the old Hakushi gimmick in Japan). Anyway, same thing here. He teamed with Hakushi for this match, while using that gimmick (Muto would use that gimmick a handful of times throughout the years, always when teaming with Hakushi. It's like that was only his gimmick for that team. The last time he used it was in 2009, also in a tag match with Hakushi).
- Former NOAH Jr. champion Naomichi Marufuji underwent knee surgery this week and should be out around 6 months (ends up being 9 months).
- NJPW is doing an angle (according to Dave) similar to the Vince/Flair angle last year where Antonio Inoki and Masahiro Chono are battling over control of the company. Although it's more realistic. Inoki is in the press talking about how many of NJPW's shows aren't doing well and is pushing for them to use Naoya Ogawa more, while Chono doesn't want to. Inoki is also saying Chono needs to retire from wrestling and focus his energies on managing the day-to-day business of the promotion full-time. Dave says this is an angle, but it doesn't sound like much of one to me, and I think later years have kinda proven there was a lot of blurring between fiction and reality here, because there was a ton of behind the scenes turmoil in NJPW during this period.
- Will Smith appeared alongside Antonio Inoki at the Japanese movie premiere for the film "Ali" based on Muhammad Ali's life. Crowd went absolutely insane for Inoki (I've tried like hell and can't even find a picture of them together. But then again, I can't find a single pic from the premiere at all).
- When reviewing the recent Dos Caras Jr. shoot fight in Japan, Dave talks about the guy's potential as a wrestler. He has a strong amateur background, legit shoot skills, and a famous name. Dave thinks, if he's even halfway a decent worker, he can almost be a guaranteed star in Mexico (based on his name alone) and probably Japan too, if he decides to pursue that career (indeed he did, and indeed, he was fairly decent at it. Of course, he later became Alberto Del Rio, accused rapist and pretty much confirmed all-around piece of shit).
- Former long-time WCW referee Randy Anderson passed away this week after a long battle with testicular cancer. Back when WCW was still around and he first got diagnosed, they did an angle out of it where Eric Bischoff fired him and then laughed at his wife and kids when they begged him to give Anderson his back. Of course, he was later re-hired when Flair became on-screen commissioner and continued to referee until 1999 when the cancer forced him to retire.
- Random news and notes: Bobby Heenan is said to be in good spirits and is especially excited because WWE recently contacted him about doing a WWE Magazine feature on him. Verne Gagne's wife Mary passed away from cancer this week. Goldberg will be appearing on this week's Wrestling Observer Live show to be interviewed. Mil Mascaras is releasing an autobiography (in Spanish of course) and man, I'd love to find an English translation of that because I bet it'd be interesting. Chyna appeared on "Sabrina The Teenage Witch" this past week.
WATCH: Hogan can't start the motorcycle
- Bruno Sammartino turned down an invitation to attend the Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame ceremony in New York (yes, that HOF existed and still does, in a different city now). Bruno did an interview with the local paper and said "Wrestling is how I made my living and supported my family, but it's over. I don't want anything to do with it anymore." Bruno managed to turn the discussion to the WWE, despite them not having any affiliation with this HOF and grumbled about how Vince McMahon blocked him from being inducted into the Madison Square Garden Hall of Fame. However, the new MSG owners have apparently promised Bruno he'll be inducted this year, since he sold the place out 200 times (Dave jumps in here to correct it and says the real number of sellouts is closer to 45. Bruno only main evented the Garden 127 times and by no means were they all sell-outs. But it's one of those myths that has been perpetuated for so long that Dave begrudgingly recognizes that people are always going to believe the 200 number is true, but it's not even close. He compares it to the claim that Andre The Giant was 7'4, which also wasn't true but people repeated the lie so often that it became accepted as fact).
- Afa Anoa'i Jr., the son of the legendary Wild Samoan, is a star football player at his high school and is being recruited for Penn State. He also sometimes wrestles on his father's indie shows (that would be Manu, who was very briefly part of Legacy with Orton, Dibiase Jr., and Cody).
- Former WCW announcer Scott Hudson will be doing commentary for Jerry Jarrett's new promotion, and Bob Ryder is said to be in a major front office position.
- Jarrett has put out a press release saying that his new promotion has had talks with Randy Savage and Ultimate Warrior. Word is Warrior wanted a 15% ownership stake in the new company, which pretty much ended those talks right there. They're also apparently interested in Scott Hall now too, with the idea that since they're only doing 1 show per week, he won't be a screw-up here. Dave is skeptical. Anyway, currently Road Dogg and Brian Christopher expected to be some of the company's top stars and Dave's not optimistic.
- XWF wrestlers were told last week that a television deal should hopefully be finalized this week. But Dave has been told no chance it's happening that soon. The rumors are that the deal is either with the FX or Fox Kids networks. Ted Turner had inquired about buying this promotion a few months ago, but when he learned how much it would cost to get them off the ground and make them competitive, he lost interest (TV deal never materializes, company is already dead, etc. etc.).
- The Scorpion King slipped to 2nd place this week, falling to the new Spider Man movie which did a record breaking $114 million opening weekend. Randy Savage has a small role in that movie.
- Speaking of, The Rock worked his first match in about a month at a Fort Lauderdale house show, teaming with Hogan to beat Jericho and Angle. After the match, Hogan tried to get Rock to pose with him, but Rock wouldn't do it. Rock thanked the fans for the success of Scorpion King and said it would likely be his last match for awhile. There was a ton of local media there, but Rock didn't talk to any of them. Basically, the house show was in his neck of the woods and he simply decided to show up and work it just so he could see his friends and hang out with the locker room, he had no interest in doing interviews. He was just there because he wanted to be. Backstage, Rock was telling people that Hollywood higher-ups have told him he has to leave the wrestling business if he wants to be taken seriously as an actor. Those in the company feel it's a certainty that Rock really is leaving and he's likely going to break out of wrestling into Hollywood and actually become a rare success story (yeah, you could say that).
- Look how long this is already. Imagine if I had covered that Lou Thesz obituary in full. JUST IMAGINE!
- Notes from Raw: Dave compares it to an episode of Thunder, with the crowd half-dead for everything. Also, the roster was exhausted after just returning from the Europe trip (and the plane ride shenanigans) and that was apparent too. Brock Lesnar won his match via pinfall instead of the usual ref stoppage and Dave says that word is Triple H got in Vince's ear and convinced him to end the ref stoppage gimmick for Brock. Sure, why not? Hogan was supposed to ride off on Undertaker's bike at one point, but then the motorcycle wouldn't start. It was one of those awkward live-TV moments where time stood still and nobody knew what to do. Flair finally turned heel on Austin, to a shocking lack of heat from the crowd. Nash returned, etc. Dave recaps the rest of this show and it sounds like a lot of bad WCW stuff, coincidentally enough with a lot of the same people.
NEXT WEDNESDAY: more fallout from the Plane Ride from Hell, more on the beginning of Jarrett's new NWA-TNA promotion, more on the NJPW Tokyo Dome show, and more...
- The man who played the effeminate gay guy applying to be Vince McMahon's secretary on Smackdown a few weeks ago was new creative team member David Lagana. He recently joined the company and has written for several other TV shows, including "Friends" and has a strong knowledge of the industry (Dave says if you've been reading the Observer closely for the last few years, you're probably familiar with him, he's written in to Dave a lot over the years).
- Dave goes on a brief rant about how to use older stars. In the past, everyone, even Vince McMahon, talked about how you should use guys like Hogan and Flair in small doses and how WCW's reliance on older stars like that is what made them less special. Dave talks about back in the day in Memphis, Jackie Fargo would come back once or twice a year and he was always the biggest star in the company when he did. Because he was used sparingly. But WWE has pretty much built its company around Hogan and Flair (and to a lesser extent, Vince and Undertaker) over the last few months and they've been totally overexposed because of it. Just 6 weeks ago, Hulk Hogan was getting some of the largest crowd reactions in the history of the business. Now, he and Undertaker are practically hearing crickets during their on-screen interactions.
- Lita underwent neck surgery this week and isn't allowed to do anything physical for 9 months. Scotty 2 Hotty also had neck surgery and is expected to be out for about a year. Both are expected to make full recoveries though.
- Jesse Ventura admitted this week that he received WWF stock options as partial payment for some work he did with them. Dave doesn't know if it's related to the Summerslam appearance a few years ago or the XFL announcing gig. Ventura says he has 10 years to exercise those stock options but wouldn't give any further details.
- Scott Steiner told WWA he will work their next UK tour but after that, he's going to WWE. Dave is skeptical. Reports are that Steiner was in horrible pain after every match he worked on the last WWA tour and there's significant doubt that his body will hold up to a WWE schedule.
- The new Steve Austin "What!" DVD has a lot of WCW footage, including the full Austin vs. Steamboat match from WCW Bash at the Beach 94. Dave doesn't say so, but I believe this is the first time WWE used any of the WCW library for commercial release after they purchased it the year before.
- Someone writes in and asks Dave to stop spending so much time writing about steroid use in wrestling and instead says he should write a story about racism in the business. This person writes about the allegations from years back of Dusty Rhodes using the N-work with impunity, or the time DX parodied the Nation by wearing blackface. The WCW discrimination lawsuit, the embarrassing angles they've done with Mark Henry such as Sexual Chocolate, etc. This guy is asking why is it white wrestlers outnumber black wrestlers by 35-to-1 ratio in the U.S. (70-to-1 in Mexico and 80-to-1 in Japan). He wants to know why Dave isn't writing about that stuff. Dave responds and agrees that the blackface DX promo was racist, and it was racist when Buff Bagwell did it in WCW and when Roddy Piper did it in the 80s. Dave says wrestling, especially from the 70s through the 90s, had a horrible history of exploiting stereotypes and/or saying and doing racist things. You can argue it's gotten better, but no doubt the problem still exists. Dave lists some examples but he also pushes back on some others. For example, he's heard people complain that Booker T isn't being used properly due to his race and Dave disagrees. It's true that Booker T probably deserves a bigger push, but you can make the same case for guys like RVD and Jericho and Raven or DDP (when he first debuted, at least) and that didn't happen either, so Dave doesn't necessarily think Booker's lack of top-star push can be blamed on his race (we're less than a year away from Triple H definitively proving otherwise).
- There's also 2 letters about the Rock/Hogan match at Wrestlemania and they couldn't be more different. One guy writes in and he can't understand why people are praising that match because if you put aside the hot crowd, it was awful, everyone's moves looked bad, it was embarrassing, etc. and says Hogan should have retired afterward. Then someone else writes in and says he was there live and, taken as a whole, Rock vs. Hogan was the greatest match he's ever seen. Basically the same "love it or hate it" opinion people have about that match to this day. Also, someone else writes in about the recent Low-Ki vs. American Dragon match from an ROH show and puts it up there among some of the greatest matches of all time (listing off several classic WWF matches like Shawn/Razor and Owen/Bret at WM10 for example). So there ya go.
A history of subject matter that Knicks PR team and James Dolan have felt qualified to talk about.
submitted by HokageEzio to NYKnicks [link] [comments]
James Dolan released a statement today in email talking about how he did not feel that the Knicks were qualified to take a stance against police brutality and racial relations in America. Stating the following:
Subject: A message from Jim Dolan
We know that some of you have asked about whether our company is going to make a public statement about the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer. I want you to know, I realize the importance of this issue. Therefore, I want you to understand our internal position.
This is a turbulent time in our country. The coronavirus and civil unrest have taken their toll on our way of life. We at Madison Square Garden stand by our values of a respectful and peaceful workplace. We always will.
As companies in the business of sports and entertainment, however, we are not any more qualified than anyone else to offer our opinion on social matters. What's important is how we operate. Our companies are committed to upholding our values, which include creating a respectful workplace for all, and that will never change. What we say to each other matters. How we treat each other matters. And that's what will get us through this difficult time.
That's an interesting stance, considering they are now officially the only team in the NBA to not make a statement about the murder of George Floyd. But fair enough, they feel they are not qualified to talk about it. However, let's look at some things that Dolan and the Knicks PR team has
felt qualified to talk about:
For clarification purposes, it is not true that the New York Knicks offered Richard Jefferson a contract in either the summer of 2018 or 2019.
“To me, Charles has got a problem. We’ve said it before; he’s his own worst problem. People have to understand that. He has a problem with anger. He’s both physically and verbally abusive. He may have a problem with alcohol. But those problems with being physically and verbally abusive, those are problem.
“I do think Charles needs help. He can’t want the things that have happened to him since he retired. They aren’t good. He’s had many altercations. He’s been arrested. It all seems to come from his anger. Maybe he can’t remember it, but I think he’s somewhat in denial.”
You are a sad person. Why would anybody write such a hateful letter. I am.just guessing but ill bet your life is a mess and you are a hateful mess. What have you done that anyone would consider positive or nice. I am betting nothing. In fact ill bet you are negative force in everyone who comes in contact with you. You most likely have made your family miserable. Alcoholic maybe. I just celebrated my 21 year anniversary of sobriety. You should try it. Maybe it will help you become a person that folks would like to have around. In the mean while start rooting.for the Nets because the Knicks dont want you.
Dolan spoke about the MeToo movement and the song in an interview on Fox today, stressing that the song wasn't only about Weinstein: "All of us knew all those people, who are basically no longer active," he said. "I wonder, and I've actually talked to a lot of my other friends who know all these folks, I wonder what could I have done, what did I miss, and that's almost really what the song is—what did we miss? Because if you were friends with any of those people, a lot of them were people we never would have thought that about."
Dolan of course couldn't avoid the subject of Weinstein, who was more than just a personal friend—as Billboard notes, Dolan was part of the Weinstein Company board from mid-2015 to June 2016 and was named as a co-defendant with Weinstein in a lawsuit filed in December by six women who said they were assaulted and/or harassed by Weinstein. According to the suit, Dolan allegedly knew of Weinstein’s "pattern and practice of predatory sexual conduct toward women" due to his seat on the board.
"I think a bunch of it she did [make up], yes," Dolan said, in response to allegations that Thomas used sexist and demeaning names during conversations with Browne Sanders. "I was running a business. She didn't do very well in it. She was real unhappy with that and she decided to go get a lawyer. I fired her because while she was working for me, she was coercing her own direct reports, to come down to her lawyers office, to build her case against the company." In conclusion, James Dolan is full of shit. Who knew?
Jeopardy! recap for Fri., Jul. 10 - 2019 Tournament of Champions quarterfinal game 5
submitted by jaysjep2 to Jeopardy [link] [comments]
Here are today's champions:
- Ryan Fenster, a graduate student from Washington state, is still living down the infamous football category;
- Steven Grade, a sports industry consultant from Georgia, took a shave off his playoff beard; and
- Francois Barcomb, a teacher from New York, went to England after his Jeopardy! success.
Francois went on a tremendous run in DJ, crushing the field with $34,300 going into FJ. Ryan lost everything on DD2 and couldn't recover enough to stay alive in the tournament at $4,000. Steven, with $9,200, would need a correct response on FJ to advance.
DD1, $1,000 - NOVEMBER DATEBOOK - On Nov. 9, 1908, a tradition began as hotel guest Archie Bailey ordered 25 of these to be put in the rooms (Francois won $2,500 from his score of $2,600.)
DD2, $1,600 - REVELATIONS - A bestselling 1836 "autobiography" by this frontiersman who died that year was revealed as a hoax in the 1880s (Ryan lost $4,000 on a true DD.)
DD3, $800 - BODIES OF WATER - This sea is fairly straight on Italy's shores, but dented by coves & islands on the Balkan side (Francois, who at $24,300 already had a spot in the next round in the bag, surprisingly bet $8,000 and was correct.)
FJ - LITERARY CHARACTERS - From an 1894 work, his name literally translates to "Tiger King"
Everyone was correct on FJ. Francois wagered $0, while Steven doubled to $18,400 to earn his wild card spot.
Triple Stumper of the day: No one knew the organization formed to teach business savvy to the "Junior" set is Junior Achievement.
Correct Qs: DD1 - What are Gideon Bibles? DD2 - Who was Davy Crockett? DD3 - What is the Adriatic Sea? FJ - Who is Shere Kahn?
NEW! List of banned subreddits part 2
submitted by Holesome_chungus to reclassified [link] [comments]
Updated list of all known banned subreddits sorted by reason and alphabetically part 2 (unmoderated and ban evasion). Current as of July 3, 2020 5:32 PM EDT
This is a second thread containing subs banned for ban evasion or for being unmoderated, as Reddit limits you to 40000 characters per post. Unmoderated: Ban or quarantine evasion:
* Ban time and reason changed during the purge of subs containing the word 'nigga' or 'nigger'
Wall Street Breakfast: The Week Ahead. I read this and thought it interesting. Enjoy from SeekingAlpha
Nike (NYSE:NKE) will headline a light roster of earnings reports in the week ahead, while Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) WWDC event sets the stage for the company's launch of the first 5G iPhones later this year. On the economic front, reports on existing home sales, jobless claims, consumer spending and a Q1 GDP revision will be the headliners. Fed heads are out in force next week, with virtual speeches on the docket for Raphael Bostic, James Bullard and Charles Evans. In a sign of normalcy, Ford (NYSE:F) and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE:FCAU) are expected to return to pre-pandemic production levels at U.S. plants, while results of Fed stress tests on major banks will be announced on June 25. submitted by abiech to Winkerpack [link] [comments]
Earnings spotlight: IHS Market (NYSE:INFO) on June 23; BlackBerry (NYSE:BB), KB Home (NYSE:KBH) and National Beverage (NASDAQ:FIZZ) on June 24; Nike (NKE), Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI), Accenture (NYSE:ACN) and Rite Aid (NYSE:RAD) on June 25.
IPO watch: U.S. grocery store operator Albertsons (ACI) is expected to price its IPO next week and begin to trade. The company could have a valuation of over $10B if the IPO prices at the midpoint of the expected range of $18 to $20 range. Albertsons, which is looking to raise as much as $2B, is one of the grocery chains seeing a sales boom in business during the coronavirus pandemic. Stakeholders Kimco Realty (NYSE:KIM) and Cerberus Capital are both selling off shares in the offering. No other IPOs are due to price during the week.
M&A tidbits: The walk date for the Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR)-Eldorado Resorts (NASDAQ:ERI) merger arrives on June 24, although no surprises are anticipated. Shareholders vote on the Provident Financial (NYSE:PFS)-SB One Bancorp (NASDAQ:SBBX) deal on June 25. On the same date, Delphi Technologies (NYSE:DLPH) shareholders vote on the merger with BorgWarner (NYSE:BWA). It is almost a lock that there will be some more drama in the Taubman Centers (NYSE:TCO)-Simon Property (NYSE:SPG) duel.
Projected dividend changes (quarterly): Kroger (NYSE:KR) to $0.17 from $0.16, John Wiley (NYSE:JW.A) to $0.35 from $0.34, Saul Centers (NYSE:BFS) to $0.27 from $0.53.
Spotlight on Nike: Nike will post its FQ4 report with more uncertainty in the air than almost any time before due to the lack of formal guidance from the company. The two biggest pullouts from the report are likely to be the pace of recovery in China and the momentum of the e-commerce business. Nike is one of the companies seen by Wall Street as in a strong position on the other side of the pandemic. "We see Nike as favorably positioned for both secular fitness/casualization trends and industry structural changes that benefit those with strong direct engagement with consumers," notes bullish-leaning Wells Fargo ahead of the print. Stocks that quite often move right along with Nike on earnings day include Foot Locker (NYSE:FL), adidas (OTCQX:ADDYY), Under Armour (NYSE:UAA) and Dick's Sporting Goods (NYSE:DKS).
WWDC: Apple will hold its annual developers conference on June 22-26 in a virtual format this year. Apple is expected to announce its ARM-based Macs as the company advances its control of chips and architecture away from Intel (NASDAQ:INTC). Enhancements with iOS14, tvOS 14 and watchOS 7 are also anticipated, along with new products/R&D initiatives on the AR headset and wearables/AirPods front. Tim Cook will give the keynote presentation on June 22 at 10:00 Pacific time in what is likely to be his last presentation before the annual September iPhone reveal event.
Healthcare watch: Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY) has an investor series presentation next week covering its early pipeline/immuno-oncology on June 22 and hematology on June 25. PDUFA dates arrive for Karyopharm Therapeutics' (NASDAQ:KPTI) Xpovio on June 23, Zogenix's (NASDAQ:ZGNX) Fintepla on June 25 and Heron Therapeutics' (NASDAQ:HRTX) HTX-011 on June 26. The big event of the week in the sector is the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Virtual Annual Meeting II running from June 22-24. A large number of potentially market-moving posters and abstracts are due to be released, as well as special sessions on COVID-19 and cancer research. Some of the notable companies due to present include Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD), AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN), Phio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:PHIO), Exicure (NASDAQ:OTC:XCUR), Xencor (NASDAQ:XNCR), ESSA Pharma (NASDAQ:EPIX), ImmunoGen (NASDAQ:IMGN), Molecular Templates (NASDAQ:MTEM), Guardant Health (NASDAQ:GH), CRISPR Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CRSP), Jounce Therapeutics (NASDAQ:JNCE), GlycoMimetics (NASDAQ:GLYC), Seattle Genetics (NASDAQ:SGEN), Provectus Therapeutics (OTC:PVCT), ORIC Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ORIC), Sanofi (NASDAQ:SNY), aTyr Pharma (NASDAQ:LIFE), TG Therapeutics (NASDAQ:TGTX) and Neoleukin Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NLTX).
Bank tests: The Federal Reserve will release results of the annual bank stress tests on June 25. Fed Vice Chair Randal Quarles noted that the test this year includes running banks up against three possible economic trajectories of varying severity to see how they perform due to the unprecedented uncertainty about the pandemic. The test will see how banks perform against a rapid V-shaped recovery, a slower U-shaped recovery and a rough W-shaped recovery. The test results could factor in to dividend decisions down the road for Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Citigroup (NYSE:C), Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) and JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), while Capital One (NYSE:COF) and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) are seen being pushed under the scenarios. Traders are making plays based on the results, with a notable amount of bullish options bets being placed on Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC). Some other bank names to watch when the results roll out are PNC Financial (NYSE:PNC), Truist (NYSE:TFC), Regions Financial (NYSE:RF), Ally Financial (NYSE:ALLY), HSBC North America (NYSE:HSBC), UBS (NYSE:UBS), Credit Suisse (NYSE:CS), Barclays (NYSE:BCS), Bank of New York Mellon (NYSE:BK) and Huntington Bancshares (NASDAQ:HBAN).
Analyst meetings and business updates: Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) will host a fireside chat for the investor community with members of its management team on June 22. The impact of some of the games introduced at EA Play Live 2020 will be discussed. Hewlett Packard Enterprises (NYSE:HPE) is launching the first-ever HPE Discover Virtual Experience on June 23 to showcase the company's pivot to an edge-to-cloud platform-as-a-service company. In the transportation sector, Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU) is participating in a Q&A webcast with Cowen on June 23. Also on June 23, Dell Technologies (NYSE:DELL) has an investor call with Morgan Stanley scheduled. Meanwhile, Sanofi is holding a virtual R&D day event on June 23. Bristol-Myers Squibb has an investor event covering immunology and cardiovascular on June 26.
Conferences rundown: The timing looks spot on for the Jefferies Virtual Consumer Conference on June 23-24 with the pandemic shifting shopping habits in the U.S. Companies due to present include Hasbro (NASDAQ:HAS), Planet Fitness (NYSE:PLNT), Nu Skin (NYSE:NUS), Freshpet (NYSE:FPT), Murphy USA (NYSE:MUSA), Sysco (NYSE:SYY), Hostess Brands (NASDAQ:TWNK), Shack Shack (NYSE:SHAK) and Jack in the Box (NASDAQ:JACK). In the healthcare sector, the BMO 2020 Prescriptions for Success Healthcare Conference features virtual presentations by Humana (NYSE:HUM), Halozyme (NASDAQ:HALO), Horizon Therapeutics (NASDAQ:HZNP), Apellis Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:APLS), Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) and Replimune (NASDAQ:REPL) on June 23. Other conferences of note include the SVB Leerink CybeRx Series CNS Forum, BMO Chemicals & Packaging Conference, Wells Fargo Bricks to Clicks Digital Conference, Goldman Sachs Leveraged Finance Conference and the Morgan Stanley Zero Trust Architectures Virtual Thematic Conference. On the smaller side of the conference schedule, the mining and metals sectors will be in focus, with John Tumazos Very Independent Research virtual meetings set for June 23-24 on Wheaton Precious Metals (NYSE:WPM), Western Copper and Gold (NYSEMKT:WRN), KORE Mining (OTCQB:KOREF), Amarillo Gold (OTCQB:AGCBF), Sierra Metals (NYSEMKT:SMTS), Foran Mining (OTC:FMCXF), Wolfden Resources (OTC:WLFFF), Trilogy Metals (NYSEMKT:TMQ) and Adventus Mining (OTCQX:ADVZF).
Ford F-150: Ford has a digital reveal event for the all-new F-150 set for June 25. The Ford team is expected to describe innovative features of the all-new F-150, including the new electrical architecture, a flat-lying passenger sleeper seat and over-the-air updates to key modules controlling vehicle performance and user experiences. The new truck is seen as a critical part of Ford's plan to slash $5B in warranty costs and push the automaker's vehicle connectivity platform. As a profit generator, the F-150 launch later this year will also help restore the company's balance sheet. The all-new Ford F-150 will be discussed by execs in detail during a June 26 conference call with Citi Research.
Deurbanization trade: Expect more talk from analysts next week about which sectors and stocks could benefit if the mega-trend of people and businesses moving out of downtowns of major cities becomes a reality. Jefferies got the ball rolling last week by singling out Home Depot (NYSE:HD), Lowe's (NYSE:LOW), Best Buy (NYSE:BBY), Floor & Decor (NYSE:FND), At Home (NYSE:HOME), Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) and Wayfair (NYSE:W) as retailers that could gain from an uptick in suburban living and more spending on houses than metropolitan apartments. One of the bigger pure plays is Tractor Supply (NASDAQ:TSCO), which has racked up a 64% gain over the last 90 days.
RVs: Keep an eye on the RV sector with May shipment numbers due out from the RV Industry Association. Demand is expected to be on the rebound after RV shipments fell 82% in April. Looking ahead, there is a difference in opinion on Wall Street on the outlook for Winnebago (NYSE:WGO), Thor Industries (NYSE:THO), Patrick Industries (NASDAQ:PATK), LCI Industries (NYSE:LCII) and Camping World Holdings (NYSE:CWH). Some firms like SunTrust Robinson Humphrey expect a RV boom as consumers gravitate toward safer vacations, while Bank of America has warned that the high rate of unemployment and salary cuts could keep discretionary spending in check.
Sports betting: Time is running out for the California Assembly to pass legislation on sports betting to move the issue to the November ballot. The bill has to pass through the legislature before June 25 to become an election issue. Why is it a big deal? California is forecast to have the potential for a +$30B sports betting market through sports books placed at tribal casinos, horse racing tracks and satellite wagering facilities. "California could easily become one of the most productive sports-betting markets in the world," observes gaming analyst Chris Grove. Tax revenue from sports betting would also help the Golden State with its budget issues amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Stocks of interest in relations to how sports betting in California plays out include DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG), William Hill (OTCPK:WIMHF), MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM), Caesars Entertainment, Fanduel (DUEL), Red Rock Resorts (NASDAQ:RRR), Boyd Gaming (NYSE:BYD) and Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN).
Casinos: The Nevada Gaming Commission is meeting on June 25 to likely approve amendments to state regulations that would streamline the process for moving to modern payment methods. The casino industry in general wants to quickly adopt cashless payment transactions on the casino floor due to the risk of handling cash during the coronavirus outbreak. The casino reset could have implications for Visa (NYSE:V), Mastercard (NYSE:MA) and American Express (NYSE:AXP), as well as financial apps from Apple (AAPL), Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG) and PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL). Casino operators like MGM Resorts, Wynn Resorts, Caesars Entertainment and Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) would also welcome the change.
What's not playing: Warner Bros.'s (NYSE:T) feature animated film Scoob! will stream on HBO Max on June 26 after running in a premium video on-demand window. The children's picture was first scheduled for theaters on May 15 before opting for a 48-hour rental PVOD period price of U.S. $19.99. While Scoob! didn't make quite the splash that Trolls World Tour did in the spring when it nabbed $100M in digital sales over three weeks, it's another incremental step away from the traditional studio release format for major studios like Sony (NYSE:SNE), Universal Pictures (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and Disney (NYSE:DIS). As for theater chains, auditoriums are likely to operate at 25% to 50% capacity as AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC), Cinemark (NYSE:CNK), IMAX (NASDAQ:IMAC), Marcus Entertainment (NYSE:MCS) and Reading International (NASDAQ:RDI) open back up this summer.
Notable annual meetings: Companies with virtual annual meetings set next week include Ollie's Bargain Outlet Holdings (NASDAQ:OLLI) on June 22, Dave & Buster's Entertainment (NASDAQ:PLAY) on June 23, Keurig Dr Pepper (NYSE:KDP) on June 24, At Home Group and Tailored Brands (NYSE:TLRD) on June 25.
Barron's mentions: The publication digs out four industrial companies whose stocks are called compelling. Midsize manufacturers RBC Bearings (NASDAQ:ROLL) and Wabtec (NYSE:WAB) join large-caps Emerson Electric (NYSE:EMR) and Ametek (NYSE:AME) on the short list of economy recovery picks. Of the four, Wabtec trades with the lowest forward PE ratio at 14.2. Brunswick (NYSE:BC) is also singled out this week as an advantageous product-mix shift and rising boat demand are seen helping to drive shares higher. Most of Brunswick's profit is derived from the high-margin Mercury engine business. The rally in tech names hasn't encapsulated the entire sector. Attractive names still trading at less than 4X sales include Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC), CACI International (NYSE:CACI), Leidos Holdings (NYSE:LDOS), Seagate Technology (NASDAQ:STX), Amdocs (NASDAQ:DOX), Ciena (NYSE:CIEN), Accenture, MKS Instruments (NASDAQ:MKSI), Intel and F5 Networks (NASDAQ:FFIV). The cover story this week hits on the rising inequality issue in the U.S., noting that it can be a breeding ground for all kinds of concerning things for the market like secular stagnation.
OBLIGATORY FILLER MATERIAL – BAR FIGHT? NOT WITH DOC BIONICFINGERS! Part two.
Continuing… submitted by Rocknocker to Rocknocker [link] [comments]
“You asshole”, Roy muttered into his beer.
I was having a large time. Es was right. This is just what the Doctor’s wife ordered.
I was now trying to explain to Zac American Football.
“So, let me get this straight. These huge cousins of yours, kitted out in all that heavy protective gear, basically smash into one another, up one side of the field and down the other. They can run, throw the ball, and jump on each other.” He observes.
“That’s the gist of it.“ I reply.
“Sounds like Rugby with more padding. Must be a bunch of pansies; don’t want to get hurt.” Zac laughingly laughs.
I chuckle. I guess after my cricket fiasco, I deserved that.
The drunk Kiwi, now 3.5 sheets to the wind wanders by, hears the tag-end of the conversation again and says:
“Yeah. Fucking American pussies. Stupid game. Not a one would last a second against the All Blacks. All Americans are pussies. ”
I turned slowly, looked at this weaving retard, and said:
“You should feel honored. I’ve never done this for another person. Yet.”
I slowly turn and extend my kevlar-coated middle finger right in front of his face. You could almost hear the micro-stepper motors whine.
“Oh, yeah?” He counters, “Well. Fuck you.”
“Eloquent little miscreant”, I mention to Roy and Zac.
Then he makes a slight misstep.
He reaches out and grabs my left hand.
I swear. It wasn’t intentional, but his grasping of my hand triggered my reflexes. That is amped and amplified by this fine Japanese technology.
My hand opened near-instantly, caught his, and flexed back down.
There were a couple of audible cracks.
They weren’t from me.
The hammered Kiwi went down on his knees in an instant. Evidently he was feeling some pain.
“Sorry mate; but you shouldn’t have done that. Automatic reflexes. I’m still getting used to the power curve.” I said.
“ARRGH!” he wailed, “Let me go, you motherfucker!”
Suddenly, a dark shadow arrives. Sandeep enters and looks over the situation.
He sees Zac behind the bar, who gives him the high sign.
“Doctor Rock? This bag of shit giving you a hard time?” Sandeep asks me.
“Well, he was being the most antisocial of creatures, Sandeep”, I calmly replied.
Sandeep grabs the Kiwi by the scruff of the neck and rear belt. He then picks him up like a scrap of dogshit-smeared day-old newspaper as I let go of his slightly mushed hand.
Sandeep carries the Kiwi, physically, to and out of the front door.
Zac smiles at me and says:
“If that’s not worth another round, I don’t know what is!”
Even Roy tried just a little of the vodka. He had to as the bottle was almost empty.
He groaned audibly as Zac returned with a fresh one.
Roy wandered over to an unoccupied booth. He sat down, leaned his head back and started snoring loudly.
A buxom waitress, but not the one from earlier, came over and began to complain.
“How am I supposed to make any tips with this birk snoring away like this?” she haughtily asked.
Zac and I look around the bar. It’s nearly deserted.
I ask her to step over to the bar. I explain that Roy is with me and he’s just a bit tired from driving all day in the hot Dubai sun.
Then, I hand her a random assortment of notes from off the bar.
She accepts them and her demeanor swings 1800.
“Is there a problem?” I ask.
“Oh, no. No sir. He can sleep there all night for all I care.” She smiles.
The other buxom waits-person from before sees the transaction, and emits an audible “Harrumph!” She throws down her towel and makes it rapidly for the kitchen door.
“Hmm”, I say, “What’s eating her?”
Zac just smiles and doesn’t even bother to ask if he should pour us another.
Zac, Sandeep, and I were going through the bar’s taped collection of sporting events, trying vainly to find something we could all agree upon.
It seems that time, as it’s wont, had passed and the bar was closed.
At least, to other patrons. As long as I was happy buying everyone rounds, Zac and Sandeep had nowhere else to be.
We stumbled across some sport fishing show from years and years ago. We all decided that yes, we all liked fishing, and this would serve a fine counterpart to our MST3K-like riffing of the show.
We had a fine time. Zac, Sandeep, and I swapping fishing lies and Roy snoring away like a buzz-saw over in the booth.
But, as the sun crept through the windows, I decided it was time for me to vamoose. I settled up my bar tab with Zac, leaving both him and Sandeep a couple of cigars and healthy tips.
Sandeep rouses Roy and after a bit of cajoling, Roy joins me at the bar.
“Looks like you’ve got a driver for the next two weeks”, Roy sorrowfully laments.
“Nahh…I was just funnin’ ya’.” I said.
“No. A bet’s a bet. I lost. You are something else. What? I don’t know, but I do know you’ve won this bet.” He admits.
“I just hate to lose”, I smiled back.
Roy looks at me a bit unsteadily. He has severe booth hair.
“Roy”, I say, “You look like what we in the business call a ‘Go Devil”. It starts out spiffy but comes out looking like hell. You need coffee. In fact, so do I. Go throw some cold water in your face and I’ll ask Zac to set us up.” I offered.
I didn’t need to tell Roy twice. He toddles off to the euphemism, and I ask Roy for two black coffees.
Roy returns and sips at the hot beverage. He stops short and asks:
“There no booze in here, is there? I can smell booze.” He notes.
“It’s a bar, Roy”, Zac laughs.
“Yeah, Roy”, I reply, “Only booze fumes are from my coffee.”
“Over the evening, I told Zac how to prepare a Greenland Coffee. One with whiskey, Kahlua and Grand Marnier; hold the schlag.”
“You are drinking one now?” Roy asks, incredulous, “After all that last night?”
“After all what?” I reply, “Yep. Best eye-opener in the world.”
“You’re fucking inhuman,” Roy says, deep into his mug of Joe.
“Never claimed I was anything but.”, I smiled and waved my cybernetic fingers in his direction.
“What did I do to deserve this?”, Roy muttered.
Well, we finally, around 0600 depart the Quantum Sports Bar.
I was a bit peckish as the pub grub available was just a bit too amuse-bouche cutesy for me. I want Luigi’s gut bomb pizza; with extra cheese, Italian sausage, and anchovies.
Alas, none were to be found in Dubai at this hour.
Roy deposits me back at the hotel and I pay him his due, with a smart tip. He makes certain I have his business card and that if I ever need a Dubli driver, to call him first.
Up in the room, Es is sawing lumber. I decide not to wake her and grab a quick drink or five out of the mini-bar. I run a luxuriantly foamy hot tub in which I can relax my cares away once I disconnect my digits and set them in the charger.
Esme and I were later at lunch after I tubbed for a while then decided to grab a few hours’ sleep.
Es was up and puttering around the room when the doorbell rang.
I went to grab something other than sleeping clothes as Es answered the door.
“Rock! It’s for you” Esme called.
“Probably the fuzz. The Kiwi narked on us and now I’m in Dutch.” I thought.
It wasn’t. It was a local Emirati, one Mr. Abdul Jabbaar el-Abdalla, from the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development.
“Yes?”, I said to the dishdasha-clad individual at the door.
“You are Dr. Rocknocker, late of the Sultanate?” he asks.
“Yes,” I replied. I’m not letting anything on past name, rank, and serial number until I get the lowdown on this character.
“Ah. Wonderful”, he smiles back, “Might we have a chat?”
“Regarding?” I ask warily.
“The upcoming Late Summer or Early Fall Dubai Shopping Festival.” he smiles like a cheetah back at me.
“Weird”, was the only thing I could think.
“Most certainly. Won’t you come in?” I ask.
“Thank you”, he says and sweeps into the hotel room.
We take seats near my work desk. I introduce Esme as my wife and they exchange pleasantries.
“Could I get you something? Coffee? Tea?” Esme enquires.
“I could go for a cold one, dear,” I say. Arab or not, this little piece of Dubai real estate is dogma-free.
Mr. Abdul surprises me and asks for a cold beer as well.
“I may look Emirati, but I’m really, by family, Omani.” He smiles broadly and goldly.
“Well”, I reply, “That explains it. Yes, dear. A couple of Balticas, please.” I say. “Care for a light or dark beer, Mr. Abdalla?”
“Oh, light please.” He remarks.
“A number 3 and one 9, please,” I say to Esme.
Over his light and my very dark Russian beer, he lays out the program.
“Yes, at the conclusion of the festival, we want to mark the passing of the occasion after the virus pandemic with a special finale.” He noted.
“Such as? And why me?” I ask.
He smiles and actually chuckles a bit.
“We plan on Tchaikovsky’s 1828 Overture as a finale.” He lights up.
“OK. A good piece of solid show music”, I reply, “And this applies to me how?”
“Well, you obviously know of the score”, he says, “And we want to set a record with our rendition of a finale.”
“Really?” I ask, “Let me guess, you asked around and the pyro crowd gave you my name?”
“Precisely.” he laughs. “Every time. We tracked you down from flight records. Imagine our astonishment to find you right here in town. “
“Yep. Yippee. So, if the normal pyrotechnicians can’t supply what you want and you come to me, you must want some really big booms.” I note.
“Exactly. Such a quick study, Doctor”, he notes.
“How big?” I ask and have a swig of beer.
“Record-setting”, he replies.
“OK. What are the previous world’s record for such an endeavor?” I ask.
“The performance by the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force Eastern Army Band, 1st Band, and 1st Artillery Unit in 2010 used M101 105mm howitzers. The final part of the performance of Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture in London 2012 was with live gunfire of HMS Belfast. The Boston Pops in 2015 used a record of 1.5 tons of fireworks. We want to surpass that.” he replied.
“OK. Now I’ve got a basis for comparison. Leave me to it. We’re not leaving any time soon, it appears. Let me cogitate the matter for a while and I’ll get back to you with a plan and procedure. OK? What’s the budget?” I ask.
“Unlimited. But within reason”, he chuckles. “Use your best judgment.”
“I can do that.” I reply, “I’m sort of bored right now so I’ll get right after its wild ass.”
A bit taken aback, he continues:
“Fine. Fine. Most agreeable. As is this beer. Thank you. My card, Doctor. Please call when you have a plan.” he states, rises, shakes my hand, says goodbye to Esme without shaking her hand, and departs.
“You heard?” I asked Es.
“Oh, yes. Damn. Talk about giving Dracula the key to the blood bank.” She smiles.
“Gonna need your help on this one”, I say.
“Oh, yes, oh deaf one. Call me when you need me.” she smiles.
“I always need you”, I reply very truthfully.
After a bit of research, we find that Tchaikovsky’s 1828 overture finale consists of 12 cannon fires. 1-11 are pretty much the same, but #12, El Ultimo, it is the loudest and most sustained.
“We’re setting records,” I say to Esme, “This will not do…”
Two days later, I have a plan and procedure. I call one Mr. Abdul Jabbaar el-Abdalla, from the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development for a second visit.
“Good day, Mr. Abdulla. I trust you’re well amid all this craziness?” I ask.
“Oh, yes. Thank you. You and yours as well?” he asks tangentially.
“We have fully functioning immune systems”, I reply, “We’re good.”
“Excellent! Shall we see what you’ve worked up?” he asks, anxiously.
“Absolutely. But first, a libation?” I ask.
“I wouldn’t say no if it were wet and cold.” He smiles.
Esme returns with our beers and I pull out the pages of procedure and the list of materials with projected costs for Mr. Minister of the Culture and Know-how.
He looks at it and emits a low whistle.
“Well, Doctor, one cannot say you don’t do your homework.” He smiles in appreciation.
“I always try to be succinct, sufficient, and satisfactory. Plus, I always add an additional 25% contingency.” I reply.
“Can you walk me through this?” he asks.
“Most assuredly”, I remark. And I do.
“Based on results from a nine element vertical line array (VLA) with hydrophones spaced 0.7 m apart and an autonomous recording system recording on a multi-channel coherent data acquisition system (Astro-Med, Inc.) for which each channel was recorded at 62,500 samples per second; the initial shock wave can be approximated as decaying exponential with a decay constant h given by Chapman as Ø = 8:12 x 10–5 W13 (W1/3)0:14.
Remembering that attributes of a sound at a particular point are usually obtained by measuring pressure changes as sound waves pass; this Δ detonation pressure equivalent for 1 kilo of C-4, which is composed of 91% RDX ("Research Department Explosive", an explosive nitroamine), bound by a mixture of 5.3% dioctyl sebacate (DOS) or dioctyl adipate (DOA) as the plasticizer (to increase the plasticity of the explosive), thickened with 2.1% polyisobutylene (PIB, a synthetic rubber) as the binder, with a density of 1.58 grams per cubic centimeter, and an explosive velocity of 8,092 m/s (26,550 ft/s) is 257 kilobars.
This is the equivalent of ‘noise dosemeters’, record the Pa2·h (pascal-squared hour) decibel level of an instantaneous 140.”
“Um, yes Doctor. “ Mr. Abdalla says, “A little less theory, and a bit more practical if you please.”
“Oh, yes, certainly”, I say, and proceed right along, “Using the equation ‘Distance = 215(NEQ)1/3, and since 140 decibels is considered as a "safety cutoff" for exposure to impulsive noises without using hearing protection, as per a festival; it’s not a question of how loud do you want the bang, just how far will you have to keep people away to ensure their safety.”
“How is that?” he asks.
“Well, with 10 kilos, you need to be back 463.20m to be safe. 100 kilos? 997.94m or near as hell one kilometer. 1,000 kilos? Just over two kilometers or 2150.00m to be precise. Just for laughs, 10,000 kilos? Nearer to five kilometers, or 4632.03m.”
“I see”, he says and rubs his neatly trimmed beard.
“So, I propose building or acquiring three sea-going barges, 75m x 15 meters, and have them anchored offshore from a kilometer to two distant. That’s easily done as the water here off Dubai is quite shallow.”
“Continue, please.” He says.
“There are 12 cannon shots in the 1812 Overture finale. An initial set of three, a set of four, another set of 4, and the grand finale. I suggest that you build 12 flat-topped wooden platforms where the height of the platform relates directly to the C-4 charge size. If the charge is 100 kilos, then a minimum of 6 meters in height; scaled proportionally. The flat top of wood eliminates missiles if the platform disintegrates, as the blast energy will radiate outward hemispherically and basically just scorch the hell out of the wood platform.”
“Understood. Please continue.”, he asks.
“OK. This way you can scale up the charge, move back the barge, and build your towers just so large.”
He snickers at that and asks me to carry on.
“I suggest three initial charges of 100 kilos. Then four of 250 kilos. Then four more of 500 kilos. For the Grand Finale, I suggest 1,500 to 2,000 kilos. Do that, and the record will be assured.”
“Excellent!” he exclaims, “Anything else?”
“Oh, yes”, I smile, “C-4 is pliable and easily molded. I suggest you form the charges with a flat base, but into an auricular shape. That is, chop off your ear and set it on the table. Mold the C-4 in that approximate shape, aiming the low-side toward the audience. That will maximize the volume, but dissipate the shock wave the fastest.”
“Outstanding!” he clasps his hands.
“But, wait. There’s more!” I say, “The flash from C-4 isn’t that especially bright. You want sight as well as sound. So, mix 15-25% Tannerite, a binary explosive, with the C-4. Also, you can place potassium nitrate/magnesium or potassium nitrate, aluminum, and sulfur flash powder packets into the cavity of the auricular shape. The pyrotechnicians handling the show can rig this no problem. You can mold the C-4 and Tannerite up to 3 days in advance if you cover it with biophane, a breathable bioplastic, and keep them cool and in the dark.”
“Oh, this is wonderful, Doctor. But you’ll not be here?” he asks.
“No, I’m afraid not.” I reply, “Once the quarantine is lifted, my dear wife and I are gone to the Sultanate. We’re packing as quickly as we can and headed back to the states. I need to get to university where I’m pursuing my DSc degree. We also want to get out of the Middle East. 22 years is quite enough, thank you. Of course, no offense intended. We just want to get home to family.”
“I see. That I can understand.” He notes, “Thank you for your time and design. I do appreciate the list of materials, that will make things most convenient. How much do we owe you and the Mrs. for your time and efforts, Doctor?”
“Mr. Minister, nothing”, I say. “We’re stuck here and just working on the preliminaries for my dissertation. It was a welcome respite from Helium exploration and Rb/Os ages of Neoproterozoic biomarkers. Consider it the Rocknocker family gift to the cause.”
“My, my Doctor and Mrs.”, the Minister of the Small and the Silly remarks, “That’s very generous of you. Your names will be mentioned prominently in the proceedings of benefactors to the festival.”
“Mr. Minister”, I said, “We’d rather you didn’t. We neither desire nor require the notoriety, and in this case, we would rather just remain safely anonymous.”
“If that is your wish, then your requests will be respected.” The Minister says as he rises to leave. “How much longer will you be staying with us?”
“Ask your brethren to the south. It’s all up to them” I wearily replied.
“I’ll see what I can do. Once again. Doctor? Mrs. Thank you. Thank you so very much. Good day.” He shakes my hand, ignores Es’ and takes his leave.
“Well,” I relate to my beloved, “That was fun. I’m going swimming. Can you charge up my fingers for me, dear?”
She smiles and says of course. Besides, it’s siesta time for her. I want to get out to the pool before it’s the Skin Bubbling Hour.
A day passes. We’re still bored and waiting for liberation.
The next morning, the doorbell rings.
I’m working on the New York Times crossword and another Greenland Coffee.
“Bloody hell.”, I remark, looking at my watch. “It’s Oh-Dark 30 early. Now, what the fuck?”
After closing my robe, I open the door. I don’t trust those little fisheye peepholes since I saw Hard Target and Leon the Professional. I’d rather see it coming.
“Yeah?” I say to the huge bush of fresh-cut flowers.
“You’re Dr. Rocknocker and Mrs?” a voice asks.
“Yes to the first and no to the second. But she’s here.” I say warily to the talking greenery.
“Gift for you from the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development. Sign here please”, the foliage requests.
I grab the clipboard and scribble something similar to what passes for my signature.
I hand the clipboard back to the mound of sentient vegetation whereupon it asks where I would like it to be set in the suite.
“Anywhere you can find that’s there’s room,” I reply.
Holy shit, it’s not a floral arrangement, it’s a floral shop.
He sets it in the middle of the dining room table. The damn thing extends from one side, parallel to its longest dimension, to the other. The damn thing must weigh in at 50 kilos. Or more.
“Wait here, please”, the now visible delivery person asks.
“Like I’m going somewhere?” I mused.
He returns with three huge boxes of custom, hand-dipped chocolates. Somehow, he finds room for these on the table as well.
I tip him 25 dirhams and he says “Thanks” and bids a hasty departure.
Es hears all the hubbub and wanders down from the bedroom.
“What the hell was all that …What the hell is this?” she asks.
“Let me look at the note,” I say, find it and rip it open.
“A small gesture of our everlasting thanks. Signed, Minister Abdul Jabbaar el-Abdalla, and all of us at the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development.”
“Well, so much for that diet we discussed.” I snickered to Esme as I opened the first box and saw the easily 20 to 25 rows of lovely looking hand-dipped dark chocolates.
“I do so wish I liked chocolate.” I mused aloud.
Esme adores chocolate.
The doorbell rings again. Es hustles upstairs in her nightgown, and I wander over and answer the door.
“Dr. Rocknocker?” this new delivery guy asks.
“Sign here.” He says.
I do. He takes and hands me a yellow flimsy from the triplicate delivery order. He turns and begins to walk down the hall.
“Hey, Chuckles. What did I just sign for?” I ask.
“Look down”, he says over his shoulder, never breaking stride.
“Oh”, I said.
Hey, it’s early. Leave me alone.
There’s a suspicious-looking parcel, approximately 12-7/8” x 9-11/16” x 12-1/2” and weighing in at around 34 pounds or so.
I drag it in and find space for it in the kitchen.
Look. There’s a card. Addressed to me.
I open it.
“Doctor. Best regards and wishes. Abdul Jabbaar el-Abdalla.”
I open the case to find a dozen bottle sampler of Chopin Vodka. Four wheat, four rye, and four potato vodka.
Es wanders back down and is almost consumed by the overwhelming pong of the tropical flower shrubbery that has taken up residence in our dining room.
“OK. You can have a few chocolates. As long as I can have some of my present.” I say.
“Deal” Es replies."Gimmee."
Remind me to say something nice about Dubai sometime in the future. But only once; let’s not get carried away.
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