Category Archives: Sports

Now What?

Artist: Miles Davis

Tune: So What?

My depression is lifting. I have read and heard a lot of stuff. There is some degree of finger pointing, which is normal and to be expected. Now someone needs to do the autopsy. What happened and why? No, Hillary Clinton wasn’t a perfect candidate. Do we need to run a perfect candidate, Barack Obama, all the time in order to win a national election? Obama was so good that the GOP had to make up stuff – Born in Kenya, was a Muslim, hates America, etc. 

I have been watching Dallas Cowboys games all this week. With modern technology, you don’t have to listen to the news if you don’t want to. Ever. No MSNBC. No FOX News. No CNN. It was necessary in order for me to decompress. I needed to reassess.  

So, we have been through this before. Progressives have lost elections which they (we) were supposed to win (see John Kerry verses George W. Bush). Where do we go from here? What do we need to do, not just to win an election, but to truly help the American people?  

News Round Up – Lochte, Hot, Earthquake, EpiPen

lochte

I am not sure how to explain a man working all his life to be successful and then, on a whim, flushing it all down the toilet. That is exactly what Ryan Lochte did. Lochte lied to authorities in Rio. He has been formally charged with filing a false robbery report. This is a man who performed brilliantly in the Olympic pool. He was a set up to collect at least tens of thousands of dollars in sponsorships. He has lost almost all of that. Sometimes, it is extremely hard to explain human behavior.

Man, it is hot and I hope that you like hot, because the long-term outlook is for more heat!!

italian earthquake

This is just terrible. From WaPo – In this 12th-century town, as many as 70 percent of the homes were vacant in the off-season. There were fewer people on the streets. Numerous teenagers had left for good. And that was before the earthquake. As the search through the ­debris continued and hopes dimmed that rescuers would find more survivors, cities and towns hit hard by Wednesday’s devastating temblor in central Italy began to process the full extent of the disaster. Churches fell. Piazzas were ruined. Neighborhoods were leveled. The body count was at least 250 and set to grow. But in many of those towns, already fighting a long battle against depopulation, a deeper anxiety began to spread.

Yuck!!  EpiPen monopoly – A two-pack of the injectors, which release epinephrine to stop an allergic reaction, has risen from less than $100 in 2007 to $608 today. Mylan said the company never intended for patients to pay the full price, expecting insurers would carry the load. “We recognize the significant burden on patients from continued, rising insurance premiums and being forced increasingly to pay the full list price for medicines at the pharmacy counter,” chief executive Heather Bresch said in a statement. (Oh, and here’s the good part.) The debate is the latest to embroil Congress in the battle over increasing drug costs and their role in escalating health insurance premiums. EpiPen’s rising price is particularly notable because state and federal legislation have been key to the drug’s rapid growth. Annual prescriptions for EpiPen products have more than doubled in the past decade to $3.6 million, according to IMS Health data. Mylan benefited from factors including failed competitors, patent protections and laws requiring allergy medications in schools. Having a virtual monopoly has facilitated the rapid price hike. Mylan reached $1 billion in sales for the second time last year.

 

Golf has a lot of parallels with Life

jordan spiethWe love sports analogies, but many of those analogies really don’t work. In life we really do not have five power lifters to protect us from evil. In golf, as in life, you can get advice from other people but it is mostly up to you to perform. On Sunday we saw one of the best in the world in golf’s biggest tournament under perform when the pressure was the highest. Jordan Spieth fumbled the ball at the goal line.

Now, before anyone jumps on me for talking about Jordan, I really like Jordan for a number of reasons. I love the fact that he really never gives up. He is always out there trying to do better. His game is about precision and not power. For years commentators have marveled at the drives of Dustin Johnson and Bubba Watson. We have been told that they are the wave of the future. Power. Jordan made all of these guys look foolish as he won the Masters and US Open last year.

In life we have those pressure moments. Sure, we don’t have millions of people watching our every move, but the pressure is on, nonetheless. Whether it is an important test that allows us to be certified as a lawyer, a doctor, a contractor or something else, it is pressure. Pressure can make us do stupid things.

On Sunday, Jordan Spieth was leading the Masters. He was struggling. He didn’t have his A game. He wasn’t hitting his targets. His driver was flaring to the right. Every now and then, his irons were also flaring. His scrambling was solid, but his putter was good. It was not red hot. He was leading by 5 strokes with 9 holes to play. Sounds easy. He bogeys 10. He bogeys 11. Now, he comes to short par 3. 150 yards. This hole is known for swirling winds, which make it hard to pick a club. The target area is small. Hit the ball short and you are in the water. Hit the ball long and you are in the bunker, which will make it very difficult to get a par from there. Seven strokes later he was staring at a quadruple bogey.

jordan masters

I have seen several folks who are very smart, but for some reason, they can’t pass the big test. They have taken the big test several times and they fall short. The track star who hits the last hurdle and loses the big race is kind of the same thing. I’m not sure why some people perform well under pressure and others simply don’t.

Here’s what I find interesting. Tiger Woods. There, I have said it. Almost no one mentioned Tiger Woods on Masters Sunday. Tiger Woods would not have lost on Sunday if he had a 5-stroke lead heading into the back 9. Somehow, he would have figured out a way to win. Once he had the lead on Sunday, it was a lock. So, how was Tiger able to handle the pressure and perform?

I think that Jordan Spieth will be fine. Rory Mcilroy, Jason Day and Rickie Fowler have shown that they can win on the big stage, but they have also faltered on that same big stage.

Congratulations to Danny Willett for winning the Masters. He played Jordan’s mistake-free game. He hit his targets. He played steady throughout the tournament.

I guess the take-home lesson is to take a deep breath. Slow down and don’t let the pressure get to you…if you can.