Monthly Archives: March 2016
He Was Gunning for Them
Arsenal (“The Gunners”) have not had many reasons to celebrate in triumphant fashion in recent years, yet they’re reminded at every home game at Emirates Stadium of the eternal truth that one goal can change everything.
To celebrate this “Throwback Thursday,” let’s visually travel back to the far back yesteryear of 2002. The match was Arsenal hosting its bitter rival Tottenham Hotspur and the player was Thierry Henry. If you’re struggling to place Thierry Henry, he’s that world-class French forward who doesn’t run in strides, but glides with speed and cool precision.
I present the story of his goal and its iconic (and elaborate) celebration that literally and figuratively cemented Mr. Henry’s legacy in London.
What’s French for power and strength?
At least France has one non-joke answer to that question.
Does Ivy Grow in Florida?
Imagine America’s unidentified future leaders in Skull and Bones sweating in Florida’s stifling humidity before entering their ultra-secretive, windowless tomb to plan their world domination.
No, there’s just something about a secret society in Connecticut that fits better than a secret society in Florida.
Riding a jet ski connected to a trailer through a drive-thru? Sure.
Driving 15 miles under the speed limit? Yes.
Finding a crocodile in a swimming pool? Well, this could be Florida or Skull and Bones.
Regardless, Yale spokesman Tom Conroy responded to Florida Governor Rick Scott’s playful invitation to move its prestigious university from Connecticut to the Sunshine State. Mr. Conroy expressed appreciation for the offer, but declined with a reference to the school’s three centuries of history as a reason to continue its legacy in the northeast.
While Yale was never going to relocate to Florida, reacting in a polite and humble manner is not the typical response people have when hearing about the elite institution Yale University. Give the Ivy League school credit for that.
The reason for Governor Scott making such a random and unusual request was driven by Florida’s favorable tax structure. While Yale trading New Haven’s famous pizza for NASCAR reads like an absurd joke, money talks and a move of a smaller university from a high-tax state to a state with attractive tax incentives could become a reality in the not-so-distant future.
Consider how many movies you’ve watched recently that have been filmed in Georgia and/or Ohio. That’s the power of a motion picture tax incentive. If state leaders continue to increase spending and raise taxes, Thomas Friedman’s “The World is Flat” economic actuality will influence larger and larger industries and entities to consider options across state lines and around the world to reevaluate their fiscal health and potential benefits elsewhere.
In a country where the impossible consistently becomes possible, it’s hard to completely rule out such a seemingly unthinkable transfer.
Yale University to Florida? Never.
Florida developing an exclusive, upscale gated community for Yale alumni? That would be an interesting counter-offer…
Cuatro a Cero Sounds Good Too
First: Columbus, Ohio is THE undisputed soccer capital of the United States of America.
(What would Johan Cruyff do?)
As tributes from the Netherlands to Spain and all around the world continue for the recently deceased footballing legend Johan Cruyff, his name should be on the minds of the USMNT (United States Men’s National Team) and its fans.
When you consider the confusing insistence of Jürgen Klinsmann to use the same players who struggle to win big games against top teams (and lesser opponents), who lead squads that lack any apparent tactical purpose, how is anything going to change without making a big change at the top. Mr. Klinsmann selects his players and decides who plays and who he develops.
Too many players who should be on the pitch gaining valuable experience aren’t getting genuine opportunities to play and improve, which is ironic given Jürgen’s prowess for recruiting young, dual-citizenship talent.
The 2-nil loss at Guatemala this past Friday was shocking, but, sadly, not entirely surprising. Guatemala is not a powerhouse by any stretch of the imagination and if the 95th FIFA ranked CONCACAF foe becomes the standard for success, the USMNT is really in trouble. And this is why Cruyff should be on the minds of American coaches, players and fans tonight and in the near future.
Johan Cruyff’s style was/is world-class that looks like a high-stakes, speed-infused master level chess game. However, don’t be fooled, it takes tremendous vision, hard work and talent to execute his philosophy. Most teams can get results just playing for the win. But teams with an objective focused on carrying out a grand strategy with complex, purposeful movement and possession that can attack at will, while simultaneously simplifying the game with clarity and mesmerizing with creativity are commonly referred to as champions.
Is this how you would currently describe the USMNT?
Win or lose tonight (I predicted a win), Jürgen Klinsmann’s future should still be discussed with pressing questions going forward. My vote has been for a new coach for quite some time now. The issue isn’t just advancing in World Cup qualifying, but whether or not the USMNT product on the pitch can play against, and not just chase, the best teams in the world.
Granted, Klinsmann and Co. delivered a massive win in a massive stadium when they needed a victory. 4-nil warrants congratulations. The goals were great and the atmosphere was incredible. At Crew Stadium, the USMNT team has won 8 games, including 7 World Cup qualifiers with absolutely zero losses.
Once again, well done Columbus!
However, is keeping Klinsmann as manager worth risking another underwhelming 4-year World Cup cycle?
That’s the massive question leaving Columbus, Ohio.
P.S. Local fan favorite Ethan Finlay was clearly onside when he scored.
For some strange reason, the journey to an athletic championship is sometimes given greater value than the actual championship game and its eventual winner.
Once again, Jimmy’s Daily Planet wants to introduce some of that pre-championship coverage to musical scores. Specifically, Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL, who are the joint composers of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Going inside the minds to learn a little bit how the creative process works is something special. Discovering the inspirational sparks that led Mr. Zimmer and Mr. XL to go from the blank page at Point A to the finished sound at Point Z is not only cool, but educational if you listen carefully.
A rare combination, yes, but a wonderful sentiment and incentive for Monday.
Have an Awesome Week!