ON ZZZABUU VI

May 1, 2022

May 1, 2022

You were reintroduced to Zzzabuu one year ago. He had arrived earlier in 2003 from the planet Zzokki in a faraway galaxy, having been dispatched to Earth on a fact-finding trip involving politicians in the United States. More recently, Zzzabuu had been selected once again for a special assignment by The Superiors in 2021 to determine details (both pros and cons) of gambling investment opportunities on Planet Earth. As per instructions from the Superiors, Zzzabuu met with a retired, often confused, outspoken, nefarious chemical engineering professor (who shall remain nameless) in order to obtain background material and guidance prior to preparing his report on this assignment.

As promised, this third of five articles on gambling is concerned with casino gambling. This piece is particularly appropriate since New York State is now expanding casino gambling. In any event, here is my take on this betting activity.

Let’s proceed directly to the bottom line. For me, there are four modes of gambling in casinos: slots, roulette, dice, and blackjack. Before discussing each of these games, I should note two factors: all are games of chance (unlike pari-mutuel wagering – see August 1, 2021 article) and thus all chances of winning are a function of the takeout. Remember, the takeout represents the amount of money returned to the bettor after the result of the bet has been determined, e.g., with a 5% takeout, the casino returns 95% to the bettor and retains 5% as profit. In any event, here is the lowdown on each of the 4 above games of chance.

SLOTS. Depending on the casino, the takeout here ranges from 1-10% with 3-4% a reasonable norm. Although it is the most popular game, I rarely – if ever – play the slots. Why? The takeout is simply too high. The game is easy to play: you simply press a button after inserting your money and wait for the results, hoping for a lot of noise.

ROULETTE. Once the game of royalty, the takeout here is approximately 3.5%. This one is also not for me. The game is easy to play: you put money on red or black and a number ranging from 1 to 35. The roulette wheel is spun and you hope for the circling ball to fall in the right slot.

DICE: My game. Some refer to it as craps. I just love playing dice; it is all I play when I am in a casino. The takeout here can be as low as 0.5%; this effectively means you have close to a 50-50 chance of winning. Here is how I recommend you play. Put your money on PASS and roll the dice. If a 7 or 11 comes up on the first roll, you win and the game ends. If a 2, 3, or 12 comes up on the first roll, you lose and the game ends. If a 2, 3, 7, 11, or 12 doesn’t come up on the first roll, then 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 must come up, and the game continues. Whichever number amongst these six numbers come up on the first roll becomes “your number.” You then continue to roll the dice until either a seven (you lose) or your number (you win) comes up. The game then ends. However, after the first roll, you are provided the option to double your bet on “your number.” You should definitely avail yourself of this opportunity since the takeout on this latter bet is 0%. For example, if you roll a 4 or 10, or 5 or 9, or 6 or 8 on the first roll, the odds of winning become 2 to 1, 3 to 2, and 6 to 5, respectively. That’s it. Do not get involved with any of the other available bets on the dice table.

BLACKJACK. Often referred to as 21. Not my favorite; but it is the game of most of my gambling degenerate friends. The takeout is close to 0%! Many years ago, a group of MIT students started winning at the casinos by “counting.” A book describing their approach makes interesting reading but essentially involves counting cards. In the game, the dealer gets two cards (with one face-up) and the bettor gets two cards. You may request additional cards in an attempt to get as close to 21 as possible, BUT not go over 21. Whoever goes over 21 first loses. If no one goes over, the winner is the player closest to 21. Counting? If a lot of high cards come out during the game, the bettor is at a disadvantage the next game. If a lot of low cards come out, the bettor has the advantage and should increase the bet the next game. How do you count? Here is a simple method. I suggest assigning a -1 to discarded cards that are 2, 3, 4, or 5, and +1 to those that are 10, J, Q, or K. If your total is in the negative regime, increase the bet the next game.

I leave you with this: A day at a casino is a great day out, particularly for seniors. Follow my suggestions and you almost certainly will not get hurt. You want more? Go to the library and pick up a book on casino gambling or simply go on the Internet.

Contact me if you have any questions. Once again, just remember that LOTTO has a 50% takeout, and is therefore an ideal game for those poor in arithmetic.

I return later this year when Zzzabuu will report on sports betting.

P.S. For those readers residing in East Williston, remember to vote NO on the school budget this month.

Visit the author at:

www.theodorenewsletter.com

or

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NEXT POSTINGS

JUNE 1:                      Purely Chaste, Pristine, and Random Thoughts XXXI

JULY 1:                      On Great Eats V: Pastrami

AUGUST 1:                On the Constitution

SEPTEMBER 1:         On Aging

OCTOBER 1:             On Water

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Practice strategies to employ for offense(s) near the end of a game.
  2. Practice strategies to employ when attempting to gain an offensive rebound following a foul shot.
  3. Drive to basket at the end of game if trailing; in effect, help the official blow his whistle.

ON THE ULTIMATE QUIZ

April 1, 2022

April 1, 2022

As indicated in the past, this has become one of my favorites. You are requested to provide the correct answer to the following 20 questions. Credit 5 points for each correct answer. A grade of 85 indicates that you are brilliant. Here we go once again with several of the questions related to baseball and yours truly.

  1. True or false: Queens was established in 1863.
  2. Who published his theory of relativity in 1915?
  3. Who authored “A pound of prevention is worth a pound of cure”?
  4. Who was the star of the movie “The Maltese Falcon”?
  5. What Baseball Hall of Famer recently had a street in Astoria named after him?
  6. Jingle Bells was the first holiday carol to be broadcast from what unique location in 1965?
  7. What is the currency of Greece?
  8. Who is the greatest baseball player of all time?
  9. What was the final score of Don Larson’s perfect World Series no-hitter?
  10. The age of the sun is approximately how many years?
  11. Project Independence is concerned with what county?
  12. What singing great from Astoria belted out “there’s no business like show business…”?
  13. What Baseball Hall of Famer was the only pitcher to beat Walter Johnson four times?
  14. Who was the first batter to bat at Yankee Stadium in 1923?
  15. What songwriter from Astoria wrote the tune Mary?
  16. What group gave their last full concert at Candlestick Park on 8/29/66?
  17. Who recently received a potable water patent that generates water from the flue gas produced following natural gas combustion?
  18. What web-based  word game was recently sold to the New York Times?
  19. Name the author of a soon-to-be published book titled “Virology for Engineers and Applied Scientists”?
  20. Your favorite author was recently essentially barred by an administrator from attending basketball games at what school?

ANSWERS:

  1. It’s hard to believe but it is true.
  2. Albert Einstein. Interestingly, he did not receive his one and only Nobel Prize for this theory.
  3. Benjamin Franklin.
  4. Bogie.
  5. Edward “Whitey” Ford.
  6. A tough one here: Space.
  7. It is not the drachma; the correct answer is the euro.
  8. Full credit here. I would guess Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, and Mariano Rivera should get the most consideration.
  9. 2-0.
  10. 4.5 billion years.
  11. Nassau County.
  12. Ethel Merman.
  13. Babe Ruth.
  14. A tough one: Whitey “Witt” Witkowski.
  15. George M. Cohen. Was he referring to my wife?
  16. The Beatles.
  17. You all should know this. It’s none other than your favorite author.
  18. Wordle, developed by Josh Wardle.
  19. Once again, your favorite author.
  20. Hofstra University.

I’ll return with another quiz late in the year.

Visit the author at:

www.theodorenewsletter.com

or

Basketball Coaching 101 (Facebook)

NEXT POSTINGS

MAY 1:          On Hofstra’s 2021-22 Basketball Season (to be replaced)

JUNE 1:          On ZZZabuu VI

JULY 1:          On Great Eats V

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Practice one-on-one basketball under the basket.
  2. Practice one-on-one basketball from beyond or just inside the 3-point line.
  3. Practice various strategies for inbounding the basketball at various locations on the court and when one is free to move along the end-line.

ON ONE LINERS: BIDEN’S ADMINISTRATION

March 1, 2022

March 1, 2022

It’s been over a year since an article of a political nature. Here are 30 one (or occasionally two) liners drawn from my Biden file. For some of you: please don’t get upset – these are only my opinions.

A comment on history repeating itself before providing my notes. In 1939, it was Hitler and Chamberlain on Poland with Churchill waiting in the wings. Today, its Putin and Biden on Ukraine with Trump waiting in the wings. Perhaps Putin and Biden should hold hands and visit WWII cemeteries in Europe.

  1. Two impeachments and now a senate trial on the events of January 6, 2021; these have proven to be nothing but bad theater in a useless attempt once again to defame and insult President Trump.
  2. Polls clearly indicate that Biden continues to reject the desires of the voters and has failed miserably on near all of his actions.
  3. Our Constitution might be somewhat flawed but it is still the most ideal way to govern a complex entity such as our country.
  4. The democratic party is infested with career bureaucrats who are cunning and corrupt lawyers / politicians.
  5. The current immigration policy of the democrats will get them voters, which will get them the desired vote, which will get them money and power. In the meantime, they are violating federal law, endangering lives (health and crime), and negatively impacting our economy.
  6. Trump has many faults, but he is devoted to our nation and to its defense; his original mission remains unfulfilled.
  7. The enemy continues to rant about Trump’s lies. I’ve listened to all his speeches and am still trying to figure out what the lies are.
  8. Trump delivered on virtually all his promises prior to his election – particularly providing 3 vaccines and 2 antibodies. And, what about historic peace in the Middle East, Korea, China, etc.
  9. I am really mad at our elected officials. Why aren’t they demanding Biden sever all relations with Russia and move back to Trump’s state of energy independence? Don’t they understand that there is a war and people are dying?!
  10. Here is what we are currently experiencing under the Biden Administration: shootings, murders, vandalism, riots, silencing opposition, defunding police, open borders, pacifying our enemies, inflation, etc. Add to these attempts to abolish the Electoral College, pack the Supreme Court, attempting statehood for Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C., terminate the filibuster, etc.; perhaps ever worse is their current education policy of defaming our country and also really dividing our country. How about the recent Durham revelations that Trump was indeed spied on.
  11. Obama has blood on his hands with what transpired with ISIS. Now Biden has blood on his hands because of Ukraine.
  12. Biden and his administration claim that government spending does not cost the taxpayer. Is it creative mathematics or a complete fraud?
  13. The fact that 38% of the electorate think that Biden is doing a good job is a tribute to how dumb, indifferent, and misinformed they are.
  14. Biden has unquestionably emboldened our enemies: Taiwan and Ukraine are prime examples.
  15. What the hell is Biden doing? Surrendered Afghanistan, failed our citizens and allies remaining there, and left military equipment for our enemies (that could now be used in the Ukraine). Can anyone be that dumb?
  16. Biden appears more concerned on attacking individuals such as your favorite author than in protecting us from our enemies; I’m also tired of him, his cohorts, and the news media calling me a racist, un-American, a Nazi, a hater, etc.
  17. FOX News, better than anyone, has proven that media bias exists with their videotapes of CNN, CNBC, etc.
  18. The New York Times news reporting is disgusting; just read their headlines every day.
  19. Biden and his family are probably the most corrupt family in American history; the recent news about Pelosi puts her in second place. Virtually every elected official in Washington becomes a multi-millionaire; thank you Donald for opening my eyes to this fact.
  20. Biden’s entire cabinet is made up of career bureaucrats; none have ever worked for a living. And, no surprise, there are no republicans. How’s this for his promise to put forth a competent and diverse cabinet.
  21. Pelosi labeled Biden as “just perfect.” Really?? Wow!! She obviously is lying and she must know it.
  22. Biden called Trump’s COVID testing a travesty, then promised free testing without an ability to provide testing. Another failure.
  23. Perhaps we should pray for Biden because next comes Harris (what a disaster) and Pelosi (is there a more evil person?).
  24. Any chance Pelosi will provide her tax returns given what was recently made public? And what about Hunter Biden’s returns?
  25. The corrupt media is the greatest concern. Many citizens are either misinformed or not informed. Prior to Biden’s election, 30% of democratic voters did not know of Hunter’s activities and 25% of those said they would not have voted for Biden if they knew.
  26. Our nation definitely needs Trump. Hopefully, he will pick a woman for a running mate to pick up some of his haters (perhaps it would be best if he didn’t run with the raw hatred some have for him).
  27. This COVID-19 pandemic came about primarily because of the incompetence and inaction of both the CDC and WHO. Fauci the Fraud, who heads up the CDC’s 50-billion-dollar program, has caused the death of many Americans.
  28. Trump was transparent from the day he entered the race, always responding to a hostile media… and, on a daily basis. Biden? He’s been AWOL since Day 1 and refuses to answer questions.
  29. Regarding January 6, nearly 1,000 were arrested but only a handful were guilty of wrong doing. This demonstration was peaceful compared to some earlier fanatical democratic demonstrations.
  30. Finally, and thankfully, it appears most (but not all) of our elected Republicans have united.

I really believe that Trump looked after those – such as your author – who have no voice. But we may still survive. When will I return with another one of these? Who knows?

Visit the author at:

www.theodorenewsletter.com

or

Basketball Coaching 101 (Facebook)

NEXT POSTINGS

APRIL 1:        On the Ultimate Quiz VI (replacing Hofstra’s season)

MAY 1:          On the EWSD School Tax Vote

JUNE 1:          On ZZZabuu VI

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Here are this month’s three defensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Players should not view defense as a time to rest and relax. Practice time on defense should be as important as time on offense.
  2. If an opposing team’s offense is run by their playmaker, the defense should attempt to prevent him from getting the ball.
  3. Defensive drills should include double and perhaps triple-teaming an offensive player.

THE BOYS OF KILLEEN’S

February 1, 2022

February 1, 2022

            “The great hills of the South Country they stand along the sea; and it’s there,

walking in the high woods that I would wish to be,

and the men that were boys when I was a boy walking along with me.”

The South Country

Hilaire Belloc (1870-1953)

Once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away, there was a small bar named Killeen’s Tavern located on a side street in Astoria, Queens. The tavern’s history dates back to about 1934 (my birth year). It was owned by a burly Irishman. The whole place was no bigger than 30 ft. by 15 ft., half of it designed like a half-moon bar, and the other half consisting of a few tables, a juke box, a telephone booth, a toilet that was always clogged up, and a kitchen (required by law) that didn’t work. Beer was 12 cents a glass, and a shot of rye was 45 cents. The local crowd had its colorful characters. Damon Runyon would have loved this place. There was “Buster” the late-night singer who crooned Sweet Leylani, Lorraine the Dancer, “Cuz” the night bartender, “Oil Pan” Tom, the landlord Pete the Russian, Freddie “Spook” Stegman – the greatest sport birddog this side of the Mississippi.

Then there was the day bartender – Pat Killeen himself. An impressive 6′ 1″ and burly 275-lb. man with a thick Irish brogue, who, when angry, would roll his black cigar from one end of his mouth to the other. Yes, he could intimidate if necessary. But he was a fair and open-minded individual, always with the best intentions at heart.  And then there was dapper George Connelly – the Sunday bartender of 30 years who many believe James Cagney copied his mannerisms from.

Who were the other inhabitants of the Tavern? Here are some of their names: Scratch, Buddy, Gaylord (your author), Big Dan, The Whale, Jimmy the Greek, Steve the Greek, Weegie, The Rat, Vince the Prince, The Grey Fox, The Scavenger, The Buff, The Snake, The Brat, Tuto, Tex, Superman, The Hawk, Marty Cool, The Phantom, The Bant, The Weedier, Big Fitz, Red, Joey Hot Dog, Sparksy, Dixie, Jake the Weightlifter (all 95 lbs. of him), Bugsy, Louie the Lob, the Dolly Sisters, Filthy Phil, Tony Guido, etc.

Among these notables was a younger contingent known as the Boys of Killeen’s. They were the children of working-class parents who endured the Great Depression and survived the harsh times of that era. Although better off than their parents, the Boys of Killeen’s was a group that appreciated good times, and were not nearly as security conscious as their parents. It was a group that ultimately went on to succeed in the workplace, no doubt influenced by their New York City and Killeen’s experiences.

It has been written that most Long Islanders are displaced New Yorkers. For certain, many in the reading audience have their roots in Queens and Brooklyn, if not Manhattan and the Bronx. The displacement process occurred at different times for different individuals and groups, but for some, despite the emigration to Long Island, the ties of friendship and companionship remain as strong today as it did nearly a century ago.

Rhetorically speaking, it seems like it happened eons ago. But in real time, it all started nearly 70 years ago. There was a group of guys that had just exited their teenage years and were brought together by a common love: basketball. They were headquartered in Astoria, Queens. What follows is a tale of their pilgrimage through time over the last half century plus.

In the late part of 1954, a group of youngsters 17, 18 and 19 years of age decided to rent the empty storage room next to Killeen’s. The Phantom, later Special FBI Agent Ernie Haridopolos, was the instigator for the club and first dubbed it the Parkside Nationals. The room was 20 ft X 15 ft and contained a Coke machine, a 7-ft bar, one card table, a fumigated sofa and six chairs. The bathroom (ugh!) was shared with the adjacent deli. Things soon improved as up went sheetrock, a tile floor, and a phonograph. This was followed with a monthly $50 split-even raffle to pay the $35 rent and for parties (approximately twice a month).

During the early 1950’s, and prior to the massive TV sports agenda available today, Sunnyside Gardens (located of course in Sunnyside, Queens) annually hosted an Open Basketball Tournament that featured all the great amateur stars of that era. The young teenagers who patronized Killeen’s Tavern, located on 24th Street off Ditmars Boulevard in Astoria regularly paid the one-dollar admission fee to see their basketball heroes perform. And then, as if blessed by a magic wand, these same youngsters became basketball stars in their own right.

In late Spring of 1955, they came to the conclusion that “hell, we can play with these guys.” And were they ever so right. They enlisted the help of one of their own with limited basketball ability, (yours truly) with directions to field a team for the upcoming summer tournaments. I was baptized coach and the Killeen’s Tavern dynasty was set in motion. I got Pat Killeen, owner of Killeen’s Tavern, to sponsor the team and made the necessary arrangements to enter the team in the various tournaments. The Killeen’s team was officially born.

All the pieces were put into place when the recruiting process started that would effectively mold the team into a winner over the next dozen years. The talent was primarily gathered locally from Astoria that included Marty Collins (Elon), Steve Afendis (High Point), Joe Montana and John Caso (St. John’s), Bo Erias (Niagara and later Minneapolis Lakers), Don Ryan (Atlantic Christian), Richie Bennett (Bryant High School), Tom Rice (School of Hard Knocks), and Wally DiMasi (Providence). Key amongst this group was Danny Doyle (Belmont Abbey and later the Detroit Pistons). The first year also saw additions to the local mix that included Dennis Costigan (Hofstra), Ivan Kovacs (St. John’s), York Larese (North Carolina), Timmy Shea and George Blaney (Holy Cross), Nick Gaetani(Brooklyn College), Kevin Loughery (St. Johns), Tom Fitzmaurice (St. Bonaventure), Brendan Malone(former Knick assistant coach), Al Filardi (NYU), and the Quarto brothers —Frank (Manhattan College) and Vinnie (Adelphi). All, at one time or other, for over a ten-year period, wore the $2.00 blue T-shirt and $1.50 white shorts that marked them as The Boys of Killeen’s.

Summers came and went, but from 1955 to 1965, summers in New York featured tough basketball. All the Killeen’s Boys came home from school to the Big Apple to sharpen their game on the blacktop. Legendary tales of summer activities about Rockaway Beaches 108th Street Basketball courts – sandwiched between the Atlantic Ocean and the McGuire and Fitzgerald bars to the north – have remained some of this area’s proud historical moments in time. Later came graduation, and winter brought on the Star Journal, Long Island Press, CYO and YMCA leagues, plus the Haverstraw, New City, Jersey City, and the famous Don Bosco Tournaments. It was truly an exciting era. The Boys of Killeen’s were an integral part of that era. The one player who will always be remembered is the aforementioned Danny Doyle. He was a Killeen’s star for many reasons, but Doyle may have said it best with, “I probably was the most heralded player on the team, but was probably the third or fourth highest scorer. In a very real sense, this was a team without a star, and yet every player on the team was a star.”

Over the years, The Boys convened annually in January at my house. When this ritual started over 40 years ago, there was a robust group of over 30 attendees. A few more were added along the way, but the relentless passage of time has taken its toll on The Boys. There was a time when attendance was viewed as mandatory, even if one were sick or located elsewhere. However, the number of attendees reached 10 two years ago and was decreasing at an  exponential rate. Enter Covid-19 and, unfortunately, the ritual ended as The Boys now have but a handful of curtain calls remaining.

I still keep in close contact with the remaining members of The Boys. A problem with The Boys is that a large number have unfortunately left us. Memories of youth, earlier love, Killeens Tavern, the basketball team, etc., now find The Boys often attempting to relive what Hilaire Belloc (in the preamble) was referring to with “it’s there . . . that I would wish to be, and the men that were boys when I was a boy walking along with me.” No matter; it was a great ride for all of us as the life and times of The Boys prepare to ride off into the sunset.

Visit the author at:

www.theodorenewsletter.com

or

Basketball Coaching 101 (Facebook)

NEXT POSTINGS

MARCH 1:                 On Purely Random, Pristine Thoughts XXVI

APRIL 1:                    On Hofstra’s 2021-22 Basketball Season

MAY 1:                      On the EWSD Town Tax Vote

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. An assistant (coach) who specializes in developing offenses and / or offensive strategies would help.
  2. Practice dribbling with both hands. In effect, the player should be just as capable driving or dribbling left as well as right.
  3. Practice taking layups when dribbling toward the basket at top speed.

On Hofstra 2022 Men’s Basketball Upcoming Season

December 1, 2021

December 1, 2021

Two teams come to mind when one thinks of basketball on Long Island: St. Johns (Queens) and Hofstra (Nassau County). Hofstra has held the upper hand in recent years. But last year, SJ head coach, Mike Anderson, revitalized the team with a high-pressure defense that created havoc for a number of teams (I have a bet on them to win the NCAA this year at whopping odds of 175-1). Hofstra, on the other hand, took several steps backwards after coach Jo Mihalik went on medical leave last year and the team utterly failed to respond to the new leadership. That was then, now is now, and the article is about Hofstra’s Spring season (I did not bet on them at 2500-1.).

Five topics on Hofstra’s upcoming season are reviewed below: coach, players, defense, tournament thoughts, and closing comments. Here we go.

  1. Coaching: There is a new sheriff in town and his name is Speedy Claxton. Everybody is enthused about his selection to lead the Pride. So am I. He will do fine, even though it is his first year. My dear friend and mentor, Jack Powers, former Executive Director of the NIT, had this to offer on Speedy: “He is a wonderful kid, a quality person, a great player, and certain to succeed. Rick Cole made a great choice.” My sentiments…exactly.
  2. Players: Here is some bad news. The club lost Isaac Kante who I believe would have been a dominant center in the CAA this season. This was a major loss, particularly since the club lacks both a solid big man and shot blocker. The club appears to be top heavy with quality guards. They include: Jalen Ray who will need to have a superstar year on offense, and improve his defensive play; Aaron Estrada, a solid addition from Oregon University; Cabet Burgess, a holdover who shows promise; and, Zachary Cooks, another solid addition from New Jersey Institute of Technology;
  3. Defense. The club has almost exclusively played zone since the arrival of coach Mikal ich. Here is some good news. Speedy announced early on that that the club would almost exclusively play zone defense. As I’ve always said, if you play against a zone, your grandmother can guard you. I’ve also said that it is defense that wins championships, particularly backcourt defense. Bottle up your opponent’s playmaker and you’re in business.
  4. Tournament thoughts. The object every season for any club in a mid-major conference is to win their tournament, NOT their conference. Iona College, with essentially mediocre seasons, has won the MAAC tournament in the last 4 years in a row. Does Tim Cluess know something that other coaches don’t know? I believe he has figured out that the corrupt NCAA has stacked the deck against mid-major teams, and the only way to survive and prosper is to win their tournament. Bottom line: Play to win the tournament, NOT conference games during the season. How does a team do this? I discussed this very topic in the 2nd edition of my “Basketball Coaching 101” book.
  5. Closing comments. The team chose to open against 3 top 25 ranked teams: Houston, Maryland, and Richmond. Did these games provide a wakeup call? Perhaps. Houston was an overtime loss; Maryland was 2-point loss with some really poor time management at the end of the game, and Richmond was also a loss. The club was 3-4 at the time of submission of this article.

One more thing. My spies tell me that Hofstra has aspirations of moving from the CAA to the MAC. I hope not since the CAA gives the club a more “spatial” presence.

Finally, attending Hofstra games for me still remains the best sports buy in the New York Metropolitan area; it’s even cheaper than going to the movies. There is ample free parking, easy access in and out of the Mack Sports Complex, the concession stands are not a rip-off ($3.50 for a dog, $3.00 for a soda, etc.), and there isn’t a bad seat in the house. Did I mention that it’s $9 for seniors and children, and the whole exciting atmosphere is conducive to family attendance? Consider sharing it with someone you care about.

NOTE: A real downer. An assistant in the Athletic Department cancelled my media pass for Hofstra games. That will probably adversely affect future Hofstra articles, but more importantly, reduce my ability to contact / involve key basketball personalities such as players, coaches, ADs, and officials in the second edition of my book “BASKETBALL COACHING 101”. It will not affect my involvement elsewhere. Anyway, I enjoyed my serving as a good will ambassador for the program — and it was good while it lasted.

Visit the author at:

www.theodorenewsletter.com

or

Basketball Coaching 101 (Facebook)

NEXT POSTINGS

JANUARY 1:             On Zzzabuu VI

FEBRUARY 1:          On Great Eats VI

MARCH 1:                 On Purely Random, Pristine Thoughts XXVI

APRIL 1:                    On Hofstra’s 2021-22 Basketball Season

MAY 1:                      On the EWSD Tax Vote

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Practice inbounding the ball at various locations on the court when the opposing team is pressing.
  2. The player nearest to the ball should take it out immediately after a basket or foul shot and pass it to the first open man.
  3. Do not leave the foul line after the first of two (or three) free throws, and do not slap / shake the hand of a fellow teammate.

ON ZZZABUU V

August 1, 2021

August 1, 2021

You were reintroduced to Zzzabuu four months ago. He had arrived earlier in 2003 from the planet Zzokki in a faraway galaxy, having been dispatched to Earth on a fact-finding trip involving politicians in the United States. Zzzabuu had been selected once again for a special assignment by The Superiors in 2021 because of his great intellect, analytical mind, and his love of gambling. On reaching Earth, Zzzabuu set out immediately to accomplish his specific assignment: to determine details (both pros and cons) of gambling investment opportunities on Plant Earth. As per instructions from the Superiors, Zzzabuu met with a retired, often confused, outspoken, nefarious chemical engineering professor (who shall remain nameless) in order to obtain background material and guidance prior to preparing a final report on his assignment.

As promised, this second of five articles on gambling is concerned with pari-mutuel racing, i.e., betting on horse races. This piece is particularly appropriate since the New York Racing Association (NYRA) venue is now in full swing in upstate Saratoga Springs…a place I have visited 66 years in a row. In any event, here is my take on this betting activity.

Let’s proceed directly to the bottom line. This sport is dying a slow death. Why?

  1. NYRA is a totally corrupt and incompetent organization, unable to run a legitimate business.
  2. There is a 15-20% “takeout” that significantly – and I mean significantly – reduces the probability of the bettor winning.
  3. The sport is currently supported by the aged few, e.g., yours truly, for whom this form of gambling has unfortunately become a way of life. Attempts to attract the younger generation and the opposite sex continue to fail miserably.
  4. The bettor has consistently been treated as a third class citizen, not a patron to be valued.
  5. I predicted NYRA’s demise when I appeared as an invited guest at a Presidential Crime Commission hearing in 1976. My predictions have come true.
  6. I have proposed a legitimate possible solution to the sport’s dilemma…but I hold no hopes for its implementation.
  7. Finally, NYRA has successfully alienated its base and continues to discourage live fan involvement.

But, what about those in this reading audience who will continue to wager on horseraces? Although you should accept the fact that the probability of losing is extremely high, here are a handful of hints that I believe will increase your chances of winning.

  1. For the beginner or novice, who has little or no knowledge of pari-mutual wagering, simply bet the number 1 (one) horse every race.
  2. Always give serious consideration to betting the 1 (one) horse, particularly with 2-turn races where the inside post is a major advantage.
  3. What about tips? The general rule here is to never bet tips. Here’s a quick tale that will seal the deal. Mary and I owned Katy R, a standardbred. One night prior to one of her races at Roosevelt Raceway, I was introduced to a guy who suddenly claimed he had a tip on a horse in the race. What horse? Katy R. I asked him about the source of this tip. He showed me the program that read OWNER: M.K. Theodore and L. Theodore, Jackson Heights. He claimed that he got the tip directly from L. Theodore, a gambling degenerate who was owner and the chef of a diner in Jackson Heights. I showed him my horseman’s photo ID card. He snickered and walked away. So much for tips.
  4. What about win bets? I rarely bet win because tickets are being punched AFTER a race starts. I believe this could be proven in a court of law. (Successfully gaining illegal entry to computers, protected by sophisticated systems operated by true experts, has become painfully clear in recent months.)   Never bet place or show. I also generally try to stay away from favorites, particularly in stake races. I also prefer betting large field cheap claiming races rather than small field stake races.
  5. Try to key on betting on Pick-3, Pick-4, Pick-5, and triples.
  6. What about jockeys? I stay away from established older jockeys, e.g., John Velasquez. Their ROI, i.e., return on investment, is almost always negative. For me, the greatest jockey of all time was Jerry Bailey. The most overrated were Angel Cordero, Eddie Arcaro, and Mike Smith. Give bug-boys (apprentices) more consideration for longer races since the weight allowances are sure to come into play.
  7. Give apprentices more consideration in later races, particularly during the cold winter months, as the journeymen are more likely to be disinterested bystanders.
  8. What about race changes? I love first-time turf but stay away from turf to dirt. I also love horses going long the first time and stay away from horses going long to short.
  9. Give special consideration to 2nd-time starters.
  10. Try to stay away from betting on favorites.
  11. Give special consideration to speed horses in stake races.
  12. Try to avoid betting on layoff (21 or more days) horses in cheap claiming races since they obviously have missed a turn — for a reason.
  13. Finally, stop betting NYRA tracks. I now bet Gulfstream, Pimlico, etc.
  14. Where to bet? Find an OTB or a simulcast facility that offers track odds or bet from home with a phone account since live at-the-track betting has become a dying form of entertainment.
  15. What about money management? Forget about it. It is a non-entity for the real gambler. It all depends on the risks you are willing to take. For the novice, bet only an amount that losing will have no impact on your life.
  16. What about bringing friends and family to the track (as I have often done)? Don’t waste your time. Most are looking for “instant gratification” and become disillusioned / bored when they realize there are 30-35 minutes between races.

Good luck in the months (and hopefully years) ahead. If you continue to bet, and my above suggestions don’t work, blame it on Karma.

Zzzabuu will return early next year (if  I’m still around).

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NEXT POSTINGS

SEPTEMBER 1:         On Great Eats VI

OCTOBER 1:             On Technical Writing

NOVEMBER 1:         On the Ohi Day IV

DECEMBER 1:          On Hofstra’s 2020-21 Basketball Season / EWSD (Budget Vote)

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Practice putting the ball in play; there should be several options available (and known) without the need to take a time out.
  2. Always run on offense; the only exceptions are:
  3. The bench is weak, and
  4. A key player is in foul trouble (shorten the game).
  5. Motion offense is a must, otherwise your grandmother can guard you.

Note: Mary (M.K. Theodore) and I (L. Theodore) just published a book titled “Introduction to Environmental Management”, 2nd edition, CRC Press / Taylor & Francis Group, Boca Raton, FL, 2021 (99$). The book is the definitive source for those seeking a non-technical presentation of technical environmental issues, e.g., electromagnetic waves, noise pollution, nanotechnology, global warming, desalination, etc. Homework problems and exams (with solutions) are also available for those who adopt.


On Technical Jargon II

July 1, 2021

July 1, 2021

Many of the individuals in my reading audience classify themselves as “professionals.” A good number of them would also classify themselves as “technical”. I think of myself as fitting into both categories but I doubt anyone would agree with me.

Here’s what I recently wrote about technical professionals communicating with the average citizen: “Be honest, fresh, and open … technical language and jargon are useful as professional shorthand, but they are barriers to successful communication with the public.” I believe this is good advice when dealing with the public. But, it is another matter if you are dealing with another professional. All bets are then off, and many revert to a language that resides solely in the domain of the professional. I became aware of the unique phenomena following receiving two potable water provisional patents, the submission of a report to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and the preparation of a proposal to the National Science Foundation (NSF). Although words can mean different things to different people, I have listed below two dozen sentences and phrases employed by us gifted few; each is followed by a layman’s pragmatic definition and / or explanation.

  • Congratulations continue to pour in – The only thing being poured is the Dewars to help me forget this mess.
  • I can say with certainty – My brother-in-law Vito (on my wife’s side) mentioned it to me last night in a Go-Go joint.
  • We can say with certainty – My cohorts were also there.
  • A Foundation Director concluded – She read it in the New York tabloids.
  • An informed local official concluded – He’s got an IQ to match his age.
  • An informed state official concluded – Her IQ is in the single digit range.
  • An informed federal official concluded – He doesn’t have an IQ.
  • An informed career federal official concluded – His IQ approaches negative infinity during any thought process.
  • There may be negative international repercussions – Only if our findings get out.
  • Definitely worthy of NSF support – It is a totally useless project that can in no way serve mankind.
  • My mental process has concluded the following – Your guess is as good as mine.
  • A reliable source has just informed me – A guy named Pepe mentioned it to me in a bar last night; we were both cockeyed.
  • There is wide range agreement – No one believes a word of it, including my colleague Lefty.
  • The results appear to indicate a trend – Unfortunately, we can’t figure out what the trend is.
  • The results appear to indicate a definite trend – We are totally confused at this point in time.
  • We intend to pursue this aspect of the investigation vigorously – Only if someone puts up the moola.
  • Based on my limited experience – I’m looking for clues.
  • Based on my experience – I’m desperately looking for clues.
  • Based on my extensive experience – I’m clueless.
  • Getting started on the study was no problem – We simply assumed the subject in question to be a sphere.
  • Thanks are due – I had to mention his name since dinner at his restaurant last week was on the arm.
  • Thanks are due the NSF – I have a policy of thanking anyone who gives me money on a no-strings-attached basis.
  • My colleagues congratulated me – They really meant that I was mentally deranged.
  • If I were you Thank God I’m not.

Much of the above material was drawn from yes, an earlier “On Technical Gargos” article that appeared in the press on July 6, 2000 – 21 years ago … and much of it still applies.

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NEXT POSTINGS

AUGUST 1:                On Great Eats VI

SEPTEMBER 1:         On Technical Writing

OCTOBER 1:             Zzzabuu V

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Practice inbounding the ball at various locations on the court when the opposing team is pressing.
  2. The player nearest to the ball should take it out immediately after a basket or foul shot and pass it to the first open man.
  3. Do not leave the foul line after the first of two (or three) free throws, and do not slap / shake the hand of a fellow teammate.

On Hofstra’s 2020-21 Men’s Basketball Season and The East Williston School District Budget Vote

May 1, 2021

May 1, 2021

This is not an easy newsletter for me to write. There are two parts: one concerned with Hofstra’s 2020-21 basketball season and one concerned with the upcoming East Williston School District (EWSD) budget vote. There is bad news on both subject matters. In any event, here goes.

  1. Hofstra’s 2020-21 Men’s Basketball Season

In case anyone forgot, Hostra won its first Colonial Athletic Association (CAA Men’s Basketball Championship) in March 2020, defeating Northeastern 70-61. The teams’ combined wins over its past two years include 26 wins in 2019-20 and 27 wins in the 2018-19 campaign. These 53 wins placed them 14th nationally and was the main reason they won consecutive regular season titles. In addition, Isaac Kante was exceptional with a 65 percent field goal average – 9th in the nation. They were worthy champions in 2020 but, alas, the COVID-19 struck and the NCAA Tournament was cancelled.

The bad news continued following the conclusion of the 2019-20 season when coach Joe Mehalich took sick and has retired from basketball. The new season brought forth a new coach with Kante selected on the CAA’s preseason first team plus Jalen Ray and Tareq Coburn were preseason honorable mentions. I was pretty certain they were going to have another great year. But, the team’s performance turned out to be less than stellar. They arrived at the CAA Championship Tournament with high hopes but failed miserably.

My notes on this past season are listed below:

  1. They continued to play zone defense; even mediocre teams don’t play zone.
  2. There was no hustle on defense – a characteristic of many zone defenses with players confused at times as to who was guarding who.
  3. They couldn’t hit 3-pointers with any consistency.
  4. There was often poor shot selection.
  5. The other teams were simply better.

What makes for a winning team? Here is what legendary coach Rollie Massimino offered in my Basketball Coaching 101 book: “Every team has an identity and for me it is family. The magic word is WE. We are all together. Most of our family of players, coaches, etc., regularly contact each other for Christmas. I also still get calls from my gang at the beginning of each season wishing me well.” The Hofstra team? They looked like a pickup team; it was as if the 5 players had just been introduced. The bench? It appeared comatose most of the time. I once half-jokingly mentioned that “if you hope to win a championship, you’d better be with people you love.” Now I don’t think of it as a joke.

Next season? Look for them to rebound with a new coach. The new coach? What a great choice: Craig “Speedy” Claxton. Speedy played at Hofstra and won the Haggerty Award (top New York metropolitan player) as a senior. He followed that with 7 years in the NBA. Hopefully, he will not follow in the same footsteps as Chris Midlin. One thing we know is that Hofstra has had a really fabulous record of recruiting top guards and this included both Speedy and Juan’ya Green plus my favorite – Charles Jenkins. More recently, Speedy was apparently responsible for not only recruiting but also developing Justin Wright-Foreman and Desure Buie. Let’s hope the tradition will continue since it is guards who bring home championships. Regarding Speedy, my dear friend and mentor, Jack Powers, former Executive Director of the NIT, had this to offer: “He is a wonderful kid, a quality person, a credit to our sport, and certain to succeed. Rick Cole made a great choice.” My sentiments … exactly.

II. The East Williston School District (EWSD) Budget Vote

Over the years, I have been critical of teachers for taking yearly salary increases at a time when many people in the private sector are being laid off, taking salary cuts, or losing their benefits. Such is the situation this year.

A question we engineers often ask when evaluating a scheme, proposal, contract, etc., is as follows: Is it cost-effective and is there sufficient accountability? When applied to education, most school boards, school administrators, and teachers have conveniently avoided answering this question. In fact, these individuals continue to try to convince concerned taxpayers that taxes need to be raised further if our children are to receive a quality education. Our teachers also maintain that they are dedicated professionals. What in the world is the rest of the workforce? To hear the teachers you would think they were God’s gift to society. Regarding our teachers, I have more respect for the NYC teacher, who I believe is as dedicated, if not more, because they are exposed to combat duty, often on a daily basis. Furthermore, one need only compare the recent conduct of teachers with 9/11 first responders and the COVID-19 pandemic health care workers.

Needless to say, I shall vote against the budget since it contains increases and not reductions in teachers’ salaries and benefits. I suggest District taxpayers do likewise. Remember, it is Okay to vote NO on the budget.

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NEXT POSTINGS

JUNE 1:                      On Memorial Day VI

JULY 1:                      On Purely Chaste, Pristine, and Random Thoughts XXXI

AUGUST 1:                On Great Eats VI

SEPTEMBER 1:         On Technical Writing

OCTOBER 1:             Zzzabuu V

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Here are this month’s three offensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Every attempt should be made to exploit the team’s offensive capabilities against the opponent’s defensive weaknesses.
  2. Players should learn to dribble with either hand.
  3. Players should learn to shoot with either hand.

ON ZZZABUU IV

March 31, 2021

April 1, 2021

Zzzabuu is his name. He arrived earlier in 2003 from the planet Zzokki in a faraway galaxy, having been dispatched to Earth on a fact-finding trip involving politicians. Zzzabuu had been selected once again by The Superiors in 2021 because of his great intellect, analytical mind, and his love of gambling.

On reaching Earth, Zzzabuu set out immediately to accomplish his specific assignment: to determine details (both pros and cons) of gambling investment opportunities on Plant Earth. As per instructions from the Superiors, Zzzabuu met with an outspoken chemical engineering professor (who shall remain nameless); he had earlier published a book titled, “Probability and Statistics for Environmental Engineers and Scientists”. Part of the material in the well-received text addressed games of chance, including dice, cards, football pools, Lotto, etc. The professor proved an invaluable source of information despite being dubbed “The Chemist” by his friends and colleagues because of an uncanny ability to turn their money entrusted to him into horse manure.

Several weeks of intensive study followed. After obtaining all the facts, Zzzabuu prepared his report in a manner that any Zzokkian could relate to and understand. The executive summary in his z-mail to The Superiors follows.

“The financial alternatives of any game of chance can often be measured by the cost of the game / investment. This cost effectively represents what the gambling industry charges the investor for the opportunity to gamble. For example, a 5% cost figure could represent the “takeout”, that is, a measure of what percentage – on average – of the investment that the gambler automatically pays for this opportunity. Alternatively, it could represent what percent – on average – one would expect to lose with a particular game of chance. This information follows for a host of gambling options.

            Lotto                           50%

            Pari-mutuel Racing* 16%

            Real Estate Industry* 5%

            Sports Wagering*       5%

            Roulette                      3.5%

            Slots                            1-5%

            Dice                            0.5%

            Blackjack (“21”)*      0.1%

            Securities Industry*   0%

Each Zzokkian should note that the five activities with asterisks are not truly games of chance since each individual can control his / her own destiny, i.e., chance of winning, by intelligent gaming decisions. For example, with thoroughbred pari-mutuel wagering, the ability to select winning horses could negate the 16% takeout and result in a profit. The same applies with investing in securities via the Internet where the only cost could be as low as $6 for a multi-million dollar investment.

Most of the inhabitants on Planet Earth, including the nefarious professor, delve into most – if not all – of the above games of chance. Obviously, Lotto is a game for those individuals whose IQ is in the 2-digit range and in need of a grade school refresher course in arithmetic. The game of blackjack offers some interesting possibilities since one may employ a “counting” technique that actually could convert the odds to slightly favor the gambler. Finally, the real estate and securities industries have a track record that, on average, have produced significant profitable returns over the years to investors.

The Superiors need to realize that the aforementioned term probability must be an integral part of any gambling study or analysis. Webster defines probability as ‘the number of times something will probably occur over the range of possible occurrences, expressed as a ratio.’ For me, probability can be interpreted subjectively as a measure of degree of belief, on a fractional scale from 0 to 1 or 0 to 100 on a percent basis, that an “event” occurs. This interpretation is frequently used in ordinary conversation. For example, if someone says, “The probability that I will go to the movies tonight is 90%”, then 90% is a measure of the person’s belief that he or she will get to the movies. This interpretation is also used when, in the absence of concrete data needed to estimate an unknown probability on a basis of observed concrete data, information and / or facts, the personal opinion of an expert is sought. For example, an expert might be asked to estimate the probability that a stock will double in the next six months; the estimate would be based on the expert’s familiarity with the stock market.

The Superiors and / or Earthlings may obtain additional details on all of the above games of chance at no charge by calling (516) 742-8939.”

In order to accommodate some of my readers, future articles – Zzzabuu V, VI, VII, and VIII – addressing pari-mutuel wagering, stock market investing, casino gambling, and sport book betting, respectively – will provide specific details on each of these four topics. I will provide not only pertinent odds but also helpful hints in these write-ups. And yes, I am significantly involved in all four pursuits.

Visit the author at:

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NEXT POSTINGS

MAY 1:           On Hofstra’s 2020-21 Basketball Season / EWSD Budget Vote

JUNE 1:          On Great Eats VI

JULY 1:          On Technical Writing

AUGUST 1:    Zzzabuu V

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Here are this month’s three defensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. If trailing with more than a minute to go, attempt (perhaps via a timeout) to prevent any delays in inbounding the ball by your opponents.
  2. Practice various defenses when your opponents are in-bounding the ball from various locations on the court.
  3. Finally, never forget that defense is 50% of the game. Coaches, are you reading this? Players, are you reading this? DEFENSE IS AS IMPORTANT AS OFFENSE. You can never lose a game if your five starters have the capabilities of shutting down their opponent. However, you can lose a game even if your 5 starters have the capability of scoring at will.

THE ULTIMATE QUIZ IV

February 1, 2021

February 1, 2021

As indicated in III, this has become one of my favorites. But, this one is a little different. It is solely political in nature and each statement to follow requires either a true or false answer. And, there is no correct answer … it is basically your call. The 40 comments to follow concern events/ actions that occurred during the 2016-2020 time period. You are asked to provide a true or false response.

I personally will not take a position on the results/grade of your true – false test. But, based on your number of true answers, I feel that you would be classified in one of the five categories:

  1. 0-8:     a staunch liberal
  2. 9-16:   a liberal
  3. 17-24: a moderate
  4. 25-32: a conservative
  5. 33-40: a staunch conservative
  1. The stock market increased at a near exponential rate, no doubt due to a turnaround robust economy, commitments to job creation, and a decline in poverty levels.
  2. Our nation is now classified as energy independent (remember the price of gasoline is now $2.00/gal)
  3. Contrary to earlier predictions, there was a return of manufacturing jobs.
  4. Black colleges and universities received an unprecedented increase in financial aid from the Federal government.
  5. The U.S. military prowess increased dramatically.
  6. The air, water, and land (soil) was never cleaner.
  7. Despite a departure from the Paris Peace Accord, CO2 emissions decreased below expectations.
  8. NAFTA was dissolved and replaced.
  9. New rules were put in place to stop the exploitation by China.
  10. Built nearly all the Southern wall and stopped illegal immigration across the Southern border.
  11. The majority of the public came to realize that the media was corrupt, self-serving, and un-American.
  12. The Washington establishment – consisting primarily of career bureaucrats, often referred to as “The Swamp” – was corrupt, self-serving, and un-American.
  13. Stopped the ISIS killing and torture.
  14. Several elements of the Obama Health Care Act were eliminated.
  15. Reduced the North Korean threat.
  16. For many citizens, there was a return of pride and love of country.
  17. Contrary to earlier predictions, our presence in foreign wars was significantly reduced.
  18. Abuses in veterans’ hospitals were significantly reduced.
  19. The COVID-19 pandemic was responsibly addressed medically and economically.
  20. Delivered ventilators and hospital beds immediately to an ill-prepared NYS.
  21. Delivered the COVID-19 vaccine in 7 ½ months, not 5-10 years (as predicted).
  22. Taxes were lowered for the middle class.
  23. The President was impeached based on a telephone conversation with a third-world country that was interpreted in a questionable manner.
  24. Unemployment levels for Blacks reached an all-time low.
  25. The Food Stamp Program was significantly reduced.
  26. Per capita wealth increased at a near exponential rate.
  27. Property values increased at a near exponential rate.
  28. Many companies, after moving abroad earlier, returned home.
  29. The MS-13 presence in our country was reduced.
  30. Eliminated the presence of ISIS in the Middle East.
  31. Our soldiers are now coming home.
  32. The Iranian threat was significantly reduced.
  33. Contrary to earlier concerns, no nuclear wars were initiated.
  34. The US was the first country to stop to and fro travel with China.
  35. Unemployment levels for Hispanics reached an all-time low.
  36. Unemployment levels for Asians reached an all-time low.
  37. Unemployment levels for women reached an all-time low.
  38. Contrary to failed promises from a host of past presidents, the US Embassy in Israel was relocated to Jerusalem.
  39. The economy and newly created jobs grew at an unprecedented and exponential rate.
  40. Contrary to the prediction of nearly all the bureaucrats, peace treaties were signed between Israel and several Arab nations.

How many true answers did you come up with? Where do you think Trump would be classified? Biden? Pelosi? Cuomo? Pence?

Note: For some of my fans, I recently co-authored an Amazon book ($7.99) titled “Virus Contacts”. The lead author is Ann Marie Flynn.

Visit the author at:

www.theodorenewsletter.com

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NEXT POSTINGS:

MARCH 1:                 On Technical Writing

APRIL 1:                     On Great Eats VI

MAY 1:                       On Hofstra’s 2020-21 Basketball Season

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Here are this month’s three defensive suggestions from the upcoming second edition of my “BASKETBALL COACHING 101” book.

  1. Every shot, particularly of an “outside” variety, should be contested — unless you are the size (5’ 6”) of the author.
  2. Every attempt should be made to exploit your team’s defensive capabilities against the opponent’s offensive weaknesses.
  3. If fouls committed by your team are low relative to your opponent, substitute for your star or key players – assuming they need a breather anyway – since the officials are more prone to call “touch” fouls on your team.