A Stones Throw 12-29-16

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I hope everyone had a safe and wonderful Christmas weekend. I hope everyone had a chance to share warmth and comfort with family and friends – no matter how close they are, or how far away they are.

I also hope everyone is looking forward to a safe, healthy, and exciting 2017. When you read this you will still have time to make your New Year’s resolutions. I have already made mine.

I resolve to be sound asleep at midnight on Saturday night. I have found in the past that if I wake up on the morning of January 1st, I know two things. First, and most important, I know I am still alive. Second, I know the New Year made it without me.

I resolve to make no other New Year’s resolutions.

Still, I do think there are a lot of interesting thoughts that might or might not happen in 2017.

First and foremost, we will inaugurate perhaps the most divisive President in our history. While I continue to be concerned with many decisions and many comments being made by our new President Donald Trump, I think he should be allowed to lead the way he chooses to lead.

Meanwhile, I will be interested to see how many of the dozens of celebrities who promised to leave the U.S. if Trump is elected actually leave. Some who vowed to leave the country did so because they could not trust what Trump said. Others vowed to leave because they did trust what Trump said.

I wonder if those who don’t trust Trump’s words will go to one country while those who do trust his words – and don’t like them – will go to a different country.

I think I know the answer to this one.

These “I will leave the country if Donald Trump is elected” will still be here when the next president is elected. After all, we shouldn’t expect any of them to keep their word. They thought their declarations would be enough to keep Trump from being elected.

They failed.

So, they will just continue to blast Trump while hoping everyone forgets they made a commitment that they won’t follow through – no matter that he isn’t following through on his “commitments”.

I would have to say that I would have liked to see many of these celebrities leave the country. I would have missed Cher and Morgan Freeman. The rest can leave.

Now would be a good time.

I also think those celebrities who promised to leave should take all those people who have claimed Trump will destroy America and have protested his election by physically “destroying America” by breaking, burning, and looting property or by blocking interstates, etc.

At the same time, there are other things that I am interested in seeing during 2017. Obviously the one I want to see most is a repeat World Series victory for the Chicago Cubs.

While I know the odds are against a World Series repeat, I have to smile when I read that the “lovable losers” have now become the “hated winners” since they are considered to be a baseball dynasty somewhat like the New York Yankees.

Give me – and the Cubs – a break.

Two World Series titles in 108 years is a Dynasty?

But, it will be fun watching the season unfold. It will also be much more nerve racking. When they were expected to lose, a victory was fun. Now that they are supposed to win, a loss will be devastating.

So goes the life of a Cubs fan.

Then there are the other sports.

NASCAR has a new name – The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.”

NASCAR has a new problem – Jeff Gordon is gone. Tony Stewart is gone. The names on the starting grid are getting more and more unknown. NASCAR is becoming “who cares” racing.

That is sad.

But, not unique.

Unless Tiger Woods is able to make a comeback and Phil Mickelson is able to play golf at the highest level, the PGA has become totally vanilla with one unknown after another winning each tournament.

Speaking of a growing lack of interest in sports, I have to digress a bit. I wonder how many readers have watched any of this year’s football bowl games. I know I haven’t watched a single one. I don’t even know who is playing in any of the games – except the upcoming playoff games – and I am a certified sports nut (some people think I am simply certified.)

I have seen highlights – or lowlights – of some of the Bowl games where there are more players on the sidelines than fans in the seats.

I think it is time to reevaluate the whole Bowl game concept for 2017.

I also think it is time for the Indianapolis Colts to either find an offensive line that will protect Andrew Luck or find a team that will take his massive contract and just admit the Peyton Manning era of dominance will not be repeated with Andrew Luck.

I could go on and on about my 2017 thoughts in the sports world, but I know I have already bored many of my readers so I will finish with a non-sports thought.

Simply, I don’t like one of Ohio’s new laws.

Beginning in 2017, you will be allowed to use your credit or debit card to purchase lottery tickets. I have always been concerned that many, if not most, lottery tickets are purchased by people who cannot afford them. Allowing the use of credit cards simply adds to that dilemma. If you don’t have the cash – borrow it for a one in a million -or worse – chance to win.

I don’t have a problem with gambling. I don’t have a problem with Casinos. I don’t have a problem with the lottery.

I do have a problem when individuals who cannot afford to lose even a dollar are encouraged to lose more than they have – perhaps will ever have.

Regardless, 2017 will bring a lot that we can’t anticipate today.

Until then, take care, be safe, and enjoy the New Year.

– Mike Cooney