Donald Trump can’t stop lying, attacking the First Amendment, trying to knock down stories about his campaign’s connections to Russia…and the Red Sox are playing in Florida. And so, with apologies to Boston Globe sports writer Nick Cafardo for lifting the name, here’s The Hanging Shad’s “Apropos of Nothing.”
1. One panda gone. One panda back. Beloved National Zoo panda Bao Bao is back in China after a rock star run in the US. She arrived on the FedEx Panda Express. Apparently, so far, she’s not digging her diet. It turns out Chinese bamboo tastes different from American bamboo. (I’ll take their word for it.). She also is struggling to understand Chinese commands.
On the flip side, Pablo “Kung Fu Panda” Sandoval is back with the Red Sox and he is seeing the benefits from his new diet. Sandoval dropped some 40 pounds when recovering from should surgery last year. He’ll get every opportunity to win the third base job. So far, so good. He is a long way from the player who was so chubby he busted his uniform belt.
2. It’s getting chilly in Hades. I can’t believe I’m saying this but US Rep. Darrell Issa is right.
3. Are we there yet? It’s only a matter of time before both Republicans and Democrats coalesce around the idea that Donald Trump cannot sustain as president. His attacks on the media should send shivers down the collective spine of the nation. He didn’t say the media “should not use” unnamed sources. He said the media “shouldn’t be allowed to use” unnamed sources. There is a significant and stunning difference. We are on a very slippery slope.
4. Don’t change the décor of your office just yet. Did Trump really mean it when he told his top people they can speak their minds? Immediately after saying his deportation plan was “a military exercise,” Trump’s Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said the exact opposite.
Meanwhile, newly appointed National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster proclaimed using the term “radical Islamic terrorism” is not helpful. This is after two years of Trump slamming President Obama and various other Democrats for not using the term. Trump is reportedly considering another “H.R.” for other positions.
5. Murphy for America. Connecticut US Sen. Chris Murphy is stating categorically that he is not running for president. Ok. That might be true right now, but consider these words from 2006:
The Murphy speculation will continue because, 1) He is smart, measured, brilliant politically. 2) He is on the right committees. 3) Absolutely excels on TV. 4) He is the anti-Trump. 5) He is more likable than Elizabeth Warren, Terry McAuliffe, Corey Booker, Kamala Harris, Sherrod Brown or any other Democratic contender. 6) Paired with a Midwesterner (Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper?), he’d be force to be reckoned with.
6. Tomato or Chicken Noodle? As Late Night host Seth Myers points out, perhaps Trump does in fact have a “replacement” for Obamacare.
7. Two, two-thumbs up. I usually don’t see too many of the Oscar-nominated movies before the awards are given out. This year, I saw two—“Manchester-by-the-Sea” and “Lion.” There were both very good in different ways. They were also both sad in different ways. I liked “Lion” better.
8. Kris, Kim, Khloe, Kourtney, Kylie, Kendall…and Guðni, Ronja, Bríet, and Stubbur? Now THIS is a reality show! “Keeping Up With the Kattarshians” is a new Icelandic reality TV show that follows the exploits of four cats as they eat, sleep, play and live together in one house after begin rescued from animal shelters. There are multiple hidden cameras around the cat house and follow the kitties as they interact. Think I’m kidding?