The Endless Summer

A Saturday. On this date the SS Andrea Doria collided with the MS Stockholm just south of Nantucket. Also, Bob Dylan went electric at Newport.

Boston is losing one of its best murals. Hopefully it can be recreated at another location.

Coronavirus roundup: There were over 73,000 new cases in the US yesterday. South Africa is braced for the worst. Experts are struggling with predictions for when infections will peak. 13 elderly nuns in a Michigan convent died from Covid-19, but a nursing home in Baltimore seems to have beaten the odds. There are still problems with supplies. And Dr. Fauci is in a NYT crossword. He’s also in a Sinclair News propaganda video being accused of actually creating the virus. I need a new planet.

I don’t always agree with David Brooks but sometimes he hits it out of the park. This is one of those times.

What could possibly go wrong in the November election? Garrett Graff lists 8 things.

Bill Forry provides a list of potential names for the new consolidated St. Ann/St. Brendan parish. I like St. John Paul II Parish but there are other strong contenders.

And the quantum Internet is coming. But not as soon as this article implies.

Breaking with convention

Friday, July 24th. It’s opening day!

If you do manage to plan a vacation, you may need to get a tested before you go. That may not be as easy as you think. Deborah Becker looks at testing turnaround times.

Well, so much for the Republican Convention in Jacksonville. Cancelled. At least one guy is happy, the local sheriff, Mike Williams, who had the impossible task of providing security for the late-scheduled event.

More than 1000 Twitter employees had access to the tools used in the big hack last week, Reuters reports. That’s not a very tight ship.

UFOs are back in the news. Multiple sources report that we’re in possession of artifacts from something that crashed at some point in time. Not very specific but fascinating, nonetheless.

And, how can you tell if the coronavirus is spreading in your area? Check to see if your local Apple store is open. (I’m guessing that the stores in Brazil are all closed.)

Headlong, eyes closed

Today is Thursday. It’s National Refreshment Day.

In Poland, they’re playing soccer in empty stadiums. But fans will find a way.

Under the proposed Massachusetts police reform bill being rushed through the legislature, current or former law enforcement officers are prohibited from serving on the law enforcement Standards and Training Commission. That’s a little weird, don’t you think? I certainly do, and so do these two prominent attorneys. Also, Eddie Crispin, president of MAMLEO, weighs in on the bill’s streamlined due process provisions. The issues involved are important but this legislation, he says, “cannot, and should not, be a rushed product.”

And defunding the police, as a political concept, is not generally supported by the public, although the Black Lives Matter movement is. It’s an election year so expect to see these two things to be conflated and weaponized.

Bruce Schneider takes a high-level view of the implications of the big Twitter hack.

And, someday, our whole life will be built around the computercirca 1974. Despite those thick glasses Arthur C. Clarke had amazing vision.

Do your jobs

The Wednesday hump. Birthdays, today, for Bobby Sherman and George Clinton.

We’re all struggling to interpret the constantly shifting data on Covid-19 spread. Journalist are too. ProPublica has some tips. Meanwhile, the WSJ runs through the numbers to try to nail down fatality rates.

Everyone’s talking about the police reform bill but there’s also the small matter of passing a budget for the fiscal year that has already started. Come on, Legislature. You know what Belichick would say.

The Australian version of The Onion is called The Shovel and they take a well-aimed shot at the NRA.

Steve McQueen’s Mustang, from the movie Bullitt, sold for $3.7 million dollars earlier this year, setting a record. That record has been left in the dust by another recent auction of a Mustang, the one once driven by Ken Miles and Carroll Shelby of Ford vs. Ferrari fame.

Elon Musk wants to get into your brain.

And if you’ve ever wondered how Apple became such a hugely successful company, this example of long-term thinking may enlighten you.

An American story arc

Today is Tuesday, July 21st, 2020. It’s the anniversary of both the first moonwalk and the last Space Shuttle mission.

No summer blockbusters this year, only re-runs of Jaws at the drive in. And, maybe that’s a good thing.

Fifty one years ago an American walked on the moon. Today we’re struggling with the not very complex problem of whether to wear a mask. Delta is doubling down on requiring them on flights while Winn Dixie says, come on in without one. (Update – they changed their mind and now require a mask). The governor of Texas is taking heat from local counties for his statewide mask-wearing mandate while the governor of Georgia is going out of his way to prevent local municipalities from implementing mask mandates. And the president, who was against masks, is now for masks. I can’t wait to see how we handle vaccine distribution.

The AG’s office in Massachusetts doesn’t do many criminal investigations. And from what I’ve seen, there’s a political angle to what investigations they do take on and how they approach them. So designating them to be point for deadly force investigations is either a cynical or a clueless decision by legislators.

When the Democratic National Convention came to Boston in 2004, planning started more than a year in advance. Same thing for the RNC in New York that same year and the DNC in Denver in 2008. There are a lot of moving parts. So I don’t envy the Sheriff in Jacksonville who’s trying to put together a security plan for the RNC in less than two months. Not to mention current government disfunction, today’s unrest and all the precautions needed for social distancing. That’s a triple-decker shit sandwich.

And now, here are some cute penguin photos to cool you off on a hot day.