Thursday, January 20, 2011

Allegations, Grimaces, and a Good-Bye…

Thursday, folks, but, you already knew that….Let’s get to it…

Hell hath frozen over; if you are buying a coffee from Starbucks, there is now an app for that. Apple unveiled an app made to make the unthinkable a reality; you can now purchase a latte or Frappuccino if you forgot your wallet. The app allows you to put money on an account, then, upon walking to the counter, scan your phone (which briefly displays a barcode) and make your order. How that is in anyway faster than simply swiping your credit or debit card, I have absolutely no idea, but, it is not to the Bohunk to question why. If you want to ooze Starbucks affiliation, this is the app for you….

Researches have spotted a disturbing trend in elevated suicide rates for National Guard or Reserve soldiers, most typically while not deployed. The number of suicides of non-active reservists nearly doubled last year, from 80 to 145. A major contributing factor (besides repeated deployments to a warzone) is the logistical problem of providing access to counseling and post traumatic stress experts in the States. The broken marriages and relationships, lost jobs and difficulties faced by a prolonged absence are contributing factors, but the Army is clueless, especially about the dramatic rise. One commander, a Maj. General Raymond Carpenter says that roughly half of the suicides in his company are attributable to troubled relationships at home. Many experts are hoping that a universal network of counselors will be established, both in theaters of war and in the US, in order to provide expense-paid access to help upon returning home. The war is not only fought afar….

Carla Swaft riding for South Africa at Worlds…

In more sad news (my apologies), the cycling community honors the loss of Carla Swart, a 23 year old cyclist killed yesterday while on a training ride in South Africa. Swart was a promising star for HTC-Highroad entering her first full season with the pro squad. She was a college student who balanced an international racing schedule along with the demands of homework and family life. In the cycling community, any loss is widely mourned as if it were a very close friend, and for many, Carla was. Her alma mater, Lees McRae College is already working to establish a scholarship in her honor, to be awarded to a female cyclist each year. You can donate to this fund by sending a check to Lees-McRae College with a note of ‘Carla Swart Scholarship ‘ in the memo line. Here is the address:

Lees-McRae College Office of Advancement
P.O. Box 128, Banner Elk, NC 28604

A not-so-fond farewell; Juan Pelota faces more charges than ever before….

Ben Swift of Team Sky won the second stage of the Tour Down under while Team RadioShack sprinter took the overall lead, donning the ochre jersey as top man. The sprint finish was marred by a violent high-speed crash in the closing kilometers of the race. One of the most scarred and bloodied riders was the sprint favorite Mark Cavendish, who sustained some ugly cuts and bruises when someone hit some gravel in the road while rounding a tight, congested corner late in the stage which ended in Mannum. With several stages left to go, the sprinters are still at the top of the standings with other contenders lurking back. Still no moves from the likes of Armstrong, Gerrans and Porte in the lack of any real climbs, leaving the likely win to a sprinter or a rider with lots of power. Armstrong is catching flak after rumors and allegations of doping in the early 90s have risen after a Sports Illustrated article was partially leaked two days ago, as reported in the Update yesterday. It documents, or claims to, that Armstrong tested positive for unnatural testosterone to epitestosterone levels of 9:1, 7.6:1 and 6.5:1 over a four years span. It alleges that the Olympic Committee, or members of the Committee, tested athletes in private to avoid public positives and then allowed the drugs to deplete before submitting the rider to public tests. All of this is according to notes taken in the over a decade long span ending around the period of the 2000 Sydney games in Australia. Representatives from Armstrong say they have no comments.

President Obama welcomed our overlord, or landlord, or Chinese President Hu Jintao, or whatever you’d like to know him by, to the White House today to talk currency and trade issues. The talks were ungainly and slow due to translation delays, but Obama says he made frank remarks about the poor human rights record China is infamous for, and also the lack of effort to strengthen China’s currency, the yuan. The Chinese leader repeatedly failed to reply to certain questions and statements, claiming at times not to understand the translator (he brought his own, mind you) and declined to divulge any detailed plans of bringing about more freedoms in his country. Conversely, Obama acknowledges that the US is neck-deep in debt to the diminutive Hu, and the aloofness of the visiting diplomat is uncannily similar to someone stopping by to see if his tenant will be able to make rent by the end of the month. (Obama: “Check’s in the mail, bro, promise.”)

Those aren’t smiles; these men despise each other so much a grimace is all they can
manage for the cameras. The Bohunk wonders what they are muttering under their

  Another short and sweet Update, enjoy NBC’s Thursday night line-up, all new, and don’t panic; 30 Rock has moved to 10. Don’t have a cow. Thanks for reading, now you can go back and check Facebook again….

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