A quick start guide for your reading edutainment

Image for post
Image for post
Aurthor illustration composing old photo frame and photo by Igor Rodrigues on Unsplash

Remember that old joke about the guys in prison who called out numbers instead of telling the same joke for the hundredth time? Well, this is the next best thing: one fun quote to sum up stories that will make you laugh and make you think.

“If you’re going to rant, at least try to make it funny.”

An Open Letter to Writers Who Write to Other Writers About Writing.

“As I waited to check out at Costco a few weeks ago, I was struck by the absurdity of my desire to make sharp investments for the upcoming year while seeing first hand my uncanny ability to pick the worst line. …

A picture of the headlines is worth a thousand words

Image for post
Image for post
Chip Somodevilla | POOL | Reuters

Breaking News! Attorney General William Barr stabs his boss in the back by reporting facts, but Fox News will have none of it.

Here is his exact quote.

“To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have affected a different outcome in the election.” — William Barr

First, let’s look at how real news sources covered the story.

Here is the lede from AP:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Attorney General William Barr said Tuesday the Justice Department has not uncovered evidence of widespread voter fraud that would change the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

Here is the lede from CNN:

(CNN)The Justice Department hasn’t found evidence to support allegations of widespread fraud that could have changed the result of last month’s presidential election, Attorney General William Barr said in an interview with the Associated Press published Tuesday. …

The NBA Restart, Part 2

A season that should get an asterisk for being the most grueling in league history could have far-reaching effect in the future

Image for post
Image for post

The NBA preseason starts in ten days, so it’s time to look back at the bubble again before we predict the next season.

In part one, we looked at how the NBA came back from the shutdown and changed in many profound ways. In part two, let’s look back at how the bubble affected the playoffs and what it may tell us about the upcoming season.

The death of home court advantage

One of the most interesting developments in the bubble was how the level of play improved, especially for role players.

Players were not burdened by travel and social distractions in each new town, while they got to see the same basket and background environment in every game.

Teams shot better in the bubble and there were wild scoring games. …


A song parody of “We Are the Champions” by Queen

Image for post
Image for post
Clutch Sports

Due to the pandemic, LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the Lakers did not get a parade, so they released a new track to their album, “L.A. Our Way.”

We’re Bubble Champions

(Sung to the tune We Are the Champions)

Fans paid their dues
For such a long time
Suffered such nonsense
Disrespected by K’whi
And bad mistakes
Ballz made a few
Shoving his billboards right into our face
We just had to come through
(And we need to laugh on and on, and on, and on)

Image for post
Image for post
Twitter Source

We‘re bubble champions, Lakers fans
Not like the Clippers, also-rans
We‘re bubble champions
We‘re bubble champions
Tweet all the haters
’Cause we’re bubble champions
Of the…

Fox News begins to pivot toward other issues as Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, and Pennsylvania certify their results, but the stolen election myth will be milked for all its worth in future elections.

Image for post
Image for post
Illustration by Author

I am wearing an N95 mask, goggles, and using generous amounts of hand sanitizer, but it’s not because I am on the set of a porn shoot.

No, dear reader, I have started to watch Fox News to report their alternative reality and protect you from direct exposure to the brain-rotting qualities of their broadcasts.

This week, we saw the beginning of the end of the disease that has plagued our beautiful land.

Not the pandemic, silly, the toxic sewage poisoning the Oval Office:

  • The courts have ground Agent Orange’s legal challenges into dust.
  • Increasing numbers of Republican leaders are recognizing Joe Biden’s victory and advocate beginning the transition process.
  • Even the slime ball legal firms that have feasted on Trump retainers for the last four years have stopped working the frivolous election fraud cases because they are hurting their reputations. …

The political version of Nightmare on Elm Street continues

Image for post
Image for post
Author illustration. Sources: Freddy Kruger, White House, and Trump (REUTERS/John Sommers II)

On December 12, 2000, five Republican Supreme Court Justices committed a crime for which there is no word. Could they do it again?

When the Supreme Court ordered the state of Florida to stop counting their ballots, awarding the election to George W. Bush, attorney Vincent Bugliosi wrote:

“…the institution Americans trust the most to protect its freedoms and principles committed one of the biggest and most serious crimes this nation has ever seen–pure and simple, the theft of the presidency…

“No technical true crime was committed here by the five conservative Justices only because no Congress ever dreamed of enacting a statute making it a crime to steal a presidential election…

“That an election for an American President can be stolen by the highest court in the land under the deliberate pretext of an inapplicable constitutional provision has got to be one of the most frightening and dangerous events ever to have occurred in this country.”

The quest to find writing fulfillment while jonesing to keep up with the social media Joneses

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Austin Chan on Unsplash

If you want to be part of the 1% who make a lot of money on this site, this article is for you.*

I started writing on this platform in the Social Media Time Unit of Our Lord and Corporate Overseer 696 B.M. (before money).

As I rise on this glorious social media time unit of 1138 A.P.P. (after Partner Program), I wanted to send out a message of hope when it comes to growing a massive and loyal group of followers.

You probably know that writers with a huge number of followers have a much higher chance of making a lot of money on their stories.

As the rules of the game continue to change, just know this: if you thought Medium was fucking with you before, you ain’t see nothing yet. …

Another report from Fox News’ alternative reality

Image for post
Image for post
Author illustration compositng a public domain wallpaper, news photos of Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson, Rudy Giuliani by ringsidereport, and Make Me Zombie.

There’s something about the scripted messages on Fox News that crawls into your brain like the Ceti Eel from that old Star Trek movie.

At first, you scream in pain as the lies come in contact with your ears. But then they interview an “expert” who asks questions that seem reasonable on the surface, and you wonder if you should at least listen to what they’re saying.

In five minutes, I could see how Fox News can turn people into brain-dead pod people.

Here’s the clip from the movie.

According to Khan, “You see, their young enter through the ears and wrap themselves around the cerebral cortex… This has the effect of rendering the victim extremely susceptible to suggestion.”

“Later, as they grow,” Khan continued, “follows madness … and death.” …

The NBA off-season has featured an incredible battle as the Bucks, Lakers, Pelicans, Suns, Thunder, and Trailblazers look like big winners. Will any other team join their ranks?

Image for post
Image for post
Nicholas Kastner

A flurry of massive trades have electrified the atmosphere heading into draft night, as some teams swing for the fences, others plant the seeds for a brighter future, and a few just look to put out the flames.

Here’s a summary of the moves so far by tiers.

TIER 0: Subtraction through no additions

These top contenders for next season are handicapped with cap space problems and glaring weaknesses that other teams may not want to solve. When we compare them to Lakers, Bucks and Heat, their inability to improve will probably push them further down the mountain.

Boston Celtics

Year after year, the media trumpets the genius of Danny Ainge. While he fleeced the Nets and 76ers in trades and got tons of assets, he has consistently failed to do anything with them.

To be fair, the Celtics found two stars in Jayson Tatum and Jalen Brown, but they did not find a franchise-altering MVP level player at the level of Giannis or Luka. They are also not quite at the level of the guys who continue to block their path to the Finals. …

Sometimes surrender is the real secret of success in life, love and politics

Image for post
Image for post
(AP Photo)

Vince “winners never quit” Lombardi won some battles but lost the war way too soon.

If you don’t know who I’m talking about, Vince Lombardi was regarded as the greatest coach in NFL history and famous for his quote, “winners never quit and quitters never win.”

The problem was he was so driven as a coach, he neglected his body and looked like sdk when he died at age 57.

What people don’t remember about Lombardi is what makes him the greatest: his was one of the leaders in the NFL against discrimination. …


Lon Shapiro

Ad agency creative director, writer & designer at https://guttmanshapiro.com. Former pro tennis player and peak performance coach for professional athletes.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store