The crashed Lamborghini Gallardo at Le Meridien hotel and Brazils crushing loss to Germany in the World Cup, shows just how quickly we can lose control of our destinies.It was over in a matter of seconds. Two events, unfolding in different parts of the world, the locations separated by thousands of miles, but the end result the same: it was over before one could say blink. At the EstadioMineirao in Belo Horizonte, Brazil playing Germany went from 1-0 down to 4-0 in all of 179 seconds.In Delhi, a hapless valet had the most aborted ride of his life at the Le Meridien, crashing a Rs. 3 crore Lamborghini Gallardo Spyderinto a parked sedan, and then a concrete wall, causing damages of Rs. 2 crore.It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Brazil had been resolutely marching forward in the World Cup. In Delhi, the man who brought the Lamborghini to the hotel said that he’d done it so many times, and that he’d always given it to the valet to park.SuperficialThese are superficial events. After all, how significant is a football match or a wrecked car? But, in a funny way, they become metaphors for the lives we live. We think we have control over things but the reality is that we don’t. Things go wrong for reasons beyond our control. When the Brazilian coach Luiz Scolari walked over to the Germans and asked them how they pulled this off – 3 goals between the 23rd and 26th minute – they replied they had no idea themselves.The why and how in these matters is a mystery.advertisementLike the Brazilian players, the valet has no answer. Except maybe that he put the Gallardo in gear without thinking: the car can move from a standstill to 320 kmph in 3.6 seconds. Joan Didion, in her memoir of grief, The Year of Magical Thinking, writes about losing her husband. It might sound trite comparing the death of a human being to the death of a car, but then that’s the point of metaphor.Didion had made her husband a drink; her mind was on going into the kitchen and making a salad. He was talking about World War I or single malt Scotch, she cannot remember.He suddenly stopped talking. He had died of a cardiac arrest. The first words she wrote on her laptop were: “Life changes in an instant. Life changes fast. You sit down for dinner and life as you know it ends.” Life also changed for the Lamborghini owner. Except that the owner wasn’t present. According to one report the car had been borrowed by the owner’s cousin’s friend.Delhi’s fatal attraction for Lamborghinis and other fancy cars is wellknown. In 2012, a real estate tycoon’s son smashed his L in the BRT, also critically injuring a cyclist.Delhi’s show-off culture is unique to it, not seen in other Indian cities, a culture that is as obsessive and demeaning, as it is totalitarian. My phone, my car – they are who I am. If you can’t afford it, borrow it.ConspiracyLeaving aside what happened in the porch of the Meridien, how does one drive a pricey car such as this on an Indian road? How does one get it from point A to point B? There are a hundred ways in which it can be damaged. And if the idea is to be seen driving it, then presumably while you’re driving it you’re constantly watching other people watching you drive. Then how do you drive? Two years ago, Jason Overdorf in a blog for Global Post wrote: “My thoughts on sports cars were formed by a former teacher of mine (also a psychologist), who used to say that driving such a vehicle was “another way of walking around with your pants unzipped.” When drivers used to inch around the circle drive of our school, he would hold up a small, handwritten sign that read: “We see you.”On a lighter note, let me float a conspiracy theory. What if this incident is a deliberate act, part of a larger plan by leftist guerrilla organisations. Their men have infiltrated the valet ranks of five-stars across the country. The mission: to destroy supercars, the ultimate symbol of capitalism. What if this is one of many suicide missions to come, the equivalent of ramming a busload of explosives into a building in Iraq.ArroganceMaybe hotels will become less snooty after this. I am always made to get off the auto-rickshaw at the gates of any five-star. They don’t want a ‘chooch’ standing in their grand porch. My friend, who owns a second-hand Santro, nicknamed ‘Basanti’, voluntarily parks outside the gates because he doesn’t want to deal with the arrogant valet. If thirdworld hotels were not so snobbish, then maybe ‘the victim’ would have taken an auto-rickshaw to the Meridien rather than borrow a friend’s friend’s Lamborghini. Finally, spare a thought for the poor car, one of a hundred-odd on Indian roads. No one cared for the lady’s rights over her own body. She was repeatedly violated, different men handled her, but no one asked her permission. If she had her way, she’d rather have been a Google auto-drive car, so she could have driven herself out in a glorious cloud of dust before the valet could put a finger on her, past the Meridien’s gates, and into the orange sunset.advertisementUnfortunately, she now lies wrecked, with a crushed bonnet and a front that separated on impact. She can no longer admire herself now in the dangling rearview mirror.(The writer is the author of The Butterfly Generation)
Arsenal 4 Crystal Palace 1: Early blitz means Sanchez is hardly missed Harry West Last updated 1 year ago 00:52 1/21/18 Getty Images Four goals in the first 22 minutes inspired Arsenal to a rout of Crystal Palace, ensuring Alexis Sanchez’s absence was hardly a factor. Arsenal shrugged off the impending departure of Alexis Sanchez by scoring four times in the first 22 minutes en route to a 4-1 hammering of Crystal Palace on Saturday.The Chile international appears set to make the switch to Premier League rivals Manchester United, who are reportedly ready to pay £35million plus Henrikh Mkhitaryan for the forward’s services.For the second straight game, Arsene Wenger left Sanchez out of his matchday squad and the Frenchman seems poised for a pursuit of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as a replacement after Borussia Dortmund confirmed the Gunners had made a bid, thought to be in the region of €50m. 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A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player But whatever Arsenal’s comings and goings before the end of the January window, they were certainly not short of firepower at Emirates Stadium as a sorry Palace were swept aside in a devastating opening.Nacho Monreal capitalised on shambolic defending to score the first and then tee up the next two for Alex Iwobi and Laurent Koscielny before the returning Mesut Ozil, back after missing three games with a knee injury, played a key role in Alexandre Lacazette’s marvellous fourth.Luka Milivojevic’s consolation came far too late to cause any Arsenal nerves and victory sees Wenger’s men bring their five-match winless streak – since a 3-2 success at Palace in which Sanchez scored twice – to a resounding end and move within two points of fifth-placed Tottenham, who visit Southampton on Sunday.The Arsenal #WeAreTheArsenal pic.twitter.com/0Xlgsu5Emi— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) January 20, 2018Palace had enjoyed a resurgence under Roy Hodgson, losing only one of their past 12 Premier League outings, but they were comprehensively blown away as Arsenal moved out of sight inside the first quarter of the game.The tone was set when Monreal stole in completely unmarked at the back post to head in Granit Xhaka’s right-wing corner, and the lead was doubled before 10 minutes were up as the left-back turned provider, getting to the byline on the left before cutting back for Iwobi to steer home from close range.Palace failed to learn their lessons, however, as another Xhaka set-piece was met at the far post by Monreal, whose ball across was bundled home by Koscielny inside the six-yard box.The beleaguered Wayne Hennessey fumed at his defence as he picked the ball out of his net for the third time in 13 minutes, but neither he nor his backline could do anything about the glorious fourth.Ozil exchanged passes with Jack Wilshere and upon receiving the return, flicked a sumptuous backheel into the path of Lacazette, who swept home first-time into the bottom-right corner.Palace showed belated signs of life as Bakary Sako caused havoc among the Arsenal defence and shot straight at Petr Cech, who was at full stretch shortly before the break to keep out Wilfried Zaha’s deflected effort. A @premierleague milestone #AFCvCPFC pic.twitter.com/1gss2AuUIW— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) January 20, 2018Hennessey raced from his line to deny Iwobi at the end of a searing counter 11 minutes into the second period and Cech was similarly impressive in spreading himself to keep out Christian Benteke at the other end.Iwobi’s thumping drive was kept out by Hennessey at his near post as Arsenal sought a fifth but with the game long since sewn up, Wenger replaced Ozil with Premier League debutant Reiss Nelson as the match entered its closing stages.Cech’s wait for a 200th Premier League clean sheet went on, however, as Milivojevic spun and fired home from a corner late on with 12 minutes left, Benteke claiming the assist.But that was the only sour note on an otherwise excellent outing for the Gunners ahead of their crucial EFL Cup semi-final date with Chelsea, while Palace’s poor day at the office took another bad turn when Yohan Cabaye left the pitch on a stretcher in the final moments.Key Opta stats:- Arsenal went 4-0 up in the opening 22 minutes in this game – the earliest a side has led by that many in a Premier League game since Liverpool against the Gunners themselves in February 2014 (20 minutes).- Nacho Monreal was involved in three of Arsenal’s goals before being substituted (1 goal, 2 assists) – as many as in his previous 43 Premier League games combined (2 goals, 1 assist).- Roy Hodgson is now winless in all 11 of his Premier League away London derbies as manager (D3 L8).- Arsenal are now unbeaten in their last 19 Premier League home games kicking off at 3pm on a Saturday (W17 D2), since losing to Aston Villa on the opening day of the 2013-14 campaign.- Luka Milivojevic scored his seventh Premier League goal, with the Gunners the only team he has scored against more than once.- Crystal Palace have now lost just two of their last 13 Premier League games (W5 D6), with both defeats coming against Arsenal. read more
New Delhi: Legendary West Indies batsman Brian Lara has predicted that World Cup winners England will beat Australia in the ongoing Ashes series. Along with the winners, Lara also predicted that England skipper Joe Root will end up as the leading run-scorer by the end of the five-Test series while Chris Woakes will be the leading wicket-taker. “My predictions for the Ashes 2019, winners: England; most runs: Joe Root; most wickets: Chris Woakes,” he tweeted on Thursday. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh On Thursday, Steve Smith scored a brilliant hundred to single-handedly drag Australia out of a hole and help them post 284 before being bowled out in the fag end of the opening day of the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston. Woakes picked up three wickets while Stuart Broad scalped five during the course of the Australian innings. At Stumps, England were 10 for no loss and were still 274 runs behind.
SEATTLE — For a businessman who grew a small coffee roaster into an inescapable global chain, who ensured that even his part-time workers had benefits and who has given about $150,000 to Democratic campaigns, former Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz is generating tepid — or even hostile — responses within the party as he weighs a presidential bid in 2020.That’s partly because — as Schultz told “60 Minutes” on Sunday — he’s considering running as an independent, a prospect many worry could draw support from the eventual Democratic nominee and hand President Donald Trump another four years in office. Among those urging him not to run as an independent are David Axelrod, the former adviser to President Barack Obama, and Tina Podlodowski, the Democratic Party chairwoman in Washington state, where Schultz has lived for decades.“For somebody who is professing to be a lifelong Democrat, I think to be running as in independent in this particular cycle is not a wise thing to do,” Podlodowski said.Julian Castro, the former secretary of Housing and Urban Development who announced a bid for the Democratic nomination this month, said Sunday on CNN he is concerned that if Schultz did run an independent campaign “it would provide Donald Trump with his best hope of getting re-elected.”The 65-year-old Seattle billionaire launches a tour Monday to promote his latest book, “From the Ground Up: A Journey to Reimagine the Promise of America.” He has stops this week in New York; Tempe, Arizona; Seattle; and San Francisco — but no dates listed for the early voting states of Iowa or New Hampshire.He’s been mentioned as a potential candidate many times before, and he’s done little to quell speculation about his presidential ambitions since saying when he retired from Starbucks last June that his future could include “public service.”His office did not respond to an email seeking comment about his intentions. If he were to enter the race he would be the most high-profile candidate without prior elected experience.On paper, Schultz offers a number of qualities that might appeal to voters. He grew up in public housing in Brooklyn, New York, and became the first person in his family to graduate from college.He took over Starbucks when it sold only coffee beans, not cups — it had 11 stores and fewer than 100 employees at the time — and grew it into a global behemoth that now has close to 30,000 stores in 78 countries. Along the way he adopted an ethos of corporate responsibility, making Starbucks one of the earliest U.S. companies to offer stock options and health insurance even to part-time employees, and more recently partnering with Arizona State University to cover tuition for workers who want to earn their bachelor’s degree online.He’s waded into contentious social issues. In 2013, Starbucks asked customers not to bring guns into stores following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, and in 2015, Schultz drew anger and ridicule after he urged baristas to write “Race Together” on cups to spark conversations amid tension over police shootings of black men. Last year, after two black men were arrested in a Philadelphia Starbucks while waiting for a business meeting, Starbucks closed 8,000 U.S. stores early so employees could take anti-bias training.He’s been a longtime Democratic donor, contributing to the campaigns of former President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, and Washington Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, among others. He has also criticized Trump, telling employees that the president was creating “chaos” and hurting business; calling Trump’s tax cuts for corporations unnecessary and reckless; and vowing to hire 10,000 refugees after Trump issued an executive order banning travel from seven mostly Muslim nations.But some of his views might clash with a Democratic Party gearing up to unseat Trump. While some potential nominees, including Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and California Sen. Kamala Harris, have endorsed single-payer health care, heavily taxing the rich or free tuition at public colleges, Schultz has criticized some such proposals as unrealistic and instead emphasized expanding the economy and curbing entitlements to get the national debt under control.“It concerns me that so many voices within the Democratic Party are going so far to the left,” Schultz told CNBC last June. “I ask myself, ‘How are we going to pay for all these things?’ in terms of things like single-payer or people espousing the fact that the government is going to give everyone a job. I don’t think that’s realistic.”Will Stiles worked at Starbucks for 17 years. The company’s culture was laid-back when Schultz arrived, with workers wearing cutoffs and flip-flops, and stores sometimes closing for days at a time so employees could go to a resort, he said. Schultz wore suits.“He’s all, ‘Clean this! Clean that!’ and he’s got shiny shoes,” Stiles said. “We were like, who is this guy?”But Schultz had vision and drive, and he had the workers undergo training in sales and in the product, Stiles said. By offering stock options and benefits, he involved the employees in Starbucks’ success. Stiles said he believes Schultz could similarly inspire Americans to be more invested in the country’s future.Still, Stiles, a staunch Democrat, hopes Schultz doesn’t run as an independent for fear it could help Trump.“It would be a shame if he somehow assisted this guy to become a two-termer,” Stiles said.Gene Johnson, The Associated Press
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California should get insurance to help cover taxpayers’ costs in bad wildfire seasons, a solution that could help stem losses as climate change contributes to more destructive blazes, two state officials said Thursday.The most populous state should follow the lead of Oregon, the World Bank and the Federal Emergency Management Agency after outspending its emergency fund in seven of the last 10 years, California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara and Treasurer Fiona Ma said.California spent nearly $950 million two years ago, about $450 million more than was budgeted and by far the highest annual amount. It spent about $677 million last year, as wildfires again swept through cities, suburbs and more rural areas.California has experienced 11 of the top 20 most destructive fires in its history since 2007.The two statewide officeholders teamed with Democratic state Sen. Bill Dodd of Napa to propose that California lawmakers allow the governor, treasurer and insurance commissioner to negotiate insurance coverage with private providers, instead of self-insuring.“It works just like your home insurance, but for our actual state,” Lara told reporters. If the premiums, terms and coverage aren’t favourable, he said the state can walk away.The gamble paid off for Oregon, he said, where the state paid $61 million in premiums over nearly 40 years but recouped $102 million in insurance payments.FEMA began buying $1 billion in flood insurance in 2017, Lara said, with a payout triggered by $4 billion in losses. The government received the full benefits in 2018.Buying insurance is part of an urgent larger discussion on how California can better respond to wildfires worsening with climate change, Lara said. The state also is considering taking out bonds to pay for wildfire costs to lessen the growing effect on the budget, he said.The state’s private insurance potentially could be used for other disasters like earthquakes and tsunamis, depending how it’s written, Dodd said. He represents the wine country area hit hard by wildfires two years ago.A fire last year became the nation’s deadliest in a century and levelled the town of Paradise, where Gov. Gavin Newsom spent Thursday touting two new laws providing emergency funding to fire-hit local governments.State officials also are seeking ways to encourage private insurance coverage for residents of fire-prone areas who may be uninsurable now, Lara said. That could include unspecified new insurance products, “something that’s unique to California,” the insurance commissioner said.Premiums could drop as the state does more to thin tangled forests and utilities work to keep their equipment from sparking wildfires , Dodd said.The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association said taxpayers should not be put in the position of subsidizing insurance costs for residents who choose to live in dangerous areas.“If it’s not putting taxpayers at risk and it’s a way to spread the risk, it might make sense, but we’d have to see the details,” group president Jon Coupal said.Ma, the treasurer, said in a statement that insurance would make wildfire costs more predictable, help stabilize the budget and protect other spending needs. She missed the news conference while flying back from Washington, D.C., where she had been testifying about allowing banks to service the legal marijuana industry.Don Thompson, The Associated Press
Some of the most active companies traded Tuesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange:Toronto Stock Exchange (15,149.60, down 116.44 points):Encana Corp. (TSX:ECA). Oil and gas. Down 39 cents, or 3.38 per cent, to $11.14 on 10.3 million shares.Cenovus Energy Inc. (TSX:CVE). Oil and gas. Down 84 cents, or 8.17 per cent, to $9.44 on 9.4 million shares. The Calgary-based oil company announced plans to sell between $4 billion and $5 billion of assets, cut up to an additional $1 billion in costs over the next three years and the unexpected retirement of CEO Brian Ferguson.Bombardier Inc. (TSX:BBD.B). Aerospace, rail equipment. Up two cents, or 0.77 per cent, to $2.61 on 9.2 million shares. SpiceJet could buy up to 50 additional Q400 planes from Bombardier under a letter of intent signed at the Paris Air Show. If all the planes in the letter of intent are delivered, the order would be valued at up to US$1.7 billion, before discounts.Sandvine Corp. (TSX:SVC). Telecommunications. Up 20 cents, or 5.24 per cent, to $4.02 on 6.8 million shares.Titan Medical Inc. (TSX:TMD). Healthcare. Down three cents, or 17.14 per cent, to 14.5 cents on 4.5 million shares.Telus Corp. (TSX:T). Communication services. Down 29 cents, or 0.64 per cent, to $45.14 on 3.5 million shares.Companies reporting major news:Air Canada (TSX:AC). Airline. Down two cents, or 0.12 per cent, to $17.24 on 481,577 shares. Air Canada’s plans to develop its own frequent flyer program are one of several digitization initiatives the airline is pursuing to meet the varying needs of its 45 million passengers a year, CEO Calin Rovinescu says. Weeks after Air Canada announced it was ditching Aeroplan, Rovinescu said the decision was part of the company’s broader strategy to become more digital in its operations. That includes looking at working with artificial intelligence specialists to recognize patterns in customer data, and employing augmented reality to change how employees learn and collaborate.Home Capital Group Inc. (TSX:HCG). Financial Services. Up 63 cents, or 4.26 per cent, to $15.42 on 2.05 million shares. The alternative mortgage lender is selling $1.2 billion in mortgage assets to real estate-focused private equity firm KingSett Capital as it looks to stabilize its position following a flood of customer withdrawals from their savings accounts. Home Capital expects to lose approximately $15 million on the deal, which will allow it to reduce its debt, after taking on an emergency $2-billion line of credit with onerous terms from the Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan.
The initial applications for the asset declarations of the President and Prime Minister were filed in February 2017. The President’s Office had refused to disclose the information requested, prompting TISL to appeal to the RTIC. In its historic ruling the RTIC underscored that “the RTI Act enables a powerful check to be exercised on even potential corruption, as this would deter those otherwise enticed to amass public wealth for themselves”. Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) is disappointed to learn of the decision made by the Presidential Secretariat to appeal against the order issued by the Right to Information Commission (RTIC), directing the disclosure of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s assets and liabilities declaration for 2015/2016.TISL’s Executive Director Asoka Obeyesekere said that given the President’s New Year pledge to fight corruption in 2019 and given the allegations cast against the Prime Minister in late 2018, TISL is surprised that the President’s Office has sought to block access to the Prime Minister’s Asset Declaration. “Having credible self-declared information in the hands of the public is an essential ingredient presently missing in the fight against corruption,” he said. In its statement following the Commission’s ruling, TISL recognized the right of the Presidential Secretariat to appeal the RTIC’s order. TISL also highlighted the fact that such a challenge would undermine the President’s stated commitment to transparency and accountability, and the government’s commitment to ensure the public’s right to access asset declarations.Obeyesekere added, “as many members of parliament have repeatedly expressed a willingness to unilaterally publish their asset declarations, TISL calls on all elected representatives to proactively disclose their asset declarations to foster a culture of accountability and open government”. (Colombo Gazette)
A 72-year old Port Colborne man is facing several serious charges.He’s been arrested and charged with committing indecent acts in public. Police had been receiving complaints that a man was exposing himself on the running track inside the Vale Health and Wellness Centre.They caught him on videotape. Charged is 72-year old Lewis Kerton of Port Colborne. Anyone with any information on these incidents is asked to call police.00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09
Ohio State junior Taylor Harrison preforms on balance beam in St. John Arena on Feb. 18 with her teammates watching from the side. Credit: Megan Russell | Lantern reporterAfter closely trailing the Mountaineers before entering the final rotation, the Ohio State women’s gymnastics team sealed a victory with strong performances on floor against West Virginia on Saturday.The Buckeyes posted a 49.200 on floor to tally a final score of 196.075-195.800 over West Virginia. “Our last three kids on floor are dynamite, and so I knew they were going to have to go a 9.800 or better to win the meet,” OSU coach Carey Fagan said. “You could tell — once that momentum started building deeper in our lineup — it was going to be really hard for West Virginia to stay with us.”In the first rotation on vault, junior Alexis Mattern scored a team-high 9.900 to take first overall in the event. Mattern also posted her second 9.900 of the night on floor.“This is actually the first time I’ve ever done that in my career,” Mattern said. “I may not have had the highest overall scores I’ve ever had, but consistency wise, it was one of my more consistent nights, so I’m happy with it.” In the second rotation on the uneven bars, Mattern also scored a career-high of 9.875 to take first in the event while sophomore Kaitlyn Hofland posted a 9.850 to finish in second. Senior Tenille Funches also earned a season-high of 9.825 on uneven bars.Olivia Aepli had two false starts before completing her routine on bars for the team-low of 8.750.“Olivia normally goes 9.900 on bars, and that’s the type of performance we need,” Fagan said. “Not everybody on the team has 9.900 potential, but the ones that do have that 9.900 potential, they have to come through. So little things like that can be frustrating.” At the midpoint of the meet, OSU led the Mountaineers by a meager .025.On balance beam, junior Stefanie Merkle started the lineup for OSU, posting a 9.775 to tie for third in the event with freshman Amanda Huang. Junior Taylor Harrison took first in the event with a strong score for the team of 9.875 and to tie her season-high.“Normally, going in, being last on beam — even when somebody falls or the scores are low — I try not to let that mess with my head,” Harrison said. “I just know that when I get up there, I do what I do every single day in the gym. So today, going into that routine, I felt very confident.”Heading into the final rotation, the Buckeyes trailed West Virginia 146.875-146.775.The final three performers for the floor event propelled the OSU team to set them up for the win. Those included Harrison who posted a career-high of 9.875 to take third in the event behind Mattern’s 9.900, while Merkle scored a close 9.850 behind Harrison. “I think the highlight for me was probably the last three floor routines because they knew and they could feel that the meet was on the line,” Fagan said. “And so, for them to come out and really hit really solid routines, I think it will build their confidence, and it builds the team’s confidence too.”Mattern placed first in the all-around with a 39.375.
Last week I wrote “Lionel Messi Is Impossible,” an article that explored how play-by-play data sheds light on the Argentina forward’s skills, style and value (spoiler: he’s good). Many readers asked if I could do a similar analysis comparing Messi with all-time greats, particularly Argentine legend Diego Maradona (who played on the winning 1986 World Cup side) and Brazilian great Pele (who helped his country win the Cup in 1958, 1962 and 1970).Ask and you shall receive. Opta, the soccer analytics company, has compiled touch-by-touch data from World Cups going back to 1966, meaning all of Maradona’s World Cup tournaments and two of Pele’s have been logged. This gives us 21 Maradona and eight Pele games to analyze — certainly a small sample, but informative nonetheless.I’ll note before I begin that I’m not usually a fan of cross-era comparisons. Today’s athletes aren’t playing the same game as yesterday’s. Strategies, styles and even rules change dramatically from decade to decade, and in most sports other than horse racing, modern athletes would crush historical greats. It’s easy to think that the dominant players of the past would be just as effective as their modern counterparts with current training, conditioning, etc. — but I’m not buying it. Historical greats frequently dominated a smaller pool of players or excelled in an immature game. And there’s no guarantee that their previous success means they would respond well to modern training techniques or would fit into the modern game.1In other words, the correlation between a player’s skill relative to a previous era and the ability to port those skills into the modern era isn’t necessarily very strong.But cross-era comparisons can still be worthwhile when the circumstances are right. Those circumstances, from most to least useful:When the modern player is much more dominant than the historical player: That means the modern player is almost certainly better.When the modern player is a bit more dominant than the historical player: That means the modern player is probably better.When the historical player is much more dominant than the modern player: That means there’s some the chance the historical player was better.When the historical player is a little more dominant than the modern player: That’s not helpful in the slightest.The Messi vs. Maradona debate falls somewhere between Nos. 1 and 2. But Messi vs. Pele is somewhere between No. 3 and No. 4. Although we have only eight games in the data set, Pele’s fine-grained statistics over this sample are remarkable. And unlike Maradona, whose career production doesn’t quite match Messi’s (e.g., Maradona had 346 combined club and international goals in 679 career appearances, while Messi already has 407 goals in 548 appearances), Pele’s macro-level stats are formidable. While record-keeping wasn’t as good in the 1950s and ’60s, and there were all kinds of odd unofficial matches, Pele had at least 757 goals in 812 “official” matches — a higher goal-to-appearance ratio than Messi overall — and his peak seasons were even better. For example, in 1961 Pele scored 62 goals in 38 appearances (1.63 goals per appearance!) for Santos FC, the Brazilian club team where he spent most of his playing career.To make the fairest possible comparisons, I’ve used two sets of Messi games to isolate his World Cup play from his high-level club play. “Messi-A” is all of Messi’s games in the Opta data set for Argentina (get it? “A” is for Argentina) either in World Cup or World Cup qualifying play (so no international friendlies or the like), going back to 2006.2Note that 2014 alone would be considerably better than average for Messi-A, but we’re comparing all available data rather than cherry-picking each player’s best seasons. “Messi-B” is all of Messi’s games since the 2010-11 season that Opta covers for Barcelona (“B” is for …) in UEFA Champions League games only — the highest level of competition he faced in club play. Here’s the top-line breakdown:On a game-by-game level, Pele leads Messi and Maradona in goal production by significant margins. Even Messi’s UEFA numbers, while stellar, don’t match Pele’s.3It’s perhaps worth mentioning that Messi averaged a considerably higher 1.59 goals plus assists per game for Barcelona in La Liga games, though the significance of those games is less certain because of the extreme imbalance between the league’s top teams and the rest. Pele’s five goals in eight games are a bit below what we would expect given what we know about his goal-scoring in other contexts (for example, Pele scored seven goals in his five previous World Cup games). And, importantly, Pele’s assist rate gives us a rare glimpse into that aspect of his game. If he was nearly as good at distributing the ball over his career as he was during these two World Cups, his value may have been even greater than we previously thought.But let’s zoom in a bit closer, going from the game-by-game data to the play-by-play data. First, let’s look at our “four” players’ shooting. The Opta data set has x-y coordinates for each shot, which means we can see the shot charts for all of them.4More detailed shot charts are also possible with this data.First is Messi-A, playing with Argentina in all World Cup or World Cup qualifying matches. (Note that this includes three goals from penalty kicks.) Second is Messi-B, playing in UEFA Champions League games for Barcelona:The Barcelona chart includes seven goals from penalty kicks. The main thing that sticks out is that compared to Messi-A, Messi-B takes fewer shots from distance and has been less successful with them.Now here are Maradona’s shots:Maradona was abysmal from distance! But he made a very high percentage of shots inside the box; none of these was a penalty.Finally, here’s Pele:Pele loved to launch it from long-range, and appears to have done so pretty well. However, I’d note that both of these goals were on direct free kicks, meaning neither he nor Maradona scored from outside the box on regular “open” plays in this data (something that is kind of Messi’s specialty).Here’s how those charts break down in numbers (excluding penalty shots):Messi-B wins this competition overall, though largely because of Pele’s affection for long attempts. Pele hit a higher percentage both inside the box and outside it, but ended up with a lower shooting percentage because he took over two-thirds of his shots from distance.5Note that Messi’s shooting for both Argentina and for Barca in UEFA matches trails his La Liga efficiency considerably. In regular league games he has made 9.9 percent of shots outside the penalty area and 25.7 percent inside it, for 20.2 percent overall (and even higher if you exclude free kicks, which are a relatively low percentage shots for him).Now let’s turn to dribbling skills. Of the play-by-play stats I used in my Messi study, one of my favorites was the “take on” or “1v1” stat, where we found that Messi takes on defenders one on one more than any forward tracked in our data set, and with a higher success rate. So, naturally, this is one of the first things I looked up in the historical data:Maradona took on defenders even more zestfully than Messi, and was slightly more successful in doing so. Pele, however, was almost as successful, though he made far fewer attempts per game. I should note, though, that taking on defenders was both more common and more likely to be successful in Pele’s and Maradona’s eras, so this may be a bit of an historical anomaly. In UEFA matches since 2010, teams had an average of about 18 “take on” attempts per game — succeeding 44.8 percent of the time. That’s less than the 21 or so per game by World Cup teams in the Pele and Maradona years; those players succeeded 49.4 percent of the time. Messi appears to be the greater outlier (especially if you consider La Liga, where he succeeds in one-on-one attempts 55.3 percent of the time, while the typical success rate is only 35.6 percent). My main inference from all of this is that defenses are probably tougher these days, which perhaps should affect how we interpret the other comparisons as well.Another area where Messi seems to have the edge is in passing accuracy and success rates. For this I’ll look at each player’s overall pass completion percentage and the “success” rate of his passes (that is, how often the pass leads to a “successful” play by the receiving player, such as a shot, or another pass):Both Messis attempt more passes than Maradona or Pele did, and both have higher completion percentages and success rates, though Pele’s stats look remarkably similar to Messi-A’s.That final stat, “touches with ‘successful’ pass,” basically tells us how often the player successfully extends his team’s possessions. But how do things go down when he uses the possession himself?To find that out, I slightly tweaked the “Possessions Used” stat I created in my previous article. First, to avoid any skew, I limited what qualifies as a touch to regular, open (non-set-piece) plays only. Each time a player did something that ended a possession, I logged one of three different outcomes: a lost ball (when a player was dispossessed, turned the ball over, failed in a one-on-one attempt, or passed to someone who lost the ball before managing to get off a shot or pass); a missed shot or chance (either the player missed a shot, or the player whom he set up to take a shot missed); or a goal (whether by the player’s own shot or an assist). As before, possession-extending events like successful one-on-ones don’t count themselves, though they may affect the relative likelihood of each outcome (e.g., successfully taking on a defender would presumably be reflected by scoring or assisting more goals). And passes that are successful but don’t immediately lead to shots don’t count as possessions at all. Our players compare like so:Of these “four” players, Pele produced the most goals (through shots and assists) per possession, with Messi-B slightly behind, Messi-A a little further back, and Maradona coming in a respectable fourth. Pele was also much more likely to take or create a shot attempt that missed than to lose possession of the ball any other way, which likely had secondary advantages (as missed shots often lead to rebound attempts, corner kicks, etc).Let’s recap the ways that Pele’s numbers stack up to Messi’s:Pele leads in rates of goals plus assists, whether by game or by possessions (as measured by Possession Used).A higher percentage of Pele’s Possessions Used came from missed shots rather than lost balls.Pele took on fewer defenders, but was similarly successful (though Messi is a bigger outlier for his era).Pele’s passing stats (both completion rate and success rate) are a little bit behind Messi’s, but not much.Although Pele’s overall shooting percentage is similar to Messi-A’s and a little behind Messi-B’s, this is largely a result of Pele taking almost twice as many shots from long range.Over this sample, Pele shot about as well as Messi from long range and considerably better from short range.I don’t mean to suggest that this proves Pele was better than Messi: In addition to the historical comparison issues I mentioned, we prefer not to draw conclusions from just eight games of data.But sample size isn’t a death knell in Bayesian analysis. While the 21 Maradona games are also a relatively small sample, that sample is probably large enough for us to conclude that Messi is likely the better player (though not necessarily as valuable to Argentina writ large) for two reasons: First, Messi comes out ahead of Maradona fairly consistently and by fairly good margins, and second, the data conforms with what we know of their broader careers, and what we would assume based on Messi playing in a stronger era.6Which is to say, in Bayesian terms, the data confirms our priors.But with Pele, we have essentially the opposite scenario. As amazing as Messi’s numbers are — from the career level down to the touch-by-touch level — Pele essentially matches or exceeds them stride for stride. So the thing those eight games confirm is the lack of a conclusive gap between Messi and Pele. In other words, we’ve precluded a simple answer to the Messi/Pele question: If Messi were a substantially more dominant player (even for his era), it would be very unlikely that we’d see results like these.I hope more Pele data emerges, so that we can get a better sense of how dominant he really was, and whether these eight World Cup games were consistent with his overall play (we should expect some regression to the mean just because they’re so good to begin with). But Messi has an opportunity to improve his standing: He’ll be adding more data to his sample Wednesday afternoon, and for many years to come.
Tecpro Australia will unveil innovative new dust suppression products for the mining industry on Stand R176 during AIMEX – Asia-Pacific’s mining exhibition 2011, to be held at Sydney Olympic Park, Homebush, from September 6-9. On show for the first time in Australia will be the Elefante and Giraffa fog makers from Italian company Idrotech. They are ideal for suppressing dust which is being generated a long distance away and/or is spread over a large area.The 2.4 m high Elefante uses a powerful fan to shoot billions of small water droplets into the air and projects them a distance of up to 60 m. The direction of the plume of mist can be fixed to go in a certain direction or canbe set to automatically rotate backwards and forwards through an arc of 340o. The fan diameter is 660 mm. The doplets are produced by 156 misting nozzles mounted in three spray rings on the exit from the fan, and the nozzles can be sized to suit the dust suppression/water requirements of a particular application.The smaller Giraffa offers the same advantages and is great for suppressing dust or neutralszing odours on mine sites and other open spaces, or inside large buildings, Graeme Cooper of Tecpro said. Depending on the model, the Giraffa can reach a maximum height of 5 m and can project a plume of spray up to 25 m. It has a rotation angle of 340o with an elevation range of -20o to +45o, and uses 64 nozzles mounted in two spray rings to produce the mist. The fan diameter is 410 mm.“Using the Idrotech Fog makers makes it simpler to comply with various environmental requirements as, by suppressing fugitive airborne dust over a large area, they minimise the dispersion of dust to neighbouring areas, thereby reducing dust pollution.”Two Idrotech product specialists from Europe, Tommaso Gazzignato and Marco Ferrarese, will be on the Tecpro stand at AIMEX. Both are highly experienced with Idrotech’s high-pressure dust suppression products, including the Elefante and Giraffa fog makers and will be ready to discuss visitors’ dust suppression problems. Tecpro will also use AIMEX to highlight:The Idrotech range of high pressure dust suppression misting nozzles and pumps which are suitable for mounting around crushers and conveyor transfer points where minimum water volume is to be used to suppress fugitive dustA lightweight washdown gun – light at 440 gm but heavy duty and ergonomic – for all types of cleaning tasks. Has a ½” BSP Swivel inletA red washdown gun – red rather than conventional blue, with the colour acting as a visual warning for workers that a particular hose is carrying hot water. Has a ½” BSP Swivel inletThe Ramex range of heavy duty, stainless steel, spring retracting hose reelsThe SIME range of stockpile sprinklers, built to handle the high pressures (>150psi) commonly found in the mining industry.Tecpro will also feature a unique new dust suppression nozzle assembly at the exhibition. The nozzle assembly, which was scheduled to be launched just before AIMEX, has been developed by Tecpro over a 21/2 year period, with the support of the CSIRO Department of Mining, the Australian Coal Association, and the University of Wollongong.
Working on a major motion picture? Looking to save a few won? Take a cue from South Korean director Park Chan-Wook–you may have the tools in your back pocket. The filmmaker has wrapped the first-ever major motion picture shot entirely on an iPhone. Night Fishing cost 150 million won ($133,000). There were 80 people involved in the filming. The whole thing took 10 days. “New technology always offers wonders and useful features,” the director told the press, during the premier of the 30 minute film. “Testing them is part of the amusement.”The film centers around the meeting of a fisherman and a lady shaman. AFP describes the film as “surreal.” “New technology always offers wonders and useful features. Testing them is part of the amusement.”The veteran director, who was behind such films as Oldboy and Thirst, described the whole thing as a different kind of challenge. “It was a new experience compared with making a meticulously planned movie,” he explained Even a casual and spontaneous shot delivered a surprise.”
Image: Shutterstock/Radu Bercan 12,718 Views Short URL By Ceimin Burke Apr 2nd 2019, 6:00 AM Drinking alcohol during teenage years linked with stunted brain growth Many teens start drinking just as their brains begin to undergo important developments. https://jrnl.ie/4571452 Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article This is the age range when the brain is being fine-tuned to fit adult responsibilities. The question is, does alcohol exposure during this age range alter the lifetime learning ability of individuals?The scientists hope their data will spark further research into how brains develop during adolescence and whether drinking during this time makes a person more susceptible to alcohol issues later in life. Image: Shutterstock/Radu Bercan DRINKING DURING ADOLESCENCE and early adulthood can slow down brain development, according to researchers who studied alcohol’s effects on monkeys.The brain undergoes crucial developments as we transition from adolescence to adulthood, right as many people start drinking for the first time.The authors of fresh research published in the journal eNeuro tried to determine what alcohol does to brains of teens by examining its effects on 71 rhesus macaque monkeys who were given unrestricted access to booze.The paper found that heavy alcohol use reduced the rate of brain growth by an alarming amount, 0.25 millilitres per year for every gram of alcohol consumed per kilogram of body weight to be exact. This is roughly equivalent to four beers per day.The strictly controlled experiment saw the scientists precisely measure the monkeys drinking and diet as well as their daily activities. This ruled out other factors that have undermined similar studies involving people.“Human studies are based on self-reporting of underage drinkers,” one of the study’s authors, Christopher Kroenke, Ph.D., explained. “Our measures pinpoint alcohol drinking with the impaired brain growth.” Figures from Alcohol Action Ireland show that 64% of 13 to 17 years olds have tried alcohol and nearly half of those go drinking every month.Commenting on the potential harm of teenage drinking the study’s lead author, Dr Tatiana Shnitko, said: Share185 Tweet Email9 Tuesday 2 Apr 2019, 6:00 AM 19 Comments
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram It was only a day before Easter when a young Greek migrant family in Melbourne lost their mother and wife 34-year-old Athanasia Mazarakidou. But what has followed has been an outpouring of support from not only the Oakleigh Greek community but the community as a whole. “We were overwhelmed with the amount of money raised, and it’s not just Oakleigh, I’ve been getting calls from all over from people,” Angelo Sardellis, president of the Greek Orthodox Community of Oakleigh and Districts Incorporated tells Neos Kosmos.Athanasia and her family, husband Alexandros and young daughters Kalliope and Theodora arrived in Melbourne about 15 months ago and have struggled since coming here. But their troubles have been compounded by this awful tragedy. “We as a community – and together with our church – embraced to support them the best way possible,” says Mr Sardellis. “The community, and our priest banded together with the auxiliary bodies, association and our schools, to transfer the family to one of our units next to our church with subsided rental. “The funeral costs were covered and raised by the community and the parishioners, and we are now raising funds for the children’s education,” says Mr Sardellis, who says there is a bank account raising funds for the children. “It’s hard enough when people migrate to Australia, but then you hear of a young family struggling and then find out the young mother passed away leaving two young children with no mother – the moment I heard that I had to do something to help,” says John Rerakis, director, Philhellene restaurant in Melbourne’s Moonee Ponds. He was so taken aback by the story and said that he felt he “had to do something”. He’s organised a fundraiser dinner with all proceeds raised on the night going directly the family. The event will be held at Philhellene Provincial Greek Restaurant, 551-553 Mount Alexander Road, Moonee Ponds, on Thursday 15 May at 7.00 pm for $70 a head. “I see how many Greek kids come through our doors and ask for help and I see how hard it is first hand, and I think as a community we need to do more to help,” says Mr Rerakis. If you would like to donate to the family contact Angelo Sardellis on 0415 533 896 or if you would to attend the fundraising dinner contact Philhellene on (03) 9370 3303.
Décodeurs TNT : les constructeurs démentent les possibles dysfonctionnementsFrance – Suite à la révélation de possibles problèmes techniques concernant les décodeurs TNT, les constructeurs ont tenu à démentir ces informations. Ces derniers affirment que leurs produits ne sont pas obsolètes.Cette semaine, Que Choisir avait révélé qu’entre 300.000 et 500.000 décodeurs pouvaient cesser de fonctionner suite à une actualisation des chaînes menée au printemps, actualisation nécessaire pour le passage à la télévision numérique. Chez les constructeurs, c’est la levée de boucliers : “Je n’ai jamais vu un décodeur, même chez les marques concurrentes qui, pour une quelconque raison, se met à ne plus recevoir certaines chaînes. Le pire qui puisse arriver, c’est que les chaînes ne soient plus accessibles au bon numéro”, expliquait ainsi un responsable de Metronic à nos confrères du site 01.net. Simavelec, entreprise regroupant des marques comme Panasonic, LG, Loewe, Philips, Samsung ou Sony, emboîte le pas : “Sur toutes les marques, qu’il s’agisse de modèles anciens ou récents, il n’y aura aucun problème. Cela fait longtemps que l’on a vérifié leur compatibilité.”Le 26 février 2010 à 12:39 • Emmanuel Perrin
While this summer’s wildfire season has so far been quiet in Alaska, there are areas of the state that have been sunny, warm, and are drying. In south central Alaska, recent warm days and temperatures on the holiday forecast to be in the 80s will dry the surface fuels and deeper layers of forested lands leaving them very susceptible to fire starts. Howie Kent with the Division of Forestry: “Currently our fire danger is high to to very high going into the weekend with these nicer temperatures.” Kent: “As people get out and they want to do some camping, and want to have a campfire remember to keep your campfire small in case the winds pick up unexpectedly try and keep your fire under control.” Also, be sure to adhere to the Alaska Division of Forestry’s burn permit guidelines if you plan to do any kind of burning. Call your local Forestry office or check online at https://dnr.alaska.gov/burn to make sure there are no burn suspensions in effect where you live. Summer holidays traditionally result in an increase in traffic in the woods, on rivers and roads as people head out to go boating, camping, fishing, hiking, off-road riding, and other recreational activities. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享As Alaska residents and visitors prepare to head outside for the warm weekend, the state’s wildland fire officials would like to remind the public to be extremely cautious with any activity that could ignite a wildfire.
WILMINGTON, MA — Town Health Director Shelly Newhouse provided the Wilmington Board of Selectmen with an update on the steps her department is taking to prepare residents and retail establishments for the town’s upcoming plastic bag ban.“You’ll recall at the 2018 Annual Town Meeting, we had a petitioned article pass that was seeking to ban certain types of plastic bags [at retail, food and grocery establishments in Wilmington] due to environmental concerns,” Town Manager Jeff Hull told Selectmen. “‘[Through the Health Department’s efforts], we expect that establishments will be well aware of this new change, which takes effect on May 5, 2019.”“Notification to retailers have already been happening,” announced Hull. All retail food establishments will be getting a notice in their renewal application form reminding them of the plastic bag ban. Postcard mailings conveying the same information will go out to other businesses in Town that would use plastic bags.“We’re One Wilmington and the Wilmington Rotary Club are providing reusable bags that will be made available to residents,” added Hull.Reminders via the Town Topics newsletter, town newspapers, and electronic media will be published as May 5 draws closer.“Most retailers know this is coming as I have already been talking to them,” wrote Newhouse. “I expect it to be a smooth transition.”Interestingly, Newhouse noted that she expects some Wilmington retailers will continue to offer plastic bags to customers.“You will still see plastic bags, as many retailers will be opting to go with the larger 2.5ml thickness, which our bylaws allow,” wrote Newhouse. 2.5ml bags are not considered “single use” bags due to their thickness as they can technically be reused.Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedTOWN MEETING NEWS: Voters Approve Plastic Bag Ban At Grocery & Retail Stores In WilmingtonIn “Government”SELECTMEN NEWS: Town Discusses Rollout Of Plastic Bag BanIn “Government”SELECTMEN NEWS: Big Issues To Be Discussed At Tonight’s Meeting (September 24)In “Government”
Jaguar 2019 Jaguar XE SV Project 8 review: The lovable lunatic Autonomous Vehicles Electric Cars 2018 Jaguar XF Sportbrake: Capability and hustle combine Share your voice 6:08 Jaguar’s I-Pace gets the Waymo treatment 2019 Jaguar F-Pace SVR first drive: A magnificent beast, indeed Post a comment Enlarge ImageIt’s been over a year since Waymo and Jaguar debuted the self-driving I-Pace, but now they’re testing in public. Mike Cutler/MHCPhotography We’ve known about Waymo’s autonomous Jaguar I-Paces for a while now. The company started talking about them way back in March of 2018 and got its first three kitted-out kitties in July of last year.Things have been relatively quiet with the Waymo Jags since then, but TechCrunch reported on Monday that these self-driving Jaguars had been seen testing on public roads in and around Mountain View, California aka the home of Waymo and its parent company Alphabet.Unlike the company’s Chrysler Pacifica vans currently operating in Arizona, the I-Paces are still sporting their human safety drivers during their initial public testing. The company has contracted to order 20,000 I-Paces from Jaguar and will start rolling them into its fleet beginning in 2020.Waymo is likely testing its next generation of hardware in these I-Pace models, and that would explain the fact that they appear to be testing in manual mode, with human drivers behind the wheel.Waymo opted not to comment further on future plans for testing the I-Pace models. Tags 0 38 Photos A ride on public streets in Waymo One Waymo Jaguar More From Roadshow Now playing: Watch this:
Sea Otters. (U.S. Fish & Wildlife photo)The Alaska Senate passed a resolution Wednesday calling on the federal government to take steps to increase the harvest of sea otters in Southeast Alaska.Listen nowSenate Joint Resolution 13 is sponsored by Sitka Republican senator Bert Stedman.It asks the federal government to transfer management responsibility to the state government or National Marine Fisheries Service, instead of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.It also urges federal agencies to work with the state and other interest groups to produce a management plan for otters, recognizing their impact on crab, clams, urchins and other sea creatures.Stedman was glad Wednesday to see his resolution pass in the Senate.“I think it’s reflected across the state that we’re getting impacted on the coast with sea otters, in particular Southeast but even beyond that and other members of the Senate want to help try to get some balance in the system, which we don’t seem to have right now,” Stedman said.Otters are a protected species under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.Only coastal Alaska Natives are allowed to hunt the animals and sell products made from their pelts that are “significantly altered.”The resolution asks for changes to the federal law to expand the definition for Alaska Natives to qualify to hunt otters and relax restrictions on sale and export of their pelts.The federal law already permits transfer of management to states, but only under certain conditions.Stedman hopes the federal government takes notice of the state resolution and takes steps to change the law.“And particularly working on the definition of significantly altered and allow folks to sell and trade full hides that are cured or tanned, and also relax some of the enforcement dealing with other modifications that are required,” Stedman said. “Otherwise we’re gonna continue to see either a stagnant or further decline in harvest rates (of otters).”Commercial fishing organizations and the communities of Petersburg and Wrangell support changes to the law because of otter predation on commercially caught species.Others oppose state involvement in the management of otters. The resolution has drawn opposition from the Organized Village of Kake along with the Alaska Sea Otter and Stellar Sea Lion Commission, a statewide group formed to protect traditional uses of those animals by Alaska Natives.Otters in Southeast were hunted to near extinction by the fur trade but reintroduced by the state in the 1960s.A population of 400 animals moved to the Southeast Panhandle has grown to number more than 25,000.Eleven other senators signed on with Stedman to sponsor an amended version of the resolution. It passed the Senate by a 20-0 vote. It goes on to the House next for consideration.