Jack Goes Confidential: Amy Schumer Unfiltered In ‘SNATCHED’

When did so-called chick flick comedies take a sharp turn to the left with heavy doses of sex—and raunchy language?

To my way of thinking it happened six years ago.

BRIDESMAIDS set the stage when Melissa McCarthy and gang potty-mouthed their ways across the screen to huge box office success.

And as time passed things have gotten even raunchier.

Female audiences seem to no longer be offended by the wildest acts or vilest language as long as women – not men – are doing the talking.

Which brings us to SNATCHED, Amy Schumer’s second movie since her very successful debut with TRAINWRECK two years ago.

And while the plotline here is extremely predictable, its execution pushes the envelope in several scenes.

The buddy-adventure comedy has Schumer’s boyfriend dumping her on the eve of a great vacation trip to Ecuador.

Making matters worse, the trip was purchased as a non-refundable package.

Now what? Continue reading

Posted in Jack Poessiger | 4 Comments

Lefsetz: The Comey Conundrum

My inbox went quiet…

Are we in a constitutional crisis? Is it the end of the world as we know it?  Or is it business as usual?

I DON’T KNOW!

The internet is de rigueur. Everybody’s got a smartphone. Technologically we’re up to date, but emotionally we haven’t digested the change.

Twenty-odd years ago we would have turned on the TV and been told what was right, by esteemed personages we believed more intelligent and more informed than ourselves.

But now we know most of the talking heads are overpaid wankers and the experts…EVERYBODY’S AN EXPERT NOW! My opinion is as good as theirs, so is yours.

And frighteningly, not a single so-called expert got it right last November.

So is this just an issue of two camps, each in their own silo?

It certainly isn’t about fake news. That’s a canard employed by those who are living in the last century. People have the power of discernment…WHEN THEY WANT TO! However they like reading stories that reinforce their viewpoint. But where did they get said viewpoint to begin with?

There’s been all this talk of the Saturday Night Massacre. And yes, President Nixon had just been reelected, but we’d come off the 1960s, an era of tumult and everything appeared to be up for grabs.

Today however our heroes are Ivy League dropouts who run the internet and billionaires – sometimes the same people. We’ve got so many channels we can afford to cut the cord. The wall fell and communism ended and it was supposed to be clear sailing.

Only it isn’t.

So you flip the channels and hear diametrically opposed views. And this is one crisis wherein the written word does not suffice. We want talking heads. We want live. We want video. We don’t want to read. We’re living it in real time, EXPLAIN IT TO US!

But what they’re not explaining is how we got here.

I’m not talking the 109 days since President Trump took office, but the changes in our country that allowed him to become president.

One thing’s for sure; we’ve got no idea what the temperature of the country will be until there’s another election. Hell, look at France. The good guy won, but the polls were off significantly – it was never that close.

And is this about math? With the Republicans in power, so it’s business as usual?

Is this about carpetbaggers or ineptitude? Continue reading

Posted in Bob Lefsetz | 29 Comments

Hearne: Feeling Bored, Like Butter on a Pancake? Visit Kansas

Don’t look now but the Great State of Kansas is on a trajectory to nail the distinction of being most boring state in the nation…

While that may not exactly be a shocker to people from places like New York, LA, Chicago or Hawaii, it’s not exactly a spirit lifter for folks from Lawrence, Topeka or Wichita.

Because not only did Kansas not fare well in WalletHub’s recent Most Fun States in America 2017, it staggered into a lowly 43rd place behind New Jersey.

Yep, beat out by New Jersey for crying out loud.

The twin categories that spelled doom for the Jayhawks:

Entertainment and recreation and nightlife.

Which unfortunately makes perfect sense.

Anybody ever confuse Kansas with a vacation destination?

Hey, but don’t take WalletHub’s word for it!

A few years back Kansas made Gawker’s Worst 50 States.

“The geographic center of the U.S. is a flatland with few surprises,” Gawker sniped.

Kansas good points were few and far between; as in two.

KU – “one of the best college towns” and K-State – “apparently a good place to retire young.”

Duly noted.

Now Gawker’s bad points. Continue reading

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Lefsetz: The Almightiness of Facebook

When was the last time you changed your word processor?

Anybody remember arguing over WordPerfect and WordStar? Maybe you were a fan of the Mac-only WriteNow. But now you just use Word, Apple’s Pages or some notes app. Maybe something built-in – Google Docs, something that is free.

The point being we saw decades of constant evolution, tumult, change, and then it all stopped. Now maybe word processors will be superseded, by collaborative tools like Slack, but you give not a thought to your word processor of choice, assuming you pay at all.

That’s another thing that’s gone by the wayside.

Used to be you needed not only a word processor, but a standalone spell-checker. Then spell-checking and all the rest of the add-ons were baked into the behemoth word processing programs and the little companies disappeared.

Hell, even the little mobile app companies have disappeared. Hell, software in general, the kind you buy, is a moribund field.

Change happens. Continue reading

Posted in Bob Lefsetz | 7 Comments

Glazer: ‘King of Sting’ Preps for Liftoff

I’m baaaack….

King of Sting director David Jung put some hard work into a killer trailer for the movie project of. my book.

Jung and I wrote a new script for the movie and this is his take on how the it should be promoted via a one minute sizzle of what its about and how it will look.

It’s a fairly new concept in taking a picture to its final level before filming and hiring actors.

Jung has put his agency APA and the film company Mayhem with its partners on board to package the film with top actors to play the lead roles of be and my former partner Don Woodbeck as well as our love interests.

The trailer will be given to actors and their managers and agents so they can quickly see what the picture’s about and how exciting the story and movie will be when filmed.

Mayhem specializes in true stories, including movies like ‘Invincible’ ‘Game Plan’ and ‘Secretariat.’

All of which did well.We signed with Mayhem two years ago and I flew to LA a year ago to work with him on the script and complete the project. The last thing to do is hire the stars. Continue reading

Posted in Craig_Glazer | 29 Comments

Jack Goes Confidential: Marvel’s ‘Guardians’ to Rule Box Office

It’s that time again…

The season of change from everyday movies to studio tentpoles.

(Translation: Hollywood’s summer movie season is upon us!)

For the past several years that high velocity popcorn timeframe has been ushered in by the latest Marvel Studios offerings including THE AVENGERS, IRON MAN 3 and AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON.

Last year’s summer season kicked off exactly one year ago with CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR—and we all remember the kind of blockbuster that one turned out to be.

So why mess with success?

Marvel once again jump-starts the season this weekend by unleashing GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY—VOLUME 2.

And believe it or not this sequel ranks right up there with the 2014 original.

The entire gang is back with Chris Pratt as Peter Quill again leading his rag-tag band of alien misfits on their reward seeking mission and intergalactic battles while getting ever closer to learning who his father is.

Enter Kurt Russell as Ego, an eccentric traveler who has created a planet derived from his DNA and, and………. Continue reading

Posted in Jack Poessiger, Jack_Poessiger | Tagged | 1 Comment

Lefsetz: 10th Anniversary iPhone 8

Tech is about utility, not fashion…

And there’s no breakthrough coming, other than a curved screen.

You needed a new phone when they went from 3G to LTE.

You needed a new phone when they increased the screen size.

You no longer need a new phone, especially since the carriers have stopped subsidizing the purchase, now that the true cost is evident.

People drive their cars ever-longer, but analysts believe consumers are all gonna fork over a thousand bucks for a fashion statement?

Not gonna happen.

Otherwise, 3-D TV would have been a juggernaut and you’d be throwing away your present flat screen for one with 4k.

Not that Apple isn’t powerful.

While the fanboys cheered on ever more expensive and less unique products, all power was consolidated in the four horsemen – Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook.

That’s the story here, not the iPhone.

With a beachhead in tech you can get ever-bigger. Hell, Facebook bought Instagram, never mind WhatsApp, and it looks like Snapchat is gonna struggle. Maybe not, but going it alone is nearly impossible these days, because of deep pockets and network effects. Continue reading

Posted in Bob Lefsetz | Tagged | 7 Comments

Glazer: Have This Year’s Royals Given Up?

Our Kansas City Royals are baseballs worst team!

With a record of 7-16, they’re in last place with worst record in the majors.

Worse yet, even if they went 20-10 over the next month they would only be maybe .500. And going 20-10 is highly unlikely right now.

The team can’t hit at all with a league low .210 team batting average. The Royals top hitter, Lorenzo Cain is batting just .272.

AND THAT’S OUR BEST HITTER!

Core stars like Eric Hosmer is loping along at just .225 with only one home run. Alex Gordon is batting .184, and so on.

It’s ugly.

WHY?

The answer is simple.

There’s no energy and the players are playing for their future homes and contracts, not to be in KC anymore. There’s just a general lack of interest as a group.

These were the same young excited guys in 2014, and committed players in 2015 that won it all.

Unfortunately it all started falling apart last year with a .500 team and now it’s much worse.  Continue reading

Posted in Craig_Glazer | 27 Comments

Hearne: Fun & Games @ 18th and Grand Aboard Sinking Ship

Priorities, priorities…

In a testament to how out of it daily newspapers like the Kansas City Star have become, after making huge cuts recently – Thursday’s venerable Preview section and almost all of FYI – the one thing still standing:

A full page and a half of black and white cartoons.

Yep, as the news media of record for KC has withered to a shadow of what it once was, it’s still choking out the holy grail of cartoons, puzzles, horoscopes and obituaries like it’s 1959.

Allow me to explain.

For some reason – a strange one to me – studies seem to indicate newspaper readers simply must have their daily dose of outdated cartoons and the like…

or else!

Honestly, I don’t get it, never quite did.

I mean, you don’t see Fox News or CNN intersplicing cartoons into their programming. Like an Adult Swim or something.

And lord knows, the Star has axed and/or trimmed to the bone just about everything else news related but cartoons, puzzles, horoscopes and obits.

At least the obits are halfway legit.

Although for decades (if not centuries) obituaries passed as actual news. That is, until belt tightening in the ’90s lead to hawking them to loved ones as paid ads.

Thus in lieu of fielding a news section columnist a la Art Brisbane (or even Mike Hendricks for crying out loud) – instead of serving up a colorful, diverse accounting of people, places and things going on around town similar to my column (highest read in the Star for most of 16 years) – readers get a you-know-what load of cartoons like Dennis the Menace, Family Circus, Beetle Bailey and Blondie.

I can’t even believe I’m typing those names in 2017. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | Tagged | 8 Comments

Hearne: Bleacher Report Gives Chiefs QB Draft Pick Low Marks

We interrupt this local media hoopla day to bring a dose of stark skepticism…

While the Chiefs startling, aggressive move to spend a 1st round draft pick on Texas Tech quarterback Patrick Mahomes was certainly – let’s call it – refreshing,

Talk about God’s gift to local sportswriters and sports talk radio.

That said, Bleacher Report analyst Mike Tanier provided a more sobering overview.

Unlike Kansas City Star sports scribe Sam Mellinger who’s front page headline commentary was headlined “spectacular” and “smart,” Bleacher Report was far more critical.

“Mahomes is Brett Favre-like in the way the neighborhood teenager throwing rocks from the sidewalk and breaking windows of the old abandoned warehouse is Brett Favre-like: You love the arm but question the judgment,” Tanier writes. Continue reading

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Glazer: Scribe a Little Giddy Over Chiefs 1st Round QB Pick

The last time the Chiefs picked a quarterback in the first round was Todd Blackledge in 1983…

Blackledge was picked at No 7 and was a total flop. A couple years before that they chose quarterback Steve Fuller in 1979 – another bust.

And for the next nearly 40 years the Chiefs have made a living taking quarterbacks from other teams – veteran players for the most part on their down side.

A few of them worked out; like Joe Montana, Steve Deberg and Trent Green. Oh, and now Alex Smith.

KC was able to field a winning team often during the regular season with those QBs with many playoff chances.

The problem: close but no cigar – no Super Bowls – and only mild glory. 

Only Montana was able to take KC to an AFC title game, which we lost to Buffalo in 1994.

The latest:

In a draft day shocker the Chiefs traded up to the 10th spot on, giving up several draft picks to Cleveland and took Texas Tech‘s Patrick Mahomes.

Deshaun Watson was also available, but John Dorsey and Andy Reid were in love with Mahomes the GUNSLINGER. Watson would go several picks latter to Houston.

Mahomes was named as a top 5 quarterback along with Mitch Tribisky, who went No. 2 to the Chicago Bears.

Ah but Kansas City wanted Patrick over everyone from the start.  Continue reading

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Lefsetz: The Conundrum That Is Twitter

Twitter Results are being misjudged…

Tomorrow the short-messaging social network will reveal its numbers and the analysts will gasp, the pundits will swoon, and everybody will say that Twitter needs to be fixed.

But that’s not the truth at all.

By Wall Street standards Twitter’s a diving joke. A company that’s hit a financial wall with no obvious upside.

By cultural standards it’s a juggernaut, far exceeding the impact of Facebook and Snapchat, even Instagram.

How can this be?

You see our nation has gone topsy-turvy, it’s all about the money.

It’s ruined the arts and it’s ruining business. If you’re not making a ton of dough and increasing the number every quarter you’re falling behind, out of the conversation. And yes, an entity needs cash flow to survive, but how much? And isn’t impact more important than money, especially when it comes to changing the conversation?

Look at Tesla.

Anemic by automobile standards, gargantuan regarding impact, it took the electric car off the shelf and put it back into the conversation.

But Tesla’s stock is through the roof, for now anyway, defying all realistic fundamentals. Let’s focus instead on BMW, which has lost the sales crown to Mercedes-Benz.

BMW is a juggernaut of innovation. Do you think we’d see all those features in Hondas and Chevys if it weren’t for the bleeding edge developers? Of course not!

Not that automobiles are a perfect analogy.

The point being, someone has got to lead. Someone has to move the conversation forward and that all happens on Twitter. Continue reading

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Glazer: Scribe Manhandles Chiefs Draft Prospects

Thursday’s NFL draft is important to every team…

However, it’s particularly critical to the Kansas City Chiefs who badly need to add some weapons on offense. They have zero running game to speak of. Spencer Ware had a below average season. Tyreek Hill is a once in a while running back, and that’s about it.

The Chiefs running game was so bad on 3rd and 4th down short yardage last year that they went to QB Alex Smith for runs or pass to pick up the first down. Unfortunately, usually it failed.

So is running back their first pick, right?

Should they take controversial running back Joe Mixon?

Hey, it’s worked out thus far with for Hill and his issues. He hasn’t killed or beat up any women to date. And Hill was the Chiefs MVP no question. Without him the Chiefs wouldn’t have won the divisi and might not have made the playoffs. He had 12 TD’s and was All Pro.

Hill’s past was similar to Mixon’s – his beating up his pregnant girlfriend. But Mixon beat his up on video, not good.

Will KC dare to take another risk?

There are several other good backs out there, so my guess is no.

We all know Alex Smith is nearing the end of his NFL career in Kansas City.

Will KC look for his replacement?

Clemson quarterback Desean Watson might be available when the Chiefs take their first round pick. Will they go for him? Most think no.

Why?

Many NFL observers question Watson’s overall ability to win in the NFL.

His skill set seems to be there, but teams are not confident in his ability to get it done, and fast.

Lets face it, no No. 1 draft pick on quarterback over the last 10 years has been a smash hit in the league. Continue reading

Posted in Craig_Glazer | Tagged | 14 Comments

Lefsetz: MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Queen of Cable

She’s the left wing explainer in chief…

I’ve become addicted to the news. Not just the papers which arrive every day, whose apps I’m constantly checking on my phone, but TV, which I mostly catch via satellite on Sirius XM.

That’s right, there’s everything from FoxCNN and MSNBC to Bloomberg, NPR and the BBC. I want to know what’s going on.

And so does everybody else.

As George Drakoulias famously said, he used to fight over bands, now we all fight over politics.

I did not see this coming.

The long national primary season, which seemed to start immediately after President Obama’s last electoral victory, resulted in two candidates who fought hard with Donald Trump emerging victorious and now seemingly no one is happy.

And it’s hard to say it doesn’t matter.

Want an abortion? Want corporations out of politics? Then Gorsuch in the Supreme Court will keep you awake at night.

Want to get rid of Obamacare? Want to get rid of the welfare state? Well, that turns out to be much harder to do. Turns out talk is cheap and that wall ain’t gonna be erected anytime soon.

So what we’ve got is a lot of people yelling.

On TV and in person. Figuring if they just shout loud enough, they’ll win. Not realizing no one who disagrees with them is tuning in anyway.

Then we’ve got Rachel Maddow who takes a different tack.

Yes, yes, she was excoriated over her tedious buildup to the Trump tax return reveal. However the truth is the media builds you up and then destroys you and if you believe it all you’ve got enough whiplash to end up in physical therapy.

And it’s weird playing the home game. With a President who constantly contradicts himself. Not only in statement, but policy.

But the whole world is watching.

America used to be the leader. Continue reading

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New Jack City: Movies: Oldsters Rock Evolving Movie Biz

Guess what THE AVENGERS, IRON MAN, SPIDER-MAN and CAPTAIN AMERICA have in common?

They all very successfully kicked off the past several summer movie seasons with early May debuts.

Now as we are about to reenter the tentpole season beginning with GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY-VOLUME 2 (May 5) I would like to address two major concerns facing the motion picture industry—specifically the theatrical exhibition side of it.

It’s no secret that several major Hollywood studios are pushing for an even shorter span between a film’s first showing on the big screen and it is being made available to video on demand, DVD and other means of digital distribution.

It’s a major concern to theater operators but one we’ll hold for future discussion.

The other ongoing concern is the decreasing numbers of millennials going to the movies on a (what used to be) regular basis.

Instead they pick and choose from among tentpole offerings and ignore the rest.

How to lure them back? Continue reading

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Glazer: The Beginning of the End for Hosmer, Royals?

Things are not looking good for this year’s Royals

There’s just no offense.

In fact, even their flagship sports station 610 Sports is down on the club’s efforts. Long games – like the 1-0 loss, a four hour game – are BORING.

“The Royals hard to watch right now.”

Yes, their starting pitching has been outstanding, but with no offense how long will that continue?

The big hurt is Eric Hosmer – the face of the team – doing next to nothing thus far.

He’s batting just .197, with one home run and he’s not getting it done with men on base. He’s nearly leading the league in hitting into double plays.

Not good.

Alex Gordon continues to prove that his big contract and dumping Ben Zobrist to keep him, was a mistake.

Gordon has a large sample size of no offense. In 500 at bats he’s hitting just over .200 over the last two seasons.

Nobody is hitting well except Lorenzo Cain, however he’s not hitting with any power either and is the walk king right now.

Last year Paulo Orlando showed promise, this season he is batting just .149.

The good news is the season’s  still young. Continue reading

Posted in Craig_Glazer | 19 Comments

Hearne: The Spin Stops Here, Baby

How many times does the exact same story about fallen Fox News host Bill O’Reilly need to be written?

I’ve lost count.

The usual suspects have been busy reporting basically the same stuff – CNN, MSNBC, Vanity Fair, New York Times, Fox news – even the late to the party Kansas City Star. 

Here’s another take:

I hung out with O’Reilly in the early days of his success at Fox News, when he was still something of a right wing cult hero…relatively speaking.

A group of Kansas City business dudes flew him in for a talk at the Folly Theatre and success did not appear to have completely gone to his head.

Yet.

What had gone to O’Reilly’s head was a really bad cold – he was miserable – but not about to forgo his at that point microscopically small speaking fee as well as a bit of ink from the local daily.

The left leaning loons in the FYI section of the Star had already written off Big Bill. And since I didn’t crucify him, they figured I must have been some sort of right wing Rush Limbaugh disciple as well.

Little did they know I’d yanked the lever for Ross Perot, Ralph Nader, and later not once but twice for Obama. Let alone that I gave money last year – again, not once but twice – the leftist loon of all, Bernie Sanders. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | Tagged | 4 Comments

Lefsetz: Chalk One Up for Mankind; Bill O’Reilly Takes a Bullet

No one is bigger than the system…

You may think you rise above – that you’re better than the rest of us, know more, are entitled to more – but that’s not true. Furthermore, the nature of human beings is they want to tear you down to their level if they think you’ve gotten too big for your britches.

Bill O’Reilly lost contact with the working man, the same person he said he was speaking to in his show. And what a show that was, one in which he said he slung it straight, but if you disagreed with him you couldn’t get a word in edgewise and were labeled a nitwit.

Do we blame O’Reilly for our present national condition, one in which facts don’t matter and rational discourse in search of truth is out the window?

Yes – along with the rest of the right wing blowhards who should realize if you live in a glass house, you shouldn’t throw stones.

Like Rush Limbaugh, who lost his hearing from overusing opiates after denigrating drug addicts. Turns out right wingers O.D. just like Democrats, but for a long time the Republicans did not agree.

Not until their kids started dying and they became compassionate.

And expect them to come around to global warming and gay rights and so much more. That’s right, Democratic/left wing principles win in the end, because they’re people-oriented as opposed to money-oriented, they’re more about love than hate.

Did you see the WaPo story saying Trump voters pulled the lever because of racism? I believe that. Hell, it even exists in the institutions of higher learning, wherein Asians are excluded. You work hard to get ahead and then those in power don’t like it, they want to keep you down.

And Bill O’Reilly, despite constantly saying he was defending the little man, was doing anything but.

What do these people want?

To exorcise the government from their lives, to eliminate taxes so the corporations can rape and pillage with no restrictions – not worrying about safety whatsoever – so you can sit on your porch self-satisfiedly believing you’re free.

Come on.

Yup, that’s the truth. Send me all the hate mail you want. Continue reading

Posted in Bob Lefsetz | Tagged | 30 Comments

Lefsetz: It’s the End of the World as We Know it

Am I the only one freaked out about this?

I lived through the Cuban Missile Crisis. I was only 9 years-old, but I was plenty scared. I remember visiting my grandparents in Peabody, Mass., lying on the sloping porch of their three story abode, asking my mother what was gonna happen.

She said if they dropped the bomb we’d all die, and not to worry about it.

Is that the genesis of all my problems right there? Because this only made me more afraid.

And I haven’t been that afraid this century.

Haven’t been afraid for decades. Yes, 9/11 happened, but that was in New York, the first stop for Europeans, a bit more of a hop, skip and a jump from the Middle East, but the centralized city, Manhattan, makes a perfect target.

However if they’re lobbing bombs from North Korea, L.A.’s the place.

Don’t tell me to be unafraid. It doesn’t work.

Just like in the instance of my mom above.

I laugh when I hear people in the heartland give up their rights in the name of protection from terrorism. The assailants are gonna go there last. They’re gonna start in the big cities, where they can have the most impact.

So I’m driving on the freeway and they’re going on about the Mother Of All Bombs. ISIS is comprised of bad guys, I get it. But aren’t we pissing them off by doing this, the ones who survive? Aren’t we imploring them to commit acts of terrorism, poison our water, kill our children? That’s the first thing that went through my mind, revenge. Some of these people have been pissed for centuries, they can hold a grudge. And the truth is no one can keep America safe, it just can’t be done. Continue reading

Posted in Bob Lefsetz | Tagged | 11 Comments

Hearne: What Goes Around Comes Around for St. L. Rams Fans

Does anyone not living in the 314 area code feel sorry for St. Louis Rams fans?

Seriously.

That after St. Louis filed a lawsuit yesterday against the National Football League over its Rams relocating to Los Angeles.

Uh, relocating back to LA.

Something about the NFL “enriching itself at the expense of the community it left behind.”

Which is kinda funny.

That’s because before the Rams pulled the plug on the Gateway City last year to return to LA – a city the team spent nearly 50 years in before moving to Missouri in 1995 – it was St. Louis that ripped off Los Angeles

That’s right, St. Louis offered financial incentives that included a taxpayer funded domed stadium for the Rams to abandon LA.

That’s funny.

I don’t recall any of the 314 crowd worrying about the NFL enriching itself at the expense of LA then.

So much for turnabout being fair play.

Prior to that of course, LA did a number on Cleveland by waltzing off with the 1945 NFL champion Cleveland Rams.

The not too far between-the-lines truth being what most people have long since figured out; that nothing in life is sacred when it comes to big time sports. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 5 Comments