Hot Pink Jungle Pants

As we wrote on last night’s Daily Musings (joannietansky.com), Jean Beliveau, who passed away late Tuesday night, was much more than one of the best hockey players in the world. He was, in the true sense of the word, a mensch.

Beliveau was also human and there is no doubt that he didn’t always feel like smiling or being nice to the constant barrage of people who wanted his autograph or just to shake his hand. And yet, over and over again we hear how kind he was. It didn’t matter if you were the president of a company or the janitor of a building. He showed goodness and kindness to everyone. We can’t take any hockey lessons from him but we can sure learn from the way he conducted himself. Always be kinder than you feel.

In the past two weeks, we have heard about two young black men killed by the police. Most likely there were also white men killed by police, but we haven’t heard about it.

In Ferguson, Michael Brown was shot. In New York, Eric Garner suffocated while in a choke hold. We are not by any stretch of the imagination liberal, democratic, tree-hugging or save-the-world kinda of people. However, this last death was gruesome and caught on camera. Garner kept yelling I can’t breath yet no one lessened the grip of the choke hold and he died.

Last night the policeman involved was told he would not be prosecuted. Of course there was the usual taking to the streets. And in two weeks it seems that there will be a march in Washington, modeled after the Million Man March headed by Martin Luther King in October 1995.

As we are not in the law enforcement business, we cannot possibly know what to do with all of these happenings. But as a regular person we can say one thing: The police could use some  retraining. Yes, their lives are on the line the second they take to their patrol cars. Last week someone was shot while giving a ticket. But unless someone takes the bull by the horns, and at least pretends to be trying to change the perception of the police,  the escalation between the two factions is going to get a lot uglier and more violent – on both sides. Talk about fear-mongering. What exactly is the point of telling the public that the flu vaccine may not be strong enough for this year’s flu strain? Two things will come from this: Older people will get nervous and next year less people will take the flu shot because they’ll say what’s the point, we’re not really covered anyway.

Why not wait until the flu season begins, see where the chips fall, and then say that the strain was different or mutated or whatever. Whoever said this is not the brightest chip in the box.

Guess who’s back? Mitt Romney, the Republican who ran for President in 2012. He recently held meetings with donors in New York this week that left people convinced he is running for president again in 2016. He certainly has a lot of money, so the fact that he’s looking for more is a harbinger of a trial balloon – should he run or not.

The other possible candidates so far: Jeb Bush, Chris Christie and Rick Perry.

Here’s something really nasty. A golfer in South Africa was retrieving his golf balls from a place called Lake Panic (no Blanche, we didn’t make this up) and he was eaten by a gigantic alligator. Ich.

Here’s a cheery headline: Big chain stores on death watch. That’ll boost the economy, eh? Not really. Sears, Radio Shack, Aeropostale and J.C. Penney are all on the verge of catastrophe. If this news goes viral, who exactly is going to shop in those places? Images of people unable to return gifts because the stores are closed or closing is not a pretty sight.

Pundits are sighting the high cost of food, medical care and savvy online shopping for the potential demise of these massive stores. Let’s bet: Will the police come to Jean Beliveau’s funeral wearing hot pink jungle pants? Or will they suck it up, take a lesson from him and act like they want people to treat them – with respect and put on their uniforms?

Good Shabbos,

We’ll talk…

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