3/14/2023: Baboon Boulder Attack!
PLUS: Biden Shirks Blame; Actor Steals Used Oil; and Meg’s Blog Returns
Today is Tuesday, March 14, 2023.
It is the 73rd day of the year.
292 days remain.
WHAT’S ON TAP
Silicon Valley Bank employees and insiders are laying blame for the collapse on the CEO and NASA is developing a new space tug. More in HIT LIST.
President JOE BIDEN has approved a $7 billion oil and gas drilling project in Alaska. More in SWAMP.
Playboy Magazine is returning with a digital publication and THE WHO are done releasing new music. More in SHOWBIZ.
“The Last of Us” ends with record high ratings and a “Dancing With the Stars” pro is retiring from the ballroom. More in CASTING CALL.
Employees and insiders at SILICON VALLEY BANK are directing blame for the institution’s sudden collapse squarely on its CEO, who made the decision to announce the simultaneous bond selloff and stock sale last week that triggered a last minute run on deposits.
Two analysts tell CNN that SVB had plenty of capital to cover the necessary asset-to-liability regulatory requirements, despite the falling value of the bank’s bond portfolio. The bank’s announcement about its situation was not necessary, and any shortfalls could’ve been swiftly addressed, quietly and privately. [via CNN]
The Russian government has reportedly ordered the clearing of trees from vast nature preserves in order to build massive missile defense systems.The complexes outside Moscow include radar systems and anti-aircraft missile launchers capable of traveling short-and-long-range distances.
WORTH NOTING: The strategic shift to a defensive strategy could be purely a proactive move – or it could suggest anticipation of a turning tide in Russia’s ongoing war with Ukraine. [via New Voice of Ukraine]
A pack of “agitated” baboons collaborated to roll a boulder toward a group of hikers in South Africa – and while the group survived, the monkey-attack left three of the hikers with broken legs.
The baboons appeared to dislodge the giant rock to fall off a cliff and onto a ledge where five of the hikers stood. The force of the impact caused the boulder to virtually explode when it hit the ground, sending shrapnel and shards into the hikers’ legs. Another hiker was sent off the edge of the cliff but was saved by a safety tether.
That’s when the monkeys started throwing rocks down on the group, which rushed to find shelter while calling in a helicopter rescue.
One primatologist says, “ “It takes a lot to accidentally dislodge a 60 kilogram boulder” – suggesting the baboons were either trying to attack or just up to mischief.
One hiker says the rocks weren’t thrown, and were just dislodged when the boulder fell. [via NY Post]
MEANWHILE, IN WASHINGTON STATE: A freight train reportedly plowed through a herd of at least 24 elk that were lingering on the tracks late last week.
Despite sounding the whistle and initiating the emergency break it was not able to stop in time. One rep for the train company tells local media the ensuing scene was “disturbing.” [via KPTV]
NASA’s most recent budget request includes $180 million to begin developing a “new space tug” that will play a role in de-orbiting the International Space Station when it’s scheduled to be decommissioned in 2030.
Reps for NASA say the whole space-tug project will cost around $1 billion.
The current de-orbiting plan relies on Russian technology, but NASA would like more reliability – especially after some recent equipment malfunctions onboard Russian components of the ISS. [via Space.com]
Ford has identified the specific cause of a fire that halted production of all F-150 Lightning models last month. Fortunately, the specific battery cell defect is only present in 18 vehicles currently on the road.
These customers have been notified and can get the battery cells swapped out at their dealer. In the meantime, they’ll be provided with loaner trucks. [via Motor Authority]
Top 5 Songs on Apple Music:
Morgan Wallen, “Last Night”
Morgan Wallen, “Thinkin’ Bout Me”
Morgan Wallen, “Everything I Love”
PinkPantheress & Ice Spice, “Boy’s a liar Pt. 2”
Morgan Wallen, “Ain’t That Some”
Top 5 Songs on Spotify:
Miley Cyrus, “River”
The Weeknd & Ariana Grande, “Die For You - Remix”
SZA, “Kill Bill”
KAROL G & Shakira, “TQG”
PinkPantheress & Ice Spice, “Boy’s a liar Pt. 2”
DICK FOSBURY, the Olympic high jumper who won gold with his “Fosbury Flop,” has died.
He passed away Sunday after a recurrence with lymphoma, according to his publicist.
Fosbury was 76.
Former NBA player FELTON SPENCER has died.
He passed away Sunday afternoon, according to a social media post from his sister. No cause of death was shared.
Spencer was 55.
BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN is postponing tonight’s concert in Albany due to an unknown illness.
E Street Band member STEVEN VAN ZANDT shared his own update with fans, telling them not to worry, while adding, “Just a temporary situation. We will all be back in full force very soon.”
It is the third such cancellation for the band in a week.
In addressing the government’s backstopping of uninsured deposits at SILICON VALLEY BANK, President JOE BIDEN says he is “firmly committed to holding those responsible for this mess fully accountable ….”
WORTH NOTING: SVB would not have tanked if interest rates haven’t been creeping up slowly for months. Interest rates wouldn’t be creeping up slowly for months if there weren’t rampant inflation. There wouldn’t be rampant inflation if Biden hadn’t approved trillions of dollars of unnecessary, borrowed spending. The best accountability he could offer would be to get some semblance of excessive-spending-driven inflation under control.
President JOE BIDEN has approved a $7 billion oil and gas drilling project in Alaska, in a shift drawing criticism from the green wing of his progressive supporters.
The project only allows for three drilling sites – not the three that ConocoPhillips wanted. The project is expected to bring in new jobs and revenue for Alaska, which is heavily dependent on the energy industry.
When completed, the project is expected to bring more than 180,000 barrels of oil a day into the Trans Alaska Pipeline. [via Reuters]
BY THE NUMBERS
📈 The DOW lost 90 points (0.28%) on Monday to close at 31,819. The S&P lost 5 points (0.15%) to close at 3,855 and the NASDAQ added 49 points (0.45%) to close at 11,188.
🛢 WEST TEXAS INTERMEDIATE closed at $74; BRENT CRUDE at $80.
⛽ The national average price of a GALLON OF GAS was $3.47 on Monday.
₿ BITCOIN had another gangbusters day, up over 8.5% and trading over $24,000.
🛩 There were more than 6,000 FLIGHTS delayed within, into, or out of the United States on Monday and more than 187 such cancellations.
💰Tonight’s MEGA MILLIONS drawing will be for a $229 million jackpot or a $120.6 million cash payout.
Playboy is planning to relaunch its magazine as a digital publication later this year.
The revamped magazine will serve as an “elevated,” “safe” and “exclusive” alternative to OnlyFans, according to a press release. Also, instead of Playboy bunnies there will be Playboy creators, who will post adult and non-adult content on their pages.
Another big difference is that anyone can become an OnlyFans creator, but Playboy’s creators have to apply and be accepted by its editorial team, the statement explains. [via NY Post]
WORTH REMEMBERING: Playboy stopped publishing its printed magazine in 2020 after suffering covid-related supply chain issues.
Actor PAUL SORVINO was left off of the Oscars’ In Memoriam segment on Sunday night and his wife, DEE DEE SORVINO and daughter, actress MIRA SORVINO are not happy.
The “Goodfellas” star, who passed away from natural causes last July, was noticeably absent during the portion that aired during the award show, though was part of a select few whose tributes could be viewed by scanning a QR code that was on the screen.
Dee Dee has called on the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to apologize for excluding the actor from the live presentation.
Others left out of the broadcast included actress ANNE HECHE and model CHARLBI DEAN. [via People]
SPEAKING OF THE OSCARS: Sunday night’s broadcast averaged 18.7 million viewers. That is a 12.5% increase from last year’s awards, which saw 16.2 million viewers.
TIGER WOODS claims ERICA HERMAN is nothing more than a “jilted ex-girlfriend.”
According to court documents filed by Woods, and obtained by TMZ, he says Herman has no right to “invoke the federal Speak Out Act,” which allows someone to essentially void an NDA if there are incidents of sexual assault or harassament, because she is not a victim.
In Herman’s $30 million lawsuit against the golfer, she claims that he booted her from their home, breaking an “oral tenancy agreement” they had, which he says they didn’t. Also, when it came to answering the question of “Does this case involve allegations of sexual abuse?” Herman checked the “NO” box on her filing, thus showing her hand as far as the federal statue is concerned.
Woods is asking a Florida court to uphold the NDA signed by Herman at the beginning of their six-year relationship. [via TMZ]
SHAQUILLE O’NEAL is allegedly hiding from lawyers who have been trying to serve him with a class-action lawsuit in relation to his endorsement of the cryptocurrency platform FTX.
According to RadarOnline.com the basketball legend has been “impossible to reach for almost four weeks,” with attorneys saying they have gone through four different service companies. [via Radar Online]
WORTH REMEMBERING: O’Neal hosted a huge Super Bowl Party at Shaq’s Fun House in partnership with FTX last February.
DRAKE and 21 SAVAGE are hitting the road for their “It’s All A Blur” tour.
The 28-date tour will kick off in New Orleans on June 16. [via Rolling Stone]
SEAN “Diddy” COMBS is tossing his hat into the ring of potential buyers of Paramount's BET businesses, which includes BET, VH1, BET Studios and streaming service BET+.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, other possible buyers include TYLER PERRY and Weather Channel owner BYRON ALLEN. [via The Hollywood Reporter]
THE WHO frontman ROGER DALTREY told NME that he and bandmate PETE TOWNSHEND are done making new music.
Daltrey said that he believes their fans prefer their earlier recordings, so “What’s the point of records?”
The band has released 12 studio albums over their decades-long career. Their last album, “WHO,” was released in 2019. [via NME]
MARK BALLAS is leaving the ballroom.
The 36-year-old announced over the weekend that he will be retiring as a pro-dancer on “Dancing With the Stars,” effective immediately.
Ballas made his debut on the dance competition show in 2007, during Season 5. Throughout his career he won the Mirrorball Trophy three times, including during the most recent season.. [via People]
The finale episode of HBO’s “The Last of Us” drew in 8.2 million viewers on Sunday night, setting another ratings record for the show.
According to Nielsen, the series premiere saw about 4.7 million viewers, making it HBO’s second-largest debut, behind “House of the Dragon.”
The apocalyptic, zombie-infested video game adaptation stars PEDRO PASCAL and BELLA RAMSEY, who must traverse a post-pandemic country. [via AP News]
“Scream VI” scored a franchise-record for its opening weekend at the global box office with $67.1 million.
It also set a record at the domestic box office with $44.5 million, topping the franchise’s previous record holder “Scream III,” which had a $34.7 million opening.
The original “Scream” is the highest-grossing film in the franchise, with $173 million. [via Deadline]
Former soap star FORBES MARCH was arrested in New York earlier this month for allegedly stealing used cooking oil from a diner.
The oil was allegedly siphoned from a storage container owned by Buffalo Biodiesel that was parked behind Michael’s Diner, the Ulster Police Department reported.
March, and another man, were charged with grand larceny in the fourth degree. The used cooking oil has an estimated value of more than $1,000.
Used cooking oil can be used to manufacture biofuels, which has led to a rise in thefts throughout the Northeast as fuel prices increase, according to Sumit Majumdar, the president of Buffalo Biodiesel. [via Deadline]
THE DAILY KARDASHOPUS
Those close to KIM KARDASHIAN say she is “happy” her ex-husband, YE, found someone who makes him happy, referring to his wife BIANCA CENSORI.
“She knows they have both completely moved on from their relationship and she wants nothing but the best for him,” an insider told US Weekly.
Another source added that Kim is fine with her four kids being around Censori, especially her eldest daughter, NORTH WEST, who has a “particularly strong bond” with her dad.
This is a vast difference from how Kim reportedly felt when Ye and Censori were first linked. As many may remember, there were stories that Kim hated the Yeezy designer even before she started dating the rapper. [via US Weekly]
MEANWHILE: Kim is ready to date again and is asking her close friends to hook her up with eligible men, who are not famous.
WE’LL NEVER BE ROYALS
MEGHAN MARKLE’s blog, “The Tig” may be making a comeback.
According to a document filed with the US Patent and Trademark Office, obtained by the New York Post, a rebooted version of the blog would consist of articles and interviews about “food, cooking, recipes, travel, relationships, fashion, style, interior design, lifestyle, the arts, culture, design, conscious living, health and wellness.” [via NY Post]
The Mirror reports that the site, which does not have an official relaunch date, could go live as early as next week, according to insiders. [via The Mirror]
WORTH REMEMBERING: Meg shut down “The Tig” in 2017 after getting engaged to PRINCE HARRY.
DAY OF THE YEAR
National Organize Your Home Office Day
International Day of Mathematics
National Potato Chip Day
International Ask a Question Day
National Pi Day
Science Education Day
Legal Assistance Day
National Learn About Butterflies Day
Dribble to Work Day
ON THIS DATE
1592 - This date is known as “Ultimate Pi Day.”
On this date at 6:53 am is the largest correspondence between calendar dates and significant digits of pi.
March is the third month (3). It was the fourteenth day (14). In 1592. At 6:53 am. Put all those numbers in a row and you get the first significant digits of pi: 3.141592653….
1794 - Eli Whitney receives a patent for cotton gin invention.
The contraption quickly and efficiently separated cotton fibers from cotton seeds, which eliminated much of the tedious manual labor required to do so by hand.
The textile industry quickly took off following the invention -- but the demand for slave labor also increased, in order to process more cotton.
1899 - Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin receives an American patent for his rigid airship design.
The Zeppelin blimp was first patented in Germany and called a Lenkbarer Luftfahrzug, or "steerable air-cruising train."
In World War I, zeppelins would become formidable warships for Germany, used for scouting and bombing missions. The most famous Zeppelin disaster was the explosion of the Hindenburg in 1937.
1950 - The Federal Bureau of Investigation releases its first "Ten Most Wanted" list.
The initiative was meant to inform average citizens of the worst criminals out on the run.
It proved effective: 8 of the 10 were apprehended within a year.
1964 - Jack Ruby is sentenced to death.
Ruby was found guilty of murdering with malice Lee Harvey Oswald, who was captured following the shooting of President Kennedy.
Ruby’s sentence was handed down on live TV, a first in US history.
In October of 1966, the Texas Court of Appeals reversed the decision, and Ruby died in prison from lung cancer just three months later.
1990 - Mikhail Gorbachev becomes president of the Soviet Union.
He would eventually oversee the Soviet regime's collapse before the end of the following year.
His election was fairly democratic compared to the standards of the previous decades. He had been a popular politician whose agenda centered on decentralizing Communist Party control.
He would resign as the Soviet Union dissolved, at the hands of his own reforms.
2006 - Mike Wallace retires from “60 Minutes.”
He hosted the news program for 37 years.
2018 - A twin study conducted by NASA finds that Scott Kelly is no longer genetically identical to his twin brother after spending one year in space.
The study found that 7% of Scott’s genes were altered. He was also slightly taller than his twin due to the lack of gravity in space.
2019 - Google employee Emma Karuka Iwao breaks the world record for calculating the most digits of Pi.
She wrote software that computed Pi to 31.4 trillion decimal points.
The previous record was 22.4 trillion digits, set in 2016.
Simone Biles - Olympic gymnast - 26
Ansel Engort - actor, “Carrie” & “The Fault in Our Stars” - 29
Stephen Curry - basketball player - 35
Sasha Grey - actress, “The Girlfriend Experience” & “Smash Cut” - 35
Jamie Bell - actor, “King Kong” & “Fantastic Four” - 37
Taylor Hanson - pop singer, Hanson -
Daniel Gillies - actor, “The Vampire Diaries” & “The Originals” - 47
Corey Stoll - actor, “House of Cards” - 47
Brian Quinn - comedian - 47
Billy Crystal - actor, “When Harry Met Sally” & “Analyze This” - 75
Michael Caine - actor, “Kingsman: The Secret Service” & “The Dark Knight” films - 90
Quincy Jones - music producer - 90
Frank Borman - astronaut - 95
Born On This Date
Kirby Puckett - HOF baseball player - 1960 (d. 2006)
Albert Einstein - physicist, Theory of Relativity - 1879 (d. 1955)
Lucy Hobbs Taylor - first American woman dentist - 1833 (d. 1866)
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