Christmas Shopping Days - There are about 24 shopping days until Christmas.
Are you a last minute shopper?
Avoid the crowds and shop on the Internet?
Be careful about mail delivery via the Internet. Delivery might take longer than you are told by the stores.
City Councilmember Appointments - When a city councilmember leaves his/her office and the vacant city office seat must be filled by a city council appointment, it would probably make good sense to appoint a person who would not seek election. Thus, and for the sake of "fair-play," the person temporarily filling the city office seat would not seek election but would rather be someone, much like former-city of Clearwater Commissioner J.B. Johnson, who would serve but would not seek election.
Most folks would think a political appointment should be without . . . politics.
How do you think this will play-out in Clearwater? (An experienced former city commissioner without elected office ambitions would perhaps be the best choice.)
Profits Have Been Made, Now What? - Few, if any, people would deny that there is a homeowner's insurance crisis in Florida. The homeowner's insurance crisis, of course, is only one problem regarding building insurance - the other major insurance problem involves commercial building insurance. No market.
Prices keep climbing but not many insurers want to write insurance in Florida, regardless of the high price. Big reinsurance companies have "reinsured" as much business as they want from small insurers, and small "take-out" insurance companies of last resort are all that is left to acquire property insurance coverage. (And some of those small "take-out" insurance companies only have $5 million of net capital, which is not a large sum considering the size of large regular insurance companies (that refuse to write homeowner's insurance in Florida.)
This year most every insurer in Florida made handsome profits. Reinsurance companies from Bermuda made huge profits in 2006. No hurricanes - no hurricane claims.
What happens with all the money? Profits for shareholders? Hmmm, who are the shareholders that took risk in 2006 and made handsome profits? Hedge funds and other large private investors. Yes, several hedge funds invested in the reinsurance hurricane market. Of course, they are happy folks today. Now, about the 2007 homeowner hurricane reinsurance market . . . Rates are up - insurers want higher prices - and no major insurance company has said they would enter the Florida market.
Insurers made handsome profits in 2006, but there is a chance it could be worse in 2007. On the other hand, they might have another banner year of huge profits. All of this makes you wonder if about to be Gov. Charlie Crist is not correct by stating that insurers that wish to only write preferred business in Florida, and not homeowner's insurance, should be required to either be in the risk business to blend more profitable Florida business with potentially less profitable Florida (homeowner's) business. Could Charlie be right?
USF BULLS - There is talk about Ohio State vs. USC and Michigan vs. Arkansas or Florida, but the real talk in football should be the win by USF over seventh ranked West Virginia last Saturday (at West Virginia.) The win by USF knocked West Virginia out of a significant upcoming game against Rutgers (a team that USF played tough losing 22-20 with a missed two-point conversion by USF.)
In a year where FSU, remember them, can't seem to win big games, USF has proven they can play most any other big-time football program. Imagine USF vs. FSU in a bowl game? Miami vs. USF?
Perhaps the only negative thing about this football year for USF is the fact that their coach might leave to coach at Miami or Alabama. However, USF is loaded with great young players and 2007 could be another good football season for the USF BULLS and their tens of thousands of local Tampa Bay fans.
The time is coming when USF will attract its large local alumni base to fill the Raymond James Stadium at every home game.
The success of USF football is good for Tampa Bay, kudos to everyone involved in this wonderful success story.
Michael Vick Points The Finger - Michael Vick is arguably the best all-around athlete playing NFL football.
Most people are simply amazed at his ability to avoid linebackers and run the ball. However, and as good of a runner as Vick has shown himself to be each Sunday, Vick has also shown he is an average NFL passer. Perhaps it is Vick's first inclination to run, rather than pass, the football that has made him known as a running quarterback and not as a passing quarterback.
Bottom line is the Atlanta Falcons are an average (or below average) NFL football team. There is no passing game in Atlanta and Vick should shoulder much of that blame. Instead, and when fans boo his performance, Vick should not flick the finger at paying fans when he leaves the playing field after another loss. Fans can be brutal, just ask players in Philadelphia or now Pittsburg.
Flick the finger?
Michael Vick has it wrong, he needs to look at his passing statistics. Great runner? Yes, maybe the best ever to play the game. Best quarterback? No, he is far from being considered a great quarterback. He needs to develop as a better passer.
It is too bad Michael Vick vented his frustrations in the manner he did with Atlanta fans. It will take time for him to gain back the respect of the fans he recently snubbed. Can you image Bart Star, Johnny Unitas, Joe Montana or Dan Marino, all great quarterbacks in their day, ever flicking a finger at fans after a loss?
Spurrier To Coach At Miami? - Can you imagine the excitement of Miami fans if ex-gator coach Steve Spurrier opted to coach at the University of Miami?
Leave South Carolina for the magnificent golf country clubs and warm beaches of Miami?
Steve Spurrier says none of this Miami coaching talk is true and he plans to stay at South Carolina.
Money talks, doesn't it?
Of course Miami has not fired their coach as of this writing. But most observers believe he will be gone at year end. Next coach? Interesting.
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