Sports in 2020: A Vision that is just a Vision

Stadium woes

As I write this article within the confounds of my home with family, I’ve been paying attention to the latest updates regarding the CoVid 19 outbreak on both sides of the Atlantic with a mixture of sadness and anger. Sadness because of many people that we know (in)directly who have been infected and in some cases have died. Anger because of the way countries have managed the virus, because of political incompetence, delayed responses and especially, the lack of supplies needed to fight this virus: mouth masks, ventilators and most importantly, medicines needed to both treat and inoculate the general public.

But one element that has become a real thorn on the side of many is sports. Yes, sports.

While sports provides a fraction of the revenue to help the economy of the country in general, it only serves as a fraction of the general revenue needed to keep the country running. With business, commerce, infrastructure, education, environment, manufacturing and even agriculture producing between 10 and 15% of the revenue for the country, sports belongs to the category of leisure time activities and produces a maximum of not more than 5%. It is understandable that many sporting leagues are concerned that with the Corona Virus forcing the governments to impose a total lockdown, keeping people in their homes and banning large public gatherings, they are losing revenue at an alarming rate. The longer the lockdown, the longer they will have to wait until they can resume play again, the more likely that if not the teams, the leagues themselves will be driven towards bankruptcy. Already today, the US Rugby League filed for receivership. Soccer leagues in Europe and the Americas may be next in line, as well as hockey, basketball, etc.

With billions of dollars in revenue and players receiving a lion’s share of the money, many are fearing a loss of income for longer periods of time, even if the leagues agree to continue paying for a limited period of time.  This holds true if the lockdown is (partially) lifted and sports events can resume but in empty stadiums, where despite having no fans, contact between players can also potentially risk contracting the Corona Virus.

Therefore, I have one question for the sporting leagues, which is more important: sports and economy or the health and well-being of the general public?

Let’s look at some grim facts that indicate the latter is much more important. Europe is struggling to contain its virus as two thirds of the cases have stemmed from there.  Germany alone has over 62,400 cases at the time of this article, ranking it third behind Italy and Spain. Already talks of extending the lockdown are in place as the peak will be reached by June. Asian countries are experiencing a slowdown in the number of new cases, whereas China is receiving only a trickle of new cases daily. Still, they are not out of the woods just yet as much of the country remains on lockdown. As for the US, let’s hope nobody writes a book on the country’s failing health care system, with grim prognosis of between 200,000 and 2.2 million dead and the virus expecting to linger through August.  Who would want to play baseball in an empty stadium? Let alone soccer?

Almost all of the leagues have been trying to find a date to resume play for the sake of finishing the season. In the case like Major League Baseball, they are attempting to have a full to 75% full season that would start in June and end in November.  Yet for the likes of the soccer leagues in Europe, the NHL in ice hockey and the NBA in basketball in the USA, they are all delaying the inevitable- the cancellation of the remaining season. And it is understandable because of the financial implications that cancelling the season has. However, as the old saying goes: Money can be replaced; People cannot be replaced.

Already, the Olympics have been pushed back almost exactly one year. It was a decision that was difficult for Japan, but it was a must for the safety of the athletes. The German ice hockey league decided to cancel the rest of the season with no teams being promoted or demoted for the next season. This model would work for the German Soccer League (Bundesliga) as well as all other international soccer leagues.  The same goes for handball and basketball. The NCAA has cancelled all spring sports and granted an extended year of eligibility for seniors and more space in the colleges’ sports programs. Almost none of the college sports had begun before the decision was made to call it off. High school spring sports will not be that lucky with seniors having to walk off with their diplomas but without any chance of setting sports records, unless states agree to “redo” the entire school year. But that’s a different story.

What we are getting at here is we need to look at the real statistics and ask ourselves, are sports really worth the risk?  I can imagine the world on total lockdown for much of the year, but much of the population having a slow recovery from the shock of losing business and people for months to come. Sports will be as hard hit as the global economy, where four out of five analysts are predicting the first Great Depression in over 90 years. The virus will reshape the lives of the global population in many aspects. What was important in our lives before the pandemic hit will be down at the bottom of the global food chain- at least for awhile. While one can assume the virus will disappear towards the end of the year, we may not be so sure about the predictions, given our current status. One can try and restart sports in the fall, beginning with American football, basketball and ice hockey, it’s realistic to say that 2020 will not see any sporting events around the globe. Only when the virus disappears and everyone is treated and inoculated will we see sports again in stadiums and on TV.

That would put us down to 2021, if everything goes as planned. For now, all sports leagues may want to look at the real situation in the now, 2020, and ask themselves: “Is it worth continuing the season and risk another outbreak?” For many sports fans it would be a blessing, however….

It’s safer to plan for 2021 when we know the virus will disappear, the curfews will be lifted and everyone is ready to pay for a good game in the stadium.




LOOK AT THAT! DID YOU SEE IT?!!- Verbs of Perception in English


Imagine you are sitting down with some friends, watching a good basketball game on TV. You see that there is popcorn, beer and cola, Chex snack mix and bars on the coffee table. You notice the excitement in the atmosphere among your friends, especially as you had a bet with one of them, who is staring at you in hopes he would win the bet.

All of a sudden, you see this happen:



Everyone is jumping up in the air, with food and drink flying all over the floor. One of your friends is hosting the party and comes to the living room to see a mess and all of you covered in food and drink. His lone reaction:



The redness on his face was not only the expression of anger (which is understandable) but also fear because his parents would be coming home soon.


And he was not supposed to have a basketball party, unless he risked getting grounded. 😉


But looking at the situation, we have many words in there that have to do with perception: LOOK (AT), SEE, WATCH, STARE, OBSERVE & NOTICE. All but TWO of them mean the same as the German SEHEN, whereas NOTICE means BEMERKEN and OBSERVE is BEOBACHTEN.

The underlying meaning behind them has to do with the context and for people learning English, this is difficult to do unless you understand the meaning, have an example and even include an mnemonic (Eselsbrücke) to help you.

Here are the differences you need to pay attention to:


SEE SEE has to do with the passive function of the eyes. We use SEE when something sudden appears and you have to shift your eyes onto that object.


SEE is an irregular verb with the past tense SAW and perfect form, SEEN



1.      When I look out of the window, I see my neighbor’s garden with lots of flowers

2.      Did you see what I saw?  Yeah, I saw a huge dolphin swimming in the harbor.


As an mnemonic, think of this tongue twister: Mr. See owns a saw. Mr. Saw owns a seesaw. Now see saw soar saw seesaw (….) Link here.

NOTICE When you NOTICE something, you suddenly realize that something is there. Most of the time you comment on something you NOTICE.


NOTICE is a regular verb where only -D is added for both past and perfect forms.



1.      I noticed you have a new pair of glasses! How long have you had them?

2.      Ben got the notice from his boss yesterday that he was being laid off.


As an mnemonic, think of a situation where one person gives his boss his NOTICE because he’s unhappy with his job. In this case, the boss NOTICES this NOTICE suddenly and must react by finding a new employee to replace him.

STARE The opposite of notice is STARE. To STARE at someone is when a person looks at the person or an object for a long period of time for a specific reason.


If it’s a person, unless you are playing the stare game, STARING at a person may present some discomfort  because he/she is being perceived as an object of interest.


STARE shares the same function as NOTICE and is a regular verb, whose past and perfect form ends with -D



1.      Grady stared at Nicole for a long time because of her long brown hair.

2.      The police officers were staring at a house because one was trying to break in.

3.      Jack and Clara played stare game and stared at each other for a long time.


STARE game is when two people stare at each other for as long as possible  until one flinches. The one who stares the longest wins.



LOOK (AT) To LOOK at someone means you are directed by a person to see something that the other person saw but only for a short time.


LOOK (AT) in this case should not be mixed up with SEARCH, for one can use LOOK (FOR) in the case of finding something.


LOOK is a regular verb tense whose past ending is -ED



1.      Look at that girl there! She’s a real beauty.

2.      Have you ever looked at yourself in the mirror, lately?


Mnemonic: Who was your first lover? Think about the story about that first person you were in love with. Did someone tell you to LOOK AT the person when she was garnering your attention?

WATCH WATCH can be used when you are looking at something for a long period of time, like a game, an event, a show on TV or sometimes babysitting smaller kids.


WATCH has -ED as an ending for past and perfect and is a regular verb


WATCH OUT and LOOK OUT are the same but have a different meaning. They imply that danger is ahead and you must avoid or steer clear of it.



1.      My friends and I watched a great football game on TV last night.

2.      She really enjoyed watching the orchestra concert at the high school.

3.      Watch out! Deer!


There are two Mnemonics. The first is asking what your favorite TV shows were (or still are). For WATCH OUT, use the deer crossing as a sign. When you see one, you know you need to slow down and watch for wildlife.

OBSERV-E OBSERVE has the same function as WATCH, which means looking at something for a long time. However, OBSERVE is when a person looks at the developments of a project, behavioral pattern or changes in the environment and analyses it, providing some conclusions in oral or written form.


OBSERVE is a regular verb and has a -D ending for past and perfect form



1.      I’ve observed your behavior lately and you seem irritated. What’s wrong?

2.      The teacher observed the science experiment closely.

3.      The students observed the demonstration with interest.


OBSERVE has more to do with seeing things live and not from a distance. Therefore, ask yourself what your favorite science experiment was in school.

After learning the rules regarding the difference among the perceptive verbs, here are some activities for you to do so that you have a chance to use them correctly. An answer sheet can be found by clicking here.



Multiple Choice:  For each sentence, choose the correct word and write it in the blank. Pay attention to the verb tenses.  One answer possible!


1.      When I opened the window, I _____________ Mr. Markman mowing the lawn.

a.      Watch          b. See                  c. Observe          d. Look at


2.      I __________ that you have a cool haircut, Mia. Which hair dresser did you visit?

a.      Notice          b. Observe          c. Look                d. Watch


3.      Ken, Don and I ____________ three hours of professional wrestling on TV last night.

a.      Look             b. Notice             c. Watch             d. See


4.      Quit ____________ at me, Jake! I don’t like that.

a.      Watch          b. See                  c. Stare                d. Look at


5.      Karen and Mattie ____________ exhibits at the museum while I’m meeting friends at a pub.

a.      Stare                    b. Notice             c. Look at            d. Observe


6.      Fans and the prep band ____________ the football game at the stadium in Hanover on Friday.

a.      Watch                 b. Look at           c. Observe          d. Stare


7.      Wow! __________ that beauty walking down the stage!

a.      Stare                    b. See                  c. Look at            d. Observe


8.      Did you __________ that asteroid that landed in the field, last night?!!

a.      See                       b. Look                c. Stare                d. Observe


9.      Many kids in the class ____________ Ms. Mulder’s amazing chemistry project in the science lab.

a.      Notice                 b. Observe          c. Stare                d. Look


10.   Wow, Dean! You __________ pale. Are you OK, Bud?

a.      Watch                 b. Stare               c. Notice             d. Look


11.   We ____________ the snow falling onto the ground for a few minutes yesterday.

a.      Look                    b. Watch             c. Notice             d. See


12.   Millie, you ____________ the kids this evening as we will go out for dinner, understand?

a.      See                       b. Observe          c. Watch             d. Notice


13.   ____________ what you did! Who’s going to pay for the new window?

a.      Watch                 b. See                  c. Look                d. Notice


14.   Mr Hildebrandt _____________ Heidi’s change in behavior in class and went to talk with her about it.

a.      Look at               b. Observe          c. Watch             d. See


15.   Leia ___________ the ducks closely on the lake and wrote down her results.

a.      Observe              b. See                  c. Notice             d. Look



Word Group:   Look at the following group of words and determine which of the perceptive verbs you would use. One answer possible!


1.      Student               Test                      Classroom          Write  

ANS: ____________________

2.      Stadium              Baseball              Umpire                Pitcher   

ANS: ____________________

3.      Car                       Deer                     Road                    Darkness     

ANS: ____________________

4.      Wildlife               Forest                  Bear                     Mating    

ANS: ____________________

5.      Highway              Car                       Flat tire               Police Officer  

ANS: ____________________

6.      Games                 Kids                       TV                         Trouble

ANS: ____________________

7.      Old dress            New outfit          New hair style   New attitude 

ANS: ____________________

8.      UFO                     Farm field           Alien (E.T.)          Rotating Lights

ANS: ____________________

9.      Boss      Anger Management        Crying Worker      Fired    

ANS: ____________________

10.   Parking lot         Parking Meter   Parking Ticket    Car 

ANS: ____________________



Dia-Slide Show: Now you have an opportunity to construct sentences using the perceptive verbs.  Use the following 15 pics and construct a sentence using the correct Verbs. Please note that there are many answers possible.  Good luck! 🙂

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Note: All the photos were taken by the author and the motif is in the far North.


Activity 4:

A Couple or Not? Sometimes it is possible to use more than one perceptive word in a sentence. Look at each pair and determine if they are a match or not. Answer with either Yes or No.

  • Trevon stared at Pauline for a long time because of her beauty.
  • Trevon looked at Pauline for a long time because of her beauty.




  • We saw that you bought a new car. How much was it?
  • We watch that you bought a new car. How much was it?


  • Did you see Fall Guy on TV last night?
  • Did you watch Fall Guy on TV last night?


  • I was watching your interaction with Anja with concern. Do you want to talk about it?
  • I was observing your interaction with Anja with concern. Do you want to talk about it?


  • Sean got a notice from his boss today.
  • Sean got a watch from his boss today.


  • Jana was watching Dr. Quincy when the phone rang.
  • Jana was seeing Dr. Quincy when the phone rang.


  • Hundreds of fans watched the soccer team score the winning goal the last second.
  • Hundreds of fans observed the soccer team score the winning goal the last second.


  • Did you see the UFO fly over the city hall?
  • Did you watch the UFO fly over the city hall?


  • I see that you are packing your stuff and leaving. Where are you going?
  • I notice that you are packing your stuff and leaving. Where are you going?


FlFi logo alt new

Finance minister of the German state of Hesse commits suicide

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and colleagues. ❤

Ukraine Today .org

Police suspect Thomas Schäfer died by suicide after his body was found on train tracks near Wiesbaden.

He was the finance minister for the state of Hesse, where Germany’s financial center Frankfurt lies.

The body of a man identified as Thomas Schäfer, the finance minister of the German state of Hesse, was found on a high-speed train line in the town of Hochheim between Frankfurt and Mainz, police confirmed Saturday.

© 2020 DW


View original post

Reducing Unnecessary Heated Discussion Online with Corona Virus

Some lessons when dealing with a very sensitive discussion like the Corona Virus.

The Domain for Truth

Obviously if you have been on social media and blogs since the Corona Virus led to the slowing down of things in our county you probably have seen a lot of debates.  Some of these can be pretty heated and sometimes unnecessary.

View original post 455 more words

Most people are wrong about the primary goals of Roosevelt’s economic moves.

via Hiltzik: FDR’s New Deal has lessons for the coronavirus crisis — The Mercury News

Analyst have been predicting that the Corona Virus, which has brought the world to a virtual standstill costing millions in employment and billions in revenue, could lead us to the next Great Depression. The Great Depression started with the Great Crash in October 1929 and ended with the outbreak of World War II in 1939. The USA entered the war in 1941.  Many people do not know much about the policies of Franklin D. Roosevelt, whose New Deal brought America back from the ruins and reshaped the landscape to what we see today- both in terms of infrastructure and environment as well as social systems, including Social Security.  Many countries, including those in Europe, as well as Japan, China and New Zealand have policies of the latter today that are based on the New Deal initiated by FDR.

But what exactly is the New Deal? Check out this article abive to find out. After reading it, ask yourselves what type of New Deal would be needed, should the world go into its first depression in over 90 years. This includes any new deals that include our environment, climate change, social disparities and improving the infrastructure.





In Germany, where my younger son Ned has been suffering from the coronavirus for nine days, Chancellor Angela Merkel has “barred groups of more than two people from gathering” and has herself gone into isolation after learning her doctor had tested positive. Ned, who is fluent in German, listened intently to a speech she gave […]

via Coronavirus Hits Home in Germany — You Do Hoodoo?

Photo Flick/ Quote of the Day: You’ll Never Walk Alone

In connection with the Corona Virus, which has brought the world to a virtual standstill in many places, many have come up with some creative quotes and poems to encourage people, especially as they weather this storm.

This was found by Neal Foore at a restaurant in New York City, one of the hardest hit cities in the country. It pretty sums up our courage to walk through all of this and come away better than before.

And I will leave it as that.  Stay healthy and stay safe, everyone. 🙂



A brief history of the coronavirus family – including one pandemic we might have missed

My Awesome Fearless Blog

The Conversation Africa, Inc.

March 24, 2020 Burtram Fielding Director: Research Development and Principal Investigator: Molecular Biology and Virology Research Laboratory Department of Medical BioSciences, University of the Western Cape

Stray cows rest on a New Delhi street during a one-day civil curfew to combat coronavirus. Cattle may have been central to a coronavirus outbreak in 1890. Yawar Nazir/Getty Images

Scientists have known of the human coronavirus since the 1960s. But only rarely has it garnered wider recognition over the past half a century.

One example was in 2003, when the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) caused an outbreak of the disease severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in mainland China and Hong Kong. Another was in 2012, when the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) led to an outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the Republic of Korea, among…

View original post 1,010 more words

COVID-19: A Man-made Epidemic


The recent outbreak of Corona throughout the world is a man made epidemic which has nothing to do with bio-war. COVID-19 is a novel corona virus which means its entirely new to us. So far we had knowledge of only 6 corona viruses like SARS and MERS and COVID-19 is the seventh one. Like most other viruses COVID-19 is a RNA based and needs a host to be active and multiply. So how was this new virus formed? The virus evolved as a result of global climatic change. Each and every creature on earth evolves based on its environment and so does viruses. The current global temperature is prone to the evolution of such viruses.The recent outbreak with its epicenter in Wuhan, China is only a first of the many. The next one may be in the near or far future.

Mother Earth is cleansing the cancer which is torturing…

View original post 275 more words

Czechia Closed for Six Months

Czech-German border at Oberwiesenthal.

FlFinewsflyer new

PRAGUE- Summer travelers thinking of vacationing in Europe (or elsewhere) this summer may want to reconsider in light of the Coronavirus epidemic that has put literally everything on hold.  This includes any travel to Czechia.

In response to the surge in cases in the country, the Czech government has closed down the entire country for six months, effective immediately. This is according to several German news sources, including MDR Aktuell and is based on a speech by Roman Prymula, the head of the Czech Crisis Management, on national TV. Czechia borders the German states of Saxony and Bavaria, as well as the countries of Poland, Austria and Slovakia.  Under the rule, travel into the Czechia is not allowed. Exceptions are commuters working in the country and lorry drivers wishing to deliver goods there. Non-Czech residents can leave the country but will not be allowed to re-enter.

Czechia has been on lockdown since the beginning of the month because of the outbreak.  This includes no travel unless it’s absolutely necessary and all residents are required to wear a mouth mask when outside. Failure to wear a mouth mask means a find of 800 Euros per offense.  At the time of this news release, 904 cases have been reported with no deaths reported. 22,129 cases were reported in Germany with 95 deaths, whereas Austria has 2649 cases with six fatalities. Slovakia has 178 cases.

Czechia became the second country to impose a travel ban of six or more months. On Friday, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison issued an executive order banning all non-essential travel within and into Australia for six months. Like in Czechia, the ban may be extended should the outbreak not be stopped. It could lay a precedence that other countries may follow suit, given the current situation.

Analysts are predicting the Corona Virus to linger throughout the entire year, thus putting a halt to many key events, including sports and international conventions that attract thousands of visitors. Even experts in Germany are expecting the soccer season to not take place again for the rest of the year. Officials of the German Football Federation will discuss the future of the 2019/20 season next week.