Barack and Michelle Obama Strike Unique Netflix Deal

Expect to see a lot more content from Barack and Michelle Obama in your queue.

The former president and first lady struck a deal with streaming giant Netflix, the details of which became public on Monday, CNN Money reports. The two will work both in front of and behind the camera during the multi-year deal.

“We hope to cultivate and curate the talented, inspiring, creative voices who are able to promote greater empathy and understanding between peoples, and help them share their stories with the entire world,” Barack Obama said in a statement.

Netflix’s unparalleled service is a natural fit for the kinds of stories we want to share, and we look forward to starting this exciting new partnership,” Michelle Obama said.

The New York Times first reported in March that the Obamas were in talks to strike a deal with Netflix. The Times reported then that one possible show idea could include President Obama moderating “conversations on topics that dominated his presidency — health care, voting rights, immigration, foreign policy, climate change — and that have continued to divide a polarized American electorate during President Trump’s time in office.”

In another, Michelle Obama might discuss the topics and causes she championed as First Lady, including nutrition.

Specific financial details of the deal were not released.

Cartier Owner Bought Back Nearly $600 Million-Worth of Watches to Destroy Them

The company behind Cartier and Montblanc has repurchased and destroyed roughly $585 million (or £437 million) of its own watches over the past two years, according to The Guardian.

The Swiss company Richemont pulled this bizarre maneuver in order to prevent their watches from being sold at lower prices and by unauthorized resellers.

The buybacks have taken places across both European and Asian markets, as the company’s brass has become increasingly concerned about how the resale market produced by unsold stock could drive down prices and tarnish the watches’ luxury appeal. Described as an “exceptional circumstance” by Richemont’s then-CEO Richard Lepeu in 2016, the watch buyback program recycles the parts that once made up some of the world’s most famous watches.

Watch This Cardinals Rookie Reliever Throw 105 MPH Fastballs

On Sunday, St. Louis Cardinals rookie right-hander Jordan Hicks became just the second pitcher on record to hit 105 miles per hour on a radar gun.

And, he did it twice.

While pitching to Philadelphia Phillies center fielder Odubel Herrera, Hicks threw a 104.2-mph sinker, 105-mph sinker, 104.3-mph sinker, 105-mph sinker and 103.7-mph sinker.

Those five pitches were the fastest of the 2018 MLB season so far, according to Statcast.

“Odubel just takes forever to get in the box,” Hicks said after the game. “It amps me up a little bit. So I bring it against him.”

As impressive as it is, the speed hasn’t been all that effective for Hicks, as he only has nine strikeouts compared to 16 walks through 22 innings this season.

Mayor de Blasio Orders NYPD to Stop Arrests for Public Marijuana Use

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told the NYPD this weekend that police should no longer arrest people who are caught smoking marijuana in public, according to a story on CNN. Under de Blasio’s new policy, officers would only issue summonses, similar to parking tickets, for smoking in public. The change comes as de Blasio begins to shine a spotlight on his new marijuana policy. On May 15, New York City District Attorney Cy Vance said that his office would cease prosecuting marijuana smoking and small-amount possession cases on August 1. That same day, de Blasio requested that the NYPD decide on changes to its marijuana policy within the next month, changes that would become policy at the end of the summer. In 2017, police made more than 5,500 arrests for smoking or possessing small amounts of marijuana in Manhattan alone. This new policy comes after recent reports found that those arrests for low-level marijuana use overwhelmingly target African-Americans and Hispanics.

Are the Rays Revolutionizing Pitching Rotations—or Just Desperate?

Before last weekend, Tampa Bay Rays reliever Sergio Romo had never started an MLB game. Thanks to some highly unusual moves by manager Kevin Cash, Romo had made the first two starts of his major league career by Sunday night.

Romo pitched the first inning on Saturday and threw into the second on Sunday, becoming the first pitcher to start on consecutive days after pitching at least one inning the previous day since Steve McCatty did it for the Oakland A’s in 1980.

With three starting pitchers on the disabled list with injuries, the Rays have been forced to think of creative ways to use their pitchers. As a result, Rays manager Cash has routinely used a slate of short-appearance relievers to pitch an entire game instead of utilizing a starter for the first half and then turning to the bullpen.

While that has generally worked for the Rays this season, it remains unlikely MLB teams will convert to a full rotation of Romo-type starters unless they are forced to. Tampa Bay’s strategy is certainly different, but that doesn’t necessarily make it better.

Active Lava Flows Are Creating Toxic Plumes on the Island of Hawai’i

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory has spent the past several days watching two active lava flows near MacKenzie State Park on the island of Hawai’i, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. As of 11 p.m. last night, levels of sulfur dioxide were rising in Kamaili, Seaview, and Malama Ki, all locations downwind of the active lava vents.

There is also the problem of a “laze” plume, which is created when hot lava touches cold seawater. The resulting laze appears in the form of steam containing glass particles and hydrochloric acid. Laze makes breathing harder and annoys the skin and eyes.

As of yesterday, the Observatory was warning that the laze could affect areas as far as 15 miles downwind of the lava flow on the ocean.

‘SNL’ Star Doesn’t Like How Partisan Sketches Alienate People

Kate McKinnon said in a recent interview with GQ that she doesn’t like to alienate audience members with partisan sketches, but when she portrayed Hillary Clinton singing Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah during the ‘SNL’ cold open following the 2016 election, she says she desperately wanted to communicate how she was feeling.

“I knew the half of the country that was happy with what happened would not like it, and I don’t like to alienate anybody,” McKinnon said. “But I also just had such an earnest desire to show people how I was feeling—a visceral desire to communicate.”

And when she communicates, she doesn’t want to do it without empathy. McKinnon said that when she portrays another person, whether Democratic or Republican, it’s vital from her end that there to be empathy involved.

“You can’t be judging someone as you’re embodying them. You have to find the point of connection—something you find delightful,” McKinnon said. “Even if you’re intending to skewer someone, you also have to find something that you truly like about them. If you’re mean, it ain’t fun to watch. And if it ain’t fun to watch, they turn off the TV.”

Collusion Case Reveals NFL Teams Do View Kaepernick as a Starter

The ongoing collusion case against the NFL which was brought by Colin Kaepernick has revealed multiple NFL teams believed the quarterback was good enough to start in the league in 2017.

Citing a source with knowledge of the situation, ProFootballTalk reports that some teams continue to believe Kaepernick can be an NFL starter.

That finding came to light during the case thanks to free-agency evaluation documents that were used as evidence and testimony from witnesses during the litigation process.

Despite that information, it remains uncertain if Kaepernick can prove teams and the league office have been coordinating their efforts to keep him off the field thanks to his ties to the national anthem protests.

“Whether coordination can or can’t be proven, the collusion case will conclusively prove one thing, regardless of whether anyone wants to believe it: Multiple teams believed that Colin Kaepernick was still good enough to play after becoming a free agent more than a year ago,” according to ProFootballTalk. “Which means that, at least as to Kaepernick, the notion that teams make decisions based only on trying to win football games doesn’t hold water.”

Watch a CEO Get Shot at by an AK-47 to Endorse His Product

Would you put your life on the line to prove how much you believe in your company’s product? Texas Armoring Corporation CEO Trent Kimball did just that, Business Insider reports. Chilling video of him sitting behind the wheel of a Mercedes-Benz upgraded with bulletproof tech is making rounds on the Internet. Kimball unflinchingly watches as a colleague fired 12 rounds from an AK-47 into the car’s windshield.

It’s truly amazing to witness. Take a look.

The Price of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Getaway Jaguar

When it came time for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to depart Windsor Castle as a married couple on Saturday, they sped away in a 1968 Jaguar E-Type Concept Zero.

This particular Jag runs entirely on battery power, and as a vehicle designed for American roads, has its steering wheel on the left side, According to a story in Page Six.

If you liked what you saw at the royal wedding, the 1968 E-Type Concept Zero retails for $471,000. Even the royals opted to rent the car for the day rather than buy it and outfitted the Jag with a custom license plate commemorating Harry and Meghan’s wedding date.

Vegas Beats the Odds to Advance to Stanley Cup Final

The upstart Golden Knights aren’t staying in Vegas – they’re heading to the Stanley Cup Final.

The first expansion team to advance to the final since 1968 St. Louis Blues, the Golden Knights were able to knock off the Winnipeg Jets 2-1 on Sunday behind 31 saves from Marc-Andre Fleury and a game-winning goal from Ryan Reaves.

In advancing to the final, the Golden Knights have lost only three times, quite an accomplishment for a team that at one point had odds as long as 500-1 to win the Cup.

“Everybody on this team has something to prove,” Reaves said. “We call ourselves ‘The Golden Misfits’ for a reason. We’re doing a good job of proving everybody wrong.”

Vegas will face Tampa Bay or Washington in the final with Game 6 set for Monday in D.C.

The Knights likely won’t be favored against either team, but we wouldn’t bet against ‘em.

How The ‘Zoot Suit’ Defined the Look of Fashion and Jazz

The zoot suit originated in Harlem, New York during the Great Depression. During this time, menswear manufacturers needed to develop a fashionable line of clothing that would allow their male clientele to make an impression while owning a durable and inexpensive working uniform. At the same time, a subculture developed, one that spread across the country and among young people, of those who were suspicious of authority and had developed a rebellious attitude. To them, fashion and jazz were means of survival and style was an expression of strength and fluidity, all of which was communicated through the zoot suit.

Zoot suits in Daytona Beach, Florida, in 1943. (Gordon Parks/Library of Congress)

The suit “pulled out the lines and shape of the traditional suit to widen a man’s shoulders, lengthen his torso and loosen his limbs,” according to Timeline. The zoot suit had distinctive markers—pegged pants, drape cut, and long coat —that allowed men to be both playful and masculine in their dress.