The ATP and WTA tennis year has started with upsets in Melbourne, at the Australian Open. On the men's side, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray packed their bags before the 4th round started. Angelique Kerber, Simona Halep, and Agnieszka R. left Melbourne before the 4th round from the women's draw. There will be a new #1 ranking in the women's rankings, when the first grand slam tournament of the year concludes. Roger Federer has a good chance of reaching the semifinals, if he can defeat Mischa Zverev in the quarterfinals. Milos Raonic and Stanislas Wawrinka are the top 2 seeds in the quarterfinals. Rafael Nadal plays #3 seeded Milos Raonic in the quarterfinals. Raonic defeated Nadal earlier this month in the Brisbane International tournament.
On the men's side, Roger Federer defeated Tomas Berdych and Kei Nishikori in strong fashion. Federer is the #17th seed, and
he should move up in the rankings by reaching the semifinals. Serena Williams is the favorite on the women's side, after Angelique Kerber
lost to Coco Vandeweghe in the 4th round. Serena could win her 23rd grand slam title, which would surpass Steffi Graf's grand slam record of 22 titles. Back to the men's draw, Djokovic was trying to win his 7th title in Melbourne. Yet, he lost to Denis Istomin from Uzbekistan in
five grueling sets in the 2nd round.
Finally, who can beat Serena on the women's side? The list is not a long one. On the men's side, let's hope Roger Federer does not face a strong Rafael Nadal in the sunday final. Roger would need to beat Zverev and Stan Wawrinka most likely, before reaching the final. Wawrinka plays Tsonga in the quarterfinals. Let's enjoy the quarterfinals and semifinals action, in the upcoming days before the finals on this weekend. See the image above for a jubilant Federer, after defeating Nishikori in five thrilling sets. Goodbye from Land Down Under.
2017 has started globally, and the UK government is trying to create 400,000 jobs post Brexit. In France, Francois Hollande has met with
Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase CEO; to discuss the luring of investment and personal bankers to Paris post Brexit. The EU countries need to create jobs, in order to keep their economies growing. Francois H. will not be running for a 2nd term as prime minister, when French elections happen
in the spring of this year. This new year brings change in the US, and France also. The US will have a new president come into office
on January 20, with the inauguration in Washington DC. Can Donald Trump help Theresa May, and Francois Hollande in
strengthening economies in both regions with job creation as one way to ensure growth?
Furthermore, the UK government is inclining that 400,000 jobs will be created in 2017. Yet, uncertainty is there for Great Britain as the EU has
a shaky relationship with the British post Brexit. Businesses want to make the best of Brexit, by being committed to full employment.
Firms should increase pay, in order to keep bankers and IT consultants employed in Great Britain. Business and consumer confidence needs
to go higher somehow, and businesses need to create agile workplaces. Businesses need to work on increasing the value of
employee engagement as well, for improving productivity and employee retention.
In closing, UK companies should improve in employee retention and improving leadership skills in future employees. There is a broad talent
pool in the UK, and the EU-UK relations will improve by end of 2017. Temporary and permanent full-time roles need to increase for
companies, to lessen the unemployment rate. Improved performance can generate higher profits, and it can generate higher
growth rate too. Theresa May will have to work with Donald Trump, Francois Hollande, and Angela Merkel to build a better global
workplace for 2017. This goal may be the main one for 2017. See the image above of Francois Hollande, France PM; and
Jamie Dimon. Their secret meeting happened a few days ago.
These days, Savannah Guthrie is on maternity leave from the 'Today' show. She is one of my favorite female anchors on
tv, and she has been the main female anchor on the 'Today' show since 2012. NBC has decided to have Meredith Vieira and Katie Couric as anchors, during the first two weeks of January 2017. Meredith hosted the 'Today' show in 2013, and she was back on NBC in
2014 covering the winter olympics. Vieira was the main female anchor on the NBC morning show from 2006 to 2011.
It is refreshing to see that Meredith will be back in the anchor's chair soon.
Now, let's chat about Katie Couric. She was the host of the 'Today' show from 1991 to 2006. Since 2014, she has worked for
Yahoo! as a global news anchor. Over the past decade, Katie has come back to the 'today' show to serve as a host.
Katie has worked at ABC News, and CBS too. She worked at '60 minutes' back in 2009 and 2010.
Finally, both of these women do work outside of journalism. Katie is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a renowned public policy think tank. Meredith has appeared in movies, and tv shows like '30 rock' and 'madagascar 2' movie.
In closing, both journalists have impressive careers in journalism and tv/radio/internet too.
Enjoy the picture above of both ladies from a 'today' show celebration, back in 2012.
Looking forward to seeing both of these former 'today' show hosts in 2017.
Well, Italy is going through some tough times. Matteo Renzi is the youngest Italian Prime Minister, but he will be resigning this week.
Renzi was Prime Minister for close to three years, yet December 4 is the turning point in his tenure in office. His proposals for constitutional reform in Italy, were met with a resounding 'No' vote. It is anybody's guess on who will be the next PM in Italy. Italy is the third largest economy in the Euro zone, most likely behind Germany and France.
Furthermore, the elections could happen in January 2017 as the country braces for political turmoil. The political parties in Italy will have
to work together to fix the electoral law. Matteo Renzi will continue to be the leader of the Democratic Party in Italy, yet he will
resign his post of Prime Minister. The 2016 Italian constitutional referendum defeat signals the end for the former mayor of Florence.
What lies ahead for Matteo Renzi?
This year, politics has been a major topic of change in United States and Great Britain. Now, Italy is adding to the mix of a
year of change. Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan is seen to be the next Prime Minister in Italy, but the elections could bring in
another new candidate. President Obama was a big supporter of Matteo Renzi, as Obama supported Renzi in his last state dinner in Washington
DC. Italy's banking system has been troubled for the past decade, and their political scene needs some new changes.
Finally, the Five Star Movement has a clear ability to win voters on the left and right with a mix of social liberalism, economic populism and tough law-and-order talk. Will this party be the clear choice of change in Italy? The current European Union is not working, according to
the Five Star Movement. Hopefully, these changes in government in Europe and U.S. will not lead their economies to falter further.
The economies of these two regions need to be strengthened further. It is Italy's younger people that need to be employed, and they need
to shape the right change for their economy. The picture above shows Matteo Renzi giving his resignation speech.
Last night, Hillary Clinton lost the presidency to Donald Trump. Donald got more than 270 electoral votes, and his margin of victory is monumental. He got the key votes from Ohio, Florida, and Texas. Many other states turned out to be deciding ones, for the billionaire businessman from NYC.
Many newspaper outlets including CNN, CNBC, Fox News, and ABC were preparing for a Hillary Clinton victory. Heck, she had her victory speech ready on Tuesday night. Yet, the victory speech was thrown away. Donald Trump gave his victory speech this morning
in New York. In 2008, Hillary Clinton lost the democratic nomination to Barack Obama. In 2016, she lost the general election to
Donald Trump. Having a woman president in the USA is not going to happen, until 2020 or 2024.
Where did Hillary Clinton go wrong, in her campaign over the past 2-3 weeks? She won three presidential debates, but FBI director James Comey wanted to do another investigation of the e-mail messages and server before the election. Could this problem be one of the reasons for
Now, let's move onto Donald Trump and Mike Pence. Both of these people are polarizing personalities. Will Mike Pence be the next Dick Cheney?
Dick was a ruthless, smart, and behind the scenes guy during 9/11 and the Afghanistan invasion in 2002-2003.
According to many American historians, Dick Cheney is the most powerful VP. Donald Trump is known for the following buildings/casinos:
Trump Tower, Trump Plaza, Trump Tower International Chicago, Trump Las Vegas hotel, the closed Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, and
Trump 29 (which became Spotlight 29 casino). Will Donald be known for his eccentric policies, or these beautifully designed structures?
Some eccentric policies are building a wall on the border of US, and Mexico. The 2nd policy is to eradicate Muslims from parts of the
US, and the world. Get rid of ISIS, but how is he going to do it. Finally, which people will make up Donald's cabinet in 2 months?
This final question is an important one for all Americans. Will Ivanka Trump, Chris Christie, Newt Gingrich, and Janet Yellen have
jobs in the Trump regime? Janet Yellen may lose her job, as Federal Reserve Chair. Trump has echoed this sentiment a handful of times.
If you have read these paragraphs, then you deserve a lot of credit. Enjoy the final picture of Hillary. If she would have won,
the US would not think about recession but jubilation. Protests are happening in US cities, due to the Trump victory.
Hope the Donald has one term in office only. Don't mean to be negative, but this opinion is shared by many successful Americans. Enough said!!
October is over, and the presidential debates ended quickly. There are six days left before Election Day. Four days ago, early voting was on my mind. Thank god, G. Ripley voted early. The line might have been an hour long, but early voting is the action that many Americans should do.
As for Election Day, the general public will watch election results come in. Can Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump get a clear path
to 270 electoral votes?
For now, the early voting is helping Hillary Clinton according to CNN and other news outlets. The polls might show Donald has the advantage, due
to the recent FBI investigation of 'private server' e-mails on Hillary. FBI Director James Comey might be seen as a hero, in the Trump campaign
these days. Let's go back to the electoral college, and the elusive 270 that Donald is having trouble with reaching. Republicans continue
to flip-flop on who they are supporting, but Paul Ryan is supporting 'the Donald' as the next president. This choice makes Paul
a 'no-no' as the next speaker of the house, in my eyes.
Finally, the expectations should be some presidential firsts for November 8. Hillary could be the first female president, and Bill Clinton would live in the East Wing in January 2017. He would be the 'first gentleman', while Donald could be the first billionaire president.
Hopefully, Tim Kaine can be the vice president to walk into the White House in January 2017. It may not be a far distance for this Virginia
politician. The suspense is six days away, and the TV networks will cover more news. Tune into different networks on next Tuesday.
Hope you like the image of the red, and blue states of this country. Bye bye!!
Last night with Primo Greenleaf, Rahulio Ganpuleone was doing his usual Friday night shenanigans. First, he drank some wine samplers. The first sample was a Eola Hills pinot gris wine, from Willamette valley Oregon. It was an ok pinot gris grape wine, but nothing worth writing on this blog post extensively. The second sample was a 2014 Gravitas blended wine, from bonny doon vineyard (Santa Cruz, ca area). The second sample was a better white blended wine, of the two. Rahulio settled on a sauvignon blanc wine from Sancerre wine region of France, at La Bocca. The sauvignon blanc wine provided a crisp flavor for me. It is a true winner in my sommelier world!
After La Bocca, Primo suggested we go to Murphy's Law in downtown chandler for some more drinking and Live Music! We ventured into the bar,
and a beautiful young seductive lady (YSL) asked us about drinks. She was our waitress, Kimmy. She was a younger vixen that had
incredible blonde hair. All of these nice features of the waitress led Rahulio to do some flirting, at Murphy's Law bar with Kim.
Drinking beer and listening to live music became another fun part, of the night.
Primo G. took in the people watching scene. Rahulio kept flirting with Kimmy, as she is a high school English teacher in Chandler.
Anyways, enjoy the picture above of the Sancerre wine region. Sancerre is a small city in the Loire valley.
The picture provides a panoramic view, and this town is on Rahulio's list of wine valleys to visit.
Au Revoir mes amis!!