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Photos: top left: David Maril with the late Chuck Thompson, the voice of the Orioles and Colts, the summer he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1993; top right: a perspective shot of Maril at Wrigley Field; featured photo: journalist Ken Decoste with the late, great Harry Caray and Maril.

Cavalcade of Columns

2017 calendar arrives crammed with mixture of surprises and big events

Trump to dominate world news and politics will never be the same

We have not heard the last from Hillary Clinton as the media is challenged to do its job

By David Maril

ONE of the great perks of formerly being in the newspaper business is all the great anonymous sources you develop over the years that remain readily available to provide inside information.

With 2017 on the scene, here’s a guide and calendar with highlights culled from an army of experts, inside traders and outside traitors.

JANUARY

4th: With several cases of flu already reported, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns of a flu season more severe than usual, stressing the importance of the flu vaccine and washing hands.

5th: Stocks in companies that make disinfectant handiwipes are up more than $15 a share.

11th: Legal experts predict the TV network battle over who owns the rights to the “swoosh” sound used on sports broadcasts, accompanying graphics, will wind up in front of the Supreme Court.

15th: One town in Eastern Pennsylvania makes history by having three Dunkin Donuts so close together they share the same parking lot.

20th: After having the words of Lavern Baker’s 1950’s hit changed to “Tweetly Dee,” Donald Trump makes it the official introduction tune of his presidency. It is played at his inauguration and is to be performed in the future by the White House and military bands, replacing “Hail to the Chief.”

22nd: Hillary Clinton, appearing on Face The Nation, Meet The Press, Fox Sunday News and State Of The Union, says she’s ready to resume the serenity of life as a private citizen and is now at peace with herself knowing she won the popular vote against Donald Trump.

27th: Hillary Clinton announces on ABC’s 20/20 program she is running for president in 2020.

FEBRUARY

3rd: Former Secretary of State John Kerry denies rumors that he has two look-alike fill-ins to help with security that also make him appear as if he’s in more than one place at a time

7th: Persistently pestered about whether he’s going to rescind Pete Rose’s lifetime ban for gambling from baseball, Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred says the odds are 10-1 against it because he is repulsed by any hint of betting.

10th: A government task force studying homeland security recommends adapting the blueprint used by many NFL teams in scrutinizing the use of tickets by their season ticket holders.

13th: Trump downplays the threat of Global Warming and says he knows more than the scientists, who are a bunch of losers.

15th: A costly, six-year government study on loan practices reveals consumers are most vulnerable borrowing money when they are short of cash.

18th: A national association of telemarketers wants to repeal the anti-telemarketing “Do Not Call” bill, saying it is a threat to the health and fitness of the American public. “For many people, the only exercise they get is when we call, making them get up from the dinner table,” a spokesman explains.

21st: PBS schedules Ken Burns’ new 15-part, 25-hour documentary on the role badminton has played in the American way of life, to air on Monday nights.

25th: When questioned why cable rates keep going up, an industry spokesman explains, “We are continually adding new channels, like the Yodeling Network, Dinosaur Channel and Road Shopping Network.

MARCH

2nd: A poll in USA Today reveals that after the surprise victory of Donald Trump in the presidential election, 75 percent of Americans don’t believe polls are accurate.

6th: Despite an early startup of the flu season at the end of 2016, national health officials admit cases ended up actually being a little below normal.

14th: NBC, which is still airing Law And Order SVU, announces a new Law and Order spin-off show, called “Law and Order: SUV”. The series will deal exclusively with cases involving people who own heavy-duty, all-wheel drive vehicles.

19th: After Trump admits that Vladimir Putin is the world leader he most respects, Mitt Romney, suddenly ends his peace treaty with Trump and goes back on the attack. He resurrects his comments about “Trump’s bullying, greed, showing off, and absurd third grade theatrics.”

21st: After having dinner with Trump and discussing a possible post as U.S. Secretary of the Olympics, Romney says he has been "impressed by what I have seen and that President Trump is the very man who can lead us to that better future.”

25th: As plans are finalized to schedule the tearing down of the original Tappan Zee Bridge when the new one opens, a group of preservationists get a court order to halt the demolition, insisting the roadway at the northern end of the Garden State Parkway is a historic landmark and treasure.

APRIL

1st: Green Party nominee Jill Stein says there is controversy remaining over the presidential voting results from Texas and demands a recount.

6th: A star Russian marathon runner, who is a refugee from China and admits to hacking the Democratic Party’s emails during the 2016 election campaign, says he plans a lawsuit against Trump for implying he’s 400 pounds and sits around all day.

13th: The Florida Marlins announce that with attendance down, they have no other choice but to raise ticket prices drastically in the future.

20th: U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, Senate Minority Leader, says that despite all the criticism from the Republicans, opinion polls prove a majority of Americans believe Obamacare is a good thing.

23rd: When asked why the latest opinion polls show a growing number of voters worry about the federal budget deficit and are becoming skeptical of big-spending programs, Schumer says polls are meaningless and he doesn’t pay any attention to them.

29th: Federal regulators make it mandatory, beginning with 2018 models, for all hybrid cars to be equipped with sound-speakers that play recordings of truck motors roaring when the cars are in their electric modes. This way pedestrians will be able to hear the clean-air vehicles coming.

MAY

2nd: CBS has to deal with an age discrimination lawsuit against “60 Minutes” that claims that not enough on-air talent under 65 are considered when full-time jobs open up.

6th: Despite the early startup of the flu season at the beginning of 2017, national health officials admit cases ended up actually being below normal.

8th: Fox business commentator Lou Dobbs is hired as an honorary Mexico border patrol guard.

14th: A research project done by a media consultant company reveals that Barack Obama holds a 97-0 lead over George W. Bush in number of TV appearances for the first three months out of the presidential office.

20th: Another request by Amtrak for stimulus money to implement an upgrade project in the Northeastern corridor, that would remove half a million cars off the highways each day, is rejected by Trump and the GOP Congress because it has the support of environmental advocates.

28th: Trump invites Soviet President Vladimir Putin for a two-day visit at the White House and most of the time is spent with him teaching his guest how to tweet.

JUNE

3rd: A special translator, usually one of Trump’s staffers, becomes part of every public speaking appearance by the president to put the right spin on his words for American audiences. “We don’t want the public jumping to the wrong conclusions, taking his words literally,’’ a staffer explains.

8th: Manfred announces all MLB post-season games will start after 9 pm to maximize prime time audience slots and commercial revenue.

14th: Trump says that even though it’s only the crooked, lying media that cares, and not the voters, he plans to release his tax returns in the near future.

20th: Fox Sports is experimenting with six broadcasters in a booth for their college football broadcasts.

25th: Martha Raddatz hosts the program so frequently, ABC considers changing the name of its news program to “Sunday Morning without George Stephanopoulos.”

JULY

3rd: After several weeks of panels made up strictly of political activists and radio show opinion hosts, NBC renames its Sunday news show to “Where Is The Press?”

9th: With all of her excuses and finger-pointing for her defeat in the presidential election, Hillary Clinton wins the not so coveted “Poorest Loser” Award from the Sour Grapes Association. Trump, a few days earlier, dismissed his trophy as “Worst Winner”, given by the Sportsmanship Association, calling the group a bunch of chokers and losers.

15th: Trump says that even though it’s only the crooked, lying media that cares, and not the voters, he plans to release his tax returns in the near future.

20th: When accused of having too many conflicts of interest because of his connections to businesses while he is in the White House, Trump says his only conflict of interest is which football game to watch when two or more are on at the same time,

25th: Senator Elizabeth Warren accuses Republicans who vote against a Wall Street financial regulation bill she introduces as corrupt and evil and then complains about the lack of civility in Congress.

30th: Bernie Sanders insists he should be considered the leader of the Democrats despite refusing to officially become a member of the party.

AUGUST

3rd: Trump disputes the international findings that there is wide-spread Russian doping in the Olympics.

8th: In response to the criticism of him not attending security briefings, Trump, who says he “knows more than the generals,” begins scheduling his own sessions where he provides the military, CIA and FBI with his own updates.

13th: Actor Alec Baldwin, who has been praised for his impersonation of Trump on Saturday Night Live, says he will challenge Hillary in 2020.

19th: A study by one of the new think tanks reveals that 30 percent of successful politicians are skilled ventriloquists, adept at speaking out of both sides of their mouth.

24th: Trump says that even though it’s only the crooked, lying media that cares, and not the voters, he plans to release his tax returns in the near future.

29th: A White House spokesperson says people should not jump to conclusions just because a Labor Secretary is anti-labor, the Housing Secretary is anti-housing, the Education Secretary isn’t a big proponent of expanding public education, and most of the diplomats seldom practice diplomacy. He insists rumors are untrue White House chauffeurs will be hired without driving licenses, chefs brought on who have never cooked, judges appointed with no law degrees, and a surgeon general is about to be named who is a holistic healer.

SEPTEMBER

5th: A distant Trump cousin builds a Ritz Hotel in Moscow and arranges to have weekly appearances by the Soviet President called “Putin On the Ritz”.

12th: Weary of being criticized for communicating with the public only through rallies and tweets, Trump announces he will hold his own brand of weekly press conferences. The format will be the opposite of traditional. He will ask the media questions instead of them interrogating him.

18th: Leaked email documents, aided by China hackers, embarrass Trump and he demands a congressional investigation.

23rd: A fifth removed cousin of Trump opens a lucrative chain of luxury hotels in metropolitan centers around the world named Trump’s Presidential Suites.

28th: The decision to allow passengers permission to use cellphones on flights is so unpopular, several airlines institute higher fares for flights that don’t allow the babbling.

OCTOBER

3rd: One consumer group reveals that none of the celebrity spokespeople making commercials for Reverse Mortgages have ever owned a house.

9th: Trump says that even though it’s only the crooked, lying media that cares, and not the voters, he plans to release his tax returns in the near future.

16th: Vice President Mike Pence is recognized by a national press association as being the all-time most uninformative interview guest. Pence is credited with consistently sticking only to talking points, deftly changing the subject and always able to avoid answering questions.

23rd: A new dietary study reveals that a diet rich with deep-fried foods is not the threat to health originally believed by the medical world.

26th: A research project completed by a prestigious medical association announces that greasy foods are responsible for obesity and over 15 different diseases and health ailments.

NOVEMBER

1st: Several national store chains begin offering 24-hour Christmas special deals, opening at midnight.

9th: Disgraced Wake Forrest football radio analyst Tommy Elrod, who was let go for giving away game information to opposition teams, gets a job with WikiLeaks.

23rd: The highlight of the Thanksgiving Parade in New York is a giant Trump float featuring a 50-foot sized figure of the president.

26th: Prime time World Series TV ratings for the Giants and Indians World Series showed a drop in number of viewers under age 18, from 40 percent the year before to 1 percent.

DECEMBER

5th: To smooth over tattered relations with China, Trump visits the Great Wall. He meets with the country’s top officials to help with his design for building a wall on the border to Mexico he has promised his supporters. His plan for financing includes selling ads on the wall.

14th: A new network, available only on line, will combine fishing and golf and be called “Fish And Chips.” The creators boast it will be the only true “streaming” network.

21st: Trump says that even though it’s only the crooked, lying media that cares, and not the voters, he plans to release his tax returns in the near future.

28th: Calendar for 2018 arrives.


David Maril has been a columnist, sports editor and copy editor at three newspapers published in Massachusetts, winning numerous writing and section-design awards. As sports editor of the Milford Daily News, he covered the Boston Red Sox, Celtics and the New England Patriots. At the Brockton Enterprise he served as vice president of the newspaper’s guild, dealing with contract negotiations and workforce issues through difficult economic times. He also served on the board of the Boston Chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, where he is a lifetime member and voter in Major League Baseball’s annual Cooperstown Hall of Fame balloting. For several years was a columnist for Voice Of Baltimore. The son of the late artist Herman Maril, whose work is included in over 100 museum collections, David splits his time between Cape Cod, MA and Baltimore, MD. He currently serves as president of the Herman Maril Foundation, which supports curatorial projects, art education programs and exhibitions related to the study of his father’s work. The website, featuring his father’s artwork, is hermanmaril.com. A graduate of Park School in Brooklandville, MD, David majored in English at Clark University in Worcester, MA.

If you wold like to comment on this blog David can be reached at david@davidmaril.com.