f you’ve been in The Landmark readers’ circle for a long time, you won’t be surprised to hear your Landmarkers have been working behind the scenes on a couple of special projects. I like to think the mental gymnastics in this office never stop. It’s as close as we get to an exercise program. Anyway, this column will include a briefing on a couple of special projects coming your way, so carry on.
Remember several years ago when The Landmark did a weekly Pigskin Picks feature, with our staffers going head-to-head to pick the outcome of every NFL game? We’re about to bring you something similar only better. Much better.
Landmark technology specialist Schneider, the tech genius who brought the green screen and additional audio/video enhancements to Landmark Live, is working hard to create a software package that will allow us to open the contest up to everyone who wants to play. The public will be able to go to our website at plattecountylandmark.com and create an account and password to enter what we’re calling Landmark Pickem. You’ll be able to compete against all your Landmark personalities and against your friends. We’ll have prizes, like concert tickets and such, for winners. The best overall record for the NFL season wins a bigger prize. And so on and so forth. It’s all done on our web site–you’ll jump on your phone or computer to plug in your picks each week. There is no cost to enter, of course. Scoring will be done automatically. The oddsmakers’ lines on each game will be listed for those who want to use that information to help make their picks.
There will be a comments section on the Landmark Pickem page where you can do some bragging or trash talk. We’ll have sponsors (shoot me a message if your business wants to be a sponsor) and a whole lot of fun.
This is an entirely new software program being developed by our man Schneider, so there may be a bug or two along the way. Seven of us have already been testing it in the background on our site. Let me just brag right here that only yours truly and Chris Kamler correctly picked the Steelers to beat the Cowboys in the Hall of Fame game last week. The other five testers all missed. Do better, guys.
A sense of humor is always an asset when you’re playing along with The Landmark, so keep that in mind as we work through getting the software rolling. All rules will be posted on the web page, as will the entry forms and the updated records/standings for every contestant.
Should be fun. Our goal is to have this ready to roll by the first week of the NFL season in early September.
Breaking news for you: The Whataburger fast food restaurant location planned near Metro North will be one of the 30 or so Whataburgers set to be co-owned by Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
Another project: The Landmark and Landmark Live connecting with musical acts coming to Ameristar Casino in KC.
First up: The Ozark Mountain Daredevils.
As a treat for our readers and viewers, we’re on a mission to get access to many of the musical groups headed to Ameristar. Ideally the goal is to get a video interview with the groups that we can broadcast via Landmark Live. That probably won’t work in the first offering, which is the Ozark Mountain Daredevils. You know them from some smash hits that in the 1970s included songs like If You Want to Get to Heaven and my favorite, Jackie Blue.
I spoke with the manager for the Daredevils this week and he let me know the boys from the Ozark Mountain Daredevils are not afraid to admit they are technologically challenged, so a video call might be a problem. If the manager were going to be with them, he could set up the Zoom, but since he won’t be present at the time, sounds like we’re going to have to settle for an old-fashioned telephone interview this go-round. I’ll be talking to tech man Schneider to see if he has any ideas but for now I can let you know that Michael Supe Granda of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils is scheduled to call my cell phone on Monday for a fun chat. We’ll keep you posted.
My favorite machine at the gym is the defibrillator.
For the most part Twitter is kind of a dying platform, but every once in a while it will still make me chuckle.
Earlier this week, an account called New York Metro Weather @nymetrowx tweeted: “Sunset in New York City on Tuesday is at 8 p.m. This is the last time that the sun will set at or after 8 p.m. in New York City until May 9, 2022.”
What made me smile was one of the responses to this tweet. The response from Twitter user @jjetsjetsjets was: “How does the city think it is okay to just stop having late sunsets?”
The Hwy. 92 improvement project from Marshall Road to Exit 18 in Platte City is almost complete, but at least some are wondering whether the ride is as smooth as it should be. Did the state-hired crew actually mill up the surface before putting down the overlay? Yes, says DJ Gehrt, city administrator for Platte City, who combined finances with MoDOT for the project. Gehrt told me: “It was milled before the overlay. It is also bumpy, although far better than when it was a mile of potholes. MoDOT is aware of the concern regarding the ride quality. Will see if the ride quality improves with a month or so of use. Ride issues that come through overlay have several causes, ranging from laydown problems to base problems. Asphalt overlay is something like the old story about the princess and the pea. If there is a problem in the road base, it will transmit through to the new surface. When it gets to a certain point, the only solution is full depth reconstruction, a far more extensive, expensive and time-consuming process than a surface mill and overlay. In layman’s terms, mill and overlay on a roadway is like installing new shingles on a house. It looks good, it protects the underlying roof and extends the life of the house and improves its functioning. However, the value of new shingles is not fully realized when there is an underlying problem with the roof structure that would require removal and replacement of the roof structure (rafters, sheeting, felt, etc).”
I will say Gehrt has a common sense way of explaining things. Not every government official has that trait. The late Max Hunt, former county commissioner back in the day, and former Platte City Mayor Frank Offutt, had that ability as well.
(You can find Ivan Foley trying to advise the Ozark Mountain Daredevils on the use of Zoom. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org )