Good afternoon, Mr. and Mrs. America and all the ships at sea! I like to think of myself as an Optimist. And on Fridays, I like whip out a big, bold new episode of NEWS … AROUND … THE … LEAGUE. Join me, won’t you?

I realize I’ve been away for a couple weeks – off on a quick, but much-needed vacation. I went whitewater rafting through the crocodile-infested Batoka Gorge along the Limpopo River in central southern Africa. But that’s not important.