Bridge: Nov. 23, 2017

Tribune Content Agency

Today’s declarer reminds me of a philosopher who refused to cry over spilled milk, consoling himself with the thought that the milk was four-fifths water.

Against four spades, West led the deuce of diamonds: six, king, ace. South next drew trumps and led another diamond. West took his queen and knew South had the ten (East would have played the ten at Trick One if he had held it) and maybe the nine.

So, seeing the need for fast heart tricks, West shifted boldly to the jack. East took three hearts for down one.


South was philosophical; he made the time-honored remark about spilled milk. But the spillage was his own fault: South must refuse the first diamond.

If East shifts to a trump, South draws trumps, takes the ace of diamonds and leads the ten, planning to pitch a heart from dummy if West plays low. If instead West covers, South ruffs in dummy and later discards a heart from dummy on the nine of diamonds. He can lose no more than two hearts and a diamond.


You hold: S A Q 5 2 H K 7 3 D J 6 C A 9 6 2. Your partner opens one spade, you respond 2NT (a conventional forcing raise) and he bids three hearts. What do you say?

ANSWER: Most partnerships agree that after responder’s 2NT, opener’s bid of a new suit shows a singleton there. The idea is to help responder judge whether he has useful cards. Since your king of hearts is a “duplicated” value opposite partner’s singleton, sign off at four spades.

North dealer

N-S vulnerable


S A Q 5 2

H K 7 3

D J 6

C A 9 6 2


S 8 4

H J 9 4

D Q 8 5 2

C K 10 5 3


S 9 6

H A Q 10 5

D K 4 3

C …read more

Source:: The Mercury News

Horoscope: Nov. 23, 2017

CELEBRITIES BORN ON THIS DAY: Miley Cyrus, 25; Salli Richardson-Whitfield, 50; Robin Roberts, 57; Bruce Hornsby, 63.

Happy Birthday: Mixed emotions will lead to a confusing year. If you see an opportunity, don’t hesitate or wait for someone’s approval. Make a move because it’s what’s best for you. Don’t question whether you are heading in the right direction or if you may have made a mistake that will cause you regret in the future. Do what feels right intuitively. Your numbers are 2, 9, 18, 27, 36, 39, 46.

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Taking reserved measures will be better than getting worked up over something you cannot change. Exercise or some form of physical activity will give you the time and stress relief you need to think matters through rationally. 2 stars

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Not everyone will have your best interests at heart. Be careful when dealing with your peers. The competition will be stiff, so don’t offer anyone information that could be used against you. Moderation and secrecy will be in your best interest. 2 stars

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Be aware of what’s going on around you. Learn from the mistakes others make and avoid anyone trying to get you involved in something that doesn’t fit into your schedule or your plans for the future. Look out for number one. 5 stars

CANCER (June 21-July 22): Spend more time with the people you love. Working toward simple goals and meaningful endeavors will make you feel good about what you accomplish and how you move forward. Personal improvements will make you feel good about what you have accomplished. 3 stars

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): A challenge will do you good and encourage personal growth. Indulgence should be countered with physical fitness and common sense. Networking will help you …read more

Source:: The Mercury News

Menlo Park: Council to begin creating district boundaries

Menlo Park officials will begin the process of moving from at-large to district-based elections at a meeting next week.

On Wednesday, the council could begin carving out district boundaries and forming an independent or advisory group to oversee the work. The council also could initiate steps to turn Menlo Park into a charter city.

The goal is to have everything done before the November 2018 election, when three council seats are up for grabs.

At Wednesday’s meeting, council members will gather residents’ input, including suggestions for drawing district boundary lines. According to a staff report, each district must contain a nearly equal number of cross-section residents.

The city last month started moving away from at-large elections, where candidates can be elected by everyone instead of by residents within particular districts, in response to the threat of a discrimination-tinged lawsuit.

City Attorney Bill McClure urged the council to change the voting system because a lawsuit could cost millions of dollars and no public agency has prevailed in cases involving alleged Voting Rights Act violations. The council on Oct. 4 authorized a contract with National Demographics Corp. to assist with the transition and appropriated $75,000 from budget reserves to cover the cost.

Currently, four of the five council members live between downtown and Sharon Heights and one lives in The Willows. Depending on how voting boundaries eventually are drawn, one or more incumbents could end up competing against each other for the same district in future elections.

On Aug. 21, the city received a letter from Kevin I. Shenkman, an attorney with Malibu-based law firm Shenkman & Hughes, stating that it is violating the California Voting Rights Act of 2001. Shenkman threatened to sue unless the current voting system is changed to one that better represents Latino and African-American residents, who predominantly live in the Belle Haven neighborhood. He …read more

Source:: The Mercury News

YouTube will block ads against creepy videos targeted at children (GOOG)

Peppa Pig

Multiple reports show that there’s a growing trend on YouTube for disturbing content featuring children — like showing them tied up or wearing revealing clothing.
Another trend involves showing cartoon characters that are popular with children doing weird and disturbing things — like Peppa Pig drinking bleach.
YouTube will crack down on channels that make money from advertising by showing these kinds of videos.
It will ban predatory comments left under videos showing minors.

There’s a weird category of YouTube video which involves mistreating kids for entertainment — like tying them up with tape, or showing them wearing vulnerable clothing. There’s another, almost equally disturbing, trend towards showing popular cartoon characters like Peppa Pig doing weird things like drinking bleach.

That’s according to multiple reports from blogger James Bridle, BuzzFeed, and The Verge, which found popular, verified channels showing disturbing content targeted at kids.

And YouTube is finally cracking down.

The site said it would remove videos that “may be endangering a child,” even if the uploader didn’t intend to cause harm. As a result, it’s deleted 50 channels and thousands of videos.

In response to reports that people were leaving creepy comments under videos featuring kids, YouTube said it would block all predatory comments. The Verge found that, in the case of one home video showing two young girls doing gymnastics, a commenter had described the children as “beautiful.” Another commenter asked if viewers had an erection.

YouTube has also stopped funding 3.5 million videos that feature disturbing cartoons. One example found by James Bridle shows the cartoon character Peppa Pig drinking bleach. YouTube has now blocked the video. YouTube said it would remove ads from inappropriate videos targeting families, “even if done for comedic or satirical purposes.” Where cartoons are obviously …read more

Source:: Business Insider