Actors’ Homes Become Sets During COVID-19

Suddenly, a dog walks past the screen and a baby cries, awoken from a too-short nap by nearby construction. Hastily made beds, half-done puzzles, and bread-making supplies clutter the background. And then there’s the guy who forgot to push mute, the one without pants, and another who holds the camera too close.

Although this might sound like every Zoom meeting or FaceTime call you’ve participated in since March, it’s actually a list of problematic scenarios faced by actors including Bette Midler, Leslie Odom Jr., and Dan Levy when they rolled out the welcome mats and allowed their homes to serve as makeshift sets for scripted TV and movie productions such as Coastal Elites (HBO), Host (Shudder), Mythic Quest (Apple TV+), and Love in the Time of Corona (Freeform) when pandemic rules and safety recommendations closed soundstages and required casts and crews to remain socially distant and well sanitized.

“It’s truly amazing that we got anything other than a blooper reel. We had WiFi outages, phones freezing, phones ringing, dogs barking, kids running wild, [props] breaking, people putting themselves on mute and, worse, not knowing they’re not on mute. Rob [McElhenney] dropped his laptop and broke the screen. F. Murray Abraham accidentally called the emergency number twice while trying to set up his iPhone,” says Mythic Quest writer and executive producer Megan Ganz of the chaotic making of a bonus episode that saw the workplace comedy’s fictional employees (and the people who play them) #WFH and cope with the COVID-19 crisis. “There were a million complications, like actors doing their own makeup.”

For Emmy-winning director Jay Roach, who is used to massive crews and elaborate sets for films like Bombshell, it was “a matter of balancing safety with the value of telling this story while it’s relevant” and “accepting that

Continue Reading

Home Bancshares: Relatively Cheap Valuation Sets Up A H-O-M-B Run Opportunity (NASDAQ:HOMB)

Investment Thesis

Headquartered in Conway, Arkansas, Home BancShares, Inc. (HOMB) is a $16.9 billion asset holding company and parent to Centennial Bank, a Southeastern commercial and retail bank. Centennial provides a wide range of commercial and retail banking services to businesses, developers, and individuals. With its more than 165 branch location, Centennial offers services across the state of Arkansas, the panhandle and south Florida, Alabama’s Gulf Coast and New York City.

While HOMB has continued to grow much faster than bank peers, some have called into question the long-term net interest margin (NIM) potential juxtaposed against the rate of future earnings growth. While credit is difficult to forecast, I do believe future net charge-offs (NCOs) are going to be limited in nature. Expense management has been a clear priority for the management team, and in my mind, it will be the swing factor for future profitability.

Today, my bullish stance is driven by two major variables. First, upon further review of the credit portfolio, I believe that HOMB is set up well to absorb all future NCOs that might hide in the lending portfolio. Second, and this one is geared more for the longer term, I believe the NIM is rather resilient at a ~4.00% level. While it is clear that I do have it working lower, HOMB’s niche lending and superior deal placement should warrant higher loan yields.

It’s always frustrating to see banks prove their strong profitability ratios, only to have shareholders compress valuation simply due to peers working lower. Banks often trade in tandem with one another and their valuations rarely get out of sync, at least from a relative comparison. In my mind, once there are some signs of sustainable economic growth, or a more productive yield curve improvement, I believe HOMB will be one of

Continue Reading

Handyman sets out to save them from extinction


Kirk Jackson explains why using a manual typewriter is almost like playing a piano, and how it inspires him.

Nashville Tennessean

Nearly four years ago, longtime collector Kirk Jackson happened across a dusty, old manual typewriter in an antiques shop — and that turned into a full-blown obsession

He’s only 42, but handyman Kirk Jackson has always been an old-school guy who loves old stuff.

He collects old oil lamps and old coins. He fixes and preserves old furniture and old machines. He uses roller and hand brushes instead of spray guns to paint houses. He keeps his broken-down 1980 Jeep parked next to his work shed because he likes to look at it.

So it was natural four years ago that he was drawn to an old, dirty case in the Dead People’s Things antique store in Goodlettsville during a shopping trip.

Handyman Kirk Jackson keeps most of his 220 manual typewriters in this work shed about 100 yards behind his Goodlettsville home. (Photo: Larry McCormack / The Tennessean)

Jackson hoped it was an old record player, but when he opened the case, a filthy 1954 Remington manual typewriter was inside. The keys still worked though.

“It was intrigue at first sight,” he said.

Jackson got the store owner to come down from $50 to $35 on the price. He brought home his new-old typewriter, blew away dust and dirt with an air compressor, tapped out some sentences and made a bunch of typing mistakes. 

After a few paragraphs, something clicked for Jackson.

He started buying manual typewriters. He taught himself how to repair them. He scoured the internet for parts, and he joined online groups of manual typewriter enthusiasts and collectors.

He started selling some typewriters that he has cleaned up and fixed. He started repairing other

Continue Reading