The resident faculty left a note in the corridor outside the mail room that read “2, or 3 OT, or 5 PK.” We think that was a clue. (More)

First our thanks to last week’s writers. On Monday, the BPI Squirrel ranted on Marriage and the Race Card in Furthermore!, addisnana mused On Biting (and not about bugs) in Midday Matinee, and Winning Progressive asked us to Help the EPA Save 13,000 Lives per Year in Our Earth. On Tuesday, Winning Progressive celebrated Barack Bests Boehner in Budget Battle’s Beginning Bout in Morning Feature, and JanF was Pragmatically Progressive in HEMMED In and offered a Quick Take on Getting Real About Jobs in Evening Focus. On Wednesday, we had a Nutshell on McConnell’s Blink and the Frustrighti’s Fury in Morning Feature, the Squirrel discussed Rupert Murdoch’s Hairball in Furthermore!, addisnana warmed up to Comfort Food in Midday Matinee, and JanF brought a Quick Take on Balancing Acts in Evening Focus. On Thursday, we began our series on Enthusiasm with The News Cycle in Morning Feature, JanF was Speaking of Primacy in HEMMED In, and Deborah Phelan reminded us that Famine Threatens 11 Million in the Horn of Africa in Our Earth. On Friday, we continued our series on Enthusiasm with The System in Morning Feature, addisnana shared a stark protest idea with Die Quickly! in Furthermore!, Winning Progressive reviewed The Last Mountain in Our Earth, and JanF brought our news Week in Review in Evening Focus. On Saturday, we concluded our series on Enthusiasm with ‘Little Things’ in Morning Feature, JanF shared Saturday Videos in HEMMED In, Deborah Phelan called us to action with East Africa Famine Part II in Our Earth, and JanF voted neigh on Herd In-stinks in Evening Focus. On Sunday, Ms. Crissie opened the mail bag with Reinventing the Wheel? in Morning Feature, Winning Progressive offered Weekend Reading in Furthermore!, and JanF compiled our weekly Eco News Roundup in Our Earth.

Tonight Lake Toba returns to Evening Focus to continue his series on Water Security. He will share the first installment of a three-part interview with Craig Withers of The Carter Center. Craig Withers has been working in Africa to eradicate Guinea Worm Disease, and described that process in depth for Lake Toba. The rest of the interview will be published over the next two Mondays – July 25th and August 1st – in Evening Focus. Don’t miss this exclusive interview series!

Please join our Authors! We have Morning Feature openings this Tuesday and Wednesday (July 19th and 20th), and Evening Focus openings this Tuesday through Thursday (July 20th-22nd). We also have openings or our campus soapbox Furthermore!, our afternoon people-watching series Midday Matinee, and our evening environmental series Our Earth. Share your insights with the BPI community!

If you are already a BPI Author, you will find a complete list of category openings in the Authors Notepad in your Dorm Room. To reserve a slot, type in your user name, topic, and date, and click “Save Notes.” I will remove your note when I add you to our Schedule.

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Also: Please share your stories of offline activism in Things We Did This Week.

That leaves the resident faculty and the note they left outside the mail room, as they made their way from the wine cellar library where they spend the weekend drinking thinking on our motto of Magis vinum, magis verum (“More wine, more truth”) to the hot tub faculty lounge for their weekly game where the underwear goes flying planning conference. The staff immediately realized the note referred to the Women’s World Cup Final. The staff also knew the note had to be a clue to the resident faculty’s plans for the week. But what did it mean?

The Women’s World Cup final was a heartbreaking defeat for Team USA. The match was tied 1-1 at the end of regulation, and 2-2 at the end of overtime. Team Japan won the penalty kick shootout, 3-1. All other things being equal, the resident faculty reasoned, Team USA would have won had they scored 2 goals in regulation, or reached 3 goals in overtime, or made all 5 of their penalty kicks. (Japan did not need to attempt their fifth penalty kick.)

Of course that’s a speculative estimate. But to win, you need a target and a plan. Not just a vague sense of “more than the opponent,” but a specific estimate of how many “more than the opponent” is likely to be, and a plan for how to reach that target number.

In soccer the goals go on the scoreboard as they happen, so you know whether you’re winning or losing and can adjust your target as you go. But in an election you don’t know the score – in actual votes – until it’s too late.

So this week the resident faculty will share insights from this weekend’s Campaign Academy offered by Democracy For America. How do you estimate how many votes a candidate will need to win an election? Where will you find those votes, and how do you get them?

What we learn won’t help Team USA in women’s soccer, but it can help the other Team USA. The one we’re all on. Because if we want to win, politics can’t be a spectator sport.

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Happy Monday!