With all the glorification of war that takes place during the nation’s sporting events, maybe it wouldn’t be a bad idea if a sports team around here pays homage to guy wearing a banana outfit while riding a Segway.

“This could be one of the reasons that I’m still alive,” Matt Birr of Fridley tells KARE 11’s Boyd Huppert.

He was shot in the head during a tour in Afghanistan. He’s lost part of his vision and still has seizures.

He can’t work.

So he dresses in costume to entertain drivers on their way to/from work.

“If I’m not able to get a job or work, might as well get people to laugh that are coming home from a bad day at work,” he says, “so I don’t feel worthless.”

His friend took his own life last year and for a few weeks he couldn’t wear the costumes, he wrote on his Facebook page.

Mr. Birr says his effort to get people to smile helps him push back his own demons.

Rick Bowmer | AP file

U.S. Bank is losing a fortune giving away cash, Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal writes today.

The bank is asking the Metropolitan Airports Commission for a better deal at the airport, where 35 million passengers a year are a “captive audience.” And the bank still can’t make money charging people for money.

The bank pays the airport $636,000 a year for the right to place ATMs around the property. Half of the $3 transaction fee goes to the airport (Funny, they don’t tell you that).

Perhaps U.S. Bank should’ve known something was up last year when the airports commission put the ATM contract out for bid and the bank was the only one to bid on the deal.

Apparently, there’s a cultural change going on. Cash? It’s so yesterday. ATM transactions declined 15 percent from 2010 to 2015 and are expected to keep deteriorating by 2 to 5 percent annually.

The Smithsonian, in an essay on the history of the ATM, says banks have seen the end coming for some time.

Basically, people are using cash less and less. Boston-based research firm Aite Group said in 2011 that US use of cash was expected to decline by $200 billion by 2015.

The Federal Reserve’s 2013 study of payment methods in America found that on the whole, payments are increasingly card-based, especially debit card. The study also found that the average payment made using a card, whether debit, credit or prepaid, is decreasing, meaning that people are using cards for the kinds of small purchases they once would have used cash to make.

MasterCard estimates that 80 percent of consumer spending in the US is cashless, a figure that came in a press release heralding their claim that a number of nations are moving to a cashless society (and should be taken with a grain of salt, given its source).

Then there’s the much-talked-about, almost-cresting mobile payments wave, which allows consumers to use their smartphones to pay for purchases. Venmo, a mobile wallet-cum-social network app that serves up peer-to-peer payments with emoji and millennial élan, is growing dot.com fast: According to Bloomberg Businessweek, it processed $700 million payments in the third quarter of 2014, up $141 million from last year.

Apple’s new iPhone 6 comes with Apple Pay, which allows users to use tap existing contactless payment terminals to tap and pay (although, for the moment at least, it seems to be confusing cashiers the world over). The funds come either from the credit card the user’s iTunes account is connected to or another that the user wishes, but, crucially, credit card information is not stored on the phone.

The U.S. may not ever be a cashless society, but ATMs provide a service that is increasingly available elsewhere. You can deposit a check by taking a picture of it with your smartphone, for example.

Still, the ATM might have a future, Smithsonian argues. It just needs to do something else.

Oh, hey, another Confederate flag controversy in outstate Minnesota.

This time it’s Erhard, Minn., south of Pelican Rapids, Minn., where someone thought a Confederate flag in the Fourth of July parade was the perfect way to promote the local NAPA auto parts store, the Fargo Forum reports today.

“That was his personal vehicle and his doing,” Mark Farnam, who runs the Pelican Rapids store, said of the employee. “I’m disappointed that he chose to do that.”

In the 15 years he has attended the parade, it was the first time he saw the Confederate flag make an appearance, he said. He said it was particularly “stupid” to fly the Confederate flag in light of the debate that has recently exploded over it.

The killings of black churchgoers in Charleston, S.C., on June 17 prompted debates about removing the Confederate flag from public places. Photos of the alleged shooter, 21-year-old Dylann Roof, who is white, show him posing with the Confederate flag.

“I just found it so appalling,” said Bowhall, 64. Others around him were “livid,” he added.

Another parade-goer, 29-year-old Ryan Ruud, was surprised to see the flag and took a picture, which he posted on social media.

“I was just disappointed because regardless of current events, it seems like it’s not the most logical thing to fly on Independence Day,” he said. “You would really fly the flag of a group that was trying to split” the nation?

He at least got the proper display of the flag correct. Of the three flags on the “float,” the American flag was displayed highest.