Aug 18 2016

What The Hell Is Up With That Robbery?

If you’ve been following the Rio Olympics at all, you likely have heard about Ryan Lochte and his teammates being robbed at gunpoint.

Taser Gun

(Note: the photo above is a taser. It was in the DaddyTips image library. It has nothing to do with the story. But it is a gun, albeit not a deadly one.)

Unless it never happened. Which is not what we’re saying AT ALL. This is just reporting what others have reported and adding some musings about the “Dad is my Spokesperson” thing.

According to the AP, two of Lochte’s teammates were pulled from a plane and had their passports seized. That seems odd to me. Here’s some details:

USOC spokesperson Patrick Sandusky said Jack Conger and Gunnar Bentz were released by local authorities after being pulled from a flight at the Rio de Janeiro airport, with the understanding that discussions would continue amid uncertainty over what truly took place during a late outing the night Olympic swimming wrapped up at the Rio Games.
Fellow teammate Jimmy Feigen also plans to talk to officials, Sandusky said, as he navigates a judge’s order that keeps him in Brazil. The order similarly called for Lochte’s passport to be seized, but the star swimmer had already returned to the United States before authorities could enforce the decision.
A lawyer for Conger and Bentz said Thursday that they won’t be allowed to leave Brazil until they provide testimony to investigators. The swimmers didn’t speak to reporters as they left the airport, shuttled away by a black car waiting outside. They departed for an unspecified location in Brazil and had yet to testify, said attorney Sergio Viegas. (emphasis added)

Kinda bizarre, right? Is it possible that they made the whole thing up? Apparently accounts of the details of the event have changed, which is less surprising when you read that Lochte and his teammates were, according to published reports, inebriated. What is very strange to me is that the athletes aren’t being allowed to leave the country. That feels punitive.

Here’s what Lochte’s father Steve had to say (this is why I’m writing about the whole thing on DaddyTips):

Lochte’s father told The Associated Press by phone from his Florida home that his son called him Tuesday after arriving in the United States. The 32-year-old swimmer was going to pick up his car and buy a new wallet to replace the one that he said was stolen.
“I’m just happy he’s safe,” Steve Lochte said. “It was an unfortunate experience for him and the other three. I don’t know what all the controversy is. They were basically taken out of the taxi and robbed. The main thing is he’s very lucky that he’s safe and that all they got was his cash and wallet.”

So Ryan Lochte was allowed to leave Rio.

A brief word about the whole “Dad as Spokesperson” phenomenon.

This is something that I continue to be fascinated by. Why does a 32-year-old need his father to speak on his behalf? Athletes in particular seem to have their Dads talk for them, especially in situations like, say, the NFL draft. We saw that in Jerry Maguire; the father of someone Jerry is trying to represent is clearly running his kid’s life. In that case it makes a bit more sense. The kid is young, impressionable, possibly not that great with money. That was the case in Jerry Maguire. It’s probably a little less true today. But Dad as head of the Athlete Brain Trust? OK. I can work with that.

It’s “Dad as Spokesperson” that I get stuck on. It happens more often in sports than anywhere else, but it also occurs in entertainment. At a certain point, I would think that one wouldn’t want want to have one’s parents speaking for you. (I apologize for that sentence.) It just feels weird to me. I love my kids but I want them to be able to speak for themselves, especially at the age of 32.

This should in no way be construed as a dig at any athlete, nor should it be seen as shedding any doubt on the story that U.S. Olympic athletes were robbed in Rio. The story is bizarre and doesn’t seem to be getting covered the way I would like, which is to say that this seems like a straightforward series of events — guys get robbed at gunpoint, police investigate, they get to move on. People not being allowed to leave the country? That’s odd. Bottom line: we’re just reporting what other outlets have reported, outlets with actual reporters doing journalism. If you want to read more about the whole mess, there are links below.

Three American Olympic swimmers planned to meet with Brazilian law enforcement Thursday to discuss a reported robbery targeting 12-time medalist Ryan Lochte and his teammates, a U.S. Olympic Committee official said.

Source: Ryan Lochte’s swim teammates to meet with authorities on robbery – Chicago Tribune


May 20 2015

Conan O Brien and Louis CK Talk Parenting on Letterman

David Letterman‘s last show is tonight, May 20, 2015. I tend to go to bed too early to watch Dave these days, but thanks to YouTube it’s easy to catch what you missed. Here are two fun video clips in which Conan O’Brien and Louis CK talk parenting on Letterman.

 

English: David Letterman hosting President Bar...

English: David Letterman hosting President Barack Obama at Late Show with David Letterman. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

A couple of editorial notes: the above photo is from Wikipedia and they say it is in the Public Domain. It is not a photo from either of the clips embedded below. Also, for each of the two clips, I included a link to the part where they start talking about parenting stuff, in case you’d rather not watch the whole thing. Who says this isn’t the DaddyTips age of Internet Video Viewing Options?

First up: Conan O’Brien in 2012. Obviously he discusses the NBC Tonight Show kerfuffle. But about halfway through, Conan tells a hilarious story about the time his family got to meet the President, but almost didn’t because, you know, kids.

 

 

Next: Louis CK, January 26, 2015. At the 9:50 point in the video, they segue nicely from Deflategate into what values you should teach your children.

See? It’s just three fathers talking about their kids. Celebrities are just like us!

Even though I’m usually in bed by the time Dave’s show starts, I’m sorry to see him go, and not only because it means I’ll never get to be one of his guests. He’s had a great career, and brought a pleasantly caustic sense of humor that will be sorely missed. Congratulations, Dave. Enjoy your retirement.


May 18 2015

Man Learns About Dad’s Past Via Nazi Banner

This is a heavy news story.

Imagine getting a big Nazi banner in the mail and then realizing it has something to do with your Dad. (Actually, if it didn’t have anything to do with your Dad, that would be even more messed up.)

From Wauwatosa Now:

Wauwatosa — Robert Griffin was overcome with a wave of memories as he read a letter from a distant stranger — a letter that, at least in part, filled in some of the blanks of his father’s wartime experiences.

The letter was sent by Gigi Hickey, who uncovered a 12-foot-long, crumpled Nazi banner emblazoned with a black swastika — and complete with 84 American soldiers’ signatures — while cleaning out her deceased mother’s North Dakota home about two years ago. The banner was stuffed inside a howitzer canister and hidden in a trunk, a painful piece of history that Hickey thinks her mother, Georgia Henrichsen, wanted to stow away and forget.

Other than the specifics, this is the main bit:

Robert Griffin was overcome with a wave of memories as he read a letter from a distant stranger — a letter that, at least in part, filled in some of the blanks of his father’s wartime experiences.

I’m in the process of piecing together some of my own father’s past. There’s a lot I don’t know, and a lot that I’ve accepted I will never know. For me, this article is somewhat validating, since it shows that I’m far from the only son who wants to find out about his Dad. I can’t say that I’m expecting any artifact as dramatic and jarring as the one this man received. That said, it sounds like it was illuminating, which is a good thing.

Source: Through Nazi banner, Wauwatosa man learns of father’s experiences at war


May 09 2015

Father-Son Coach Team at Baylor

We’ve written about father and son quarterbacks, now we have fathers and sons coaching college football at Baylor.

 

English: An American football game between the...

English: An American football game between the 1952 Houston Cougars and the Baylor Bears at Rice Stadium in Houston. Pictured are Houston’s M. “Buddy” Gillioz (#77), J.D. Kimmel (#78), and Roland Johnson (#80), and Baylor’s “Cotton” Davidson (#19). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

(The above photo is old, but it does have the Baylor Bears in it. Public Domain for the win.)

“There’s obviously added pressure there,” said Kendal Briles, who will also be quarterbacks coach in his eighth season working for his father.

 

Pressure? Gee, ya think? NFL football is high stakes, but I think college football can be even more intense. Although whatever they do, it’s unlikely the Briles will screw up as royally as Shanahan and Son did in Washington.

Source: Baylor Coach Makes Father-Son Bet – NYTimes.com

 

 

 


Oct 30 2013

Denis Leary And Son, 1st World Series Game

Here is a tweet from comedian, actor, writer and father Denis Leary:

No matter who you’re rooting for, even if you don’t care about the World Series and/or baseball in general, this is something that almost any father can relate to. I know I have memories of going to special events with my kids, some of them sports related. This tweet definitely resonated with me.

For a lifelong Red Sox fan like Mr. Leary, this is a long time coming. Even though the Sawx reversed the curse in 2004, they haven’t won the World Series at home since 1918. (Read more about this at MassLive.com if you want.) If the Red Sox win tonight, the fans at Fenway Park are going to go nuts. Leary being able to share that with his son is a cool thing.


Nov 21 2012

Would You Defend Your Son If He Killed a Monkey?

Would you defend your son if he killed a monkey? That’s what Jerry Watkins, father of Michael J. Watkins, is doing. Michael J. is accused of killing a money at Zoo Boise in Idaho.

I’ll take “Questions I Never Considered” for $500, Alex.

Here’s a video report from KiviTV.

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

To be clear: this is all alleged. Michael J. Watkins has been accused of breaking into Zoo Boise and beating a patas monkey “so severely that it later died,” according to the AP (via the Houston Chronicle). The story originated in the Idaho Statesman.

According to published reports, the father, Jerry Watkins, said that he believes Read more »


Jul 21 2012

James Holmes’ Father Goes To Colorado, and Reflections on TV News, TMZ, and Kids Doing Journalism

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

James Holmes, the man accused of shooting dozens of people at a screening of The Dark Knight Rises, will get a visit from his father.

From where did I get this news? TMZ.

Yes, that TMZ. Weird Al did a song parody of Taylor Swift’s ‘You Belong With Me’ called ‘TMZ’ on his recent album Alpocalypse. Whenever I hear “TMZ”, I think of that song. (This is why there’s a Weird Al video at the top of this post.) I certainly don’t think “trenchant news reporting”. So I was surprised to find that this particular TMZ broadcast did a nice job of reporting on the Colorado shooting.

Here are some of my thoughts about the awful event in Colorado, how it was covered in the media, and kids practicing the ancient art of journalism from their bedrooms.  Read more »