Let’s imagine for a moment or two the challenges faced by a hypothetical bright-eyed young singer-songwriter fella who has been publicly accused of rape. Not exactly the way you’d wanna launch promo for a new album, right? Bye bye to any future Springsteen cameos!
That said, the sophisticated people behind Heavy.com are doing their part to ensure women will be doubly reluctant to air such grievances in the future, what with the frat-tard website going out of the way to a) identify one such accuser, b) publish numerous photographs of her, c) reveal her husband’s name, child’s medical condition and the family’s state of residence (and recent hospital visits).
That all of the above information was available elsewhere on the internet cannot be denied, but this brand of cyber-stalking via listicle should sicken most sensible persons. Even if it’s ultimately determined the celebrity in question is innocent, i think it is safe to say that Heavy did absolutely nothing helpful for his cause or anyone else’s. Maybe they routinely engage in this kind of staggering dumbfuckery, but you couldn’t pay me enough to find out for certain.
The specific pop star who’s been named has every legal right to face his accuser, but that doesn’t mean third parties ought to engage in a cowardly, traffic-driven campaigns of harassment and intimidation. Heavy actually usds the headline, “5 Things You Need To Know About ____ _____”. Who, precisely, needed to know any of this?
You’d like to think that if the young Houston Astros were told to turn up for a 9 am Spring Training lecture from a universally respected figure like Roger Clemens, the entire roster would be ready with their notepads, floral bouquets, etc. Apparently, that wasn’t the case earlier today in Kissimmee, and as MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart explains, manager Bo Porter will not tolerate a bunch of ingrates, punks, and/or people who actually remember, y’know, what a high-character individual Roger Clemens is.
“Obviously, as an organization we’re fortunate to have some people like Roger Clemens and Craig Biggio and different people that will come in here over the course of the year and speak to our ballclub,” Porter said. “Even that being said, we have the 9 o’clock meeting when it comes to the synergistic chemistry lab.
“Out of respect to your teammates, out of respect to the people that take time out of their day to come out there and try to do everything they can to help this organization, it’s the right thing to do to make sure you’re dressed and ready and attentive when that person shows up or when it’s time for a team meeting.”
Former Grizzlies head coach Lionel Hollins (above, right) recently took to the Memphis Fox affiliate to give his side of last summer’s exit (“taking a team that previously won 22 games a year, taking young players who hadn’t done anything and developing them into a winner, here’s finally an opportunity for me to reap the rewards financially, and it didn’t happen”). In the considered view of SB Nation’s Tom Ziller — otherwise quick to credit the coach for the career ascents of Marc Gasol and Mike Conley (above, left) —- ” Hollins is doing himself no favors…who the hell wants to work with someone who snivels so openly about losing his job in a competitive environment?”
You know how many coaches get let go? Basically all of them. Phil Jackson got let go after a playoff season. If Jesus were an NBA coach, he’d probably have been fired multiple times. This is the nature of the business. Perhaps Hollins suffered a real indignity — that was Memphis’ best season ever — but it’s not a rare indignity in this business. Coaches get fired constantly. Most do not act as if their puppy has been kicked. Most manage to remain stoic in the face of dismissal. And guess what? Most manage to get hired by another team.
Imagine everything Hollins says is true. That he screamed at de facto GM John Hollinger for faux-contesting a player’s shot during practice. This seems pretty basic, all told, but if you want to keep your job, you do not scream at your boss. You especially do not scream at your boss in front of your players. It’s just a horrible idea. And then when you admit to doing it in an attempt to clear your name, you are not making potential future bosses more comfortable with your candidacy. Who the hell wants to hire someone who has admitted he screamed at his last boss in front of players for a rather shrug-worthy perceived offense?
Hollins has outed himself as a frustrating employee. To what benefit? Absolutely none. He’s only confirmed the rumors he claims the Grizzlies’ management team planted about him
I’m tempted to say the following is the most unfortunate thing to be associated with this part of the country since Jambang played Coachella last year, but that’s not really doing the subject justice. On Tuesday, the New York Times’ Sarah Wheaton reports Thermal, CA’s Coachella Valley High School has worked out a deal with an anti-discrimination group to change the school’s mascot, “the Arab”, “after objections to the sneering, crooked-nosed figure.”
Late last year, the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee was made aware of the school’s carpet-riding mascot, and objected to stereotypical portrayals that included a belly-dancer entertaining the mascot during sporting events.
“A lot of us were confused, shocked, a little angry,” said Chrystabelle Ramirez, the high school’s senior class president, “because it’s like you’re taking away our mascot, something we take pride in because we all grew up in this community.” Ms. Ramirez, who is a member of the committee to redesign the mascot, is the official Princess Dunyazade of the festival, one of three winners of the Queen Scheherazade pageant. She spoke from the bleachers in a stadium on the fairgrounds, where she had gamely chased an emu around a racetrack while wearing a costume reminiscent of Princess Jasmine’s in the Disney movie “Aladdin.”
“It’s not like we just got it out of nowhere,” said Ms. Ramirez, the daughter of Mexican immigrants who began their lives in America picking dates. “We have so much history with our streets, with our festival, and with our date history.”
(above : not one of Ai Weiwei’s more acclaimed works)
Miami painter Maximo Caminero is accused of smashing a vase valued at more than $1 million while on display at Pérez Art Museum Miami. The vase, part of the “Colored Vases” collection by Chinese artist/activist Ai Weiwei, was destroyed in what Caminero is calling an act of protest specifically inspired by Weiwei’s own work. “I wanted to draw attention to the fact that there are many foreign artists like myself and others who have been here thirty years and have never received attention or support from MAM or now PAMM and other local museums,” Caminero tells New Times’ Mitchell E. Miller, adding, “I admire Ai Weiwei greatly and have always supported his actions while he was suffering indignities from the Chinese government.”
Caminero tells New Times that he had no idea Weiwei’s work was worth $1 million.
“I didn’t know that it was that amount,” he says. “I feel so sorry about it, for sure.”
“It was a spontaneous protest,” he explains. “I was at PAMM and saw Ai Weiwei’s photos behind the vases where he drops an ancient Chinese vase and breaks it. And I saw it as a provocation by Weiwei to join him in an act of performance protest.”
“If you saw the vases on display and the way they were painted there was no way one would think the artist had painted over an ancient artifact,” Caminero says. “Instead I thought it was a common clay pot like you would find at Home Depot, frankly.”
Impressed with Hawks organist Sir Foster’s versions of contemporary classics by the Ying Yang Twins, Sage The Gemini and Gucci Mane during Sunday’s NBA All-Star Game, SB Nation’s Ethan Rothstein (or his headline writer) calls Foster, “sports’ greatest organist.” And while Foster’s performance last night was certainly memorable, were former US Cellular Field organist Nancy Faust still active, he’d be competing for second place. From CSTB, 9/18/2010 :
(the Nancy Faust bobblehead, handed out to the first 10,000 fans at tonight’s loss to Detroit)
I attended a 2005 ALCS game between the Angels and the host White Sox during which The Cell’s venerable organist Nancy Faust played a brief, between-innings interpretation of Jimmy Eat World’s “The Middle” that even the Sun Ra Arkestra would’ve struggled to make sense of. I know this is a bold statement — what self-respecting adult actually admits to recognizing a Jimmy Eat World song? So with Ms. Faust’s pending retirement in mind, the New York Times’ Karen Crouse honors the former by declaring “her music has been the grace note bridging memorable eras in the team’s history, from the baseball barker Bill Veeck to the showman Ozzie Guillen.
Faust was an innovator, choosing songs that played off names like a musical Chris Berman. She has a knack for matching songs to on-field situations, perhaps the most famous example being her inspired choice of Steam’s “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye” when an opposing pitcher was pulled in the heat of the 1977 pennant race. For White Sox fans, the song became a part of the everyday rotation, right up there with “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”
Eric Carlson, who is 29 and a lifelong White Sox fan, believes so. He met Faust as a teenager when he approached her booth behind home plate during a game to suggest she play “Around the World” by the group ATC.
When he returned to his seat and heard the strains of the song fill U.S. Cellular Field, Carlson said: “I felt special. I was thinking, of all the people in the stadium, she was playing that song for me.” Speaking by telephone, he added: “Most of the players, they don’t even want to give you the time of day anymore. But Nancy’s very down to earth and approachable.”
Carlson, though part of the generation that is the target of baseball teams’ entertainment upgrades, remains an unabashed fan of Faust. “Some of the songs she plays, I feel they actually sound better than the originals,” he said, adding: “I™m a Sox fan, so I’ll still go to games after this year. But it won’t be the same.”
It’s a wonderful story but with all due respect to Mr. Carlson — who seems like a nice enough fella — the Air Traffic Controllers don’t have any songs called “Around The World”. Where are the fact-checkers for this kind of thing?
So it seems last’s Adirondack vs. Portland pier six didn’t take place on a pier. Heck, it didn’t even take place in Portland, ME. It did, however, occur in the same building as this somewhat more historical bout.
Longtime WFAN overnight man Tony Paige is an avid boxing aficionado and generally conducts an entertaining though not entirely dynamic program on a number of topics.
The care and maintenance of kitty-cats is generally not one of those topics (audio link swiped from Bob’s Blitz).
(carefully affixing fake white beard from the Xmas Store)…ok, we’re all set! From Phil’s February 15, 2014 New York Post column :
Several readers have asked a good question: Why do the media demand we be sensitive to and tolerant of Michael Sam’s sexuality, yet so many mocked Tim Tebow’s religiosity?
Thank you, dear anonymous, hopefully not entirely imaginary readers of The New York Post for your
loaded stupid thoughtful question. I could not be happier to spell it for you fucking troglodytes lovely people.
Though I’ve yet to actually see any “demand” that young Mr. Sam be treated in a sensitive fashion, most civilized persons would not argue that his consenting-adult relationships be subject to the same protections and rights as those of failed talk radio hosts who’ve had more marriages than I’ve owned automobiles.
More to the point, Michael Sam didn’t choose to be homosexual any more than Shawn Bradley chose to be very tall. Conversely, while Tim Tebow’s “religiosity” is also subject to protections that go back to this country’s formation, his spirituality is the very definition of learned behavior.
Were Michael Sam — or any other homosexual athlete — actively engaged in the dubious process of recruiting, media mockery might be the least of his worries. On the other hand, Tebow has used his sports notoriety as a vehicle with which to champion his religious beliefs. It’s hardly illegal, but some have suggested the saintly aura is convenient cover for you know, the fact he totally sucks as a professional football player. Perhaps Tebow’s faith isn’t being mocked nearly as much as Tebow himself.
Even if Phil Mushnick is suggesting the worship of Tim Tebow is legit thing that’s roundly ridiculed by others, the analogy is mega-flawed. Merely because Michael Sam was born gay does not mean that Skip Bayless was born with his lips superglued to Tebow’s hind quarters.
There’s probably gonna be casualties aplenty following the release of Ted Wells’ investigation into the bullying of Dolphins OL Jonathan Martin ; for starters, there’s the end of Richie Incognito’s Twitter account. Then there’s Miami head coach Joel Philbin and offensive line coach Jim Turner, both of whom were thoroughly buried today by the Miami Herald’s Armando Salguero (“Philbin never won the trust of his players and others in the organization because Martin and the other players and trainers and staffers who were harassed were more afraid of breaking trust with Incognito”). But if we can be wildly
naive optimistic for a moment, perhaps the Wells report’s more sickening details will hasten the demise of a particular type of jock/fuckhead culture, or at least make it slightly less socially acceptable. Slate’s Emily Bazelon suggests this is “a watershed moment for the NFL”,
I’ve recently been thinking a lot about a point made by Richard Weissbourd and Stephanie M. Jones of the Harvard School of Education: Empathy doesn’t just mean understanding someone else’s feelings. It means valuing them. Otherwise, understanding twists into manipulation. That’s the dark place where fellow feeling took Incognito. Since Martin left the team, Incognito has protested that all the joking was mutual and in keeping with standard locker-room banter. He released selective texts between himself and Martin and tweeted at his former teammate that “the truth is going to bury you.” (To state the obvious: If you have zero impulse control, stay off Twitter.)
It turns out that Incognito buried himself with the evidence he produced. Incognito and other offensive linemen kept a book of fines, docking players for everything from farting to lateness to wearing ugly shoes. In that book, he fined himself $200 for “breaking Jmart” in the hours after Martin left the team. And then he issued five fines to Martin:
Incognito’s treatment of Martin was part of a pattern. An unnamed assistant trainer got called “Jap,” “Chinaman,” “dirty Communist,” and “North Korean.” Incognito, Jerry, and Pouncey talked to him in a mock Asian accent and gave orders like “give me some water you fucking chink.” Nobody intervened, including head trainer Kevin O’Neill, who allegedly laughed. No one confronted Incognito or his henchmen. The assistant trainer didn’t want to cooperate with the investigators, saying he didn’t want to lose the trust of the team. But he texted to Martin, after Martin’s departure, “They are relentless sometime. … Some day I wanna do exactly what you did today.” The investigators draw the obvious conclusion: The trainer had no standing to fight back and feared the loss of his job if he protested.
(image swiped from Mets Police)
While Stephen Drew is apparently considered a luxury the New York Mets cannot or will not afford, the club’s off-season expenditures on Bartolo Colon, Curtis Granderson and Chris Young have failed to impress the Wall Street Journal’s Jade Diamond, who warns “the club haven’t added much money at all to acquire new talent. Instead, they reallocated the funds made available by departing players.”
No matter how the Mets account for Bay’s deferred payments internally, it seems clear that, rather than spend major-market money to build a winner, they did little else but replace the money that came off last season’s books.
Ironically, the improvement will likely need to come from within, rather than from the newcomers. Colon, who posted a 2.65 ERA for Oakland last season, essentially replaces ace Matt Harvey, who will miss all of 2014 as he recovers from Tommy John surgery. Granderson, who slugged 84 home runs for the Yankees in 2011 and 2012, essentially replaces departed outfielder Marlon Byrd, who hit 21 homers for the Mets in 425 at bats last season.
In other words, the money the Mets spent primarily replaces the production they lost. So how do they get better? The Mets’ heralded pitching prospects, highlighted by Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero, must come to the majors and take steps forward. Travis d’Arnaud, arguably the sport’s best catching prospect, must begin to produce.
But most important, the Mets’ other players, their underachievers, must rebound from disappointing showings in 2013—young players Alderson said “have the capacity to improve.”
First baseman Ike Davis cannot hit .205. Shortstop Ruben Tejada cannot hit .202. If they do, the Mets likely will end up where they did last year.
“If you declare yourself not in the race, you cannot lose it, simple as that,” declared Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on Friday, with the Mirror’s Alan Wilson quoting him as saying of the EPL leaders, “only Chelsea can lose it because they are in front and all the other teams can win it.” If this seems like a strange semantic exercise, Chelsea’s Jose “Rabbit Ears” Mourinho (above) — no stranger to feuding with Wenger — might agree. From the Guardian’s Dominic Fifield :
“He is a specialist in failure, I’m not,” retorted the Portuguese. “So if supposing Wenger’s right and I’m afraid of failure, it’s because I don’t fail many times. So maybe he’s right. I’m not used to failing. But the reality is he’s a specialist because, eight years without a piece of silverware, that’s failure. If I did that in Chelsea I’d leave London and not come back.”
Asked if Wenger’s comments had annoyed him, Mourinho said: “Yes. He loves to look at this football club. I thought between 2007 and 2013 [when the Portuguese was at Internazionale and Real Madrid] was enough time for Wenger to forget this. But it looks like he always likes to look at this club. Am I afraid of failure? What is that. I believe at the end of the day I’ll be seen as the ‘impolite guy’, the one who’s aggressive in his words. But I’m not.
“He is saying we’re not candidates because we’re afraid of failure? Failure of what? Not winning a title this year? Or in two years? I have a lot of respect for him, he’s a great coach, but failure is not winning a title in seven or eight years. That’s failure. Am I aggressive in my words? I don’t know. Ask him, not me [why he is obsessed with Chelsea].”
“If I don’t win a trophy in four years, I don’t want a new contract,” he added.
Above : the flier for 12XU’s third annual not-affiliated-with-SXSW wrap-up party at Trailer Space, this time a joint (ad)venture with the good people at Street-Legal Guitars. The show is free, the lineup spectacular and unsurprisingly, there will be beer.
Yesterday’s announcement that Derek Jeter would end his glittering major league career at the end of the 2014 season sent a number of folks into a flurry of activity. In the Bronx, one executive was mindful of the commercial opportunity, while back in the land of the allegedly impartial, the Yankee captain was hailed for not being a jerk. Except of course, do we really know?
Jeter’s been hailed almost as often for his ability to maintain his privacy (translation : sports media are impressed by who he’s fucked) as for his clutchiness, but there’s been a few exceptions. Mop Up Duty’s memories of Jeter’s handling of a 2003 shoulder injury at the hands of Blue Jays journeyman catcher Ken Huckaby are less than fond, there’s been accusations he gave a famous starlet an STD, and perhaps most damning, the charge the sure-thing Hall Of Famer wouldn’t lift a finger to intervene when A-Rod was getting booed-to-death at Yankee Stadium. From November 1, 2006 and SI.com’s Phil Taylor :
A-Rod is a man of tremendous insecurities, even though he struggles to appear as though he has none. He craves acceptance, and on the Yankees, there is only one man who can bestow that him, and that man is the sainted Jeter. All the Teflon shortstop had to do, at any point in the season, was to let it be known that he was on A-Rod’s side. The rest of the Yankees, and then the public, would no doubt have followed suit. A few words of support to the media would probably have done the trick. Jeter’s never been much of a talker, so perhaps that was too much to ask, but words weren’t even necessary. It would only have taken a token gesture from Jeter — a hand on A-Rod’s shoulder, some horseplay in front of the television cameras — to send the message that A-Rod had Jeter’s stamp of approval.
But the Yankee captain couldn’t bring himself to do that. By his silence, by his body language, he sent the unspoken message that he had no interest in helping A-Rod out of his funk. Go ahead and boo him, go ahead and rip him in the press, Jeter seemed to be saying. I don’t like him any more than you do. By all accounts Jeter has never forgotten some mildly disparaging remarks A-Rod made about him years ago in a magazine article. But apparently he has managed to forget that Rodriguez switched from shortstop to third base when he became a Yankee rather than ruffle Jeter’s feathers, and that he has deferred to him at every turn ever since he came to New York.
Whatever sin A-Rod committed against Jeter, he has more than paid penance for it. Jeter is no one’s MVP until he finds a way not just to accept A-Rod, but also to help him. That’s what leaders do.
above : Inspire Pro Wrestling‘s inaugural champ/Denver Broncos acolyte, One Man Mike Dell lays down the law on challenger Franco D’Angelo and agitator Matthew “The Centerfold” Palmer ahead of Sunday’s title defense at the Marchesa Theatre.
above : D’Angelo and Palmer return fire. And point taken, Dell didn’t mention Franco’s “Star Trek” appearance!
If you’re looking for any silver lining to the above Sirius/XM Valentine’s Day promotion, consider the following ; that with Dino Costa’s recent termination, we’re spared “sleeves or not sleeves, that is the question”.
…and forgets to reference Ray Lewis. Hansen admits to “not understanding” the world of gay persons, but perhaps he’ll someday conclude that world isn’t so different than the one he’s already living in. But the Dallas sportscaster deserve props for putting the Michael Sam Situation into a civil rights context rather than, y’know, how can Sam best assuage the fears of guys afraid he’ll be checking them out in the shower.
Clearly, the media and public alike have grossly misjudged Mr. Incognito. As you can see, he’s a sensitive soul, not afraid to cry (or express his appreciation for fine automobiles). We can only hope Jay Glazer doesn’t get any plastic-bread crumbs on the upholstery.
Golden State C Andrew Bogut’s ailing left shoulder has kept the Australian out of the lineup for the last 3 games, a situation Warriors head coach Mark Jackson addressed (clumsily) yesterday (as quoted by the San Francisco Chronicle’s Rusty Simmons) :
“As far as I know, it wasn’t on the court,” Jackson said before the Warriors faced Philadelphia. “It wasn’t in practice. It wasn’t in a game. I’m not really sure. It may have been sleeping, and I say that in all seriousness.”
That remark didn’t sit well with Bogut.
“I just wanted to address that the sleeping comment is absolutely ridiculous,” Bogut said. “I don’t know where it came from. I don’t know if I should read between the lines with it. The frustrating thing is: I don’t know when I hurt it against Utah (on Jan. 31). I just know after that game, it was a little sore. It hasn’t gotten better.”
“I don’t know where (the sleeping comment) came from or if he heard that from the trainer or from somebody, but it’s definitely not the case,” Bogut said. “It’s not like I just woke up after sleeping on my shoulder wrong. I have a bone bruise and swelling in my shoulder. That coming from sleeping is very highly unlikely, I believe.”
After the Warriors’ blowout win, Jackson clarified his remarks, and by “clarified”, I mean he suggested someone else was trying to stir shit up.
You can make it seem like I said something against Bogut. That he slept and got hurt. I understand how you can take that and think, “Coach just took a shot at him.” I said he legitimately was hurt. I expressed how it happened. So please put the whole thing in there, and not half the story. I was part of the media. I understand how you can make it much more appealing, and go for the home run. But in three years, in the 23-win season, I didn’t throw anybody under the bus. And you can wait and wait and wait, and it won’t happen here until somebody else is sitting here. That’s not my M.O. And contrary to the choir, it won’t be my M.O. I believe in every one of my guys and I’m proud of what we’ve been able to do. And I’ll go down being me. I can’t be anybody else.
If, in Mike Francesa’s words, a “normal, regular NFL player” wouldn’t be burdening him and his vast listenership with thorny topics like sexuality. Of course, most “normal, regular” NFL hopefuls don’t have scouts asking questions like, “does he have a girlfriend?” or “why not?” Superstars aside, they don’t have to worry about TMZ going public with information about who they may or may not be seeing. And they certainly don’t have to worry about their career prospects being intertwined with something as part and parcel to their existence as Francesa’s sexuality is to his (and yes, you can presume he has one).
The Pistons terminated head coach Maurice Cheeks Sunday, a 21-29 mark this season apparently not mollifying owner Tom Gores, who told reporters, “our record does not reflect our talent.” In the view of the Detroit Free Press’ Drew Sharp, “ it was only a matter of time before the Pistons served up another head coaching sacrifice under the guise of demanding better performance…but at some point, it’s less about the coach and more about the culture.”
Joe Dumars helped create this poisonous culture. Instead of elevating assistant coach John Loyer to interim head coach, Gores should have put Dumars on the bench for the remainder of the season. Instead of entrusting him with the responsibility of finding the next guy capable of creating a more compatible coach-player environment, put him directly in the line of fire and see if he can arrive at a solution there. Making Dumars coach this mess would make more sense than putting him in charge of yet another head coaching search.
There’s talent. There isn’t a team. There are pieces that can’t properly mesh together until additional roster moves are made. But that was more than evident last summer. Yet Gores basically delivered a playoffs-or-else ultimatum following last season when he cut loose Cheeks’ predecessor, Lawrence Frank. That was the impetus for bringing in a more experienced point guard in Brandon Jennings, using the ninth overall selection in last summer’s draft on an athletic wing in Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and committing $54 million to Josh Smith, who’s spend too much time this season playing out of position at small forward.
University Of Missouri DE Michael Sam, the 2013 SEC Defensive Player Of The Year effectively kicked the Marcus Smart story to the curb yesterday, telling the New York Times’ John Branch, “I’m gay”. While at least one observer took this occasion to weigh in on the threat to public health and safety, Sports Illustrated’s anonymous sources in scouting circles went almost as low. From SI’s Pete Thamel and Thayer Evans :
NFL coaches and executives project a significant drop in Sam’s draft stock, a publicity circus and an NFL locker room culture not prepared to deal with an openly gay player.
“I don’t think football is ready for [an openly gay player] just yet,” said an NFL player personnel assistant. “In the coming decade or two, it’s going to be acceptable, but at this point in time it’s still a man’s-man game. To call somebody a [gay slur] is still so commonplace. It’d chemically imbalance an NFL locker room and meeting room.“
All the NFL personnel members interviewed believed that Sam’s announcement will cause him to drop in the draft. He was projected between the third and seventh rounds prior to the announcement. The question is: How far will he fall?
“I just know with this going on this is going to drop him down,” said a veteran NFL scout. “There’s no question about it. It’s human nature. Do you want to be the team to quote-unquote ‘break that barrier?’”
You’ll note The Tim Tebow Traveling Circus was given no fewer than 3 opportunities at employment with an NFL team. Hopefully, SI’s sources are not fully representative of Sam’s possible employers or teammates.
LandlordsNY, sadly not a Gotham tribute to wonderful members of the Happy Flowers family tree, but instead a property owners/managers organization, has been forced to ditch plans for a symposium at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. The venue pulled the plug after learning public protests were planned over the event’s chosen keynote speaker…who just happens to be the guy who built the building. From The Real Deal’s Katherine Clarke :
“Barclays Center has called to let us know they can no longer host our event due to threats by one or two tenant related groups protesting Mr. Bruce Ratner, whom was slated to be our keynote speaker,” said J’Nell Simmons, executive director of LandlordsNY, in the note. “They are concerned of the negative press it will bring them and Mr. Ratner, and thus feel they can no longer host the property management symposium.”
Tenant groups including the Fifth Avenue Committee, Make the Road and Met Council on Housing were slated to protest outside the Barclay’s Center on the day of the event, Fifth Avenue Committee director of organizing and advocacy Jackie Del Valle told The Real Deal.
“The building of [Atlantic Yards] has caused extreme displacement and rising rents in the neighborhoods around it,” Del Valle said. “There’s been a ton of public money given to this but no government oversight and the promised affordable housing has not been built.”
“He’s going to be teaching best practices when it seems like the best practices have been going into communities, pushing out long-term tenants and building luxury condos? New York City has become like the homeless capital of the world in the last few years and we needed to get out the word that tenants aren’t happy. We needed to school landlords on these facts of displacement.”
Oklahoma State’s Marcus Smart shoved a Texas Tech fan identified by media outlets as Jeff Orr during the closing moments of the visitors’ 65-61 loss Saturday, an incident the Lubbock Avalanche found unworthy of commentary in their game report. While there’s much speculation in Twitterville about whatever might’ve provoked Smart, Orr was profiled in a March 3, 2010 entry for Texas Tech Today (“Texas Tech Basketball Fan Extraordinaire”) :
He’s a perfectly normal Red Raider who happens to really, really love his basketball team. His response to the “crazy” question: “I agree with them, I guess. This is my hobby. I don’t hunt, fish, golf or any other normal guy activities. I just sort of follow the team around.”
“Jeff is unbelievable,” said Head Coach Pat Knight. “He means a lot to us and we try to take care of him. He’s always there for us, win or lose. It’s great to know that when we arrive at an away game, he’ll be there to meet us. We can always count on Jeff.”
At this season’s home game against Texas, he sat in his regular seat under the north basket dressed in a referee’s striped shirt.
“I always wear the referee’s shirt to the UT game, I’ve done it since I was a Court Jester,” Orr said. “I don’t know where I got the idea, but I’d wear the striped shirt under my jacket and when the refs mad a bad call, I’d rip my jacket off and start helping the refs.”
(SUNDAY AM ADDENDUM : as this item from Deadspin illustrates, while it’s widely believed/rumored that Orr baited Smart with a racial slur of some sort or another, that’s hardly been proven)
Perhaps you’ve heard the story about how Rocket From The Crypt famously pledged free admission to anyone willing to sacrifice burial in a Jewish cemetery by tattooing the band’s logo somewhere on their person? The Wall Street Journal’s Ryan Dezember reports that with RFTC’s reunion dates a hot/expensive ticket, the band cannot make good on this lifetime commitment.
37-year-old Graham Fahey of Brooklyn waited too long to buy tickets for a pair of sold-out New York concerts scheduled for April. He thought he had a trick up his sleeve to get in: a rocket tattoo on his left forearm. Alas, when he reached the band’s management to ask, he learned he would need a ticket—tattooed or not.
John Reis, Rocket from the Crypt’s lead singer and songwriter, says the band, which combines blaring horns with densely layered guitars, is both befuddled and flattered by the number of fans who have its tattoo. Though the band wasn’t pushing fans to get tattoos just to get into shows, “we kinda created this thing where we don’t want to renege on what people think the deal is,” he says.
“It got a little out of hand,” says Mike Stobbe, a San Diego tattoo artist who inked the band members. Mr. Stobbe estimates he has tattooed “a couple hundred” fans, and still fields the occasional request. “It’s hard to have a guest list of that magnitude,” he says.
As it prepared last year for its first shows in eight years, the band was preoccupied with other matters. Its saxophone player needed a saxophone, for instance. “We really didn’t think about it,” says Mr. Reis, 44. “We were more surprised that we were playing again.”