by John Walters

Happy 30th, Michael Phelps. That’s 3 gold medals for every 5 years on the planet.

Starting Five

1. The Rainbow Connection

Why are there so many songs about rainbows? And what’s on the other side?
Perhaps we found out last week, as rainbow flags were flown proudly after the SCOTUS decision while Stars and Bars flags came down. I like to think that we live in a country where two men can wed one another while wearing suits made of rebel flags.

Meanwhile, maybe it’s time Kermit came out of the closet and admitted Miss Piggy is a beard.

Of course, not everyone was happy about the new rainbow coalition. Willie O’Reilly said the White House rainbow was an affront to “traditional Americans,” in other words, “straight white guys like me who occasionally cheat on our wives and eventually pay huge divorce settlements.”

And here’s a wonderful video from Georgia with the tag, “God don’t like ugly….”

2. Bryant: Park

That’s Bryant in the foreground and Florida State starter Everett Golson in the background. Betwixt, C.J. Prosise, who may take Bryant’s spot.

Notre Dame sidelined 2nd-string (and possibly 3rd) running back Greg Bryant for the first four games of the season yesterday for an incident not involving the punching of a woman at a bar. It wouldn’t be summer in South Bend without a football suspension, now would it?

Fighting Irish summer football suspension are a little like doing your income taxes. All you know for sure each year is that you’re going to take a hit; you just don’t know how bad.

Bryant, a former 5-star recruit out of Plantation, Fla., has long been known as a guy who tries to do a little too much with each play — which sometimes results in fumbles — as opposed to just hitting the hole hard and taking what’s there. Tarean Folston, who like Bryant is a junior from Florida, is the No. 1 back in Brian Kelly’s offense because he is far more reliable.

3. Vanished

Seven days ago Michael Careccia, a United Airlines pilot based in Maricopa, Ariz., and his wife, Tina, an accountant, awoke before sunrise and left for work. No one has seen them since, though their car was found on the very first day they were reported missing. And they have children. Strange case.

4. Delle Donne, Dominant

Delle Donne also goes by “That’s at least two more NCAA titles Geno would’ve had.”

No sophomore slump for Elena Delle Donne of the Chicago Sky, who leads the WNBA in scoring (29 ppg.) and is 3rd in rebounding (9.6 per game). The only other player who is in the top four in two major categories is Skylar Diggins, who is fourth in scoring and third in assists. And Diggins’ team, the Tulsa Shock Syndrome, have the league’s best record at 8-1.

5. Roads Rule

The first installment of this section brings us to British Columbia’s Sea to Sky Highway. (from Chicago Sky to Sea To Sky. See how we did that?) Props to whoever gave it such a magical name. Also known as Highway 99, it runs from Vancouver to Whistler. I’ve driven it once. Hope to return.

Music 101

Lovely Day

Then I look at you/And the world alright with me/Just one look at you/And I know it’s gonna be….

Born on the 4th of July, Bill Withers served nine years in the U.S. Navy. He hit it big in the late Sixties with “Ain’t No Sunshine” and then in the early ’70s with “Lean On Me,” arguably his greatest pop song. This 1977 tune goes down smooth. Withers, who will turn 77 on Saturday, was recently inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Remote Patrol

World Cup Semifinal: USA vs. Germany

Fox  7 p.m.

Wambach, wa wa. Will the USA stop whining? From Montreal, on the 71st anniversary of the Battle of Cherbourg (we won that one).


by John Walters

Starting Five

Did the SpaceX rocket break up or was it simply a conscious uncoupling?

1. It Is Rocket Science*

An unmanned SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying nearly two tons of supplies for three men aboard the International Space Station broke up 2 1/2 minutes after launch, but before lunch, on Sunday. SpaceX is a company founded by Tesla visionary Elon Musk. Maybe battery-powered rockets aren’t the way to go?

*We will also accept “I’ll Take Bad Kate Hudson Films for $400, Alex” and “Oh, the Inhumanity”

2. “Estas Despedido!”

Yeah, but the Latinos love Trump, and Trump loves the Latinos.

One week after Donald Trump, while announcing his presidential candidacy from his eponymous 5th Avenue building, says that Mexican illegal aliens include a bunch of “rapists and drug dealers,” NBC Universal fires the man most famous for the phrase, “You’re fired.”
Trump then stepped out onto 5th Avenue with a suitcase and caught a cab.

Meanwhile, NBC will no longer air Trump’s Miss USA or Miss Universe pageants. If you’re scoring at home, Trump uttered a racist comment and NBC responded by dropping his sexist annual TV events. Oh, okay.

3. Paying the Ultimate Spice

It’s a few days too late to save Caleb Halley, who died at the sharp end of a co-worker’s knife last week over a gumbo seasoning argument, but here’s what Chef Emeril recommends:


  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried leaf thyme



Halley, as you may know, portrayed Chief Osceola as an undergrad at Florida State football games between 2004 and 2007.

The real Chief Osceola died of infection or malaria after being captured by deception under a flag of truce.

Filed Under: Flori-Duh

4. World’s Greatest Nestle’s Quik Ad

The vortex is about 8 feet in diameter, large enough to swallow a boat.

What is it about Oklahoma and funnels? Above, tornados. Below, vortexes. This one formed on Lake Texoma, which is near, you guessed it, the Oklahoma-Texas border, after heavy rains. Video here. Watch, and it’s like being on ‘shrooms. Coo-ul.

5. Law & Order: Special Diners Unit

Pier Pressure: At the end of this walk, the server encountered the dine-and-dashers.

“Look in my eyes!” he screamed. “I’ve KILLED people! Look in my eyes!”

I stood inches away from a man who was about 20 years younger, four to five inches taller, and I’d guess about 40 to 50 pounds heavier than I am. He was a white dude with clean-cut black hair and dark brown eyes. He wore a red tank top with blue horizontal stripes. He looked vaguely Irish. He could’ve been a fireman or a Wall Street douchebag for all I know.

It was nearing 10 p.m. last night, about 15 minutes after I’d first noticed that he and his female companion had run out on a bill worth no more than $70. It was near the end of my shift at the cookoutateria and like my fellow servers, I’d been hustling to do my side work, which entails a lot of trips to and from the kitchen area, as the last few tables lingered.

I noticed they had left their edge-of-the-terrace table and so I went to gather up the bill. They’d left the check but no money. No credit card. Dine-And-Dash. This happens about once a summer to a waiter at our place, and it makes you feel used more than anything else.

There are three exits from our restaurant. Out to West 79th, or north or south along the walk along the Hudson River. I guessed that they, like most diners, were headed back into the city via the most direct route, W. 79th, so I ran through the restaurant and up the stairs to find them. Once I got to the street, I could not spot them all the way up to West End Ave. There aren’t many places to escape other than the street itself, so I decided they had fled along the river.

There’s not much happening along the river to the north, especially on a Sunday night, but to the south there is a cafe and a pier that juts out a good 150 yards or so (above). I decided to take a chance and head south. From what I remembered of them, they hadn’t looked as if they couldn’t afford to pay their $69 tab (and we could afford to absorb it; for me it was the principle of the matter).

I thought they might’ve headed this way to celebrate their Bonnie-and-Clyde’ing of us. First I checked the Pier i Cafe, but they were not seated there. I decided to take a short walk down that long pier on the slim chance that they might be out there. All I really remembered is that the male had dark hair and a striped tank top.

Having walked most of the pier, I was about to turn back, but something told me that, having come this far, I should walk all the way to the end and check out the random couple lingering along the rail at the end. And then, wow, there they stood.

And here is where I made my mistake: at that moment I should have dialed 911. They had no idea I was searching for them, after all. Would’ve been the wise thing to do. If I’d waited for New York’s Finest, we could have approached them together, surprised them, and made an arrest. Alas, adrenalin got the the best of me…

I approached them. “Hey, did you forget this?” I asked, showing him the bill. “Pay up, asshole.”

I’m not sure I said that word. I might’ve used something stronger. Anyway, at first he pretended not to know what I was talking about, then he quickly told me, “If you don’t get out of my face, you’re going over that rail.”

A spirited discussion ensued, as I tried to phone 911 and he and the girl started to make their way from the pier. I ran down to the other end, knowing they had no other escape route, and found a pair of Park Enforcement Patrol (PEP) officers. I quickly told them my story — the 911 call went to a New Jersey operator who was asking what state I was in.

The PEP officers were no help. And the perps were now walking past us toward….what?…freedom? I stepped directly in the man’s way. He put a finger into my chest and warned me that he was going to “fuck you up.” Then I grabbed his female companion by the wrist and she warned, “You have no idea who you’re dealing with.”

True, I didn’t. Nor did I care.

I released her and returned to him. I have no idea what the PEP boys (one was a female, though) were doing. Observing? At this point he grabbed and tried to throw me to the ground. I held on and he whirled and I went flying. It didn’t really hurt but I could see he was a lot bigger and stronger than I was.

I kept Jack Russell Terrier’ing him, as I called out, “Police!” Nothing. Then he told me he was a lawyer. I kept trailing him. Then I noticed he was trying to walk to a dark area where no one would follow us. “What’s your name?” I asked him. “What’s your name?”

“My name is ‘I’m gonna fuck you up!” he replied.

Unfortunate choice of parents, that.

I went no further, but I kept saying loudly enough for others to hear that he’d walked out on his bill and he owed me money. That’s when he got into my face and screamed, “I’ve killed people!!!!”

Then he did that thing where he pointed to his own eyes with his index and middle fingers and screamed, “Look at my eyes! I’ve killed people! Look at my eyes! I will fuck you up!”

And I just kept telling him to pay, because I don’t boast that I will kick people’s asses because that’s really not my nature. And I know that. But it doesn’t mean I’m just about to surrender.

This is Michael Madsen’s son, Christian. Dude looked A LOT like this guy. Not saying it was him, just that it looked a lot like him.

And then he ran. He took off up a ramp to get to where the Trump apartments are on the West Side. Maybe he’d just stalled me long enough to let his girlfriend get away. I ran after him, but what was I going to do if I caught him with no cops around? There were a few dozen people watching, but no one was willing to help.

And so that was my night. I asked the PEP cop why he hadn’t helped and he replied, “I’m not going to lose my job by putting my hands on someone.” The real NYPD eventually arrived and took a report and told me the PEP would’ve entirely been in his authority to have taken charge of the situation.

I only wish I’d taken a photo of the couple through all of that. I’ll be smarter about that next time. But it was certainly an interesting night. And my manager voided the check. “You did everything you possibly could,” he said.






by John Walters

Happy 41st, Captain Dutch. I loved those heds from earlier this week: “Jeter and Davis split….the check at lunch!”

Starting Five

Knicks fans did not shower KP with a whole Latvia love…..

1. “Kristaps (Boo!) Porzingis (Boo!)”

With the fourth pick in the NBA draft, the New York Knicks select a 7’2″ Latvian who is either the white Kevin Durant or the not-French Frederic Weis. Stay tuned. Karl-Anthony Towns goes first, to the T-Wolves, while the Lakers take a man with a very L.A. name and look, D’Angelo Russell, and the Sixers are well on their way to having the world’s premier indoor volleyball team by adding Jahlil Okafor to their stable of seven-footers.

Frank the Tank will play for MJ in Charlotte.

Duke’s Justise Winslow slides all the way down to 10th spot and Miami, which was so outrageous that it compelled Bill Simmons to break radio silence for the one and only time last night(“I take back everything I said about trying for the 8th playoff spot over getting a top-10 pick. Winslow is a stud. Miami does it again.”). As you know, this JW loves that JW.

The Irish have not one but two players drafted, which probably last happened in the Seventies. Jerian Grant to Washington (which already has arguably the league’s second-best backcourt, and they’re both very young) and Pat Connaughton to Brooklyn. I’ll now be referring to him as Park Slope (ask your NYC friends).

2. In Other News, the USA Track & Field Outdoor Championships Began Yesterday in Eugene….

And now “man spreading” means something entirely different to me….

If you haven’t seen the video…. I’m no field events coach, but if you’re going to do a running start, you don’t stop and then plant both feet. Haven’t you ever seen anyone long jump? Or dunk? To the dude’s credit, he got right up and walked away. I’m not sure how.

3. Confederacy of Dunce

I don’t know if I despise this op-ed more because it’s so replete with half-truths and disingenuous lies or because its author is so absolutely devoid of empathy.

The greatest thing that could happen here is if in the middle of the night someone kidnapped Clay Travis and placed him in chains. Maybe they’d take away his children,  never to be seen again. Perhaps things would be done to his wife that are not so pleasant. Perhaps he’d be made to watch.

He’d be stripped entirely of his property, not to mention his name. He’d be told what to do and when to do it for the rest of his life. He’d have no authority to argue his point ever again. Even if he’s on the right side of any matter, he loses. Every time. If he’s insubordinate or even defiant, he will be whipped. Or lose a limb. He may eventually be allowed to remarry, but whoever owns him makes sure Clay knows that his wife is just as much the owner’s property as it is his.

Oh, and he has absolutely no hope that any of this will ever change in his lifetime. None of it.

And the people who do this to him, well, they will have a little flag that they like to wave that symbolizes the way of life that they live, a way of life that is appreciably better because millions of Clay Travises do their hard labor for them for free, which cuts costs, which increases profit. Which is the number one reason that these halcyon days are even remotely possible.

And after all of this, if Clay Travis and his fellow kidnapped servants, if they have a problem with us waving that flag…or if they don’t like that it’s now been coopted by a lunatic fringe who’d like to kill Clay and everyone who looks like him….well, Clay and his pals better get over it. Because their centuries of fear and terror and institutional discrimination are so negligent as compared to the point that you shouldn’t let a Twitter mob dictate your actions.

After all, THAT is the real injustice.

I mean, come the fuck on!

Travis writes:

And here’s a history lesson for you from someone who didn’t learn about the Civil War from Facebook. I actually went to Civil War sleepaway camp in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and have been fascinated by the era for my entire life. (Yes, I was really cool in high school). The north didn’t go to war with the south to end slavery, they went to war to preserve the union.*

And here’s a history lesson for you, Clay. Here’s Article IV, Section 2, of the Confederate Constitution of the United States:

 (I) The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States; and shall have the right of transit and sojourn in any State of this Confederacy, with their slaves and other property; and the right of property in said slaves shall not be thereby impaired.
(2) A person charged in any State with treason, felony, or other crime against the laws of such State, who shall flee from justice, and be found in another State, shall, on demand of the executive authority of the State from which he fled, be delivered up, to be removed to the State having jurisdiction of the crime.
(3) No slave or other person held to service or labor in any State or Territory of the Confederate States, under the laws thereof, escaping or lawfully carried into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor; but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such slave belongs,. or to whom such service or labor may be due.

Will we still be able to read columns on the Hottest Coaches’ Wives in the SEC? Um, no.

And here’s Alexander H. Stephens, Vice President of the Confederate States, speaking on March 21, 1861, in Savannah, Ga. This is an excerpt from what is known as the Cornerstone Speech:
“Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner- stone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth. This truth has been slow in the process of its development, like all other truths in the various departments of science. It has been so even amongst us. Many who hear me, perhaps, can recollect well, that this truth was not generally admitted, even within their day. The errors of the past generation still clung to many as late as twenty years ago. Those at the North, who still cling to these errors, with a zeal above knowledge, we justly denominate fanatics. All fanaticism springs from an aberration of the mind from a defect in reasoning. It is a species of insanity. One of the most striking characteristics of insanity, in many instances, is forming correct conclusions from fancied or erroneous premises; so with the anti-slavery fanatics. Their conclusions are right if their premises were. They assume that the negro is equal, and hence conclude that he is entitled to equal privileges and rights with the white man.

Alexander Stephens’ point: the negro is subordinate to the white man

And so this is my point. Whether or not the North was fighting the Civil War to end slavery, as Travis says it was NOT, that is immaterial. The South seceded because it did want to preserve slavery. And that’s sort of the point. The war was about Southern secession, and the secession was based on the fact that the South wanted to continue the practice of slavery because it made economic sense.
And either Travis is too stupid to have understood that point — he’s not — or he was hoping that you wouldn’t see his absurd leap in logic because, you know, he went to law school and you didn’t and he’s smarter than you are.
Stephens gave that speech extemporaneously, just three weeks before Southern forces fired on Fort Sumter not too far up the coast from Savannah to launch the Civil War.  Fort Sumter is located in a harbor just off the shore from…Charleston. That’s not a coincidence, in terms of where Roof chose to target his victims.
The diatribe about social media, or people not putting things in context, or Facebook mobs…all true, but who gives a shit? That’s hardly the point here. Maybe the SEC frat boy alums who have helped make the author of Dixieland Delight so popular sop up this garbage with a biscuit, but you don’t have to.
This is intellectually dishonest crap, from a well-educated person who’d rather appeal to his fan base or dangle click bait than tell the truth.
You wanna fly the flag? Go ahead. It’s a free country (unlike the Confederacy, by the way). But if you think it’s more important to make a grand point about hypocrisy and social media overreaction at the expense of any empathy for the generations of people who lived in bondage (what a nice word for the horrors they endured) with absolutely NO HOPE of ever having control of any aspect of their lives, and if you choose to do so by making straw man arguments that you know are invalid, I have to ask: What is it you’re really advocating for?
Okay, I think we’re done here for the day.
*Thanks to good friend Sorp for the historical assist.

4. Here We Go Again

In Tallahassee, true freshman quarterback DeAndre Johnson is suspended after allegedly punching a woman in a bar. Before we get to why a minor was in a bar, we should note that Johnson was suspended for “breaking team rules.” Johnson was 8 of 11 passing with two touchdowns in the Seminoles’ spring game. He was the state’s Mr. Football last year, which in that state means a lot.
Tallahassee P.D. are yet to charge Johnson with a crime or even interview him, according to Mark Schlabach’s piece on
From Mark Schlabach’s story on ESPN: The incident report redacted the alleged suspect’s name and a witness’ name. The woman’s name was not redacted.

5. Messrs. Smug and Arrogant

The world’s most outspoken activist comedian, Bill Maher, visits with Jerry Seinfeld in the latest episode of CICGC. Two favorite moments:
1) When Maher expounds on how tough it was for him starting out, and says that when people criticized his act, he could be a… and as he pauses, Jerry fills in, “a prick.” Because that much about Maher is definitely accurate.
2) Maher notes that philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre said that “Three o’clock in the afternoon is both too late and too early to do anything you really want to do.”
To which Seinfeld replies, “He should’ve done stand-up.”

Remote Patrol

Women’s World Cup: USA vs. China
Fox Sports 1   7:30 p.m.

Sailors say , Brandi, you’re a fine girl/What a good midfielder you would be….

The Americans have not allowed a goal in 333 minutes and yet if you listen to them and to soccer analysts, the sky is falling. This is a rematch of the landmark 1999 World Cup final (Brandi Chasten sports bra moment), and also the first time these two nations have met in the World Cup since that day.





by John Walters

“Let’s go to the record store and look at Carly Simon album covers” — Dr. Johnny Fever, WKRP. Happy 70th, Ms. Clouds in My Coffee

Starting Five

Don’t make me bring Louis C.K. in here to shut you down!

1. “You’re In My House!”

A heckler at an LGBT function at the White House is reminded by POTUS that it is disrespectful to interrupt the host in his own home (Miss Porter’s Rules). Not to mention it’s kind of dumb to heckle a man who has drone-termination capability. Would it be wrong of me to inflect a “Those people!” right here?

2. All Out of Dimes*

clockwise: Tom, Joanie, Susan, Elizabeth, David, Abby (sans Roadster), Tommy, Mary, Nancy and NICHOLAS!!!!!!

We children of the Seventies adored Tom Bradford, master of the house on Eight Is Enough and ringmaster of the paragon of domestic life that we all once thought possible. The ABC one-hour dramedy was pure fiction: a man can afford to raise eight children and live in a two-story home on a newspaper columnist’s salary.The man who played the Bradford patriarch, Dick Van Patten, passed away a couple of days ago.

Lest we forget, Late Night with David Letterman once did a Top 10 List entitled “Top 10 Anatomical Parts or Van Pattens” and yes, No. 1 was “Dick.”

*Oh we spend our days like bright and shiny new dimes…

3. Where’s The Baby?

I hope he was wearing protection on that grab

Toronto Blue Jay Josh Donaldson attempts to out-first row Cub fan Keith Hartley with this leaping catch into the stands at Tropicana Field last night. At the time, it was the bottom of the eighth inning and Toronto pitcher Marco Estrada was working on a perfect game. And that foul pop came on a 3-2 count.

Alas, the following Ray batter, Logan Forsythe, got an infield single to spoil the bid.

4. Alberto’s Manifesto

Salazar, who was born in Cuba, won the New York City Marathon three years running (well, of course he was running; that’s how he won)

On June 3 the BBC in conjunction with American website Pro Publica released a detailed and scathing investigation of Nike Oregon Project coach and U.S. running legend Alberto Salazar. Three weeks later, yesterday, the Empire (Nike) struck back.

Salazar produced and 11,000-word treatise rebutting the allegations. It was so verbose that Nike’s website had to print it in two parts. While Salazar makes a number of valid arguments, he also character-assassinates former coach Steve Magness and former Olympian Adam Goucher. Also, he uses the word “hypogonadism” in his own defense.

Meanwhile, the USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships begin today from Eugene. Enjoy that.

5. Is This How Manhattan Started?

As lakes go, Africa’s Lake Victoria, the largest on that continent and the second-largest in the world by surface area (26,600 square miles) after only Lake Superior (hence the name), is rather large.

So when a piece of shoreline broke off from Uganda and began floating around the lake four months ago, there was plenty of room for it to move. In the interim, at least 10 artists have set up permanent residence on the floating island and renamed it “Mirembe,” which means peace.

I don’t know exactly how land floats and I’m not sure what happens after the first crocodile moves in, but this is an indie film waiting to happen.

Music 101

That’s The Way I’ve Always Heard It Should Be

But you say it’s time we move in together/And raised a family of our own you and me….

In honor of Carly Simon’s 70th, I’m presenting my favorite not-built-for-radio-play tune of hers. In the early 70s, Carly Simon and Carole King were the twin towers of pop music. Carly was a consummate talent (with great legs!). This performance took place in Central Park in August of ’71.


Remote Patrol

NBA Draft

ESPN 7 p.m.

Not only is he talented enough to play professional baseball and basketball, but Connaughton also can sing the entire Air Supply oeuvre

I’m the guy who wouldn’t draft Jahlil Okafor, at least not in the top five. Don’t ask me why. I just don’t have a good feeling about him. I love KAT, love the Winslow boy, love both Wiscy players, like Kelly Oubre, and think some team in the lower part of the first round will be very happy that they selected Pat Connaughton.

Meanwhile, wouldn’t it be nice if John Skipper lifted Bill Simmons’ mask of silence and allowed him to opine tonight from the Sports Guy Mansion? Push-leeze! Note: the first time the Simmons publicly called a prominent figure out as a liar on air was at the 2013 NBA draft, when he implied Doc Rivers was doing so….


by John Walters

Happy 35th, Minka Kelly. Let’s go dutch on a pizza.

Also, a happy 34th birthday to the Humber Bridge in Yorkshire, which when it opened was the world’s longest suspension bridge at 7,280 feet.

Starting Five

“Honey, I’m going to the game. We got front-row seats.” “You’re bringing the baby!”

1. Dad Bod-acious

The dad: Keith Hartley. (Any relation to Dr. Robert Hartley?)
The baby: Isaac Hartley.

The photographer: Jon Soohoo.

The Dodger: Adrian Gonzalez.

Not in attendance: Steve Bartman.

The Cubs would win 1-0 in 10 innings. I’m not sure if Keith and Isaac had wandered home by then. The Cubs have, who are now 9 games above .500,  beat former Cy Young winners Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke on consecutive nights at Wrigley.

Oh, so that’s the way it’s done…

2. The Sleeper

He’s a 6’11” Latvian with a sweet touch from beyond the arc, and I’m pretty sure he lost to Rocky Balboa in Rocky IV: he’s Kristaps Porzingis, and you’re hearing that he’s a “white Kevin Durant.”

Perhaps. On the other hand, ESPN Stats said yesterday that the only international player drafted in the lottery in the past 12 years who made an All-Star Game was Yao Ming. So what do you do tomorrow night if you’re an NBA team?

How I’d select the Top 5:

Minnesota: Karl-Anthony Towns, Kentucky

Los Angeles: D’Angelo Russell, THE Ohio State University

Philadelphia: Jahlil Okafor, Duke (Is Joel Embiid going to be the next Greg Oden?)

New York: Justise Winslow, Duke (because even if Porzingis has more upside, Winslow will be a star in this town from Day 1)

Orlando: Porzingis

3. This Is Going To Make A Great Anecdote in Lou Holtz’s Next Speech

Was Someone up above attempting to render a Final Verdict on Dr. Lou? Lightning struck Lou Holtz’s 11,000 square-foot Lake Nona, Fla., home the other night and destroyed a good deal of it. No one inside was seriously hurt. Meanwhile, Tiger Woods wonders how Whoever did this got the address mixed up.

4. Netflix is the New Green

Shares of Netflix, not unlike Kimmy Schmidt, appear unbreakable at the moment.

Shares of Netflix stock continue to torment my friend Dan Wolken. The video streaming service, whose stock is up 99% this year alone and nearly 1,300% in just the past three years, announced a 7-for-1 stock split, effective July 14, after the close of the bell yesterday.

In pre-market trading this morning it is already more than 2% over yesterday’s close at $696. Yes, but is a stock that trades at 177 times earnings a potential house of cards (and hence, a house of pain)?

5. The Most Polite Apprehension of a Mass Murderer You’re Likely To See Today

This is before police went on a Burger King run for Roof (really)

Here’s the arrest of Dylann Roof last week, courtesy of a police dash-cam, less than 24 hours after he murdered nine people. You’ll note that the car with the dash-cam made the gut-wrenching decision to leave the vehicle with “40 minutes of commercial-free classic rock coming up next.” What’s the correct word here? Gentle?

Here’s a second video showing more of the aftermath. Officer Joe Burris, the lone African-American policeman on this detail, pounds his arms together after Roof is put away in the squad car. He’s understandably amped about this arrest. A little more so than his colleagues, it seems.

Music 101

Girl From the North Country

Remember me/To one who lives there /For she once was a true love of mine

Released in May of 1963, written and recorded by the one and only Bob Dylan. Six years later he re-recorded it as a duet with the Man in Black.

Remote Patrol

One Million Years B.C.

TCM 8 p.m.

Plot? Who cares! It’s 91 minutes of Raquel Welch, then 26 years old, in full-busted glory.  My cave or yours?


by John Walters

Happy 58th, Marge Gunderson….

Starting Five

Rap City in Blue

1. Mora Money, Mora Problems

The score after P. Diddy allegedly assaulted UCLA strength & conditioning coach Sal Alosi following a Bruin training session on Monday afternoon: Reality 1, Ballers 0.

Colonel Mustard with the candlestick in the conservatory has now been replaced by Sean Combs with the kettlebell in the coaches’ offices. And now what does Justin Combs, a 5’7″ red-shirt junior defensive back who rarely sees playing time anyway do? Transfer? Stick around? We are all just lucky Suge Knight has no sons who play football.

2. Gone Girl!

It’s so refreshing to profile a fast woman who’s not currently appearing as The Bachelorette

That’s Candace Hill, whose 100-meter time, unlike Nigel Tufnel’s amplifier, does not go to 11. Last weekend Hill, who just finished her sophomore year at Rockdale Magnet  School for Science and Technology in Conyers, Ga., ran a 10.98 in a meet in Seattle. She becomes the first U.S. high school girl to run a sub-11.00 100.

Letting her hair down

To put Hill’s feat into perspective, that time would have won an Olympic gold medal in every Games prior to 1984. Moreover, Hill has a weighted 4.50 GPA in high school. Meet America’s next great sprinter.

3. The Time of Your Lifetime

A Deadly Adoption: The Sharknado of summer 2015

With lines such as “Please don’t make me shoot you again!”, the Lifetime movie A Deadly Adoption earns the network’s Mother, May I Sleep With Danger seal of approval. The gag here is that it stars Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig, who play the entire script straight. The funniest aspect of the entire film is that they never once wink at the camera to share the joke.

Okay, was it as funny a collaboration between the two as this was? And was there a scene in which they cut to Tommy Lee Jones not being amused?

Here’s Rolling Stone’s list of their 10 favorite Lifetime movie tropes that the film adhered to. Spoiler Alert on speed dial.

4. Jim Class

Carrey, Coffee, Comedy

One of my true life heroes, Jim Carrey, is the current guest on Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee. It’s not so much about his comedy; it’s more about Carrey’s “get-it” factor in terms of his approach to life. Stay tuned to the end when he brings Jerry to his art gallery.

Best exchange comes early when Carrey tells Seinfeld that he used to own a McLaren, but that he found it to be too much car for him. “Now I drive a Tesla,” the environmentally aware Canadian tells his automobile addict host.

“I like burning things,” Seinfeld tosses out offhandedly.

“And we love breathing what you’re burning, baby,” Carrey retorts.

It’s extremely rare to see Seinfeld encounter an intellectual equal, but he has done so here.

5. Where Every Night Is Caucasian Heritage Night

Diversity Night in Orem: Blonde AND brunette!


It reads like an article from The Onion. The Orem (Utah) Owlz, a Rookie League minor league baseball team, schedule a “Caucasian Heritage Night” and claim it’s a joke. You know, they’ll serve sandwiches on Wonder Bread and air clips from Friends. 

Except that, I mean, have you ever been to Orem? The people are whiter than the bases. So the joke sort of falls flat. It’s like Miami Beach hosting a “Cheeseball D-Bag Night.”

The team’s media relations director, Joey Zanaboni (sure, he’s from Orem), stepped down after only two weeks on the job when the team refused to relent on holding such a night. Then, after the web went all nutso about it, the Owlz have since canceled the promotion.

So Joey was right. Take heart, Joey. You were never meant for Orem (2 to 1 odds he attended either Fordham or Seton Hall). Continue westward to Vegas where your cousin Sal already has that job lined up for you parking cars at the Tropicana.

Although, as someone noted in Comments, claiming that you’re not racist after coming up with an idea such as Caucasian Heritage Night would seem like a fundamental aspect of a Caucasian Heritage Night.

Music 101

Romeo and Juliet

You promised me everything you promised me thick and thin/Now you just say Romeo oh yeah you know I used to have a scene with him.

Long before Taylor Swift placed Shakespeare’s most storied couple in a song, Mark Knopfler and Dire Straits did so. This band always got respect, but it never got the love it deserved until a later album, Brothers In Arms, was released in the summer of ’85 and Money For Nothing ruled the airwaves. But a lot of the Knopfler loyalists consider this tune from 1980 to be his magnum opus: don’t let the tepid applause from the studio audience from Fridays dissuade you. That was not the crowd to appreciate this tune; it’s a more Unplugged type of ditty.

Remote Patrol

Jimmy Kimmel Live

ABC 11:35 p.m.

All the years Hamm waited tables in L.A. thinking to himself, How does a guy THIS handsome not find work? Think about that, A.J.

A few weeks ago I finally got around to subscribing to NetFlix (you win, Katie) and the only TV I’ve watched in that time, practically, are old episodes of Mad Men (I saw at most 20% of the first four seasons). And so my gast is flattered by just how compelling a character Don Draper is (yeah, I knew, but I didn’t really know, you know what I mean?).

So? Well, I love Jon Hamm because while playing one of the most intriguing characters in TV history, he seemed to have never taken himself too seriously. In an exit interview with the New York Times after the season finale, Hamm noted that the last time he saw his cast mates, he told them, “See you all on The Love Boat.

Anyway, Hamm makes what is as far as I know his first public TV appearance since the end of MM tonight with Jimmy Kimmel. Not that I’ll see it live, but maybe one of you can tell me about it.



by John Walters

Starting Five

It’s Dustin Johnson’s 31st birthday today. Somebody give him a hug….

1. Noooooooooooo!

Dustin Johnson misses this four-foot putt on 18, which would have put him into a Monday playoff with Jordan Spieth. Johnson’s lovely parting gifts include his son (it was Father’s Day, after all) and his smoke-show fiancee. Spieth, only 21, has now won two majors this year with two remaining.

2. True Defective?

True Detective, Season 2: It’s no Castle

The second season of True Detective, which takes place in Los Angeles, premiered last night on the HBO. Most everyone panned it. Talk about The Leftovers.

3. Surfin’ Safari

In Huntington Beach, Calif., — check out that as-advertised June Gloom weather — a Guinness World Record is set for most people on a surfboard. I don’t have the precise number of people, but I hear it was “two girls for every boy.”

Note: It is officially the slow time of the news cycle. We should all be on vacation.

Note 2: It was actually 66 people, the board was 42-feet long, and they rode for the required minimum of 10 seconds. I want to know who paddled to catch that wave.

4. Death on the Pitch 

Ackerman was 25

Here’s your heartbreaking Father’s Day story: James Ackerman, a player for the Sunshine Coast Falcons in the Australian Rugby League and a father of two, died after being tackled in a match against the Norths Devils in the Queensland Cup on Saturday.

Ackerman, 25, suffered a head injury after being tackled by Francis Molo, 20, just five minutes into the game. Ackerman two days later, Monday in Australia, at a hospital in Brisbane as the game was canceled.

5. Mad, Max?

Did Tabata have enough elbow room to avoid being plunked?

Rule 6: In baseball, every game brings an opportunity to see something you’ve never seen before.

Washington Nationals’ ace Max Scherzer is one out away from a perfect game — and Scherzer would’ve been the first pitcher with heterochromia to throw a perfecto — but instead strikes the Pirates’ Jose Tabata on the elbow. Tabata not only didn’t make an effort to avoid being hit, but he somewhat leaned into the inside pitch.

Scherzer still picked up the no-hitter, but meow, that hurts. Meanwhile, stay tuned for the next time Tabata faces Max. I think he’ll make the next HBP memorable.

Music 101

Only In My Dreams

As real as it may seem/It was only in my dreams

Bubble-gum pop never was more sugary than in this No. 4 hit from the summer of ’87 by Debbie Gibson. Who cares if there was never a solid follow-up? We loved this song. Stay tuned for the cheesy mid-’80s saxophone solo.

Remote Patrol

Women’s World Cup: USA vs. Colombia

FS1  8 p.m.

After shocking France, 2-0, in group play (the French are ranked third in the world by FIFA, behind Germany and the USA), Colombia meets the Yanks tonight in Edmonton in the Round of 16. Lose and you’re out. Thunderstorms expected. We’ll see about colossal meltdowns.



by John Walters

Starting Five

The governor of South Carolina does not have the authority to even lower the flag to half-mast. Only the state’s General Assembly does — and they didn’t.

1. Dixie

Oh, I wish I was in the land of cotton/Old times there are not forgotten

But maybe they should be. Or perhaps they should not be celebrated as much.

We are taught in school that the defining element of the United States of America is freedom, but the longer one lives, the harder that is to believe. I think the defining element of this country, or at least one that is just as pronounced as freedom or democracy, is slavery and its aftershocks.

That a man whose own ancestors helped usurp a country from its previous inhabitants would have the audacity to tell a roomful of African-Americans, “You’re ruining our country; you have to go…” well, there’s just a whole lot of ignorance and hypocrisy there. And those victims’ ancestors, well, they never asked to be here in the first place. At least not to be brought here the way they were.

Gun issue. Race issue. Mostly, it’s an American issue. You bring people here in chains and then you free them but still try to keep them down for the next century (and beyond) afterward, and then you wonder why they just can’t “behave” like everyone else? And what were the people who were killed actually doing that was so destructive to society? Oh, right, praying in a church.

There’s a large segment of Americans, too large a segment, who actually believe that the “white” in America is more than just a color on the flag. It isn’t. People better get used to that.

A step in the right direction? Taking down Confederate flags at state houses. You wanna fly a Rebel flag? Go ahead, that’s your first Amendment right. But why any state government would choose to do so knowing what it symbolizes for so many is a little strange.

2. Dixie (Cont.)

Here’s Jon Stewart’s masterful opening of The Daily Show last night.

And here’s Charles Pierce in Esquire.

In New York City, where whites and blacks and Asians and Hispanics and Arabs and Indians interact each day (I know I do), familiarity breeds comity, I find. Last night I was on the Uptown 2 express train. It stopped at 42nd Street. Three black women boarded and there were two free seats next to me, but not three.

Two of the women sat down, and one was left standing. I said to the lady, “Would you like my seat?” And she looked at me and in a blunt but not unfriendly way, she said, “That’s okay; you’re getting off at the next stop, anyway.”

And I laughed. And then she laughed. See, we both knew that I’m a white guy of a certain age who is not a hipster, so I was most likely getting off in the heart of the Upper West Side (72nd St) and not continuing on to Harlem. And so the four of us had a nice little conversation.

When the train stopped at 72nd, I pretended for as long as possible that I was NOT getting off there. Then, just before the doors closed, I smiled at them, said, “You were right,” and left. And they laughed.

3. Star 80

Three-time U.S. Open champion Tiger Woods shoots an 80 in the opening round at this year’s edition in Chambers Bay, Wash., then blows off the coolest Floridian I know, Fox’s Charles Davis, for a post-round on-camera interview (Tiger did attend the presser, to his credit).

It was seven years ago this June that Tiger won the last of his 14 majors at this very tournament in Torrey Pines, Calif. He was 32 years old.

Of the 156 golfers who played Thursday’s first round, only two, Rickie Fowler (81) and Rich Barbarian, Jr., shot worse scores than Woods, who will almost certainly be headed home on the G-5 after today.

4. FIFA Flop

Roth, in a personal financial hole, resigned himself to play Blatter in the film

Dig it: If you’re going to title a film United Passions, why not make it a porn flick set on a jetliner? Instead, you’re FIFA, and you make it about soccer and it becomes the lowest-grossing film in U.S. box office history. It earned $918 at the box office last weekend, or only a scant few dollars more more than I earned at the cookoutateria.

Worse, it stars Tim Roth, who actually appeared in not one but two classic Quentin Tarantino films. C’mon, honey bunny, let’s get out of here.

5. Step Children

If you know anyone who owns a Fitbit, you know that they become a little obsessed with out-walking their friends who also have one. The product is figuratively a Police song: It monitors every step you take. What has made the wearable such a success is that it combines fitness with showing up your friends. You can out-Mandelbaum people you know on a daily basis.

The product went public yesterday at $20 and is already up about 65% (warning: If I were someone who shorted stocks, this would be a prime candidate) to $33. Fit Bit: The perfect gift for your step-father this weekend.

Remote Patrol

True Detective

Sunday, HBO 9 p.m. 

I would never expect it to be as good as the Rust Cohle-Marty Hart inaugural season, but the reviews portend a sophomore slump. Vince Vaughn, Colin Farrell, Rachel McAdams and Taylor Kitsch. Maybe we should all just walk hand in hand into extinction. One last midnight, brothers and sisters opting out of a raw deal. Don’t fret, Nic Pizzolatto. Harper Lee never even produced a follow-up.



by John Walters

When you turn 73, you damn well believe in yesterday.

Starting Five

1. Charleston

“Terrorism” or “Hate Crime”? Does it matter? Nine people are dead after a gunman opened fire during a prayer service at the Emanuel AME Church. It’s all ignorance and fear, anyway. I’ll just point out that the killer, Dylann Roof, allegedly told the victims that they are all “rapists” and that they “have to go,” while just two days earlier a certain billionaire announced his presidential candidacy and circled another minority group whose “rapists” have infiltrated our borders.

Too politically charged? You decide.

2. Brian’s Swan Song

Now writing tags with Johnny Mathis…

NBC announces that it is keeping Brian Williams but that he will no longer be its Nightly News anchor. Instead, he has been demoted to MSNBC. It’s like when Sterling, Cooper, Draper, Pryce “welcomed” Don back but then had him write tags for Peggy Olson’s Burger Chef account. On the other hand Williams is slated to make $10 million per year for the next five years. Do the work, Don.

3. Between Two Trees

Our friend Moose, who occasionally cracks our list of “Top 10 Blonde Canadians” (who don’t all have to be blonde or necessarily Canadian) recently purchased a hammock. The suspended animation has given her time to reflect on a lot of things. She offers “10 Lessons from the Hammock.”

1. It’s important to look up. Always be looking up.
2. Time to just be still and think is always time well spent.
3. Balance is important or you will be on your ass on the ground.
4. You must do some things everyday that make you happy.
5. Letting go of the landscape of the future allows you to enjoy the present moments and those present moments are what fill your heart and feed your soul.
6. You may get hit with bird poop but that’s just part of the adventure.
7. Rocking is not just soothing to babies.
8. The sound of the wind in the trees is one of the most perfect sounds on earth.
9. Naps are better with warm breezes, fresh air and drops of sunlight on your face.
10. The point of dreaming is not that they all come true but that you still keep dreaming when they don’t.

4. Bank > Banks

I lost HOW MUCH?!?

San Antonio Spur legend Tim Duncan alleges that he lost approximately $20 million to former financial advisor Charles Banks between the years 2005-2013. That’s approximately 15% of his career earnings. I’m sure the irony of his advisor’s surname is not amusing to The Big Fundamental today.

5. Stephanie on the March

March: Northwestern alum

New on the market: Stephanie March, former Law & Order SVU D.A., whose marriage to Bobby Flay is ending (is he still after Ari Gold’s wife?), and Charlize Theron, who has split up with Sean Penn.

Music 101

Band on the Run

Well the rain exploded with a mighty crash/As we fell into the sun

Birthday boy Paul McCartney recorded the entire album of the same name in Lagos, Nigeria, with just his wife, Linda, and musician Denny Laine. This tune topped the charts and deservedly so, in April of 1974.

Remote Patrol

The New High: Extreme Sports

CNBC 10 p.m.

Medium Happy fave Amelia Boone sits down with Quintanilla during the show.

Host Carl Quintanilla examines the growing fascination with “purposeful suffering,” a topic I’m all too familiar with. I ride the subway every day.


Looks Like We Made It….to 72 years old. Happy Birthday, Barry Manilow!

Starting Five

Iguodala narrowly edged eight Kansas City Royals to be named Finals MVP

1. Night of the Iguodala

A man who did not start during the regular season, Andre Iguodala, scores 25 points in Golden State’s Game 6 clincher and somehow 7 of the 11 Finals MVP voters are moved to bequeath the award to him, never mind that LeBron James became the first dude ever to lead both teams in points, rebounds and assists in an NBA Finals. Stephen Curry, the league MVP who was outstanding throughout, including 37 points in Game 5, garnered zero votes.

And I’ll note that before Game 6 ran a story whose hed was “LeBron May Go Down as the Greatest Loser Ever.”

But the big story (supposedly) is that Golden State wins its first NBA championship in 40 years and so now they’re off to visit Trump Tower for the presidential congratulations.

More on this from our Maryland-based correspondent later, I’m sure….

2. Lady and The Trump

The Trump stump speech

“When did we ever beat Japan… at anything?”

Well, I’ve got World War II and Apple computers, but go on….

The jokes are easy, but don’t laugh off Donald “I’m really rich” Trump, who declared his presidential candidacy yesterday, so quickly. Unlike his other 11 or so GOP candidates, the Donald has charisma. And he’s long been comfortable in front of a camera.

Sure, it’s funny to hear Trump say that he’ll be the best jobs president ever after having said, “You’re fired” more than anyone in the history of television. But he’s a combative, irrepressibly arrogant and candid breath of fresh air in the race. A blowhard, sure. But a breath of fresh air.

The big questions: Will he still be allowed to own the Miss USA pageant and would he re-decorate the exterior of the White House in all gold and glass?

I see Taran Killam playing Donald next fall. SNL’s writers got the greatest gift of all.

3. Arch Enemies

Hackman played for the Cardinals from 1999-2003. What more evidence do you need?

The FBI, the same organization that brought you Sepp Blatter’s head on a platter, now is investigating the St. Louis Cardinals for allegedly hacking the computers of the Houston Lastros. This is like sending spies to infiltrate the government of Andorra, but whatever….

The Cards currently have baseball’s best record (43-21) and have been to four World Series in the past 11 Octobers.

4. Howl at the Screen

Admittedly, reenacting Seven Brides for Seven Brothers proved difficult

If Alan had his “one-man wolfpack” in The Hangover, well, the Angulo kids were a seven-man wolfpack in lower Manhattan. The Wolfpack is the TRUE story of an immigrant family, the Angulos, who home-schooled their six sons and one daughter and pretty much confined them full-time to their four-bedroom apartment. The children learned about life by watching movies and then reenacting them.

I agree, this is an amazing story: An immigrant family affording a four-bedroom apartment in Manhattan!?!

Anyway, the film won the Documentary Grand Jury Prize at Sundance and is now playing in cool cities where people spend nearly double the price of a monthly Netflix subscription to see a single film in a theater.

5. Stand and Deliver

That’s 6’5″ Aussie Owen Wright, moments after scoring a perfect 20 on a wave at the Fiji Pro. It’s only the seventh time a perfect 20 score has ever been accomplished in the World Surf League. You can watch his ride here….

Music 101

Private Life

Before scoring the title theme for The Simpsons and most of friend Tim Burton’s films, Danny Elfman was the lead singer of a New Wave punk band named Oingo Boingo. This song was released in 1982 or ’83 in what was the height of the New Wave era.

Remote Patrol

You’ve just had four straight nights of NBA and/or NHL finals. Go outside and look at the stars. Or vote for a Kansas City Royal.