Tag Archives: James Corden

The great Roger Federer leaves me in awe again, and three cheers for Caroline Wozniacki, finally a Slam winner. And my annual Grammy thoughts from a has-been music fan

For 99 percent of professional tennis players, winning a Grand Slam title is the absolute pinnacle of their careers. So many thousands of hours of practice, sweat and tears, so many close calls and near-misses, so many injuries they’ve fought through and bad luck they’ve endured, and then one day, miraculously, they’re the last player standing, they’re holding the trophy and it’s all been worth it.

Ninety-nine percent of tennis players would kill to experience winning one Grand Slam.

Roger Federer has now won 20. And that is mind-boggling.

I know, I know, that’s very simplistic to put it like that, but it’s just one way of thinking about how amazing this 36-year-old Swiss master is. Sunday in Melbourne, Australia, he won yet another Slam title, beating Marin Cilic in five sets to win the Australian Open.

The man defies description. He goes five years between Grand Slam titles, and looks for all the world to be a man on his way out of the sport. People are calling for Federer to retire, to ride off into the sunset, all that jazz. Mind you, he was STILL in the Top 10 in the world, still playing deep into majors. But he was no longer the dominant, best-of-all-time force he once was, and so he must be told to quit.

Then, amazingly, after a six-month injury absence, he comes to Australia a year ago and wins. Then wins Wimbledon. And now wins another Aussie Open. And still gets so emotional at winning that this is his reaction in the on-court speech immediately following.

He is class personified, and I’m thrilled that he’s back on top. Twenty major titles. Just amazing.

Also a quick shout-out to Caroline Wozniacki, a fantastic player who for almost 10 years has chased a Grand Slam title that eluded her. Her career looked to be on the downswing a few years ago, but she kept fighting and finally this weekend won her first major title. Wozniacki has always struck me as a class act, always gracious in defeat and a kind person off the court. Very happy to see her finally get her moment.

*Finally today, Sunday night was, of course the Grammys, and as usual I had heard very little of the music that was performed and awarded. But as always, that doesn’t stop me from having opinions. I must admit up front I didn’t have time to watch the whole show, but skipped around.

— Kendrick Lamar, I only watch you once a year, because I’m still stuck in the 1980s, musically. But damn, you are a pretty kick-ass performer.

— Very nice and touching performance by four country music artists with their rendition of “Tears in Heaven” to honor those who died in the Las Vegas shooting massacre. Glad that was honored and talked about.

— U2’s performance was, of course, amazing, with the Statue of Liberty in the background and a song “Get Out of Your Own Way” that fits the times.

— Ke$ha and Cyndi Lauper and Co. were also fantastic. Lot of great live performances at the Grammys this year.

— Pink is amazing, which I have said on this blog many, many times. Whether she’s dangling off the side of a building and singing like she did last year, nor simply standing on stage and belting out one hell of a song like she did Sunday night, that woman is truly sensational. So pumped to see her again on her current tour; the wife and I got tickets to an April show in New York. She is so incredible.

— Logic, another musician I did not know, did a powerful performance of a song written to make a suicide-prevention hotline phone number more visible.  Also enjoyed him telling people from all over the world that ‘you are not from shithole countries,” though it’s sad CBS bleeped it out.

— Miley Cyrus and Elton John doing “Tiny Dancer” was sensational; with all of her ridiculous behavior you forget just how incredible a talent Miley is. But she was fabulous here.

— Am I the only one who didn’t know there was still a “Best Comedy Album” Grammy? Man did they play that up a lot during the show; who really cares about comedy at the Grammys?

— That James Corden, Sting and Shaggy sketch on the New York City subways. Groan, groan, groan. Just bad.

— Finally, I don’t know who Logic is, but that was a pretty fantastic little speech he gave at the end of his performance. Proud to see so many artists speak up about the atrocities this President and his allies are committing.



A sorority in Michigan puts out a horrific anti-Semitic V-day card. “SNL” and Melissa McCarthy score again. And thoughts on a politically-charged Grammys dominated by Adele

There is so much going on in America right now, politically and socially, that sometimes I feel like we can’t process at all.

There’s so much wrong, and so many lies and such deep hatred emanating from the White House and those who support it, that sometimes I feel like things slide and don’t get the attention it deserves.

So in my tiny corner of the Internet today, I wanted to say how absolutely revolted I am by this story, and how it’s just a mere pebble to a larger boulder of a trend: Anti-Semitism is getting worse and worse in America.

The Central Michigan University College Republicans hosted a Valentine’s Day party last Wednesday night; at the party, they distributed gift bags to all attendees.

In those gift bags was a Valentine’s Day card so hideous, so horrendous… Just look at it.


Words fail me. That is 14,000 kinds of wrong.

Of course the College Republicans of CMU apologized profusely, claimed that it was some “unauthorized” person who unbeknownst to them put those cards i people’s bags, yada yada yada. Maybe they’re telling the truth, but it smells like bullshit to me.

Anti-Semitism has always been around, you don’t have to tell any Jewish person that. But over the past year, ever since a certain bigoted a-hole began running for President and doing stuff like running ads with pictures of Hillary Clinton and talking about money and putting a Jewish star on the ad (real subtle, Donald), things seem to be getting worse.

There were many, many stories around Hanukkah time of menorahs being destroyed, synagogues being vandalized, and blatant anti-Semitism in many forms. You going to tell me it’s just a coincidence that all this is getting worse since a man who actually became President has a white supremicist and anti-Semite running his campaign and now, his White House?

It is disgusting, it is scary, and it needs to be called out every single time it happens.

Shame on the Central Michigan College Republicans, and shame on the millions of Americans who excused the anti-Semitism of the current administration.

Sadly, this shit doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon.

**And now, on a lighter note… “Saturday Night Live” did a pretty sexist and awful KellyAnne Conway sketch this week (I’m not going to link to it and give it more clicks, you can find it if you want to), but they absolutely hit a home run again with Melissa McCarthy as White House press secretary Sean Spicer. “The People’s Court” bit is hilarious, and the last 30 seconds are my favorite part, but her saying the word “Orlan-ta.” had me burst out laughing.

Melissa McCarthy may have to become a permanent cast member, she’s too damn good in this role…


**Finally today, every year I spend 364 or so days ignoring popular music of all genres, stuck in the 1980s and ’90s that I am, then spend one night watching the Grammys and catching up and asking my much-cooler, hipper wife to explain stuff to me (Hey, it works for us.)

Some thoughts from what was a pretty powerful and politically-charged, but sometimes boring, Grammys:

— So Adele won everything and she was absolutely charming as always, whether it was when she stopped her tribute performance to George Michael to start it over because there was a screwup (and then she cursed on live TV which is always fun), or when she basically bowed down to Beyonce and apologized for winning Record and Album of the Year. As I’ve said, I know nothing about current music but it seems the Internet lost its mind that Adele beat Beyonce.

— Beyonce was pretty stunning in her visual and artistic performance; pregnant with twins, she still put on an amazing show.
Seriously, I know she’s called Queen Bey and all that, but can we actually elect her Queen of America?

— The political protests from the stage were expected, because music has always been such an important way to spread messages of resistance. A Tribe Called Quest was pretty on point, calling the President “President Agent Orange” and then parading to the stage a variety of regular people from all different faiths and nationalities. Katy Perry, who I’m not usually a fan of, dropped a fantastic performance as well, and Jennifer Lopez quoting Toni Morrison? Didn’t see that one coming.


— The Prince tribute was the highlight of the whole show for me, which I knew it would be. Bruno Mars doing “Let’s Go Crazy?” Well done, sir.

— Speaking of J-Lo, she looked great but she’s coming dangerously close to John Boehner’s skin color. There is such a thing as TOO much bronzing and tanning.

— Literally nothing can get me to change the channel faster than “An All-Star Tribute to the Bee Gees!”

— For old fogies like me, seeing the James Corden “Carpool Karaoke” bit with so many artists singing “Sweet Caroline” along with Neil Diamond was pretty fun.

— Also, I had no idea who they were before Sunday night, but Twenty One Pilots coming up to accept their Grammy award with no pants on was pretty fabulous.

— Finally, Lady Gaga and Metallica was a glorious train wreck. As my wife astutely put it, “Gaga looked like she was a Metallica groupie.”



The most powerful and stunning commercial of the year. I take in Duke basketball at MSG and am really excited. And Corden and Kendrick make more TV magic

It takes so much. It takes so much to really shock people anymore, especially with a short public service commercial intended to help change minds on an issue that seems so intractable.

This is the most powerful ad I’ve seen in a long, long time. I don’t want to tell you what it’s about, because I don’t want to blunt the force of it.

Just please take a few minutes and watch until the end. Just an amazing, amazing ad.

It was put out by a group called Sandy Hook Promise, and its devastating message will hopefully sink in. The students who are being ignored are the ones who need our help the most.

**Next up today, you people should know by now that I love, love, love me some Anna Kendrick (definitely on my Ross Gellar-approved “laminated” list of celebrities my wife will let me be with should, you know, the opportunity arise), and I do love some James Corden and Billy Eichner, so there was no way I’d miss this little musical number they did on Corden’s show last week.

Really funny and great.


**Finally today, I went to Madison Square Garden Tuesday night to watch my beloved Duke men’s basketball team play Florida. I saw the Duke-Kansas game at MSG a few weeks ago, but the Blue Devils were very shorthanded in that one, three of the stud freshmen who are supposed to lead Duke back to the Final Four were all hurt. (Gotta say, though, that the atmosphere at MSG that night, with Duke-Kansas and Kentucky-Michigan St. playing a doubleheader, was the best environment for hoops I’ve ever seen at MSG. Crowd was nuts.)

Tuesday night Duke finally had most of its freshmen playing, and … man, was I impressed. Florida is a legit Top 20 team, and Duke had to play really well to beat them, by 10, 74-64.

It was only the second college game for superstar freshman Jayson Tatum, and man oh man was he great. He started slow but came on strong in the second half, scoring 16 points. Guy is 6-9, can shoot, dribble, rebound and score in traffic. He dominated stretches of the game, and he’s not even in game shape yet. He’s going to be so much fun to watch this season.

This Duke team, with the freshmen like Tatum, Marques Bolden and hopefully Harry Giles healthy, could be all kinds of scary. I know everyone reading this probably hates Duke, but as a Duke fan I”m extremely excited for the rest of the year.

Could be national title No. 6 for Coach K.

The best book I’ve read in years finally comes out (and it was dedicated to me!) Lady Gaga and James Corden do a great “Carpool Karoake.” And a 5-year-old soccer fan does something adorable.


In September of 1993, a scrawny, glasses-wearing, jean-jacket sporting freshman at the University of Delaware (OK it was me) walked up to the student newspaper office, The Review, and said he wanted to write.

I had all of two years of high school newspaper experience, hadn’t taken any of the required college journalism courses you needed to write for the newspaper, and probably annoyed a few of the editors by telling them how great my high school newspaper was (hey, The Commack H.S. Courant won awards!)

The editor-in-chief was a tall skinny dude with a cocky attitude but a heart of gold. His name was Jeff Pearlman, and he wasn’t allowed to write for The Review as a freshman, and it stung him. After quizzing me a bit on sports, he decided he’d give me the chance that he never was.

Twenty-three years later, I’m really glad I walked up the stairs to the office that day. Jeff has become one of my two or three best friends in the whole world. He has been more instrumental in whatever journalism successes I’ve had than anyone else; truly there was a time early in my career where just about every chance I got was because he either talked me up to the person in charge, or passed on an opportunity so I could have it.

As a friend, he’s been more than amazing, which is why he was a groomsman in my wedding three years ago. His kind gestures big and small have never been forgotten, including the time two years ago when he mentioned our newborn son’s name on a nationally-televised sports show, just because I told him my wife thought it’d be cool to hear it. (To be fair, my son DOES share a name with a former NFL receiver, so it wasn’t dropped totally out of nowhere).

He’s also, oh yeah, a fantastic journalist and author, with four New York Times bestsellers to his credit.

Why am I telling you all this? Because as one of the people lucky enough to have edited/proofread all of his books and offer thoughts on them, I feel pretty qualified to say this: His new book, “Gunslinger,” a biography of NFL legend Brett Favre, is by far his best. Jeff talked to nearly 600 people about Favre, who of course played QB for the Green Bay Packers, won a Super Bowl, had a major prescription drug problem, said he was retiring 43 times before he actually did, and was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame last summer.

Also, I nearly cried when Jeff sent me an advance copy a few months ago and I saw this on the first page:


I can’t tell you how cool I thought it was to have a book dedicated to me (all those other names are obscure New York Jets from the 1980s and ’90s; we’re both hardcore Jets fans).

Anyway, after all he’s done for me, the least I can do for him is promote his books when they come out. I am certain this Favre book will be a bestseller, and well worth your time. (Here’s a very quick taste of what you can expect from the book.) If you are, or know of, a big NFL or Green Bay Packers or just sports fan, please consider buying “Gunslinger.”

**Next up today, seems like James Corden hasn’t done a “Carpool Karaoke” in a while, but this one was worth the wait. I’m no Lady Gaga fan (I don’t dig her music, and I think she spent way too much of her career doing offensive and crazy things just to get attention), but she comes across really well here. Her voice is, unquestionably, fantastic, and Corden’s “costume changes” at about the 12-minute mark through are pretty hilarious.


**Finally today, I don’t know if this is a true “Good News Friday” story but it made me smile pretty widely when I heard it. It seems 5-year-old Louis Kayes had to go to a birthday party last weekend, which meant he couldn’t go to the game of his favorite soccer team in Scotland, Celtic FC.

So Louis borrowed his mom’s phone and called the team to tell them he was sorry he couldn’t make it, and could he speak to manager Brendan Rodgers and captain Scott Brown, to apologize for his absence

She told the BBC her son had called after a “bit of a guilt trip”.

Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland’s Kaye Adams program, she said: “He was in the living room with my phone and then I heard the voicemail message from Celtic Park saying ‘thank you for calling’.”

“He wanted to let both of them know he’d missed it in case they were looking for him,” said Lisa Kayes, Louis’s mother.

Louis told BBC Scotland the birthday party had been “good”, but said he would definitely not be missing Wednesday evening’s Champions League clash with Borussia Monchengladbach.

Come on, Celtic FC, give this kid free tickets for the rest of the season!

Good News Friday: The NBA shows some courage and pulls All-Star-Game from North Carolina. Michelle Obama’s awesome “Carpool Karaoke”

All-Star Game Basketball

Not going to say one word about last night’s speech by the Republican Presidential nominee. It speaks for itself.

Time for some happy news as we head into a weekend that may hit 100 freaking degrees up and down the East Coast (somewhere, sunscreen company executives are planning new extensions to their homes).

First up, it’s not often a major sports league takes an important stand on an issue knowing it’s going to anger one of its franchises, and some of its fans. But good for the NBA, and commissioner Adam Silver, for doing what they did Thursday.

After North Carolina’s Republican-dominated state legislature and puppet governor, Pat McCrory railroaded the odious anti-gay and lesbian law known as HB2, lots of corporations and sports leagues made threats about boycotting the state of North Carolina. Silver said if the law didn’t get changed or repealed, he might pull the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte.

Well the law still stands, but the All-Star Game is going elsewhere. The NBA announced Thursday that it was pulling the game from the state, thereby costing the Hornets, and North Carolina, millions in expected revenue.

“While we recognize that the NBA cannot choose the law in every city, state, and country in which we do business, we do not believe we can successfully host our All-Star festivities in Charlotte in the climate created by HB2,” the league said in a statement.

Good for them. Let’s see more sports leagues take major events away (why are things still held in Indiana?) and see what kind of impact it has.

You know, if they really wanted to make a stand for equality and gay rights, the NBA ought to put this year’s game in San Francisco.

**Next up today, it’s been obvious for years that Michelle Obama is the coolest FLOTUS since at least Jackie Kennedy, and probably even cooler than her.

While her speech was getting plagiarized by some former model from Slovenia, Michelle was driving around singing Stevie and Beyonce with James Corden on the host’s newest “Carpool Karoake.” Love the singing, but love the chat about 3 a.m. grilled cheese sandwiches, too.

I have no idea what Michelle Obama will do come January. But whatever it is, I know it’ll be great.

**And finally, for the millions of you out there who are dog people, this should put a smile on your face. A second-class petty officer named Christina Baez was away at sea for a year, and one of the things she missed most was her pet pitbull, Layla.

Well, Baez has finally come home, and there were cameras out to record Layla’s slightly excited reaction.

“When you’re away from an animal, and even a child, you’re nervous coming home and afraid that they won’t remember you,” Baez said.

I don’t think that’s a problem. Just beautiful stuff.

The Orlando nightclub shooting and the Tony Awards: Love will always beat hate. The Penguins win the Cup, and Gordie Howe, remembered. And Billy Crystal beautifully eulogizes Muhammad Ali


I woke up Sunday morning around 7:30, and within minutes I was filled with rage.

Rage at once again, a mass shooting on American soil, by a person using weapons only military should be allowed to possess. A man raging against the world, against gay people, against our values, and mowing down more than 100 people, killing 50.

Last time there was a mass shooting I wrote in this space that I was numb to it, and trying to remain hopeful. Two mass shootings ago I was angry and pissed off, and that’s where I was Sunday. I don’t care if the perpetrator of this heinous act did what he did at Pulse nightclub because he hates gay people, or because he sympathized with ISIS

And my rage barely subsided all day when I thought about the horrible tragedy, and how incredibly frightening it must have been to be in that club. And my rage reached new levels when I read “our thoughts and prayers are with the victims” statements from men like Ted Cruz and Mike Huckabee, who absolutely demonize and spew hatred at lesbian and gay people constantly, yet now more than four dozen of them are dead and suddenly they give a fuck.

So I was mad, and feeling helpless, and knowing that once again, absolutely nothing will change in America even after the worst mass shooting in our nation’s history.

Then at 8 p.m., the Tony Awards started. And host James Corden did a fabulous opening number talking about inclusion, and how diversity is a good thing, and for the next few hours a theater community that welcomes and becomes a safe refuge for so many gay, lesbian and transgender people was a cornucopia of joy, and good feelings.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, the genius behind “Hamilton,”  gave a fantastic acceptance speech that ended like this:

“We lived through times when hate and fear seemed stronger,
we rise and fall and light from dying embers, remembrances that
hope and love last longer.

And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love…
It cannot be killed or swept aside.”

And awards were handed out and heartfelt speeches made, and tributes to the Orlando victims were offered, and I smiled through much of it.

On such a tragic day, a day that usually leads to feeling such helplessness, it was wonderful to be reminded, by brilliant actors and actresses on the Beacon Theatre stage, that love ALWAYS wins over hate.

Every damn time.


**Next up, there was a hell of a Stanley Cup finals hockey game played Sunday night, which I watched during Tonys commercials and then saw the whole third period.

The Sharks and Penguins played the whole game like their hair was on fire, and if only the choppy ice had cooperated (it’s June in San Jose, can’t really expect good ice) the score could easily have been 6-5. Pittsburgh is the new Stanley Cup champion, and man it

Couple quick thoughts on the Penguins’ Stanley Cup win:

— Sidney Crosby, hated by so many hockey fans (including me), is just a sensational player. His puckhandling, his vision, he’s been so good for so long that you take him for granted. But this guy almost had his career ended by concussions a few years ago, so to see him playing at this level again is something else.

— Mike Emrick. I mean, what more can you say about the best play-by-play announcer in any sport? He was just so much fun to listen to Sunday night.

— The Sharks have just about put to bed their reputation as playoff chokers, right? What a fantastic playoff run they had. Absolutely nothing to be ashamed of.

— Gordie Howe, maybe the second-greatest hockey player ever (some blonde dude named Gretzky was better), died on Friday. So many great stories were told by the hockey writers who knew him; I loved this Michael Farber essay on Howe on SI.com, and Canadian hockey legend Roy MacGregor also had a great story and video here as well. In McDonald’s piece, we hear a wonderful anecdote about Howe once picking an opponent up off the ice by his nostrils. And oh yeah, Gordie was still playing pro hockey at age 51. Fifty-one!

Rest in Peace to a legendary player.

**Finally today, wanted to end on an uplifting note. Friday was Muhammad Ali’s funeral, and as you expect, so many luminaries were in attendance.

Billy Crystal gave one of the eulogies, and he was just pitch-perfect. His humor, emotion and words were outstanding. Watch this and again, appreciate how much love and goodness there is in the world.

Billy’s the best.

Good News Friday: An incredible flag return tradition from America to Japan. The Holocaust survivor who sang the anthem at a Tigers game. And James Corden’s Tonys-themed Carpool Karaoke is great.

And a Happy Friday to you all! Summer seems to have arrived, we’ve got all kinds of “Kumbaya” unity on the Democratic side (and did you see Joe Biden’s fantastic letter to the Stanford rape victim? Love that Joe Biden), and Donald Trump is tweeting stupid crap and alienating more people every day. God bless America…

Three great pieces of media to share with you today. First up, a fantastic and emotional story done by the stellar crew at “CBS Sunday Morning,” and for once, it’s not a Steve Hartman story I’m sharing.

You’ve probably heard a lot in the last few weeks about World War II, and the U.S. bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as President Obama visited the historic Japanese site of Hiroshima. Seven decades later, the healing between American soldiers and Japanese citizens is still ongoing.
Well, an Oregon couple is doing its best to give closure to the descendants of Japanese soldiers killed in battle; they’re sending back the “good luck” Japanese flags used during the war.

It’s an emotional, beautiful thing to see the reaction of the Japanese people when the flags are returned. Watch, and realize that it’s never too late to do good.

**Next up, Sunday is the Tony Awards, which if you’re like my wife, is one of the highlights on the calendar every year (seriously, she loves the Tonys almost as much as she loves me.)

James Corden is hosting this year, and so of course he did a special and awesome version of “Carpool Karaoke,” starring Jane Krakowski, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, the amazing Audra McDonald, and Lin-Manuel Miranda from some little off-Broadway show called “Hamilton” or something.

This is terrific.


**Finally today, this is a wonderful story from a few weeks ago that I missed while we were away. Eighty-nine year old Holocaust survivor Hermina Hersh dreamed of one day singing the national anthem at a sporting event, and a few months ago her grandson videotaped Hersh singing it at home and put it on YouTube.

The video went viral locally, media attention followed, and then the Detroit Tigers gave her the chance to do it a few weeks ago.

With her family all watching from the stands, Hersh knocked it out of the park. What a wonderful moment for her. Hear Hersh’s story in more detail here.

The little kid who took NPR off the air briefly. James Corden and Gwyneth Paltrow do “Toddlerography” and it’s hysterical. And an NFL player’s fabulous essay on masculinity and rape culture

I’ll try to somehow carry on with my life now that our Lord and Savior Ted Cruz has announced he’s no longer a candidate for President. I’m not going to lie; it’s going to be hard. (that GIF above just keeps making me laugh, though. Poor Heidi Cruz).

But we must soldier on, as we scour the Internet for Cruz-Fiorina 2016 merchandise, and try to get our heads around the fact that John Kasich is the only challenger left on the GOP side, and who the hell would’ve predicted that six months ago?

Our first story today is one I found really funny; Take your Child to Work Day has become a pretty big thing in our country the last decade or so, and of course, when little kids come to the workplace, accidents are going to happen.

But this accident was a beaut: One of the little tykes brought to work by NPR employees accidentally knocked the entire station off the air for a little more than a minute.

“During a bring your kids to work day tour today, some of our junior visitors pressed some buttons that affected a portion of the 11 a.m. ET newscast that can be heard on a limited number of West Coast stations,” said Isabel Lara, NPR’s director of media relations. Not all stations were affected,” she said. “It was an educational day for us as well as our kids.”

More specifically, “one of our junior journalists was somehow able to press the exact sequence, and perfectly timed live insert panel to insert studio 42 into the stream 1. I kid you not,” an NPR employee email read. “Feel free to giggle at will.”

I love it. Dead air caused by a 10-year-old. Think the kid’s parent who did it might be a little made fun of for the next 100 years or so by co-workers?

“Wait, Mommy, if I press this button, what happens?”

**Next up, even if you, like me, think Gwyneth Paltrow is a fairly useless and obnoxious human being, I think you’ll be entertained by this skit she did with James Corden last week.

It’s a dance class called “Toddlerography,” and it’s fantastic. I totally want to sign up for this at my gym…


**Finally today, it’s extremely rare that an NFL player would write a thought-provoking essay of any kind. But when he writes one about male privilege and rape culture, and how whacked-out society’s ideas of masculinity are, then, well, I’m sitting up and paying attention.
DeAndre Levy of the Detroit Lions penned a fantastic essay for The Players Tribune, on the faux-masculinity so many men show, and why it’s so incredibly important that sex gets separated from “being a man.”

“It’s truly astounding how many awful things that occur in this world because men are afraid of appearing weak.… So what’s the opposite of weakness? Power. And oftentimes, how powerful a man is is directly associated with his sexual exploits. And that’s what I’d like to discuss.”

Levy goes on to say some very powerful things, including “The focus always seems to be on teaching young women how not to get raped and on what steps they can take to “stay safe.” But why are we not also focused on educating young men about the definition of consent and what constitutes rape? We’re essentially dealing with the problem by telling women to be more careful. And that’s bullshit…. It’s important for men, especially in a hyper-masculine culture that breeds so many assholes, to stand up and challenge the values that have been passed down to us.”

It’s a really powerful, important piece, especially coming from the hyper-masculine world of the NFL. Levy blames himself for much of what he thought as a young man.
I urge you to read the whole essay here.

Good News Friday: A 100-year-old Rangers fan gets to meet her heroes. Elton John and James Corden in carpool karaoke. And a 10-year-old’s clean energy project helps hundreds


And a Happy Friday to you all! I’m still buzzing in amazement at that remarkable Duke win over North Carolina Wednesday night; truly one of the most improbable and shocking wins I’ve seen in 30 years as a Blue Devils fan.

But since that win is only “good news” to the small portion of us that root for Duke, let’s move on to some more universally-accepted good news.

Like, for example, a woman hitting the century mark and getting to meet her heroes.

Mila Zavodni went to her first hockey game in 1926, 90 years ago. Her father took her to a Rangers exhibition game in Czechoslovakia when she was 10, and she got hooked on the sport.

Zavodni, who lives in White Plains, N.Y., watches Rangers games on TV all the time, and is a huge diehard fan. So a few weeks ago her neighbor and good friend, Tim Khachetoorian, contacted the Rangers and let them know about their biggest fan’s birthday milestone.

So Tuesday Zavodni got to go to a Rangers practice, meet star players Mats Zuccarello and Derek Stepan, and got a ton of souvenirs.

“It’s beautiful. It’s perfect,” Zavodni told the Journal-News of Westchester. “It’s not the same as watching on television. You don’t sense the physicality of what they do. These boys are so tall and majestic, and they glide across the ice like ballerinas.”

I loved this quote from her, too.

“It was so fun, I can’t wait to call my sons and tell them about it,” she told the paper. “I love watching hockey because it makes you forget about your problems. This sport is so full of joy, full of life. Sometimes I wish I weren’t so old, because it can be hard. But then, there are moments like this.”

God bless her. I hope at 100 I’m still able to watch the Rangers and complain about their awful penalty killing and refusal to shoot the puck.

**Nezt up, these James Corden Carpool Karaoke segments keep getting better and better. This might be my favorite one yet, with the legendary Elton John. His story about how “Your Song” was written is just beautiful, and I thought it was really interesting to hear him talk about how other new and exciting music still motivates him, after all these years.

Plus, James Corden’s wig…


**Finally today, I love stories like this, of little kids taking on huge problems and actually making a difference.

From Upworthy.com comes the story of Cassandra Lin, who at 10 years old began learning about global warming and how if the world’s addiction to fossil fuel continues, her home state of Rhode Island would be completely underwater by 2100.

So Cassandra and her friends decided they wanted to do something about it, and hit on an idea: She formed the Turn Grease Into Fuel organization, soliciting restaurants to, instead of throwing away used cooking oil, transferring it into biofuel, energy that is much, much better for the environment than fossil fuels.

Cassandra got the town of Waverly, R.I. to help out, and since its launch seven years ago TGIF has, with the help of 132 local restaurants, used the biofuel to heat the homes of 400 local families.

They’ve also recycled enough cooking oil to offset 3 million pounds of CO2 emissions, according to the EPA’s estimations.

What an amazing kid.


A political revolution gets a major win: Bernie Sanders takes New Hamshire (Trump does too). James Corden and Cindy Crawford hilariously re-create her Super Bowl ad. And the craziest story, maybe ever, from Australia

CONCORD, NH - FEBRUARY 09:  Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and his wife Jane O'Meara (R) greets supporters after winning the New Hampshire Democratic Primary February 9, 2016 in Concord, New Hampshire.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Six years ago, my mother told me Bernie Sanders should run for President, and that he would win.

I love my mother more than anything. She’s a wonderful, huge-hearted woman who is as bleeding-heart liberal as they come, and she truly doesn’t understand why everyone doesn’t feel the same way she does about things.

So, given that she gave me life and everything, I gently patted her on the head, laughed pretty hard, and sweetly and patronizingly said “Mom, that’s completely nuts. Never could happen. Only in your wildest dreams.”

Well now … I’ve decided, six years later, that my mother might be the female Jewish Karl Rove, or at least, the James Carville of the Whole Foods crowd.

She saw what no one else did, or at least, what no one else would admit publicly.

A 74-year-old Jewish man from Brooklyn (L’chaim!) won a resounding 22-point point victory over Hillary Clinton Tuesday night in the New Hampshire primary. And even though it’s looked for weeks like Bernie would win, and win big, this is still yuuuge news. (Here’s his victory speech from Tuesday night.)

He’s now tied one state and won another, an incredible underdog suddenly scaring the bejeezus out of the Clinton machine. I just kept smiling during his victory speech Tuesday, because of what the great Rachel Maddow verbalized right after Sanders finished: We liberals have NEVER had a serious Presidential candidate say these things on a national stage, and it’s glorious to behold.

I know, I know. It still seems kinda impossible that Bernie can beat Hillary, and then win a general. But then you see, seconds after Bernie finished his victory speech, a complete sexist, racist gasbag who has no bleeping idea what he’s saying get up on stage after his yuuge primary win, and you think: If it’s Bernie vs. Trump, really, Bernie couldn’t win that?

Dare to dream, folks. Dare to dream. Tuesday night was a wonderful night.

Couple other thoughts from Tuesday night…

— Hillary Clinton’s concession speech was fabulous. She sounded like a true firebrand liberal. And if Bernie has done nothing else over the past six months, he’s forced her far to the left, which is a good, good thing for America. Since she’ll probably be our next President.

— I can’t wait to see some new South Carolina polling numbers following tonight’s win. Methinks it’ll be pretty damn close.

— Congrats, John Kasich, on coming in 2nd! Sadly I think this is the last we’ll hear from him. He’s way too reasonable to win.

— So much for that “Marco-mentum, huh?” Chris Christie really destroyed Rubio in the debate last Saturday, and Marco may never recover.

— There is not one genuine bone in Trump’s body. Not one. I listened to his victory speech and it was just so obnoxious.  I will never, ever understand how this man could be so worshipped by so many. He makes Dick Cheney look uncertain.

**Next up, as I wrote on Monday, this year’s Super Bowl commercials were pretty lame. Very few memorable ones.

Not like the magical Cindy Crawford Pepsi ad from 1992, which was pretty huge for 16-year-old me at the time, since I, like millions of other red-blooded American males, positively worshipped the ground Cindy walked on (I had several Cindy posters in my room, as did most of my friends).

Well, James Corden and the still insansely-pretty Cindy did a great “update” spoof of the commercial recently, and it’s hilarious.



**Finally today, this might be the craziest story I ever heard (except, you know, Donald Trump maybe being President.). An Australian woman confronted her husband at her own funeral.

He’d paid men to kidnap and kill her, they took his money, but decided not to murder her. They told him they’d done it, he planned a funeral, than in the parking lot on the way out, she scared the hell out of him.

He eventually confessed, and just got sentenced to nine years in prison.

I’m nowhere near close to doing this story justice, though. Read it, and then go hug your spouse and be very, very glad they’re not as crazy as this guy.