Tag Archives: Pat Venditte

A student driver accident that amazingly really happened. Jon Stewart on the McKinney pool mess. And an awesome headline screw-up, maybe the best of the year


If you’re like me, you remember driver’s ed class with a mix of terror and joyful memories.

The joy came from finally being allowed to steer an automobile, getting on the open roads and hoping the teacher in the passenger seat with his own brakes didn’t have to jam on them too often.

The terror came from, you know, driving for the first time and being petrified you’d kill someone, or more accurately, yourself.

My driver’s ed teacher was named Mr. DiGiorgio, and he was swell. Sure, one time I started making a left turn into oncoming traffic, but hey, he didn’t even yell at me too much. (My friend Andrew, sitting in the backseat that day, can recall that moment 25 years later, I am certain.)

Heck, even when one girl in our car once asked as we were pulling away “The one on the left is the brakes, right?” good ole’ Mr. D. just calmly fixed her confusion.

Anyway, I bring this up because all kinds of crazy things can happen when you’re a student driver, but I’m pretty certain no one ever prepares for what happened to this poor girl in Germany last week.

An 18-year-old woman in a Toyota hatchback accidentally turned into a column of British tanks that were travelling through the small town of Augustdorf, Germany.

The British soldier at the controls of the tank behind her had no time to stop, but managed to turn so that he crushed the engine of the car, just avoiding the driver.

The 18-year-old woman, who has not been named under German privacy laws, escaped unharmed.

I don’t know how exactly one “accidentally” turns into a column of British tanks. And maybe I’m a bad person but that photo above made me crack up. Thank God no one was hurt, but I mean come on, the street it happened on was called Tank Ring Road!

Ah, student drivers. God bless them.

**Next up today, you’ve probably heard about the incident over the weekend in McKinney, Texas, when white police officers appeared to use over-aggressive force in trying to apprehend a bunch of African-American kids who were at a pool party. The facts of the case are not quite clear (some witnesses said the kids had been cursing and harassing people at the pool, others say that absolutely did not happen), but what’s very clear from the video is that once again, white police officers went way over the line (pointing a gun at a teenage girl in a bikini?)

Jon Stewart and “The Daily Show”, as always, had the best take on the matter. Watch the above clip with Jessica Williams, so funny it hurts…

**Finally today, this headline made me laugh out loud. Last week a Major League Baseball first occurred, as Pat Venditte of the Oakland Athletics pitched with both his right and left arm to get batters out.

Yes that’s right, Venditte is ambidextrous, and has been for a long time. He’s been toiling in his minors after leaving Vanderbilt and finally got his chance last week.

So naturally, newspapers across the country were eager to trumpet Venditte’s accomplishment, including the East Oregonian newspaper in Pendleton, Ore.:


He’s amphibious! If only he could pitch all his games in the water, he’d be the best pitcher ever!