Tag Archives: Tim Tebow

Good News Friday: Tim Tebow and an autistic boy share a “movie moment.” Yipee, airline passengers are getting bumped less often. And a Chicago Bears player’s beautiful bond with a cancer-stricken boy

And a Happy Friday to you all! I’m happy for all kinds of reasons today, among them: my wife’s 28-week sonogram Thursday showed a perfectly healthy fetus (the only body part I could confidently identify was the penis, so that was fun), my wife’s birthday was Thursday and so for the next six days, we’re the same age (then next Thursday I leap ahead of her, dammit), and, you know, the world didn’t blow up on Thursday thanks to two crazy madmen insulting each other.

So, you know, that was good.

We lead off Good News Friday this week with a story straight out of Damon Runyon (look him up, kids), or a Hollywood screenplay. It really does seem like these things always happen to Tim Tebow, but this one is absolutely true.

Tebow is playing for the Mets minor-league team in St. Lucie, Fla. these days, and the other night an autistic boy who’s a big fan of his decided, while Tebow was in the on-deck circle, to come down to the front row and try to give the former NFL QB a high-five.

Tebow saw the boy, Seth Bosch, and walked over and gave him a high-five. Seth was overwhelmed and return to his seat and his mom, Ileana, crying.

As she tried to console him, Tebow came to bat. And drilled a three-run home run. Leading Seth to jump up and down wildly.

Such a beautiful moment. Watch it here…



**Next up, it’s exceedingly rare we can praise airlines for anything, but thanks to some horrible incidents in the recent past, they are in for a bit of praise today. Happy news to report is that ever since the video of United Airlines flight attendants dragging 69-year-old David Dao off an airplane after an overbooking disaster, airlines are bumping fewer and fewer passengers.

According to this story, the Transportation Department said Tuesday that just 1 in every 19,000 passengers was kicked off an overbooked flight in the first six months of this year.

That’s the lowest rate since the government started keeping track in 1995.

The biggest decline took place between April and June, partly because airlines began paying many more passengers to give up their seats.

Hey, should ANY passengers ever be bumped because of an overbooked flight? No. Because airlines should NOT overbook flights. You have 200 seats on the plane? Sell 200 tickets, not 220 tickets.

I don’t understand why this concept doesn’t seem to work with airlines. But hey, the fact that so many horrible overbooking incidents were captured on video in the past year has made airlines stop bumping passengers is a silver lining.

Let’s hope it keeps up.

**And finally, a beautiful story by Dan Wiederer in the Chicago Tribune about an NFL player and a little boy who is surviving cancer.

NFL tight end Zach Miller befriended Ryan Creemens, a 9-year-old cancer survivor, after they first met when Miller handed Creemens his gloves after a game two years ago.

As Ryan underwent surgery after surgery and painful chemo, his buddy Zach was there, with FaceTime and phone calls, and words of encouragement.

But Miller went way, way beyond that. This is a really beautiful story; read it and appreciate how one person can make such a difference in the life of another.


Good News Friday: A homeless New Jersey man is overwhelmed with gifts from the 49ers. Baby of a twin Dad meets her uncle and is adorably confused. And Tim Tebow holds a prom for special needs kids

And a Happy Friday to you! Honestly, I could make this entire GNF post about last night’s Republican presidential debate, because as a Democrat, that was 2.5 hours of wonderful. Just crazy, insane, off-the-wall stuff from every candidate but Kasich, and there’s no way the GOP will be smart enough to nominate the guy who might actually win. I consider it wonderfully good news because there’s no way in hell Trump, Cruz or Rubio is winning a general election.

But no, I won’t torture my Republican friends and readers (I promise, I have a few of them! They’ve emailed me!) by gloating over that shit-show last night.

Onward for some REAL happy news…

First up today, a few weeks ago there was a horrible video circulating of a New Jersey homeless man named Ronald Leggatt being paid $5 so an obnoxious kid could pour coffee over his head. (Personal aside: Are kids THAT cruel and bored these days that this is a thing to do?)

The video spread around the world as a pretty good example of evil and stupidity, but remarkably, some good has come out of it. Lots of good-hearted people saw the video and wanted to help Leggatt; money was raised to put him up in a hotel and get him off the streets, and the San Francisco 49ers saw that Leggatt was wearing a worn team jacket in the original video, and so they sent him a huge box full of new 49ers gear.

“Unbelievable,” Leggatt told News 4 New York. “From California! That’s just unbelievable! Best thing that ever happened!”

Good for the Niners.

**Next up, these videos are adorable. A father of a new baby boy wanted to introduce his wee one to his twin brother, her uncle. Watch the baby’s reaction and quite understandable confusion as he goes from her dad to her uncle.

So sweet.


**And finally today, you can mock former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow for a lot of things, and I certainly have over the years. But one thing that has absolutely never been in doubt is his genuinely good heart, and concern for others.

Tebow is incredibly charitable and does tons of good work that gets very little press anymore since he’s pretty much washed out as a pro player. But I saw this last week and again was reminded what a good guy he is.

The Tim Tebow Foundation sponsored a worldwide prom, “Night to Shine,” for people with special needs over last weekend.

This year’s event, which was simultaneously hosted on Friday by 200 churches in 48 states and seven countries, provided a night to remember for more than 32,000 people with special needs.

Tebow attended one of them in New York City, and made a lot of kids very very happy.

Beautiful job, Tim Tebow. Beautiful.


A husband in China goes way above and beyond the call of duty. Stories from the kids who survived Oklahoma City bombing. And a quick rant about flashing highway billboards


All kinds of weird and wonderful and terrible sports news over the weekend; still trying to process why the Eagles signed Tim Tebow, how the horrendously unworthy of luck Edmonton Oilers managed to win yet another NHL draft lottery and thus get the once-in-a-generation talent Connor McDavid in this year’s draft, and how I’m not at all surprised at the behavior of Islanders fans on Sunday at Nassau Coliseum.

But we begin today’s post with a pretty remarkable act of spousal support from a husband in China.

A 27-year-old soldier in the Chinese army named Yin Yunfeng is stationed in Tibet, and only gets to see his wife, Zhao Mai, about once a year.

Apparently on a recent visit Yin was distressed to see that Zhao was so busy she rarely had time to cook herself dinner.

So Yin decided to solve that problem. He cooked 12 months’ worth of meals for Zhao, so she’d have something to eat every day while he was gone.

According to this story, Yin Yunfeng’s cooking marathon included more than 1,000 dumplings, 150 liters of his wife’s favourite noodle soup and dozens of other hearty meals all individually packaged, which he then stashed in their freezer and the freezers of nearby friends and family.

Explaining his epic effort in a note, Yin Yunfeng wrote: ‘You’re so focused on your work and have so much to read when you get home that I want to make life easier for you.’

Wow. And here I am, feeling all proud of myself for going out to get my wife coffee and an egg sandwich on Saturday mornings.

Yin Yunfeng, you have shamed all the husbands in the world. Damn you! But seriously, that’s incredible.


**Next up today, this is just fabulous story-telling, and devastating yet uplifting to hear.
Sunday was the 20th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, a day I remember as clear as day, as I’m sure you do, too.

National Public Radio marked the occasion by interviewing kids who survived the blast at the Alfred Murrah building, and what they remember, and how they feel about having the most significant moment of their lives happen when they’re barely out of diapers.

Incredible stuff.


**Finally today, allow me a quick rant about something really stupid and idiotic that occurred to me Sunday night. My wife and 7-month-old son and I were coming back from a fabulous weekend trip to see relatives in Maryland, and I was in a pretty good mood as we rolled off the Jersey Turnpike toward the Lincoln Tunnel because we’d hit remarkably little traffic on the way home.

And as I’m steering, I’m suddenly half-blinded by two enormous, flashing neon-lit billboards in my face as I’m driving toward the tunnel. I mean, huge, flashing billboards that could not be ignored.

And I’m thinking, drivers don’t have enough distractions? Texting, other drivers, the radio, kids in the backseat yelling, etc., that we really need flashing, sun-bright billboards hanging over highways? I mean, this is legal to do this?

Just saying, you want me to recognize your product or brand, don’t blind me heading into a curve.

Hurricane Sandy bearing down on the East Coast; I’ve got bread and water so I’m good. The Jets… oy. And Mitt, lying ever more brazenly

For the first time in my life, there’s a hurricane named after my mother.
But I’m pretty sure she’s never gone 75 miles per hour in her life (even when we were late for school in the car pool), like the winds that are going to whip through New York and up and down the East Coast Monday.
Man, this is going to be one hell of a storm. There’s been talk of nothing else all weekend here in my corner of the world. Bread and water and gasoline and you name it, all stocked up.

Personally, I’m feeling pretty safe. It’s not like I can really go anywhere in Manhattan Monday; the subway, the trains, all of it, shut down completely.

They’re calling it the biggest tropical cyclone in history, so this could be quite a bit worse than Irene last year, which was pretty bad for Connecticut and other parts.
Hurricanes used to seem fun as a kid; then I moved to North Carolina and saw how devastating they can be.

I hope if you’re reading this on the East Coast, that’s a good sign you’ve still got electricity. Stay safe, my friends. Just ride out and hopefully by Tuesday night, we’ll all be getting ready to eat lots of candy and try to figure out why everyone went as Taylor Swift or a vampire for Halloween.

Final hurricane thought: Can you imagine if this storm hit a week later, on Election Day? Mass chaos.

**Not much to say about the Jets’ pathetic showing on Sunday, which would’ve had to have improved by a lot to really be called “pathetic.” A couple short thoughts, since I got my venting out hours ago during the game.

— There’s really never going to be a time where Rex Ryan benches Mark Sanchez. If it didn’t happen Sunday (and I know it wasn’t all his fault, but he was bad), with a dull, lifeless team getting blown out at home by the Dolphins, it’s not going to happen at all.

— I’m not there yet, but almost to a point where I hope they lose the rest of their games so they can get a high draft pick and start over with a new QB. I don’t think owner Woody Johnson is going to fire Rex and GM Mike Tannenbaum yet, but man he ought to start thinking about it.

— I am so sick and tired of these unlikable Jets players and their attitude and their woofing. Freaking disgusts me how much a 3-5 team talks shit to the other team.

Other, happier NFL thoughts from Sunday…

— My poor soon-to-be father-in-law nearly had a stroke watching the Giants-Cowboys (I was there with him; I should’ve had a blood-pressure machine hooked up to him, at least). Giants go up 23-0 when Tony Romo did his best Mark Sanchez impression. Then the ‘Boys storm back to go up 24-23, only for th Giants to re-take the lead 29-24.

Followed by the Cowboys scoring on a quasi-Hail Mary with six seconds left… that was overturned by replay and ruled incomplete. What a nuts game, but the Giants always seem to win them.

 I know the Saints’ defense stinks, but anyone out there still have doubts about how good Peyton Manning is?
— Crazy finish to that Bears game. Carolina is coming up with new ways to lose every week.
— I think Andy Reid will finally be shown the door in Philly after this year. His team played a dog of a game Sunday (and yes, that’s a reference for you, Mr. Vick).


**Mitt Romney is getting more and more desperate. The election is only a week away, he’s going to lose this race, and so he and his team are just flinging more and more bullshit at the wall in the hopes that somehow, it will stick.

His latest complete fabrication? While talking to a group in Ohio, he said that Chrysler is closing down its Jeep plant in Toledo and moving all Jeep manufacturing to China.

Completely, 100 percent not true, as Chrysler pointed out in this blog post immediately after Romney said it.

It’s one thing to scare the hell out of voters about what “the other guy” will do. It’s another to basically tell thousands of Ohioans that they’re about to be fired.

Ah, the last desperate breaths of a desperate campaign.

Gail Collins’ new book explains how Texas took over America. The Jets are an utter disgrace. And kids eating ice cream for the first time: priceless

“Homeland” is back! I am very happy. I will be doing weekly recaps and thoughts on each episode, but will save those until Tuesday, since I know not all of you can stay up late Sunday night to watch it when it airs live on Showtime at 10. So glad the best show on TV is back. And the first episode was awesome.

It’s not enough that so many of us just shake our head at the craziness that is Texas. We really should look at how destructive and dangerously trend-setting it is for America.
From health care and social services (worst in the nation) to polluting the air (also near the bottom) to being the biggest textbook publisher in America, thereby setting the agenda for what kids around the U.S. are learning, Texas has an outsized effect on the U.S. (Plus, they’ve sicced both George W. Bush and Rick Perry on us, which is a plague all it’s own).

Gail Collins of the N.Y. Times, a really smart op-ed writer, has decided to examine Texas and figure out why the hell it’s always puffing itself up when there are so, so many things wrong with it in her newest book, “As Texas Goes.”
I just read it last week and really enjoyed it as a book, but it scared the hell out of me.

Besides Texas’ rightward slant on everything, it was depressing to see how much it has held down its own citizens, actively stolen business from other states, and slanted our nation’s textbooks.

I don’t want to give away all the fun stuff in the book (and it is a really fun read, Collins is really witty), but it’s truly staggering to think that this state sets much of the Republican agenda, and sometimes the nation’s.

Check out more about the book here; I definitely recommend it.

**Here’s something I know I wish I could’ve had recorded in my own life: Little kids eating ice cream for the first time, and how deliriously happy it makes them.  This should make you smile on a Monday, and make you hungry for some Ben & Jerry’s… (my favorite is the kid at :31)

**Finally, football. Here were some phrases thrown around via text among my Jets support group/posse that I communicate with every Sunday in the fall:
1. Disgraceful
2. Pathetic.
3. Kotite-level incompetence (I was particularly proud of that one).
As bad as I expected the Jets to do against maybe the NFC’s best team Sunday, they played worse in getting shut out by the Niners, 34-0. The less I say, the better.

Except two things: 1, This coach and GM ought to be embarrassed by the level of talent on this team right now, and 2, They had better draft or sign a quarterback for next season. Because Mark Sanchez will never become a successful QB in this league. He’s getting worse every week.

Some other quick-hit thoughts from Week 4:
— A friend who shall remain nameless texted when the Bills were up 21-7, saying the Patriots were done, headed to 1-3, not that good, etc. I told him it was way too early to say that.
Um, yeah, the Pats won 52-28. Scary how good that offense can be.

— Fantastic endings to the Carolina-Atlanta and Washington-Tampa games. Matt Ryan led his team from his own 1 into field goal range to keep the Falcons unbeaten, and RGIII beat Tampa on the last drive when Billy (Shank) Cundiff finally made a field goal after missing three others.

— The real refs were back! And yeah, they made some bad calls, but SO much better than those imposters.

— How good are the Texans? So pleased the Jets get them next week. That’ll be fun.
— Peyton Manning, that’s more like it. You helped me to a (likely) fantasy win this week.
— The Chargers are going to fall apart like they usually do, right? Because they look damn good right now.
— Finally, the Giants just can’t seem to beat the Eagles. Stupid penalty at the end by Ramses Barden, but you know, the guy has hardly played. I was still hoping Tynes made that kick at the end to punish Andy Reid (and all other coaches) for that split-second timeout they always call right before a game-deciding kick.

Such a stupid rule that you can do that.

A glorious opening day win for the Jets, and other NFL thoughts. A scary trip across the highway for some ducks. And Serena wins a thrilling U.S. Open final

Well that was a hell of a way to start the NFL season.

My expectations for the New York Jets are low this year, and I thought Sunday against Buffalo would be a really tough game.
And yet midway through the third quarter, my boys led 41-7.
Most stunning opening-day Jets win since the Parcells era started, when they kicked the hell out of Seattle, 41-3 back in ’97.
Sunday, everything worked beautifully, except the Tim Tebow Wildcat plays. Mark Sanchez was terrific, throwing with great accuracy and poise. The O-line was impossibly good, keeping Sanchez upright. The wide receivers, including the rookie Stephen Hill who dropped lots of passes in the preseason, consistently got open.
And the defense, except for a bad stretch in the 4th quarter, was excellent, pressuring Bills QB Ryan Fitzpatrick (who really isn’t any good) and intercepting three passes.
Maybe Sunday will be as good as it gets in 2012 for the Jets. One game doesn’t make  a season. Still, it was a whole lotta fun seeing this offense click, seeing new heroes emerge, and all that stuff.
A happy Sunday for me and the other long-suffering members of Gang Green Nation.

Some other NFL thoughts from a wild week 1:
— I think this anecdote sums up all you need to say about Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins, who beat the Saints 40-32.
As RGIII sliced and diced New Orleans, I texted my good friend Tony, who’s been a ‘Skins fan his whole life and for the past 15 years has suffered through one awful QB after another:
“So how you liking RGIII?” I wrote.
“I am sexually aroused,” he replied.
Yeah, Washington fans are excited.
— Got totally confused when I saw the Vikings kick a field goal in OT Sunday to beat the Jaguars, only the game kept going. New OT rules say if first team that gets the ball only kicks a FG, the other team gets one chance to score. I love the rule change.

— Speaking of rules, the replacement refs were pretty bad Sunday, missing a ton of calls. Unfortunately, they didn’t screw up so royally that they cost a team a game, which is what it’s going to take to get the NFL and the “real” refs back to work.
— It is so great seeing Peyton Manning back playing football, and playing so well. But geez is it weird to see him in Broncos orange. As weird as it was for me seeing Montana in a Chiefs jersey, and Favre in a Jets/Vikings jersey.

**And now, for a pretty harrowing piece of video I saw on Deadspin.com the other day. A mother duck leads her flock across a busy highway. Let me assure you before you watch: They all make it safely across.
But if I’m those ducks, I’m waddling over to Duck Protective Services and filing an abuse complaint against my momma.

**I do not like Serena Williams, not much at all. I think she is arrogant, and highly disrespectful toward officials and line judges, and oftentimes wholly dismissive of her opponent when that foe defeats Serena.
And so I generally root against her, despite fully acknowledging the fact that she’s one of the five greatest women’s players of all time.
But even I who dislikes her so much had to admire her guts and performance on Sunday in the U.S. Open final. She beat Victoria Azarenka, 6-2, 2-6, 7-5 in dramatic fashion, coming back from 5-3 down in the final set to win the last four games and the match.
She is an incredible competitor, Serena is, and even when it looks like she’s down and out (Sunday she was mostly beating herself, but full marks to the shrieking Azarenka for hanging in there), she’s never quite done. She hit some superb forehands in the game at 5-5 to hold serve, and then closed the match out.
She’s been through a lot these last few years, some of which was her own doing, other parts of it (like the life-threatening embolism she had) were unfortunate luck.

Serena’s one of the greatest female athletes ever, and love her or hate her, she makes tennis more interesting.
Oh, and my pick on today’s Murray-Djokovic final? Should be a classic. Just have a feeling Murray is due to break through. The Scotsman wins it in 4.

A few words on outdoor summer eating. A GOP Senate candidate says the dumbest thing. And it’s too early for me to be angry about the Jets, right?

A few words this morning on a subject hardly of Earth-shattering importance, but about a ritual we all take for granted.
Nothing to me says summer like a great meal on an outdoor deck/porch at a laid-back beach-side restaurant.

From the moment you walk out there, with music playing, the small waves making noise a few feet away, beer flowing, flip-flops bouncing off the wooden ground … it all just goes together to make the meal that much better.

It’s hard to explain, but when the air is warm and the cold drinks are flowing, and the smell of fresh fish, corn on the cob (a very underrated side dish!) and burgers permeating from each table, everyone just seems less stressed.
I had two dinners this weekend with family, both on outdoor decks, and both times I left the restaurant wishing I could eat like that all-year round.

Maybe it wouldn’t be so special if we did it year-round. But man, I sure do enjoy it.

**It’s almost fall, in a major election year, so political junkies like me have their radar up for anyone saying anything remotely stupid.
But boy, you certainly didn’t need an antenna to believe that what Missouri GOP U.S. Senate candidate Todd Akin said this weekend was just about the most idiotic thing said in 2012.
If you missed it, Akin was talking about why he opposed abortion in all cases, even in rape and incest. And this was his direct quote:

“From what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.”

Wow. Despite the many, many, many questions I have for Mr. Akin after that quote (first question: how, exactly, does the female body “shut that down” when a man is raping her?), I think we’ll just let it hang there. Listen to him speak it (above), it doesn’t get any better.

Todd Akin, you would hope, is finished as a politician. What a disgusting thing to say.

**I know it’s only preseason. I know I’ve got five months of NFL football ahead of me. But there I was late Saturday night, watching the 1st half of the Jets game, and I was getting angry. Furious, pissed, whatever word I can usually use to describe my mood during autumn Sundays when the green and white are playing.

It doesn’t count, but holy hell did the Jets look awful. Offensive line was horrendous (Why is Wayne Hunter still on this team???). Running game, mostly non-existent. Wide receivers, OK, I know the top three were out injured, but they did nothing.
And the two quarterbacks (which is one too many, of course) both looked awful. Mark Sanchez, it’s year 4, you can’t be making idiotic throws like the one you made Saturday that got run back for a touchdown. And Tim Tebow, well, I can’t really get mad at him for being what he is: A poor NFL quarterback who has no business starting in the league.
It’s been two preseason games, and the Jets have two field goals. Combined.

Way too early for me to get this frustrated, fellas.

Tim Tebow and why I have never been more disgusted to be a Jets fan. And Facebook helps a man’s two current wives connect

It’s totally irrational. I’m 36 years old, I have a great life, a loving and beautiful girlfriend, a terrific family, and so many good things around me.

And yet I allow myself to get completely worked up and pissed off because my favorite professional football team continues to do the stupidest things possible.
Seriously, it’s like they TRY to anger every single fan they have.
Let me start to discuss  the Jets acquiring of Tim Tebow in a trade by saying this: In three decades of being a fan, I have never been more frustrated and angry at the Jets than I was today.
Wasn’t this mad during the Kotite years. Wasn’t this mad during the ’86 playoff game with Cleveland, or the many, many late-season swoons.

I’m going to try to keep this rant as concise as possible: This is a terrible, terrible, terrible move for the Jets. For so many reasons.

First of all, let’s start with this: TIM TEBOW IS NOT A GOOD NFL QUARTERBACK. Seems to me that if you’re going to acquire a player as controversial as Tebow, you might want him to be kind of good. Tebow has terrible accuracy, a not-very strong arm, and has trouble completing simple passes.
Next, how about this: You just gave Mark Sanchez, your franchise QB, a huge new contract extension, telling him how wonderful he is, how you’re committed to him, yada yada yada.
Now you bring in a guy who, to millions of football fans, is a cult hero, a messiah-like figure. And as soon as Sanchez throws a few interceptions next season, you’re going to hear the drumbeat from the stands of “Te-bow!,” Te-bow!”

It will go on all season, and it will be loud, and it will be an enormous distraction. It’s going to make Sanchez feel awful, but that’s not the worst part. The worst part is Tebow IS NOT AN UPGRADE. So even if they do pull Sanchez, things won’t get better.

Then there are these reasons to hate the deal: You gave away two draft picks for a guy who will only play 8-10 plays per game in the Wildcat, if things are going well; nobody runs the Wildcat effectively in the NFL anymore so even Tebow’s effectiveness there is in doubt; you’re adding a highly polarizing figure to a locker room that already has plenty, and just let me throw this out there, in total seriousness:

There’s a huge contingent of Jets fans who are Jewish. Do you think they’ll feel all warm and fuzzy about a high-profile Jets player who believes that all of us Members of the Tribe are going to hell? (A great tweet today from Parks and Recreation writer Michael Schnur: “Well, if there’s one place a crusading Christian and decidedly mediocre athlete should mesh perfectly with the local culture, it’s New York.”)

Ugh. I just hate this so much. This reeks of the Jets wanting to make headlines, steal some of the Giants’ thunder (here’s a way to steal their thunder: Win a Super Bowl!!!) and get people talking about them.
I don’t know who this franchise is anymore. They’re the pro sports equivalent of a dope fiend hanging out on the corner, doing anything to get their next high. When that one fades, got to get another one. Peyton Manning doesn’t want to play here? We’ll go get God’s quarterback!

It’s the middle of March. I really shouldn’t get this worked up over the Jets.
But I hate them right now, and everything they’ve become.

**OK, moving on to a less-inflammatory topic: Bigamy.
I laughed quite heartily about this story. It seems that a county corrections officer in Washington state has been charged with bigamy after Facebook helped uncover his secret double life.
What happened? According to this story, Alan O’Neill’s first wife recently found out about Wife No. 2 when Facebook detected their connection to O’Neill and suggested the friendship connection.
Well sure, they have a “friend” in common!  Wife No. 1 then called O’Neill’s mother (fabulous!), and a short time later the police got involved.

Alan, Alan, Alan. It’s the first rule of plural marriage: Stay the hell off Facebook.

The Golden Globes entertain me once again. A crazy NFL weekend capped by Giants upset. And an update on MJ’s coach

The Golden Globes were Sunday night, and I love a good Hollywood awards show (go ahead and threaten to take away my “man card,” I don’t care.) The Globes this year weren’t all that terrific, but that didn’t stop me from having some thoughts; some nice, some not so nice.
— Ricky Gervais wasn’t anywhere near as mean as last year. But he also wasn’t that funny. He had one or two decent jokes in the monologue but nothing memorable.
— Is there a better Hollywood couple than William H. Macy and Felicity Huffman? Their intro was very cute.
— Great seeing Madonna, but her arms looked really scary.
— So happy that “Homeland” cleaned up, with Claire Danes winning best actress and the show winning best drama. I’ve said it several times before: Watch this show if at all possible.
— Harrison Ford, God bless him, looks like death warmed over.
— Reese Witherspoon (above) and Charlize Theron looked amazing.
— Seth Rogen got the biggest laugh by admitting, standing next to Kate Beckinsdale, that he was currently “hiding the biggest erection.”
— Wondering how a silent movie like “The Artist” can be nominated for best screenplay. There were no words!
— Very tough call: Which role will Morgan Freeman most be remembered for? “Driving Miss Daisy” or “Shawshank?” I say “Shawshank.”

**Wild, wild weekend in the NFL playoffs. Lots to digest, so some quick-hitting thoughts on the games from a man who was once again reminded to never, ever, ever wager money on the outcome of a football game:

— Shockingly dominant win by the Giants. Big Blue did whatever they wanted to Green Bay’s putrid defense, which isn’t as shocking. But the fact that they forced three Packers turnovers and held Aaron Rodgers basically in check was pretty stunning.
Amazing that the Giants were basically given up for dead at 7-7 in Week 15, and now are 60 minutes from the Super Bowl. It’s looking very much like 2007 all over again.
— Insanely exciting finish to 49ers-Saints Saturday night; I got home from dinner just in time to see the fourth quarter. Four TDs in a the last five minutes? And who knew Alex Smith had such clutch play in him? There should be NO hands up, since the football world had long since given up on him before this year.
— Very surprised that Baltimore struggled so much with Houston; thought that one would be a blowout. I’m not so sure the Ravens offense can keep up the the Pats’ juggernaut next week, but it should be a heck of a game.
— I don’t want to hear the name “Tim Tebow” for a while now. That’s agreed upon by all, right? He was a great story but even Tebow-lovers have to be sick of him by now.

–On a personal note, if the Giants win next week that’ll be 5 Super Bowl appearances by them in my lifetime as a Jets fan. Appearances by the Jets in my lifetime? Zero.
Yep, I definitely chose correctly back when I was 6.

**So a few days ago I linked to a great story by Sports Illustrated writer Thomas Lake on Clifton “Pop” Herring, who in the early 1980s coached Michael Jordan at Laney High School in Wilmington, N.C. It was a great story because it once and for all punctured the crazy myth that MJ was cut from his high school team. Herring, who has suffered from mental illness for years, finally was vindicated.

Yet, the same week Herring’s story was finally told to a national audience, he’s dealing with fame for a very different reason. This is bizarre, but Herring was arrested Friday after a dead body was found at a home where he was living. Herring isn’t being charged with murder, but with resisting arrest.
As of now the facts are still unclear, but it doesn’t look good for Pop.

Crazy to think that a week ago, this guy was still basically anonymous. Now he’s been in two major news stories in the span of a few days.

The sheer brilliance of “Unbroken.” The amazing Tim Tebow and other NFL thoughts. And the dangers of live TV reporting

For months I’d been seeing “Unbroken” on the New York Times bestseller list, resolving to read it.
I’d read and heard people I knew and respect talk about how awesome it was, that it was a must-read, that it was an astonishingly good book.
Sometimes it takes me awhile to get around to reading things I really want to read. Finally, with a long plane ride coming up last week, I dove into Laura Hillenbrand’s massive bestseller, about a WWII POW and former U.S. Olympian Louie Zamperini’s incredible life.

Just finished it yesterday. Cannot recommend it highly enough. Let me say that again: THIS IS AN AWESOME BOOK. I feel I needed the all-caps to tell you how great it was.
Without giving away too much of the story, Zamperini was a top amateur runner out of Torrance, Calif., went to the 1936 Olympics, and later enlisted in the Army and became a bombardier, helping fly missions. He and his mates were shot down by the Japanese, beginning Zamperini’s three-year odyssey on a life raft (which he incredibly survives on for more than 40 days) and in various Japanese POW camps, where unspeakable horrors came to him.

Hillenbrand has you gasping with horror at the details of Zamperini’s internment. She is a master storyteller, with minute descriptions of battles, psychological and physical, that these POW’s undertook every day.

It’s impossible to come away from this book without an enormous amount of respect for Zamperini and other Pacific POW’s. It’s interesting that in school we learn all about the Holocaust’s horrors, and about the Japanese internment camps here in the U.S., but I recall very little about life in Japanese POW camps for captured American soldiers.

Hillenbrand, also the author of “Seabiscuit,” deserves a Pulitzer for this story. If you are looking for a great read that will stay with you for a long time, definitely check out “Unbroken.”

**Some assorted thoughts on the NFL wild-card playoff games this weekend:
— Tim Tebow. I mean, wow. I don’t know what to say anymore about this kid. Denver, a vastly inferior team to Pittsburgh, goes up 20-6 , then blows that lead, goes to OT, then God in Broncos cleats throws an 80-yard TD on the first play of overtime to win it.
Yeah, I know Tebow thinks I’m going to hell when I die. I’m still pretty damn impressed with the kid.

— Mike Smith, Falcons coach, was awful Sunday. I know his team played poorly against the Giants in a blowout loss, but Smith’s decision-making was awful. Terrible clock-management at end of first half, terrible play-calling on the two 4th and 1s (why not kick a field goal in 3rd quarter, down 10-2?), and just generally had his team unprepared to play.

I met Smith a few years ago and interviewed him one on one; seems like a heck of a nice guy. But man did he have a bad day Sunday.
— I heard a guy on WFAN Saturday say Eli Manning is a Hall of Fame quarterback, and the host agreed. I nearly shot out of bed in shock. Look, Eli’s had a great season, and 2007 was fabulous in the playoffs for him. But Hall of Fame? Come on, please.
— Drew Brees is playing QB about as good as you possibly could. I don’t see the Saints losing this year anymore.
— Finally, not really NFL-related, but I love how all the former Penn State players are pissed the new president of the school went outside the “family” for a new head coach. Um, hello, that “Family” just allowed a child molester to coach and be on campus for the past 20 years!

**You know, you really shouldn’t stand in the middle of a road while doing a live TV report. Hang in until the 25-second mark to see this woman learn a hard lesson: