Saturday, April 25, 2015

A Mattel spokesperson confirmed they will stop production of the SeaWorld Trainer Barbie. In addition, they are cancelling plans to make ESPN Announcer and Cashier-insulting Barbie and the “I used to be a gold medal Decathlon winner” Barbie.

World's Greatest Athlete

Nobody has more of an appreciation for what Bruce Jenner accomplished as a Decathlete than I do.

To compete in the Decathlon (men) or Heptathlon (women) is to have a lifelong love affair with the event and those who compete in it. The Decathlon and Heptathlon are the two single greatest tests of athletic ability. The winners are truly the World’s Greatest Athletes.

My Decathlon experience was a tale of two extremes. 

From the ages of 13 to 17, although I trained hard - you have to train hard to compete in a Decathlon - I won easily and set all the age group records: 13, 14, 15 and 16-year-old records. Four National records and two world records.

The 16-year-old record I set in 1975 traveling from Chicago to California to compete in the 3rd annual Junior (19 and Under) National Decathlon Championship at Cal State Hayward. I was the youngest competitor by two years and, although I did not place in the top three, I set the National 16-year-old record at 6032 points.

As I was closely following Bruce Jenner's '74/'75 ascending Decathlon career in "Track and Field News," I was one of Jenner's earliest and most ardent fans. In my mind, there was no reason why I wouldn't be the next, albeit slightly less pretty, Bruce Jenner. 

One month later, just after my 17th birthday, I pulled my hamstring running a 4.5 40 for football. My football coach forced me to play in a game two weeks later and I tore what was left of the hamstring for good. Although I did not know it at the time, my athletic career was over at the ripe old age of 17*.

The next four to five years was an odyssey of hamstring injuries and searing back pain. By the time I was 22, I had only competed in two or three more Decathlons with mediocre to embarrassing results.

And yet I got to train as a member of the UC Santa Barbara track team with the greatest man and track coach of all time, the late Sam Adams. And I trained with not only the greatest athletes, but the greatest people I have ever met all of whom, I am proud to say 36 years later, are still my good friends. 

Despite the endless pain and frustration, training for the Decathlon in Santa Barbara was one of the greatest times of my life, thanks to the friends I made, and I would not trade it for anything.

So I had the rare experience of all the highs and the lows that come with training and competing for my beloved Decathlon. That is why my admiration for what Bruce Jenner accomplished is second to none.

And this is with the caveat of the belief Bruce Jenner cheated with steroids.

In Jenner's defense, all the top Decathletes of that Seventies to Eighties era used steroids. But Jenner went from a scary skinny 6.2, 180 pounds in Munich in 1972 to a jacked 220 in Montreal in 1976. (He lied and said he weighed only 195) And that 40 pounds was packed on despite Jenner's desperate attempts to keep weight off by running a ludicrous-for-training-for-the-Decathlon 50 miles a week.

The most telling aspect of Jenner’s steroid use was not just the 40 pounds of pure muscle he put on before Montreal. It was the almost immediate loss of the same 40 pounds six months after he stopped competing. That simply does not happen naturally. 

Although a poker game where everyone is cheating is still crooked, the plain truth is all the top Decathletes were using steroids, so Jenner was on sort of on an even playing field. 

Steroids or not, setting a world record and winning a gold medal in the Olympic Decathlon is a Herculean task. Jenner set a stellar 7 personal records in Montreal. Steroids or not, Bruce Jenner was well deserving of the title World’s Greatest Athlete.

As a Decathlete, nobody has been more dissappointed in Bruce Jenner's post-Decathlon career. But I had no idea the length, breadth and depth of his pain due to his identity conflict. In my mind, winning an Olympic gold medal in the Decathlon would be the be-all do-all cure-all to all of life's ills. 

That was certainly not the case with Bruce Jenner and I feel bad for him. Nobody put a gun to his head to get married three times, have six kids, not spend much time with the first four children and then hitch his wagon to the Kardashian fame-whore, cash-cow star. 

But, as someone who admires what he did accomplish, I hope Bruce is happy in this new chapter of his life. He gave us Decathletes a lot to be proud of for a long time. 

So, yes, Bruce Jenner was the World’s Greatest Athlete. That is something of which everyone, especially Bruce, should be proud.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Chipotle announced they are now making deliveries. Which makes sense, Chipotle is a Spanish word that means, fat, lazy gringos.

Complaints against airlines rose 22% last year. Upon hearing this, an executive of Spirit Airlines said; “It is gratifying to know we are making a difference.”

Complaints against airlines rose 22% last year. Upon hearing this, an executive of Spirit Airlines said; “That increase would be so upsetting if we gave a damn.”

A former Utah high school teacher, 35-year-old Brianna Altice, admitted to having sex with three high school students in a plea deal. In exchange the prosecution dropped other charges including the charge of making all the other male students extremely jealous.

Three more women have accused Bill Cosby of sexual assault bringing the total to 41. How many people remember the good old days when the only crimes Bill Cosby was accused of were ugly sweater fashion felonies?

Three more women have accused Bill Cosby of drugging and sexual assault bringing the total to 41. Five more and they get their own area code.

I’m starting to think there may be something to this. 40 women, not convincing. But 41, now you have my attention.

Dear Hillary Clinton:

As a comedy writer, it is important to me for you to stay in the race. At the rate your scandals and screw-ups are piling up – seriously, you didn’t think to tip at Chipotle? – you’re not going to be around for long unless you hire me as a speech writer/comedy consultant.

My rates are reasonable and non-negotiable. (Nothing wears me out faster than having to argue with cheap rich people who think writing comedy is its own reward)

Now I know your writers think they are funny. They are not. 99.9% of the population thinks they could be a comedy writer. 99% of them could not be more wrong.

Hillary, you have a serious image problem.

Your image problem is not political. The far right are going to hate you no matter what you do. Your image problem is not because you are a highly motivated woman. Sexist men - and women - are going to hate you no matter what you do.

And you have a hard-core group of intellectual Clinton-lovers who are going to vote for you even if they find out you kidnapped the Lindberg baby. (You didn’t did you? Oh, right, the wrong era thing. You’re off the hook on this one)

Your image problem is personal. Or maybe more accurately impersonal.

Your image problem is that you seem disingenuous. Every comedian who nails you, including spot-on impressions by Amy Poehler and Kate McKinnon, nails your hyper-active duplicity.

Almost every word and gesture you and Bill utter seems synthetic and designed for a political effect. And that artificial, phony stench is off-putting to people who might have voted for you otherwise.

The best way to combat that air of hypocrisy is with some good, old fashioned self-deprecating comedy. Nobody wants hoaky. Corny. Nobody wants to see Hillary Clinton do ten minutes at the Komedy Klub in Kankakee doing jokes about cankles.

But a few well-worded zingers at yourself, ala your and Bill’s idol, John F. Kennedy, and you are back in business. Who wrote for JFK? Ted Sorenson. And Ted Sorenson was a witty, witty guy. 

Now, as a writer, I am no Ted Sorenson. You ain’t getting’ no “Ask not what your country can do for you . . “ out of my sorry Paris Hilton-joking butt.

But I am funny and I cost far less than Ted.

Would I vote for you, Hillary? Probably not. Would I write for you? You bet your pantsuit-wearing ass.

But part of me thinks you might make a good president and or you might be the most qualified. To deserve that chance, you need to win-over people just like me by hiring me to write for you.

Sincerely, your comedy writing whore,

Alex Kaseberg

(I would e-mail you a copy of this, but I know you would just erase it)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

The New England Patriots, without Tom Brady, were honored by President Obama at the White House. It got awkward when President Obama said; “I am sorry to miss the man who won the Super Bowl for the Patriots. But I can meet Seattle coach, Pete Carroll, some other time.”

The NFL has hired, Sarah Thomas, their first female referee. A woman authority figure reprimanding and punishing NFL players. What could possibly go wrong?

“The whole ballgame is to preserve your credibility and not do something that makes you look like a fool."

Bruce Jenner in “People” April, 1977 feeling sorry for Mark Spitz looking foolish in too many commercials. How did that work out, Bruce?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

To protest against water pollution on Earth Day, Christopher Swain, swam in the most polluted body of water, the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn. You know water is polluted when the name has both the words anus and anal already in it.

Rand Paul’s 22-year-old son, William, was arrested and charged with a DUI. And I had no idea he was a Secret Service agent.