Tragedy struck Sunday afternoon when NBA legend and Los Angeles Lakers great Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, just outside of L.A. There were nine people on the helicopter including his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Maria Onore (Gigi), with whom he was headed to basketball practice. There were no survivors.
Bryant was just 41 years old, and leaves behind three other daughters, including a newborn, and his wife Vanessa.
The superstar was a bit of a polarizing figure, turning off many fans with the constant comparisons to Michael Jordan, his “selfish” playing style, and his at times abrasively competitive personality. But at a time like this, it’s not his career as a basketball player that stands out. It’s his role as a family man and father to four young girls, including Gigi, with whom he was recently filmed sitting courtside, explaining something about the game they were watching together.
Kobe and Gigi courtside breaking down the game 📋 pic.twitter.com/FxqSjVx6ew
— ESPN (@espn) December 22, 2019
Kobe, who was partially raised in Italy where his dad, Joe “Jellybean” Bryant, played professionally, is synonymous with Los Angeles, where he spent every one of his 20 years in the league in the Lakers’ purple and gold. The city will be reeling, as will the NBA itself, facing the premature death of one of its biggest stars, who was one of the faces of the NBA for the better part of this still young century and remains prominently tied to the league and the current generation of players who saw Bryant as a role model. The tributes will be pouring in all week long.
Bryant entered the NBA straight from high school and almost immediately made his mark on the league, teaming with Shaquille O’Neal to bring the Lakers back to NBA prominence, and dominance, before retiring a few years ago as a five-time champion, an 18-time All Star, two-time Finals MVP, and the league’s third all-time leading scorer. (He moved to fourth place just 16 hours before the crash, when LeBron James passed him Saturday night.)
Love him or hate (losing to) him, he was one of the game’s greatest players, and one of the most fun to argue about. But no matter how you feel about Kobe Bryant himself, you have to feel for his family, especially the thee young girls who lost their father – and a sister – just after he’d retired and was able to be more present for them.
It’s an incomprehensibly sad day for his family, and a loss for basketball fans everywhere.
Everybody has a few movies that traumatized them as a kid.
Often it’s a Disney movie, usually for two reasons: 1) they’re usually among the first movies kids see, and 2) more often than not, they feature the death of a parent. (For me, it was Poltergeist, which I stand by, especially since I had a huge tree right outside my window that I swear wanted to eat the shit out of me.)
The good news is, they usually feature talking animals, which is a fairly decent clue that this isn’t real life, plus, they’re animated, which is an even stronger indication that the movie isn’t a documentary. That is, they used to be. Because in the age of remakes and reboots and re-imaginings, Disney has been slowly producing new live-action versions of all their classics.
So far we’ve already had Jungle Book and Lion King and Beauty and the Beast and Dumbo, coming soon are Little Mermaid and Mulan and 101 Dalmations and – perhaps the most traumatizing of all – Bambi.
News broke that the classic 1942 flick – about a little deer (a male deer, FYI) learning to live on his own in the woods after hunters kill his mom – is getting the live-action treatment, and social media is bracing itself.
The first images from Disney's Live Action 'BAMBI' remake pic.twitter.com/1HNk0DkQiP
— Geek Vibes Nation 🖖 (@GeekVibesNation) January 24, 2020
The death of a parent plot point is one Disney has returned to countless times over the years, including in the aforementioned Lion King, but Bambi is ground zero for it. Soon, children everywhere will have a brand new chance to be traumatized, this time by a photo-realistic depiction of the tragic moment. Thankfully, things get a bit cheerier once Bambi meets Thumper and Flower, the rabbit and skunk he befriends on his road to independence.
It will be a while before the deer hits theaters, but you’ll have plenty of live-action Disney movies to line up for before it does, including Pinocchio (from Robert Zemeckis) and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the granddaddy of them all!
“The crushing weight of trying to do it all and still be there for your kids as a dad is exhausting.
At the end of the night, they asked to play a couple rounds of Mario Kart on the SNES. My wife came up 10 minutes later and found me like this.
Passed out in the chair just trying to spend a little time with them doing what they wanted to do.
Here’s to all the dads who get beat up by life but still try to be the best goddamn dads we can be.”
– Wes Meadows
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Check out the previous editions of Father Figures here.
Look, pregnancy is no joke.
It’s a nine-month marathon of physiological changes, physical stress, and psychological turmoil, and it requires superhuman levels of endurance, perseverance, and patience. The women who survive those nine months, only to then be faced with an entire lifetime of parenthood, are true heroes.
That said, they’ve got nothing on what this one dad went through.
His name is Matt McMillan, and he spent more than a year recording his baby’s goofy baby sounds, every single day, and then ultimately, painstakingly compiling and editing the videos together until they approximated the sounds of the AC/DC song “Thunderstuck.”
The video is full of clips of his son, Ryan, staring at the camera and making those cute little noises babies always make. The video reads “For one full year… I recorded my son… making baby noises.”
Then his intent is announced with the title card: Baby Ryan “sings” Thunderstuck…
One afternoon when I was a kid, I blasted Thunderstruck and when it finally kicked in, I jumped onto my bed and totally broke the bed spring. The song is just that powerful. This dad’s baby version doesn’t rock quite so hard, but it’s pretty close. It’s truly a sight, and sound, to behold.
The 1 minute and 45-second video was uploaded to YouTube on January 14th and has over one million views as people marvel at the dad’s patience and creativity.
Again, pregnancy is a long, hard road. But when the kid is born, you get what you get. You don’t have to spend hours manipulating the baby until he or she behaves exactly the way you want him too. Okay, wait, that’s basically all of parenting. Bad example.
The point is simply that this video is insane, and I can’t imagine how long it took this guy to put it all together so perfectly. I’ll be right back, I have to turn this up and go jump on my bed.
Every week we pan for comedy gold in the comments section of our Facebook posts. If your comment cracks us up (or warms our hearts) we’ll showcase it here!
Here’s this week’s roundup of the 10 Best Comments of the Week:
1. Dim Mak
2. Resting Place
4. Name Game
6. Food Consultant
7. Cereal Killer
Check out the previous edition of the best comments of the week here.
Parenting requires sacrifice. Usually this comes in the form of sleep, and free time, and money, and peace of mind. But in some situations, parents are required, or simply choose, to go a little further for their kids in order to provide them with whatever they need and make sure they have the best possible life.
Sometimes, outsiders aren’t always privy to the reasons parents have to make certain decisions on behalf of their family. Everyone has struggles that aren’t always obvious, and can’t always be easily diagnosed from someone’s social media post, or their demeanor out in public.
UFC fighter Robert Whittaker is a perfect example.
Whittaker was scheduled for a bout at UFC 248, he was set up to fight Jared Cannonier, and was hoping to bounce back from his defeat at the hands of Israel Adesyana back in October. But in mid-January, he announced he was pulling out of UFC 248 on Instagram. He didn’t include a reason in his post, but the photo shows him walking hand-in-hand with his daughter.
View this post on Instagram
I’m sorry to all my friends, supporters and family for not being able to fight in March. A lot has happened over the 12 last months and I need to take some time now to be with my family, slow things down and to refocus. Sorry to everyone again but I’ll be back. The best is yet to come.
Turns out she is the reason, as it’s been learned that his daughter Lilliana is severely ill and needs a bone marrow transplant. And Whittaker dropped out of his fight to be the donor.
Speaking about his fighter on Submission Radio, UFC head Dana White praised Whittaker for having his priorities in the right place.
“That’s personal for Whittaker…If Whittaker wants to talk about that, he can, but I’ll tell you this, when you talk about somebody whose priorities are in the right place, who is completely selfless and down to the core and a good human being, that’s Robert Whittaker. The reason Robert Whittaker is not fighting in this fight is one of the most unselfish things I’ve seen in my life. He’s a good man, he’s a good human being, and I have a lot of respect for him. Good luck to him in what he’s dealing with right now.”
It’s clear that White has a great deal of respect for the man for doing what he has to do and putting his family, and his daughter, first.
“I can’t put into words and articulate how I feel about Robert Whittaker. He’s the real deal, man.”
Sometimes pictures are enough.
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Brett Korves was a 10-year veteran of an Illinois Fire Department when he died tragically in a car accident on his way to work in early 2019. He left behind a two-year-old son and a pregnant wife. Nearly a year later, Brett’s brothers at the Fire Department honored his memory with a photo shoot with the newborn daughter he never got to meet.
His wife, Alex, didn’t know she was pregnant when Brett tragically passed and told Good Morning America she was “freaking out” at first, but was glad to have one more piece of him in her life.
Brett’s First Responders was a foundation started in his memory to carry on his legacy of helping his community.
Alex said she was touched by the avalanche of positivity after the photos went viral and said she is thankful for the support of their family, friends, and Brett’s brothers in the Fire Department,
“I just want Brett Grace to realize that even though her father has passed, she has all this outpouring support from all these men, too.”
It’s now been a full decade since we met The Man Your Man Could Smell Like. For the uninitiated, Old Spice body wash once made commercials showcasing actor, former wide receiver, and certified hunk Isaiah Mustafa.
The ads, utilizing single continuous shots and ingenious practical effects, featured a towel-wrapped Mustafa celebrating the full breadth of his manliness, be it through beachside horseback rides or graceful swan dives onto motorcycles submerged in hot tubs. You know. Guy shit.
Ten years later, Old Spice and Mustafa have reunited for a couple of ads in which the character has a son. As it turns out, even the smoothest, most fragrant of men are defenseless against the inherently lame disposition that comes with fatherhood.
In one ad, he shows up at his son’s basketball practice and doles out dad jokes the only way he knows how.
The embarrassment continues in “Office Visit,” when he logrolls nonchalantly into his son’s workplace to suggest he join the family business and recommend a coconut-scented body wash.
Fingers crossed for another series of ads in ten years, where we catch up with the world’s best-smelling grandpa.
Brooklyn gets a lot of flak. It’s the land of hipsters with handlebar mustaches selling artisanal pickles who front bands that Pitchfork loves. As someone who lives in Brooklyn, I concede that all of that is true.
But Brooklyn also often sets trends that reverberate throughout the rest of the country, because it’s the land of pioneers. And today we learned of a new pioneer from New York City’s best borough, and here’s hoping his groundbreaking efforts start a movement that benefits us all.
His name if Floyd Hayes, and he lives in the Clinton Hill neighborhood in Brooklyn. But after his recent gambit, where he really lives is in our hearts, and in the annals of legends, because Floyd successfully registered his beer as an emotional support animal.
Floyd told the Brooklyn Paper how he came up with the idea. “It’s a delicious beer and at a reasonable 5% abv, can be consumed without hindering hand-eye coordination, mental ability or judgement. I’ve had trouble trying to take the pint onto public buses and into places of business, so I had the idea to get it registered,” he added.
He reached out to USA Service Dog Registration and applied online.
“I’m not permitted a dog in my building, so I thought an emotional support beer would be more appropriate. It helps alleviate my anxiety and is a cost effective way to manage stress,” he told Ale Street News.
And it worked! Sort of.
An anonymous employee there told Brooklyn Paper that it won’t provide Floyd with many benefits.
“This will not get you into Walmart, it will not get you into Denny’s, it will only protect you where you’re renting,” she said. “He can register his beer all day long, it’s not going to get him anywhere.”
Except straight into our hearts.