Parenting, Rad Dads, And The Bagel Bites Jingle: A Conversation With Tony Hawk

What were you up to 17 years ago? I was spending inordinate amounts of time eating Bagel Bites and playing Tony Hawk Pro Skater 3 on Nintendo 64. I’d jump from rail to rail, park bench to car to building, constantly on the grind… not literally of course. I was a lazy college student.

The real Tony Hawk was out there grinding for real. And crashing through coffee tables. (This iconic commercial just celebrated its 17th birthday!)

In addition to being the most influential skateboarder ever, Tony is a prolific media and entrepreneurial powerhouse: video game producer, actor (60 IMDB credits, including Sharknado 5!), skateboard emoji adviser, and philanthropist, making a big difference in low-income communities with The Tony Hawk Foundation.

That’s cool, but has he ever turned a Nosebluntslide grind into a McTwist grab while eating a Bagel Bite? Probably. But whatever.

My friends and I idolized Tony growing up. Still do. And he’s been a follower of The Dad for quite some time. As a dad of 6 himself, he’s very much “part of the club.” So it was super cool to catch up with him by phone for a quick chat.


JOEL WILLIS, EXECUTIVE EDITOR OF THE DAD: What are you like as a dad? What is your parenting style? Has it changed or evolved over the years?

TONY HAWK: It’s definitely changed. I think I’ve learned to be more effective as I’ve gotten older and through experience. But I think that [all of my kids] are all different obviously. They all have different needs and different kind of attention that they want or require. It’s been fun to see them all develop their own interests. They all are very unique, and my approach is to be supportive of whatever it is they’re getting into.

If they really find their passion, I want them to explore and to have the resources to take it further. I think that’s probably how I’m most effective not just financially but in terms of really giving them the tools and giving them the confidence to go forward in something that maybe is untested. Because that’s exactly what I did as a kid. I started skating and it was the furthest thing from cool you could do. I just kept at it because I loved it. I didn’t know I was going to have any sort of career out of it, and I feel very fortunate that that’s what happened. But at the same time, I want them to have that same desire and passion in their life.

Totally. That’s great. I think anybody in any career or any pursuit can relate to that. I know I do. I used to work in IT, and I was there in what many would call a soul-crushing corporate job. I just like making people laugh and making memes and stuff, and now I get to do cool stuff like talk to you on the phone.

That’s exactly it. You never know where it’s going to take you, and if you embrace the challenges of it, you’ll go further than you ever imagined.

And I think that that lesson is so important for kids, the lesson of doing what you love, but also learning every aspect of it and being up for the challenge if things don’t go the way you expect, because those are probably the moments that are more defining and probably more important.

Exactly. Like that video with your daughter where you were helping her overcome her fear and go down the ramp on the board. So cool.

Oh, thank you. Yeah, I just set my phone in a cup that was nearby. Mostly because I knew that she would want to see it. I knew that if she did it, she was going to be excited about it and maybe not do it again, so I just wanted her to have documentation for herself. And then I thought it was such an interesting experience to see her have that doubt, but then have the confidence to really try it, and I was encouraging but I wasn’t trying to be overbearing or intrusive on her thought process.

So I felt like that was a fun thing to watch unfold, and that’s why I shared it with people.

I think the reason I loved it so much and related to it was your excitement. You were fired up. Amped up for her. Did she feel the same way?

She was very excited. She actually ran back up to do it again, because she didn’t want to lose that confidence that she had. I think that she thought she didn’t do it as well as she could have. So she ran back up and did it again. That particular ramp is actually at my office, so whenever she ends up at my office, her first go-to is to go up there to make sure that she can still do it.

With the Rad Dad Squad, I feel like a “rad dad” to me is when you’re able to get down on your kids’ level and play with them and do the things that they like to do, and love it just as much as they do because they do…

It gives them the self-confidence to keep doing it, and as long as you’re doing it and not being intrusive at the same time, that’s obviously a fine line. But the idea of this whole campaign with the rad dad squad is that we want to recognize those moments and those fathers that are really putting out that effort, and getting into what their kids are doing. Being silly, but also being engaged. I’m sure they do it to very little appreciation. So we want to recognize that.

I relate to that. That’s part of our goals at The Dad to recognize modern, involved dads who are going above and beyond and give them that recognition they may not get otherwise.

Right.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NGUtX_RXq8

A little controversial here, but I want you to rate the Bagel Bites jingle in terms of musical artistry on a scale of 1 to 10.

You mean, “Pizza in the morning, pizza in the evening, pizza at suppertime?”

You got it.

I’m going to give it an 8, just in terms of memorization. And concise, or you know, impact. Effective impact. Because it’s not like you have to sing it all the way through to get there. It’s very to the point. I like that. It’s a concise message.

I consider it a commercial masterpiece. I ask this because in your commercial in 2002, the jingle was different. It was sort of like a hard rock remix. So I want to ask you if you were involved in that decision.

I was not directly involved in that decision, no. But I’m honored that my inclusion changed the vibe enough that I got my own signature version. Signature cover, let’s put it that way.

Yeah. The Tony Hawk remix of the Bagel Bites theme.

Yeah, the punk cover of the Bagel Bites jingle, absolutely. I brought that to the world.


Thanks for the chat, Tony.

If you’re a rad dad, you can chat with him too. 3 winners will be inducted into the Rad Dad Squad later in June and will get to hang with Tony on his skate ramp. Just post a video of your own rad dad moments using #RadDadSquad and #sweepstakes.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I gotta get back to the grind.

Raya Rules in Disney’s New Trailer For “Raya and the Last Dragon”

Raya Trailer
(Disney)

Disney dropped the latest trailer for “Raya and the Last Dragon” and it is truly terrific. While the first look at it didn’t give much away, this trailer gives a much deeper look at what the movie is and why it’s shaping up to be one of the more hotly anticipated releases from Disney.

The trailer has Raya, voiced by Kelly Marie Tran of Star Wars sequel fame (or infamy, depending on where you fall on The Last Jedi), putting together a team to help save humanity, partly by finding the titular last dragon. And it looks outstanding.

It’s got everything you could want, including a CON BABY, which is the type of scheming, conniving toddler parents can probably relate to. And Raya finally finds the elusive Sisu, voiced by Awkwafina.

“I’m gonna be real with you. I’m not, like, the best dragon,” Sisu tells Raya after they meet. “Have you ever done like a group project but there’s like that one kid who didn’t pitch in as much but still ends up with the same grade?”

Another key part of the trailer involves the interaction between Raya and her dad, voiced by Daniel Dae Kim. The cast also includes Gemma Chan and Sandra Oh.

The trailer is full of action and even shines through with some humor and personality, which bodes well for the March 5 release in theaters and on Disney+. It’s got some really strong Moana/Frozen vibes, so it’ll be one your kids lock into for sure.

Thousands Send Cards to Help Girl Celebrate First Birthday Without Her Dad

Bday Cards
(FB/Dorothy Sedlak)

Not that there was any shortage of tragedy in 2020, but a young girl in Massachusetts suffered a double blow last year as her dad passed away tragically at the age of 28. Just weeks later, her godfather passed away. And now, as young Lilly prepares to turn 4, her mom is doing her best to make it a birthday she’ll never forget, and thousands of strangers are answering the call.

As her mom explained in a Facebook post earlier this month, Lilly “LOVES mail.” She said Lilly loves getting the mail, loves the mailman, loves everything about it. To help Lilly celebrate her first birthday without her dad, her mom asked if people would be willing to send her a birthday card, drawing, or letter. She expected a modest response from the community at best, and to date, Lilly has received cards from all over the world ahead of her 4th birthday.

Her mom told a local news station Lilly loves being a little helper and loves ‘to do everything for everyone’ and has been thrilled at the letters she’s received so far. Shes’ received cards from nearly 40 different states and a handful of other countries, including Canada, France, and even as far as Australia.



Her mom told People “Lilly has been so excited! We have been blown away by the response and never expected this. We are just so thankful to feel so much love. It’s been overwhelming in the best way.”

A $220 Million Mistake, Early Bitcoin Investor Forgot His Password

Bitcoin Investor Forgets Password
(Getty/DjelicS)

Remembering passwords is one of the biggest pains of the modern era. Forgetting your Amazon, Gmail, or Netflix password can involve jumping through multiple hoops to reset, especially since two-factor authentication became a thing.

But I will never bemoan the forgotten password process again, after hearing about a Bitcoin investor who can’t remember his IronKey password. Turns out he can’t access his digital bitcoin wallet, worth a cool $220 MILLION! Plus, he’s used 8 of his 10 attempts. He only has two tries left before his IronKey hard drive encrypts forever and he permanently loses access to millions.

The story was featured in the New York Times about a German programmer, Stefan Thomas, who was paid for a project in Bitcoin in 2011. Since then, the bitcoin stock has SOARED (it’s up like 50 percent just in the last few months). He saved the password to his digital wallet on an IronKey hard drive and then wrote the password on a piece of paper. He lost that paper, which now looks like a $220 MILLION mistake.

It’s the type of lost password nightmare that would give you enough anxiety for two lifetimes. He told the NYTimes he would lay in bed and think about it, try a new strategy, and be desperate after it failed again. He’s put the drive in a secure facility for the time being, as he tries to scheme another strategy to rescue his $200+ million bitcoin wallet.

“I got to a point where I had to let it be in the past, just for my mental health,” he said.

This is exactly why you use a simple password involving your name and jersey number from high school for every single PW ever.

 

4-Yr-Old Celebrates Being Cancer Free by Ringing Bell on Dad’s Fire Truck

Boy Rings Dad Firetruck Bell
(YouTube/13NewsNow)

Having a child diagnosed with cancer is one of the most gutting things a parent can experience. It’s one of life’s most vicious and senseless cruelties to see your kid suffer fighting a deadly disease. This is why every parent can relate to the joy and happiness when a child overcomes the disease. The story of a 4-year-old boy in Virginia was making the rounds recently for his unique celebration marking the end of his cancer battle. After he was in remission, he got to ring the bell on his firefighter dad’s fire truck.

Nolan Turner celebrated being cancer-free by donning a fire helmet and ringing the large silver bell on the fire truck outside the Children’s Hospital. He was surrounded by his parents, extended family and friends, and hospital staffers.

His teary-eyed dad told a local news station that ‘crossing the finish line is a great feeling’, he said. “It’s just so amazing watching him overcome this adversity with a smile on his face.”

Dad called his son a “true fighter”, and said Nolan wants to grow up to be a firefighter too. His dad’s firefighter buddies have been part of the support network the family was especially grateful for, and they even made several trips to his hospital while he was undergoing treatment. The boy wasn’t allowed to have any visitors outside of his parents, so the fire trucks raised ladders with signs of support for Nolan to raise his spirits.

Just a powerful and cathartic moment to see their son triumphantly ring that bell, and it’s the sort of thing that causes the allergies of any dad to act up (if you prefer a cutting onions reference, feel free to swap that in).

George Orwell’s 1984 Is Getting a TV Adaptation

1984 TV Series

Thanks to our political climate, people often turn to pop culture to make sense of what’s going on in the world. Things aren’t exactly peachy these days, and thus various dystopian movies, TV shows, and books are being referenced in relation to the pandemic and our political circumstances.

As social media continues to assert its dominance, both in driving conversations and shutting down particular voices, one particular work has been getting more and more play, and that’s George Orwell’s classic tale of totalitarianism, conformity, and disinformation: 1984.

It’s a great book, in which many parallels can be found with today’s climate, regardless of your own political persuasion, but unlike other dystopian works like Brave New World or Fahrenheit 451, it hasn’t gotten a pop culture makeover in quite a while (unless you’re a theatergoer). Until now.

1984 is getting a TV adaptation, but instead of adapting straight from the novel, the planned five-part miniseries will work off of the 2013 stage play from Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan.

“As the world grapples with democracy and government in our divided age of surveillance, ‘fake news’ and truth decay, the urgency of Orwell’s masterpiece is undeniable,” the pair said in a statement (via Deadline) “The small screen feels like a natural home for his portrait of a society in which people trust their screens more than the world outside their windows.”

Apparently, that 2013 staged version has a bit of a reputation for its intense and bloody torture sequences (the book employed a very literal ‘rat in a cage,’ shouts to Billy Corgan), which caused some audience members to recoil – and made actress Jennifer Lawrence throw up during her visit to see Olivia Wilde in the Broadway production.

Whether the TV show will adhere to those levels of intensity is yet to be seen, but there’s no denying the show’s modern-day relevance, even if most of the people claiming we’re currently living under Big Brother’s watch haven’t actually read it.

Is HBO Max is Developing a Live-Action Harry Potter Series?

Harry Potter
(Warner Bros)

It was a big day for wizardry, as The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that HBO Max is developing a live-action Harry Potter series. The beloved book franchise has spawned 10 blockbuster movies appeared headed for the streaming world for a series set in the Harry Potter world.

We’re in a full-fledged era of streaming wars, as each service tries to one-up the competition and dethrone Netflix. NBC moved The Office to Peacock, Disney+ is releasing a million Marvel and Star Wars shows, and HBO Max is getting all Warner Bros movies the same day they are released in theaters. And now, HBO Max is working to add some magic to their offerings.

Rumors say the project is in the very early stages and that executives are deep in conversations with several different writers exploring TV possibilities, as the project is a high priority item for HBO Max. Yet, when The Wrap contacted HBO and Warner they got this response:

“There are no ‘Harry Potter’ series in development at the studio or on the streaming platform.”

But that may be because they haven’t committed to one of the pitches they’ve been soliciting.

Or maybe it’s all a bunch of Hogwarts hogwash!

There would still be plenty of speed bumps for a future series, including a complicated rights deal with NBC that doesn’t expire for several years. Another wrinkle is the involvement of author J.K. Rowling, who still has a say in any spin-off productions. Still, with the highly popular IP, and the clear efforts from the streamer to find an angle to return the Harry Potter world, it looks like only a matter of time before wizards will become cool again.

Coca-Cola With Coffee Is Here to Power You Through the Day

Coca-Cola Coffee
(Coca-Cola)

If you’ve been looking for a magic button to help you get through the day, the Coca-Cola company has heard your call and delivered a first of its kind: a coffee cola. Coca-Cola With Coffee is already in cans and available now, it’s set to change the beverage game. Why? Not just because it’s a first, but because it’s good…like, really good, according to reports.

Announced last summer, the product has officially hit grocery stores throughout North America after being tested in dozens of international markets. Here are the important details: it’s 100% Brazilian coffee mixed with the Coca-Cola you know and love, not just some bizarro coffee-flavored pop (are we going with soda or with pop these days?). There are three flavors; dark blend, vanilla, and caramel. There’s also a zero sugar, calorie-free option.

Supposedly it “sips like a Coke, finishes like a coffee” according to a spokesman. The true key here, it’s got a LOT more caffeine than your regular Coke. But still not quite as much as a 12-ounce cup of coffee (the 69 milligrams of caffeine is around half of the 12-ounce coffee), so it hits that perfect middle ground.

“In preliminary consumer testing, more than 80 percent of consumers who tried it said they would buy it,” a spokesman said in a press release. “Our customers would take a sip and immediately ask, “When can we have this?” The answer is NOW. It’s in stores everywhere and will be integrated into the daily routine for parents who need a lift in no time. Unless you’re one of those saints who has successfully given up soda (raises hand smugly) but is still addicted to drinking too much coffee anyway (raises hand shamefully).

For the rest of us, it could be just the ticket we need to power us through those afternoon lulls and gets us to the finish line that much sweeter.

“Dexter” Revival Takes Michael C. Hall Out of the Woods (and Miami)

Dexter
(Showtime)

It was one of the best series on TV and then…it wasn’t. Few shows saw an unraveling after a series finale (and last few seasons, if we’re being totally honest) quite like “Dexter” on Showtime, but now, the gang is getting back together to fix those mistakes.

Here’s what we know, and it’s the most important thing: the 10-episode revival is not picking up where the story left off (thank god), which means Dexter is NOT A LUMBERJACK anymore. The controversial series finale had the vigilante faking his own death and starting a new life on the west coast as a lumberjack, which was deeply unsatisfying to many fans. So, like, just forget that, because the revival is picking up years later

The revival WON’T be going back to Miami either, as it’s set to take place in a fictional upstate New York town. Clancy Brown (Highlander, The Shawshank Redemption, Starship Troopers) is signed on to play the antagonist, and only a handful of other characters are known at this time. Of course, the main one, series star Michael C. Hall is back, obvs, and he too was frustrated by the finale.

“Let’s be real, people found the way that show left things pretty unsatisfying, and there’s always been a hope that a story would emerge that would be worth telling,” Hall told reporters. “I include myself in the group of people that wondered what the hell happened to that guy, so I’m excited to step back into it.”

It’s also clear it isn’t being rushed, as Hall said he and the show’s creators have bantered around ideas for years, but Hall never thought it was the right time. This time, they found an idea they really liked, and one Hall thought was a better fit for the character.

Hall said “I think in this case, the story that’s being told is worth telling in a way others weren’t, and I think enough time has passed where it’s become intriguing in a way that wasn’t before.”

The show is in production now and will air in the fall. It sounds really promising and will give fans of the original series (you know, before it fell apart) hope for a much more satisfying close.

Could Rick Moranis Appear in Ghostbusters: Afterlife? Winston Didn’t Say No

Ernie Hudson on Rick Moranis' Return
(Columbia)

In the midst of the nightmare that was 2020, there were a handful of bright spots. A bunch of movies landed on streaming services to help us survive, Taylor Swift graced us with two new albums, and Rick Moranis re-emerged into the spotlight after having taken years off to raise his kids.

The one-time megastar who started on SCTV starred in Strange Brew, headlined the Honey I Shrunk the Kids trilogy, and co-starred in Ghostbusters and Spaceballs, pulled back from Hollywood after his wife passed from cancer. Now that his kids are grown, he’s making a return to the industry, most notably in the forthcoming legacy-quel to Honey I Shrunk the Kids on Disney+.

Despite the imminent arrival of a new Ghostbusters film that exists in the same universe as the original movies and will feature cameos from some of the original cast, Moranis is not supposed to appear. Or is he?

Ernie Hudson, who suited up alongside Bill Murray, Dan Akyroyd, and Harold Ramis, was recently asked if Moranis makes an appearance in the new movie, and he didn’t exactly say no…

During a chat with Living Life Fearless, he was asked point black, and he dodged the question. “I think the studios probably want to hold that one,” Hudson said. “I love Rick. But yeah, I’ll let them share that.”

Moranis hasn’t spilled the beans, but he has expressed a willingness to dive back into work – but that the female-led Ghostbusters movie didn’t pique his interest.

“I’m interested in anything that I would find interesting. I still get the occasional query about a film or television role, and as soon as one comes along that piques my interest, I’ll probably do it,” Moranis told The Hollywood Reporter in 2015. “[But Ghostbusters 2016] didn’t appeal to me.”

If Hudson is playing coy and Moranis is returning, it’s a pretty well-kept secret. Bill Murray himself even denied it when he guested on Ellen, saying, “”We’re missing Rick Moranis and we’re missing Harold Ramis,” Murray said. “And they’re greatly missed for so many reasons. They were so much a part of the creation of it and the fun of it. But Harold is featured in the story of the movie, so it’s going to be very interesting.”

Maybe the movie’s delay, which was made necessary due to the pandemic, afforded a little extra time to find a way to get Moranis into the film. Or maybe the cast are just great at bluffing!

Either way, we’ll have to wait til this summer to find out, when Ghostbusters: Afterlife premieres. But you can tie yourself over with some crazy Facts About Rick Moranis.