Heroes Of The Week!

Black Widow

Last week’s episode proved that mashups ain’t no joke. I was able to fit in more stories than in any previous Heroes post. This isn’t to say there weren’t glitches, because any good thing comes with glitches. Just ask the peeps at Apple. Using the Speaking Of format caused ‘rollover’, in which one positive or negative story bled into the next with precious little room for a segue salve. But don’t fret, my maintenance crew is looking into the problem and you can look forward to a new and improved version sometime soon.

And now, the news.

Fidel would’ve loved this chick- If lies really do set your pants on fire, they’re gonna need dental records to identify Kayleigh McEnany. In an interview with Chris Cuomo, the press secretary for Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign insisted Trump has never lied, after which she went back to the tired old well of blaming the media for every single thing. Kudos to CC for cutting it short with K Mac before she could blame the media for her cluelessness.

What impossible dreams may come- Imagine losing your right leg as a newborn in a chemical fire, after which you spend the next eight years in a state run orphanage in Nanjing, China. That was Scout Bassett’s reality until her entire world changed when she was adopted by a Michigan family in 1995. Some people rest on their good fortune, while others use it as fuel. And that’s what Scout did, winning three medals in the Para-triathlon and two more in the Para World Championships. She recently made ESPN’s “Body Issue”, where she proves that you shouldn’t be afraid of your scars. You should own them.

Luck ’em all!- Andrew Luck’s retirement took most football fans by surprise. But that didn’t make it alright for Colts fans to boo him as he left the field after last week’s game. And it doesn’t mean that Adam Schefter, who broke the story for ESPN, should have waited for Luck to announce it in a presser. And it sure as hell doesn’t mean Dan Dakich gets to rip Luck’s commitment, and people with mental health issues on his sparrow shit of a radio show. Maybe a little high road would’ve done everyone involved some good.

Ain’t no mountain high enough for these two- In 2010, Marine Staff Sgt. Jonathon Blank was serving in Afghanistan when he lost both his legs to an IED (Improvised Explosive Device). His friend John Nelson was nearby when it happened, and while that memory will never leave them, they’ve made sure to make plenty of much better ones in the time between. Nelson recently climbed Mt. Timpanogos in Utah, with his pal Jonathon on his back. 14 miles and 4,500 feet in an epic tag team hike. And they’re not done yet. Next up, they’re going to hike up the tallest mountain in California, Mount Whitney. And they’re gonna do it on Veteran’s Day. Because they can.

The tykes keep teaching us how- Eight year old Christian Moore didn’t think twice when he saw his classmate Connor Crites struggling on his first day of school. He didn’t laugh, shake his head or judge Connor for having a meltdown right in front of their whole class.

Hero Kid

Moore didn’t know Crites has autism or that he finds it extremely difficult to fit in with other kids. All Christian saw was a friend in need. So he did what any good friend would do. He sat with Connor as he cried, and then he held his hand and walked with him into school. No shaming, no blaming. Just love, in a not so random act of kindness that made all the difference in the world to one little boy.

That’s the problem with us adults. We tend to forget the power of compassion, and that it is every bit as much of a currency as all that dope we peddle to make us smarter and richer and stronger and younger. The difference with compassion is that the stuff has no expiration date. It will never leave us broke. Or empty. Or alone. And it is full of the kinds of nutrients that do a body and soul the most good. Lessons.

That picture is worth a thousand of ’em.


103 thoughts on “Heroes Of The Week!

  1. That’s Scarlett Johansson in the opening photo, isn’t it?

    But on to the serious stuff and I’m pretty sure you have perfected Heroes of the Week with this edition.

    Almost every politician lies — some are more blatant than others. Some are better at it than others. It’s just one of those things that, unfortunately, is an inevitable part of being a politician. One some level, I accept that. But just don’t be blatant about it and don’t lie about the fact that you lie. Trump and his enablers have taken this to a level that is about 100 times more severe than any other politician in the history of America. It is just stunning.

    Andrew Luck … the people who booed when he left the field a few days ago should be forever banned from any sports stadium/arena in the land.

    Jonathon Blank and John Nelson … there is a spirit of sacrifice and camaraderie and support that soldiers have for each other that is a thing to be in awe of. It’s a thing that us civilians are completely lacking and is one of the reasons why we find ourselves so divided. The “Greatest Generation,” a title I’m not particular fond of, shared in mutual sacrifice at a level we simply cannot comprehend today. Because we lack that shared sacrifice of generations past, we are not as capable of recognizing our neighbor, our co-worker, the stranger on the street as something simple … another human, another American, somebody who needs and deserves our support and aide. It’s a shame.

    And then you close with Christian Moore … a perfect, beautiful example of what we are actually capable of as humans if only we stopped and threw our biases and intolerances and impatiences to the side and just … be humans who care and love.

    And, yes … what the world needs now is love, sweet love. No, not just for some, but for everyone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark,

      It’s stunning alright. There is a deep sense of dread that I feel, like, all the time. If Trump has given us anything, it’s an appreciation for the etiquette we once expected from the Oval Office. Those days have been scorched.

      I’m like, why couldn’t they have done something like “We Want Luck!” if you want to complain? Boos? Nah. They didn’t deserve him!

      Service people have gotten shit on, let’s face it. With all the talk about protests and marches and with phones recording single moment of our days, these people do not stand a chance. But what of the overwhelmingly majority who face life and death on a daily basis and keep on lacing it up to go do it again? With no incidents? What about them? When do they get to count? These guys are the best of the best. Of which they have company. Plenty of it.

      Christian Moore is proof that these kids are leading us from the places we forgot we had in us.

      It worked, didn’t it? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

          • I’m guessing you’ve seen today’s news about Antonio Brown. If you’re an NFL owner of a team not called the Raiders or Steelers, do you call Brown’s agent? How much do you offer? I don’t see how any team could sign him, but you know somebody will.

            Liked by 1 person

          • There is no doubt some team is going to sign this asshole. The Chiefs come to mind, since they never met a bad guy they didn’t embrace. The only deal breaker is that maybe Reid doesn’t want to mess up his franchise QB with a completely unpredictable personality like Brown. The Patriots . . this is their wheelhouse. But Brown doesn’t seem like he’d be the type to fall in line, at all.

            Liked by 1 person

          • A friend suggested the Patriots. Will be very interesting to see what happens. He was pissed at the Steelers for a lot of reasons, including no guaranteed money, and he just threw away $30 million in guaranteed money because of his own inability to control his behavior. I seriously wonder if he’s brain-damaged.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Yeah me too. Dude might have some real issues going on.

            As for the Patriots, Brown would have to do a complete about face. His diva act in Pittsburgh got worse by the end. And what he pulled in Oakland over the last six months is extreme. So I gotta wonder if he could ever fall in line with anyone.

            I blame Gruden for the train wreck that the Raiders have become. But AB’s behavior is a totally different matter. No one, especially Gruden, could have seen this coming.


  2. Hey there – how inspiring to see the pic of that student helping the other and hearing the story ! Nice…
    And well said with this:
    “We tend to forget the power of compassion”

    And let’s have som compassion for Luck
    We joke that the NFL means Not For Long
    And so not surprised when any player gets canned or leaves on their own
    But this situation is unique because of the way that team let go of Peyton for him – and so I can see why folks have their gripes – but oh my goodness do we need to get off his back! Physical and mental health is more important than any career –
    And I think the lesson here is another example of assuming too much from someone from their college records –

    Liked by 1 person

    • That pic should be hung up in Congress.

      The fans had a right to be like “Whaa?”. But to boo was going well below the line. Luck’s responsibility is to himself and his family, and when he wasn’t feeling it any longer, it was time to go.

      Liked by 2 people

          • and personally I am happy the way it worked out way back when – at first I was not – but I live with Denver broncos fans and hubs family are all big Denver people – and they were liked when Peyton came.
            I was slow going – it was difficult to mentally see Peyton as a Bronco – I kept seeing blue –
            just like with Bret Favre as viking – could not adjust –
            anyhow, when Peyton finally won Super Bowl for the broncos I was finally mentally congruent with him in the orange and blue

            and back to booing Luck –
            shows a nasty side of humans and sports- come on people – so mean – and surface-like with groupthink type of behavior

            Liked by 1 person

          • It was so strange seeing him in that orange jersey. And yanno, with Luck retiring there was a great “What If?” article I read recently in which the writer wondered what would have happened if the Colts never drafted Luck and kept Peyton. Wow, the dominoes!

            Brett Favre is one of my favorite players even though I was never a Packers or Vikings fan. Dude was an old school gunslinger. And yes, a Packers uni is the only one I see him in now.

            They could have been original in their shock/awe/dismay/confusion/anger by chanting something like “We Want Luck!”.

            Liked by 1 person

          • yes – the “we want luck” chant would have been perfect – now how can you get these good ideas to the many fans?

            have you ever seen a Monk episode with the NFL theme?

            Mr. Monk makes the Playoffs.
            (Playoffs?? who said anything about playoffs… oh wait – that’s not it)
            but in the Monk episode – they highlight so many little human funky sides when it comes to NFL – and the way some lost their human side – have you seen it? Just curious

            Liked by 1 person

          • They wouldn’t listen anyways, haha.

            I’ve not seen that.

            But it sounds like something I would definitely get a kick out of. I believe Monk has OCD? Welp, back in the day I had umm . . . superstitions when my favorite team would be playing. I would have to sit in a chair directly facing the TV, not on a slant. I kept a cap of my team on top of the TV, right side. If I was up when they started a rally, I had to remain standing until the drive was over. There was other stuff but I remember those.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Oh this superstitions are awesome – and we had some too –
            and int he monk episode – which I hope you get to see from start to finish because it is really well written and acted out –
            Bob Costas has a small part – ‘but a fun scene that came to mind with our comment chatting was the locker room prayer …
            the team is praying and asking God to help them “crush” and annihilate the other team – hahha

            Liked by 1 person

          • Sports superstitions are so kitschy, aren’t they? And they beat the hell out of booing, LOL.

            And have you seen some of the athletes superstitious rituals? They’re hilarious!

            Imma have to check it out, it sounds hilarious. And the locker room prayer bit, that’s priceless!

            Liked by 1 person

          • the mr monk episode also has a hedge fund manager who has all these millions (remember when that was a big topic – all that money they were making in a matter of hours)
            and my husband will not wear orange if it is Super Bowl game for the broncos – something like that

            Liked by 1 person

          • Yes / but I still have yet to find anything NFL related that I am
            Comfortable in- just got rid of another bills jersey – had different broncos ones and none for right – t-shirts don’t always work out (I am not into t-shirts anyhow)
            But one day – maybe –
            And wishing you a good night –
            Enjoyed comment chatting (I was also checking in with dale a bit tonight and it felt fun to have separate lines going with the two of you who I sometimes see together – ya know
            Well sweet dreams when you hit the sack

            Liked by 1 person

          • Was it the home blue Bills jersey? That’s a cool one. Would you believe I have exactly one sports related t-shirt that I bought? I have a couple others that were gifted me.

            That’s funny. And speaking of funny, I watched that Monk episode where he brought the Captain to the Condors playoff game. I never would have taken foam finger for a hedge fund manager! LOL. And the calico cat that almost killed Bob Costas, according to . . . Bob Costas, LOL.

            Well good morning to you.

            Liked by 1 person

          • well it was the nice home blue and it weighed about 100lbs (seriously nice and China authentic – but heavy and plus I am just not into jersey wearing – had to admit it and accept and now move on) and so yes – I can believe you only have one sports related tee – because you carry all the sports stuff in your head and who needs the clothes – haha
            that is the episode I was talking about – the condors game.
            a lot of social psych in that episode – and the cat story was not my fav at first – but then I got the humor – lol

            Liked by 1 person

          • The Bills home blue is a very cool uniform. One of the sharper looking ones. But I get what you’re saying about jersey and t-shirts. And I relate.

            Haha! When Monk added up all the players numbers and it equaled 1,000. Exactly.

            Liked by 1 person

          • It’s a very quirky show, with lots of sneaky funny humor. I felt for the dude who got the TV stuck on the stairwell, and upside down at that. But he made the most of it.

            Monk reminded me of a modern day Colombo. With OCD.

            Liked by 1 person

          • yes – and quick story with the TV stuck on the stairs – I was skeptical that it could get stuck and when Randy and Natalie eat pizza on the stairs watching the game with their heads turned upside down – I thought it was fun but not completely realistic
            about two years ago someone got rid of two busy TVS (one about the size of the one int hat episode) and those early versions of large tvs were heavy things – I helped two other folks move one and that scene came to mind and I could see how it became wedged and got stuck.
            I was also amazed at how prices dropped = the original price that now obsolete TV was crazy high

            and I heard that Columbo show inspired the series (partly) and they even mention that show at tone point.

            my only closing small pet-peeve with the show Is that people were not exhausted as they really would be in real life.
            Natalie bounces back all the time – but in real life – someone with certain disorders can take a much bigger toll –

            Liked by 1 person

          • The moral of the story, as per that TV getting wedged, is to always have it right side up. It wouldn’t have been so bad in that case.

            And yes, the price of TV’s in general is so much lower now.

            It IS exhausting, and you’re right.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Hahah – well it is really easy and gets easier when you do it more and more
            Also – it is national yoga month so you might want to try something (or not) but a forward fold can refresh immensely – —
            Stand tall – arms to side – Root your feet – lift your toes and root your feet again.
            Bend your knees – a lot of really tight – and gently bed forward chest leading towards your thighs –
            Just hold when you reach a point of knowing it is enough – you can make a box with your hands on elbows – and breathe – let gravity decompress your spine ever so slowly – the bit of fresh blood flow to the mind is awesome –
            And try to stay for a few breaths
            Do it a few times and usually on the third time you feel so much more loose and can straighten up the legs a bit – but never lock the knees
            – the forward fold can be a part of his flow of poses Called sun salutations- or it can lead into chair pose – which is a serious fire pose that looks easy.
            Anyhow – just think about trying something Yoga this month…

            Liked by 1 person

          • I do stretch, but I rarely provoke my muscles into an all out rumble. But you’re right, I should try this on for size, because it does help. And I need to loosen up.


  3. That’s the problem with us adults. We tend to forget the power of compassion, and that it is every bit as much of a currency as all that dope we peddle to make us smarter and richer and stronger and younger. The difference with compassion is that the stuff has no expiration date. It will never leave us broke. Or empty. Or alone. And it is full of the kinds of nutrients that do a body and soul the most good. Lessons.


    One of your choices always jumps out for me, as the star of the show. We sadly live in a Trumpesque world so a story like this, that should be the norm, isn’t. It’s the exception to one of the new rules…every man for himself and I’ll kill ya for a parking space.

    Compassion now has to sneak in the backdoor like the Good Samaritan since he’s not recognized for his good, just his willingness to make the takers look bad. It hurts me so much being as openhearted as I am, but stories like these restore my hope that…and to quote Bob…The Times They Are A Changin;.

    You’re a wonderful writer Marc. Have I told you that lately???


    Liked by 1 person

  4. B,

    Last week’s episode was definitely breathtaking, However, it was a great read and there are no complaints over here 😉

    All or almost all politicians lie but this class of clowns really take the cake. It is a whole nother level of blatant in your face lying that makes me more than shake my head.

    Scout’s story is amazing. She is a powerhouse in every way. I loved the behind the scenes video of her “Owning her body” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jv5uXSTlyNQ – in case you haven’t (though I’m sure you have).seen it.

    What the hell is wrong with people? Andrew Luck made a decision he felt he had to make for his own well-being. Fans are only satisfied when there is irreparable damage or death if they retire before being too “old”. LA said it above so well.

    There is a reason they keep making movies about marines and the bond they have between each other. Blank’s go-to attitude is fantastic as many would have just stopped living after losing their legs like that. Nelson is a friend/hero of the highest order. What a pair!

    From the mouths and actions of babes, we must continue learning. I don’t know where or when it is that compassion goes out the window. Why is it we learn to care less instead of keeping that as a part of us?

    This week’s stories are beautifully woven. Two heroes who lost legs yet keep moving forward; one hero who made a decision to take care of himself so that he can continue taking care of his family and compassion (or lack in Luck’s case) woven throughout.

    That second-to-last paragraph is gold. I would quote it again but saw that Susannah already did 😉 Because we recognise fantabulous writing talent when we see it.

    You’re right. Fuck it! The song works perfectly for this post!!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Q,

      I really dig using the Speaking Of format, so the love is very much appreciated. I enjoyed doing it that way.

      Trump has taken it to an entirely different level. He’s blatant about his lies and then he insists he ain’t lying. He’s like a kid who’s caught pilfering the cookie jar and then says he’s innocent.

      Yes, I watched it. Thank you. :). Scout is such an amazing athlete, with as you said, a powerhouse of a body. Nothing is impossible.

      So true. I applaud Luck for bowing out. If his heart wasn’t in it, he was only going to get hurt. Because the sport demands everything of its athletes and if they are not all in, that’s when bad things happen. That said, it will be interesting to see if he comes back a year or two from now or if he decides that really is it.

      I love how Nelson decided they were gonna go for it no matter what. I guess after going through all that shit on the other side of the world, this stuff is nothing in comparison.

      Because we are of the mindset that we have to keep moving forward or die. Life’s tough and it makes us less sympathetic to the kindnesses, even when those kindnesses count for so much.

      Thank you! There was a symmetry to this week’s Heroes post, huh? I didn’t try it, LOL.

      You guys are AWE-some.

      It really did. I couldn’t fit anything else into that spot no matter what I tried.

      Gracias Q!


      Liked by 1 person

      • It is a cool format so don’t give it up 😉

        Honestly, I have never seen or heard anyone so bad before him. I think he actually believes he’s not lying since it comes so naturally.

        I figured you had 😉 She is a sight to see.

        He said it had been four years of the cycle of pain and rehab and he was done. Who can blame him? You can love a sport but when your body is battered, time to find something else.

        I cannot even try to fathom what they dealt with on the other side. It has to bring people closer together – common horrors witnessed, having each other’s backs, etc. Climb a mountain with my buddy on my back? No problemo!!

        It’s a sad state of affairs. I think we can all try to be kind even as we move forward…

        There truly was. As I was reading and then got to your before last paragraph, I felt wow… this was particularly well-woven. Wonder if he realises it? 😉

        We just appreciate what you do so well.

        Sometimes you just have to let go. First choice is often the best one.

        De Naturally!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Nope, Imma bring it back here and there for shizz.

          He follows the George Costanze rule of thumb. It’s not a lie if you believe it. LOL.

          She really is an inspiration.

          Peeps up in the stands booing him have no idea about any of that. Which is why the boo. Because they have no idea what in the hell they’re talking about.

          The horrors they bring home. And then they’re supposed to just go back to ‘normal’ when there is no such thing for them. Yep, that’s why those bonds are forever. Because they are the only peeps they can truly relate to.

          We can and should. And it ain’t have to be huge productions. Simple gestures count for plenty.

          I did when it was done. The only thing I shifted was the last story. It was originally second in line and I thought, nah, it’s too good.


          This be true.

          You’re getting it! 😉

          Liked by 1 person

          • Kewl.


            The boo-ers need to shut the fuck up. I hate when I go to a game of any sort and the crowd boos – I don’t care for it for my team nor for the visiting team. It’s just not right.

            Exactly! And these two, fortunately, have found a way to not fall into the PTSD trap.

            The smallest gestures – hold open the door, understand when the barista makes a mistake on your order, smile in compassion when a frazzled mother is doing her best to control her rugrats…

            Yes. It belonged last. Made the flow perfect. And of course you did.


            Yes. it be.

            Well… I didn’t want to look like I was copying you… 😉

            Liked by 1 person

          • Sports fans ain’t much for ingenuity it seems. Over a century worth of professional sports and still one of the most popular refrains.

            They’re fortunate in that way. But again, we don’t know what they go through in the quiet moments. It must make these hikes that much more valuable to them.

            Those simple gestures have cache.

            I thought so too. Especially since I HAD to include that picture.


            No way Josie. 😉

            Liked by 1 person

          • Too true. Human nature is really uninspired at times.

            This is also true. We cannot possibly know what goes on in the quiet moments. I like to think that the fact they keep themselves busy doing fabulous things, those quiet moments are just that. Quiet. But that is also looking at it through rose-coloured glasses.

            They do. And truly, not all that difficult. Except when you are really needing your caffeine fix and now have to wait a whole ‘nother two minutes… Might require a bit more effort on your part!

            Yes! You had to include that picture.


            Alrighty then… I shall keep on keeping on 😉

            Liked by 1 person

          • And no place quite like fandom. When you think about it, the traditions are just plain odd. Peeps dress up like their favorite players. They paint their face. They drink copious amounts of alcohol to insure they don’t remember a blessed thing . . .

            I think the fact that they have the support and encouragement of each other counts for a ton. They aren’t isolated and alone to deal with all that shit they carry.

            It’s amazing how you can make a person’ day with those simple gestures though.



            Keeping, trucking, doing. Uh huh!

            Liked by 1 person

          • Makes zero sense to me, quite frankly.

            Exactomundo. They are blessed to have each other.

            Oh man. It is so true. I know how I feel when someone shows me an act of random kindness so I don’t hesitate to do the same.


            Now I have this song in my head!

            Liked by 1 person

          • I guess the next time I go to see Mission Impossible, I should dress up like Tom Cruise. I wonder if there are any Scientology men’s stores around here . . .

            They are.

            And don’t you feel that “pay it forward” vibe inside the moment? I do believe that. One kind thing begets another.



            Liked by 1 person

          • Buahaha! Well… I dunno about that… I’m thinking it’s more common to get into it with say, Rocky Horror Picture Show…

            Yes, absolutely! There is a great little video where a black ball is passed on which makes everyone feel awful. Then one day a woman paints it yellow with a smiley face and changes what is being passed on. I love it.


            What? You don’t like the video “Truckin'” by The Greatful Dead?

            Liked by 1 person

          • This is true. And nobody would get the all black ensemble as being an ode to Tom Cruise anyway.

            That sounds like quite the idea!


            I was buahahing to your trucking reply. 😉

            Liked by 1 person

          • I didn’t even realize I was engaging in cosplay,even though I was! LOL


            Puh-leeze. “at times . . .” Chyeah, way more often than that.


  5. Excellent post, Mark. The Andrew Luck debacle shows how base organized sports fans, and some broadcasters really are. They should be ashamed. Loved the picture of the two boys. They can teach us a lot. Trump never lied? LOL. Jonathon Blank and John Nelson are true heroes in every sense of the word joined by Scout Bassett. A beautiful edition, Marc.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The fans reaction was wrong, even if they were upset. I don’t blame them for that, but to boo Luck in that moment, no.

      As for the broadcaster, he is supposed to be delivering the news without the passion. Just straight up, deal it. For him to go there, he may as well be running a podcast from his camper, because that’s amateur hour stuff.

      The kids always seem to do just that, don’t they?

      Trump has never once lied. Notice I said it when there was no threat of lightning?

      Those two really are the dynamic duo. And they’re what the Heroes posts are all about.

      And Scout Bassett. That girl is a wonder.

      Thank you Sheriff!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I wish Miss K-Mac (and her despicable boss) would go away. Or at the very least, go pound sand. #thesepeople

    Kudos to Scout Basset, Staff Sgt. Blank and his friend John Nelson for their grace and athletic prowess.

    A tip of the hat to Andrew Luck, the fans and haters not so much. As for Adam Schefter, he was a douche at times when he wrote for the Denver Post so his ‘let’s jump the gun’ scoop wasn’t surprising. Why is it being first at all costs by the press no matter what the consequences is the norm rather than the exception. Sheesh.

    I hope little man, Christian Moore reaps so much good karma. What a precious act by a lovely example of sweet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • She is so delusional, I just can’t.

      Those two are the legit dynamic duo!

      As a Dolphins fan, I was so pissed when the Colts finished ‘ahead’ of us in the Suck For Luck draft. And seven years later, I still wish we would have drafted him. I would take seven years of Luck over what we’ve had.

      As for Schefter, he works for ESPN, a network that gobbles up everything and everyone.

      Christian Moore has set the example for the big kids in the room.

      Liked by 1 person

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