Greg LeMond has received a public apology from a media guy who regrets pedaling the lies spouted by disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong.
Mark McKinnon, who is described on his Twitter page as a Texas media guy, wrote an open letter in thedailybeast.com calling LeMond “a true hero.” LeMond, the Twin Citian who won the Tour de France three times, has long crossed swords with Armstrong, who was stripped of his seven Tour titles in 2012 and ultimately admitted to doping.
“Lance won’t say it but I will,” begins McKinnon’s missive. “I apologize. I believed in Lance’s lie. My wife had a very deadly form of cancer, and his story [Armstrong is a cancer survivor] was a powerful elixir that helped us get through it. And then for 10 years, I served on the board of the Lance Armstrong Foundation, later the Livestrong Foundation, which did — and still does — truly great and innovative work for those living with and through cancer. But through all of those years, I was complicit in pushing the myth. And all I really knew about you was what I heard through Lance, Inc. I don’t have to tell you it was not flattering.”
McKinnon wrote that he almost had a private chat with LeMond after a conference about a year ago where LeMond was gracious and kind and said he wanted to talk later.
“Unfortunately, one of your children had a medical emergency and you were called away. But Kathy [LeMond, Greg’s wife] did show up, and for a couple of hours leaned on me pretty good. But not unfairly. I didn’t get to talk to you that night. But in the meantime, here is what I want to say to you. You are the undisputed greatest American bike rider ever, and among the greatest cyclists of all time.
“But more than that, you are a Hall of Fame Survivor. First ballot. You suffered through pain, lies, humiliation, bankruptcy, embarrassment, serious injury, health problems, and more. And despite all this, from all the objective accounts that I’ve now read about you, unlike Lance, you are honest, humble and kind. For all this, and more, I say to all the people suffering with and through cancer, or any other disease or fight, if you want a role model for inspiration, you should look to a true hero, Greg LeMond.”
Efforts to reach LeMond or his wife were unsuccessful, although someone forwarded me a tweet from Kathy LeMond to McKinnon that read: “Thank you, Mark. It means a lot to me that you wrote this.”
Xciting news for an X pair
“Xcel Energy Center and BART Productions announced today that a pint-size human will be ‘BORN IN THE USA’ on January 17, 2015,” read a cute baby announcement from the X’s senior PR manager, Jora Deziel Bart.
The announcement for Jora and Adam Bart’s first baby was presented like a news release about an event at the X.
EVENT: Baby Bart Arrival; DATE: Saturday, Jan. 17, 2015 - Time TBD; TYPE: Life Changing Event
FLOOR PLAN: Nursery; TICKETS: Priceless; ON SALE: Now;
DETAILS: Tickets are available. Certain fees (baby-sitting/diapering) may apply.
‘Found Footage’ guy touts a find
The 10th “Found Footage Festival” features a purportedly Minnesota-made instructional video providing directions that seem superfluous.
Two former Minnesota residents, Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett, host the screening of videos found at places like garage sales and warehouses. The 10th Anniversary Show is 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Fine Line Music Cafe.
Prueher has been sweating me to write about his event for a couple of years, and this time when he sent an e-mail, I challenged him to tell me something genuinely entertaining.
“OK, let’s bring out the big guns: ‘How to Have Cybersex on the Internet,’ ” wrote Prueher. “This is a video we found at a thrift store in St. Louis Park last year and there’s an even greater local angle. It was produced in 1997 by a [Maple Plain] company [that] churned out a ton of VHS content in the golden age of videotape. If there was a fad or trend happening, they cranked out a VHS tape for it in record time. In 1997, they decided to cash in with an instructional video about having cybersex. As odd a concept as that is, the video itself is even stranger. It’s a woman explaining the boring how-to’s of logging on, choosing a chat name while occasionally (and without warning) topless. It’s too sexy to be informational but not sexy enough to really do the trick, so why does it exist? We are hoping to track down the [creators] for this show in Minneapolis to get some answers.”
On Wednesday, when I talked to Prueher, I asked if this was a prank, since he claims both he and Pickett have Onion ties.
“No, we’ve been doing it 10 years. We do about 130 shows a year,” said Prueher. “We have hired a private detective to find the makers of ‘How to Have Cybersex on the Internet.’ ”
C.J. can be reached at email@example.com.