No male family members will play football or hockey if attorney Bucky Zimmerman can prevent it.

“Not knowing what I know today,” he said. “I’ve been studying head injuries in contact sports for a long time and I would be very hesitant to allow my family to participate in those sports.”

Concern about head injuries is about to rush to the fore of the national conscience with the Will Smith movie “Concussion.” It’s the story of Dr. Bennet Omalu, a forensic pathologist who discovered the degenerative disease CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) in the brains of deceased NFL players. Zimmerman knows Omalu well.

I ended up talking to Zimmerman about concussions when I ran into him and asked whether his wife, former WCCO and KARE 11 news anchor Pat Miles, had already fled the mild Minnesota fall for the warmth — and golf — of Arizona. And she had.

Zimmerman Reed law firm, which handled the Target data breach and has long handled medical device recall cases, recently added a Los Angeles office to the ones in Minneapolis and Phoenix.

“We liked the attorneys there; we had worked with them before, and it expands our market to the most populated state in the country. The other thing we are doing is all the traumatic brain injury cases in football and hockey,” he said. “We are the lead counsel in the National Hockey League concussion multidistrict litigation. We also did the NFL, that one settled and is still up in the appellate court.”

Zimmerman said he will see “Concussion” as soon as possible. “I know Dr. Omalu,” he said. “We are working closely with him.”

I told Zimmerman that Omalu lucked out to be played by the handsome Will Smith, who had his ears pinned back for the role. “There is a striking resemblance between Bennet Omalu and Will Smith, in my view,” Zimmerman said.

When I close my eyes they sound alike, because Smith completely captured Omalu patois, a source of great amusement to the doctor during their interview on “CBS Sunday Morning.”

Since the brain-rattling sports of football and hockey are off limits, I asked Zimmerman what sports are OK with him: “Golf and tennis.”


A meaty PETA message

PETA demonstrator Meggan Anderson was off the sidewalk and still on message about her time, literally, on Nicollet Mall on Tuesday.

Anderson was the meaty protein on a gigantic plate (also occupied by what looked like real cabbages but fake peas and carrots) protesting for PETA. The message: “Go Vegan This Christmas: Try to Relate to Who’s on Your Plate.”

The redhead was dressed in flesh color hosiery, and some flesh-toned pasties with her hands doing most of the upper-body covering required.

We started a conversation on Twitter after she noticed the photo I tweeted remarking that I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to start eating people.

“I’m always happy to volunteer to help animals! 12 years of not eating animals really helps,” she wrote.

It was 34 degrees. An extremely warm temperature for a December day, if one is wearing clothing, so I asked Anderson if she put her mind in a meditative state with thoughts of warmer climes?

“No. I was thinking of pigs freezing in a transport truck on their way to slaughter, knowing that their suffering is preventable,” replied the actor and model, who visits Minnesota but is not from here.

That was goooood. Probably will keep me away from ribs for a few days.


Customer dissatisfaction

Snapfish lost one media customer in the Twin Cities. Overwhelmed by orders, the California-based online card maker has been offering shipping deals as a result of social media complaints.

“I ended up canceling the order,” said Dave Kent, weekend host on Kool 108 and husband of Fox 9 anchor Kelcey Carlson. “I ended up ordering in just a few hours at Walgreens.”

I was shooting video for an upcoming Q&A with Kent when he vented his frustrations with Christmas cards and introduced me to a weird new word: Snapfish.


C.J. can be reached at and seen on FOX 9’s “Jason Show.” E-mailers, please state a subject; “Hello” does not count.