Friday, January 14, 2011

Ryan Lochte - Quit being a jackass!

Memo to Ryan Lochte: Quit bragging about how wealthy you are, how much money you spend, and how fast you or a possible friend has driven you in their ridiculously expensive car.

From Universal Sports:

On Wednesday, Lochte posted a tweet saying

"...Just cruisin down the road... Wit my
boi @rexgator44 !! Ya dig!! Jeah!!!"

With a photo attached of a speedometer. A zoomed-in portion of that photo can be seen at above right, with the operative number being 166 -- as in 166 mph...

Lochte, it is time you grow up or at the very least pretend in public that you have so as to instill a sense of confidence that you are both reliable and literate.

Note: You are a brand, a potential Olympic asset for the United States and a role model. Currently your tweets make you look and sound like you're Paris Hilton's spoiled little brother who affects an urban dialect so as to sound "street."

Your tweets give the appearance that your maturity sudden froze at 14-years-old; probably around the same time you started to illustrate that sublime talent of yours. Move on!


Anonymous said...

You can't swim when you are 6 feet under.

Tony Austin said...

Or 6-years in jail for vehicular manslaughter!

Anonymous said...

Because you're so mature posting terrible cartoons?

Charlie said...

Well said Tony!

Tony Austin said...

Anonymous, please don't think I am about to scold you for your remark about my maturity. I want to educate you.

The cartoons I posted are an act of socio/political satire. Cartoons, of all things, have inspired politicians to do better and create change.


"... Political cartoonists have shaped public opinion since the mid-19th century, and they provide current scholars with a glimpse of the political debate and public opinion surrounding past events. Relying on symbolism and caricature, experimenting in fresh imagery, political cartoons help people think about politics. Whether their purpose is to promote the status quo, raise social concerns, or to spur people to fight hard for change, political cartoons have changed the face of history. ..."

In my humble opinion, I think it was extraordinarily mature of me to post "these terrible cartoons" since a profound majority of people connected to USA Swimming are those that have their incomes tied to the sport probably fear reprisals since so many have been so silent in the face of this hideous nightmare.

Trust me, these cartoons will get more done to protect kids then my editorials.

JB said...

Sick Audi - pretty awesome vehicle! There are worse things he could be doing.

Tony Austin said...

JB, there is always a "worst case potential."

My post was a constructive criticism. From a business standpoint Lochte should be angling to be more of brand personality rather than a teenager. His rhetoric on Twitter is great if the sponsor he is angling for wants to sell skateboard decks to a 14-year-olds.

If I was his rep, I would be more interested in having him try and sell $5,000 Tag Heuer or Baume and Mercier sport watches to 50-year-olds rather than beanies and tennis shoes to kids.

Federica Pellegrini should be his template. She sells Armani and other pricey items, what does Lochte sell, $25.00 Speedos?


Charlie said...

What are these cartoons that Anonymous is talking about?

Tony Austin said...

A blog post from January 11th:

Reezy Nation said...

Late to the party, sorry. Ouch, that's "constructive criticism?" That's pretty harsh. Tony. You've met the guy, right? You've been to meets? You'll never meet a nicer, more generous, approachable professional athlete. He'll stand there as long as it takes and sign everything everyone hands him and takes every picture people ask him for. Half of facebook has a profile picture of themselves with Lochte. If he can't sign something right then and there he says, "I'll meet you here at this time" and he shows up!! We've seen some other swimmers (who shall remain nameless) literally make kids cry because he was "too busy" to sign some swim caps AFTER a race and cool-down. One kid stood there with his Sharpie and welled-up in tears. You think that's how you promote a sport? Become a brand? Be a role model?

As for the Speedo comment that's just unfair. It's obviously a multi-million dollar deal. Not bad for "$25 swimsuits." Besides, last time we checked he was a swimmer. Seems to make sense. He also seems to be using it very smartly to expand his "brand." He's confirmed he just signed a "big" new sponsorship and he's the first swimmer in this company's history to sign a deal with them. Due to confidentiality clauses in contracts he can't say what it is yet but we'll know within the next few weeks. Judging by his excitement we'll guess you'll consider it legit.

So he's got an expensive car, drives fast, probably on a track (you don't really think he's bombing through the UF campus at 166 mph do you?) and he likes Lil' Wayne. Like JB said, "so what?" He's not being photographed doing anything illegal and getting himself banned from competition for 3 months or making kids cry. Judging by his growing popularity within the swim world and now the corporate world as well, he's doing something right.


Tony Austin said...

I sent Mark to Pan Pacifics and Nationals. I am so "persona non grata" with USA Swimming that I won't even bother entering a USA Swimming meet. I watch them on TV, Universal Sports and You Tube.

Mark met Ryan Lochte and spoke very highly of him. Glowing remarks even and was impressed how accessible he was but he still acts immature!

Driving a car at 166-mph is not safe for one's heath nor the health of anyone near them

I find it highly unlikely that Lochte has a multi-million dollar deal with Speedo. This is a business where youi can sponsor a swimmer for $40,000 or less.

In Fact I find it unlikely that Michael Phelps the greatest swimmer ever is making more than 3-million from Speedo.

I have regular conversations with marketing directors and I can promise you that there are many top-three swimmers who are pulling less than $200,000 dollars a year and those numbers are rare.

Hence, if I was Lochte rep , I would tell the gentleman to mature fast and to find an affluent demographic he can sell stuff to since the majority of Speedo's sales are not $125 jammers.

Even Tiger Woods has a public persona that nets him over $122-million but if the public knew the real Tiger Woods persona, would be he selling $3,000 Tag Heuer watches

Oh wait, they fired him!

If Lochte is in this for fun, let him be whatever he wants to be. If he is in this for a profession, then in my humble opinion, he is missing the mark as a professional.

Anonymous said...

We're talking about 3-million-per-year contract for Phelps? That's not bad, not bad at all.

Tony Austin said...

$3-mil is huge but I am not confident he is making that much.

Anonymous said...

"He's not being photographed doing anything illegal and getting himself banned from competition for 3 months or making kids cry."

That's really uncalled for. Stop hating Phelps already. It's so unbecoming to call yourself a swim fan and to hate, at the same time, the greatest swimmer ever.

Tony Austin said...

I think the Michael Phelps bong incident is far less of a transgression then Lochte nearly getting himself or another killed by driving 166-mph.

I do not hate Ryan Lochte nor do I care how fast he swims or how many medals he wins. What I care about is the accomplishment and the hope that he could be a break out star for swimming much like Ian Thorpe was.

Lochte will never be a break out star acting like 14-year-year-old or doing self destructive things like driving 166-mph.

Anonymous said...

How come anytime anyone says anything critical of Phelps they're a bad swim fan? It's so annoying.

Tony Austin said...

...or a hater, jeah!


"...When I be bloggin,' they hatin!
Trollin,' they try to find me wrtitin' dirty!..."

Anonymous said...

Umm,it's not 'anyone' 'anytime'. I was replying to Reezy Nation's comment and I apologize for not being more specific.
You see, there's a story called Little Kid With a Sharpie & Tears in His Eyes. The story is about a swimmer (who shall remain nameless but it comes in handy to mention that he's photographed doing illegal things) who, for some reason, didn't sign some swim caps and that made the kid really unhappy. Since then, I've read the story about the villain swimmer who makes little children cry so many times it really makes you wonder. Even when the subject is another swimmer and no one is talking about the nameless swimmer, Reezy Nation never fails to remind us of that sad story so everyone else looks like a saint in comparison. Thanks Reezy Nation.

Anonymous said...

To quote sportswriter Mike Silver of "I’d encourage all of you, in general, to err on the side of appreciating the art, rather than overanalyzing the attitude of the artist."

Tony Austin said...

I sincerely respect all of his accomplishments but he is still an embarrassing and possibly a self-destructive ambassador.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for making this man accountable for his actions. It seems like being accountable is heading out the door as quickly as being politically correct came in. He does seem like a good guy who thinks it is cool to play the gangster with his "grill" and his other behaviors. I hope in the end you helped to make his fast driving uncool. Maybe it will help my son in some way some day.

Tony Austin said...

I am very flattered, anonymous, since you understand my motives.

With all the money Ryan Lochte has worked very hard to generate for both himself and his sponsors, his first worry should be securing shelter - that is the first rule any survivalist or financial planner should tell you.

For instance: You wash up on an island after your ship has sank or your plane has crashed in a desert: the first thing you do is find or make a shelter. Next, you secure water, then you secure food, then communication and transportation.

You don't secure shoes! You don't secure a obscenely expensive car that will be obsolete in fifteen minutes, nor do you secure jewelry that you stick in your mouth!

Same goes for when you when you win the lotto or become a sports star: Secure shelter so you will never be homeless. Maybe you pay off your parent's house, maybe you buy your own house but secure shelter you can afford. Then, secure the cash reserves to afford the utilities, food and transportation costs for the rest of your life.

Ryan has 8-years at best to make an affluent living and then he is going to be forced to master a new trade that maybe pays maybe $40,000 a year - and that's considered a "real find" in America right now.

If I was Lochte's rep, I would tell him to use Proactiv if he isn't all ready, and the reason why he uses it is to hydrate his skin after workout. (That is a key phrase and I can't tell you why I know that.) Then I would call Gunthy Renker who owns Proactiv. a product that makes $750-mill a year and say he would love to represent them. (They give endorsers to 3% of what it grosses - or $1-3-million-a-year)

Then I would call Tag Heauer and tell the marketing director that he loved their Carerra Chronograph that Leonardo DeCaprtio wears and that he would like to be a Tag Heuer Ambassador. THen I would suggest to them that he throw a $2,500-a-plate party in or around the the 2011 FINA World Championship where he demonstrates to people like me how to use the Carerra's Chronograph which we get to take home along with a Tag Heauer party bag.

Now that I am warmed up: It's vulgar and it is only cool to people who suddenly found a pile of money in a alley and spent the whole thing on a blond named "Easy."

His dialect, his "fast driving," his bragging, the "big shot" spending, shows no class and this is coming from a guy who has a charismatic personality, great looks, massive talent and a very accessible demeanor. He could be a movie star instead he wants to look and sound like an extra in a rap video.

Anonymous said...

I understand your viewpoint because Lochte has the potential to make a lot of money in a short period of time. If he's careful, he could save enough to never have to work again. It seems wasteful for him to let these opportunities pass.

Nevertheless, one of the most appealing things about Lochte is he's real. He lets people see his true personality. He's not a corporate shill. He's engaging and open with fans.

Maybe he's destined to blow all of his riches & end up working in a $40k a year job for 40 years after he retires from swimming. That's his choice. It doesn't take away from his greatness as a swimmer or that he's entertaning and fun to watch. He's doing things his way and he doesn't take himself seriously. It's kind of refreshing.

Tony Austin said...

Let me make this clear, Lochte is a kind hearted individual, he has massive talent, and numerous accomplishments but he is still a jack ass. Perhaps youth is wasted on the young but this "young man" is 26-years-old.

Yes, he is real I agree, but look what happened to Tom Cruise, Lindsay Lohan, or Mel Gibson when they suddenly began to embrace being "real?"

I am not asking Lochte to be a robot, I suggested he transition to a more adult version of himself that embraces his charitable and more robust personality components rather that his current "rap star persona"

Here is a quote from a movie star from long ago. This movie star's real name was "Archibald Leech" but his stage name was Cary Grant:

"Cary Grant, Cary Grant, everybody wants to be Cary Grant... Even I want to be Cary Grant."

Ryan Loche should strive to become Ryan Lochte the man rather than Ryan Lochte the "riche nouveau" child.