There are no words. Apparently. Just Blam! Blam! Blam! Blam! Blam!

Photo: Screen grab from ABC news.

Lisa Marie Alarcon. Just wants to be your teddy bear.

In April 2012, as Steve and Paula Alarcon were sleeping, someone fired five shots through the bedroom window, hitting them in the legs. Steve Alarcon wasn’t able to walk for months. Paula Alarcon did better, once the risk of bleeding to death was past.

It was hard for them, especially since the first person who rushed to their aid, a neighbor, said he had seen the shooter, and it was their daughter, Lisa Marie.

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Posted in Apologies and the Law, The Mechanics of Apology, True Crime Apologies | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nom nom, blech, I’m eating dirt.

Hello, strangers! May I have your attention? I was a huge jerk, and I’m so sorry. I will do anything, anything, to show how sorry I am. I will humiliate myself in front of the whole world – that’s you.

Image: Sidney Paget, Strand Magazine. Public domain.

He did something dreadful, no one knows what.

Yo, sir! See how I am groveling and eating dirt? You will tell her how sorry I am, won’t you, ma’am? See, dirt. Nom nom, blech, dirt. That’s how sorry I am.

Sorry for what? I was a jerk, and a complete and total asshole. What did I do exactly? A thing. A bad thing, and that’s why I’m so sorry. God, I think there are bugs in this dirt. I KEEP CHEWING.

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Posted in Cryptic Apologies, Personal Apologies, The Mechanics of Apology | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Public restroom mishap

This happened at a women’s restroom at a highway gas station in Utah. Three stalls. Our protagonist, thinking the handicapped stall is empty, opens the door.

It is not empty.

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Posted in Good apologies, Youth apologizes | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Non-apology of the year thus far!

Four days ago, the New York Times ran a devastating account of the horrific mishandling of a sexual assault incident at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. The long, extensively reported piece is a difficult read, but an essential one. 

Lady Justice is totally asking for it.

Lady Justice is totally asking for it.

Today’s New York Times featured a letter from a college trustee. It is not an apology. It does not fall under the purview of this blog. But it is so egregiously awful in its spin-management efforts, attention must be paid. Here’s the letter in its entirety, followed by SorryWatch’s Dov-Seidmanian analysis of why it is not only a terrible non-apology, but also a terrible public relations attempt. I have helpfully annotated it for you. Continue reading

Posted in Non-apologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Why didn’t you come see me, Dad?

Screen grab of photo released by Cook County Sheriff's Department.

Where Polk was trapped. Photo released by Cook County Sheriff’s Department.

It’s no fun having to visit your kid in jail. It’s even less fun when instead of seeing him, you get locked into a steel-doored concrete room and forgotten.

Farad Polk had been visiting his son, who’s awaiting trial (drugs), every Saturday at Chicago’s Cook County Jail. Even innocent visitors quickly learn they’re unlikely to be treated well when they visit a jail, and the younger Polk’s been locked up for thirteen months. So it was two hours before Farad Polk understood he wasn’t just being jerked around. Something was wrong.

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Posted in Apologies and the Law, Institutional Apologies, Shrieval Apologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Sock puppet on a mission to help lazy pigs


Screen grab

Some words leave a bad taste in the mouth

John Huppenthal is Superintendent of Public Instruction in Arizona. “Schools chief” in headlinese. He’s an ambitious, presentable chap who worked his way from local office to state office.

Turns out he’s been posting on blogs as Falcon9, Socrates, and Thucydides, at least since 2011. Saying mean racist classist stuff about “lazy pigs” on welfare, raging against the speaking of Spanish by people living in the US, repeating tedious lies about Obama, raving on various topics.

Falcon9/Socrates/Thucydides (I’ll say F9 for short) disapproved of “rewarding… lazy pigs with food stamps, air conditioning, free health care, and flat screen TV’s, typical of ‘Poor’ families”.

Photo: Steve Dunham. Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Enchiladas Suizas? They’re kind of a Mexican blintz. With bechamel.

“We all need to stomp out balkanization. No Spanish radio stations, no Spanish billboards, no Spanish TV stations, no Spanish newspapers. This is America, speak English.” Still, “I don’t mind them selling Mexican food as long as the menus are mostly in English.” Although he wasn’t against immigration, he blamed illegal immigrants for crime and “half the murders in Phoenix” – in fact more than half. He wasn’t vague about this, he used statistics. Wrong ones, of course.

F9 didn’t like Obama, “the current slime in the white house”, and babbled “Its in Obamas book, Obama said he was born in Kenya!!!!”

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Posted in Bad Apologies, Political Apologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Nerf Herder’s “Sorry” video

Nerf Herder is best known as the band that did the Buffy the Vampire Slayer theme, among the greatest tv show themes in history. (Click that link to be hypnotized by the opening sequence from all seven seasons.) But writer Meg Nesterov just pointed me to the band’s 1996 song Sorry, which is a DELIGHT: An excellent, escalating, cumulative tale of a bad ex-boyfriend, bad-apology song! Continue reading

Posted in Funny-on-Purpose Apologies, Musical Apologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

SorryWatch has ways of shutting that whole post-unapology down

You may remember former Congressman Todd Akin’s 2012 comment“If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” He was explaining SCIENCE: Women who were ACTUALLY raped (i.e., not FALLEN women or LYING women) would not need abortions because they would not get pregnant. SCIENCE.

Akin stays on the hot seatThe day after he made the comments, Akin, whose lustrous combover gleamed like a million gold doubloons minted by a magical industrialist-funded super PAC, apologized, saying,

I’ve really made a couple of serious mistakes here that were just wrong, and I need to apologize for those. Let me be clear: Rape is never legitimate. It’s an evil act that’s committed by violent predators. I used the wrong words in the wrong way. What I said was ill conceived, and it was wrong, and for that I apologize. I don’t know that I’m the only person in public office who’s suffered from foot-in-mouth disease here, and this was a very, very serious error.

He lost his Senate race, to Democrat Claire McCaskill, anyway.

Now Akin has a book out. And suddenly he is un-apologizing.  Continue reading

Posted in Political Apologies | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Dear Equinox: Stop Trying to Make #PreApology Happen

On Twitter yesterday, the Chief Marketing Officer of Equinox Gyms posted this:

preapologyCEO1 This wittiness is tied to Equinox’s new campaign, all tied to the notion of “preapology.” LET’S DISCUSS. Continue reading

Posted in Bropology, Corporate Apologies, Fake apologies, Fashion Apologies, Twitpologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Facebook is not actually sorry

kittehWhy should Facebook be sorry for conducting a huge study that tried to manipulate users’ emotions by jiggering which posts users saw, all without telling them?

To be sorry, you need incentive. You need to want to be better, do better, make your victim feel better. Why should Facebook want any of these things? We hear over and over how Facebook is misusing our data, compromising our privacy, not giving us control over our own feeds, making us pay for people to see our Pages. (I could provide links, but do you really need me to? Are you living under a rock? Can you make fire? How did you find SorryWatch, anyway — did your cat walk across the keyboard and randomly type in our URL?) And yet we stick around. Continue reading

Posted in Bad Apologies, Corporate Apologies, Media Apologies, Social Media Apologies | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments