Not funny? Then it didn’t happen.

Urban Outfitters sells some “vintage” clothes as well as new. Used clothes. Mostly shirts from college teams, schools, or amusingly named organizations. Cobleskill Football – $129. Iowa State University – $129. Providence College Hockey Camp – $149. Texas Int’l Airlines – $139. They’re overpriced, possibly condescending, and save you the trouble of going to a thrift store. They also have some highly distressed jeans/overalls. $650 for a “Vintage French Repaired Overall.” (So distressed it’s practically in crisis, but someone has snatched it up.)

Were you not cautioned about the edgy?

Were you not cautioned about the edgy?

Also – too late to buy this, or even find it on their site – a Kent State University sweatshirt. Unlike the others it’s unevenly stained and mottled with red. Unlike the others, it has half a dozen round dark red spots and holes over where a person’s heart might be.

I mentioned the Kent State University logo, didn’t I? Kent State, where in 1970 13 students were shot, four them killed, when Ohio National Guard troops opened fire? That Kent State.

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Let’s all yell GO JOE BIDEN.

Cleanse your news palate with some visually pleasing young Joe Biden.

Cleanse your news palate with some visually pleasing young Joe Biden.

People keep asking us to weigh on the new Ray Rice video. We said what we have to say back in May. (We did update the post, though.) So let’s not talk about Fox needing to apologize for making douchey jokes about taking the stairs. Or about boxer Floyd Mayweather (a man with his own history of domestic violence) apologizing for saying that the NFL overreacted in banning Rice. (A sorry-if apology, even. Oh, Floyd.) Or about an ESPN sportswriter failing to apologize for telling us that he’d assumed until he saw the second video that Janay had viciously attacked her gigantic football playing husband and provoked (!) him into accidentally (!) knocking her out (?) (“I wrongly and naively thought that she was the aggressor in the attack, that Rice reflexively shoved her to fend her off and she slipped, fell and hit her head. I did not think a man could sucker-punch a woman on tape and have the police, a prosecutor, the victim and the image-conscious NFL all work to treat the assaulter in a sympathetic fashion.” I’M SORRY, JASON WHITLOCK, WHAT SPECIAL MAGICAL PLANET DO YOU LIVE ON.)

No, instead, let’s talk about Vice President Biden’s off-the-cuff awesomeness in responding to the situation. Courtesy of Jezebel, here’s what he said on The Today Show this morning:

It’s never, never, never the woman’s fault. No man has a right to raise a hand to a woman…[.] The one regret I have is we call it domestic violence as if it’s a domesticated cat. It is the most vicious form of violence there is, because not only the physical scars are left, the psychological scars that are left. This whole culture for so long has put the onus on the woman. What were you wearing? What did you say? What did you do to provoke? That is never the appropriate question.

There’s more at the link.

SorryWatch’s opinion hasn’t changed since our post in May: the horrendousness of Rice’s apology (to various members of the Ravens’ organization rather than to his wife) and the Ravens’ craven social-media attempt to make Janay responsible for her own beating tell you more than any video.

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Nothing to see. Nothing to hear. Certainly nothing to dance to.

Photo; Sumac. Public domain.

I guess I didn’t run into your friends who always go to Burning Man because I was doing something else.

I won’t try to say what Burning Man is, but it is not a music festival. This year, I was briefly at a hot spring 15 miles from Black Rock City (BRC), and I could still hear the throbbing, but it is not a music festival. There is music, dancing occurs, but it is not a music festival, and the organizers don’t want it to be one.

They don’t want people to think of Burning Man as a “venue.” A venue for well-known Djs. Such as Paul Oakenfold.

Photo: Sumac Public domain.

Could be they were doing something else.

As reported in that ephemeral publication, BRC Weekly, if people think of Burning Man as a venue for someone they want to hear, they may go for the wrong reasons. “[T]hat person is less likely to be acculturated if they chase the music only,” says Marian Goodell, Burning Man’s Chief Engagement Officer.

If they’re not acculturated, they may fail to bring water and sunscreen and personal lighting, and steal bikes, and whine, and leave garbage in the portapotties, and get dehydrated and crawl out on the playa to die, and thus create annoying speedbumps. (I said that, Goodell didn’t.)

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CeeLo sincerely apologizes for…wait, what?


Whhhhy? Uh! Whhhhy? Uh!

Let me 1st praise god for exoneration fairness & freedom! Secondly I sincerely apologize for my comments being taken so far out of context.

— CeeLo Green (@CeeLoGreen) September 1, 2014

Uh, no. Let ME apologize for my comments being taken so far out of context. The comments that I am about to make. Continue reading

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“You put in other details”

The news is making me so sad right now. We have any number of terrible apologies we could talk about, but instead, can we focus on a good one? (I realize we’ve had a lot of good apologies on the site lately. I DO NOT APOLOGIZE.)

This lovely apology is from Letters of Note, a delightful web site (and now a gorgeously published, oversized, heavy-papered, art-filled thick book) by Shaun Usher that looks at “fascinating letters, postcards, telegrams, faxes, and memos” — often with scans and photos of the letters in question. (The book features new content as well as posts from the site.)

This delightful letter was sent to the Royal Australian Air Force’s Rocket Range at Woomera.


Fifty two (52) years later, Denis got a reply. It begins with a fine apology for tardiness.

Australian Government
Department of Defence
Defence Science and
Technology Organisation

Mr Denis Cox


Dear Mr Cox, 

I would like to thank you for your letter we received on 20th Oct. 1957 regarding the design of your rocketship. I apologise for the late response to your letters. You will appreciate, that as you requested “A Top Scientist” that uses the “WOOMERA ROCKET RANGE” it took a little while for your letter to get to me and in addition, it took some time to provide due consideration to your ideas. 

Go read the whole charming reply at Letters of Note. Here’s the conclusion: 

I remember as a boy designing rocket ships and planes at about the same time that you wrote your letter. I don’t know why or how, but somehow I was lucky enough to get to a position where I now head a team that designs planes and engines that will soon fly at Mach 8, or around 9000km/hr. I am proud to tell you that these planes will have an “AUSTRALIAN MARKING” on them as you indicated they should have. My one hope is that we do a sufficiently good job that is worthy of the inspiration, dreams and hopes that you provided in your letter those many years ago. 

Once again, thank you for your letter. 


Allan Paul BSc PhD MEngSc
Research Leader Applied Hypersonics
Air Vehicles Division

Thank you, nice scientists (and authors and artists and public servants) who write back to children. Even belatedly.


wee dreamy scientific spawn of snarly

Posted in Belated Apologies, Good apologies, Scientific apologies | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

SorryWatch Reads: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

file92862-300x450Rainbow Rowell is best known for her young adult novels, Eleanor & Park (one of the best YA novels I have ever read) and Fangirl (which many people like even more than Eleanor & Park, and which my 12-year-old daughter will kill me soon for not having read). I have Rowell’s new grownup book, Landline, but because I am contrary (HA HA 12-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER I HAVEN’T READ THE FAULT IN OUR STARS EITHER COME AT ME BRO) I decided to read her 2011 grownup e-pistolary novel Attachments instead.

Attachments is fluffy historical fiction, set in 1999, when everyone was in a tizzy about the impending Y2K global meltdown that did not happen. Continue reading

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A fab sports apology! It’s like a beautiful unicorn!

This is our fourth post in a row about a GOOD apology. A SorryWatch record!

Republican political strategist Mark McKinnon has said he’s sorry to cyclist Greg LeMond for repeatedly slurring his name and career. It’s not the best apology on the planet (it’s no Klosterman), but it’s pretty dang fine.

Trust me. I have a hat.

Trust me. I have a hat.

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Alas for human dignity, it was a burrito

Photo: randy stewart. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike Generic 2.0 license.

Insert burrito joke here.

Ugly stuff is and has been happening in Ferguson, Missouri. People were talking about it on Twitter the other night. Nate Silver, noted statistician, and now editor of the FiveThirtyEight blog for ESPN, joined in with an apercu about police use of force. Against Nate Silver.

As reported in New York magazine’s “Daily Intelligencer,” it took eight tweets to tell the story. And get him one heap o’ scorn.

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Posted in Apologies and the Law, Media Apologies, Twitpologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Takei’s sorry


"George Takei" by Diane Krauss (DianeAnna) - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons -

Most able-fingered people don’t realize what it’s like when your fingers are stuck like that.

George Takei posts fun stuff on Facebook daily, mostly photos with amusing captions. It’s working out – he’s got nearly seven and a half million Likes. People like his stuff who aren’t even Trekkies.

You can’t please everybody all the time. You can’t even please 7.5 million people all the time. So Takei’s used to complaints about this or that image. He took it in stride when people complained about a recent post. This was a photo of a woman standing up in front of a wheelchair so she could reach a high shelf in a liquor display.




The joke was that apparently she didn’t need the wheelchair since she could stand perfectly well when she saw something she wanted, like booze.

But that’s not how it works.

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Watching apologies in real time!

This morning, the web site Jezebel put up a post calling out its upper management. The post was headlined We Have a Rape Gif Problem and Gawker Media Won’t Do Anything About It. Basically, misogynist trolls have been posting multiple images of gruesome rapes and violence against women in Jezebel’s comments section, over and over, in bulk. With the site’s current commenting software, Kinja, the only way to get rid of these comments has been to hunt them down and manually delete them…but still they return, over and over, like swallows returning to Capistrano or syphilitic sores on the tiny tiny weiners of the fellows who think that threatening women is funny.

Wrote Jezebel’s editors: Continue reading

Posted in Belated Apologies, Bropology, Corporate Apologies, Good apologies, Media Apologies, Social Media Apologies, Twitpologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment